Posts from August 2014

Creole Spiced Slaw with Sweet and Spicy Jerked Cashews, from 'Caribbean Potluck'

To Trinidadian Chicken and Rice, add this spiced slaw from Caribbean Potluck (Kyle Books, May 2014) by Two Sisters and a Meal Suzanne Rousseau and Michelle Rousseau and you have the foundation of an island themed dinner.

Creole-Spiced Slaw

We made this dish for a fabulous island-themed rehearsal dinner that we catered in the Hamptons for our great friend, television personality Robyn Moreno. None of the guests was from the
Caribbean, although we did have a few Tejanos and they simply loved the island flava! This cool
summer slaw is spicy-sweet perfection with any kind of barbeque—from burgers to ribs to chicken.


Serves 6

For the Sweet and Spicy Jerked Cashews

1 and 1⁄4 cups raw cashews
2 teaspoons jerk sauce
sea salt
1 tablespoon butter
3 tablespoons brown sugar

For the Coconut Sesame Dressing

juice of 6 limes (about 6 tablespoons)
1 stalk lemongrass, tender inner part only, smashed and finely chopped
1 stalk scallion, chopped
2 tablespoons honey, preferably Jamaican
1 tablespoon brown sugar
2 tablespoons dark Asian sesame oil
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1⁄4 teaspoon minced Scotch bonnet
1⁄4 cup canned coconut milk
6 ounces white cabbage, thinly shredded (2 to 3 cups)
6 ounces red cabbage, thinly shredded (2 to 3 cups)
1⁄2 medium red pepper, cut into matchsticks
1⁄2 medium yellow pepper, cut into matchsticks
1 red chile pepper, seeded and finely sliced into strips
1⁄2 red onion, thinly sliced
1⁄2 cup thinly sliced strips fresh pineapple
1 ripe mango, peeled, pitted and cut into thin strips
1 medium ripe papaya, peeled and cut into thin strips
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 bunch fresh mint, chopped
1 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped
toasted grated coconut (optional)

Creole Spiced Slaw


1. To make the sweet and spicy jerked cashews, preheat the oven to 350°F. In a small bowl, toss the cashews with the jerk sauce and a little salt. Spread on a baking sheet in a single layer and toast until golden, about 5 minutes.

2. Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the brown sugar and let melt; when it begins to caramelize, add the roasted cashews and toss to coat well. Spread the cashews out onto a
baking sheet lined with waxed paper to cool. Roughly chop.

3. To make the coconut sesame dressing, in a blender, combine all of the ingredients and whizz together. Season with salt and pepper.

4. In a large bowl, combine both cabbages, all the peppers, the red onion, pineapple, mango and papaya. Season with salt and pepper.

(* Recipe excerpted from Caribbean Potluck by Suzanne Rousseau and Michelle Rousseau -Kyle Books, May 2014- Photography by Ellen Silverman- all rights reserved)

Give Toothpick Test to Buttery Mochi Cake from Jeni's Splendid Ice Cream Desserts

First dib into Jeni's Splendid Ice Cream Desserts (Artisan Books, May 2014) by Jeni Britton Bauer was Salty Bitch, a cocktail.

We finally get around to putting a dessert recipe on your map.

Mochi Cake

A buttery, not-too sweet rice flour cake has delightful chewiness

This is one of our favorite recipes. We originally made it to cut into cubes and through into our bubble-gum-pink Magnolia Mochi Ice Cream (page 45). It has an enjoyably chewy texture when frozen and is soft, buttery, and dense at room temperature.

If you so desire, you can trim off the outer layer to give the cake super-sharp square corners. Aesthetically, that's pretty cool, and you can't do that with other cakes. You can then slice it into crisp-edged squares or rectangles or cubes of whatever size. Saute them in butter until golden and crispy on the outside, and wow! Or brush them with butter and put them on the grill. Serve these with tea-infused or flower-scented ice-cream and with exotic fruits. like fresh rambutants on the half-shell.

Makes 8 to 10 servings

2 cups sweet rice flour
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 3/4 teaspoons baking powder
Pinch of ground cinnamon
1 1/3 cups evaporated milk
1 1/4 cups unsweetened coconut milk
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
5 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

105_Mochi Cake

1. Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan.

2. Sift together the rice flour, sugar, baking powder, and cinnamon into a large bowl.

3. Add the evaporated milk, coconut milk, eggs, vanilla, and butter in a bowl, and whisk to combine. Create a small well in the middle of the dry ingredients, pour in the liquid ingredients, and stir until fully combined.

4. Pour the batter into the loaf pan and bake for 35 minutes.

5. Rotate the cake pan and bake for about 35 minutes longer, until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out with a few moist crumbs clinging to it. Cool the cake in the pan on a rack for 10 minutes, then invert onto a rack to cool completely. 

In case you missed it, read Jeni's 10 Do's and Don'ts of Columbus (Ohio), her hometown.

