Friday, March 13, 2009

Don't Fool Yourself, You Always Eat Fat.

Recipes by Susan Oak

WALNUT OIL: Spinach Salad with Spiced Walnut Oil Dressing, asian pear, grapefruit, toasted walnuts, red onion

Fat Fact: Walnut oil has a low smoke point and therefore should be used as a garnish or in a dressing. They are a good source of omega-3 essential fatty acids.

Walnut Oil Salad

1   cup chopped walnuts, toasted
2   Tbsp honey
3   Tbsp balsamic vinegar
Suprêmes from 2 grapefruit, and juice reserved
½ tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp ground cumin
2/3 cup walnut oil
Salt and pepper to taste
12 oz baby spinach
½ medium red onion, peeled, sliced thinly1 Asian pear, julienned

1. Heat honey, balsamic, reserved juice, cinnamon, and cumin. Whisk in walnut oil off heat. Season with salt and pepper. Toss with spinach, onion and grapefruit suprêmes. Top with pear.

PINE NUT OIL: Cauliflower Soup with Basil-Pine Nut Oil - seared bay scallops, croutons, toasted pine nuts

Fat Fact: Cauliflower serves as a mild base that is enhanced with the addition of a flavorful oil.

Cauliflower soup

1 head cauliflower, cored and sliced evenly

3 Tbsp olive oil

1 onion, ciseler

2 cloves garlic, chopped

2 cups chicken stock

1 cup milk

½ cup heavy cream

½ cup walnut oil

Pinch of nutmeg

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Chives, chopped

Pine nuts, toasted

2 slices white bread, crusts removed and cubed


1. Sweat the onion and garlic in olive oil. Add cauliflower, sweat briefly. Add nutmeg. 

2. Cover with milk, stock, and cream, simmer until tender. 

3. Puree in blender. Add pine nut oil and blend to combine. Season to taste. 

4. Sauté bread cubes in butter, season with salt. Top soup with chives, pine nuts, croutons, scallops and a swirl of basil pine nut oil.

Basil Pine Nut Oil

1 bunch basil

1 cup pine nut oil

Puree basil leaves with oil in blender. Simmer for a few minutes. Cool, and then strain with cheesecloth.

Seared Bay Scallops

24 bay scallops

2 Tbsp blended oil

1 Tbsp butter

2 1/2 Tbsps paprika

2 Tbsps salt

2 Tbsps garlic powder

1 Tbsp black pepper

1 Tbsp onion powder

1 Tbsp cayenne pepper

Combine dry ingredients. Season scallops with mixture. Heat saute pan. Add oil, sear scallops briefly. Add butter to pan as necessary, being careful not to let it burn.

Garnish soup with chives, pine nuts, croutons, scallops and pine nut basil oil.

MILKFAT: Butternut Squash and Ricotta Ravioli with Brown Butter Sauce crisp sage

Fat Fact: This dish can be paired with a Sauvignon Blanc such as the Chalk Hill 2006 from Sonoma County, whose dry lightness would complement but not overwhelm the pasta, while the acidity would balance the butter.  Brown butter makes for a delicious, nutty sauce on it’s own that goes beautifully with pasta.

Ravioli with Brown Butter

A 2-pound butternut squash,

cut in half lengthwise, seeds removed

Olive oil

1 medium onion, ciseler

Salt and freshly ground pepper

1 Tbsp unsalted butter

2 garlic clove, ciseler

1 cup whole milk ricotta cheese

Pinch of nutmeg

60 wonton wrappers, thawed if frozen

Sage leaves

1 cup unsalted butter

30 fresh sage leaves

Toasted walnuts, crumbled

1. Grease baking sheet with olive oil. Roast squash, flesh side down for 30 minutes at 425°F or until tender. Cool. Scoop out flesh into a bowl and mash. Season with salt and pepper.

2. Saute onion to golden brown in butter. Stir in garlic, cook for a minute to fragrant. Add to cooled, mashed squash. Stir in ricotta and nutmeg just to combine, season to taste.

3. Bring salted water to boil. Put 1 wonton wrapper on lightly floured surface, mound 1 tablespoon filling in center. Brush edges with water and place another wrapper on top, pressing down around filling to force out air and seal edges well. Dry slightly.

4. Brown butter to noisette. Season with salt. Add sage leaves, cook for a few seconds. Transfer to dish so as not to burn butter.

5. Gently boil ravioli to tender. Drain ravioli. Toss with browned butter and top with walnuts and sage.

DUCK FAT: Duck Confit and Duck Fat Rice Cakes shitake mushrooms and scallions

Fat Fact: Duck fat fries are becoming an increasingly common menu offering. Here, a take on the same, with duck fat rice cakes. Pair with a medium-bodied dry red with some acidity to cut the richness of the dish, such as the Ridge, Geyserville 2006 from Alexander Valley.

Duck Confit and Rice Cakes

4 duck legs confit

Duck fat reserved from confit

3 oz shitake mushroom caps, stems removed

Salt and freshly ground pepper

½ lb rice cake logs

2 Tbsps sugar

3 Tbsps soy sauce

1Tbsp plum sauce

1 Tbsp grated onion

2 cloves garlic

2 tsp sesame seeds, toasted

1 chili pepper

1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped

1 bunch scallions, sliced into strips

1. Remove meat and skin from confit legs. Heat oil in a pan and cook meat over low heat so that the skin renders and crisps.

