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I’m on a cauliflower kick, what can I say? I seem to be eating a lot of it, roasted, with various toppings. I think it’s because my friend Laurel mentioned it, then it was in the paper (something about a cauliflower trend—yes I still read a paper paper) and then I just couldn’t get it out of my head.
Besides cutting out wheat, I’m avoiding large servings of grains in general, so the idea of something mild and non-grain that takes flavors very well —–a sauce depository, if you will—-is very appealing. I was never a huge fan of cauliflower in the past, but I think, as with many veggies, I just had to find my favorite cooking method. Roasting wins.
First, preheat the oven to 375F. Slice the cauliflower into pieces about 1/4 inch to 1/3 inch thick, brush with olive oil and roast for about 20 minutes (just like the broccoli here). If you’re going to make the vinaigrette below, throw in a clove or two of garlic and roast them while you’re at it.
When the cauliflower is tender but still firm, with browning on the edges, it’s done. At least, that’s the done-ness I like.
At this point you could serve it with any number of sauces or toppings: peanut sauce? bread crumb/ nut topping? curry?
I made this vinaigrette in homage to a bread dipping sauce from a favorite restaurant, Passion8 Bistro in Fort Mill. Charlotte area friends, seriously, you MUST go there. It’s this funky little farm-to-fork place in the middle of nowhere. Besides great food, it has loads of character.
But I digress.
The vinaigrette is a loose combination of:
Roasted Garlic, minced
Chopped Olives (I used green ones but kalamata would be excellent)
a spoonful of Capers
a judicious amount of red pepper flakes (I’m addicted)
Red Wine Vinegar
Salt and Pepper to taste
I usually do a little more olive oil than vinegar and just add however much I like of the rest of the stuff, to taste.
Charlotte friends, I feel compelled to mention a couple of places we’ve eaten recently that, in addition to Passion8 Bistro, were just outstanding.
- The King’s Kitchen (which is owned by the same guy that owns Roosters, which I also love) is outstanding—-sort of re-imagined upscale meat and three, and btw it’s non-profit, which is totally fascinating and you should read about it on their website. I had the hangar steak. Yum!
- Doan’s Vietnamese Restaurant: try the hotpots!! It’s like a Vietnamese broth fondue. So excellent and fun. Best tomyum broth I’ve ever had.
- And one more: Zeitouni’s Mediterranean Grill at Toringdon in Ballantyne. Seriously, how did I not get a clue about this place earlier? The falafel is TO DIE FOR!
Okay, that’s a lot of exclamation points, but really, it’s been good dining lately. What about you? What’s got you inspired in the kitchen/ out to eat lately?
By: Emily Smith Pearce,
Blog: Emily Smith Pearce
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I threw this together the other night when I needed something pretty quick and had to use what I had on hand. It was a perfect easy supper.
It’s inspired by Rachael Ray’s Calabacitas Casserole, which is yummy but more involved, with no beans. I once had it at my sister-in-law’s house, and was immediately sold.
My casserole is based on three main ingredients: black beans, salsa, and pre-cooked polenta. Anything else is icing on the cake.
Quick Black Bean and Polenta Casserole
Measurements are approximated. What you want is enough salsa to give the beans plenty of flavor.
2-3 cups canned or pre-cooked black beans, drained (I used up leftovers I had cooked the day before)
1/2 to 1 jar chunky salsa (I used Herdez salsa, which was great, but would’ve been better semi-drained. I think semi-drained Ro-tel would also be excellent, and maybe even Mexican-style stewed tomatoes)
1 tube prepared polenta, sliced into 1/3 inch rounds (you could also cook your own, then chill and slice)
Optional add-ins: diced scallions, cilantro, chopped veggies, spinach, cheese
Preheat oven to 375 F. I made a smaller version of this (since it was just for me) and cooked it in the toaster oven.
Place the beans in an oiled casserole dish (maybe 8 x 8), and add enough salsa to suit your taste. You want a little less salsa than beans, but enough salsa to add lots of flavor. Lay the polenta rounds on top and brush them with a little olive oil.
