Friday, January 17, 2014

Oh hai!

Hi KDP-ers (Mom), 

It's been a while....

So, heads up, I moved to Romania. You can read more about my travels here
Here in Bucharest, I live in an attic with a half kitchen, so for the past 4 months, I've made all meals with a microwave, toaster, coffee pot and water heater. 

Therefore for the past 4 months, I've eaten a lot of: popcorn, bread, hummus and raw vegetables. 

Just recently I figured out how to steam broccoli in the microwave. It's a whole new freakin' world. 

Microwave Steamed Broccoli
Take your puny, not sharp, trick knife and hack at the head of broccoli until it's in semi-smaller pieces. 

Put the broccoli trees into a too small bowl. 
Fill the bowl with the most water it'll fit without spilling. 

Put it in the microwave. Refill with the water your clumsy ass spilled. 
Put a plate on top of the broccoli bowl. 

Cook for 2 minutes. 
Turn all of the broccoli over, so the dried sides can sit in the water. 
Cook for another 2 minutes. 

Drain the water. Gently place some cut up cheese on top. You can half ass it even more and not melt it, as seen here. 

Bring on a new wave of KDP in 2014!

Watch Anthony Bourdain's No Reservations Romania episode for a better idea about Romanian food. (Side note- he pretty much hated the country, I'm having a better time). 

There is too much good music happening right now, but I'm currently in my "It's winter and I sort of miss home" phase and my constant "sit in a hammock, listen to country music, drink PBR and cry" mood, which together makes the completely radical playlist of a lot of sad (usually) guys, playing acoustic instruments, like:

David Wax Museum's Everything is Saved
Chris Thile's Bach: Sonatas and Partitas, Vol 1
Tom Brosseau's Grass Punks
Noam Pikelny's Noam Pikelny plays Kenny Baker plays Bill Monroe
Inside Lleywn Davis soundtrack (or the best reason to never date a musician) 
The Mipso Trio's Long Long Gone
and round it all up with 
Keaton Henson. 

And, in keeping with the Romanian culture, this: 

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Baby Birthin' Stew

Becca, of B's Bakery and Bistro fame, became the first friend to HAVE A BABY.

Everyone is growing up, buying houses, getting married and spawning.

I, on the other hand, have fit all of my belongings into two bags and moved across the world. I might get another tattoo too, on my face.

So, here we are, launched from the world of making drunk cornbread into making food for friends to freeze as they lose sleep for their poop monsters.

Becca requested something healthy and freezable. I was inspired to make something that looked like the baby poop that she'll be bathing in for the next 18 years.
Lilah (who is actually super cute and old now) also took a while to get here and apparently spicy things help pregnant ladies pop.


Moroccan Stew

You'll need:

Vegetable oil
1 onion- chopped
1 zucchini- chopped
1 yam- peeled and chopped
1 can of chickpeas- drained
4 cloves of garlic- minced
3 cups (or more) vegetable broth
1 tsp of each:  cinnamon, cumin, dried thyme and chili powder
1/4 c creamy peanut butter
1 c chunky salsa
2 cups of spinach- roughly chopped.

Thanks to George for the Haines grown zucchini

To do:
- Heat oil in a pan, add the spices, cook for about a minute, until fragrant. Add in the onion and garlic, cook for another minute or so. Throw the yam into the mix, cook for about a minute. Throw in the zucchini, cook for another minute.

-Add in the vegetable broth, salsa, peanut butter and salsa (if you want it to a stew, use less vegetable broth, for a soup, use more). Let simmer for 10-15 minutes, until the vegetables are tender.
- Throw the spinach in right before you're about to serve, just so it wilts a little bit.
- Serve over couscous

- have that baby.

*Reheats, freezes and doubles very easily.

Spotify thinks that I listen to too much bluegrass and is trying to get me to branch out, so it started playing The Belle Brigade.
Spotify robots +1
All other robots -1

A little bit pop, a little bit rock, a little bit country. "Losers" is pretty amazing and a good drink PBR, cry and dance it out jam. But my cold cold heart was first warmed by this gem:

They make me want to start a band with my brother, but would end, tragically, with audiences bleeding out through their ears. The Ingram-Wolf kids aren't musically gifted.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Israeli Salad

I spent 10 days in Israel and now consider myself an expert on Israeli salad. As one does.

But David Lebovitz had some pretty good ideas about it too.
I mean, how could you not with a name like Lebovitz.

