Caitlin McGrath's Profile

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December 2014 & February 2011 Cookbook of the Month: THE ESSENTIAL NEW YORK TIMES COOKBOOK Chapters 1-4

Speedy Fish Stew with Orange and Fennel, p. 133

Speedy with minimal ingredient prep was just what the doctor ordered tonight (well, that and plenty of rest and fluids), and this delivered in both ease and flavor. I used Pacific cod from the farmers' market, and added extra garlic and a shake of red pepper flakes to help combat the cold I've just come down with (perfect holiday timing!), and had it ladled over steamed, halved little potatoes. Loved the hints of orange and fennel, and found it as warming and soothing as I desired. I'll be happy to repeat, preferably when not under the weather!

about 12 hours ago
Caitlin McGrath in Home Cooking
1

What are you baking these days? December 2014 edition, part two!

Souschef, I hope you can find this post haste, because you can revert CH to the old view by using the drop-down menu next to your avatar in the upper right corner of the page to go to Settings, then clicking on Chowhound and checking off Collapse previously read (see all).

Voting thread: Cookbook of the Month January 2015

Voting thread: Cookbook of the Month January 2015

LN, I've found a handful of recipes from each through googling. I can certainly post links after the vote, or if you want to take a look before making a choice, I can try to post them here a bit later tis evening.h

August 2014 COTM - Diana Henry Month: A Change of Appetite

Yup, pretty much the same (finely ground almonds). I keep it in the freezer, along with most other nuts/seeds.

Dec 20, 2014
Caitlin McGrath in Home Cooking

What are you baking these days? December 2014 edition, part two!

I made a simple almond and spelt cake with Morello cherries (bottled from Trader Joe's) from a Diana Henry recipe for a family Hannukah dinner last night. It's dense and moist, homey and delicious.

In recent days, I've done holiday gift baking: Hazelnut linzer cookies filled with blackcurrant jam, almond florentines with dried cranberries and golden raisins, drizzled with bittersweet chocolate, buttery palmiers with orange zest and cardamom, and no-bake chocolate-ginger squares. Some are packed up to mail off, others to give Monday. I'll do another batch of linzer cookies and bake up the rest of the florentines and palmiers for giving next week, and try to snap a photo.

August 2014 COTM - Diana Henry Month: A Change of Appetite

The recipe calls for almond meal (which TJ's also sells!) - it makes up about half the dry ingredients - and I added a dash of almond extract to intensify the flavor. It's a very easy cake.

The Morello cherries are with the applesauce and other canned/jarred fruit things, usually also shelved where they have maple syrup and such, which I think most TJ's put next to the flour/sugar/baking mixes. This is, thankfully, one item they've sold for years and not one of those now-you-see-it, now-you-don'ts that are son common there.

Dec 19, 2014
Caitlin McGrath in Home Cooking

August 2014 COTM - Diana Henry Month: A Change of Appetite

The tart cherries were great in this. I had a jar in my pantry, which led to my using them, but I love that this can be a year-round cake, and this is something always available at TJ's. I've no idea how gooseberries are with almonds (I've only had them a couple of times that I can recall), but cherries are a natural pairing.

Dec 19, 2014
Caitlin McGrath in Home Cooking

December 2014 & February 2011 Cookbook of the Month: THE ESSENTIAL NEW YORK TIMES COOKBOOK Chapters 9-12

delys77, yes, they've changed the format, but you can change your settings to revert to the old way. Go to settings in the pull-down menu by your avatar in the upper right, then to the Chowhound tab, click the box by "Collapse Previously Read Posts". If you're on mobile, this post links to something explaining how to do it: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/9995...

Dec 19, 2014
Caitlin McGrath in Home Cooking

Another side for my Chanukah dinner?

Something as simple as an arugula salad with lemon juice and olive oil, or one of my favorite winter salads, crisp greens with oranges, dressed with equal parts fresh OJ, olive oil, and sherry vinegar would work well to offset the richness. Or, yes, sauteed bitter greens with garlic and a splash of vinegar.