(* Credit: “Excerpted from Jeni's Splendid Ice Cream Desserts by Jeni Britton Bauer (Artisan Books). Copyright © 2014. Photographs by Kelsey McClellan.") 

Cucumber Basil Sparkler opens Salad Buffet for a Hot Day from 'Foods for Health'

With Foods for Health (National Geographic books - September 9, 2014) chef and author Barton Seaver and nutritionist P.K. Newby want to help us 'choose and use the very best foods for our family and our planet.'

Divided in chapters that cover vegetables, fruits, proteins (almonds to beef to shrimp to yogurt), whole grains, fats and oils (fats are essential to good health), beverages (beer and spirits to tea), and finally seasonings, Foods for Health also offers seasonal menus including salad buffet below.


Menu by P. K. Newby

From colorful squashes and lettuces to luscious berries and stone fruit, I can make almost my entire supper from local produce during the height of summer. Below is selection of favorites I might serve as part of an evening buffet on a balmy day. (Can you tell I eat a lot of salad?)


Mix pureed cucumbers. Keep the skin for fiber and color-with fresh lime juice, basil simple syrup, and sparkling water for a  flavorful, pretty drink. For an alcoholic version, substitute gin.


Grilled peaches are sublime in summer (and make a terrific dessert). Plate with seared sea scallops and baby chard and dress with a peach vinaigrette for a salad that is as lovely as it is nutritious.

Foods_for_Health_front cover


Top thinly sliced squash with a mixture of sun gold cherry tomatoes, corn, white onion, and parsley dressed with olive oil, white balsamic vinegar, and garlic. Summer on a plate, made even more divine with a scattering of chèvre.


Toss a selection of lettuces and herbs together with quinoa, blueberries, and toasted pine nuts for a dinner salad that won't leave you wanting. Dress with a lemon-herb vinaigrette, or keep it simple
with oil and vinegar .


I put these together when I found both at the market one spring day. Poached in port, orange peel, and spices and topped with a dollop of mascarpone, this is a wonderful dessert that can be served at room temperature.

(* Menu created by P. K. Newby from Foods for Health by Barton Seaver and P. K. Newby- published by National Geographic; September 9, 2014)

Hideyuki Oka Classic 'How to Wrap 5 Eggs', The Art of Traditional Japanese Packaging

Hideyuki Oka classic book How to Wrap 5 Eggs, Traditional Japanese Packaging (Weatherhill, last edition 2008) was originally published in 1975 under title 'How to Wrap 5 More Eggs'.


"Traditional Japanese packaging is an art form that applies sophisticated design and natural aesthetics to simple objects. In this elegant presentation of the baskets, boxes, wrappers, and containers that were used in ordinary, day-to-day life. Largely constructed of bamboo, rice straw, hemp twine, paper, and leaves, all of the objects shown here are made from natural materials. Through 221 black-and-white photographs of authentic examples of traditional Japanese packaging—with commentary on the origins, materials, and use of each piece—the items here offer a look into a lost art, while also reminding us of the connection to nature and the human imprint of handwork that was once so alive and vibrant in our everyday lives."

Furze Chan shares a few photos of objects featured in the book on Ferse Verse...

Peaceful read for a Summer afternoon.

Japanese craft for  Tokyo Thursdays # 292

Previously: Toast, Kampai, Beer in Japan with Mark Meli at Japan Society, NY, September 12

Be a Fool for Dessert, Rhubarb and Raspberry Framboise Fool from 'Beer and Food'

With his second book, Beer and Food ( Ryland Peters & Small, Dog & Bone imprint, Spring 2014) Mark Dredge of Pencil and Spoon reminds us that Beer and Food have been paired for 10,000 years.

Rhubarb and Raspberry Framboise Fool

A super summer dessert, this mixes the tartness of rhubarb with the sweet and sourness of raspberry beer. 


14oz (400g) rhubarb, cut into thumb-sized pieces
4 tbsp vanilla sugar (if you are using ordinary sugar, just add 1 tsp vanilla extract/essence)
6 tbsp raspberry beer
7oz (200g) raspberries
1 ¼ cups (300ml) whipping cream

Framboise Fool


1 Put the rhubarb in a large saucepan along with the sugar and beer. Cook until the fruit is soft but still holds its shape.

2 Once the rhubarb is nearly cooked, add the raspberries to the pan and cook for a further minute. Drain off the liquid— drink it, if you like, as it tastes good! Allow the fruit to cool.

3 Whip the cream until it thickens and then fold into the fruit.

4 You can serve this fruit fool on its own or perhaps with a shortbread biscuit or pale malt cookie on the side. This is really amazing with a glass of raspberry beer—I like to use Liefman’s

(* Recipe reproduced with permission from Beer and Food by Mark Dredge- Ryland Peters & Small, Dog & Bone imprint, Spring 2014- Food photography: William Lingwood)

Visions of Bruschetta for Lunch, Here's a Trio of 'Fresh and Light' Ones

Having visions of Bruschetta for lunch?

Here's a trio of them from Fresh and Light (Harper 360, 2014, US edition), by Donna Hay, one of the most visually appetizing books of the year.

