An Accidental Cookbook Author & A Recipe from “The Peace, Love and Potato Salad Cookbook” – “Egg, Apple & Smoked Trout Potato Salad with Cider Dressing”

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 Can one be an “accidental cookbook author”? Is such a thing possible? Yes…I am living proof that by just being in the right place at the right time some amazing things can happen totally by accident! I so enjoy working and styling food for cookbooks and have worked on many over the years. I, on the other hand,  have never been particularly interested in doing one of my own.  So it was even sweeter and more fun when I got this pre-release cookbook cover image from Spring House Press and there was my name right under Zack Browns! Me, the accidental cookbook author!

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“The Peace, Love & Potato Salad Cookbook”, the story of a crowd-sourced $55,492 bowl of potato salad, published by Spring House Press is to be released this coming July 2016. As the cover says it will have 24 delicious recipes for seasonal potato salads which proves that potato salad is not just for summer picnics and such, but should be enjoyed all year.

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As a “tease” I am going to share with you one of the 24 recipes I conjured up and developed, tested and styled for this book with Zack who was a joy to work with. If you have not already heard about his potato salad Kickstarter project then a quick look here will tell you more. All the gorgeous images are the work photographer Danielle Atkins. The person who brought us all together…who was the glue…is J Spinks…art director extraordinaire.

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How I got involved with Zack’s Kickstarter is another story,  but that is all in the cookbook.  This was a labor of love that I worked on just for the absolute fun of it as well as my interest in pursuing projects that are works of good.

Later on there will be some cookbook giveaways and other fun stuff. Today I share with you a yummy spring potato salad recipe, “Egg, Apple & Smoked Trout Potato Salad with Cider Dressing”, to tease your potato salad palate, . Enjoy!

Egg, Apple & Smoked Trout Potato Salad with Cider Dressing

  • Servings: 6
  • Print

Image by Danielle Atkins Photography
Image by Danielle Atkins Photography

Tossed with pepper arugula and watercress and smoky trout, this entree potato salad is exquisite. The apple slices and cider vinegar add a fresh dimension. Served with good crusty bread and a chilled white wine, it’s just what spring calls for.

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb baby Yukon gold or honey gold potatoes
  • 2 tart apples, thinly sliced
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 3 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 handful watercress
  • 1 handful baby arugula
  • 8-10 ounces smoked trout, separated into chunks
  • 4 hard-boiled eggs, peeled and quartered

Directions:

  1. Bring potatoes to a boil in salted water. Reduce heat and simmer, about 20 minutes, until potatoes are knife tender. Drain and set aside. Once cool, cut each potato in half.
  2. Toss apples with the juice of 1/2 lemon and set aside.
  3. Make the dressing: Put the egg yolks, additional lemon juice, and a dash of salt and pepper in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse a few times to mix. With processor running, drizzle in olive oil until mixture has thickened. Add the mustard and vinegar. Pulse to blend. Taste and adjust seasoning.
  4. To serve: gently toss the potatoes, apples, watercress, arugula and trout with the dressing. Place mixture on a serving platter or individual plates. Scatter sea salt and pepper over salad. Top with egg pieces and drizzle with additional olive oil if desired.

reprinted with permission from Spring House Press

teresablackburnfoodstyling.com

 

 

Still Life with an Arkansas Black Apple Tart & A Scenic Road Trip

I realize that many of you lovely readers of Food on Fifth and fellow bloggers travel to, or are currently vacationing in, exotic locations around the globe while so many other blogger friends live in cities and countries far & wide. Celia is in New Zealand visiting family, Roger actually lives in France, Tina is based out of Frankfurt, Germany but  can be found in so many truly exotic spots it can make the mind reel. Selma resides  in London & Cheryl in Glasgow and Meg might be blogging about Verona one day and Virginia the next. My recent travels were of a more humble nature, yet iconically American.

A couple of weeks ago my well-traveled friend, Terry, and I purposefully took a road trip to Bentonville, Arkansas.  Deep in the Ozark forest is a wonder to behold, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art. We will return to this thread later…..

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Have you ever eaten an Arkansas Black apple?  From a road side stand in Harrison, Arkansas I bought a half bushel basket of these very crispy, deep red, right on the edge of black, apples. They are long-keeping apples and are said to turn almost black when stored.

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Last week after our return I gave away bags of these beauties to friends who love to cook. Jill at Jill Cooks Here took home a bag and Nancy at Good Food Matters just made a terrific seasonal cake with her bag.

These apples are very crisp and do not get mushy when cooked, but hold their shape and keep a bit of crunch when used in cakes & pies. I like this quality very much.

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 Maple syrup, brown sugar & cinnamon.

