Running with kitchen shears.

breakfast, lunch, dinner, cupcakes, tastiness.

I did it! There’s no stopping me now! July 9, 2009

Filed under: food,recipes,win — Mox. @ 7:22 pm
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Thanks to all the beautiful images on Tartelette and Mad Baker‘s sites, I was totally inspired to make macarons. Not macaroons, macarons. These aren’t those giant mounds of coconut that instantly come to mind (at least for most Americans)-they’re beautiful, delicate, and often colorful sandwiches of awesomeness (and also French). After deciding that I must make them, I searched high and low for a recipe that wasn’t measured by weight (as I haven’t been fortunate enough to purchase a kitchen scale yet). Then I realized that many of the recipes included statements encouraging the baker to continue on after screwing the batch up. Was it really going to be that difficult of a task? Surely not-I’m good at this! Finally I found a recipe on Mr. David Lebovitz’s website that was sure to do me right. With nerves of steel, I set to my task.

I had recently purchased a large quantity of liquid egg whites due to a diet plan and set out to “age” the equivalent of two egg whites (as recommended by Tartelette) for a day. Now I know, all you that are versed in making meringues are rolling your eyes at this, but I learned my lesson. DO NOT attempt to use liquid egg whites to make a meringue. You will beat and beat your egg whites until your mixer threatens to jump off the counter top and steal your car, and all you’ll have is sweetened foam. Save yourself the time and irritation and just use egg whites from whole eggs. Seriously.

I didn’t expect them to look anything like they were supposed to when I checked the oven, as I’m a noob and didn’t have the right size piping tip. Imagine my surprise when I checked in the oven and they had little feet and everything! Yay! I did end up screwing up the ganache (I attempted the chocolate one on Mr. Lebovitz’s website but didn’t realize I didn’t have enough chocolate until too late, and tried to halve the recipe-which did not work. I ended up making some strange chocolate ganache/peanut butter concoction that tasted pretty darn good).

Huzzah! I will definately be attempting more flavors soon.

 

 

Let’s get some f*cking french toast! July 2, 2009

Filed under: food,recipes,win — Mox. @ 6:46 am
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God bless Mrs. Apatow.

As an American, I think I am legally required to hate France and the French. Unfortunately, the CIA or Office of Homeland Security or whoever does this sort of this will most likely be showing up to ship me off to some awful place that serves only freedom fries due to my recent Frenchfest. It all started with the French breakfast, of which I felt compelled to tell everyone that will listen: Take a slice of lightly toasted baguette, butter it, and top it with sliced radishes (even better if they’re the “French Breakfast” variety of radishes!). SO delicious. Yes it sounds weird, yes I was a little afraid the first time I ate it, and yes, afterwards I was totally tempted to make an entire sandwich out of bread and butter and radishes. I didn’t intend for it to become a Frenchfest, but after this came the best French toast that I have ever made or eaten. This was followed by the macarons that were also amazing and will be posted about very soon. I learned, when making this French toast, French bread sliced and left out overnight kicks the ass of regular old sliced sandwich bread any day (sorry Mom)! Also, putting maple syrup in the batter ensures that your husband/wife/domestic partner will never leave you for someone who cooks better breakfast.

French Toast

French toast!

-2/3 c whole milk, heavy cream, or half-and-half (I used half heavy cream, half vanilla soymilk to keep it from getting too heavy)
-4 large eggs
-2 Tbs pure maple syrup (or sugar, but remember what I said above)
-1 tsp vanilla
-1/4 tsp salt
-6 slices white or egg bread, with or without crusts (or sliced baguette left over from your “French breakfast”!)
-2 Tbs butter
-powdered sugar

1. Whisk the whole milk, eggs, maple syrup, vanilla and salt together in a shallow bowl. You could also use a pie plate, in which case whisk the ingredients together in a medium mixing bowl and then pour into the pie plate. I tried to just whisk it in the pie plate-thank Mothra I was wearing an apron, it was a mess!

flipping the bread

2. One or two at a time, add the bread to the mixture. Turn the slices in the egg mixture until thoroughly saturated but not falling apart. In a skillet, melt the butter over medium heat.
3.Add as many slices of bread to the skillet as will fit without crowding (with my baguette it was 4 pieces, but I also made 8 total since the pieces were smaller) and cook until the underside is golden brown. Turn the bread and cook until the second side is golden.

