Category Archives: Cookbooks

Moosewood Cookbook’s Pasta Al Cavolfiore [Spaghetti with Cauliflower]

Forbidden Rice Blog | Moosewood's Cauliflower Spaghetti (8 of 8)

Hello World,

Long time no see. How in the world we’ve reached the middle of November eludes me. It appears this humble little blog inevitably took the back burner to busy life schedules. Regardless, here we are, with one of my favorite recipes for over two decades.

Mollie Katzen’s original Moosewood Cookbook was released in the late 70’s. My parents received the book from my dad’s parents as a wedding gift. Growing up, there were two staples in our house: the lasagna and the pasta al cavolfiore, or spaghetti with cauliflower. The lasagna was often reserved for dinners in which we had company over. The spaghetti? One of my favorite meals to request for my birthday. When a kid requests cauliflower spaghetti for any meal… really, it cannot be bad.

The cookbook was re-released in the early 2000’s as a 40th Anniversary edition, but to be frank, the recipes in the 70’s version are much better. If you’re looking for recipes that do in fact have less butter, cheese, dairy, then the new edition is for you. Perhaps for myself it’s as much about nostalgia – the memory of my mom in the kitchen chopping cauliflower or the smell of basil cooking with garlic in hot olive oil – as the less healthy recipes. Regardless, here’s the original pasta al cavolfiore recipe. May it bring you as much joy as it does for my heart and belly.

Forbidden Rice Blog | Moosewood's Cauliflower Spaghetti (2 of 8)

Moosewood Cookbook’s Pasta Al Cavolfiore [Spaghetti with Cauliflower]

Serves 6-8 folks.

Ingredients:
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
1 medium head of cauliflower, broken or cut into 1-inch flowerets
3 medium cloves garlic, minced
1 bay leaf
2 teaspoons dried basil
2 cups tomato puree
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 cup sharp cheddar cheese
1 pound uncooked, thin spaghetti

Forbidden Rice Blog | Moosewood's Cauliflower Spaghetti (5 of 8)

Directions:
Heat half of the oil (2 tablespoons) in a deep skillet. Add the garlic, bay leaf, and basil. Sauté until fragrant (about 1 minute). Add the cauliflower then sprinkle with the salt. Cook until the cauliflower is tender (15-20 minutes).

Once the cauliflower is tender, add the tomato puree, stirring to combine. Simmer for 15-20 minutes. In a bowl, combine the parmesan and cheddar cheeses, mixing thoroughly.

While the sauce simmers, cook the pasta according to the package instructions.

Once the pasta has cooked, drain. In a large baking dish toss the cooked pasta with the remaining oil (2 tablespoons), butter and half of the cheese. Pour the cauliflower sauce over the pasta, then top with the remaining cheese. Serve immediately.

Forbidden Rice Blog | Moosewood's Cauliflower Spaghetti (3 of 8)

Forbidden Rice Blog | Moosewood's Cauliflower Spaghetti (7 of 8)

Forbidden Rice Blog | Moosewood's Cauliflower Spaghetti (1 of 8)

Forbidden Rice Blog | Moosewood's Cauliflower Spaghetti (4 of 8)

Bouchon Bakery: Chocolate Chunk and Chip Cookies

photo 1Chocolate chip cookies are the quintessential go-to favorite dessert, after-school or tucked-into-your-home-packed-lunch treat. Everyone has their preferred chocolate chip cookie. Some like the soft, chewy types. Others prefer the crunchy kinds that don’t have a hint of softness at all. If you’re me, you prefer something in-between those two types – a crisp outer edge, with just the right amount of chewiness in the center. Just as everyone has their preferred type of chocolate chip cookie, everybody has (or should have) a good, go-to recipe.

Can I tell you the truth – I don’t have a good go-to recipe. Chocolate chip cookies are the one single cookie variety that eludes me constantly. When I make chocolate chip cookies, I usually think things are going wonderfully. The dough comes together brilliantly, tastes incredible, and then I follow various directions and wind up with pancake-like cookies. Or one gigantic sheet pan-of-cookie. I am on the hunt for the perfect chocolate chip cookie. We are not there yet, you and I.

But this recipe… it’s a good one. It isn’t The One. But it’s closer than I’ve been before. This recipe comes from Bouchon Bakery, one of Thomas Keller’s brilliant restaurants. Thomas Keller, the American chef, restaurateur, and cookbook writer. Thomas Keller, the owner and mastermind of incredible restaurants I dream about checking out one day, like The French Laundry in Yountville, California (whose gardens I dream of equally as much). These cookies are the lovely combination I enjoy so much – crisp and tender at the same time. The flavor is pleasurable – the hint of blackstrap molasses shining through without overpowering the brown sugar sweetness of this cookie, laden with both chocolate chunks and chips. This cookie… it’s a good one. Give it a try while I hunt down something even closer to The One for us. Maybe try out another recipe from the Bouchon Bakery cookbook – everything sounds good and the mouth-watering photographs are gorgeous as well.

photo 4

Bouchon Bakery‘s Chocolate Chunk and Chip Cookies

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups + 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar, packed
1 3/4 teaspoons unsulphured blackstrap molasses
1/2 cup + 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
2/3 cup chunks of dark chocolate (70-74%, in 3/8-inch pieces)
1/2 cup chocolate chips
12 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
60 grams eggs (about 1 large egg), room temperature

photo 1

For directions, read on here

The Perfect Scoop by David Lebovitz: Chocolate Ice Cream

IMG_6261

Last week I shared a recipe from David Lebovitz’s book, The Perfect Scoop, for vanilla ice cream. This week, I’m bringing you another recipe from the same book – chocolate ice cream. Since these two recipes were my first attempt at homemade ice cream, I decided to keep things pretty un-fancy as far as elaborate ingredient lists are concerned. I figure if I can get basics like chocolate and vanilla ice cream down, then adding things into them later will be an easy way to dress things up.

