Cookbooks


I have had a bottle of Balsamic Vinegar in the cabinet for a while. Good thing it just gets better! I bought it for a recipe and then never made THAT recipe. Donna has come to my rescue with the recipe I chose for this week’s Wednesday with Donna hay.

P1040901

Chicken breasts (and thighs) marinated in balsamic vinegar mixed with chicken stock and garlic then browned and cooked in the marinade. So simple. Simply serve it over couscous infused with garlic. I found some tri-color couscous at World Market that was fun to use. But it made TONS of couscous. 1 cup dry yielded 4 cups cooked.

If you are a balsamic fan then you will love this dish. I am still trying to decide if I liked it. B was definitely NOT a fan.

How did Chaya, Gaye, and Sarah like it? Check out their posts.

The recipe is from Flavours on page 102. I also found it at Food.com

I know I haven’t been in on the Friday Fun lately. Life has been too crazy. And I have been in a cooking/baking funk. Seeing this week’s choice kinda brought me out of it. And while I was expecting more of a cake that fact that it was a filled, with cherry jam, giant cookie was just fine with me.

P1040891

According to Dorie this gâteau is a ‘double crusted tart, one in which the crust is like butter cookies.” Bingo! Perfect quick and tasty dessert.

P1040893-001

It was good with just a little whipped cream. Even better with some home made vanilla ice cream.

You can see the rest of the Gâteaus on French Fridays with Dorie.

If you want to try the recipe it is on NPR but you REALLY need to get Dorie’s Around my French Table for your bookshelf

This week’s pick, from Kayte, is a mixed mushroom risotto. I love risotto and always look forward to making different ones so when Kayte chose this one I jumped in enthusiastically.

P1040897

What we have is a lovely seasoned risotto with dried porcini mushrooms as well as a mix of fresh. I used Portobello and white button and then threw in some dried mixed that I had on hand. What’s not to love about this one. A little red wine, a little garlic, some leeks. Yes indeed. LOVED it!!

The recipe is on page 138 of Donna’s modern classics: book 1. Check with

Two weeks ago the group made Veggie Laksa. I really wanted to make it but here in Podunk Laksa paste was not to be found. Lucky for me I travelled south to visit my Babies and just happened to visit a HUGE Asian market – Vinh Phat. It carries everything. And I do mean EVERYTHING anyone would ever need for Asian cooking. I have to admit I didn’t recognize a lot of the products but I found the two I really needed – Laksa Paste and Miso.

P1040892

I had never had Laksa before. It is a wonderful seasoned paste. Full of flavor and a little spicy. Why haven’t I had that before? The Veggie Laksa, which was Sarah’s choice last week, included sweet potatoes, bok choy, garlic, and snow peas in a rich coconut milk and Laksa broth. Donna said to serve it over Vermicelli noodles. I had also found some of the noodles made from Mung Beans. Altogethr I think I liked it. Next time I would cut the sweet potatoes and boy choy in smaller pieces. The recipe is on Donna’s Website.

Sarah made the Laksa as did Gaye so check out their posts.

I have always loved Yorkshire Pudding. Ever since eating it as a child it has been on my fave food list. But I have never made it. I have wanted to. When we went to London on Spring we made sure to have Sunday dinner at a Pub – Roast Beef with roasted potatoes and Yorkshire Pudding. Sooo good!!

This week’s pick for Wednesday with Donna Hay was Gaye’s. I FINALLY made Yorkshire Pudding!!

P1040867These Puddings are NOT puddings but rather similar to a pop-over. Light and hollow they are perfect for dipping or scooping up gravy.

P1040870

So the next time you fix a roast, try making some of these handy little ‘scoops’. They are easy, tasty, and, for me, they bring back lots of memories.

Check with Gaye, Kayte, Sarah, and Chaya for their ‘Puddings’.

The recipe is on page 120 of Donna’s modern classics: Book 1

Last week I was in one of our local bookstores. They were having a BOGO $1 on the bargain books. Including a whole slew of cook books. I had promised myself I wasn’t going to buy Any.More.Cookbooks. I don’t need them. I have more than recipes I will ever use, which I know is NOT the reason we buy cookbooks, but I really DON’T need any more. REALLY! But this sale was just TOO good. So, since I have no self control…

ckbk

Bittman for $4.00. I could NOT pass that up. Or Krieger. Or Hay. So I buckled under and bought the books. Lucky for me POTLUCK this week so I am using at least one of my unnecessary purchases. Bittman for Potluck!

P1040876

    Wild Rice with Celery and Steamed Salmon

I have to admit I have NEVER cooked Wild Rice before. Eaten yes, cooked, no! I was a little leary. But while it took FOREVER {58 minutes} it was delicious. The celery, garlic, onions, bay leaf added so much flavor. And so much better than white rice. I loved the idea that the salmon was steamed on top of the rice before the rice was completely finished. It did make it a one pot meal. I think I would like to add some color to this one – red or orange bell peppers would be nice.

