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Everything posted by blue_dolphin

  1. Lunch! What'd ya have? (2017)

    Host's note: this topic is broken into segments to improve server efficiency. The previous segment is here. This is the Baked Romanesco Broccoli With Mozzarella and Olives from the NY Times. @kayb recently posted her cauliflower adaptation over here on the dinner thread where she declared the recipe a keeper and I agree. I picked up a head of Romanesco broccoli at last week's farmers market for this purpose. I didn't add any additional salt but with the olives, anchovies, capers and pecorino Romano cheese, it was plenty salty enough to perk up a few slices of chicken breast. Edited to add that the other thing I did differently was to briefly microwave the broccoli (instead of blanching in salted water) then tossed it with the olive, anchovy, caper, red pepper, olive oil mixture instead of drizzling that over the top.
  2. Recipes that Rock: 2017

    I have raved about the Green Chile Adobo from Rick Bayless' More Mexican Everyday before but haven't officially nominated it in this category so I'm doing so now. The recipe may also be in other Bayless and appears on his website here. It's a condiment, not a dish in and of itself. Just fresh parsley & cilantro, pan-roasted garlic & serrano chiles, olive oil and salt blitzed together in a blender or processor. It has a brilliant jewel-like green color and maintains that color and it's fresh flavors in the fridge for months, under olive oil. Last year, I must have mentioned it a dozen times, putting it in dishes from that cookbook like the risotto-style rice & beans and skillet tacos to everything else I could think of - eggs, sandwiches, chicken and fish. This year, cooking from Diana Henry's Simple and Ottolenghi's books, I realized I could use it as a shortcut to so many of their sauces by adding a squeeze of fresh lemon or lime juice, chopped mint leaves, minced preserved lemon, freshly toasted and ground cumin, coriander, cardamom or cloves - not all at once, of course, but it made it so easy for me to make small amounts of various green sauces. I will not be without it!
  3. Breakfast! 2017 (Part 2)

    Sweet broccolini with tofu, sesame and cilantro from Ottolenghi, recipe available online here. I added some uncalled for sugar snap peas. The recipe describes this as a salad and says to cool it down to room temp for serving. I was getting hangry so I ate it warm, over brown basmati rice.
  4. Salad 2016 –

    Sprout Salad, Part Two from Ottolenghi's Plenty More, the ingredients and quantities are available online here. Not really much to look at but with plenty of nuts, avocado edamame and a mix of other vegetables in an interesting dressing flavored with umeboshi paste, it's a refreshing and satisfying salad.
  5. Breakfast! 2017 (Part 2)

    Super French Toast from Ottolenghi's Plenty More, online here (scroll down, it's the last one) and sausage. I skipped the sour cream. This recipe first bakes the bread in the custard, re-dips it and fries it in butter. In contrast to the NOPI recipe where the toast gets a quick fry in butter and then bakes in the oven. The NOPI method makes sense for a group as everything comes out at the same time. I like the NOPI method and the star anise sugar it uses but I also like the way this recipe heats the milk/cream with orange rind, cinnamon and vanilla to flavor it. No reason I can't combine them both. Sausages are these, purchased from a vendor at my local farmer's market. I've been trying their various offerings and the name on this one made me laugh
  6. Salad 2016 –

    Yes, the recipe calls for boiling all but one beet and slicing the raw beet paper thin. I went with the program but next time, I would cut the raw candy beet into thin matchstick so they look like little peppermint sticks!
  7. Salad 2016 –

    Another Ottolenghi salad. Candy beets with lentils and yuzu from Plenty More, recipe available online here. I love the combination of beets and citrus. Yuzu is one I hadn't tried with beets but I enjoyed it here. I roasted (instead of boiled) regular red beets and used a raw candy beet.
  8. Hospital Time

    Thank you for sharing this glimpse of Chinese culture with us. I hope you'll be sharing more pleasing observations with us soon - get well!
  9. Lunch! What'd ya have? (2017)

    Jerusalem artichoke and Swiss chard tart from Ottolenghi,online here. The chard or other greens + feta are a natural but I never would have thought of putting Jerusalem artichokes into a tart like this. My deviations from the recipe: I used beet greens instead of Swiss chard because I had them. I roasted the Jerusalem artichokes instead of boiling and used yogurt instead of crème fraîche. Finally, I had less feta than I thought so I added some goat cheddar and goat gouda to make up the difference. I don't think those adjustments did any harm to the end result. It's rich enough that a slice and a salad make a nice meal.
  10. Salad 2016 –