Bake for 35 minutes or so at 375 F, then add, if you feel like it, a handful of spinach and chopped scallions, and turn up the heat to 400 F. When the spinach is wilted, the polenta is getting crispy, and the beans are bubbling, it’s done.
The polenta adds structure and has such a great creamy/ crispy texture that I really didn’t miss having cheese. This one will definitely go on my repeat list. I think I’ll add more spinach next time and maybe cilantro. Hmmm…what about sweet potato?
For more of my recipes and recipe trials, click here.
You have less than a day left to join the giveaway for a gorgeous Dawn Hanna print. Details here. All you have to do is comment about which print is your favorite—-you won’t be added to a mailing list. Just enjoy!
The ongoing broccoli battle in our house is, I believe, finally won. No, it wasn’t over whether or not certain people will eat it. The kids don’t love it, but they’ll eat it without much of a fuss. The battle is over the best way to cook it.
Hubs prefers stir-frying with soy sauce, but I find that time-consuming and too hands-on to do all the time. For a long time my favorite method was steaming, then rolling in olive oil, garlic, and breadcrumbs. Hubs ate this broccoli dutifully but missed the stir-fry texture.
Enter Mollie Katzen’s vegetable roasting guide from Vegetable Heaven. I’ve used the roasting guide so much that the book naturally opens to that page. It’s great for many a veggie, but at our house, it’s helped us find the broccoli method that results in the perfect texture + flavor+ easy-ness.
Add a drizzle of balsamic vinaigrette, and you have us battling again, over seconds.
So, here’s my adaptation of the original Mollie Katzen recipe. It’s less of a recipe, more of an idea for you:
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Slice your broccoli florets in half. I find this helps things cook a little faster and more evenly.
Brush a cookie tray with olive oil, and arrange the florets on it.
I usually cook about 20 minutes, but check at 15 minutes to see how it’s going. Personally, I like the broccoli still firm but tender, with some brown edges.
Serve with your favorite vinaigrette. Here’s what we use:
In a jar or bottle, combine:
about an inch Balsamic Vinegar
about an inch and a half, maybe more, Olive Oil
a big squirt/ soup spoonful Dijon Mustard (you can use powdered mustard here as a substitute)
small squirt of Honey, to taste
freshly ground Pepper
dusting to half a handful freshly grated Parmesan (*optional)
I always taste the dressing and adjust seasonings to suit.
Enjoy! For more of my cooking posts, click here or on the “Food” category.
Do NOT forget to join the giveaway for a gorgeous Dawn Hanna print. There’s no downside here, people. You won’t be added to a mailing list. Just check out her gorgeous work and decide which is your fave, then comment on it. You do not have to live in the U.S. to enter.
You may think I’m a vegetarian from all my veggie posts, but I DO eat meat. Just not a lot of it. More on that here.
We love burgers around here, but I’m always trying to get my people to eat ones that don’t involve red meat. The turkey ones always seem to need a bit of doctoring, in my experience. I love the Mar-a-Lago burgers championed by Oprah, but really, they’re just too much work for a weeknight and the flavors, while delicious, don’t really go with our favorite toppings (like ketchup and pickles).
These are a good compromise, and, with a few recent tweaks, they’ve entered into that rare realm which is the full-family-seal-of-approval. Like, all four members. I’m probably jinxing that status just by typing this, but I’m willing to risk it, just for you.
My recipe is adapted from this one.
Favorite Turkey Burgers
1/2 cup rolled oats*
1 1/2 pounds ground turkey (I use breast meat)*
3 TB mayonnaise
1/4 to 1/2 cup chopped onion (the finer the better, in order to trick the kids)
1 TB Worcestershire sauce
dash of hot sauce
good sprinkling of sweet paprika
a judicious amount of ground pepper
1. If your turkey meat is fairly dry, moisten the oats with about a tablespoon of water and let rest for a minute or two. If the meat has a fair amount of water content already, skip this step.
2. Combine with other ingredients. I hate doing this with my hands so I use two big spoons. Mix just enough to get it well-combined and make into patties.
