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Pierogi

eG Foodblog: Pierogi (2011) - Rollin' the bon temps on the Left Co

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*deep breath*

*gulp*

I'd like to thank the Academy. Oh wait....that was LAST weekend !

Yes, Heidi, Darienne and Nickrey got it. I did sort of know that the Dodger Dogs and the Polish cookbook would give it to y'all.

Your guest host this week is little ol' moi. I am so thrilled to invite you into my kitchen, and very flattered that eG thought me worthy of a vaunted Foodblog. Or, if there were no other takers, I'd prefer not to know ! Let me live in my fool's paradise :raz:

To address a couple of comments from the "coming attractions" thread, Prasantrin, the first Mexican angel is indeed an ornament, not jewelry. She hangs in my kitchen, as does the print of the angels baking. Robirdstx, hadn't thought about the connection to LA, but I LIKE it since Long Beach is, in fact, the largest "suburb" of LA. If we were anywhere else but 30 miles south of downtown LA, we'd be a big city on our own, but here in LaLaLand, we're but a suburb. Actually, the angels are because I collect angels, and those particular ones also were making or offering food. Which, or course, speaks to my soul.

Chris Hennes, Heidi nailed it. Your "mountains" in the distance is, in fact Catalina Island....26 miles across the sea, as they say. And that's the Port of Long Beach, with downtown Long Beach in the far foreground. There's a hill in the middle of Long Beach, which is an independently incorporated city, called Signal Hill. It's where a lot of the old-time oil operations in the area was based. That picture was taken from the top of Signal Hill. You can also see downtown LA from there, but it was a bit too hazy to make it out clearly the day I was there.

Anyways, back to food. Tomorrow we'll get into the throes of the week. As a last teaser, here's some of the resources we'll be using to cook our way through the next few days. And yes, there will be a few field trips, and probably (more than) a few gratutious cute, furry dog shots. Hey, THEY eat my cooking too !

Blog 1 002.JPG

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Oh, and a semi-funny story about the Dodger Dogs.

For a bazillion years, the packaging that's in that picture has been the retail package for the hot dogs sold by Farmer John meat packing as "Dodger Dogs". They are the official purveyor of hot dogs at Dodger Stadium, and yes, they're called Dodger Dogs there (only get 'em grilled, please. The steamed ones are nasty....)

When I was asked to do this blog, I knew I'd have to provide teaser photos, and as Heidi pointed out, since my avatar is my own, personal Dodger Dog, I thought that a package of the real ones would be a good clue.

Fast forward to Tuesday, when I went to the grocery store, in search of Dodger Dogs. None to be found, and I went to all 5 of the major chains in my 'hood. The closest I could come was a package of the foot-long Farmer John Dogs labeled "Big Game Dogs" or some such twaddle. They literally disappeared off of the shelves in the space of less than a week.

Figures, the one time in my life I actually WANT an entire package of Dodger Dogs, and they seem to have become extinct.

Luckily, the Farmer John web site still had a picture of the old, traditional packaging.

Until tomorrow ! Big day in the little kitchen planned.

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Looking forward to this! Esp. the New Orleans cookery your cookbooks photo suggests is in the offing..not something we see a lot of around these parts. :smile:


Edited by rarerollingobject (log)

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I recently bought the new Sunset Cookbook. I'm anxious to see what you think of it. I would give

up all my magazines before parting with my monthly issue of Sunset!

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Wow, is your name Roberta? Because that's the first time I ever noticed that in your signature. Hi, Roberta! (And, if your name isn't Roberta, then please forgive my idiocy.)

I'm really looking forward to this! Anyone who loves dogs so much is a-okay in my book. :wink:

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I'm excited to see a So Cal blog! Maybe you'll take us to some places I can check out myself!

And like IowaDee, I'd like to hear what you think about that Sunset cookbook, too.

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Yipppppie!!!! :cool:

*sigh*

I bet it's like 80 degrees and sunny there. I'm envious!

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*sigh*

I bet it's like 80 degrees and sunny there. I'm envious!

