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TxnInMtl's Profile

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May 2014 COTM - My Bombay Kitchen: Fish and Seafood/Meat and Poultry

I'm glad you made it work for you. It is very quick and the lime juice sounds like a nice touch.

May 07, 2014
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking

May 2014 COTM - My Bombay Kitchen: Fish and Seafood/Meat and Poultry

Fish in Coconut Milk, p. 105

I used the lazy coconut milk, so this was a very quick dinner, albeit not quite as flavorful as what I usually think of for Indian cooking (having not had much exposure to Parsi). To make, chiles and curry leaves are sizzled in oil. She suggests 3 to 6 green chiles. I used 6 Thai bird's eye and the dish was still fairly mild to us, although I think this batch of chiles lacks heat and the heat did become a bit more pronounced towards the end of the dish. Then finely chopped onion and garlic is browned and cooked until softened. Turmeric is added and then the thin coconut milk. My can of coconut milk wasn't separating very nicely, so I just poured in the full can. She suggests 3 - 4 cups of liquid in all, but that seemed excessive and I wanted the flavor a bit more concentrated, so I just used 1 can. After the mixture simmers for a bit with some salt, she has you add the thick coconut milk and then the fish. I was using very thin Dover sole fillets, so I let the sauce simmer until it became a beautiful sunshine yellow. The fish are added and simmered until the fish is cooked. The fish was wonderfully moist. Don't forget some rice to soak up the sauce. We enjoyed it, but I can't help but compare it to a similar dish in 660 Curries that had a lot more going on (the halibut with coconut-mustard sauce).

May 04, 2014
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking

May 2014 COTM - My Bombay Kitchen: Soups/Eggs/Salads

Cucumber and Ginger Salad, p. 218

I made this to go with the fish in coconut milk. It's quick, simple, and refreshing. Halved and thinly sliced cucumber is dressed with lime juice and salt. Chopped ginger is mixed in. I microplaned some frozen ginger without peeling it. Using the microplane seemed to help it mix evenly into the salad. Shredded mint is listed as optional. I included it and it seemed like a nice addition to a very simple salad.

May 04, 2014
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking

What cookbooks have you bought recently, or are you lusting after? May 2014 edition! [through May 31]

Agreed! Herbfarm is great. His newer book, Herbal Kitchen, is also very good and benefits from a more enticing layout.

May 04, 2014
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking

What cookbooks have you bought recently, or are you lusting after? [Through April 30, 2014]

I strongly second the meatballs and beehive and to add a few more. We made the fontina and mushroom pizza this week and it was outstanding (used our own pizza dough, next time I might increase the ratio of mushrooms to cheese a bit as it was a lot of cheese. The recipe did seem to be missing a roasting temp for the mushrooms though.). We really liked the flavor combination of the pork skewers, gouda, and apricot mustard, although the method of making the skewers was a bit of work for me. I also liked the rigatoncini with ricotta and orange zest quite a bit (would break up the sausage more to incorporate it into the dish a bit more though). The burrata with asparagus, pine nuts, and golden raisins is also very nice with a bit less oil.

DK, I'm eager to hear your report when you receive it.

Apr 11, 2014
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking

Nominations for May 2014 Cookbook of the Month (COTM)

I had not heard about the Cheesemonger's Seasons. Thank you for mentioning it! It looks great. We made the fontina and mushroom pizza from his other book Monday night and it was outstanding. It would be nice to have them as a pair for COTM once they've been out a bit longer.

Apr 09, 2014
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking

March 2014 Cookbook of the Month - Stir: Mixing it up in the Italian Tradition: On the Side Pg. 261-288

Steam-Roasted Asparagus with Fresh Herb Vinaigrette - p. 268

I made this a couple of nights ago, but never got around to reporting on it. I don't have much to add to smtucker's thorough review except that the modifications are spot on for reducing the oil and vinaigrette. I had a full bundle of asparagus and drizzled the olive oil on as I normally would (~<1 tbsp). Against my better judgement, I poured all of the vinaigrette on the asparagus and it was simply too much and oily. Half would've been plenty. For the herbs, I used a mix of parsley and fennel fronds because that's what was on hand and it worked very well.

Mar 22, 2014
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking

COTM: Which one was your most successful?

