Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Onion Law

( More OPP - "Old Popular Posts"!)

While surfing the web this evening looking for something to blog I discovered some outdated onionlaws. You can check more of these out at http://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/plantanswers/publications/onions/onionlaws.html If you are a woman weighing over 200 pounds living in Ridgland, South Carolina you are in violation of the law if you are seen wearing shorts eating onions in a restaurant or at a picnic. O.K., now let me take a moment to make a fashion public service announcement. It is my personal belief that no-one should ever wear shorts because they are one of the most unattractive pieces of clothing ever invented, so forget the onion thing and lets just outlaw shorts. I mean for Pete'ssake ladies....wear a skirt. It's way more flattering. This, of course, excludes work out attire, around the house garb, and when you get all dressed up to go to the Walmart it's all right too.
Now, try this AWESOME French onion Soup Recipe we picked up from Carike Clements & Elizabeth Wolf- Cohen's book "French- Delicious Classic Cuisine Made Easy".

4 large onions
4 cloves garlic minced
1 tablespoon flour
1 tsp sugar
1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme
1 tablespoon butter
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup dry white wine
8 cups beef or chicken stock ( we use chicken )
2 tbsp brandy
6-8 thick slices French Bread
1 clove garlic
12 oz Swiss cheese, grated

In a large pot heat olive oil and butter, add onions and cook till soft and just starting to brown about 10-12 minutes. Add minced garlic, sugar, thyme and cook over medium heat for 35 minutes until onions are well browned, stirring frequently.
Sprinkle over the flour and stir until well blended. Stir in the white wine and broth and bring to a boil. Skim off any foam that rises to the surface, then reduce the heat and simmer for 45 minutes. Stir in the brandy if using.

Preheat the broiler and rub each slice of toasted French Bread with the garlic clove. Fill oven proof soup bowls on a baking sheet and fill about three-quarters full with the soup. Float a piece of toast in each bowl. Top with grated cheese. broil about 6 inches from the heat 3-5 minutes. just till cheese begins to melt and bubble.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Cat Shame, Pop Tops, & Cheese

Some of you know I work in an art gallery and have even been to my place of employment. We do a little gallery hop every month and I usually whip up something for the hop. Over at The Pioneer Woman Cooks, Ree, aka 'the Pioneer Woman" made these awesome goat cheese 'logs' (what else would you call them...log sounds so..well ...YOU KNOW.) and I was dieing to give them a try. She was right as usual...they are tasty and super easy to make. I've seen other variations on these, goat cheese in fresh chives, nuts, and various other herbs and spices...there are a lot of great variations on this recipe in (hard to believe it I know) Martha Stewart's Hor's Doeuvres Handbook. If you do a lot of entertaining as I do..this is a must have! I found mine at Half price books for $9... SUCKA!

Goat cheese with fresh dill

Goat cheese with Paprika

Fresh fruit with Farmers Cheese and Brie

While I was busy taking pictures of the nibbles...I also wanted to share with you this amazing, talented artists named John Strickland who has a fantastic quirky sense of humor. As you can see in the top picture there is a painting called "Cat Shame" and in this bottom one there is one in the background of a pop top on a can of soda. Very creative I think.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

This Bread will Cost You Some Dough!

More OPP - "Old Popular Posts".

Wheat (Triticum spp.) is a grass that is cultivated worldwide. Globally, it is an important human food grain ranking second in total production as a cereal crop behind maize; the third being rice. Wheat grain is a staple food used to make flour for leavened, flat and steamed breads; cookies, cakes, pasta, noodles and couscous; and for fermentation to make beer, alcohol, vodka or biofuel.
The current financial market of wheat has recently fluctuated. Due to the possibilities with ethanol fuel, the “smart” farmers have planted corn. Because of this, wheat has become a more sought after resource, therefore, wheat prices of gone sky high.

Why did we tell you all this you may be asking yourself…because the ladies at my vintage kitchen aren’t just “Donna Reading” around!

We graduated from 6th grade too...sheesh!

