Category Archives: Test Kitchen Tuesdays

Let’s Get Cooking: Emeril’s One-Pot Blogger Cooking Party!

Click on the Photo for Pre-order Info

I have been a fan of Emeril Lagasse since the first time I saw him on Emeril Live, his unpretentious style and love of food infectious.  It is an honor to be chosen to participate in Emeril’s One-Pot Blogger Cooking Party to help spread the word about his newest release, Sizzling Skillets and Other One-Pot Wonders.

So what does this mean?

♦  For Emeril, 20 bloggers will create some buzz for the launch with three posts each week about what they are cooking from the book. If you are familiar with him at all, you know that any party Emeril-style is filled with fantastic food and fun!

♦  The bloggers receive some sweet perks like Emeril’s book, serving bowls, a jar of Essence, and a $50 reimbursement for foodstuff.

♦  YOU get the inside scoop, a preview of recipes, and a chance to win a copy of Sizzling Skillets and Other One-Pot Wonders and the zak! Emeril Flames 7-piece Table Art Serving Bowl Set.

So, stay tuned, Monday we’ll start with a recipe preview of Cajun Shrimp Stew—I’ll have it posted early so there’s time to get it going for Monday Night Football. Of course, I’ll include tips for gluten-free or any other customized versions you would like to see.  Let’s get cooking!

Shared on the following Blog Hops:
Premeditated Leftovers Gallery of Favorites

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Bacon, Leek & Cheddar Mini Quiches: Test Kitchen Tuesday

This weekend I am hosting a bridal shower for a friend’s daughter, who is really more like family. Do you know what it’s like having neighbors or friends that have been through thick and thin with you and you consider their kids, your kids? Well, that is what makes this bridal shower so special.  I love cooking, but cooking for a gathering of friends rates at the top of my favorite things list.

These Bacon, Leek & Cheddar Mini Quiches at FineCooking.com will be a tasty addition to the list of light lunch ideas—and a great excuse to buy a new pan.  To accommodate all of our guests, I will adjust this recipe for a gluten-free and lactose-free menu, I like that I can make them in advance.  Who doesn’t need more recipes for make-ahead hors d’oeuvresI hope you join me in this delicious adventure!

In the next week or so:

1.  Make the recipe (posted below)
2.  Leave a comment describing your experience, opinion, adjustments, etc.
3.  Subscribe to comments if you want an update to see what others have done.
4.  If you are especially please with your creation, send a photo to savoringtoday@comcast.net, or include a link to your site.

Bacon, Leek & Cheddar Mini Quiches

Source: by Kate Hays, Fine Cooking
Yield: 4 dozen
3/4     lb.  bacon — cut into medium dice
3       cups  medium-diced leeks — washed and drained
(about 3 leeks, white and light green parts only)
1 1/4   cups  half-and-half
1        cup  grated extra-sharp Cheddar (4 oz.)
2        large  eggs
2        large  egg yolks
2        tablespoons chopped fresh thyme leaves
1        teaspoons  kosher salt
1/2      teaspoons  freshly ground black pepper
1/4      teaspoons  ground nutmeg
Cooking spray
2        1.1 lb.  packages frozen puff pastry sheets — thawed according to package directions (preferably Pepperidge Farm brand)
Flour as needed for rolling out the dough

In a medium skillet over medium-high heat, cook the bacon until browned and crispy, 6 to 8 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to a plate lined with a paper towel. Pour off all but 1 to 2 Tbs. of fat in the skillet. Set the skillet over medium heat and cook the leeks, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Let cool slightly.

While the leeks cool, combine the half-and-half, Cheddar, eggs, egg yolks, thyme, salt, pepper, and nutmeg in a medium bowl. Add the cooled leeks and the bacon and stir to combine.

Assemble the mini quiches: Lightly spray four mini muffin tins (or two if your tins have two dozen cups) with cooking spray.

