Food Survival Techniques; Eating Insects; Things Cooks Love
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Marie Simmons tells us which kitchen items cooks love, while Jack Bishop cooks up vegetables with bad reputations. Professor Arnold van Huis advocates eating bugs as a way to solve the meat-consumption problem, chef Douglas Keane raises flavorful poussin and Gary L. Benton offers food tips for surviving the wilderness. Plus, Martha Hall Foose brews Southern sweet tea, food scientist Shirley Corriher talks about White Lily flour and Laura Avery has a fresh Market Report.
The Market Report ()
Summer is an ideal time to plant your garden. Laura Avery chats with Logan Williams of Hayground Organic Gardening, who suggests Czechoslovakian and Polish tomatoes that are designed to fruit in November. It's still not too late to plant big beef tomatoes now. For a beautiful leafed plant try this interesting type of amaranth pictured above. Its leaves go from green to red to amber to yellow all in the same leaf.
Mark Peel is mad for the Spring onions that will be available for the next three weeks. The chef of Campanile Restaurant makes a simple onion soup by slicing one pound of onions very thinly, sauteeing them in butter until they are "strawberry blonde," then adding one pint of chicken broth and one pint of water. He also adds a sprig of thyme and slivers of garlic, then simmers on low for about 30 minutes. Before serving he removes the thyme, and adds salt and pepper. To give it a French onion soup feel without the gummy, molten cheese top that traditional soups have, top the soup with a large crouton sprinkled with melted Gruyère cheese.
Music break: Auxerre by Michel Legrand
Things Cooks Love ()
Sea Bass Poached in Orange, Basil and Wine, with Citrus and Herb Sauce
(from Things Cooks Love by Marie Simmons)
4 cups water
2 cups dry white wine
2 cups orange juice, preferably fresh
1 (3 by ½-inch) strip orange zest
1 large, leafy stem fresh basil
1 large, leafy stem fresh Italian parsley
1 yellow onion, thinly sliced
1 bay leaf
1 clove garlic, bruised with knife
1 tsp coarse salt
½ tsp black peppercorns
1 (3-lb) whole sea bass fillet with skin intact
Make the poaching liquid in a large saucepan, by combining the water, wine, orange juice, orange zest, basil, parsley, onion, bay leaf, garlic, salt, and pepper. Bring to a boil over high heat. Adjust the heat to a gentle boil and cook, uncovered, for 15 minutes. Let cool to lukewarm. Strain through a fine-mesh strainer or chinois. Taste and adjust the seasoning with salt.
1 cup orange juice, preferably fresh
1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 green onions, white and green parts, thinly sliced (about ¼ cup)
¼ cup chopped fresh basil
¼ cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
2 Tablespoons chopped fresh oregano
½ tsp grated orange zest
1 tsp coarse salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1. To ensure even cooking, the fish and poaching liquid should be almost the same temperature. To achieve this, remove the fish from the refrigerator about 1 hour prior to cooking.
2. Run your hand over the surface of the fish fillet to locate the pin bones and determine the direction of their growth. Use the tip of fish bone tweezers or pliers to pinch the top of the pin bone and slowly tug at the same angle as the bone. If the bone breaks off, you are pulling in the opposite direction of growth, so you must reverse direction.
3. Remove the rack from a fish poacher 18 inches long and 7 inches wide. Lightly oil the rack with the olive oil. Place the fish, skin side down, on the rack. Lower the rack into the empty fish poacher. Gently pour the room temperature poaching liquid into the pan.
4. Set the pan over two burners and turn them on to medium heat. Cover and heat the liquid, checking under the cover frequently, until a bubble or two comes to the surface. (This will take about 15 minutes.) Adjust the heat to medium-low, re-cover, and cook, without boiling, for 15 to 18 minutes, until the tip of a small knife inserted into the thickest part of the fillet finds no resistance, or the internal temperature registers 130° to 140°F on an instant-read thermometer.
5. While the fish is poaching, make the sauce: Place the orange juice in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Adjust the heat to medium and boil gently for 5 minutes, or until the juice is reduced by half. Pour into a bowl and let cool to lukewarm.
6. Gradually whisk the olive oil into the orange juice until blended. Add the lemon juice, green onions, basil, parsley, oregano, orange zest, salt, and a grinding of pepper. Stir to blend and set aside.
