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Cheddar Bacon Biscuits July 4, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — crankychef @ 9:56 pm

I love baking, but I definitely prefer the savory over the sweet so I don’t get to do it enough. This is the cure for what ails me. These are totally worth getting up a little early to make, and they don’t even take that long. Great for houseguests, but worthy of any lazy Saturday morning.

Start by frying up 2-3 slices bacon. Turn your oven on to 400. While the bacon is cooking, make some coffee and start  your dough: Combine 2 cups flour with 1/2t baking soda and 1/4t salt. Using a pastry tool or two knifes, cut in 3 1/2 T cubed, chilled butter. Mix in your bacon (crumbled of course) and about 1/3 cup (or, uhm, more) finely grated sharp cheddar cheese. Toss in a half pint of buttermilk (or about a cup, if you measure from a larger container). Mix it all together. Drop by heaping spoonfuls on a greased cooking sheet. Smaller biscuits will take about 10 minutes, mine were about 20. they are ready when they are golden brown, and holy crap are they delicious. The inside is fluffy and moist and salty, while they outside has the perfect crunch.

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Spanish Friday

Filed under: Uncategorized — crankychef @ 9:48 pm

Instead of an appetizer, yesterday I made a delicious summer blackberry limeade.¬† The blackberry is definitely the strongest flavor and this juice isn’t too sweet, either. Simply blend 1 cup water and 1 cup blackberries. Strain out the seeds and solids. Stir in 1 cup sugar, 1/2 cup lime juice/juice of 4 limes, and another 5 cups water. Done!!

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Pan con tomate is the staple dish of Spanish tapas bars. It is incredibly simple and delicious, and is a healthy alternative to a heavily buttered garlic bread. Simply toast 1/2″ slices of soft loaf bread (batard is ideal, but you can wing it with others; 400 degrees for 10 minutes worked perfect for us). For each slice take half a clove of garlic, and rub it into the toast until you are left with just a little nubbin. This technique with raw garlic will give you that wonderful tongue zinging flavor that is lost with any cooking. Then take half a tomato, and rub that into your toast as well. This sweetens and moistens the bread. At this point, you are ready to go. If you want a little more flavor, salt & pepper and a light drizzle of olive oil will do the trick. Thin slices of manchego cheese will take the flavor an entirely different direction, try it both with and without and you will be hard pressed to pick a favorite.

Garlic shrimp. Another incredibly simple and healthy recipe. Sautee up about 6 cloves chopped garlic in a couple T olive oil, add diced dried red chile or chili flakes as you prefer. After about a minute or so throw in a bay leaf and some medium sized shrimp (deveined), cook a few minutes (will vary depending on size of shrimp/prawns) until thoroughly pink. Discard bay leaf and garnish with parsley.

Green beans with olives. Trim fresh green beans and cook in boiling water for about 7-9 minutes. Drain. Toss with 1-2 T butter and s&p (to taste). Toss in a handful of chopped Spanish green olives. The olives are mellowed by both the butter and the green beans, I was very impressed that the saltiness was not overpowering.

No cava at the grocery store, so we enjoyed our Spanish expedition with some prosecco:

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