Tag Archives: Julia Child

Braised Short Ribs {Picture Tutorial}

16 Jan

 

After a dinner at McDonald’s on Thursday, and a rotisserie chicken from the grocery store on Friday… I was beginning to think my domestic side had flown the coop. Thankfully, I’m baaaaaack! I drew inspiration from my new Le Creuset dutch oven {which I’ve found out are considered ‘vintage’} and a blog post from the Pioneer Woman. The result: Braised Short Ribs and Garlic Whipped Potaotes! {dessert will follow in the next post, and was also amazing!}

 

Thanks to the Pioneer Woman for this recipe idea. I fully intended on following the recipe exactly as it was written, but the grocery store didn’t have Pancetta {I used regular, thick cut bacon} … and although I took a picture of flour as one of my ingredients, I must have been spacing out at the time and didn’t even use it. Everything turned out wonderful though and there were lots of fully and happy tummies in my house tonight! So, here ya go!

 

You will need:

6-8 Whole Beef Short Ribs

Salt and Pepper to taste

1/4 cup of All-Purpose Flour (I did not use this, and will explain later)

6 pieces of Pancetta (I used regular, thick-cut bacon – diced)

2 TBSP Olive Oil

1 Medium Onion – Diced

3-4 Whole Carrots – Diced

2 Whole Shallots – Minced

2 Cups Red Wine

2 Cups Beef Broth

2 Sprigs of Thyme

2 Sprigs of Rosemary

 

And, here’s what you do:

1. Salt and Pepper generously (This is where it is recommended that you roll the ribs around in flour – I forgot, and it worked out just fine.)

2. In a large dutch oven {Hooray}, cook the Pancetta (our in our case, bacon) over medium heat until completely crispy and all the fat is rendered. Remove bacon and set aside. Don’t discard grease.

3. Add olive oil to pan with grease, and raise temperature to high heat. Brown ribs on all sides {no more than 45 seconds on each side} Remove and set aside.

{Note: I thought I was going to burn down the house. The pan really needs to be HOT in order to braise the edges … and it smokes and pops, etc. But it does the trick!} This is also where I started to run around the house screaming “Come see, Come see! Look! Look what I’m cooking! ….

4. Next, turn temperature back to medium. Add onions, carrots, and shallots to pan for 2 minutes. Then, pour in wine and scrape the bottom of the pan to get all the good stuff off the bottom. Bring to a boil for approx 2 minutes.

5. Add broth, 1 teaspoon of salt, and plenty of pepper. Taste and add more if needed. Add ribs {they should be almost completely covered} and the full sprigs of Thyme and Rosemary

6. Put lid on and cook for 2 hours at 350 degrees. Reduce heat to 325 and cook for an additional 30-40 minutes. When done, remove pot from oven and let sit for 20 minutes. Fat will rise to the top – skim it off before serving. Serve 2 ribs on a bed of garlic mashed potatoes (see previous blog for Julia Child recipe – de’lish) … spoon gravy/juice over ribs and potatoes!

 

Full tummies all around. This dish was ah’mazing and was actually pretty easy to make. Once the prep work is done… it does its magic all alone in the pot! Just make sure you have enough self control to wait nearly 3 hours to open the present! Hope you enjoy & as always, if you make it – I’d love to hear how it goes! Enjoy!

Creamed Spinach: Julia Child & Jacques Pepin ‘Cooking at Home’

1 Jan

 

I mentioned before that I had a great recipe for Creamed Spinach. Like some of the other recipes I have blogged about, it too is from Julia Child and Jacques Pepin’s cookbook: Cooking at Home. I have made this to accompany lamb, duck, and beef … and it was delicious each time. If there is a tedious part, I would say that it is taking the stems off the spinach. However, some grocery stores have a bag option available without stems. Other than that – the whole recipe is fairly simple.

 

Creamed Spinach

{Source: Julia and Jaques – Cooking at Home}

{Yields 4 Servings}

 

You will need:

2 – 10 ounce packages of baby spinach

1 TBSP Butter

1 TBSP Flour

1/4 Cup Heavy Whipping Cream (I use Stonyfield Organic)

Salt and Pepper

 

Here we go:

1. Stem the Spinach: Pull the stems out of the spinach. As mentioned before, some grocers offer this as an option in the bagged salad area.

2. ‘Wash’ the leaves in a bowl of water to loosen any dirt. Repeat if necessary to get all the dirt out. Remove the leaves from the water.

3. Drop the leaves into a large pot of boiling, salted water. {4-5 quarts} Cover the pot only until steam starts to escape; then uncover at once! Let boil a minute or two, until spinach is wilted and only partially tender.

4. Remove to a large bowl of ice water. This stops the cooking and sets the green color. When it is chilled, remove by big handfuls and squeeze out as much water as you can. {Very fun! Like Play-Dough!}

**This can all be done the day before and kept in a plastic bag in the refrigerator**

5. Briefly saute the spinach in a frying pan with 1 tablespoon of butter, to evaporate the moisture. Stir in 1 tablespoon of flour and continue to slow saute for about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and blend in 1/4 cup of heavy cream. Bring to simmer again for two minutes or so, blending in drops of more cream if the spinach seems too thick.

