Sunday, January 3, 2021

An Eat-Along to Lord of the Rings? That's what I'm Tolkein about....

Truth be told I do enjoy The Lord of the Rings, but am not a huge Tolkein aficionado compared to my husband or many of my friends who have read the books and watched the films multiple times. I read The Hobbit in junior high and The Fellowship of the Ring in high school and watched each of the movies when they originally opened in theaters. I thought they were beautiful but as they did not technically fall into the category of rom-com or regency era fiction, the stories weren't ones I turned to for comfort.  However, when Hulu recently made the three films available in their extended forms, I realized I had never watched them in one day.  And when I read about people eating corresponding meals for this all day affair, of puns and pies, of second breakfasts and elevenses, I knew what we had to do.

The true question was "If not now, Arwen?" 

There and back again, but this time with soft pants.

As someone whose coping mechanism is making plans, crafting a menu was a beautiful, time consuming blessing. Drawing inspiration from UK writer Nate Crowley, the hashtag #ThereAndSnackAgain, and multiple articles and podcasts, highlighting important "food moments" and guessing what times would correspond to Hobbit meals, here's where we landed:


Fellowship of the Ring

First Breakfast, Second Breakfast and Elevenses

Recipes #1, 2 and 3:

Bilbo Baggins' Birthday Cake Pie

Merry and Pippin's Stolen Produce: Maple-Roasted Cardamom-Spiced Apples and Carrots 

Weathertop Fry Up: Bacon, Tomato, Mushroom Frittatas

(Mirror of Galadriel sparkling water)



The Two Towers

Luncheon, Afternoon Tea and Dinner

Recipes #4, 5, 6 and 7:

Savory Lembas Bread

Orc's Blood and Snow cocktail

"Meat's Back on the Menu Boys" Pork Pie

Sam's Poh-tay-Tos (and parsnips)

(and a Cheese Plate for Gimli)



Return of the King

Supper and Dessert

Recipes #8 and 9

Denethor Chicken and Grape Salad

Eye of Sauron shot

(Swedish fish for Gollum

Isengard Charcuterie and Preserved Vegetables

Mt. Doom Strawberries and Cream)





I highly recommend doing some meal prep the night before and starting The Fellowship of the Ring early, especially if you want to eat Elevenses around 11.  We ended up having about 2 hours in between each movie to stretch our legs and prep for the next meal/movie which worked out quite nicely.  There are other things we could have added like rabbit stew or a giant chicken roasted with tomatoes, but maybe next time.  I did want to live another day to at least blog about this...

Heartburn vs Individuals in their 30s

Choices of Libation: Like a hobbit, I am the size of a child but I have not escaped the perils aging, so we started off with coffee and tea and sparkling water for The Fellowship of the Ring.  That said, hobbits love their ale so eventually we do get into some booze, starting at meal prep for The Two Towers.  There is a fantastic craft brewery in Minneapolis called Dangerous Man, and for the occasion I picked up a crowler of their Pecan Brown Ale, because Tolkien is just so nutty, amiright?  It was perfect paired with the saltiness of the dishes we were about to eat, slightly sweet, with a nice warm roasted malt.  From there we moved onto our Blood and Snow cocktail* which is one of those dangerous drinks that you can accidentally finish in a few gulps because of its sweetness and because you get easily stressed out by violence. At last, it didn't feel right to end the day without some sort of ode to the scary giant marble of a bowling ball, also known as The Great Eye and I needed some energy, so why not make it a shot?  Therefore, I present to you a bunch of crap I had in our bar, poured quickly into a tiny glass, "The Eye of Sauron."*


*recipes below

Choice of Music: Listen.  I know Howard Shore did a great job, despite accidentally copying some of the Back to the Future score.  But can we just focus on this classic from Leonard Nimoy for a moment?

You're very welcome. And. I'm sorry. Good luck getting that chorus out of your head.
For your food prep, I also recommend Annie Lennox's album Peace which doesn't have Into the West, the song she sang for the LOTR soundtrack, but is oddly appropriate for Frodo and Sam's journey.  

You can certainly cook everything the day of your marathon, but I wanted to be as loungey and lazy as possible while watching, so I started on a few things early...