Israeli Salad (from David Lebovitz)

You'll need
1 ripe tomato
1 cucumber
1 carrot- peeled
2-3 tbsp red onion- chopped
1 small beet- peeled
1/4 c parsley or cilantro- chopped*
2/3 c mixed nuts and seeds (walnuts, almonds, pine nuts, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds etc...)- chopped
1/3 c feta or goat cheese- crumbled
2-3 tbsp fresh lemon juice
2-3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
sea salt and pepper

* If you want to get crazy, try mint, chives, tarragon... every country claims this salad as their own.

-Chop all the vegetables into tiny tiny cubes. Slice the arugula.
-Toast the nuts in a skillet (no oil), over medium heat and shake the pan frequently so they don't burn. Stop when they are a little brown and you can smell them.
-Mix all of the vegetables, nuts, cheese, lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper.

-Serve pretty quickly, no one likes old salad.

Spotify has changed my life again by introducing me to LP

It's common knowledge that I'm a sucker for whistling.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Solgrrrrr Hummus

Liz gained a Mister Sol Grr!

The wedding was a beautiful redneck shit show, in every way that you expect an open bar wedding in Juneau Alaska to be.

And in true Liz fashion, I was informed two days before that I was bringing the hummus.

For 300 people.

Now, to most people, this isn't a huge deal. You throw a bunch of chickpeas in a food processor with some tahini and let it do it's thing.
But I'm not actually most people. I'm on a mission to create the smoothest hummus possible, which means peeling

"But Hannah!" you cry, "That's just crazy talk!"

Well, yes. It is, but it's also true. Taking the tiny layer off of every cooked chickpea leaves you without clumps and without hummus farts. It's a win win.

For two days I became a hummus making factory.
This is my story.

Super Traditional, Super smooth hummus (perfected by Hannah)

You'll need:
1 lb dried chickpeas
2 or 3 lemons- juiced
1/4 c tahini
7 or 8 cloves of garlic- chopped
olive oil
paprika, salt and pepper

-soak the dried chickpeas over night
-Boil the chickpeas the next day, for about an hour, or until they are soft. Drain, rinse etc... SAVE THE WATER.
-Peel the chickpeas. The best technique for this is to pinch the rounded end with two fingers and let the skin pop off. It's satisfying for the first ten, then it gets tiring, then it gets boring, then you get tennis elbow.
-Put all of the chickpeas in the food processor. Process them until crumbly.

-Put the lemon juice, the garlic and tahini in the processor, while it's running, slowly add in the reserved water, 1 tbsp at the time, until it's smooth and dip-able. Season with salt and pepper.
-Put it in a bowl, pour olive oil on top and sprinkle with paprika.

-Get drunk at a wedding.

No music this week.... Well sort of, I'm super into:
Milk Carton Kids
Steve Gunn
Chris Thile's Bach album
so more of the same.

But on a completely different note, I'm spending the next 9 months in Bucharest Romania on a Fulbright Grant!
I'll continue to post here, probably at the same frequency as I already do. But you can track my adventures in Romania at this blog:
Romania plus Hannah equals Blog

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Power Ballad Eggs

When I saw the recipe title for Company Eggs, I thought it was going to be some cute thing with eggs that have a buddy, say of bread (side note, I'm going to go make Eggs in a Pocket now) and presented in a way that makes you never want to eat eggs without the buddy again. 

This isn't that, it's simply eggs that work well for company. They are glorified baked eggs.
No problems on this end though, but that might be the mountain of cream and cheese speaking. 

Company Eggs! (from Bon Appetit

You'll need:
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 small onion- sliced
4 garlic cloves, chopped
Salt and Pepper
2 bunches of Swiss chard- backbone and stems removed, leaves chopped.
1/2 c heavy cream
6 large eggs
2 oz sharp white cheddar cheese- grated

You'll need to:
-Preheat oven to 400. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat, throw in onion, garlic, salt and pepper. Cook until the onion is soft, about 8-10 minutes.
-Throw the chard in the skillet, let it wilt a little. Cook/toss until tender, 8-10 minutes. Add cream and simmer until thick, another 8-10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
-Lay the chard down in a baking pan, make 6 little dips in the chard and crack 1 egg into each. Season with more salt/pepper (or a little paprika, if you're into that). Sprinkle the cheese over (think heavy dandruff).

-Bake until the egg whites are almost set and the yolks are runny, 15-18 minutes. Pull it out when you are still a little worried about the whites, because they'll still cook for another 5 minutes when you let them sit before serving.

Typhoon's new album "White Lighter" (on NPR First Listen).
I'd never heard of them before this and I'm hooked. It's intense and emo, with a horn section. They rock out to power ballads about joy. This album feels all the feelings at a 10 and instead of scoffing at them, I head bob along. 

