Author Archives: A BSC Blogger
German food always seems to me a fall or winter thing. When the weather turns chilly, I get cravings for my daughter’s schnitzel and späetzle, which she makes to perfection. I long for hearty, comfort food and the Germans seem to have that down. Not too long ago, I was trying to think of something for dinner and wanted to use up some pasta in the cupboard. I also had some sauerkraut in the fridge and some smoked pork chops in the freezer. I came up with a recipe that had some serious German undertones—cabbage? check. mustard? check. sour cream? check. smoked meat? check. Pasta? well, maybe not so much. But, it works, and is in fact quite tasty! In this recipe, I add the sauerkraut last to preserve the health benefits of the probiotic in this product. Just heat it through enough so that it’s nice and warm when you put it on the table.
German Sauerkraut Pasta
3 tablespoons butter
½ medium onion, thinly sliced
1 package Johnson’s Smoked Pork Chops, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon mustard seeds
1 tablespoon stone ground Dijon mustard
½ cup sour cream
One 16-ounce container of raw sauerkraut (I like Sonoma Brinery brand)
½ pound Farfalle pasta, cooked al dente
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
In large skillet, melt butter and add onion; cook until transparent. Add pork chops, mustard seeds, and mustard and cook for 5 minutes. Add sour cream and sauerkraut and warm through. Add pasta, stirring until warmed through and season with salt and pepper. Serves 4
There is a certain magic involved in harvesting, preserving, cooking, gifting, and serving food that transcends all its practicalities. Sure, we eat to live, but of course, there is so much more to food than simple nutrition. Growing up, this was the time of year my mom would can and make jam from produce from our garden and trees. She obviously preserved fruits and vegetables so we could eat them later in the year but my memories of helping to pit cherries and pick raspberries and tomatoes and watching her jar all of it up are pure magic.
Part of the magic of cooking is in the learning!
As a teenager, I would often get frustrated with my baking efforts. One day I baked a cake for a friend’s birthday and it came out of the pan in chunks. I had a melt-down and wanted to chuck the whole thing in the garbage when my mom swooped in and suggested that I piece it together. Hidden under a layer of thick, fluffy frosting, no one would be the wiser, she said. That cake turned out very nicely, if I do say so myself. That lesson really hit home with me.
Ever since then, if a cooking project doesn’t turn out the way I think it should, I always take a deep breath and pause before assuming it’s a loss. I’ve tried to pass on this lesson to each of my own kids.
Rather than tell you about all the wonderful things happening at BSC this fall, I want to invite you to look through this brochure, find a class that strikes your fancy and come learn something new. Or…even better…come make some memories! We would love to see you. To me, learning, and making memories is what this season is all about.
Hope to see you soon, upstairs in the BSC Kitchen!
Fall 2017 Brochure Now Available: www.bayviewschoolofcooking.com
Summer has arrived, complete with one 98° day and lots of lovely days after that! Now I’m craving salads for dinner but those salads gotta have pizzazz. I found this salad from Cooking Light magazine a few years ago. The flavors are vibrant, it’s beautiful on the plate, and you get to grill, so it’s kind of the whole package. The dressing is tart, sweet and spicy and really elevates this dish from the usual to the extraordinary. I’ve played with the original recipe a bit here, so you should too (just don’t mess with that dressing!). I’ve been known to throw some chunks of avocado in because, well, they’re delicious. Some cubed jicama might be good in there too! The recipe may look longish but it’s a fairly simple salad to throw together. One more note: this tastes even better when you eat it outside!
Southwestern-Style Shrimp Taco Salad
¼ cup fresh lime juice
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 teaspoons garlic, minced
2 teaspoons maple syrup
2 teaspoons chipotle hot sauce
1 pound medium shrimp, peeled and de-veined
2 ears shucked corn
4 cups romaine lettuce, chopped
½ cup green onions, chopped
¼ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
One 15 ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained
3 plum tomatoes, chopped or 1½ cups cherry tomatoes, cut in half
2 ounces baked blue corn tortilla chips or regular chips
⅓ cup light sour cream
⅓ cup avocado, peeled and diced
Lime wedges (optional)
Prepare grill to medium-high heat.
