Wednesday, December 17, 2008
Two Beans and a Pea Salad
adapted from a Gourmet recipe
Serves 6 side dishes
1 1/2 cup frozen shelled edamame
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tsp ground cumin
1 15 oz. can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 15 oz. can black-eyed peas, drained and rinsed
2 cups chopped celery
3 tbls fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
1 tsp finely chopped garlic
salt and pepper to taste
Cook the edamame in boiling salted water for about 4 minutes or until heated through. Drain them in a colander and rinse under cold water to stop the cooking.
Heat the oil in a small pan and cook the cumin stirring until fragrant about 1 min. Pour into a large bowl. Add the edamame and remaining ingredients toss with the oil and season with salt and pepper.
I just had to post this as soon as I took my first bite. I didn't even finish my lunch before taking a few shots and getting it up here. This was really what I needed today. A fresh easy filling salad.
It is very gray and wet here in Baltimore today and Robby (the husband and product tester) has his last law school exam of the semester tomorrow. So needless to say I will not be seeing him until tomorrow night.
I plan on making a big roast beef with mashed potatoes and salad for dinner which will be waiting for him to heat up at about 1:00 in the morning if he gets home by then. So the salad is just perfect for lunch.
Oh, and I pulled out some speck that I got at Balducci's last night.
Speck dell'Alto Adige is similar to prosciutto but is cured with garlic, bay leaves, juniper berries, and nutmeg. I don't usually like smoked meats but I am in love with this one. I have a really hard time not eating it in the car on the way home from the store. Try it sometime as an alternative to prosciutto which where I shop is more expensive than speck.
Saturday, December 6, 2008
Grand Marnier Crepe Cake
Gourmet March 2008
serves 8 to 12
6 large eggs
1 cup whole milk
3 cups chilled heavy cream, divided
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract, divided
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/8 tsp salt
1 cup confectioners sugar, divided
2 tablespoons grated orange zest, divided
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 tablespoon grand Marnier of Cointreau
Blend eggs, milk, 1/2 cup cream, and 1/2 tsp vanilla with flour, salt, 1/4 cup confectioners sugar, and 1 teaspoon zest in a blender until just smooth.
Brush a crepe pan or 10-inch nonstick skillet lightly with some melted butter, then heat over medium-high heat until hot. Pour in a scant 1/4 cup batter, immediately tilting and rotating skillet to coat bottom. Cook until underside is golden and top is just set, 15 to 45 seconds. Loosen edge of crepe with heatproof rubber spatula, then flip crepe over with your fingertips and cook 15 seconds more. Transfer to a plate. Continue making crepes, brushing skillet with butter each time and stacking on plate.
Beat remaining 2 1/2 cups cream, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, 3/4 cups confectioners sugar, 1 teaspoon zest, and Grand Marnier in a large deep bowl with an electric mixer until cream holds stiff peaks.
Center a crepe on a serving plate and spread with 1/4 cup cream. Continue stacking cremes and spreading with cream, ending with a crepe. Chill, covered, at least 4 hours and up to 24.
Friday, November 21, 2008
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
They come wrapped in paper and are weighed by the kilo with one kilo costing about $2.00. I use them for everything including just a snack. Most recently I made a unique memorable enchilada dish from Epicurious. It sounds a little unconventional, which it is, but after you make it you will see that is easy and will soon become a staple in you repertoire. Enjoy!
Wild Mushroom Enchiladas with Ancho Chili-Cream Sauce
Bon Appétit | June 1997
- 2 cups water
- 2 dried ancho chilies
- 4 large garlic cloves, peeled
- 2 cups whipping cream
- 4 teaspoons fresh lime juice
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 3/4 cup chopped onion
- 12 ounces fresh wild mushrooms (such as oyster and/or stemmed and sliced shiitake and portobello)
- 5 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
- 6 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
- 2 medium tomatoes, seeded, chopped
- 1 small avocado, pitted, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 8 6-inch-diameter corn tortillas
Bring 2 cups water to boil in small saucepan. Remove saucepan from heat, add chilies and soak 30 minutes. Drain chilies, reserving 6 tablespoons soaking liquid. Cut stems off chilies. Cut chilies open. Scrape out seeds and discard. Combine chilies, 6 tablespoons reserved soaking liquid and garlic in blender and puree until smooth.
Preheat oven to 350°F. Combine cream and chili puree in heavy large skillet. Bring to boil. Reduce heat; simmer 3 minutes. Whisk in lime juice. Season with salt. Strain sauce; return to skillet. (Sauce can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and chill.)
