Archive for July, 2007
It is time once again for Coffee & Cornbread test kitchens to award
it’s yearly Du Jour Du Horrid Award.
Like we have stated previously this award is so prestigious that
while the term Du Jour means “of the day” the award is lucky to be
presented once Du Year.
Last year we had recommendations to try cauliflower that wants to
The recipe “called” Cauliflower was very well received
in the test kitchens….. But “called” Mashed Potato?
We at the test kitchens love cauliflower so
why it would want to parade around as a potato is beyond our
While the kitchens don’t condemn anyone feeling
cauliflower is potato, we do wish to award originality.
Someone out there inventing this masterpiece must have had a very
vivid and creative imagination and we applaud you for it.
Now on to the award winning recipe.
Faux Mashed Potatoes (aka::.. Mashed Cauliflower)
raw cauliflower – a medium head makes about a pound of floret
any combination of butter, milk, cream, or whatever you use
when you make mashed potatoes – about 1/4 cup
salt and pepper
(If you have low carb “instant mashed potatoes”,
add up to 1/4 cup for texture*)
Options: minced garlic (a clove or two);
garlic powder (1/2 to 1 teaspoon);
Use instant “potatoes” made for low carb diets,
such as Dixie Carb Counters Instant Mashers. Or use a
small amount of real potato or instant potatoes to improve the
Break the cauliflower up into florets, or just chop.
Cook it until it’s tender – a fork should easily pierce it.
Put it all in a
regular blender or food processor and blend to desired “mashed potato”
Assuming 4 servings from a pound of cauliflower,
each will have about 3 grams of usable carbohydrate plus
three grams of fiber.
The calories will depend on what else you add.
Lurch is my pet/sourdough starter. I named him Lurch because he had to
lurch around my kitchen a while to grow.
As I contemplated self sufficient ways, the thought of bread making
throughout the centuries came to mind.
One did not throw in a packet of yeast each time they
made bread but relied on sourdough starters.
This was right down my ally since ..
1- self reliant ways are a goal of mine
2- no need to keep buying yeast ( at least not as much… But I
must have some on hand for emergency situations –
example..Forgetting to set Lurch out to proof in time?) so that cuts supermarket time and cost
I scoured the net for sourdough starters and began my own
Now this bread site I used told me to start Lurch with just warm water
and flour. It said it was simple. They also said to consider your starter a “pet” hence the name.
I fed Lurch and watched Lurch.
After about a week Lurch certainly smelt sour but was too
lazy to use. A bubble here and a bubble there did not in my
mind seem worthy of bread.
That was when I, being tired of feeding a seemingly border
line pet/starter, gave Lurch a boost with some yeast.
My gosh.. There are tons of sourdough starters out there that
use a boost of yeast or yogurt for the culture.
I felt like I was cheating a bit but once Lurch jumped into
activity I no longer felt so bad.
Here is my first Lurch inspired bread
and Lurch is still alive and well in the fridge for next time.
I believe he will make an awesome pizza crust too.
Lurch inspired bread
Lurch inspired bread with salad
Now all I do is remember to feed him once a week and remember to
set him out to make sponge when needed.
One more mark toward self reliant ways.
It was one of those mornings.
You get up and perk your coffee and go out on the porch to sip the dark brew in those old rockers.
The cane seating is wearing thin in places in those old rockers. One of them belonged to my husbands mother. His brother had initialed the back of the headrest with something sharp as a kid. We painted over it with black paint when we recieved the chair. The initial gives the rocker character.
This morning the mist was coming up off the ponds and deer stood on the hill and watched as I invaded their territory. They didn’t run. They are so used to us now they won’t dash off until you venture a tad too close.
I was at peace with the world.
I thought that this was the peace of the Lord that passes all understanding.
As I sipped I began to think of all the bustle I used to have to endure with my career. It seems so far off now.
I don’t care much for breakfast and rarely eat it. The years I spent toiling in it burned me a bit.
This morning after the last drop of coffee and the deer went searching for more interesting pasture, I made myself breakfast.
One simple boiled egg in a tarragon white sauce.
All is well with my soul.
I have always wanted a cherry tree.
I was obsessing over these beautiful Bing cherries I bought at a steal of a sale.
Aren’t they beautiful?
I didn’t know what I wanted to do with them but decided on a Fruit Crisp idea I got from our local paper. The paper recipe used a mixture of berries, white flour and sugar… but I used only the cherries, wheat flour, and brown sugar.
I also added a bit of lemon juice.
I then planted the cherry pits in a tub outdoors. If they grow I will keep this blog dated, if not forget it.
I have always wanted a cherry tree.
2 pounds Bing Cherries pitted
1/4 C brown Sugar
1/4 C wheat flour
1/4 t cinnamon
small amount of lemon juice
1 C rolled Oats
1/2 C Wheat Flour
1/2 C Brown sugar
pinch of salt
1 stick butter ( cut into small pieces)
Preheat oven to 350.
Gently combine the filling and place in a 9 inch pie plate.
Combine the topping and sprinkle all over the filling.
Bake about 40 minutes or until top is browned and filling bubbles.
A patch of mint and thirsty summer house guests
are a winning combination.
I hope some of the WHB-ers and readers out there will enjoy this tea as much
as we do here in Virginia, USA.
There are many varieties of mint, most (that I know of) will work well in this.
I have used Peppermint here.
Lemon Mint Ice Tea
Make a simple syrup using 2 cups of sugar
and 2/3 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice.
Remove from the heat when sugar dissolves
add one cup of fresh chopped mint, then add 4 cups
of fresh brewed tea.
Allow to cool and then strain.
Serve with a lemon slice and sprig of mint over ice.
What a great way to cool off. Most hot house guests will love you for it.
Visit Food Blogga for more great WHB this week.
I love Eggplant Parmesan but have never been able to grow
I decided to try this and substitute a couple of large summer squash.
It came out so yummy!
Eggplant Parmesan (or summer squash..my take)
Olive Oil — for frying
1 medium eggplant — (unpeeled)( I used summer squash)
2 eggs — slightly beaten ( I used one)
2 tablespoons cold water
1 1/2 cups fine dry breadcrumbs with dried italian herbs
2 1/2 cups your favorite italian sauce —
(I used my homemade italian sausage meat sauce I keep frozen
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese — OR ( I added 1/2 before baking and 1/2 after)
grated Romano cheese
12 ounces sliced Mozzarella cheese ( I left this off)
Preheat oven to 375 F. Pour small amount of oil in a large skillet.
Cut eggplant into 15 slices about 1/4″ thick; set aside.
In a shallow dish or pie plate, beat eggs and water to combine;
Pour breadcrumbs into another shallow dish or pie plate.
Dip eggplant into egg mixture, then into breadcrumbs.
Brown eggplant slices in hot oil, turning once, until tender
when pierced with a fork. Add more oil, if needed.
Butter a 2-qt casserole dish. ( I used individual dishes)
Arrange 5 eggplant slices over
bottom of dish, overlapping if necessary.
Top with about 1/3
of the Italian-Style Meat Mix, 1/3 of the grated cheese and 1/3
of the Mozzarella slices I left off the mozzerella).
Repeat, making 2 more layers.
Bake uncovered 30 to 40 minutes.
Makes 6 servings.