Monday, November 30, 2015

Cooking with BlueApron Delivery - Parsnip and Sweet Potato?

Wow! This is another surprising menu with wonderful flavor that made my palate dance around to enjoy every bite of it.  This is one of my BlueApron menu of the week delivered to my home.  The menu name - Spiced Salmon and Cranberry Chutney is not a name that would get my curiosity but to my surprise it is another winner at my dining table.

2 Skin-On Salmon Fillets - Fresh Wild Caught
1 Clementine - zested, peels cut off and skin/membranes removed
1 Sweet Potato - peeled and Cut into 1/2 inch chunks
1 Parsnip - peeled and Cut into 1/2 inch chunks
1 Red Onion - peeled, cut into halves, then cut each halves into quarters or 6 to 8 parts (depending on the size of the onion.)
1 Bunch Mint - rinsed and leaves removed from the stem.  Reserve a small sprig for plating, if you wish.  It is basically served to compliment the dish.  Not just as a garnish.

To make Cranberry Chutney:
2 Tbsp Organic Cane Sugar
1/2 C Fresh Cranberries
2 Tbsp Water
2 tsp Cranberry Chutney Spice Blend

To make 2 Tbsp Spice Blend
Mix and test to combine following spices:
 Ground Fennel Seed
Ground Coriander
Ground Cardamom
Ground Nutmeg

3 Tbsp - Extra Virgin Olive Oil for cooking
Kosher Salt and Black/White Pepper for taste

In a small sauce pot, add cranberries, sugar, clementine zest, 1 Tbsp Spice Blend and 2 Tbsp water plus 1 Tbsp water.   On high heat - bring to boil.  Turn to simmer.  Stir and cook to reduce liquid, cranberries are softened and chutney thickened.  Remove from heat and set it aside.   In a skillet or saute pan with lid, heat 1 to 2 Tbsp of Extra Virgin Olive Oil on Medium-high until hot.  Stir fry parsnip and sweet potato for 8 to 10 min - covering with lid after first 30 seconds.  Open the lid and stir fry every 3 minutes, repeat until sweet potatoes are almost tender.  Add Onion to the pan.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Stir fry until Onion is translucent and softened.  Turn off the heat.  Reuse the pan to fry salmon.  Add the clementine.  Stir thoroughly.  Transfer to a serving bowl or plates.
Rub Salmon with kosher salt all over and rinse gently under running filter water.  Pat dry.   Coat salmon with Spice Blend.   Reheat the pan.  Add some EVOO 2 to 3 tsp.   Bring oil to shimmer.  Cook salmon skin side down on medium-high heat. - Cook 2 to 4 minutes per side.   I like to cover with lid to assure complete heat through and to avoid grease splatter.  Cook until browned.  Remove from heat.
Serve with finished vegetables and salmon.  Garnish with Cranberry chutney and top with mint.
The mint is really great with this vegetable to balance the sweetness of the sweet potato and onion.  Parsnip is a delight to the taste.
Enjoy!   Hope you will have a fun adventure with your menu order from
They are your2nd  sous chef that you always wanted in your kitchen.
If you are interested in ordering from BlueApron and would like a discount coupon, please let me know, I have two coupons that I can share.

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Fresh Coconut Milk Chiffon Cake

Follow Pandan Coconut Chiffon Cake recipe or the Kabocha Chiffon Cake on this blog to complete the cake.

 Woops!  it shrunk without my permission!!!
 But Beautiful!
 The shrinkage was not that much.
Yum!   Nicely turned out.  Light and fluffy.
 The texture is moist and light.
 Yum!   the taste of Fresh Coconut Milk is refreshing find in the bites.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Polly's Biscuits .... Ahhh, it's back

