Sunday, March 20, 2011

Feelin' cheffy this weekend...

I made a loaf of bread yesterday. It looked like this.

And today I decided to use our Romertoph to make a pot roast. The sirloin roast is the last remaining piece of meat from a share I purchased over the summer. I am following a recipe from this link ( If you don't feel like clicking, I'll paste it below.

Clay Pot Roast

3.5 to 4 lb. Blade Roast (Chuck)
4 ribs celery, chopped
4 large carrots, chopped
4 medium onions, chopped
2 large cloves garlic, peeled, smashed
2 t. dried thyme or 2 large sprigs fresh thyme and 10 stalks fresh parsley
2 bay leaves
About 2 c. red wine
6 boiling potatoes, cut in half or quarters, or left whole, depending on size
2 parsnips, peeled, cut lengthwise in half or quarters, depending on size
1 lb. small carrots, peeled
Salt and pepper

Submerge Clay Pot, both parts, in water for 15 min. (1 hr. first time).

Trim excess fat from meat. Dry well. Salt and pepper generously, dredge with flour.

Place chopped onion, celery, carrots, and garlic in bottom of soaked clay pot. Scatter herbs over. Salt and pepper generously. Place meat on top. Pour red wine around edge, enough to cover vegetables, but not meat. Place covered clay cooker in cold oven, set to 425°. Cook for 1 1/2 hours.

Add carrots, potatoes, parsnips around edge of meat. Continue cooking about 1 hour, until vegetables and meat are tender.

Remove meat, carrots, potatoes, parsnips (the vegies added for the last hour of cooking) to a serving platter, keep warm. Mash chopped vegetables into juices in a skillet over high heat to reduce and thicken. Strain, then defat juices, and taste for salt and pepper. Serve over meat, potatoes, carrots, and parsnips.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Wife, birthday, and carrot cake

My wife's birthday falls in February. This means I also bake a carrot cake in February. The first two weeks of this month are always super busy for me with the birthday, and Valentine's Day and the shoveling, and slipping on ice...but I digress.

So I'm making a carrot cake today. I was going to follow this recipe for the "Loveliest Carrot Cake in the World," but my sister-in-law sent me a recipe in the email I will paste below. If you look at them carefully, you'll notice THAT THEY ARE THE SAME!

> She mentioned you were looking for the "world's best carrot cake
> recipe." While I can't promise the "world's best" distinction, this
> is definitely one of the best carrot cakes I've ever had. It's what I
> usually make for Adam's birthday -- and now Theo's, too. Its
> provenance is a bit uncertain: I have it in my recipe book as "Bea
> Fishman's Carrot Cake!", as does my mother, whom I got it from. Bea
> Fishman (friend of my mom's), however, has it in her recipe book as
> "Ruth Hall's Carrot Cake," which would suggest it actually came from
> my grandmother, although my mom has no recollection of her mother ever
> making this. Whether Bea's or Ruth's, here it is:
> Combine:
> - 1 1/2 C oil
> - 2 C sugar
> - 4 eggs
> and beat until thick and light yellow
> Mix in a separate bowl then beat in to above mixture:
> 2 C flour
> 2 tsp cinnamon
> 2 tsp baking powder
> 2 tsp baking soda
> 1 tsp salt
> Add:
> 1 1/2 lb carrots —grate in food processor (s/b approx. 3 cups post-
> grate; I often end up with more carrots than this, though)
> 1 C walnuts or pecans, chopped
> Pour batter into
> - a sheet pan
> - three 8" rounds
> or
> - two 9" rounds
> Bake at 375 degrees for 45 minutes to one hour.
> Let cool at least 45 minutes before icing (s/b cool to the touch)
> Combine:
> - 8 oz. cream cheese
> - 1/2 C butter
> - 1 tsp vanilla
> and beat until smooth.
> Beat in:
> 1 lb. powdered sugar (3 3/4 C)
> Finally, stir in 1C chopped nuts
> Happy baking and birthday celebrating!
> Love,
> Lauren & fam