Archive for November 2009

best mac and cheese in the history of mankind

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macaroni and cheese

  • 1 lb. (maybe? it’s a block of cheese) of sharp white cheddar
  • 1 can evaporated milk
  • 1 spoonful Dijon mustard
  • generous sprinkles of nutmeg, salt, and paprika
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 package of fusilli pasta
  • Fresh breadcrumbs with olive oil stirred in
  • Ground almonds (TJ’s almond meal)

Shred up the cheese and garlic in a food processor fitted with the grating blade. Mix in the eggs, mustard, and spices. Cook the fusilli according to package directions. Mix with the cheese mixture, top with breadcrumbs and ground almonds. Bake at 400 degrees for 30 minutes, until top is brown and crispy.

I also made

Vegetable pesto casserole

Lightly oil a cast-iron pan and layer in it, in this order:

Peeled, sliced Yukon Gold potatoes

Sliced sweet onion

Halved cubes of pesto, scattered evenly over the surface

Chopped kale

Sliced potatoes

Peeled, sliced celeriac

Grated Yukon Gold potato

Grated carrot

Bake in 400 degree oven for 45 minutes, or until all layers of veggies are soft.

Here are the two desserts I made and brought to Josh and Kelly’s house when we went over for dinner last night, both from Nigella Lawson’s How to Eat:

Clementine Cake, p. 66

I made this with 1 lb. lemons instead of 1 lb. clementines. I suspect the clementines would have gone better–Rahul complained bitterly about the bitterness.

4-5 clementines (about 1 lb)–I subbed 1 lb. Eureka lemons

6 eggs

1 cup plus 2 Tbsp sugar–I subbed 1 1/4 cup sugar

2 1/3 cups ground almonds (almond meal from Trader Joe’s)

1 heaping teaspoon baking powder

Put the citrus in a pot with cold water to cover. Bring to the boil and simmer for 2 hrs. Drain, and when cool, cut the citrus in half, remove the seeds, and chop everything (skins, pith, fruit) finely in the food processor.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Line an 8-inch springform pan with parchment paper. (I used a 9-inch pan and this seemed like the right amount)

Beat the eggs. Add the sugar, almonds, baking powder, and citrus, and mix well.

Pour into the springform pan and bake for 1 hr, when a skewer comes out clean. You may need to cover the cake after 40 mins to stop it from burning. (We only baked it for about 45 minutes total)

Let it cool and remove from the springform pan.

Glaze, if desired, with a light icing made of powdered sugar, lemon juice, and water. I didn’t have powdered sugar and instead blitzed up regular white sugar and cornstarch.

Translucent Apple Tart, p. 277

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Line a 9-inch pie pan with pastry (does not need to be blind baked). Melt 1/2 stick (4 Tbsp) butter and 1/2 cup sugar together over very low heat–let cool a little if necessary. Remove from heat and beat in 1 egg and a bit of vanilla extract. Peel and grate 2 Granny Smith apples and stir into the butter mixture.  (Her recipe calls for one but I used two, after reading some complaints that the recipe doesn’t make enough filling).

Pour the filling mixture into the prepared pan and bake for about 15 mins, until golden brown (this was more like 30 mins for me). Lower the heat to 350 degrees and bake for another 15-20 mins, until nicely colored. Good warm, hot, or cold.



Written by orata

November 22, 2009 at 10:13 pm

Cornish Pasties

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I made a batch of NYT no-knead bread (the original recipe) with a few Tbsp of olive oil stirred in, and let it sit around for about 3 days before getting around to using it.

The oil had pooled up on top. I stirred it back in and kneaded in extra flour till it was thick enough to work with (though still pretty floppy). I figured the oil would help keep the bread from staling too soon.

Made filling from a saute/braise of the following, seasoned with sugar, soy sauce, salt, and pepper:

  • 2 ground beef patties, cooked in a bit of water and mashed up
  • 1/2 bunch kale, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • some fresh parsley, chopped
  • 3 carrots, diced
  • 1/2 celeriac, diced
  • 1 large Yukon Gold potato, diced

I stretched out pieces of dough on a floured dinner plate one at a time, and filled them: put a bunch of filling on one half, folded it over and sealed it shut, put it on a Silpat.

Baked at 350 degrees for about an hour, until crust is browned and crisp.

Written by orata

November 20, 2009 at 1:32 pm

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Pom Pom Blanc

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Cooked up the 2nd pom pom blanc/lion’s mane mushroom. It was DELICIOUS.

Sliced a small onion into half-moons.

Cooked it in butter in a small saucepan until starting to turn translucent.

Added shredded pom pom mushroom and frozen peas and cooked till everything seemed cooked through.

Added lemon juice, chopped flat leaf parsley, a little grapeseed oil, salt, and a few big spoonfuls of Fage yogurt.

Tossed everything together with pappardelle pasta.

It was really, really good. Savory, chewy, maybe a little seafoody and tangy.

Written by orata

November 10, 2009 at 1:48 pm

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