  There was a study at the University of Leicester which calculated how many pieces of Lembas bread would have been required for the characters' survival. They concluded that they would have had to carry a total of 673 pieces for the whole party, factoring in each species' metabolism.  I love that there was time and money dedicated to this. I am not be sarcastic. I love it. Carbs are very important. 
  Anyways, Lembas bread is supposed to be "rustic" i.e. "ugly." So. Authenticity is key.  I wanted a kind of a savory shortbread situation and also to use up the rest of the parmesan cheese we had in our fridge.

 No one understands more than Merry how delicious a meal can be when it is free, nor how heartbreaking it is when one ruins the meal (or in my case, accidentally leaves it under my seat on the red line).  In any case, these carrots and apples are an ode to stolen produce and the hobbits who love it so...


I have the utmost respect for the hobbits who, after being cruelly denied their second breakfast, risked their lives for fried pork.  As a Filipina I fully understand this action, though also was stressed by the consequences.



Bred by Saruman for the sole purpose of becoming soldiers, the Uruk Hai are equal parts man and Orc, and their hunger cannot always be controlled.  Very much like me after an afternoon at Mariano's.


Sorry, Samwise.  We didn't feel like stew today. So we boiled 'em, mashed 'em, fried 'em and put 'em on a plate after tossing in blue cheese, bacon and parsnips. No regrets.

 

A crude demonstration of a man gone mad, mercilessly turning from his son? One of the most effective A.S.M.R. videos of all time? Probably what I looked like stress eating during election week?  Yes to all.  But hey at least it culminated in a refreshing chicken and grape salad.


I do have to say, a bowl of strawberries and cream was the perfect way to end this epic feast and day. Not just because of all the heavy fare on our plates and screen but because Sam and Frodo's beautiful words that just hit me differently today:

"It'll be spring soon. And the orchards will be in blossom. And the birds will be nesting in the hazel thicket. And they'll be sowing the summer barley in the lower fields... and eating the first of the strawberries with cream. Do you remember the taste of strawberries?"

"No, Sam. I can't recall the taste of food... nor the sound of water... nor the touch of grass. I'm... naked in the dark, with nothing, no veil... between me... and the wheel of fire! I can see him... with my waking eyes!"

"Then let us be rid of it... once and for all! Come on, Mr. Frodo. I can't carry it for you... but I can carry you!"

Friends if you managed to read this whole blog entry, I thank you for sharing your time with me. I hope that our words and meals and music and ideas can carry each other this year and every year.  I am grateful for your fellowship and the opportunity to share as much as I have the capacity to.  Happy New Year to you. I think we're quite ready for another adventure.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
If you're in the market to support a local bakery or are lucky enough to have been gifted a gorgeous pie like we were this Christmas, I highly highly recommend perusing Justice of the Pies, established by Chicagoan Maya Camille Broussard.  Truthfully I'm not a pecan pie person, but holy wow if this one didn't make me a convert. I mean. It had bourbon in it.

If you'd rather make one at home, consider Chad's family's recipe of Chocolate Pecan Pie.  
1 cup light corn syrup
3 eggs
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup butter
1/2 tsp salt
1 6oz pack semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted
1 cup coarsely chopped pecans
1 9" unbaked pie shell
1/4 cup semi sweet chocolate chips

Heat oven to 375 degrees. In a large mixing bowl, combine cornsyrup, eggs, sugar, butter and salt; beat until blended.  Gradually beat in melted chocolate; stir in pecans.
Pour into unbaked pie shell.  Bake on lowest oven rack until filling is completely puffed across the top and
crusted over (55-60 mins).  Let cool.

Pour 1/4 cup chocolate chips into a ziplock bag.  Submerge bag in hot water until chips are melted.  Drizzle melted chocolate over pie.
Refrigerate at least 4 hours.

Cardamom Spiced Carrots and Apples
stolen and adapted from vanillaandbean.com
14 oz Carrots cut to similar thickness*,
1 lb Apples your favorite variety, cut into thick wedges
1 1/2 Tbs Olive Oil
1 1/2 tsp Maple Syrup
1/4 tsp Cardamom ground
1/4 tsp Ginger ground
1/4 tsp Cinnamon ground
2 tsp Fresh Mixed Herbs finely chopped, like thyme and rosemary, or sage and parsley
Sea Salt to taste
1/4 Lemon juiced

