Friday, April 30, 2010
Tuesday, April 27, 2010
Friday, April 23, 2010
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
Monday, April 19, 2010
Tuesday, April 13, 2010
Monday, April 12, 2010
Kudos to Pete and Rachael (who live directly above us) for making the most delicious authentic enchiladas I have had in a long long time. We take turns cooking for our double dates, and we usually go with ethnic foods, since both of us couples love to cook and try new things (and watch cooking shows...haha...turns out I am not the only one! ). Friday night, they made these enchiladas... I was slightly skeptical, since I am used to terrible American tex-mex enchiladas unless I am in Mexico (I know...I am a food snob), but BOY was I in for a surprise!
Seriously, I do believe these were the best enchiladas I have EVER had!!!! Of course, Rick Bayless (the Chef of the Frontera Grill in Chicago) is a genius Latin American Chef, so he gets all the props for the creation, but don't let that intimidate you! These are pretty easy to make, are good for you, and incredibly creamy and delicious.
Enchiladas Especiales Tacuba StyleEnchiladas Cremosas de Pollo, Estilo Cafe Tacuba
Serves 4 to 6
This recipe is from Season 7 Mexico - One Plate at a Time
2 fresh poblano chiles
1 cup (lightly packed) roughly chopped spinach leaves
2 cups milk
2 cups chicken broth
6 tablespoons (3 ounces) butter—or you can use vegetable oil
3 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
1/2 cup flour
3 cups coarsely shredded cooked chicken (I usually use a rotisserie chicken or leftover grilled chicken)
12 corn tortillas
A little vegetable oil for brushing or spraying
About 1 cup Mexican melting cheese (Chihuahua, quesadilla, asadero or the like) or Monterey Jack, brick or mild cheddar
A little chopped cilantro for garnish
1. Make the sauce. Roast the poblanos directly over a gas flame or on a baking sheet 4 inches below a very hot broiler, turning regularly, until the skins have blistered and blackened on all side, about 5 minutes for an open flame, about 10 minutes under the broiler. Place in a bowl, cover with a kitchen towel and, when handleable, rub off the blackened skin, tear open and pull out the seed pod and stem. Quickly rinse to remove any stray seeds or bits of skin. Roughly chop and put in a blender jar. Add the spinach.
In a medium (3-quart) saucepan, combine the milk and broth, set over medium-low heat to warm.
In a large (4-quart) saucepan, melt the butter (or heat the oil) over medium. Add the garlic and cook for a minute to release its aroma, then add the flour and stir the mixture for a minute. Raise the heat to medium-high. Pour in the warm broth mixture and whisk constantly until the sauce boils. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat.
Pour half the hot sauce into the blender with the chiles and spinach. Cover loosely (I remove the center part of the lid, secure the lid, then drape a cloth over the whole thing) and blend until smooth. Pour the mixture back into the saucepan with the remaining sauce. Taste and season with salt, usually about 2 teaspoons.
2. Finish the enchiladas. Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Smear about 1/4 cup of the sauce over the bottom of each of four to six 9-inch individual ovenproof baking/serving dishes or smear about 1 cup of the sauce over the bottom of a 13x9-inch baking dish. Stir 1 cup of the sauce into the chicken.
Lay half of the tortillas out on a baking sheet and lightly brush or spray both sides of the tortillas with oil; top each tortilla with another one and brush or spray those with oil. Bake just to warm through and soften, about 3 minutes. Stack the tortillas and cover with a towel to keep warm.
Working quickly so that the tortillas stay hot and pliable, roll a portion of the chicken up in each tortilla, then line them all up in the baking dish(es). Douse evenly with the remaining sauce and sprinkle with the cheese. Bake until the enchiladas are hot through (the cheese will have begun to brown), about 20 minutes. Garnish with the cilantro and serve without hesitation.
And DO take his advice. Serve without hesitation!!! :P
Friday, April 9, 2010
3.) This week last year, I had my senior art show. This week this year, I finally sold my first piece of art!!!! Granted, it was a piece commissioned by my Aunt and Uncle, but they paid me for it, so it counts! Here it is lying on our dining room table. It is a 2 ft. by 4 ft. piece of Masonite that is cut into 5 pieces. The background was painted in acrylics, using various texturing techniques, and the tree is painted with India Ink that I applied to the board by blowing air through a straw with
4.) This photo is for Kate. This is one of my buttermilk dinner rolls that I baked for Easter dinner last weekend. They were a huge hit! I was really impressed by how professional-looking they turned out! The recipe is from Marcy Goldman's Passion for Baking book, which I spend my down time reading like a novel (yes, yet another confession: I read cookbooks for pleasure reading :).
5.) I came into the dining room the other day and found Jack sleeping like this. He cracks me up. Out of all the comfy places to sleep in our apartment, he chooses to sleep half on top of several books, and squished between candles, picture frames, and games. What a weirdo! Cute, but weird.
Friday, April 2, 2010
Cooking and baking in the kitchen for me is the same as making art. It's what I love and what I am passionate about! If I had a bigger grocery budget, I would experiment much more, but for now, little rarities that require semi-normal ingredients will do!
Here is a fun bread recipe that Eric and I made together this week. Although it sounds strange, it is really delicious! :)
Hot Buttered Popcorn Bread
Thanks to Marcy Goldman and her book "Passion for Baking"
SERVES 16 , 2 large loaves (change servings and units)