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  1. Chard-Stuffed Pork Roast (page 276) I wouldn't ordinarily bother to post about a recipe that someone else had already reported on (see: competitive cooking above), but I took a few liberties with this one that I thought worth mentioning. Instead of a boneless pork loin roast, I used half of a standing rib roast of pork that I had in the freezer. I made the stuffing as directed using red chard, but I doubled the coating mixture of crushed black peppercorns and coriander seeds. Before I cut into the meat for the stuffing, I cut along the rib bones almost to the chine and spread half of the pepper/coriander mixture in there. Then I stuffed the roast and, because I was lazy, closed it with toothpicks. When I first removed the roast from the oven after 25 minutes, I discovered something that doesn’t seem so odd in retrospect but really threw me at the time. The top part of the roast, above the stuffing, was at 140 degrees while the part near the bone, below the stuffing, was about 125 degrees. I measured a few times so I don’t think it was that my thermometer was inserted incorrectly (e.g., in the stuffing or against the bone). Anyway, I cooked the roast another 15 minutes and then let it rest for 15 minutes more. The part above the stuffing ended up drier than I would have liked it; but the part below was just perfect—slightly pink, very juicy. I was bit hesitant about the raisins. I don’t always like them in savory dishes. But there aren’t many here and they added just the barest hint of sweetness to every other bite or so. Quite delightful. In fact, the whole dish was quite delightful.
  2. I made the Creamy, Cheesy, Garlicky Rice with Spinach to serve with a hunk of protein, but from here on in it's going to be a main course. Comfort food par excellence. My garlic cloves may have been small, or too fresh, or something. I've made a note to try the recipe with 3 instead of two.
  3. Spice-Crusted Tuna. Simple. Super quick. Very enjoyable. I was glad I’d read her note saying that the tuna was good at room temp and that leftovers were delicious sliced and served on a green salad. I got a call I’d been waiting for all day just seconds before the fish was ready so I pulled it out of the pan and set it aside for nearly half an hour. Decided to just slice it and serve it on the salad. Good call. This is definitely spicy. Much to my liking, but I’ll have to be careful to whom I serve it. I also think I could have cooked the fish probably 15 seconds less per side; it was pink in the center, but I would have preferred it more toward red.
  4. Returned home after being away most of September to find this book waiting for me and to discover that the local farmer's market still had glorious corn, tomatoes, and basil and the the fisherman hadn't sold out of his great scallops. Making the Warm Scallop Salad with Corn, Nectarines, and Basil was like an end-of-summer celebration. I was a bit hesitant about the raw corn at first. I shouldn't have been. What a great introduction to the book.
  5. Of course it is. And I know that. Thanks for the correction. Afraid it won't be the last time the fingers engage before my brain does. I don't yet own Revolutionary Chinese Cookbook, which is Dunlop's Hunanese book, but I have made quite a few recipes from it and it's definitely on my "to buy" list.
  6. Well, it is Hunanese. And some recipes are spicier than others. One, among many, of the lovely things about Dunlop's recipes, though, is that they're never so spicy that the other flavors are overwhelmed. I have a friend who cooks from this book a lot and doesn't adjust the recipes for her 2-1/2 year old. But she's a rather unusual 2-1/2 year old. I think it would be difficult to do most of the recipes both with and without the spices unless you were using two different woks. The spices are such an integral part of the dishes that it's not as though you could just toss in a couple of chiles as the dish was being served. That said, it's such an outstanding book I think it well worth experimenting. And I'd be willing to bet your children will grow into it long before you get tired of cooking from it.
  7. Why do cookbook authors always have you measure a teaspoon of sugar right after you've measured out two teaspoons of oil? I now use my oval measuring spoons for wet ingredients and my oblong spoons (the ones that fit into a spice jar) for dry. No need to stop and wipe one clean before measuring the next ingredient.
  8. LOVE Land of Plenty. This is what I’ve made so far: Steamed Pork and Pumpkin Dumplings Xie Laoban’s Dan Dan Noodles Sweet-and-Sour Crispy Fish Dry-Fried Green Beans Hot and Numbing Crispy Shrimp Gong Bao Chicken Pock-Marked Mother Chen’s Bean Curd And . . . Twice-Cooked Pork Stir-Fried Cabbage with Chiles and Sichuan Pepper Stir Fried Water Spinach with Chile and Sichuan Pepper Traditional Dan Dan Noodles Tai Bai Chicken Dry-Fried Chicken Chicken with Vinegar Pork Slivers with Preserved Mustard Tuber Stir-Fried Pork Slivers with Sweet Fermented Paste Fish-Fragrant Bean Curd
  9. Was at Hong Kong supermarket on East B’way yesterday and was disappointed in their selection. I did find facing heaven chiles, but not the brand of chili bean paste I wanted (which I’ve found before in the Flushing Hong Kong market) or even the brand of rice vinegar I was looking for (Pearl River Bridge). I find their selection to be very hit and miss. I can't always count on them having what I'm looking for in stock.
  10. I'm surprised no one's mentioned RLB's Rose's Christmas Cookies. I've had it for years; there's not a dud in it; and I couldn't get through December without it.
  11. Made the Meyer Lemon Curd Tart using her Sweet Tart Shell recipe and decorating it with Candied Meyer Lemon Zest. The dough was a bit of a bear to work with; very soft and sticky. Even on my cold marble living room table it took three tries to get it into the pan after it was rolled out. The dough uses confectioners sugar instead of granulated and the butter and sugar are creamed together for 8 minutes. The result is a crisp, but tender, cookie-like texture that ends up being well worth the trouble. The tart was just outstanding. Even after a very substantial meal all my guests had seconds and then hinted, not at all subtly, for doggie bags. Eagerly looking forward to trying more recipes from the book. If this one was any indication, there should be lots of winners here.
  12. JBN

