Those of you who are regulars here have recently seen a recipe for an awesome Black Coffee Ice Cream, then a few days later one for sublime Macarons. Well, today you see what glory can be achieved by combining these two into one of the best ice cream sandwiches you'll ever eat. Inspired by Jeni Britton Bauer's example in her terrific cookbook Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams at Home , we've combined her Black Coffee Ice Cream (along with some store bought vanilla and chocolate for a little variety) with some super-sized cinnamon macarons to make a few seriously dangerous sandwiches.
Archives for June 2012
I've made homemade pestos for years, but have always done so on the fly, never from a recipe. A few handfuls of fresh basil here, some gratings of parmesan there, sometimes one garlic clove, sometimes two, and a liberal sprinkling of pine nuts. All of this blended with the best olive oil I had always delivered a good pesto, sometimes a great one, but one that was always a little different.
Sadly, one thing that never varied with these pestos was their tendency to lose their vibrant green color and turn an ugly army green-brown just hours after being made. To make matters worse, it wasn't just the color that oxidized, it was the flavor as well, and nothing I did, like coating the pesto with a thin layer of oil, or storing it with plastic wrap pressed tight to its surface seemed to halt its degradation.
Having lived in Paris for a couple years, I am frequently asked for travel recommendations from friends who are heading there for the first time. Their questions run the gamut from where to stay, what to see, and of course, where to eat. I am always happy to share my thoughts about Paris because doing so always gives me a sort of vicarious thrill, as though I were travelling back there myself.
Without exception, one piece of advice I give everyone who asks for tips is this; you MUST go to Pierre Hermé and buy yourself an "Ispahan" macaron, a perfect confection of rose cream, lychee and raspberries. Not the tiny little tasting version, but the full-on 4" diameter monster; and not to share either, as this is one of life's special moments that is best enjoyed alone.
If someone else is dying for a bite, tell them to go buy their own!
This is a recipe from one of my favorite old cookbooks, Johanne Killeen and George Germon's Cucina Simpatica: Robust Trattoria Cooking From Al Forno . Johanne and George are the chefs behind one of our region's finest restaurants, Al Forno in Providence R.I.. Famous for their grilled pizzas and hearty braises, they have also made a name for themselves as masters of baked pastas. One of our favorite dishes here at Oui, Chef (in fact, its Muppet's favorite pasta of all-time) is their baked pasta with lemon, asparagus and prosciutto, a light and flavorful dish bright with lemon and herbs. Sadly, light is not an adjective I'd use to describe this dish so if you are still in the middle of your spring cleanse, then you best click elsewhere and save yourself some suffering.
As heart attacks go, this one is damned tasty, super flexible and oh so easy to put together. So, if you're not yet on your bikini-season diet, let's carry-on shall we.
One of the more recent additions to my ever-growing pile of cookbooks, is one I "won" at Share Our Strength's Baltimore "Taste of the Nation" when I attended last Fall. The book, Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams at Home, was one of about a dozen that I won in the silent auction part of the fundraiser. Needless to say, I'm glad I'm a light packer because I required all sorts of extra room in my suitcase to accommodate the book booty for my trip home. I half expected the TSA folks to check my bag for a dismembered body, I mean how else could I explain a weekend bag weighing in at 100+ pounds.
Now that Spring is finally in high gear around here, I thought I'd share another meatless recipe highlighting the veritable king of the season, asparagus. For such a fancy looking thing, there isn't a lot of work here, especially if you use a store bought crust. There are a few steps to bringing it all together, but much of the time spent in making this is hands-off as your crust rests, and your veggies roast.
Last week was a big one around here as far as sweets go. First came the latest version of my wife's now perfected Peanut Butter Pie to celebrate Grid bringing his college sweetheart home to meet the family, then Muppet decided to pull out all the stops when putting in her order for the cake that would mark the awesomeness of her turning THIRTEEN! That's right, the youngest of our clan is now a teenager……God help us.
Can his and hers walkers, and pallets of Depends undergarments be the next big purchases for the wife and I?
Don't count on it!