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An original recipe by yours truly!


Salmon, Lard et Basilic Timbale avec de la Salade de Riz à la Menthe 

(Salmon, Bacon and Basil Timbales with Minted Rice Salad)

In the early 1960’s, francophiles Richard Olney and Julia Child championed the rustic, simple food they discovered in France. In sharp contrast to the molded salads, frozen juice concentrates and “convenience foods” of 1950’s America; the simple, honest dishes they sampled in Europe must have seemed revelatory. Both authors took cause to educate stateside readers on the possibilities of traditional, divine flavors in their own home kitchens. 

In Honor of Mr. Olney and Ms. Child, I urge you to attempt these timbales; which hovers somewhere between a soufflé and a custard (once you get the hang of them, their variations are myriad). Rice salad, also quite common and popular in France makes an excellent accompaniment to this dish, which serves well warm for dinner, but proves equally fantastic cold for lunch the next day. Convenience, it would seem, is a luxury that the French enjoy as much as the Americans!

For The Timbales:

1 1/2 Lbs - Fresh Salmon Filets

4 Slices - Thick Cut Bacon

4 Tbsp - Unsalted Butter, Softened

1 Cup - 2% Plain Greek Yogurt

4 - Large Eggs

1/4 Cup - Heavy Cream

2 Tbsp - Well packed, finely chopped fresh Basil Leaves (with extra sprigs for garnish)

1/2 Tsp - Fine salt (with extra pinch for salmon prep.)

1/4 Tsp - Cracked Black Pepper (with extra pinch for salmon prep.)

For the Salad:

1 Cup - Medium or Long Grain Rice

1 - 15oz Can Black Beans

3 Tbsp - Well packed, finely chopped fresh Mint Leaves

1/2 Tsp - Fine salt (with extra pinch for rice prep.)

1/4 Tsp - Cracked Black Pepper

2 Tsp - Balsamic Vinegar

2 Tbsp - Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Special Equipment:

4 - 1 Cup Ramekins

1 - Large, Rectangular glass or metal casserole dish

Serves 4

Prepare The Timbales and Salad:

Fill a kettle with 4 Quarts of water, adding a pinch of salt. Set over high heat to boil.

Meanwhile, On a rimmed baking sheet, arrange 4 slices of bacon with space between the slices. place in the center of a cold oven, and set oven to 450. Set time for 20 minutes. Check bacon at 15 minutes, and remove when crisp and golden. Do not allow bacon to burn.

Transfer bacon to wire rack set over a paper towel, and set aside. Wash, rinse and dry baking sheet.

Add rice to boiling water and maintain a rolling boil over high heat. Boil for 12-15 minutes until tender. Do not allow the rice to overcook or burst. Drain rice into a fine mesh sieve or into a colander lined with cheese cloth. Spread drained rice onto baking sheet and transfer to refrigerator uncovered, to chill.

Preheat oven to 350 Degrees.

Next, check salmon and remove any bones. sprinkle salmon lightly with a pinch of salt and pepper. In medium sized skillet, bring 1 cup of water to a boil. Simmer the salmon for 3 minutes on each side until pastel pink. Remove salmon from water and allow to cool. Remove & discard skin and flake fish with a fork, removing any remaining bones to obtain about 2 cups of flaked salmon meat. Reserve salmon in a small bowl and set aside.

Using 1 Tablespoon of the butter, grease ramekins liberally and set aside.

In a medium saucepan, melt remaining 3 tablespoons butter over low heat. Add cream and yogurt and whisk over low heat, to warm. Whisk for about 1-2 minutes, or until you see faint wisps of steam. Remove saucepan from heat, and add eggs, one at a time, whisking well after each egg to fully incorporate. Reserve sauce off heat.

In a tea kettle or saucepan, bring 1 quart of water to a boil.

Meanwhile, Chop and mince basil, adding to reserved salmon. Crumble or coarsely chop bacon, adding to reserved salmon and mix well. Add salmon mixture, salt and pepper to Sauce. If the sauce is blocky or broken, reheat over low heat. If sauce is very thick, add 1 Tablespoon of water. Pour the sauce into the prepared ramekins, filling each ramekin about 3/4 full. Place ramekins in casserole dish, adding enough boiling water to the dish to surround the ramekins to about 2/3 height up the ramekins. Carefully place casserole with water and ramekins in the center of the 350 degree preheated oven for 20-30 minutes until a clean knife inserted in the center of one of the ramekins comes out clean.

Remove ramekins from water bath carefully, with a thick rag or heavy duty tongs, Placing ramekins on a wire rack to rest for 5-10 minutes. 

Complete the salad and assemble the dish:

Drain black beans in a sieve, rinsing them well with cold water, and reserve. Chop and mince mint and reserve. Transfer chilled rice to a large bowl and toss with mint and beans.

In a medium glass or non-reactive bowl, combine the oil, vinegar, salt and pepper. Whisk well to emulsify. Add to bowl with rice mixture, tossing and combining well.

Invert each ramekin on it’s own plate carefully and garnish the timbales with reserved basil leaves. Arrange rice salad alongside the timbales and serve.

Noah Fecks / 1981

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NEW WORK by Noah Fecks!

