Saturday, August 22, 2009
I like to go crabbing in the evening, when blue crabs swim to the surface and can be lured in toward a net with a flashlight. During the day, we toss in a line with bait (usually chicken) and wait for a tug to reel them in. And what do I do with them? After boiling the crabs and carefully picking the meat out of the shells, I make crab cakes.
This is my favorite recipe; it combines crabmeat and another seasonal Long Island treat -- corn. These two ingredients really work together well. There’s no need to catch your own crab, crabmeat from a fishmonger or canned crabmeat both work well. Serve them with some homemade tartar sauce.
1 shallot, minced
2 tablespoons butter
1 ear of fresh corn
16 ounces lump crabmeat
¾ to 1 cup fresh bread crumbs*
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 teaspoons Old Bay Seasoning
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro
Vegetable oil, for cooking
1. Melt 1 tablespoon of butter in small frying pan over low heat. Add shallots and cook until shallots are translucent, about 5 minutes. Set aside.
2. Steam corn or cook corn in boiling water about 4 minutes. Cool and remove kernels. Combine corn and crabmeat in large bowl. Add bread crumbs and mix lightly, trying to keep lumps of crabmeat intact.
3. In a medium bowl, mix together egg, mayonnaise, mustard, lemon juice, Old Bay and Worcestershire sauce. Mix in shallots and cilantro.
4. Pour egg mixture into crabmeat and gently combine. Divide mixture into about 6-8 portions and flatten into thick patties. Place in freezer for about 30 minutes to set.
5. Heat 1 tablespoon of butter and a little vegetable oil, enough to coat the bottom of a large frying pan, over medium heat. Add crab cakes, in batches if necessary (do not crowd otherwise they will be difficult to flip) and sauté until golden brown on both sides, about 4-5 minutes per side. Serve immediately.
*For breadcrumbs, can use about 5 inches of french bread. Slice as if making a sandwich and scrape out (or pinch out) white portion, leaving crusts.
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
Him: It's a bean (or fruit or something equally obvious and unhelpful.)
Roasted cherry tomatoes
Cooked Borlotti beans
1/4 cup chopped sundried tomatoes
1 tablespoon chopped basil
Red wine vinaigrette, to taste (recipe below)
In bowl with beans, add roasted tomatoes, sundried tomatoes, chopped basil and enough vinaigrette to coat (or to taste, I probably used less than half amount below.) Toss well and serve. Adjust seasonings.
For red wine vinaigrette:
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1-1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon honey
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/2 cup olive oil
1 generous tablespoon pesto
Mix the vinegar, lemon juice, honey, salt, and pepper in a blender. With the machine running, gradually blend in the oil and then the pesto.
Friday, August 14, 2009
I’m a big fan of soba noodles, skinny Japanese noodles made from buckwheat. I’m also a fan of Napa cabbage, a light, crunchy cabbage that is ubiquitous in Chinese stir fries. And it’s a good thing, because we recently had somewhat of a Napa cabbage crisis: A friend gave use several heads of cabbage the same week our CSA delivered a head.
My husband’s solution to this crisis was kimchi, a traditional Korean side dish made by fermenting cabbage and other vegetables. We used this YouTube video to make the kimchi and it turned out great (although I am still humming the background music.) I have to say that, for me, it was an entirely unique way of preparing food. It also called for ingredients I’ve never used, like sweet rice flour and garlic chives. Who knew?
I, on the other hand, knew exactly what to do with the cabbage: Make this salad. It’s perfect for lunch or a light summer supper. I think it would also work well as a side dish with grilled meat.
For the salad:
3-4 ounces snap peas or snow peas (one big handful), blanched 3 minutes
1 bunch soba noodles (they usually come packaged in 3 or 4 separate bunches), cooked about 5 minutes, drained and rinsed under cold water
Half head napa cabbage (depending on its size and your taste) halved lengthwise and sliced in thin ribbons.
