Archive for the ‘green beans’ Category

Saturday, May 19th, 2012

Top Ten Vegetables for Grilling

Yes, I know, things have been a little quiet around here. I hope to get back to it soon. In the mean time, check out the guest blog I wrote for Full Circle Farm: Top Ten Vegetables for Grilling



Monday, December 5th, 2011

Vegetable Terrine with Goat Cheese Inlay and the Final Challenge

Here it is. My last Charcutepalooza post. The challenge for this, the final month in our year of challenges? Show off a little. Basically, have a party, invite a bunch of friends and feed them until they are ready to burst.

Of course there were a few more guidelines than “just feed people”. A list of items (using at least four) that our meal needed to include: something smoked, cured or brined, something made with pork belly, a pate or terrine,  rillettes or confit and sausage of some kind.

I pulled out all of my trusty charcuterie books. For days I pored over them, considering my menu. A few items easily made the list (my buffalo chicken rillettes and pork belly confit) but some needed more consideration.

Finally, after days of adding something to my list only to replace it with something else two hours later, I settled on the following menu:

To start:
• Scotch Eggs
• Baguettes topped with Bacon Jam and Tomato Confit
• Buffalo Chicken Rillettes
• Baguettes topped with Goat Cheese and Lonzino

• Vegetable Terrine with Goat Cheese Inlay (based loosely on the version found in Charcuterie, recipe follows)
• Brined Pork Loin with Cured Lemons (from Thomas Keller’s Ad Hoc at Home)
• Brussels Sprouts with Bacon, Maple Syrup and Pecans
• Jim Drohman’s Pork Belly Confit with tender and bitter greens, mustard vinaigrette and sous vide eggs (pork belly recipe from Charcuterie)
• Polenta with Parmesan

And of course there was dessert (I served a nut tart I picked up at Will Bake for Food) and many plentiful cocktails (including a take on a lemon drop that included lavender and rosemary)

Ninety percent of my friends (and my husband) work at a the corporate office of a major corporation that does not allow anyone to take the day after Thanksgiving off work. So, that is the day I settled on for my gathering. Guests started arriving as they got off work and I started feeding them right away. And then I kept feeding them for the next four hours.

It was a glorious night of gluttony. Think about it, how often do you get to eat pork that has been prepared six different ways. The pork belly confit, which was cooked with cinnamon, cloves and allspice than deep fried was my favorite dish of the night, though the still-pink and meltingly tender pork loin was a close second. But then again, those brussels sprouts were pretty good too. Oh, and the veggie terrine…

I’m sad that my year of Charcutepalooza challenges has come to a close though I’m grateful for the new skills I’ve gained and the community of meat-enthusiasts that I have found. I plan to continue my learning and experimentation. Making my own bacon, grinding and stuffing my own sausage, whipping up a rillettes, just because. And now that I’ve got my curing chamber up and running, cured muscles and sausages are again within my grasp.

Vegetable Terrine with Goat Cheese Inlay
Recipe type: Appetizer
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
This vegetable terrine was a welcome addition to a very meat-centric meal. Add or subtract other vegetables as you see fit, just be sure to think about color transitions as you layer them in you terrine. Make sure to season each vegetable as you prepare it.
  • 1 eggplant
  • 2 zucchini
  • 2 yellow squash
  • 4 red pepper
  • 2 portobello mushrooms
  • 1 handful green beans
Goat Cheese Inlay
  • 3 roma tomatoes
  • 6 ounce Goat cheese, softened
  • 2 Tablespoon fresh soft herbs (parsley, basil, etc)
  • salt and pepper
Gelatin Vinaigrette
  • 2 teaspoon powdered gelatin
  • 3 Tablespoon Water
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 1 Clove garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • ¼ cup sherry vinegar
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • salt and pepper
  1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees. Slice the tomatoes into ¼ inch slices. Shake of as much liquid as you can. Spread the slices in a single layer on a baking sheet. Season with salt and pepper. Place in oven for 2-3 hours or until the tomatoes are dehydrated. Once cool, cut into ¼ inch pieces. (This step can be done 1-2 days in advance)
  2. Heat the grill or preheat the broiler.
  3. Slice the eggplant, zucchini and squash into ⅛ inch slices. Toss the slices with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Arrange in a single layer on a baking sheet and grill or broil, turning once until tender. Set aside to cool. Repeat the process with the mushrooms and green beans. Roast, peel and deseed the red peppers, leaving the pepper pieces as large as possible.
  4. Stir together the diced tomatoes, herbs and goat cheese. Season with salt and pepper then spoon the goat cheese onto a piece of plastic wrap and use it to form the goat cheese into a log shape the same length as the mold you plan to use.
  5. Heat the water in a small saucepan. Sprinkle the gelatin over it and allow it to bloom. Heat the bloomed gelatin over low heat until dissolved. Meanwhile, whisk together the remaining vinaigrette ingredients. Add the bloomed gelatin to the vinaigrette and set aside in a warm place.
  6. Line a terrine mold with plastic wrap leaving enough overhang on the two long sides to cover the terrine. Lay the eggplant slices over in the mold so that the ends hang over the sides. Brush them with the gelatin vinaigrette. Repeat the process with the zucchini. In the bottom of the terrine add a layer of green beans, followed by mushrooms, and red pepper, brushing each layer with vinaigrette. Spoon the goat cheese in a line down the middle of the terrine. Layer green beans and squash along the sides of the goat cheese. Add a layer of red pepper. Fold the zucchini flaps over, brush with vinaigrette and then finally fold over the eggplant flaps, brush with any remaining vinaigrette. Fold the plastic wrap over and refrigerate overnight.
  7. Remove the terrine from the refrigerator. Open the top flaps of plastic and turn the terrine onto a cutting board. Remove plastic and cut into ¾ inch slices.