The recipe is HERE! It is delicious. Low cal. Dellicous. Healthy food. And, as Bittman would say – Food Matters!

Check out the other Potluck dishes at I heart Cooking Club.

Potluck

Why is it when I know I have a month to plan and cook/bake I wait til the last minute to actually do it? Could be because it has been a crazy month. In town. Out town. Even the weather has been crazy. Mid-June and we had Spring. Now it’s HOT! Summer. And of course summer means more time out side {Unless you live in the humid hot deep South} and more picnics and the chance to eat al fresco which happens to be this months LETS LUNCH theme. I didn’t even decide what to do until Thursday afternoon. Sheesh! So if it looks hurried…. But it was fun. And tasty!

    P1040835

    Pudding and Cookie Jars

I have seen lots of ‘jarred’ desserts around the internet. Some with cake. Some with Cheesecake {YES PLEASE!} Some with fruit. Some ‘trifled’. I thought that would be a perfect easy to carry dish to bring to the Lets Lunch picnic.

In small pint jars layer your cookies, I used mini Oreos and NutterButters, with pudding. Flavor of your choice. I had some vanilla – NOT what I wanted but what I had – thanks to boxes. And I made some tofu Chocolate pudding from Ellie Krieger.

P1040837

Using the puddings layer them with cookies, or cookie crumbles in the jars. Top with whipped cream and garnish with cookie bits, mini chocolate chips. It’s all up to your imagination. Go WILD!! Put on the lid. Place in a cooler and everybody gets their own individual dessert. No big bowls. No big spoons. No bowls to mess with. Easy!!

Dark Chocolate Mousse
adapted from Ellie Krieger’s The Food You Crave

    1 (12.3 ounce) package silken tofu, drained
    3 ounces high quality bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
    1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
    1/4 cup water

Puree the silken tofu in a food processor until completely smooth.
Combine the bittersweet chocolate, cocoa powder, water, and brandy. Microwave on medium until chocolate starts to melt. Stir. Continue until all the chocolate is melted and ingredients are combined. Stir in 1/2 cup of confectioner’s sugar, a little at a time, until smooth.
Add the chocolate mixture to the tofu in the food processor and puree until well-combined and smooth. You may have to stop it a few times to scrape down the sides.
Pour the mousse into individual serving dishes, cover tightly, and refrigerator for at least one hour, up to three days, to set properly. {I let mine partially set and then spooned into the jars in layers.}

Want to enjoy the picnic? This month’s Lets Lunch is hosted by Annabelle at Glass of Fancy and she will have the complete list in case I miss someone here.

Enjoy the Picnic, Y’all!!

Follow us on Twitter: #LetsLunch

Annabelle’s Butterscotch Brownies
Betty Ann’s Adobong Mani or Peanuts in Garlic
Grace’s review of The Great Outdoors Cookbook
Karen’s Watermelon Mint Cocktails
Linda S.’s Spicy Nectarine and Tomato Salad
Lisa’s Spinach and Three-Cheese Coil Pastries
Anne Marie’s Peachy Picnic Sliders
Linda’s Spicy Nectarine and Tomato Salad
Cheryl’s Perfect Summer Pesto

It is hard enough to pick a recipe for yourself but when you have to pick one that you know other people will be making it is even harder. Even when I know the other members of WWDH are adventurous cooks and bakers I often hesitate. But when it was my turn to pick for my June recipe I saw these spring rolls and knew EVERYONE would like them. Quick! Easy! Light!

P1040793

And with the dipping sauce – very tasty!

A simple combination of shredded carrots, shredded snow peas, vermicelli noodles, mint, cilantro, and peanuts all nicely wrapped up in rice paper rounds! We left out the mint for these and increased the noodles just a hair but as with any Donna Hay recipe the ingredients are listed with amounts but changing them up usually doesn’t hurt the dish at all.

The dipping sauce is simply brown sugar and soy sauce. Sweet and salty. Donna left her rolls open on one end but we closed them on both ends. Less messy that way.

The recipe is on page 78 of Donna’s modern classics: book 1.

Check with

for their veggie rolls.

When it comes to favorite foods I would have to list Seafood at the very very top. Any kind of seafood fixed any way. Any time! Including in a Paella. With lots of rice, various kinds of seafood and spices. I wish I had had more variety for this one. Kayte picked Donna’s Paella for this week’s Wednesdays with Donna Hay dish. Donna called for shrimp, clams, and mussels. And even though I live in a state with lots of seafood it does not include mussels or clams. The subbing of canned whole baby clams just didn’t do this dish justice.

