Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Alton Brown's take on Molecular Gastronomy

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Pretty funny video I ran across of Alton Brown talking about how molecular gastronomy simply cannot replace good basic cooking skills. Check it out!

Travelers opening 2nd Location!

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So if you have ever lived or visited Capitol Hill, Seattle, chances are you have walked by Travelers and maybe even stopped in for their Indian food, international wares, or tasty chai. They are opening a 2nd location called Beacon Hill Thali House on August 5th, with a soft opening at the end of July and their Delhi street food menu! After that they will serve their delicious Thali plates. In the meantime as they get everything together at the new location, the Capitol Hill location is staying open later until 8pm.

Travelers - Pavilion 08.09 018

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Fresh farm picked strawberries!

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In season, along with many other favorites! Make sure to visit your local farmer's market before the season ends. You should be seeing more late summer season varieties of produce in the Northwest such as corn, squash, tomatoes, apples and pears!

We're going away for the weekend so have a good one everyone and eat well!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Traditional Pavlova makes a comeback!

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My mother in law made this traditional Pavlova last Memorial Day weekend and I just had to ask her for the recipe. Like a huge meringue cookie, it's got a crispy outside and a chewy fluffy inside, and when smothered in whipped cream and fresh berries, this dessert is bound to please everyone in your family! It really seems like it's making a comeback as I have been seeing more and more recipes and pictures pop up online about it in the last few months!

Traditional Pavlova

1 C superfine sugar
1 T cornstarch
4 large egg whites, at room temperature
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp white vinegar
1 C whipping cream
2 pints mixed berries (strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, blackberries)

1. Preheat oven to 275 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with foil or parchment paper. Using a 10 inch round cake pan or plate as a guide, lightly trace a circle (use a toothpick on foil or a pencil on parchment). Set aside.
2. In a small bowl combine 1/4 C sugar and the cornstarch; mix with a fork until smooth.
3. With a mixer on high speed, beat the egg whites to a foam; add the salt and cream of tartar. Continue to beat until soft peaks form. Gradually add the remaining 3/4 C sugar, 2 T at a time, while beating constantly, until peaks stiffen. Beat the cornstarch mixture until just blended. Add the vanilla and vinegar, continuing o mix until just blended. Spoon the mixture onto the cookie sheet. Using the circle of paper as a guide, spread the meringue into a large "nest" using the back of a tablespoon (the edges should be 1 1/2 inches high, and the center should be shallow). Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Turn the heat off and leave the meringue in the oven for 1 hour to dry thoroughly. Remove and cool completely on a wire rack.
4. Peel the paper from the bottom of the meringue, and place the dessert on a serving dish or cake plate. Just before serving, whip the cream into soft peaks and spoon into the center of the meringue. Top the whipped cream with the fruit and serve immediately.

Serves 8

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

"Whatever's in the fridge" Tomato Sauce!

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Time to go grocery shopping! But I managed to cook a pretty good tomato sauce out of all I could find in the kitchen...added some spicy red pepper powder at the end for kick too. Make it your own, see what you have in your fridge! I sweat the onions/garlic/shallot with olive oil on medium, added my fresh herbs, some dry basil/oregano, a wee salt and pepper, stirred in diced celery, then some white wine, stirred again, added my crushed tomatoes and simmered! Then after I took it off the heat and it cooled a bit, I took my hand blender and crushed everything to make it more smooth, but not totally puréed. Taste a few times as it's back over the heat and add salt and pepper to taste.

"whatever's in the fridge" tomato sauce makings

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Cheese Making Class!

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My husband and I recently used a Groupon for cheese making class at The Cellar Homebrew and came out of there really inspired to try it on our own.  The teacher demonstrated making gouda, which is not too difficult, but they do recommend trying out soft cheese recipes first to get the hang of the starter process.  I think we're going to start out with a Paneer or Mascarpone as making a killer Indian curry or tiramisu with homemade cheese would be fantastic wouldn't it!  Eventually we'll need a large double boiler and a cheese mold to make the harder cheeses, but in the meantime it looks like all we need is a large pot and good cheese cloth.  We already have a temperature gauge that my husband uses for beer making, which is another consideration when making hard varieties.  There is quite a bit of watching and monitoring the mixture while cooking, as well as stirring, brining, pressing and storing...but all in all seems like an intensely satisfying and fun skill to pick up!

paneer, cubed

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Real Mexican food in Seattle??

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Yes!  You CAN find good Mexican food in Seattle.  We went to a super delicious food truck called El Camión just up Aurora Ave. next to Home Depot.  Kind of an obscure location, their fare was probably the most authentic Mexican food I've ever had in the greater Seattle area.  The menu is really diverse with special meats you wouldn't normally find on a regular food truck like tongue and tripe.  I tried the beef cheek taco; tender and packed with flavor (with a fresh squeeze of lime on top of course!) I probably should have ordered two, it was so good.  I also had their shrimp ceviche, and although not native to Mexico, had it's own thick and saucy style with bay shrimp marinated in chopped red onion, chile, cilantro, tomato, avocado and lemon and lime juices. And of course we washed it down with one of my favorite real sodas, Mandarin Orange Jarritos! Unfortunately I didn't get any "food-porn" shots, because I was too busy ravenously eating  and mooching off everyone else's plate of burritos the size of your head and the tastiest tamales ever!

Don't miss it! (I would suggest telling the family you need to "pick up a new drill.")

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