6. Season carefully with salt and pepper (a little goes a long way) Blend in a bit more butter if you’d like.

 

Simple and easy, but tastes delicious. Those are my kind of recipes! I made this for my family not too long ago, and got rave reviews. Make sure to follow the recipe the first few times you make it, when the proportions of cream and flour are off .. it just doesn’t taste the same! This would also be a really fun recipe to have your kids help you with. Taking the stems off the spinach, washing it, and squeezing the excess water after the ice bath are all steps they can help you with … hey, maybe they will even like spinach when their done!

 

Enjoy and Happy New Year! And, as always, if you make it – I’d love to hear how it goes!

Regurgitation, Yarn, and Kitchen Gadgets: Life

30 Dec

 

Wow, It’s only been one day off and I feel like I’ve cheated on my blogging friends. I’ve been so busy with life the last two days that I haven’t had time to sit at a computer! {Shocker} I had the first test of the regurgitation of my new found knowledge, and did wonderfully. I have one more part before I’ve met my goal. It feels good to set goals and accomplish them! A long time has passed since I graduated college and I was hesitant about how this whole “expanding my brain” thing would work out .. I guess I’ve still got it in me afterall. And, its good to know you can learn something new every day!

 

In the mad dash of the last two days, I haven’t had much time to work on my blanket. Although, I was able to stop by the craft store and buy them completely out of the brand/color yarn I’m working with. {and it was on sale} Oh, and my lovely brother gave me the most fabulous idea … crocheted laptop sleeves! I’m envisioning making a ‘pillow case’ and then putting a fabric liner and zipper inside to give a little added protection to the sleeve. {I’m sure it will not be that easy, but a girl can dream} My brother already asked for the first sample… we’ll see! Just think of all the possibilities of color and style! Mmmmm. Fun!

 

Guess who came to my house today!?

My new batch of Netflix came in the mail today {love them} and I’m so excited to sit down and watch! I have the first three disks of the Julia Child and Jacquese Pepin PBS series: Cooking at Home. I’m such a nerd, but I really am looking forward to watching and learning some new recipes! {And, of course ‘oohing’ and ‘aweing’ at the fun kitchen gadgets that I will want to run out and purchase!} I’ll have to keep you all posted on that!

 

Well, I believe it’s time to settle down with a nice glass of wine, the dog, and the boyfriend, and just unwind. It’s been a crazy two days..  Night Ya’ll!

The Best Garlic Mashed Potatoes: Julia Child and Jacques Pepin

26 Dec

 

I’d like to share my ‘secret’ to the most amazing Garlic Mashed Potatoes you have ever put in your mouth! This is adapted from a Julia Child and Jacques Pepin recipe from their book: Cooking at Home.  Which I just learned was based on a PBS television series they did from 1999-2000. {I definitely added that series to my Nettflix queue!} If you aren’t a garlic lover, beware.

 

The Best Garlic Mashed Potatoes

 

You will need:

Peeled and Cubed Yukon Gold Potatoes (Approx 2 pounds)

Salt

Pepper

Milk (Approx 2/3 cup)

4 TBSP of Salted Butter

2/3 to 1 cup Heavy Whipping Cream (I use Stonyfield Organic)

10-15 cloves of garlic

 

Here’s what to do: (In total, this takes about an hour to complete)

The key to this recipe is the garlic and whipping cream. You will want to start this process about 20 -30 minutes before the potatoes begin to boil. Peel the garlic and place in a small sauce pan. Next, pour in the heavy whipping cream until the garlic is covered. Heat over low-medium heat, watching periodically. You want the garlic to become so soft it ‘mushes’ when you touch it with a spatula. This takes at least 20-30 minutes, and only gets better the longer you can wait. I usually cook mine for approximately 45 minutes. You will be able to tell it is ready when you have a creamy consistency and the garlic is ‘mushy.’ About 20 minutes into this process, you can start the potatoes. Remember when boiling your potatoes to add some salt to the water. Let them boil until they too are ‘mushy.’

 

Once your potatoes and garlic/whipping cream are ready, it’s time to put it all together. Drain potatoes AND PUT THEM BACK IN THE POT so you can burn off a bit of the moisture that remains. Add the 4 TBSP’s of butter and mash the potatoes very well. While you are doing this, heat up approx 2/3 cup of milk in the microwave. Next, you want to take your garlic/whipping cream and put it into the pot through a mesh strainer. Make sure you get all the cream out of the pan, and press most of the garlic through the mesh strainer with a spatula or spoon. Next, take the hot milk and add it a little bit at a time while whipping the potatoes (a whisk works well for me) until you get a creamy consistency. Finally, add salt and pepper to taste (I tend to use a good deal of salt and also prefer to use Sea Salt).

 

If you didn’t already catch on, you are basically making regular mashed potatoes with a few extra steps: the garlic whipping cream creation, and for some people hot milk is different. I really think these two steps make them extra creamy and obviously garlic filled! I’ve heard of people whipping them with an electric  mixer, but I don’t have one .. so the combination of a masher and whisk work great for me!

 

Hope you enjoy the potatoes. I know that my house could NOT survive without some form of potatoes. If you make these, I would love to hear how they turn out! Oh, and here is a picture of the cookbook I was talking about. It’s a GREAT one to have in your home!