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Quiche is, as Thomas Keller called it, “the sexiest pie.” Photo by Donna Turner Ruhlman. I’ve been in LA on an entertainment project and to see the opening of my friend and collaborator Richard LaGravenese ‘s new movie Beautiful Creatures . I’d never been to an opening before. But quiche has been on my mind, so I’ve been using travel time to work on some variations of this infinitely variable fat custard tart. If I had time I’d head to Bouchon in Beverly Hills , which makes perfect quiche. Bouchon, and working on that book , is where I learned that, while America was taught to make quiche in premade pie shells, this deprives the quiche of its true greatness: depth. In order to achieve that voluptuous texture, it has be about two inches thick. For this, you need to have a ring. When I told this to my partner in tools, Mac Dalton , he said, I can make that! I said great. And so we did. The recipe here is for my favorite quiche, simply bacon and onion enriched with delicious cheese. I made it for Kai Ryssdal when he interviewed me about my book Ratio . Because I found myself writing about quiche on the CLE-to-LAX flight, I thought I’d post on it here, this simple but extraordinary creation, what Thomas Keller described as “the sexiest pie.” I couldn’t agree more. Trimming the crust off the quiche ring. Quiche Lorraine For the crust: 12 ounces flour 8 ounces butter (or lard, shortening, or any combination thereof), cut into small pieces, cold or even frozen 2 to 4 ounces ice water (quantity depends on the fat—whole butter has water in it so you need only a couple ounces; shortening and lard do not contain water) three-finger pinch of salt (about 1/2 teaspoon) For the quiche: 2 large Spanish onions, thinly sliced canola oil as needed 1 3-2-1 savory pie dough (see recipe above) 1 pound slab bacon cut into 1/4-inch lardons* 2 cups milk 1 cup cream 6 eggs 2 teaspoons kosher salt 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper nutmeg to taste (about 5 gratings) 1/2 cup grated Comté or Emmentaler cheese To make the crust: Combine the flour and fat in a mixing bowl and rub the fat between your fingers until you have small beads of fat and plenty of pea-sized chunks. (If you’re making a bigger batch, this can be done in a standing mixer with a paddle attachment, but remember not to paddle too much after you add the water, just enough so that it comes together.) Add the ice water gradually and a good pinch of salt, and mix gently, just until combined—if you work the dough too hard it will become tough. Shape into two equal discs and refrigerate for 15 minutes or until ready to roll. To make the quiche: Sauté the onions over medium heat in a few tablespoons of canola oil. You might cover them for the first 15 minutes to get them steaming and releasing their moisture, then uncover, reduce the heat to medium low, and continue cooking them until they are cooked down but not overly brown, 45 minutes to 1 hour. Set them aside when they’re finished. Preheat your oven to 350°F/177°C. Roll out the dough to a thickness of about 1/4 inch. Place a 2-x-9-inch ring mold or a 9-inch cake pan on a baking sheet (line the baking sheet with parchment if you’re using a ring mold; if you’re using a cake pan, line its bottom with parchment). Lightly oil the inside of your ring mold. Lay the dough into the mold—there should be plenty of dough overhanging the edges to help it maintain its shape. Reserve a small piece of dough to fill any cracks that might open in the dough as it bakes. Line the dough with parchment or foil and fill it with dried beans or pie weights so that the crust bakes flat. After a half hour, remove the weights and parchment or foil. Gently patch any cracks that may have formed with the reserved dough, and continue baking until the bottom of the crust is golden and cooked, about 15 more minutes. Remove it from the oven and patch any cracks that may have opened; this is especially important if you’re using a ring mold, or the batter will leak out. The shell should be anywhere between cold and warm when you add the batter, not piping hot from the oven. Reduce the oven temperature to 325°F/163°C. Sauté the bacon gently until it’s cooked as you like it (crisp on the outside, tender on the inside is best!). Drain the bacon and combine it with the onions. In a six- or eight-cup liquid measuring cup, combine the milk, cream, eggs, salt, pepper, and nutmeg and, using a hand blender, blend until frothy. This can be done in a standing blender as well (though depending on the size of your blender, you may need to do it in batches). Or you could even mix the batter in a large bowl using a whisk—beat the eggs first, then add the rest of the ingredients. The idea is to add the ingredients in two layers, using the froth to help keep the ingredients suspended. Layer half of the onion-bacon mixture into the shell. Pour half of the frothy custard over the mixture. Sprinkle with half of the cheese. Layer with the remaining onion-bacon mixture. Refroth the batter and pour the rest into the shell. Sprinkle the remaining cheese over the top. You may want to put the tray with the quiche shell into the oven and pour the remaining batter into it there so that you can get every bit of batter into the shell. You can even let it overflow to make sure it’s up to the very top. Bake for about an hour and a half, or until the center is just set (it may take as long as two hours, but don’t overcook it—there should still be some jiggle in the center). Allow the quiche to cool, then refrigerate it until it’s completely chilled, at least 8 hours or up to 3 days. Using a sharp knife, cut the top of the crust off along the rim. Slide the knife along the edge of the ring mold or cake pan to remove the quiche. Slice and serve cold or, to serve hot, slice and reheat for 10 minutes in a 375°F/190°C oven on lightly oiled parchment or foil. * Lardons are batons of bacon and can be as thick as 1/2-inch square. Smaller lardons are best here, but a pound of thick-cut bacon sliced into strips is also acceptable. This is the quiche “money shot”. Other links you may like: My post on making your own English Muffins . Learn about the history of quiche lorraine. Another great treat: try baking your own cinnamon bread . © 2013 Michael Ruhlman. Photo © 2013 Donna Turner Ruhlman. All rights reserved .

