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Jenise

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jenise » Mon Dec 21, 2020 3:03 pm

Peter, I had to look at several different references to this recipe to realize that the Jools in question is Jamie's wife, not Jools Holland. :)

Thanks for the link.



Tonight I'm making a mixed wild mushroom risotto, which will follow basil-tomato marinated artichokes.
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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Peter May

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Peter May » Wed Dec 23, 2020 7:39 am

Jenise wrote: the Jools in question is Jamie's wife, not Jools Holland.


:lol:


I found interesting his assertion that it wasn't necessary to brown the meat first.

I still don't understand why the meat needs coating in flour.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jenise » Wed Dec 23, 2020 12:44 pm

I saw that. Several points: the flour browns and creates fond which brings color to the liquid component of the stew. It also lightly thickens such that the stew might not need additional thickening later. Or at least that's always been the rule of thumb.

I've personally reached different conclusions. For one, I don't necessarily want the pasty opacity of Flour as a thickening agent in all versions of 'stew' I make. A beef bourgogne, for instance, is much more attractive with clarity. A similar dish but more in line with the values of sunny southern France and redolent with orange peel and some tomatoes (my favorite), also benefits from clarity. Secondly, while recipe instructions are historically intent on browning as if the goal is color, IMO the focus should be on exposing all/most surfaces of the meat to a pre-cook; thus sealed up, the chunks are more durable and less likely to shred toward the end of the braise. Careful not to crowd the pan, I throw chunks of meat in the pan and let them color up on whatever side they land on, and then stir them to get that seal. The end result is blonder than it would be otherwise, but the meat's tenderer because I didn't toughen all the surfaces. For my tastes, a good trade-off.
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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Paul Winalski

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Paul Winalski » Wed Dec 23, 2020 4:06 pm

Julia child uses beurre manie (uncooked roux) as a sauce thickener for both boeuf bourguignon and coq au vin.

I'm making ratatouille tomorrow and Paul Prudhomme's chicken and andouille gumbo for Christmas.

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jenise » Wed Dec 23, 2020 8:27 pm

Beef pot pies with green salad tonight!
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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Jeff Grossman

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jeff Grossman » Thu Dec 24, 2020 6:35 pm

Crab cakes tonight. A dozen oysters for me and a dozen littlenecks for Pumpkin.
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Larry Greenly

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Larry Greenly » Thu Dec 24, 2020 6:48 pm

A melange of leftovers: kung pao shrimp, fried rice, very hot tamales. etc. to help clean out the fridge.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jenise » Thu Dec 24, 2020 7:34 pm

Jeff, I'll have what you're having!

We're doing lobster tail with parmesan rice. Will be elegant but easy. I've spent the day prepping for tomorrow, including gift wrapping which takes me forever since I make all my own bows.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Peter May » Fri Dec 25, 2020 11:11 am

Jenise wrote: Several points: the flour browns and creates fond which brings color to the liquid component of the stew. It also lightly thickens such that the stew might not need additional thickening later. Or at least that's always been the rule of thumb.


Flour as thickener I understand, but why not add it separately? Why go to the faff of coating the meet? That's what I don't understand.

As for adding colour - in this recipe the red wine colours everything dark.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Paul Winalski » Fri Dec 25, 2020 12:36 pm

Flouring the meat and then browning it allows the flour to participate in the Maillard reaction as well as acting as a thickener for the sauce. You don't get this if you add the flour later unless you make a brown roux. The sauce in boeuf bourguignon gets most of its flavor from the wine so I don't think there's much gained if you flour the beef before browning it. But I can see the potential benefit in other stews.

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jeff Grossman » Fri Dec 25, 2020 5:15 pm

Tonight: capon, roasted with herbs and butter under the skin; also twice-baked potatoes and delicata squash with Jeffrey's seed mix applied.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by wnissen » Fri Dec 25, 2020 7:06 pm

Larry Greenly wrote:A melange of leftovers: kung pao shrimp, fried rice, very hot tamales. etc. to help clean out the fridge.

With an overworked single mother, our Christmas Eve tradition was always takeout Chinese food from a place called "Nam Wah". (It was only years later I realized that the family running the place were in fact Vietnamese, thus "Nam".) There was one item on the menu that we ordered almost as a joke, "Bean Curd Home Cook Style". It did not sound appetizing, but the lightly fried tofu, vegetables, and rich brown sauce were wonderful. So every year I get some, as it's available on almost every Chinese menu, under varying names, such as "Family Style Tofu".

My spouse had a similar tradition, frozen Lucca brand spinach ravioli with red sauce, because it was relatively easy and Christmassy. So now we have combined two traditions, but being culinarily oriented, can't leave well enough alone. This year I prepared Lidia Bastianich's Bolognese Sauce. First I diced all the meat by hand from beef and pork chuck, instead of using ground. After browning the meat I transferred the sauce to a crockpot and let it cook for 7 hours instead of the 3 she suggests. The texture was superb, little bites of meat just falling apart in your mouth. Served with Costco cheese tortellini.

