"Perhaps the most impressive of all the cookbook blogs are the three devoted to the 2004 edition of Gourmet magazine's "The Gourmet Cookbook" -- all 5¼ pounds and 1,300-odd recipes of it. Befitting this culinary Everest, all three writers are overachievers in their professional lives."

--Lee Gomes, The Wall Street Journal, May 28, 2008
"I should have told you before how much I've been enjoying reading your thoughts. You seem like such a great cook."

--Ruth Reichl, Editor-in-Chief of Gourmet Magazine, June 8 2008, comment on "Chocolate Velvet Ice Cream".

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Date Walnut Rugelach and Gratineed Chicken and Vegetables in Cream Sauce

If I had had a balloon over my head showing my inner thoughts while I was in the process of making Date Walnut Rugelach, it would have looked like this:

If I had had a balloon showing my inner thoughts while I was in the process of tasting the rugelach after they had cooled, it would have looked like this:

Clearly, this is a recipe that is to be made only once a year.

And it is, actually, a traditional Hanukkah recipe, which is why I made it even though nobody at work celebrates that particular holiday except M.'s husband E. (who won't be around til Christmas anyway). They rank on the pain-in-the-ass scale up there with Peanut Butter Bon Bons (my family's traditional Christmas goody).

Here is why Date Walnut Rugelach will make you emit hearts too: the dates melt somewhat during the baking, and in the little spots where they leak out of the dough wrapper, they caramelize and become chewy. Mmmm, heaven.

Production note: the book directs you to brush the pastry rounds with melted apricot jam before rolling them up--the recipe on Epicurious doesn't. Also, in searching for an image of rugelach to put here, I notice that hardly anybody tucks the outer ends of the roll under--this would make production slightly easier. Anyway, here's a lovely photo from Milk and Cookies\.


Gratineed Chicken in Cream Sauce is a very tasty, comforting fall/winter dish for chicken. My only problem with this dish was that I didn't read it all the way through and so was expecting a casserole.

It isn't--it's pan-seared chicken parts with vegetables in a cream sauce--the pan is sprinkled heavily with Gruyere at the end and finished under a broiler until it's all melted and bubbly.

If you love classic French food, you will really love this and should give it a whirl. If you are not a sauce person (incredible, but they're out there) or are watching your fat intake then steer clear.

This photo by Romulo Yanes doesn't really show all the lovely cheese and sauce to its best advantage, but it will give you an idea...

No comments: