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June 2009 COTM Elizabeth David Classics: Vegetables

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Welcome to Elizabeth David Classics, which includes these three books by Elizabeth David:

A Book of Mediterranean Food [M] - "Vegetables"
Summer Cooking [S] - "Vegetables"
French Country Cooking [F] - "Vegetables"

Please post your full-length reviews of recipes here for vegetable dishes contained in the chapters listed above. If such a dish appears in a chapter the title of which is not covered by one of the categories in the master thread, please post it here anyway. Since there are a number of different editions and some posters have the individual books, please post the abbreviations for the books as listed above, and the name of the recipe, as well as any modifications you made to the recipe. That way posters can then look up the recipe in the index of whichever book they have.

A reminder that the verbatim copying of recipes to the boards is a violation of the copyright of the original author. Posts with copied recipes will be removed.

Thanks for participating!

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  1. From M -- "A Book of Mediterranean Food" -- Vegetables

    I chose "Potato Kephtedes", which ED states is a Greek favorite. Simple simple but very nice.
    I riced 1 lb. of cold peeled boiled potatoes (regular baking potatoes). (The recipe said to "sieve" them, but I riced.) Then added 2 finely chopped tomatoes. This is the 1st time I've seeded tomatoes for any recipe-- but I could see that too much moisture would ruin this dish. So after peeling them (easy if you drop them into boiling water for 15 or so seconds), I scooped out the shiny slippery seedy part and chopped the flesh.
    Added 1 tablespoon melted butter,
    some salt & pepper, some fresh chopped parsley, some chopped green onion.
    ED doesn't say *how much* parsley or onion or salt/pepper-- common sense here. (Visualize the individual potatoes, figure from there.) Then add 2 ounces flour (very approximate equivalent is 3 TBLS.) This mixture gets "kneaded lightly", rolled out, (I just patted out) and made into rounds (patties.) Fried in half butter, half olive oil until browned (both sides). ED says they should be very soft inside.
    Comfort food of course. I found myself wishing the tomatoes had a sharper tang, but hot from the pan with that thin crisp crust they were just about perfect.

    10 Replies
    1. re: blue room

      have you ever made Marcella's potatoes and tomato casserole? It is divine, and it seems similar in ingredients.

      1. re: NYchowcook

        NYchowcook, no--I don't know that casserole. I have only one of her books-- ("Essentials of ..."), where would I find it?

        (You can't beat her "Novara's Bean and Vegetable Soup" from that book.)

        1. re: blue room

          Marcella's Baked potatoes, onion & tomatoes, Apulian style
          Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking, p. 521.

          It's great and I've made it many times. I've used canned tomatoes, and it's fine. Romano really sets it off.
          I'll have to try the bean soup.

      2. re: blue room

        blue room, I'm curious whether you weighed the flour or used some equivalency chart. I only ask because most references I see indicate that all purpose flour generally runs 4.5 to 5 ounces per cup (depending on how it's measured, humidity, etc.), and a cup is 16 T. Clearly, whichever system you used, it worked out well. Inquiring minds and all...

        1. re: Caitlin McGrath

          Caitlin, I have no scale, I googled and saw that 2 oz. = 4 tablespoons.
          But is that fluffed up dry and sifted, or packed down on a humid day? So I guessed.

          But *your* measure would make 2 oz. = 8 tablespoons, right? A big difference. I'd like to find a scale I can trust.

          1. re: blue room

            Ah, I see. I think what's happening is that there's a confusion about liquid vs. dry measurement in the 2 oz = 4 T conversion. 1 cup = 8 fluid ounces = 16 T, so 2 fluid oz is indeed 4 T, and the conversion works with any liquid.

            But dry ingredients are all different weights for the same volume (dry cup or spoonful) because they're different densities. So 1 cup of granulated sugar weighs more than 1 cup of flour, and 1 cup of nuts or oatmeal weighs something else than either. And we in the US don't know that intuitively the way people in places that weigh dry stuff do from experience, because we use volume measures in our cooking.

