Thursday, December 31, 2009
Thursday, December 24, 2009
Tuesday, December 22, 2009
Monday, December 21, 2009
Saturday, December 19, 2009
I loooove risitto although I don't cook it often because it requires my continuous presence. My favorite is to add a little saffron. It gives it such a rich taste and a pretty color:)
How often do you cook no meat dinners or vegetarian twists on old classics? My husband is a meat and potatoes kind of guy, and I'd love to move away from meat at every dinner.
TGC: Whitney, I have a 2X2X2X1 rule when it comes to family dinners. 2 poultry a week, 2 non-meat, 2 fish and 1 diner's (or cooks) choice. It is easy to remove meat from so many favorites, pot pie, shepherd's pie, pizza. If you are not strictly vegetarian, eggs are always a great way to make a meal. Omelets and soufflees come to mind. I'm not a big fan of soy products or "fake" meat or poultry, I'd much rather just go with a meatless meal. Vegetable fritata's, falafel, grilled cheese with tomato or vegetable soup. Meatless spagetti sauce, tacos with beans instead of ground meat, just use your imagination!
My question: Have you taken cooking classes or attended a cooking school?
TGC: Yes Nancy, I have done both (and continue to take classes). I earned a certificate in Principles of Cooking - which taught me the classic techniques of cooking (think sauteeing, whisking, frying, roasting, searing, etc) and I earned a second certificate in Intensive Principles of Cooking, Applied - which concentrated on using classic techniques and applying them to contemporary cooking. One of the most important and beneficial classes I have ever taken was a knife handling and butchering class. I have also taken classes in Bread making, Soup and Stock preparation, Pastry, Canning / Preserving and Cheese Making. I have attended classes in Locavorism and am travelling to Italy in 2010 to the Amalfi Coast for a week of cooking lessons. (my dream come true). I am always looking for new and interesting classes. In February I have a cooking class with the former executive chef of Bouley of NYC, Chef Cesar Ramirez.. I believe a good cook never stops learning new and innovative ways to prepare food!
I have a question!
Do you buy your cooking utensils brand new, or is secondhand fine with you (i.e. thrift store shops)?
I need all the advice I can get. I can't even afford decent pots and pans. Also! No room to put them anywhere!
TGC: Phoebe, Of course! Reuse, recycle. Look for good quality, clean products. Don't buy interior scratched pans (outside scratches are okay) - inside scratches and your food will stick everytime. Antique (older than 50 years) knives are an especially wonderful find as they are generally carbon steel. Very easy to sharpen and they hold an edge. Don't let a little rust bother you - this can be sharpened away. Look for a solid handle, where the steel goes all the way through the handle and has at least 3 rivets.
Your All-Clad comment is excellent! I don't have them, but as an engineering/metals guy all my career- they would be my choice(if 1200 bucks fell on my head right now!) My Wusthof knives are my go to weapon of choice! I can stir with a knife- can you cut with a spoon? HeeHeeHee...
TGC: Buffalodick, I can cut butter and soft cheeses with a wooden spoon :-)
You are absolutely right about high quality knives. Dull knives are more dangerous than sharp.
Is there anything that you would not cook?
TGC: Unknown Mami, Cat, Dog, sweetbreads (aka brains). I think that's about it.
Love all these questions and answers! thanks. I enjoy your blog. It's so informative, and I really enjoy your recipes! You are very generous to share so many with us! I would LOVE to get your Yorkshire pudding recipe!
Oh, and enter me please!
TGC: Cousin B, Here's your Yorkshire Pudding Recipe:
You will need to be roasting beef for this recipe.
Remove the roast from the oven 25 minutes before you are ready to serve. Yorkshire Pudding MUST be cooked in the beef fat and drippings or you are just making popovers. (if you're not making roast beef, use butter where ever the fat is used)
Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
4 tablespoons roast beef pan drippings
1 cup milk
1 cup flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
Divide drippings between 6 big muffin cups and swirl to coat. Place in oven until sizzling hot (about 5 minutes) Meanwhile, whisk the eggs, milk, flour and salt together. Quickly, divide the batter between the hot muffin tins (fill about 2/3 full). Bake 25 to 30 minutes until puffed and golden. DO NOT OPEN THE DOOR TO THE OVEN WHILE THEY ARE BAKING. Serve piping hot!
I love to cook but have a terrible problem being able to duplicate a dish I've made in the past. I either can't remember how I did it or can't find the recipe. Do you have this problem?
