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Preview: A Full Belly

A Full Belly



A weblog about eating well.



Updated: 2010-08-27T11:00:00-04:00

 



Fried Eggplant Balls

2010-08-27T18:45:50-04:00

Wayne and Tracie invited us over Wednesday night for a Turkish Themed Potluck. I love potlucks, and I love Wayne and Tracie, so I immediately hit the cookbook collection to search for an appropriate recipe. I ended skimming through Mediterranean-themed...

Wayne and Tracie invited us over Wednesday night for a Turkish Themed Potluck. I love potlucks, and I love Wayne and Tracie, so I immediately hit the cookbook collection to search for an appropriate recipe. I ended skimming through Mediterranean-themed Olives & Oranges by Sara Jenkins and Mindy Fox, and settled on a recipe for Fried Eggplant Balls. Simple and delicious, and easy to make ahead, I was sold.

They turned out to be a huge hit at the potluck, especially among those who claimed to be former eggplant haters. Success! I'll definitely be making these again.

 

Fried Eggplant Balls

From Olives & Oranges by Sara Jenkins and Mindy Fox

Ingredients

2 large eggplants (about 2 3/4 lb)

1 large egg

2 cups medium-ground fresh bread crumbs

1 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, plus more for garnish

3 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley, plus more for garnish

3 garlic cloves, minced

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

Extra virgin olive oil for shallow frying

 

Procedure

Heat oven to 375 F. Prick each eggplant several times with a fork. Roast until cooked through, about 1 hour. Let cool.

Halve eggplants lengthwise, scrape flesh from skin, and place in a fine sieve set over a mixing bowl; discard skin. Drain for 4 hours at room temperature or overnight in the refrigerator.

Transfer eggplant flesh to a food processor (discard juices). Add egg, bread crumbs, cheese, parsley, garlic, and salt; pulse to combine. Transfer to a plate or bowl. Form into forty 1-inch balls.

Fill a large skillet with 1/4 inch oil and heat to 360 F to 365 F. Using a slotted spoon add several eggplant balls into hot oil to cook until golden on all sides, about 5 minutes. Remove with slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Repeat with remaining balls.

Serve eggplant balls hot, dusted with a little grated Parmigiano-Reggiano and chopped parsley.




One Page Cookbooks

2009-07-30T13:05:13-04:00

I like this concept: One page "cookbooks" focused on Indian cuisine. These are more like one sheet formulas, or Cooking for Engineers meets Ruhlman's Ratio. At the very least, a quick way to jog your brain out of a culinary...I like this concept: One page "cookbooks" focused on Indian cuisine. These are more like one sheet formulas, or Cooking for Engineers meets Ruhlman's Ratio. At the very least, a quick way to jog your brain out of a culinary rut. The latest one for biryanis will go in my recipe file, as will this one for traditional Bengali/Oriya sweets.



Breakfast Portrait

2009-07-30T08:55:15-04:00

Breakfast Portrait, originally uploaded by Alaina B.. Blueberries, doughnut peach, yogurt.
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Breakfast Portrait, originally uploaded by Alaina B..

Blueberries, doughnut peach, yogurt.




Tomatoes

2009-07-27T08:52:05-04:00

tomatoes, originally uploaded by Alaina B.. Tomatoes for Spaghetti all'Aglio e Olio.
(image)

tomatoes, originally uploaded by Alaina B..

Tomatoes for Spaghetti all'Aglio e Olio.




Breakfast @ Blue Bottle

2009-06-18T11:05:22-04:00

Breakfast @ Blue Bottle, originally uploaded by Alaina B.. Quick trip to San Francisco included breakfast at Blue Bottle Sunday morning. I prefer my eggs a little runnier, otherwise YUM.

Quick trip to San Francisco included breakfast at Blue Bottle Sunday morning. I prefer my eggs a little runnier, otherwise YUM.