            What matters most to me is that the recipe worked out for you regardless and you enjoyed it! If it hadn't worked, I'm sure you'd have thought, This needs more flour to come together, and considered adding it. No reason not to do it the way you did if you liked it, if you decide to make it again, after all.

            Here's a good reference that converts weight/volume of different flours, for these rough estimates: http://www.traditionaloven.com/conver...

            When I want to find out for dry ingredients, if I don't have access to a scale, I'll google "ounces [ingredient] to cups" and that usually turns up a reference to the specific thing.

            1. re: Caitlin McGrath

              Caitlin, I looked here http://wiki.answers.com/Q/How_many_ta..., but now I see that the info given there isn't correct. I was just lucky in this instance!

              1. re: blue room

                Oh, okay, interesting. I see whoever answered this question is confused about the fluid ounces/weight issue! That's the potential problem with wikis, I guess. All the references I've seen give the weights I mentioned, which is why I was curious.

                Clearly, you get it; I misunderstood your previous answer and thought you'd just looked for a general oz to T conversion rather than specifically flour. Sorry about that!

                1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                  No problem, glad you caught that--maybe someone will jump in here and recommend a scale.

                  1. re: blue room

                    There are lots of good scales out there available at any cookware shop, or you can find a good selection of scales at good prices at www.balances.com.

                    You want a scale with a capacity of around 5-10 lbs for most home kitchen tasks that reads to a precision of 1 g or 1/8 oz (which is more than 1g, but is as precise as you are likely to need for cooking), and it should read both ounces and grams.

                    Some scales have a "parts counting" function which is handy, so you can put, say, 10 or 20 pennies or screws or whatever standard sized object you want to count to calibrate it, and then you can just dump them on the scale to count them. I have a scale that does this (not my kitchen scale), and usually use it for rolling coins to deposit in the bank.

                    My kitchen scale is a Salter 1015 with a capacity of 7 lbs and a stainless steel top, so I can weigh directly on it or put a bowl on it and zero the scale so that I'm not weighing the bowl, but it seems to go through batteries faster than it should, so I won't recommend that particular model, but Salter makes others that get good reviews.

      3. Poireaux a la provencale - "A Book of Mediterranean Food"

        This is a great way to cook leeks, if you have a lot of them like I did (3 lbs). You basically cook them gently in olive oil and seasoning for about ten minutes. Add half a pound of tomatoes cut in half (I used whole cherry toms), a dozen stoned black olives, the juice of a lemon and a dessertspoon of chopped lemon peel to the pan and cook slowly for another ten minutes or so (I think mine took a little longer).

        Simple and very tasty. I served mine warm with some new potatoes and good butcher's sausages, but she also recommends the leeks cold as a salad.

        1 Reply
        1. re: greedygirl

          Yum. I want to try this. Reminds me that I would like to return, also, to another fantastic COTM leek recipe I found, from Wolfert's Slow Mediterranean Kitchen. I believe olive oil was involved, and just the tiniest amount of rice, and I cooked the leeks in my Le Creuset with a tight cap of parchment paper directly over the vegetables. I kept spooning more and more of the leeks into a little bowl until there were almost none left for dinner by the time Sweety got home... ha ha :)

        2. Pommes de Terre Matelote [M]

          Lovely way to serve the potatoes. Very nice indeed!
          Boil some potatoes (I used 4 Yukon Golds) and when just tender cut in half. Place them in a pan with butter, parsley, S & P. Cover with stock (I used chicken stock) and a glass of wine (I used 4 oz.). This cooks for about 10 minutes and the sauce reduces a bit. The directions call for binding this sauce with the yolk of an egg but I did not do this. The potatoes had wonderful flavor and we both liked the dish enough to want to make it again. .

          10 Replies
          1. re: Gio

            This sounds good. Maybe I'll try it tonight or tomorrow.

            1. re: Gio

              We tried this recipe last night and were "disappointed." Actually the chowpup used a much stronger word.....I used red potatoes and steamed them whole with skins on. When tender, we peeled them and proceeded as per the recipe. It's hard to tell what went wrong since this is one of the more "specific," (i.e. very little guess-work involved) recipes I have come across in the book.