Source: ruhlman.com

Tweet #pin-wrapper > a {background-image:none !important;} Photo Courtesy of Culinary Trends and Bouchon Photo One Perfect Bite From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite... I'm not given to hero worship and will never understand the commotion that surrounds some icons in the cooking world. I have respect for the very best of them and an amused tolerance for the "wannabes". Sure, I have a favorite chef or two, but my admiration never approaches adulation. It's muted and controlled, and based on an honest assessment of their food that, I hope, is detached from the cult of personality that's so prevalent today. I've obviously had some disappointments and tend to be unforgiving when that happens. This is not, however, going to be an expose. I want, instead, to focus on a chef who consistently delivers - in his food, his restaurants and his books. Many of you know of my admiration for Thomas Keller. I have featured several of his recipes on One Perfect Bite, have read all of his books and eat in his restaurants whenever possible. I have not, until today, baked any of the cookies that are sold at his Bouchon Bakery. I chose the Nutter Butter cookies because I knew the Silver Fox would love them. I decide to use the recipe from the New York Times . After I had finished my baking, I found a more exact recipe for them on Culinary Trends. I plan to use that recipe, found here , the next time I make these cookies. The recipe below comes from the New York Times, but I've changed the ingredient's list to make only half a batch of the cookies. While they are quite homely in appearance, they are surprisingly light and crisp and very, very good. My only criticism is that the cookies are way too large for mere mortals to consume. Mine were saucer-size and next time I'll make them smaller. If you bake and you love cookies, you'll really enjoy these. If you are a serious baker, I urge you to visit Culinary Trends . Here's the New York Times recipe scaled to make half a batch of cookies. Nutter Butter Cookies ...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite, courtesy of the New York Times and Bouchon Bakery Ingredients: Cookie Dough: 1 cup all-purpose flour 1 teaspoon baking powder 2 teaspoons baking soda 1/2 pound (2 sticks) butter, at room temperature 1/3 cup creamy peanut butter, preferably Skippy 1/2 cup granulated sugar 1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar 1 large egg 3/4 teaspoons vanilla extract 3 tablespoons coarsely chopped peanuts (omitted and used crunchy peanut butter) 1-1/4 cups quick-cooking oats Cookie Filling: 4 tablespoons butter, at room temperature 1/4 cup creamy peanut butter, preferably Skippy 3/4 cups confectioners’ sugar Directions: 1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. 2) To make cookie dough: In a bowl, mix together flour, baking powder and baking soda; set aside. Using an electric mixer, cream together butter and peanut butter. Add sugars and beat at medium speed for 3-4 minutes, scraping down bowl twice. At low speed, add egg and vanilla. Add flour mixture and stir until well mixed, frequently scraping down bowl. Add peanuts (if using) and oats, and mix well. Using an ice cream scoop 2 inches in diameter or an extremely heaping tablespoon, place balls of dough on parchment-lined baking sheets at least three inches apart. Bake until cookies have spread and turned very light golden brown, about 10-14 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside to cool and firm up, 5 to 10 minutes. Transfer to a rack to cool completely before filling. 3) To make filling: Using an electric mixer, cream together butter, peanut butter and confectioners’ sugar until very smooth. 4) To assemble cookies: Spread a thin layer (about 1/8 inch) on underside of a cookie. Sandwich with another cookie. Repeat. Yield: 12 large cookies. Cook's Note: A specific peanut butter is listed in the ingredient list, both here and at Culinary Trends. Interestingly, not all peanut butters taste the same. Apparently the staff at Bouchon prefers Skippy. It is not an advertisement. You might also like these recipes: Nutter Butter Cookies - Look I Made That Chewy No-Bake Nutter Butter Bars - Picky Palate Homemade Nutter Butters - Erin Cooks A Tour of the Bouchon Bakery, Yountville, CA - Baking Bites Thomas Keller's Ad Hoc Brownies - Lawyer Loves Lunch Thomas Keller Oreos - Dishing Up Delights Pink Grapefruit Cake - Playing House Pineapple Upside Down Cake - Seasalt with Food Thomas Keller Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe - Cookie Madness Thomas Keller Chocolate Chip Cookies - Une Gamine Dans La Cuisine Thomas Keller Chocolate Chunk Cookies - Culinary Idea Lab Thomas Keller's Gingerbread Cookies - Eat Me Daily Thomas Keller's Black Walnut Snow Cookies - Delish Thomas Keller's Sugar Cookies - Tokyo Terrace Shortbread Cookies - Minneapolis Hunter

