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All About Braising: Which Recipes are You Choosing? and Recipe Links

redwood2bay Sep 30, 2006 03:39 AM

October 2006 Cookbook of the Month. Use this thread to discuss which of Molly Stevens' recipes you are considering, get feedback from other chowhounds, and find out if anyone else has tried or is trying the same thing. Full length recipe reviews should be posted in the review threads (to be opened later)-- this thread is intended for menu planning purposes. Have fun!

This thread is also the place to post links to recipes that are available online with the following caveat:

The Chowhound Team has asked me to remind you that verbatim copying of recipes to the boards is a violation of the copyright of the original author. Posts with copied recipes will be removed.

  1. c
    ceeceee Oct 9, 2006 03:52 PM

    hi all, i'm having so much fun with the cook along....
    i am still awaiting my book to be shipped. in the meanwhile, i have been using molly's recipes that i find online and here on these threads...
    next i am making the whole chicken braised with pears...


    however, on this recipe, she left out how much and what kind of wine to use! also---what to do with the first pear...
    could someone fill in the blanks for me?
    thanks a million!!!

    1 Reply
    1. re: ceeceee
      BKchompchomp Oct 10, 2006 06:55 PM

      ceecee, I just made this last night. The first pear gets quartered (unpeeled, uncored) and stuffed inside the bird with the rosemary. (MS says to makes sure that two of the quarters are inserted stem side first, and the other two blossom side first, but I don't know why.) The recipe calls for 2oz dry white wine. I just threw in a couple of shots of dry vermouth. Enjoy!

    2. JoanN Oct 8, 2006 05:14 PM

      This may not be the appropriate place to post this, but I figure it’s my best bet for others in the AAB club to see it.

      I’m beginning to wonder if I have the same version of the cookbook everyone else does. I ordered mine from Amazon and it was shipped from Jessica’s Biscuit. It does not have a separate jacket. The book is bound, sort of like a high school textbook, with a laminated surface directly on the hardbound color cover. I suspect it’s a book club edition, although it’s not so specified on the copyright page, as opposed to the edition shipped to the stores by the publisher.

      The problem is that I’m finding lots of typos and odds and ends of book production errors, such as type in the wrong font and with incorrect indentations. I’m also finding odd lapses in the instructions, such as failing to mention that the cabbage for World’s Best should be cored, although that instruction is indeed given for the other two cabbage recipes. I used to know the editor of this book (worked with her many years back) and know her to be very demanding and thorough. I also own lots of other cookbooks she’s edited and never came across one with so many easily-remedied goofs. It’s just an educated guess, having been in the business, but I wonder if the publisher didn’t send to the book club an early set of proofs from which they printed their edition and then corrected for their own edition the slip-ups I’m finding in mine.

      I’ve only done two recipes so far and the errors certainly aren’t substantive. The dishes have been terrific. But I find it annoying and I’m leery. Anyone else running into this?

      2 Replies
      1. re: JoanN
        beetlebug Oct 8, 2006 05:54 PM

        My version of ABB is from the library. For the World's Best Cabbage, there are no directions to core the cabbage. The picture of the cabbage does look that the cabbage was cored.I haven't noticed any incorrect fonts or indentations, though, but, I've been fliping through the book and mostly focusing on the TOC of each chapter.

        Since it is a library version, the cover is separate and laminated.

        1. re: beetlebug
          GretchenS Oct 9, 2006 04:42 PM

          Ditto, my library version has no instruction to core the cabbage in the World's Best Cabbage recipe. I have not noticed any oddities (obvious typos, font changes, etc) in the text.

      2. c
        ceeceee Oct 8, 2006 04:25 PM

        after all of the rave reviews of the world's best braised cabbage (world's best!) i will be making this tonight. as molly suggests, it's going to be a simple vegetable based dinner. i'll maked mashed potatoes and a can of heinz or batchelor's baked beans...mmmm....has to be the imported ones from ireland/england. soooooo comforting.

        1. c
          ceeceee Oct 6, 2006 01:48 PM

          so i will be attempting the maple glazed short ribs tonight. i havent heard anyone making it yet...if someone has what did you use for the porter? i need to pick up a bottle of something on the way home. i went into a small grocery shop this monring and found no porters...or the other suggested--sam adams black lager!

          3 Replies
          1. re: ceeceee
            JoanN Oct 6, 2006 06:15 PM

            Just bought the ingredients today. Perhaps over the weekend? Can't help you with the porter substitute since Fairway had the Samuel Smith's Taddy Porter and I bought that. I'll be most eager for a report. Particularly curious to know whether or not there is much sauce since I'm debating sides. Not really interested in the roasted beets she recommends.

            1. re: JoanN
              ceeceee Oct 6, 2006 06:44 PM

              i picked up anchor porter..so i'll give it a try tonight and let you know. for sides im making sweet potatoes and brussel sprouts...

              1. re: JoanN
                Chris VR Oct 6, 2006 06:51 PM

                I've made it in the past and am fairly sure there was a good amount of sauce.

            2. b
              BangorDin Oct 6, 2006 01:43 PM

              Can someone tell me if these recipes will be the same in both a braising pot and a crockpot? The long slow simmering cooking method seems to me to be identical, but if there is a difference I'd like to know--thanks!

              1 Reply
              1. re: BangorDin
                GretchenS Oct 6, 2006 02:19 PM

                Molly Stevens says that she doesn't like crockpots all that much, in part because you can't do the initial searing in them and if you need to do a final sauce reduction you can't do that in them either. Also, she thinks there is a "subtle, but definite, lack of richness of flavor" in crockpot braises. But, she says, if it's a choice of crockpot braising or no braising, go for the crockpot.