Melt butter in another heavy large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and mushrooms and sauté until onion is translucent and mushrooms are tender, about 5 minutes. Add cheese, cilantro, tomatoes and 3 tablespoons cream sauce. Simmer until just heated through, about 4 minutes. Stir in avocado. Season filling with salt and pepper. Remove from heat.
Bring remaining cream sauce to simmer over low heat. Cook 1 tortilla in cream mixture until softened, turning to coat, about 15 seconds. Carefully transfer tortilla to baking sheet. Repeat with remaining tortillas. Cover remaining sauce and keep warm. Spoon generous 1/3 cup filling down center of each tortilla. Roll up tortillas, enclosing filling completely. Arrange seam side down on same baking sheet. Cover enchiladas with foil.
Bake enchiladas until heated through, about 10 minutes. Transfer to plates. Spoon some sauce atop each. Serve, passing any remaining sauce separately.
Saturday, October 25, 2008
Penne with Green Beans and Goat Cheese
Adapted from Gordon Ramsey's Fast Food
10 oz penne
Salt and pepper
6 tbls butter
1 red chili, seeded and minced
1 rosemary sprig leaves chopped
9 oz. green beans trimmed, and sliced on the diagonal to 1 inch length
Extra virgin olive oil for drizzling
5 oz. goat cheese
1/3 cup toasted pine nuts
Boil a large pot of salted water and add pasta. Cook until al dente.
Meanwhile, melt the butter in a large pan, add the chili and rosemary and heat over low heat for 2 minutes. Turn up the heat and add the beans, and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, stirring until tender but not too soft.
Drain the pasta and toss with a little olive oil, then mix with the beans. Take the pasta off the heat and mix in the cheese. Season with salt and pepper and top with the pine nuts.
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
We drove up Saturday evening and met Donnie at Manhattan Motor Cars where he works. He was a few minutes late so I wasted no time in finding some good eats which happened to be one block away at a little convience store. I got coffee and samosas. One was Chicken which I had not tried before, I am used to just veggie. This is the first reason I love New York. It took me all of one block to find some cheap tasty eats. Not that everything is cheap, in fact most of it is ridiculously expensive but I will get to that later.
After an extensive and dreamy tour of the Bentley, Roles Royce, Lamborghini, etc. store we headed to the hotel to check in and change for dinner. Standing on the curb waiting for a taxi with no idea of where to go we started brainstorming. Did we want Italian, Mexican (Rosa Mexicana was great on the last trip) or maybe Sushi? Christopher chimed in for Sushi and then it was up to Donnie to pick the place. He decided on "Momo's" one of his favorites, and we were off.
When the taxi dropped us off and we walked into the restaurant I realized where we were. Morimoto's as in the Iron chef Morimoto. Now I am lucky enough to have eaten at one of his restaurants before in Philadelphia but this was even better. We went for it and ordered everything. Three appetisers, a Hugh plate of chef's sushi, and then entrees. I got the Duck Duck Duck which was perfect!
Oh, and the bathroom! I can't forget. Michelle tried to take a picture but I don't think it turned out. The toilets are those fancy $10,000 toilets with heated seat, spray, and blow dry for the down there parts. Crazy.
So we left full, "cleaned", and ready for more. Heading to the meatpacking district to do I don't know what. Donnie is always impressing me. We went to one of those fancy nightclubs I don't even know the name. There was a big line out front. We were inspected as Donnie talked to the man at the door. Then the rope opened and we were ushered in ahead of the beautiful New Yorkers waiting in the cold. I don't remember much from that part of the trip and I am definitely not sharing the pictures so lets skip ahead to the next day.
Get up, take Advil, drink lots of water, and shower. That is how the morning went. Then off to find food. Donnie the ever improving food host took us to a cheese shop where I got Speck (one of my favorite). This sounds funny for the first thing in the morning but it was followed by pastries from a shop down the street. Wonderful.
The day was spent shopping in Soho until we were hungry again and headed to The Spotted Pig for what was supposed to be one of the best hamburgers in NY. And it was. We waited for a little while but it was totally worth it. A blend of beef topped with Gorgonzola and placed on a flavorful grilled bun. It was so tender. I can't wait until there cookbook comes out so I can find the secret. (I asked the waitress they are working on it now)
Full again and getting late we left so our car would not turn back into a pumpkin and headed back to Maryland. Thank you Donnie, Robby, Christopher, and Michelle for a great night. Lets do it again soon.
