Monthly Archives: November 2012

Ladies Night Out at the Christmas Forest

Last night, Christine Ciancetta, our Italian instructor and I had the opportunity to take part in “Ladies Night Out” at the Providence Christmas Forest. It’s a super fun event to help raise funds for the wonderful pediatric unit at St. Peter Hospital.  We had $5-off-a-class coupons, a drawing for a free class and some wonderful appetizers at our booth.  Here are the recipes as promised.  Christine’s Taralli are absolutely addictive (and would make a great little gift for someone this Christmas) and the Chive-Spiked Smoked Salmon on Chips are way more delicious (and easy) than the sum of its parts!  Enjoy them both during the holidays.

Chive-Spiked Smoked Salmon on Chips

½ pound smoked salmon (lox style), minced
3 tablespoons finely chopped chives
1 small shallot, finely chopped
1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
½ teaspoon lemon zest
30 think-cut potato chips

In a bowl, combine the smoked salmon, chives, shallot, olive oil, lemon juice and lemon zest. Mound about ½ tablespoon of the salmon mixture on each potato chip and garnish with parsley sprigs. Serves 10

Taralli
Savory Italian Cookie

2 cups unbleached white flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper or crushed fennel seeds
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup warm water
1 cup olive oil

Mix all ingredients together to make a soft dough. Roll out a small ball into a rope a bit thicker than a pencil. Shape into circles, twists or loop with ends crossed. Bake on parchment paper or lightly oiled baking sheet at 400°F for about 20 minutes or until taralli are just beginning to turn brown.

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An Old Thanksgiving Tradition

When I first started living on my own in college, I didn’t do much cooking but I became fascinated with recipes—there seemed to be an element of mystery about them.  Eventually, I decided I better start exploring this mystery and I more or less chose random recipes for experimentation.  I had no idea what “chutney” was so I gave this recipe a try. I have made it every Thanksgiving since then, with the exception of a few Thanksgivings when I tried other cranberry chutney recipes that didn’t compare with this one. In my ignorance, I chose a keeper!  This recipe makes plenty to use for a large holiday gathering and leaves leftovers for turkey sandwiches (and gifts for the neighbors).

Cranberry Chutney

Two 12 ounce packages cranberries
2 red cooking apples
2½ cups packed brown sugar
¾ cup diced pitted prunes
¾ cup water
½ cup cider vinegar
⅓ cup minced candied ginger
1 tablespoon grated orange zest
1¾ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground allspice

Put all of the ingredients in a pot and cook until thick!  Keeps for up to a month in refrigerator.

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Going Home

There’s a restaurant in Seattle that we used to go to called Buddy’s Homesick Café (in the Greenwood neighborhood). It was when fifties-styled diners were all in vogue and this one had Kathy Casey connected with it. It was a fun place to be—it just felt comfortable. My favorite meal there was a scrumptious pot roast, probably the best I’ve ever had, that made you immediately feel as if you had gone home. It’s Kathy Casey’s recipe and here it is. If you make it, you won’t be sorry—comfort food at its best.

 

Cranberry Pot Roast
½ cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons salt
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
3½ pounds boneless chuck roast
¼ cup vegetable oil
2 celery stalks, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups dry red wine
3 cups beef stock
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 can whole-berry cranberry sauce
1 unpeeled orange, quartered
2 cloves
1 bay leaf
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon thyme
2 onions, peeled and quartered
4 carrots, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces

Garlic Whipped Potatoes with Parsnips
2½ pounds russet potatoes, peeled and cut in half
1 pound parsnips, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
1 teaspoon salt
10 garlic cloves
¼ cup butter
¾ cup whole milk
Salt and pepper, to taste
Parsley, minced, for garnish

Gravy
¼ cup butter
¼ cup reserved seasoned flour
4 cups reserved pot roast cooking liquid
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

Combine the flour, salt and pepper; rub into the surface of the meat, coating it well. (Reserve leftover flour for the gravy.) Heat the oil in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat and brown the roast well on all sides, about 2 minutes per side, for a total cooking time of 6-7 minutes. Add the celery and garlic and sauté for 30 seconds or so. Pour in the wine and boil it while scraping up the cooked bits on the bottom of the pan. Add next 7 ingredients. Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer for 3 hours, or until fork tender. Add onions and carrots and cook for another ½ hour.

To make the potatoes: about 25 minutes before the meat will be done, place the potatoes, parsnips , garlic and salt in a medium saucepan with water to cover. Cover the saucepan, bring to a boil, and cook for 25 minutes, or until the potatoes, parsnips and garlic are tender. While the potatoes are cooking, combine in a small pan over medium heat, the milk, pepper and butter. Heat until the butter is melted and the milk is warm. Drain off the water from the potatoes, parsnips and garlic and mash or whip in the pot while adding the hot milk mixture. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Remove the roast to a cutting board and cut it into thick slices, reserving the cooking liquid. Arrange the slices on a serving dish and keep warm.

To make gravy: melt the butter in a medium, heavy saucepan over medium heat. Whisk the reserved seasoned flour into the butter. Cook for 1 minute, then vigorously whisk in the reserved cooking liquid. Cook, whisking often, until thickened and free of lumps. Season with salt and pepper as desired.

Arrange the carrots and onions around the slices of roast (discard the orange pieces.) Pour some of the gravy over the slices and pass the rest in a sauceboat along with the whipped potatoes. Serves 6

Categories: General Blogging, Kitchen with a View, Recipes | Leave a comment

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