Category: 50 Women Game-Changers in Food

50 Women Game-Changers in Food – #50 – Julie Powell – Poached Eggs

50 Women Game-Changers in Food – #50 – Julie Powell – Poached Eggs

Poached Eggs:  They’re not just for breakfast anymore.   Alyce’s  Poached Egg Chef’s Salad

If you saw the movie “Julie and Julia,” you’ll know Julie Powell didn’t like eggs.  While working her way through Julia Child’s Mastering The Art of French Cooking, Volume I in one year, Julie one day had to wake up and smell the eggs.  Yuck.  Something she never cooked.  But eggs were on the list and eggs are what she finally did fix.  And liked.  Who knew?

To begin with, Julie was a young married woman in NYC with a job that was stressful.   She needed more.  She loved to cook.  What else to do but to cook all of Julia Child’s recipes from The Art of French Cooking in a year and blog about it?  The original blog (2002-3?) is still online if you’d like to peruse it; blogs have changed immeasurably since then.  I actually did read it once upon a time…  If you’d like to read quite a bit of it all at once, you can still order the book, Julie & Julia .  As you more than likely are aware, the book became a very popular movie of the same name (2009) that taught everyone I know about  food bloggers.  I no longer ever have to explain what I do with my free (insert eye roll) time; people just say, “Oh, like Julie in Julie and Julia.”  I just nod my head, “Yes.”  What more can I say? She did change our world.  No doubt at all.  I don’t know how many food bloggers there were in 2005 versus 2012, but a current figure  (wrong/right?)  is over 11,000 in the United States alone.  Smile.

As far as poached eggs go, I’m a fan.  I often blog them:

Egg Salad #2

Alyce’s Asparagus-Mushroom Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette and Poached Egg #3
Poached Eggs on Grilled Cheese Tomatoes–one of my favorite breakfasts
After the cut.

Don’t know how to poach eggs or are scared?  Ah, gwahhn.  Heat up some water and let those eggs slip naked into the hot tub.   There are ways to make them more perfect, but here’s the easy lesson I posted in my Dinner Place blog, which is all about cooking for one person: 


Alyce’s Method for Poaching Eggs:

1. In a deeper small skillet or saucepan, heat 3″ water to boiling.  Turn down the heat to simmer and add a small splash of white vinegar (1 tsp) if you have any.  You don’t want a big boil here, the whites will fly all through the water.

2.  Crack one egg into a ramekin or tea cup and tip the egg slowly and gently into the water, holding the cup in place for a couple of seconds as the egg begins to set.  Repeat with second egg a certain distance away so that the whites, if possible, aren’t touching.  Either let simmer for 3 minutes or so (occasionally spooning hot water over yolk if you like)  or, alternately, turn heat off and cover tightly for 3-5 minutes, depending on how set you like your eggs.  3 for runny yolks, 5 for firm.  Approximately.

Not perfect, but perfectly edible.  Just add salsa.
I like my eggs “eye ball” set (haven’t drawn hot water over tops) and quite runny — often for salad dressing or part of anyway.   Most people want the yolk completely masked–above.

3.  Remove each egg from its bath using a slotted spoon or spatula and tap the spatula gently on a towel or paper towel to remove excess water before sliding the egg onto the plate.

4.  Season well with salt and pepper.   Eat immediately.

A couple of tips:  Room temperature eggs crack more easily than cold eggs; you have less chance of shell fragments.  Also:  crack  your eggs on a flat surface, not on the edge of the pan.  You can also buy egg poachers (metal cups with long handles on legs) or silicone poachers for the microwave.  I’ve never tried either gizmo, so let me know if you like them.

Here’s my equipment:

 
And, of course, tasty eggs–all sizes!

We can raise chickens right in the city here in St. Paul.  These are from Cathy Velasquez-Eberhart and her ladies.

Here’s my copy–a first edition even.

Julia’s Method

 Notice that Julia Child was always “Julia Child” until the movie came out.  Now she’s just Julia.  Kind of like Just Joan. (“Jewel of the Nile” l985–Kathleen Turner)  Well, maybe not!

Just for grins, I’m going to look up Julia’s instructions. Hold on.  Whoa.  This is all coming back to me.  If you’ve the book (Mastering the Art of French Cooking, Volume I), it’s on pages 116-117.  Yes, it’s two pages of instructions that you’re welcome to.  I make my instructions short and simple; you’ll learn technique and improve your eggs over time IF you’re a beginning cook or even an accomplished cook who hasn’t made poached eggs.  Not that my technique is better (cough cough), but while I’m wordy, I’m not quite as wordy as Julia—usually. 

