Friday, August 29, 2008

The Need for No-Knead

Here's just a little nibble'n'nosh that I made recently.

I've made two loaves of Cook's Illustrated's No-Knead Bread 2.0 Recipe.

It's easy to make, albeit time consuming, and it tastes great.

Mmmm...fresh baked bread.

I made a loaf a few nights ago and addROC and I bought a ton of cheese. We practically killed the whole loaf for dinner alone.

It was classy, in that filthy, cheesy way.

Oh-so-easy and delicious.

And, did I mention: CHEAP as hell!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Oh, Those Scrumptious Southerners

To me, great biscuits are the epitome of southern cooking.

Simple, high calorie eats that you can mix and match to almost any meal.
They're good at breakfast stacked high with eggs, cheese, and bacon.
They're good at dinner lathered up in gravy, beans, slaw, and juicy pulled pork.

Heck, they're just freakin' good.

So, when I tried Paula Deen's Cream Biscuit recipe from "Paula's Home Cooking," I nearly croaked.

These biscuits are easy, delicious, and perfect. And, while you'll probably want to ignore the calorie count, after one bite, I'm guessing you won't give a damn.

These biscuits are da bomb!

Paula Deen's Cream Biscuits

2 cups self-rising flour, plus more for dusting
1 tablespoon sugar
1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream

Preheat oven to 500 degrees F.

In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, sugar, and cream until the dough forms a ball. Turn the dough out onto a surface dusted with additional flour. Fold the dough in 1/2 and knead 5 to 7 times, adding just enough flour to keep dough from sticking to your hands. Gently roll out dough to 1/2-inch thickness. Using a 3-inch biscuit cutter coated with flour, cut dough into biscuits. Place on baking sheet coated with cooking spray, leaving at least 1-inch between each biscuit. Bake for 10 minutes, or until golden brown.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Mother Knows Best: Peppermint Ice Cream Torte

Greetings from the dead.

Yes, yes. I know I am the shittiest blogger ever, and all that. The best I can say is a new job at a new restaurant has kept me very busy, and, when I'm not busy workin'...I'm busy taking a load off.

But, though I have been tardy with the blog, fear not. I have still been cooking, however, on a somewhat infrequent basis.

And, in my most recent adventures...I took addROC on a trip down memory lane.

As you may or may not remember, addROC's mom gave me a recipe book for Christmas that includes her recipes with some significance in addROC's youth.

Previously, I made Boston Cream Pie for addROC's birthday from the family inspired, recipe collection.

This time? Peppermint Ice Cream Torte.

One of addROC's favorite treats of yesteryear.

I started by layering a Homemade Granola Mix, then, a layer of Peppermint Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream (Ben & Jerry's of course), and then a middle layer of Chocolate Creme which I prepare below:

Then, I spread the Chocolate Creme over a frozen Ice Cream layer before two more rounds of freezer time!

Then, after much layering and much freezing, it was finally time for EATING!

Refreshing and delicious.

seemed to enjoy it.

Though, deep down, I know it'll never be Mom's.

And, he did take the liberty to bitch about the fact that I used WHITE Peppermint Ice Cream, as opposed to GREEN.

His Mom's response?

"Who sez real men don't eat green food?!"

Thanks for the recipe Cindy! It was damn good!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Sugarbush Farm: Where (Cheesy) Dreams Come True

and I found ourselves on an extended Vermont vacation for a friend's wedding. So, after checking out a map of Woodstock, VT, I declared that a trip to Sugarbush Farm, where the cheese is plentiful and the maple syrup flows like wine, was an absolute necessity.

So, we walk into the Sugarbush Farm Country Store first, and, there are no other words to express the feeling other than, "Holy Shit!"

Sugarbush was frikkin' stocked with homemade jams, mustards, maple candies, and VT oddities.

Which we proceeded to sample...

Then, it was on to the incredible cheese room, where we got to try every cheese they make at Sugarbush!!!

Next, we watch in awe as the Ladies de Sugarbush prepare and package cheese by first wrapping it in thin foil and then triple-dipping it in wax! This was so exciting. I felt like, finally, I was able to witness something worthy of a Mister Rodgers field trip:

The ladies.

Foiled cheese.