I've had good luck with the chicken and seafood dishes as well, but for some reason I always find myself drawn to the lamb. Without the cardamom and turmeric though, the options get a little limited. My mom can no longer have cardamom or cumin along with a very long list of other ingredients, so Indian is definitely off the list for the next time my parents visit (which is sad because it worked well with my dad's need to have gluten-free food!).

Mar 14, 2014
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking

COTM: Which one was your most successful?

You're welcome! I should add the basil and peanut pesto shrimp recipe to that list as well. And now for some reason I'm craving Indian food.

Mar 14, 2014
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking
1

COTM: Which one was your most successful?

I had that problem when I first bought it as well. The layout is just overwhelming at first. I think it sat on my shelf unused for at least six months, but now it's my standard go-to when we have people over for dinner. We even used it for our welcome dinner for out-of-town guests at our wedding.

Some simple recipes that might get you started:
Cardamom-Scented Chicken with Ginger and Garlic
Cashew Chicken with a Cilantro Sauce
Lamb-Almond Dumplings in a Tomato Cream Sauce
Yogurt-Marinated Lamb with Ginger and Garlic
Buttery Basmati Rice with Spinach and Onion

Mar 14, 2014
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking
1

Cooking from “The A.O.C. Cookbook” by Suzanne Goin

Albacore crudo with avocado, cucumber, and ruby grapefruit - p. 137

For AOC, this was a pretty quick dinner and no cooking was involved. The avocado puree was excellent and a nice contrast to the grapefruit-cucumber salsa. I was a little concerned the grapefruit would be too sour, but it really worked in the dish.

To make the salsa, grapefruit is mixed with diced shallots and lime juice. After those flavors have time to mix, olive oil and diced jalapeno and cucumber are added to the mix. I think I would've been okay with only 1/2 or 2/3 of the amount of olive oil.

An avocado puree is made of avocado, lime juice, salt, and a bit of oil.

To plate, the avocado puree is smeared on the plate and topped with watercress (I used arugula because I had some that was on its last legs in the fridge). Sliced tuna seasoned with lime zest, salt, and pepper is spread on top, then topped with the cucumber-grapefruit salsa. The final garnish is a bit of sliced cilantro which I forgot on the cutting board, but I'm sure would've been a nice addition.

Mar 10, 2014
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking

March 2014 Cookbook of the Month - Stir: Mixing it up in the Italian Tradition: From the Sea (175-204), Chicken, Duck, Goose (205-232), Beef, Pork and Lamb (233-260)

Braised (Goat) Shanks with Winter Root Vegetables - p. 255

Last month, our CSA gave us a lone goat foreshank, but this month, they finally decided to send its match, so I thought this might be a good candidate for using them. It's a fairly standard shank recipe. The shanks are browned and removed, then aromatic vegetables are added (carrot, celery, and onion). Red wine is used to deglaze the pan and make a base for the braise. Then chicken broth, bay leaves, rosemary, and peppercorns are added along with the shanks. When the shanks are done, skim the fat, strain, and reduce the braising liquid to a glaze.

The meat came out moist and full of flavor. The rosemary was a very nice addition to a standard braise. I didn't follow her suggestion of making it ahead of time, so skimming the fat wasn't terribly successful. It was also just a lot of liquid, so it did not want to reduce to a glaze very quickly. I may've cheated a bit and added some cornstarch.

The most unique thing about this recipe is that instead of braising the vegetables with the meat, she chooses to cook them separately (fried in butter with a bit of water) to retain more of their "individual character." In theory, this sounded like a great idea. In reality, they ended up just seeming like an after thought. I cooked a mix of beets, potatoes, and celery root (ignoring her suggestion to separate the beet so the other vegetables wouldn't turn pink). Perhaps I've been spending too much time with AOC and its intricate pairings, but they just didn't seem to add much to the dish. I think I would've preferred the same vegetables roasted with some rosemary and garlic or else some creamy polenta or mashed potatoes. Overall, a very good dish, but next time I'll skip the vegetable preparation is favor of something else.

Mar 10, 2014
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking
1

Cooking from “The A.O.C. Cookbook” by Suzanne Goin

Balsamic-glazed brussels sprouts with pancetta - p. 245

This is a relatively simple side dish compared to the other dishes I've made so far in the book. The balsamic vinegar adds a nice depth of flavor to the dish and sets it apart from other brussels sprouts recipes. I wish I'd had just a slightly higher quality for the dish though as some bites were just a bit too vinegary.