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can’t let today pass without posting this gem… HAPPY AMERICA EVERYBODY!

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Spending some quality time with one of our nation’s greatest treasures: Susan Orlean


Pumpkin Fettuccine, Roasted Chicken and Spicy Corn Purée

submitted by thewayweate

By the late 1980’s, Americans had already become completely enthralled with the glamour and simplicity of Italian Cuisine. Fresh pasta was something of a national obsession as a new generation of gourmands were introduced to the old-world array of pasta-bilities that Italy had to offer. Also popular in the late 1980’s was a leaning toward low-fat, recipes that relied far more on olive oil than the copious amount of butter called for in the 1960’s and 70’s. Grilled chicken breast became not only a restaurant staple, but an oft featured item on home menus from decadent dinner parties to weeknight whip-ups at home.

With a nod to both of these well held trends of the 1980’s, The Way We Ate offers a dish that would have easily been found in an American dining room or restaurant in the era of big hair, big shoulder pads and even bigger egos.

Pumpkin Fettuccine, Roasted Chicken and Spicy Corn Purée

Prepare the Spicy Corn Purée:

2 - Fresh, whole Jalapeño Peppers

1 - Can of Baby Corn

1/2 Cup - Heavy Cream

Salt and Pepper

Heat a heavy cast iron skillet over high heat, and dry roast the peppers on the skillet.

Press the peppers occasionally into the skillet using a large heavy spoon, turning the peppers frequently to blacken and char them on all sides. Once fully blackened (about 10 minutes) remove peppers and allow to cool. Slice peppers in half, removing all stems, seeds and ribs. Using a small knife, remove the dried blackened skin to reveal the charred flesh. set aside.

In a food processor, combine drained corn, jalapeños and spices. Process on high for about 1 minute with a tablespoon of water, until smooth. Restart Machine and add heavy cream in a stream to processor, and process until combined (about 30 seconds). Set aside at room temperature. 

Prepare the Pumpkin Fettuccine:

1 Cup - All-Purpose White Flour

1 Cup - Semolina Flour

1 Teaspoon - Kosher Salt

1/4 Teaspoon fresh ground pepper

2 tablespoons - Olive Oil

2 - Egg Yolks

2/3 Cup - Canned Pumpkin Puree 

2 Cups - Grape Tomatoes

10 to 12 - White Pearl Onions

1 Tablespoon - fresh rosemary

3/4 Cup - Tinned Chicken Broth

1 Cup - Sliced Black Olives

1 Cup - Fresh Chick Peas (Casing Removed)

Preheat oven to 450.

Combine the flours, salt and pepper in a large bowl and stir with a whisk. Add egg yolks and pumpkin, combining the mixture with hands until fully incorporated. If necessary, add more flour or pumpkin to obtain a consistency that’s solid and moist, but does not stick to hands. roll dough into a tube and cut in four pieces. Press each piece into a disc, and wrap well in wax paper. Place discs in refrigerator to rest. 

Meanwhile, slice tomatoes in half and add to a bowl. Peel pearl onions, slice in half, and add them to bowl with rosemary, olive oil, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Combine to coat with the olive oil and pour them into a rimmed baking sheet. Place in oven on center rack for 20-30 minutes until well roasted, but not blackened. Set aside to cool.

Add cooled ingredients to food processor, and purée well. place mixture in small sauce pan and add tinned broth stirring to combine. over very low heat, reduce mixture by 1/3. (about 30 minutes)

in another small saucepan, Steam chick peas in a vegetable steamer over medium heat, with water in a small saucepan for 15-20 minutes. Place in a small bowl and allow to cool.

Remove 2 discs of pasta from refrigerator (reserving other two for another meal).

On a well floured surface, roll pasta out to about 1/16” thickness in a large rectangle, using a straight or “french” rolling pin.Dust pasta sheet liberally with flour and starting with the shorter end of the rectangle, roll pasta into a tube (as you would a Jelly Roll), and slice tube using a large kitchen knife at 1/2” intervals.  Unroll each noodle and hang on plastic hangers. Repeat with second disc and allow both hangers of pasta to dry slightly.

Prepare The Chicken Breast:

2 - Bone-in Chicken Breasts

1 - tablespoon olive oil

pinch of salt 

pinch of pepper

Rinse chicken breasts under cold water and pat dry. Coat breasts with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Prepare a charcoal grill and roast the breasts over medium hot smoldering coals. Turn chicken frequently and roast on all sides for 10 minutes, or until the breasts read 165 Degrees on a thermometer. Remove from grill and tent with tin foil.

Combine and serve the dish:

Prepare a pot with about 1 quart of salted water and bring to a rolling boil. Boil pasta for 30-60 seconds until done and strain, reserving a few tablespoons of the water, if needed.

In a large bowl combine the pasta, the reduced tomato mixture, the chick peas, and the sliced olives. Toss and add a few teaspoons of the pasta water if needed to loosen the mixture and coat the pasta well. Plate the pasta with one chicken breast per person, and add about 1/4 cup of the spicy corn puree over or alongside the chicken. 

Today is cool…

RIP Meshach Taylor :(

RIP Meshach Taylor :(

My “Recently Used” emoji are a window into my soul…