Friday, September 19, 2014

For Your Viewing Pleasure ...

It's vintage recipe Friday.
You know you've missed those Jelloed Jewels from yesteryear.

I apologize if any of these are re-posts,
but if any are, it means they were "special."

Please enjoy!

This one has a little bit of everything.
It seems to be a balanced meal -
a sort of "throw everything in but the kitchen sink."
There appears to be some type of meat (ham?),
hard boiled eggs, unidentifiable objects (vegetables? fruit?).
All imprisoned in aspic.
Which I think I'll start spelling asspic.

This is intriguing.
I'll have a squirt of Squirt, please and thank you.
Because I'm a rambunctious kid.

Love the attention to detail.
Rotini pasta on top.
Two green beans interspersed with ... link sausages?
Symmetry is a virtue!

Why, this has the Rachael Ray Seal of Approval!

If this swam its way onto my buffet table, 
then it can just swim its way into my garbage can.
I must say, the shrimp heads along the back are a nice touch 
and one must appreciate the delicate piping
 on the mouth, eye, and whatever.
I do worry about the toxic sludge the "fish" is swimming in.
And I worry about the shrimp parasites/leeches
alongside the fish sucking it dry.
Gives me pause.

I've been saying this for YEARS!
Boldly go where no man has gone before.
And there's probably a reason for that,
but no matter -
don't let that deter you.
Just do it! 
 Can anyone identify anything besides bananas?

Forgive me if I just say no.

For that special valentine in your life,
when you can't be bothered to give a crap.

This is your brain on drugs.
I mean saltines.

I think we've discovered penicillin.

I love the restraint shown here by using only half a dog.
Personally, I would have gone with the whole dog,
but then, what do I know?
Nice artistic placement of potatoes(?).
Cheese?  Eggs?  Brown stuff?
I guess this is breakfast,
 since there's a super hero on what looks like
 a random cereal box in the background.

Let us out!!!

"Please, sir.  No more!"
I don't understand the placement of the finger, bottom right.
It's obviously pointing out something.
I just don't know what.

Oh, honey!
Dinner's ready!!
Come 'n' git it!!!

 I love it when the food itself tries to walk away.

Iceberg wedge with Russian dressing.
Tweeted by Martha Stewart.
Jeeze, Martha.

Onion soup.
Tweeted by Martha.

Foie gras walnut brioche.
Tweeted by Martha.

"Pasta handkerchiefs at crown-john delucie's
newest eatery on east 81st."
Tweeted by Martha.
Don't you know John Delucie's proud of this!
John to Martha, "Martha, please.
I beg of you.  Do not try to help!"

Tweeted by Martha.

"Watermelon goat cheese salad
with salt and olive oil at nougatine at jean georges."
Jean George to Martha, "Ms. Stewart,
I must ask you to leave immediately."

Tweeted by Martha.
I don't think Grenouille will stay the pre-eminent
French restaurant in NY if Martha has anything to do with it.

 Why, Martha?
Tweeted by Martha.
Someone take her cell phone away!

Enough with Martha.

I've saved the best for last.
And now, for my favorite ...
Drum roll ...............................

Nothing celebrates the birth of the Baby Jesus
like a ham, hot dog, sausage, and bacon crèche.
This will be on my breakfast table Christmas morning.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Rosie Accepts A Challenge.

My loyal readers know
I will take on any challenge.
Just Ask Rosie @

 I have a friend who recently offered me a challenge.
"I have a culinary challenge for you... cook up something using teff.  You do the research but 10s of million people  eat teff every day and I will bet none of your reading audience knows how to cook with is the new quinoa?"

Well, of course, Rosie accepted the challenge. 

 Teff is the national pride of Ehiopia.  It's been a staple of traditional Ethiopian cooking for thousands of years - as in way back BC.  It's the smallest grain in the world and it's a nutritional powerhouse - high in fiber, iron, calcium, and protein, including all 8 essential amino acids, and it's gluten-free.
In Ethiopia, teff is ground into a flour and fermented to make injera, Ethiopia's national dish.  It's a spongy, sourdough flatbread that is soft, porous and thin like a pancake. Traditional Ethiopian restaurants serve injera with all meals as an edible serving plate topped with meats, vegetables and sauces.
You may be interesting in watching this:
Farmer to Farmer program
  It's how I found out about teff.
 I found whole grain teff at Fresh Market in Nags Head.

 It's a teeny tiny grain.
Mr. Hawthorne was kind enough to grind the grain for me.

 And I have teff flour!

Injera Ingredients

For the starter - Takes 5 days
1/2 cup teff flour
3/4 cup water, room temperature
a pinch of yeast (1/8 tsp) or a teaspoon of sourdough starter

DAY 1:  I mixed the water and teff flour together.

 I have a sourdough starter that's been
sitting on my counter since February.
Every day I feed it
and whenever I make bread,
which is just about every other day,
I use a tablespoon or so of the starter, in addition to the yeast.

 It's alive!

I added a little starter to jump start the mixture.
This is not necessary.
There's enough wild bacteria in the air
to start the fermentation process.

Loosely cover the mixture with a paper towel.
 Just a few hours later,
it's doing its magic.

DAY 2:  The next morning,
we have fermentation!
You can actually watch the bubbles bubbling.

Day 3:
It has a nice crust on it.
This is normal.

Stir the starter, then add in 1/3 cup teff flour and 1/2 cup warm water.

Mix well, loosely cover, and wait 2 days.
 I like to check in on my starters.
Just a few hours later,
it's doing what it's supposed to be doing.

Actively releasing carbon dioxide.

Day 5

 It's starting to resemble an alien landscape.
    Whenever you jiggle the bowl,
the carbon dioxide bubbles up.
The starter has separated into two layers.
It's watery on top and muddy on the bottom
and when you stir it, it has a definite odor about it.
I've smelled this before -
around cows and horses and in barns.
I would describe it as ...  grassy.

 Next, I fed my starter
with 1/3 cup teff flour and 1/2 cup water.

 Stir to mix.
Cover loosely and leave it alone for at least 4 hours
before beginning the injera.
 I left it overnight.

Day 6:
 Look what happens when you jiggle the bowl.
  More jiggling.

 I took 1/4 cup of the starter and added 3/4 cup water.

 Add in 3/4 cup of teff flour.

 Add in 1/3 tsp. salt.

 Whisk to combine
and let rest for 5-6 hours.

 I heated my pan over medium heat,
swiped my pan with a paper towel of oil,
and poured in 1/2 cup of the batter.
Swirl the pan around.

  Cook 1 minute and let the bubbles come up,
then cover and let the injera steam for 3 minutes.
Cool on a rack.

 And here's my injera.

 It looks like the pictures I saw.
 Is this an acquired taste?
I really should have made some of
the traditional Ethiopian stuffings for the injera,
but after 6 days of smelling the fermentation,
I was not so inclined.

But I did find a few suggestions
in an Ethiopian restaurant menu.
(Queen of Sheba in Louisville, KY.)

I would rather go to the restaurant and have it done properly.

Rosie needs benchmarks.