Smoked cheese, before foiling.

Onion cheese, after being triple-waxed.

Next, addROC and I put on our best Moose faces and smile!

Then, we see, what's that?! A sign for a Maple Walk?! Let's go!

addROC and our friend Aaron head up to the teeny-tiny little bridge that begins the maple walk, as I bring it up the rear.

After the Maple walk, which was peaceful and oh-so-Vermontish, Aaron and I enjoy a refreshing bottle of Sugarbush Farm's own Root Beer! Sooooo fuckin' good!

Finally, we bid ol' Sugarbush Farm goodbye, after buying $50 worth of cheese and Maple Mustard!!! What a day trip!

Go to RIGHT NOW and buy cheese. We've already ordered a ton for friends and family, and it ships extremely well.

Viva La Sugarbush!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

The Good Ship, Lollipop.

I've never liked Lollipops all that much.
Even less so, are small, high-pitched children who sing about them.

But, I recently tried a new recipe that is changing my tune.

Cheesecake Lollipops.

These charming, little treats were easy enough to make, tasty, and a very pretty addition to our Mother's Day dinner party spread, indeed.

Start off by baking some cheesecake! Awww yeah!

Then, prepare to get messy. 'Cause you're gonna rip that cheesecake apart after its cooled and form nice, little balls.

Then, impale the the balls like you're fighting in Braveheart and freeze the little guys solid. Once they're good to go, dip them in your favorite chocolate flavor combinations!

What chocolaty flavors did I pick, you ask?:

Milk Chocolate and Peanut
Milk Chocolate and Andes Mints
White Chocolate
White Chocolate and Dark Chocolate

Yup, it sure is a sweet trip to the candy shop!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

The Easiest Way To Be The Best-Girlfriend-Ever

Go ahead.

Break out the unitard, frillies, and lace.

It's all well and good.

But, I'll let you in on a little secret. When your Mom said that the way to a man's heart was via his stomach, she wasn't too far off.

My super-hero specialties are my little secret, but, when my boo, addROC, was coming home after a long and snack-less day, I knew where my ass belonged.

The kitchen.

Ladies, throw on your sexiest teddy and heels.
We're making snacks.

Quick and Easy Crostini and Red Pepper Dip

First, I baked a fresh loaf of my famous, and nearly perfected French Bread. But, if you're not into baking, or pressed for time, just pick up a French loaf at your local supermarket.

Next, I cut up that bad boy into thin, round slices.

Heat up your oven to 450 degrees, paint the tops with olive oil and toast these guys until they are golden brown. It should only take around 10 minutes. But, keep a constant watch to prevent burning.

Now, onto the Red Pepper dip!

First, assemble your ingredients:

Yup, that's it:
1 Cup Roasted Red Peppers
4 oz Cream Cheese
8-10 Fresh Basil Leaves
2 Cloves Garlic (Medium to small size)

Now, just throw that stuff into a food processor or fancy-schmancy blender and whip it up!

Voila! Crostini and Red Pepper dip!

Now all you have to do is, lay out the goods...and wait for your lover to take the bait.

Then, take the time to revel in your Best-Girlfriend-Ever glory!

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

'Mole! 'Mole!

No, not that kind of mole.

Actually, I'm talkin' about the Guac-a-mole!
And, lord, do I LOVE guacamole.
Nothing says summer like some ooey-gooey, green-guac-goodness.

So, I trotted out to purchase supplies:

No Mexican Summer party should be without the usual suspects:
Tomato, onion, avocado, cilantro, jalapeño, lemons, limes, chips, salsa, red beans, garlic, and most importantly, Tequila.

So, I chopped up the goods, like so:

And, stir!

So amazing. Especially after many Margaritas and even more shots of Tequila!

'Mole! 'Mole!

Eat, drink, and celebrate the arrival of this Bitch's favorite time of year! Summer!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Gifts From The Matriarch

My Mom rocks.

Her finger is always on the pulse of our kitchen because I blab, blab, blab to her all the live-long day about addROC's many adventures in the great culinary abyss.

I'm lucky, because, she's not one of those boyfriend-hater Moms.

In fact, knowing I'm with addROC gives her comfort. Not only because she knows I'm loved and taken care of, but, most importantly, because she knows I'm well fed!

