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Jeff Grossman

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jeff Grossman » Sun Jan 07, 2018 9:31 pm

Jenise wrote:Roast chicken tonight. It's marinating in a tea made from leftover riesling, fresh thyme, fresh rosemary, garlic and peppercorns and will get spatchcocked and roasted with potatoes, fennel and carrots.

I think I could eat this menu every night of the week!
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wnissen

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by wnissen » Mon Jan 08, 2018 2:38 am

Mike, my sister got an Instapot and served us some very good pulled pork from it. Straight from the freezer, and completely done in like an hour.

Jason, that polenta looks so warm and comforting. I really love the stuff, but for some reason I don't cook it.

Jenise, sorry about your travails.

Boy, am I behind. Thanksgiving was interrupted when I ran out of propane on the rotisserie while I was showering and didn't notice. Oh well, it all turned out well, including a local Dungeness crab Napoleon on homemade buckwheat toasts with piment d'espelette, avocado, and dill.

Christmas Eve we blend our two families' traditions, where we have Lucca ravioli (with meatballs and tomato sauce) and "home-style" tofu in brown sauce. The idea was, and is, to make things easy on the mother who was cooking, so that everyone would have time and energy to enjoy the quiet anticipation of Christmas Eve. They were served with a NV Solter Rheingau sekt, en magnum.

Christmas Day was "Around the World". The highlight was juleribbe, or Norwegian Christmas ribs. My friend who had a mission there brought the dish back with him, and this year we decided to make it. The baby back ribs are left with the skin on, which is scored. You can get this cut already prepared at Nordic House in Berkeley, but I think you'd also have good luck at a specialty or Latino butcher. There's no seasoning beyond salt and pepper, and of course the skin, which is finished under the broiler and makes spectacular crispy cracklings. The traditional accompaniments are potatoes and pork sausages cooked under the ribs, which covers them in the rendered fat of the pork belly, but we skipped those. One that we did include was red cabbage, which we made in the slow cooker, much more simply than the Martha Stewart recipe we typically use: https://www.daringgourmet.com/tradition ... d-cabbage/

Since the pork is reminiscent of Mayan cochinita pibil, I also served corn tortillas and quick-pickled red onions: http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2016 ... ecipe.html Seville oranges were nowhere to be found, so my wife suggested substituting kumquats, which worked really well. My son suggested and made little pizzas for Italy. We also made celeriac and potato purée: http://www.delscookingtwist.com/2014/03 ... tato-mash/ for France and bought a cute Christmas tree pull-apart sourdough roll from Boudin. Apparently Barbera d'Alba is the wine for juleribbe, so I picked up a 2014 Paola Lanzavecchia Barbera d'Alba Superiore Seta from Total Wine.

During the break between Christmas and New Year's, I decided to try Paula Wolfert's cassoulet. Is that the one Bettylu uses? I should look up the threads. Anyway, it famously takes three days, though the first day is really just buying the ingredients, sprinkling salt on them, and soaking the beans. I never did find the fatback, despite checking a half-dozen butchers and meat counters in the Cleveland area, but it was the 30th and people were sold out of a lot of stuff. I did manage to get the pork skin, unsmoked ham hock, fresh garlicky pork sausage, pork shoulder, and duck confit, and made the recipe more or less exactly as printed. It was especially fitting to use Rancho Gordo's cassoulet beans, because I met Paula Wolfert and Steve Sando at the same offline in Sonoma! The cooking was not nearly as demanding as I expected. The second day was pretty active, but none of it is highly technical. There's no sauce to make, no high-heat sauteéing to screw up. That said, the result was a bit underwhelming. I'd made a "kosher cassoulet" by adapting that recipe before, using Rancho Gordo flageolet beans but obviously no pork products. I was kind of figuring that using the right beans and all the porks and the three-day cook it would blow me away. It was really good, don't get me wrong, and better the next day, but I don't think I'd make it the long way again. A great match with 2014 Bouscasse Madiran, a topic that the four-page recipe curiously omits.

