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Everything posted by blue_dolphin

  1. What? No warm nuts? I used to tell the FAs to just keep bringing me wine and nuts 🙃!
  2. blue_dolphin

    Camping, Princess Style

    Info on this page about broccoli harvesting explains how the broccoli is chilled right in the cartons.
  3. blue_dolphin

    Lunch 2019

    Wow! those are some seriously international dumplings!
  4. First, your entire dish sounds incredible! Not sure I'd be up to the challenge of making it but I'd certainly order it if it popped up on a restaurant menu near me! I will absolutely try the pickled avocado. I understand why you thought of using it with tuna. I made some sous vide tuna confit yesterday for a pasta dish. I made some of the leftover tuna into a tuna salad, using the same ingredients to the pasta dish - capers, preserved lemon, pine nuts and just enough mayo to bind. The tuna itself is well seasoned with lemon zest, bay leaf, dried chili, black pepper, garlic and fennel that were added to the oil used to confit it. I took a bite of the salad to see what would go well and it basically begged for avocado. I'll make up another batch and stuff it in an avocado but since I already had some little sandwiches in mind, I continued with that plan and just added some little slices of avocado. Salad of ahi tuna confit with pine nuts, capers and preserved lemon on gougères with arugula, avocado and pickled onion: The recipes for the tuna confit, gougères and pickled onion are all from The Zuni Café Cookbook but I assume responsibility for the avocado and for putting them together in this way.
  5. Whether I agree with the decisions or not, I do enjoy reading the judgements in this cookbook "tournament" and this year's version is currently underway over at Food52: 2019 Piglet As usual, there have been a number of apples vs oranges match-ups bu,t so far, I'm impressed with the effort the judges have put into reading and testing recipes from the books this year. I believe the last of the first round decisions appeared today. I'm cheering for my favorite book of last year, Shaya. Anyone else reading along?
  6. blue_dolphin

    "Zuni Cafe" Cookbook by Judy Rogers

    Pasta with Preserved Tuna & Pine Nuts from The Zuni Café Cookbook p 211. Here's a link to the canned tuna version of this recipe. Much earlier in this thread, @trillium called this out as a favorite recipe and "more than the sum of its parts," and I agree. I've made it before and loved it with oil-packed tuna belly but this was my first time making the tuna confit. I used the same seasonings that Judy calls for but packed the tuna into jars and used an immersion circulator to cook them for 90 min @ 45°C (113°F), following time/temp guidelines from Chef Steps. Here are my jars, packed and ready to go: The tuna itself is decidedly more flavorful this way as it's had plenty of time to absorb all those flavors and I'm looking forward to using it in other ways. Also, you are rewarded for your earlier effort by not having to measure the seasonings out for the pasta as you can just scoop them out with the tuna. Though I have to say that the canned tuna belly I used previously was absolutely silky in texture and nicer in that regard than the leaner cuts that I used. Once the tuna is prepped, this pasta dish comes together quickly and for something so easy, the flavors are remarkably complex - I especially love the preserved lemon here!
  7. It's possible that in some cases, they are selling to wholesalers rather than direct to stores so they may not have a complete list, though I'm sure more could be done. In another thread, @Smithy mentioned a Bimbo bakery product, Doraditas, and when I entered my zip code, the website was able to return a list of local stores that had received delivery of that particular product in the last 3 days. I didn't really want one but I was impressed.
  8. blue_dolphin

    Peeps: Marshmallowly Goodness

    If you do that this year, please do post some photos. I would love to see what a roasted peep looks like! Edited to add that I did Google "Roasted Peeps" but most of them looked skewered and toasted, as one would toast a marshmallow for making s'mores. Roasting sounds like something that would be done in an oven, rather than a campfire, though I've never seen one, hence my curiosity.
  9. blue_dolphin

    "Zuni Cafe" Cookbook by Judy Rogers

    Following up on the polenta, I poured the leftovers out to make firm polenta and decided to try a test portion of the Sage & Onion Polenta Gratin, one of 3 variations on using firm polenta. The notes say that it takes some care to steer clear of stodginess so I wanted to see if I could manage that and indeed, I did. I'd certainly make this again. The firm polenta is to be cut into 3/4" chunks and arranged in "2 loose layers" in a baking dish, sprinkled with "a lacy layer" of grated cheese and baked until the high points are quite brown. Even though I probably made closer to 1.5 layers, it still took about twice as long as the recommended baking time, perhaps because my polenta was a bit wet. The result was delicious with the contrast between the crispy, cheesy exterior and creamy interior of each little chunk. Not stodgy! I think the creamy texture of this polenta may be an even better asset to the firm polenta variations as when it's fresh in the bowl.
  10. blue_dolphin

