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Recipes that include thyme

Duck Fat Turkey Meatballs

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

After roasting that duck the other night, we were left with excess duck fat, which we of course saved. I decided to make turkey meatballs, fried in the duck fat, for a nice twist. You won’t really taste definable duck fat, but I do think it adds to the flavor of this dish. On a separate note, I usually brunois carrots for my red sauces, because carrots add a natural sweetness. I was feeling lazy today so I decided to try shredding the carrots on a box grater and the result was great. I may end up doing it the lazy way more often.

Duck Fat Turkey Meatballs 4

*some new photos added 11/23/09

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Roasted Duck with Cherry Balsamic Glaze

Monday, May 26, 2008

Mmmm….duck, another meal I should not have made right before the wedding. It’s just so delicious though. I also find that whole duck is often over-cooked, or I just prefer under-cooked, whichever way you want to look at it but I don’t like dry meat. This preparation yields a very moist little duck, and it’s relatively easy for such an impressive looking dinner. It’s perfect for a romantic dinner for two if you’ve been dating long enough not to care about being a little messy.

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Three Herb Pork Tenderloin on Ciabatta

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

I threw together this pork tenderloin, thinking that I would heat up some left over rice to serve with it, but then Lon called and he was going to be late coming home from work. The pork was already in the oven and almost ready to come out. It would no longer be hot when he arrived. Quickly, I switched dinner plans, the room temperature pork would now be made into a sandwich. When Lon got home, I sliced the pork into 1/2 inch slices, and laid it on ciabatta with a spread (half mayo/half whole grain mustard).

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Paella

Saturday, March 17, 2007

In Chinatown on Wednesday, Jessica and I picked up a huge pile of mussels and mahogany clams, we’re talking about four pounds here– they were just so cheap, $6 total. Jess had just under a pound for dinner that night, while I went to Devi.

So Thursday night we made paella! While there are many wonderful, foreign dishes that can be found in Manhattan, paella is really not one of them. In my experience, most paella in NYC is terrible, and trust me, I’ve searched. If I do discover any decent, digestible dishes, I’ll let you know.

In the meantime, I suggest you do as I do, and make your own paella. It’s substantially cheaper than can be bought, although it’s still quite an expensive dinner. I’ve made it at least half a dozen times, and am quite good at it by now. It’s delicious to practice! I’ve included my recipe and below that some notes on ensuring success.

Ingredients

  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large spanish onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 4 ounces chorizo sausage, diced
  • 4 skinless, boneless chicken thighs – cut into small chunks/strips
  • 12oz uncooked short grain, white rice
  • 5 cups chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup white wine (red is acceptable to)
  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme
  • 1 pinch saffron
  • salt to taste & ground black pepper to taste
  • 2 squid, cleaned and cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 2 tomatoes, seeded and chopped
  • 1/2 cup frozen green peas
  • 12 large shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 pound mussels, cleaned and debearded
  • 1 pound clams, cleaned
  • 1/4 cup chopped Italian flat leaf parsley
  • lemon, for garnish
  • Spanish paprika, for garnish

Directions

  1. Heat olive oil in a paella pan over medium heat. Add in onion, garlic and pepper; cook and stir for a few minutes. Add chorizo sausage, chicken, and rice; cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in 3 1/2 cups stock, wine & vinegar, thyme leaves, and saffron. Season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, and simmer for 15 minutes; stir occasionally.
  2. Taste the rice, and check to see if it is cooked. If the rice is uncooked (it likely will be), stir in 1/2 cup more stock. Continue cooking, stirring occasionally. Stir in additional stock if necessary, up to 2 cups additional stock, 5 cups total. Cook until rice is done.
  3. Stir in tomatoes and peas, arrange clams on top. Cook covered for 5 minutes. Stir in squid and arrange remaining seafood on top. Cover and cook for 5 minutes.
  4. Uncover and scatter parsley over the food. Serve with lemon garnish (perhaps covered in cheesecloth, stretch wraps), dust with paprika.

Tips for Success

  • Paella should have a complex flavor, developed from the smokiness of chorizo and dusting of paprika constrasted with the brightness of saffron, wine, and lemon. Know your flavors and how to develop them.
  • Paella is traditionally made using arborio rice. However, since it is expensive, rarely used, and difficult to work with, I prefer short grain rice (I also have a bucket around). Arborio is starchier, so to get the same texture, just work the short grain rice frequently and use more liquid than you normally would.
  • As you can tell from the directions, paella is cooked in successive layers of flavors. Use these as guides for how frequently to stir. In the beginning you can not over stir and at the end you can not under stir. In other words, stir frequently at the beginning and slow down with each step. By the end, when you’re adding seafood, do not stir AT ALL.
  • Plate with plenty of rice, seafood, lemon and paprika.

Mangia!

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