Roasted root vegetables

img_2829Roasting vegetables in the oven is the perfect method for caramelizing and flavoring them but still keeping them moist and tender.

In this recipe from “My Paris Kitchen”,  I chose  carrots, parsnips, potatoes and Brussels sprouts.  David suggests using beets but I think they are so messy and did not want to color the rest of the vegetables.

After coating the mixture with oil, salt and pepper, I sprinkled some dried  thyme on top and put them in a preheated oven at 400 degrees.    The vegetables roasted for about 50 minutes, had a beautiful color, and were perfectly browned.

I served this with  an old standby,  Salmon and tomatoes en Papillote,  from “Around My French Table”,  by Dorie Greenspan.   Both  recipes are so easy to prepare and  go well together, but more importantly are  delicious.

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Potato chowder.

This recipe is called “potato chowder lots of ways”  from “Everyday Dorie” by Dorie Greenspan.  Depending upon the season you vary the vegetables but the main ingredient will be the potato.

The basic recipe,  which is the one that I am using here,  consists of leeks, onion, shallot, and garlic that is cooked in either bacon dripping or oil  until they have softened, then   add the chicken broth and the potatoes, cooking until the potatoes are soft enough to be smashed,  giving  the soup another texture.

Before serving,  add about 1/2 cup of either cream, half and half or milk.  I used milk in my soup but I think that cream would be a better choice.  When you are ready to plate the soup you can add a dollop of  sour cream or yogurt and sprinkle the bacon bits on top. Since I did not use the bacon to cook with, I just topped mine with parsley.

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This was a delicious soup, easy to make using vegetables that we always have on hand, and I am looking forward to trying the other suggestions using spring or fall vegetables that Dorie  mentions in her book.

 

 

Tangerine-Champagne Sorbet

This is the perfect recipe for the New Year of 2019.

I’m  off to a good start, not only did I substitute Clementine for Tangerine, I actually purchased a bottle of juice rather than go thru squeezing a lot of fruit.img_2770

Also, I did not use an ice-cream maker.  I mixed up all the ingredients and put that in the freezer and every two hours or so I would take it out and give it a good stir.

The combination is very tasty and the end result is so refreshing.

Since we were having champagne to celebrate the New Year, along with our traditional cooked lentils,  I was lucky enough to save some for this recipe.

Happy New Year to everyone.

 

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Bûche De Noël

This was a recipe that took a lot of planning.  I wanted it to be so perfect and I kept going over and over it hoping to get it straight.

I decided to make the little mushrooms the first day since they could be held at room temperature for a few days.   I actually had to make two separate batches since the first ones looked a little pathetic to me.  I found it to be a messy job using a plastic baggie so the second batch I did by hand.  Not great, but at least they were round.

The second day I worked on the Genoise and that wasn’t too difficult.  I  rolled it without a problem and was pleased that it did not crack.

As for the filling, I thought it was delicious.  I didn’t  use the orange peel because I don’t like fruit cooked that way.  Besides, with the chocolate in there, that’s enough for me.

After filling the cake I rolled it again in the plastic wrap and put it into the refrigerator overnight so I could finish the decorating the next day.

I think I cut the branches incorrectly because they did not look exactly as David had in the book, but when they were covered up it didn’t seem to matter at all.

The chocolate icing was very easy to prepare and went on the cake smoothly.

All in all I am pleased with the results, and most importantly, I’m  glad we are finished with that recipe.IMG_2747

Roasted Squash Hummus

This month’s selection from EVERYDAY DORIE is for toasted squash hummus that can be prepared with either Acorn or Butternut squash.

Even though it has the usual tahini, it also has the addition of za’atar, and pomegranate molasses.

It can be served with fresh vegetables or pita, but Dorie likes to spread some yogurt on the plate or bowl and pile the hummus on top with a drizzle of oil and additional pomegranate seeds.

I roasted the butternut squash in the oven and under the broiler for some additional browning, and then after cooling I scraped the flesh and mashed it very fine before adding all the rest of the ingredients.

I have never used pomegranate molasses before so I had no idea what it would do to this recipe.  I thought perhaps it would turn red or something, but it just made it sweet.

