Friday, October 31, 2008
Thursday, October 30, 2008
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Hmmmmmmmmmmm, Chicken chasseur aka cacciatore in Italian. This is a great mix of mushrooms , tomato and tarragon. The chicken is sauteed in the kind of saucepan you see here, shallots are added, sliced mushrooms are added and some chopped tarragon. The chicken is removed and white wine is added to the mix and reduced by half. The mushrooms are removed and diced tomatoes are added with a little garlic. This is cooked for a few minutes and the whole thing is seasoned. You can add just a pinch of flour here and stir it in. Then you add either stock or water and you allow to cook for a little while. Then you put your chicken and mushrooms back in to finish the dish. It is a good idea to correct the seasoning at this time and possible add just a little garlic and some more tarragon. Bring the sauce to its proper consistency add some chopped parsley for color, let sit for half an hour and serve.
Monday, October 27, 2008
This is a short project I did for a competition last year. I didn't win of course but i enjoyed doing it.
Roseburg is a very small town. It is getting bigger but it is still small. During the winter and fall it rains a lot. The skies are overcast and the clouds are heavy and steel grey. Personally I don't mind it because the rain and the clouds bring back memories of happy times spent over Irish coffee in a remote pub in the Wicklow Hills one rainy winter’s afternoon. That was back in the day of course.
During the rains in Oregon, the greens are greener, the hills more splendid and the walks more colorful. The air is brisk.
I love the winter and fall in Oregon in general. I should really say in the Northwest.
But then... comes the summer. The air is lighter the mood easier and the smiles are all around. All of a sudden we begin to notice flowers in the city. Of course there are flowers in every city, but these flowers.... somebody puts them there. They are everywhere. They hang from buildings, they hang from lamp posts and they hang from trees. Beautiful big baskets of flowers dot the streets and the walls and the trees and the sidewalks. We know it is going to be a nice summer.
Hope you have flowers in the city too. Have you ever looked?
Sunday, October 26, 2008
I love barbeque and I have it as often as I can. I love BBQ Meats, BBQ fish and BBQ vetetables. This one here is a particulary easy one ( most Barbeques are) and I usually parboil the ribs or any meats that I am using for this dish for the simple reason that it avoids the crust that barbeques usually get if they are done from raw. I put whatever I am using into a pot of cold water, bring it to the boil and then wash it off; any blood will be washed off with it and you will start with a nice clean piece of meat as you see here. I rinse it off and then put it back into a pot with cold water , some onion, garlic, thyme and bay leaf and then I simmer it until half way cooked. After it is parcooked I slow roast it in the oven until it is 99% cooked. Then i start putting on the barbeque sauce: I usually apply the sauce two to three times or until it starts to get that nice chocolatey color. In this case here I cooked the onions and peppers in the same pan but took them out when they were cooked. All the flavors mesh when you cook them altogether but you have to remember to take the vegetables out because they cook much quicker than the ribs. I marinated the peppers and onions in some olive oil, garlic and thyme for about half an hour beforehand. You also need to make sure that you cut the peppers and onions in really big pieces or they will disappear in the cooking. When you remove them from the pan after cooking keep them in a warm place not a hot one or they will continue to cook
This is a variation on the Beef Wellinton using the same method and technique but costing much, much less. Once you know how to make a Beef Wellington you can use any cut of meat as long as it is the same proportions. Loin of pork is good for this. You also do it with fish but you will make a fish stuffing instead of the mushroom duxelle.
Saturday, October 25, 2008
Friday, October 24, 2008
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
Sunday, October 19, 2008
Saturday, October 18, 2008
Classic dish, inexpensive, easy to make and very tasty. It is cheaper to buy the sausage meat in bulk, then form your own meatballs at home. When they are rolled put them on a flat surface that will fit in your freezer then line them up like little soldiers on your flat surface and put the whole thing in the freezer. When they are frozen put them into a protective plastic bag and use as needed. Depending on the season I will put different vegetables into pasta. Here I have added some butternut squash that I had previously blanched well so that it was close to cooked when I added it. Like that everything was cooked at the same time.
A winters day, on a cold and dark December Seems like Simon and Garfunkel are describing the perfect setting for this king of beef stews. To call it a stew seems like heresy but despite all the attention it needs and all the preparation and care in cooking , that is what it is. Properly done it is a complex mix of flavors that should be served with a good mashed potato of your choice. Another one of my favorite dishes and one that I love to prepare because it takes so long to do. It is a cooks delight. Goes well with a good hearty Cabernet.
The classic vegetable dish from the south of France. It is a great accompaniement primarily to lamb but will go with almost anything. I have had it for breakfast with a poached egg and bernaise. It is also good cold with cold cuts. A very versatile dish for any season of the year.
Friday, October 17, 2008
Thursday, October 16, 2008
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
Monday, October 13, 2008
Sunday, October 12, 2008
Saturday, October 11, 2008
Another staple of the South of France is the salade nicoise and only there will you find the real thing. People put potatoes in it and all kinds of cooked vegetable like green beans. There in not one cooked item in a real salad nicoise and this is its secret. Because of the fact that it has only raw foods ( crudites as they say in France) it is refreshing and all the more so because the dressing is so light , usually olive oil and vinegar or a light french dressing. It is best to make it and then chill it a little before eating. Great with crusty bread and a nice glass of white wine. You can't beat the French for food.
I love these. So named because they were created in Buffalo New York from what I hear and not from buffalo on the prairie. The sauce is very hot but softened a little by adding butter to it. One of my favorite appetizers. There are many variations on this. This one is my favorite.
These are made by deep frying the chicken wings , or drumettes in this case, and draining them of all excess fat after they are cooked. It is a good idea to put them into an abosorbant paper towel and season them slightly. You then heat up a little of Franks Red Hot Buffalo Wing Sauce, put the sauce in a bowl big enough to hold the chicken, add a little butter soft butter to it and melt it in the sauce. Add the hot wings, toss well and serve. Some people have celery and blue cheese. Not me! That would distract me from this great appetizer.