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blue_dolphin

Cooking with Six Seasons by Joshua McFadden

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Posted (edited)

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 xD

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!


Edited by Smithy Added host's note (log)
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I love it! I may make the Raw Brussels Sprouts tonight, I've got all the ingredients.

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@blue_dolphin

 

 Thank you for starting this topic. I need to get back to that book (but there are so many books I need to get back to and so many I am anxious to get started on).  

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In another thread, @kayb said:

On 9/24/2017 at 6:16 PM, kayb said:

The butters and condiments alone are worth the price. Artichoke mayonnaise? Yes, please.

 

There is indeed some delicious-sounding stuff in that "Go-To Recipes section.  I spent some time going through the book and writing the names of the recipes that utilize these items underneath the condiment recipes so I can see where they are used.  There are a few orphan condiment recipes (for example, the Artichoke Mayonnaise, Pickled Vegetable Mayonnaise, Lemon Cream and the Classic Salsa Verde).  Not sure what's up with that.  Maybe I was just careless and missed them.  

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It's mildly annoying that info was not included somewhere in the book or the index and it's generally lacking from the Eat Your Books indexing as well.  Below are a few things I've made from the "Go-To Recipes" section so far.

 

The first thing I made was Frico p 31 (link in the first post).  As I mentioned there, I'm not sure I needed a recipe for 1-ingredient snacks but they are very tasty. 

Next, was the Brined & Roasted Almonds p 30  Whole, raw almonds get a 30 min bath in salty water before being toasted.  They are rather addictive. They are salty but there's no loose salt crystals sticking to the nuts so they make quite a pleasant nibble.  So much so that I ate them all up without taking a photo.  Next time. 

 

The Dry Breadcrumbs p 30 get used in 15 subsequent recipes, one of the most commonly used Go-To Recipes.  They're just dry, unseasoned bread crumbs. 

I followed the author's suggestion to use a whole grain loaf.  The bread cubes get dried thoroughly @ 250°F and are then to be ground in a food processor to a Grape-Nuts-like consistency. With this sturdy whole grain loaf, they seemed to go from large chunk to powder without making much in the way of intermediate-sized particles so I put them into a heavy weight bag and bashed them with a rolling pin.  I think I will return to my more usual method of making the crumbs from dry bread and then toasting the crumbs to dry them out.  Either that or I'll just use Grape-Nuts cereal instead xD!

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The crumbs do look like Grape-Nuts, don't they?

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Next up is the Pistachio Butter p 37 that gets used in the recipe for Beet Slaw with Pistachios and Raisins that I made the other day.   This came together nicely using the Blendtec Mini blend jar. 

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 Ingredients are just toasted pistachios, red wine vinegar, olive oil, salt and a bit of water to loosen things.  This stuff absolutely makes that beet salad.  Not sure what else I will do with it. Maybe a dressing for some spicy noodles or something like that?

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Next up are ingredients for 2 of the compound butters, Cacio e Pepe Butter p 34:

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And Alla Diavola Butter p 33:

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And the finished products:

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The Cacio e Pepe Butter uses black pepper that's been toasted to bring out the flavor and then coarsely ground, plus Parm & Romano cheeses.  It was delicious in the Pasta alla Gricia with Slivered Sugar Snap Peas that I made last night.  I'll be happy to have this in the freezer so I can cut off a chunk to use on potatoes, steak or pasta. 

I only tasted the Alla Diavola Butter but haven't used it in any of the recipes.  Seems pleasantly spicy.

 

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 Sometimes I just need a nudge.  This quick bread has intrigued me since I first opened the book. I decided to challenge myself before breakfast this morning and make it.

 

I wonder if the 8 x 5 pan that is called for is a typo. I have 9 x 5 and 8 1/2 x 4 1/2. Search doesn’t bring up anything like an 8 x 5 but it worked just fine in my 8 1/2” x 4 1/2”.  

 

It also took longer to bake than suggested —  close to an hour (and yes I did check my oven temperature).

 

 I tried to take a shortcut by throwing the toasted hazelnuts into the food processor to be chopped. Bad move. Some were pulverized and some remained pretty much whole.  So just a word of warning there. Your knife is your best friend for chopping hazelnuts. 

 

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It is cooling now and I’m getting hungrier by the minute. 

 

 

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Just what I need. Another cookbook

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Half-Steamed Turnips with Alla Diavola Butter from Six Seasons p 370.

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I used small white Hakurei turnips because that's what was available at the farmers market instead of the late season turnips specified but they worked fine.  Probably not as peppery, but the butter makes up for that.
Once that Alla Diavola Butter p 33 is made, this comes together very quickly. I loved the flavors here and am looking forward to trying it in other ways.