Preheat oven to 425F and place rack in upper third of oven. Line two sheet pans with parchment paper.
Place walnuts in a pan and toast while the oven is preheating for about 15 minutes or until toasty and fragrant. Set aside to cool, then chop fine. Set aside.
Toss carrots and apples with olive oil and maple syrup. Sprinkle with spices. Toss again to evenly distribute the spices. Spread the carrots and apples in an even layer, on each prepared sheet pan making sure not to crowd the carrots and apples. Roast for 20 minutes, gently flip the carrots and apples 1/2 way through roasting.Test to see if the carrots and apples need more time by checking for fork tenderness. If more time is needed, give them another five or more minutes. Thicker carrots will need more time. Right out of the oven, sprinkle with lemon juice, toss with fresh herbs, toasted walnuts and season with sea salt.
Serve immediately or chill and serve later.

Mini Frittatas
stolen and adapted from thecomfortofcooking.com
2 eggs
4 egg whites or 3 additional whole eggs, if you prefer
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
3 slices bacon or 1/2 cup chopped pancetta
1/8 cup small diced green onion
1/4 cup small diced tomato seeds removed

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
In a medium bowl, beat together egg and egg whites/whole eggs. Add salt, pepper and garlic powder.
Coat 6 cups of a muffin tin with cooking spray and set aside.
In a frying pan set to medium high heat, cook bacon for 4 minutes per side. Place strips on a paper towel lined cutting board. Let bacon cool then chop into small pieces.
Divide chopped bacon, onion, tomato between the muffin tins. Top each muffin cup with the beaten eggs.
Bake for 15-20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
Remove pan from oven. Let cool for about 5 minutes before running a small knife alongside each frittata to release it from the pan. Serve warm.
Enjoy!

Savory Lembas Bread
Stolen and adapted from Bon Appetit 
1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese (about 2 1/2 ounces)
1 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
1/2 small garlic clove, minced
pinch of cayenne pepper
pinch of oregano
pinch of thyme
pinch of black pepper
1 cup (2 sticks) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper. Mix flour, 3/4 cup Parmesan cheese, salt, garlic, and herbs in processor. Add butter and, using on/off turns, process until dough begins to come together. Gather dough into ball. Divide dough in half. Roll each half into 12-inch log, and cut each log into 1-inch pieces. Roll each piece into ball. Arrange dough balls on prepared baking sheet, spacing about 1 1/2 inches apart. Press each ball into 2-inch squares. I made little x's on them for funsies. Sprinkle remaining 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese over.

Bake until tops are dry and bottoms are golden brown, about 20 minutes. Transfer breads to rack and cool completely. DO AHEAD: Can be made 1 week ahead. Store squares in airtight container at room temperature, or freeze up to 1 month.

Chad's Ham and Cheese Pie
1/4 lb ham, cut into small cubes
1/4 lb provolone or swiss cheese, cut into similar cubes
1 egg
1 small onion, finely chopped
salt and pepper to taste
ground mustard to taste (we used a lot) or horseradish sauce
1 package crescent roles
1pre-made pie crust
1/2 cup broccolli flowerets
 
Preheat the oven to 450.
Beat an egg with a fork and add to bowl of cubed ham and cheese. Add onion and broccoli and season with  salt, pepper and mustard or horseradish.  
Open the crescent rolls.  Cut the rolls into strips with a pizza cuter. Make a "lattice' weaving crust over pie.  You can make long strips by moistening dough and pinching together.
Set pie on top of a sheet pan and put into oven for fifteen minutes at 450.
Set oven to 350 then bake for 15 more minutes or until the cheese is melted and crust is nice and brown.  Cut into wedges to serve.

Boiled/Smashed/Fried Potatoes and Parsnips with bacon
Stolen and heavily adapted from spendwithpennies.com

3 or 4 Yukon gold potatoes
2 parsnips
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 stick butter
2 tablespoons chopped chives
6 strips bacon, fried and diced
1 cup blue cheese or cheddar shredded

Peel and cut the potatoes and parsnips into even sized pieces. Put them into a large pot, cover them with cold water, and add a large pinch of salt. Bring to a boil and simmer until the vegetables are fork tender, about 20 to 30 minutes. Meanwhile, in a small pot gently heat the cream and butter over low heat. When the vegetables are done drain them well. Put the vegetables back into the pot over medium heat. Gently stir them to remove any excess moisture; be careful not to burn them. While the potatoes and parsnips are still warm, press them through a potato ricer or food mill into a bowl. Add the warm cream a little at a time and beat with a wooden spoon until the potatoes are fluffy. Season with salt and pepper and chives. 
Add to the bacon bits to mashed mixture and blend well with a spoon.
Wash and dry your frying pan, then melt 1 tbsp of butter or margarine in it over medium heat.
Scoop up about 1/4 of a cup of the potato mixture and form it into a ball. Place it in the hot pan, flattening it out until it’s about 1/2 – 3/4″ thick.
Fry for about 3 minutes on each side, until they are lightly golden brown.