    "Zuni Cafe" Cookbook by Judy Rogers

    You would be most welcome to visit....especially if you bring bacon! Sage and Onion Polenta from The Zuni Café Cookbook p 192 topped with Roasted Pepper Relish p 310 I'm generally very happy with my pot-in-pot Instant Pot polenta but decided to try Judy's method of stove top cooking over low heat, then holding for at least 30 min (up to several hours) in a double boiler. Her polenta cooking method is available online here. The polenta I used was stone ground, locally grown corn and quite coarse and I do think the texture benefitted from the holding time. In the interest of less pans to wash, I think I can mimic that in the IP by just letting it sit in the "keep warm" mode. For the sage & onion variation, you gently sauté a diced onion in butter with fresh sage and lots of black pepper, then mix that into the finished polenta. The result is rich from the butter, sweet from the onion, flavorful from the sage and plenty peppery. I might reduce the butter if I were to serve this as a side but on its own, I like the richness without having to add a bunch of cheese. Since the polenta is so rich, I thought the roasted pepper relish would add a nice counterpoint. This recipe extends over 3 pages but most of that is details on two methods to roast the bell peppers. After that, it's just a few short sentences. It includes currants soaked in sherry vinegar(I used golden raisins that I snipped to be smaller), pine nuts, garlic, basil or arugula (which I intentionally left out, then unintentionally forgot to add it at the time of serving), olive oil and sherry or Marsala. I very much enjoyed the contrasts in texture and the bright flavor that this relish brought to the rich, creamy polenta.
  11. I certainly agree about the nature of some pairings but I figure it's all in fun. If you decide to take a look, check out Emeril's judgement of Bottom of the Pot and Flavor Matrix. He actually called in his team to help cook and taste the dishes. I also very much enjoyed reading James Pomerantz's judgement of his match-up between Coconuts and Collards and Rose's Baking Basics which takes the reader (or at least me 🙃) on a bit of a roller-coaster ride. Vivian Howard had to judge between Christina Tosi's All About Cake and Anita Lo's Solo and had an entirely different take on Solo than my own opinion from borrowing it from the library but I enjoyed her write-up. Those pairings are apples to oranges, as is today's judgement by Andrew Knowlton, Editor-at-Large of Bon Appétit, between Shaya and the Noma Guide to Fermentation, but I enjoyed reading about their judging experiences and decision processes.
  12. blue_dolphin

    "Zuni Cafe" Cookbook by Judy Rogers

    Bosc Pears with Fennel, Fresh Walnuts, Parmigiano-Reggiano & Balsamic Vinegar from The Zuni Café Cookbook p 107 Last week, I bought pears (not Bosc), fennel and fresh walnuts from the local farmers market so I was able to put together this plate of deliciousness. The walnuts were picked last fall, so they are not as fresh as Judy would have liked but they were freshly shelled and much more flavorful than those I usually buy. Not sure it's really a recipe - just arrange the ingredients and drizzle with extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
  13. blue_dolphin

    Trader Joe's Products (2017–)

    I agree. Anything from TJ's can disappear anytime but I haven't noted any seasonal pattern with the Dijon mustards.
  14. blue_dolphin

    Breakfast 2019

    I ordered one of those molds, too, and it arrived yesterday. I think I need some bigger nori sheets. Yours looks delicious, @Shelby! The bacon bread was not made by me. I bought it at Roan Mills, a local business that grows and mills the grains and bakes bread. They had samples of the bacon bread made with their Sonora Red Fife blend out last weekend and that lured me into buying a loaf. I sliced it and am hoarding it in the freezer. They really put quite a lot of bacon in it. I like it best when it's toasted and the bacon gets crisp and starts to sizzle.
  15. blue_dolphin

    Breakfast 2019

    Avocado toast with tomato The secret ingredient here is this bacon bread: See that? BACON! 🙃
  16. blue_dolphin

    Lunch 2019

    Hey, @HungryChris, good to see you! I've been missing your breakfasts lately!
  17. Host's note: this cookbook can be found at Amazon: Six Season: A New Way with Vegetables A few of us have posted dishes from Six Seasons: A New Way with Vegetables and I'd very much like to cook from it a good bit more so I thought I'd give it a "Cooking with" thread in hopes of encouraging myself and hopefully attracting some cooking companions to the book. This is not a vegan cookbook, there's lots of cheese and butter and for a vegetable-centric cookbook, it includes quite a few recipes that contain meat. The author seems to love scallions as they appear almost everywhere and he may not care for cilantro as it makes an appearance in relatively few recipes. The book starts with a section of "Go-To Recipes" for compound butters, dressings and sauces, pickles, etc. I'd especially love to hear how people are using these condiments, even if they're being used in other applications. The full list of recipes can be viewed on Eat Your Books here. I'll start this off with links to existing posts using the book (this is what I could find easily, feel free to add anything I missed): @Anna N kicked things off back in May: Smashed Broccoli & Potatoes, Celery Salad with Dates, Almonds & Parmigiano Cream of Celery Soup Broccoli Rabe, Mozzarella, Anchovy & Spicy Tomato Fried Potato & Cheese Pancake Raw Brussels Sprouts with Lemon, Anchovy, Walnuts & Pecorino @koen posted about the Israeli-Spiced Tomatoes, Yogurt Sauce & Chickpeas @liamsaunt made the Rigatoni with Broccoli, Sausage and Whipped Ricotta and the Corn, Tomato, Scallion and Torn Crouton Salad Summer Squash Pickles Pasta with Eggplant alla Norma I started in with the book this year and so far, I've made: Frico - did I need a recipe for this? Apparently so, as I'd never made it before Raw Brussels Sprouts with Lemon, Anchovy, Walnuts & Pecorino Turnip Salad with Yogurt, Herbs & Poppy Seeds Beet Slaw with Pistachios and Raisins Pasta alla Gricia with Slivered Sugar Snap Peas Leeks with Anchovy and Soft Boiled Eggs Please join in!
  18. blue_dolphin