One biggy is that even Julia admits you might want to make a 6 minute (boiled) egg instead of poached.  (Not likely for me.)  She also wants you to use fresh eggs, which are worth hunting for.  Check out your Farmer’s Market if you can’t find eggs any other way.  You can then set up a schedule to buy eggs from that person throughout the year.  I trade things for my eggs–things like baked cookies, granola, homemade ice cream sauces, etc.  You could try trading a service even.  Often, however, the eggs are no more expensive than quality eggs from the store.

One thing Julia writes is that if you need to keep the eggs for any length of time, place the cooked eggs in ice water.  You can store them in the frig like that.  Later, to heat them, slide them into salted hot water for 30 seconds. This is perfect if you’d like to have some friends for Sunday brunch.  You fix your poached eggs on Saturday, and do the hollandaise and English muffins (oven) on Sunday.
Or what if you’d like to do a few eggs for yourself for weekday breakfasts?  Do them Sunday afternoon and eat them Monday-Tuesday.

A Couple of Thoughts About Eggs 

We eat a lot of eggs and while they have a bad rap for cholesterol, so far we have no problems as we ease on toward 59.  I encourage young or new cooks to make eggs.  They are easy, fast, accessible, and inexpensive protein.   They store well.  They travel beautifully (if boiled.)  You can do all kinds of things with them!  In two minutes flat, you have an omelet and you can put nearly anything in the frig or pantry into it.  In twenty, you’ve cooked a dozen, boiling, and you  have lunches for work done.  Go eggs.

Want more about Julie Powell?

Watch a great video of Jacques Pepin and Julia Child poaching eggs together.  Julia uses the metal egg poacher with the long handle!  HA HA!!
Read Amanda Hesser’s 2003 NYT article about Julie Powell’s “web log or ‘blog'”
NYT 2009 updated article on Powell
Julie’s 2010 blog
Wiki biography
Time Magazine, 2010–Julie becomes a butcher.

~

With this post,  I give a low bow and fine thanks to our great group of bloggers writing about Gourmet Live’s 50 Women Game-Changers in Food as we come to the tail end of our project.  A few folks will write another post summing up the whole 50 or writing about someone spectacular who didn’t make the list (Marion Cunningham for me), but mostly this is our last hurrah.    I joined the group late, but have enjoyed all of my experience and am thankful for all of the learning, camaraderie, and fun…  Please take time to visit the other fine bloggers and see what they made for “Julie” week — or any other week, for that matter.

THANK YOU, LADIES:

Linda A – There and Back Again, Nancy – Picadillo, Mireya – My Healthy Eating Habits
Veronica – My Catholic Kitchen, Annie – Most Lovely Things, Jeanette – Healthy Living
Claudia – Journey of an Italian Cook, Alyce – More Time at the Table
Kathy – Bakeaway with Me, Martha – Simple Nourished Living, Jill – Saucy Cooks
Sara – Everything in the Kitchen Sink

Several of us plan to begin another blogging venture (though I’m about to put the blog on vacation and join up a little later) featuring the 38 healthiest foods featured in 


Power Foods: 150 Delicious Recipes with the 38 Healthiest Ingredients by The Editors of Whole Living Magazine (Dec 28, 2010)

I hope you’ll join us!

Sing a new song and poach a new egg,
Alyce

50 Women Game-Changers in Food – #49 – Soraya Darabi & Alexa Andrzejewski

50 Women Game-Changers in Food – #49 – Soraya Darabi & Alexa Andrzejewski

bbq chicken pizza from the happy gnome, st. paul, minnesota

Actually, this is Alyce’s BBQ Chicken Pizza!

 As a girl who loves to take pictures of food (it only started out with wanting to write about it), I don’t know how I missed being involved in Foodspotting, a website and way of life devoted to not just sharing the names of good restaurants (with our now ubiquitous and often ambiguous reviews), but to sharing the best dishes at those restaurants.  Oddly enough, in the whirl around the net, I guess I had signed up on Foodspotting, but never got around to actually participating.   So, in order to write my post for our group-blogging of Gourmet Live’s 50 Women Game-Changers in Food   (#49, Soraya Darabi & Alexa Andrzejewski, ) this week,  I had to go on the Foodspotter’s website and see what it was all about.



Because I’m watching my weight carefully just now, and because I LOVE IT, I decided to put in “St. Paul” and “pizza”  to see what would come up.  (Any reason for a night “off” from the diet.) Give it a whirl for yourself.  Put in your favorite place and your favorite meal and see what pops up.  See if you agree.  See if you’d like to add YOUR favorite meal in town or if you’ll make the decision to go to that restaurant and try that dish?   And why not?