Much like the vanilla ice cream, this chocolate ice cream is straightforward. I suggest using high quality chocolate, as the flavor will shine through handsomely. The ice cream itself is decadently rich and a good quality chocolate simply steps up the intensity of the chocolate flavor in the final ice cream. I’ve started joking that my KitchenAid ice cream attachment was a bad decision gift request, because with its ease, throwing together homemade ice cream is simple and not at all time-consuming. I  suppose there are worse things that I could be making – or consuming…

IMG_6338

Chocolate Ice Cream
Recipe from David Lebovitz’s The Perfect Scoop

Yields approximately one quart of ice cream.

Ingredients:
2 cups heavy cream
3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder (this is what I used)
5 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped (I used this dark chocolate)
2/3 cup sugar
pinch of salt
1 cup whole milk
5 large egg yolks
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:
Warm half of the cream and cocoa powder over medium heat, whisking until the cocoa blends into the cream. Bring the mixture to a boil and then reduce the heat to low, simmering for 30 seconds, constantly whisking. Remove from the heat and add your chopped chocolate, stirring until the mixture is smooth. Stir in the remaining cream, then pour the mixture into a large bowl (I prefer steel), being sure to scrape down the sides. Set a mesh strainer over the top of the bowl.Warm up the whole milk, sugar, and salt in the same pot you just used, over medium heat. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg yolks until creamy. Slowly pour the warmed milk into the egg yolks, stirring constantly. Scrape the egg/milk mixture back into the pot. Stir the mixture constantly over medium heat, scraping the bottom of the pot as you go. Continue cooking the custard until the the mixture has thickened enough to coat the back of your spoon or spatula.Pour the custard through the mesh strainer, into the chocolate cream mixture. Stir in the vanilla extract. Continue stirring the custard over an ice bath, until the custard cools. Place the custard into your refrigerator until it’s thoroughly chilled.When you are ready to churn the ice cream, remove the vanilla bean from the custard. Freeze the mixture in your ice cream maker, according to the manufacturer’s instructions. The ice cream will not freeze hard in the machine, but reach a soft-serve consistency. You can serve it like this if you wish (it’s delicious) or scoop the mixture into a lidded container and allow it to harden in the freeze for 2 to 4 hours, for it to reach a scoop-able consistency.

IMG_6253

IMG_6589

The Perfect Scoop by David Lebovitz: Vanilla Ice Cream

image_8

I understand we’re nearing the middle of January, but I’ll tell you right now – ice cream has no particular season. It really is enjoyable year-round. My mother-in-law gave me the KitchenAid ice cream attachment for Christmas and since then, I’ve been researching (and pinning) ice cream recipes left and right.

There are numerous flavors I cannot wait to experiment with, but I have never made homemade ice cream in my life (until now) and decided that something extremely straightforward and not at all fancy would be a good place to start.

image_1

I checked out David Lebovitz’s book, The Perfect Scoop at our local library. David is a professional cook, pastry chef, author, and blogger. I’ve been a fan of his blog and recipes for a few years and knew that this book wouldn’t lead me astray when it came to finding a good ice cream recipe. This book features numerous homemade ice cream recipes, sorbets, granitas, and other frozen treats. Many of the recipes sound incredibly irresistible… Lavender-honey, fresh ginger, pear-caramel, roasted banana, and panforte (an Italian cake featuring toasted almonds, spices and candied orange peel) being at the top of my list for recipes to attempt.

For my first ever homemade ice cream, I decided to follow David’s recipe for vanilla bean ice cream. I halved the recipe, as we also had dark chocolate brownies on hand and no need for a full quart of ice cream. After the first bite, however, I wished I had made the full recipe as this ice cream is perfectly sweet, creamy, and deliciously amazing on its own. So good in fact, my husband, Silas and I decided to have dessert at 4:30 in the afternoon when the ice cream finished, before dinner rather than after.

image_3


Vanilla Ice Cream
Recipe modified from David Lebovitz’s The Perfect Scoop

Yields approximately two cups of ice cream.

Ingredients:

1/2 cup whole milk
6 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 cup heavy cream
pinch of salt
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
3 large egg yolks
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

image_7
Directions:

Warm the milk, sugar, salt, and half of the heavy cream in a small pot over medium heat. Once the milk is warm, scrape the seeds from the halved vanilla bean into the milk mixture. Add the scraped bean, too. Cover the pot and allow it to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes, allowing the vanilla to flavor the milk mixture.

Pour the remaining heavy cream into a small bowl (steel is preferable if you have one) then set a mesh strainer over the top of the bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg yolks. Slowly pour the warm milk mixture into the yolks, stirring constantly. Scrape the warmed egg yolks and milk back into your small sauce pot.

Over medium heat,  stir the egg/milk mixture constantly, scraping the bottom of the pot while you mix. Continue stirring and cooking the mixture until it thickens and can coat the back of your spoon or spatula. Pour the custard through the mesh strainer, into the remaining heavy cream. Put the vanilla bean into the custard, then stir in the vanilla extract. Continue stirring the custard over an ice bath, until the custard cools. Place the custard into your refrigerator until it’s thoroughly chilled.

When you are ready to churn the ice cream, remove the vanilla bean from the custard. Freeze the mixture in your ice cream maker, according to the manufacturer’s instructions. The ice cream will not freeze hard in the machine, but reach a soft-serve consistency. You can serve it like this if you wish (it’s delicious) or scoop the mixture into a lidded container and allow it to harden in the freeze for at least one hour for it to reach a scoop-able consistency.

image

image_2

image_5