June 3rd, 2012: Roasted Butterflied Chicken with Cardamom and Yogurt
Serves 6 (See the original recipe for 2-4 servings)
8 Cardamom Seeds
1.5 Teaspoon Black Peppercorns
2.5 Teaspoons Sea Salt
1.5 Teaspoon Ground Coriander
1.5 Teaspoon Ground Cumin
5 Garlic Cloves
2 Tablespoon Olive Oil
2/3 Cup Greek Yogurt
2 Tablespoon Grated Fresh Ginger
2 Tablespoon Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice
1 3-4 Pound Chicken, Butterflied (Virtual Weber Bullet has a great video on butterflying.)
Fresh Cilantro Leaves (for garnish)
1. Grind the cardamom seeds and peppercorns in a mortar with pestle to a fine powder. Add the salt, coriander, and cumin. Roughly chop the garlic and add it in, smashing it with the pestle. Add the olive oil to form a paste. Stir in yogurt, ginger and lemon juice.
2. Butterfly the chicken. Place the chicken in a large bowl or pan. Rub yogurt between skin and breasts and thighs. Then smear remaining yogurt over the outside of the chicken, front and back. Refrigerate at least 3 hours or up to 24 hours. (I left the chicken to marinate for only 1.5 hours, it worked out fine but the longer the marinade, the better!) Remove chicken from refrigerator 30 minutes before roasting. (I was old school and left the chicken out of the fridge to marinate. Chickens should be left on the counter for 1 hour before roasting, to warm up to room temp and sweat. Tastes better, I promise.)
3. Preheat oven to 425 F. Place chicken breast-side up in a baking pan or cast iron pan. Bake in oven until thoroughly cooked, 45 minutes – 1 hour. Remove and let rest 15 minutes before carving. Serve garnished with cilantro leaves.
June 3rd, 2012: Mujaddara with Spiced Yogurt
Ingredients for the Mujaddara:
3/4 cups Puy lentils (aka French lentils, the tiny dark brown ones) – I used French Green lentils and it tasted great.
1 Teaspoon Sea Salt
1 Cup Jasmine Rice
2 Tablespoons Butter
3 Tablespoons Olive Oil
6 Cups Onions (about 3 medium onions), halved and thinly sliced – I used shallots, a little softer taste
Ingredients for the yogurt:
1/2 Cup Greek Yogurt
1/2 Teaspoon Cinnamon
1/2 Teaspoon Cumin (freshly ground, if possible)
1/2 Teaspoon Coriander (freshly ground)
1/2 Teaspoon Spicy Paprika or Aleppo Pepper – I used Hungarian Paprika and French Piment d’Espelette
3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
Juice and zest of half a lemon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
2. Put lentils, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 4 cups water in a large pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer lentils until soft but not mushy, about 20 minutes. Drain lentils and set aside. Rinse pot.
3. Add rice, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1 1/2 cups water to the pot, set over medium heat, and bring to a boil. When water begins to boil, cover pot, transfer to oven, and cook for 17 minutes (the tried-and-true Amanda Hesser method!) until perfectly cooked. Remove from oven, uncover, and fluff with a fork. Set aside.
4. While rice cooks, set a wide, deep saute pan over medium-low heat and add butter and 2 tablespoons olive oil. When butter has mostly melted, add onions and toss to incorporate with butter and oil.
5. After 5 minutes, onions will have softened slightly and started to release their liquid. Raise heat to medium and cook 10 to 12 minutes more, until onions are very soft and browned. Add water by the tablespoon if pan gets too dry or if onions start to stick. When onions are well browned, add last tablespoon of olive oil and raise heat to high. Cook another 3 to 4 minutes, until bottom layer of onions has charred and crisped; try not to stir too much, or onions won’t crisp up.
6. Combine rice, lentils, and most of the onions in large serving bowl and let sit for at least 15 minutes, to marry the flavors together. (Truth be told, this dish improves with age.) Taste, and add more onions if desired. Meanwhile, make the yogurt: mix all ingredients together in a small bowl. (Yes, it’s really that simple.)
