Posts Tagged 'recipes'

To Make: Homesick Texan Dr. Pepper Cake

Dr. Pepper Cake

Let me just tell you: The topping? It's GOOD.

Just out of the oven.

House smells great.

Will I wait for the kids to dig in?

What do you think?

Homesick Texan Dr. Pepper Oatmeal Cake with Coconut-Pecan Topping

Dr. Pepper Cake

Related:

Homesick Texan Carnitas

Oh, yeahhh….

 

 

Recipe of the Week: Homesick Texan Carnitas

Homesick Texan carnitas

Porky goodness.

So many things in Lisa Fain‘s new cookbook, The Homesick Texan, look good to me — and, of course, remind me of home — that I literally couldn’t decide what to make first. Then I saw Deb over at Smitten Kitchen tried out the carnitas, with great results, and I thought, OK, decision made.

Carnitas are basically tender-crispy bits of pork that you put into a corn tortilla, dress up with your favorite fixings, and eat as tacos. You braise the pork first in liquid — orange and lime juices, water, cumin, crushed garlic — and then sear to brown and crisp up all over once the liquid evaporates. It takes a good three hours start to finish and, I have to say, Chrissy and I thought the meat was absolutely delicious. Flavorful, perfect.

The recipe says to use pork shoulder or butt; we used shoulder. And the three pounds of meat was crowded in our medium-sized to large Le Creuset — so I’d suggest using the biggest damn dutch oven you’re got. Also: I’m not sure if it was in part because of the crowding, but not all of our liquid evaporated — we had to remove the excess ourselves. But it didn’t matter. We took out the remaining juice and let the meat brown nicely in the pot. Crispy, salty, addictive.

We made guac and piled on diced pickled jalapenos and cilantro, too. Yum, yum.

Carnitas, via The Homesick Texan (but as posted on Smitt-Kit — looks like Fain has adapted the recipe from her blog for her cookbook, so that’s what I’m linking to.)

For more Tex-Mex and other faves, scan the blog or buy the book.

Let me know what you think! (P.S. — The kids loved the meat, too, and there were plenty of leftovers.)

Recipe of the Week: Gwyneth Paltrow’s Marinated Gigante Bean Salad with Grilled Shrimp

gwyneth-paltrow-gigante bean salad with grilled shrimp

Summer’s over, but we’re still making this light, lemony, garlicky salad and loving it. Don’t have gigante beans? Use butter beans or cannellini beans instead. No watercress in your fridge? Use any kind of greens or serve over sauteed spinach.

One note: Marinating the beans in olive oil, garlic, and scallions (or chives) for several hours before preparing is a key step in the recipe and makes a big difference in flavor. So do that earlier in the day and then assemble later for dinner — it’s fast and easy. And delish.

Gwyneth Paltrow’s Marinated Gigante Bean Salad with Grilled Shrimp and Watercress.

What else is cooking:

Pork Shoulder Ragu

Spicy Veggie Burritos

Salmon with Sweet Chili Glaze

 

 

 

November 5 – 6: Weekend Links for Brooklyn Mamas

tea time sandwiches

Tea time! (photo by Leslie Kalohi)

Thanks to Halloween, jury duty, and some fun new freelance ventures, I’ve had precious little time to blog this week. But I’m pulling my crap together today to get something short and sweet out — since I know there are, like, three of you sitting on the edge of your seats out there wondering, “God, when are they going to post again?!”

Well, my dears, here you go.

It’s pricey — $25 a kid — but dying to take the kids to this DIY (but with the help of a NYC chef) Yummy Tea Time Party at lovely DUMBO shop Pomme tomorrow. (Reserve a spot by email.)

Can’t wait to make tracks to the new space for the Children’s Museum of the Arts. Looks awesome.

On tap to cook this weekend — gotta knock out the last CSA squash for the season — is Mark Bittman’s Butternut Squash Soup with Apples and Bacon. If you’re looking to take down a lurker squash or two at your house, I recommend these Garlic and Herb Roasted Potatoes and Squash — made them last night and yum, yum. The balsamic vinegar adds a ton of flavor. One other late-breaking idea, from a friend I just had lunch with: Butternut Squash Risotto. This one, a Chez Panisse recipe, looks good.

