Archive for November, 2009

From Dish Erin:

Nothing says the holidays at my Mom’s house like some of her time-tested recipes that I find myself eating cold from the refrigerator at various points on Black Friday. There is a time and place for vegetables smothered in cream-based sauces (especially those from a can), and it’s called Thanksgiving. This is a modified version of a recipe (we Jones girls rarely follow directions) of a dish, ripped from a Betty Crocker cookbook, circa 1988. The very thought of it conjures images of recipe-swapping parties in suburban households, and this one likely made its way through the NJ Tupperware party circuit. The page is stained with oil and fingerprints, vestiges of years of love and usage in my family kitchen.

3 cups sliced cooked carrots (I use the pre-peeled baby carrots and cook for about 5-7 minutes in boiling water)
1 can condensed cream of celery soup
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

1/4 cup dry bread crumbs
1 tablespoon butter, melted

Heat oven to 350 degrees.

In medium bowl, combine carrots, soup and cheese. Pour into an oven-safe casserole dish.

In small bowl combine bread crumbs and butter. Sprinkle topping over carrot mixture.

Bake at 350 for 25 to 30 min until hot and bubbly around edges.

Serve with a smile, and in an apron embroidered with your name, obviously.

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From Dish Jess:

Well, dishes, the holiday season is here whether we like it or not. Personally, I love holiday food and drink, but can sometimes be a scrooge when it comes to bringing in the warm fuzzy cheer (that’s what eggnog is for). Still, the goodness of holiday eats cannot be denied, so I thought I’d share a new favorite that I’ve been perfecting.

I researched cornbread recipes, both traditional and cutting-edge(ish) to formulate this one. I found that true southern cornbread shouldn’t have added sweetness, and that you can substitute yogurt for buttermilk. Also, that truly authentic crumbly cornbread crust is attained only by baking in an iron skillet which I, sadly, do not possess.

So here’s my not-quite-authentic version – a crusty whole wheat cornbread. One could also substitute white flour here with great results. Makes 6-8 servings.

For the cornbread:

Dry ingredients
1 ½ cups medium-grind corn meal
½ cup whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt

Wet Ingredients
1 egg
½ c milk
½ c yogurt
4 tbsp melted butter
1 tbsp melted honey

1 tbsp oil (I used olive)

Pour olive oil into skillet or baking pan and set aside.

Combine dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl and mix thoroughly. In a separate bowl, beat egg and add the rest of the wet ingredients, whisking together. Pour the wet ingredient mixture into the dry bowl, adding a teaspoon or two of milk if the mixture is too dry. Whisk to combine. Set aside for 15-20 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 375-400°F – depending on whether your oven is hotter or cooler. Place the skillet or baking pan into the oven and let the oil heat while the batter is resting.

In the meantime, make your honey butter:

4 tbsp room temperature butter
1 tbsp honey

Beat honey into the butter with a fork. If the butter is a little cold or the honey is crystallized, warm the honey slightly. I don’t like super-sweetened spreads, but you can feel free to adjust the ratio to your tastebuds.

When it’s time to pour the batter into the pan, carefully spread it into the hot pan, smoothing the top so that the batter evenly fills the space. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the sides begin to darken and a toothpick comes out dry.

Feel free to experiment with mix-ins; for this go-around, I had recently made a plain batch, so I added some chopped scallion, jalapeño and grated cheddar. Bacon would be a great addition, or cilantro, or creamed butternut squash. I haven’t made muffins yet but would welcome any baking tips for a muffin tin.

Let the bread cool and cut into squares. Spread the honey butter lavishly onto a still-warm piece… but don’t blame me if the one becomes two or three – or an entire meal!

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From Dish Jodi:

The wedding is over and Neal and I can eat carbs again! No guilt! Why not indulge!

These waffles are made with a little something extra…the yogurt not only gives them a richer texture, but a little tang as well. And adding in whole wheat flour always helps make things a little healthier and a little more flavorful.

4 oz milk
4 oz plain yogurt (not fat free)
2 large eggs
½ stick butter, melted and cooled slightly
1 tsp vanilla
6 oz all-purpose flour
2 oz whole wheat flour
2 tbsp sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt

Combine wet ingredients and whisk til combined. Combine dry ingredients in a separate bowl and stir together.

Combine wet and dry ingredients and whist until the batter is smooth. It will be thick.

Depending on the size of your waffle maker, scoop about a ½ – ¾ cup of batter on to the griddle and follow the directions of your machine. This mix can also be used as pancake batter. Thin it a little with a couple tablespoons more milk and spoon quarter cups on to a hot griddle.

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Posole Soup

From Dish Rachelle:


Every day in New York, a restaurant opens its doors and then permanently closes, victim to the indescribable forces that render one place an enormous success while its next-door neighbor suffers. Unfortunately, I’ve gotten attached to dishes that disappeared as soon as the lights went down in these restaurants – for good. There was the crack-like hummus at a nearby brunch spot that I’ve never been able to replicate, and the posole soup at Café Mexico on the corner, that used to be the holy grail of cold weather, hangover food. After just a quick shuffle across the street, and then – OK, a considerable, and potentially disastrous wait – I would sink my spoon into an enormous bowl of savory, steamy, hominy stew, blissfully unaware of the creepy looming waiters and the deafening Mexican pop music.

