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Nathan P.

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Everything posted by Nathan P.

  1. OK, I've got another Piedmont meal to add. I started dinner tonight with very nice cipolle ripiene. This is a recipe I picked up on Langhe.net and consists of onions stuffed with ground veal, salami, the inner part of the onions, parm. cheese, parsley and topped with breadcrumbs before roasting. Very tasty, and in proper thrifty Italian cook fashion I was able to use up the last bit of stale bread from my bread soup. As I looked at the recipe though, it calls for cooked salami. I am familiar with cotto and crudo in hams but have not seen this term applied to salami. Anyone know the scoop? I used a sopressata from Molinari which my butcher carries. FYI, if no one has looked at Langhe.net there are around 150 recipes with only a few obviously non-regional. There is a tasty sounding timbale of breaded fried potatoes with almost equal parts of murazzano cheese and prosciutto that sounds like the kind of antipasti that will let you skip primo and main courses. For the more adventurous, there is an interesting sounding fried pigs trotter and a pork blood lasagna! Langhe.net For my main, I prepared Trota alla Piemontose following the recipe in Ada Boni's Regional Italian Cooking. This recipe calls for braising the trout in stock and vinegar with celery and white raisins. Additional seasoning comes from rosemary and sage. This turned out good with a nice balance between the sweet raisins and the acidity of the sauce. Interestingly, the recipe I have called for Olive Oil to cook in. For a contorno I sauteed some cauliflower in tasty taqueria lard with a couple of garlic cloves. I was pretty happy with this meal though adding fish stock to a sauteed fish dish and then thickening the sauce with a flour slurry challenged my ideas of Italian cooking.
  2. This looks a little closer to Italy's answer to cheese in a can. That soup looks good. How much stock to the head of garlic and how much dairy. Do you just cook it until the garlic is tender or further?
  3. That is what I was guessing. Could historicaly be some seaonality to this as well due to milk production. In case anyone is curious, yes you can fry your bread soup if it soaks up all the broth. Sort of like a soggy grilled cheese sandwich with a frico under it. Don't know if this has any real history, but it seems likely to me that at some point in time someone in the Aosta Valleyhad a bit of leftover Valpellinentze and tossed it in a pan with some butter to heat up!
  4. Yeah it is called Dinosaur Kale most of the time here in Northern California though the good market staff will know it as lacinato or cavalo nero for their food geek customers. It is available 365 days a year where I am. Good stuff and I liked the way it blended with the much milder napa cabbage. Good info on Piemonte coming in. So we have butter to cook in from the cows but I have also seen mention of lard. Anyone have any insights into the breakdown here or its micro-regionality?
  5. All this Valpellinentze talk has been making me hungry so I decided to try this dish tonight since it seemed fairly straightforward. Three grocery stores later I could still not find a Savoy cabbage . I decided to buy a Napa cabbage which looked like it had gotten a bit of sun and supplement that with some black kale to give it a bit more game. Other ingredients were pain de campagne from a local bakery (wheat, whole wheat, Rye), the cabbage, butter, pancetta, fontina and roasted chicken stock. For recipes I followed the techniques from the Culinaria Italy book and from Negrin's Rustico which I found online at the publisher. I pre-cooked the cabbage in boiling water, toasted the bread in the oven to bring out flavor and mimic staleness, and sauteed the pancetta before layering it all up. Unfortunately, my gratin dish was a bit short for the thickness of bread so I am hopping that everything will sink as it cooks. Well no sinking but it looks tasty enough in a rustic way. This spent around 25 min at 450'. Here it is with a portion taken out so you can see the liquid ratio that I achieved. Very tasty and I would do again but in a slightly deeper pan and with more cabbage. So what will happen with the leftovers? I am guessing it will congeal overnight- can it be fried in butter or pork fat?