3. You can grill these, but I find it’s actually a lot easier to cook them in my cast iron pan on the stove. They fall apart easily on the grill. I cook them at medium low for several minutes on each side to make sure they’re all the way done. This way the outsides don’t burn. Check to make sure there’s no pink.
4. Add toppings and enjoy!
*So, like many turkey burger recipes, the mother recipe called for bread crumbs. Since I’m not eating wheat, I could use GF bread crumbs, but I decided instead to try oatmeal. Bingo! Totally works and in fact is an improvement in my book.
*Last night I discovered I had a pound of turkey, not a pound and a half. The whole mixture was gooey (ew!) so I added a second half cup of oatmeal. I was a little nervous about the gamble, but they turned out great, with no comments from the peanut gallery. And as a bonus, they used less meat.
One question I have for you—-all turkey burger recipes seem to have something like mayo in them for, I guess, texture and flavor. Do you think the mayo nixes the health benefits of changing to turkey meat? Do you think I could skip it?
And one more question: anybody have a fantastic gluten-free vegan burger recipe? I know, sounds like a tall order, but I’m totally convinced there’s one out there. So far I haven’t done any trials, but let me know if you’re ahead of me.
For more recipe trials and food posts, look here.
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, Arts & Leisure
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, Oxford World's Classics
, christmas dinner
, isabella beeton
, Mrs Beeton
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With Christmas approaching, we are looking towards the food we’ll share on the day itself. If you’re looking for ideas, who better to consult that Mrs Isabella Beeton herself, who authored the seminal Household Management at just 22 years old. Below is her sage advice on that classic Christmas meat, roast goose.
4 large onions
¼ lb. of bread crumbs
1 ½ oz. of butter
salt and pepper to taste
Choosing and Trussing
Select a goose with a clean white skin, plump breast, and yellow feet: if these latter are red, the bird is old. Should the weather permit, let it hang for a few days: by so doing, the flavour will be very much improved. Pluck, singe, draw, and carefully wash and wipe the goose; cut off the neck close to the back, leaving the skin long enough to turn over; cut off the feet at the first joint, and separate the pinions at the first joint. Beat the breast-bone flat with a rolling-pin, put a skewer though the under part of each wing, and having drawn up the legs closely, put a skewer into the middle of each, and pass the same quite through the body. Insert another skewer into the small of the leg, bring it close down to the side bone, run it through, and do the same to the other side. Now cut off the end of the vent, and make a hole in the skin sufficiently large for the passage of the rump, in order to keep in the seasoning.
Make a sage-and-onion stuffing of the above ingredients; put it into the body of the goose, and secure it firmly at both ends, by passing the rump through the hole made in the skin, and the other end by tying the skin of the neck to the back; by this means the seasoning will not escape. Put it down to a brisk fire, keep it well basted, and roast from 1 ½ to 2 hours, according to the size. Remove the skewers, and serve with a tureen of good gravy, and one of well-made apple-sauce. Should a very highly-flavoured seasoning be preferred, the onions should not be parboiled, but minced raw: of the two methods, the mild seasoning in far superior. A ragout, or pie, should be made of the giblets, or they may be stewed down to make gravy. Be careful to serve the goose before the breast falls, or its appearance will be spoiled by coming flattened to the table. As this is rather a troublesome joint to carve, a large quantity of gravy should not be poured round the goose, but sent in a tureen.
Time – A large goose, 1 ¾ hour; a moderate-sized one, 1 ¼ hour to 1 ½ hour.
Seasonable from September to March; but in perfection from Michaelmas to Christmas.
Average cost, 5s. 6d. each. Sufficient for 8 or 9 persons.
A teaspoon of made mustard, a saltspoonful of salt, a few grains of cayenne, mixed with a glass of port wine, are sometimes poured into the goose by a slit made in the apron. This sauce is, by many persons, considered an improvement.