TGC: Debbie, I keep a notebook on hand that I jot down ingredients and quantities as I add them - that's when I'm testing a recipe of my own. I can then edit it after we eat it, such as, "too spicy, add less XXX" or increase cooking time by... that type of thing. I also keep a three ring binder with marked dividers (cookies, cakes, salads, meats, sides, etc...) that I file my favorite recipes in. I tear the pages right out of cook books, magazines, etc.. I also write in cook books. I'm an organized mess!
Here are a couple questions that came directly to my email:
Question: What are three things you always have in your refrigerator?
TGC: Eggs, Heavy Cream and Butter. You can make heaven on earth if you have these three ingredients.
Question: What do you do with the chicken or vegetable broth you have left over when a recipe calls for only a 1/2 cup or so.
TGC: Freeze the leftover broth in an ice cube tray. Then once it is frozen, pop out and store in a plastic bag in the freezer. 2 cubes equals 1/4 cup.
Question: What do you do with leftover wine?
TGC: I have no idea. That has never happened to me. :-)
If you are in the Mid-Atlantic or Northeast part of the USA this weekend, hunker down from this storm, stay off the roads, make something fabulous to eat and share, stay warm and be safe!
The Good Cook
Friday, December 18, 2009
Thursday, December 17, 2009
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
Friday, December 11, 2009
Wednesday, December 9, 2009
If you're reading this post, then you must:
(a) leave a comment and answer the below 25 questions that Mandy made up,
(b) write the answers to the questions below in your own blog post, if you have a blog, that is.
or (c) call yourself a scrooge in the comment below and refuse to answer them.
I hope you choose (A) or (B) but if you choose (C) then I'll just let the ghosts of Christmas past, present and future deal with you. If you do decide to write your own blog post about it, please mention Mandy since she is the author of these important questions. (Writers credit and all that jazz - thanks!)
(1) What is your favorite Christmas movie?
White Christmas - I even know all the songs, not just the title one. TBHITW and I watch it every year... hmm.. maybe this weekend.
(2) What is your LEAST favorite Christmas movie?
The Grinch Movie (not the cartoon) the one with Jim Carey in it...
(3) What is your favorite Christmas song?
Oh Holy Night... it just gives me chills...
(4) What Christmas song(s) drives you crazy?
Grandma got run over by a reindeer - WTF?
(5) What is your favorite Christmas drink? (i.e. egg nog, hot chocolate)
Hot buttered rum..
(6) What is your favorite Christmas memory?
When I had littles and they believed...
(7) What is the best toy/gift you've received on Christmas?
(8) What is the worst toy/gift you've received on Christmas?
Can't think of anything... I guess I am blessed.
(9) What do you LOVE about the holidays?
How happy and giving most people are.
(10) What annoys you about the holidays?
People forget the reason for the season.
(11) Do you prefer star or angel on top of a Christmas tree? Or something else?
(12) What is your family favorite recipe at Christmas?
Kiefels - lekvar and nut filled
(13) Are you a Grinch or a Who at Christmastime?
Definitely a Who.
(14) Christmas light displays - Love them or Hate them?
Love, Love, Love them. Tacky, tasteful, white, blue, colored, whatever...
(15) Santas at the mall - Fun times or Creepy?
Better over the years. Most have REAL beards!!
(16) Christmas cards - do you send them, yes or no?
YES! Every year - always an original with a picture of the family..
(17) What is the best thing about Christmas, in your opinion?
The feeling of goodwill and the act of giving.
(18) What is the worst thing about Christmas?
That there are people (children especially) who won't experience the magic of Christmas
(19) When do you put the tree up and take it down?
It's up!! Usually two weeks before and it comes down on New Year's Day.
(20) Out of the 12 days of Christmas, which day and item would you want your true love to give to you?
Geese - roasted perfectly I might add.
(21) Why do you think that Grandma got run over by a reindeer?
Because her grandchildren were rotten and made her walk home. Again, WTF?
(22) Who is your favorite reindeer?
Vixen - definitely Vixen
(23) Do you believe in Santa Claus?
Uh - YEAH!!
(24) What is your favorite smell at Christmastime?
(25) What would make you happy at Christmas this year?
I'm already happy, but Peace and family unity are always nice.
Monday, December 7, 2009
Wednesday, December 2, 2009
Tuesday, December 1, 2009
- 1 15 oz. can chickpeas, drained
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon coriander
- 3/4 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 1/4 cup vegetable, canola or peanut oil
Form the falafal mixture into small balls, about the size of a ping pong ball and place gently on the pan with the hot oil. Slightly flatten. Place in oven for 10 minutes.
Turn and continue to bake for another 10 minutes or until slightly brown and crisp on both sides. Remove from oven and drain on paper towels.