On the way home from work on Friday I was listening on the radio to Jeanne Robertson, a really wonderful and funny humorist and motivational speaker. She was relaying a story about her 7Up Pound Cake, which she makes and delivers to family and friends when someone has “passed”. Now you might not think death is a funny topic, but in fact her story is amusing as she talks about her husband Left Brain, and his adventure at the grocery store while picking up ingredients for her. See the clip below, as Jeanne tells it far better than I could explain here (that’s why she is paid for her humor, and I am not). As Jeanne was approaching the end of her routine, I was approaching my neighborhood Whole Foods, where I made an immediate right turn into the parking lot so I could get ingredients to make my Lemon Loaf. Right now you can find really bright and juicy lemons – I used Meyer Lemons for this dessert as they are sweeter than regular lemons. …
If you enjoy garlic bread, and I mean really, really like garlic, then you will adore this recipe. Because the garlic is very prominent I don’t use regular sized slices of french bread, but rather demi baguettes, (slices are a bit larger than a long baguette loaf.) The flavor of the garlic is toned down by using the cream cheese and the slice of grape tomato. Unfortunately these breads don’t hold their crispness to the next day, but if tossed in a fry pan with olive oil for a minute or two, (don’t put in microwave) they bounce back and work well broken up and used as garlic croutons in a salad. They are the best!
Flat Iron steak is my new best friend – at least for this month. Talk about scads of flavor – and it costs less than a NY steak or tenderloin. I generally like a steak with a lot of fat (as I think it provides so much flavor, even though it isn’t so great for your heart or figure.) The flat iron steak is flavorful because of the significant amount of marbling in the meat – if it’s Wagyu or Kobe beef, even better. It can sometimes be a little tough (similar to skirt or flank steak), so marinating the steak will go a long way – shoot for 4 to 6 hours, or overnight if possible. Toss it on the grill – it takes to the grill like wild fire!
Clafouti is a traditional French dessert with a flan-like batter poured over black cherries, and a delightful dessert in the warmth and sunshine of summer when cherries are in season. When you use other fruits, such as pears, peaches, apples or berries, it technically becomes a Flaugnarde – which is harder to pronounce and doesn’t sound nearly as sexy – so I made a Blackberry Clafouti! Raspberries are one of my favorite berries, but when I got to the store I found Raspberries cost $9 for a 12 ounce pack, while the blackberries (which looked luscious) were selling for $5 – it was a bit of a struggle as I went back and forth on which to choose, but guess which berry won!
Onion dip is readily available at any grocery store silently sitting beside the ranch dip, like an old married couple. But if you look closely to the ingredient list on the bottom of the tub, you might think twice on taking it home to serve family and friends. Why? Just check out some of the ingredients found on the label: trio calcium phosphate, guar gum, xanthan gum, vegetable gum (really needs 3 GUMS?), corn starch, distilled vinegar, sugar, caramel color, onion flavoring, dried onion flakes, dried parsley, malteddexrin, and a whole lot of other things that don’t look either nutritious nor appetizing. With homemade caramelized onion dip you know exactly what you are eating, and will enjoy pungent flavors of robust onion and garlic with a touch of lemon zest that provides a delightful freshness to this dip.
New Year’s Eve is almost here, oh yeah I already said that in the other Black and White Canape post. So here is the second B&W canapé that is quick, but elegant. Any time you use caviar the canape/appetizer becomes elegant, right? You start with a basic crostini, add some caviar, a little creme fraiche and you are on your way to an elegant canapé in a relatively short period of time. I know, you are thinking, she said the same thing in the other B&W post. I know, I know, but time is running out on 2012 so I don’t have a lot of time to be clever. Here we go….
Red roasted potatoes (especially made with garlic) are one of my favorite ways of cooking potatoes – better than Russett Boat Potatoes; even better than mashed potatoes or hash browns – and I love them all! I particularly like to serve this recipe when I make a Rack of Lamb, which I did this past weekend. Often when I serve these potatoes someone invariably asks for the recipe and I say “Yes of course I will email to you” but then forget to actually do it. So ladies, as promised, I am posting the recipe. The potatoes have a lot of flavor, and are really easy, easy, easy to prepare – another reason you gotta love em!