Saturday, November 18, 2017

Coffee Glazed Pork Chops with Bacony Brussels Sprouts

This month, I've dusted off yet another of my infrequently used cookbooks, French Food at Home, by Laura Calder. In looking through the book and deciding what to make, I was struck by the simplicity of the recipes, particularly in the chapter titled Dinner Fairly Fast....who doesn't want good tasting food quickly?

The first recipe I made was A Good Coffee Chop (page 102). I used my cast iron pan set on high heat to give the meat a good sear, then lowered the heat to cook it through. We really enjoyed these beautifully caramelized, juicy pork chops. The coffee used to deglaze the pan at the end produced a rich tasting sauce that wasn't obviously coffee-flavoured. So good!
In the chapter on side dishes, I found a recipe for Bacony Brussels Sprouts Leaves (page 179) that was a fairly quick way to achieve caramelized Brussels sprouts. I ignored the vegetable prep instructions that involved removing the leaves of the sprouts and discarding the centres. Some leaves came loose during trimming but the bulk of my dish consisted of thinly sliced sprouts. They were briefly sautéed then combined with crisp bacon bits. Cooked this way, they retained so much of their colour and texture and didn't taste at all cabbage-y.

Both dishes were delicious and I've bookmarked them to make again.
I'm linking this post to Cookbook Countdown hosted by Kitchen Flavours and Emily's Cooking (Makan2) Foray.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Brown Sugar Tart - Tuesdays with Dorie

This week's Tuesdays with Dorie project was a simple tart that required only a few ingredients apart from the baked tart shell: heavy cream, eggs, sea salt and lots of brown sugar. As you can imagine, it was very sweet.
There's only one person in my family who likes this kind of sugary custard tart and he was quite pleased that he had it all to himself (a half recipe that made a 6" tart). My husband had his first slice with homemade pear sorbet and enjoyed the rest plain.

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Roast Fennel-Orange Chicken with Crunchy Butternut Squash Spirals

This Mediterranean-inspired roast chicken dish is an easy, one-pan dish that produces moist, beautifully bronzed chicken and tender fennel and onion, all subtly flavoured with orange and thyme.
A mixture of orange juice, orange zest, thyme and olive oil provides the flavour for the chicken, which is first dipped into it, then arranged on a bed of sliced fennel, onion and orange. In lieu of the extra olive oil called for in the recipe, I drizzled the remaining orange-thyme-oil chicken dip over the entire pan of chicken and vegetables before roasting.
An equally effortless side dish of roasted butternut squash spirals (they need only 10 minutes in the oven!) topped with crunchy herbed breadcrumbs was its accompaniment. 


Both recipes are from the book I've been cooking from this month, Modern Jewish Cooking by Leah Koenig: Roast Chicken with Fennel and Orange, page 188, which can also be found here; an adaptation of Roasted Delicata Squash with Thyme Bread Crumbs, page 108.

I'm linking this post to Cookbook Countdown hosted by Kitchen Flavours and Emily's Cooking (Makan2) Foray.

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Moka Dupont - Tuesdays with Dorie

This week's project for Tuesdays with Dorie was one from the "Fancy Cake" chapter of Baking Chez Moi and required no baking. Essentially, it was an ice box cake comprising alternating layers of rich chocolate buttercream and espresso-dipped cookies.

The recommended cookies aren't available here so I bought low-sugar, high fibre cookies, not for their so-called health benefits but for their size and scalloped edges alone.
The chocolate buttercream was very rich and buttery and, as warned by the author, gritty in texture. I didn't care much for it on its own, but in combination with the cookies, the flavour of the cake was quite good and the chewiness of the bran in the cookies I used detracted from the graininess of the buttercream. I thought it was fine but the chocoholics in the family loved it.