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A crust using the seeds of a whole vanilla bean, almond meal & Kerrygold butter.

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Filled and loosely….I like to think artistically….latticed.

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Sugared top golden browned.

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“Still Life with an Arkansas Black Apple Tart”

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Best eaten warm from the oven.

Arkansas Black Apple Tart

  • Servings: 6
  • Print

tart

Ingredients for Crust:

  • the seeds from one vanilla bean
  • 1 3/4 cup almond meal (I used Bob’s Red Meal/Gluten Free)
  • 1/2 cup gluten-free flour + extra for rolling out the dough (King Arthur or Bob’s Red Mill)
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1 1/2 sticks cold/12 tablespoons butter grated or cut into small pieces (Kerrygold is my favorite)
  • 2 tbsp cold plain greek yogurt

Ingredients for Filling:

  • 5-6 Arkansas Black Apples, cored, peeled & sliced, or other seasonal local apple with a crispy, tart flesh
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 2 tbsp dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground nutmeg or any ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 cup real maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp cold butter cut into small pieces
  • 1 whole egg well beaten for wash
  • Granulated Sanding sugar for dusting over the top before baking

Directions for Tart Crust:

  1. Put the 1 3/4 cups almond flour, 1/2 cup gluten-free flour, the vanilla bean seeds & the 1/4 tsp sea salt in the bowl of a food processor and pulse a few times.
  2. Add the cold butter & pulse a few times.
  3. Add the cold yogurt & pulse until a sticky dough forms.
  4. Scrape dough from the processor bowl, shape into a ball, wrap with plastic and chill for at least 30 minutes. This can be made the day before as well.
  5. Lightly grease a springform pan. Press 2/3 of  the chilled dough into the bottom and halfway up the sides of the pan. Set aside.
  6. Roll the other 1/3 of the dough out on a floured board and cut into lattice strips. Use as much flour as needed as this dough is very soft and tender.

Directions for Filling the Crust:

  1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a bowl toss the apple slices with the juice of half a lemon. Sprinkle with the nutmeg and dark brown sugar and toss again.
  3. Drizzle with the maple syrup and toss well.
  4. Arrange the apple slices in the tart crust snuggly. Top with the butter pieces.
  5. Place the dough strips over the top of the apple filling in a “lattice” pattern. As you can see perfection was not my goal, but I did want it to look pretty.
  6. Brush lattice top with egg wash and sprinkle generously with the sanding sugar.
  7. Bake for about 35-40 minutes or until the apples are bubbling and the top crust is golden brown. If the crust browns to rapidly then cover the entire pan loosely with foil.
  8. Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack. Best served warm and of course would be extra good with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Scenes from a road trip….

A couple of hours into our trip we had to stop at Billy Tripp’s “Mindfield” in Brownsville, TN…now an official Roadside Attraction!

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I always like to stop and wander about. A West Tennessee cotton field is a contemplative place.

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Heading into the Ozarks on a cloudy day.

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Bentonville, Arkansas. Home of Walmart. Old ad..a store wide selection of timely values.

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Bentonville is also home to the  Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art. Sam Walton’s daughter, Alice, the powerhouse behind this beautiful space is an interesting read on Google. A stunning space for both it architecture, designed by Moshe Safdie,  and its remote location, it houses American art spanning 5 centuries of artists from Colonial times to the present.

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Other road side attractons…..

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Take a road trip….make a tart.

“Easy-to-Make Simple Syrups” Holiday Gifts, E.A.T. #15

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Time fleets….gift-giving season is here…just a perusal of Etsy or Scoutmob makes it very clear that home-made, hand-made and diy gifts are the “thing”. With that in mind here is a final, very easy-as-this gift idea for all your food friends. Make one or make them all, it only takes an afternoon in your kitchen, and it really will put you in a holiday mood. I promise!

“Beet Juice & Ginger Simple Syrup” chilled with a splash of white rum or drizzled over vanilla ice cream with a sugar cookie? “Cranberry & Orange” with white wine anyone? “Lemon & Thyme Simple Syrup” added to a cup of relaxing hot tea with a slice of lime? Or maybe an “Apple, Habanero & Mint” with Seltzer & fruit ice cubes for a non-alcoholic pick-me-up?

Simple syrups

From Top Left clockwise: “Fresh Beet & Ginger”, “Gala Apple, Habanero & Mint”, “Cranberry Orange” and “Very Lemon Thyme” simple syrups.

The process of each syrup is the same. It is as “easy-as-this”.

Basic Simple Syrup Recipe

1 cup water (liquid) + 1 cup sugar, a 1-1 ratio

“Cranberry & Orange Simple Syrup” – 1 lb fresh cranberries, the peel & juice from one orange, 2 cups water + 2 cups sugar. Bring to a boil, turn to simmer, stirring often until mixture thickens & sugar has melted. Cook for 20 minutes on low heat. Remove from heat. Let cool completely.