2 C flour shift with 2-1/2 tsp baking powder and 3/4 tsp Kosher salt.  
In a medium bowl with shifted flour mixture, add 3 TBsp of room temperature Butter.  
Use finger to rub them into flour.   
Cut 3 Tbsp of cold Butter and slice them into cubes.  
Use fingers and mash cold butter with flour between fingers... most of them should be in flat floured shapes.  Add 1/2 C Buttermilk and 1/4 C water by spreading liquid all over the dry ingredients.  
Allow liquid to be absorbed.   
Use hand to 'toss' moist flour to form shaggy dough.   Do not knead, yet.
Transfer to lightly floured work surface.
 If there are some dry flour mixture still, then add teaspoonful or drops of buttermilk.  Let it absorb.
Form the dough into round by gently pressing them into disc shape.  Roll out a bit with rolling pin.
Cut out with Biscuit cutter.  Place on baking sheet by placing them close to each other.
Cover.  Set it aside to rest while waiting for oven to come to temperature.
Heat oven to 435'F.
Roll it out gently and cut out with Biscuit cutter or Cut out with . . .  pizza cutter, it would work also.   But don't use knife and Press Down into the dough.   That would "Seal" the cut edges.
Bake until golden.  Check around 12 minutes and Brush with Egg wash - egg yolk and milk, if you wish.  Or brush top with butter when done.  

Spicy Pork Soup with Butternut Squash and Kale - BlueApron Delivery

Had fun cooking one of menu delivered today with my son.   Spicy Pork Soup with Butternut Squash and Kale.   We purchased extra lots of Sourdough Bread to go with it since the portion turned out to serve more than two people.   Fed all of us five and still had enough left over for my son's evening snack.
It is truly an adventurous cooking with the new tastes.   Tasty spice mixtures of curry and heat complimented by subtle sweetness from the squash.
10 oz Ground Pork
1-1/4 C canned Cannellini Beans - drained
3 Cloves of Minced Garlic
2 Oz Lacinato Kale
1 Butternut Squash - Cut, seeded and chopped into chunks
1 Lemon Quartered twice and seeds removed
1 Red Onion, chopped
1 small Bunch Sage - at least three stemfull - removed from stem and chopped finely.

Parmesan Cheese Sage Pesto:
1 Tbsp Walnuts crushed
1/3 C Grated Parmesan Cheese
2 Tbsp Squash Soup Spice Blend - Some flour mixed with Ras El Hanout, Ground Turmeric, Ground Nutmeg, and Ground Cardamom -- Measurement is not sure, but experiment with 1 tsp each of Ras El Hanout, Ground Turmeric, Pinch of Nutmeg, and pinch of Ground Cardamom.  If they tastes all right, then, quadruple the measurements.

Extra ingredients Need:  Olive Oil for saute; Salt and Black Pepper; some drinking white wine - Vermouth, for example, to cook with; Sourdough Bread, Baguette, or French Bread. 1/4 C Pure Olive Oil

Heat a sauce pan large enough to hold 4 to 5 cups of liquid plus ingredients - over medium-high heat - depending on your stove's BTU.
When the pan is hot enough, add Olive Oil.  When Olive Oil starts to shimmer, add Squash and cook till slightly tender.  Some might lightly brown.  6 to 10 minutes.
Add onion, stir fry a bit with Squash.  2 min.  Add Garlic.  Stir and cook 1 min. - Add Salt and Pepper to taste.
Move vegetables to the side of the pan and add ground pork.  Stir fry pork and break down the pork.  6 to 8 min.  Add white wine to pork and stir fry to cook until wine evaporates.
Stir in vegetables on the side and cook with pork.   Add spice mixtures and cook.   Stir fry till fragrant and thoroughly combined.

Add the chopped Kale to the pan.   Add 4 C of water.   Bring to boil.
Turn to simmer and cook until liquid is reduced and everything is tender.   Add salt and black pepper to taste.
Squeeze half of the lemon.   Stir and Season with salt and pepper to taste.
While the soup is cooking, prepare the Pesto:
Combine finely chopped sage, crushed walnuts, crumbled cheese, and the lemon juice from the remaining lemon wedges.   Slowly add enough olive oil to create a rough paste.  Season with salt and pepper to tastes.

To serve:
Serve the soup into bowls and Top with walnut cheese pesto.
Serve with your favorite French bread/Sourdough bread.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Germinating Dragonfruits Seeds

After saving and drying out some Dragonfruits seeds, it's time to test germinating them and see how they will do.
November 28th Status.   They are still doing well.   Have not suffered from the 'cold' from being left outdoor within the egg container, still.

Autumn Roses

This late Autumn rainfall kept some plants pretty happy.  Even made purple roses normally show up once a year  smiling.