One funny thing:  I was not looking for The Happy Gnome, which is one of my favorite restaurants in St. Paul.  I live smack in the middle of the city (in the Mac-Groveland neighborhood) and we have tons of choices.  I adore our neighborhood pub, 1/2 block down from our house (The Groveland Tap) where we stop for a drink or meet friends for a burger and I’m always thrilled to go to Cafe 128 for a perfectly-paired dinner or a wine-tasting over on Cleveland near the University of St. Thomas, where I’ve done some graduate work in music.

In good weather, I sometimes sit outside with coffee to write here.   Dave tasted 40 beers here and won a shirt. He’s starting over now to build his wardrobe.


The back room at Cafe 128–wine tastings and special dinners are here.  Make sure to get a reservation. 

But the Happy Gnome is another place entirely.  It’s kind of between The Tap and Cafe 128, though not physically.  (They’re all within a couple of mile of one another.)   It’s maybe a cross between the two, though it’s called a “gastro pub.”  There’s a wonderful, well-appointed bar with perfect music (saying a lot for me), but also the food is thoughtful, well-prepared, tasty, in season, seasoned beautifully (no salt or pepper on the table), is priced fairly, and is served by people happy in their work.   The wine list is even and balanced and there’s a good by-the-glass list. They’ll tell you if a bottle’s been open too long.   It’s a spot for happy hour, a special dinner, or Sunday brunch.  But it’s not, as far as I knew, a place for pizza.  So I was surprised to see pizza on Foodspotting for The Happy Gnome.  Pleasantly surprised and ready for the challenge. Here’s the Happy Gnome dinner menu.  Just so you can see.

The Happy Gnome Firehouse Room. The restaurant’s in an old firehouse.

 And here’s the photo (below) of their BBQ Chicken Pizza from the Foodspotting website, which I’m thinking is an item found on the menu occasionally.  I’m guessing they switch out their pizza choice.  Right now, Duck Pizza  (yes) is the option.  Whatever, I was happy to create a recipe and make my own.  I got on fb and asked BBQ Chicken Peeps to speak up about what went on BBQ Chicken Pizza, which I’ve never eaten.  I used their input to develop my bbq pizza.

Happy Gnome BBQ Chicken Pizza –Photo from Foodspotting, where photos needn’t be perfect.


 If you’re not a home pizza maker, try this anyway.  It’s made on an oiled rimmed cookie sheet (no stone or pizza paddle needed) that is heated for 10 minutes before you build the pizza on it and is not difficult to accomplish.  (I first baked with this simpler method making Tyler Florence’s Pizza Margherita recipe and have since used it to teach very inexperienced cooks how to make homemade pizza.)  Not knowing what BBQ chicken pizza was supposed to taste like made me a good tester, I think.  And I liked it.  I wouldn’t eat it weekly, but it’s spicy with a note of sweetness and chewy with lots of crispness and not gooey with cheese.  I did, however, use three kinds:  cheddar, blue, and pepper jack.  It occurred to me it might make a good appetizer or a drinks snack for a crowd (Super Bowl?) if cut into very small pieces; it’s rich.    Here’s the recipe I worked out:

alyce’s bbq chicken pizza
                                             serves 4 generously
 ingredients needed:

  • pizza dough (recipe link below)   Prep and rise = 1 1/2 – 1 3/4 hours
  • 2 cups BBQ sauce (recipe below or use your own)–some for pizza and some for dipping
  • 2-3 cups shredded chicken
  • 1 cup shredded or chopped cheese–I used a mixture of Extra-sharp Cheddar, Blue, and Pepper Jack
  •  1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • Olive oil (for dough, for oiling sheet pan, and for cooking the onion)
  • kosher salt and pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

directions:

1.  Make Tyler Florence’s pizza dough.  It must rise 1 – 1 1/2 hours until doubled.  (Alternately, buy pizza dough from your favorite pizzeria.)  Makes enough for two.  If you’d like to keep the second piece of dough for another time, divide the dough before it rises and freeze one half well-wrapped in plastic-wrap and then placed in a freezer bag.  Freeze for no more than a month or so.



