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Showing posts from May, 2013

Food'N'Flix: Jiro Dreams of Sushi {Invitation}

We've come full-circle and it's my turn to host  Food'N'Flix   where we watch movies and head  into the kitchen and cook or bake or make something based on a recipe they actually make in it or just something we were driven to make after watching it. This month was my pick. And I selected  Jiro Dreams of Sushi . I watched this movie with some girlfriends last year; I remember it being a visual feast, seasoned with a quest for perfection. I'm looking forward to watching it again.  If you're inclined to join the fun - and I really hope you are - watch the movie and get cooking. Post about it on your blog with a link back to  this post  and to  Food'N'Flix . Use of the logo is optional. Your post must be current  (during month of film) . And of course we don't mind if your post is linked to other events...the more the merrier. Have fun with it! Email your entries to me at: constantmotioncamilla [at] gmail [dot] com and include... ~

Salt-Crusted Beets

I don't remember where I first heard about roasting beets in salt. But I filed it away in my 'to-try' vault. And when beets showed up in my CSA box this week, I decided to give it a whirl. It's an awful lot of salt; and I don't know how they rate compared to regularly Roasted Beets . I'll report back tonight. But this was pretty high on the fun factor. The boys thought it was like excavating beet-mummies. Okay. I can run with that. 3 medium beets, scrubbed and dried completely 2 C medium grained salt juice from 1 lemon 2 T fresh herbs (I used chives and parsley) Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place the salt and herbs in the bottom of a baking dish. Squeeze the lemon juice over the salt and nestle your beets in the salt. Scoop the salt over the top of the beets and press firmly to create a crust. Roast in the oven for 75-90 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool completely. Once cool, you can crack the crust and extract the beets. Peel and

Rhubarb Romance {Call for Recipes}

With my rhubarb romance in full-bloom, I am going to do a round-up of rhubarb recipes later this month. If you have any rhubarb recipes to share, post June 12th, please. Thanks! Click for the  Rhubarb Romance Round-Up .  Great recipes from some great foodies. *Update, 6/13/2013: Though this party is closed, feel free to keep sharing your favorite rhubarb recipes. I will definitely try them, as long as my rhubarb stash lasts, and give you a shout out on my Culinary Adventures with Camilla Facebook page . Thank you.*

Minty Spinach-Pea Dip

When I saw that I was getting mint, spinach, and peas in my CSA box tonight, I knew that I wanted to try a fresh pea dip. 1 C fresh, shelled peas 1 C fresh spinach 2 T olive oil 1 t crushed garlic freshly ground sea salt freshly ground pepper 3 T fresh mint, chopped Blanch the peas and spinach in boiling water until the peas brighten in color, approximately one minute. Plunge into cold water, then drain. In a blender, place all of the ingredients except the sea salt, pepper, and fresh mint. Blend until the consistence you want. Gently stir in the mint. Season to taste. Serve with crackers or vegetable crudite.

Rhubarb Brownies

Thanks to a message - and link -  from my cousin Jo, I had the Cooking Channel's '25 Ways to Use Rhubarb' rolling around in my head this evening. Rhubarb season is fleeting and I just happened to have picked up an armful of rhubarb at the store. I've tried rhubarb a lot of different ways: Lobster with Rhubarb Sauce Over Braised Greens , Rhubarb Pavlovas , Rhubarb Heart Tarts , and even a Rhubarb Barbeque Sauce . But I have never thought to mix it with chocolate. That seems to me a waste of good rhubarb; I figured the chocolate would completely overrun the rhubarb. Still, I decided to give it a try. Rhubarb Compote 2 C rhubarb, sliced into 1/2" piece 1/4 C water 3 T organic brown sugar Place the ingredients together in a small saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce heat, and cook for 10 minutes. My Favorite Brownies 4 large eggs 1 C organic granulated sugar 1 C organic brown sugar 1 T unsulphered molasses 1 t ground ancho c

Seafood Paella

I love paella. I've just never made it before. But for Christmas my cousin Tiffany gave me a cookbook for authentic Spanish fare; and for my 40th birthday, my friend Jenn gave me a paella pan. It was a sign. So, after a hike through an archery range yesterday, we stopped at a local fish market and I picked up a some seafood to make the 'Seafood' Paella' in the book. I'll try 'Esperanza's Paella' soon.  Bear in mind that I never actually follow recipes. I use them as jumping off points for a culinary adventure of my own. The verdict from my peanut gallery: "This is better than the paella we just had from Gerard's Paella in San Mateo." Sweet. The Seafood Feel free to substitute with what you have readily available. I went with what was local (mostly) and fresh (absolutely). 6-8 clams 6-8 mussels 1 rock cod filet, sliced into 1" pieces 6-8 scallops generous handful of squid tubes Everything Else pinch of saffron (between 20-30

