Archive for category Back to Basics

Back to Basics: Roasted Garlic

Fridays are for the beginner cook!

Roasting garlic is simple and quite versatile. It can be spread on toasted bread, put in mashed potatoes, added to various dips…you name it. Follow these simple steps:

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2. Take a desired number of garlic heads. Place stem side down and cut about 1/4 inch off the top. This should expose all of the garlic inside.
3. Place garlic on a sheet of aluminum foil.
4. Douse with some olive oil and a little salt and pepper.
5. Loosely wrap the garlic with the foil.
6. Bake for 45 minutes. Let cool and squeeze out the garlic from the casing.


Back to Basics: Chocolate Sauce

Fridays are dedicated to the beginner cook.

Chocolate Sauce

I made a chocolate sauce for the first time last week. I thought it was important to highlight on the blog because it was tasty, versatile, and EASY! Just follow the few short steps in the link above, and you’ll always have a solid chocolate sauce recipe in your back pocket. This stuff goes good on most desserts (and any solid, tangible object for that matter). I always thought making a chocolate sauce would be a little more complicated than this. It’s not. I even threw in a little dark rum to mix it up a bit.

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Back to Basics: Pan Frying Fish

Fridays are dedicated to the beginner cooks.

Pan Frying Fish

I’ll let the great Alton Brown guide you this week. The link offers a wonderful recipe, but more importantly, please pay close attention to his frying technique. It’s brilliant and EASY! I tried it the other night with a nice piece of rainbow trout. Feel free to leave out the capers. I love capers but didn’t have any on hand. I also fried up a couple extra fillets and had one the next day for lunch on a sandwich. The only negative about frying fish in the house is the lingering smell. Have a good candle on stand-by. You’ll need it.

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Back to Basics: Hollandaise Sauce

Fridays are dedicated to the beginner cook.

Hollandaise Sauce

A few years ago I took a cooking class at Great class and instructor! One of the things we learned from Chara was how to make an authentic Hollandaise sauce. I always thought it was difficult, but guess what? It’s EASY!

I lost her recipe, but I think it was close to this (I do it this way and it turns out well):

2 sticks of butter (throw in freezer for a few minutes)
2 TBSP fresh squeezed lemon juice
8 egg yolks
Salt and pepper to taste

1. Take butter out of the freezer and dice into small cubes. Set aside.
2. Take a small pot and add the yolks, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Whisk well.
3. Take a larger pot and fill half-way with water. Bring water to a nice, rolling boil.
4. Hold the smaller pot (with the yolks, etc) over the boiling water. You’ve created a double boiler.
5. Whisk in 2 cubes of butter at a time. Don’t add any butter before the previous cubes have melted.
6. Continue to whisk until all cubes are melted.
7. Serve immediately.

If your sauce breaks, dump it…don’t try to save it. If you sense it’s about to break, move it a little further away from the boiling water. Hollandaise sauce traditionally goes with Eggs Benedict (shown above) and over vegetables such as asparagus.

Please note that Hollandaise sauce, also known as Fat Man’s Gravy, is extremely harmful to your health. Jamming sticks of butter into your arteries is never a good thing…well, almost never. Please don’t make this stuff more than twice a year.

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