Archive for the ‘Tips’ Category

Braised Brussels Sprouts
May 31, 2011

Simplicity itself, this side dish, and oh so delicioso.

In my case, with a hunk of good bread and a bit of gooey cheese, this was lunch. Oh, it is with a pathetic yearning that I recall this meal: Ivy and her dad (those crucifer haters) were away that afternoon; the house was tidy-ish; the Saturday paper was pregnant with fluff and puzzles and I strolled to the grocery store with the virtuous posture of the recently yogafied and nothing but sprouts on my mind. Happiness.

15 minutes. Serves four normal people.

Rinse and trim the stem ends of a dozen Brussels sprouts and remove any loose leaves. Halve them and put them in a large pan or wok. Add water so that they are less than half covered (about 1/2 a cup) and a scant tablespoon of butter. Set them over medium-high heat and leave to simmer. When the water is almost all evaporated, test a sprout with the tip of a sharp knife, and add a bit more water if needed. When the water has done its job the butter is left to brown and glaze. Keep an eye on them and toss them around a bit. Some toasted sliced almonds would have been beautiful here, but I was far to gluttonous and impatient for such niceties.

Popcorn Cauliflower
May 8, 2011

As I type this I am becoming aware of a new limb. Here is my left hand, tap tap tapping. And here is my right. Tap tap tap. But wait, what mysterious hand is feeding my mouth, quite independently of my conscious mind but apparently in cahoots with that part of the brain concerned with snacking (the nibbley lobe)?

I’ve been munching on roasted cauliflower all afternoon and even when I told myself I’d had enough and moved them into the kitchen, my mysterious third hand reaches out and pops some in my mouth every time I walk by. How refreshing to be suffering from a super-healthy addiction.

The most important thing about roasting is oven temperature; 375°f is ideal for almost everything and it’s a very good habit to allow at least five or eight minutes of preheating. Nothing good can come of torturing our food before cooking it. 

Meanwhile, divide a big, beautiful head of cauliflower into florets and coins and toss with 1 1/2 tbsps olive oil and 1 tsp salt. They are delicious roasted just like that. But as your dependence grows you will crave some variety: try curry powder and lemon juice (my current fave) or smoked paprika and hot sauce (the chicken-wing treatment). I used about a tablespoon of each, but these measures are, as always, to taste. Spread them out on a baking sheet or similar shallow thing, allowing some space betwixt so they roast and don’t steam each other. Check on them at 12, 15 and 18 minutes. They’re ready when they’re golden but haven’t lost their spunk.

Bedtime snack kabobs
March 25, 2011

I’m still waiting to get a meeting with some folks from the ‘biz’. But in the the meantime we’re still cooking and I’m still blogging. I thought I’d share this little snack.  If you go down to the woods today you're in for a big surprise...Pineapple, cheese and dates on a pretzel stick. I wonder what will she dream about after this?

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The Chopstick Trick
March 13, 2011

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Use this simple trick to help out the children or other chopstick-challenged folk.

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