7. When the fish is cooked, turn off the heat. Place next to the stove a rimmed sheet pan large enough to accommodate the poaching rack. Remove the cover of the fish poacher. With your fingers protected with oven mitts, carefully lift the rack from the fish poacher and place it on the sheet pan. (Alternatively, you can place the poaching rack with the fish in the sink.) Let the fish sit on the rack for 10 minutes. Loosen the fish by running a large, flat spatula between the fish and the rack. Then, use 2 long, flat spatulas, or 1 long spatula and 1 shorter one, to carefully lift the fish off the rack and place it on an oval platter.
8. Stir the sauce and ladle half of it over the fish. Arrange the orange slices on the surface of the fish in a slightly overlapping pattern to simulate fish scales. Garnish the platter with the basil sprigs and cherry tomatoes. Serve the fish warm, and pass the remaining sauce at the table. Or, cover the fish with plastic wrap and chill until ready to serve.
Music break: Bathtub Dub by Shawn Lee's Ping Pong Orchestra
Jack Bishop of America's Test Kitchen shares ideas for cooking under-appreciated vegetables, such as broccoli and zucchini. He recommends roasting them! The secret to roasting broccoli is to add 1/4 teaspoon of sugar. For grilling vegetables, Bishop suggests marinating them with a soy-based marinade and putting them on thin, flat metal skewers for kebabs. When cooking them with meat, cut the meat in big pieces and cut vegetables in small pieces. Jack Bishop is the Editorial Director of Cook's Illustrated and Cook's Country magazine and the author of A Year in a Vegetarian Kitchen: Easy Seasonal Dishes for Family and Friends.
Roasted Broccoli with Olives, Garlic, Oregano, and Lemon
Trim away the outer peel from the broccoli stalk, otherwise it will turn tough when cooked.
- 1 large head broccoli (about 1 3/4 lbs)
- 5 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 tsp table salt
- 1/2 tsp sugar
- 5 medium garlic cloves, sliced thin
- 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
- 2 Tablespoons finely minced pitted black olives
- 1 tsp minced fresh oregano leaves
- 2 tsps juice from 1 lemon
1. Adjust oven rack to lowest position, place large rimmed baking sheet on rack, and heat oven to 500°F. Cut broccoli at juncture of florets and stems; remove outer peel from stalk. Cut stalk into 2- to 3-inch lengths and each length into 1/2-inch-thick pieces. Cut crowns into 4 wedges if 3-4 inches in diameter or 6 wedges if 4-5 inches in diameter. Place broccoli in large bowl; drizzle with 3 tablespoons of oil and toss well until evenly coated. Sprinkle with salt and sugar to taste and toss to combine.
2. Working quickly, remove baking sheet from oven. Carefully transfer broccoli to baking sheet and spread into even layer, placing flat sides down. Return baking sheet to oven and roast until stalks are well browned and tender and florets are lightly browned, 9 to 11 minutes.
3. While broccoli roasts, heat remaining oil, garlic, and pepper flakes in 8-inch skillet over medium-low heat. Cook, stirring frequently, until garlic is soft and beginning to turn light golden brown, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove skillet from heat; stir in olives, oregano, and lemon juice. Toss roasted broccoli with olive mixture and serve immediately.
Zucchini with Tomatoes and Basil
- 3 medium plum tomatoes , cored, seeded, and diced
- 1 small clove minced garlic
- 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
- 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil , plus additional for serving, if desired
- Table salt
- 2 Tablespoons chopped fresh basil
- 5 medium zucchini (about 8 ozs each), ends trimmed
- Ground black pepper
- 1/4 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese , for serving
1. Combine tomatoes, garlic, vinegar, 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, 1/4 teaspoon salt and chopped fresh basil leaves in small bowl and set aside.
2. Cut each zucchini crosswise into several pieces, each 2 to 3 inches long. Shred each piece on large holes of box grater, rotating as needed to avoid shredding seeds and core; you should have about 10 cups shredded zucchini. Toss zucchini with 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and place in colander set in medium bowl; let drain 5 to 10 minutes. Wrap zucchini in kitchen towel, in batches if necessary, and wring out excess moisture.
3. Place zucchini in medium bowl and break up any large clumps. Drizzle 2 teaspoons oil over zucchini and toss to combine thoroughly.
4. Heat remaining 2 teaspoons oil in 12-inch nonstick skillet over high heat until faint smoke appears. Add zucchini and spread evenly in pan with tongs; cook without stirring until bottom layer browns, about 2 minutes; stir well, breaking up any clumps with tongs, then cook until "new" bottom layer browns, about 2 minutes more. Off heat, stir in tomato mixture and salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to serving platter, sprinkle with 1/4 cup finely grated Parmesan, and serve immediately, drizzling with additional olive oil, if desired.