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Posted (edited)

I just made the Raw Brussel Sprouts with Lemon, Anchovy, Walnuts & Pecorino. The recipe can be found here

 

It was ok, it didn't taste like brussel sprouts, it tasted like a Caesar salad but with a different texture. It was a taste as you go dish, I love how McFadden said, "Did I really only call for half a lemon? Can I get another half?" Imo, it did need more than half a lemon and some black pepper too.

 

I have plans to devour this later tonight, but honestly, it's not going into my rotation. It's a tad ordinary. And I love brussel sprouts, I have several tried-and-true recipes that I never tire of, so it's hard to keep brussel sprouts around here.

 

I'll post pics when I get a chance.

 

 


Edited by Smokeydoke (log)
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@Anna N, what did you think of that parsnip bread?  Was it very parsnippy tasting? Seems like that could be a good thing or not, depending....

 

@Smokeydoke, looking forward to photos and your thoughts after serving the Brussels sprouts salad.  I generally agree with your assessment. 

I thought the upsides were that it was much lower labor than the Brussels sprouts salads that ask you to separate all the little leaves and Brussels Sprouts salads are handy to have in your back pocket during the winter (or just lazy shopping) months as those sturdy sprouts store so well.  

 

Here's repeat of the Pasta alla Gricia with Sugar Snap Peas p 123. Recipe available online here. For the first round (link in the first post), I made this as written in the recipe so the sugar snaps were slivered into the pretty much the same shape as the spaghetti.  It was excellent and I wondered if it had much to do with the slivered pods and thin spaghetti having so much surface area to coat with the sauce or if it would work as well with a shorter pasta shape and compatible larger slices of the sugar snaps.  I also had some cute pod-shaped capunti pasta so I did the experiment:

IMG_6768.thumb.jpg.6a4dad9a8d680f20ef1fed7549c004ff.jpg

 

Yes, indeed, it works very well!  So cute the way the little pancetta cubes lined up in the pasta like peas in a pod!  This is certainly a winner - comes together in the time it takes to cook the pasta. 

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52 minutes ago, blue_dolphin said:

@Anna N, what did you think of that parsnip bread?  Was it very parsnippy tasting? Seems like that could be a good thing or not, depending....

 I was amazed at how good it was. I could taste the parsnip but it was not overpowering by any means. I wondered if someone who did not know that there was parsnip in there would detect it or just notice a different flavor. 

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Here's a photo of the Brussel Sprouts, I had some this morning and it reminded me of the salad they serve at Japanese restaurants.

Last night, Mr. Smokey added some mayo to it and it was delicious! YMMV.

 

 

IMG_2580.JPG

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Posted (edited)

I am not the biggest radish lover but I just happily lunched on a big ol' bowl of radishes in the form of the Radishes with Tonnato, Sunflower Seeds and Lemon from Six Seasons p 112.
I picked up some at last week's farmers market for another recipe and had quite a few orphans that ended up in today's lunch.

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I made a few minor modifications: subbed slivered almonds for the sunflower seeds and served it all on a bed of greens. 
The more major mod was using a Tonnato recipe I know and love rather than the one in the book. I'm sure that one is fine but it seemed a little heavy on the tuna and under seasoned. Next time I'll give it a try.


Edited by blue_dolphin because I hit "save" before I was done! (log)
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I have this book but haven't made much from it. 

 

Might join in once we move past the winter season here in CA.

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On 1/10/2018 at 1:28 AM, ProfessionalHobbit said:

I have this book but haven't made much from it. 

 

Might join in once we move past the winter season here in CA.

I'll look forward to that.  Down here in So Cal, we're getting into spring.  Broccoli, Cauliflower & relatives are at their peak - they're featured in the mid summer chapter of the book but they will be long gone around here if I wait that long!

 

A variation on the Crispy Sugar Snap Peas with Tonnato & Lemon from Six Seasons p 124.

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The recipe calls for deep frying the sugar snaps in a light batter. I'm sure they would be delicious but I'm not particularly good at deep frying (I was also a little afraid of them filling up with hot oil) and so I gave these a quick steam/stir fry to give them some color but maintain their crispness, squeezed the lemon juice over them right in the pan and served with the tonnato sauce. Yum!


Edited by blue_dolphin to fix photo (log)
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Just got my copy...finally

The recipes are clearly exceptional, esp the root vegetable and late season veg.

I'm going to revisit rutabagas and turnips.

Makes me mourn the crappy produce I get around here. Carrots? We got big ones and little ones. Whaddaya want?