Working with one sheet of puff pastry dough at a time, use a floured rolling pin to roll the dough on a lightly floured work surface into a 10- by 18-inch rectangle. Stamp out 3-inch circles of dough with a cookie cutter and gently press the rounds into the mini muffin tins, making sure that each round is centered and that the dough extends up to the top of the tin. Fill each with about 1 Tbs. of filling-you can fill right to the top of the dough. Repeat with the remaining dough and filling until all the filling is used. You may not need all the dough; save leftovers for another use. You can bake the quiches immediately or freeze and bake them later (see Make-Ahead Tip, below).

To bake: Heat the oven to 400°F and position racks in the top and bottom thirds of the oven. Bake the quiches, switching the position of the tins halfway through baking, until the filling is puffed and the crust is golden brown, about 20 minutes.

Make Ahead Tips: Unbaked quiches can be frozen for up to a month. Freeze the quiches in the muffin tins for about 2 hours, or until set. Remove them from the tins and transfer them to an airtight container, setting parchment or plastic wrap between layers, or seal them in a plastic bag. To bake, transfer the quiches back to the tins and bake immediately, without thawing. Baking time for frozen quiches will be about 30 to 35 minutes.

NOTES: You’ll need four mini muffin tins for this recipe (or two if your tins have 24 cups). If you don’t have enough muffin tins, you can assemble the quiches in batches, storing the remaining egg mixture and dough in the refrigerator until you’re ready to use it.

Beef Stew with Rice, Onions, and Tomatoes [Boeuf À La Catalane]: Test Kitchen Tuesday

Yesterday was the birthday of the late, great, culinary icon Julia Child, so it seemed only fitting to include a recipe from Mastering the Art of French Cooking for Test Kitchen Tuesday.  It has been a delight to glean from her style and expertise in this two-volume set—I wholeheartedly relate to her affinity for butter and cream. In honor of her birthday, HuffPost Food compiled clips from The French Chef, Julia Child & Company and Julia & Jacques: Cooking at Home—you’ll want to check it out and reminisce.

Beef Stew with Rice, Onions, and Tomatoes [Boeuf À La Catalane] is described in the book as a hearty dish from the Spanish-Mediterranean corner of France.  I have included some of the detail of the instructions, simply to honor Julia’s style and original voice, but have adjusted for American bacon, canned tomatoes (unless you have a garden or a nearby farmers market), and the fact that a Dutch oven will work just fine in lieu of a casserole.  Mine is in the oven right now and the aroma is divine!

I hope you join me in this delicious adventure!

In the next week or so:

1.  Make the recipe (posted below)
2.  Leave a comment describing your experience, opinion, adjustments, or suggestions.  ♥ If you do focus on altering it to economize, choose healthier ingredients or techniques, make it gluten-free/allergy sensitive, embellish for entertaining, or incorporate into batch/once-a-month cooking, please mention that too.
3.  Subscribe to comments so you can see what others have done.
4.  If you are especially proud of your creation, send a photo to savoringtoday@comcast.net, or include a link to your site with your comment.

Beef Stew with Rice, Onions, and Tomatoes (Boeuf A La Catalane)

Source: Mastering the Art of French Cooking Vol I, by Julia Child, Louisette Bertholle, and Simone Beck — Copyright: 2001 by Alfred A. Knopf
Serves 6
1/4       pound  chunk of bacon
2         tablespoons  olive oil
3         pounds  lean stewing beef — cut into squares 2 1/2″ across and 1″ thick
1 1/2    cups  onions — sliced
1         cup  raw white rice — unwashed
1         cup  dry white wine or dry vermouth
2         cups  beef stock or canned beef bouillon
salt to taste
1/4       teaspoon  pepper
2         cloves  garlic — mashed
1/2        teaspoon  thyme
Pinch   saffron
1          bay leaf — crumbled
1          pound  tomatoes — peeled, seeded, juiced, and chopped —
(about 1 1/2 cups pulp)
1          cup  Swiss cheese or Parmesan cheese — grated

Preheat oven to 325°

“Remove rind and cut bacon into lardons (1 1/2-inch strips, 3/8 of an inch thick.) Simmer in 1 quart of water for 10 minutes. Drain, dry, and brown lightly in oil in the skillet. Remove with a slotted spoon to the casserole.”–Julia

Since bacon in America is smoked, you may not want to lose that flavor by simmering it in water first, but you certainly can. Heat the olive oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat and lightly brown the bacon. Remove from the pot and transfer to a platter, set aside.