Mrs Beeton’s Book of Household Management is a founding text of Victorian middle-class identity. It offers highly authoritative advice on subjects as diverse as fashion, child-care, animal husbandry, poisons, and the management of servants. The Oxford World’s Classics edition is an abridged version, edited by Nicola Humble, which does justice to its high status as a cookery book, while also suggesting ways of approaching this massive, hybrid text as a significant document of social and cultural history.
For over 100 years Oxford World’s Classics has made available the broadest spectrum of literature from around the globe. Each affordable volume reflects Oxford’s commitment to scholarship, providing the most accurate text plus a wealth of other valuable features, including expert introductions by leading authorities, voluminous notes to clarify the text, up-to-date bibliographies for further study, and much more.
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Image credit: Crispy grilled goose for Christmas. Photo by Chikei Yung, iStockphoto.
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Happy Halloween! It’s officially soup and pumpkin season—so, pumpkin soup.
I don’t know about you, but on the whole, I’m way more into savory pumpkin dishes than sweet. The natural sweetness of the pumpkin is just begging for a little sour/ hot/ salty complement.
Here’s a little riff on a Williams-Sonoma recipe (theirs is Butternut Squash and Roasted Garlic Puree from the Soup book):
Pumpkin Soup with Chipotle
1 Hokkaido pumpkin (also called Red Kuri or Baby Red Hubbard squash)—you could probably use any similar winter squash, but I’m partial to these
5 or 6 garlic cloves
a few tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup water
2 onions, chopped
5 cups broth (chicken or veggie)
Salt and pepper
Chipotle with adobo sauce (canned, located with Mexican grocery items)
First, preheat your oven to 350. Peel the pumpkin and cut into quarters or sixths. Scoop out the squishy middle and the seeds.
On a cookie sheet or roasting pan, brush the pumpkin and garlic cloves with oil, then pour in the water. Roast until soft and golden, 35 plus minutes, until soft and golden.
Meanwhile, saute onions until softened. If you have a stick blender (a soupmaker’s very best friend), combine the onions, pumpkin, and garlic all in your soup pot with the broth. Blend. If you don’t have a stick blender, get one. You’ll love it. In the meantime, use part of the broth to blend up the veggies in your blender, a batch at a time. Then combine with all the broth in the soup pot.
Season with salt and pepper to taste. In individual bowls, garnish with a little teaspoon or so chipotle/ adobo sauce, according to your taste. I never use a full can at once, so I usually freeze the rest of the can to have on hand in the freezer. Love me some chipotle. Squeeze a little lime on top. Yum.
If you have non-spice-loving eaters at your table, just leave the chipotle out. Not that you needed me to tell you that.
Last year at our school’s pumpkin fest, someone made some fantabulous curry pumpkin soup (sounds weird, tastes great) but I never figured out who made it or what recipe they used. ISHR friends, anyone know the whereabouts of said chef or recipe? Or do you have a curried pumpkin recipe? I’d love to try it.
What are you dressing up as? I had hoped to be Effie Trinket from The Hunger Games but realized I just didn’t have the time to devote to making a costume. After all, my little witch and my little green ninja have to come first in the Halloween department. Maybe I’ll have a moment to paint my face, though.
Here’s hoping you have power and water. My prayers go out to those of you who don’t, and I hope all will soon be restored.
Also, in other news, if you live in the Charlotte area, our local chapter of the WNBA (no, it’s not basketball, it’s Women’s National Book Association) is a great place to meet people who love books. We’ve got writers, booksellers, editors, agents, and booklovers of all kinds. Our next meeting is a cookbook event called “A Toast to Cookbooks” at Total Wine on Monday November 12. Details about the event and our organization here. Our last event, a multi-author dinner called Bibliofeast, was way, way fun.
Good night, and enjoy your treats, everyone!
I’ve always made tabbouleh from the box because it’s so easy and quite good, but the box mixes aren’t in every store here in Germany. This time I found only plain bulghur so decided to make it from scratch using Mark Bittman’s How to Cook Everything Vegetarian.