Tonight we were at home so I cooked some Marcella beans, dressed with olive oil and sushi rice seasoning. I know this whole post seems like a commercial for Rancho Gordo, who is a total sweetheart and has not offered me so much as a hill of beans for saying this, but it is incredible what a difference fresh beans makes in cooking time. These Marcellas are a large bean for runners, and they were cooked within two hours of starting, and falling-apart creamy thirty minutes past that. Whereas I've had small white northern beans that remained hard and crumbly all day in the crockpot. Anyway, I had some basmati rice in the freezer from before we left, and sautéed some sweet potatoes for a hearty, wintry meal. Happy New Year, everyone!
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jenise » Tue Jan 09, 2018 3:37 pm

Fresh beans are little miracles. And the "commercial" is well deserved--Rancho Gordo is amazing. I discovered another bulk fresh bean seller at the Saturday market a the Ferry Building when we were in Frisco last June. You remind me, guiltily, that I haven't cooked them yet. I did transfer them to a jar so they've been properly stored, but still. It's time.

Sounds like a fun Christmas, Walt. Kind of too bad you had to go kosher on the cassoulet, as there are so many excellent sausages in the Cleveland area. My stepmother, who went annually to visit Hungarian relatives there, always came home with a suitcase full. Not all the right thing for a cassoulet, mind you, but would still be great.

Interesting idea on the Norwegian Christmas ribs. I'm going to look into that!


I'm currently tasting a lot of Italian wines in preparation for an Italian tasting I'm hosting next week, so last night had rigatoni with a sausage ragu.

Tonight I'm going to a wine tasting at someone's home, theme 'Big Red'. I'm making a Winter Panzanella to take. Winter Panzanella is my own creation: sliced raw cauliflower and white mushrooms will marinate all day, lots of garlic and herbs. I'll separately shave and marinate fresh fennel. All will be combined with fresh bread, torn and roasted with a garlicky vinaigrette and then combined with the marinated raw vegetables along with capers and ribbons of fresh escarole.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Robin Garr

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Robin Garr » Tue Jan 09, 2018 3:48 pm

I had to laugh ... and add my own testimony for Rancho Gordo. We've had both their cassoulet beans and Marcellas in the past couple of weeks, and more of both in the pantry. I love the way that fresh dry beans take to the Instant Pot, too.
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Mike Filigenzi

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Mike Filigenzi » Tue Jan 09, 2018 11:33 pm

Dang, Walter, those sound like some excellent meals! I will take the Instant Pot pulled pork under advisement. It seems to be one of the more popular things to make in the IP, so it's good to hear that it can be done well.

I made a Bolognese in the thing a couple of nights ago, using a Serious Eats recipe. I wasn't all that thrilled with it. It tasted very good, with chicken livers and a little fish sauce amping up the flavors. The texture was what was not great. It was not so much a sauce as it was the best tasting sloppy joe ever. The four packets of gelatin that went in didn't seem to add much in this respect. I will stick with Lynne Rosetto Kasper's recipe for this barring further recipe development.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Mike Filigenzi » Fri Jan 12, 2018 12:00 pm

Dealing with my own personal version of the cold/flu thing that's been going around here, so yesterday I made a pot of black bean soup in the Instant Pot. As with any pressure cooker, a bean soup is likely its best, highest use and this one came out very nicely. Seasoning involved plenty of garlic, fresh jalapeno, chili powder, smoked paprika, and worcestershire sauce. Comforting stuff for a grey day and a stuffed up head.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by wnissen » Sat Jan 13, 2018 1:24 pm

Mike, sorry you are under the weather. I have been very lucky this season, knock on a wooden spoon. I was curious to see your comment about the best use of a pressure cooker, as I don't eat that much in the way of bean soups, and never heard of using a pressure cooker to do that. Makes sense, though.

Jenise, I remember being shocked in California how lame and new-agey the mass sausage culture is. Who wants chicken tarted up with fruit when you can have beef or pork with a truly harmonious set of spices? They don't even know what kielbasa is here! You can still get great traditional sausages at a specialty market in the city, but it's not the same as having it in every grocery store. The politics in Cleveland have shifted decidedly anti-immigrant at this point in time, but there is, for example, a Hungarian-language radio show broadcasting there as we speak.

