Tag Archives | recipes

The Blue Plate Special: Autumn Comfort Food with Ruth Reichl

Ruth Reichl

6 years ago Ruth Reichl (It’s “RYE-shul,” not “RYE-Kul) had been the editor-in-chief of Gourmet magazine for 10 years.  Food magazines everywhere were succumbing to the onset of the Internet, but it never crossed her mind that Gourmet might shutter.  Until it did.

In conversation with Blue Plate Special hosts Kurt and Christine Friese, Reichl discusses the demise of Gourmet, how retreating to the kitchen was her salvation, and the book that resulted.  My Kitchen Year: 136 Recipes That Saved My Life is part journal, part cookbook, part collection of tweets that read like Haiku.  The great book designer Susan Turner used Reichl’s recipes and journal entries, along with the inviting photography of Mikkel Vang.

Afterwards, Kurt and Christine discuss their current go-to comfort foods for eating alone, like real ramen, and curry.  The book they refer to by Deborah Madison is called What We Eat When We Eat Alone, and you can get that here.

Follow Ms. Reichl on Twitter, and get her new book from your favorite local, independent bookseller by clicking here.



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The Blue Plate Special: Celebrating Paula Wolfert with Emily Kaiser Thelin

Writer Emily Kaiser Thelin. Photo by Quentin Bacon

Emily Kaiser Thelin is a writer and editor based in Berkeley with a focus on food, drink, travel and design. A two-time finalist for James Beard awards, from 2006 to 2010 she was a food editor at Food & Wine. In 2007 she co-authored The Harney and Sons Guide to Teawith Michael Harney, published by Penguin Press. Her work has also appeared in the Best Food WritingseriesOprah, Dwell, Gourmet, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Timesand The Washington Post.

Now she is hard at work with her friend and mentor Paula Wolfert on their new Kickstarter-funded project: UNFORGETTABLE: Bold Flavors from a Renegade Life, a retrospective on Wolfert’s life and career in light of the onset of Alzheimers.

In this episode of The Blue Plate Special, hosts Kurt and Christine Friese talk to Thelin about Wolfert’s remarkable career and how the new project is coming together.

Click here to contribute the campaign, see their video and the recipes discussed in this episode.

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The Blue Plate Special: In the Prairie Kitchen with Summer Miller

Summer Miller Blogs at ScaldedMilk.com

Kurt & Christine chat with Summer Miller, author of New Prairie Kitchen, about the burgeoning cuisine of the Heartland.  Summer spent 4 years touring and tasting at farms and restaurants to find the best of this oft-neglected region, where the best soil on earth makes growing and eating local food easy.  Summer Miller blogs at ScaldedMilk.com.

There’s also a quick plug for the newest show int he Edible Radio lineup, Cuisine KaChing, and a mention of the forthcoming food writers conference, Eating Words.

The conference will be held October 2-4.  Make your plans now!  Tickets are available here, hotel arrangements here, travel info here, and the agenda is posted here.  You can follow updates via Facebook and Twitter.

Recipes below the fold…

 

 

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The Kitchen Workshop: Kathleen Weber, author of Della Fattoria Bread

Mary Reilly of Edible Pioneer Valley spoke with Kathleen Weber, the founder of Della Fattoria Bakery in Petaluma, CA, about baking artisan breads at home. Kathleen generously shared her recipe for Tomato Bread Soup with us. Show off fresh summer tomatoes in this rustic recipe.


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The Kitchen Workshop: Cookie Love with Mindy Segal

Sega_Cookie LoveKitchen Workshop host Mary Reilly, editor and publisher of Edible Pioneer Valley, speaks with Mindy Segal about her book Cookie Love, treating a cookie like a meal and building  your cookie making pantry. Mindy is the author of Cookie Love and the proprietor and pastry creator of Hot Chocolate Restaurant and Dessert Bar in Chicago. She has graciously shared her recipe for Fleur de Sel Shortbread with Vanilla Halvah.

FLEUR DE SEL SHORTBREAD WITH VANILLA HALVAH

Segal_Mindy

 

I AM ALWAYS ON a quest to find more ways to use halvah in desserts. Coffee, chocolate, and cocoa nibs are my usual pairings with the Middle Eastern sesame confection, but one day I shifted gears in favor of vanilla and fleur de sel. It worked—halvah anchored the vanilla-flecked frosting, for a sweet, salty, nutty result. To finish the cookies, I dip them partially in dark milk chocolate and then place a shaving of halvah on top. The frosting is seasoned well to balance its sweetness, but because the cookies themselves carry a noticeable salt level, you may prefer to add less. If using a sea salt that is not as light and flaky as Murray River (see page 267 for a description of the salt), reduce the salt by 1 tablespoon.

To cut out the cookies, you will need a rectangular cutter approximately 13⁄4 by 21⁄2 inches. To pipe the frosting, you will need the Ateco tip #32.

