Spent-Grain Bread

Or, “Beer Bread, Minus The Beer”. Homebrewing is on the rise.  In 2010, according to a press release from the American Homebrewers’ Association, 82% of homebrew supply shops “saw an increase in sales of beginner [homebrew] kits”, which means, well, more folks are getting into the hobby. Last summer, I started homebrewing, also from aContinue reading “Spent-Grain Bread”

Heather’s (Tea-Infused) Lemon Yogurt Cake

or, A Lemon Tea Cake, My Dear Watson. This week’s entry would not have been possible without the help of the fine folks at Chicago Computerland at 2640 N. Halsted.  First, a story of my own stupidity. A few weeks ago, when I was posting La Macchina, I wanted to put in a few extraContinue reading “Heather’s (Tea-Infused) Lemon Yogurt Cake”

A Paean to Pea.

It was at Volo in Roscoe Village where Carolyn and I beheld an exceedingly awkward first date: he was a public servant, she was a Tea Party equity manager. He smiled at her blandly, steering the conversation away from politics in an attempt to be civil. She, upon learning that he worked for the government,Continue reading “A Paean to Pea.”

La Macchina, or The Ecstasy of Pasta

While my parents were in DC a few weeks ago, I was tasked with watching Penelope, the familial springer spaniel.  She’s a very cute critter, and last summer she stayed with me for a time at the House in Indiana.  She served as my amanuensis, and even took dogtation. She’s very smart. Anyway, I wasContinue reading “La Macchina, or The Ecstasy of Pasta”

Pizza Day, Part Three: Getting Saucy, and other pursuits

First, a musing on the balance of flavors: Pizzas are, generally, pretty robust affairs; it’s a rare one that I’ve made that trades on subtleties.  I wouldn’t call myself a subtle cook – if cooking were painting, I’d cook in big, wet, Post-Impressionist brushstrokes.  A recipe calls for two garlic cloves?  I’ll use four.  HalfContinue reading “Pizza Day, Part Three: Getting Saucy, and other pursuits”

Pizza Day, Part Two: Advanced Doughbending

So in Part One of my pizza-making series, I detailed how to bake quite-nice pizza in an oven at home, and earlier this week, Melissa Clark of the New York Times did a writeup on how to do, largely, the same thing.  She also has a neat video on dough technique, which, you might say,Continue reading “Pizza Day, Part Two: Advanced Doughbending”

Cockles ‘n’ Mash.

The second main heading in the professional cook’s handbook I purchased a few weeks ago is “World Cuisines”, which is designed to familiarize the culinary professional with the key flavors of different food cultures.  The Americas get twenty pages.  Asian cuisines get fifty.  Europe gets about 40, with entries for Hungary, Portugal, Spain, and ‘EasternContinue reading “Cockles ‘n’ Mash.”

Pizza Day, Part One: The Essentials

Once a month, I throw a pizza party at my apartment.  I used to do it every single Friday in college; by this point, I’ve probably used up twice my body weight in flour over the past three years – ask my old roommates and they’d probably corroborate that figure.  From 2009 to 2011, IContinue reading “Pizza Day, Part One: The Essentials”

Mejillones con Chorizo y Epazote

This time, Carolyn sang to the mussels.  “What do mussels dream of/when they take a little mussel snooze?” Carolyn intoned, to the tune of some song from some movie I haven’t seen.  The guilt at eating bivalves – cute, cuddly bivalves! – had grown in her.  Lauren had scrapped her previous argument – What ifContinue reading “Mejillones con Chorizo y Epazote”

Morning-After Fish-and-Mussel Soup

Now, I trust you kept hold of that mussel broth, like I asked you to in the last entry.  This is one of those fridge-emptier recipes, one of those “Oh, damn it, what am I going to do with all this ingredient x” standbys. Often, after having confronted a tasty bowl of mussels in aContinue reading “Morning-After Fish-and-Mussel Soup”

Naan-Disclosure Agreement

By reading this WEB-LOG POSTING (hereafter referred to as the “post”), the RECEIVING PARTY (hereafter referred to as “you”) shall enter into an AGREEMENT (hereafter referred to as ‘an agreement’) with the DISCLOSING PARTY (hereafter referred to as ‘me’ or ‘I’); the party of the first part agrees to partake of that which the partyContinue reading “Naan-Disclosure Agreement”

Fun with Coconuts.

(or, Pumping Up Your Mussels) You’ll never see a can of coconut milk for under a dollar.  Not the good kind.  -Sure, there’s the Roland Classic kind, which sometimes sells for 99 cents, but that brand has guar gum in it, which artificially thickens and emulsifies the coconut milk.  A sign of good coconut milk,Continue reading “Fun with Coconuts.”