Dec 19, 2014
Caitlin McGrath in Home Cooking
1

August 2014 COTM - Diana Henry Month: A Change of Appetite

Cherry, Almond, and Spelt Cake, p. 150

I made this yesterday for a Hannukah dinner with my immediate family. It's a variation of the gooseberry, almond, and spelt cake, and while DH intends you to use fresh sweet cherries, I used a drained bottle of tart Morello cherries from Trader Joe's. This is your standard butter/sugar/eggs/flour/leavening cake, made with brown sugar and a combination of almond meal, spelt flour (she suggests whole wheat as an alternative, in which case I'd go with WW pastry flour), and AP flour for the dry ingredients. It's not called for, but I added a dash of almond extract. The fruit goes in the pan atop the batter, which bakes up around it, and partway through baking, you scatter almonds over the cake. The ingredients say slivered almonds, but the photo shows sliced, and sliced is what I used. Also, I skipped tossing the fruit with sugar because the cherries were packed in syrup.

This is a delicious, homey cake that's dense and moist, with a nice almond flavor that, as always, is perfectly complemented by cherries.

December 2014 & February 2011 Cookbook of the Month: THE ESSENTIAL NEW YORK TIMES COOKBOOK Chapters 1-4

Almond-Carrot Salad, p. 204

This is a really nice twist on raw carrot salads - fresh, crisp, and interesting.

Whole almonds (recipe calls for blanched, but I used the unblanched I had on hand) are tossed with lemon juice, olive oil, ground cumin, sugar, salt, and pepper, and toasted. Golden raisins and white balsamic vinegar are brought to a boil and then allowed to cool, after which the raisins are drained. Carrots are peeled, then shaved into ribbons with a mandoline or peeler (a mandoline would be faster, but it went okay with my sharp Y-shaped peeler). The carrots are tossed with the almonds, raisins, and a packed cup of herbs - the recipe suggests parsley, dill, mint, and chervil and I used all but the chervil (I also chopped them up, though that's not stated) - and dressed with white balsamic, lemon juice, olive oil and almond oil (I used all olive oil), and salt and pepper. You're meant to use 1/4 cup vinegar to plump the raisins and another 2 T for the dressing, but when I drained the raisins I was left with exactly 2 T vinegar, so I just used it instead.

I like this a lot. The cumin-coated, toasty almonds and sweet golden raisins are nice little pops of flavor and texture among the crunchy carrot ribbons and fresh herbs. One note: The recipe claims to serve four, but once made into ribbons, a pound of carrots produces one big bowl of salad. I'd say serves at least six, if you've got a few other dishes on the table. But leftovers should also keep well.

Christmas Baking 2014

I have to cosign Christina's statement on the chocolate-ginger squares. I used 72% cocoa content chocolate to keep it not too sweet, and chopped and added some candied orange peel I had around. I have some friends who are going to love this stuff.

Dec 18, 2014
Caitlin McGrath in Home Cooking

A Faster Chowhound: Pagination for Longer Threads

Once you check off the "Collapse etc." box in your settings and restore the old view, clicking the post count should work again - at least it is for me.

Dec 17, 2014
Caitlin McGrath in Site Talk

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - December 2014

Bar chocolate melts better than chips. Personally, I wouldn't use milk chocolate on Christmas Crack because the rest is already very sweet, but it depends on your audience and how sweet they like sweets.

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - December 2014

Chocolate chips would work, but I prefer chopped or grated chocolate for melting. I don't know the price of their chocolate chips, but pound plus bars are $4.99, and give you a choice of cocoa percentage.

Dec 17, 2014
Caitlin McGrath in Chains

December 2014 Cookbook of the Month: "The Essential New York Times Cookbook", by Amanda Hesser

What is your setting for sorting CH boards, angelsmom? If you perchance have it set as Date Started instead of Last Reply, that would explain why you're not seeing the threads started in 2011 on your board index.

What are you baking these days? December 2014 edition, part two!

If well-wrapped, I'm sure it will keep well for a few days in the fridge. Keeps very well frozen.

December 2014 & February 2011 Cookbook of the Month: THE ESSENTIAL NEW YORK TIMES COOKBOOK Chapters 15-18

I just looked at the book, and it lists Hesser as author (i.e., not "Edited by" or "Amanda Hesser, Editor)." She tested, sometimes rewrote, the recipes, and wrote all the non-recipe prose, including headnotes, AFAIK.