Combine lime juice, olive oil, cumin, garlic, syrup, and hot sauce in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk.
Place the shrimp in a shallow bowl. Drizzle 1 tablespoon of the lime juice mixture over shrimp, tossing gently to coat. Reserve the remaining lime juice mixture; set aside.
Thread shrimp onto metal skewers. Lightly coat corn with cooking spray. Place shrimp kebabs and corn on a grill rack coated with cooking spray. Grill 8 minutes, turning kebabs once and turning corn frequently until browned. Remove from grill; cool slightly. Remove shrimp from skewers, and place in a large bowl.
Cut kernels from ears of corn. Add corn, chopped lettuce, green onions, cilantro, black beans, and plum tomatoes to shrimp. Drizzle reserved lime juice mixture over the shrimp mixture and toss gently to combine.
Divide tortilla chips evenly among 4 shallow bowls; top each serving with shrimp mixture. Combine sour cream and diced avocado in a small bowl; mash with a fork until well blended.
Top each serving with sour cream mixture. Serve with a lime wedge, if desired. Serves 4
Even though summer officially arrives on June 20th, those of us from the Pacific Northwest know perfectly well that it might not be here until the middle of July, and even that can be somewhat questionable! We want to eat outside and grill everything we bring home from the market, but the weather isn’t always cooperative.
I recently found a recipe from Ina Garten that is great for those in-between times, when heavy, rich food feels wrong, but you still crave something a little heartier than light summer fare. It’s pasta, so I’m all in, it’s meatless, so it’s great for our “Meatless Mondays,” and it’s full of cheese, which is always good. If you’re in a hurry, it’s a meal in itself, or you can serve it with a green salad and a nice bottle of wine. As usual, I changed the recipe a bit to suit my own taste. Don’t be shy when you’re cooking up the cauliflower—the brown bits add a lot of flavor!
Crusty Baked Shells & Cauliflower
Freshly ground black pepper
¾ pound medium shells, such as Barilla
Good olive oil
2½ pounds cauliflower, cut into small, bite-sized florets (1 large head)
2 tablespoons fresh sage leaves, finely chopped
2 tablespoons capers, drained
1 tablespoon (3 cloves) garlic, minced
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
2 cups Italian Fontina, freshly grated
1 cup (8 ounces) fresh whole milk ricotta
¾ cup panko (Japanese bread flakes)
6 tablespoons Italian Pecorino cheese, freshly grated
2 tablespoons fresh parsley leaves, minced
Preheat the oven to 400°
Fill a large pot with water, add 2 teaspoons of salt and bring to a boil. Add the pasta and cook until al dente, according to the instructions on the package. Since it will be baked later, don’t overcook it! Drain and pour into a very large bowl.
Meanwhile, heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil in a 12-inch sauté pan over medium-high heat, add half of the cauliflower in one layer and sauté for 5 to 6 minutes, tossing occasionally, until the florets are lightly browned and tender.
Pour the cauliflower, including the small bits, into the bowl with the pasta. Add 3 more tablespoons of olive oil to the sauté pan, add the remaining cauliflower, cook until browned and tender and add to the bowl.
Add the sage, capers, garlic, lemon zest, red pepper flakes, 2 teaspoons salt and 1 teaspoon black pepper to the bowl and stir carefully.
Stir in the Fontina.
Transfer half of the mixture to a 10 x 13 x 2–inch rectangular baking dish. Spoon rounded tablespoons of ricotta on the pasta and spoon the remaining pasta mixture on top.
Combine the panko, Pecorino, parsley and 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a small bowl and sprinkle it evenly on top. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until browned and crusty on top. Serve hot. Serves 6-8
“If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world.”