              It all went astray when I added the wine (4 oz). The chowpup thought it smelled disgusting (again she used a much stronger descriptive phrase) while it was cooking and it totally turned her off. I myself was getting skeptical.....The finished potatoes weren't nearly as bad as I expected, but the wine seemed to give the potatoes a sour note.

              In retrospect, what I think I did wrong was pouring the wine over the potatoes BEFORE adding the stock (chicken) to cover. Perhaps the potatoes soaked up that winey flavor too much. ...

              I thought about skipping the binding of the sauce with an eggyolk as Gio did. But there seemed to be so much liquid in the potatoes that I went for it, and was glad I did.

              I made these to accompany Le Poulet a la Creme, which I have posted about in the poultry thread. We loved that and thankfully sopping the sauce up with the potatoes somewhat redeemed them - for me anyway.

              1. re: Gio

                I'm going to give this a whirl tonight, along with a pork cutlet dish from one of the books. I'm assuming you used white wine? I just made some chicken stock and used an egg white to clarify it, so I think I'll go ahead and use the yolk for this.

                1. re: MMRuth

                  Yes, I used a white "table wine" - the same brand I always use for cooking...I really think my mistake was pouring it over the potatoes before adding the stock.

                  1. re: clamscasino

                    Thanks - I'll make sure to do it in reverse order and report back!

                    1. re: clamscasino

                      Just jumping in here to mention I used Chardonnay for the potato dish.. Should have included it in the report.....

                      Clams.... the Yukons I used were a little larger than medium size and I left the skin on throughout.

                      1. re: Gio

                        I just had some of the leftovers and the potatoes actually seem to have lost that winey flavor after a couple days in the fridge. Yeah! They won't be going out to the compost heap after all....

                        Did you do the last ten minutes on the stove, or in the oven as another poster did? I may actually try this again with Yukon Golds.

                        1. re: clamscasino

                          IIRC I kept the pan on the stove throughout.... no oven.

                  2. re: Gio

                    I made these spuds last night w/ the mackerel -- which I posted about (and sauteed dandelion greens). I had no chicken stock so used water and wine, Forgot about the yolk.

                    I liked this dish a lot. I used small/baby yukon golds. I think it's a handy recipe because I always stress over everything coming out at once, and if you cook the potatoes a bit ahead of time, before putting into oven; it should help w/ timing.

                    I was thinking ahead of time about the need to temper the yolks by putting a bit of the hot liquid into the yolk and whisking before dumping the yolk in the potato pan. (But I didn't do it!)

                    1. re: Gio

                      I made these on Friday night with the pork cutlets. I used 1lb of small white potatoes, which I forgot to peel, and cut them in half. I put them in a heavy sauce pan on the stove, and added 2 T butter, salt, pepper, chives and parsley, home made chicken stock to cover, and a glass of white wine - about 5 oz. I cooked for the ten minutes, removed the potatoes, and used the egg yolk to bind the sauce. I really liked this dish, but felt as if there was far too much liquid. That is a recurring theme that I'm noticing in various dishes I've made where one adds a liquid to cover in her dishes - I end up w/ far more sauce than seems "normal. Delicious though!

                       
                       
                    2. Haricot Verts a L'Italianne [S]

                      One pound of green beans are trimmed and boiled in salted water till not quite done. Really, it's a long blanch. Then they are put into a pan in which oil has been heated. 3 chopped tomatoes and some chopped garlic are added. I also seasoned this with Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper although it's not mentioned in the recipe. This is cooked for about 10 minutes or until the tomatoes are cooked. A very nice way to cook the beans. I have made variations of this over the years and this one of the best. Terrific for farm fresh green beans. It went very well with a roast pork loin and the seasoned boiled potatoes from the Summer book.

