Thursday, December 31, 2009

Lemon Tart (with thanks to David Lebovitz)


I was intrigued by David Lebovitz’s blog post on an interesting method for making French Tart Dough that he used with his lemon curd to make a Lemon Tart. I just happened to have all the ingredients on hand – instant gratification.



Unfortunately, I was trying to work quickly and didn’t photograph the intermediate steps; check out the David Lebovitz’s French Tart Dough post for what the components should look like. You heat the butter, oil, water, sugar, and salt in a bowl in the oven until it just starts to brown around the edges, then dump in the flour – almost like pâte a choux. Mix it together and pat it into the pan. No rolling!

I didn’t have a tart pan, but I thought my springform would do in a pinch.



It’s a bit too light, I think. I’ll bake it a bit longer next time.




Unsalted butter, lemon juice, lemon zest and sugar (plus two large eggs and 2 yolks) for the lemon curd.



Ready to bake for 5 min.


My husband said it wouldn’t be right without a dusting of confectioner’s sugar. The crust is wonderfully flaky and lovely with the homemade lemon curd filling.

Spice Pepper Tapenade

Pepper Tapenade Ver. 2 10242009_04

Onion, anchovies, garlic, capers, purple basil, Parmigiano-Reggiano, sundried tomatoes, and roasted spice peppers. I finally realized that as the seeds in these spice peppers aren’t hot, I didn’t have to go insane removing them from the tray full of tiny peppers.


Pepper Tapenade Ver. 2 10242009_07

This tapenade is so tasty (and now that I know I don’t have to deseed them), I’ll grow these peppers again next season. (This was made in October.)

Friday, October 9, 2009

Peppers from Our Garden

Peppers-20091007_01 cropped

My husband has started making a lovely roasted pepper-garlic spread/dip with the peppers from our garden. After roasting in the oven, he processes the garlic and peppers with a bit of nice olive oil. It's a great tapenade to spread on crostini, etc.



Peppers and garlic after charring under the broiler. The skins are so thin on these peppers, we didn’t have to peel them; removing the seeds and ribs took plenty long enough. I’m so glad the dip turned out to be worth the tedious bit.



Processed with a little salt, pepper, thyme (had some handy), and olive oil to the consistency desired.




Must, Stop, Photographing peppers. Enough.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Savory Chicken Salad


I wanted to make some chicken salad from the leftover rosemary-garlic paste roasted chicken my husband cooked the other night. I’m not a big fan of the fruit-laced chicken salads (apples, grapes?!) so I headed straight for the umami.



This is from my prior batch of pancetta flavored bacon. (My husband suggested the name, but I’m too embarrassed to call it that anymore.) This section was so fatty I didn’t want to eat it as bacon, so I saved it for pseudo lardons.



This is about 8 slices cut into 1/4 “ strips and fried.



I’ll chop and “toast” these pecans in the bacon fat.



Smells real good about now.



Minced shallot and garlic.



The shallots have been “sweated” and I’m adding the garlic for the last 30 seconds.



Draining the lardons and the pecan-shallot-garlic mix.



Shredded rosemary-garlic roasted chicken.



It was too late after work to make my own mayo.



Love this Louisiana Cajun seasoning.



Gotta have some of this.



About 1/2 cup of mayo, 2/3 cup of sour cream, 1 tablespoon of Cajun seasoning, 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce, plus Maldon sea salt and freshly ground pepper (not shown).



I over-toasted the bun in the broiler, but it was still delicious.

Thyme Roasted Potatoes

Technorati Tags: ,,


I’ve often heard that potatoes roasted in goose (or duck) fat are the best. As I had a bit of duck fat saved from the duck confit I used to make the Duck Rillettes,  I had to try some.



I used this recipe for the method. I used small russet potato wedges. These were parboiled for 4 minutes.



The lovely duck fat and some thyme from my garden. I sprinkled the thyme on the potatoes during the last 5 minutes.  The potatoes had a wonderful crunchy exterior and tender interior. They were good, well worth the effort.


My husband had roasted a chicken with a rosemary-garlic paste spread under the skin in our Big Easy infrared turkey fryer.  It made a great sandwich with some homegrown lettuce.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Easy Hamburger Buns | Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day

Buttermilk White Mix 08012009_07

Since my husband was making some lovely pulled pork to make barbequed pork sandwiches, I was happy that I had some Buttermilk White Bread mix from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day already mixed in the refrigerator.


Buttermilk White Mix 08012009_01

This is the mix in the bucket.


Buttermilk White Mix 08012009_05

I had a hamburger pan from earlier experiments. Sometimes it is good to hang on to baking pans you never thought you’d use again.


Buttermilk White Mix 08012009_06

I love the “shooting through glass” option on my camera.


Pulled Pork on BW Buns

The pulled pork with barbeque sauce, homemade mayonnaise, homemade buns, beans from our garden, and fried potatoes.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Bacon, Garlic, and Thyme Gougères | Duck Rillettes


I saw the recipe for similar gougères a few days ago on the Cook's Illustrated website. I had some leftover Emmental from the Quiche Lorraine, my bacon, and thyme in my garden; now was the time to finally try pâte a choux. Back in June, Michael Ruhlman had posted about taking some cheese puffs to a friend’s house and eating them with leftover duck confit. I didn’t think ahead to make duck confit, but while I was at one of my favorite grocery stores – Calandro’s – buying the flour, right there in the charcuterie area was canned duck confit. Not quite inventing the universe; but, sometimes, instant gratification is very satisfying. I decided to use the Cook’s Illustrated flavorings with Ruhlman’s Ratio. I watched Jacques Pépin make the choux paste on his The Complete Pépin: Techniques and Recipes DVD for a confidence boost (he uses half the butter compared to Ratio, hmmm).



My bacon, thyme, and the rest of the Emmental.



Minced thyme and garlic cloves.



Diced bacon and minced garlic, draining.



Replaced some of the unsalted butter with bacon grease.



The choux paste. I used buttermilk (had some in the fridge) rather than milk.



I didn’t want to clean my pastry bag after this sticky paste, so I used the baggie trick.



Ready to bake. My piping skills aren’t so good.



Coming out of the oven.



Warming the duck legs.



Lovely duck fat and gelatin (duck goo) in the bottom of the can. After shredding some of the leg meat to serve on the gougères, I made Duck Rillettes (adapted from Kevin Weeks’ – adapted from Charcuterie). I just tried to get the proportions right for the goo and fat to the amount of duck leg meat left and processed it.



Served beans from our garden on the side.



The shredded confit was lovely, but I like the rillettes. For some reason I find it amusing that it looks like devilled ham.