Monday, May 18, 2009

Monday, May 18th - Focaccia al Pomordorini, Eggs Benedict MY Way, Butternut Barley Risotto

Focaccia al Pomordorini

1 1/4 t yeast (1 envelope is normally 2 t, used the whole envelope....we'll see)
2 T sugar
2 c unbleached flour
1 1/2 - 2 c whole wheat flour
1 T and 1 t kosher or course salt
1/2 c olive oil
1 1/2 pint cherry tomatoes
1/4 lb or 100 g pitted, black olives
sea salt

Now I originally got this recipe from Saveur May 2009 issue. I've altered it to make is easier for me to make. I just do not like having to knead in my place because I don't have the big marble table I had at mom's when I was a kid and the flour on the counters is just messy. Now remember, this can all be done by hand up to the point all the ingredients are put together you'd turn it out onto a floured surface and work by hand.

Put a bit of boiling water in your kitchen mixer with the dough hook on. I'm making breakfast, Eggs Benny my West Sayeed style with Lemon Aoli so I did this in stutter steps.... The water is just to warm the mixer bowl since it's big and steel and normally cold.

Measure out 1 1/4 c warm water. Warmer than room but cool enough to put your finger in with out an ow ow. Empty out mixer bowl. Put 1T of the sugar and add the water. Pour in the yeast. If you want you can measure out the right amount since the envelope is more. Set aside for 10 minutes until foamy.

On a flexy cutting board or bowl. Measure 2C unbleached flour and 1C of the whole wheat. Add the 1T + 1t salt and 1T of remaing sugar. Whisk a bit to combine.

In the bowl, add the 1/2 c of oil. Add the collar if you have one, that has the ingredient spout to prevent spillage. I spill. I can spill when trying to pour ingredients into a large wide pit. Fold up the flexy cutting board and with it still on stir, add the flour mix. When it's all in turn up to one notch up, 2 maybe 4 if it's not coming together for a few seconds. If it is still to soft and sticky, add more whole wheat flour by the heaping table spoon until it is a soft dough that pulls away from the side and leaves the bowl clean. Knead on 2 for at least 10 minutes or until you've finished serving your eggs benny my West Sayeed style (photos later) :-P.

Turn off the machine, pull the dough off the hook and fold the dough into a ball. Put a few t of oil in the bottom and with the dough in one hand swirl around the bowl to coat the bowl with oil. Then turn over so the oil side of the dough is up. Cover with plastic wrap or damp towel and put in a warm place. I put it in the oven to rise for 90 minutes.

Oil a cast iron skillet. 12" at least. Push down the dough a bit and form a ball. It is alot spongy and softer than your typical bread dough or pizza dough. No worries. Oil changes the texture alot!!! With your finger tips or with your palms press out the dough into the skillet. Cover with a damp towel or pot lid that overs the skillet and set a side to rise for an hour....

During this time... I have to go buy the cherry tomatoes and olives :-D I was going to settle for Leek and Anchovy focaccia but D wants me to follow the magazine as per instructed because the photo looks awesome..

Stay tuned.

Eggs benedict J's West Sayeed style

4 eggs
1 large saucepan full of salted water
2 T white vinegar
1 palm sized portion of smoked salmon
4 pieces of round multigrain rustic stick
a few T of Lemon Aoli (see recipe below)

Bring sauce pan to a bare simmer. The vinegar is ESSENTIAL. It keeps the eggs together. It's really cool. I first saw this on a Gary Rhodes UK food show. It works like a charm. I've been doing it this way ever since.

On the side, have a small skillet with a small amount of water on 'melt' or lowest setting.

Have the eggs out about 10 minutes before cooking so that they don't cool the water down when you add them. Always have one egg ready in a small prep bowl ready to go when the other one is cooking. ONLY cook ONE egg at a time. Ready?

Take a small whisk and stir the water medium speed along the edge until the water doesn't fight you and is moving like a merry go round. Take the whisk out and drop the egg slowly into the centre. The egg will close in on itself like a @#ershy's kiss. 4 minutes max. Play with the heat so it doesn't boil but keeps that bare simmer. Crack the next egg into the prep bowl. Take a slotted spoon and remove the egg carefully to the small skillet, cover. Repeat in the saucepan with the next egg. 4 min max for soft to runny. 5 for medium... any closer to 5 or if the water is too hot will cook the egg through.

Toast the toast rounds. Set on plate. Place the broken pieces of the smoked salmon or lox on the toast. Lift each egg out of the skillet with a slotted spoon and a paper towel under the spoon to sop up excess water. Top with the Aoli and fresh herbs.... SOOOOO good.

Lemon Aoli

1 egg yolk
2 clove garlic
few sprigs tarragon
1/2 lemon, juice
pinch of salt
dash of tobasco
splash of hot water
1 c of olive oil.

Blend in a small processer until looks like a loose mayo.

Summer Corn and Cherry Tomato Succotash
(Original version from San Jose Mercury)

4 ears corn, removed from cob while raw, canned corn not an option. Don't make this with canned. Eat something else. The point is SEASONAL. :-D
1T extra virgin Olive oil
1 clove garlic chopped
1 shallot or 3 green onions, white part only
1 basket of cherry tomatoes or fresh small tomatoes halved or quartered depending on size.
1 T balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper

Shuck fresh corn! Heat oil in a wok and sauté garlic until golden add corn and cook 4 min. Add tomatoes for 2 more minutes. Season with Salt and pepper. Add balsamic, cook 1 minute until sticky. Turn off heat and add the shallot. Serve as a side or with a salad. Parsley or fresh herb on top.

YUUUUUUMMMMO we make this often when corn is cheap and in season.

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