2.  Meantime,  roast 2 chicken breasts with skin on the bone:  Preheat oven to 350.   Place breasts on a baking sheet and brush chicken with olive oil and season generously with salt and pepper.  Bake about 45 minutes and set to cool for a few minutes.   Remove skin, debone, and shred the chicken.   You should have 2-3 cups of chicken after shredding.  Place in refrigerator until dough has risen and BBQ sauce is done.
3.  While the chicken roasts, make my favorite (or your favorite) BBQ sauce.  You’ll need 1- 1 1/2 cups for the pizza and a little extra for dipping at the table.  This will make much more, so use it for summer grilling!   Here’s the best BBQ sauce I know:

1 1/2 cups ketchup
3/4 cup chili sauce
3/4 cup wine vinegar
3/4 cup water
1/2 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup A-1 sauce
1/4 cup prepared mustard
3/4 cup brown sugar
1T celery seeds (I love these, but left the out for the pizza)
2T Worcestershire sauce
1T soy sauce
1 clove garlic, minced
1 dash Tabasco sauce  (or more to taste)

Combine all in a large sauce pan, stir, and bring to a boil.  Lower the heat and simmer 30 minutes.  Remove from heat and reserve until dough is risen.  (Keeps well for several weeks in the refrigerator and is great for ribs or brisket, too.)  Sauce recipe courtesy BYTES : COLORADO’S FAMILY-FRIENDLY COOKBOOK. 

3.  Chop or shred 1/2 cup each:  extra-sharp Cheddar, Blue, and Pepper Jack cheese.  Set aside.
4.  Saute or carmelize (if you have the time)  1 large red onion, thinly sliced, in 1 T olive oil.  Remove from heat.
5.  Chop 1/4 cup fresh cilantro and reserve.
6.  When dough has doubled in size, preheat oven to 450 degrees F.  Place jellyroll pan (or half sheet pan) in oven to heat for about 8 minutes.  Remove from oven and drizzle, then brush, bottom of pan with olive oil.  
7.    While pan heats, stretch the pizza dough into a rectangle  just a bit bigger than the bottom of the jellyroll pan.  Yes, you’ll need to be the pizza man here.  No flipping up in the air required, but holding it up in the air (like you’re holding a shirt to see if there’s stains on it) and repeating on all four sides will work.  Keep at it; you’re a novice (or not).  It’ll get there.
8.  Place the stretched dough carefully onto the hot pan and press dough up sides of pan if possible.
9.  Spoon about a cup of BBQ sauce evenly over the dough.  Remove the chicken from the refrigerator and stir about a tablespoon of sauce into it.  Spread the chicken evenly on top of the sauce and sprinkle with the reserved onions.
10.  Sprinkle the cheeses  evenly over the chicken and onions and  top with the chopped cilantro.  Dust with a bit of kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper.
11.  Bake about 15 minutes until bubbly and crust is browned to your liking.
12.  Let sit 2 minutes or so before slicing.  Serve with a couple tablespoons of BBQ sauce for dipping the crust.

     a little bit about  Soraya Darabi, Alexa Andrzejewski

Alexa first came up with the idea for Foodspotting because she couldn’t find good Okonomiyaki in San Francisco. Before launching Foodspotting in 2010, Alexa was a User Experience Designer for Adaptive Path where she helped clients ranging from startups to established companies reimagine products from the ground up.

Soraya Darabi loves food, travel, photography and emerging technology, so naturally she was one of the earliest foodspotting devotees, before becoming an advisor to the company and now a co-founder. She previously worked for Epicurious.com and drop.io, but most notably The New York Times where she successfully launched the social-media presences of The Times.
courtesy foodspotting.com

~~

I share this blogging journey with a fun group of foodies; read up!  We’re almost at the end of a phenomenal trip.
 

Linda A – There and Back Again, Nancy – Picadillo, Mireya – My Healthy Eating Habits
Veronica – My Catholic Kitchen, Annie – Most Lovely Things, Jeanette – Healthy Living
Claudia – Journey of an Italian Cook, Alyce – More Time at the Table
Kathy – Bakeaway with Me, Martha – Simple Nourished Living, Jill – Saucy Cooks
Sara – Everything in the Kitchen Sink

If you like this, you might also like:

  Potato Gratin with Rosemary Crust

Sing a new song right after you bake pizza,
Alyce

50 Women Game-Changers in Food – #48 – Cat Cora’s Grapefruit Margarita

50 Women Game-Changers in Food – #48 – Cat Cora’s Grapefruit Margarita

Grapefruit Margarita by Cat Cora

On the journey with fellow food bloggers through Gourmet Live’s 50 Women Game-Changers in Food, we’re heading on fast toward the finish line with number 48, Cat Cora (b 1968.)  Each week, we feature one special woman who has made an impact on what goes on the table when we sit down to eat.  Some we’ve know well; others have been new to some of us.  If you’re interested in the celebrity food world, you’ve heard of this week’s Cat Cora (Iron Chef, Around the World in 80 Plates), who hailed from Jackson, Mississippi where she was raised in a Greek restaurant family.  Soon after college she found her way to New York and the CIA for culinary school.   Training further in first-class kitchens in France and New York, she finally found her way to California where she now lives with her partner and four sons.  