P1040740

I am definitely looking into finding some mussels and clams in the shell so I can make this dish the way it should be. Until then, this isn’t a bad substitute.

The recipe is on page 144 in Donna’s Modern Classics

Did the other WWDH cooks find all their ingredients? Check with

And thanks, Kayte. Good choice.

If you would like to join us in Wednesdays with Donna Hay just leave one of us a comment. We are using

    Modern Classics: Book 1
    off the shelf
    Donna’s Website

for recipes.

It’s PotLuck week at ICHH. And since we can choose any chef/cook we want from previous months I went with Bittman again. This time, something simple – COOKIES.

P1040440

    1/2 cup peanut oil or vegetable oil, 8 Tbl unsalted butter, softened
    1/2 cup granulated sugar Stevia
    1/2 cup packed brown sugar
    1/4 cup applesauce, or 2 eggs
    1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
    2 cups rolled oats (not instant)
    1 cup (about 3 ounces) chopped dried apples, or other fruit
    1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
    1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    Pinch salt
    2 teaspoons baking powder
    1/2 cup almond milk, rice milk, or oat milk, or cow’s milk
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla or almond extract

Blend butter (or oil) with sugars. Add in the applesauce (or eggs) and mix until well blended.
Mix the dry ingredients. Alternating with the milk add to the sugar/oil/applesauce mix.
Stir in the vanilla.
Drop tablespoon sized mounds of dough onto an ungreased cookie sheet and bake at 375 degrees for 10 – 12 minutes until lightly browned. Cool on a rack. About 40 cookies. {Original Recipe}

These were pretty good. They are not very sweet but the pecans add a nice crunch and the apples add a little sweetness. They would also be good with dried cranberries. I think I would try and add a little PB next time for sweetness and fiber.

{Nutritional info: (each cookie) 106 calories, 7 g fat, Less than 1 g cholesterol, 11 carbs, less than 1 g fiber, 3 g sugar, 1 g protein.}
The recipe is from Bittman’s Food Matters page 290.

I am working my way through some of the Bittman’s recipes for Potlucks this go round. Last month I made his Coconut and Nut Chews for the Potluck. This month I settled on his

    PAELLA

P1040012

Paella is a Spanish rice dish often made with different kinds of seafood. The dish is actually named for the pan it is made in and usually cooked over open fires. While mine was not cooked over an open fire and it is rather small compared to traditional HUGE paellas it did not disappoint.

    3 1/2 cups any stock or water, plus more if needed {I ended up using 4 cups of Veggie Stock}
    Pinch saffron threads (optional)
    1 pound ripe tomatoes, cored and cut into thick wedges
    Salt and freshly ground black pepper
    3 tablespoons olive oil
    1 medium onion, chopped
    1 tablespoon tomato paste
    2 teaspoons Spanish pimenton (smoked paprika), or other paprika
    3 ounces Spanish chorizo or other cooked or smoked sausage, cut into 1/4-inch pieces (optional) {I used a local Louisiana Smoked sausage}
    2 cups short-grain brown rice {I used a long grain white rice}
    6 large peeled shrimp; or 2 boneless chicken thighs, cut into 1/2-inch chunks (optional)
    1 cup fresh or frozen peas
    Chopped fresh parsley leaves for garnish

PRHEAT the oven to 450°F.
HEAT the stock with the saffron, if you’re using it, in a small saucepan. Toss the tomatoes with salt, pepper, and 1 tablespoon olive oil.
HEAT the remaining oil in a 12-inch ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat until hot. Add the onion, salt and pepper, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are soft, 3 to 5 minutes.
STIR in tomato paste, paprika, and chorizo/sausage, if you’re using it, and cook for a minute more.
ADD the rice and cook, stirring occasionally, until it’s shiny, another minute or two. Slowly pour in the warm stock and stir until just combined.
ADD in the shrimp {I also added some chopped chicken to this} and peas.
PLACE the tomato wedges on top of the rice and drizzle with the juices that accumulated in the bottom of the bowl. Bake, undisturbed, for 30 minutes. Check to see
if the rice is nearly dry and just tender. If not, return the pan to the oven for 5 minutes, check again, and repeat if necessary. If the rice looks too dry at any point, but still isn’t quite done, you can add more stock or water. When the rice is ready, turn off the oven and let it sit for at least 5 and up to 15 minutes.
REMOVE the pan from the oven and sprinkle with parsley. If you want to develop a bit of a bottom crust before serving put the pan over high heat for a few minutes .

SOOO good. I would like to make it using some mussels, maybe some squid, or some fish. It is so adaptable.

Check with the IHCC members for the POTLUCK this month. Tasty.

Next Page »

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 144 other followers