Makes approximately 28 sandwich cookies.

SHORTBREAD

11⁄2 cups plus 2 tablespoons (13 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature

11⁄4 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted

2 extra-large egg yolks, at room temperature

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour

2 tablespoons sea salt flakes

FROSTING

8 ounces plain or vanilla halvah, cubed

2 ounces white chocolate, melted

11⁄4 cups (10 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 cup confectioners’ sugar, sifted

1⁄2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1⁄2 teaspoon kosher salt

1⁄2 teaspoon sea salt flakes, or to taste

TO FINISH

Piece of plain or vanilla halvah, for garnish

8 ounces milk chocolate, melted

Fleur de Sel Shortbread with Vanilla Halvah CookieStep #1: Make the Shortbread

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the butter on medium speed for 5 to 10 seconds. Add the sugar and mix on low speed to incorporate. Increase the speed to medium and cream the butter mixture until it is aerated and looks like frosting, 3 to 4 minutes. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula to bring the batter together.

Put the yolks in a small cup or bowl and add the vanilla.

In a bowl, whisk together the flour and salt.

On medium speed, add the yolks, one at a time, and mix until the batter resembles cottage cheese, approximately 5 seconds for each yolk. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula to bring the batter together. Mix on medium speed for 20 to 30 seconds to make nearly homogeneous.

Add the flour mixture all at once and mix on low speed until the dough just comes together but still looks shaggy, approxi- mately 30 seconds. Do not overmix. Remove the bowl from the stand mixer. With a plastic bench scraper, bring the dough completely together by hand.

Stretch two sheets of plastic wrap on a work surface. Divide the dough in half and place each half on a piece of the plastic wrap. Pat each half into a rectangle, wrap tightly, and refrigerate until chilled throughout, at least 2 hours or preferably overnight.

Let the dough halves sit at room tempera- ture until the dough has warmed up some but is still cool to the touch, 15 to 20 minutes.

Put a sheet of parchment paper the same dimensions as a half sheet (13 by 18-inch) pan on the work surface and dust lightly with flour. Put one dough half on top.

Using a rolling pin, roll the dough half into a rectangle approximately 11 by 13 inches and 1⁄4 inch thick or slightly under. If the edges become uneven, push a bench scraper against the dough to straighten out the sides. To keep the dough from sticking to the parchment paper, dust the top with flour, cover with another piece of parchment paper, and, sandwiching the dough between both sheets of parch- ment paper, flip the dough and paper over. Peel off the top layer of parchment paper and continue to roll. Any time the dough starts to stick, repeat the sand- wiching and flipping step with the parchment paper.

Ease the dough and parchment paper onto a half sheet pan. Repeat with the remaining dough half and stack it on top. Cover with a piece of parchment paper and refrigerate the layers until firm, at least 30 minutes.

Heat the oven to 350°F. Line a couple of half sheet pans with parchment paper.

Let the dough sit at room temperature for up to 10 minutes. Invert the dough onto a work surface and peel off the top sheet of parchment paper. Roll a dough docker over the dough or pierce it numerous times with a fork. Using a 1 3⁄4 by 2 1⁄2-inch rectangular cutter, punch out the cookies. Reroll the dough trimmings, chill, and cut out more cookies.

Put the shortbread on the prepared sheet pans, evenly spacing up to 16 cookies per pan.

Bake one pan at a time for 10 minutes. Rotate the pan and bake until the cookies feel firm and hold their shape when touched, 3 to 5 minutes more. Let the cookies cool completely on the sheet pans. Repeat with the remaining pan.

Step #2: Frost the Cookies

Blend the halvah in a food processor until fairly smooth. Drizzle in the white chocolate and blend until incorporated. The halvah will turn into a thick paste.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the butter briefly on medium speed for 5 to 10 seconds. Add the sugar and beat until the butter mixture is aerated and pale in color, 3 to 4 minutes. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula to bring the frosting together. Briefly mix in the vanilla and salts until incorporated, approximately 1 minute. Add the halvah paste and mix until smooth, with a little texture left from the halvah.

Fit a pastry bag with the Ateco tip #32 and fill with the frosting.

Make pairs of similar-size cookies. Turn half of the cookies over. Leaving an 1⁄8-inch border, pipe rows of dots onto the cookies. The frosting should be approximately as thick as the cookie. Top each frosted cookie with a second cookie and press lightly to adhere.

Step #3: Finish the Cookies

Freeze the piece of halvah until chilled, 30 minutes.

Line two half sheet pans with parchment paper. Dip a quarter of the long side
of each sandwich cookie into the milk chocolate, shake off the excess, and place on the prepared pans. Using a vegetable peeler, shave a piece or two of halvah and place onto the chocolate- dipped part of each cookie. Refrigerate until the chocolate is firm, approximately 1 hour.