It's not 80 yet where I am, but it's supposed to get close to that today and it certainly is a beautiful, sunny morning. I was in gray, rainy, windy Seattle most of the week. So even though I needed a sweater, I took my coffee outside this AM - the pink jasmine on my patio is intoxicating! I'll bet Pierogi will keep you envying the weather....and the food, too!

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Looking forward to this! Esp. the New Orleans cookery your cookbooks photo suggests is in the offing..not something we see a lot of around these parts. :smile:

Yes, indeedy. We will be doing Cajun/Creole food for sure.

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I recently bought the new Sunset Cookbook. I'm anxious to see what you think of it. I would give

up all my magazines before parting with my monthly issue of Sunset!

I got it about a month ago, and just finished "reading" it. I have a list of about 30 recipes to make, and another 10 or so that are flagged as "must make IMMEDIATELY".

I basically learned to cook from the Sunset softcover cookbooks they used to publish back in the day. I have about 10 of them, ranging from salads, to BBQ, to Mexican to "Oriental". I still cook regularly from them. I've always been a fan of their recipe style.

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Hooray! Let's go, let's go, let's go. Please do include the furry ones. Do you make dog cookies? or dog food?

Haven't ever done that, although now that I've become a baker (or at least pretending I'm a baker....) I should do some treeetz for them.

What really makes the girls very happy is raw veggies ! They both have never met a veggie they didn't love....broccoli, cauliflower, bell pepper, celery, cabbage, you name, they love it. As soon as they hear me chopping, they're right there looking starved.

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Yipppppie!!!! :cool:

*sigh*

I bet it's like 80 degrees and sunny there. I'm envious!

Blog 2 009.JPG

That's the thermometer on my patio about 11:15 this morning.

Sorry.....

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First step of the baking project is done. Here's some in process shots...

The ingredients

Blog 2 002.JPG

The source

Blog 2 006.JPG

The dough, which is currently rising

Blog 2 007.JPG

"Cooking Up A Storm" is a very cool cookbook. It was put together by the food staff of the New Orleans Times-Picayune newspaper after Katrina. They had for years run, as most good newspaper food sections do, a recipe exchange where readers could request and share recipes. After the storm, they had so many requests for recipes from people who had lost theirs in the flooding, they decided to make a book out of them, from the paper's archives as well as from submissions by readers. The staff felt it would be important, not only to rebuild the sense of community, but to document and preserve the rich traditions and culture of southern Louisiana. The recipes are fabulous, but the descriptions that introduce and explain them are the real gems. Gives a wonderful background to the food.

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Wow, is your name Roberta? Because that's the first time I ever noticed that in your signature. Hi, Roberta! (And, if your name isn't Roberta, then please forgive my idiocy.)

I'm really looking forward to this! Anyone who loves dogs so much is a-okay in my book. :wink:

Yep, Roberta would be me. Just added it to my sig line, figured it was time to make myself known... :wink:

VERY observant, Lisa !

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Hi Roberta.

I wish I would have seen your teasers before today. I would have recognized Signal Hill since I used to live in Long Beach and very close to Signal Hill. Looking forward to your blog as I'm in Long Beach at least 3x a month( I still have family and friends there).

Maybe I'll discover something new.

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Looking forward to a great week with you. The book Cooking up a Storm looks looks like it would fill a gap in my cookbook library. I concentrate on cookbooks that give you the background story. The link is eGullet friendly.

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I got it about a month ago, and just finished "reading" it. I have a list of about 30 recipes to make, and another 10 or so that are flagged as "must make IMMEDIATELY".

I basically learned to cook from the Sunset softcover cookbooks they used to publish back in the day. I have about 10 of them, ranging from salads, to BBQ, to Mexican to "Oriental". I still cook regularly from them. I've always been a fan of their recipe style.

I am very disappointed to discover that The Sunset Cookbookcosts $32.00 on Amazon.ca (the Canadian end of the business).

Also, exactly what is so 'western USA' about it? Does it have Tex/SoCal/Mex recipes in it?