  6. I need another week of dining austerity before I can add to this thread but thought I would share another recipe list I just found. Was doing some research on a bottle of Barbaresco I have and found some specific recipes of Langhe. You have to click on the link at bottom right. Also, anyone have an old mule they are not using . Glad I reread the thread to see this is a dual region month since 90% of the Piemonte recipes I have started with get a big white truffle! I think I am going to tackle a large Piemontese Agnolotti from Bugialli On Pasta that involves an outer filling of rice and an inner meat stuffing somewhere closer to the end of the month. I also have a strong preference to stay North until the weather warms up. I suspect the Europeans would mostly agree but any Southern Hemisphere folk here? I also like April's idea to tackle the Regions that Kevin didn't touch on in his thread.
  7. Well let me be the first to congratulate you on this amazing year long project. While I love Italian cuisine and do a fair bit of reading on it, this blog really made me realize how much I mix dishes and ideas from different regions in addition to the changes I make for personal preference and necessary ingredient substitution. Your food looked amazing and I loved the flow of the dishes as you returned to obvious favorites you had mastered and tried new things. I also loved the honesty of your obvious excitement when you nailed a dish and your dissapointement at the few dishes that did not come together. One of the best threads on eGullet. What dishes or regions surprised you the most?
  8. Great looking meal. Couple questions for you; how long did you braise the squid and what is in the lobster pasta besides the lobster and parsley? And is the shrimp in saor your own tweak of the classic? Oh, and were you frying in olive oil? Nice to see some of your other food as well. I will hold off on my super loud bravos and standing ovation in case you cook anything else in the next 5 days
  9. Thanks for the starting tips, Audrey. I'm looking forward to tasting and playing around with this product but I've promised Manhattans tonight so it is great to have someone's research to at least get me started. I had not thought about blending the two vermouths for these drinks but think it is a fine idea. My audience are not cocktail fanatics so I suspect a more modest level of bitterness will please them more.
  10. OK, so I stumbled into a bottle of the Carpano Antica Formula at my wineshop yesterday. So I am planning to do Manhattans for a cocktail before christmas eve dinner but am not going to be able to be any tasting before the event. Any hints on usage- lower % due to stronger flavor?, more and let it dominate, crank the bitters like Alchemist recommends? The spirits I have on hand are Evan William Single barrel bourbon and Old Overholt Rye. For bitters I have Fee's orange, Peychaud, and Angostura. Thanks for any hints- If it helps, my recent default has been 2.0oz : 1.0oz Eagle Rare 10yr : MartiniRossi with 2 good dashes of Angostura.
  11. Hope I am not too late play! (and could someone please confirm that these pics come through since I just got my camera the other day and am new to posting photos) So here is a potato cake that I have been making for a few years now that is a bit different than the latke style which is dominating this thread. The recipe comes from Chef Fabrice Marcon who currently runs Mistral at the Ferry Plaza in San Francisco but dates to when he ran Hyde St. Bistro. The recipe can be found at SFGate.com First bake some potatoes. Once they cool down, scoop the flesh out and mash with a fork. Add a bit of olive oil and a bunch of crumbly blue cheese (this is Roquefort). Season but watch the salt as the cheese is fairly salty. Form into cakes and throw into the fridge. Once they are cold, fry in some olive oil. They tend to stick a bit to the pan and while the cheese binds them, they are on the soft side so excercise caution. Plate with greens in your basic bistro vinaigrette, some diced pear and a drizzle of nut oil. I used hazelnut for this batch. With the strong cheese flavor of the cakes, I like to use assertive greens for the salad. This one was a mix of frisee, escarole and baby spinach. Nice starter for a french menu.
  12. There has been a lot of discussion of these knives on boards for kitchen knife talk. The Hattori HD (and are you sure you are looking at the right page because the 270 MM is $190 not $110) is manufactured by Ryusen. I have the Ryusen branded version (240mm) which is available at japanwoodworker.com and I love it. While it may not be a real $1000 Hattori, that does not mean it is not worth owning. That would be sort of like saying you should walk until you can afford a Ferrari. If you look at the Ittosai knives on Korin's site you will notice the similarity to the Hattori HD, and Ryusen: the general consensus is that this is the same knife.
  13. Nathan P.

