Ideas, advice, and what to make now from the Chowhound community and CHOW editors.
Apples are nice in grilled cheddar sandwiches, briefly sauteed and layered in turkey sandwiches, and raw in chicken or tuna salad.
They can be sauteed with red cabbage and sweet onions; season with caraway if you like. Cook them with a root vegetable to add sweetness. Add them to pureed winter squash soups and to curries.
fmogul swears that an unorthodox guacamole including finely chopped crisp, tart apples–a technique learned from a Navajo family–is really good.
Cook chicken pieces with onions, apples, and cider (add a little cream if you want)–saucy and great over noodles, says alaughingdog. E.Kolliopoulos adds apples to the mix when making chicken liver pate.
Apples work well in rice pilafs and salads, says piccola. Cook a blend of brown and wild rice, mix with chopped apples tossed in lemon juice, toasted walnuts, celery, fresh herbs, and the dressing of your choice. Eat warm or cold.
piccola also uses bread dough or puff pastry to make flatbread topped with apple slices, some strong cheese (sharp cheddar, fontina, gongozola, etc.), and rosemary, and baked until golden and toasty.
Will Owen says he’s finally created an arroz con pollo recipe that’s part of his permanent comfort food repertoire. It’s a slight departure from the classic; he uses brown rice, chiles, and smoked Spanish paprika for his earthy and somewhat spicy variation:
4-lb. chicken, cut into serving pieces
1/2 cup olive oi
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 fresh Italian sausages, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 small red onion, chopped
1 small yellow onion, chopped
2 fresh pasilla peppers, seeded, deveined and chopped
1 cup brown rice
1 Tbsp. Spanish smoked paprika
1/8 tsp. saffron, ground fine
2 1/2 cups chicken broth
In a large bowl, whisk olive oil with a large pinch of salt and a good bit of pepper, and toss the chicken in the oil. Allow to sit at room temperature while you prepare the vegetables. Preheat the oven to 350F.
Heat a Dutch oven and add the chicken and oil; brown the chicken on all sides and remove it to a plate (if the pot is too crowded, brown it in batches). Add the sausage to the pot; brown and remove it. Then put in the onions and pepper, reduce the heat a bit, and cook until they begin to soften. Stir in the rice and cook, stirring constantly, until the grains begin to look parched. Stir in the paprika until well blended, then add the saffron to the broth, whisk to blend, and pour into the pot. Lay the chicken pieces over the top, tuck the sausage into the gaps between them, put the lid on and place in the center of the oven. Bake for 1 hour.
Arroz Con Pollo!
Junie D says she’d always intended to make poached pears, but never got around to it until recently. And then: “ECSTASY. Really. I just never knew…or imagined…I ate three of the four and drank the syrup and licked the bowls.” She adapted Patricia Wells’s recipe in Bistro Cooking:
4 bosc pears, peeled
1/2 cup sugar
1 vanilla bean, sliced lengthwise and seeds scraped
1 bottle pretty good, dry red wine
1/2 cup cassis liqueur
2 Tbsp. lemon juice
1 sprig fresh rosemary
4 whole cloves
4 black peppercorns
Place all ingredients in a medium saucepan. Cover and bring to a simmer. If the liquid doesn’t totally cover the pears, turn the pears while cooking. Cook about 30 minutes. Cool and refrigerate 24 hours before serving.
280 Ninth makes what he calls “racy” poached pears with candied celery (which he says has a sweet-sour flavor and a pleasant crunch):
4 cups cold water
1 cup Moscato (or white wine)
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup apricot jam
4 Bosc pears
8 celery ribs, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
Preheat oven to 375F, with rack in middle. Remove zest from lemons, cover with 2 cups water, boil, drain and rinse. Repeat once more. Pat zest dry. Squeeze 1/3 cup lemon into bowl, whisk in wine, sugar, and jam until sugar is dissolved. Halve and core pears lengthwise. Spread out celery in a 9×13-inch baking dish. Pour in wine mixture. Place pears in dish, cut side up. Spread zest around them. Bake uncovered for 50 to 60 minutes, basting once or twice, until pears are tender. Remove pears and pour liquid, zest, and celery into pan and reduce until syrupy, about 15 minutes. Serve, cooled, with sauce spooned over pears.
Poached Pear Epiphany
Papayas are ripe when they are just slightly soft, like a ripe pear. Ripe papayas are wonderful with a squeeze of lime or lemon juice.
Pureed with orange juice, they make a thick, delicious smoothie, and a smoothie of nothing but perfectly ripe papaya and milk is popular in Asia and outrageously delicious, says kobetobiko. They’re also great with pureed with yogurt and honey, or cottage cheese, or vanilla ice cream.
marlie202 halves papayas, adds a bit of butter and cinnamon to the cavity, and bakes them.
