Category Archives: Uncategorized

Aside

I was wrong about you. Sorry for picking you out of muffins and pancakes all these years. Good thing Ford’s Filling Station makes such amazing French toast (brioche with stewed blueberries and creme fraiche; closer to me than the celebrated … Continue reading

New Digs

Home sweet home. Welcome, readers, to our new place. I can now say that I live in a “cottage bungalow” instead of an apartment! The units in our small complex were built in the 1920s to house the movie stars while they filmed on the MGM studio lot. Glam. Here’s the front. For some reason, we seem to have the jungle-encroaching style unit, as the others have much more orderly landscaping. Nothing a little cutting back won’t fix. Plus, it adds to the bungalow feel.

Quaint charm also means older appliances, some of which occasionally grumble and hum to themselves (like Old Man Fridge) and others whose prudish manners keep them from revealing how hot they are or wearing see-through tops so we can see inside (the oven). Don’t EVEN get me started on the plumbing. Any discussion would be inappropriate for a blog about food.

The oven needed a bit of encouraging from the repair guy before she’d start up, so Friday night was the first night of actual cooking. It was cause for a little bubbly (berry lemonade).

We also enjoyed some (cheap, thanks to the nearby Trader Joe’s!) halibut with a beurre blanc and Ina’s sauteed carrots (recipe from her fabulous Barefoot Contessa Family Style, sweet and earthy carrots from Trader Joe’s…did I mention we live near a Trader Joe’s?!).

These gougeres were not my best batch (no fault of Molly Wizenburg’s solid recipe from Bon Appetit, as archived on Epicurious) but they did pair well with the couch, looking dashing as ever in its new home.

And you can’t beat the taste of those intensely rich dark chocolate wooden floors…I mean cookies from Smitten Kitchen.

Got to go. Unspeakable things are burbling up inside my bathtub. And I think it’s coming from the neighbors. But I shall leave you with a more positive image:

Golden Globes

The Golden Globes was cause for celebration around here, partially because of the movies it honored, but mostly because it was an excuse to cook up a last grandiose meal in our kitchen before we move. And for this event, butter was definitely the guest of honor. Not surprising, considering the major dishes included pastries and a Julia Child recipe.

The two mostly highly-anticipated items (and, naturally, the most time-consuming) were the croissants and the Beouf Bourguignon. My inner child’s chipmunk cheeks puffed out in joy at the thought of making the “butter square” involved in the croissants: 24 (!!!) tablespoons of butter smeared together with a bit of flour and shaped into a large square to be worked into the dough.

When the masses inspired by Julie & Julia rushed to the grocery store after the movie to buy ingredients for beouf bourguignon, they ran into The Bacon Problem: Julia’s recipe calls for slab bacon with the rind still on. The rind adds flavor to the sauce, while the rest of the bacon is cut into lardons and eaten along with the beef. Unfortunately, most bacon comes to the store or even butcher shop pre-sliced with the rind removed. Unless you are persistent enough to call up local merchants until you find what may be the last butcher in town keeping the tradition alive at the Fairfax Farmer’s Market. Problem is, there are many butchers in that market, only one of which holds the prized slab bacon, and in limited amounts. At the first stall we found, we heard the man ahead of us in line ask “…carry bacon with the rind still on? I need it for a recipe…” We paused just long enough to see the butcher shake his head, then dashed through the market to find the right stall. I felt bad for leaving a fellow slab hunter behind, but we didn’t know if there would be enough pig to go around once we found the right butcher. So now, bacon secured, I apologize, Bacon Guy in the Green Shirt. Wherever you are, I hope you’ve found your rind.

And now the gallery of the 2010 Second Annual Golden Globes Dinner:

Up In The Air
Honey Roast Peanut Airplane Snacks
“Our business expense allots forty dollars each for dinner. I plan on grabbing as many miles as I can.”

The Hurt Locker
Too Many Cereal Options
“War is a drug.”

Nine
Fellini Zucchini
“I feel my body chill/ Gives me a special thrill/Each time I see that Guido Neo-Realism.”

Precious: Based on the Novel “Push” By Sapphire
Lenny Kravitz’s Fruit Cup
“I like McDonald’s.”

(500) Days of Summer
IKEA Meatballs
“Darling, I don’t know how to tell you this, but there’s a Chinese family in our bathroom.”
adapted from the “Swedish Meatball” recipe from the Cookie October 2008 issue, as archived by Epicurious

Julie & Julia
Boeuf Bourguignon
“Oh, YUM!”
adapted from Julia Child’s recipe as published by Knopf

Avatar
Unobtanium
“I see you.”
adapted from David Lebovitz’s Pineapple Granita from The Perfect Scoop

It’s Complicated
Chocolate Croissants
“It’s crazy how good this is. And I’m not even stoned anymore!”
adapted from the Cook’s Illustrated croissant recipe

Inglourious Basterds
Apple Strudel With Cream
“Attendez la crem√®.”
adapted from the Cook’s Illustrated “Easy Apple Strudel” recipe

The Hangover
Bloody Mary
“What happened last night?!”