Since I was expecting something like the chickpea style hummus I was a bit disappointed with the flavor. however, everyone has different tastes.fullsizeoutput_d7c

Comté and ham wafers

fullsizeoutput_d77The first time I saw this recipe I knew I would like it and I wasn’t  disappointed.

I used a sharp cheddar  instead of the comté as that was on hand, and as delicious as it turned out,  it was a strong flavor.   I think the comté is a more mild cheese and would be the best choice for this recipe.

I am sorry I didn’t  use my box grater to cut up the cheese, but David suggests a chef’s knife.  I found that to be a bit difficult to make the pieces tiny enough, and when everything was mixed together I had trouble rolling it into a log.  That said, after an hour or so in the fridge it did slice easily and I was able to patch the parts that crumbled.

The baking times were a bit off, but perhaps that could be my oven.  I actually baked them for a total of 14 minutes after  rotating them in the oven.

This is a delicious recipe, and would go very well with a glass of wine or drink of your choice.

David mentions that these are really good fresh from the oven and he is definitely correct on that score because when I tasted them the next day they weren’t as crisp.   I am going to try to freeze them and then reheat and see how they turn out.

 

 

Tabbouleh

Tabbouleh is a recipe that I am not familiar with and that’s  the fun  thing about cooking with a group such as ours.  When we come across recipes that we know nothing about, or if it had not been chosen for us in the schedule, we would have definitely passed it by.

That is the case with tabbouleh, this week’s recipe for the extra edition.

Not saying I particularly enjoyed the recipe, but I did learn all about bulgar wheat, and also, that  I definitely do not like parsley as a salad and I was glad that I had cut the recipe using only  1/4 of all the ingredients.   Maybe if I had used pita or flat bread to go along with this it might have tasted differently.  However, that said, I just topped a few chips to show the results.

I made the recipe for the experience and I must admit, it looked pretty.

At least Tricia enjoyed it, so it was not a complete waste of time and ingredients

 

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Maple Syrup & Mustard Brussels Sprouts

 

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An absolutely delightful new flavor for an old standby.  In this recipe Dorie adds the lovely mix of maple syrup and mustard to finish off these delicious  Brussels sprouts.

I’ve  been cooking sprouts with sautéed onions and bacon for many years and it has always been a favorite in our house but I think this new recipe may be taking its place on the Thanksgiving table this year.

I decided to cut the recipe in half since I was cooking for only one this time,  just the perfect amount so that I will not be eating it for days.

I steamed a half pound of sprouts with the slivered garlic and shallot, and then cooked them in the bacon and oil to get that  nice browned coloring.  Actually, I think the color on mine might be a little too well done.   Adding the mustard and maple  syrup mixture really brought everything together.  Topped off with the chopped bacon pieces, it was perfect.

Butternut squash bread soup

This was an amazing recipe with such  wonderful  ingredients.

I prepared half the recipe and that was more than enough for two meals for two people. I  served it with a  mixed green salad that was a perfect accompaniment.fullsizeoutput_d04IMG_2480

The onions cooked with the garlic and herbs in the stock gave it such a delightful flavor.  I layered  the squash and the bread, adding the onion mix with the stock and topping it with Fontina cheese.

Since I had prepared Mardi’s bread recipe from her new book ” in the French kitchen with kids” the day before, I decided to use the second loaf in this recipe.   I know David suggests sourdough bread, but since it is a hearty type bread it worked beautifully, and was so delicious.

The final addition of  the Fontina  and Parmesan cheeses spread on top made this all come together.

An absolutely delightful meal for a cold winter dinner.

Bay leaf pound cake with orange glaze

I steeped the three bay leaves that were called for in the melted butter for an hour before adding it to the flour but I don’t think they gave out much of a flavor.   David mentions using unsprayed bay leaves but I have know idea what that means.  I used dried leaves and hoped they were okay.

The rest of the leaves were layered on the bottom of the pan before adding the batter, and surprisingly stayed in one place and looked very nice when baked,  although I had to remind people they were there before eating.

As for the orange glaze, it was delicious.  Instead of using Grand Marnier or Cointreau, I used  orange extract  instead.  It worked well and brought out the flavor of the orange zest even more.   A very enjoyable dessert, and I will be making it again,  it is certainly a quick and easy cake to whip up anytime.fullsizeoutput_ce8fullsizeoutput_cf3fullsizeoutput_cef