Monthly Archives: February 2010

S’more Marshmallows

When an idea or recipe jumps into my head it will eventually get made, its just  that sometimes it gets tucked to the back of mind and can stay there for years before I finally get around to it (see my next post). Todays post was not one of those times. The idea for these popped into head in the morning and by the afternoon I was in the kitchen. I love s’mores but only had a “real” one in the last six months. When I was younger I was a scout and it wasnt really a great fit, one of the few things I did enjoy was the toasted marshmallows between digestives served around the campfire and whilst delicious its not the real thing. S’mores supposedly originated with the Girl Scout’s in the US going back to at least the 1920’s and the traditional standard is the requisite toasted marshmallow with chocolate between two graham crackers. Family friends visited recently from the US and decided to bring over the ingredients for the real thing and apart from the chocolate which tasted like, well, vomit (sorry but Hershey’s really is disgusting) I loved the taste of the cracker, which have more flavour than British digestives. But enough with the backstory and waffling, let me get to the point. I had the idea to combine the three elements of the s’more into one little treat. I made very soft marshallow’s dipped them in chocolate and rolled them in homemade graham cracker crumbs. These were so good I could easily of eaten more of these then would have been advisable. These are best the day they are made because after a day the cracker looses some of its crunch. Continue reading

Spicy Pork and Rice Cakes

This is the final post in this week of Momofuku recipes and the second that I actually tried at the restaurant back in May 2009. When I visited Ssam Bar the temperature was nice and high so the restaurant was a welcome escape from the heat, which was slightly getting the better of me. It was therefore maybe an odd choice to choose a dish laden with whole red chilles, szechuan peppercorns, toban djan (chilli bean paste) and chilli powder, but then hot food and drink does supposedly cool you down so maybe not. Whether or not it was the best choice for the day it was definitely  the perfect choice for me, I loved this dish. Yes there is a lot of chilli in it and yes it is hot but it’s a heat that felt more warming then blow your head off, and I’m not even good with really spicy food. Its actually quite easy to make but it does require quite a lot of ingredients that you may not, okay most likely wont have around, or easily find, but I know this dish will get made again so the things I bought will definitely be used. Continue reading

Ginger Scallion Noodles

For the second recipe from the Momofuku cookbook I decided to go with one of the simplest. I would like to have been able to post the three dishes I had at Ssam bar but the book doesn’t have many of the desserts served, in fact there are only 3, so until they publish a Milk Bar cookbook I’ll have to try the few recipes they’ve published online. This noodle recipe was the first thing I tried from the book, I wanted something simple but tasty and this definitely fits the bill. The sauce is basically just scallions, ginger, grapseed oil, soy and sherry vinegar served over noodles. Served with some quick pickled cucumbers and pan roasted cauliflower and you have a really quick healthy dinner that can be knocked up in no time (I know that sound like crap copy from a cheesy ad but hey its true) Continue reading

Momofuku Pork Buns

It has been almost a year since I was in New York but over this past week I recreated one of the meals whilst I was there, from Momofuku Ssam Bar in the East Village one of David Chang’s restaurant’s. My brother bought me the Momofuku cookbook for Christmas but these posts are the first things ive actually made from it. Most of the recipes are relatively long with multiple steps but the 3 recipes im going to share are not difficult but do have a fair few steps. It may have been a year since I ate these dishes but the taste of my attempts took me straight back to that week and that restaurant, I actually thought the taste was pretty spot on. To start off I tackled one of the most popular dishes on the menu and my favorite of the meal, pork buns. The recipe is simple but making the buns takes considerable time and because of this Chang says if you can buy ready made buns you should with no pangs of guilt. I decided to plow ahead and make the buns and they were pillowy soft, light and easy to make but do take quite a few hours to make. Continue reading

Rose Macarons

For tips from Pierre Herme’s “Macaron” book click here

I know I said previously that I would take a break from posting any more macaron recipes but I recently joined Mactweets a new blogroll for fellow macaron bakers. This month’s theme was Valentines and I was at bit of a loss for what to do. I’m single, gay and not really into valentines (im a bit of a cynic) and wasn’t really loving the theme. Originally I thought I could do an anti-valentines post but I couldn’t really think of anything other than liquorice (it being black!) but in the end I caved and thought I would go with the spirit of the theme and went all out romantic with a healthy sprinkling of pink with rose as the flavour. This post is also quite timely in that Pierre Herme has finally, after years of rumours, opened a shop in London. As of 5th February you can now buy his Macarons from a small concession in Selfridges on Oxford Street, and later this year he will be opening a fully-fledged store in Kensington. Just a shame I don’t live in London. Continue reading

Pate-a-Choux

In my continuous attempt to become a better baker, so that one day I can do what I love professionally, I thought it would be a good idea to get some sort of reference book that covers all the bases from different doughs and pastries to cakes, muffins, tarts and cookies and so on. I had thought of going with the Bo Friberg book but in the end I settled on the new book from the French Culinary Institute, which I have always dreamed of attending. The book is impressive in its 500+ pages with lots of colour pictures. I’ve only just scratched the surface of the book but I think it will be a good reference to have.  As anyone who has been reading this blog for any length of time will know I like to experiment, in the last year and a half I have cooked over 80 different recipes, and next on my list to tackle was Pate-a-Choux. Continue reading