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“Apple, Habanero & Mint Simple Syrup” – Using same process as above just add 2 chopped apples,  1/2 tsp. finely chopped Habanero pepper (wear gloves!) & 1/2 cup mint leaves to pan.

Apple, Habanero & mint simple syrupApple, Habanero & Mint Simple Syrup

“Fresh Beet Juice & Ginger Root Simple Syrup” – (I had cooked some fresh beets in water for another recipe..the color was just fantastic, I tasted it and it was really sweet and delicious…a simple syrup came of this happy accident.)  2 cups fresh beet juice + 1/4 cup peeled & sliced fresh ginger + 1 tbsp lemon peel simmered with 2 cups sugar made one really great syrup!

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“Very Lemon & Thyme Simple Syrup” – the peel of 2 lemons, 1 tsp lemon extract or syrup + a handful of fresh thyme. Same process, subtle flavors.

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How to Bottle or Jar:

After syrups have cooled completely strain each through a fine sieve. Wash & dry bottles or jars with lids.

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strained simple syrup

Pour strained liquids into prepared bottles or jars. I, once again, got out my stash of bottles, caps & bottle capper (all from All Seasons here in Nashville) to decant my simple syrups into.

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The apple has a hint of pink, the beet a deep red-burgundy, the lemon light & yellow, and the cranberry a clear red.

It is as “easy-as-that”.

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have fun! life is not perfect.

“Pannekoeken, Please”

“PANNEKOEKEN, PLEASE”

Yes, your eyes are not deceiving you…high above the skillet, looking very “halo-like” over one of my Charlie Cook tough-guy paintings, suspended for a split second mid-air, is one of Wouter’s Sunday morning Dutch Pancakes. It landed back in the skillet effortlessly and for a moment upon entering the room I  wondered if I had stumbled in on some performance art piece, or breakfast?

Pannekoeken or Dutch Pancakes are one of our favorite breakfasts. Unlike our American pancakes these are a bit like a cross between a pancake and a crepe, can be rolled or eaten flat with powdered sugar and/or maple syrup and can have apples or other fruit added as well as bacon. In The Netherlands we always have at least one breakfast, or dinner of Pannekoeken. It is one of the culinary joys of visiting.

I don’t ask for them often as I understand what makes “something special”,  special. But with food friends Nancy Davidson & Diane Stopford  as guests I asked Wouter to make this very special breakfast for us…..Pannekoeken, please.

“Wouter’s Pannekoeken (Dutch Pancakes) For Sunday Morning Guests”

Ingredients:

1 cup unbleached, all-purpose flour; 2 large eggs & 1/2 cup milk. 1/2 stick butter for the skillet.  Powdered sugar & real maple syrup. Tart seasonal apples such as Braeburns; Pink Ladies; Jona Golds, Granny Smiths, cored, peeled and thinly sliced.

How to make Dutch Pancakes in photos & words:

1. Mix together in a bowl the flour, eggs & milk using a whisk. Let batter stand about 10 minutes.

2. Using a 10 inch non-stick skillet over medium high heat Wouter has melted some butter. When skillet is hot and butter is sizzling he ladles a thin layer of batter, turning pan from side to side to coat bottom of pan with batter. Return pan to heat.

3. When the batter starts to pull away from sides of pan and starts to set around the edges, tilt the pan around so batter can run underneath cooked edges. Do this during the cooking time so batter will cook evenly. It is now time to flip the pancake. You can do this the more conventional way using a spatula or if feeling a bit of theatrics coming on, just flip mid-air like Wouter does!

4. Flip. These are pancakes best served as they are cooked so Diane, Nancy & I waited patiently with our lattes for our first Pannekoeken hot off the grill.

Guests get served first!

First we add powdered sugar…..

…some warm Wisconsin maple syrup….

…rolled & ready to eat.

For Pannekoeken round #2 Wouter poured the same batter over apple slices.

1. Wouter arranges apple slices over bottom of skillet with hot melted butter.

2. Ladles a thin layer of batter over apples & returns skillet to heat.

3.  Cook until edges of pancake are set and middle is bubbly, tilting and turning pan to let uncooked batter seep underneath edges to bottom of pan to cook.

4. Flip. Cook on other side and serve hot!

Diane adding powdered sugar….

…and warm syrup.

The apples are fork tender, the pancake hot with warm syrup & a dusting of powdered sugar. Pannekoeken Perfect!

 

We like White Lily flour for Pannekoeken.

Finally, the cook gets to eat!

Eet Smakelijk! (or as we say Bon Apetit)