Source: oneperfectbite.blogspot.com

Tweet #pin-wrapper > a {background-image:none !important;} From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite... I bought lamb chops for our holiday dinner, but because I was unsure of the number I'd be feeding, I ended up with more chops than guests at the table. I decided to grill the remainder of the chops tonight. Those we had for the holiday were delicious and I wanted to serve these with something that would compliment, rather than overpower, their marvelous flavor. I decided to make an endive and watercress salad and a very cheesy orzo pilaf. I can attribute the salad to Thomas Keller, but identifying the parentage of the orzo is next to impossible. Rachael Ray did a version of this recipe at least five years ago and since that time it has appeared in various guises on numerous cooking sites. I lack the wisdom of Solomon and have no easy test to establish paternity, so I'm just going to move along and pretend the orzo is a new version of rice pilaf. It is very easy to do and can be on the table in 15 minutes. Chances are you have all the ingredients you need to make this in your pantry, and, if not, they can all be found in any large grocery store. It is a perfect dish to serve with grilled meat or poultry and I know you'll enjoy it. Here's the recipe. Cheesy Orzo Pilaf ...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite Ingredients: 3 cups low-sodium chicken broth 3/4 pound orzo 5 minced garlic cloves 1 cup grated Parmesan-Reggiano cheese 2 tablespoons finely minced parsley salt to taste freshly ground pepper to taste Directions: 1) Bring broth to a boil in a large heavy saucepan. Add orzo and garlic and reduce heat to medium high. Simmer, uncovered, for about 7-8 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the pasta is tender, and broth is nearly absorbed. 2) Turn heat off, but leave the pan on stove. Add cheese and parsley and mix well. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve warm. Yield: 6 servings. You might also enjoy these recipes: Yangzhou Fried Rice - One Perfect Bite Warm Asian-Style Rice Salad - One Perfect Bite Sticky Rice - One Perfect Bite

