Posts tagged ‘Butter’

December 5, 2011

Early Winter Heaven | Turbot with Chanterelles and Melted Parsnips

Turbot has become my new favorite fish.  At first blush, it’s light, mild, and delicate.  But a heartbeat later you realize its meaty, dense, and packed with beautiful flavor.  Pair it with this seasonal and politely assertive sauce and you’ll really get your loved one’s attention on a cold December night.  Most importantly, the ingredients are familiar and the techniques are pretty basic.  It’s a can’t miss weeknight meal that’s quick, healthy, satisfying and elegant.  I can hardly believe something so simple could make such an impact.  It’s a beautiful dish.

Turbot is popular on European plates, but lately it seems to be making its presence known in American eateries and grocery stores as well.  If you can’t find it, ask your fishmonger.  The success of this meal is directly related to the quality of the ingredients.  Find the best mushrooms you can.  These were from the Greener Grocer and perfection.  This is a modified version of a dish found in Rick Stein’s Complete Seafood.  You must own this book.

Early Winter Turbot with Chanterelles and Melted Parsnips, serves 2

2/3 to 3/4 of a pound Turbot fillet

3 strips of bacon, thickly sliced

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April 11, 2011

Meatless Monday | Orecchiette with Leek and Pea Shoots

It’s been so rainy today that everything in sight is a variation of green: the yet-to-be-mowed grass.  The budding trees.  The trembling stalks supporting the heavy heads of daffodils.  My dinner of orecchiette bathed in butter, chartreuse leeks, backyard mint and verdant parsley.  Tiny pasta ears cradle pale green edamame, the whole bowl crowned with pea shoots.  It was as close to a taste of spring in a bowl as I’ve come in a long time.  It is long overdue.

Orecchiette de Aprile, serves two, plus a little one who’s almost 4

1/2 pound orecchiette pasta

2 T butter

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March 28, 2011

Earthy Elegance | Porcini Mushroom and Chicken Liver Pâté

I have been craving pâté for a couple of weeks.

This coming from the girl who couldn’t stand liver growing up.  But as times change, so do ingredients.  With such widespread availability from so many great producers, its a great time to revisit some of the things you thought you didn’t like.  You might be surprised.

It’s a craving that makes some sense.  Chicken livers are a powerhouse of iron as well as a slew of other minerals, and they have a high vitamin content too.  So if you’re feeling a little run down, do yourself a favor and find some high-quality livers.  These beautiful ones were from North Market Poultry and Game, because honestly, they have the best chickens in Columbus, and therefore the best livers.

I followed this recipe from Gordon Ramsay, because no matter how he acts on American television, this guy can cook.  And this recipe produced, rather simply, with just a few ingredients, something that was a serious treat to eat.  Served on some crispy toasts or small slices of fresh baguette, the pâté has an earthy, forest-like fragrance to it thanks to the porcini mushrooms and woodsy thyme.  It’s a dish that evokes luxury, but if you stop to think about it, it’s quite humble indeed.

A few PK tips if you decide to make this some Saturday.  If you’re here in Columbus, use Snowville‘s whole milk to soak the livers in overnight, it elevates the dish, I think.  And while you’re at it, just buy some of the whipping cream and fix up a quick batch of butter to clarify and pour over the top of the pâté to seal.  If you’re taking care, go all the way.  Take the time and press the pate through a sieve to ensure the mixture is silky.  When you taste it you will appreciate your own efforts.  When you’re ready to serve the pâté, take it out of the fridge a bit before you’re ready to serve it.  I marveled at how the flavors blossomed as it warmed from cool to room temperature, almost like a cheese.

Playlist included Teenage Suicide Don’t Do It by Big Fun.  There is a link there, believe it or not.

March 16, 2011

Irish Cooking | Pint Glass Bread

I am woefully unskilled as a bread baker.  I’ve just not managed a beautiful, yeasty bread that is photo-worthy.

I love the Irish for giving me an alternative that is so easy, Cherub does most of the measuring.  All you need is a pint glass, a bowl and a sheet pan.  Really.

Pint Glass Bread, makes one loaf, Inspired by The Country Cooking of Ireland

1 pint glass of all purpose flour

1 pint glass of whole wheat flour (mine was stone ground from Flying J Farm)

Salt to cover the bottom of a pint glass

Soda to cover the bottom of a pint glass

Butter to cover the bottom of a pint glass

Buttermilk to fill 3/4 of a pint glass

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  In a large bowl combine well the  flours, salt and soda.  Add in the butter and rub between your fingers to create small pebbles.  Add buttermilk and mix with your hands until it becomes a soft ball of dough.  Pat out into a large round two inches thick.  Place on a baking sheet and bake for 45 to 60 minutes or until the loaf sounds hollow when knocked on the bottom.

Serve with copious amounts of homemade Snowville Creamery butter while it’s still warm.

Playlist included Falling Slowly by The Swell Season.

Little dough-coated hands proudly display their work.

 

February 21, 2011

Persephone’s Deli| Devi’s Curried Chicken on Homemade Naan

Sometimes it’s nice to have a sandwich for dinner.  There’s a feeling of simplicity to it.  There’s an even greater feeling of ease to if, if you’re using leftovers to start.  I had some of the white ginger chicken leftover that was already deliciously flavored. Why not work that into an Indian spiced chicken salad, make a few fries and call it a night?