3 scallions, cut in 1/4 inch slices, including green part
1/2 cucumber (or one small cucumber), chopped 1/4 pieces
1 red peppers, cut in quarters lengthwise and sliced into 1/4 wide ribbons or julienned
1 carrot, made into ribbons with a peeler or julienned
1 cup cilantro, roughly chopped
A handful of sprouts (optional)
A handful peanuts (optional)
Mix all ingredients well in large bowl and toss with dressing.
For the dressing:1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
4 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons soy sauce
Juice of half of one lime
5 tablespoons brown sugar
1 clove garlic, minced
1 jalepeno pepper, minced
1-1/2 tablespoons ginger, minced
2 tablespoons cilantro, finely chopped
Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix well or combine all ingredients in a tupperware type container, cover, and shake to combine.
Makes 2 generous main courses
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
Sunday, August 9, 2009
This recipe, based on one my mom used to make, is an ice cream pie as opposed to a gooey chocolate-filled pie also called mud pie. My mom made it the easy way; she just bought already-made coffee ice cream and chocolate sauce, adding kahlua to the sauce, then made a pie crust and put it together. Still in the midst of ice cream-making mania, I decided to make everything from scratch, but, to be honest, next time I'll probably skip the homemade ice cream and just mix in a couple of tablespoons of kahlua into a softened pint of Haagen-Dazs.
For the crust:
1-1/4 cup chocolate wafer crumbs
1/4 cup melted butter
For the fudge sauce:
1-1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips or chopped pieces
1/2 cup heavy cream
3 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon kahlua
For the coffee ice cream filling:
3/4 cup sugar
3 large egg yolks
2 teaspoons all purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup whole milk
3/4 cup dark-roasted coffee beans
1-3/4 cups heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon finely grinded espresso powder
1 tablespoon kahlua
1. Crust: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine chocolate wafers and butter, stir until well blended. Press into 9-inch pie pan and bake for 8-10 minutes. Cool completely.
2. Fudge Sauce: Combine in a bowl over hot (not boiling) water 1-1/2 C chocolate chips, heavy cream, and butter. Stir until chips are melted and mixture is smooth. Remover from heat, stir in kahlua or other coffee liquor. Chill 10 minutes. Spread 1/3 cup sauce on bottom of chocolate wafer crust. Chill 15 minutes. Reserve remaining fudge sauce for the top of the pie.
3. Coffee Ice Cream: Combine Milk and coffee beans in a heavy saucepan and heat over medium heat to a simmer. Pour hot mixture into a bowl, cover and set aside for an hour. In a large bowl, use a mixer to beat sugar and egg yolks until mixture is thick and pale yellow, about four minutes. Beat flour and salt into egg mixture. Reheat coffee mixture until bubbles form at the side, remove from heat and remove coffee beans from milk with slotted spoon. Slowly pour hot milk into eggs, whisking constantly, to temper eggs. Pour entire mixture back into the saucepan and place over low heat, whisking constantly until custard thickens and coats the back of a wooden spoon. Do not boil. Remove from heat and pour coffee cusard through a strainer into a large bowl. Cool 5 minutes, then mix in cream, vanilla, espresso powder and kahlua. Chill, covered, at least 4 hours. Stir and freeze in ice cream machine according to manufacturer instructions. When done, pour ice cream into pie crust and freeze until hard. Remove from freezer and cover with remaining fudge sauce. Return to freezer until set.
Thursday, August 6, 2009
Spice Market via Food & Wine
4 teaspoons kosher salt
16 ounces añejo tequila
4 ounces Ginger-Lime Syrup (recipe below)
3 ounces Cointreau
8 lime wedges, for garnish
1/4 stalk lemongrass, smashed and chopped (optional)
Saturday, August 1, 2009
4. In large bowl, mix cheeses, eggs, salt, pepper, nutmeg and basil. Add vegetables and mix well. Pour into a lightly oiled (can use oil spray) 10-inch pie spring pan. Bake 50 to 60 minutes, until golden brown. Remove from the heat, and allow to cool 15 to 30 minutes. Slice in wedges and serve.
One 10- inch pie serves eight to ten.