Source: oneperfectbite.blogspot.com

Tweet #pin-wrapper > a {background-image:none !important;} I need a secretary! I almost missed the deadline for the October Recipes to Rival Challenge . Fortunately, Sara, who selected this months recipe and blogs at imafoodblog , had selected a Thomas Keller recipe for French Onion Soup that, while time consuming, used readily available ingredients, that made participation possible despite a late start. Our standard for French Onion Soup was set 50 years ago at a restaurant in the Cattlemen's Hotel in Kamloops, British Columbia. The town was a terminus for cattle drives and functioned as a stockyards for holding cattle before slaughter. We came into Kamloops after weeks of hiking in the high country and didn't expect much save a bed and warm bath. You didn't have to venture far from the center of town to encounter unpaved streets and sidewalks. We were really surprised at the quality and quantity of food that was served to us. The food was wonderful and the onion soup that was available with all meals was incredible. The stock used to make the soup was packed with beefy goodness. Without a doubt it was the best onion soup I have ever had. To this day, Bob sings "O, Canada" whenever we have onion soup. He is not shy, so this has been known to happen in restaurants as well as at our table. I'm sure that Thomas Keller would be surprised to learn he was bested by a line cook in a cowtown. Kamloops, by the way, is no longer a provincial hamlet and I can guarantee you the streets are now paved. The town wants to host the Olympic games and they have a really good chance of that happening. Kamloops we love you. The Keller recipe for onion soup is terrific. It's just not up to the Kamloops standard. I followed this recipe as it was written. I made the stock for the soup and was able to purchase the cheeses he recommended. If you haven't yet found a recipe for onion soup that you call your own, this could be a contender. I'm including the Keller recipe for you to scan. While it's long, it is not hard and if you make stock the day before you plan to serve the soup, it will be nearly effortless. You could also use canned broth but be sure to select a low-sodium variety. Keller actually recommends that you use only water if you don't make your own stock. Onion Soup - Soupe A L'Oignon Ingredients for Soup: Sachet: 2 bay leaves 12 black peppercorns 6 large sprigs of thyme Soup: 8 pounds (about 8 large) yellow onions 8 tablespoons (4 ounces) unsalted butter Kosher salt 1 1/2 teaspoons all purpose flour 3 1/2 quarts Beef Stock (recipe below) Freshly ground black pepper Sherry wine vinegar Croutons: 1 baguette (about 2 1/2 inches in diameter) Extra Virgin Olive Oil Kosher salt 6 to 12 slices (1/8 inch thick) aged Comte or Emmentaler cheese (at least 4 inches square) 1 1/2 cups grated aged Comte or Emmentaler cheeses, or a combination of the two. The more basic the soup, the more critical the details: Slice the onions uniformly and brown them very slowly and evenly; slice the bread a half inch thick and dry it completely in the oven; and serve the soup in appropriately sized bowls so that the melted cheese extends over the rim. When you hit it right, there's nothing more satisfying to cook or to eat than this soup. It's worth reiterating the importance of cooking the onions slowly so that the natural sugars caramelize rather than brown through high heating sautéing. The onions cook for about five hours and need to be stirred often, but they can be made up to two days ahead. The soup is best if refrigerated for a day or two so that the flavors of the onion and beef broth can deepen. Comte is traditionally the cheese of choice, but Emmentaler works as well. Gruyère is a bit strong. Use an aged cheese; a younger cheese would just melt and wouldn't form a crust. FOR THE SACHET: Cut a piece of cheesecloth about 7 inches square. Place the bay leaves, peppercorns, and thyme in the center, bring up the edges, and tie with kitchen twine to form a sachet. FOR THE SOUP: Cut off the tops and bottoms of the onions, then cut the onions lengthwise in half. Remove the peels and tough outer layers. Cut a V wedge in each one to remove the core and pull out any solid, flat pieces of onion running up from the core. Lay an onion half cut side down on a cutting board with the root end toward you. Note that there are lines on the outside of the onion. Cutting on the lines (with the grain) rather than against them will help the onions soften. Holding the knife on an angle, almost parallel to the board, cut the onion lengthwise into 1/4 inch thick slices. Once you've cut past the center of the onion, the knife angle will become awkward: Flip the onion onto its side, toward the knife, and finish slicing it, again along the grain. Separate the slices of onion, trimming away any root sections that are still attached and holding the slices together. Repeat with the remaining onions. (You should have about 7 quarts of onions) Melt the butter in a large heavy stockpot over medium heat. Add the onions and 1 tablespoon salt, reduce the heat to low. Cook, stirring every 15 minutes and regulating the heat to keep the mixture bubbling gently, for about 1 hour, or until the onions have wilted and released a lot of liquid. At this point, you can turn up the heat slightly to reduce the liquid, but it is important to continue to cook the onions slowly to develop maximum flavor and keep them from scorching. Continue to stir the onions every 15 minutes, being sure to scrape the bottom and get in the corners of the pot, for about 4 hours more, or until the onions are caramelized throughout and a rich deep brown. (my note - like a super deep brown, like way browner than you think they need to be. Think poop. Yes I said it.) Keep a closer eye on the onions toward the end of the cooking when the liquid has evaporated. Remove from the heat. (You will need 1 1/2 cups of onions for the soup; reserve any extra for another use. The onions can be made up to 2 days ahead and refrigerated.) Transfer the caramelized onions to a 5 quart pot (if they've been refrigerated, reheat until hot.) Sift in the flour and cook over medium-high heat, stirring, for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the beef stock and sachet, bring to a simmer, and simmer for about 1 hour, or until the liquid is reduced to 2 1/2 quarts. Season to taste with salt, pepper, and a few drops of vinegar. Remove from the heat. FOR THE CROUTONS: Preheat the broiler. Cut twelve 3/8 inch thick slices from the baguette (reserve the remainder for another use) and place on a baking sheet. Brush the bread lightly on both sides with olive oil and sprinkle lightly with salt. Place under the broiler and toast the first side until golden brown, then turn and brown the second side. Set aside and leave the broiler on. TO COMPLETE: Return the soup to a simmer. Place six flameproof soup tureens, with about 1 1/2 cups capacity on a baking sheet to catch any spills (the soup will bubble up and over the tureens). Add the hot soup to the tureens, filling them within 1/2 inch of the tops. Top each serving with 2 croutons: Lay them on the surface - do not push them into the soup. Lay the slices of cheese over the croutons so that the cheese overlaps the edges of the tureens by about 1/2 inch, Scatter the grated cheese over the sliced cheese, filling in any areas where the sliced cheese is thiner, or it may melt into the soup rather than forming a crust. Place the tureens under the broiler for a few minutes, until the cheese bubbles, browns, and forms a thick crust. Eat carefully, the soup and tureens will be very hot. Okay now if you are feeling like a real challenge, you can make Keller's homemade beef stock as well. I have never made homemade beef stock before, and I think I may try this when I make the soup again, depending on how much time I have. If anyone has their own recipe for beef stock, use that by all means, and please share! Ingredients for Beef Stock: makes 3 1/2 quarts We use this stock for onion soup and to add in combination with veal stock to beef stews. The bones are roasted first to give the stock a roasted flavor, then simmered with caramelized vegetables for a rich brown stock. About 2 tablespoons canola oil 5 pounds meaty beef necks or leg bones, cut into 2-3 inch sections 2 small Spanish onions (about 8 ounces total), peeled 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt 3 ounces (1 large) carrot, peeled and cut into 4 pieces 3 ounces (1 large) leek, roots trimmed, split lengthwise, rinsed well, and cut into 2 inch pieces, or leek tops 1 large sprig of thyme 1 large sprig of Italian parsley 3 bay leaves 1/4 teaspoons black peppercorns 1 head garlic, cut horizontally in half (reserve half for another use) Preheat the oven to 475F. Place a large roasting pan in the oven to preheat for about 10 minutes. Add 1 tablespoon of the oil tot he hot roasting pan and distribute the beef bones in a single layer. Roast the bones for about 45 minutes, or until richly browned, turning each piece only after it is well browned on the bottom side. Meanwhile, cut 1 onion crosswise in half. Heat a small heavy skillet over medium-high heat for 2-3 minutes. Place 1 onion half cut side down to one side of the skillet so that it is not over direct heat and let it brown and char black, about 30 minutes. This will add color to the stock, set aside. Remove the roasting pan of bones from the oven and reduce the oven temperature to 400F. Transfer bones to a large colander set over a baking sheet to drain. Drain the fat from the roasting pan and discard. Add about 1 cup water to the pan, place over medium heat, and use a metal spatula to scrape the bottom of the pan and release the pan juices. Let them simmer until reduced by half. Add the resulting fond to a large deep stockpot. Transfer the bones to the stockpot and add about 5 quarts cold water - just enough to cover the bones. Any fat present in the juices will rose to the top when the cold water is added; use a skimmer to remove and discard the fat. Add the charred onion half and the salt. Place over medium heat and bring to a simmer, skimming as impurities rise to the top of the stockpot. Reduce the heat and simmer gently, skimming often, for 5 hours. If the level of liquid falls below the bones, add additional water. Meanwhile, cut the remaining whole onion into quarters and cut the remaining onion half in half again. Place the onions, carrots, and leeks in a roasting pan that will hold them in a single layer, toss with the remaining 1 tablespoon canola oil, and place in the oven to roast for 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and stir, then roast for an additional 20 minutes or until the vegetables are richly caramelized. Set aside. After the stock has simmered for 5 hours, add the caramelized vegetables, herbs, peppercorns, and garlic and simmer for 1 hour longer. Turn off the heat and allow the stock to rest for 10 minutes. Prepare an ice bath. Place a strainer over a large bowl. Removing the bones or pouring out the liquid through the bones would cloud the stock. Instead, carefully ladle the stock out of the pot and pass it through the strainer, tilting the pot as necessary to get all the stock. Strain a second time through a chinois or fine mesh strainer lines with a dampened cheese cloth. Measure the stock. If you have more than 3 1/2 quarts, pour it into a saucepan and reduce to 3 1/2 quarts. Strain the stock into a container and cool in the ice bath, stirring occasionally. (Store the stock in the refrigerator for up to 3 days, or freeze in several containers for longer storage.) NOTE: If the stock will be refrigerated for longer than 3 days, bring it back to a boil after 3 days, cool it, and return it to the refrigerator.