– J.R.R. Tolkien
After 21 long years of cooking in a kitchen the size of a small walk-in closet, I am now standing on the precipice of a major house and kitchen remodel. I hope to finally have the kitchen I’ve longed for since I was in my twenties. Yet, as I look back, I’ve cooked a lot of amazing food in that tiny kitchen, and some pretty small kitchens before that. More importantly, I’ve shared that food and good cheer with a lot of amazing friends and family. As awkward as it was preparing daily meals and grand feasts in close quarters, it was certainly worth the effort. Nothing brings folks together like food. I will love to have a beautiful new kitchen, but my small kitchen has taught me that it’s the people your good food brings together that’s truly important.
Our kitchen at BSC isn’t very large, but over the past 13½ years an incredible amount of culinary delights have been produced there! This spring quarter will be no exception. We’re offering classes that represent at least 10 different countries, we have 12 hands-on classes for children and adults, 2 classes with local treasure Xinh Dwelley, 3 classes with downtown Olympia food establishments, and one very special tour. All of this, and I’m just scratching the surface here!
The BSC tour this spring is called the South Sound Artisan Food and Wine Tour with Christine Ciancetta, and it focuses on our local produce, animal products, wine and spirits. We’ve never done anything like it and I can hardly wait!
Springtime can be a busy time. One of my new year’s resolutions was to try and have guests over for dinner more often. I know that many of you are like me and feel that cooking good food is a gift we can give to others. What a lovely pursuit!
Hope to see you soon, upstairs in the BSC kitchen!
Now available online for viewing,
download or pick it up around town!
We Americans come from all over the world and while I’ve always known that my ancestry is largely from Britain and Ireland, I feel that I’m now becoming slightly Scandinavian. To wit, my husband is of Norwegian and Swedish descent and hence, my children as well, and after searching through genealogy sites I find that I am distantly related to King Haakon that once ruled Norway and Sweden. I take that last qualification with a grain of salt, by the way! Additionally, after a recent visit to Stockholm, I found that sparkling city to be so charming that I feel I could happily live there. To top it off, if I’m making lefse this Christmas season, doesn’t that make me slightly Scandinavian?
As Scottish and Irish as my mom was, every Christmas she would make King Haakon (yes, that King Hakkon) cookies, which are essentially biscotti. They can be flavored with cardamom, almonds or anise seed, although my mom always chose the latter. To celebrate my newfound heritage, I’m making these tasty treats this holiday season. To remind me of Stockholm, I’m dipping my cookies in white chocolate and tiny white sprinkles, as I imagine the city to be covered in lovely snow by now. Of course, as I bake I’ll also be reminded of my mom who has been gone a year now. She always loved this time of year.
King Haakon Cookies
½ cup melted
¾ cup sugar
2 cups flour
1½ teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon ground cardamom *
In a large bowl combine butter, eggs, sugar, flour baking powder, salt and flavoring. Form dough into 3 long rolls on a greased cookie sheet and flatten slightly. Sprinkle with colored sprinkles or cinnamon sugar.
Bake at 325°F for 30 to 40 minutes. Cool slightly and slice diagonally ½-inch thick. Place on the cookie sheet and toast in oven for 1 hour at 200°F or until lightly browned. Makes 3 dozen
* or substitute 1½ teaspoons anise seed or 2 teaspoons almond extract (if using almond extract: ¼ cup chopped almonds, toasted in microwave for 3 minutes or until browned)
The New Brochure for All to See!
Check out the new brochure and see great classes!
http://www.bayviewschoolofcooking.com/ …. warning….classes are filling very quickly!
Check out the new brochure and see great classes!
http://www.bayviewschoolofcooking.com/ …. warning….classes fill quickly!
