The Week Night Challenge

LeanneThe quest for interesting week night meals has been an on-going pursuit of mine for over 30 years now. The week-night dinner needs to be somewhat healthy, easy and quick to make, include inexpensive ingredients, and most importantly, be something that everyone likes. That’s the hard part when you have three kids who all like different things and all have certain dislikes. Many times, one member of the family has to just “lump it,” as I say. They’ll eat a barely acceptable portion, put the leftovers away and likely snack on stuff the rest of the evening. Fortunately, in this regard, my kids are almost all grown, moving away from home, and from here out, making weeknight dinners won’t be so problematic. Perhaps this small reward will make it slightly less painful when my youngest goes off to college next fall?

This week night dinner is from Martha Stewart originally but as usual, I’ve made some changes. The recipe is more about using Thai flavors than being authentic Thai food. I loved the bright flavors and the classic salty-sweet-sour-spicy balance of tastes. You can find fish sauce at most grocery stores now and you really should have some of this in your refrigerator if you don’t already. It passed our test of all those attributes listed above and is officially “a keeper.” Yes, indeed, one more dish for my weeknight repertoire!

 

One-Pot Thai Turkey and Rice

½ cup fresh lime juice
2 to 3 tablespoons fish sauce
1½ tablespoons packed light-brown sugar
7 shallots, halved and thinly sliced lengthwise – 2¼ cups
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 pound ground turkey
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, peeled and minced
1 tablespoon garlic, minced
One small jalapeño, minced
1¼ cups jasmine rice
1¼ cups unsweetened full-fat coconut milk
1 sweet red bell pepper, thinly sliced – ⅓ cup
Coarse salt
3 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
1 cup packed fresh basil leaves or Thai basil, roughly chopped
1 cup packed fresh cilantro leaves, roughly chopped

Combine lime juice, 1 to 2 tablespoons fish sauce, and brown sugar in a bowl; stir until sugar is dissolved, then stir in ½ cup shallots.

Heat oil in a large high-sided skillet over medium-high. Add turkey, ginger, garlic, remaining 1¾ cups shallots and jalapeño.

Cook, stirring to break up turkey, until browned, about 9 minutes. Add rice; cook, stirring, 1 minute. Add remaining 1 tablespoon fish sauce, scraping up browned bits from bottom of pan.

Add coconut milk, red pepper, 1½ teaspoons salt, and 1¼ cups water. Bring to a simmer and do not let boil; cover. Lower heat and gently simmer, stirring occasionally, until rice is tender, about 15 minutes.

Toss tomatoes and herbs with dressing in a large bowl; season with salt. Serve over rice, spooning dressing from bottom of bowl over top. Serves 4

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“It’s Still Winter” Food

LeanneI like February better than I like January, probably because it’s one month closer to spring. There’s no getting around it though – February is still very much winter, and today as I write this, a constant, cold drizzle falls, veiling almost everything with the same dull gray. I do like wintery food, however. It’s usually warm, hearty, comfortable stuff that seems as if it’s calling you home.

When I visited England a couple of years ago, it was in the early spring, with all the daffodils blooming and green everywhere you looked. It was still chilly nonetheless and the little pubs we visited were serving wintery fare. We had a brilliant (how quickly I fall into English descriptives!) steak and stout pie at York’s House of Trembling Madness, a wonderfully eccentric pub with absolutely delicious food. I’ve attempted to recreate it, with pretty good success. What I’ve come up with is fairly close to what we ate on our trip and it certainly fits the bill as winter comfort food. Have yourself a cozy evening by the fire and enjoy a scrumptious steak and stout pie!

Steak & Stout Pie
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 small red onions, peeled and finely sliced
3 sprigs of fresh rosemary, leaves picked and finely chopped
3 sprigs of fresh thyme, leaves picked
3 bay leaves
3 heaped tablespoons flour
2 pounds beef skirt steak, sliced into bite-sized pieces
1 pound Crimini mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
2 tablespoons tomato purée
Sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
10 ounces good-quality stout or dark ale
2½ cups hot beef stock
3 ounces Dubliner Stout Cheese or good quality Cheddar, crumbled or sliced
1 large egg, beaten
1 package pie pastry (with lard as an ingredient)

Place a large casserole pan over medium heat, add olive oil and the butter, followed by the onions and fresh herbs. Cook for around 20 minutes, or until soft and turning golden, stirring occasionally.