I still think box-mix tabbouleh is decent, but making it from scratch definitely kicks things up a notch, and it’s really very easy. The most time-consuming part is chopping the herbs and veggies, but that’s really no big deal. It’s a real herb love-fest.
I added a little red bell pepper and chick peas in addition to the usual tomato and cucumber to give the salad some more heft. I think I may also have used scallions instead of white onion. It was super delicious. Recipe here.
We had our school festival over the weekend, and as always, there’s great international food there. I keep dreaming about these wonderful tamales and salsa and also, some fantastic Egyptian falafel. The falafel was green! And full of flavor. Note to self: Learn how to make tamales and Egyptian falafel.
What about you? Made any good salads lately?
It’s that time of year again – a day full of everything cress-like and boy does that let you in for a peppery treat! It’s the annual Watercress Festival!
Not only are there food stalls and numerous cookery demonstrations there is the chance to have a tour round a real watercress farm and have your photo taken with one of the falcons that help protect the cress from any unwanted visitors.
Even better are the World Famous Watercress Soup Championships and the World Watercress Eating Championships that challenge the general public to the max! How many different ways can you eat watercress?
So, why is it that we choose to celebrate Watercress?
Watercress is a salad leaf that has been enjoyed for many years and with very good reason! . . . Watercress contains MORE vitamin C than oranges, MORE calcium than milk and MORE iron than spinach! And because of its consumption brings so many benefits to our health it is considered to be a first-class ‘superfood’.
What’s more, watercress tastes incredible! You could try it in a classic watercress soup, cheese and watercress sandwiches or even mix it up a little and explore other combinations. We at Secret Seed HQ have taken a fancy to the Chicken and Watercress Stir Fry and have made our own addition with our home-grown Mingo Mung bean sprouts! Mmmmmmmmmmmm!
A few fun facts about Watercress:
A word of warning though:
Watercress is NOT the same as cress. Although it still has a nice peppery taste and can also be eaten in sandwiches and salads it is grown on a much larger scale from fresh spring water in streams.
By: Emily Smith Pearce,
Blog: Emily Smith Pearce
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One of my New Year’s resolutions is to learn some new “more exciting” vegetable dishes, even if the kids won’t eat them. I figure more interesting veggies will mean more veggies eaten, at least for me (though hopefully my husband will eat them too). After all, nothing tastes very good if it’s just nuked in the microwave. And my kids tend to try new things when I’m eating them, especially if I don’t serve it to them or try to make them eat it.
So, I’m looking to one of my favorite blogs, 101 cookbooks, for inspiration, and for some reason her cauliflower recipes are just calling to me. Ha ha ha! No, but seriously, she makes cauliflower seem so delicious and fascinating.
I tried this recipe the other night, though I have to admit I did the lazy-I’m-not-going-to-the-grocery-store-again version with ginger paste (rather than fresh) and no chilis (not easy to find here), thinking the kids might eat it if it wasn’t too spicy. My six-year-old ate one bite after being bribed with a Skittle. She didn’t like it, but I’ll try again. The three-year-old wouldn’t touch it. I thought it was really good, though, and so did my husband. Since I had no chilis, I sprinkled a little red pepper flakes on top. I went really easy on the salt, but needed to add a little more. The difference between the slightly salted and properly salted versions was like, totally decent vs. totally delicous. I’m always trying to cut salt, but sometimes it’s necessary.
One thing that struck me about the recipe—–I had never thought of slicing cauliflower rather than cutting it in chunks. It’s so simple but really it makes the whole dish so much easier to cook and eat. So much more appealing, too.
I also finally broke down and bought Mark Bittman’s tome How to Cook Everything Vegetarian. It’s so huge (perfect e-book possibility, methinks,but it doesn’t seem to exist in that format), but chock full of good stuff to try. The author of 101 cookbooks, Heidi Swanson, has a book coming out in the spring—yay!
