Brownies-made easy

8 Feb

Hey, thanks for stopping by! I’m sure you get cravings for certain things, for the moment I’m on a Brownie kick. With ingredients calling me softly from the pantry in the early morning hours, Continue reading

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Oil Poached, or Confit of Rabbit

30 Jul

The term confit generally means to preserve, or to cook something in its own juices. This could apply to the classic Duck Confit, but can be used for other meats, or fruits. This time around, we’re using the fresh rabbit we picked up from the butcher a few days ago.

After breaking down the rabbits, we cured the back legs for three days in a mixture of salt, sugar, herbs and spices. Here’s a pic of the ingredients- Image

Regarding the spice blend, it is up to your liking. I went with the following;

Black Peppercorns

Bay Leaves

Jamaican Allspice

Coriander

French Thyme

Rosemary

Garlic

Juniper Berries

 

For the berries and bay, I used a mortar and pestle to break them up a bit, keeping them coarse, and crushed the garlic and rosemary by hand, while mixing up the salt and brown sugar. Once this mixture is combined, add freshly washed and paper towel dried leg pieces, coating them fully-

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tossing to coat each piece and place in the pan-

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Pack these legs with the salt, sugar and flavor, making sure to add the salt/sugar mixture to each layer, covering them completely-

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Nice! Once all pieces are coated and layered, it’s time to cover them with film or foil and place them in the fridge for up to three days, to let them sit and think about what they’ve done.

After two or three days, remove the entire lot and give them a full rinse in running water. This will remove the salt/sugar mixture, but they will have taken on the herb flavors. Now, for the magic. Give them a pat dry with clean paper towels, re-layering them in a clean hotel pan, or similar cooking pan. Make sure you’ve got a deep enough pan, as we’re going to add enough olive oil to cover the tops of these by at least one inch,

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That done, these will need to go into a preheated 225 degree oven for four hours. Once finished,
remove from the oven and rest on the counter for 1/2 hour to cool down a bit, before placing the entire pan into the fridge. Remember, that part of the process is keeping the finished meat under the oil and away from air, and will keep for several weeks, up to a few months under refrigeration.

Rabbit: Breaking Down a Carcass, Oven Fried Recipe

30 Jul

A few weeks ago, Loren came down from the tree house (his office on the second floor) with some information regarding rabbits, local supplier, close to us…it all sounded great. Continue reading

Galette des Rois

3 Jul

Galette des Rois.

Galette des Rois

3 Jul

If you’ve read any of my posts, you know I keep saying, “how easy it is”, or “quick and easy”. Seriously, there is always 15 minutes that you can spare to make something pretty incredible that looks like you spent all day on it, here’s a great example-

Remember that post about the quick puff pastry? Well, here’s two 1/2 batches out of the fridge and ready to roll. Remember that Nut Creme (Frangipane) recipe I post about earlier? That’s the filling for this bad boy.

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Line a 1/2 sheet pan with parchment, and label if needed (making one or more of these is easier to find in a fridge or walk-in full).

Roll out one of the 1/2 batches, evenly to about 1/4 inch thick. I’ve used a pie tin to give me an approximate 10 inch circle, cut out and remove the scraps. Place the first circle of pastry onto the lined sheet pan. Image

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I’ve traced a light circle, using the pointy end of a chopstick, approximately 1 inch from the edge of the circle. This comes in handy when you are filling this, so you don’t get too close to the edge, and you have an edge to egg wash-glue the top and bottom pieces together.

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Filling goes on. Using a small offset spatula, evenly spread out the filling, right up to the traced edge. This hazelnut filling with black pepper will go nicely with raspberries. These IQF raspberries we froze ourselves, finding choice berries at the farmers market, and freezing (spread out) on a lined sheet pan. Once completely frozen, they’re placed into a freezer safe container, until they’re needed. Quick and easy, remember?

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Second 1/2 package of puff gets rolled out for the top layer. I’ve used the pie tin again, but have cut this circle slightly larger, as the filling in the bottom layer will take up some room, when you lay the top down.

Egg wash gently around the circle, taking care not to get any on the sides, the multi-layered puff pastry will not rise if it’s secured down with egg wash.

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Top layer goes down, over the first, filled layer..Take care to match up sides all the way around, this will give a nicer edge and finish to the overall galette.

Now, for some fun. There’s tons of designs you can do to the top; I’ve chosen a classic design. Using a sharp paring knife, score lightly (maybe 1/3 or less) into the pastry, creating the design you like. Once finished, you can place (wrapped lightly) in the fridge until you need it for later in the day, or tomorrow.

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When you bake off-

Preheat Oven to 425

1-Egg wash pastry prior to placing in the oven. Remember to not egg wash the edge/sides of the galette or pastry you are baking, this will minimize rise and “puff”

2-Oven at 425 for the first 15 minutes

3-Reduce oven temperature to 350 for the remaining 20 or so minutes to finish, revealing a medium to dark golden brown pastry.

4-In production, I’m used to leaving this on the pan, once removed from the oven to cool. In this state, it will firm up a bit when cooled, so you can move it to a platter prior to serving.

Here’s the completed galette-

 

Nut Creme

3 Jul

Nut Creme.

Nut Creme

3 Jul

Minds out of the gutters, please, this blog is not called Chefs Gone Wild…..yet. This is a really easy filling, usually referred to as Frangipane. We’ve changed the type of nut here, from Almonds to Hazelnuts, because hey…we’re literally surrounded by Hazelnut farms here in Willamette Valley.

Here’s a rundown of the ingredients you’ll need to make this yield, usually enough for a 10″ Galette des Rois:

3 oz Unsalted Butter, at room temperature

3 oz Sugar

1 Egg, at room temperature

1 Egg Yolk, at room temperature

1/4 tsp Vanilla

1 Tbl Rye, Bourbon, Rum, Liquor of Choice

pinch of salt

1/2 tsp cracked black pepper (optional, I just like the pepper with Hazelnuts)

1 oz AP Flour

3 oz Ground Nut Meal of Choice (today is hazelnuts, tomorrow….who knows)

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You can do this by hand if you like, or use the mixer, with a paddle attachment. Either way, add the sugar and butter together and cream until light and fluffy (just like me).  Image

With a fork, lightly scramble the eggs,add the vanilla and the liquor of choice, and add slowly to the butter/sugar mixture…it may look a little separated. If it does, stop the mixer and scrape the bowl down with a spatula, and work it in a little better before restarting the mixer.

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In a bowl, fork together the nut meal, salt and flour. This breaks up any chunks of flour or nut meal, so you won’t have any lumps in the finished creme.

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salt & pepper goes in to the bowl

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Add this to the butter/sugar/egg mixture and paddle until just incorporated.

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Ta-dah! Done and ready to use. If you want to, remove to a smaller container, wrap and refrigerate for no more than 3 days (raw eggs you know). To see how this finished creme can be used, be sure to check out our Galette des Rois, or King Cake.