Kisses - Robin & Shelly

3 cups Whole Wheat Flour
1 1/2 tsp instant yeast
1 1/2 tsp salt
3 tbsp sugar
1 1/4 cup water
2 Tbsp veg oil
In a large mixing bowl mix your yeast, sugar, salt and yeast in warm water. When the yeast starts to bubble you can start adding in your sifted flour. When the dough begins to ball turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and kneed. Knead the dough with quarter turns with the heel of your hand. Repeat until dough is smooth and elastic and does not stick to the board. Place in a buttered bowl and turn the dough once. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise until it has doubled. Punch down the dough and turn it completely over in bowl. Let rise again until almost double in bulk…about 30 mins.

Shape the dough and place in a loaf pan. Bake about 50 mins…bread is done when you hear the “thump”. Remove from pan to cool.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Down with OPP?

While we have been slowly moving from our typepad page to blogger I thought I would transfer the old recipes but there are just tooo many and I'm tooo lazy. We will just be posting some of our favorirtes....So if your down with OPP - "Old Popular Posts". Look out here they come.


Have you ever seen that MTV show, pimp my ride, where they take a 1982 mercury linx and turn it into a stretch limo/tiki bar? Well, lets say if an orange dreamcicle were a mercury than well...enough with the metaphors. If you want to make this one you don't really have time for silly stories.
These Frozen Grand Marnier Souffles are tasty but be prepared to work fast and work out your upper arm! This recipe comes from a book written by our second favorite Bridget Jones "Appetizers, Finger Foods, Buffets & Parties" written by Bridget Jones, and apparently this Bridget CAN cook.
Serves 8
1 cup superfine sugar
6 large eggs, separated
1 cup milk
1 tbsp powdered gelatin, soaked in 3 tbsp cold water
4 tbsp Grand Marnier... if you don't want to shell out the $35 for a bottle of this stuff you may sub 1 teaspoon of orange extract-though I am not promising the same side effects ; )
2 cups heavy cream
1. Wrap a double collar of baking parchment around eight dessert glasses or ramekins and tape shut. Whisk together 1/2 cup of the sugar with egg yolks until the yolks are pale. This will take about 5 minutes by hand or 3 minutes with an electric hand mixer.
2. Heat the milk until almost boiling and pour it on the yolks, whisking constantly. Return to the pan and stir over a gentle heat until the custard is thick enough to coat the back of the spoon. Remove the pan from the heat. Stir the soaked gelatin into the custard. Pour the custard into a bowl and leave to cool. Whisk occasionally until on the point of setting...but be careful to work fast and not let it set otherwise your souffles will be chunky!

3. Put the remaining sugar in a a pan with 3 tbsp water an dissolve it over a low heat. Bring to boil and boil rapidly until it reaches the soft ball stage. Remove from the heat, in a clean bowl, whisk the egg whites until stiff. Pour the hot syrup on to the whites, whisking constantly. Leave the meringue to cool.

4. Add the Grand Marnier to the cold custard. Whisk the cream until it holds soft peaks and fold into the cooled meringue, with the custard. Pour into the prepared glasses or dishes. Freeze overnight. Remove the paper collars and leave at room temperature for 15 minutes before serving.
This would also work in a large souffle dish if you would rather not do individuals.

Monday, May 05, 2008

Vegetable Lo Mein...

Cooking Chinese food has always been somewhat of a challenge. For starters there's that whole "I'm not Chinese" thing and then the fact that if you grew up in the 70's we thought La Choy was Chinese food....it's not, who knew.

The thing about it is that it never tastes as good as take out...until now. Give this a try... if you like lo-mein you will like this! You could easily add some shrimp, chicken, pork, cat, whatever. It will taste like the restaurant!


Vegetable Lo Mein serves 2 or 4 as a side

Boil 1/4 box linguine in salted water

In a bowl

¼ low sodium soy sauce
¼ tsp fresh grated ginger
1 TBSP sugar
1 tsp white wine vinegar
Thin sliced green scallions

In a pan with a TBLS Olive oil add

4 large mushrooms sliced
1 small onion chopped
1 clove garlic grated
1 cup bean sprouts (fresh...NOT that crap out of a can...don't say I didn't warn you)
¼ tsp red pepper flakes (more if you like it hot)

Cook until onions and mushrooms caramelize
Add and toss

1 cup thin sliced green cabbage
1 grated carrot

Add linguine and pour prepared sauce over everything, mix well.

Serve with more scallion sprinkled over the top.