Source: oneperfectbite.blogspot.com

Yesterday it was really fun to share the recipes that were the most popular in 2010 among you, the readers. While many of my personal favorites made the cut, several did not, and today I wanted to highlight those recipes. I hope you discover something you may have missed this year that will become a new favorite in your house! So, here they are, in no particular order: Flat Roast Chicken - This recipe helped me conquer my long-standing fear of roast chicken. Not only is it simple and faster-cooking than if you roasted the chicken without flattening it, but the meat is tender and juicy and the skin couldn't be more crisp. Thomas Keller's Oreos - I don't even have to go out on a limb to say this is hands-down the best cookie I made this year. Crisp and sandy with an intense chocolate flavor, these cookies are sandwiched around a smooth, sweet white chocolate ganache - quite simply, perfection. Pepperoni Pan Pizza - This pizza is sure to please those who, like me, love thick, chewy crusts. It's an indulgence (though I guess that could be said about all pizza), but a worthwhile one every now and then. Pumpkin Whoopie Pies - Pumpkin treats always seem to be popular, and these were no exception. Moist and spicy little cakes enclosing pumpkin's perfect match - cream cheese frosting. Definitely a worthy addition to your fall baking plans. Slow Cooker Pulled Pork - This has been the most popular recipe at our house yet this winter; I think I've made it 3 times already since the weather got cold. You can't beat the simplicity - a spice rub is applied to the meat and then your slow cooker does the rest of the work. It makes a ton of food so unless you're feeding an army you'll have plenty of leftovers, but I don't think you'll mind. Three-Cheese and Bacon Macaroni - A simple mac and cheese that's nice to have in your repertoire, especially for those nights when you just want quick comfort food, this one relies on evaporated milk and eggs rather than a roux. Oh, and did I mention there's bacon? Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies - I think everyone has their own idea about what makes the perfect chocolate chip cookie, it's probably one of the most subjective goodies out there. For me, this one can't be beat. The cookies are moist and chewy in the center, crisp on the edges, and pack a rich toffee flavor. Homemade Puff Pastry - I'm fairly cheap so when I discovered how expensive all-butter puff pastry was in the store, the only solution was to learn to make it myself. Luckily, it wasn't difficult at all and this simple recipe turns out light and flaky pastry every time. Chocolate Malted Cupcakes - I've loved chocolate cake for as long as I can remember - it was always my preference over yellow cake - so these chocolate malted cupcakes were an easy decision to include on this list. The cupcakes are intensely chocolatey but my favorite thing about them is the light, fluffy texture. Paired with a malted chocolate frosting, they're the perfect sweet treat for chocolate lovers. Chocolate Babka - When the year began, I didn't even know what babka was, but now I wonder how I ever lived without it. Tender yeast bread studded with chocolate, cinnamon and nuts - yes, please! Lemon Scented Pull Apart Coffee Cake - I'd never made a yeasted cake before attempting this lemon-scented pull apart coffee cake, and this was a very nice introduction. Layers of sweet brioche-like dough are filled with a citrus paste and baked then topped with a tangy cream cheese icing. You'll find yourself reaching for one slice after another - I promise this won't last long. Mum Cupcakes - So, this isn't a recipe so much as a technique and it's all about presentation here. These cupcakes, decorated to look like mum flowers using mini marshmallows and a little sanding sugar, are a show-stopper for sure, and you don't have to let anyone in on the secret about how easy they were to make! I hope you all enjoyed these round-ups as much as I enjoyed putting them together. It's been a very delicious year and I look forward to more culinary adventures in 2011! Cheers to a fun New Year's Eve - I'll see you all in the New Year :)