Music break: Bim Bom (Psapp Remix) by Astrud Gilberto
Bugs as Meat ()
Researcher Arnold van Huis, a Professor of Tropical Entomology at Wageningen University in the Netherlands, advocates eating insects as an alternative to consuming meat. He says there are some 1,400 - 2,000 species of edible bugs which can be used as a source of protein. For more information about capturing and cooking insects, visit www.eatbug.com.
Music break: Biorganised by The Pinker Tones
Chef Douglas Keane raises a special breed of poussin, or Cornish game hen, for his Cyrus restaurant in Healdsburg, California. Cyrus has a two-Michelin stars rating and has been named one of Gourmet Magazine's Top 50 Restaurants in America.
29 North Street
Healdsburg, CA 95448
Music break: Bird Priest by Ratatat
Wilderness Survival Tips ()
Survival expert Gary L. Benton gives helpful tips on what to do when lost or stranded during a camping trip or skiing adventure. A retired United States Air Force Senior Master Sergeant, Benton has taught parachuting techniques and survival skills to Air Force aircrew members. Benton, author of Simple Survival: A Family Outdoors Guide, also has a website with more information.
Music break: Blow Up by James Taylor Ouartet
Sweet Tea and Southern Cuisine ()
Chef Martha Hall Foose talks about the South's sweet tea, and how iced tea became popular across America and Southern cuisine. Her book is titled Screen Doors and Sweet Tea: Recipes and Tales from a Southern Cook.
4 (pitcher size) Cold Brew Tea Bags or 6 Tablespoons orange pekoe tea in a diffuser
3 quarts 75°F water
1 cups water
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 lemons, sliced
Fresh mint sprig, if desired
1. Place tea bags in large pitcher. Add water 75ºF. Allow to steep 30 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, combine 1 cup water and sugar. Bring to a boil stirring occasionally, until sugar is dissolved.
3. Remove tea bags. Add sugar mixture; Stir to combine.
4. Serve over ice with lemon and fresh mint, if desired
The first mechanical ice maker was produced in New Orleans in 1865. Before that ice was harvested and brought down from the great lakes and stored in underground ice houses insulated with straw.
Lemon should be squeezed into tea and then discarded. The bitterness from the pith will infuse the tea if it is left to wallow in the glass.
Music break: Blue Beat by Claude Bolling
White Lily Flour ()
Food scientist and baker Shirley Corriher talks about White Lily flour, low protein flour and Southern baking. The White Lily flour plant in Knoxville, Tennessee recently closed and has been relocated to the Midwest.
Shirley Corriher's 'Touch of Grace Biscuits'
A low protein Southern flour like White Lily is best, but any self-rising flour will work. (The recipe also calls for a cup of plain flower for shaping the biscuits.) Serve the biscuits with butter or, if there's time, make Cherry-Chambord Butter.
2 cups self-rising flour, preferably White Lily
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
4 Tablespoons shortening
2/3 cup cream
1 cup buttermilk, or more
1 cup plain flour, for shaping
2 Tablespoons butter, melted
- Preheat the oven to 425°F and arrange a shelf slightly below the center of the oven. Spray an 8-inch cake pan with nonstick cooking spray.
- In a large mixing bowl, stir together flour, sugar and salt. Work the shortening in with your fingers or a pastry blender until there are no large lumps.
- Gently stir in the cream. Stir in the buttermilk until the dough resembles cottage cheese. It should be a wet mess. If you are not using a low-protein Southern flour, this may require considerably more than a cup.
- Spread the plain flour (not self-rising) out on a plate or pie pan. With a medium(about 2-inches) ice cream scoop or spoon place scoops of dough well apart in the flour. Sprinkle flour over each. Flour your hands.
- Turn a dough ball in the flour to coat, pick it up, gently shape it into a round, shaking off the excess flour as you work. Place the biscuit in the prepared pan. Coat each dough ball in the same manner, and place the shaped biscuit "smuched" up against its neighbor. Continue scooping and shaping until the dough is used.
- Bake biscuits until lightly browned, about 20 to 25 minutes. Brush with melted butter. Invert biscuits out onto one plate, then back onto another. With a knife or spatula, cut quickly between biscuits to make them easy to remove. Serve immediately. "Butter 'em while they're hot."
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