Dry the meat so it will brown well. Lightly salt and pepper the meat.  Brown the meat on all sides in the rendered bacon fat. Once browned, place it on the platter with the bacon, and set aside.

Lower heat to medium-low, and brown the onions. Remove and transfer to the platter with the meat, and set aside.  Add additional oil to the Dutch oven if too dry and cook the rice over moderate heat for 2 to 3 minutes until it turns milky in color. Transfer to a separate bowl and set aside until later.

Add the wine and stir over medium heat to dissolve any fond in the pan. Return the meat and onions to the pan and add stock or bouillon almost to the height of the meat.  Stir in the pepper, garlic, and herbs. Bring to a simmer over medium-low heat, cover tightly, and set in lower position of preheated oven for 1 hour.

Remove casserole from oven. Stir in the tomatoes, bring to a simmer, cover, and return to the oven for an additional hour of simmering. When the meat is almost fork tender, remove pot from oven. Raise oven heat to 375°.

Skim off any excess fat. Stir in the rice. Bring to a simmer over medium-low heat, cover, and set back in the oven for 20 minutes until the rice is cooked. Do not stir the rice. At the end of the time it should be tender and have absorbed almost all the liquid.  Just before serving, fold the cheese into the beef and rice.

Shared on the following Blog Hops:
The Nourishing Gourmet Pennywise Platter Thursday

Zucchini Ginger Cupcakes: Test Kitchen Tuesday

Perusing stacks of old cooking magazines, I picked up the July 2006 issue of Gourmet noticing Zucchini Ginger Cupcakes was dog-eared, perfect for Test Kitchen Tuesday.  Ginger and orange are well-matched, the zucchini is sure to keep the crumb moist, these are a must-try.  My plan is to convert it to a gluten-free recipe I can take to showers or potlucks, so wish me luck!

If you are like me, you have favorite issues of magazines squirreled away somewhere.  When Gourmet ceased publishing, I was glad to have my old copies and felt a little less guilty about my messy, piled-up stash.  I miss Gourmet landing in my mailbox as it once did.  Gourmet.com is still around, but it is not the same as holding a glossy issue in my hands, ogling its contents.  Sifting through this issue was like visiting with an old friend. 🙂

I hope you join me in this delicious adventure!

In the next week or so:

1.  Make the recipe (posted below)
2.  Leave a comment describing your experience, opinion, adjustments, or suggestions.  ♥ If you focus on altering it to economize, choose healthier ingredients, make it gluten-free/allergy sensitive, embellish for entertaining, or incorporate into batch/once-a-month cooking, please mention that too.
3.  Subscribe to comments so you can see what others have done.
4.  If you are especially proud of your creation, send a photo to savoringtoday@comcast.net, or include a link to your site with your comment.

Zucchini Ginger Cupcakes

Source: Gourmet July 2006
Yields: 12
For cupcakes
1/3    cup crystallized ginger (1 3/4 oz) — coarsely chopped
2       cups all-purpose flour
1        teaspoon  ground ginger
1        teaspoon  ground cinnamon
1        teaspoon  finely grated fresh orange zest
1        teaspoon  salt
1        teaspoon  baking soda
1/2    teaspoon  baking powder
2        cups coarsely grated zucchini (2 medium)
3/4    cup mild olive oil
3/4    cup mild honey
2        large  eggs — lightly beaten
1         teaspoon  vanilla
For frosting
8         oz  cream cheese — softened
2         tablespoons  unsalted butter — softened
1/2     cup confectioners sugar
1         teaspoon  vanilla
1/2     teaspoon  ground ginger
1/2     teaspoon  ground cinnamon
1/2     teaspoon  finely grated fresh orange zest
12       paper liners

Bake cupcakes:
Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 350°F. Line muffin cups with liners. Pulse crystallized ginger in food processor until finely ground, then add flour, ground ginger, cinnamon, zest, salt, baking soda, and baking powder and pulse until combined.