Monday, October 6, 2008
So believe it or not I love Costco clams. They are cheap, fresh, and so tasty. They are farmed, but for a recipe like this where garlic and chilies play a big role the clams work perfectly. I got over 50little neck clams for under twenty dollar. I used half of them for this recipe and half will be for something new tomorrow night. Wash them well and check for any dead clams before starting.
Linguine with Clams
1 cup water
24 little neck clams
5-6 garlic cloves
1/3 cup olive oil
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
1/2 tsp dried oregano
3/4 pound fini linguine
1/2 cup shopped parsley
Bring the cup of water to a boil and drop in the clams, cover, and steam until the clams open.
Remove the clams to a plate with tongs reserving then straining the liquid with cheese cloth into a bowl. Remove the clams from their shells and coarsely chop them.
Meanwhile heat the garlic in the olive oil over medium heat. When it starts to sizzle turn the heat down to low and cook for 15 minutes so the oil is infused with the garlic. Add the red pepper and oregano and heat on low for 4 more minutes. Add the strained clam juice and turn up to boil cooking until reduced by half.
While the sauce cooks boil water and cook the pasta one minute less than recommended. Drain pasta and return to the pot adding sauce, clams, parsley, and salt to taste cook one more minute on low. Toss and serve.
Tuesday, September 30, 2008
Here is a quick note about this coming Thursday and the rest of the week for that matter. I have been invited to a food blogger's dinner at Woodberry Kitchen in Baltimore by Liz and Nathan Stambaugh who write "What's to Eat Baltimore?". I am very excited about this not only because I have not eaten at Woodberry, (where I plan on ordering; Baked Stuffed Clams Roasted green chile, bacon, bread crumbs, then Brick Oven Roasted Chicken Bread salad, peaches, almonds, tuscan kale, and if there is room Buttermilk Panna Cotta Cinnamon thin, rhubarb gumdrop, blackberries,) but I am excited that my blog is helping me to make new friends. I love food people, they are fun, interesting, opinionated, and there is usually something good to eat around them.
I also have Cook Book Club on Friday. We will be using The Herbal Kitchen by by Jerry Traunfeld and John Granen. My assignment is apps, and I have chosen the warm figs stuffed with bacon and goat cheese (mouth watering yet?). My week is looking good and it might end with a tomato canning day on Sunday. I will take as many pictures as possible and report back soon. Oh, and I need a name for my Cook Book Club which has been meeting for over a year now so any suggestions are greatly appreciated!
Wednesday, September 17, 2008
Raita is India's signature yogurt and vegetable condiment. This one would also be good on pita or naan.
Curried Trout with Chutney and Cucumber-Melon Raita
Bon Appétit | August 2007
The Bon Appétit Test Kitchen
1/2 cup plain whole-milk yogurt
1/3 cup diced unpeeled English hothouse cucumber
1/3 cup diced peeled cantaloupe
3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint, divided
2 large (8- to 9-ounce) trout fillets with skin
4 tablespoons mango-ginger chutney
2 teaspoons Madras curry powder
1/3 cup sliced almonds
2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
Mix first 3 ingredients in small bowl. Add 2 tablespoons mint; season generously with salt and pepper. Chill raita while preparing trout.
Place trout fillets, flesh side up, on platter or baking sheet. Brush each with 2 tablespoons chutney, covering top completely. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Sprinkle each fillet with 1 teaspoon curry powder. Sprinkle almonds evenly over fish; press very firmly to adhere.
Melt butter in large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add fish, almond side down, and cook until browned on bottom, about 4 minutes. Carefully turn fish over and sauté until cooked through, replacing any dislodged almonds, about 4 minutes. Transfer fish to plates; sprinkle remaining mint over. Spoon raita alongside.
Wednesday, September 3, 2008
So I woke up this morning looked in the fridge and discovered about a cup of uncooked corn kernels left over from a recipe last week. Since it was breakfast that I was looking for I decided to incorporate them into this basic johnnycakes recipe. They are fast, simple, and a great change from pancakes and waffles made with regular flour. You could either pour syrup over them (maple please, none of that corn syrup crap) or just eat them with butter and jam. The one I ate was right out of the pan, plain, it was great. They should warm up nicely in the toaster, but my husband Robby will be the tester of that theory tomorrow before work.
Fresh Corn Johnnycakes
2 1/2 cups fine ground corn meal
1 tsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. sugar
1 cup fresh corn kernels cup off the cob
2 1/4 boiling water
Mix the corn meal, salt, sugar, and corn together in a bowl. Then add the boiling water and mix well. Heat about 2 tbls of butter in a skillet until light brown and then turn the skillet to meadium low. Add 1/4 cup of the batter to the skillet for each cake pressing the top down a little to flatten the them. Cook for 6-8 mins on the first side or until brown. Turn them over and cook another 2-3 mins.