Source: traceysculinaryadventures.blogspot.com

1/4 teaspoon curry powder 1 cinnamon stick (1-inch) 1 clove 1/2 lemon, zest of , cut into 2 two inch strips 1/2 orange, zest of , cut into 2 two inch strips 8 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil 1/4 cup shallot , minced 1 cup tomato , peeled, seeded, finely chopped 1/2 cup red wine 1 tablespoon sugar 1 tablespoon lemon juice 2 tablespoons orange juice 3 cups eggplants , finely diced 1 1/2 cups zucchini , finely diced 1 1/2 cups yellow squash, finely diced 3 tablespoons butter , unsalted, cut into small pieces (optional) 1/4 cup roasted sweet peppers , finely diced 1/4 cup roasted yellow pepper, finely diced 1 teaspoon parsley , chopped kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper 1 In a small skillet, combine curry powder, cinnamon stick and clove and place over medium heat, toasting until aromatic; removed from the heat and wrap the spices in cheesecloth with the lemon and orange zest and tie the cheesecloth to make a sachet. 2 In a medium saucepan, combine 2 tablespoons of olive oil and the shallots and saute over low heat until the shallots have softened--about 4 minutes. 3 Add the tomatoes, red wine, sugar, lemon and orange juices, and the sachet. 4 Simmer until the liquid has reduced and the mixture resembles a marmalade--about 20 to 25 minutes. 5 Remove from heat and discard sachet. 6 In a large skillet over medium heat, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil and then add the eggplant and saute until tender--about 5 minutes. 7 Drain eggplant on paper towels set on a rack. 8 Return the skillet to the medium heat, add two more tablespoons of oil and, when the oil is warm, add the zucchini and yellow squash and saute that until tender--4 to 5 minutes. 9 Drain the zucchini and squash. 10 Note: Dish can be prepared in advance to here and chilled for several hours; if it is chilled, bring to room temperature before proceeding. 11 Reheat the tomato mixture and whisk in the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil. 12 Add butter, one piece at a time, whisking to emulsify the sauce. (this step can be omitted to "veganize" the recipe). 13 Add the eggplant, zucchini and yellow squash. 14 Fold in red and yellow peppers and parsley. 15 Serve warm. 16 If served as a base for skate (as at The French Laundry), this serves six; as a condiment or as part of an appetizer plate, it will serve more--the yield is roughly 6 cups.

Source: food.com

Given the number of scone recipes on this blog, you might be fooled into thinking I'm a huge fan. Not true. Don't get me wrong, I like scones, but if you put out a spread of breakfast pastries before me, scones probably wouldn't be a top three selection. That is, unless these cinnamon honey scones were somewhere on that table. I try to refrain from the hyperbole of labeling recipes the "best ever" but sometimes it just can't be helped and such is the case with these scones. Hands down my favorite scones of all time, no doubt about it! The recipe comes from Thomas Keller's Bouchon Bakery , and though I've had the book since Christmas and even flipped through it a few times, I'd never noticed these scones. Luckily Josie put them on my radar a few months ago and I resolved to make them asap. So, what makes these scones so awesome? Butter, and lots of it, of course :) A cinnamon honey butter is made and then cut into tiny cubes which are incorporated into the dough like any other mix-in (think chocolate chips). It's a genius idea, I want to add tiny butter cubes as mix-ins in all my recipes going forward! They give the scones so much flavor, as well as a really neat marbled appearance. Texturally, the scones are impossibly light and tender, thanks to the inclusion of cake flour in the recipe. And in case they weren't already rich enough on their own, the scones are brushed with a honey butter glaze when they emerge from the oven. They're an occasional indulgence for sure, but worth every single calorie! These cinnamon honey scones would be a perfect weekend project. Though they're easy to make, there are quite a few steps and several require hours of chill time. But once they're assembled you can leave them in the freezer for up to a month, allowing you to pull out and bake a few scones at a time as needed. That's my kind of weekend breakfast! One quick note: this recipe calls for creme fraiche, an ingredient I rarely buy or use but I do recommend splurging for it here. That said, I know there's nothing worse than a half-empty container of creme fraiche sitting in the back of your fridge, so I found another recipe to help you use it up. I'll be sharing it with you next week! Cinnamon Honey Scones just barely adapted from Bouchon Bakery by Thomas Keller and Sebastien Rouxel (originally seen on Pink Parsley ) {Note: The recipes in this book are given in both weight and volume measurements. I made the scones using the weight measurements and would urge you to do the same for the best results.} Cinnamon Honey Cubes 30 g (3 tablespoons) all-purpose flour 30 g (2 1/2 tablespoons) sugar 4 g (1 1/2 teaspoons) ground cinnamon 30 g (about 2 tablespoons) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch pieces 20 g (1 tablespoon) honey Scones 152 g (1 cup + 1 1/2 tablespoons) all-purpose flour 304 g (2 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons) cake flour 12.5 g (2 1/2 teaspoons) baking powder 2.5 g (1/2 teaspoons) baking soda 91 g (1/4 cup + 3 1/2 tablespoons) sugar 227 g (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch pieces 135 g (1/2 cup + 1 1/2 tablespoons) heavy cream 135 g (1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons) creme fraiche Honey Butter Glaze 2 oz (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted 20 g (1 tablespoon) honey To make the cinnamon honey cubes: Add the flour, sugar, and cinnamon to a medium bowl and whisk to combine. Add the butter and toss until the pieces are coated in the dry ingredients. Use a pastry cutter to cut the butter into the dry ingredients until no large visible pieces of butter remain. Stir in the honey with a rubber spatula until the mixture forms a smooth paste. Turn the paste out onto a piece of plastic wrap and shape into a 4-inch square. Wrap the mixture and freeze for at least 2 hours (or up to 1 week). To make the scones: Sift both flours, the baking powder, baking soda, and sugar into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on low speed briefly, just until combined. Add the butter pieces, and mix on low speed until no large visible pieces remain, about 3 minutes. With the mixer on low, gradually pour in the heavy cream, then add the creme fraiche, and continue mixing for about 30 seconds, or until the dry ingredients are evenly moistened. A rough dough should form around the paddle. Remove the cinnamon honey butter from the freezer and cut into 1/4-inch pieces. Add them to the bowl with the dough and use a spoon to incorporate them by hand (it's fine if they start to break up a bit). Turn the dough onto a large piece of plastic wrap and press it together to form a cohesive mass. Place a second piece of plastic wrap on top, and shape the dough into a 7 1/2 by 10-inch rectangle, smoothing the top and sides the best you can (if the dough becomes soft and difficult to work with, just pop it in the fridge for a few minutes). Wrap the dough in the plastic wrap, and refrigerate for about 2 hours, or until firm. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and using a sharp knife, cut it lengthwise into thirds and crosswise into quarters so you end up with 12 equally sized scones. Transfer them to the prepared baking sheet, leaving 1/2 to 1-inch of space between them. Cover the baking sheet with plastic wrap and freeze the scones until they are frozen solid - at least 2 hours, but even better if you can leave them in there overnight (the scones can be frozen for up to 1 month at this point). Preheat oven to 350 F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Transfer the scones you want to bake from the freezer to the prepared baking sheet, leaving about 1 inch of space between them. Bake for about 28-30 minutes, or until the scones are golden brown and slightly firm. Meanwhile, make the glaze by whisking the butter and honey together until combined. When you remove the scones from the oven, immediately brush the tops with the glaze. The scones are best the day you make them, but can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for 1 day. Makes 12 large scones

