Cooking with Wine; Dessert Parties

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Recipes and information from Good Food, Saturdays at 11:00am on KCRW.

December 1, 2001

Go to the Hollywood Farmers Market on Sunday, December 2, 2001 for a cookbook signing. Over 20 area cookbook authors will be on hand to sign their works. The Hollywood Farmers Market is located at the intersection of Selma and Ivar Ave in Hollywood (near Cahuenga and Sunset) and runs from 9am to 1pm.


Ann Willan is the author of "Cooking with Wine" published by Abrams in cooperation with COPIA. You can find more about Ann Willan and her cooking school at

Chardonnay & Cornmeal Cake
Serves 6 to 8

1 1/2 cups flour
4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2/3 cup coarse yellow cornmeal
2/3 cup slivered almonds
1/2 cup butter, diced
1 cup sugar
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup full-flavored white wine

9 inch springform pan

1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Butter the cake pan, line the base with a round of parchment paper, and brush again with butter. Sprinkle the pan with flour, discarding the excess.

2. Sift the flour with the baking powder and salt into a food processor. Add the cornmeal, almonds, butter and sugar. Work the mixture, using the pulse button until it forms crumbs that start to clump together, about 30 seconds.

3. Add the eggs and wine and pulse just until smooth. Pour the batter into the cake pan, and bake until the cake starts to shrink from the sides of the pan and springs back when lightly pressed with fingertip, 45 to 55 minutes. Let the cake cool in the pan about 10 minutes, then turn it onto a wire rack to cool completely.


Nicole Aloni is the author of "Secrets from a Caterer's Kitchen" published by HP Books.


Claudia Fleming is the author of "The Last Course: Desserts from Grammercy Tavern" published by Random House.

(Recipes are coming. We'll send them to you.)


Mark Bittman is the author of "The Minimalist Cooks Dinner" and "How to Cook Everything."

Pot Roast w/ Cranberries
4 to 6 servings

1 tablespoon butter or extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup sugar
2 to 3 pound piece of chuck or brisket
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup sherry vinegar or good wine vinegar
12 ounces fresh or frozen cranberries
1 orange

1. Put the butter in a casserole or skillet and turn the heat to medium-high. Put the sugar on a plate and dredge the meat in it until all the surfaces are coated. Reserve the remaining sugar. When the butter foam subsides, brown the meat on all sides -- this will take 15 minutes approx. -- seasoning it with salt and pepper as it browns.

2. When the meat is nicely browned, add the vinegar and cook for a minute, stirring. Add the cranberries and remaining sugar and stir. Strip the zest from the orange (you can do it in broad strips, with a small knife or vegetable peeler) and add it to the skillet. Juice the orange and add the juice also, along with a pinch of cayenne. Turn the heat to low and cover; the mixture should bubble but not furiously.

3. Cook, turning the meat and stirring about every 30 minutes, for 2 hours or longer, or until the meat is tender. When the meat is done, taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary. Turn off the heat and let the roast rest for a few minutes, then carve and serve, with the serve.

Dusting the meat with some of the sugar makes the browning process go much more rapidly, and leaves behind a caramelized residue that is deglazed by the vinegar when you add it.

Most pot roasts depend for their flavor on the juices exuded by the meat itself; that's why tough, slow-cooking cuts like brisket or chuck are usually preferable. But since the meat's contribution here is minimized by the powerful cranberry-based combination, a fast-cooking cut like tenderloin works well, reducing the cooking time to just over an hour. *Substitute a 2 to 3 pound piece of tenderloin (filet mignon) for the chuck and reduce cooking to to about 1 hour, or until internal temp is 125 to 130 degrees (medium-rare); you can cook it longer than that if you like.

Sauce au Chien

This thin powerful sauce goes great with grilled foods

1 tablespoond slivered or minced garlic
6 scallions, trimmed and minced
1 jalapeno, habanero, or Scotch bonnet pepper, stemmed, seeded and minced or Asian chile paste or crushed red pepper flakes to taste (start with about 1/2 tsp.)
1/2 tsp ground allspice, or to taste
1 tablespoon peanut, or grapeseed, corn or other light oil
juice of 1 lime

Combine the garlic, scallions, chile, 1/2 tsp each of salt and pepper, allspice, and oil in a small bowl. Add 1/2 cup boiling water; stir and let sit. After about 15 minutes and just before serving, add lime juice. Adding the lime at the last moment allows the sauce to retain its freshness.

Serve the sauce with grilled fish or shellfish, grilled ribs or any kind of grilled meat. To vary the flavor, add some chopped capers to the finished sauce.