Thursday, September 23, 2010

It's So Easy Being Green - Split Pea Soup with Bacon

It's raining in Portland today. It's cool and cloudy and it's the perfect day for soup! So far this week I've made Garlic Soup and a quick thrown-together chicken noodle, both of which were in response to the colds going around. Today I'm in the mood for something different and have decided to make a pot of Split Pea with Bacon.

I can already hear all of you Split Pea purists out there screaming "What?! No ham??" You will hear no apologies from me, however, as there are a couple of reasons for my replacing ham with bacon. First, and most importantly, I really can't stand ham! Something about the flavor just doesn't sit well with me. I don't mind fresh ham but I don't usually have any on hand since I tend to avoid this cut of pork. Secondly, and of equal importance, we have a wonderful little Russian meat market called Overseas Taste right down the street from us that smokes all their own meat! They have what I feel to be the best bacon anywhere, a twice smoked slab bacon that is out of this world! I will find any reason I can to use it, including tossing out the ham in pea soup! 'Nuff said!

In addition the the wonderful local bacon, Kat (as I mentioned in the last post) had brought home an assortment of fresh veggies, among them a colorful variety of carrots! Besides the standard orange, we also have yellow and purple carrots. These will make for an unorthodox but vivid looking pea soup!

I start with:
3/4 - 1 lb. slab bacon, diced into 1/4" chunks
Brown the bacon over medium heat in a large stock pot until it is nice and crispy. Using a slotted spoon, remove the bacon and set aside to drain. Pour off the excess grease and add to the pan:
1 large onion, chopped
Cook until the onion just begins to brown, about 5 minutes. Add:
2-3 garlic cloves, crushed and chopped
Stir in to the onions and cook for a couple of minutes, then add:
1/4 c white wine or vermouth
Stir up the fond from the bottom of the pan. Increase heat to high and add:
8 c water
2 c dried peas
2 bay leaves
1 large sprig fresh rosemary
2 t fresh ground black pepper
1 t salt (or more, to taste)

Bring the soup to a boil and reduce heat back down to medium. Simmer for one hour. Add the bacon along with:
2-3 carrots, chopped
Continue cooking until peas have softened and carrots are tender, about 30-45 minutes. Remove the rosemary stem and the bay leaves. Serve, garnished with chopped parsley if you like.

The nice thing about pea soup is that, of all the dried legumes, peas cook fairly quick. A bean soup can take all day but Split Pea can be cooked in less than 2 hours. Plus, it's one of the simplest soups you can make! Who says it's not easy being green?

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Raspberry Honey Vinaigrette

Yesterday, my wife came home with fresh produce, including an assortment of cherry tomatoes. I've been a bit under the weather and don't feel too much like making anything complex, so I opted instead for a simple garden salad. We have a variety of fresh greens growing in our garden, now seemed like a good time to harvest a quick and easy meal!

This led me to contemplate a good salad dressing. There was I time when I bought my salad dressings at the store. I look back at those days and chuckle at my innocent naivete. Those were the days before I discovered how incredibly easy salad dressings are to create and how much better (and cheaper!) they are when you make them yourself. They can be a lot of fun too, mixing different ingredients together into new and mouthwatering combinations. This was the task before me today, as I had run out of my previous batch of dressing!

Looking in the refrigerator, I found a dish of fresh raspberries. I picked them a couple of days prior and they were now a deep dark red, almost purple, color. There was about a handful of them. I gathered together a few other ingredients and whisked them together in a bowl. I suppose I could have used a food processor too but why make such a mess?

In the bowl were:
1/2 c fresh very ripe raspberries
1/2 c olive oil
1/4 c sweet vermouth
1/4 c red wine vinegar
1/4 c honey
1/2 t dried basil
1/2 t salt
1/2 t black pepper

I whisked all the ingredients together until they were well mixed. Then I let the dressing sit while I went out back and collected green leaf lettuce, arugula, and mustard greens. I also grabbed a few more raspberries off the bushes. Back inside, I assembled these together with the tomatoes, grated Parmesan cheese and a few homemade croutons. The only thing that I really wished I had at this point was a nice piece of smoked salmon!