Source: traceysculinaryadventures.blogspot.com

4 lbs boneless pork shoulder , cut into 8 pieces and trimmed of excess fat salt & freshly ground black pepper, to taste 2 tablespoons canola oil 1 cup panko 4 ounces bacon , thick cut, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch strips 4 cups yellow onions , coarsely chopped (about 3 medium onions) 2 cups sauvignon blanc wine or 2 cups other dry white wine 1/4 cup tomato paste 1 (35 ounce) can Italian plum tomatoes , peeled and drained and coarsely chopped 2 cups chicken broth 12 cups great northern beans , fully cooked and drained 6 chorizo sausage , fully cooked or smoked about 1 1/2 lb. total, each halved on the diagonal 1 head of garlic , halved crosswise 1/4 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley , chopped, plus more for garnish 1 lb baguette , cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices olive oil , extra virgin, for brushing coarse sea salt , such as sel gris, for garnish 1 Directions:. 2 Season the pork generously with kosher salt and pepper; set aside. 3 In the stovetop-safe insert of a slow cooker over medium-high heat, combine the canola oil and panko. Cook, stirring constantly, until the panko is toasted and golden, 4 to 6 minutes. Transfer the panko to a baking sheet and season with kosher salt and pepper. 4 Add the bacon to the insert and cook until crisp on both sides, about 5 minutes. Drain on paper towels. Reserve the bacon fat in the insert. 5 Add half of the pork to the insert and brown on all sides, 7 to 8 minutes total. Transfer to a platter. Repeat with the remaining pork. 6 Add the onions and 1 teaspoons kosher salt to the insert and cook, stirring occasionally, until golden brown and softened, about 7 minutes. Add the wine and simmer until reduced by half, about 8 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste, tomatoes and broth. Remove the insert from the heat and add the beans, pork, chorizo and garlic. 7 Place the insert on the slow-cooker base, cover and cook on low until the pork pulls apart easily with a fork, 9 to 10 hours. Skim off the fat, and remove and discard the garlic. Fold in the panko and the 1/4 cup parsley. Adjust the seasonings with kosher salt and pepper. 8 Position a rack in the lower third of an oven and preheat the broiler. 9 Brush the baguette slices with olive oil. Arrange the slices, oiled side up, on top of the cassoulet, overlapping them. Broil until golden brown, 4 to 6 minutes. 10 Let the cassoulet stand at room temperature for about 30 minutes before serving. Sprinkle each serving with the reserved bacon, sea salt and parsley. Serves 8 to 10. 11 Adapted from a recipe by Thomas Keller, Chef/Owner, The French Laundry.