Be careful of swaying while cooking though, it can lead to some disasters. 

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Spring Risotto and Star Eggs

It's been a while.
I've been in Israel.
I meant to post this before (in spring), but got distracted by something shiny and the Internet.
Oh well. It's too hot to cook now, but there is always next spring!

Spring Risotto and Poaching Eggs in shapes (from Bon Appetit

You'll need:
2 c frozen fava or lima beans - thawed (let's be honest, no one wants to actually shuck those)
1 Tbsp white vinegar
Eggs (however many you want to eat)
8 c vegetable broth
2 tbsp butter
1/4 lb mushrooms
2 tbsp olive oil
4 garlic cloves- chopped
2 leeks- only the white and pale leaves- chopped
1 bulb of fennel- chopped
2 c arborio rice
1 c white wine
1 bunch of spinach- torn
2 tbsp sour cream or creme fraiche
1 1/2 c Parmesan- grated
1/4 c chives- chopped

You'll need to: 
-bring broth to simmer in a large pan over medium heat, reduce to low, cover and keep warm
-Melt 1 tbsp butter in a large pot over medium heat, add mushrooms and cook until tender. Transfer them to the bowl with the thawed beans.
-Heat oil and 1 tbsp butter in the same pot, add leeks, fennel and garlic. Cook until the vegetables are soft. Add rice and stir to coat, about 2 mins. Add wine and cook until it's evaporated, about 4 mins.

- Add 1 cup of broth, cook and stir until it's absorbed. Add the rest of the broth by the cupfuls, allow it to absorb before adding more, until the rice is firm, but tender, like a good man, about 20 mins total.
- Add spinach, creme fraiche, cheese, chives, beans and mushrooms to rice mixture. Cook until the spinach is wilted and the cheese is melted, about 2 mins, season with salt and pepper.

- Poach Eggs!
-Bring a large skillet of salted water to a simmer, add vinegar.
-Drop the cookie cutter into the water, crack the egg into a bowl, then slide it into the cookie cutter.
-Cook until the white are cooked, but the yolks are runny, about 3 minutes. Use a slotted spoon and transfer the egg and cookie cutter to a bowl of ice water.
Not at cool poached eggs. 
-gently use a knife and separate the cookie cutter and the egg.

- Put the eggs on top of the risotto, top with cheese, chives, pepper etc... Nom.

It should come as no surprise that I've been rocking out to Daft Punk's new album. It's a little old school, pretty DSSJ (ask Val what that means) and doesn't really sound like them a ton. Does that piss me off? Maybe a little, but after the intenseness of Tron, I'm glad for some soulful easy listening/BBQ-ing music from them. I won't be throwing a dance party with it, but it is road trip worthy.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Quinoa doesn't like to be patty(ed)

There is a reason why quinoa burgers aren't a thing.
Quinoa, by nature, doesn't like to be bound together, forced into unnatural shapes or squished between slices of bread. Each little quinoa granula is constantly trying to be it's own, unique entity and quinoa actively resents you when you try to make it anything else.

Moral of the story, we all grew up in the "Free To Be You and Me" era, so just let quinoa be quinoa.
Lesson learned.

Enjoy this quinoa hash.

You'll need:
2 1/2 cooked quinoa
4 large eggs- beaten
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 c fresh chives-chopped
1 yellow or white onion- chopped
3 garlic cloves- chopped
1 c bread crumbs
1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 c parmesan cheese- optional

You'll need to:
- Mix the quinoa, eggs, salt, chives, onion, cheese, garlic and breadcrumbs in a medium bowl. Let it sit so the bread crumbs can get a little soggy.

-Try to make the quinoa into patties. Or give up and make a scramble.
- Heat the oil in a skillet, cook the unnatural patties, or hash until it's all deep brown, like 7 minutes per side.

- Serve however you want. Try not to think about  cheeseburgers while eating.

So "The Great Gatsby" is kind of a big deal right now.
The book, the show (GATZ), the film and now the soundtrack. I have heard many rumors about the film, how awful it is, how awesome it is.... but, if the soundtrack is pretty awesome and that means I'll give the film a shot.
It was available on NPR First Listen and it's now on Spotify, but I might actually buy it.

. I kind of love that they aren't using period music, that there is an attempt to go for the risque feeling of that era with music of today. It's not only Jay-Z, but the xx, Florence and the Machine and Jack White, among others. Is there a history of music lesson here? Or is NPR reading into it a little too much. Who knows?

All I do know is that the soundtrack makes me even more excited to see the movie and it feeds my not so secret love for Beyonce.

And there is new Daft Punk. Life is good.