A fresh and flavorful lunch, right out of the backyard! What could be more simple and satisfying? I feel better already!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

A Perfect Day for Ginger Snaps

One of the joys of marriage is sharing, the good along with the bad. Kat, in the spirit of love (I'm sure) has shared her cold with me, leaving me wondering what I might create in my kitchen that would help me feel a little better. Yes, I've already eaten the Garlic Soup and may make another pot before this is done. I have, however, other tricks up my sleeve and have decided to call upon another wondrously healthy ingredient - ginger!

There are lots of ways to take advantage of this delicious root but I know of nothing that highlights the flavor of this ingredient more than Ginger Snap Cookies. I have a recipe that I am still working on perfecting and today seemed like the perfect day to continue my experimentation.

When I first encountered a version of this recipe online, the thing that struck me was that, unlike most other Ginger Snap recipes, this one featured ginger in 3 different forms - ground, fresh and crystallized. The recipe was huge and made some 8 dozen cookies, a bit much for our household (according to Kat)! I decided to halve the recipe to a scant 4 dozen, at least until I got it just the way I wanted it.

My first batch was very tasty though there was one problem. The cookies were chewy, there was no snap to them at all. I tried to make them again, this time reducing the flour by about 1/4 cup and increasing the amount of sugar from just a cup of brown to also including 1/2 cup of granulated sugar. This resulted in a crispier cookie, but they were way too thin, almost wafer-like. In both trials, I increased the amount of ginger. Another thing I did to both recipes was to add the "super secret" ingredient, cayenne pepper! It took the cookie to a whole new level, elevating it from a "kid cookie" to an "adult cookie." The flavor is much more complex and the spiciness adds just the right touch.

Today my plan was to replace the butter in the recipe with vegetable shortening. I added back the 1/4 cup of flour that I removed last time and also increased the baking time from 10 minutes to 12. The result was exactly what I was looking for - a crisp ginger cookie that actually 'snaps' when you break it in half!

Today I am giving the recipes for both the crispy version, as well as the chewy version. The chewy version is obviously the healthier of the two. There are prices I'm willing to pay for a good Ginger Snap, however, and I am unrepentant! As for you, you may take your pick or even better, try them both!

Ginger Snap Cookies
Preheat oven to 350. In a medium to large bowl, sift together:
2-1/4 c unbleached all-purpose flour
2 t ground ginger
2 t baking soda
1 t cayenne pepper
1/2 t salt
Set aside. In a large mixing bowl, cream together with a wooden spoon:
3/4 c vegetable shortening (use softened butter for a chewy cookie)
1 c packed brown sugar
1/2 c granulated sugar (for chewy cookies, do not use)
When butter and sugar are fluffy, add:
1/4 c molasses
1 egg
Mix until smooth. Add flour mixture and:
1/4 c grated fresh ginger, squeezing and adding excess juice
1 c chopped crystallized ginger
Stir with spoon (or even by hand) until well blended. Roll the dough into little balls about an inch in diameter and place onto parchment covered baking sheet, about 2 inches apart. Press down in each ball to flatten it just a bit. Bake for about 12 minutes, until tops of cookies are lightly golden and take on a cracked appearance. Remove cookies from the oven and slide parchment on to wire rack to cool for a couple of minutes, then remove cookies from the parchment and allow to completely cool on rack. To speed the baking process along, I generally use 2 pieces of parchment, so that one is ready to go into the oven when the other comes out. Typically, I get 4 dozen cookies with this recipe but today I got 54, meaning I had to eat 6 of them to make the numbers come out!

A couple of quick tips - first, regarding baking sheets. I cannot recommend strongly enough the use of insulated cookware. I have one old baking sheet that I bought because it was cheaper than the others that is just awful for baking. The bottom comes out burned every time! I baked these cookies on an insulated baking sheet and the bottoms are a beautiful golden brown, each one a perfect cookie. Spend a little more on your bakeware. Trust me, it's worth it!

Second, in regards to purchasing crystallized ginger. It can be very expensive when purchased from an American supermarket, which has put a lot of people off of buying it or trying these cookies. Fret not! Simply go to your neighborhood Asian market (if you have one) and you'll find it for about $5 or $6 per pound, as opposed to $5 for an ounce or two! A pound is way more than enough to use in this recipe, leaving you with extra ginger for nibbling (it's great for upset stomach, colds and a variety of other health issues, or for just snacking on when you have a sweet tooth) or for making more cookies! Don't be afraid to shop in ethnic food stores. True, the labels are harder to read but the folks who run these stores are very helpful and I think you'll find that the prices will blow your traditional American market out of the water! Here in Portland, we're lucky enough to have Asian, Russian, Latino, African, German, Carribean and other ethnic stores available to us. They are a veritable treasure trove of food wonders and challenges.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Thursday's Spread - The Aftermath

Photos by Geoff Leibinger

As I mentioned in an earlier post, last Thursday I had agreed to provide an appetizer spread at Sekhet-Maat Lodge for the lecture and book signing by author Richard Kaczynski. The event went well and the food was a success, even though it did not go off exactly as planned.

