Saturday, January 30, 2010
Monday, January 25, 2010
Friday, January 22, 2010
- Place clams in large soup pot along with the 2 cups of water. Cover and cook over medium heat until clams open. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly. Discard any that don't open.
- Remove clams from shells and coarsely chop the clams. Strain; reserve the broth.
- Cook bacon in the soup pot over low heat until fat is rendered and bacon is wilted and slightly browned on the edges, about 5 minutes.
- Add butter and onions and cook, stirring, until onions are wilted, 10 minutes. Add flour and cook, stirring another 5 minutes.
- Add reserved clam broth, potatoes, thyme, and pepper simmer 5 minutes longer.
- Add reserved chopped clams and simmer, stirring often, until they ar tender, 12-15 minutes. Do not overcook or clams will be tough.
- Add milk and cream and stir well over very low heat until hot. Do no boil or soup will curdle. Adjust seasonings, stir in parsley and serve immediately. (10-12 servings)
Wednesday, January 20, 2010
"There is a language 'little known',
Lovers claim it as their own.
Its symbols smile upon the land,
Wrought by nature's wondrous hand;
And in their silent beauty speak,
Of life and joy, to those who seek.
For Love Divine and sunny hours
In the language of the flowers."
~ The Language of Flowers
- Preheat oven to 350º. Grease, flour, and line the bottom of two 8 1/2 x 4 1/4 x 2 1/2-inch loaf pans with parchment paper.
- Cream butter and 2 cups granulated sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with paddle attachment, for about 5 minutes, or until light and fluffy. wth the mixer on medium speed, add the eggs, one at a time, and the lemon zest.
- Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a bowl. In another bowl, combine 1/4 cup lemon juice, buttermilk, and vanilla. Add flour and buttermilk mixtures alternately to the batter, beginning and ending with flour. Divide batter evenly between pans, smooth the tops, and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until cake tester comes out clean.
- Combine 1/2 cup granulated sugar with 1/2 cup lemon juice in a small saucepan and cook over low heat until sugar dissolves.
- When cakes are done, let them cool for 10 minutes, then invert onto a rack set over a tray, and spoon lemon syrup over the cakes. Allow cakes to cool completely.
- For glaze: Combine confectioners' sugar and lemon juice in a bowl, mixing with wire whisk until smooth. Pour over top of cakes and allow laze to drizzle down the sides. (2 8-inch loaves)
Saturday, January 16, 2010
IT'S 'JUNE IN JANUARY' (June Garden) ~ GRILLED PORTOBELLO BURGERS with PESTO, PROVOLONE & ROASTED PEPPERS
- Heat grill. Brush both sides of mushrooms with olive oil. Season with coarse salt and freshly ground pepper.
- Rub one side of bread/roll with olive oil and grill until lightly toasted.
- Combine pesto and mayonnaise; spread on grilled side of bread/bun.
- Brush both sides of mushrooms with olive oil and grill, rounded side up, 4 minutes. Turn over, cover, and grill about 4 minutes or until mushrooms are tender, adding Provolone the last minute or so until it melts.
- Place cheesy mushroom on grilled bread/bun. Top with roasted peppers and baby spinach leaves. (4 servings)
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
- Bring water, salt, and butter to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add rice, return to a boil, and then reduce heat to the lowest setting. Shake the pan occasionally and cook until rice has absorbed the water but still al dente, abut 15 minutes.
- Bring milk, sugar, vanilla, and a few dashes of cinnamon to a simmer in a separate saucepan. Add cooked rice and cook at simmer over medium-low heat until rice absorbs most of the milk and mixture starts to get thick and silky, about 10-15 minutes (or longer).
- Transfer pudding to a large bowl and cool to room temperature. Place in refrigerator until cool and set. Serve with whipped cream and a dash more cinnamon. (4 servings)
~ Frenand Leger, "On Monumentality and Color", 1943.
Monday, January 11, 2010
- Let navy beans soak overnight. Drain and transfer to large saucepan. Cover with water and bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer 20 minutes. Drain and set aside.
- Heat olive oil in large stockpot. Add garlic, onions, celery and potato and cook until limp but not brown. Add 1 1/2 cup broth, cover and cook 20 minutes until soft. Strain onion mixture returning broth to stockpot. Puree in food processor for 1 minute. Return to stockpot. Add cooked navy beans, remaining broth, chopped tomatoes and tomato paste. Blend well.
- Add chopped carrots, green beans and zucchini to pot. Add thyme and oregano. Season with salt and pepper and simmer until tender, about 20 minutes. Serve piping hot with a dollop of WINTER PESTO and crusty rustic bread. (12 servings)
- Using steel blade of food processor, drop garlic through running blade of feed tube and mine finely. Add cheese and chop using 4 on/off turns until finely minced, about 1 minute.
