Sunday, December 12, 2010

Remember when I posted about the things I want to try this blustery winter season... well, the Roving Taster is a woman of her word. I've started making my way through the list. Some wonderful meals, deals, and steals I've been reading, eating, and writing about.

lavender/rosemary/candied ginger shortbread -

I got this recipe from a site called For years I have known them as a great reference library slash jumping off point slash inspiration board, especially of baking recipes. So I was not surprised to find this among one of the most highly used and reviewed off all the shortbread recipes I poured over.

I changed the rosemary it called for to some dried lavender I bought at Planet Organic when I was stocking up on spices the other day. I also used the lavender in a honey infusion that I basted a roast chicken with the other day. More to follow on that meal, my god...

molasses -

I use this in my sisters' sort of thrown together version

of ginger cookies. It changes pretty much every time I make them, but the same basic ingredients are there - molasses, butter, eggs, flour, powdered ginger, cinnamon, and cloves. Then I elaborate from there - usually Cognac, or vanilla, or other spices.

consommés -

As it turned out, a slow cooker I put on last Friday called for beef stock, and I had a trusty can of Campbell's Beef Consommé in the pantry so I used that in my Provencal Beef Stew. So good. Made a total bonehead mistake though. I grabbed cilantro instead of Italian flat leaf parsley so the stew was missing a little bit of something fresh to

pep it up at the end before serving. Might try to make my own consommé still.

Oh yes, and the slow cooker beef stew also called for a sliced bulb of fennel.

mulled fruit - I have yet to figure a way to include this into my cooking in the coming days. But I have a hunch it will likely involve mulled wine... Maybe, dear readers, if you're lucky, you'll be able to share some with me.

brulée-ing things -

I saw a kitchen blow torch for brulée-ing in the Lee Valley catalogue. A pilgrimage may be in order.

parsnip soup - was on the menu as the soup of the day at The Highlevel Diner today. I should have had it instead of the quiche of the day which was sadly uninspired but lacked any real flavour or texture. Boo quiche. Yay parsnip soup. I must make it myself to keep the cream and butter under control. I will try to keep it healthy yet delicious for the health-conscious among me with whom I plan to share this dish.

stuffed roast chicken -

I already mentioned that this bird was possibly the most delectable creature I've ever cooked. Seriously. And I cook with meat fairly often. For now, it must suffice to say that there was a lot of butter and honey involved. Oh yes, and it was lavender infused honey.

osso bucco -

I had this at another restaurant who's fault I don't think it was. But I was unhappy with it. It wasn't actually what I wanted. They were out of what I wanted (which was mussels...) so I ordered the braised lamb shank which was the osso bucco. But it just wasn't what I wanted. It wasn't what I felt like that night and it was a bad impulse. Don't you hate that? When you run out of time or have to change your order just before your turn because someone else at the table already ordered it... Maybe that's just me. I think if I try this then I will attempt a tomato base to cook the meat in after browning and then add olives as a feature flavour in the sauce. I think their saltiness will hold up to the robust flavour of the lamb.

Note to self: keep an eye out for osso bucco cuts at the market in the coming weeks. My hours have changed so now I can try to grocery shop for the week at the Saturday market.

homemade cannelloni -

I have a recipe in a copy of Cook's Illustrated I've got tucked away in a folder somewhere. I have discovered that I own more cookbooks that I have room to store them. New Year's resolution number 7: buy more shelves. Resolution number 8: learn to build IKEA shelves once ad for all.

chocolate and cheese soufflé (though not necessarily together) -

This one definitely should be photographed. Those who have expressed interest in photographing my cooking at home, this would be a very fun one to capture. Anyone interested?

lentils - I must learn my sister's recipe. She'll show me over the holiday, I'm sure.

flambé -

I should probably buy a fire extinguisher first. And know where it is in relation to my flambéing at all times.

something that when assembled spells my name -

I don't rightly know what made me put this in. Do-over. I don't really care if I eat or make something that required assembly in order to be a megalomaniac statement. If I suggested something with my name written on it, I think that would be just as interesting...

layer cake - maybe an apple crumb cake with caramel in between... or rootbeer icing... will commence my recipe research.

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