Apr. 21st, 2013

nverland: (Monthly-April)
[personal profile] nverland
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Among His Effects We Found a Photograph
by Ed Ochester

My mother is beautiful as a flapper.
She is so in love
that she has been gazing
secretly at my father
for forty years.
He's in uniform,
with puttees and swagger stick,
a tiny cork mustache
bobbing above a shoreline of teeth.
They are "poor but happy."
In his hand is a lost book
he had memorized,
with a thousand clear answers
to everything.
nverland: (Cooking-box-nverland)
[personal profile] nverland
New Orleans Red Beans and Rice with Pickled Peppers
TOTAL TIME: 30 MIN SERVINGS: 4

4 ounces thick-cut bacon, cut into 1/4-inch dice
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 inner celery rib, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 pickled jalapeño, finely chopped
1/4 cup chopped Peppadew peppers, plus more for garnish (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peppadew)
Two 15-ounce cans red kidney beans
1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
Salt
Freshly ground pepper
Steamed white rice, for serving

In a large saucepan, cook the bacon over moderately high heat, stirring, until golden and crisp, about 5 minutes. Add the onion, celery, garlic, pickled jalapeño and 1/4 cup of Peppadews and cook, stirring, until softened, 5 to 6 minutes. Add the beans with their liquid and the chicken broth and bring to a boil. Simmer over moderate heat until the liquid is slightly reduced, 8 minutes. Season the beans with salt and pepper.
Ladle the beans into bowls and top with a mound of rice. Garnish with more Peppadews and serve right away.
nverland: (cooking 3)
[personal profile] nverland
Ham and Cheese Pop Tarts

To make sweet pop tarts, add 1 tablespoon sugar and an extra 1/2 teaspoon salt to the dough. Then use 1 tablespoon filling per tart.

Makes 9 pop tarts

Pastry:

2 cups (8.5 ounces) all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks or 8 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into tablespoons
1 large egg
2 tablespoons (1 ounce) milk

Filling:

1 cup (about 4 ounces) deli-sliced ham, roughly chopped
1 cup (4 ounces) Cheddar cheese, shredded

To Make the Pastry: Place the flour and salt in the food processor, and pulse to mix. Add butter, and pulse until pea-sized lumps of butter form. (The mixture should hold together when you squeeze it.) Transfer the mixture to a large bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together 1 egg and the milk. Stir the milk mixture into the flour mixture, just until everything is mostly combined. Then finish the job by kneading the dough with your hands, either inside the bowl or on a lightly floured surface.
Divide the dough in half (that’s about 8 1/4 ounces each), and shape each half into a rectangle. Use the dough immediately, or wrap it in plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to 2 days.

To Assemble the Tarts: If you refrigerated the dough, take it out of the fridge and let it warm up on the counter for about 20 minutes. Lightly flour your work surface, place one piece of dough on it, and dust your rolling pin with flour. Then roll the dough into a large rectangle that you can trim down to a perfect 9″ x 12″.
Repeat with the second piece of dough.
Divide each 9″ x 12″ rectangle of dough into nine 3″ x 4″ rectangles. (That’s 18 total.)
Beat your remaining egg, and brush it onto all nine rectangles from your first piece of dough.
Place about 2 heaping tablespoons of ham into the center of each rectangle, spreading it out a little with your fingers but keeping a 1/2-inch border around the rectangle. (If you have leftover ham, divide it among the tarts, or save it for an omelet.)
Cover the ham with about 2 tablespoons of cheese per tart. (Likewise, if you have leftover cheese, divide it among the tarts, or save it for later.)
Place the 9 “naked” rectangles from your second piece of dough on top of all the rectangles covered with filling. Use your fingertips to press and seal the top and bottom rectangles together on all sides.
Grab a fork, and press the tines around the edges of the tarts.
Using a large spatula, gently transfer the tarts to a parchment-covered baking sheet. Prick the top of each tart several times with a fork so steam can escape during baking.
Refrigerate the tarts for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Bake the tarts for about 25 minutes, or until golden brown, and cool in pan on wire rack.

Freezing: To freeze the tarts, don’t bake them. Place them between layers of wax paper on a baking sheet until they freeze, and store them in freezer bags.

To Make a Sweet Version: Add 1 tablespoon sugar and another 1/2 teaspoon salt to the pastry flour. Use 1 tablespoon of sweet filling per tart.

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