Chicken and Grape Salad
fully stolen from wellplated.com

1/4 cup raw sliced almonds or raw walnut halves
2 cups 1/2-inch-diced cooked boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 1/2 cups seedless red grapes halved
3 medium stalks celery diced (scant 1 1/2 cups)
1 large green onion thinly sliced (about 3 tablespoons), or 2 small/medium green onions
2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
1/4 cup tahini
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt plus additional to taste
1/2 teaspoon black pepper plus additional to taste
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder plus additional to taste
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
5 tablespoons hot water

Toast the nuts: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spread the nuts in a single layer on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake for 6 to 8 minutes (for almonds) or 8 to 10 minutes (for walnuts) until crisp, fragrant, and toasted. Set a timer and do not walk away from the oven during the last few minutes, as nuts can burn the moment you stop watching. If using almonds, transfer to a small bowl; if using walnuts, transfer to a cutting board, then let cool a few minutes and roughly chop.
Place the diced chicken, grapes, celery, green onions, dill, and toasted nuts in a large bowl.
In a small bowl, add tahini, salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Whisk to combine. Add the apple cider vinegar, then the hot water, and stir until smooth. Add additional hot water 1 tablespoon at a time, until you have a smooth, pourable sauce that seems like a thick dressing.
Pour the tahini mixture over the chicken mixture and toss to coat. Taste and add additional salt and pepper as desired. If time allows, refrigerate for 2 hours. Serve piled inside lettuce cups and enjoy!

(Orc) Blood and Snow
stolen and adapted from cooking to entertain

1 oz Bourbon
1 oz Sweet Vermouth
1 oz bitter orange liqueur
1 dash of ginger bitters
1 oz Blood Orange Juice
1 Egg White (if you only have big eggs then use half the white)

Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker with 2-3 ice cubes and shake hard until the egg white foams up, or the ice cubes have melted. You don't have to add ice if you don't want to dilute it.
Pour into a cocktail or coupe glass. Garnish with a blood orange slice if you feel like it.

Eye of Sauron shot
equal parts: St. Germaine, Mezcal, Cranberry gin liqueur 
Dash of ginger bitters
An orange slice with a cherry that's been soaked in bourbon

Put stuff in the shot glass. Yep.


 







Friday, November 13, 2020

Kalimotxo for Ate Coco

There was - at one point - at least four Emma Gavino's in the state of Washington.  I was one of them but I was far from the most coordinated (that was Ate Miemme) or the most outgoing (that was Ate Chillette).  Though she was six years older than I was, Ate Coco was the newest Emma, since her family moved to Seattle from the Philippines and I couldn't have been more thrilled.  I was still a very lonely only child and she and Kuya Joel would be forced to be my friends (i.e. their parents made them babysit me).  

Even as a 12 year old, Emma Victoria Gavino was wise beyond her years - smart, graceful, kind, responsible and ridiculously too patient with my tiresome 6 year old self. I'd always wanted an older sister, and having her roll her eyes and laugh at me all summer, it felt like I finally had one. 

I honestly don't know if she was given her nick name in The Philippines or once she got to The States, but I do know it had something to do with Coca Cola.  

So I made a Coca Cola Cocoa Red Wine cake in memory of this incredible woman, wife, daughter, mother, friend, cousin, sister, superhuman who meant so much to so many of us and who was taken from us far too soon.  

  

Recipe #19: Kalimotxo Chocolate Cake

Choice of Libation:  She liked mezcal and I had been looking forward to enjoying some with her after this hellish year.  So proper a toast to her was important today.



Puntagave Rustico Mezcal.  Smooth and smoky with a little bit of pepper and cedar.  I usually do a twist of orange, but honestly this one just needs a little air and some ice.  

Choice of Music: Repeat Offender by Richard Marx, I know, I KNOW but hear me out....

