remembering the disremembered

I have been negligent. At least when it comes to the following three dishes.

But data is data, after all — and data is recorded.

I don’t have much for stories. This sourdough rye bread was baked last August, the day before I left for New England. Is that an excuse for neglecting to include it in my journal? The dough wouldn’t raise. I remember that. But it was awesome — as most homemade breads are awesome.

This represents my 29th completed bread from Reinhart’s The Bread Baker’s Apprentice (percentage complete: 52.73%).

sourdough rye sourdough rye breadAh, and here is a mango lassi, adapted from Krieger’s The Food You Crave. This was made last November, and the mango — perhaps obviously — wasn’t ripe. I remember thinking it needed a bit of vodka.

This drink is my 55th completed recipe from Krieger’s book. Percentage complete: 26.32%

mango lassi 2012-11-19 13.35.45And lastly, a pomegranate and butternut squash khoresh from Batmanglij’s The Food You Crave — made just about a week ago. Batmanglij calls for chicken legs, but we used boneless breasts. I am becoming partial, I think, to pomegranates.

I now have completed 34 recipes from this book. Percentage complete: 12.69%

pomegranate khoresh    

game hens with pomegranate

game hens with pomegranateI have had my eye on this recipe in Batali’s Molto Italiano for some time — almost two years. Yet, for one reason or another, the moment never seemed quite right for a Cornish hen. I hadn’t had one before this Christmas. And although I like to imagine that I am fairly open to various types of foods, the truth of the matter is that I usually find myself floundering when it comes to meats. Cooking these hens, in fact, may have been my first time cooking something whole — or, well, whole-ish.

But my mother and I cooked this together on the 25th. We stuffed each hen with pomegranate seeds that had been soaked with fresh mint in Marsala wine. We then browned the hens in a fragrant sage butter sauce before roasting them in the oven. Although I still lay claim to the belief that a whole bird on my plate is slightly hard to eat, I must admit that they turned out rather well.

I now have completed 69 of Batali’s 327 recipes. Percentage complete: 21.10%

I can’t take credit for this next dish — but what’s December without my grandmother’s stollen?


taftun flat bread

taftun bread

December 24, 2012 was a momentous day, for more reasons than one. I made, for instance, this taftun flat bread — the first bread formula that I have attempted since 2008 that is not featured in Peter Reinhart’s The Bread Baker’s Apprentice. It’s ridiculous, but I felt just slightly disloyal as I measured (without a digital scale, no less) the ingredients listed in Najmieh Batmanglij’s Food of Life.

taftun breadBut just slightly.

taftun breadWe served this pita-like bread with a lovely platter of fresh herbs, goat cheese, and toasted nuts. Sadly, no photo of this platter exists — I must re-create it soon! I now have completed 33 of Batmanglij’s 268 recipes. Percentage complete: 12.31%