To make, brussels sprouts are browned in olive oil and butter with a bit of salt and pepper. Diced pancetta is then added to the pan and cooked until the pancetta starts to crisp. Then diced shallots and garlic are added. Next balsamic vinegar joins the mix. Finally, veal stock is added until it is reduced to a glaze. I used duck in place of the veal, but chicken is also suggested as an alternative.

Mar 09, 2014
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking

Cooking from “The A.O.C. Cookbook” by Suzanne Goin

(Petrale Sole) with Saffron Potatoes and Blood Orange-Meyer Lemon Salsa - p. 143

Goin suggests that sole is a good substitute for scallops in this dish and our seafood box gave us an abundance of sole, so I decided to test it. Although the salsa requires a bit of chopping, this recipe is doable on a weeknight. The components include a citrus salsa, boiled potatoes, and grilled scallops.

For the scallops, she calls for skewering them on rosemary sticks and seasoning with meyer lemon zest and chopped rosemary. If you're using fish, you'll only need a branch of rosemary to have enough for the marinade. She suggests calls for grilling the scallops, but my sole was so thin that grilling was not an option, so I pan-fried.

For the salsa, finely diced shallots are soaked with champagne vinegar (I used white wine vinegar) and salt. Meanwhile, 2 meyer lemons are cut into a 1/8" dice. Despite her very detailed instructions for cutting the lemons, she doesn't mention anything about the seeds. I did my best to remove those as I went. My lemons were not nearly as precisely diced as she outlined. Two of the blood oranges are cut into segments with the third retained solely for its juice. The citrus is mixed with the shallot along with olive oil, mint, salt, and pepper. 1/2 cup of olive oil seemed like a bit much and I think it would've worked fine with only half as much. I really liked the mint in the salsa when I found it and would've also been happier with significantly more mint in the mixture as the 1 tbsp just didn't seem to go very far.

For the potatoes, saffron is first soaked with warm water. Meanwhile, olive oil is heated in a large Dutch oven. Onion, thyme, crumbled chile, salt and pepper are then added and cooked. Chopped potatoes are added to the mix and left to sear in the hot oil. After the potatoes are nicely coated with the onions, the saffron water is added and the potatoes are cooked until tender and the potatoes are glazed. Mine may have been a little more towards soupy than perfectly glazed. Mine also were not as beautifully yellow as the photo. The red onion darkened the color to a less attractive brown.

To assemble, the potatoes are placed on the plate. Followed by a scattering of dandelion greens or arugula (I used arugula). Those are them topped with fish and then the salsa. On their own, the potatoes were a bit heavy, but the salsa and peppery arugula really brightened them. I was a little skeptical about having the lemon rind in the salsa, but I didn't mind them at all in the finished dish. I would happily repeat this dish, cutting down a little on the olive oil in the salsa and maybe increasing the mint.

Mar 09, 2014
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking

Cooking from “The A.O.C. Cookbook” by Suzanne Goin

Alaskan Black Cod with Kabocha Squash, Golden Raisins, and Pedro Ximenez - p. 128

I've resisted buying Sunday Suppers at Lucques over the years, but so far I'm really enjoying this book, so I might have to cave and add it to the collection as well.

The timing on this recipe wouldn't be bad for a weeknight if the squash puree was made ahead of time. The recipe does call for a ridiculous amount of butter and cream though, so perhaps it's best if it doesn't become an every day meal. The components of this dish include a squash puree, wilted Swiss chard, fried cod, and a sherry raisin butter sauce.

To make the squash puree, kabocha squash is roasted with thyme until tender and pureed with brown butter, heavy cream, and sage. She calls for peeling the squash before roasting, but I found it much easier to do so after it had roasted. She also calls for pureeing in a food processor in batches, but our food processor is on the small side, so I used the blender instead. I had no difficulty pureeing in the blend and as a bonus, I was able to do it all in one batch.

For the fish, you're supposed to marinate it with lemon zest, thyme, and parsley for at least 4 hours or overnight. I missed that and was only able to marinade for an hour. After marinating, the fish is seasoned with salt and pepper and fried. Sadly, I lost most of the skin when I flipped the fish.