The idea was to only do finger foods and items that could be nibbled, as opposed to a full meal spread. The menu was as follows:
Roasted red pepper hummus with toasted pita bread
Baked spinach artichoke cheese dip with sliced baguette
A cheese tray with brie, blue and herbed goat cheeses, served with toasted garlic cloves
A fruit and nut tray with dates, figs, peanuts and candied pecans.
Lemon poppyseed bread

The Spread
Everything turned out wonderfully and exactly as I had planned except for the lemon poppyseed loaves which were accidentally left at home! The hummus and artichoke dips in particular received their share of compliments.

One of the most popular snacks were the candied pecans. I had never made this tasty treat before and now that I know how easy and delicious they are, you can bet that I'll be making them much more frequently! The recipe is simple.

Preheat your oven to 300 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and set aside. Take a large mixing bowl and whisk with a wire whip:
1 large egg white
until it's light and frothy. Add to the bowl:
2-1/2 c pecan halves
Gently toss the pecans with your fingers until they are well coated. In a small bowl, mix together:
1/4 c sugar
2 t ground cinnamon
1/2 t ground allspice
1/2 t salt
Sprinkle the mixture over the pecans and toss very gently so as not to break the nuts until all the pecans are well coated with the sugar mixture. Spread the pecans out evenly over the parchment lined cookie sheet and place in the oven for 30 minutes. When finished, remove the nuts from the oven and slide the parchment directly onto a large wire rack to cool. Once the nuts have cooled, carefully break them apart and store in a cool dry place until they are served.

When I made the recipe I used white granulated sugar, though I'm willing to bet that brown sugar would be tasty as well. The next time I make a batch, I will try that and see! The spices could be toyed with as well, perhaps using clove or ginger. This recipe would also work real well with walnuts, which are much cheaper than pecans! Candied nuts are a wonderful holiday snack and, best of all, when packaged in an attractive can or box, this recipe makes for a fantastic gift!

My thanks to all at Sekhet-Maat Lodge for helping make this event a success, and for your kind compliments on the food spread! Thanks to Richard Kaczynski for sharing his knowledge with us, and to Geoff Leibinger for taking the awesome photos! And thanks to you, dear reader, for continuing to support this, my humble blog. Cheers!

Peredur and his food.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Garlic Soup Update

Kat, lucky girl that she is, seems to have caught the bug that has been going around and, after looking at an earlier blog post (Garlic Dreams, Sept. 15) requested a pot of Garlic Soup. As it turns out, we have a freezer full of homemade chicken broth, due to the fact that we make a pot every time we eat a chicken or turkey (or anything else I can make broth out of) and freeze it for winter soups. Even though in my post the other day I said that I've tried working with different broths in making Garlic Soup, it occured to me that I've never tried making this recipe with chicken broth. Now seemed like an ideal time to try.

I pulled out 2 quart-sized jars of broth from the freezer and thawed them. In a large pan I bought the broth to a boil and turned off the heat. I didn't add black pepper, as my broth tends to be well seasoned.

From there, I made the recipe as I usually do. Instead of french bread, I cut and trimmed a couple of thick slices off the loaf of Egg Bread I baked a couple days ago and toasted them under the broiler. The house was so pungent with the smell of garlic, even Kat with her clogged sinuses noticed. After whisking in the egg yolks, the soup took on its signature cloudy, almost creamy, appearance. I ladelled the soup over the top of the cheese covered bread, which melts the Monterey Jack into a mass of gooey goodness and sprinkled the top with chopped fresh parsley.

The flavor of the soup with the chicken broth was absolutely outstanding! It had a very different character from the beef based version and, because I used homemade broth, it was much more complex. It was every bit as good as the original version, if not better!

