Archive for March, 2009

Love of parchment paper

March 29, 2009

Many thanks to those of you who are feeding my parchment paper obsession.  I have recently been on a brownie kick and it also came in quite handy with some Pane di Como Antico from The Italian Baker book.

I found the perfect brownie recipe in The Fannie Farmer Baking Book, where I should have looked to begin with.  The latest recipe of Moist Chocolate Brownies were made with some chopped toasted almonds and amaretto.  The parchment paper makes life so much easier.  I can take the brownies right out of the pan and cut them on the cutting board, stack them on a paper plate and take them downstairs to the concierge, as a “get well soon” gift.  Not that brownies are necessarily going to help when you’ve cut your arm with a machete.  (He’s much better now and got the stitches out last week.)

Yesterday, I made the Pane Como again and it came out even better than the previous time.  And, I’m crediting the parchment paper.  I have a small problem with my ceramic bread form – it’s a little too short.  In the past I’ve had problems with the bread running off the edge and creating a little frown.

This time, I put it on a piece of parchment and in the bread mold.  Not only did I not need to grease the mold, the paper was longer than the mold and any run off was contained, and the bread browned better on the paper than in the form.  Success on all levels.

In non-parchment paper cooking news, I made a really interesting blood orange olive oil cake and with my excessive orange purchasing lately, it is easy and fast.  I’ve never seen blood oranges here, and when I asked a friend about them she was really confused.  I used regular juicing oranges and the cake was very tasty.  I may try the original recipe soon.

Also, I got a tip from one of Adolfo’s friends about a charcuterie near my regular supermarket.  I went yesterday and there was practically a line out the door.  Everyone was getting prosciutto and I got in line.  I was able to come home with some prosciutto, salami and Dutch Gouda.  I also tried the Chilean Gouda and it was obvious why it was significantly less expensive.  There were too many interesting options listed on their wall, so I will have to go back to try the pastrami (!), Gruyere, bacon, Camembert and other interesting goodies.

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Olive Paste

March 22, 2009

I made this while dad was here visiting and he wanted the recipe:

1 c. sliced kalamata olives
1/2 clove of garlic
1 t. fresh thyme (approx.)
1/2 t. fresh ground pepper
2 anchovies
1 T. olive oil (extra virgin)

Combine all ingredients in a food processor and process to the desired consistency.

We ate this on toast while Dad was here, but yesterday I made it again and spread on some pizza with onions and it was pretty good.