When was a little girl, my dad would go salmon fishing on a regular basis. He truly loved to fish. While there were many times he came home empty handed, there were plenty occasions where I got to go outside and watch as he scaled and cleaned the fish he had caught. Our downstairs freezer was full to the brim with the bounty of his favorite pastime.
Because we had salmon for dinner at least two or three times a month, it was in no way a treat for me. My mom would usually prepare it the same way—with butter and brown sugar, and the predictable regularity of this entrée left me assuming that salmon was nothing special. I didn’t help that I always seemed to get a bone stuck in my throat!
When I met my husband, I found out that salmon was one of his most favorite foods. When I became interested in cooking I learned that Pacific Northwest salmon held an almost reverent spot in many chef’s hearts. I’ve come to realize that this ubiquitous fish from my past is truly an ingredient that has amazing potential to lift any dish to great heights.
I often cook with salmon these days and I like to try new things. I found this salad adapted from Sunset magazine to be surprisingly hearty and summery at the same time. While it’s definitely impressive and tasty enough to serve to guests, it’s relatively easy to put together. What really makes this dish stand out is the Pistachio Salsa Verde, which provides a nice counterpoint to the flavor of the fish!
Salmon and Grains Salad with Pistachio Salsa Verde
1 cup wild rice or wild rice blend
½ cup black quinoa or regular quinoa, rinsed well and drained
1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
1 cup grapeseed or canola oil, for frying
1½ pounds sockeye salmon fillets, about 1 inch thick, thawed if frozen, pin bones removed
1 tablespoon olive oil
½ teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon pepper
1 quart loosely packed small, tender watercress sprigs
¾ cup radish, sliced paper-thin
½ cup red onion, thinly sliced
¾ cup loosely packed flat-leaf parsley leaves
½ cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves, torn if large
½ cup loosely packed fresh small, tender cilantro sprigs
¼ cup small, tender fresh dill sprigs
Pistachio Salsa Verde (see recipe below)
Prepare grains: Cook wild rice and quinoa separately according to package instructions, adding ½ teaspoon salt to each. Drain grains of any liquid, then pour out each onto separate rimmed baking sheets and let cool.
Heat oil in a small saucepan over medium-high heat until it reaches 350°F on a deep-frying thermometer. Using a slotted spoon, add one-quarter of quinoa; cook until crisp (spoon out a few grains and taste them to test), about 2 minutes. Transfer quinoa to paper towels to drain and repeat to cook remaining quinoa.
Make salad: Preheat broiler with rack about 3-inches from heat. Set salmon on a rimmed baking sheet. Rub all over with oil, salt, and pepper. Broil until medium-rare (cut to test), turning once, 3 to 5 minutes total.
Set aside 5 to 10 minutes (salmon will continue to cook a little).
On a large platter, layer wild rice, half of quinoa, the watercress, radishes, onion, parsley, basil, cilantro, and dill. Gently toss greens and vegetables to loosely mix.
Break salmon into 4-inch pieces, discarding any skin, and add to platter. Sprinkle with remaining quinoa, taking care not to cover salmon. Spoon about ⅔ cup Pistachio Salsa Verde (see recipe below) over salad and serve the rest on the side.
Pistachio Salsa Verde
½ teaspoon ground fennel seeds
½ teaspoon ground coriander
½ teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon fresh rosemary leaves, chopped
¼ cup chives, chopped
¼ cup flat-leaf parsley, chopped
1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
1 teaspoon packed light brown sugar
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 garlic clove, minced
¼ teaspoon red chile flakes
¾ cup extra-virgin olive oil
¾ cup pistachios, rough chopped
Into a mortar, put fennel seeds, coriander, cumin, and rosemary; grind with pestle. Add mixture to the bowl of a food processor and add chives, parsley, vinegar, sugar, salt, garlic, and chile flakes. Pulse until well blended. Add pistachios and pulse until nuts are chopped. Add oil in a steady stream until incorporated
Make ahead: Keeps, chilled airtight, up to 3 days.