“I keep the subject of my inquiry constantly before me, and wait till the first dawning opens gradually, by little and little, into a full and clear light.” – Isaac Newton

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Dilled Shrimp Salad for Lunch

Today, Lynne cooked Dilled Shrimp Salad for lunch:

 

 

You can find the recipe here: Dilled Shrimp Salad

It is a very healthy and tasty meal. Sometimes, we just poach the shrimp per this recipe and then have them as a shrimp cocktail with Bookbinders sauce.

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Posted under: Food and Cooking • by Rick on 02/23/2013 at 09:12 AM
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Sunday, October 21, 2012

Chicken Liver Paté

Yesterday, in preparation for the upcoming holidays, I made a batch of chicken liver paté. This time I used a recipe from Emeril Lagasse. In the past, I’ve used a somewhat different recipe, which I modify slightly.

In either recipe, start with fresh raw chicken livers, cleaned of any “hangy on bits”, rinsed well, and marinated in milk for a couple of hours. The milk marinade removes the gamey-ness of the livers and makes for a milder flavored paté.

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While marinating, prepare your other ingredients: a cup of finely chopped yellow onion (about one small onion); two teaspoons of finely chopped garlic (two large cloves); two tablespoons of green peppercorns (drained); two bay leaves; a teaspoon of fresh thyme leaves, chopped.

 

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After marinating, drain the livers well. While they are draining, sauté the yellow onion in four tablespoons of butter. When softened, add finely chopped garlic and cook until fragrant. Add the chicken livers, half of the peppercorns, the bay leaves, thyme, 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 1/2 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper.

Sauté for about 5 minutes until the livers are brown on the outside, but if you cut into one, still pink in the middle. Add 1/4 cup of Cognac and continue cooking until the juices are reduced and the livers are just cooked through.

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Remove from the heat, allow to cool for a while then add to a food processor and puree until smooth. Add the remaining 4 tablespoons of butter, one at at time and pulse to blend well. Remove blade from the processor scraping all the goodness from it. Stir in the remaining tablespoon of green peppercorns.

Pour into 3 or 4 small ramekins and cover well with plastic wrap. Place in the refrigerator for at least six hours.

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Serve spread on toast and a nice red wine or champagne. A bit of chopped parsley dresses it up some. Cornichons are a great accompaniment.

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Posted under: Food and Cooking • by Rick on 10/21/2012 at 06:24 AM
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Sunday, October 07, 2012

Chicken in a Pot

Sometimes Lynne and I really struggle with what to cook for dinner. “What do you feel like?” … “I don’t know.” … “Well? Fish? Seafood? Chicken? Pork? Beef? A salad?”

We were engaged in this dialog yesterday when we settled quickly on Chicken in a Pot. The recipe is a way to slow cook a roaster chicken in its own juices, flavored by a bit of aromatic veggies and some herbs. It always comes out moist and delicious and it makes its own gravy. If you like crisp skin, you won’t get it with this recipe.

We decided to cook the Hen-in-the-Woods mushroom we found in our back yard, along with some glazed carrots and mashed potatoes to accompany the chicken. If you are a member of Lynne’s blog and have been keep up with it, you know the story of the mushroom. If not, I’ll just say that we found a delicious, edible mushroom in the back yard and decided to pick it for this dish.

In this blog post, I’ll walk you through the preparation of the meal.

First, do the prep work. Coarsely chop the aromatics—a small onion, a rib of celery and a few cloves of garlic. You’ll want a sprig of rosemary and a bay leaf too.

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Next, wash the chicken in cold water, trim any feathers and fat, dry thoroughly with paper towels and liberally sprinkle with salt and pepper.

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Heat some olive oil in a Dutch oven large enough to hold the chicken and put the chicken in, breast side down. Put in the aromatics and herbs and cook about 5 or 6 minutes until the breast has browned slightly and the vegetables start to soften.

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Then, using a wooden spoon or two, turn the chicken over. Continue to cook for another 5 or 6 minutes, stirring the vegetables occasionally. You want them to start to caramelize and brown some.

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Then remove from the heat and cover with aluminum foil and a tight-fitting lid. (You don’t want any steam to escape during the cooking.)