Conchas with Cardamom, Cocoa Powder, Coconut Oil

Whenever we got to the Mexican market, the boys beg and plead for to get conchas .   Yeasty, sweet, and colorful. I see the appeal. And I've always had it on my list of to-makes. Whenever I have the urge to make something Mexican, I usually go to Girlichef's blog ; it's an incredible resource and a constant source of inspiration for me. I started with her recipe: here . I adapted - to my detriment - because my topping wasn't quite right*, but it was still delicious! Conchas  (Mexican Sweet Rolls) Adapted from Girlichef's recipe post Dough 1 T active dry yeast 1/2 C warm water 1/2 C warm milk 1/3 C organic granulated sugar 1/3 C coconut oil 1 egg 4 C white whole wheat flour dash of ground nutmeg dash of ground cardamom Topping 1/2 C butter, softened 2/3 C organic powdered sugar 1 C white whole wheat flour 2 T unsweetened cocoa powder In a large mixing bowl stir together yeast and warm water, let bloom for five m

Ginger-Meyer Lemonade with Chia Seeds

Inspired by a limeade version by Girlichef , I decided to make my own version this morning for breakfast. The only thing I've really done with chia seeds is a Raw Warrior Pudding ; I did put some in a Chocolate Zucchini Bread  once. But I've been trying to think of ways to use them more. I always have a bag in my pantry because Riley likes to eat them by the teaspoon. I'm not sure if he actually feels a difference in his energy, but once he read that Aztecs used them to promote stamina, he was sold. He'll ask for it before they have to do the mile-runs in PE. I suspect that he just likes the story, but you never know. 3 medium Meyer lemons, halved 3-1/2 to 4 C cold water 1/3 C organic powdered sugar 2 T ginger syrup 1/4 C chia seeds Place the powdered sugar and ginger syrup in a quart-sized mason jar. With a mesh strainer over the top, juice the Meyer lemons directly over the jar. Fill the jar with cold water and screw the lid on tight. Shake to d

Grow-Your-Own-Mushrooms + Stirfry

For Jake's birthday, I planned a 'Fungi Feast for My Fun-Guy' and one of our friends gave him a Grow-Your-Own Mushroom Kit as a present. Fun. Only, he forgot about it until he noticed that a mushroom was pushing its way out of a box. Funny. So, he hung it on a hook in the kitchen and dutifully sprays it to keep it moist. Today, he told me that it was time to cook the renegade mushroom that was not 'following the directions' and was sprouting out of the top instead of out of its grow hole. Really funny. I had never seen a kit like this. Then we went to the Maker Faire Bay Area and the Far West Fungi booth had them for sale. Far West Fungi 's webstore carries a shitake mushroom kit . And you can also get an oyster mushroom kit  online at Uncommon Goods . I carefully cut off the lone mushroom, sliced it up, and included it in our stirfry for lunch. 1 T crushed garlic 1/2 lb ground turkey 4 carrots, scrubbed and cut into coins 1 celery root, peeled an

Watermelon Gazpacho

After making a  Watermelon-Honey Soup  for #BrunchWeek, I made a variation - with blackberries - for our sunset Mothers' Day picnic. And Riley wanted a version of it for his birthday picnic at the Pinnacles National Park. So easy! 6 C cubed watermelon 1 C sliced tomatoes 1/2 C water juice from one Meyer lemon 2 T honey 1 T crushed garlic 2 T chopped chives 2 T chopped Italian flat-leaf parsley In batches, blend everything in a blender. Ladle into individual servings and garnish with Meyer lemon wedges.

Absinthe-Scented Gravlax

Making my own gravlax had never occurred to me. Until I heard a quick recipe mentioned on NPR's The Splendid Table . I was on my way to Huckleberry Hill for a hill work-out, but it haunted me during my run and I swung by Whole Foods on my way home to pick up some wild-caught salmon and give it a go. Here's a link to the recipe as posted on I used it as a starting point, but made several modifications to fit the ingredients I had in my kitchen. 1/2 C coarse sea salt 1/2 C raw turbinado sugar 1 t ground black pepper 3 springs fresh dill splash of absinthe 2 pieces of wild-caught salmon, well matched in size and shape, if possible Mix the salt, sugar, and pepper together. Spoon a third of the mixture on a piece of plastic wrap and place one of the salmon pieces on top of it, skin-side down. Put half of the remaining salt mixture on top of the salmon. Drizzle the filet with absinthe. Sandwiching the fresh dill in between, fit the other piece o

Riley's Birthday Rhubarb Pies

"What kind of dessert would you like for your birthday party, Riley?" Baked Alaska , he declared, without hesitation. "Let me rephrase - what kind of dessert would you like me to haul an hour away that can be assembled or served in a remote hiking location?" Oh. "I promise to make a Baked Alaska when we celebrate on your real birthday." We moved his celebration with his friends a week ahead because two of his best buddies couldn't make it on the actual birthday weekend. Okay. Then I want pie. "What kind of pie?" My first choice is rhubarb. But, if you can't find any, strawberry pie is fine. I hadn't seen rhubarb in any substantial quantities at the store. And, in fact, when I asked for it last week, the green grocer didn't give me a warm and fuzzy feeling about its arrival anytime soon: we get it occasionally, but most people don't know what it is. They think it's a red celery. So, we don't sell very