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I'm excited to see a So Cal blog! Maybe you'll take us to some places I can check out myself!

And like IowaDee, I'd like to hear what you think about that Sunset cookbook, too.

Hi Roberta.

I wish I would have seen your teasers before today. I would have recognized Signal Hill since I used to live in Long Beach and very close to Signal Hill. Looking forward to your blog as I'm in Long Beach at least 3x a month( I still have family and friends there).

Maybe I'll discover something new.

Unfortunately, there probably won't be too much (if any) restaurant eating....budgetary constraints and all that. But we'll be out and about a bit anyway.

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I am very disappointed to discover that The Sunset Cookbookcosts $32.00 on Amazon.ca (the Canadian end of the business).

Also, exactly what is so 'western USA' about it? Does it have Tex/SoCal/Mex recipes in it?

It *IS* pricey, and to be honest, right now, I probably wouldn't have bought it for myself. There are other cookbooks I really want, like "Around My French Table".

But....I won it in a contest on another website (Serious Eats). Who am I too look a gift cookbook in the mouth??? I took it quite happily.

Sunset, the magazine, only covers the states West of the Rockies, so yes, all of California, the Pacific Northwest, Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado, Utah, Nevada, Idaho are included. I don't believe they get into Texas at all, but all the other iterations of Mexican cooking are covered well and thoroughly by them. As is Asian, since we have such a large, and varied, Asian population. Then there's the dreaded "California" cuisine, but it's really food you'd WANT to eat, rather than the cliche of "California" cusinine from the 90's (or whenever).

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OK, there's a bit of a lull before it's time to cook dinner (and have a delightful adult beverage....) so let's get caught up on what's gone on in the little kitchen today.

First off, it occurs to me that I haven't talked about what I actually ATE today. Well, that's 'cause I really didn't eat much, and it was really not very interesting. I had a storebought Chinese almond cookie for breakfast, mainly just to get something into my tummy other than medication ! About an hour later, I had a big glass of buttermilk, and then later this afternoon, a tangerine. That'll probably be pretty typical for the week. I've never been much of a breakfast eater, and now that I'm not working, I find I don't even usually want too much of a lunch. Don't get me wrong, I'll EAT if its put in front of me. I guess it has to do with not being a morning person... :huh:

So, the baking project is done, and if I say so myself, I'm pretty impressed. Another effort I'd been wanting to try, and had never made before. We'll see how it tastes later, let's see how it went together now.

When last we left our dough, it was rising.

I'd say it doubled nicely

Blog 3 023.JPG

Dough rolled out

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Some melted butter would be nice

Blog 3 025.JPG

So would some cinnamon and brown sugar

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All rolled up and slashed to show the pretties

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Doubled again

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Out of the oven

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Needs some glaze and decoration

Blog 3 054.JPG

Annndddd, voila ! A King Cake to celebrate Mardi Gras weekend with !Blog 3 055.JPG

Nope, I did *NOT* forget the bean !

Blog 3 027.JPG

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The source

Blog 2 006.JPG

"Cooking Up A Storm" is a very cool cookbook. It was put together by the food staff of the New Orleans Times-Picayune newspaper after Katrina. They had for years run, as most good newspaper food sections do, a recipe exchange where readers could request and share recipes. After the storm, they had so many requests for recipes from people who had lost theirs in the flooding, they decided to make a book out of them, from the paper's archives as well as from submissions by readers. The staff felt it would be important, not only to rebuild the sense of community, but to document and preserve the rich traditions and culture of southern Louisiana. The recipes are fabulous, but the descriptions that introduce and explain them are the real gems. Gives a wonderful background to the food.

I looked all over NOLA for this cookbook when we were there last spring and couldn't find it. I thought it was an amazing concept. Thanks for the reminder - I just added it to my amazon wishlist! Looking forward to your week!

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PHEW!!!! Time to sit down. Maybe I can get those fur bombs to rub my tired feeties....

