November, 2007 Archive

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

moules frites, redux

easy setup

In the comments of yesterday’s post, someone asked why she feels a need to make so many dishes for Thanksgiving when she’s only feeding a few people and always ends up with leftovers that end up getting thrown out four days later. Now, I’m sure the question was rhetorical yet I can’t help but chime in because I’ve been mulling this over a lot lately: Why is it that hosts feel so compelled to over-feed? Why is it that I feel bad when I only have served just enough food?

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Monday, November 19, 2007

q&a: special thanksgiving edition

q&a: special thanksgiving edition

For once this month, I actually have a few really great recipes in the queue that I haven’t gotten to (as opposed to a frantic “I guess I have to make dinner tonight so I’ll have something to NaBlop!”) but I’ve received so many Thanksgiving questions in my Inbox and in comments on previous posts, it seems far more useful today to bring them up to the top of the page. Thus, I’m going to answer a few questions as best as I can, but feel free to weigh in on these concerns in the comments, or add your own between now and Thursday. Any newer questions I receive I will answer in the comments. Finally, I’ve rounded up some Thanksgiving recipes at the end, so be sure to skip to that if it’s all you’re really looking for.

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Sunday, November 18, 2007

nutmeg-maple cream pie

nutmeg-maple cream pie

Before I can tell you about this recipe, I need to ask you a few leetle questions. It will only detain you a minute or two, I promise, but it essential that we get some facts out in the open before we can proceed. I wouldn’t want to lead you astray.

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Saturday, November 17, 2007

pie crust 101

pastry blender

To begin, I want to make a note about the zillions of pie dough recipes out there: I barely buy it. Not the value of a recipe, mind you, but that new ones will ever come to pass. At their very base, they’re all just some type of solid fat (butter, shortening or lard) cut with powdery ingredients (flour, sometimes salt and sugar) bound with a liquid (usually water, but some folks get creative with milk, cream, buttermilk or vodka), and I’m amused that every year, so many cooking publications feel a need to pronounce that By Golly, They’ve Got It! They’ve found the perfect pie dough. In my mind, it was never lost.

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Thursday, November 15, 2007

q&a, vol. II

q&a, vol. II

[Q&A Vol. I] Phew! You guys really came through with that Q&A request, so thank you. In the interest of not writing The Longest Food Blog Entry, Ever I’m going to handle these in batches of ten, in the order they were received, and pepper them throughout the next month or so. (Only on days where the task of cooking seems ludicrous–can I hear it for the day after Thanksgiving? I mean, seriously. That was the only day last November that I was skeptical about the value of daily posting.)

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Wednesday, November 14, 2007

brussels sprouts and chestnuts in brown butter

brussels sprouts and chestnuts in brown butter

Every so often, a recipe crosses my browser’s threshold and I know immediately that it Must Be Made. Surely, you know the feeling. This happens a lot more in the fall, because I simply love the cooking this time of year–warm, soupy, stewy and rich. We haven’t yet succumbed to hibernation and meals scraped from whatever was in the pantry because the famers’ markets looked so paltry, and you seriously cannot deal with another butternut squash.

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Tuesday, November 13, 2007

oatmeal, chocolate chip and pecan cookies

oatmeal, chocolate chip and pecan cookies

Someone asked me yesterday how I manage the day job, this site, cooking, hobbies and attempting some semblance of a social life, but I didn’t answer because the gritty truth is that I don’t. I’m horrible at time management, not because I’m a slacker so much as I lack an attention span of more than 12 minutes. Take tonight. I swore I’d leave work at 5:30, but left at 6:20 instead (still earlier than last night), I had planned to give you guys a pie crust how-to but instead flitted from one thing (side project) to another (Thanksgiving thumbnails in sidebar) and as usual it’s 11 p.m. and oh right! I haven’t updated yet today.

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