Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Clementine Tarts for BloggerAid

This is one of my most favorite personal recipes, ever. But I'm sorry, dear readers. You can't have this recipe. Not just yet, anyway. No bite of cool, creamy, sweet, tangy clementine and yogurt tart over a crisp shortbread cookie base for you--not just yet.
Clementine curd tarts

I'm sending it to BloggerAid. We're putting together a cookbook, which they will sell to raise funds to benefit School Meals, one of The World Food Programme's projects. Bookmark the BloggerAid site. If they use my recipe, they will tell you how to get it. ;)

More teasers below the cut.

Clementine curd tart

Clementine curd tart
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Sunday, March 29, 2009

Daring Bakers, March: Lasagne of Emilia-Romagna

For those of you new to the drill, we Daring Bakers are assigned a secret recipe at the beginning of every month. We don't vary from the recipe, except for dietary restrictions. At the end of the month, all on the same day, we post the results of our projects. Now, on to this month's business. The Daring Bakers have had a busy March! First off, we got a new website and new badges. This one is my favorite:

You can check out my updated widget for it. If you click it, it will take you to our new site! Thank you, Lis and Ivonne, and all the talented people whose resources brought these positive changes about!

And now, our challenge!

The March 2009 challenge is hosted by Mary of Beans and Caviar, Melinda of Melbourne Larder and Enza of Io Da Grande. They have chosen Lasagne of Emilia-Romagna from The Splendid Table by Lynne Rossetto Kasper as the challenge.

Daring Bakers March: Lasagne of Emilia-Romagna
For me, this challenge started with a somewhat daunting pile on my counter. This pile of flour, eggs, and spinach quickly turned into an episode of "When Shaggy Dough Attacks"!

I muscled through and tamed the beast, though.

Daring Bakers March: Lasagne of Emilia-Romagna
In the process, my forearms grew about an inch in diameter. Persevere! What a workout! Like magic, I ended up with soft, silky dough. The directions read that this dough will feel alive. It did! I kinda wanted to make out with it. (Just kidding, Hun!)

Daring Bakers March: Lasagne of Emilia-Romagna
Then you stretch-pull-press the dough as flat as you can (yes, with a rolling pin if you're like me and don't have a rolling pin). Then cut them into lasagna noodles. The directions read that my noodles should be so thin, I should be able to see colors through the noodles. Well. I guess my noodles were so green, I could see the green clear through on the other side of them. I hung them on a chair covered with a dish towel so they could hang out a bit and dry.

Daring Bakers March: Lasagne of Emilia-Romagna
I'll admit that I was worried about this lasagna. I've made pasta from scratch and pasta by hand, but never lasagna noodles. I was planning to serve this to guests, so as backup (read: compensation to my dinner guests) in case this recipe ran amok, I made a version of David Lebovitz's really delicious scotcheroos.

Daring Bakers March: Lasagne of Emilia-Romagna
My tip when serving lasagna--don't serve from the corner. Serve from the side. For some reason, they seem to come out more cleanly.

Daring Bakers March: Lasagne of Emilia-Romagna
Looked okay . . .

Daring Bakers March: Lasagne of Emilia-Romagna
Tasted GREAT! Soft pasta, delicious and deeply flavorful ragu (guess those 2+ hours paid off), and kick-butt bechamel sauce (with Hun's help, since I was too busy boiling and drying off noodles to whisk the pot). All of my dinner guests had three servings each. There's one piece left in the fridge (I call dibs!!! Unless it's already gone. Oh, dismay!).

Check out my fellow DBers by clicking through our Blogroll.

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Friday, March 20, 2009

Hw I store herbs, starring oregano (and more writing updates)

Organo in a moist bag! O no! Condensation like this can lead to wilted, listless, limp and even fuzzy herbs!
storing oregano

Dry the oregano off and lay it on a clean, dry paper towel.
storing oregano

Wrap it up! If this were an herb with sturdier leaves, I'd consider using a lightly damp paper towel.
storing oregano

Wrapped and bagged!
storing oregano

And some other food-related freelance articles I've written:

How to Store Fresh Rosemary

How to Make Balsamic Jellies Out of Gelatin

How to Cook Diabetic Dog Food

How to Make Sugarless Hard Candy

How to Make a Homemade Coca-Cola Cake

How to Make Homemade Lemon Cake

How to Store Olive Oil

How to Make a Homemade 7UP Cake Read more!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

I've been writing

Just not in this blog. Wary about today's economy, I picked up a freelance job, writing articles here and there, as time allows. Most of them aren't food-related (rats), but several of them are. You can visit those articles here:

How to Make Dry Fondant

Pros and Cons of the South Beach Diet

Quick Energy Foods

Low Cholesterol & High-Fiber Foods

High Cholesterol and High Blood Pressure Diet

How to Cook in a Cast Iron Pot

How to Cook with Radiant Heat

Edible Flower Bouquets

Hard-Anodized Vs. Stainless Steel Cookware

Hard-Anodized Vs. Porcelain Cookware

Differences Between Dutch Ovens & French Ovens

And once in awhile, I scribble in my yelp page, onewall.yelp.com, where I review restaurants.

Want some food porn? I went to the Arizona Renaissance Festival . . . or should I say, I ate my way through the Festival?

Broccoli cheese bread bowl
Breakfast should always be a broccoli cheese bread bowl! The bread bowl was so nice and soft!

Spinach and artichoke bread bowl
Hun had a spinach and artichoke bread bowl.

Scotch egg
Scotch egg--no relation to Scotch the Dog. A Scotch egg is a hard-boiled egg wrapped in sausage and fried. Oh, my arteries!

Fruit smoothie!
We split a really good strawberry smoothie.

Meat and taters pasty
A meat and potatoes pasty with (intentionally) mushy peas.

Sausage roll
Hun had a sausage roll: too much roll, not enough sausage.

Funnel cake
Funnel cake! It was a bad day to wear black jeans. The same stand selling these also had crepes, but they looked a little too stiff and thick in the middle.

And some random favorite shots:

A lady at her loom
The lady at her loom.

The Birds of Prey Show: Great Horned Owl
Archimides the Owl.

The Birds of Prey Show: Falcon
A falconer and his falcon.

The Birds of Prey Show: Falcon
So photogenic.
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