Wednesday, November 20, 2019

660/1038 - Beurre blanc

A sauce this simple, this fattening and this good should come with a warning label.

Beurre blanc should be white (hence the name) but given that Australian butter is generally yellow, my sauce came out more like a beurre jaune. Either way, it was absolutely fantastic.

Making this was a last minute decision so I had to replace the shallots with finely chopped onion because shallots are not something I have in the house unless I have bought them for a specific purpose. I also swapped the wine for a combination of verjuice and apple cider vinegar, given my devastating intolerance of wine. 

To be honest, I was nervous trying verjuice for the first time given how similar it is to wine but I don't react to it at all which is just brilliant. I can't explain why I react to one and not the other, except to say that I also have an allergy to milk protein which does not fire if the milk is frothed. In that case, the milk proteins being stretched trick my body into thinking I am not allergic and the reaction doesn't happen. Gotta love science. 

But back to the sauce! Beurre blanc is pretty much butter sauce with a lovely acidic aftertaste. We are BIG fans. My youngest even stole some carrots off my plate to wipe up the last of his. 

I hereby declare this sauce to be our new quick fish dinner staple. 

Sunday, November 17, 2019

659/1038 - Byessar (Moroccan broad bean dip)

I was handed an enormous pile of broad beans and, given the amount, decided the easiest thing to turn them into was this gorgeous dip. I planned to make the flatbreads too, but sometimes life gets in the way and the prospect of opening a packet is simply too good to ignore. 

The beans were already out of their pods when they came to me and search as I might, I could not find out what they would have weighed, unpodded. I decided to take an educated guess and it turns out that if a recipe calls for one kilogram of beans in pods, around 650g of podded beans is about right.

My husband was dubious regarding how this would taste, but he was pleasantly surprised (as was I) that the dip was full of flavour and not a whole lot like broad beans at all! More like a broad bean hummus which is just absolutely fine with us. We ate it for dinner tonight with chicken and a myriad of vegetables conducive to raw eating and dipping. 

This recipe also had the benefit of being easy to split in two so that I could hand half back to the grower of the beans. Because it is always nice to be able to say thank you with food. 

Thursday, November 7, 2019

658/1038 - Silverbeet and potato torte

More lovely garden produce! 

Our silverbeet looked ready to eat and so it was harvested and largely turned into an incredible dish with lemon, garlic and walnuts using a recipe from Taste. We had a huge amount of stems left over and so I decided this torte would be just as good with silverbeet stems as it would with leaves. (I was right).

I absolutely loved the oil pastry in this recipe which was soft and lovely to the touch. It also rolled easily and baked to a lovely crisp crust. A pastry recipe predicted to be used with many torte fillings in the future! 

As the picture shows, it was only halfway through the sealing process that I decided to twist the crust like the edge of a pasty. Apart from looking a bit lopsided, it was good to know that no matter how the edges were sealed, this pastry stayed together beautifully with no leaks. 

I would have taken a picture of the inside but I was torn between using a sharp knife to remove the slices in a photogenic manner or using a more gentle method that would guarantee my pizza stone coming out of the process unscathed. I opted for the latter, hence the lack of a photo of the inside.   

You will just need to take my word that it was fabulous!

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

657/1038 - Rhubarb muffins

Surprising as it may sound, today was the first time I have cooked with rhubarb. Keen to get a bit of vitamin D, I was wandering around our beautiful garden and found some ready to be picked. Having a whole chapter of recipes to choose from, I settled on rhubarb muffins, which are listed only in the original edition, although I think they may still exist as a margin recipe in the later editions. 

I had a bit more rhubarb than was required, but was fairly sure an extra quarter cup would distribute without much notice in twelve large muffins. The smell as I sliced it was amazing, no doubt due to its freshness. There is simply nothing like food picked straight from the garden! 

These babies came out of the oven like little pieces of heaven; slightly crunchy on the outside and ridiculously fluffy in the centre. I have no idea how I stopped at one. Now I cannot wait for our little rhubarb plant to sprout again so I can take a deeper dive into the chapter. 

Speaking of chapters, with rhubarb started, that leaves only nine chapters from one hundred and twenty five yet to be explored; chervil, chokos, cumquats, persimmons, tamarillos, tripe, venison, vinegar and witlof.

Getting there!