Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Left Over Egg Whites

Slowly, I am trying to use up everything in the refrigerator before Hubby and I depart for a four week absence. Looking directly into the middle shelf, tucked way back in the corner, was a jar of perfectly good egg whites............six of them, just floating around. I used the eggs to make a custard sauce last weekend. Bingo-there is custard sauce in here somewhere, too! Still smells good. I added a little more cream, heated it gently and all was well in that department. Hence, my little meringue shells filled with a low fat vanilla ice cream, drenched in a high-fat custard sauce. Seems like a proper way to use what is just hanging aound in the frig!
6 large egg whites, room temperature
1/2 teaspoon of vanilla
1/4 teaspoon of cream of tarter
pinch of salt
1 1/4 cup of sugar
Preheat your oven to 200 degrees. I used the largest baking sheet I had and lined it with parchment paper.
Beat the egg whites, cream of tarter and salt on medium speed until the mixure become frothy. Add one cup of sugar. Add the vanilla. Beat on high speed until the peaks remain stiff. Fold in the remaining 1/4 cup of sugar.
To make the shapes, I simply used a very large spoon and carefully placed a huge spoonful of mixture on the parchment lined cookie sheet. Then I took the back of a tablespoon and gently made an indentation to hold the ice cream.
Bake the meringues for two hours and keep the oven door closed.This is easy~turn off the oven and let the meringues remain in the oven for 3 to 4 hours. I was able to time this just right , so out of the oven and into our stomachs! Store in airtight container. This made 10 really nice sizes shells.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Artichoke Frittata

The summer is getting away from me and I have not been very current on my posting. When the weather is great and there are roads to travel, it is difficult dragging myself into the office.
Making a quick dash to the market the other day, my eyes caught the brilliant purple color on the displayed artichokes. I had no intention of buying any today........ and since the store manager frowns upon me photographing, I decided to purchase a handful. Digging through my files, I managed to find the recipe I was searching for. Why is it when you really need something, you just can't locate it quickly? This recipe was given to me by one of my good friends now living Seattle. We enjoyed brunches on the weekends when our kids were young......time to catch up and also to let the kids visit and play. The dish is very similar to a pancake and has a very creamy center.

Artichoke Frittata

6 eggs
1 chopped onion
1 large can, 14 oz. or more, of artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
3/4 cup of grated pecorino cheese
1/2 cup of chopped red pepper
1 cup of fresh or frozen broad beans
2 tablespoons of chopped parsley
2 shakes of nutmeg
3 tablespoons of olive oil

Beat the eggs, add the parsley, cheese and nutmeg. Season to your liking with salt and pepper. Set aside.

Boil the beans with a little salt to taste for 3-5 minutes. Drain and peel off the skin of the beans.
Heat the oil and fry the onion over low heat for 5 minutes. Do not let the onions brown. Add the artichoke pieces and cook for another 5 minutes. Add the beans. Continue to cook for 5 minutes.
Add to eggg mixture and pour into the frying pan. Cook over low heat untl the mixture is "almost" set. Finish cooking by carefully placing the pan under the broiler to grill until a golden crust appears. Need to keep an eye on it to make sure it doesn't burn! Cool well before serving. Great with a small tossed salad.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Summer Eye Food

What could be more refreshing than a garden salad in the summer~( it tastes better if the lettuce was grown in your very own garden!) The combinations of salad creations are endless.....you can toss in any vegetable to create a beautiful masterpiece! This photo was taken at a restaurant located near Sarlat, the heart of the country's foie gras and walnut region.

Summer in France brings endless opportunities to photograph what I call, "eye food." There must be a magical formula that our French friends have to make their gardens grow greener and so perfect. The shutters surrounding the windows, the arbors in the gardens all entwined in ivy........ they know the secret for making such beautiful masterpieces.......

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Summertime Vegetable Stew

With summer vegetables soon coming into season, enjoy this quick version of rataouille, fragranced with fresh herbs for a refreshing side dish or appetizer.......oh, don't forget a loaf of crusty, hot French bread and your favorite red wine...........
I medium size onion, choppped.
4 large plum tomatoes, peeled and chopped.
1 red pepper, seeded and chopped.
1 yellow pepper, seeded and chopped.
1 medium size eggplant, peeled and cut into small chunks.
2 medium size zucchinis, cut into small chunks.
1/4 cup of olive oil.
1 medium garlic, crushed.
salt and pepper to taste.
1/2 teaspoon of chopped fresh oregano.
4-5 medium size freshly torn basil leaves.
Using a large saute pan, saute the garlic and onion in the olive oil. Saute until the onion becomes translucent. Add the peppers, eggplant, zucchini. Continue to cook until the vegetables are tender. Add the tomatoes and the oregano. Sprinkle the fresh basil over the simmering vegetables. Add the salt and pepper to your liking. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes. Serves 6