Saturday, August 25, 2007

Baked garlic fries

These fries are addictive. (You wouldn't think they were good for you, too.) I made a first batch of them last week as a side dish and then Bill spontaneously whipped them up for breakfast today, unable to wait until dinner.

3 medium potatoes, peeled and sliced into 1/3" by 1/3" sticks
1 tablespoon oil
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
2 garlic cloves, minced
Coarse salt, pepper to taste

Preheat to 425°F. Pat potato strips dry with paper towels. Combine potatoes and oil in large bowl; tossing to coat well. Divide potatoes between 2 large baking sheets lined with parchment paper. Bake until potatoes are deep golden brown, turning and rearranging potatoes every fifteen minutes, for about 40 - 45 minutes total.
Transfer potatoes to bowl. Toss with parsley, garlic and coarse salt.

Serves 2-3.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Thai Shrimp Curry

This is my take on a classic Thai yellow curry. So quick, so satisfying, sooooo fiery hot. This dish was half inspired by the curry soup at Mee Noodle in midtown. But this is much, much better.

1/2 cup basmati rice
1 cup chicken stock
1 teaspoon olive oil
salt to taste

1 small (4 oz) can yellow curry paste
1 can coconut milk
2 cups chicken stock
1 large potato, peeled and sliced into 1/8 inch slices
1 carrot, peeled and sliced into 1/4 inch rounds
3/4 cup frozen baby peas
12 shrimp, shelled and deveined
4 cloves garlic, sliced thin
1/2 can baby corn, each corn sliced into 3 pieces
2 scallions, sliced into thin rings
large handful fresh cilantro and fresh basil, coarsely chopped
2 lemon wedges

Cook the rice in the chicken stock, oil and salt. While the rice is cooking, stir the curry paste, coconut milk and chicken stock together in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil and add the potatoes and carrots. Let the liquid come back up to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Cook, stirring frequently, for about 10 - 12 minutes, or until the potatoes are not quite cooked through. Add the peas, stir and let come back up to a low boil. Add the shrimp, garlic, baby corn and scallions and cook for an additional 3 - 5 minutes. Stir in the chopped herbs at the last minute. Serve over rice with a generous squeeze of lemon. Serves two.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Outer Cape Blueberry Cobbler

We're on vacation with my family in Cape Cod for a week, renting a house in Wellfleet. Bill and I spent an hour gathering tiny wild blueberries along the bike trails by the Marconi Station. They baked up beautifully into this intensely delicious cobbler. P-Town artist Joan Cobb Marsh gave me this recipe a few years ago (she makes her cobbler with peaches) and I've made it regularly ever since. It works with any kind of fruit as long as you use about 4 cups of it. Guests fight over the leftovers. I even made it with frozen peaches once, and it was still outstanding. The science behind the dish seems counterintuitive at first: i.e., you would think that heaping the fruit on top of the batter would result in a big pile of mush, but the batter rises as the fruit falls, and 50 minutes after you stick it in the oven, the layers have all sorted themselves out, ending up with a delicate top crust and pillowy middle with a cohesive pie-like filling in between.

1 cup sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 cup milk
1/2 cup butter: melted
4 cups fresh blueberries, or frozen blueberries, thawed but not drained, tossed with 2 T sugar. (If the berries are fresh, wash and pick over them well before using.)
Stir together sugar, flour and baking powder; add milk and butter and mix with a wire whisk or beater until well blended. Pour batter evenly into a greased 2 quart square baking dish. (You can also use a rectangular disposable pan as we did in the photo. The cobbler will be flatter and thinner, but just as good.) Add berries and their juice on top of the batter, distributing them evenly but keeping an outer edge of batter all the way around. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 50 to 60 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Let cool a little bit before serving -- at least 20 minutes. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream. Serves 8 - 10.