2. Slice mushroom caps into thin strips. Sauté in a little bit of duck fat with salt and pepper. Set aside. Cook rice cakes in duck fat to brown and crisp slightly.

3. Combine sugar, soy sauce, plum sauce, grated onion, and garlic. Add confit meat and skin, and heat through. Toss in mushroom caps, season and cook a few minutes longer.

4. Serve with rice cakes. Garnish with sesame seeds, chili, jalapeno, and scallions.

Duck Confit (FCI Recipe)

4 duck legs

60ml kosher salt

Pinch of pink salt/curing salt

5g minced garlic

10 black peppercorns, mignonette

1 bay leaf, crushed

1 sprig thyme, chopped

500-750ml duck fat

1/2 head garlic, crushed

1 whole clove

1. Trim duck legs. Mix all the ingredients for cure. Rub legs all over with mixture, and place in a suitable container, adding any remaining cure form the bowl. Cover with plastic and refrigerate for 1 to 2 days.

2. Remove duck legs from container and brush off marinade with a damp towel. Melt fat  and add duck legs and extra garlic and clove. Cook meat for about 2 hours, until very tender. It should not exceed 190 degrees F.

3. Remove meat when cooked. Place in clean container. Strain fat over pieces of confit, making sure they are completely covered. Cool and refrigerate.

SESAME OIL: Pork Belly and Cucumber Salad, sesame garlic confit

Fat Fact: Sesame oil is commonly used in Korean cuisine. This dish is a take on a very common Korean meal of grilled pork belly, often cooked at the table and dipped into a simple sauce of sesame oil, salt and pepper. Try it with a traditional Korean rice wine, like Baekseju.

Pork Belly with Cucumber Salad and Garlic Confit

1 lb pork belly, in ½” slices

2 lbs English cucumbers

Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper

2 heads garlic, peeled

2 Tbsps sesame seeds, toasted

2 bunches scallions

1 cup sesame oil

1. Slice cucumbers on mandoline lengthwise. Salt lightly with 1 tsp salt. Toss, chill at least 1 hour to very cold.

2. Cover garlic in sesame oil and simmer 20-30 minutes, until very soft. Strain garlic, reserving sesame oil.

3. Grill pork belly or saute in pan with garlic sesame oil on high heat until cooked through. Season with salt and pepper.

4. To serve: toss drained cucumbers in 1 tablespoon sesame oil. Top with garlic confit and sesame seeds. Place pork on bed of scallions.

SUET and OLIVE OIL: Maple Walnut Tart with Suet Crust , olive oil ice cream, caramel sauce

Fat Fact: I thought it would be interesting to use suet and olive oil in a less conventional way. Suet (beef fat from the kidneys) is relatively flavorless, but makes for a very crisp and flaky crust. Butter adds color and flavor. A Moscato d’Asti is always a nice dessert wine, as the sparkly sweetness tempers the sugar in the dessert. Marenco 2006 from Piedmont is particularly delicious.

Maple Walnut Tart

3/4 cup pure maple syrup

3/4 cup golden brown sugar

1/2 cup light corn syrup

1/4 cup unsalted butter

3 large eggs

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/4 tsp salt

1 1/2 cups walnut pieces

Suet Crust Dough

1. Stir syrup, brown sugar, corn syrup and butter in medium saucepan over medium heat until sugar dissolves and butter melts. Increase heat and boil 1 minute. Cool slightly.

2. Position rack in bottom third of oven and preheat to 350°F. Roll out crust dough on lightly floured surface to fit 8 small tart shells. Freeze crust until firm, about 20 minutes.

3. Whisk eggs, vanilla and salt to blend. Gradually whisk maple syrup mixture into egg mixture. Place walnut pieces in each tart shell and pour filling just below top. Bake pie until filling is slightly puffed around edges and center is set, about 25 minutes. Cool pie completely on rack.

Suet Crust (McLagan)

1 Cup flour

pinch sea salt

2 T unsalted butter, diced

3/4 cup finely grated suet

1/3 cup ice water

1 T Sugar

1. Combine flour and salt in food processor and pulse to mix. Add the butter and pulse again just to mix the suet. Add water, stir with fork. Knead gently. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

Olive Oil Ice Cream

 3 cups whole milk

1 cup heavy cream

6 large egg yolks

9 oz sugar

1/2 cup cold-pressed olive oil

1. Place the milk and heavy cream into a medium saucepan and set over medium heat. Bring the mixture just to a simmer, and remove from heat.

2. Blanchir yolks and sugar. Add the oil and whisk thoroughly. Temper the cream mixture into the egg mixture. Return the mixture to the saucepan and place over medium-low heat. Cook gently until the Crème Anglaise thickens slightly and reaches 170 to 175 degrees. Strain and cool about 4 hours, or overnight.

3. Pour into an ice cream maker and process according to the manufacturer's directions, approximately 25 to 35 minutes. Freeze for another 3 to 4 hours to allow ice cream to harden. 

1 comment:

the wicked noodle said...

Okay, with all these yummy recipes this is quickly becoming one of my favorite blogs! Can't wait to make that salad!