So there you have it, Chicken Garlic Soup. Something to keep you warm and healthy on those cold days when everyone else is sick!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

A Better Use for the Bread Machine

"Bread is the king of the table and all else is merely the court that surrounds the king. The countries are the soup, the meat, the vegetables, the salad but bread is king."
- Louis Bromfield

I love fresh baked bread. No, let me stress this - I love fresh baked bread! The aroma is one of my favorite scents in the world. For years I would bake my own from scratch, enjoying the therapeutic process of kneading the dough and watching it rise, knowing that it is a living thing filled with live yeast cultures. Each loaf had a personality of its own. It was all very personal and the end result gave me a whole new appreciation for this staple food. My mother, in an effort to encourage this new found love, bought me a bread machine for the holidays one year, not realizing that for me the joy was in the handling. I never used the machine and exchanged it for some much needed knives.

Egg Bread

As time went on, I found myself with less time to bake and would just buy my bread from the store. I still tried to stay with the rustic loaves when I could, occasionally buying the pre-sliced stuff off the shelves at the supermarket. It was on one such shopping trip a couple of years ago that my wife Kat and I realized just how much we were paying for this item that is essentially flour, water and yeast. Kat remarked that she had an old bread machine in the basement and we decided to start using it, in an effort to save a little money.

Her old Breadman took a little getting used to. In the past when I had made bread, I would start with a sponge or starter, and build the loaf from there. Bread machine recipes called for just throwing everything into the machine at once, turning it on for a few hours and - hocus pocus - you have bread! There were several problems with it though. The biggest issue was that the loaves tended to be rather inconsistent. Every bake cycle was identical, with the same rising times and baking times. Each loaf, however, was individual and the exact same recipe would vary based on the measurements, temperature of the kitchen, humidity, etc. Some loaves would rise too much, some wouldn't rise at all. I had no success whatsoever with whole wheat and rye breads. The loaves looked weird too, real boxy, not at all like the loaves I was used to. There was a big hole in the bottom of each loaf caused by the paddle from the machine. In addition, the odd shape made it difficult to fit into the toaster unless it was sliced horizontally, top to bottom. All in all, it was very unsatisfying.

Then I decided to try something different. I started a loaf in the machine and let it get through the second kneading cycle, about 40 minutes into the process. Then I pulled it out of the machine and placed it into a greased container to rise. From there on, I treated it like any other bread recipe, giving it one more knead and forming it into a loaf. I baked it in the oven and it was spectacular!

Since that day, I have never used the bread machine for anything other than a bread mixer. One of the benefits is that, even though the machine is designed to make 1.5 lb loaves, I can now make 2 lb loaves, as I am not baking the bread in the machine. Which brings up an important point. When you remove the bread from the machine, remember to turn the machine off! I forgot to do that once and found my kitchen filled with a nasty burning smell - never a good thing!

Here is a basic Egg Bread recipe that I am actually baking as I write this.
3/4 c milk or buttermilk (I used buttermilk.)
1/3 c water
2 T butter or oil
(I used butter.)
2 eggs
3 c unbleached white flour
1 c whole wheat flour
3 T sugar
1 t salt
1 t yeast
Place all ingredients in your bread machine and set for basic white bread. After the second kneading cycle, turn off your bread machine and place dough in a large bowl that has been sprayed with non-stick spray. Flip the dough over so both sides are greased. Cover with wax paper or plastic wrap and let rise for 60-90 minutes. The bread is done rising when it has doubled in size. Place loaf on a lightly floured surface and form into a loaf. You may use a loaf pan if you like, or you may form it into a rustic loaf in the shape of your choosing. Loosely cover with the same wax paper/plastic as before, sprayed with a small amount of non-stick spray if necessary to prevent sticking. Allow to rise for 60 minutes or so. When the bread is nearly done rising, preheat the oven to 350. Just before baking the bread you may, if you choose, apply a wash using a pastry brush. Using water will cause to crust to be crispier, egg white gives a shiny appearance, egg yolk causes the crust to darken, and milk makes the crust softer. You may also add seeds to the top of your loaf at this point if you are using an egg wash. Bake the loaf for about 40 minutes. For an extra crispy loaf, you may spray the loaf with water once or twice while it bakes, or you can place an oven safe dish of water in the oven with the bread. The bread is finished baking when the internal temperature reaches 205 degrees. Remove the loaf from the oven (and pan, if you're using one) and cool completely on a wire rack before slicing.

