This is one awesome dressing that can be used on a variety of dishes; burgers, steak, salads, shrimp dip, etc.
Such a great weekend again working in the kitchen. Warm enough outside to keep the kitchen door open. We can still find fresh, as such, asparagus but watch the prices. I saw prices vary here in Boise from $2.99 a pound for medium sized spears – which I bought – to $8.99 a pound for the skinny little spears, which I did not buy. It’s either $8.99 a pound for skinny little asparagus spears or my meds for this month. I chose my meds. (This is week #6 past open heart surgery for me. Go Team!) So with that introduction, here are some photos, and recipes, for our culinary endeavors for this past weekend. Enjoy!
I don’t have any photos for these recipes, but the plates were delicious. We made a chicken and then prepared a Chicken Curry Salad with some of the left-overs. (The rest are used in chicken stock!) But for the dressing we used this recipe, and it is superb! Chicken Curry Salad Dressing The curry dressing calls for a chutney. We don’t have any in the house. Don’t fret! Here is our own recipe for the Apricot and Cranberry Chutney.
Chutneys, by nature are, “Chutney (Hindi/ Nepali – “चटनी” also transliterated chatney or chatni, Sindhi: چٽڻي) is a side dish in the cuisines of the Indian subcontinent that can vary from a tomato relish to a ground peanut garnish or a yoghurt, cucumber and mint dip…Major Grey’s Chutney is a type of sweet and spicy chutney popular in the United Kingdom and the United States. The recipe was reportedly created by a 19th-century British Army officer of the same name (likely apocryphal) who presumably lived in Colonial India. Its characteristic ingredients are mango, raisins, vinegar, lime juice, onion, tamarind extract, sweetening and spices. Several companies produce a Major Grey’s Chutney, in India, the UK and the US…The word “chutney” is derived from the Hindi word chatṭnī, meaning to lick. It is written differently in North and South Indian languages (Nepali: चटनी, Gujarati: ચટણી, Bengali: চাটনি, Marathi: चटणी, Punjabi: ਚਟਣੀ, Tamil: சட்டினி chaṭṭiṉi, காரத் துவையல் karathuvaiyal, Kannada: ಚಟ್ನಿ, Hindi: चटनी, Urdu: چٹنی, Sindhi: چٽڻي, Malayalam: ചട്ടിണി, chattin̩i, ചമ്മന്തി, Telugu: పచ్చడి). Pacchadi, as written in Telugu script, refers specifically to pickled fruits, whilst chutney refers to minced foods, usually made out of coconuts.
In India, “chutney” refers to fresh and pickled preparations indiscriminately. Several Indian languages use the word for fresh preparations only. A different word achār (Hindi: अचार) applies to pickles that often contain oil and are rarely sweet.” [Wikipedia]
Our chutney, is but one of many variations of chutney. Ours is not cooked. Think of chutney as jerk sauce or sofrito, “…Italian soffritto, the Spanish sofrito, from Portuguese-speaking nations refogado (braised onions, garlic and tomato), the German Suppengrün (leeks, carrots and celeriac), the Polish włoszczyzna (leeks, carrots, celery root and parsley root), the U.S. Cajun and Creole holy trinity (onions, celery and bell peppers), and the French duxelles (onions, shallots, and mushrooms, sauteed in butter). Or Cajun Trinity – they can all vary from kitchen to kitchen. Fun stuff!
Oh yes! ‘Tis the season for crab. At least the season for Blue Crab – if you can find them. (see photo below) No, that is a Dungeness crab pictured here. I suppose if you had to, you could use the Dungeness. So a little twist on the standard apple, or fruit, strudel. Let’s try a Crab Strudel with a Salmon Pasta Salad. Robin directed me on how to make the salad. It’s one she “dreamed” up. There is no recipe as such.
For the strudel, probably the most difficult part is finding the garlic scapes. What? From Mother Earth News,
…The scapes are the flower stems that garlic plants produce before the bulbs mature. Growers often remove the scapes to push the plant’s energy toward bigger bulbs, and when harvested while they are young and tender, the scapes are delicious.