For the Swiss chard, the chard is sauteed with olive oil and a bit of salt and pepper until tender.

Finally, for the sauce, golden raisins are soaked in boiling water, drained, and then soaked in a mix of Pedro Ximenez and dry sherry for half and hour. I just used sherry. This mixture is then combined with brown butter and a bit of salt and pepper and cooked until the sauce emulsifies and a bit of sage is added.

The sage in the sauce and puree really helped to balance out the sweetness of the dish, but the dish overall is a bit on the sweet side. The squash puree is incredibly rich. My husband, who is not a fan of squash at all, complimented it many times. The puree and greens also make for a nice color contrast on the plate.

Mar 09, 2014
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking

March 2014 Cookbook of the Month - Stir: Mixing it up in the Italian Tradition: On the Side Pg. 261-288

Creamy (Cream Cheese) Polenta - p. 286

I went ahead and made this with the added cheese (although a local cream cheese instead of mascarpone) and the full amount of butter. It was ridiculously rich and creamy. Polenta on its own is already good enough that I'm not sure it needs all of the additional fat, but if you're looking for an over the top indulgence, this one is very good.

Mar 09, 2014
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking

March 2014 Cookbook of the Month - Stir: Mixing it up in the Italian Tradition: A Passion for Pasta (111-175)

Orecchiette with Cauliflower, Anchovies, and Pistachios - p. 123

This dish surprised me by how richly flavored it was for such a quick dish.

To start, pistachios are roasted and chopped.

Butter is browned. It seemed like an obscene amount of butter (1/2 cup), but I went ahead and used the full amount. Cauliflower florets are then cooked in the butter for a minute or two. Then anchovies and garlic are added to the mix. I made a half recipe and only used 2 anchovy fillets. I found the anchovies a little on the overly assertive side in this dish, but I'm not the biggest fan of them either and it did work nicely with the red pepper flakes. Once the anchovies dissolve into the butter, chicken broth is added and the cauliflower cooks until tender. I wish she had given guidance for how reduced the broth should be. It seemed a little soupy to me even though I let it reduce for a couple of extra minutes.

Meanwhile, cook the pasta. I was using dried pasta with a 9 minute cook time. The recipe would've gone a little bit quicker had I started the pasta before the cauliflower I think. Before draining the pasta, she has you reserve a bit of pasta water, but I didn't need it at all. The drained pasta is then mixed into the cauliflower along with parsley, parmesan, and red pepper flakes.

The pasta is then served and sprinkled with toasted pistachios and more red pepper flakes. She also calls for a drizzle of a tbsp of oil on each serving, but the pasta was already rich enough that I didn't think it needed more. I liked this very much, but I would've been happy with just a bit more cauliflower relative to the amount of pasta.

Mar 09, 2014
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking

February 2014 Cookbook of the Month-- ASIAN DUMPLINGS: Mastering Gyoza, Spring Rolls, Samosas, and More: Filled Pastas;Thin Skins

Shanghi Soup Dumplings - p. 59

I made the mistake of trying these on the same day that I attempted the rice sheets (see other thread), so my soup dumplings weren't very soupy and instead were more like plain pork dumplings for various reasons of rushing through these while steaming up my apartment making rice sheets. This report will focus more on the closed satchel.

My largest change to this recipe was making a stock using a duck carcass I found in the back of the freezer in the slow cooker. I ended up with a very gelatinous stock even before the agar-agar was added. Due to timing issues with the rice sheets, I rushed the final chilling of the stock and rather than having cubes just mixed a fairly jello-ish stock into the pork. When cooked, I didn't get the same burst of soup because it was too mixed, but it was still good.

My biggest struggle with this recipe was the satchel shape. Having made the Nepalese vegetable and Tibetan beef dumplings a week ago (which I never reported on due to a work trip and being uncertain what to report - we both liked them, but not nearly as much as the fish dumpling or LOP dumplings and there wasn't much sichuan), I knew the shape was problematic for me. Attempting it the same night as the rice sheets was a disaster. The steamy apartment air just made the dough too difficult to work with.

