What's Cooking (Take Two!)

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby wnissen » Thu Aug 28, 2014 11:17 am

I was reminded last night of why I eschew tomatoes throughout most of the year (save in salsa). I apologize in advance for the description that reads like a pretentious menu, but it was Acme rustic batard, sliced and toasted, served with organic Cherokee purple tomatoes and Prather Ranch uncured bacon. Served with a 2013 Château Minuty Côtes de Provence rosé that I brought back. I was in heaven. We did try with avocado and it wasn't any better. Don't mess with perfection.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Robin Garr » Thu Aug 28, 2014 11:38 am

wnissen wrote: Acme rustic batard

Is that the Acme bakery in Berkeley, which is (or used to be?) next door to Kermit Lynch? That's a great bakery. We have a great bakery in Louisville, Blue Dog, that is lovingly based on the Acme concept and even uses a similar brick oven from Barcelona, a business started by a guy who I think once worked at Acme.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby wnissen » Thu Aug 28, 2014 1:39 pm

Robin Garr wrote:
wnissen wrote: Acme rustic batard

Is that the Acme bakery in Berkeley, which is (or used to be?) next door to Kermit Lynch? That's a great bakery. We have a great bakery in Louisville, Blue Dog, that is lovingly based on the Acme concept and even uses a similar brick oven from Barcelona, a business started by a guy who I think once worked at Acme.

Dear Robin,
That's the one. The founder was Chez Panisse's in-house baker from 1979-83 (according to Wikipedia), after the Cheese Board could no longer supply enough. Berkeley is really a small town at heart. They have very cautiously expanded over the years, to no loss of quality that I can determine, with an outlet in San Francisco's Ferry Building (where I bought my loaf). Luckily, it is also available at high-end grocery stores in the Bay Area.
It wouldn't surprise me that there are Acme alumni all over the place. As far as I can tell, there's no magic to the production except top-quality flour and the patience and space to use long-rising starters. To my taste, an Acme baguette is better than many indifferent ones I've had in France.

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Jeff Grossman/NYC » Thu Aug 28, 2014 5:04 pm

wnissen wrote:
Robin Garr wrote:
wnissen wrote: Acme rustic batard

I think Wile E. Coyote orders from them, too. :wink:
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Jenise » Thu Aug 28, 2014 6:55 pm

Jeff--lol!

Tonight I'm going to pan-roast a thick rib eye with butter, garlic and sprigs of fresh thyme. Not sure what's going with it, food-wise, yet, but the wine will be a first growth because I feel like splurging!!!!
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Mike Filigenzi » Sat Aug 30, 2014 1:23 am

wnissen wrote:Dear Robin,
That's the one. The founder was Chez Panisse's in-house baker from 1979-83 (according to Wikipedia), after the Cheese Board could no longer supply enough. Berkeley is really a small town at heart. They have very cautiously expanded over the years, to no loss of quality that I can determine, with an outlet in San Francisco's Ferry Building (where I bought my loaf). Luckily, it is also available at high-end grocery stores in the Bay Area.
It wouldn't surprise me that there are Acme alumni all over the place. As far as I can tell, there's no magic to the production except top-quality flour and the patience and space to use long-rising starters. To my taste, an Acme baguette is better than many indifferent ones I've had in France.

Walt


We get their bread out here as well - it's a godsend.

And I have yet to have an anvil fall on me while buying it!

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Jenise » Sat Aug 30, 2014 12:29 pm

Dinner--dunnoh. I spent the last two days tending crab pots in rough waters so that we and another couple could supply 35 Dungeness crab for an annual event our wine club does called The Crabtacular. I spent so much time on the boat that I woke up yesterday morning seasick--in my own bed, but I just couldn't shake the rolling. By the time dinner rolled around, I was so 'crabbed out' both in spirit and on the palate, that I didn't even eat any, but instead concentrated on the side dishes and stuff other people brought (like a spectacular crab lasagna). I don't even want to see seafood. But I still have to go out and bring in my pots....
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Jenise » Sat Aug 30, 2014 5:46 pm

Caught 8 more crab today and already cooked and shucked them. A pot of bisque stock is simmering away right now.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Redwinger » Sat Aug 30, 2014 5:53 pm

Jenise wrote:Caught 8 more crab today and already cooked and shucked them. A pot of bisque stock is simmering away right now.


That sounds wonderful. I can smell the aroma from here.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Jenise » Sat Aug 30, 2014 7:47 pm

Redwinger wrote:
Jenise wrote:Caught 8 more crab today and already cooked and shucked them. A pot of bisque stock is simmering away right now.


That sounds wonderful. I can smell the aroma from here.