    Saffron Chicken & Herb Salad from Ottolenghi's Jerusalem. Recipe available online here. Not the most photogenic salad I've made but very tasty. I don't love raw fennel so I used the recommended sub of arugula and green onion. Fennel would have been better as I was sorely missing the crunch that it would bring. After a few bites, I went back and added sliced radishes. Sugar snap peas would also have been good. No fresh red chiles about so I used a mixture of jalapeño for heat and red bell pepper for color. I cooked the chicken breast sous vide, ahead of time, so aside from the time to simmer the orange/saffron mixture, this came together very quickly.
  11. Salad 2016 –

    Beet, avocado and pea salad from Ottolenghi's Plenty More, recipe available online here. I almost always use some sort of citrus in a beet salad so this was a nice change of pace. I roasted the beets whole instead of boiling as the recipe specifies. The cooked beets & thinly sliced onions are marinated in a mix of sherry vinegar, olive oil & chili sauce (I used Sambal Oelek) so they have a bit of heat. Once you start mixing the salad, everything (including the peas and avocado) turns beet-colored so it's worth composing it nicely on the plate. The online version calls for broad beans or edamame while the book uses peas.
  12. Breakfast! 2017 (Part 2)

    Scrambled eggs, watermelon and half of a brioche-crust mini "pizza"
  13. Dinner 2017 (Part 5)

    Pistachio & pine nut-crusted halibut with wild arugula & parsley vichyssoise from Ottolenghi's NOPI The vichyssoise (served warm, not chilled) is lovely and I'd be happy to eat a bowl of it all on its own. The browned butter and nut crust add a nice finish to the fish. I can't say that the radish does much beyond looking pretty and pink.
  14. My copy of Dorie's Cookies arrived today and it looks great. I don't even drink milk but I wanted to pour myself a big cold glass and curl up with this book. It was a struggle to finish reading the introduction before jumping around to read the lists of recipes in each chapter. Up front, there are helpful sections on technique, ingredients and gear. Each recipe includes a note on storing both the dough (if appropriate) and the finished cookies. And for anyone unfamiliar with Dorie, she's firmly in the weights/metric camp when it comes to measurements. Cup and ounce measurements are generally given as well. Teaspoon and tablespoons are used for small quantities. I said I wanted a glass of milk with this book but there's a whole chapter titled "Cocktail Cookies" so a glass of wine might be equally appropriate. Here are a few from that chapter that caught my eye: Goat Cheese & Chive Cookies! Cranberry Five-Spice Cookies! Hot and Spicy Togarashi Meringues (who even dreams like this )!!!! Rosemary-Parm Cookies! Fennel-Orange Shortbread Wedges! Cocktail Puffs (I see a variation with tomato chutney in my future)! Chocolate-Olive Cookies (I can't imagine ) Honey-Blue Cheese Madeleines! Anytime Tarragon-Apricot Cookies! Bee's Sneeze Nuggets (yes, with lemon, honey and GIN )! Major Grey's Roll-ups! Cocoa-Cayenne Cookies! Then, there's the chapter of recipes from Beurre & Sel, the cookie boutique Dorie and her son ran together for a number of years. Oh my, there are recipes in every chapter that are calling my name - it's deafening! The Cocoa-Tahini Cookies with Sesame Crunch in the Cookies for Every Day, Any Day sound delicious. The chapter on Brownies, Bars, Break-Ups & Biscotti has a recipe for Blueberry-Buttermilk Pie Bars that looks really good. There's a chapter on Cookies for Weekends, Holidays and Other Celebrations and a section at the end with recipes for syrups, glazes, frostings and other toppings. As in other cookbooks, Dorie includes "Playing Around" notes in some of the recipes that end up converting one recipe into many variations. I love the idea of substituting fresh chopped lemon verbena leaves for the chives in the Goat Cheese & Chive cookies. Where shall I start? Hmmmm. I have some jalapeño-honey chèvre that might make another variation on the Goat Cheese & Chive Cookies. Hmmmm.
  15. Breakfast! 2017 (Part 2)

    Puréed beets with yogurt & za'atar from Ottolenghi's Jerusalem with pita chips. My intention was to mix this up and put it in the fridge for later but I ended up scarfing down most of it. The recipe calls for the yogurt to be blended with the seasoned beet purée and crumbled goat cheese used as a topping. I mixed the yogurt and goat cheese together and swirled that into the beets. Sweet, tangy, spicy, earthy. Lots of good flavor.
  16. Trader Joe's Products (2017–)

