Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Duck pate

You can preserve any fatty, tasty meat in a similar fashion, by turning it into a delicious paste to be spread on crispy toast or crusty, chewy bread slices. It's aromatic, delightfully fatty, and amazingly meaty and substantial.

1 whole duck
1.5 tbsp Kosher salt
2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 tsp dried thyme

12 cloves garlic
1-inch piece of fresh ginger
3 bay leaves
peel of an orange
1 bunch of thyme

1 tbsp brandy
2 tbsp soft butter
2-3 tbsp duck fat
2 tbsp duck stock
2 tsp minced parsley
1 tsp minced chives
0.5 tsp orange zest
1 tsp dijon mustard
black pepper

Mix the salt, dry thyme and black pepper. In a separate bowl mix the cloves of garlic, bay leaves, orange peel, fresh thyme, and the peeled, sliced ginger.

Clean the duck and season with salt and thyme mixture inside and out. Place the garlic, orange peel mix in the cavity.

Take a baking dish and line with two pieces of aluminum foil in opposite direction. Place the duck in and wrap with the two pieces of foil tightly.

Roast it at 250F for 5 hours, until the meat comes off easily. Remove the duck and collect the drippings. Cool the drippings and remove the meat from the duck once the duck cooled.

Mix all the meat, the brandy, butter, duck fat and stock, and the other spices until finely mashed. Portion out into jars and top with remaining duck fat. Refrigerate and serve over crispy toast.

Caesar salad dressing

Caesar salad dressing is creamy and tangy, with the subtext of pungent anchovies and fragrant garlic. Enjoy with crispy Romaine lettuce, croutons, and shaved Parmesan. The egg may provide a point of concern as it is uncooked. However, the risk of bacterial infections from eggs acquired at small farms is rather low.

6 anchovy fillets
1 garlic clove
2 egg yolks
2 tbsp lemon juice
0.75 tsp dijon mustard
2 tbsp olive oil
0.5 cup vegetable oil
black pepper

Mince the anchovies, 0.25 tsp salt, and the garlic. Mash into a paste. Whisk in egg yolks, mustard and the lemon juice.

Whisk in olive oil little by little, then add the vegetable oil slowly, whisking constantly.

Season with lemon juice, black pepper and more salt.

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Lemony shrimp pasta

Such a delightful, light summer meal. Mild acids tend to make starchy foods taste like vegetables. Sushi rice and this pasta both fall into this category for me.

2 tbsp butter
4 cloves garlic
0.5 cup parsley
0.5 lb shrimp
0.5 lemon
0.5 cup white wine
sea salt
black pepper
Parmesan  cheese

Melt the butter and add the minced garlic. Cook for a few seconds, then add the wine, lemon juice, and half of the finely minced parsley. Add the shrimp and simmer until shrimp is cooked.

Season with salt and black pepper, add 4 oz of cooked linguine and finish cooking in the sauce for a few minutes.

Finally, stir in the remaining fresh parsley and serve on two plates. Sprinkle with freshly-shredded Parmesan cheese,

American shrimp curry

It's a  milder, sweeter, but flavorful version of shrimp curry. So comforting with rice and all the toppings.

1 lb shrimp
1 large yellow onion
5 tbsp butter
6 tbsp flour
1 chicken bouillon cube
1 cup boiling water
2 cups milk
2 tsp curry powder
0.25 tsp powdered ginger
1 tsp salt
1.5 tsp sugar
chopped peanuts

Puree the onion in a food processor. Sautee in the butter for 10 minutes on medium-low.

 Stir in the flour and the bouillon cube that has been dissolved in the water previously.

Add the milk and the spices. Cook to a medium thickness.

Add the shrimp and cook until just done.

Serve over rice with raisins, chopped bananas, chutney, chopped nuts and coconut flakes to top.

Friday, October 30, 2015

Naan bread

My favorite component of a meal at an Indian restaurant: the bread. Alas, this must not be surprising, given that I'm a devoted panivore. Naan bread is fluffy and soft, with a delicious coating.

1/2 cup ice water
1/3 cup whole milk yogurt
3 tbsp and 1 tsp vegetable oil
1 large egg yolk
2 cups flour
1.25 tsp sugar
0.5 tsp dry yeast
1.25 tsp salt
1.5 tbsp butter

In a measuring cup combine the yogurt, water, oil and egg yolk. Mix well.

In a food processor with the blade on mix the flour, sugar and yeast. With the processor running slowly pour in the yogurt mixture and process until the dough is just mixed. Allow to sit for 10 minutes.

Add the salt and process for about a minute until a silky dough forms.

Transfer onto the table and knead for a minute. Place into a lightly greased bowl and cover. Refrigerate overnight.

The next day remove dough onto a floured work surface. Cut into four pieces and Shape each into a ball. Allow to sit covered with plastic wrap for 15-20 minutes.

Roll the balls one-by-one into 9-inch disks. Poke entire surface 20-times with a fork. Sprinkle with flour to avoid sticking.

Heat a tsp of oil in a cast iron skillet with a lid on medium heat until the oil is shimmering. Wipe out the oil.

Spray the top of the dough with water and place into skillet moist-side-down. Mist top with water and cover (with lid or aluminum foil, if you don't have one). Cook for 2 minutes until brown spots appear, flip and cover, finish cooking the second side as well. Brush tops with melted butter. Serve warm.

Fresh salsa

This was an utterly delicious dish I had to make repeatedly this summer. The roasted poblanos are a great addition, but it's also delicious with just finely diced jalapenos. Also absolutely delicious served with breakfast egg sandwiches.

2 large, ripe tomatoes
3-4 jalapenos
3 poblanos
1 lime
2/3 cup cilantro
1 medium red onion
0.5 tsp cumin

Cut the poblanos in half, remove seeds and lay on a baking sheet skin-side-up. Broil until charred. Add to a sealed container and allow to steam. When cool, remove skins.

Mince the poblanos, onion, tomatoes, jalapeno. Add to a bowl. 

Add the finely minced cilantro and salt to season. Squeeze on the juice of a fresh lime.

Mix well. Serve with tortilla chips. Or a spoon.

Homemade hot dog buns

I always found the store-bough hot dog buns flimsy and overly sweet. This recipe prepares a hearty, but airy and fluffy savory hot dog bun.

1 tbsp dry yeast
1.5 cup warm water
1 tsp sugar
3.5 cups flour
1 tsp salt

Dissolve the sugar in 0.5 cup warm water. Sprinkle the yeast on top. Set aside for 15 minutes, until the top gets frothy.

Add the remaining warm water, the flour and the salt. Knead until smooth and elastic. A rather sticky dough will form, you may add a little more flour if necessary.

Allow to rise for 30 minutes in a warm oven (set to preheat for one minute, then shut it off).

Deflate the dough and cut it into 8 pieces and roll into logs. Place onto a baking sheet and allow to rise in the warm oven again for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and preheat it to 400F.

Bake the rolls until a very light brown. Cool on cookie racks.