              2. Katie Nell Oct 5, 2006 09:52 PM

                While they aren't necessarily braising recipes, Fine Cooking has a ton of Molly Steven's recipes online: http://www.taunton.com/finecooking/dt...

                2 Replies
                1. re: Katie Nell
                  Rubee Oct 5, 2006 10:40 PM

                  Those look good! I might have to make the boursin potatoes. So much for trying to limit my starches this month ;)

                  1. re: Rubee
                    Katie Nell Oct 6, 2006 01:22 PM

                    Ah... last month was a bad one for starches too! You're just screwed! ;-)

                2. e
                  ellaj Oct 5, 2006 01:00 AM

                  Made the Pork Loin Braised in Milk tonight. It smelled great and was delicious. Family loved it, will surely make it again.

                  My dutch oven was too large for the meat so I did what she suggests in the front of the book and used parchment paper to create a lower lid.

                  Not sure what's next, have to see what's in the house and go from there. Several of the recipes mentioned above are on my hit list.


                  1. j
                    julesrules Oct 2, 2006 06:39 PM

                    Here's another one for braised chicken and pears, slightly modified from the original though as outlined by the blogger


                    1. Rubee Oct 2, 2006 12:02 AM

                      A link with recipes for:

                      Braised Cauliflower with Capers & Toasted Bread Crumbs
                      Braised Turkey Thighs with Onions and Buttercup Squash
                      Braised Halibut Steaks with Creamy Leeks (one of my favorites)


                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Rubee
                        Dommy Oct 2, 2006 07:38 PM

                        You found my recipes... :) I'm making the Cauliflower and Halibut... I love both things! :)


                      2. Rubee Oct 1, 2006 11:40 PM

                        On the agenda for the month - all new recipes (for me):

                        Sides -
                        Braised Potatoes with Garlic and Bay Leaves
                        Green beans with tomatoes
                        Tart with Braised Leeks, Bacon and Thyme
                        Sweet Braised Scallions with tarragon

                        Main Dishes -
                        Sausage and Pistachio-Stuffed Veal Marsala
                        Red Pine Chicken
                        Veal and Ricotta Meatballs
                        Burgundian Quail with Grapes, Pancetta, and Vin Santo

                        Monday night will be Sausages and Plums Braised in red wine.

                        Lots of others I hope to try (like the Duck Ragu with pasta, the Vietnamese Scallops, the Braised Whole Chicken with Bread Stuffing, and Stuffed Squid Roulades) but those are the definites. If I come across recipes, I'll link.

                        1. c
                          ceeceee Sep 30, 2006 06:24 PM

                          i am going to try the short ribs braised in porter ale with maple rosemary glaze.
                          a link to the recipe was posted last week:

                          i don't have the cookbook yet, so this will keep me going till then...

                          5 Replies
                          1. re: ceeceee
                            faijay Oct 2, 2006 12:59 PM

                            I guess we found the same recipe on line and it sounded great, as did the braised cabbage. We both posted a question about Porter Ale just minutes apart. I will probably also make a side dish to be determined. I,m cooking this coming weekend, since the salting is done the day before.

                            1. re: faijay
                              ceeceee Oct 2, 2006 01:54 PM

                              i think i'm going to make it on friday ... any ideas for side dishes? are you gonna go for another molly stevens recipe? i think im just going to serve maybe some roasted sweet potatoes & brussels sprouts on the side...

                              1. re: ceeceee
                                faijay Oct 3, 2006 06:12 PM

                                If I can find it (don't have the book) braised potatoes with garlic and a nice green salad and good bread. Your plan sounds very good. I just hope it doesn't come out too sweet, but I guess the beer's bitterness prevents that. I make a fab. belgian stew with beef and onions and I replaced the Trappist Ale called for in the recipe with Belevedere Cherry Beer, mmmm. So if I don't like the Porter I may do that next time on this recipe.

                                1. re: faijay
                                  Rubee Oct 3, 2006 06:46 PM

                                  Here's a link to the potatoes:


                            2. re: ceeceee
                              julesrules Oct 11, 2006 01:17 PM

                              I found a more detailed version of this recipe, also a cabbage and pork recipe which I think are from the cookbook as well.


                            3. HillJ Sep 30, 2006 01:58 PM

                              I'm planning the Red Cabbage Braised with Maple & Ginger as a side dish since I'm new to braising...beginning small :)

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: HillJ
                                kitchensalli Oct 6, 2006 07:38 PM

                                I'm going to make this tonight or tomorrow.
                                Did you make yours yet? How was it?

                              2. NYchowcook Sep 30, 2006 01:36 PM

                                I'm looking to make the escarole braised w/ cannellini beans and the braised leeks w/ bacon this weekend. Anyone want to cook w/ me?
                                Later in Oct I'll move onto the meat of the matter -- red-wine braised short ribs.

                                here are a few of Molly Stevens' recipes on her website

                                Happy braising, everyone!

                                3 Replies
                                1. re: NYchowcook
                                  AppleSister Oct 2, 2006 12:59 AM

                                  I just made the escarole braised with cannellini beans--very good! The beans end up with this great creamy consistency, a good foil to the slight bitterness of the escarole. This was my first time cooking with escarole. I know I should be posting somewhere else--where is the vegetables thread? Thanks.

                                  1. re: AppleSister
                                    Rubee Oct 2, 2006 01:03 AM

                                    Sounds delicious. I was looking at that earlier, may have to add escarole to the grocery list!

                                    Here's the thread for vegetable reviews:


                                    1. re: Rubee
                                      AppleSister Oct 2, 2006 01:10 AM


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