Cupcake Recipe for Adriana

2009-04-12T19:52:39-04:00

- Makes 12 cupcakes - Ingredients 2/3 cup (10 tablespoons) unsalted butter at room temperature 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour 1/4 cup cornstarch 2 teaspoons baking powder 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt 1 1/2 cups sugar 2 large eggs 1 large...

- Makes 12 cupcakes -

Ingredients

2/3 cup (10 tablespoons) unsalted butter at room temperature
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup cornstarch
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 large eggs
1 large egg yolk
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/4 cup buttermilk or 2/3 cup sour or regular milk


Procedure
Preheat oven to 350°F.

Sift together the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and salt.

Using the paddle attachment of an electric mixer, beat the butter with the sugar until light and fluffy, a good 5 minutes.

Add the eggs, one at a time, beating after each, and the egg yolk.

Beat in the vanilla.

Stir in the dry ingredients in thirds, alternating with the buttermilk, just until incorporated. Do not overmix.

Fill lined muffin tins with batter almost to the top. Bake at 350°F for about 20 minutes, or until set.

* * * * * * * * * *


Vanilla Cream Frosting

Ingredients
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 tablespoon light corn syrup
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
pinch of kosher salt
4 cups confectioner's sugar (about 1 pound)
1/4 cup heavy cream

Procedure
Beat together the butter, corn syrup, vanilla, and salt until smooth.

Blend in the sugar to form a stiff paste.

Slowly beat in just enough of the heavy cream to make a spreadable frosting. If the frosting is too soft, add more sugar or chill it for a few minutes to firm up.




Homesick Texan's Basic Black Beans Recipe

2009-03-27T13:51:40-04:00

Homesick Texan: Austin and basic black beans. This is my basic black bean recipe. It takes little effort and has a rich smoky flavor that comes from chipotles instead of the usual ham hocks or bacon. And, of course, if...

Homesick Texan: Austin and basic black beans.

This is my basic black bean recipe. It takes little effort and has a rich smoky flavor that comes from chipotles instead of the usual ham hocks or bacon. And, of course, if you’re bored by black beans at least now I have something to point to when I write in the future about really fun things, such as black-bean salsa, corn and black-bean salad or that Austin late-night staple, Mag mud.




"The proof is in the eating"

2009-03-23T21:12:16-04:00

Adam has his truth hammer at the ready: Depending on how well Sceral trains the team, it's not going to matter if that oven burns at 1,000 degrees, rotates in a circle, shines my shoes, or calls me a cab...

Adam has his truth hammer at the ready:

Depending on how well Sceral trains the team, it's not going to matter if that oven burns at 1,000 degrees, rotates in a circle, shines my shoes, or calls me a cab in the morning. The proof is in the eating. And we'll see how that goes both while Sceral is at the helm and when he's not.




South Indian Restaurant Menu Decoder Ring

2009-03-23T14:55:30-04:00

South Indian Restaurant Menu Decoder Ring - Evil Mad Scientist Laboratories: So you need a decoder ring! Or at least a wallet card. With a little help from Wikipedia (check out their page on curry!) and the glossary in my...

South Indian Restaurant Menu Decoder Ring - Evil Mad Scientist Laboratories:

So you need a decoder ring! Or at least a wallet card. With a little help from Wikipedia (check out their page on curry!) and the glossary in my copy of 1000 Indian Recipes, we've put together a South Indian Restaurant Menu Decoder Wallet Card (800 kB PDF) for your enjoyment, education, and dining pleasure. You can print it out-- single sided so no hassle --and it compresses to standard business card size: 3.5" x 2". You can also not print it out, and just view it on your iPhone. (And if you've never been to a South Indian place, isn't this a good time to try one?)

[Via Not Martha]




Benton's Red-Eye Gravy Recipe

2009-03-23T11:01:39-04:00

The Church of Allan Benton, John T. Edge: ....Those encounters reminded me to take a second look at a recipe that Allan shared with me a while back. It’s his take on red-eye gravy. And it’s as straightforward as the...
The Church of Allan Benton, John T. Edge:
....Those encounters reminded me to take a second look at a recipe that Allan shared with me a while back. It’s his take on red-eye gravy. And it’s as straightforward as the man himself, as honest as the cured pork that emerges from his smokehouse.