I had plenty of filling left over from last night's failed dumplings, so I decided to make another attempt today. She notes the filling doesn't keep well, but mine had firmed up very nicely overnight, so I thought it was worth trying. The dough is slightly different than the main dumpling recipe, using bread flour as well as all-purpose and a little oil. She notes it makes the dough more elastic and I think it helped for forming the satchel. Like the regular dumpling dough recipe, it's very easy to work with even without a food processor.

I think I watched her video at least a half dozen times trying to put these together: http://www.asiandumplingtips.com/2010... . My difficulty with the satchel shape is that I seem to squeeze the filling out while doing the pleating. At the end, I became more confident in stretching the dough upwards and pushing the filling down, rather than letting the filling push out towards the side. I still don't seem to be able to get nearly as much filling as I should be able to into a wrapper and closing it is often problematic as the filling pushes towards the opening and makes it harder for the wrapper to stick.

The good thing is that even with the difficulty in closing these (in the picture the middle ones were the earliest and some weren't closed at all), they all steamed up very nicely. In the future, I may stick to half moons, but I'm glad I gave this one another shot.

Feb 17, 2014
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking
1

February 2014 Cookbook of the Month-- ASIAN DUMPLINGS: Mastering Gyoza, Spring Rolls, Samosas, and More: Translucent Wheat and Tapioca Starches;Transformations of Rice

Thanks. This looks very similar. A-K mentions temperature issues. I wonder if I'd have better luck poaching with a metal pan that's the right size. I'm not sure I'm enough of a glutton for punishment to test that theory though!

Feb 17, 2014
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking

February 2014 Cookbook of the Month-- ASIAN DUMPLINGS: Mastering Gyoza, Spring Rolls, Samosas, and More: Translucent Wheat and Tapioca Starches;Transformations of Rice

I realized while I was on her website today that I really should take advantage of being in SF currently to take one of her classes. She has one at the end of February that's already sold out, but I'll have to keep an eye on it and try for another.

Feb 17, 2014
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking

February 2014 Cookbook of the Month-- ASIAN DUMPLINGS: Mastering Gyoza, Spring Rolls, Samosas, and More: Translucent Wheat and Tapioca Starches;Transformations of Rice

Beef and Orange Rice Rolls - p. 157

While the rice sheets themselves were a real headache, I greatly enjoyed the filling on these (NB the book has a typo in step two and references "How to Make Rice Sheets" on page 215 instead of 155).

To make the filling, orange zest, sugar, salt, white pepper, baking soda, cornstarch, soy sauce, water, and oil are mixed together. Then finely chopped scallions and minced beef are mixed in. She says to mix your own beef so it isn't too finely textured and clumpy, but I had a surplus of ground beef, so I went ahead and used that instead. The meat mixture melds for 30 minutes and is then rolled into the rice sheets before being steamed. Sweet soy sauce is poured over the rolls. She also suggests chile garlic sauce for dipping which would've been a nice addition, but I forgot about it.

The flavor of these rolls was great with the hint of orange and salty-sweetness of the soy sauce. I'd make these again, but only if I could use pre-made rice sheets next time.

Feb 17, 2014
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking

February 2014 Cookbook of the Month-- ASIAN DUMPLINGS: Mastering Gyoza, Spring Rolls, Samosas, and More: Translucent Wheat and Tapioca Starches;Transformations of Rice

Rice Sheet Batter - p. 154

My other half is away for the weekend, so I thought Sunday would be the perfect day for dumpling projects. Sadly, this recipe was not terribly successful for me and my project day was a little bit more frustrating than I had hoped. I do feel a little bit better though now that I see there's a 3 star review for this recipe on EYB.

The batter for the rice sheets comes together very easily. Just whisk together rice flour, cornstarch, tapioca starch, salt, canola oil, and water and let rest for at least 30 minutes.

Nguyen gives you a choice of then cooking the rice sheets by steaming or poaching. Ideally, you should have a square baking pan to do this. We only have rectangular or circular pans, so I opted to use one of my smaller (and less rectangular) baking dishes. Ideally it would also be metal, but I tried to make it work with a very thin Corningware as all of our metal pans are huge.

The pan is preheated either in the steamer tray or floating in a pan to poach. The lid to my steamer didn't quite fit with the pan in it, so I also covered with a towel and it seemed to heat very nicely. Batter is then ladled into the pan to cover the bottom by about 1/8 inch and left to cook for 5 minutes.

