Showing posts with label Dips. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Dips. Show all posts

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Smoked Trout Schmear – Because There’s No Cool Way to Say, “Spread”

Schmear,” on the other hand, is impossible to say without sounding cool. Try it, you’ll see. You also have to love a recipe whose name describes what you’re supposed to do with it. You make a schmear, and then you schmear a schmear.

Names aside, this smoked trout schmear is incredibly easy, and very versatile. Obviously, it’s great spread on any kind of bread or crackers, but slathered atop a freshly toasted bagel may be it’s finest expression.

By the way, this is one of those recipes were you almost have to ignore the exact ingredient measurements I give below, since the ideal amount of salt, acidity, and heat are very subjective. Equal proportions of cream cheese and smoked trout is a good starting point, but everything else should be added “to taste.”

Smoked trout is relatively easy to find in any of your fancier grocery stores that sell smoke salmon, and unlike its more common cousin, I think it provides a richer, more interesting flavor, especially in spreads like this. I really hope you give this a try soon. Enjoy!



2 trout boneless, skinless fillets (about 5-6 ounces total), checked for bones and crumbled
6 ounces cream cheese (3/4 cup), softened to room temp
2 teaspoons capers, drained
1 rounded teaspoon hot prepared horseradish, preferably homemade
salt and freshly ground black pepper
pinch of cayenne
1/2  lemon, juiced (about 4 teaspoons), or to taste

2 teaspoons fresh chopped chives
1 tablespoon fresh chopped dill
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How to Make Your Own Prepared Horseradish – Feeling Hot, Hot, Hot

Every time I use horseradish in a recipe, I get e-mails from people asking me how they can make it at home. They mention they can get the fresh root, but can’t find anything already prepared in the jar, which in some cases is hard to believe – like when the email originates from New York City – but regardless, this is still a very worthwhile thing to learn how to make.

Worthwhile, and somewhat painful, if you’re not careful. As I mention in the video, the fumes produced by this process are very intense, and will cause burning eyes and runny noses, if you’re not in a well-ventilated space. Having said that, using a little common sense, it’s really not that bad, and so totally worth it.

This really is quite easy if you have a food processor, but if you don’t, a heavy-duty blender will work, although you may have to add more water in the first step, to get the mixture fine enough. You can also grate this very fine on a microplane, but that would probably only be practical if you’re making a smaller amount.

Once your horseradish has been ground finely, the technique is very simple. I like to wait two or three minutes (this is supposed to make it hotter), before adding the salt and vinegar. Then, I’ll simply process, adding as much water as necessary, until I have a nice, smooth, creamy mixture.

And while this looks like something from the grocery store, the flavor is incomparable. Intensely hot, and aromatic; this is the real deal. So, whether you’re one of these people, who lives in a place where they don’t have jarred horseradish, like apparently New York City, or you always wanted to try and make some yourself, I really hope you give it a try soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients for about 3 cups: you read this please in here
1 pound peeled, cubed fresh horseradish root
cold water as needed (about 3/4 cup total)
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/3 cup white distilled vinegar
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Saturday, August 27, 2016

Eastern North Carolina-Style Barbecue Sauce with a West Coast Twist

I’m not sure if using honey instead of sugar really qualifies as a “West Coast twist,” but it does ensure that people from North Carolina can’t attack me for this Eastern North Carolina-style barbecue sauce not being authentic. 

Anyway, while this isn’t exactly what you might find in the Tar Heel State, it was fantastic on the pork, and I hope it inspires you to add this deliciously different barbecue sauce in your repertoire.

As I mentioned in the video, I’m heading down to SoCal to work on a top-secret project, but since I teased this sauce in the recent paper pork recipe, I wanted to get this posted before I left. Unfortunately, I can’t give any details about what I’m doing down there, but let’s just say…actually, I can’t even say that. So stay tuned, and in the meantime, I really do hope you give this a try soon.  Enjoy!


Ingredients:
1 tablespoon honey, or other sweetener to taste
1 generous tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
1 generous tablespoon hot red pepper flakes
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup white distilled vinegar
3/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
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Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Eggplant Escabeche – The Second Best Way to Eat Eggplant

The best way to eat eggplant is fried, which I’ll hopefully prove to you one day with a video recipe. In the meantime, you’ll have to settle for the second best way, which is this eggplant escabeche. It’s cold, refreshing, vibrantly-flavored, and I’m guessing, very healthy. 

This was inspired by a visit to a restaurant in San Francisco called Lolinda, where Chef Alejandro Morgan serves a simple, but incredibly delicious Argentinian-style eggplant escabeche. I won’t go so far as to say it came out as good, but the noises of pleasure Michele made while eating this were very similar. 

If you didn’t get the #dotsnotslots reference, I explained how to tell a “male” from “female” eggplant in a old video, which involves looking for a dot shaped mark at the end, and not a slot shaped one. This indicates a “male,” which generally has less seeds.

By the way, “male” is in quotations because eggplants don’t actually have different genders, but apparently some are less pregnant than others. I’m certainly no expert when it comes to eggplant sex, but I’ll go with that until I hear otherwise. I really do hope you give this fabulous eggplant recipe a try soon. Enjoy! 

 
Ingredients for about 2 pints:
3/4 cup sliced roasted sweet and/or hot peppers

1 large eggplant, halved, cut in 1/4 slices
1 large zucchini, halved, cut in 1/4 slices
tossed with 2 tablespoons kosher salt 
1 cup white wine vinegar 
2/3 cup water 
1/2 cup olive oil 
2 cloves finely crushed garlic 
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano 
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper, or to taste
1 tablespoon freshly chopped parsley
1 tablespoon freshly chopped oregano
1/4 cup reserved vinegar cooking liquid
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste 
2 tablespoons vegetable oil 
.
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