Friday, July 10th, 2009

Potato Cake with Truffled Green Beans and Sauteed Mushrooms

The last few days, I have had no desire to eat at all. Which is really, really weird for me. Last night however, I finally got my appetite back, so I decided it was time to cook.

I took a look in the refrigerator and found some items that looked like they would make great side dishes, but no main dish candidates. The husband saw me staring into the fridge and made a suggestion, potatoes.

I found a few Yukon golds lurking in the back of the crisper drawer and decided to use them to make my main dish, a potato cake kind of similar to Pommes Anna.

Here’s the ingredients:
4 Yukon gold potatoes
2 Tablespoons butter
3 or so cloves garlic

I started by melting the butter over very low heat along with the garlic.

While it melted I used a mandolin to slice the potatoes (very carefully because that thing is wicked sharp).

I sliced the potatoes about 1/8″ thick (traditional Pommes Anna would cut the potatoes to about 1/16″ thick).

Next I got out a 9″ nonstick cake pan, brushed it with the garlic butter then added a layer of sliced potatoes.

Then I brushed this with more garlic butter,

and sprinkled it with a tiny bit of salt. I repeated this process a total of three times. I would have preferred it be a little thicker (more layers), but I really needed a 6″ or 7″ pan to accomplish this, and the only pan I have that is that size was not deep enough.

I put this into a 400 degree oven and let it bake for 45 minutes.

While the potatoes were in the oven, I started on the side dishes. Here’s the ingredients.

1 handful green beans trimmed and cut into 1″ pieces
truffle oil
3 slice bacon, chopped (optional)
6 mushrooms, sliced
1/2 cup white wine
2 teaspoon fresh tarragon

I tossed the green beans with some truffle oil and a little truffle salt. I considered sauteing the beans, but since the oven was on, I decided to roast them alongside the potatoes. I put them in the oven when there was 20 minutes left on the timer.

Once I put the green beans in the oven I cooked the bacon in a saute pan until it was nice and crispy, then I removed it from the pan and put it on a paper towel to drain. I left a little bit of the bacon fat in the pan and added the mushrooms to the pan to saute. If you don’t want to use the bacon, saute the mushrooms in olive oil instead.

When they were cooked through, I added the white wine and let it simmer until all the wine was gone.

At this point I added the fresh tarragon and the bacon.

When the potatoes were done cooking I removed the pan from the oven.

Then I turned the potato cake out onto a cutting board.

To plate, I cut the potato cake into quarters, put two on each plate and then spooned on some of the green beans and mushrooms to each plate. Alongside I served a salad made with red and purple radishes, cucumber, fresh mint, feta cheese and a splash of sherry vinegar.

At first I tried each thing individually. The potatoes were creamy and sweet on the inside, but the outside was so crispy and delicious (like yummy french fries). The truffle oil was a perfect accompaniment to the greens beans and the tarragon was delicious with the wine-infused mushrooms. Next I started mixing and matching flavors, a little mushroom with a little potato, a little mushroom with a little green bean, etc. It was all good and it was all good together. The husband liked everything too (especially the potatoes) which is good, because the whole thing started as his idea.

About Me

I'm a personal chef living happily with her picky-eater (but willing to try anything) husband, neurotic black lab and a red heeler puppy.

I watch way too much TV and enjoy hip-hop more than any reasonable grown-up should.

I'm an avid swimmer and sometime triathlete (whenever I'm not nursing an injury).

Find out more about me here.

About This Blog

I started this blog at a time when my personal chef business was quite slow and I needed to keep my mind busy and my skills sharp. But now, business is booming so I've had to put the blog on the back burner. So, no new recipes for now, but please enjoy my archives.

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