I made homemade naan and fries, but you certainly don’t have to if you don’t feel you have the time (because secretly you do, it’s just how you choose to spend your time).  If you’re starting out at cooking, just make the chicken salad, buy the naan and spice some frozen fries with turmeric and sesame seeds and cashews.

Curried Chicken Salad on Naan Bread

1/2 onion, thinly sliced

3 T butter

Meat from 1/2 of a 3 to 4 pound whole chicken, picked, and chopped

2 t curry powder

1 stalk celery, finely diced

1/3 c currants or raisins

1/2 c mayonnaise or Greek yogurt

Salt and pepper to taste

In a small pan, add the butter and onion and season with a bit of salt and a few twists of pepper.  Cook over medium low heat until very soft and caramel brown.  Drain onions from the butter, keeping both separate.  In a bowl, combine chicken through mayo or yogurt and season with salt and pepper to taste.  Chill.

Make naan

9 oz self rising flour

2 t sugar

1/2 t salt

3 1/2 oz milk

2 T vegetable oil

Sesame seeds or nigella seeds

Combine all and knead for 10 minutes (a mixer with a dough hook works wonders here).  Let rest for 15.  Divide dough and shape into six small tear drop shaped pancakes.  Sprinkle and press a few seeds into each.  Bake on a preheated cookie sheet at 450 degrees for three to four minutes or until golden and bubbly.  Brush with the onion butter.  If using store bought naan, warm the naan then brush with the butter.  I think this is what makes the sandwich great, don’t skip this step.

Assemble the sandwiches and top each with some chopped cilantro or parsley (if you hate cilantro, and I know you haters are out there).

Serve with Guajarati Potatoes or toss cooked store bought frozen fries with 1 T oil that has fried a bit of ground tumeric, chili powder some sesame seeds and a small handful of cashew nuts.

Playlist included Young Blood by The Naked and Famous.

February 17, 2011

It’s Really Just An Excuse | Buttermilk Pancakes

So with all the crème fraiche lying around, I was bound to make some more butter, and with that comes the buttermilk and with that, well, Cherub wanted pancakes.  I can’t say no to her sweet little face.  Well, I can sometimes.  OK, a lot of times.  But today is a yes kind of day.  So fresh buttermilk pancakes for lunch?  You got it little sister.

And for me?  It’s really just an excuse to eat more butter.  Besides, Warren says it’s good for me.

Buttermilk Pancakes, inspired by James Beard’s recipe in American Cookery

2 c all-purpose flour

1 1/4 t baking soda

1 t salt

3 T sugar

2 c buttermilk (homemade, if you can)

3 eggs, seperated

2 t vanilla

1/4 c butter, melted

Whisk the flour, baking soda, salt and sugar together in a large bowl.  Whisk together the buttermilk, egg yolks and vanilla.  Add and mix well with the dry ingredients.  Beat in the butter and mix until smooth.  Beat the egg whites until they have stiff peaks, then fold into the batter gently.

Ladle the batter into a hot pan or griddle and cook until the edges of the pancake are just starting to dry, most of the bubbles on top have popped and the bottom is golden brown.  Flip and brown the other side.

Serve with all that Snowville Creamery butter and some good Ohio maple syrup.  Speaking of which, fresh batches of syrup will available March 5th at Flying J Farm at the annual Maple Sugaring event.  Bring the kids for a demonstration on how syrup is made and stay for a pancake lunch.

Playlist included Thirteen, by Big Star.

 

 

February 15, 2011

Snowville Creamery | Making Crème Fraiche

A little kitchen magic. After 24 hours, thick creme fraiche pours from the heavy cream container.

Slow Food Columbus recently held a free (yes! it was free!) workshop at the North Market as part of their taste education efforts.  It was so wonderful to see a room full of folks eager to learn how to make their own butter.   Warren Taylor, a.k.a., the Dairy Evangelist, lead the class and was a fireball of energy and information.  I learned the differences between the milk produced by the beautiful grass fed ladies Snowville cares for and the product from more intensive methods.  I learned about the difference between pasteurization and ultra high temperature (UHT) pasteurization (Why is UHT milk slightly sweet? Because it starts to caramelize at that high temperature. Eek).  Warren even convinced me to switch from skim to whole.  (I’ll move up to 2% first, but I’m doing it.)

But not only did I learn the difference between sweet cream and cultured cream butters (and made them) but I also learned something tremendous: how to make crème fraiche.  Oh yes.

Here’s how:

1 cup of cultured buttermilk

1/2 gallon heavy cream

Mix the two.  In Snowville’s carton, there’s enough room for you to add in the buttermilk and shake it to mix.  Let it sit on the counter for 24 hours.  Voilà ! Crème fraiche.  Refrigerate until ready to use.

Then to make cultured butter, pour some of this crème fraiche into a food processor (no higher than the liquid fill line) and flip on.  Process until the butter separates from the buttermilk (it will happen rather suddenly).  Using your hands squeeze out all the buttermilk from the butter (do this over a bowl and save that buttermilk for pancakes or coleslaw dressing), then rinse the butter under cold water until it runs clear (it keeps longer if you do this).

Fun fact: If you make butter from heavy cream, the liquid you press out is not buttermilk, it’s skim milk!  Who knew?

Keep an eye out for crème fraiche in tonight’s dinner.  It’s divine.

Thank you Warren Taylor.  We love Snowville.  We love your pasture grazed cows.  We love their fresh milk and the heavenly cream that rises to the top.

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