Bruschetta_Fresh and Light_HAY

3 toppings are:

-Lemon, Ricotta, Tomato and Basil

-Goat's Curd, Broad Bean and Mint

-Rocket, Salmon and Caper

(* Reproduced with permission from Fresh and Light by Donna Hay, US edition published by Harper 360, 2014- Photography by William Meppem)

Map, Time, Travel Options and Cost for St Vith to Brussels via Rome2rio

A family member is about to spend a lenghty period of time in Liege province of Belgium and needs to travel from St Vith to Huy and St Vith to Brussels in first days of his stays.

I wanted to find out what best travel options where and discovered Rome2rio which offered for both trips not just a map but also length of trip, travel options and respective costs depending on wether you drive, take a cab, hop on a bus or ride the train or a combination of these options.

For Taxi and Train from St Vith to Brussels, Rome2rio estimates total travel time to 2h 57 and cost of $97 each way starting with $60 for 11,9 miles taxi ride from St Vith to Gouvy (25 minutes) where you can catch train to Liege-Guillemins (1h and 16 minutes, hourly service) for $15 then Liege-Guillemins to Bruxelles-Central (56 minutes, service every 30 minutes) for $20.

In comparison, driving is estimated to take 1hour and 57 minutes and cost $35.


If you are under 26, cost of train travel from Gouvy to Brussels can be brought down by purchasing  a Go Pass 10 from Belgian Rail  for 51 Euros. 

Each trip even if you change train can be made with one of the 10 passes for a cost of 5.1 Euros.

In this case you would have to use one pass from Gouvy to Brussels and another one for return trip for a total cost of $13.63 instead of $70.

Some destinations like Brussels Airport require payment of Diabolo fee in addition to your Go Pass.

Rome2rio is based in Melbourne (Australia).

(* Illustration from Rome2rio blog)

Hasenpfeffer, Pulling a Rabbit out of The Meat Hook Meat Book Hat

With this Hasenpfeffer, I am pulling a rabbit out of The Meat Hook Meat Book  hat.


Serves 3 to 4

1 rabbit, 3 to 4 pounds, cut into 6 pieces
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup lard or chicken fat
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 cup stock
1/2 teaspoon light brown sugar

For the Marinade:

2 cups cider vinegar
1 cup chicken stock
1 cup sturdy, fruity red wine
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
4 large yellow onions, sliced
10 garlic cloves, sliced
A few thyme sprigs
2 tablespoons mustard powder, preferably Colman’s
1 tablespoon crushed toasted juniper berries
7 whole cloves
10 bay leaves, preferably fresh
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Special Equipment:
Medium nonreactive food-safe container


1. Put the rabbit in a medium food-safe container, preferably one with a lid.

2. To make the marinade, mix all the ingredients together in a bowl. Pour the marinade over the rabbit, cover with the lid or plastic wrap, and refrigerate, ideally for at least 24 hours, turning the pieces after 12 hours.

3. Pull the rabbit from the marinade and wipe it dry with paper towels. Strain the marinade and set aside.

4. Dump the cup of flour into a medium bowl. Dredge each piece of rabbit in flour, shake to remove the excess, and set aside on a plate.

5. Heat 2 tablespoons of the lard in a Dutch oven over high heat. When the fat is hot, brown the rabbit in batches of 3 pieces each, sprinkling with salt and pepper as you go, about 3 minutes a side. Transfer to a plate.

6. Drain the fat from the pot, add the strained marinade, and deglaze the pot over high heat, scraping up the bits with a wooden spoon, about 2 minutes. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons lard, the stock, and the brown sugar. Add the browned rabbit to the pot and bring the liquid to a simmer. Cover, reduce the heat to low, and simmer for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until the meat is tender and just starting to fall off the bones.

7. Divide the stew among four plates and serve.

Also from The Meat Hook Meat Book: Edoardo’s Fried Beef Kidney

(Excerpted from The Meat Hook Meat Book by Tom Mylan- Artisan Books- Copyright © 2014. Photographs by Michael Harlan Turkell. Illustrations by Kate Bonner)

Cremant d'Alsace and Kerner, Wine Pairings on Restaurant Under Lindetraeet 2011 Menu

This menu from Restaurant under Lindetraeet in Odense (Denmark) was gathering dust in a box until I unearthed it while doing some sorting out.

Menu copenhagen summer 2011

I had the pleasure to sample their fare at Copenhagen Cooking Nordic Taste on my last day of a 3 day week-end in Copenhagen in August 2011.

I was there for Nordic Feed conference.

As you can see, wine pairings range from Cremant d'Alsace to Kerner.

Another highlight from Nordic Feed was Jacobsen's Brewer Marten Ibsen Gives us Scandinavian Beer Education, Nordic Feed Pt 3...

Sorry I could not translate menu from Danish for you. 

Restaurant Under Lindetraeet website is also in Danish only.

A few details in English are offered by Visit Denmark...