A couple of tips. First, don't give in to the temptation to slice into the bread early! As delightful as warm bread is, it ruins the loaf when it is sliced too early. What I used to do was make 2 loaves, one smaller than the other. I would eat the small loaf warm and allow the larger loaf to completely cool. Best of both worlds! Second, when buying yeast, be smart and go to the bulk section! The jars of yeast you find in the baking aisle run about $5 for a little jar. Winco (a Kroger chain) has it bulk for $3.01/lb.! That's a lot of yeast! For about $1 I got more than I would have gotten buying the $5 jar. I win!

Happy baking, friends! Remember, good bread is the greatest of all feasts!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Garlic Dreams

A reader writes...
"Dear Peredur's Kitchen,
I have always prided myself on my good hygiene. I shower at least once a day, brush my teeth after every meal, and wear effective deodorant. This is my problem. I don't stink and when I walk into a room no one notices. I want to be noticed. I want to have a bold smell that will turn heads! Do you have a recipe that will help me?
Signed, Stinks Like A Rose"
Dear Stinks,
Boy, do I have the ingredient for you! This will not only turn heads, but it has also been known to help cure colds and has, in some cases, proven to be an aphrodisiac! I refer of course to garlic, and one of the best ways to fully experience this divine little bulb is by making a nice pot of Garlic Soup.

We start with a simple beef bouillon base. I have tried to get fancy and use other types of beef broth but nothing seems to work as well as just using plain old-fashioned bouillon cubes. Take a large pot or heat proof bowl and combine:
8 c boiling water
7 beef bouillon cubes
1/4 t fresh ground pepper
Stir to dissolve the cubes and set aside. In stock pot combine:
2 T butter
15-20 large cloves garlic, finely minced
2 T chopped fresh parsley
Saute over low heat stirring constantly until garlic is cooked through and aromatic, about 5 minutes. Add:
1 T flour
Stir until slightly browned. Carefully pour in the beef broth and stir, scraping up all the garlic on the bottom of the pan. Increase the heat to medium-high until soup nearly boils, then reduce heat to medium and simmer for 45 minutes to 1 hour. When the soup is about half cooked, slice:
1 loaf French bread
into 1" thick slices. Toast the bread on both sides. Just before serving the soup, whisk soup while drizzling in:
6 egg yolks, beaten
To serve, ladle soup over toasted French bread topped with shredded Monterey Jack cheese. Garnish with parsley, if that's your thing. This recipe makes about 6 servings, which is just enough for 2 people at my house. In the event that, for some reason, you have soup leftover, it happens to be just as amazing and flavorful reheated!

There you have it, Stinks! Make a pot of this soup and you'll have garlic coming out of your pores! People will make room for you on the bus! Garlic lovers will follow you home!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Lemons + Poppyseeds = Love!

"Do you know the land where the lemon-trees flower?"
- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

When life gives you lemons...CELEBRATE! In addition to lemonade, these little fruits make some delightfully sweet and tasty treats! Like Lemon Poppyseed Bread, for example.

In preparation for the lecture and signing this Thursday, I made 2 of these wonderful loaves tonight. I'm making them early because it is best to let them sit for a day or so after applying the lemon syrup at the end. This will allow the syrup to really soak the bread and get all that lemony goodness spread around so that every single bite is tangy and mouthwatering!

Lemon Poppyseed Loaf

A little prep work is necessary before beginning. First, preheat your oven to 350. Make sure your rack is on the middle setting. Then grease and flour an 8"x4" loaf pan (or what I find to be much easier is to just spray the pan with non-stick spray and then flour it). Then take a small piece of parchment and cover the bottom of the pan. Grease and flour the parchment and set the pan aside.
Next, grate the peal of:
1 fresh lemon
You'll need about 1 T worth of zest. Remember - yellow part only, no white! After you zest the lemon, cut it in half and squeeze the juice. You will need 1/4 cup. Set the juice aside.
In a small to medium sized bowl, whisk together:
3 large eggs
1-1/2 t vanilla extract
1/4 c milk
Set aside. In a large mixing bowl, sift together:
1-1/2 c all-purpose flour, sifted
3/4 c granulated sugar
3 T poppy seeds
1 t baking powder
1/4 t salt
lemon zest
When sifted together well, add half the egg mixture with:
13 T butter, softened
Mix on low speed until blended, then increase speed and beat for 1 minute. Add the rest of the egg mixture and beat for another minute. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 50-55 minutes. About 5 minutes before bread is done, combine in a small saucepan:
lemon juice
1/3 c sugar
Bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat and simmer until the sugar completely dissolves. Set aside until bread is removed from the oven. Bread is finished when the top of the loaf is golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean. Remove the loaf from the oven and poke several holes through the top with a wooden skewer or long toothpick. Pour about half of the lemon syrup over the top. Cool the loaf in the pan for about 10-15 minutes, then invert the pan onto a wire rack (be sure to grease it first!). Using a pastry brush, apply the rest of the syrup to the bottom and sides of the loaf. Flip the loaf back over right side up and allow to cool completely before wrapping in wax paper. Like I said, it's best to let the loaf sit at least overnight, if not a full 24 hours.