I’m also eyeing this chili, from the fine folks over at Dinner: A Love Story.

Happy cooking, eating, socializing, wine drinking, kid wrangling weekend!

(flickr photo: Leslie Kalohi / never cool in school)

Weekly Menu, October 2-8: Ode to the End of Summer

Well, here we are again. Back to the menu. Hi! It’s been a while. I’ve been a bit distracted. And uninspired. Felt a little hiatus was in order.

First, it was coming down off sabbatical. I’ll admit I checked out in July. Turned daydreams from a hobby into a profession.

Mmmmm. Daydreams.

So August and September, with all their attendant, resuming responsibilities, the stress of work, the noise of the City, was a bit of a shock to the system. Like winning the lottery, and then being told, whoops! It’s not you after all.

There is also the issue of the weather. The thing is (and you know this about me if  you know me at all): I’m a summer person. There’s nothing I like better than a bright sky, warm weather, bare skin, bare feet.

Poolside in Italy. Isn't this the way it should be?

When I start waking up in the dark, when I see City women get out the tall boots, when I begin to carry around a cardigan, and think twice before putting on a summer dress, my inner bear wakes up and begins to contemplate the winter ahead. Explore the hibernation options.

Trees, knees, sheesh. No sub for sun and heat.

Question: What’s up with all you fall people? What is fall really but a prelude to winter? I love the first snow as much or more as the next person, but after that, do we really need more snow if we are not skiing, sledding, or making snow angels? I think not. At least not here. And all those holidays squashed together so you barely get to enjoy them before they’ve rushed past and there’s nothing but months without a break (think about it: January – May is holiday free). Sadly, my lobby to move Christmas to February has never gained any momentum.

Remember this? That's our car buried in front of the house.

Yes, winter drags on.

I just haven’t felt inspired. We’ve been eating as much of the late summer harvest as we can, in a completely ad hoc manner, and I’m still gamely trotting about in sandals and breezy dresses. But I know, in so many ways, my number is up.

This menu is about trying to get past personal disappointment in summer’s sweet brevity, and everything ending with it. It’s about comfort food. Unless we are moving to warmer climes, I’m stuck with the next two seasons. So I’m trying to make the best of it! And happy to hear from you with great fall recipes.

Weekly Menu

Sunday: Family dinner tonight: Grilled Skirt Steak, Homemade Mac and Cheese. We’re still enjoying My Father’s Daughter, Gwyneth Paltrow’s cookbook. Her mac & cheese- a reasonable, not-too-rich recipe with mascarpone, parm and breadcrumbs– is nice addition our repertoire. A gorgeous, late summer CSA Salad rounded out the meal.

Monday: Roast Chicken and Braised Leeks; is there anything better? Not when it’s only going to get up to 61 degrees.

Tuesday: Grilled Shrimp and Watercress Salad with Gigante Beans- Something a bit lighter, and again, from My Father’s Daughter, but you could make this up, easy. In fact, we’ll probably skip the watercress (which to me always tastes a little bit like eating dirt) and sub in some other green.

Wednesday:Slow-Roasted Tomato Soup (from you-guessed-it: Gwyn) with leftover Mac and Cheese

Thursday: Grilled CSA Veggie (red pepper, maybe eggplant- what does one do with eggplant?) Burritos

Friday: Melisa is out-of-town, so the kids and I will do something, don’t know what! Dinner with Katie, I hope.

Saturday: Road Trip! Dinner Chez Bush.

May L.A. days be your every day ALL OCTOBER!

Currently Obsessed with…. the October, 2011 Issue of Food & Wine Magazine: New French Classics

food & wine october 2011

Can’t put down the French-food-focused October ish of Food & Wine. Melissa Clark’s Marseille-Style Shrimp Stew — with garlicky French rouille on toasts — is a major keeper. Absolutely delicious and full of flavors we don’t always cook with — orange zest, saffron, cloves.

Other temptations:

More recipes for eating the French way: smaller portions of better-tasting food (with wine, of course)

NYC chef April Bloomfield hits France: note the Lyon-Style Chicken with Vinegar Sauce, the Herbed Steamed Rice, and the Warm Bacon-and-Egg Salad

A fun culinary travel guide to Paris: Can we go back, please, and try all of these places?