The cookies can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 1 week.Read the rest

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The Kitchen Workshop: Glorious Kale with Catherine Walthers

Kitchen Workshop host Mary Reilly, editor and publisher of Edible Pioneer Valley is joined by Catherine Walthers. Cathy is a personal chef and food writer. She is the author of four cookbooks, the latest of which is Kale, Glorious Kale.

Join us in the Workshop as Mary and Cathy discuss varieties of kale, the perfect kale chip and kale cocktails! Cathy also shares her secret for making the perfect kale salad (hint: it involves massage therapy!).


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The Kitchen Workshop: Michael Dietsch’s Shrubs – An Old-Fashioned Drink for Modern Times

DSC_0836Kitchen Workshop host Mary Reilly, editor and publisher of Edible Pioneer Valley, speaks to Michael Dietsch about his book Shrubs, An Old Fashioned Drink for Modern Times.

Basically, shrubs are an acidulated fruit syrup. Originally enjoyed as a thirst-quenching non-alcoholic drink, they are now enjoyed in cocktails as well. Michael fills us in on the history of shrubs, from antiquity to today, and shares ideas for several ways to prepare your own versions.

Here’s a recipe for an Apple-Cinnamon Shrub to enjoy this fall. Pick up a copy of Shrubs for more inspiration.

Cinnamon-Apple Shrub

  • 3 medium apples, quartered (no need to core or seed them)
  • 1 cup apple cider vinegar
  • ½ cup turbinado sugar
  • 2 cinnamon sticks

Using a box grater or a food processor, shred apples. Add shredded apples, cider vinegar, sugar and cinnamon to a nonreactive container. Cover and leave in a cool place on the countertop for up to 2 days. After 2 days, place a fine-mesh strainer over a bowl. Strain apple mixture. Squeeze or press apple mixture to remove any remaining liquid. Pour liquid into clean mason jar or glass bottle. Add lid or cap and then shake well to combine. Place in refrigerator. Discard solids. Shrub will keep for up to 1 year.

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The Kitchen Workshop: Indian Wedding Food with Saveur’s Betsy Andrews

saveur__maacherWe spoke with Betsy Andrews, Acting Editor in Chief of Saveur Magazine, about Saveur’s India Issue. Join us on this podcast for a discussion of the culinary traditions of different regions of India. Betsy was a visitor at a wedding in Kashmir and tells us about the traditional wedding caterer (waza) and the 36-dish feast (wazwaan) he prepares. Enjoy the flavors of a Kashmiri wedding with Mirchi Qorma (Kashmiri Lamb in Chile Sauce).

She also takes us to the Kashmiri city of Srinagar and together we visit its marvelous floating gardens and boat markets.

Visit the Saveur website to find the entire India Issue plus the stories that couldn’t fit into the magazine.

Recipes from this podcast:
Maacher Johl (Bengali-Style Fish Stew)
Mirchi Qorma (Kashmiri Lamb in Chile Sauce)
Sevaya Kheer (Vermicelli Milk Pudding)
Shahi Tukra (Royal Toast)
Smita Chandra’s Rasam (Spicy Tamarind Soup)

On this episode, Betsy Andrews of Saveur Magazine describes her visit to the Kashmir region of India. As we recorded, in early September 2014, news reports describing the worst monsoon flooding and landslides in 100 years started to come out of the region. As of September 17, the current death toll from the floods in Indian Kashmir is estimated at over 200, and tens of thousands of residents are homeless. Our thoughts go out to the victims of the disaster.

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The Kitchen Workshop: Summer Cocktails with Maggie Batista

maggie-battista-Eat-BoutiqueKitchen Workshop host Mary Reilly, publisher and editor of Edible Pioneer Valley, talks with Maggie Battista, cook, writer and traveler! Maggie is the proprietress of EatBoutique a website and artisanal foods emporium; and is the author of the upcoming book Food. Gift. Love.

Rhubarb Cordial

How to make fruit cordials

Limoncello

Making fruit vinegars

More recipes –

How to make a fruit syrup
Combine equal parts fruit, sugar and water (by volume) in a saucepan and bring to a simmer. When the syrup is brightly colored (this will take 5-10 minutes with softer fruit like blueberries or strawberries and over 15 minutes with less-tender fruit like rhubarb. Strain and let cool before using in a drink.

Here are the cocktails we made on the show:

Rhubarb-orange Sidecar

  • 1.5 oz  fresh orange
  • Juice 1.5 oz lemon juice
  • 1 oz rhubarb syrup
  • 1 1/2 oz brandy

Combine in an iced cocktail shaker. Shake hard until chilled and strain into a cocktail glass.

Strawberry-basil Cocktail

  • 1/2 ounce strawberry syrup
  • ½ ounce lime juice
  • 4 basil leaves
  • 2 ounces gin, preferably Hendrick’s or a Plymouth style (use vodka if you prefer)

Combine in an iced cocktail shaker. Shake hard until chilled and strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with a basil leaf.  

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