Order Cat Cora’s Classics with a Twist
In addition to cookbooks, restaurants, a line of food, wine, and cookware, as well as the tv shows (click here for her You Tube Channel), Cat is also involved in a variety of causes… 
Outside of the kitchen, Cat is known for her philanthropy. She is President and Founder of Chefs for Humanity, an organization that originated in response to the 2004 Tsunami disaster. Modeled after Doctors Without Borders, the not-for-profit gathers the culinary community together to raise funds and provide resources for important emergency, educational and hunger-related causes. Recognizing Cat’s altruistic determination in the food world, UNICEF named her a nutritional spokesperson to help raise awareness for humanitarian crises around the world.

In June 2010, Cat joined First Lady Michelle Obama as part of her Chefs Move To Schools campaign in an effort to provide nutritional guidance and education from professional chefs to schools nationwide. Cat is presently working on adopting an elementary school near her home in Santa Barbara, CA.  (courtesy catcora.com)

Want more info about Cat and her recipes?  Check out her website here . 
Follow Cat on twitter here.

But first, mix up this heat-beating  grapefruit cocktail as a trial run for your Memorial Day cook-out.  I am not much of a spirits drinker (as a foodie I’m into wine–it goes with food!), but I do drink the occasional  finger of island Scotch come January in St. Paul, a shot of Asbach-Uralt if I’m stuffed up with a cold, or the ubiquitous summer margarita on the patio.  You could say I’m a  medicinal drinker!   I  do like the idea of something different with a nod toward healthy (has grapefruit, right?) and so had my husband and friend Jim whip these up for us to try last weekend.  That’s right, I didn’t even make these babies; I’m fessing up.  I don’t grill outdoors and I don’t make cocktails; I don’t want to learn.  I do make great sangria and will make you some if you come to dinner in the summertime.  So there.  Try these:

cat cora’s straight up grapefruit margaritas  makes 4 cocktails

Ingredients

  • 1 to 1 1/2 cups fresh squeezed grapefruit juice (from about 2 large grapefruit)
  • 3/4 cup tequila
  • 1/2 cup Triple Sec
  • 1/2 cup fresh-squeezed lime juice
  • 2 Tbs superfine sugar (plus extra for rim)
  • 4 cups crushed ice

Directions

Run a lime wedge over the rim of each glass and dip in superfine sugar. Shake all ingredients together in martini shaker, strain out the ice, carefully divide the margarita mixture among four glasses and serve. 

Taster’s Notes:  I thought these a tad sweet for my taste and would increase the lime juice next time.  Otherwise–a beautiful, refreshing start to our Mother’s Day cookout.  We also made a non-alcoholic version with grenadine and grapefruit juice.

~
I blog, on this project, with a tasty group of writers.  Read up:

Linda A – There and Back Again, Nancy – Picadillo, Mireya – My Healthy Eating Habits
Veronica – My Catholic Kitchen, Annie – Most Lovely Things, Jeanette – Healthy Living
Claudia – Journey of an Italian Cook, Alyce – More Time at the Table
Kathy – Bakeaway with Me, Martha – Simple Nourished Living, Jill – Saucy Cooks
Sara – Everything in the Kitchen Sink

   
If you liked this, you might like my Greek Chicken Salad to go along with the margarita!

Mother’s Day Dessert

two-dog kitchen and around the ‘hood
Making the shortcakes–I did the ice cream, too.  May blog the whole thing!
Baked a glazed Korobuta ham–Bourbon-Orange Glazed— Wednesday for my choir’s last rehearsal.  Berkshire pork is worth the price and this is my new go-to recipe (Fine Cooking) for big groups or holiday ham.

You see where they are–getting the tablecloth full of dog hair!
Allium in my west garden–everything is way ahead of schedule.

 Egg Salad on my Dinner Place Blog (Cooking for One) this week :
                “An Egg with a Few Greens for Supper”

Sing a new song,

Alyce
50 Women Game-Changers – #47 – Zarela Martinez’ Savory Cornbread

50 Women Game-Changers – #47 – Zarela Martinez’ Savory Cornbread

From my childhood on, cooking meant sharing and security and a way of “speaking” to people.  When I grew up I found that cooking grew also to be a means of celebrating and honoring those who would eat meals that I’d carefully prepared from scratch. Over the years as I lived and thought and learned, cooking grew even more to embrace nearly every aspect of culture and human relationships. I have been lucky to make my career as chef, consultant, and businesswoman a never-ending source of joy and fulfillment.”

                                                                                                              –Zarela Martinez

Each week for the last forty-six, a food-loving group of bloggers has been studying, choosing a recipe, cooking, photographing, and writing  about one very special food expert off the Gourmet Live list of 50 Women-Game Changers in Food.    I jumped on this yummy trolley last January at stop number 32, but a good number of these scribes started right from the beginning.   We’re near the end of the line, but this week we’re featuring number forty-seven, Mexican chef, author, teacher, philanthropist, and NYC restauranteur-caterer Zarela Martinez.