This recipe includes one of my favorite ingredients: "Hot biscuits, for sopping."




You Never Know What You Might Learn @ Serious Eats

2009-03-20T12:03:19-04:00

Serious Efforts: Whole Deer Neck | Serious Eats : Talk I am going to receive a whole deer neck via FedEx tomorrow. It has been skinned and frozen solid, but is otherwise pretty much intact. I would like some advice...

Serious Efforts: Whole Deer Neck | Serious Eats : Talk

I am going to receive a whole deer neck via FedEx tomorrow. It has been skinned and frozen solid, but is otherwise pretty much intact. I would like some advice from anyone here experienced with taking deer apart. I would like to remove the muscles from each other and from the bone in as large and unmolested pieces as possible. . . I plan on consulting some books and websites on the matter, but was hoping I could get some pointers from the community. Thank you!




10 Steps to Gardening from Scratch

2009-03-18T09:08:56-04:00

10 Steps to Gardening from Scratch « Straight from the Farm:These 10 steps are best applied to a garden being created from scratch. However, a few of them are good to repeat with an established garden once in awhile. It’s...10 Steps to Gardening from Scratch « Straight from the Farm:
These 10 steps are best applied to a garden being created from scratch.  However, a few of them are good to repeat with an established garden once in awhile.   
It’s only fair to add a bit of a disclaimer here too:  these steps are a tad idealistic and presume you all have plenty of time and resources on your hands.   Reality may not allow you to take all of these steps.  Don’t let that discourage you.  These steps are just what I’d do if I were starting over from scratch.  Use the ones that make sense for you and learn what you can from the others. 



Bird Houses: Using Nature to Control a Farm Pest

2009-03-18T08:56:29-04:00

Bird Houses: Using Nature to Control a Farm Pest. John Bansen, a third-generation dairy farmer, demonstrates one of his techniques for using nature to control his fly populations.

Bird Houses: Using Nature to Control a Farm Pest.

John Bansen, a third-generation dairy farmer, demonstrates one of his techniques for using nature to control his fly populations.

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To Eat: Minetta's Black Label Burger

2009-03-17T13:26:43-04:00

Secrets of Minetta Tavern's Black Label Burger | A Hamburger Today: The finished burger looks so simple, completely belying the rigorous preparation involved in bringing it to table. Although the bun might appear too large, it is so light and...
Secrets of Minetta Tavern's Black Label Burger | A Hamburger Today:
The finished burger looks so simple, completely belying the rigorous preparation involved in bringing it to table. Although the bun might appear too large, it is so light and airy that as it compresses and conforms around the plump patty the beef-to-bun ratio is actually spot on. The acridity of the onions balances the subtle sweetness of the bun, allowing the flavor of the beef to be fully realized. The Black Label is simply ethereal—tender, succulent, and brimming with the flavor of dry aging: that musky, Roquefort-like tang that is so intoxicating.

I'm skeptical of any $20+ burger, but Nick's DVD extras-esque post about Minetta's $26 Black Label Burger has swayed me. *Added to To Eat List*




Heather Carlucci-Rodriguez's Chana Punjabi Recipe

2009-03-13T12:25:42-04:00

The Wednesday Chef: Heather Carlucci-Rodriguez's Chana Punjabi Recipe: This recipe comes from Heather Carlucci-Rodriguez, who runs darling little Lassi in the West Village and has a way with Indian food that makes me weak in the knees.
The Wednesday Chef: Heather Carlucci-Rodriguez's Chana Punjabi Recipe:
This recipe comes from Heather Carlucci-Rodriguez, who runs darling little Lassi in the West Village and has a way with Indian food that makes me weak in the knees.



