Sunday, March 29, 2009

The Most Awesome Bacon Ever

So, today I made some of what we call around here, Candied Bacon.
I had not eaten bacon in 25 years before Lillian, an  assistant on mine, introduced me to this highly addictive method of serving bacon.

Preheat oven to 350.
Lay the bacon out on a 1/2 sheet pan lined with foil. I like Release for its non stick properties.
Make a mixture of  50% each dijon mustard and maple syrup.
For 12 pieces of bacon I used about 3 tablespoons of each.
Spread the dijon mixture on each bacon slice using a pastry brush.

Sprinkle the entire surface with fresh cracked pepper.
Place in oven for about 12 minutes.

Remove from the oven and flip the bacon onto the other side,
Repeat  the dijon mixture and pepper. Return to oven and cook for about 10-15 minutes more.
The time will vary depending on your desire for soft or crispy bacon.

I usually check the bacon every 5 minutes and pour off any rendered fat as it cooks.
Try it.  Let me know what you think.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Cookbook Reviews

I just received two new cookbooks today, which I ordered from AmazonUK.

"Bake" by Rachel Allen
"Venezia: Food and Dreams" by Tessa Kiros 

I have only had time to glance through them, but they both look great.  The photographs of Venice are stunning.  The food photos in each are nicely done.  The recipes look enticing.

I will make a full report as soon as I have tried out a recipe or two.


Thursday, March 26, 2009

High Heat Roasted Chicken

So at 5:30 today I realized that I had not brined the chicken I had originally intended to slow roast.
I needed plan "B". I split the chicken, rubbed it with a lemon and rosemary salt and pepper seasoning, and let it sit for about 5 minutes.

I then slipped it into a large ziploc bag (a large bowl or roasting pan can also be used) and brined it in an icewater bath for about 30 minutes.I used a total of about 1/8 cup of salt/seasoning mixture and an 1/8 cup of sugar. Use enough water to cover the entire chicken.

After removing it from the brine I rinsed it and placed it flesh side down on a sheet pan. I roasted it at 400 degrees for about 45 minutes. The results were great! Juicy and flavorful. I threw some sliced carrots on another tray and roasted them during the last 15 minutes . While the carrots and chicken roasted, I sauteed about 2 cups chopped radicchio and some garlic in olive oil, mixed in a drained can of cannelini beans and some rosemary and salt and the meal was complete.

Total time-about 1 1/2 hours. Active time - about 40 minutes.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

What is Cooking in my Kitchen

Wow. My first post.

Clients are always asking me if I cook at home too. Some think I must be tired of cooking all week and forgo it on the weekends. Quite the opposite is true. Weekend cooking allows me to try new recipes and techniques. And best of all to share the results over a few glasses of wine with dear friends and family.

So at the encouragement of my friends Burt and Nancy, I have started a blog. It is dedicated to:

What's Cooking in My Kitchen.
A way to let people know what I cook in my spare time.

I will also include restaurant visits and meals shared with friends and family, interesting cookbooks or recipes I come across, and grocery finds.

We'll see where it goes from there.

Welcome. Thanks for stopping by.


Monday, March 23, 2009

Cooking last weekend

I spent most of the last weekend cooking for friends and family.
My goal was to make dinners from items I already had at home and to not purchase a single new ingredient.

Saturday night I (along with my talented side kick and husband, Mike) made Potato Gnocchi in a Radicchio Sauce.
The radicchio is one I had previously purchased to do a photo sample with my friend and Photographer, Jennifer Marx.
It was a beautiful Raddichio Variegato di Castelfranco, yellow to green in color with red specks. You can see it on my website on the home page.
It almost looks like a rose.

Anyway, the sauce was a recipe I found on Lydia Bastianich's website, in her blog area. Her recipe is for a Ricotta Gnocchi, bud sticking to my plan- I had potato, but no ricotta in the house. Still, it was delicious.

We had started the meal with a bottle of Prosecco and a thin crusted pizza with oven roasted tomatoes and thyme with a finish of grey sea salt.

We finished with a butter cake from the Weekend Baker. Delicious. Soft Crumb. Buttery flavor.

Sunday, one of my sister's and her family joined us for Sunday dinner. With and abundance of potatoes and monterey Jack cheese in the fridge, I whipped up twice baked potatoes with pesto and monterey jack. The recipe came for the Cooks Illustrated website. A definite keeper.

Baked ham and sauteed asparagus rounded out the meal leaving just enough room for Blondies with chocolate and pecans.

As I figure this all out I will include more pictures, recipe links etc.

But for now, thanks for reading.