Cubetti-Dotted Turkey Meatballs

I had never baked meatballs - until I did a book review of The Bengali Five Spice Chronicle . Now it's one of my favorite ways to cook meatballs. I whipped up a double batch for Riley's birthday picnic and served them with a sheeps' milk yogurt from Garden Variety Cheese in Royal Oaks. They were a hit! Meatballs 2 pounds ground turkey 2 eggs 1 C cubetti (diced pancetta) 1/2 C ground almonds 2 T diced shallots and garlic, sauteed in butter until softened and beginning to caramelize 1/2 t ground cumin 1/4 t ground coriander dash of paprika freshly ground salt freshly ground pepper Mix all of the ingredients together well. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking pan with foil. Form tablespoon-sized meatballs - or larger if you like - and place them on your baking sheet. They will shrink, so you can place them fairly close together. Bake for 30-35 minutes. Yogurt Sauce 1 C sheeps' milk yogurt 1/2 t crushed garlic 1 T dukkah* 2

Vanilla-Chamomile Cremeux {Cook the Books}

This round Deb, at  Kahakai Kitchen , selected  The Color of Tea  by Hannah Tunnecliffe for our April-May  Cook the Books  project. Serendipitously, the author herself will be judging our entries. No pressure... Annnnnd, despite having had the book on my nightstand for months - yes, months! - I waited until the last minute to read it and cook from it; but at least I made it to the party. I cracked the cover on this book after an evening event at the boys' school. My house was silent except for the hum of the filter on our fish tank. It was far too late for me to be up, especially as I had a busy day at work the next day, but I couldn't put it down. And I eventually fell asleep with it on my chest, sleeping peacefully until my husband came to retrieve me from the couch. The Read Grace Miller has landed on the tiny island of Macau - "the bulbous nose of China, a peninsula and two islands strung together like a three-bead necklace." A stranger in a foreign l

Cardamom Pannekoeken with Fresh Strawberries

Click to read how I  re-discovered this childhood favorite  during a  cookbook review for Shauna Sever's  Pure Vanilla .  It's grey and gloomy. It must be almost June on California's central coast. And since I knew it would be the perfect way to kick off this chilly pre-summer week, I doubled the recipe and made several  pannekoeken . I topped them with a dusting organic powdered sugar and a heap of fresh strawberries. Breakfast!!! 1-1/3 C milk 6 eggs 4 T salted butter, melted 1/2 t ground cardamom 1/2 t baking powder 1-1/3 C white whole wheat flour Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Butter two baking dishes and set aside. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the milk, eggs, melted butter, and ground cardamom. Blend in the flour and baking powder. Whisk for a full minute. Pour the batter into your prepared dish and bake until the  Pannekoeken  is puffed and golden, approximately 30 to 35 minutes.

Cuba Libre Granita {Pass the Cookbook}

I joined the fun for the  Pass the Cookbook series  kicked off by Kita, the culinary force behind the  Pass the Sushi blog , a couple of months back. Her goal: cook from some unused cookbooks on her shelf...and get some other foodies to join her. Sign me up! This month, we're creating from  Slushed by Jessie Cross. The subtitle made me chuckle: More Than 150 Frozen, Boozy Treats for the Coolest Happy Hour Ever! Cuba Libre Granita 3 cups cola ¼ cup light   dark rum (I only had dark rum!) zest from 1 lime Combine the cola and rum in a shallow, freezer safe dish. Gently stir in the lime zest. Freeze for 1   2 hour s . Stir the mixture with a fork to break it up. Return to the freezer. Check and rake with fork every 30 minutes until the entire mixture is icy and frozen. Mine took about 4 hours total. I also added a floater of dark rum on top...just for good measure. Cheers!

Olive Oil-Tamari Poached Salmon Bowls

I needed a quick dinner tonight and I had some wild-caught salmon. So I decided to do an Asian-spin on my old favorite: olive oil poached salmon . Olive Oil-Tamari Poached Salmon Preheat oven to 275 degrees. Lay your fish in an oven-proof baking dish. Fill pan with enough olive oil to mostly cover the filets. Drizzle the fish with tamari. Cover with foil. Place in the oven for 25 minutes. Check for doneness. If the fish needs more time, return the dish to the oven. The fish is cooked when it is firm to the touch. Assemble the bowls... (1) rice; (2) quickly sauteed cabbage with garlic and parsley with a splash of tamari; and (3) olive oil-tamari poached salmon Dinner in less than 40 minutes. Woohoo!