So, when it's time to give gifts to addROC, she's always thinkin' about food.

So, for his b-day this year, she got him a set of Le Creuset Crock Bowls.

Um, Sweeeeeeet!!!

So, addROC took his gifts, and did what he does best, cook up some food!

Tonight's special?

French Onion Soup!

Holla! (And, thanks Ma!)

Friday, May 2, 2008

Ramp Me, Baby.


All the live-long day.

Everyone who's anyone in the food community, and beyond, is talking about these wild leeks. Foodie friends, all the blogs, snooty and otherwise, it's insane. I had to know, what is soooo great about these little fuckers?

Why did I have to go to the Greenmarket in Union Square BEFORE work, just to make sure what seemed like Greenmarket contraband hadn't sold out? And, furthermore, WHY did I pay $6 for just two bushells? Eh? Eh?

Well, after much skepticism, I found out what the big frikkin' deal was with ramps.

They are delicious.

If I have to get up early to get the little buggers again, so help me God, I will.
It was a meal to remember, partly due to the mystery that was somehow solved, and partly due to addROC's superb execution. Which, will unfold below:

addROC Sautés Ramps and Prosciutto .

Then, adds pasta and a healthy amount of delicious Romano Cheese.

Plate and savor.


I annoy addROC with my obnoxious ramp songs.

But, take my word for it, they're worth singing about.

Get up early, and shake your putootie over to the Greenmarket for New York's Culinary Contraband!!!


Friday, April 25, 2008

2 Cakes To Rule Them All

addROC and I are now both officially ONE birthday away from landmark ages.

I turned 24 in early April, and addROC, or as I like to call him, Gramps, turned 29 just last night.

While I will, on occasion, search for crow's feet, I'm still far, far more concerned with birthday snacks.

There's nothing like celebrating with a big ol' birthday cake.
So this year, with both addROC and I clinging to our dear youths, as the ever-approaching, fat ol' round numbers edge closer, we decided that there is no time like the present to, as Marie Antoinette so fervently declared, "Let Them Eat Cake!!!"

addROC is the best. So, when I came home from work on my birthday I had this bad boy waiting for me!!! And, yes, it was a Funfetti Cake. It was awesome and mammoth. We ate it for days and days. It was glorious.

For addROC's birthday, I knew I had to make his favorite: Boston Creme Pie.

It was my maiden voyage with this cake, addROC's Mom provided me with the recipe that she used to make him every year, for every birthday.

I was intimidated. In the past, I have purchased said Boston Creme Pies at fine baking establishments. But, I did it, and it was reeeal good. Maybe not as good as his Mom's, but, I still get an A for effort. Right Gramps?

The Boston Creme Pie:

1. Make Cake.

2. Make Custard.

3. Combine Cake and Custard.

4. Drown Cake and Custard with Chocolate Glaze.

5. Feed the Birthday Boy!!! Happy Birthday addROC!!!

Frikkin' Yummy.

One Funfetti Cake. One Boston Creme Pie.
Two Cakes to Rule Them All

Happy Birthday!!!

Monday, April 21, 2008

Mary, Mary Quite Contrary: Seed Starting

(Painting By: Maxfield Parrish)

Spring has sprung, Nesters, and there is no time like the present.

Even if you are living in the tiniest apartment in Brooklyn, there is no excuse not to do a bit of gardening. Even if you've got just one viable window.

Fortunately for us, addROC and I have a great little roof space. And, while it maybe not be the Ritz, this year, I've decided I am going to go crazy and attempt a ridiculous roof garden.

Here are the the first group of seeds that I've started:

1. The Scarlet O'Hara Morning Glory.
2. Wildflower Perennial Mix.
3. Wildflower Bluebonnet Mix.
4. Sweet Peas (the flower).

I am supremely stoked.

Even more so, because these pictures are from almost a week ago! There have been some serious developments to my tray of peat starters! I will update you very soon so you can see the sprouts and the new flowers and veggies we've started, right here in our own little Brooklyn kitchen.

Seeds are cheap. So, head to K-Mart and load up on flowers, edibles, and all the garden amenities that will make starting your Spring garden easy!