For my first noodle sheet, it still seemed a little soft, but wasn't sticking to my finger (the test she suggests), so I removed it from heat, let it cool for a couple of minutes, and then tried to remove the sheet only to end up with a gloopy blob. For subsequent rice sheets, I let it cook for significantly longer (12 - 15 minutes) assuming that my heating system/pan wasn't working very well and my noodle sheets may've been a bit thick. These worked much better, but I still occasionally lost portions of the sheet. (After my first complete miss, I made a second batch of batter.)

I somewhat assembled my dumplings with a few occasional tears while folding when they must've cooled for a bit too long. For cooking, I decided to give a bit more than the 5 minutes of steaming because my rolls were over-sized due to pan issues, tearing, etc. The end result was that some of the rolls just seemed to fall apart entirely. The flavor of the rice sheet was great, but presentation left a lot to be desired.

I'd be very interested to hear someone else's experience with making these. Next time, I'll just buy the sheets!

Feb 17, 2014
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking

January 2014 Cookbook of the Month, GRAN COCINA LATINA: THE FOOD OF LATIN AMERICA: Fish and Seafood; Poultry; Meat

Aunt Carolina's Roasted Red Snapper in Green Sauce (El Pargo en Salsa Verde de la Tia Carolina) - p. 625

I was traveling for the first half of the month, so sadly haven't been able to participate much. This was my first recipe from GCL after receiving it for Christmas and I'm very happy to report that it was a success. I made one major modification to the recipe and used rock cod fillets that we had in the freezer instead of a whole snapper.

To make, the fish is rubbed with mashed garlic, salt, and bitter orange juice (or half lime juice and orange juice which I used), covered with onion slices, and left to marinade for at least two hours. Mine was probably less.

A green sauce is then made by blending together parsley, cilantro, onion, garlic, hard-boiled egg yolks, almonds, jalapeno, capers, green olives, sherry, cider vinger, and salt. Half of the green sauce is then cooked in olive oil with a bit of broth added at the end.

Parboiled potato slices are used to line a baking sheet. Those are topped with the onions from the fish marinade and then the cooked green sauce. The recipe then calls for the whole fish being placed on top of the potatoes and cooked for 45 minutes at 400. My fillets were thin, so I baked the potatoes and onions separately for 30 minutes. Then, the recipe calls for pouring the uncooked green sauce on top and cooking for another 10 - 15 minutes. I added the fillets at this point and cooked for 10.

The sauce on this dish was outstanding - bright with a bit of sourness and a nice depth of flavor. It worked really well with the potatoes. Likely because I didn't use a whole fish, the fish itself didn't add much to the dish (she describes the potatoes as drenched in fish juices), so I'd like to try it again with a whole fish.

Jan 22, 2014
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking

December 2013 Cookbook of the Month, ALL ABOUT ROASTING by Molly Stevens: Beef & Lamb; Pork

Thank you for mentioning using this recipe with ground duck! We both loved the ground duck burger recipe in Big Small Plates, but found ours were way too soft for grilling. I think this method of cooking could work quite well with the BSP recipe. We made the stuffed mushroom and cheese variation of this a couple of years ago and really enjoyed how juicy they were. I need to make those again sometime.

Dec 11, 2013
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking
1

December 2013 Cookbook of the Month, ALL ABOUT ROASTING by Molly Stevens: Vegetables & Fruits

Goose-fat-roasted potatoes with rosemary - p. 497

I've been meaning to try this recipe ever since the mister brought home a goose around Canadian Thanksgiving. He followed the recipe for roast goose in this book with excellent results and ever since we've had a nice supply of rendered goose fat sitting in the fridge.

This recipe is simple, but rich. A cast iron pan is heated in the oven, the goose fat is added and left to heat. Small potatoes and a few sprigs of rosemary are then added and left to roast, stirring occasionally until done. The potatoes came out wonderfully crispy on the outside. Next time I might follow her suggestion of adding a few garlic cloves as well. Served with steak and a simple salad for an easy dinner.

Dec 09, 2013
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking

December 2013 Cookbook of the Month, ALL ABOUT ROASTING by Molly Stevens: Vegetables & Fruits

Roasted Parsnips with Bacon and Rosemary, p. 516

This was great, but I love parsnips. The Mr.'s opinion may be a little less biased and he was quite happy with the combination of sweet parsnips, smoky bacon, and rosemary.