What are you baking these days? December 2014 edition, part two!

herby, along these lines I can wholeheartedly recommend the cashew wafers with cardamom (can be made with other nuts) in My Bombay Kitchen; the recipe has a couple of tablespoons of flour, which the author says you can leave out.

And for a cake, I just love Alice Medrich's Italian Chocolate Almond Torte: http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/20...

Medrich's book Sinfully Easy Delicious Desserts has several flourless (naturally GF) cakes in a variety of flavors and textures that I've yet to try, though I have made the Queen of Sheba 5.0 without the little bit of flour called for (just added a bit more almonds). Might be worth checking out a library copy.

What are you baking these days? December 2014 edition, part two!

It all sounds wonderful. The two ginger cake recipes are not quite identical apart from the sugar, in that the Gramercy Tavern Gingerbread recipe published in Gourmet not only has twice the sugar, it lacks the tablespoon of grated fresh ginger in the Guinness Stout Ginger Cake (the version published in Gramercy Tavern's then-pastry chef Claudia Fleming's cookbook The Last Course: The Desserts of Gramercy Tavern). Both recipes available on Epicurious.

Dec 16, 2014
Caitlin McGrath in Home Cooking

Christmas Baking 2014

I did bake the linzer cookies (will wait to fill until just before I do them up to send/give; I will use blackcurrant jam). I used this Dorie Greenspan recipe: http://www.chow.com/recipes/29087-lin... with a few tweaks based on the mostly similar recipe in her new book (added vanilla, used dark rum instead of water, made the dough in the food processor), and it was fairly painless. You roll the dough out between sheets of waxed paper immediately after making it, when it is quite soft and easy to roll, and then chill the rolled dough (I left it overnight) before cutting and baking. I collected the scraps, which softened quickly, rolled, and chilled for about an hour.

I will note that, while I used a larger cutter (2.5" rather than 2"), there's no way you'd get 36 sandwiched cookies as the Chow page describes using a 2" cutter. Dorie's recipe in Baking Chez Moi gives a yield of 20, which is much more rational. With the larger size, I got enough for 13 sandwiches plus an extra round to try (very nice, buttery, delicate, not too sweet for the jam), and a few lonely scraps. I will have to make another batch next week for the local giftees.

ISO Tips re: Creating a Ginger Frosting

I've made ginger ice cream that involved heating milk and ginger, then letting it steep before straining and using it for the custard, without a problem, but thanks for the warning on amounts.

Dec 14, 2014
Caitlin McGrath in Home Cooking

Difference between coconut cream and milk?

The stuff at the Indian market is more likely to be stuff this thread is talking about, the fattier part of pure coconut milk.

Difference between coconut cream and milk?

What liquor stores carry is sweetened coconut cream, like the Coco Lopez brand, which you'd use for piƱa coladas and such. What trolley's asking about is more along the lines of unsweetened coconut milk that you use in cooking, only it's fattier and when cold, you can whip it for a non-dairy alternative to whipped cream.

What are you baking these days? December 2014 edition! [old]

I hope it works well with your special new cookie cutters, BC.

What are you baking these days? December 2014 edition! [old]

I find that doughs meant to be rolled and cut out generally work fine as slice-and-bake cookies, but for drop cookies like those, it's best to freeze the dropped dough on a lined baking sheet, then transfer to a bag or container.

Difference between coconut cream and milk?

I think you need the coconut cream for whipping. If you refrigerate regular (not light) coconut milk, the cream will rise to the top of the can and you can spoon it off the milk below.

establishments that barter for meyer lemons

It's not uncommon to find restaurants in the Bay Area that barter goods for Meyer lemons. A lot of people around here have backyard trees groaning with fruit and, while they're more available as a commercial crop than they once were, they tend to be expensive. I can't speak to other produce; Meyer lemons are the only thing I've personally seen businesses ask for in trade.

ISO Tips re: Creating a Ginger Frosting

This is what I would do, except instead of using ground ginger, I'd infuse the milk with fresh ginger, then finish the frosted cake with chopped crystallized ginger.