This has so far been the year of easy recipes.One of my favorite restaurants in CT serves a delicious, although heavy pear/almond clafouti. I looked it up and found a really simple recipe on Chow.com: http://www.chow.com/recipes/29695-cherry-clafoutis-clafouti
It really was ready an hour after I read it – mmm!
I think the recipe here is a slight variation on Julia Child’s recipe. It’s egg-y – and we noted how it was essentially a large, fluffy pancake with cherries in it. The traditional French rustic recipe, as Wikipedia notes, does use cherries without removing the pits – it does let the taste be a bit more intense.
We took a NY Times recipe, changed it a tad and have spent the last couple of dinners satisfying the hankering for lamb burgers. We’d never made lamb burgers before – but everything thankfully went according to plan. We made them on a pan – this worked out really well since lamb has more fat than say, turkey and so harder to burn/char too much on the pan.
Here’s what we used:
- 1 1/2 lb of ground lamb*
- 1 large onion – minced up by food processor/hand
- 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped finely
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin powder
- 1 tablespoon ground coriander powder
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
- Salt and black pepper to taste
- Garnish: chopped red peppers, scallions, shredded carrots, tomatoes and greens
- Extra virgin olive oil to cook on the stove top
* (The original recipe asked for boneless lamb shoulder, cut into pieces and then used a food processor to grind it. We used up a gift certificate we had for Whole Foods)
Here’s what we did:
- Mix the ground lamb, finely chopped onions in a bowl with the jalapeno pepper and the spices, including the salt and pepper. Mix, handling the meat as little as possible, until combined. Without compressing the meat too much, shape it into burgers. With this much lamb, we made 12 medium sized burgers
- To cook on the stove top, heat the olive oil and add the patties gently. Let them cook undisturbed for 2-3 minutes.Gently flip over and let them cook for another 2-3 minutes. Check if done – if not, you might want to cook a little bit more on each side until done. We cooked them until we had just a bit of pink inside
- Garnish as suggested – or go crazy!
I am usually not big on looking up recipes, and when I do look them up – it is mostly to try and learn some technique I need.
I am not sure why, but a few weeks ago I had the hankering for poached pears. Actually – I do know why. We’d gone fruit picking, like any self respecting New England resident. Also like any other self respecting New England resident, we’d picked more pears than we needed. After making pear-cake and using them up in nutella-pear crepes (That’s for another post) I decided to find out how to poach pears.
This is how I came across this wonderful post by the celebrated chef David Lebovitz. Oh, the pictures in the post are amazing. For once, I followed the steps faithfully. I was immensely gratified by the results.
The only difference between what he describes and what I did – was I did not have parchment paper. So I made do without it, and ensured I kept covering the pears so nothing would dry out. I might have also gone overboard with adding raisins and dried cranberries at the end.
Like I said, his pictures are amazing, but here are mine.
This one’s a bit of a whimsical entry. Last week we got to play restaurant. A friend brought his new squeeze over for a date – and we cooked for them as well as a few other friends. We decided on a menu earlier – dishes we thought would go over well. Then out we went and got all the ingredients and wine and so on and cooked it all up. Our friend generously paid for the groceries.
We even printed a menu up – we’re so silly!
The squeeze and he are still together – so the date must have gone well!
No recipe today, more of being grateful.
I was just thinking how lucky I was to eat my mother’s food for most of my life. She is an exceptional cook and always had a natural flair for cooking the most simple and delicious of dishes. I think I got my sense of ‘how-would-this-taste-if-you-do-that?’ and of ‘how-is-this-supposed-to-taste’ from her. I took her love of food and sense of taste and my father’s sense of being adventurous in trying out new things and for all that I am eternally blessed.
My mother, in turn, had received this gift from her mother, and then developed her cooking skills beyond that.
Saradipitea of course, gets all her kitchen wisdom from her mother, who is also a fantastic, tireless cook.
I know everyone says this of their mothers. They are probably right. But I know I am absolutely right about our mothers being truly the culinary geniuses we know them to be!
So here we are – hoping to emulate the generations of kitchens of our families. If we cook the dishes we grew up with as well as our mothers and grandmothers did, we’d be a very fortunate couple. We hope we can take this culinary heritage and develop it even further. Here’s to three generations of kitchens, and beyond…
Nothing too fancy here. Chicken or paneer, marinaded, spiced up and cooked. Perfect as an appetizer/snack. I also use it as a filling when I make my ‘gourmet quesadillas’ – something I have not yet blogged about, but that is coming up.
Here’s what you need:
- 1 lb chopped chicken breast
- Olive Oil
- Vegetable Oil
- Coriander powder
- Cumin powder
- Black pepper
- Cardamom powder
- Clove powder
Here’s how to do it.
- Chop the chicken breast into bites sized pieces and put in a container.
- Cover it with yoghurt (just enough yoghurt to cover the pieces), 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1 heaped teaspoon coriander powder, 1 heaped teaspoon ground cumin powder and pinches of clove and cardamom powders.
- Mix it all thoroughly. Leave to marinade in the fridge for 2 hours.
- Heat vegetable oil, sauté 5-6 bay leaves and as they turn brown, remove them.
- Lower the heat to medium.
- Remove the chicken pieces from the marinade (It is alright if some marinade comes with it – just not too much). Fry lightly in the oil, stirring frequently, not letting it burn.
- Add ½ teaspoon black pepper and salt to taste while there’s still some liquid, mix quickly. Lower heat and cook until the chicken is cooked through.
- The bites can be served up as an appetizer, or a part of another dish.
- The chicken can be replaced with paneer. If you want to use a non dairy marinade base, use lemon juice.