    Peanut brittle

    I was just searching the board to see if anyone had posted results from Kate Zuckerman's new book and came across this thread. Regarding the use of cream of tartar in the brittle recipe she says, not in the recipe itself but in her Note About Ingredients, that she "often calls for a pinch of cream of tartar as a way of introducing acid into a recipe, but 1 teaspoon of lemon juice or 1/2 teaspoon of vinegar can easily be substituted." OT, but I made her Meyer Lemon Tart for a dinner party last night and it was simply outstanding.
  13. The Baked Green Lasagne with Bolognese is outstanding. In fact, the Bolognese itself is outstanding.
  14. Thanks, Sara, but I'm afraid the zest is much too thin too dry on a rack. And perhaps I cooked the syrup too long, but it's so thick I'm not even sure how I'll remove the zest from it. Any suggestions? If I do figure out how to remove the zest, perhaps I could just dry it out on waxed paper? Do you think that might work.
  15. I am, as I type, cooking Meyer lemon peel in syrup according to the directions in The Sweet Life, which fyi calls for bringing the peel to a boil four times. She says the peel can be stored in the syrup in the fridge, but doesn't give instructions on drying it once it's removed from the syrup. The peel is cut into 1/16-inch widths, so I'm concerned that just scooping them out with a strainer and rolling them in sugar to dry isn't going to work. I want to use them to decorate a meyer lemon tart and would prefer the candied peel be dry for the change in texture. Any suggestions on how best to do that and how long it will take? I'm making the lemon curd and candied peel today, but not putting together the tart until Wednesday.
  16. JBN

    whole lotta shrimp

    Here's a terrific recipe for Cilantro Lime Shrimp. It's similar to one published in the new Gourmet cookbook. The only real differences are that the Gourmet recipe calls for making a paste of the salt and garlic rather than just mincing the garlic and calls for 1/4, not 1/2, cup chopped cilantro. I've served this as an hors d'oeuvre, an appetizer, and a main course and it's always been a huge hit. http://www.cooksrecipes.com/appetizer/cila...imp-recipe.html
  17. JBN