                      1. Mushrooms with vine leaves (S)

                        i was intrigued by this recipes, and as I had several organic flat mushrooms (portobellos to you guys) and a packet of vine leaves left over from Greek month (!) I decided to give it a whirl. She says to boil fresh vine leaves, but I just followed the instructions on the packet and soaked them in hot water for 20 minutes. Then you line the bottom of a baking dish with the leaves, and add a film of olive oil. Pack the mushrooms in the dish, add more EVOO, then put vine leaves on the top and cover tightly (I used foil as my dish doesn't have a lid). Bake in a "slow" oven for 35 mins.

                        I let these cook for a bit longer than 35 mins as they were quite large. They tasted really good - stayed very moist and flavourful. She says this method makes cultivated mushrooms taste like field mushrooms, whatever that means. All I know is they were lovely.

                        I have lots of vine leaves left over so I think I'll try her recipe for dolmades tomorrow.

                        3 Replies
                        1. re: greedygirl

                          Did you eat the grape leaves too? Or remove them before serving?

                          1. re: yamalam

                            She says to remove the top layer, which were all shrivelled anyway. I suppose you could eat the bottom layer but we didn't.

                          2. re: greedygirl

                            cultivated mushrooms are what we buy in the shops, grown in mushroom 'farms'. Field mushrooms are wild mushrooms you pick from the fields and woodlands in England. More common in ED's time, but foraging IS undergoing a revival... Clearly she thinks wild taste better than cultivated. I've never gone mushroom picking, so I don't know!

                          3. Dolmades, or stuffed vine leaves (S)

                            OK, so now I understand why Turkish and Greek restauranteurs force their grannies to make stuffed vine leaves all day long. It's an incredibly fiddly and tedious process!

                            I had some leftover vine leaves from making the mushroom dish above so decided to make dolmades. She has two recipes, one in Mediterranean Food and one in Summer Cooking - I liked the addition of pinenuts and allspice in the latter.

                            You take 2 teacupfuls of cooked rice and add it to a small onion cooked in olive oil, some pinenuts, seasoning and a little allspice. Put a teaspoon of the mixture on each vine leaf and roll up like a cigar, tucking in the ends.

                            Sounds easy, right? It's not. The key here I think is practise, but it's hard to roll up the vine leaves without the stuffing falling out. I finally managed to get the hang of it, but mine are squat parcels rather than cigars!

                            You pack them in a pan and put in water or stock to about halfway up. Put a saucer or a small lid on top of the dolmades to stop them rising up and simmer for about half an hour.

                            She says to dress with lemon juice and serve cold. Mine are cooling as I type. I've tasted a couple hot and they're OK but not brilliant. They seemed a bit dry, so I've also drizzled on some olive oil. We will see what they're like cold.

                            Not an experience I'll be rushing to repeat! I think I'll stick to the ones in tins, which I adore.

                            1. Potatoes en Papillotes [F]

                              My goodness I've had a busy week and I've only had a chance to read the books rather than cook from them. Tonight my boyfriend really wanted to grill steaks so I made these potatoes to go along with the steak.

                              I preheated the oven for 375 degrees. I found a very helpful web page that said that Gas 5 was 375. I cut my potatoes in half because they were kind of large and added a few more leaves of mint (she said 2 leaves) than she called for, then butter, salt and pepper. I wrapped it all in parchment paper and put it on a baking sheet because I was afraid it might leak and I really hate to clean my oven. I cooked it for 35 minutes just as she said and the potatoes were perfect.

                              They were good. I wouldn't say that you could detect any flavor of mint unless there was a mint leaf hanging on the potato that you were eating. I wouldn't say that they were anything to write home about but nonetheless good.

                              This was my very first ED recipe (to make) so I'm hoping to have a calmer week so I can be a bit more adventurous.

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: Boudleaux

                                BTW - I believe that all the books (unless perhaps you have English versions) have equivalency tables, either toward the front or in the back, that set forth not only the oven temperatures, but also measurements. This was on my list of ones to try. I had not encountered the idea of combining mint with potatoes until I started cooking from British recipes, and really like the combination.

                                1. re: MMRuth

                                  Yes, I have the English versions of the books. I have a (bad?) habit of buying cookbooks as a souvenir of my travels.