Whisk together zucchini, oil, honey, eggs and vanilla in a medium bowl, then stir in flour mixture until just combined.  Divide batter among muffin cups and bake until golden and a wooden pick or skewer inserted in center of a cupcake comes out clean, 20 to 24 minutes. Cool in pan on rack 10 minutes. Remove cupcakes from pan and cool completely, 1 hour.

Make frosting:
Beat together frosting ingredients with an electric mixer at high-speed until combined well and fluffy, 3 to 5 minutes. Frost tops of cooled cupcakes.

Tuscan Garlic Chicken Pasta: Test Kitchen Tuesday

This is one of those recipes I have had tucked away for a long time–anything with six cloves of garlic has promise, right.  Pasta dishes are ideal for a quick weeknight meal, use Tinkyada brown rice pasta and it’s gluten-free too. Basil is at its peak right now, available at most farmers markets—I anticipate that is what makes this dish really sing. We shall see!

I hope you join me in this delicious adventure!

In the next week or so:

1.  Make the recipe (posted below)
2.  Leave a comment describing your experience, opinion, adjustments, or suggestions.  ♥ If you do focus on altering it to economize, choose healthier ingredients or techniques, make it gluten-free/allergy sensitive, embellish for entertaining, or incorporate into batch/once-a-month cooking, please mention that too.
3.  Subscribe to comments so you can see what others have done.
4.  If you are especially proud of your creation, snap a photo and send it to me at savoringtoday@comcast.net so it can be included in this post, or include a link to your site with your comment.

Tuscan Garlic Chicken Pasta

Source: http://www.cookscountry.com/recipe.asp?recipeids=5444
Serves 4
6       garlic cloves — minced
1/4    teaspoon  red pepper flakes
6       tablespoons  extra-virgin olive oil
4       boneless, skinless chicken breasts — about 1 1/2 pounds
Salt and pepper
1        pound  penne pasta
1        bag  baby arugula — 5-ounce
1/2     cup  chopped fresh basil leaves
6        tablespoons  fresh lemon juice
1        cup  grated Parmesan cheese

1. Bring 4 quarts water to boil in large pot. Meanwhile, combine garlic, pepper flakes, and oil in bowl and microwave until garlic is golden and fragrant, about 1 minute.

2. Pat chicken dry with paper towels and season with salt and pepper. Transfer 1 tablespoon oil from bowl with garlic mixture to large skillet and heat over medium-high heat until just smoking. Add chicken and cook until well browned and cooked through, about 5 minutes per side. Transfer to cutting board and tent with foil. Let rest 5 minutes, then slice thin and set aside.

3. Add 1 tablespoon salt and pasta to boiling water and cook until al dente. Reserve ½ cup cooking water. Drain pasta and return to pot. Stir in sliced chicken, arugula, basil, lemon juice, Parmesan, and remaining garlic mixture, adding reserved pasta water as needed. Season with salt and pepper. Serve.

NOTE: Microwaving the garlic, pepper flakes, and olive oil until fragrant blooms the flavors and infuses the oil.

Coffee Rub for Ribs: Test Kitchen Tuesday

Grilling for more than 20 years with a serious love for coffee that spans the same time, I’m not sure why it has taken so long to try a coffee rub to season ribs.  After reviewing a number of options for Test Kitchen Tuesday, I landed on this recipe from Recipes Planet, persuaded by the author’s description. He doesn’t include a recipe for cooking the ribs, so my plan is to use my own Missouri-Style Ribs recipe, using this coffee rub on beef back ribs.

