RECIPES

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Vanilla Sugar Butter Cookies

03 March, 2018 0 comments Leave a comment

These cookies make perfect use of our vanilla sugar. I've used weights here because it's so much faster and more efficient. A decent kitchen sale will run you $12-$20. Go for it!

375 grams flour (sub a 1-1 gf, if desired)
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
100 grams white sugar
100 grams dark brown sugar
1/2 lb (227 g) softened butter
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
Vanilla sugar for rolling

Combine the flour, salt, and baking soda in a bowl. Set aside. Cream butter and sugar until the mixture pales. 2-4 minutes in a mixer. Add eggs, one at a time, scraping down sides between each addition. Beat in vanilla and almond extracts. Add flour in two additions. If using wheat flour, mix just enough to thoroughly combine, as any more will toughen the cookies. If you use gluten free flour, don't worry because there's no gluten!

Refrigerate dough for at least an hour (overnight is best). Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Fill a small bowl with vanilla sugar. Roll dough into large marble sized balls and roll those balls in the sugar until they're completely covered. Place on a cookie sheet and press into 1/4 inch discs with the bottom of a glass. Bake 10-12 minutes, til just brown around the edges. 10 minutes will get you a softer cookie, 12 a crisp one.

Garam Masala Nuts

01 March, 2018 0 comments Leave a comment

1 egg white, at room temperature 
3 tablespoons sugar 
1-2 teaspoons salt 
1 ½ teaspoons garam masala 
3 cups toasted nuts (we use pecans, walnuts, & pecans) 

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.  Cover a cookie sheet with parchment or a silicone mat. If you use foil, reduce cooking time and watch that the nuts don’t scorch.

Whisk the egg white and one tablespoon hot water until you have a thick froth (almost like foam on a latte). Stir in the sugar & garam masala. Whisk until the mixture is smooth and sugar is partially dissolved.  Toss the nuts with the mixture and then spread the nuts on a cookie sheet. Bake for about 40 minutes.  Stir the nuts occasionally. Note: I tend to like my nuts sweet and spicy, so I would add another tablespoon sugar and a half teaspoon of hot curry.

Roast Chicken with Chipotle Chocolate Rub

03 September, 2017 0 comments Leave a comment

If you're an adventure cook like my brother, you could make a boiled, peeled pig tongue that you then smoke after sprinkling it with our Chipotle Chocolate Rub, but, well, many of us might not be up to that. Alternatively, here's a recipe for easy roast chicken.

1 whole chicken, backbone removed by a butcher or by you (poultry shears or a sharp knife will do the trick)

2-3 tablespoons of Chipotle Chocolate Rub

Sprinkle the bird, inside and out, with Chipotle Chocolate Rub. If possible, let the bird sit, uncovered, in the fridge for an hour or two. Then, if you have a gas grill, turn it on to its lowest setting. If you're using a charcoal grill, set up the grill for indirect cooking. 

Roast the bird for 25 minutes, exposed side down. Then flip it skin side down and roast until the breast measures 150 degrees F and the thigh measures 175 degrees. (Those are the temps the FDA recommends. Some people find that the bird is a little overcooked this way. You do you.)

Muhamarra (better than the last one I posted)

07 August, 2017 0 comments Leave a comment

Some years ago, I posted a recipe for muhamarra that was, well, fine for what it was, but it was too complicated (three kinds of nuts? really?). This one is easy and tastier.

1/2 cup toasted walnuts
1 large garlic clove
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons pomegranate molasses (or sherry vinegar)
1 teaspoon harissa
1 roasted red pepper
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1/4 cup sheet or goat feta (or more)
salt and pepper to taste

In a food processor, pulse the walnuts and garlic until they're coarsely ground. If you like your dips chunkier, pulse til the pieces are the size of small peas. Add the rest of the ingredients and pulse til well combined. Taste and add more harissa, feta, or lemon juice, as desired. 