Bon Appetit!

***

Other obsessions:

State Prints from One Canoe Two

Dining at Buvette

Vintage Kids’ Books My Kid Loves

 

 

 

 

September 17 – 18: Weekend Links for Brooklyn Mamas, the Early Fall Edition

The Homesick Texan

I took a peek inside today and YUM.

Food blogger and fellow Texan Lisa Fain proclaims jalapeno, cilantro, and lime the Tex-Mex trinity, and of course I couldn’t agree more. I’m looking forward to digging into her new book, The Homesick Texan Cookbook — in the meantime, as fall settles in, consider digging into Frito Pie with One-Hour Texas Chili and Dr. Pepper Ribs. (And, in case you missed it, see what Alex Witchel of The New York Times had to say about Fain, the book, and the chili. Hint: It’s all good.)

And, for your continued pleasure, more weekend linkage:

Design Mom’s House Tour with Jane Foster (oh, how I cover that Marimekko dining room table!)

Jane’s Carousel (finally!) opens in DUMBO, The Feast of San Gennaro, and the World Maker Faire, all via Mommy Poppins.

SJP’s I Don’t Know How She Does It opens this weekend. New York magazine liked it — yes, believe it — ditching the kids, and we are so freaking there.

Happy, happy! Have a good one, y’all.

I_Dont_Know_How_She_Does_It

Can't wait!

Weekly Menu, August 28-September 3

So we made it. I admit the hype about the storm, which I paid no attention to until Friday, finally got to me; I was nervous last night. At about midnight, I was walking around the dark house, alone, watching the trees bend 45 degrees in the rain. Wondering: will our 101-year old house, which has withstood a tornado (a block away) and an earthquake already this year, fall apart in a hurricane?

My nerves manifested themselves in a three ways: time spent on our various electronic devices (reading Facebook and Twitter, watching the radar, checking news updates and answering texts from concerned friends and family), and cooking and eating.

All the sweets, here for the taking

Friday, I picked up slices of peach pie, chocolate pecan cookies and red velvet cupcakes in Manhattan, and on Saturday made a run to our local Trois Pommes for more peach pie, blueberry pie, a red velvet AND an almond twinkie (yes, twinkie), brownies, peanut butter cookies, and seriously I can’t remember what else. Melisa roasted a whole chicken, and made French onion soup; I made various fruit and vegetable salads. Come on over and help us eat the leftovers (we also have plenty of wine, vodka, fixings for margaritas, and distilled water to serve)!

Tomorrow in the sunshine, let’s just say a long run is planned. But for today, I’m kneading pizza dough and thinking of chasing my iced coffee and sweets with salted buttered popcorn and a movie with the kids (done & done).

***

All the excitement did provide distraction from the fact that this is the last true weekend of the season. This week’s menu is an homage to many of my favorite summer things. I’m not ready to let it go. So more fruit, more tomatoes, more corn.

Weekly Menu:

Sunday: White Pizza with Roasted Garlic, Fontina, and Goat Cheese with Crunchy, Lemony Kale Salad and Melon with Cured Black Olives

Kale Salad. It really is good.

Monday: Grilled Skirt Steak (trying a La Esquina marinade from their forthcoming cookbook) with Charred Corn Tacos with Radish Zucchini Slaw (via Smitten Kitchen)

Tuesday: Orecchiette tossed with Roast, Marinated Tomatoes, Grilled Corn and Fresh Basil

Wednesday: Salmon Grilled on Cedar Planks with Cool Potato Salad, Sautéed Summer Squash and Tomatoes

Thursday: Shrimp Fajitas with Cabbage Slaw

Friday: Dinner out with Melisa to celebrate my birthday on Saturday. Where to go? Might be the garden at Vinegar Hill House or the one at Hudson Clearwater. Hmmm.

Saturday: My birthday!! I am off the hook for cooking, but looking forward to dinner Chez Gillespie.

Speaking of birthdays: here were two we just celebrated:

This one is called: "Fancy French Cake for a Five Year Old"

Seven year old strong!

Here’s to a September full of sweet summer days.