But that makes me stronger.

 

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9 minutes ago, gfweb said:

Carrots? We got big ones and little ones. Whaddaya want?

 

I've been eyeing the carrot recipes in the book and trying to decide which carrots to use.  

Here's the selection from one of the vendors at my local farmers market last week: round, yellow & purple in the top row and the ever popular orange down below:

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Sorry.  But you'll be having great stuff later in the year.  And I will never get ramps.


Edited by blue_dolphin to clarify photo is from last week (log)
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6 hours ago, blue_dolphin said:

I've been eyeing the carrot recipes in the book and trying to decide which carrots to use.  

This must surely qualify as cruel and unusual punishment. I am lucky if I get carrots with tops that appear to have been alive at some point. For the most part I’m faced with plastic bags of large, woody, old and tasteless orange things.  Oh well. You’ll never know the pleasure of stepping out into minus degree weather and taking that first breath that sears your lungs and burns your nostrils.  So there. 

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8 hours ago, blue_dolphin said:

 

Sorry.  But you'll be having great stuff later in the year.  And I will never get ramps.

 

 

In fact I have 2 little patches of ramps of my own.

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A friend gave me this book this summer and I used it a lot. Last week I turned to it for some post-holiday winter vegetable inspiration and made this parsnips with citrus and olives salad. I liked it a lot and will make it again. 

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I picked up some nice broccoli from the farmers market this afternoon specifically for this Charred Broccoli with Tonnato, Pecorino, Lemon and Chiles from Six Seasons p 183.

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Great combination of flavors. I broiled the broccoli in the CSO and it was OK but next time, I think I should use the big oven for more char.

 

I also compared the tonnato recipe from the book, p 45 with one I made recently from a Lady & Pups blog post, based on a Gabrielle Hamilton recipe and tasted them side by side with the broccoli (and Triscuits xDThe tonnato from Six Seasons is both delicious and a little quicker (a few less ingredients to measure) but I like the depth of flavor that that those ingredients (Dijon mustard, shallot, anchovy, white & black pepper, fish sauce and a pinch of brown sugar) add to the mix so I'll take the time to make that one. 

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Gratin of Brussels sprouts Gruyere and prosciutto.  I subbed capacola and parm for the cheese and meat. Came out very tasty, but a little liquidy. Think I'd serve it in ramekin20180112_135909.thumb.jpg.92bacbe73028330004e04bb81ea0a82c.jpgs or thicken the cream.

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25 minutes ago, gfweb said:

Gratin of Brussels sprouts Gruyere and prosciutto.  I subbed capacola and parm for the cheese and meat. Came out very tasty, but a little liquidy. Think I'd serve it in ramekins or thicken the cream.

 

That looks really good and more saucy than mine turned out.  I subbed some diced pancetta (browned and drained) for the prosciutto.   I usually roast Brussels sprouts so it was nice to try something different.  Could be a very rich side or stand on its own as a main dish. 

Had a serving for lunch yesterday:

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Leftovers were reheated in the CSO and topped with a poached egg for today's breakfast:

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I was having a bit of a calamari craving and decided to mix up some of the Artichoke Mayonnaise from Six Seasons p 42 to use as a dip. This is one of the "orphan" condiment recipes in the book in that it's not specifically called for in any of the other recipes. So like many orphans, these recipes have to make their own way! 
I used frozen artichoke hearts and found the flavor bland. Perhaps marinated artichoke hearts should have been specified? Or I had unreasonable expectations? To adjust, I tripled the lemon juice, added the zest of a lemon, more salt, a squirt of hot sauce and a little fish sauce. 

IMG_6828.thumb.jpg.cbdd2ba77416d8f21e633e23b44ed065.jpg 
I enjoyed it, especially after squirting the calamari with fresh lemon juice.

 

I also used the Artichoke Mayo to make some cheesy toasts. I added some grated Parm & Romano to the artichoke mayo, spread it on sourdough toast, topped with a bit more cheese and broiled. Very tasty.

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A few of these would turn a soup or salad into a meal but so would a lot of things so still not sure this one is a winner for me.

 

I'm looking forward to trying it on fish (as suggested in the recipe) but, at this point, I'm not sure I would make it again.

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7 minutes ago, blue_dolphin said:

I'm looking forward to trying it on fish (as suggested in the recipe) but, at this point, I'm not sure I would make it again.

 Thanks for sharing your experience with this. I still think I might give it a go since our tastes are not necessarily identical. xD I am especially enamoured of James Beard’s iconic onion sandwich and one of the options for using this mayo is with spring onions to make the sandwich. 

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