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
Here are the instructions:
1) Copy this list into your blog or journal, including these instructions.
2) Bold all the items you’ve eaten.
3) Cross out any items that you would never consider eating.
4) Optional extra: Post a comment here at www.verygoodtaste.co.uk linking to your results.
I have also added a few notes next to some items and thanks to the lead of Chocolate and Zucchini Blogger Clotilde Dusoulier, where I actually found this list, and stared some of my favorites.
I was missing 24 items. Not bad considering I have so much traveling I want to do and I have not been cooking all that long.
The VGT Omnivore’s Hundred:
2. Nettle tea
3. Huevos rancheros- I made this a few times for Robby for breakfast
4. Steak tartare- On honeymoon in Paris, it was much better than I expected
5. Crocodile- I don't know if it was crocodile or ailgator but I have had it a few time in Florida and also unfortuantly in Scranton, PA. Don't ask why.
6. Black pudding
7. Cheese fondue*
9. Borscht- After a 3 day juice fast that included beet juice I really can't stand anything with beets in it anymore. To bad.
10. Baba ghanoush
11. Calamari* I used to only like it fried but the grilled Calamari at Kali's Court in Fells Point is amazing so now I look for it grilled everywhere.
13. PB&J sandwich
14. Aloo gobi
15. Hot dog from a street cart
16. Epoisses*- I love pretty much any cheese.
17. Black truffle
18. Fruit wine made from something other than grapes- I worked in the wine indrustry for almost 5 years, I have tried some pretty crazy wine.
19. Steamed pork buns- Only in America, I can't wait to get to Asia.
20. Pistachio ice cream
21. Heirloom tomatoes
22. Fresh wild berries*
23. Foie gras*
24. Rice and beans
25. Brawn, or head cheese
26. Raw Scotch Bonnet pepper
27. Dulce de leche
28. Oysters*- I made myself like them and now it has turned to love.
30. Bagna cauda
31. Wasabi peas
32. Clam chowder in a sourdough bowl
33. Salted lassi
34. Sauerkraut- Another Juice from the juice fast, but I still like it with Sausages.
35. Root beer float
36. Cognac with a fat cigar- Although I prefer Armenac
37. Clotted cream tea
38. Vodka jelly/Jell-O
39. Gumbo- Bu tnever a great one, I still have time.
41. Curried goat
42. Whole insects
44. Goat’s milk- My daughter Aveline drinks this instead of cow's milk.
45. Malt whisky from a bottle worth £60/$120 or more
47. Chicken tikka masala- really good at the Himilayan House in Locust Point
49. Krispy Kreme original glazed doughnut- fresh and hot is best
50. Sea urchin
51. Prickly pear
55. McDonald’s Big Mac Meal- not a fan of the beef at McDonald's but unfortuantly I do like the chicken nuggets. I only let myself ge them about once a year.
57. Dirty gin martini*- Robby makes a great martini
58. Beer above 8% ABV
59. Poutine- Can't wait to get back to Montreal
60. Carob chips
61. S’mores- I just made some last weekend with Peanut butter cups instead of chocolate while camping in PA.
66. Frogs’ legs
67. Beignets, churros, elephant ears or funnel cake
69. Fried plantain
70. Chitterlings, or andouillette
72. Caviar and blini
73. Louche absinthe
74. Gjetost, or brunost
76. Baijiu- Robby loves it at the Korean resturant
77. Hostess Fruit Pie*
78. Snail- Too many in Paris
79. Lapsang souchong
81. Tom yum
82. Eggs Benedict
84. Tasting menu at a three-Michelin-star restaurant.
85. Kobe beef- Only the American Version never the realy stuff.
90. Criollo chocolate
92. Soft shell crab- I eat them whenever I can.
93. Rose harissa
95. Mole poblano*
96. Bagel and lox
97. Lobster Thermidor
98. Polenta- I really want to learn how to make it the right way not the intant stuff.
99. Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee
Monday, August 11, 2008
Saturday was a beautiful day in Baltimore and since my hardworking husband was putting in overtime I took my daughter Aveline to a pick your own farm. We picked blackberries, blueberries, and over 20 pounds of peaches. By Sunday morning the blackberries were gone but I was determined to make the blueberries last so I made jam out of them. What a great idea because it intensified their flavor and I have preserved them in jars so they will last. As for the peaches, if I can hold back on eating all 20 pounds minus the two I have already consumed then they also might be giving me great happiness in January in the form of jam, chutney, preserves, or maybe ice cream thanks to my friend Coralie who has lent me her ice cream maker.