Born on a northern Mexico ranch, Zarela moved to the U.S. in the ’70’s, and to make a few bucks, began catering.  Soon she was at culinary school, studying with Paul Prudhomme, and working at Cafe Marimba in NYC!  Her famed, but currently closed, restaurant, Zarela, came next and taught more than one generation of New Yorkers about just how fine true Mexican cuisine could be, as well as providing training ground for her son, chef Aaron Sanchez.

 Here, Zarela teaches us how to roast poblanos (used in her cornbread recipe-below) and gives us her “Creamy Rice Casserole” recipe.

Lots of gorgeous recipes from Zarela out there, but I hit on Savory Cornbread for this week.  The recipe sounded perfect…lot of fresh corn, great cheese, gluten-free, but something somewhere just didn’t happen exactly as I expected.   While the bread was tasty (though quite rich), I struggled to get it done.  I baked it an extra tweny minutes and it was still underdone–more like spoon bread, which may be exactly what it was supposed to be like.  We simply enjoyed it just like that.  One thing, I did bake it in a metal 9×13 pan in the hopes of obtaining a crispy crust and if I tried it again, I’d put it in the recommended glass Pyrex casserole dish. While full of butter and cheese, the roasted peppers did shine through and provided a touch of heat usually missing from American Corn Bread recipes.  I think it would be great with a fish taco salad or a bowl of spicy chili.  Scroll down past my puppies and try it:

Gabby and Tuck waiting for mom to get done cooking.  Geez Louise, it’s walk time.

savory cornbread — Chefs Aaron Sánchez and Zarela Martínez (courtesy NY Magazine)

Ingredients

3 cups corn kernels, fresh, frozen, or canned
2 sticks unsalted butter
2 tablespoons sugar
3 large eggs
1 1/2 cups rice flour (use Goya’s, not rice flour from Chinatown) I used King Arthur’s Gluten-Free flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
8 ounces white Cheddar cheese, shredded
4 ounces poblano chiles, roasted, seeded, and diced
Cornstarch 

Instructions

Grind the corn by pulsing batches in the food processor until coarsely crushed but not puréed. Set aside.

Corn ground in food processor

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. In a mixing bowl, cream the butter until light and fluffy. Add the sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time. Beat in the eggs one by one until incorporated.

 Sift the dry ingredients, and add to the creamed mixture in 2 parts, beating on low speed until combined. Fold the ground corn into the batter, followed by the cheese and chiles.

I could not find Goya rice flour and subbed King Arthur…

Weighing the cheese before grating.

Butter a 13-by-9-inch Pyrex baking dish, and lightly dust with cornstarch. Pour in the mixture and bake for 50 to 60 minutes or until crust is golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. (2007)   

(Published 2007)
I write with a tasty group of bloggers!  Please take some time and visit

If you liked this, you might like my Irish Soda Bread (with Potato Soup)

 
And, also, on Dinner Place (Cooking for One) this week is Alyce’s Killer Guac to take to the Mother’s Day Cookout:
 
Cook with a-band-on,
Alyce
50 Women Game-Changers in Food – #46 – Gael Greene – Corn Soup with Sautéed Scallops and Bacon

50 Women Game-Changers in Food – #46 – Gael Greene – Corn Soup with Sautéed Scallops and Bacon

“Do you sing, too?” I asked, tickling his tweed elbow.

I have a good friend who is fond of this phrase:  “She was born with the words, ‘Please peel me a grape,’ on her lips.”   That could very well have been said about spicy bon vivant Gael Greene (1933-  ), this week’s  number 46 on Gourmet Live’s List of 50 Women Game-Changers in Food.  Greene, the 40-year New York Magazine restaurant critic and columnist, novelist, and philanthropist from Detroit, is best known for her erotic encounters with food, as well as with the likes of Clint Eastwood and Elvis Presley.   Want details?  It’s all (probably not) chronicled in Greene’s memoir, the infamous Insatiable : Tales from a Life of Delicious Excess (Grand Central, 2007.)  And while I promise I’m not telling tales out of school, you can listen to her own description of Presley as appetizer here.

Lest we consider the ground-breaking critic light-weight or even shallow,  life-long achiever  Greene (still writing, appearing on “Top Chef,” and tweeting as I blog)  has also spent a sizable portion of her adult life making sure New York’s elderly poor had food come weekends and holidays: 

Marcia Stein: Citymeals began in 1981 when Gael Greene and Jim Beard, the founders, read that homebound elderly New Yorkers only got meals from the city Monday through Friday, and not on holidays. They were going very long periods of time without food. Especially over the holidays: at times when other people were over-eating, these people were alone and starving.

