Orange days — Orange Tart and Candied Oranges

I enjoy making candy, all kinds of candy. But I’ve been eating more and exercising less — soon I’ll be making a change, but for now instead of making my favorite Candied Oranges Dipped in Chocolate, I made an Orange Tart. (I also made Melon Granita and Chocolate Mousse, but if I don’t write about them, they don’t count.) This was just a test. I zested the oranges and boiled them in a sugar syrup to 230 degrees Fahrenheit, cooled them with white rum and laid them in a sweet tart shell… Read More

Play with your food! Cauliflower Tart

(recipe follows) I have a friend, Paul, who was always after me to take photos of what I cook. I really disliked doing it. Stop. Snap. Restart. Then hope it looked like what you made. I started this blog using my iPhone — which was okay, but I’m competitive. I unpacked my point and shoot — Nikon Coolpix S9300. I was learning, so it was okay — then the auto mode broke. What to do? Well, I bought a new camera, a Nikon D7100. I’m still looking for the lens, though I’m… Read More

Apple strudel

Fiesta Friday — food and cameras

Friday is in the future for most of you, but here, across the International Date Line, Friday is at an end and the party begins shortly. I finished my work day at noon and went out for errands and entertainment in Ginza — today’s agenda involves Nikon and meat: I bought a new camera (Nikon D7100) and I picked up some pork and beef. I’ve been doing a lot of test cooking this month, so friends are crowding around my kotatsu tonight to scrutinize my baumkuchen, popcorn (white) chocolate, baklava, stuffed breasts… Read More

Tofu Steak with Sautéed Enoki Mushrooms

(recipe follows) Shortly after I arrived in Japan I met my new best friend turned roommate, Shawn. At that time, just after university, we were each earning between five and six thousand USD per month teaching English. We had a four-bedroom apartment in Sapporo, Roller Blades, free-time and lots of greenery — life was good. It was spring, hormones were high and Shawn was crushing on a pretty girl with waist length raven hair. The weight pulled her head back so she walked deliberately, with total control. She agreed to a dinner… Read More

Daikon Steak

(recipe follows) I was watching a Japanese cooking program many years ago in which a wizened chef placed six thick slices of daikon in a large cast iron skillet filled with hot olive oil and cooked them until they browned, which took over an hour. My thighs expand just remembering it. A quick lunch or supper for me borrows from his idea. I lightly coat the bottom of the pan in sesame or olive oil and fry boiled daikon on high until the bottoms brown, between five to ten minutes depending on… Read More

Daikon and tofu steaks with sautéed mushrooms and leek

Simple and easy to make the whole meal has fewer than 400 calories and can be made fat-free. This post will link to the recipes tomorrow, sorry M. R. 😉 For Daikon steak, click here. For Tofu steak, click here.

Play with your food! Poultry, oven roasted.

(recipe follows) My father and his family immigrated to the US from the Azores sometime in the late 60’s. My mother moved to Los Angeles from Marietta, Georgia around the same time. Announced or unannounced, when you visited my father’s family there were home made breads in the pantry, cakes in tins, cookies in jars, soups on the stove. The women could make anything in no time at all. My mother’s side filled their cupboards with Pop Tarts, Ritz Crackers, and cheese that came from cans. They bought soda by the case… Read More

pastry

(recipe follows) Pastry is simple, but food stylists, paid professionals, and ideals on what pastry should be have set a high bar on personal expectations zapping creativity and confidence — and the will to try. The only rule for pastry is that everything be cold, but crusts and shells can also be made from hot melted fat, oil, be moulded from ground cracker crumbs or raw dates. For any pastry, flour is mixed with fat and liquid. We add fat to the flour to cover the gluten. Just as water and oil do… Read More

spinach tart

Several years ago PBS released Julia Child’s The French Chef. In a favorite episode she traveled to Provence to make Spinach Tarts with her collaborator Simone (Simca) Beck. You can make a spinach tart simply by combining frozen spinach with Béchamel and placing it (cold) in store bought pastry. You can improve this by starting with fresh spinach boiled in water for three minutes, shocked in cold water, and chopped. To improve the texture you simply pull the the stems from the blades before boiling. Each step changes the dish. Start where… Read More

Decadence: Guineafowl

Imagine the greatest joys in your lives. Think of getting married, having a baby, your first kiss — whatever it is, imagine that bliss as taste, flavor, mouthfeel, satiety. That is the best way to describe this dinner: It’s one of the best things I’ve ever made. The recipe was inspired by Careme’s 1836 work. In short, I deboned the guinea fowl, removed the breast, divided it in two, then cut it almost alway through 12 times each and placed slices of foie gras between. I placed them back into the bird,… Read More

Apple Pie for dessert?

A few weeks ago someone made my pie. 🙂 She made me really happy. She said she had trouble making the crust, so I decided to make a tutorial. To do that, I made Apple Pie for Valentine’s Day. (I also made Strawberry Tarts, Apple Strudel, and Raw Apple Pies — more on those later.) So, my tutorial is ready. Check out the result.