And from About (dot) com,
Many gardeners simply toss their scapes in the compost, but garlic scapes are both edible and delicious, as are the bulbils. Along the same lines, young garlic plants that are pulled to thin a row are referred to as “green garlic”. Used in the same manner as green onions, these too make excellent eating.
Here is how we made the Crab Strudel. You can get the recipe above. Cheers and have fun with this.
And if you wanted to know more about strudel – inquiring minds need to know, Wikipedia says,
The best-known strudels are Apfelstrudel (German for apple strudel) and Topfenstrudel (with sweet soft quark cheese, in Austrian German Topfen), followed by the Millirahmstrudel (Milk-cream strudel, Milchrahmstrudel). Other strudel types include sour cherry (Weichselstrudel), sweet cherry, nut filled (Nussstrudel), Apricot Strudel, Plum Strudel, poppy seed strudel (Mohnstrudel), and raisin strudel. There are also savoury strudels incorporating spinach, cabbage, pumpkin, and sauerkraut, and versions containing meat fillings like the (Lungenstrudel) or (Fleischstrudel).
Traditional Hungarian, Austrian, and Czech strudel pastry is different from strudels elsewhere, which are often made from puff pastry. The traditional strudel pastry dough is very elastic. It is made from flour with a high gluten content, water, oil and salt, with no sugar added. The dough is worked vigorously, rested, and then rolled out and stretched by hand very thinly with the help of a clean linen tea towel or kitchen paper. Purists say that it should be so thin that you can read a newspaper through it. A legend has it that the Austrian Emperor’s perfectionist cook decreed that it should be possible to read a love letter through it. The thin dough is laid out on a tea towel, and the filling is spread on it. The dough with the filling on top is rolled up carefully with the help of the tea towel and baked in the oven.
About a month ago, I was reading one of the food blogs I subscribe to, and they had an article on the cookbooks that they have in their library. There was only one article, and they gave their most used cookbooks. Sorry, but I can not find that article again. So I thought I would start a series on some of the cookbooks that we have in our library – which is extensive – and the ones we mostly use. These books are only offered as a suggestion and they are my/our opinion. I must say that we receive absolutely no reimbursement of any kind, although that may be fun, from any of these sources. This just sounded like a fun topic. So here I go.
First, I would be remiss if I did not mention The Joy of Cooking, Irma Rombauer and Ethan Becker (The Joy of Cooking). I will not bother you with an extensive review of the book. Only to say that this volumn is a must in any and all kitchens. If you don’t have one, get one and there are several printings. Check Amazon or Barnes and Noble. The other must addition to your kitchen is by Julia Child, Mastering the Art of French Cooking, also available on Amazon and EBay.
The one book that we have, and it has been a blessing whenever I could not find the right sauce for a particular dish, was suggested to me by one of the Instructor Chefs at the BSU School of Culinary Arts and by Chef Andrae Bopp. This particular volumn is used by the CIA, Culinary Institute of America, and the BSU School of Culinary Arts.
One of our other absolutely fantastic reference books is The Modernist Cuisine at Home, Nathan Myhrvold. The Cooking Lab, Belleview, WA, 2012. ISBN: 978-0-9827610-1-4. You can find this reference on the web at Modernist Cuisine. Be sure to check the link. It’s worth the time.
This is the front cover. Look close. See how the sandwich is in an “exploded” view? Many of the views in the main book, there are two books to this set, have these exploded views, especially where they are talking about different kitchen appliances. Interesting! and fun! The second volume, is 2000+ recipes. Oh my!
Hope you have enjoyed these “basic” kitchen resources. Overload? Maybe. Depends on how much you want to learn. Cheers! The next post will probably be cookbooks of different cuisines, i.e., Bistro, Spanish, French, Italian, Tuscan, BBQ etc. Any suggestions?