My in-laws live an hour away, but we are not seeing them in person this year. To send our love, if not our physical presence, we made cinnamon braids and "sausage bread" which are the traditional Christmas morning foods. The latter is a closely guarded family secret but the link is close. We also sent down rolls, Julia Child's pommes Anna, and beef Wellington with center-cut tenderloin, matsutake, shitake, chantrelle, shallot, and pancetta duxelles, wrapped in Niman Ranch prosciutto. For dessert, eggnog tart. Happy holidays, everyone, and for those who partake, a merry Christmas!

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Pat G » Fri Dec 25, 2020 8:13 pm

Jenise wrote:Jeff, I'll have what you're having!

We're doing lobster tail with parmesan rice. Will be elegant but easy. I've spent the day prepping for tomorrow, including gift wrapping which takes me forever since I make all my own bows.


Last year, I spent 5 hours at my small charity wrapping gifts for adopted military families. Every Xmas families with a substantial hardship can be adopted by a person/organization/etc. I learned that curling ribbon is somewhat of a lost art here. I did the scissors/curling wrap thing on several presents, and also used the ribbon to embellish stick-on bows. And my supervisor came in and asked if I'd mind doing similar bows for many of the gifts. Hey, if that's what she wanted, that's what she got. 5 hours straight on my feet, wrapping and bowing. It was worth the reminder of my age with body stiffness the next day.

This year, no adoption program. Maybe next year.

On to a better item. Christmas dinner. Beef roast in slow cooker with carrots, pasta, tomato-vodka sauce. Side salad mainly of cabbage slaw, balsamic-yogurt dressing. Blue corn cornbread. Cranberry gingerbread with amaretto. 2009 Argentinan Malbec, Uco Valley. Wine opened last night. Plenty left. Very decent vino. Beef. Malbec. What's not to like?

Cheers!
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Peter May » Sat Dec 26, 2020 6:55 am

Paul Winalski wrote:Flouring the meat and then browning it allows the flour to participate in the Maillard reaction a.


Jamie explains why the meat in this recipe isn't browned before cooking. I think tomato puree and the sweet potato and butternut which both dissolve in the long cooking provide thickening, and the amount of flour used to coat the beef chunks is not enough to make a difference.

Next time I will try it without the flour.

If the liquid isn't thick enough it can be reduced in a hot pan, but there's evaporation during 4 hours cooking.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jenise » Mon Dec 28, 2020 8:54 pm

Peter May wrote:
Paul Winalski wrote: and the amount of flour used to coat the beef chunks is not enough to make a difference.

Next time I will try it without the flour.


I pretty much agree, as already stated. However, stir frying the meat chunks lightly to seal the pieces is ultimately beneficial, and flour's not needed for that.


Today's Monday, so we're going meatless. Tonight: potato/black truffle gratin and nappa cabbage and walnut salad with fenugreek vinaigrette.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jeff Grossman » Wed Dec 30, 2020 3:41 am

The Stockpot: Simmer the shells from two pounds of shrimp with a few coriander seeds and a sprinkling of bouquet garni herbs; strain. Now, in the empty pot, briefly saute a carrot, two stalks celery, two bay leaves, a dozen black peppercorns, a splash of madeira, and a lobster carcass torn into pieces; return the shrimp broth to the pot and simmer for 90 minutes; strain.

I've got 5 pints of sturdy seafood broth, ready for risotto, paella, or even soup! (3 in the fridge,2 in the freezer)
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jenise » Wed Dec 30, 2020 2:05 pm

Very cool, Jeff. My freezer's so overloaded right now that I have no room to freeze even one pint of extra stock should I make it.

Tonight I'm making a wedding feast for my brother and new brother-in-law: a stuffed steelhead salmon roast.
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 Larry Greenly » Wed Dec 30, 2020 7:42 pm

Jenise wrote:Very cool, Jeff. My freezer's so overloaded right now that I have no room to freeze even one pint of extra stock should I make it.


My freezers approach neutron star density; I couldn't squeeze in a stick of butter. :mrgreen:
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Peter May » Thu Dec 31, 2020 7:19 am

I'm making veg curry and rice tonight, dependent on the supermarket delivering the ingredients....

Last week I needed an aubergine for a recipe and they delivered one courgette instead as a substitute
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Paul Winalski » Thu Dec 31, 2020 11:02 am

Last night's dinner was Sichuan dry-fried beef.

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

by Larry Greenly » Thu Dec 31, 2020 12:31 pm

Last night was a hodge podge of sliced ham, macaroni and cheese with lobster, and a tossed salad. Night before was homemade pizza (and maybe tonight).
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Paul Winalski » Thu Dec 31, 2020 4:24 pm

The boneless, skinless chicken breasts and Cajun Trinity that I bought today will become chicken and tasso jambalaya and tom kha gai this weekend.

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Larry Greenly » Thu Dec 31, 2020 10:35 pm

Tonight a friend brought over some traditional posole, carne adovado, and flour tortillas, but I had already heated up my oven for pizza. So pizza tonight, the other stuff tomorrow.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Three!)

by Jeff Grossman » Fri Jan 01, 2021 3:42 am

Tonight was twice-baked potatoes (now, also twice-heated up), orange-glazed delicata, and a very fancy meat pie from Regalis: heritage pork, foie gras, chanterelles, whole pistachios, and some herb concoction that is incredibly fragrant.
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