Monday, February 22, 2010

badger badger...

MUSHROOM! Chanterelles drying in the living room after a successful mushroom hunt. Haven't been poisoned yet..!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


Happy year of the tiger! In the spirit of Chinese New Year, I tried my hand at making some dim sum.

First there were the turnip cakes (usually seen in square form at restaurants), which are actually made from shredded daikon - a mild radish. Why the root vegetable misnomenclature, I don't know.

Then. THEN. Let there be egg custard tarts! Mmmm... flaky crust, creamy filling... Maybe a touch sweet for my taste, but that didn't stop me from eating three. I got my recipe straight from pastry studio
Here's what you do:

1. Make some pie dough. Roll out, cut into 3 /2-in. circles, and pat them into a muffin tin. There's so much butter, no need to grease.

2. Bake the little cups at 375 for about 15 minutes.

3. Make your magical pastry cream. I added 1/2 tsp almond extract instead of rum in the recipe. See here for pastry cream success.

4. Spoon cream into little cups, and bake for 15 minutes more.

5. Lick spatula and pot clean while waiting.

6. Devour tarts while hot.

7. High-5 self.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

hot tomato! blue tomato!

This recipe has made the blog rounds already, but thought I'd throw it up here anyway. In other news, I do not know how to take photos of tomato soup (under CFL lighting at night..) that do not look like ruminated remains. But not just any soup. No! Creamy tomato soup spiked with cock sauce and blue cheese!

The cheese brings the umami, but leaves behind the blue funk. And well, this soup is just another example of cock sauce making things more delicious.

This wants you to pull out your fancy blue cheese and canned tomatoes. I went to the cheese counter, gave all the blue ones a squeeze, and settled on a soft squishy gorgonzola dolce that looked like it would melt. The fancy tomato cans were in questionable condition, so I used some generic ones instead. I also didn't bother straining the soup. You, however, should follow the recipe as written, as I'm sure it will result in a soup even more luscious than mine.

Finally, do not be a noob like me and put the cheese rind in the soup.

Spicy Tomato and Blue Cheese Soup
From Michael Symon's Live To Cook

2 tbs olive oil
1 medium red onion, finely chopped
Kosher salt
4 garlic cloves, sliced
1 28-oz can San Marzano tomatoes, with their juice
1 1/2 c chicken stock
3/4 c heavy cream
2 tbs Sriracha sauce
1 tbs fresh oregano leaves
1/2 cup Roth Kase Buttermilk Blue cheese

Heat oil in a 4-quart pot over medium heat. When the oil is hot, add the onion and pinch of salt and sweat the onions for 2 minutes.

Add garlic and sweat for 2 more minutes. Add the tomatoes, their juice, and the stock and bring to a simmer. Add the cream, Sriracha sauce, and oregano and simmer for 45 minutes.

Pour soup into a blender, add the blue cheese, and blend until smooth, working in batches if needed. Strain the soup through a fine-mesh strainer into a clean pot, taste, adjust the seasoning if necessary, and reheat to serve.