    I was at TJ's this afternoon and decided to pick one up. It's OK. If I need a gluten-free option for guests, I might use it again but not for myself. It has quite a lot of sodium - 220 mg/serving of 1/6 of the crust. Since it's a very thin crust, it would be certainly be possible for a hungry person to eat 1/2 (660 mg) or even the whole thing (1320 mg). if one chooses salty toppings (like my pesto and feta), and chows down on a whole pie, that's a lot! I read some discouraging reviews of this item and TJ's has significantly revised the baking recommendations. Here's the original, with a baking time of 8-10 min: The revised instructions that calls for 2 separate 10-12 min bakes, followed by 4-5 min of broiling before applying toppings and another 4-5 min broil after topping Following those directions, I cut short both the pre-and post-topping broils as the edges were getting over done. I was using a toaster oven (CSO) and suspect a full sized oven would cook more evenly. Here it is after topping with pesto, red bell peppers, red onion and feta cheese. I would have preferred a longer bake to get a bit of char on the toppings but I was afraid the edges would be incinerated. Here, you can see that it's relatively thin. The underside was firm, a little chewy, not soggy at all. The edges varied from crisp to hard.
  17. Thanks for sharing, @SJMitch! You raise a good point about the importance of being able to deliver flawlessly (or close to) on initial orders in order to keep customers. I also totally agree with your observation about offerings trending towards a least common denominator as they expand. Personally, I'd like a service to give me meal-sized portions of unusual ingredients to sample and play with but I've heard the "too weird" comments from friends about Blue Apron meals, too, so I suspect I'm in the minority. I've been curious about Sun Basket since they offered a set of Paula Wolfert dishes a few months back. Their menus are generally appealing to me but I haven't tried them. I notice that they offer a breakfast option (2 breakfasts subbing for a dinner choice - one a smoothie and the second breakfast was something eggy or otherwise breakfast-y. I haven't seen that from other services and thought it was an interesting option. Have you tried any of their breakfasts?
  18. Breakfast! 2017 (Part 2)

    Caramelized endive with Gruyère from Ottolenghi's Plenty p 157. Here's a photo of the endives before I covered them with cheese - so pretty, it's a pity to hide them! I was tempted to eat them like this with a drizzle of sherry vinegar ... ...but I proceeded to make them completely unhealthy! There is a similar recipe in Ottolenghi that adds a slice of Serrano ham so I riffed off of both, added some crispy bacon crumbles to the cheese and breadcrumbs and called it breakfast.
  19. Dinner 2017 (Part 5)

    Ottolenghi mish mash III. Not a lot of thought went into this collection. I planned to make something from NOPI but suffered from poor time management so this was plan B. Clockwise from top: Stuffed peppers with fondant rutabaga & goat cheese from Plenty More - the recipe calls for regular bell peppers but I wanted to try the little guys. Focaccia with olive & parsley topping from Ottolenghi - frozen and reheated nicely in the CSO. Yogurt with cucumbers from Jerusalem. Spicy Moroccan Carrot Salad from Plenty. While cooking, I enjoyed a Sumac martini from NOPI. I know this should go over in the cocktail forum but this way, I get to include all 5 Ottolenghi books in one post
  20. Salad 2016 –

    Pink grapefruit & sumac salad from Ottolenghi's Plenty More, recipe available online here. I substituted arugula for the watercress and added some uncalled for avocado slices at the end. There's a good dose of bitter flavors here - endive, grapefruit and the reduced grapefruit juice in the dressing but it's also bright and fresh.
  21. I have used the ricotta whey in place of stock in risotto but I my usual MO is to save it for a while before it goes down the drain to make room in the fridge for some other item
  22. Breakfast! 2017 (Part 2)

    It was really quite tasty! I found the recipe instructions for cooking the quail eggs to be less than precise and figured that if I found them, I'd need to test it out myself. Here's what it says:
  23. What is this cooking vessel?

    I agree that it looks like a pot that could be used to cook beans. I have this lovely Mexican pot from Rancho Gordo that is not glazed. See also the variety of clay pottery bean pots offered at Bram. The Bram website has some very good information about the use of clay pottery for cooking in the Clay Cooking 101 section. From my experience, they are very nice people and would probably answer additional questions for you.
  24. Breakfast! 2017 (Part 2)

    Royal Potato Salad from Ottolenghi's Plenty. Basically potatoes, pesto, petite peas and soft boiled eggs. The recipe calls for Jersey Royal potatoes and quail eggs. I used the smallest yellow Dutch potatoes in the bag and while I'm sure the quail eggs would have looked darling, I went with regular chicken eggs. This was a delicious breakfast while everything was still warm. I'll be curious how it holds up if it sits at room temp for a while.
  25. Dinner 2017 (Part 5)

    @sartoric, the dishes and condiments you put together every day fill me with envy! Sorry about the cake I had something else in mind for dinner but by the time I got home from the farmers market and other errands I realized that I'd skipped lunch and was getting very, very hangry. Buttered Prawns With Tomatoes, Olives and Arak from Ottelenghi. I debated serving this over pasta. It would have been good but time was of the essence. Very quick and simple. I am fed. Crisis averted.