                                  I diced the leftover potatoes and, good Southern girl that I am, fried them in some oil with some onions this morning for breakfast.

                              2. Stuffed Tomatoes a la Grecque (M)

                                If you will forgive me a Proustian moment, one of the reasons I'm enjoying these books so much is I'm transported back twenty years, to a couple of summers spent with la Famille Chesneau in a small French village in the Sarthe. There was little for a seventeen-year-old to do and so I used to look forward to meal-times as a respite from the boredom, and because Mme Chesneau was an amazing traditional French cook. Incredibly, we would have three-course meals twice a day and one of my favourite starters was stuffed tomatoes!

                                For this recipe I used some leftover rice stuffing from yesterday's dolmades - basically cooked rice, onion, pine kernels and a little allspice - and mixed in the tomato which I scooped out of the shells. She says to a good addition is a little minced beef or lamb, and I would definitely add some next time. Then you put it all back in the tomato, pop the lid back on, drizzle over olive oil, and pop in the oven for half an hour. These were perfectly cooked after 30 minutes, but the rest of the meal wasn't quite ready, so I stupidly left them in the oven a bit longer, thinking they wouldn't come to any harm. I was wrong - they fell apart when I took them out of the dish. Didn't matter though - tasted good. As good as Mme Chesneau's stuffed tomatoes? Probably not - memory is a wonderfully fickle thing! (And she put a little meat in hers.)

                                1. Beets with Herb Butter [S]

                                  This is a fabulous recipe - and very easy. I found some beautiful small beets at the farmers' market - white, pale pinkish, and the dark purple. You boil small beets, peel and slice. I roasted them a la Goin, because I prefer the flavor. Make a chive herb butter, then heat it in a pan for one minute with the beets, a squeeze of lemon juice and "a scrap of garlic". For the latter, I just crushed a small clove, and then removed it.

                                  I heartily recommend this dish, and served it as a starter before the pheasant.

                                   
                                   
                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: MMRuth

                                    I made these beets again and served them in a salade Nicoise of sorts.

                                     
                                     
                                  2. Petits Pois a la Francaise [S]

                                    I found some lovely fresh peas and spring onions at the farmers' market, so this seemed like a good dish to serve as a first course before my duck breasts a l'orange. I adjusted the quantities slightly, as I had less than a lb of peas before shelling them. I shelled them a couple of hours before making the dish, and ,as she suggests on the previous page where she discusses peas generally, I wrapped them in a damp cloth. I had four spring onions, and since they were rather large, I cut the bulbs in half. I put them in a small heavy sauce pan with about 2 oz of butter, and the heart of a Bibb lettuce, a little sugar and salt. I stirred a bit, and when the butter starts to bubble, you "just" cover the peas with hot water. Once again, I suspect I might have added a bit too much liquid. You cover and simmer for 30 - 45 minutes, depending on the pea size, and she says that most of the liquid will be absorbed. I checked after 20 minutes, and the peas were done, though there was a lot of liquid left. Next time I think I would check even sooner. So, I removed them from the heat, poured out some of the sauce, quartered the lettuce heart, added it back to the pot, and then reheated a bit later. Another winner - simple flavors, very spring like. A little mint might be a nice addition.

                                     
                                    1. Endives au Beurre: "French Country Cooking", Vegetables

                                      Hubbie is helping me cook this month. He was looking through the book, and commented "Boy, she uses a lot of butter." That's ok, we both love butter.

                                      This is a very simple recipe, but we were both astounded by the lovely depth of flavour. You take endives and remove the outer leaves, then place them in a casserole dish, top them with a few slices of butter, then cover and bake them in the oven until tender and golden brown. The you sprinkle them with salt (we used fleur de sel) and lemon juice. The recipe is quite vague, hubbie and I had a good laugh about that. He would ask things like "what temperature?" and "how long?" and I would just shrug. He commented that this was a big change from the Zuni cookbook, where everything was micromanaged to the point of ridiculousness (his words). We ended up cooking them at 350 degrees Farenheit for 30 minutes. The endives were only slightly golden when we were done, but they were certainly tender.