5 Kitchen Shortcuts for Faster Family Dinners

Yes, we love working new recipes into the weekly menu, but sometimes we just want to get dinner on the table IN A HURRY, with little or no thought. On nights when we’re feeling lazy or uninspired, we’re looking to streamline the food-making process with a no-brainer recipe or a tool to get prep work done faster. Here are a few things we turn to again and again to speed up the dinner train with minimal effort.

5 SHINY BRITE KITCHEN SHORTCUTS

Sweet Ginger Chili Sauce from The Ginger People

sweet ginger chili sauce

Bottled sauces often suck, but this one doesn’t — and it packs TONS of flavor. Sweet and hot, it makes a perfect, ginger-y 30-minute marinade for salmon (I add a little soy sauce and lime juice, too, and think it would be equally delish with pork or poultry). If your kids are spice-freaks (lucky you!), let them enjoy it as well, but I think it’s probably too strong for most young palates. What I recommend instead is that you marinate yours and do the kids’ salmon fillets with EVOO and a little S & P; then arrange all on a lined baking sheet and roast for 15 minutes or until done to taste. The whole fam can “pretend to be hungry bears, arrrrrhhh!” — this enticement actually works with our kids — and eat salmon for dinner. Look for it at specialty foods stores; in Brooklyn, you can find it at Union Market.

Rotisserie Chicken (We’re partial to the antibiotic-free Rosa Mexicano version available from Fresh Direct)

rotisserie_chicken

Talk about a meal in a hurry. But don’t just think of a rotisserie chicken as a bird on a cutting board that you carve and serve with predictable sides — you can do so much more! Sped-up chicken, cheese, and spinach quesadillas, chicken tacos with chipotle cream, Thai chicken salad. It’s a dialed-in dinner we love.

Barefoot Contessa’s Lemon Vinaigrette

lemon vinaigrette

As previously mentioned, bottled sauces and dressings are often lame, but you don’t always have time to whip up a homemade vinaigrette showcasing chopped shallots or a fancy Champagne vinegar. This is a minimalist version that anyone can love — but if lemon is your thing, as it is mine, you’ll really like it. We make it ALL THE TIME. All you need is olive oil, lemon juice, and S & P. (Ina Garten uses the dressing with her Parmesan Chicken over greens, which is also very good — scroll down when you hop to the link for the super-simple recipe.)

Large Kitchen Tongs

kitchen tongs

If you don’t have a 12-inch pair of locking tongs in your kitchen, you need to get one ASAP. Seriously. Once you have them, you’ll be amazed at how often you use them to speed up food prep: Snatch a piece of pasta from boiling water to test for done-ness, pick up sliced steak off the cutting board, grab chicken breasts from a baking sheet to plate them, use them to quickly toss a salad. They help you work faster and more efficiently. You’ll see.

Tony’s Flank Steak Marinade via Dinner: A Love Story

toasted sesame oil

As you know, we use Chrissy’s mom’s marinade for steak all the time — an old fave. But this new fave has taken hold in a big way — the secret ingredient, to my mind? Toasted sesame oil. It adds a real depth of flavor. Plus lots of chopped scallions and a dash of hot sauce. There’s tons of spice and flavor, but not too much for the kids — they gobble it up whether we use it on flank or skirt steak. And it’s such a staple, now, that I have the recipe pretty much down pat — though I do always consult Dinner: A Love Story just to make certain I’m not forgetting an ingredient. Simple, fast, always delicious.

What are your go-to kitchen shortcuts? C’mon, tell me!

Currently Obsessed with…. Porch Crawler Cocktail from Frankies Spuntino

Porch Crawler

You may have noticed we’re spring-obsessed here at Shiny Brite — ready for sun, bare ankles, and a carefree life post-TAT. (You are coming, aren’t you? Seriously, it’s gonna be kick-ass and we want EVERY KID IN BROOKLYN there.)

Anyway, just discovered this drink — a Porch Crawler — in the April ish of Food & Wine and cannot wait to make it. It’s a blissful-sounding, muddled combination of fresh cherries, mint, hot chiles, white rum, lemon, simple syrup, and club soda — SPRING IN A GLASS. And it makes me happy that it was Brooklyn-grown, crafted by the two Frankies (Falcinelli and Castronovo) behind Frankies Spuntino right here in our home borough.

Here’s the recipe.

Maybe I’ll have one — or ten — when Touch a Truck is over.

Here’s to spring!


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