I asked my son what he wanted for dinner: grass-fed hand-formed hamburgers, Applegate organic hot dogs, or tacos made with the same beef. He chose the tacos! Could have surprised me. I stick-blended the remaining Marcella beans, added my usual ad-hoc mix of toasted spices to the beef before browning it, and served it with browned onions/peppers and a side of rainbow carrots. Believe it or not, this shot was not posed, I just happened to put the taco down like that.
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IMG_6797.JPG (32.62 KiB) Viewed 2431 times
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Jeff Grossman

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jeff Grossman » Sat Jan 13, 2018 2:46 pm

wnissen wrote:Believe it or not, this shot was not posed, I just happened to put the taco down like that.


New forum avatar for you, Walt!
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Barb Downunder

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Barb Downunder » Sun Jan 14, 2018 3:32 am

That time of year, heavy metal festival and the feeding of the 7500
Spent a couple hours making cheese rolls (to have egg and bacon added for brekkie rolls) then 3 or 4 or 5 hours frying hash browns. Time flies when you’re havin fun.
Have to say the festival goers are so polite and patient, they queued without complaint even when we had fryer issues and struggled to keep up. Everyone in town is impressed with good behaviour and manners, as also in previous years.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Mike Filigenzi » Mon Jan 15, 2018 1:12 pm

One of our neighbors had a bunch of us over for (of all things) a pinochle party yesterday afternoon. We were all asked to bring something to nibble on and something to drink, so we took our responsibility very seriously and brought a cheese ball. This one involved Shaft's blue mixed up with cream cheese, goat cheese, scallions, chopped dates, and a little Tabasco, It was rolled in butter-roasted pecans and flat leaf parsley. We brought (of course) Ritz crackers and membrillo to go with. It was a pretty tasty cheese ball, if I do say so myself, and we received a number of compliments on it. Others also stayed with the theme and brought one of those Cool-Whip-lime-pineapple salad things and cocktail weenies in sauce, There was plenty of wine and beer and also something called a London Fog, which was made by the host. I guess this was "Grandpa's drink" when he was growing up and it was always served at their family pinochle parties. It's basically vanilla ice cream, coffee, and whiskey all blended up together. Nothing not to like about that, and it made for a nice dessert.
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Jason Hagen

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jason Hagen » Mon Jan 15, 2018 5:47 pm

wnissen wrote:
Jason, that polenta looks so warm and comforting. I really love the stuff, but for some reason I don't cook it.


Yeah I don't know why I don't cook it more often. Easy, cheap, versatile, and satisfying.

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Mike Filigenzi » Wed Jan 17, 2018 11:24 am

Used the sous vide thingie to cook some fish. This was a bit of an experimental run, and I bought both halibut and salmon. When I got home and checked in with Serious Eats, it turned out that they recommend 120 degrees for salmon and 130 for halibut. (D'oh!) So I split the difference and warmed the thing up to 125. I seasoned the fish pieces, bagged them with some added butter, and put them in the fridge for a half hour or so as instructed. They then went into the bath for 45 minutes, which was what was recommended for their size (although possibly a little short for the halibut, which was thicker.) After that, I very carefully removed them from the bags while managing to keep them mostly intact, and seared them in more butter. The results were interesting. The salmon was amazing; melt-in-your-mouth soft and nicely flavored. The halibut was quite good but much more firm, almost like a piece that has been just slightly overcooked. I think this was actually a result of undercooking it. with there not being enough heat/time to get the tissue to soften up the way the salmon did. I would have been reasonably satisfied with the halibut had the salmon not been there for comparison. The other takeaway was how tricky it is to get the fish out of the bag, into a frying pan. seared, turned, and on a plate while keeping it in one piece.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Dale Williams » Wed Jan 17, 2018 12:44 pm

I've been doing salmon at 115 (with citrus zest and tarragon, or with a miso/mirin/ginger/sambal marinade) based on SE/Anova. Really thought turned out well. Agree re keeping together. Now lay flat near stove before opening bag, and then use large flsh flipper.
You have to be really carefully 3 times for a few seconds, but the other 50-55 minutes is pretty brainless. :)
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Paul Winalski » Wed Jan 17, 2018 5:33 pm

Kung pao gai tonight.