So maybe those forces aren’t so indescribable after all.

But the soup! I’m still obsessed. And for the first time since Café Mexico shuttered last year, I’ve tried to recreate it. This isn’t a perfect copy – the taste memory of that posole soup will loom large, after all – but it was a wonderful soup in its own right. Just 26 hours after the start of my cooking project, I felt pretty damn satisfied.

26 hours?! Yes, that prep time is accurate, but don’t let it stop you: in terms of the time you’ll spend slaving over a pot, this soup is actually much less difficult to make than a well-prepared risotto.

Ingredients (serves 4-6):

Soaking hominy
1 1 lb. bag of dried posole, rinsed, soaked overnight and strained (that’s 12-24 hours right there. Just cover the hominy in lightly salted water and let sit, unrefrigerated, for up to a day)

1 – 1 ½ tblsp. olive oil (actually, I used duck fat, courtesy of Michael at A Razor, A Shiny Knife)

1 1 lb. pork tenderloin, cut into bite-sized chunks

1 red bell pepper, diced

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1 carrot, peeled and sliced

½ medium-sized white or yellow onion, diced

2 stalks celery, sliced

2 quarts chicken stock

½ cup canned diced tomatoes

½ tsp. cumin

½ tsp. chili powder

Cayenne to taste

Salt and pepper to taste


garnishesAssorted garnishes: parsley and/or cilantro, avocado, radishes, jalapeno pepper, etc.





Warm olive oil over medium-high heat (or duck fat, which I’ve recently learned is healthier than butter) in a large, flat-bottomed pan, or medium-sized soup pot. Add pork, season with salt and pepper, and sauté until brown, 5-7 minutes.

Browned pork

Lower heat and add bell peppers – feel free to improvise with spicier varieties, but then don’t overdo it with the cayenne – garlic, carrots, onion and celery. Sauté over medium-low heat until onions are translucent, another 4-5 minutes, stirring often. Add chicken stock*, beginning with a pint or so and scraping the bottom of the pan to deglaze it. Add the remainder of the stock, diced tomatoes, and the soaked, strained hominy, as well as the spices, salt and pepper.

Sauteing veggieswith posoleall together now

Increase heat to high and bring soup up to a simmer, 7-10 minutes. When it’s lightly bubbling – stop it before it hits anything near a rolling boil – decrease heat to medium-low and partially cover the pot. It will sit like this for another 1 ½ -2 hours, until many of the posole skins have cracked, and they’re tender. Adjust seasoning if necessary, and serve with garnishes of your choice.

This posole is funny business

*For this recipe, I used homemade chicken stock, which is much simpler to make than it sounds. After roasting and carving a chicken – see Dish Gwen’s American Roast Chicken for instructions – cover the carcass in water and simmer, mostly covered, with assorted aromatics (onion, garlic, celery, carrots) for 4-5 hours, then strain and use within the next few days, or freeze it.

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From Dish Paige!:

Brussel Sprouts

It took me a long time to drum up the courage to try Brussels sprouts – I was never really a fan of cabbage and so the idea of mini cabbages totally weirded me out. About 3 or 4 years ago I went to a family friend’s Thanksgiving, and since our host was avoiding carbs at the time, roasted Brussels sprouts were served as an extra side instead of mashed potatoes and I was (I think understandably) wary of the substitution. Being a polite guest, I carefully spooned 3 sprouts on to my plate, taking modest portions of everything else so my lack of Brussels sprouts would go unnoticed. With severe trepidation, I forked a mini cabbage, slowly brought it to my mouth, took a deep breath and then a teeny tiny bite. In an instant everything I thought I knew about my tastes, likes and dislikes flew out the window as I reveled in the totally unexpected deliciousness of this “new” vegetable. From then on, I couldn’t get enough of them. I totally geek out whenever I see them on the menu at a restaurant and make them all the time at home. While I usually just roast them with a healthy amount of olive oil, I wanted to get a little fancy this time. This recipe is super quick and easy and would make a great side for Thanksgiving since you can make it without using precious oven space. And full disclosure: I ate the leftovers (cold) for breakfast the next morning….yum!

Ingredients (serves 4):
2/3 cup walnuts
4 pieces thick-cut bacon
2 containers (10 oz each) Brussels sprouts
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
ground black pepper

If you’re making this for T-day, toast the walnuts in a pan on the stove top to avoid using the oven (keep an eye on them cause they’ll burn pretty fast!) Otherwise or ahead of your other preparations, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spread the walnuts on a parchment-lined baking sheet and toast until fragrant and lightly browned (about 10 minutes) and set aside.

Meanwhile, remove any tough outer leaves from the sprouts and thinly slice (to make this process really quick and easy, you can also use a food processor fitted with the shredding disc, but trim the ends before running them through the processor), and place in a large bowl. Just to make sure there isn’t any dirt or grit in the sprouts, fill the bowl with water and let the slices chill out in there – any dirt will sink to the bottom and then you can scoop out the cleaned Brussels sprouts with a slotted spoon.