To make the parsnips are cut into sticks and tossed with chunks of bacon, chopped rosemary, olive oil, and S&P. I followed her suggestion of lining the baking sheet with parchment paper and cleanup was a breeze. Roast at 375 for 35 minutes, stirring a few times. Then sprinkle on some brown sugar and cider vinegar. We're currently at war with some pantry moths and the brown sugar was a casualty, so I substituted maple sugar instead. Roast for another 5 - 10 minutes and serve.

She suggests serving with roast chicken or beef, but I paired with pecan-crusted rockfish and a chardonnay butter sauce. Perhaps not the best pairing, because we both seemed a little more drawn to the parsnips than the relatively mild fish, but a relatively easy dinner none the less.

Dec 05, 2013
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking

Cooking from Radically Simple by Rozanne Gold

Grilled Tuna with Lemony Tahina, Greens, and Pomegranate Seeds - p. 166

This recipe reminded me of everything I love about Radically Simple. It's quick, easy, but nice enough that I wouldn't mind serving it to company. I served it with the chard and tahini recipe in the same book (and with a very similar sauce) because we had too much chard.

To start with, you make a simple sauce of tahina, lemon juice, garlic, and cilantro in the food processor. Tuna is then smeared with oil and rubbed with a 4:1 mixture of ground coriander and cumin. The tuna is seared in a ridged cast-iron grill pan (or in my case, a regular cast iron pan), keeping the middle very rare. The tuna is served on mesclun topped with oil with the sauce and pomegranate seeds on top.

Sometimes the garnishes in this book feel like afterthoughts to me, but the pomegranate seeds really add to the dish giving it a bit more textural contrast and pops of sweetness. Mr. TiM went back for more sauce and more seeds.

Oct 27, 2013
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking

October 2013 Cookbooks of the Month, THE FOOD OF PORTUGAL and THE NEW PORTUGUESE TABLE: Vegetables, Rice and Salads; Eggs, Vegetables and Rice

I think so. Also, chopping the olives instead of slicing them might further integrate them into the dish.

(And sorry, David, for not responding to your question. I've been travelling quite a bit for work lately and haven't had much time to login!)

Oct 17, 2013
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking

October 2013 Cookbooks of the Month, THE FOOD OF PORTUGAL and THE NEW PORTUGUESE TABLE: Vegetables, Rice and Salads; Eggs, Vegetables and Rice

Sauteed Chestnuts, Onions, and Bacon - p. 170

Leite says this would make a good Thanksgiving side dish and I had some fresh chestnuts from the farmer's market, so I decided to give this one a go for our small Canadian Thanksgiving dinner. This was a very easy, tasty addition to our eclectic meal.

Strips of bacon are fried until crispy and then set aside. I skipped blanching the pearl onions in favor of using frozen to save time on peeling. The onions are then browned in the bacon fat until tender. Chestnuts, crisp bacon, and honey are added in and warmed. I realized after the bacon had crisped that we were out of honey, so I substituted maple syrup which seemed more appropriate for the holiday anyways. Season with s&p, garnish with parsley, and serve.

Salty and sweet, it was a great little side dish for very little effort.

Oct 17, 2013
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking

October 2013 Cookbooks of the Month, THE FOOD OF PORTUGAL and THE NEW PORTUGUESE TABLE: Vegetables, Rice and Salads; Eggs, Vegetables and Rice

Black Olive Risotto, The New Portuguese Table, p. 182

I love risotto and olives, so I thought this recipe would also be a big hit, but it didn't add up to the sum of its parts. The risotto itself was good, but the olives seemed a little out of place.

To make, it's a fairly standard risotto recipe. He instructs for 7 minutes to soften minced onion. Mine was ready much sooner. Rice is then added (I used arborio) and cooked, then a bit of white wine. Then chicken stock is added by the ladleful until the rice is cooked. I used homemade stock that I had on hand. His recipe seems to have more aromatics in it that mine, so that might've helped the dish a bit. Once the rice is ready, a final ladleful of stock is added with parmesan, mascarpone, and sliced black olives. Garnish with parsley, more olives, and curls of cheese. The end result is a very creamy risotto. I was just hoping for a little bit more magic from the dish.

Oct 05, 2013
TxnInMtl in Home Cooking