                                      The endives were delicious as a first course. The flavours were clean and bright, the endives took on a lovely nutty quality from the roasted butter. I was surprised by how much I enjoyed this recipe, I was not expecting much. But as Hubbie says, "how can you go wrong with butter?"

                                      First photo: endives ready to cook
                                      Second photo: plated endive

                                       
                                       
                                      11 Replies
                                      1. re: moh

                                        I do love me an endive, an oft-neglected vegetable outside of France, I think. Will definitely be making this.

                                        Interesting comparison with Zuni. I think that books like Zuni and Lucques are restaurant cooking for the home cook, ifswim, with an emphasis on tehcnique, whereas Elizabeth David concentrates on simpler, more traditional dishes.

                                        1. re: greedygirl

                                          I'm greatly appreciating the simpler, more traditional recipe. What impressed me was how much these recipes brought out the flavour of the ingredients. The endives are an excellent example of this phenomenon. You can't get much simpler than this, and yet the flavour of the endives were so concentrated and pure. Elizabeth David seems to have a genius for finding recipes that accentuate the charms of the ingredients. I can see why she was such an influence for people like Alice Waters.

                                        2. re: moh

                                          Delicious!

                                          My copy gives temperatures and time: 330F for 1 1/2 hours. I see though that River Cafe does this with the endives cut into quarters lengthways - I'm sure that would speed things along if the cooking time seems a it long.

                                          I've been reading up about different ways of cooking chicories/endives, since they're in season here at the moment. This definitely seems the simplest way to do them. Other variations on the theme involve adding a little cream, doing this stovetop, and adding ham (either wrapped around them, or scattered over or under). I think I'll definitely try this one first.

                                          I agree with you about the use of butter - a different era indeed! Similarly cream is used with a lot more joie de vivre than it is now. I prefer plain cream to the Silver Spoon's obsessive use of bechamel (their endive recipe uses butter, cream, ham AND bechamel!). It usually works out to a couple tablespoons of cream per person, which I feel is fine as part of a balanced diet. And more than fine when it comes to flavour...

                                          1. re: Gooseberry

                                            1 and a half hours! Oops! Well, this is the fun of this cookbook, there is some leeway in cooking. The endives were delicious after 30 minutes, although I could see how longer cooking time would result in a browner, even nuttier result. This recipe is very very simple, and I love that. Such an easy path to deliciousness.

                                            1. re: moh

                                              I think the reference to 1 and a half hours is in another of her books, French Provincial Cooking (which I heartily recommend). In that book she also give another way of doing it on the stove which is much quicker.

                                            2. re: Gooseberry

                                              I think you're looking in a different book, Gooseberry. Is it French Provincial Cooking that you've got?

                                              1. re: greedygirl

                                                Oh dear! I just assumed French Country Cooking was the American title of French Provincial Cooking (mine was published in England, and is the 1970 revision republished in 1979).

                                                What is the difference between the two? Is FCC an edited version of FPC? Which predates the other?

                                                1. re: Gooseberry

                                                  Nope - they're different, although there is some overlap. I think French Country Cooking came first, but FPC is widely regarded as one of her best works.

                                                  1. re: greedygirl

                                                    At the risk of sounding aggrieved - then why are we covering FCC instead of FPC?

                                                    I also enjoyed ED's Italian Food and English Bread and Yeast Cookery. The former also has some endive recipes, naturally called cicoria in Italian (trying to stay on topic here!).

                                                    Her other endive suggestions in FPC was the inclusion of fried bacon with the endives, which sounds like a winner to me.

                                                    1. re: Gooseberry

                                                      Because the book that's actually COTM is "Elizabeth David Classics," a volume that includes three of her cookbooks: Mediterranean Food, French Country Cooking, and Summer Cooking. So the choice wasn't so much between lesser and greater ED French books, but to do this omnibus that offers a whole variety (and there are versions of some recipes in more than one of the three included books, and lots of recipes dealing with the same ingredients in different ways over the three).