It was my birthday and Ate Coco said as a present, she would help me call into the local radio station to ask them to play any song I wanted to hear. The idea of having that amount of control, to be able to curate a moment and share it with the entire Pacific Northwest (as a 7 year old I assumed everyone listened to the same radio station at all times) and to maybe even hear my own voice broadcasted on the airwaves was thrilling.   I took this decision very seriously, weighing all the suggestions that Ate Coco and Kuya Joel recommended, Bobby Brown, Prince, De La Soul, all great choices.  To this day I have no idea why I knew who Richard Marx was or where on earth I would have heard this song (at home I was still only allowed to listen to Christian music and some musicals), I enthusiastically proclaimed, "I WOULD LIKE TO HEAR RIGHT HERE WAITING!!!!" Like that one box that popped up back when people still bought songs on iTunes, Ate Coco cocked her head to the side and said "Are you sure you want to listen to Richard Marx?"  


I ran around the house, turning all the radios up to full volume to KUBE 93FM while Ate Coco held the phone to her ear, on hold forever.  Finally Kuya Joel called "We're on!" and I ran down the stairs squealing until I was hushed by my older sibling-cousins.  With the regality of a royal, Ate Coco declared, "We would like to hear Right Here Waiting by Richard Marx," then turned to me and said, "They're gonna play it now! Happy birthday!" I rushed to the radio and eagerly waited to hear the rest of their conversation and the beginning of the song on air...but it was just a really long R.E.M song.  Then The Cure.  Then Dino.  But never Ate Coco and never Richard Marx.  

BECAUSE I STUPIDLY TURNED THE DIAL TO KPLZ NOT KUBE AND WE MISSED MY SONG.

I was crushed.  But I'm pretty sure Ate Coco let me have cake. So.  Win win.

With the exception of the Mexican Coca Cola (definitely better in a kalimotxo than normal Coke) and  buttermilk, this is definitely a pantry staple cake.  

Obligatory caffeine and booze pour photo


Grandma Emjoy doesn't know how to make this photo right size up. 
Also.  What does one do with extra buttermilk? Asking for a Me.


For some reason, this recipe made one ugly cake and exactly 9 ugly cupcakes.

The best part was the sponge bath with the coca cola/red wine/chocolate/butter glaze,
she typed unironically.


When Coco is part of your life, you can't beat the feeling.


Stolen and heavily adapted from tasteofhome.com

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cup Mexican Coca Cola (or whatever cola you can find)
1/4 cup red wine (I used Carmenere)
1 cup butter, cubed
1/4 cup baking cocoa
2 large eggs, room temperature
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (I used more cola)

GLAZE:
1/4 cup cola
1/4 cup red wine
1/2 cup butter, cubed
1/4 cup baking cocoa
4 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted

Preheat oven to 350°. Grease a 13x9-in. baking pan. (I used a cake pan and muffin tin)
In a large bowl, whisk the first 5 ingredients. In a small saucepan, combine cola, wine, butter and cocoa; bring just to a boil, stirring occasionally. Add to flour mixture, stirring just until moistened.
In a small bowl, whisk eggs, buttermilk and vanilla until blended; add to flour mixture, whisking constantly.
Transfer to prepared pan. Bake 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
About 15 minutes before cake is done, prepare glaze. In a small saucepan, bring cola to a boil; cook 12-15 minutes or until liquid is reduced to 1/2 cup. Stir in butter and cocoa until butter is melted; remove from heat. Add confectioners' sugar; stir until smooth. Pour immediately over hot cake.


Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Vietnamese inspired Sloppy Joe?? You can't Banh Mi from trying...

Banh Mi and Sloppy Joe were from opposites sides of the tracks, both attractive in a relatable way but kept apart by some complicating circumstances, until surmounting all obstacles the two sympathetic and well matched lovers found each other in a joyous reunion.

Did I just copy and paste the Wikipedia definition of a romantic comedy? Perhaps.
Is it an accurate presentation of what occurred on my plate. I think so.
Am I losing it? Absolutely.

Recipes #16, #17 and #18
Đồ Chua (pickled vegetables), Sriracha Aioli, 
and Red Curry Lemongrass Sloppy Joes

Choice of Libation: My favorite boilermaker - a shot of Banhez mezcal and an ice cold Steigl Radler. It's summery smokey goodness.