    Raw Lobster Flesh

    I've kept lobster alive overnight by wrapping them in a couple of sheets of wet newspaper and making sure the newspaper stays damp. The bugs aren't as feisty as they were when first brought home, but they're very definitely alive.
  18. Flo Braker, in The Simple Art of Perfect Baking, has a simply outstanding recipe for Crystal Almond Pound Cake that uses 7 ounces of almond paste.
  19. No art, but a framed recipe, business card, and handwritten note from the executive chef of a hotel in Bangkok. They served these outstanding rolls for breakfast that they called butter bread. I tracked down the chef and asked for the recipe thinking Fat Chance. The next day it was slipped under my door with a note reading "Enjoy and have fun, culinary greetings." Never did try the recipe (still intend to though), but love the message as well as the reminder of Thailand and the amazing meals I had there.
  20. It does seem odd to me that so many declare "wrong" a recipe that may be difficult and unusual but results in a good end product. I wonder how many would have declared "wrong" the Lahey/Bittman bread six months ago. Nonethless, I'd like to comapre RLB and Reinhart. I have American Pie but not Bread Baker's Apprentice (and there's a long wait for it at the library). I'm guessing that since AP is the more recently published title, the focaccia in that book represents his most recent thinking on how best to prepare it. I'd appreciate it if someone who has both could tell me whether or not there are significant differences between the two. Thanks.
  21. Totally seduced by the words “Sullivan Street Bakery” and despite the disasters reported here and elsewhere, including on RLB’s own Web site, I decided to give this a go. I followed her emended instructions using twice the amount of yeast and adding a half hour to the second rise. I also decided, because some were having problems with too much oil, not to grease the pan but to line it with parchment instead. And I made the “pockets of garlic” option, not only because I love garlic but because I’m making this for someone on a salt-restricted diet so the fleur de sel was out. Yes, it’s unlike any other focaccia dough. Ever. It’s very (very!) soft. It “pours” into the pan. And I don’t know if it was because of the parchment, but although I cooked it for the time specified, it was very slightly undercooked. But even with that, I thought it was an excellent focaccia, both thinner and chewier than most, and—especially with the garlic—excellent flavor. I’ll definitely be trying this again and just hope that my experience with it was not simply beginner’s luck.
  22. If you're referring to the masa harinas on that site, no, it's not. That's the dried form available in a number of places in Manhattan. I'm hoping to find freshly made masa.
  23. In search of fresh masa. Haven't been able to find it in Manhattan. Willing to travel, but need to be able to get there by public transportation. And if you know of a place, do you know if they carry it regularly or only on certain days of the week. I've heard of markets in the west, for example, that only have fresh masa available on Suday.
  24. Yes, it is. Supposedly with stale brioche, but I couldn't wait that long. You just make an almond cream (Dorie's is a very simple, no cook, all-in-the-food-processor version), spread it on the sliced brioche, top with sliced almonds, and bake at 350 for 15 minutes. The almond cream takes less than 5 minutes to make (once the butter is at room temp), so with the brioche on hand it's snap to make the Bostock I've just discovered there's a recipe for Bostock in the new cookbook Tartine. But that recipe calls for sprinkling the brioche with orange syrup and spreading on apricot jam before adding the almond cream and almonds. It's then topped with confectioners' sugar. Haven't tried it, but I can't imagine those additional ingredients would be an improvement.
  25. Made a Golden Brioche Loaf yesterday and the Bostock today. Loved how simple the Almond Cream, from the Indispensables chapter, was to make. It had a lovely, subtle almond flavor and wasn't overly sweet. And that brioche loaf is a real winner. I unfortunately undercooked it a bit because the top was beginning to brown too much. But the brioche was nonethless excellent. I'd never even heard of Bostock before, but certainly won't forget it now. And since the almond cream can hold in the fridge for a few days, it will be perfect treat for overnight guests on the run.
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