It's incredible. In addition to the crab shells, I had the perfect bit of stuff just lying around--a few tomatoes that were 'tired', the skins and outer layer of two yellow onions, some fresh corn husks, pheasant bones and pieces from earlier in the week and half a bottle of chardonnay we didn't like--add to that a carrot, some celery, some fresh herbs from the garden and peppercorns, and it's the most complex seafood stock I've ever made.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Redwinger » Sun Aug 31, 2014 12:04 pm

Made some eggplant (from the garden) croquettes/patties for the first time. They were quite tasty and the dish lends itself to multiple variations. For the initial effort, I stuck to the basics and was pleased with the result. Served with homemade fettuccine, tomato sauce and crusty bread.
We froze batch of the uncooked patties which hopefully will provide a couple of no-fuss portions down the road.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Paul Winalski » Mon Sep 01, 2014 12:55 pm

Friday night's dinner was Poor Man's Jambalaya from Paul Prudhomme's Louisiana Kitchen cookbook. This dish is made by browning small cubes of andouille sausage, tasso, garlic, a spice mix, and the Cajun "holy trinity" (onion, green bell pepper, celery), then adding rice and water and simmering until the water is absorbed. I made one modification: Paul Prudhomme calls for margarine as the browning fat, citing its higher oil content compared to butter. This book was published before the health hazards of trans-fats were known. I used ghee instead of margarine. The andouille and tasso I used were both from North Country Smokehouse here in New Hampshire. I was particularly pleased with the tasso. It has the same flavor profile as the tasso I used to buy mail-order from K-Paul's in New Orleans, but the meat is more tender. The K-Paul's tasso tended to go tough and chewy in jambalayas.

Making this dish has cleared me out of gumbo file. I can't find this in local stores so I'll have to order some online.

-Paul W.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Mike Filigenzi » Mon Sep 01, 2014 1:43 pm

I've made that jambalaya myself, Paul, and it's good stuff. The tasso sounds like it really put the dish up a notch.

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Jenise » Tue Sep 02, 2014 7:08 pm

Tonight, Asian: little shrimp and pork stuffed mini baos followed by salad and main course protein in one go, a hot and spicy ground chicken-bean sprout filling with ice cold lettuce wraps.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Mike Filigenzi » Wed Sep 03, 2014 2:00 am

Made a Cuban-spiced chicken and rice dish for our block party on Sunday night. It involved first marinating chicken thighs in a mix of oil, lime juice, lime zest, cumin, allspice, jalapeno, and paprika. You start the cooking by sauteing slices of Spanish chorizo in oil to render off their fat, removing them, and browning the chicken in the oil. Remove the chicken, drain off most of the oil, and saute up some onions and garlic. Then add chicken broth, short grain rice, diced tomatoes, the chicken, the chorizo, and the leftover marinade. Simmer until the rice and chicken are done and add strips of piquillo pepper. Came out beautifully, with a decent amount of crispy browned rice on the bottom. I'll definitely make this one again.

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Paul Winalski » Wed Sep 03, 2014 3:19 pm

Dinner last night was hariyali murgh kabab (chicken cubes marinated in green yogurt paste, then skewered and grilled). This is a Mughli (North Indian) dish. Unlike the conventional Mughli kabab, the yogurt marinade has fresh herbs (coriander and mint, in this case) as well as dried spices. The result is spicy and flavorful, but not in the hot sense.

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Redwinger » Wed Sep 03, 2014 3:35 pm

Paul-
That sound Delicious <drool>
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Robin Garr » Wed Sep 03, 2014 9:43 pm

Caprese with garden tomatoes and basil, peppery Italian olive oil, and fresh mozzarella.

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Paul Winalski » Fri Sep 05, 2014 7:59 am

Robin, that is a work of art.

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Robin Garr » Sun Sep 07, 2014 9:40 pm

Repeat performance of Michael Ruhlman's pasta with tomato water, basil, and garlic, with a little more butter in the sauce this time.

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Jenise » Mon Sep 08, 2014 8:12 pm

Nice, Robin.

Tonight we're having a couple over who are having some health issues and she can't easily get out of the house--can't stand any noise, a reaction to strong steroids she's on due to an auto-immune disorder that they're having trouble getting under control. So a quiet home dinner with one other couple should be a perfect evening out. I'm doing comfort food. The main course will be braised pork loin on the bone served over garlic fettucine tossed with a brussel sprout hash. The first course will be a beet/fennel/goat cheese salad, and for dessert I'll serve nectarines soaked in macerated fresh raspberries.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Mike Filigenzi » Tue Sep 09, 2014 3:22 pm

That dessert sounds really nice. I've not thought of doing that sort of thing with raspberries.

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Jenise » Tue Sep 09, 2014 6:34 pm

Mike, it's delicious. As soon as you sprinkle on some sugar and toss them, they start breaking down. The way the berries stain the nectarines (or peaches, but nectarines are better right now) is wonderful.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Tom NJ » Wed Sep 10, 2014 6:10 pm

Made a very nice veggie terrine for wifey, who loves roasted or grilled eggplant particularly. Layers of grilled eggplant, zucchini, roasted red peppers, Boucheron goat cheese and basil leaves pressed in a mold overnight. Served w/ a Ravenswood shiraz that our friend gave us (~9 bucks a bottle, great value all in all) and various little side accoutrements.

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