Music: Would I lie to you – The Eurythmics
This was made with love for my dear friend Brian on his birthday. He made a similar torte for James many years ago and I thought I would return the favor. It’s a Martha Stewart recipe (and one I could actually follow!). I’m not a baker, we know this – but this came out soooo well! (and it was really pretty, although you’d never know that from the pictures).
What you’ll need for the Torte:
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces, plus more for pan
1 cup all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled), plus more for pan
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
8 ounces semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1/2 cup low-fat buttermilk
3/4 cup shelled, unsalted pistachios, coarsely chopped
What you’ll need for the Ganache:
1/2 cup heavy cream
4 ounces semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup shelled, unsalted pistachios, coarsely chopped
Make cake: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour an 8-inch round cake pan; line bottom with parchment or waxed paper.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, salt, and baking powder. Set aside.
In a large heatproof bowl set over (not in) a saucepan of simmering water, melt butter and chocolate, stirring frequently, 4 to 5 minutes.
Remove bowl from pan. Whisk in sugar and vanilla, then eggs, buttermilk, and pistachios. Fold in flour mixture just until combined.
Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center comes out with a few moist crumbs attached, 60 to 70 minutes.
Let cool in pan 5 minutes; run a knife around edge, and invert onto a wire rack.
Remove paper, and let cool completely, about 3 hours. (To store, wrap in plastic, and keep at room temperature, up to 3 days).
Make ganache: In a small saucepan, bring cream to a simmer; remove from heat.
Add chocolate, and let stand 5 minutes; whisk until smooth. Let cool until mixture falls back in ribbons when lifted with a spoon, 2 to 6 minutes.
Set cake on a serving platter; tuck strips of parchment paper under edge of cake to prevent ganache from dripping on platter.
Pour ganache onto center of cake; using a table knife, spread evenly over the top and down the sides. Let set, about 30 minutes.
Remove paper from under cake; sprinkle top with pistachios.
We made some Christmas treats yesterday…our salted caramels but with Espresso Salt from The Filling Station (that Alex so kindly brought us from Chelsea Market for Christmas – Danke!). Here is a little picture to show what a sweet gift they will make! Happy Christmas!
This was such a hit and so easy. We served it before our holiday dinner this year and I’ve made it twice since. Also, from Bon Appetit. It was so pretty and festive!
1/4 white wine vinegar
1/4 cup fresh orange juice
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon fresh lime juice
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon peel
1 teaspoon finely grated lime peel
1 teaspoon finely grated orange peel
1/2 cup of olive oil
1 large head of escarole cut
1 head of butter lettuce cut
1 Granny Smith apple thinly sliced
1 cup fresh pomegranate seeds (about half a pomegranate)
2/3 cup hazelnuts, toasted and chopped
Music: On Melancholy Hill – Gorillaz
We held our annual Holiday party this last weekend. The usual suspects attended with some new additions. Next year I’m going to need more chairs! (or a bigger apartment?). I spent some time with older Bon Appetit magazines and created a really lovely meal. We made Cocoa and Spice Slow-Roasted Pork with Onions, Green beans with Pancetta and a Mushroom Potato Gratin.
What you’ll need for the spice rub:
1/2 tablespoon whole white peppercorns
1/2 tablespoon whole coriander seeds
2 tablespoons plus 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons coarse sea salt (preferably gray crystals
1 tablespoon plus 2 1/4 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- Stir peppercorns and coriander in small skillet over medium heat until spices are darker in color, about 5 minutes.
- Transfer toasted spices to mortar and pestle and grind finely.
- Place in small bowl; mix in remaining ingredients.
- This can be made 1 week ahead.
What you’ll need for the Pork:
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 pounds onions plus 2 shallots, thinly sliced
1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh sage
1 cup of water
1 7-pound pork shoulder butt with bone
Add water; cover and cook until onions are soft, about 15 minutes.
Uncover; continue to cook until onions are beginning to brown and water has evaporated, about 15 minutes.
Roast pork and onions until onions are deep brown, stirring occasionally, about 3 hours.
Transfer onions from pan to medium bowl.
Flip pork and continue to roast pork until very tender and thermometer inserted into center registers 165°F, about 2 1/2 hours longer.
- Transfer pork to platter. Keep onions aside and add to green beans.
Green Beans with Sage and Pancetta
What you’ll need:
2 1/2 pounds green beans, trimmed
10 ounces thinly sliced pancetta, coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
3 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh sage
Fleur de sel
- Line baking sheet with several layers of paper towels.
- Cook beans in large pot of boiling salted water until crisp-tender, 4 to 6 minutes depending on size of beans. Drain.
- Spread beans out on paper towels.
- Cut pancetta into small cubes.
- Combine pancetta and 1 tablespoon oil in large nonstick skillet. Sauté over medium heat until pancetta is crisp, separating pieces with 2 forks, about 10 minutes.
- Add sage and stir until fragrant, about 1 minute. Transfer to plate.
- Heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in same skillet over medium-high heat. Add beans and sauté until heated through, about 5 minutes.
- Add pancetta mixture and toss to blend. Season to taste with freshly ground black pepper. Transfer to large bowl.
What you’ll need for the Gratin:
5 tablespoons olive oil, divided
2 1/2 pounds medium Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled, cut lengthwise into 1/8-inch-thick slices
1 1/2 teaspoons coarse kosher salt plus additional for mushrooms
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper plus additional for mushrooms
1 1/4 cups (or more) heavy whipping cream, divided
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese (about 3 ounces), divided
2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
6 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
12 ounces fresh crimini (baby bella) mushrooms, sliced
Preheat oven to 375°F.
Brush 13x9x2-inch glass or oval ceramic baking dish with 2 tablespoons oil.
Cut potatoes into 1/8″ pieces.
Arrange 1/3 of potatoes, slightly overlapping, in dish.
Sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Pour 1/3 cup cream over; sprinkle with 1/4 cup cheese. Repeat layering 1/3 of potatoes, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, 1/3 cup cream, and 1/4 cup cheese 2 more times.
Bake uncovered until potatoes are tender, adding cream by tablespoonfuls if dry, about 45 minutes.
Remove from oven; maintain oven temperature.
Sprinkle thyme and garlic slices over gratin.
Toss mushrooms in medium bowl with 3 tablespoons oil; sprinkle with coarse salt and pepper.
Arrange mushroom slices atop gratin around edge of dish.
Drizzle with 1/4 cup cream; sprinkle with 1/4 cup cheese.
Continue to bake uncovered until mushrooms are tender and potato edges are golden brown, about 20 minutes longer.
It’s almost here! Let’s help build it…
Green Hill Food Co-op.