HELPING FAMILY FARMS FLOURISH. HELPING FEED THE HUNGRY.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Joe Beef’s Big Beautiful Roasted Mushrooms



         I’ve already waxed poetic over Joe Beef, that phenomenal Montreal restaurant where we craved everything we ate.  Almost everything we tried was truly over the top.  And Andrew and I were not the least bit surprised to see that “The World According to Joe Beef: A Cookbook of sorts” tops most Top Ten Cookbooks of 2011 lists.   The book is just a delight and just as delightful as Frederic Morin whom we were so pleased to meet when we ate there.  I literally bought the book the first day it came out in the US.  And of course, I couldn’t wait to try the recipes that he and his partner, David McMillan have put together for their readers.  But it may come as a surprise that the first recipe I tried was one for simple large white mushrooms. And I thought, “if we’re doing 12 days of Christmas recipes, why not include this one?”  It’s a perfect accompaniment to any holiday roast—beef, chicken, pork or lamb.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Doughnut Muffins, our most popular post ever!




As part of our 12 days of Christmas recipes, we really could not let the season pass without sending you this wonderful recipe.  It is by far the most viewed page out of all 250 recipes we've published.  Nothing we've shared with you comes close.  And with the most comments we've ever gotten on any post, this is clearly a winner.  It is off the charts in another way too.  These muffins are absolutely, insanely delicious.  They taste like the best doughnut you ever ate.  Rolled in butter and cinnamon and sugar, they are, my friend Luka (aged about 12), messy to make but oh what fun to eat.  I think they might be the perfect Christmas morning treat while sitting around the tree.  Here's the back story for you. 


Food Network has been running a series called “The Best Thing I Ever Ate”.  I was pretty sure they’d run out of “best things” fairly quickly—but the show divvies them up into categories.  So one is about the best thing with bacon, the best pizza, the best barbecue—you get the picture.  Well one night, while watching the horribly named “The Best Thing I ever ate—Snack attack”,  Candace Nelson, who owns 6 California bakeries called “Sprinkles”, waxed on and on about a “Doughnut Muffin” she’d discovered at Downtown Bakery and Creamery in Healdsberg, CA.        
        My personal Pastry Chef, Andrew Phillips, had taken a run at doughnuts in the not-too-distant past.  He was underwhelmed by the results.  When the Doughnut Muffin presented itself, he was intrigued.


Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Eric Ripert's Red Snapper with Sofrito



Chef Eric Ripert
       The weeknights leading up to Christmas are a time challenge to any home cook.  We all want to minimize the time it takes to get dinner on the table so that we can take care of everything else that's going on--shopping, wrapping, decorating.  And with our menus leaning towards rich foods and lots of them, I thought it would a great idea to introduce a fish dish to our 12 days of Christmas recipes.  This one has a lot going for it.  It is genuinely easy to make. It takes under 30 minutes to cook. It's light and wholesome and absolutely delicious.  And it has a great pedigree.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Black Forest Chocolate Cookies


      To add to the growing list of great cookies to bake this Christmas, I almost overlooked these beauties.  They are so luscious and deeply chocolate tasting. And that's before you get to the secret ingredient inside.  Put these on your must-bake list. Here's the whole post:

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Rustic French Pate




         I discovered this wonderfully different pate almost by accident as you will read in this story.  But in casting about for our 12 days of Christmas recipes, I realized it's just the kind of dish that has Holiday written all over it.  A pate that you can put on a buffet table at a holiday party and watch disappear.  And wonder of wonders, it's not a pate riddled fat. In fact the only fat in it is from the ground pork and veal. Nothing else.  So go ahead and make this delicious dish one day this season.  I think you'll wish me a Merry Christmas when you do. Now here's the background.