Sunday, May 9, 2010


Yesterday, my day was spent in food.  

Reading about food.
Planning what food to make.
Shopping for food.
Making food.
Eating food.  
Writing about food.  

I can't imagine a better day.
In the morning, after perusing cookbooks and blogs, Steve and I went to the New Haven farmer's market for the first time this year.  We purchased:

fresh baby lettuces, bagged, from the Yale Sustainable Food Project garden on Edwards 

large, pale brown eggs 
tiny, bright red radishes with green leaves
potatoes, still a little bit dirty 
all from George Hall Farm in Simsbury

thick-cut, smoked bacon from Four Mile River Farm in Old Lyme

a pretzel from SoNo Baking Company in Norwalk

Then, we came home and cooked.  For dinner we ate

anchovy gougeres from Alice Waters' The Art of Simple Food
Villa Wolf Gewurztraminer
baby lettuces salad with olive oil and lemon vinaigrette, avocado, and roasted beets
grilled rack of capretto, from Dom's home in Sheffield, MA, and our favorite place to buy meat, Moon in the Pond Farm
baked potatoes with olive oil, cream, and parmigiano
Palmiers, recipe below

Afterwards, we felt full, and lucky.

Recipe from Sur La Table baking workshop I took in March

2-3 c granulated sugar
1 batch quickest puff pastry--see recipe below (or 2 sheets frozen puff pastry, thawed and unfolded into a rectangle)

Roll dough out using sugar as you would with flour.  Press about 1/2 cup sugar into dough using a rolling pin, turn over, and do the same on the other side.

Fold both outer edges of doug in toward the middle from top to bottom.  Then fold the rectangle of dough in half, from left to right.  Finally, fold bottom edge up to the top one.  Set aside any remaining sugar on a small plate.  Press the dough lightly, then chill for 30 minutes.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Slice the folded dough every 1/3 inch and dip the cut sides into the sugar before placing on a parchment-lined baking sheet.  Leave 2 inches of space around each cookie.  

Bake for 10 minutes on each side, until they are well carmelized.  The color should be deep amber, not brown.  Cool pastries for a few minutes until crisp and serve warm.  

Quickest Puff Pastry

2 1/2 sticks cold, unsalted butter
1/2 c cold tap water
1 tsp salt
2 c unbleached all-purpose flour

Cut 2 sticks butter into 1/2 inch dice and refrigerate. 

Measure the water and stir in the salt to dissolve.  Set aside.

Coarsely dice the remaining 4 T butter.  Place flour in the work bowl of a food processor and 4 T of butter.  Pulse until the butter is absorbed--it should be ground finely, with no pieces of butter showing. 

Add the chilled butter and pulse a couple of times to distribute.  Shape dough into a rectangle and place between 2 pieces of plastic wrap.  Press dough with a rolling pin to flatten, then roll back and forth several times with a rolling pin to make a 12x18 inch rectangle.  

Peel away top layer of plastic wrap and turn dough over onto the floured work surface.  Peel away the second layer of plastic wrap and fold the dough in thirds the short way, to make a 4x18 inch rectangle.  Then roll the dough up from one of the 4-inch ends.  Make sure to roll the end under the dough.  Press the roll of dough out into a square, wrap in plastic, and refrigerate for 1 hour, or until firm.  

Use dough within 2 to 3 days.  Or freeze up to one month and defrost in refrigerator overnight before using.  

*Adapted from "How to Bake" by Nick Malgieri, and included in our recipes from a baking workshop I took at Sur La Table in March with Chef Meg Buchsbaum.


becca said...

It looks like you had a wonderful day :) It's good to see you're doing well! Keep up all the lovely cooking and baking!

Brewfus said...

A perfect day - all around! From morning coffee and the market to dinner on the porch. The only possible improvement? Limiting myself to 2 or 3 (instead of 6 or 7) palmiers... Mmm...

brubaker wildflower said...

how I wish we could share some of these days in person and not vicariously.....although we do love reading about them. (there is a book in here somewhere, i am sure!!)
great photographs also....
you two inspire us!! :0)

the old curmudgeon said...

What a wonderful Sunday followed by special treats on Monday. Wow. I thought we were doing well with blackened salmon and catfish along with grilled steak and fresh morels (given to us, not found by us) for a Sunday evening meal. Actually, now that I think about it, we did do well. It will just be a bit longer before the vegetables are from the garden. Keep on cookin'.