Gael and Jim called their friends in the industry; Gael called the city government and wrote about it. She was just as good at describing their situation as she is at describing food, and it made people aware. Checks started coming in, but you can’t just send a check to the government or the Department for the Aging. We had to create an organization that was a not-for-profit so we could receive the checks we were getting. So Citymeals started as a public/private partnership with the city’s meal delivery program.

We started feeding 6,000 homebound elderly, but the number has grown over time. Now we are feeding 18,000 every weekend and holiday.

We receive about 50,000 contributions a year to Citymeals. It’s a cause that New Yorkers have embraced. Six dollars a day can save a person’s life.

Read the entire interview with Marcia Stein, Executive Director of Citymeals-on-Wheels on starchefs.com

But after you get your fill reading and listening — more by scrolling down– do a little cooking with Gael and try her

Corn Soup with Sautéed Scallops and Bacon  serves 4

  • 6 ears corn
  • 4 cups water (reserve water after the corn has cooked)
  • 2 tsp olive oil for vegetables
  • 2 medium yellow onions, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and minced                                        
  • Juice of half a lime
  • Clam broth, to taste
  • 2 slices bacon
  • 6 large sea scallops, quartered       
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper  
  • 1 tbsp chopped cilantro or basil
  • Cook corn in four cups of water. Remove corn, strain water of corn silk, and reserve cooking water.
    Cut kernels from cobs and reserve the corn. Return cobs to cooking water, simmer till water reduces   to half. Then remove cobs and reserve water.
    Scrape cobs with dull knife to extract all the corn milk and reserve this liquid.
    Sauté onions, garlic, and jalapeño in olive oil in nonstick skillet. Don’t let them brown.
    Add reserved corn kernels and corn milk to vegetables, then toss and cook on low heat for 2 minutes. Puree half of this mix in a blender or food processor.
    Add puree and remaining corn-vegetable mix to reduced corn water. Then add lime juice and clam broth, to taste.
    Cook bacon until crisp, drain, and cut into ribbons.
    Sauté scallop quarters quickly in bacon fat till slightly browned. Don’t overcook.
    Reheat soup. Add scallops and bacon to mixture in the corn water. Season with ground pepper and salt, to taste. Add more lime or clam juice if necessary.
    Serve in bowls with minced cilantro or basil sprinkled on top

    A little bacon garnish might not go amiss.  A nice grind of black pepper, too.

    While this soup is perfectly suited to late summer when the corn is as high as an elephant’s eye, I managed to snare a few fresh? ears from our local grocer, who had Fed-exxed a little out of Florida.  If you can’t find any corn,  I think you could use vegetable broth (along with the clam broth) and frozen (cooked) corn kernels.  You won’t have the same soup, but I think it would be tasty.  Corn cooking tip here, though I just bring the water to boil, drop the corn in, let it come up to a boil again, and cover it for 10 minutes or so.  The other great way is to microwave it or grill it right in the husks.  Easy and maybe the tastiest version, but not possible for this recipe.

    I did pepper and sugar – 1/2 tsp each- the corn-cooking water for this soup.  Oh, summer…hurry up!

    My best sous and lunchtime taste tester.

    At first taste, my excellent taster wondered what all the shouting was about.  By the second taste, he was hooked.  The subtle heat left a gentle warm buzz in the mouth and the corn and scallops provided good contrast in texture.   I had one small bowl leftover that I ran over to Paul, the owner of our two-doors down wine and beer shop,  The Wine Thief and Ale Jail.  Love living in the city do I.

    The Wine Thief and The Ale Jail

     I chose this recipe because I adored the idea of a mostly healthy  (ok, there’s bacon) seafood soup that used only 6 scallops for four servings.  I calculated about five bucks per serving, which is a less-expensive way to splurge on a little scallop action.   The soup sounded like a luscious and light warm-weather meal that could easily be made outdoors utilizing a grill with a side burner.  It might also serve as a small first-course offering for a special dinner.  I liked a sip of a great big California Chardonnay with this soup.

    Here’ s a review one cook left on epicurious fyi:
    I followed this recipe exactly. I was surprised that the color was not as bright as I had expected (sort of a dull yellow), and the texture was, well, corny. Pureeing the corn mixture did not make it creamy at all, as I could still feel the fibers of the corn kernels in my mouth. I decided to puree all of it, and then strain it, which yielded a something I would describe as a corn broth, great for poaching fish in or serving in shot glasses with some crispy shallots or scallops right on top. 

    by A Cook from Miami Beach, Fl on 07/10/06

    Fyi I pureed three-quarters of the corn.