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

by Barb Downunder » Fri Jan 19, 2018 5:36 am

So I made a Quiche Lorraine, pretty much the traditional way with cheese, bacon, eggs, milk cream.
Wonderful, the cream makes a huge difference.
I often make variations, usually on the run and always a tasty meal, but I will now remember the beauty of the classic.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jenise » Fri Jan 19, 2018 3:57 pm

Barb, that reminds me: I ordered quiche in a Portland-area restaurant recently. It had all those classic flavors but was almost crustless. By which I mean there wasn't a traditional pie-dough crust, but yet there was a flour-crispy edge to the bottom. I don't know how they did that but it was the best quiche I've ever had.

Not been cooking this week, am a little under the weather.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Rahsaan » Fri Jan 19, 2018 4:48 pm

Barb Downunder wrote:Wonderful, the cream makes a huge difference.


Cream always makes a huge difference and is so delicious.

I haven't used cream in a quiche in a while, because it's already quite rich with the milk and cheese and buttery crust.

But you are right, cream is delicious!
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jenise » Mon Jan 22, 2018 2:49 am

Actually cooked a real lunch and dinner today. Still sick, but sick to death of being sick and needing to feel a bit more self-respect. For lunch, omelettes. Egg white only for me with avocado, sliced tomato and a drizzle of truffle oil. For dinner, a chopped stir fry for serving in lettuce wraps of of diced everything: velvetted pork, water chestnuts, preserved vegetable, ginger, garlic, shitake mushroom and bok choy.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Mike Filigenzi » Mon Jan 22, 2018 11:03 am

Hope you're feeling good soon, Jenise. If it's the flu thing that's been going around here, it can last quite a while.

I tried doing brisket in the Instant Pot last night. The recipe involved dry rubbing the brisket with Korean pepper, paprika, S&P, letting it sit for a while in the fridge, and then cooking it with beer, gochugaru, soy sauce. fish sauce, onion, garlic, and probably one or two other things I can't recall at the moment. I followed the instructions for cooking it which called for 90 minutes of cooking under pressure and then waiting another 20 minutes to release the pressure. I can't say I was all that impressed with the results. The meat was extremely tender and it was difficult to get the pieces of brisket out of the cooker without having them fall apart. It was pretty dry, though, and there was not a lot of flavor in the meat itself. The sauce (which was made by defatting and reducing the cooking juices) was good, though, and helped make up for the dryness of the meat. Still, not what I wanted. Maybe brisket is just a cut that is too lean and marbling-free to work by this technique or maybe the 90 minute cooking time was too long.

Served it with hot and sour cole slaw, and our friends brought a pineapple-chilli-cucumber salad as well. Dessert was a chocolate pear cake with ice cream.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Paul Winalski » Mon Jan 22, 2018 6:04 pm

Last night's dinner was Fuschia Dunlop's recipe for Sichuan dry-fried beef with celery.

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jenise » Tue Jan 23, 2018 5:51 pm

Morroccan Chicken with lemons and olives tonight. Have everything on hand except the chicken, and it's perfect weather for a great-smelling braise.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jenise » Thu Jan 25, 2018 10:33 pm

Doing a steak tonight. First red meat I've had in weeks. And I'll have some red wine, and ditto that re first in many weeks too. Excited!
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Mike Filigenzi » Fri Jan 26, 2018 12:24 am

Jenise wrote:Doing a steak tonight. First red meat I've had in weeks. And I'll have some red wine, and ditto that re first in many weeks too. Excited!


I'm going to go out on a limb here and guess that it's going to taste really, really good.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jenise » Fri Jan 26, 2018 3:54 pm

It was heaven.

We started with a salad of baby spinach, baby kale, sliced raw mushrooms, slivered red onion and parmesan tossed in a vinaigrette, then followed with the steak cut into strips and stacked on a galette of butter-seared turnip slices.

I actually sliced the turnip planning to serve it as a healthy raw snack/starter. But dinner got delayed by an hour, and the turnip started talking to me in a different way. Mind you, I have never EVER had turnip prepared like that--every cooked turnip in my life has been the little white Japanese turnips. So it was one of those "why the hell not?" moments--and damn, we both loved the turnip. The steak bites with turnip were better than the ones without--sharp, sweet, and creamy. Highly recommended!
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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