    "Zuni Cafe" Cookbook by Judy Rogers

    Pasta with Braised Bacon & Roasted Tomato Sauce from The Zuni Café Cookbook p 205. The recipe is available online at this link. This is a delicious, rustic and intensely flavorful pasta dish, basically a version of Pasta All'Amatriciana. The roasted tomato sauce is a keeper - a great, quick way to concentrate the flavor of canned tomatoes. Earlier in this topic, @snowangel raved about the braised bacon, suggesting its marvelous aroma may have helped sell her house and @sammy declared it the best bacon dish ever. In my opinion, the best bacon is perfectly cooked to shattering crispness in a perfect summertime BLT and there are easier and quicker ways to achieve the porky component in this dish than braising slab bacon for hours. The header notes say that guanciale was not available so the braised bacon was a substitute. It's much more readily available today so that would be an easy sub as would her suggested shortcut of using little strips of thickly sliced bacon - I'd soak the slices in water for a bit if it's a particularly smoky sort. I found a blog post that suggested just cooking the onions in rendered bacon fat to add that porky flavor for a very shortcut version. If you do decide to braise the bacon, do it a day ahead or early in the day as it takes some time and really needs to chill down thoroughly before you can slice it easily. The book says to brown the bacon "until slightly colored, a few minutes at most," but because I am appalled by pale, flabby pork fat on my plate, I let it crisp up nicely. Perhaps inappropriate for the dish, but very appropriate for this diner. I used bucatini as the pasta and sprinkled the dish with plenty of black pepper and pecorino romano (I love Judy's description of its flavor as "salty and feral") I made full batches of the sauce and the braised bacon, which is called for in several other recipes in the book, used what I needed and will save the leftovers from each separately.
  19. Welcome to the club! Don't you have 2 in active use?
  20. I suspect this salad from the Zuni Café Cookbook might be the sort of "Sunset Magazine kind of thing" that @Katie Meadow was thinking of in her comment above. It's the Butter Lettuce with Oranges, Avocado & Shallot Vinaigrette, to which I've added some grapefruit and radicchio. Simple and fresh tasting, this says winter in California to me. This uses up my ripe avocados so I need to wait for the next guys to be ready before I try that NYT salad.
  21. blue_dolphin

    "Zuni Cafe" Cookbook by Judy Rogers

    Butter Lettuce with Oranges, Avocado & Shallot Vinaigrette from The Zuni Café Cookbook p 143 Another easy salad assembled from a few ingredients and a simple dressing where everything complements each other perfectly. The header notes say that a variation on this salad would be to use grapefruit and endive and sweeten the vinaigrette with honey or Chartruese. I didn't sweeten the dressing but sort of merged the two by using a mix of butter lettuce and radicchio with both Cara Cara oranges and white Oro Blanco grapefruit. She also suggests serving this with cold shrimp or crab and I wish I had some shrimp as they would have easily turned this into a main dish. Next time.
  22. blue_dolphin

    Breakfast 2019

    I also had buttermilk biscuits with ham for breakfast but I refuse to post a picture of my sorry biscuits next to @Ann_T's perfection!
  23. I can't speak to that recipe as I haven't made it but if I saw an Italian recipe calling for fish sauce, I would assume they were using Colatura di alici, an authentically Italian ingredient.
  24. blue_dolphin

    Mail-Order Virginia Country Hams

    After @kayb mentioned Broadbent's biscuit slices, and wanting to get an order in before the weather gets too hot (after an order from Father's arrived with grease soaked clear through the box), I placed an order with Broadbent's to give them a try: My order: A slab of applewood smoked bacon (labeled 4-5 lbs, measured weight = 4 lbs 14 oz), 3 packs of the biscuit slices @kayb mentioned and their bacon sampler with a package each of hickory, maple, apple and hickory-pepper bacon. It seems the package of seasoning ends & pieces is a freebie. Nice. While the box was pristine, it still smelled pretty good: You may also have noted the paw in the upper left corner of my first photo. These guys were VERY interested! Sadly, it is the first Friday of Lent so no meat for me today 🙃