Archive for the ‘most recommended’ Category

Minestrone soup

In most recommended, recipe on January 24, 2011 at 8:17 am

Alice Waters is the undisputed reigning queen of California cuisine (read: fresh, local, and seasonal). In fact, she’s pretty much the face of healthy eating everywhere. I swear I read her name in every article about Ways to Eat Now. Maybe there’s just an Alice Waters robot out there who provides quotes automatically and the real Alice Waters is actually off questing delicious produce.

I have been lucky enough to eat at her Berkeley restaurant Chez Panisse (the cafe, though, not downstairs), and what sings through her cooking is that freshness. Everything has a zest to it, even when ingredients are prepared very simply.

For whatever reason, I’ve never really been drawn to her recipes in my own kitchen. Mad has her book The Art of Simple Food, and I’m going to blame the fact that the hardcover copy is just too darn pretty to cook with (I get nervous about pretty cookbooks. How will they look when they’ve had close encounters of the oil kind?!). But during cleanse week, I was looking to branch out, soup-wise, and came across her minestrone recipe.

Wow. Wow wow wow. I didn’t expect that it would be that good, especially when you are used to eating Campbell’s very tomato-y kind. This is a fresh, almost tangy minestrone.

Despite having consciously made a grocery list that same day, I didn’t have some of the ingredients she used, so I’m writing mine up with how I did it.

Minestrone soup
Adapted from Alice Waters’ The Art of Simple Food

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Basic crepe

In most recommended, recipe on October 6, 2010 at 8:51 am

Basic crepeThis crepe recipe is a time machine. It was one of the first recipes I ever found on the internet. It was definitely one of the first time I cooked something that I had never seen my mom make. Most importantly, it was for a school project for French class in high school.

Slightly related side-note: how did making crepes help me learn French? Does making a volcano or a pyramid teach you history? I think actual cooking lessons might be helpful, but these potlucks and crafts we had were sheer bribery.

Although. It’s such a simple recipe, and I’ve used it dozens of times since then, so I guess I can’t complain too much.

Basic crepes (via Allrecipes) Read the rest of this entry »

Baked mac and cheese (and bonus rosemary-apricot pork tenderloin)

In most recommended, recipe on October 6, 2010 at 8:49 am

Mac & cheese and rosemary-apricot pork

This weekend I tried to make pasta for the first time. The recipe was deceptively easy – mix flour and salt in mound on a cutting board, then crack eggs in mound and slowly mix with hands.

From the first egg it was a disaster. I guess my mound was more of a plateau, and egg started running all over the counter, and I had to start mixing it really fast. And it was so sticky! (That probably should have been my first clue).

After the dough sat, I aimed to roll it out. “Who needs a pasta maker?” I said to myself. “Italian grandmothers used wine bottles to roll out pasta*!” So I sat out with my rolling pin, heaps of flour, and some butternut squash filling.

Erm. The dough was really hard to roll out, and I ended up with 2 inch by 2 inch very thick squares of pasta with probably a drop of filling. I dropped the little buggers into boiling water anyways, thinking maybe they would become more like ravioli I recognized.

Not so. My roommates looked nervously at the small bricks on their plates. I tried to alleviate the matter with lots of thyme butter, but the fact remained this was a dinner FAIL.**

So I’m not posting that recipe. Instead, I’m posting a recipe that I love, that is comforting and delicious and I should be able to make with my eyes closed, but still crack open my How to Cook Everything Vegetarian.

*That may or may not be true.
** And no, you totally don’t get pictures of it.

Baked mac and cheese (and bonus rosemary-apricot pork tenderloin) Read the rest of this entry »