Warning....gratutious dog picture follows:

Copy of The Girls.JPG

The white Bichon is Rosie, who's in the Dodger hat in my avatar. The gray one is Lulu, who I think is mostly Shih Tzu and ??? They're both rescues....and they're both my babies. They'll be back later in a more food-related context.

Back to food and drink.

So, after I uploaded the King Cake extravaganza, I did in fact, retire to the kitchen to have a delightful adult beverage.

Pegu Club Manhatten

Blog 4 001.JPG

*With* homemade cordialed cherries (using Jacques Pepin's method in one of his "Fast Food" books. You plunk fresh cherries in a mix of vodka and corn syrup and let them sit in the fridge for a looooooong, looooooong time. To my palate, it's at least 6 months before they stop tasting like straight alcohol. Sadly, I only have about 5 left. Happily, cherry season is right around the corner.

Inspiration for dinner tonight came from this:

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And this:

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That's a bunch of absolutely stunning mustard greens (which I'd NEVER cooked before) from my CSA.

And this:

Blog 4 010.JPG

A mango that was getting a bit long in the tooth.

And these:

Blog 4 005.JPG

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Oh, and Shelby, it's about 9:30 at night, and all the windows are open.....

Sorry.

But it *is* supposed to drop by about 10 or 15 degrees tomorrow, and rain on Monday. We'll see... :hmmm:

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Another great blog on the go!

I am very interested to see how you will use the mustard greens. We can get these from the local Chinese "Aunties'" gardens - usually early June - called "look yuet chang" - literally June Greens. I've only used them for a quick soup with ginger and pork stock. I think this is considered a "cooling" soup to help balance the body.

Rosie and Lulu look very happy to have been rescued by you. :smile:

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As you could see by the shot of the cookbooks I'm planning on using this week, I have very, *VERY* diverse tastes in food. We'll be doing Mexican, Cajun/Creole, Asian, American comfort food and Polish this week. As some of us were discussing in this eG link here, I personally have never met a cuisine I didn't love.

Tonight was Indian. I knew had to use that mango before it walked out of the fridge under it's own power. Same for the mustard greens. They were in my CSA (we'll talk more about them later in the week) share a week and a half ago, and I could hardly fit anything else in my crisper drawer around them. But they were lovely. I had those 2 recipes I'd pulled from the March 2011 edition of "Food and Wine" and with a mango chutney from the Sahni book, there was dinner.

The greens got boiled down, along with a bit of chard also left over from last CSA (recipe said spinach, I said close enough):

Blog 4 011.JPG

Then blitzed in the Cuisinart

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There was also some red onion, garlic, fresh ginger and a MASSIVE, but sadly, very tame jalapeno involved.

The Dhaba Chicken Curry needed, of course, chicken, skinless breasts, on the bone, sprinkled with salt & pepper

Blog 4 018.JPG

Curry spices being bloomed in some hot oil (spices were ground corriander and cumin, cayenne pepper, cinnamon, ground cloves and ground cardamom)

Blog 4 019.JPG

And then some processed onion, garlic and ginger added to fry down. Then some tumeric and tomato sauce went in

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Finished mango chutney with added raisins and almonds (spices were dry mustard, ground cloves, ground ginger, cinnamon and cayenne)

Blog 4 026.JPG

Finished mustard greens

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And finished chicken curry, over basmati rice, garnished with garam masala powder and chopped cilantro

Blog 4 029.JPG

Final verdict. All the dishes (which were all first time efforts for me) were tasty, but I don't think they worked well together. I wanted more sauce for the curry. The greens were dynamite, but I think they'd be better as a side to a more simple protein, like maybe something grilled. And the chutney, again, tasted great, VERY spicy but good balance, but guess I'm just more used to the artificially thickened commercial product (or I didn't let it cook down enough....a distinct possibility). Again, I think it would be better with a less complex main dish.

Leftover count, and this is crucial to me as a single person, because they seem to BREED in the fridge of their own accord:

1 (really big) chicken breast in curry sauce. I ate most of the rice, most of the greens (OK, the veggie hog girls got a bit mixed in with their Pedigree, OK, and some rice too, golly !) and about half of the chutney.

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