                                                      1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                        Aaah, I see. Thanks for clarifying, Caitlin - I didn't know it was published as an omnibus. Never mind - everyone seems happy to hear variations from other editions, etc!

                                          2. Saute potatoes, [F], p. 156

                                            This is merely a sliver of a recipe, but I have not sauteed potatoes in ages and was a very happy eater, indeed!

                                            E David says to cook potatoes in their skins and then peel and slice. Forget that -- I had baby yukon golds so I didn't cook or peel, just scrubbed and put them through the fine slicing disk of my food processor. (My mother used to make them using a peeler putting potatoes directly into pan. I actually prefer the thicker slices from the food processor -- the potatoes don't get gluey.)
                                            Chopped up some onion and parsley.

                                            Sauteed taters in butter and oil (I used a nonstick pan), moving them around the pan to get most brown, added onion and parsley and kept cooking; added S&P.

                                            Yum! Taters, butter and browned bits. What's not to like?
                                            (sorry about the photo of half-eaten potatoes! I forgot about the camera before I dived in.)

                                             
                                            5 Replies
                                            1. re: NYchowcook

                                              I was "inspired" by that recipe last weekend, but had only fingerling potatoes. I boiled them, was not about to peel them! I dried them out quickly over heat, then sliced in half. I heated up a nice amount of butter with a little grapeseed oil, and then added the potatoes, skin side down, over high heat. I let them cook until that side was nice and crispy, and then turned them all over. When that side was crispy, I turned the heat off, and put all the potatoes skin side down again. When it was almost time to serve them, I heated them up again quickly. I think I salted each side by the way.

                                               
                                              1. re: MMRuth

                                                do you mean "inspired" by the "recipe"?? (hee hee)

                                                It's just a cooking technique/ idea at best!
                                                I think you went in a good direction, and your potatoes are beautiful! Sort of a combo of her other recipe where you cook in butter after boiling.

                                                1. re: NYchowcook

                                                  They really were nice and crunchy, and because the pieces where bigger than sauteeing cubes etc., they were a lot less fussy to make, which is a good thing in my book.

                                                  1. re: MMRuth

                                                    No kidding, they look delicious.

                                                2. re: MMRuth

                                                  Those potatoes are beautiful, Ruth! They remind me of the first time I made potatoes fried in butter from a Julia Child recipe, and they were a revelation. So simple, yet so delicious. Lately I've been roasting my potatoes in the oven with olive oil, but I think a return to the butter method is long overdue :-)

                                              2. Chou Rouge Landais [F]

                                                This recipe is in the chapter on stuffed cabbages, although it is not a recipe for stuffed cabbage...and it includes frankfurters. But I think it more properly belongs here than in the meat thread. Anyway, the recipe calls for layering (in a deep casserole) sliced red cabbage, sliced onions and apples. Then one adds some mace and ground cloves, salt, pepper, brown sugar and "herbs." Then a layer of sliced red sweet pepper and a piece of dried orange peel. Repeat until all the veggies are used up, or in my case, 'til the pot was full. Then a mixture of half red wine and half wine vinegar is poured over the top.
                                                The whole is covered and cooked in a "very slow oven" for 3 to 4 hours. 20 minutes before serving one is told to add the frankfurters (2 per person) buried "deep into the cabbage."

                                                I had a half of a white cabbage that needed using up, so I used that. And I subbed allspice for the mace. No amounts are given for the spices, so I used a pinch on each layer. I did not have dried orange peel, so thought I would add a drop of orange extract instead. Alas and alack, the bottle of extract was drained...we have no idea how that happened. So I poured a bit of the wine/vinegar into the empty bottle, hoping to capture some of the essence. Turned out I was also out of wine vinegar, so I subbed a cheapo balsamic.

                                                The chowpup, who was helping by reading the recipe to me said "what's herbs?" "Parsley I guess," said I and sent her off to the garden to pick some.

                                                I didn't have three or four hours to cook this in a slow oven so chose to do 2 hours at 325. No problems there. The veggies were soft and melded, the apples a tasteful remembrance of their formerly sliced selves. But all's well that ends well...