On the savory side, try them with feta, or with ranchero cheese, salt, and lime juice.
piccola likes them in salads with dark greens, water chestnuts, almonds, and a spicy dressing (like chili-lime or sesame-ginger). Theresa makes a composed salad made up of successive layers of watercress dressed with lemon juice and olive oil, buffalo mozzarella drizzled with olive oil, cubed papaya, and Parma ham.
Papaya–what is your favourite way to use one
When you soak dried mushrooms in hot water to rehydrate them, never discard the water, which will be a wonderful mushroomy elixir. Strain it through a sieve lined with dampened paper towels or a coffee filter, and add it to your dish if there’s a liquid component (e.g., in soup or risotto). If you can’t use it right away, the soaking liquid is worth freezing for later use.
If your dried shiitakes (Chinese black mushrooms) have stems attached, cut them off after the mushrooms are rehydrated, but don’t toss them, either. They’re too tough and fibrous to eat, but they have lots of flavor and can be used, along with strained soaking liquid, to flavor a stock or broth.
CindyJ uses marsala, madeira or sherry to reconstitute dried porcini, then strains it and uses it in her recipe. Chicken stock is another makes another double-duty mushroom soaking medium.
Chowhounds share their favorite ways to add extra deliciousness to a pot of minestrone:
Barilla brand mini penne are the perfect pasta to use, because if you’ve got leftovers, it doesn’t expand in the soup overnight like most do, says coll.
Jazz up your minestrone by adding crushed red pepper flakes and/or worcestershire sauce. Or drizzle a bit of truffle oil over the individual bowls at serving time.
Save rinds from Parmesan cheese in your freezer and throw them in your pot of minestrone–they add an amazing depth of flavor.
C70 makes a paste of garlic, chopped parsley, parmesan, and olive oil and adds a spoonful to each portion when serving.
Pomegranates are in season, and their seeds provide little bursts of tart flavor that complements both savory and sweet flavors.
They are good paired with oatmeal, yogurt, or cottage cheese; or have some over vanilla ice cream. They mix well with grain salads, and they’re a natural garnish for any recipe that calls for pomegranate molasses.
Cook them into a compote to accompany pancakes and waffles, suggests, Sam Fujisaka, who says the same compote goes well with ham, pork chops, or lamb.
pescatarian uses them on crostini: slice baguette and top with brie; broil until the brie begins to melt, then sprinkle with pomegranate seeds.
Pomegranate seeds are wonderful in salads: try them with shaved apples and fennel; with arugula, pine nuts, and crumbled feta with a citrusy vinaigrette; or with shredded green apple and toasted slivered almonds over crisp lettuce with.a dressing of lemon, grainy mustard, honey, and olive oil.
Ideas for pomegranate seeds?
People just can’t stop eating perfectly crisp bacon. The deadliest partner: a little sugar on top. Caramelized brown sugar is a great partner for crispy bacon in these simple recipes:
Hungry Celeste puts bacon in a single layer on a sheet pan, sprinkles with dark brown sugar and finely chopped pecans, and broils until the bacon is crisp the sugar is caramelized.
JasmineG bakes bacon for 15 minutes; then turns it over, sprinkles with a mixture of of brown sugar and cayenne, and bakes for 15 minutes more, or until done.
Kater makes an appetizer of water chestnuts wrapped in candied bacon; it’s incredibly popular with her guests. Coat bacon in a rub of brown sugar, ground mustard, ground chipotle pepper, cumin, black pepper, and onion powder. Wrap a strip of bacon around a water chestnut and secure with a toothpick. Line a baking sheet with foil, place a rack on the pan, and put the bacon-wrapped chestnuts on the rack; bake at 375F until bacon is cooked and crispy.
Wondering what to do with the ingredients in your fridge or looking for Tunisian recipes? Foodie View searches a host of popular recipe web sites and food blogs for recipes that match the criteria you enter, including sets of ingredients, cuisines, and chefs, among others. You can also simply browse by categories. If you register, you can save recipes you’re interested in to a recipe box on the site.
What is your favorite cooking magazine
Chartreuse liqueur is made from a long and secret recipe of herbs and flowers. The bright green version is most common; it is strongly herbaceous, and quite potent (it’s 110 proof). There’s also a yellow Chartreuse that is milder in flavor and lower in alcohol, at 80 proof–and flavored with honey, according to fafner.
Green Chartreuse combines surprisingly well with chocolate, say hounds. Bob Brooks adds a good slug to brownies, and dct says it makes an excellent flavoring for truffles that intrigues many who can’t place the flavor.
fafner offers a cocktail recipe for each color Chartreuse:
The Last Word:
1/2 oz. gin
1/2 oz. maraschino
1/2 oz. Chartreuse
1/2 oz. lime juice
Shake, serve up.
The Amber Dream:
1 1/2 oz. gin
3/4 oz. sweet vermouth
1/4 oz. Yellow Chartreuse
1 dash bitters
Stir over ice, serve up.
Chartreuse Liqueur as ingredient