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Place the pot on the bottom rack in an oven preheated to 250°F. Let it cook for 90 minutes or more for a really big chicken like this one. When it is done, remove from the pot, tent with foil and allow it to stand for 15 or 20 minutes.

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Meantime pour the drippings in the pot into a degreaser and allow to sit for 5 minutes. Pour the degreased liquid into a sauce pan, squeeze in half a lemon and allow to simmer to reduce. This juice is wonderful spooned over the sliced chicken and mashed potatoes.

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When the chicken in about 15 or 20 minutes from coming out of the oven, prepare you potatoes and carrots. For the potatoes, I just cut a couple of yellow potatoes into chunks, put into salted water and bring to a boil. Cook until they are tender and easily pierced with a small knife. Drain, put through a ricer back into the pot they were cooked in, add some butter a little milk, salt and pepper and stir to combine and keep warm.

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For the carrots, scrub to clean, cut into 1/8” slices on a diagonal, sauté in a little butter for a few minutes. Add, a little chicken or beef broth and a pinch of brown sugar. Toss in a sprig of thyme. Salt and pepper to taste and simmer until reduced to a glaze. Keep warm.

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For the mushrooms, turn the hen over and trim out the stem. Then gently separate each lobe. Wash or brush to clean (don’t worry if there is a little dirt left.) Dry on paper towels. Heat a splash of olive oil in a skillet, when hot add the mushrooms and sauté until they just start to brown. Add a tablespoon of butter, some chopped rosemary and thyme, salt and pepper and toss to coat in the melted butter. Remove to paper towels to dry and serve warm.

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When everything is done, cut the chicken, plate it along with potatoes with some juice, carrots, mushrooms. And, you have a great meal!

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Posted under: Food and CookingMushroom Articles • by Rick on 10/07/2012 at 09:29 AM
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Monday, July 04, 2011

Get Your Goat, Part 2

The goat ribs were so successful the other day that we decided to try something else this weekend. We bought a goat shoulder at the farmers’ market in Warwick last weekend and then followed a recipe for Goat Tacos yesterday.

The 2-1/2 pound shoulder was slowly braised in a red sauce made up of reconstituted dried Guajillo and Ancho chilis, fresh tomatoes, garlic, bay, clove, oregano, salt and pepper. This took about 3-1/2 hours, but resulted in meat that was packed with flavor and a wonderful red chili sauce. We then put the meat in a corn tortilla and garnished the taco with avocado, farmer’s cheese, salsa verde, and sour cream. Oh, and some corn on the side.

Here is a photo of the shoulder (I am pulling the meat off the bones so it can cook a few minutes stirred into the sauce), as well as the finished tacos.

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Posted under: Food and Cooking • by Rick on 07/04/2011 at 05:31 AM
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Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Get Your Goat

On Sunday, we shopped the farmer’s market in Warwick per our normal Summer weekend habit. We bought some pickled artichoke hearts and sun-dried tomatoes for a pizza sometime this week. Pesto was on the list, as was fresh bread and greens for a salad. We also saw some beautiful baby carrots and beets which we snapped up. Finally, we got a round of goat cheese from the goat cheese vendor, and also bought one pound of goat ribs—basically two small racks of ribs.

We cooked the goat last night and had it along with braised baby carrots, roasted beets and roasted potatoes. It was delicious.

I did not have a goat rib recipe (although I do have a great recipe for tacos made from shoulder, neck or leg meat). So, here is what I did:

Cut the ribs into two-rib chops, trimmed silverskin and obvious fat. Marinated in a solution of about 2 cups red wine, 4 tablespoons of olive oil, three crushed garlic cloves, several sprigs of fresh thyme, a tablespoon of freshly ground black pepper. I let the ribs marinate for about 2 hours then removed them from the marinate and dried them thoroughly. I prepared a hot charcoal fire. I sprinkled the ribs with some salt and then grilled them, turning occasionally for several minutes until I had nice browning, but not so much as to dry them out. (They are quite small, so the cooking goes quickly.)

Delicious!

Sorry, no photos. Was too busy eating.

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Posted under: Food and Cooking • by Rick on 06/22/2011 at 10:40 AM
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