You can see some of the mess from whisking in the pie plate here...and my stove is funny.

Serve immediately or keep warm in a 200 degrees F oven while you finish cooking the rest. Dust each slice with the powdered sugar and serve with more pure maple syrup (it won’t need much!) and your choice of bacon, ham, sausages, or vegetarian fake out meat.

I was quite popular with J for the rest of the day as he went off to his oh-so-difficult 2 hours of work on a full stomach.

This recipe is from The Joy of Cooking, my favorite vanilla-stained go-to guide.

 

Cheap and quick-just like you like it. June 24, 2009

Filed under: food,recipes — Mox. @ 5:52 am
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So I FINALLY got all registered for school for this semester-I’m going to be doing full time (12 credit hours) for Fall 2009, starting in August, and with working full time, it should be interesting. I promise I’ll try my best to not abandon you, oh loyal reader! In the meantime, I’m also going to try to keep cooking tasty meals even though I’m going to be exhausted. This one is definitely one that fits the bill-plus, it’s approximately $1.91 per serving, according to the calculation by Woman’s Day (where this recipe is adapted from).

Bow Ties with Spinach & Cherry Tomatoes

-12 oz bow-tie (farfalle) pasta (I used 16 oz because I couldn’t see the sense in keeping back 4 oz of the box I found, and I knew J would eat it)
-3 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil
-1 Tbs minced garlic (about 2 to 3 medium-sized cloves)
-1 (9 or 10 oz) bag spinach, tough stems removed if still attached and leaves torn bite size (in the 9 oz bag I purchased, they were already bite size-not much bigger than baby spinach)
-1/2 tsp each salt and pepper, divided
-1 pt cherry or grape (which I used) tomatoes, halved

1. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and transfer to a large bowl; set aside.
2. Meanwhile, heat 1 Tbs of the oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add half the garlic; cook 30 seconds. Add half the spinach and 1/4 tsp each salt and pepper; saute 1 minute, or until spinach wilts. Add remaining spinach and cook until wilted.
3. Add remaining 2 Tbs oil and rest of garlic to skillet. Cook 30 seconds. Add tomatoes and remaining 1/4 tsp salt and pepper. Cook 1 to 2 minutes, or until tomatoes release their juices. Add to bowl with pasta. Toss to combine.

This is the way I made it, at least. In the original recipe, after you are done cooking the spinach (after “cook until wilted”), you are supposed to add it to the bowl with the pasta. I did not do this-I left it in there while I was cooking the tomatoes. I also did not “transfer to a large bowl”-I put the pasta back in the emptied pot it had cooked in-what’s the point of dirtying up an extra dish when J won’t care about presentation as long as it tastes good? This was SO delicious and garlicy and tomatoey and really a wonderful summer dish. You should go make it-NOW! Or, you know, later.

 

Chicken soup for the…well, for the stomach. Duh. January 1, 2009

Filed under: food,recipes — Mox. @ 8:00 pm
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One of my resolutions for 2009 was to put more time and attention to this blog. I promise I’m really going to try. I also promise to only post recipes that either myself or my dear husband, J, considers to be amazing (unless J likes it and I think it sucks, in which case he is overruled). I got a couple new cookbooks and a host of new magazines in addition to (drumroll please)…a KITCHENAID PROFESSIONAL STAND MIXER-holy crap-so look forward to many new additions in the way of general deliciousness. J got the mixer for me for Christmas and he’s definately put himself high up in brownie points standings with it. Happy 2009 to all!
Kind of Old-Fashioned Chicken Noodle Soup

CHICKEN AND STOCK:

-1 (approximately 5 lb) quartered chicken

-6 c each water and low-sodium chicken broth

-4 large carrots, cut into 1″ pieces

-3 large stalks celery with leaves, cut into 1″ pieces

-1 large onion, cut into 8 wedges

-8 large sprigs flat-leaf parsley

-3 cloves garlic, smashed

SOUP:

-2 c baby carrots, cut into 1 1/2″ pieces

-1 c sliced celery

-1 Tbs kosher salt

-1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper

-8 oz dried egg noodles (about 2 2/3 c)

-2 Tbs chopped flat-leaf parsley

1. CHICKEN AND STOCK: Bring chicken and water to a boil in a largeish (6-8 quart) stockpot. Skim off and discard foam from surface of water; add broth and remaining stock ingredients. Bring to a second boil, reduce heat to low, and simmer, partially covered, until chicken is tender, about 50 minutes. Remove chicken to a cutting board. When cool enough to handle, remove skin and bones; discard. Shred meat; set aside.