    Read More http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/reviews/Corn-Soup-with-Sauteed-Scallops-and-Bacon-234219#ixzz1tok3W1g5

    Want more Gael Greene?
    • Read  epicurious.com
    • Check out a NYT article about Gael here.
    • Visit Gael’s personal website, Insatiable Critic, here.
    • Follow Gael on twitter for a daily hoot.
    **
    If you liked this, you might also like my one-pan meal:
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    Cook with a – band – on,
    Alyce
    50 Women Game-Changers – # 45 – Diana Kennedy- Fresh Salsa Mexicana from Jerez

    50 Women Game-Changers – # 45 – Diana Kennedy- Fresh Salsa Mexicana from Jerez

    Wake up and smell the salsa.
    This is not salsa made in New York City.
    Nor in San Antonio.
    This salsa is made in your house. On your cutting board. 
    And not in your Cuisinart.

    Plant your gardens and sharpen your knives.
    This salsa is worth the time it takes to  grow the ingredients and make it by hand.  But you can make it in its glorious Mexican-flag colors this weekend in honor of Cinco de Mayo if you’d like!

    If you’ve not been part of this journey thus far, welcome to my addition to a great group of food bloggers who are, week by week, cooking dishes from the 50 Women Game-Changers in Food from Gourmet Live.  This Friday we feature Mexican chef, teacher, and cookbook author, Diana Kennedy, a Brit (b. 1923)  who ended up in Mexico in love with Mexican food for more than fifty years.  Intent on sharing her passion, Kennedy wrote many cookbooks, (I count about twenty, though some are in English and some in Spanish.) but has remained most intent on passing on information about the culture of ingredients, agriculture,  and cuisine all over the country.
    “I’m a very active person,” she said. “I want to spend the rest of my days doing what I know best and that’s identifying what people are using in the culture.”   Read more
    Want to check out a recent interview?   Read a  2011 interview with 88 year-old Diana Kennedy here.
    But let’s get to the good stuff.  How do you make this salsa?  And what’s it good for?
    fresh salsa mexicana from jerez 
    1. 1 poblano chile—stems, seeds, and veins removed and flesh finely chopped
    2. 1 red jalapeño chile—stems, seeds, and veins removed and flesh finely chopped
    3. 2 yellow chiles—stems, seeds and veins removed and flesh finely chopped  *
    4. 2 serrano chiles, finely chopped
    5. 3 tablespoons finely chopped white onion
    6. 1 ripe medium tomato (about 4 ounces), finely chopped
    7. 1/2 cup water
    8. 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
    9. 1/2 teaspoon crumbled dried oregano
    10. Salt
    Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl; season with salt to taste. Set aside to macerate for about 1 hour.
    *Not wanting an overly-hot salsa, I substituted red  bell pepper for these chiles.  My salsa was quite mild.  For a hotter salsa, try adding first one and then another yellow chile.

    Recipe courtesy FOOD & WINE.

    This salsa was really tasty with eggs, and while I’m not a chip-eater, I did try it with some tortilla chips and would have eaten more if I weren’t saving some for a Friday night movie.   I think it would make a great veggie dip; I’m always looking for vegetable-based dips.  You could ladle this sauce over simple greens or plain steamed vegetables.  I thought I’d try it with some plain grilled chicken and then in a chicken taco salad over the weekend.  My guess is it won’t keep more than a couple of days, but who would want it to?

    I just loved the colors and intrinsic beauty of the ingredients and kept taking photographs of the greens and the reds…. 

    And just to tease you:
    Eggs traded for cookies with a St. Paul pianist who has a backyard full of chickens.

    Please take some time and visit more of our great food bloggers:

    Val – More Than Burnt Toast, Taryn – Have Kitchen Will Feed, Susan – The Spice Garden
    Heather – girlichef, Miranda – Mangoes and Chutney, Amrita – Beetles Kitchen Escapades
    Mary – One Perfect Bite, Sue – The View from Great Island, Barbara – Movable Feasts
    Linda A – There and Back Again, Nancy – Picadillo, Mireya – My Healthy Eating Habits
    Veronica – My Catholic Kitchen, Annie – Most Lovely Things, Jeanette – Healthy Living
    Claudia – Journey of an Italian Cook, Alyce – More Time at the Table
    Kathy – Bakeaway with Me, Martha – Simple Nourished Living, Jill – Saucy Cooks
    Sara – Everything in the Kitchen Sink

    If you liked this, you might like Boiled Eggs on English Muffins with Asparagus and Cheese Sauce on my Dinner Place  blog:

    Cooking for One – It’s Fun!

     Sing a new song,
    Alyce