Friday, December 7, 2012

jetting off to india

(image via la petit coterie)

I'm off to India for a business trip. I'm not all too familiar with Indian cuisine, but I'm lucky to have a friend who's been introducing me to some of her favorite dishes from home. I'm sort of obsessed with naan and chutneys and the dosas are fantastic. I know I have an abundance of new flavors awaiting me, and I'm looking forward to sharing them here.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

pot pie crust

What is everyone's favorite part about a pot pie? That's right, the crust. If you answered something other than the crust, you are obviously confused.

I have discovered the mecca of crusts. This is undoubtedbly the finest pot pie crust recipe ever created. It comes from none other than my beloved Smitten Kitchen.

We've made swiss chard and pancetta pies. Leftover turkey pies. We've even eaten the crust straight up with cranberry sauce. (It was insanely good, you should try it).

We made a big batch of the dough, wrapped it up tight, and stored it in the freezer. It defrosts in the fridge in just a few hours.

Just a tip: when you use this crust, it's best to brush it with an egg wash (1 egg, whisked with 1 tablespoon water) to give it that beautiful golden color.

pot pie crust
makes 4 individual sized crusts
recipe from Smitten Kitchen

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon table salt
13 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, diced
6 tablespoons whole Greek yogurt
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
1/4 cup ice water

In a large bowl, combine flour and salt. Add the butter and, using a pastry cutter or your fingertips, cut them up and into the flour mixture until it resembles little pebbles. Keep breaking up the bits of butter until the texture is like uncooked couscous. In a small dish, whisk together the yogurt, vinegar, and water, and combine it with the butter-flour mixture. Using a flexible spatula, stir the wet and the dry together until a sticky dough forms. Using your hands, knead the dough a few times into one big ball. Pat it into a flattish ball, wrap it in plastic wrap, and chill it in the fridge for 1 hour or up to 2 days. Or wrap tightly and freeze for several months.

Monday, December 3, 2012

spicy kale and goat cheese pesto

Kale is one of those winter vegetables that makes me forget that the world outside my (very heated) apartment doors is practically tundra-like. It's so vibrant and hearty and satisfying and versatile. I almost - almost - stop reminiscing about my summer tomatoes and berries.

This past weekend, Josh turned the traditional pesto recipe upside down. What was once basil-centric, is now filled with the depth and loveliness of kale. He paired it with goat cheese to give it a bit of creaminess and finished it with a dash of vinegar and a healthy dose of red pepper flakes.

It was divine.

We made enough to feed us for days because sometimes we get a little carried away with ourselves. But it heats up just splendidly.

spicy kale and goat cheese pesto
serves 4 
adapted from 101 Cookbooks

4 cloves garlic, peeled
3 small shallots, peeled
1 bunch kale, stalks removed and washed
1/3 cup olive oil
2 oz goat cheese
1/2 T white wine vinegar
Hefty pinch of red pepper flakes
Salt and pepper

Bring a pot of salted water up to a boil. Boil the garlic and shallots for approximately 2 minutes. Stir in the kale. After approximately 10 seconds, remove all ingredients with a slotted spoon directly into a food processor. Add in the oil, goat cheese, vinegar, and red pepper flakes. Pulse until fully mixed through. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Serve over your favorite pasta. I enjoyed this with penne rigate.