2. SOUP: Strain broth through cheesecloth-lined sieve into a clean pot; press solids to extract liquid. Stir baby carrots, celery, salt, and pepper into broth and bring to a boil; reduce heat to low, cover pot, and simmer 6 minutes. Stir in noodles; continue to simmer 4 minutes. Stir in chicken and parsley. Remove from heat and let soup stand 10 minutes, or until noodles are just tender.

This recipe adapted from Family Circle. 8 servings.

 

This Thanksgiving I learned… December 1, 2008

Filed under: food,Holidays — Mox. @ 8:16 am
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-the reason that I always make my pies a couple days ahead of time (I had been doing it for convenience/time management before…this year I realized most of them have to chill overnight)

-that in the future, I will definately be figuring out a timeline before hand for dish preparation times

-that just because you screw up on a recipe and forget to put something in or forget some special step doesn’t mean someone won’t think it’s the best stuffing they’ve ever had

-chopping herbs and vegetables ahead of time and having them ready in containers in the fridge will save much stress

 

Your regularly scheduled holiday guilt… November 6, 2008

Filed under: food,Holidays — Mox. @ 8:07 pm
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Thanksgiving’s Moveable Feast

 

Published: November 23, 2006

Boston

A RECENT article in the Montreal newspaper La Presse quoted growers as claiming that within a few years Canada would be a larger producer of cranberries than New England.

That the article was written in French only pointed up the hurtfulness of the boast. Canada is already the biggest harvester of lobster, that other quintessential symbol of New England — even if the Pilgrims regarded it as little more than trash fish, unworthy of a place of honor at the original Thanksgiving table (the only sure items at which were deer and wildfowl, according to Kathleen Curtin and Sandra Oliver’s “Giving Thanks”). Bad enough already that Wisconsin produces more cranberries than Massachusetts. Must we cede to Canada those too-tart, hard-to-love, health-giving remnants of a time when New England agriculture had national significance? For the rest of the New York Times article, click here.

 

 

So tired. November 3, 2008

Filed under: food,recipes — Mox. @ 7:44 pm
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Seriously. I can’t come up with any decent titles for this post, but I neeeeeeed to crank it out, so that’s what you get. The first decent suggestion I get will win the coveted atop-the-post spot.

“Fried” Chicken

-1.5 c buttermilk
-1/2 tsp ground cayenne pepper
-salt
-1 (3 lb) cut-up chicken (8 pcs), skin removed from all pieces except wings
-1.5 c bread crumbs, preferably panko
-1 tsp grated fresh lemon peel

1. In a large zip top plastic bag, place buttermilk, cayenne, and 3/4 tsp salt; add chicken pieces, turning to coat. Seal bag, pressing out excess air. Place on a large plate and refrigerate chicken at least 1 hour or preferably overnight, turning bag over once.

2. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Spray jelly-roll or large rimmed baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray. In a large bowl, combine panko and lemon peel.

3. Remove chicken from buttermilk marinade, shaking off excess. Discard marinade. Add chicken pieces, a few at a time, to panko mixture, turning to coat. Place chicken in prepared pan.

4. Bake 30-35 minutes or until coating is crisp and juices run clear when thickest part of chicken is pierced with the tip of a paring knife. For browner coating, after chicken is cooked, turn oven to broil. Broil chicken 5 to 6 inches from source of heat 1 to 2 minutes or until golden, keeping a very close eye on it.

Makes 4 main-dish servings.

This recipe is from Good Housekeeping June 2008.

 

I really liked this recipe. The buttermilk and lemon zest added  a clean, unexpected kick to the breading. The recipe was fairly easy as well. Definately a delicious alternative to traditional fried chicken.