Source: food.com

2 -3 lbs free-range chicken kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper 2 teaspoons minced thyme unsalted butter Dijon mustard 1 Preheat oven to 450 degrees. 2 Rinse chicken in cold water, then dry very well with paper towels, inside and out. The less it steams, the drier the heat, the better. 3 Salt and pepper cavity, then truss bird with kitchen twine to help it cook more evenly. (See Note.). 4 Now, salt chicken -- I like to rain salt over the bird so it has a nice uniform coating that will result in crisp, salty, flavorful skin (about 1 tablespoon). When it's cooked, you should still be able to make out salt baked onto the crisp skin. 5 Season to taste with pepper. 6 Place chicken in sauté pan or roasting pan and, when oven is up to temperature, put chicken in oven. I leave it alone -- I don't baste it. I don't add butter. You can if you wish, but I think this creates steam, which I don't want. 7 Roast it until it's done (165 degrees in the thickest part of the thigh), 50 to 60 minutes. 8 Remove from oven and add thyme to pan. Baste chicken with juices and thyme and let it sit for 15 minutes on cutting board. 9 Remove twine. Discard wing tip. Separate middle wing joint and eat that immediately. Remove legs and thighs. 10 I like to take off the backbone and eat one of the oysters, the two succulent morsels of meat embedded there, and give the other to the person I'm cooking with. But I take the chicken butt for myself. I could never understand why my brothers always fought over that triangular tip -- until one day I got the crispy, juicy fat myself. These are the cook's rewards. 11 Cut breast down middle and serve it on the bone, with one wing joint still attached to each. The preparation is not meant to be super elegant. 12 Slather meat with butter. Serve with mustard on the side and, if you wish, a simple green salad.

Source: food.com

Reposting this method because, well, just the name of the dish is inspiring: butter-poached shrimp. Butter-poached shrimp and grits. Mmmm. Butter-poached lobster, not uncommon in French haute cuisine, was popularized in America by Thomas Keller in The French Laundry Cookbook and at that restaurant. “Lobster loves gentle heat,” he told me then. It’s not much of a leap for the thrifty-minded cook to reason that shrimp, too, love gentle heat. That’s why, in the butter chapter of my book Ruhlman’s Twenty, I showed how to use butter as a cooking medium (one of the many amazing ways butter can be used as a tool). This dish is absolutely killer. The shrimp stay very tender, rich and tasty with the butter; the grits are then enriched with the shrimp butter. Leftover butter can be used to saute shrimp Read On »

Source: ruhlman.com

From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite... I came across this recipe years ago. We had been gifted with gorgeous grassfed steaks and I wanted a simple salad to accompany them. I let my fingers do the walking, and while searching I came across The Paupered Chef, a blog that has since become inactive. They were featuring a salad and dressing that was included in Thomas Keller's book Bouchon . With a pedigree like that, I knew my steaks would be in good company, so the salad and dressing became part of our meal. With just 3 ingredients, the dressing is the epitome of simplicity, though I must admit I mix it up a bit and use 2 parts canola oil to 1 part extra virgin olive oil to add some additional flavor. You'll notice that the dressing has no salt, sugar or herbs added to it. That's because Keller adds them to his salads rather than their dressing. This is a creamy sauce that flows easily and coats a spoon. It is not thick, and for that reason it is important to add only a third of the oil to the blender. Adding more at that time would turn the emulsion into a thick mayonnaise that cannot be poured. It's thought that Keller uses canola oil because it is bland and does not interfere with other flavors. I think most of you will enjoy the freshness of this dressing, but do remember it is unseasoned and you are expected to season the greens before tossing the salad. Do give this a try. It will keep for 2-1/2 weeks in the refrigerator, and should it separate, simply give it another whirl in the blender. Here is how the dressing and Keller's Bibb lettuce salad are made. Basic Vinaigrette Ingredients: 1/4 cup Dijon mustard 1/2 cup red wine vinegar 1-1/2 cups canola oil Directions: 1) Combine mustard and vinegar in a blender and blend at medium for 15 seconds to combine. With blender running, add 1/2 cup oil in a slow stream, making sure to add it slowly enough to develop a creamy emulsion. 2) Transfer mixture to a bowl and whisk in the remaining oil. Refrigerate for up to 2 weeks. Yield: 2-1/2 cups salad dressing. Bibb Lettuce Salad Ingredients: 1/2 cup Basic vinaigrette 4 heads Bibb lettuce, or enough lettuce for 4 of another type such as red leaf 2 tablespoons minced shallots 2 tablespoons minced chives 1/4 cup parsley leaves 1/4 cup tarragon leaves 1/4 cup chervil leaves (optional) 1 tablespoon lemon juice salt and pepper to taste Directions: 1) Carefully core each lettuce head and loosen leaves but keep structure of head intact, as it will be reassembled on the plate. If using a leaf lettuce, tear leaves into small pieces. Plunge lettuce into cold water to clean it, then gently spin in a salad spinner until very dry. 2) Transfer lettuce to a large mixing bowl and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Scatter herbs and shallot and drizzle vinaigrette and lemon juice over everything. Toss it gently by hand to dress, and serve. Yield: 4 servings. Older Posts One Year Ago Today: Two Years Ago Today: Cornmeal Cookies Swedish Raspberry and Almond Bars Three Years Ago Today: Four Years Ago Today: Strawberry and Pineapple Jam Picnic Pasta Salad

Source: oneperfectbite.blogspot.com

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