Choice of Music:  If a rainbow were a silky melody and wrapped in a gentle hug that could heal you, it would be the music of Raveena. 

Check out her album, Lucid, wherever you stream music...



So I am tiptoeing away from pantry-item recipes, fully out of boredom now. Although! Jars full of delicious pickled vegetables make for excellent staples. You can put them on tacos, burgers, eggs, tikka masala, bean soup, make yourself a gibson or a weirdass vodka tonic. And I guess salads.  Really, EVERYTHING.  Also, look at the preeety colours!



Oh but how I love condiments that will valiantly ward against vampires. Throughout my life, I've been building my tolerance to spice and horror movies. Folding sriracha into homemade garlic mayo and watching The Addams Family is about where I'm at right now.  While it's important to challenge oneself every now and again it's also nice to know exactly who you are. Y'know?

 (also, I skipped "chart day" at school so may not 100% understand how they work)



Sooo...I started out with this group of ingredients but then just ended up adding stuff on a whim. The ketchup and coconut milk weren't originally planned but seemed necessary for texture and sweetness. Also, I cut the lemongrass in large chunks because I wasn't entirely certain we are supposed to digest it and wanted to be able to fish it out later.




Here's the end result, (situated by some sort of pasta salad that was just okay). I have to admit, this was a lot of work for a sandwich but it is maybe one of my favorite things I've made this year. It has the spice and tang of a curry meatball banh mi with the impossibly beautiful mess of a sloppy Joe.  I stupidly forgot to add cilantro and mint because I was too hungry. Seriously, Gavino?? The dumb herbs are still in my fridge.  I'm so mad because my sandwich is over.  But when you make it, I know you'll do the right thing.

Đồ Chua:
stolen and adapted from hungryhuy.com
1/2 lb daikon radish peeled
1/2 lb carrots peeled
1 tbsp salt
1/2 cup hot water to dissolve 5 tablespoons sugar
1 cup water
4 tbsp distilled vinegar
Whatever spices - I used coriander seeds, mustard seed and whole black peppercorn

Peel daikon and radishes
Cut medium to small matchsticks
Sprinkle salt and toss well.
Soak for 15 minutes.
Rinse thoroughly and slightly squeeze to remove excess moisture.
Add to jars, filling almost to the top.
For Vinegar Solution - Dissolve sugar in hot water, then combine with remaining vinegar and water.
Add vinegar solution to jars to fully submerge daikon & carrots.
Screw on the lids, store at room temperature until pickled to your taste, checking every 12 or 24 hours.
Refrigerate when ready, for up to 3 weeks, or until too sour or veggies lose their crunch.

Sriracha aioli:
stolen and heavily adapted from epicurious.com

2 garlic cloves
1 large egg yolk
2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 tablespoon sriracha

Mince and mash garlic to a paste with a pinch of salt using a large heavy knife. Whisk together yolk, lime juice, and mustard in a bowl. Combine oils and add, a few drops at a time, to yolk mixture, whisking constantly, until all oil is incorporated and mixture is emulsified. (If mixture separates, stop adding oil and continue whisking until mixture comes together, then resume adding oil.)
Whisk in garlic paste, sriracha and season with salt and pepper. If aïoli is too thick, whisk in 1 or 2 drops of water. Chill, covered, until ready to use.

Sloppy Joes:
stolen and heavily adapted from chowhound.com

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup minced shallot
2 garlic cloves, minced
4 tablespoons ginger, minced
lemongrass
1 large stalk lemongrass (rough dice just the white parts of the lemongrass, usualy bottom white 1/3 of stalk)
2 to 3 tablespoons red curry paste
1 pound ground beef
About 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/3 cup ketchup
2 tablespoons siracha
1/2 cup canned coconut milk
2 to 3 teaspoons brown sugar or honey
1/2 cup doa chua
1/4 cup cucumbers sliced
1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
1 baguette (I used a roasted garlic one), cut into 4 equal pieces, split, and lightly toasted


Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add shallot, lemongrass, ginger and garlic and cook, stirring, until shallot begins to soften, about 3 minutes. Stir in red curry paste and cook, stirring, 45 seconds. Add the ketchup and siracha. Add beef and salt, breaking beef into small pieces with a wooden spoon. Cook, stirring occasionally, until beef is just cooked through, about 5 minutes.