Serve with sliced vegetables, chewy bread, or grilled meats. 

Lentil Soup with Ginger and Spinach

13 February, 2017 0 comments Leave a comment

ghee or oil, 1 tablespoon 
garlic, 1-2 tablespoons minced 
onion, 1 medium, chopped 
celery, ½ cup diced
carrot, ½ cup diced  
garam masala, 1 teaspoon 
sweet curry, 1 teaspoon 
tikka masala, 1 teaspoon
tamarind paste, ¼ teaspoon, mixed into warm water (opt.)
ginger, 1 ½ inches, grated
coconut milk, 8-12 ounces
red lentils, 2 cups
chicken or vegetable stock, or water, 1 quart
spinach, 10-16 ounces
salt to taste

Heat the oil to a shimmer. Sauté the onion on medium heat for 3 minutes. Lower the heat to medium low, add the garlic, and sauté for another minute, then add the carrot, ginger, and celery and cook 3-5 minutes. Add the spices and stir to mix thoroughly for 30 seconds. Add lentils and broth and simmer 20-25 minutes, until lentils are tender. Add more water or broth as needed. Add spinach and cook until tender. Add the coconut milk and bring the soup back up to a lower simmer. Taste, correct salt, and serve.

Lentil soup with Sausage and Spinach

06 March, 2015 0 comments Leave a comment

This soup is far more delicious than it should be, given how quick and easy it is. It takes 30 minutes, start to finish and is filling and nutritious. It's also easy to make vegan, should you wish.

8-12 ounces of sausage, removed from casings and crumbled
medium onion, finely chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon urfa biber or harissa
3/4 teaspoon turmeric

Click title for the rest of the recipe

Sometimes You've Just Gotta Have Chocolate Cake

27 February, 2015 0 comments Leave a comment

Perhaps because I'm not eating anything with added sugar right now, I found myself thinking wistfully about a chocolate cake I made two weeks ago. It was a Valentine's Day cake for my family, and although I'd originally planned to make a heart-shaped one, when the moment came that seemed precious and twee. Instead, I made up a peanut butter ganache, a chocolate frosting, and three layers of moist chocolate cake. The moist (sorry to use that abhorred word twice!) part is worth mentioning because that tends to be the Achilles' heel of gluten free cakes, of which this was one. For the record, I don't believe in sifting. (CLICK THE TITLE FOR THE REST OF THE RECIPE)

Chicken Sofrito

06 April, 2014 0 comments Leave a comment

Chicken Sofrito adapted from Yotam Ottolenghi

Just in time for Passover, or for spring, or for whatever suits your fancy, here’s a truly delicious, colorful, and easy chicken dish.  You can easily scale this for a larger group by doubling.

1 3-4 pound chicken, cut into quarters or pieces
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon paprika
½ teaspoon turmeric
½ teaspoon sugar
¼ teaspoon pepper
10 cloves of garlic, peeled and halved
the juice of one small or ½ a large lemon
3 cups diced white or yellow potatoes (not russets), cut into a 1” dice
Olive oil

Utensils needed: a shallow, heavy bottomed pan; a frying pan; a paring knife; a chef’s knife; a cutting board.

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Heat the heavy pan.  Add 2 tablespoons of oil and swirl to coat the bottom of the pan. Mix the salt, pepper, paprika, turmeric, and sugar in a small bowl.  Pat the spice mixture onto the chicken and place the chicken, skin side down, in the pan.  When it is thoroughly browned, flip it and place in the oven.

Heat the frying pan to medium high and add 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil.  Add the potatoes and leave until they are browned on the first side.  Toss to turn and brown another side or two.  Take the chicken out of the oven, briefly put the pieces onto a plate, and put the potatoes and garlic into the pan. Place the chicken pieces atop the potato mixture and drizzle the lemon juice onto the chicken.  Put the whole shebang back into the oven until cooked to your desired temperature.