7. If mujaddara has cooled significantly, reheat in a low oven or even in the microwave for a couple minutes. To serve, plate a big scoop of mujaddara and top with a dollop of yogurt.
July 13th, 2010: Raspberry Crumble
Last night Olivier and I made a raspberry crumble using the fruit we had picked at La ferme du Paradis this weekend.
– Butter (very soft but not melted)
Dump the raspberries into a dish. In a separate bowl, mix together the butter, oats, and sugar and mix with your fingers. The crumble bit is very improvised, so just keep mixing until it’s a consistency you like. Cover the raspberries with the crumble and pop the dish into the oven at 200˚ C for about 15 minutes.
July 13th, 2010: The Half-Blood Orange Salad
By Miranda Gardiner, author of Teaching Dad to Cook Flapjack
Now is the final fling of the Tarocco blood orange from the slopes of Mount Etna, in Sicily. These are often referred to as being only half blood, because of their part-pigmented bloody interior and surface flecked with red blushes. These beauties contain the highest concentration of Vitamin C in any fruit.
Blood oranges have suffered from being re-branded, as was the former Chinese Gooseberry (aka kiwifruit), and sometimes goes by the name of a Sangria orange, which ironically translates from the Spanish as “blood”.
This salad marks the transition from winter into spring and requires no dressing as the citrus juice from the blood oranges, the beetroot’s roasting juices and the olive oil that gets splashed on at the end, do it all by themselves in the bowl.
2 blood oranges, peeled into segments
small bunch of beetroot
1 tablespoon fennel seeds
100g chickpeas, cooked
2 tablespoons olive oil
salt and pepper
Preheat the oven to 200C.
Scrub the beetroot and cut into chunks of just over 1cm square. Place in a roasting tin with the fennel seeds and 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Mix together and roast in the oven for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile place the rest of the salad in a serving bowl. When the beetroot has cooked, sprinkle it, still warm, onto the salad. Drizzle a tablespoon of olive oil over the salad, season with salt and pepper and some torn coriander leaves. This is lunch in a bowl with some hummus and bread.
May 16th, 2010: Rhubarb Crisp
This looks so delicious! I am always interested by Mark Bittman “The Minimalist”‘s creations. And since rhubarb season is coming around, I would love to try this one.
I also really enjoyed this article of his regarding simple, at home sushi.
Sometime in January, 2010: Stir Fry
Olivier and I have both been extremely busy lately with internship/classes and don’t have a lot of time to go grocery shopping or cook elaborate meals during the weekdays. So, we came up with a really simple dish that’s fast and delicious – a stir-fry! “College students gone classy!”
You can use any type of meat and/or vegetable that you like. So far we’ve used eggplant, cabbage, or spinach and beef, turkey, or imitation crab to give you an idea of the variety of ingredients you can use.
1 ) Boil a pot of water for the rice (or use your rice cooker, we don’t have one).
2 ) Measure out the amount of rice you want.
3 ) Heat up one or two pans with oil: one pan for veggies, one pan for meat.
4 ) Wash your hands and vegetables. Cut your vegetables à la julienne. (Tip: cut your vegetables into slices on the diagonal. Lay all the slices together, each one touching the other, like a deck of cards spread out. Then chop from right to left, in small slices, to achieve the julienne cut.)
5 ) Cut your meat into manageable, bite-sized slices.
6 ) Toss all your ingredients into the pans and dump your rice into the now boiling water.
7 ) Push stuff around, make sure nothing burns.
8 ) Add some sesame oil to the veggies and oyster sauces to the meat.
9 ) Put rice into small bowls and the veggies/meat onto a plate.
10 ) Eat family style (continuously add veggies/meat to your bowl) and use soy sauce for more flavor.
11 ) Enjoy!!!
Here’s a few tasty ideas from my mom’s recipes over the winter break (YUM! Thanks mom!) :
– Roast pork tenderloin stuffed with figs and smothered in fennel seed.
– Seafood bouillabaisse with scallops, cockles, shrimps, fish, tomatoes, and saffron.
– Roast goose with salad and potatoes.