Then using my new canning book I followed the instructions for cleaning the jars and lids, filled them with jam and sealed them in the hot water for about 20 mins. I am planning on doing this with some of the peaches and giving them away at Christmas.
Sunday, June 29, 2008
The idea for this blog starting with my, as yet to be named, cook book club in Baltimore. I started this club last year with a few friends to cook and explore some of the many cook books that I a have wanted to try. The first book was Lee Brothers Southern Living Cook Book and a few rules were given. Each month the rotating host will pick a cookbook that the members are to cook out of. Each person is assigned a course to cook and they bring the ingredients to the host's house and we cook together, learning and making mistakes. I am going to put a list of the books that we have used up later. The pictures here are from June's cook book club Fish Without a Doubt by Rick Moonen which was also Gourmet magazine's book of the month.
Wednesday, June 18, 2008
I made this great salad today taking a recipe from Raising the Salad Bar by Catherine Walters and tweaking it a little. I added some browned onions to give it a little savory bite and ground coriander to give it another dimension. Plus some fresh herbs from my garden and I think it's perfect! Enjoy.
Corn and Wheat Berry Salad
10 ears of fresh corn
1 cup wheat berries
1 red onion chopped
1 tbls fresh parsley chopped
1 tbls fresh lemon thyme chopped
1/4 cup olive oil
Zest and Juice of 1 lime
1 tsp. ground coriander
1 tsp. ground cumin
Salt and pepper
Shuck the corn place it in a large pot and cover it with water. Boil the corn until done about 5-10 mins. Remove the corn from the water and boil the wheat berries in the water until done about 30 mins. Remove the corn kernels from the cob and place in a bowl with the cooked and drained wheat berries.
Heat olive oil in the large pot and cook the onions on low until brown and sweet about 20 mins. Mix the onions, herbs, zest and juice of the lime, coriander, cumin and season with salt and pepper. Mixed well and serve either cold or warm.
Monday, June 16, 2008
You really can find some amazing things at the Farmer's Market. I discovered these beautiful zucchini flowers a few weeks ago. They are usually something you see on TV or in cookbooks but can rarely find so I didn't pass up the opportunity to make them. I used a few things I had in the fridge and was able to make this easy weekend lunch.
Stuffed Zucchini Flowers
2 cups fresh whole milk ricotta
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
5 thin slices prosciutto finely chopped
1 tbls. fresh mixed herbs copped
salt and pepper
10-12 baby zucchini with flowers
1/3 cup flour
1/3 cup cornstarch
1/2 cup sparkling water/ or club soda
Vegetable oil for frying
Mix together the first five ingredients in a medium bowl. Using a small spoon stuff each flower with about 2 tbls. of the cheese mixture. Tie the end for the flowers closed using a fresh chive.
Heat the oil in a skillet until hot but not smoking. Meanwhile mix the flour, cornstarch, sparkling water and some salt and pepper to taste in another bowel. Let sit for 15 mins. Dip the flower end of the zucchini into the batter and fry in the oil until lightly brown.
Saturday, May 31, 2008
There are very few foods that I don't like. Until just recently asparagus was one of them. When I don't like a food I find it best to search out the best possible specimen and simply prepare it. This is what I did with the asparagus. I found some amazing asparagus at the Baltimore's Farmer's Market a few weeks ago and roasted them simply in the oven with good salt, olive oil, and pepper. The thinness and freshness of the asparagus made them taste sweet and crisp after roasting. Just wonderful. I went back this week and was happy to see that the same eastern shore farmers had more this week. They have two kinds one are long and thin and the other are shorter and fatter. I so far prefer the thin ones but I hope I will grow to love them all. I spoke with the farmer and explained my previous aversion to asparagus. He said that compost is the key to making them sweet. I asked him if I could take a picture and like a proud dad he inspected the pile and then smiled. I love a proud farmer!
Friday, May 30, 2008
This is a very exciting time for me. I have found this great medium to share my obsession with cooking, food and my love of life. This is my first blog and will be used as a practice to improve my writing and photography skills. I plan like many other blogs to contribute great personally tested recipes, cooking tools that I love, restaurant experiences, and beautiful pictures that will keep you coming back to see whats new. I hope to learn from other food blogs and perfect it. I want this site to be top on the list for beauty and trusted information. Thank you for reading, enjoy!