Add flour and cook for 1 minute. Add beef to the pan along with the mushrooms, tomato purée and a good pinch of salt and pepper. Stir in the vinegar, beer, and hot stock and bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover with a lid and simmer for 1 hour 20 minutes, or until the sauce has thickened and the meat is tender. At the end, you may need to remove meat, onions and mushrooms with a slotted spoon and boil gravy, stirring often, until thickened. Return meat mixture to gravy.

Preheat oven to 375°F. Lay out one round of pastry into a large pie dish, smoothing down, turning in the edges neatly and pricking lightly all over with a fork. Brush with egg white. Bake for 20 minutes or until just starting to color.

Carefully ladle the stew into a pie dish then lay over the slices or crumbles of cheese.
Brush the outside rim with beaten egg and lay out other round of pastry on top, crimping and sealing the edges. Brush the top with a little more egg and place in the hot oven for 40 minutes, or until the pastry is beautifully golden. Serves 6 to 8

Categories: General Blogging, Kitchen with a View, Recipes | 2 Comments

The Spring 2016 Brochure is Here!!

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Announcing: The Spring 2016 Brochure is now available online and for pickup!

Get your very own copy at Bayview or Ralph’s Thriftway or Storman’s Office

or view / print it online at www.BayviewSchoolOfCooking.com
Sign up for classes by calling (360) 754-1448 today! Hurry because seats fill quickly!

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Chocolate for My Mom

Leanne

There’s been a lot written about chocolate. George Orwell, Ogden Nash, Katharine Hepburn, J.K. Rowling, Charles M. Schulz, Dave Barry and countless others have had their say about the subject. I love chocolate, but not as much as my mom loved chocolate.

Growing up during the Depression gave her a great regard for it as only great scarcity can do. It was always a given that she would want chocolate for her birthday cake. Beautiful chocolate truffles were always a go to whenever I couldn’t think of anything else to get her for a gift. Even during her last days, when nothing else sounded appetizing to her, she still wanted a cup of hot cocoa or a bite of Almond Roca. She also kept describing a delicious little cake that had been served during a tea party at her care facility. It was chocolate, covered in chocolate ganache, with a fruit filling inside. It brought to mind a Sacher Torte that I used to make quite a bit that my mom thought was very good. I made it again recently and it is good! I acquired this recipe more than 30 years ago, so I don’t remember where it originally came from, but here it is for you. My mom would highly approve.

Viennese Sacher Torte

2 ounces unsweetened chocolate
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup hot strong coffee (instant espresso powder works well)
1 cup sugar
1 egg
¼ cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup flour
½ cup apricot preserves
2 tablespoons brandy
Chocolate Glaze (see recipe below)

In the top of a double boiler (or in the microwave), stir chocolate, oil, salt, and coffee over barely simmering water until blended.  Pour mixture into large bowl of an electric mixer and add sugar, egg, buttermilk, soda and vanilla; beat on medium speed until well blended.

Add flour and continue beating for 5 minutes, occasionally scraping sides down with a rubber spatula.  Pour into a greased and floured 8-inch cake pan.

Bake in a 350°F oven just until cake begins to pull from the sides of pan, about 30 minutes.  Set on a rack to cool, then remove from pan.

Cut cake in half horizontally to make 2 layers.  Combine apricot preserves and brandy; spread evenly over the bottom layer of cake. Set top layer in place and put cake on a rack.

Slowly pour Chocolate Glaze (see recipe below) onto the center of cake so it flows over the entire surface.  With a spatula, guide glaze down over the sides of the cake to coat smoothly.  Chill until the glaze is set, at least 30 minutes.

Using a wide spatula, loosen cake from rack and gently slide onto a serving plate. If cake is made ahead, cover without touching and chill up to 6 hours; return to room temperature to serve.  Serve with whipped cream if desired. Makes about 10 servings

 

Chocolate Glaze
In the top of a double boiler (or in microwave), over barely simmering water, melt 5 ounces semi-sweet chocolate and 3 tablespoons shortening until melted.

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

Learn to Cook Thai!

Learn to Cook Thai!
Wednesday, January 20th, 6:00-8:30 pm
Instructor: Pranee Kruhasanit Halverson

This is a newly added class and it is filling quickly!