– The perfect soft-boiled egg: 3.5 minutes. Spin it to make sure it’s equally cooked (a trick learned from the Semnachers)
– And a delicious, impromptu dish cooked by Paul Semnacher one night (do you remember Paul?) : linguine pasta, pan-fried chicken, peas, tomatoes, and all the other goodness he put in there! Another delicious alternative that we made one night was with Italian sausages and pasta.
November 16th: A French Thanksgiving
I am absolutely in crisis. This coming weekend Olivier and I are going to cook Thanksgiving dinner for the Clairouin family. I am so excited! But I don’t know what to do…there are no cranberries in France! What should I substitute my beloved cranberry sauce for? Fig relish is the only thing I can come up with. Do you have a good idea? I’m totally at a loss! And no one likes a dry turkey without any sauce!
November 5th: Foodie Blogs
I thought I would give you all a taste of some food blogs that I’ve found. Here are some that tickle my fancy:
Nosher NYC – My grammar school friend Kate’s food blog about NYC munchies.
September 15th: Roasted Chicken with Lemon, Rosemary, and Shallots
– 1 happy chicken
– 2 lemons
– 4 tablespoons of olive oil (or as much as you prefer)
– 2 bundles of dried rosemary, thyme, and any other herb you like
– 4 shallots
– 4 garlic cloves
– Salt and pepper
Preheat oven to suggested temperature (according to the weight of the chicken, etc…normally 175 C). Place chicken in appropriately sized dish. Cover with salt, pepper, and olive oil. Cut one lemon in half and squeeze juice over the chicken. Take other lemon and cut into thin slices and place around chicken. Place one bundle of herbs inside the cavity of the chicken with two cloves of garlic. Place other two cloves of garlic around chicken with the remaining herbs. Cut shallots into quarters and place around chicken. Cook for approximately an hour. Don’t forget to check on your little friend and baste every so often.
If you have room in your dish, add potatoes as a side!
August 24th: Maminic’s Plum Tart
– 20 small, ripe plums
– a pre-baked tart crust
– a handful of sugar
Preheat oven to suggested temperature on crust box (normally it is 220 C / 375 F). Cut the plums in half and remove the pit. Place the tart crust into a tart form or quiche dish. Place plums in circular pattern on the crust. Sprinkle a handful of sugar on top of the plums, a sour tart is no good!
August 15th: Nestle’s Chocolate Mousse for Arthur’s Birthday!
Ingredients: one tablet of cooking chocolate, 6 eggs, toppings of your choice (we added chopped hazelnuts).
Directions: Separate yolks from egg whites into two separate bowls. Beat egg whites until fluffy and stiff. Melt chocolate tablet and incorporate into egg yolks, whisking quickly. Incorporate egg whites into egg/chocolate mixture. Store in fridge for at least 3 hours. After an hour has passed, you can add the toppings. Do not add the toppings when the mixture is still soft, otherwise all the toppings will sink into the mousse and won’t be toppings anymore!
August 11th : rødgrød med fløde
A true dane makes a truly danish summer dessert! For those who don’t speak Danish, this is a red fruit compote with cream on top. Click on the link for an English-friendly version of a recipe.
**May I suggest not using the cornstarch or just adding a TINY bit. It will come out more like jam than the desired effect if you add too much cornstarch! Plus, pure is better!**
A friend recently turned me onto a website called All Recipes.com (http://allrecipes.com/) and I am totally obsessed. Seeing as I am on vacation and Olivier is at his internship most of the day, I’ve turned to cooking for entertainment. (Oh god, please don’t let me be a housewife yet, I’m too young!)
I also have access to the coolest outdoor market where I can buy a gargantuan bag of fruits, vegetables, cheese, bread, mint, spices, and dried fruits for 10 euros, which makes cooking much more inspiring.
But HOLY CRAP I was so scared to start cooking because vanilla is not a liquid here, it’s a powder, and I had the hardest time finding baking powder. I didn’t screw up too badly!
Here’s some food I’ve made this summer. I’ve made adjustments to all of these recipes but I recommend all of them.
– Chinese dumplings (I got seriously ambitious with this one and made EVERYTHING from scratch)
– Pizza with tomato sauce, chicken, broccoli, cheese, red peppers, pimento powder, oregano, onion, and more cheese (hey, I live in France!)