- Add spinach, nuts, basil and salt. Blend 10 seconds. With machine running, pour oil through feed tube in slow, steady stream and blend well. Transfer to small bowl and serve with soup. (1 1/2 - 1 3/4 cups)
Friday, January 08, 2010
"And finally Winter, with its bitin', whinin' wind,
and all the land will be mantled with snow."
~ Roy Bean
- Preheat oven to 425º.
- Butterfly the shrimp, leaving the tail on. Place shrimp in a mixing bowl and gently toss with the olive oil, wine, 2 tsp. salt, and 1 tsp. pepper. Allow to sit at room temperature while making the butter and garlic mixture.
- In a small bowl, mash softened butter with garlic, shallots, parsley, rosemary, red pepper flakes, lemon zest, lemon juice, 1/2 tsp. salt, and coarse pepper to taste. Combine well.
- Starting at outer edge of 14-inch oval gratin dish, arrange shrimp in a single layer, cut side down, with tails curling up and towards center of the dish. Pour remaining marinade over shrimp. Spread butter mixture evenly over shrimp. Sprinkle panko evenly over top and finish with additional chopped parsley.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes until bubbly. Finish browning under broiler for 1 minute. Serve with lemon wedges. (6 servings)
- Pumpernickel Croutons: Preheat oven to 400º. Toss 2 cups (1/2-inch cubes) pumpernickel bread with 3 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil. Sprinkle heavily with cracked pepper. Spread on baking sheet and bake 10-15 minutes, stirring often, until crisp. (Can make ahead)
- Caesar Vinaigrette: Combine all ingredients (but olive oil) in blender. Gradually add olive oil and process until creamy.
- Add bite-size pieces of crisp Romaine to large salad bowl. Toss gently with Caesar Vinaigrette to taste. Add Pumpernickel Croutons and toss again. Serve topped with grated Parmigiana Reggiano.
Sunday, January 03, 2010
SOUPE A L'OIGNON GRATINEE
(adapted from Mastering the Art of French Cooking)
~ Ronni Lundy
(FRENCH ONION SOUP)
6 pounds thinly sliced yellow onions
6 Tbsp. butter
3 Tbsp. oil
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. sugar
6 heaping Tbsp. flour
5 quarts good beef stock
2 cups dry white wine
coarse salt and cracked pepper
few drops of Kitchen Bouquet
12 Tbsp. Cognac
1 pound Swiss cheese*
1 - 1 1/2 pound assorted shredded cheddar, Colby and Swiss or Parmesan
- Cook onions slowly in butter and oil in covered stockpot for 15 minutes.
- Uncover, raise heat to moderate, and stir in salt and sugar. Cook for 30-40 minutes stirring frequently until onions have turned deep golden brown. (Long slow cooking develops the deep, rich flavor).
- Sprinkle in flour and stir 3 minutes. Off heat, blend in liquid. Add wine and season to taste. Simmer partially covered for 30-40 minutes, skimming occasionally. Correct seasoning. Add Cognac and set aside until ready to serve. (*the Swiss cheese is a surprise. Place a big hunk in the bottom of the soup before assembling.)
(hard crusts of French bread for topping)
Slice several 3/4 - 1 inch pieces of French bread. Brush tops with cut garlic and drizzle with olive oil. Bake in 325 degree oven about 30 minutes or until crusty brown.
To assemble: Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Place hot soup in oven-proof crocks. Slip in hunk of Swiss cheese. Top with croutes and finish with shredded cheese. Bake 20 minutes and finish browning under broiler. (Be careful serving ~ the 'lava' soup is VERY hot)
Friday, January 01, 2010
'FAREWELL WINDOWS ... HELLO MAC'! (NEW YEAR'S RESOLUTION) ~ CAROLE'S TRADITIONAL NEW YEAR'S PORK & SAUERKRAUT
- Preheat oven to 325º. Spray roaster with olive oil and layer undrained sauerkraut in bottom (rinse sauerkraut for less sour taste).
- Sprinkle pork loin with meat tenderizer and pierce all over. Sprinkle with garlic powder or cut slits in roast and tuck in garlic cloves. Brown roast in heavy skillet and transfer to roasting pan. Bury roast in sauerkraut. Add onions and apple . Sprinkle all over with brown sugar, salt, and cracked pepper. Drizzle a few drops of olive oil over top. Add broth, wine, sherry or beer. Cook, covered, for about 2 1/2 hours. Check periodically to make sure juice is not all absorbed and add more if needed.
- The last hour of cooking, add sausages and the potatoes.
- Serve with applesauce, black-eyed peas (for good luck), succotash, Waldorf salad and vegetables of choice, like carrots, squash or peas. (Serves a crowd)