Creamless Creamed Spinach Recipe

2009-03-13T08:54:16-04:00

From the Diner's Journal Blog: The White House chef's creamless creamed spinach recipe, "one of Michelle Obama's favorite healthful foods."

From the Diner's Journal Blog: The White House chef's creamless creamed spinach recipe, "one of Michelle Obama's favorite healthful foods."




Shuklaji's Chaat Cart

2009-03-12T12:22:33-04:00

Shuklaji's Chaat Cart and the Cheap Eat of my Lifetime in Lucknow, India | The Eaten Path: Shuklaji’s menu was limited to four choices, each a masterful exercise in minimalism. The first, his take on panipuri, forsook any kind of...
Shuklaji's Chaat Cart and the Cheap Eat of my Lifetime in Lucknow, India | The Eaten Path:
Shuklaji’s menu was limited to four choices, each a masterful exercise in minimalism. The first, his take on panipuri, forsook any kind of filling for a more pure experience: The short, mustachioed maestro would simply reach for a crispy puff of hollowed dough, dip it in his own brand of masala water and hand it to me for immediate consumption. He would then reach for another, then another, waiting for the signal to move on to the next course. For round two, Shuklaji would serve perfectly balanced dahipuri, filling the puri shell with slightly crisped potato, a large pinch of spices, a spoonful of yogurt, a drizzle of tamarind and a dusting of cilantro. It was probably the single best bite I took in six months abroad. It was also entirely and immediately repeatable, a virtual conveyor belt of homemade chaat operating at pennies per bite and smiling amusedly at my overwhelmed sense of pleasure. Shuklaji’s final act was a dual serving of aloo tikki, boiled, mashed and fried patties of potato and green peas, spiced conservatively and marked with his wife’s chutneys for a tasty, filling ending to our nightly spoiling of the appetites.



Diddy Wants to Know: KFC or Popeyes?

2009-03-11T13:34:33-04:00

DUH, Popeyes!

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DUH, Popeyes!




Scrambled Eggs Cecilia

2009-03-11T13:21:14-04:00

Goa's Culinary Treasures, India: Travel + Culture : gourmet.com. But the Scrambled Eggs Cecilia were flawless, and the waiter explained what went into them: tomato and onion, then a fried spice mix including cumin, mustard seeds, garlic, ginger, and curry...

Goa's Culinary Treasures, India: Travel + Culture : gourmet.com.

But the Scrambled Eggs Cecilia were flawless, and the waiter explained what went into them: tomato and onion, then a fried spice mix including cumin, mustard seeds, garlic, ginger, and curry leaves, with a scattering of fresh coriander on top. And a little dried coriander, too, he emphasized, because the dried coriander is very flavorful in Goa. With the eggs came the toasted white buns known as “local bread”—a staple introduced by the Portuguese some 400 years ago.

As a life-long lover of eggs, I have a special affection for Indian omelets and scrambles. The ones we ate on our recent trip to Orissa were simple yet so Indian— eggs, hot green pepper, cilantro, onion. I made my own version over the weekend. All it lacked was the accompanying cup of instant coffee.




A Day of Eating in Flushing, Queens

2009-01-03T22:17:57-05:00

A day of eating in Flushing, Queens from Alaina Browne on Vimeo. This morning I met up with a bunch of serious eaters (including Robyn, Kathy, Kathryn, Zach, Don, Gordon, and Tam) for dim sum at Perfect Team Corp. in...

This morning I met up with a bunch of serious eaters (including Robyn, Kathy, Kathryn, Zach, Don, Gordon, and Tam) for dim sum at Perfect Team Corp. in Flushing, Queens. We beat the crowds and scored a table by the kitchen so it was ideal dim sum-ing and made getting up early on a Saturday more than worthwhile. But being serious eaters, we didn't stop there. After dim sum we made stops at a couple of the food malls and street stalls before we waddled back to the subway with full bellies. I edited some clips I took with my Mino HD into the short movie above. Enjoy!