This is the story of salvation.
Am very annoyed with the 'nutty confessor's” recipe found in The Guardian. Was excited to try Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s double chocolate praline cookies. But I had two fails with the technique described at the start of the recipe. First go-round on medium low heat all I got was sugar crystals stuck to bottom of my heavy bottomed pot. Second go-round the sugar started to liquify just a tad (and only after way longer than the 1 minute or so that he describes in recipe) but then it was basically 1/3 liquid and 2/3 crystallization. So i decided to use the pecans sprinkled with some of the praline-y crystals and, on a whim cut out about 1/3 cup of the cookie’s brown sugar. Used a mix of unsweetened chocolate cut with milk choco bits for the solids part of the cookie batter.
End result - mighty tasty. But a bit of a bother. Not sure I’ll repeat. On the other hand, they are pretty darn tasty.
Thanksgivukkah 2013. Complete with crazy I-95 dogkissing motorists (in the jammed section), Aunt Arleen’s wonderful spinach dish with the toasted crunchy almond slivers on top, mom’s amazing pink cranberry mold (served in an unplanned sauce due to a little sink mishap that I’m sure was my baby sister’s fault)…Jim made delicious aperol negronis to get things started, Sara’s bird was perfect, as was her mac/cheese, garlic mashed potatoes, and everything else she prepared and laid out. There were even latkes made with celeriac and cran-pear-applesauce. And we all ate way too much.
Had fun back at home making turkey stock (or is it soup) with half the carcass that was packed off in my take-away bag the next morning. (Aunt Arleeeeen: have you made yours yet?!!?) And then a little turkey hash action following this dude’s lead (provided a neat excuse to restock the house with a bottle of sherry)…and discovered a fabulous way to repurpose my new favorite — roasted beet & yogurt & garlic & za’atar dip — by smearing it on some bread and then adding a turkey morsel. A little borscht-y action for the boid. Happy Hanukkah!!
Rum pumpkin cream pie! What would the pilgrims say? Mount Gay meets Plymouth Rock. Reggae meets Yankee Doodle Dandy. This little pie was inspired by a recipe buried in the Essential NYT Cookbook. My only changes were to sub in roasted delicata squash for pumpkin puree, and to cut the sugar quite a bit. The filling is:
2 delicata squash
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 t salt
1/2 t grated fresh ginger
1/2 t freshly grated nutmeg
3 large eggs
1 cup whole milk
1/4 c dark rum
3/4 heavy cream
Split the two squashes lengthwise, rub a bit of olive oil on the cut sides, place them on a baking tray and roast them at 425 for about a half hour, or until very soft when pierced with a knife. Scoop out the seeds and pulp, and then scrape out all the flesh and whisk until smooth. Measure out 1 1/2 c of the squash and combine with the sugar, salt, ginger, and nutmeg. Mix the eggs, milk, rum and cream in another bowl. Pour the egg mixture into the pumpkin mixture and whisk away. Then decant it all into a blind-baked pie shell. Bake it at 425 for 10 minutes, then lower temp to 350 and bake for another 30-35 minutes — check for slight jiggliness.and pull out to cool.
The NYT recipe also calls for whipped cream laced with fresh ginger, rum and sugar. But nahhhh - the pie tastes delicious in its unadorned state.
I made it in an extra wide tart pan with a removable bottom. Which yielded a very wide circle of a pie/tart, plus two ramekins of extra filling to bake off. Next time, will try it in a proper pie dish.
Taking advantage of an early-rise Saturday and an overwhelming desire to make things that give pleasure, comfort and don’t challenge my tired little brain….today’s morning started with orange & pink grapefruit juice, fresh granola “crack,” banana-chocolate-toasted walnut muffins and a new twist on applesauce with an eye to Thanksgiving (i.e. all the old apples in the bin, some overripe pears, a big handful of fresh cranberries, a chunk of ginger, a cinnamon stick, lemon zest and a squeeze or two of lemon juice, a few fingers of dark brown sugar, a sprinkle of cane sugar and a generous pinch of salt). Presto-change-o: pink tart-sweet zingy apple-pear-cransauce. YUM. Mici, meanwhile, chose to avoid the kitchen activity and hunker down into his smallest Amazon box EVER.
Turnip soup! Who knew? Pronounced ‘elegante’ by the hubby. Love the trick of making it creamy via ground up rice that’s cooked into the broth. Thanks Andrea Reusing for this great recipe!
An eclectic journey. And an awesomely curated airport exhibition of Japanese toys.
Crazy mama: lower your volume!
Made my first savory tart with short-crust pastry today. It was a variation on the Jerusalem artichoke & swiss chard tart in ‘Ottolenghi.’ Since ‘chokes aren’t sold at any shop or farmers’ market I stopped at over this past week, I subbed in mushrooms. A lot of steps and pre-planning will ensure that this won’t be a frequently repeated recipe (plus it is ‘heart attack city’ as the kid says….there’s heavy cream, creme fraiche and feta cheese in this baby). I had made the pastry dough nearly a week ago and it was sitting patiently in its disk-like form in the fridge, encased in saran wrap, until I rolled it out this afternoon. Felt proud and mildly surprised about how easy the roll-out process was….and very fun to lay it over the tart pan in one smooth ‘swoop.’