Add coconut milk and sugar, reduce heat to medium-low, and cook until most of liquid is absorbed, about 8 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add remaining 2 teaspoons of lime juice.

Fill toasted buns with beef, dividing evenly. Toss carrots, cucumbers, jicama sticks, and cilantro with remaining 1 tablespoon each oil and lime juice and a pinch of salt.

Onto your baguette spread aioli and build your sandwich as you please.

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Easy Peasy Lemon Stabby


Lemon + Sugar + MURRDERRRR
Jk, jk, no murder, just raspberries.

But the end result does kind of look like a crime scene, which is why I originally made this for a show I did where my character is stabbed to death.

BEFORE:



AFTER:
photography: Evan Hanover
painting: Emjoy Gavino on Benadryl


The cookies were quite popular with the cast and actually won a prize.  The prize was a piece of paper with a fellow actor's headshot photocopied onto it but now I can tell my third grade teacher who told me I wouldn't amount to anything that I've won something.

TAKE THAT, MRS. LAZOR.
I'VE WON SOMETHING.
ALSO.
LOTS OF KIDS USE YELLOW LINED PAPER SO STOP YELLING AT ME.

Anyway.

Recipes #14 and 15: Vodka Lemon Fizz and 
Lemon Raspberry Cookies with Pimm's Liqueur.

Choice of Libation: Vodka Lemon Fizz (see recipe below)
Choice of Music: Yola.  HOLY CRAP. WHERE HAS SHE BEEN ALL MY LIFE?




Throwback 70s soul meets old school folk meets power ballads?! And that VOICE. Just yes to all of it.




 Look at all that produce and protein.  



Muddling with my left hand, Instagramming with my right.
The things I do for my art.



Yeah, but in some countries 2 ounces = 2 wrist tremors



Obligatory cardio shot



This actually looks like something I paid $13 for at a speakeasy where the bartender shushed me. It tastes better too because I got to be loud as hell while on a social zoom. 
And no one was wearing an ironic bowtie.




Whoops, forgot an ingredients picture for the cookies so may as well just jump in with the liquor pouring shot.  We weirdly have 2 full bottles of Pimm's and we were out of vanilla extract so....


Antioxidants.  Or. AntioxiDANCE?  
.....I've had too much Pimm's.


I do recommend using 2 spoons or a small ice cream scoop to form rounds on your cookie sheet.



Otherwise the dough is pretty sticky and raspberry-y and it gets very Carrie-at-the-Prom-y.


Tart, sweet, comforting and slightly awkward.  That's what they called me in grade school. 
Except for Mrs. Lazor but let's not get into it until I have another cocktail. 



stolen and adapted from vintagekitty.com
2 tablespoons sugar (honestly, could have done 2 tsp, this was suuuper sweet)
1/4 lemon
2 ounces vodka
1 egg white

Place sugar in a cocktail shaker
Cut the quarter lemon into small pieces then muddle with sugar.
Add the vodka, stir and let sit for about 5 minutes until the sugar dissolves.
Pour the egg white into the cocktail shaker then shake until your arm wants to fall off.
Then shake some more!
Add ice and then shake more.
Pour cocktail into a coupe or small rocks glass
Garnish with lemon

Notes
A cheaters way to get the best foam is to strain the cocktail into a blender and process until foamy.

For a vegan cocktail, substitute two tablespoons aquafaba for the egg white.
If using raw egg whites worries you, you can purchase pasteurized eggs for this recipe.


stolen and adapted from bake-eat-repeat.com/

1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla (or Pimm's!)
1 large egg
1/2 lemon, zest and juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup frozen raspberries, coarsely chopped

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Set aside.

In a large bowl, or the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the vanilla, egg, lemon zest and juice and mix well, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Add the salt, baking powder, baking soda and flour and mix until combined. Add in the raspberries and mix briefly to incorporate them.

Drop the dough by tablespoonful (a cookie scoop works best here, the dough is extremely sticky, but two spoons works too, the cookies will just be less uniform) onto the prepared cookie sheet. Bake for 14-16 minutes or until they are just starting to brown on the edges and are no longer shiny at all. Put the second half of the cookie dough in the fridge while the first sheet is baking, it will get even softer as the raspberries thaw.

Allow the cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 10 minutes before moving to a wire rack to cool completely. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for 5 days, or freeze for up to 3 months.