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By: Emily Smith Pearce,
Blog: Emily Smith Pearce
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I whipped these up the other night with a favorite basic bean filling recipe. It’s from Stephen Raichlen’s Healthy Latin Cooking. It’s a great book, but funny enough, as with many cookbooks, I gravitate toward one very simple recipe and just make it over and over. I really have to explore it more but for now, here’s the recipe. It actually is part of a dish called Bean Tortillas with Honduran “Butter,” but I’ve only ever made the bean part, though I’m sure the complete three-part recipe would be great.
adapted from Stephen Raichlen’s Healthy Latin Cooking
1 1/2 cups cooked or canned red kidney beans (available in Germany! as opposed to black beans, which I have yet to find)
3 TB minced onions (I use dried when I’m in a hurry)
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 tsp ground cumin
1 cup chicken stock
In a skillet or saucepan over high heat, combine the beans, onions, garlic, cumin, and stock. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to medium, and simmer for 5 minutes, or until all the stock has been absorbed. Remove from the heat and let cool for 2 to 3 minutes. Mash the beans with the back of a spoon.
I put the beans on top of a toasted corn tortilla, then added avocado and a homemade salsa made with tomatoes, onion, and a little of some kind of green chili that you find here. It’s not jalapeno but it’ll do.
If you know me well, you’ve surely heard me mourn the dearth of Mexican food in Germany. Thankfully a friend introduced me to www.mex-al.de, where you can order, among other delicacies, corn tortillas. You can get the flour kind in the grocery store, but to me, corn tortillas are the taste of Mexico.
For those of you who enjoyed the cauliflower recipe awhile back, I also tried a cauliflower curry with toasted cashews from the same blog recently, and it was delicious. Or as we say in German, lecker, lecker, lecker! True to form, I didn’t follow the recipe entirely. I’ve had so much success with the Thai Kitchen recipe on the back of the coconut milk can that I hated to veer from it and just don’t have time in my life right now to grind my own curry powder (though I do have a spice grinder and do believe in doing stuff like that). So, I used the 101 cookbooks recipe as an inspiration point, adding snow peas instead of green beans and oops, didn’t have red onion so I left that out, too. The toasted cashews really make it.
By: Emily Smith Pearce,
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Once again, a recipe from 101cookbooks. I think this was the first recipe I made of hers, and it’s a favorite. Now that we have access to corn tortillas again (through mex-al.de), I can make it as much as I want.
In the interest of full disclosure, I have to confess that I add chicken to this vegetarian soup (usually braised breast meat) and use chicken broth rather than the vegetable broth the recipe calls for.
I highly recommend adding some of the suggested fixin’s (goat cheese, lime, sun-dried tomatoes, avocado)—the lime especially.
The most popular part of this recipe is definitely the tortilla strips. That blurry motion you see in the photo is due to little hands grabbing strips while I photographed them.
It’s really handy to have a stick blender for soups. How did I get by without one before? The converter I have to use for the stick blender is shared with my sewing machine, way down our long hallway, so there’s lots of running back and forth for two of my favorite activities (sewing and soup-making).
If you like 101 cookbooks, you might want to know that she has a new book coming out and has offered, in advance of publication, a downloadable mini-sampler book on her website. Cool!
I’m currently reading Barbara Kingsolver’s Animal, Vegetable, Miracle and sort of missing my garden back in North Carolina. Not that I was a very successful vegetable grower. I guess I’ll have to try some tomatoes on the balkon and of course visit our many nearby farmer’s markets.
In the whole food vein, loved this post by Holly Ramer of stitch/craft—about her family covering the South Beach Food and Wine Festival. There’s a picture of her young son interviewing Jamie Oliver. Holly’s got some other great stuff on her blog, including quite a few tutorials. I especially like the gifts she makes, in particular children’s book-related gifts like those here.
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We like oatmeal in the morning, but sometimes it’s hard to figure out how much the kids will end up eating. Sometimes we make too much, sometimes too little.
Monday the kids were both home sick, and there was no way I was taking two sickies to the grocery store, so I scrounged around for a second-breakfast snack. We had a full cup of already-made oatmeal left, so I tried making waffle, but they stuck something horrible. So, I spooned the batter into my mini muffin tin and voila—-oatmeal muffins!