While the Brussels sprouts are taking their bath, thinly slice the bacon into lardons and cook in a large saute pan over medium-high heat until crispy. Remove the bacon from the pan, drain on a paper towel and set aside. Spoon off some of the bacon fat, leaving about 1/2 a tablespoon, and add 2 teaspoons olive oil to the saute pan. Add the Brussels sprouts, seasoning with some fresh ground black pepper and cook, tossing occasionally until tender and beginning to brown (about 7-9 minutes). Be careful not to over cook the Brussels – that’s when they release the sulphur-y smell/taste that causes a lot of people to say “yuck, no way.”

Place the sprouts into a large bowl, add the walnuts (I crumbled them a little before adding) and most of the bacon, reserving some for the top.

Whisk together the lemon juice and Dijon mustard, pour over the sprouts and stir to combine. Serve topped with the reserved bacon and your main course of choice.

And for all you vegetarians out there – have no fear – just omit the bacon (or if you like substitute the fake kind) and use 1/2 a tablespoon butter along with the olive oil to saute the Brussels sprouts.

Paige! ain't no side Dish!

Recipe adapted from Whole Living.

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From Dish Jodi:

Chocolate pudding-y souffles - blink and they're gone

So, for my first SLD post as a married lady, I felt compelled to do my favorite dinner party dessert. (I’ve been itching to have people over to try out all the new dishes, silverware and cookware…) These little treats are so ooey gooey, warm, rich and cozy, it’s a total crowd pleaser. Not quite cake, definitely not a soufflé, and sort of pudding-y. And no one knows how freakin’ easy they are. And there’s something about giving people individual ramekins that really blows their minds.

Mix and assemble these well before your guests arrive – hell, even before you’ve started dinner – put them aside, and toss them in the oven as plates start to empty. You’ll be so excited you just might….well, you’ll see…

(Apologies for the flash photography…the time change is really screwing with my Dishing.)

Ingredients1 stick of butter
4 oz dark chocolate (note use of new scale…mmmm…)
2 eggs
¾ cup sugar
3 tbsp all-purpose flour
(yup, that’s it.)





Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees and butter four 1 cup ramekins.

Melt the dark chocolate and butter together til smooth. Let cool.

Melted chocolate and egg whites

Whisk eggs, sugar and flour together. Whisk in chocolate mixture and when combined, divide among the buttered ramekins.


Bake for about 20 minutes, until top is puffed and starting to crack. Serve with ice cream, whipped cream, whatever the heck you want.

The outside will be warm soft cake, the inside a gooey hot pudding. You will be so excited you will probably forget to take a “Final Product” picture…

Dish Jodi hearts chocolate

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OMG Appletinis!

From Dish Amelia:


Ok, well not Appletinis exactly, but much better. Last year I really thought I had appled out and would never want to see one again, but apparently I’ve come around. I had a pile of Honeycrisps from apple-picking a few weeks ago, and if you are not aware of this varietal, than you should know that it is a good eating apple, and by good, I mean that it is what every apple wishes it were. I am not a bartender, but I love thinking of cocktails like I think of food (such is the way in Brooklyn these days, la la la…) and this drink is lovely and you should make it. Or come over and I’ll make it.

Appletini ingredients2+ oz Honeycrisp Apple Vodka
1/2 oz Calvados (apple brandy)
2 Teaspoons lemon juice
2 tsp rosemary syrup
Apple chip garnish/rosemary sprig








For the Vodka:
Infusing vodka
Wash and cut up 2 or 3 Honeycrisp apples into small pieces. They are often large. Put these in a large mason jar and pour in a 750 ml bottle of vodka of your choice. seal and keep in a dark place for at least 3 weeks, turning every day or two. When you want to start drinking it and quit rotating it, strain it through paper towels or cheesecloth and a strainer into a quart container. Throw out the apple pieces unless you are in college.

For the Rosemary Syrup:
Rosemary syrup
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
leaves from 5 or 6 rosemary sprigs
heat ingredients in a saucepan until sugar is completely dissolved and rosemary has lost its green color. Syrup should be slightly amber and taste like sweet rosemary. Cool.

For the Apple Chip Garnish:
Slice apples
Preheat oven to 200 degrees. slice an apple on a mandolin so it is about an eighth of an inch thick or less. Slice all the way through, including the stem and seeds. Dip these thin slices in the rosemary syrup and lay flat on a silpat. Bake in a slow oven for a long time, (more than an hour) until completely dry and golden. When they are done they might still have some give, but take them out and they will immediately become brittle. They are fragile, so when they are totally cool, gently bend the silpat away from them to lift them off. If you really don’t want them to be golden, you can add crushed vitamin C to the syrup. I did not do this, since everything would be a pretty golden color anyway.

For the Cocktail Already:
A nice tall Appletini
Fill a shaker with ice. Add vodka, Calvados, lemon juice and rosemary syrup. cover and shake. Strain into awesome vintage wheelcut martini glass. Float apple chip and sprig on surface, and toast the big apple. Salud!
And a lovely Dish Amelia!

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