The dangerous thing about this recipe is that it's so damned good and it's so easy to make! Bake it in the evening and have it with coffee the following day for brunch! Luckily, my wife Kat has more self-control and keeps me in line or I would be a lot bigger than I am!

Bon Appetit!

Kat's Kreamy Hummus

By special request, I am posting the hummus recipe that my wife Kat showed me. I had never really made hummus before but once I tasted the good stuff, I've come to really enjoy it. The great thing is, you can play around with your ingredients and come up with all sorts of delicious flavors!

Start by combining in a food processor:
2 cloves garlic
1 t salt
fresh ground black pepper
Process until garlic is fine, scraping down the sides of the bowl once or twice. Add to this mixture:
one 15 oz can garbanzo beans, mostly drained, keeping about 1/3 of the liquid
Blend well. While beans are blending, add:
1-1/2 T roasted tahini
1 T + 1 t lemon juice
1/4 c extra virgin olive oil
Slowly drizzle in oil and blend until very creamy. Only use as much oil as necessary. When hummus is nearly done, add flavoring ingredients: 1 T chopped sun-dried tomato and a little of the oil the tomatoes were packed in makes a wonderful tomato hummus! Add 2 T chopped kalamata olives makes an easy olive hummus. Try roasted red pepper, roasted garlic, or any variety of herbs you would like. Experiment!

I will often double the above recipe for parties. Serve it with pita, crackers or sliced baguette. Roasted tahini, a paste made from roasted sesame seeds, might be hard to find, depending on where you live. We get ours at Fred Meyer, a local food market. Middle Eastern halal markets might also carry it but make sure you get roasted tahini. The regular tahini paste is nowhere near as good! Be warned! And happy eating!

Thursday's Appetizer Spread

This Thursday I have agreed to supply the food for a gathering at Sekhet-Maat, the local OTO lodge. Featured will be Richard Kaczynski, author of the the book Perdurabo. He will be reading and autographing, I will be cooking.

The menu as it stands right now will mainly consist of finger foods and the like. I thought I would start off with a Roasted Red Pepper Hummus, served with pita bread. Hummus is a staple around the lodge, I kind of felt obligated to some degree. I will be toasting whole cloves of garlic in olive oil, and also making Candied Pecans. These will be served along with dried figs and dates. I am considering a cheese plate with several varieties of cheese, including brie, blue cheese, a Belgian washed rind cheese, and perhaps a goat cheese with herbs or something like that. I will then be baking a Spinach Artichoke Dip and serving it with sliced and toasted baguette. Finally, I will make a couple loaves of my Lemon Poppyseed Bread, a strong flavored, amazingly satisfying dessert bread that will be easy for people to eat by hand.

Today I begin with shopping - at least 3 markets. My budget is only $50 for the entire affair and I have no real way of knowing how many I will be feeding, as the event is free and open to the public. I anticipate 30 or so. Tonight I will make the Lemon Bread and the Candied Pecans. I will be posting both recipes along with photos later.

Perdurabo: The Life of Aleister Crowley - lecture & book signing with Richard Kaczynski - Thu Sep 16, 2010 e.v. - Sekhet-Maat Lodge

Welcome to my kitchen!

Welcome to my humble blog, my cyber kitchen. I've decided to use this space to vent out my infatuation with food so as not to overly bore my friends with my rants on the virtues of smoked salmon and my constant obsessing about what I'm going to be cooking for dinner this week.

I will post my newest recipes here. Please feel free to comment as you will, just be polite. It won't do to go upsetting the chef! If you'd like to share your recipes here, please do so! The more the merrier, as they say.

Anyway, let the food rant begin!