I can’t for the life of me find the link to the original waffle recipe, but here it is modified to make these muffins:
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup leftover oatmeal (not instant)
1 T + 1 tsp baking powder
3 T sugar or honey
3 T canola oil
1 1/4 cups milk (we were running low on milk so I mixed in some water, no big deal)
a few shakes of ground cinnamon
Mix the dry ingredients together and the wet ingredients together separately, then combine. Or seriously, just put them all in the same bowl. I don’t think it will matter that much. Bake at 350 for about 10 minutes or so.
They turned out to be nicely moist in the middle, almost like apple muffins.
It had been a while since I'd read a book that I just couldn't stop talking about. Eishes Chayil's Hush was one of those books. An absolutely remarkable read. Have I piqued your curiosity? I hope so... go read Hush!Here's how you can bake your own:
But first, take a moment (ok, many several moments) and treat yourself to the indescribable deliciousness that is Challah bread. Gittel's family makes Challah in Hush, and my own family made it fairly often while I was growing up. I can still vividly remember taking two golden loaves out of the oven, and gobbling it down right there. My mom, sister, and I all gathered around the counter, no longer thinking about dinner, because all we wanted was the bread (and lots of butter)! YUM.
- 2 tbsp yeast
- 1 1/4 cups hot water (to dissolve the yeast)
- 2 cups flour
- 1 1/4 cups oil
- 3 eggs
- Mix all of the above ingredients together, and then add 5-6 more cups of flour, 1 cup at a time
- Let the dough rise in the bowl for one hour, covered with a dish towel
- Punch the dough down, then divide into 2 separate parts
- From each part, create 3 long "ropes," then braid the ropes into a nice thick braid
- Put both braids onto a greased cookie sheet, then cover again with a towel and let them rise for another hour
- Bake in the oven at 325 for 25-35 minutes
- Throughout the baking time, brush an egg wash mixture over the top so that it has that "glossy" finish- Now comes the best part... pop it out of the oven, coat with butter, take a bite, fall in love.Image from here. Recipe from my mom :)
The weather’s getting cooler—time for comfort food! This is a new recipe we love.
It’s Mark Bittman’s Tuscan White Beans, from his cookbook How to Cook Everything Vegetarian. I serve them over pasta and add fried bread crumbs.
These are just bread crumbs (I make them from stale bread and keep them in the freezer) that I fry up in olive oil with garlic. Somehow with this treatment they take on an almost bacony-like flavor. So good.
On top, add the garlic olive oil from the Bittman recipe and a good grating of parm. It’s like grown up mac and cheese—but leave out the parm and it’s vegan.
The recipe makes a lot, so if it’s too much for one evening, you can freeze some to save for later. Just make sure that you thaw gently (at room temp or at a very low temp) or you’ll end up with mush.
In other news, really enjoying my blogging class (Blogging Your Way with Holly Becker of decor8). It’s making me think about ways I may want to re-tool my blog, improve it, and tighten its focus. What would you like to see more of? What are your favorite posts? I’m thinking of spinning the food section off into another location. Not sure.
Currently reading Russell Shorto’s The Island at the Center of the World, which follows the history of the New Amsterdam colony before it became New York. It’s slow-going, with a large cast of van der _____’s to keep up with, but the subject matter is really interesting. There’s an enormous trove of Dutch archives on the subject which until recently had been unexamined. The premise of the book is that while the study of American history has always focused on the English roots of our country, that the Dutch influence, via New York, is actually quite significant.
Also recently read Jean Craighead George’s The Buffalo Are Back with the kids. It so made me want to go see the buffalo. It’s a kind of historical picture book with a fair amount of text, a format I’m not usually as into these days, but it totally works, and the illustrations are great. May need to make a prairie trip when we return stateside. It sounds so exotic in the book.
Off to eat some leftover pumpkin soup (made last night). I’m not much into sweet pumpkin things but the savory soup, especially with a little chipotle swirled in, really hits the spot.
2 Comments on Tuscan White Beans with Pasta and Fried Bread Crumbs, last added: 10/14/2011