I hope you join me in this delicious adventure!

In the next week or so:

1.  Make the recipe (posted below)
2.  Leave a comment describing your experience, adjustments, or suggestions.
3.  Subscribe to comments so you can see what others have done.
4.  If you are especially proud of your creation, snap a photo and send it to me at savoringtoday@comcast.net so it can be included in this post or include a link to your site with your comment.

Coffee Rub for Ribs

Source: Recipes Planet
Serves: 4
2      tablespoons  freshly ground coffee
2      tablespoon  kosher salt
2      tablespoons  paprika
1       tablespoon  ancho chile powder
1       tablespoon  dark brown sugar
1       teaspoon  oregano
1       teaspoon  garlic powder
1       teaspoon  onion powder
1       teaspoon  ground black pepper
1/2     teaspoon  cocoa powder
1/2     teaspoon  coriander

Note from Recipes Planet author: Not a coffee drinker myself, I wasn’t sure how this would go over, but I ended up loving it-the way the coffee plays with the other spices, smoke, and meat. And the coffee-ness didn’t dominate. Rather, the ground beans added an earthy quality to an already complex mix of flavors. The ribs eaten dry were fantastic, but even better with a coating of stout barbecue sauce.

Yogurt-Marinated Grilled Chicken: Test Kitchen Tuesday

Boneless, skinless grilled chicken breasts are easy to make and freeze, versatile for an array of meals throughout the week.  Though lean and quick cooking, chicken breast needs help in the flavor department, so I am always on the hunt for good marinades. This recipe from Bon Appétit looks promising for this week’s Test Kitchen Tuesday—keeping the grill lit and the oven turned off during hot summer weather.

I hope you join me in this delicious adventure!

In the next week or so:

1.  Make the recipe (posted below)
2.  Leave a comment describing your experience, opinion, adjustments, or suggestions.  ♥ If you do focus on altering it to economize, choose healthier ingredients or techniques, make it gluten-free/allergy sensitive, embellish for entertaining, or incorporate into batch/once-a-month cooking, please mention that too.
3.  Subscribe to comments so you can see what others have done.
4.  If you are especially proud of your creation, snap a photo and send it to me at savoringtoday@comcast.net so it can be included in this post or include a link to your site with your comment.

Yogurt-Marinated Grilled Chicken

Source: http://www.bonappetit.com/recipes/2011/07/yogurt-marinated-grilled-chicken
Serves: 6
8      skinless, boneless chicken breasts (about 3 pounds)
2      cups plain whole-milk yogurt
1       cup fresh cilantro leaves and stems — coarsely chopped
1/2     large  onion — coarsely chopped
1/3     cup olive oil, plus more for brushing
6       garlic cloves — coarsely chopped
1       tablespoon  fresh lime juice
1       tablespoon  garam masala
2      teaspoons  kosher salt, plus more for seasoning
1       teaspoon  freshly ground black pepper
1       2″ piece  fresh ginger — peeled and chopped

Working with one chicken breast at a time, put chicken between 2 sheets of waxed paper and pound to 1/2″ thickness. Transfer chicken breasts to a resealable plastic bag.

Combine the remaining ingredients in a food processor and blend until smooth. Pour yogurt mixture over chicken, seal bag, and turn to coat. Marinate chicken in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours or overnight.

Build a medium fire in a charcoal grill, or heat a gas grill to medium-high. Brush grill grates with oil. Scrape excess marinade off chicken; season with salt. Grill chicken, turning once, until browned and cooked through, 3-4 minutes per side.

NOTES : This dish is truly indestructible because the cutlets marinate in lots of yogurt, olive oil, and salt. That way they stay juicy, briny, and flavorful. Because they’re pounded thin, they cook quickly and evenly, so there’s not a lot of time spent poking and prodding and stressing about whether they’re done.

Shared on the following Blog Hops:
Real Food Whole Health Fresh Bites Friday