November 20, 2011

Salted Caramel Sauce


This is my current obsession. I made some to drizzle over apple pie a couple weeks ago and have been eating it nearly every day ever since. I dip apple slices in it. I eat it by the spoonful. BY THE SPOONFUL. Seriously. It's THAT good.

So, go make some.

Salted Caramel Sauce
(aka CRACK) 
Makes about 1 cup

1 cup sugar

3 tablespoons water

1 tablespoon light corn syrup

3/4 cup heavy cream

1 tablespoon unsalted butter

1 teaspoon Kosher salt (or more to taste)

  • Put the sugar, water & corn syrup in a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan and stir just to combine.
  • Heat over medium-high heat, without stirring, until the caramel turns deep amber, 5-10 minutes.  (If it’s coloring unevenly, swirl the pan as needed to blend.) Lower the heat & slowly add the cream & butter. Stir to smooth & remove the pan from heat. 
  • Stir in the salt. Taste. Add more salt, if desired.
This sauce is ready to eat warm but also stores well in the refrigerator (just put into a covered container). It stays a soft, dip-able consistency...which makes it easy to eat BY THE SPOONFUL.

November 14, 2011

Spicy Ground Bison with Green Beans & Tofu

My oven has been fritzy for a while now; it either won't hold the heat or won't ignite at all. It's SO frustrating, especially when I planned to make things that need to be a savory butternut squash & sausage bread pudding or AN ENTIRE THANKSGIVING MEAL.

So, I decided this past Friday morning, sort of spur-of-the-moment, to just buy a new stove already, dammit. It will be delivered on Saturday. It's nothing fancy, but at least it will ACTUALLY COOK FOOD.

Until then, I'll be making strickly stovetop dinners: sauteed lentils with sausage, tilapia piccata with steamed broccoli, mushroom soup, & spiced rice with stir-fried pork (recipe to be posted soon).

I'd dog-eared the recipe below in this month's Food & Wine magazine, picked up some ground bison at Whole Foods this weekend, and made it for dinner tonight...with a few additions & substitutions. It was very easy to make and tasted really good, flavorful and just a tad spicy. I'd never eaten bison before, and I was a little leery about a possible gamey taste. There was none; in fact, I really couldn't even tell that it wasn't beef here.

 Spicy Ground Bison with Green Beans & Tofu
adapted from Food & Wine

November 11, 2011

Winter 2011-2012 Cooking Classes

Kitchen Conservatory's winter schedule is now posted online. To register, call Kitchen Conservatory at 314-862-2665 or register online.
Here are the newest classes that I am teaching:

GIRLS NIGHT OUT: HE'S JUST NOT THAT INTO YOU - Friday, January 20 @ 6:30-9:00 pm (demonstration)
  • This is my "anti-Valentine's Day" class. Whether you are in or out of a relationship, enjoy a laugh poking fun at romance! I'll offer a quirky take on love gone awry, as you sip on a bittersweet Campari and Prosecco cocktail. Then, I'll prepare garlic bread knots, grapefruit and fennel salad with parsley and mint, fresh pasta with salty and spicy puttanesca sauce, plus wine-soaked strawberries with black pepper and balsamic ice cream.

DATE NIGHT FOR COUPLES: SALSA SALSA DINE AND DANCE - Saturday, Jan. 21 @ 6:00-9:00 pm (hands-on)
  • Grab your partner and join us for a unique experience of dancing and dining. The evening begins with a one-hour Latin salsa dance lesson with a dance instructor from COCA, that will spark your appetite for an incredible evening in the kitchen. Afterwards, refresh your thirst with a mojito, as you prepare fried plantain chips with black bean dip, grilled shrimp quesadillas with smoked tomato salsa, grilled pork tenderloin with papaya-mango salsa and yellow Cuban rice, plus banana cream pie.                          
DATE NIGHT FOR COUPLES: SUPER TAILGATE PARTY - Friday, January 27 @ 6:30-9:00 pm (hands-on)
  • Before football season comes to an end, learn to tackle a fun menu perfect for a tailgate party or Super Bowl Sunday. This class will create a refreshing lemon-ginger beer shandy cocktail, crispy cheddar coins with bacon jam, bratwurst burgers with sweet onion and grape relish, spicy kimchi slaw, plus chocolate chip cookie dough brownies.
DATE NIGHT FOR COUPLES: 1960'S COCKTAIL PARTY - Sunday, January 29 @ 5:00-7:30 pm (hands-on)
  • Inspired by Mad Men and the pop culture of the 1960's, this class will create modernized versions of vintage recipes for a divine cocktail party: Tom Collins cocktail, caramelized onion dip with winter white crudités (including cauliflower, endive, fennel and jicama), clams casino, Swedish meatballs with black currant dipping sauce, cheddar-gorgonzola cheese ball with bacon and smoky almonds, deviled ham canapés, plus mini dark chocolate bundt cakes with spiced rum glaze.
DATE NIGHT FOR COUPLES: THE BIG CHILL-I COOK-OFF - Sunday, February 19 @ 5:00-7:30 pm (hands-on)
  • Let the battle begin, as couples create and choose their favorite chili for a spirited evening of cooking, fun, and a little beer to wash it down. Learn to make roasted corn and jalapeño dip with fresh tortilla chips, Carolina pulled pork chili, Cincinnati chili with spaghetti, "real" Texas chili (without beans), and root beer sorbet.