    Lunch! (2003-2012)

    Leftover pozole- perfect for these blistering cold 60 degree california winter days.
  14. Nathan P.

    Making Tamales

    My favorite mexican restaurant does an interesting tamal variation where they stuff the masa into roasted poblanos before steaming. The flavor of the chile permeates the masa nicely with a stronger flavor note than either corn husks or banana leaves. They serve them in threes with fillings of huitlacoche, shrimp and turkey picadillo with red white and green pipian sauces.
  15. I live about 30 min away from what I understand is the second largest vietnamese community in San Jose Ca. I go there as often as I can to sample the wares and have had banh khot at a couple places. Plenty of places that do banh xeo as well and while I have learned to eat shell on shrimp I don't think I have learned to love them! My favorite banh xeo to date was actualy at a cambodian restaurant in San Francisco that uses ground pork instead of sliced. Are banh khot just cooked in a shaped cast iron pan over fire? I wonder if you could try this with a hot muffin tin in the oven like cooking yorkshire pudding? You would not get round bottom but you might be able to get them crispy on the bottom and cooked thru. If anyone has not had banh khot, here is a link to Noodlepie's great blog and its banh khot section with pictures of these savory custardy crispy shrimp cupcakes.
  16. Let me add another thanks for adding more to this thread, guppymo. Do you leave the shells on the shrimp for your banh xeo? Do you ever make banh khot?
  17. How exciting, the first eG foodblog from someone I know. I am still enjoying tomato sauce and slow roasted tomatoes from the 30 lbs+ I picked at chardgirl's farm this year. Her broccoli di cicco and corno di toro peppers were the highlight of my summer vegetable consumption. So, is everything you eat picked that day? Ever break down and eat wilted old greens you find in the back of the crisper Any plans to eat out this week or will this be all home cooked?
  18. I knew you could turn Thanksgiving into an Italian meal I had a fairly traditional meal cooked by my parents this year but managed to acquire the leftover turkey and made a very good tortellini in brodo with turkey stock with Kasper's tortellini from bologna recipe subbing dark meat turkey for the pork. Looked like your anolini pic though I gave myself a much bigger portion. I've checked Splendid Table out of the library so I could read along with your cooking and need to add this book to my modest collection.
  19. Here is another one, local to me, that sounds worthy of a visit: Osocalis Brandy
  20. I have to ask; how much is it on the east coast. It is $17/750ml on the west coast. And, are we going to see an Italian take on Thanksgiving?
  21. I have not tried Banana Leaf for comparison, but I ate at Layang Layang in Santa Clara a couple of times this year and had some good food. Web site claims that they plan to add an east bay location. Layang Layang
  22. Nathan P.


    Tonight I made a nice warm salad of shredded smoked duck leg, bonilla shallots, corn, fennel and pomegranate seeds topped with a some baby arugula. I like pomegranate seeds in these types of salads as they add visual and textural excitment plus a bit of sweeteness and acidity.
  23. Since all the Gin drinkers seem to be here; The Sarticious people are down the street from me. They run wine tastings for their vineyard (Alexander Valley I think) out of the same facility so I was thinking of stopping by to check out the operation. While I drink a fair amount of gin, I don't have much technical knowledge on the subject and was wondering if there are any technical details worth asking about? Also, if any Plymouth fans have a Bevmo nearby they have the original strength on sale for $10.99.
  24. . . . ← That is just annoying to hear. My local oil producer has a retail price of ~$25 per half liter. Motivated by the comments of those in Italy, I sent them an email last night asking when they are going to put on a special for locals who show up at the press with their own bottles.
  25. Looks like fresh turmeric. If so, watch your hands as it stains like mad. I think my mortar is now permanently yellow.
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