It’s never been so easy to prepare Thai dishes in your own kitchen with an abundance of Thai ingredients within easy reach. Pranee will teach you all the essentials and techniques of Thai cooking by preparing Yom Som Oh, Thai grapefruit salad with prawns and tamarind-palm sugar dressing topped with

crispy fried shallot, Tom Kha Gai, chicken in Thai ginger and coconut-lime broth with lemongrass and lime leaves, Phad Thai, stir-fried Thai rice noodles with prawns and tofu, bean sprouts and chives with Pranee’s delicious Phad Thai Sauce, and for dessert, Kao Neow Kaow,

pandan-sticky rice with coconut sauce, grated coconut and sesame seeds. After seeing all the steps and ingredients demystified, and understanding the balance of sweet, sour, salty and spicy, you will be able to prepare a Thai meal for family and friends with ease! Pranee Kruhasanit Halverson

Call (360)754-1448 for details and to sign up!

Visit the BSC Website for our other great culinary experiences!
Link: Bayview School of Cooking

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Taste the Holiday Spirit!

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Only at Bayview Thriftway – Taste the Holiday Spirit!
Saturday, December 12th, 11:00 am to 3:00 pm

  • Food & Beverage Sampling
  • Mini Culinary Seminars
  • Festive & Easy Holiday Recipes
  • Food, Wine & Kitchen Gift Ideas
  • Caroling with Olympia HS Chamber Choir
  • PLUS…purchase a BSC Christmas gift certificate for that special cook in your life

FREE!

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BSC Winter 2015-16 Brochure now available!

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Pick yours up at Ralph’s or Bayview Thriftway
or see it online at www.BayviewSchoolOfCooking.com!

It’s free!!

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The Harvest Dinner

LeanneIt’s easy to see why the word bounty is often used in conjunction with the word harvest. After all, the definition of bounty is “abundance, plenty—something occurring in generous amounts” and with the fall harvest, this is what we have after a cooperative summer.

Growing up, my mom would make a meal around this time of the year that I dubbed the “harvest dinner.” The primary components were usually green beans with bacon, large juicy tomatoes cut in half and baked with parmesan, acorn squash cooked with butter and brown sugar, and always, a big meatloaf. Not surprisingly, when the leaves start to fall, my cravings go to meatloaf. While this isn’t my mom’s recipe for meatloaf, it’s been my favorite for at least the last 15 years or so. I started making it when my kids were little because it sneaks a lot of veggies inside and they never really noticed. It’s also lower in fat and a bit healthier than the traditional beef version. Give it a try when you feel that nostalgic pull of autumn.

Glazed Turkey Loaf

1 cup chopped onion
¾ cup chopped carrot
½ cup chopped green onions
½ cup chopped celery
½ cup chopped red bell pepper
2 garlic cloves, pressed
2 teaspoons vegetable oil
2½ pounds ground turkey
1 cup dry bread crumbs
⅓ cup ketchup
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
¼ teaspoon ground cumin
¼ teaspoon ground coriander
4 egg whites (or 2 whole eggs), lightly beaten
Cooking Spray
½ cup ketchup
3 tablespoons brown sugar

Place first 6 ingredients in food processor and pulse a few times until finely minced. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add ingredients from food processor and sauté 5 minutes or until tender. Remove from heat and let cool. Combine turkey and the next 8 ingredients in a large bowl; add vegetables when they have cooled and stir well (mixture will be wet).

Shape meat mixture into a 9 x 5-inch loaf on a broiler pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 350°F for 30 minutes. Combine ½ cup ketchup and brown sugar; brush over turkey loaf. Bake an additional 30 minutes or until done; let stand for 10 minutes before slicing. Serves 10

Leanne’s Note: This recipe can be easily halved; reduce cooking time to 20 minutes and 25 minutes

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The BSC Fall 2015 Brochure

Now Available!

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View and download it at the BSC Website: Bayview School of Cooking

Or pick up your copy at:
Ralph’s Thriftway – 1908 4th Avenue East, Olympia, WA 98506
Bayview Thriftway – 516 4th Ave W, Olympia, WA 98502
Storman’s Corporate office – 1932 4th Ave E, Olympia, WA 98506

or in various locations around town!

Categories: General Blogging | 2 Comments

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