                                                Over all, this was very good, for what it was: a sweet and sour cabbage dish. Mr. Clam said "very Polish." Chow pup said "interesting." There were a lot of left over veggies. BUT the franks, (which I "slashed" as did those cooking the sausage in court bouillon recipe were absolutely delicous!

                                                Pictures to come - can't seem to add them while editing a post.

                                                9 Replies
                                                1. re: clamscasino

                                                  Trying a second time with the pictures....

                                                   
                                                   
                                                  1. re: clamscasino

                                                    Chou Rouge Landais
                                                    I came home from my sausage making class with some links of bratwurst, so I googled for cabbage, onion, and apple. Thanks to clam's review, I ended up back on an old COTM thread!
                                                    I made this dish without adding the sausages as we grilled them separately. I used red cabbage, subbed a little orange zest for the dried orange peel. I used the cider vinegar and wine vinegar combination, with red wine. I realized after pouring into the dish that the wine was a little off, but with all that vinegar (and long cooking time, I'm sure) it was not at all noticeable.
                                                    This was the perfect accompaniment to sausages. I served it with homemade mustards, one hot, one sweet, radishes, goat gouda from Holland, and some great artisan rye bread. Mr. Nightshade declared this a keeper. He's ready to serve it with grilled pork chops.

                                                     
                                                     
                                                    1. re: L.Nightshade

                                                      Look at that bratwurst... good for you. Your dinner has inspired me to revisit the Elizabeth David book. Loved cooking from it the first time around nut somehow missed that recipe.

                                                      1. re: Gio

                                                        Thanks Gio, this recipe has certainly inspired me to delve further into this book!

                                                      2. re: L.Nightshade

                                                        I totally forgot about that recipe! It looks so much prettier made with red cabbage. I bet it would make a terrific side dish for a barbeque or pot luck. Like Gio, I'm going to revisit that book, if only to finally finish reading it. I still have all the scraps of paper marking my "to try" recipes in it.

                                                        1. re: clamscasino

                                                          I'm so glad you posted about this recipe, I wouldn't have come across it otherwise. It is a great meat accompaniment, pairing with barbecue sounds like a worthy idea.

                                                        2. re: L.Nightshade

                                                          Mmmmmm, that looks and sounds wonderful LN. I wasn't around for this COTM and don't have this book but you're tempting me!!!

                                                          Btw, do tell about your sausage-making class. Was this a one-time thing or ongoing? Sounds terrific.

                                                          1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                            Thanks, Breadcrumbs. It is good to know I can still go through the old COTM files, what a wealth of ideas and information.

                                                            The sausage-making class was a one time deal. (This weekend is the cheese-making class.) Although the fellow who taught it is talking about doing a pâté class.

                                                            Of course, now I have to get a meat grinder, and a sausage casing stuffer, and some of those great charcuterie cookbooks..... oh dear!

                                                          2. re: L.Nightshade

                                                            "...I ended up back on an old COTM thread..." Ha -- yes that happens to me too. And sometimes you'll run into yourself -- your own post, which you might not remember posting -- and there you go, an interesting little interlude in your day.

                                                            I love the red cabbage recipe by Patricia Wells in her book "Bistro Cooking", so I looked at the David book and compared the two--very similar, wine and apples and cook for loong time. Glad to see your own sausage--I remember you mentioned the class!

                                                        3. Courgettes aux tomates (M)

                                                          Salt sliced courgettes and leave them to drain for a hour or so. Then cook in plenty of butter (she says) with a couple of sliced, skinned tomatoes for ten minutes or so. Mine took quite a bit longer, probably because I sliced them quite thickly.

                                                          This was a pleasant side dish but nothing special.

                                                          1. Tomates Fromagées [M]

                                                            I have a lot of local tomatoes coming in so I am trying to cook them in different ways. Thought I would try this recipe because it looked simple and involved Gruyère. It was a bit of a guessing game when it came to figuring out how much of each ingredient to use. I made a first batch of the cheese filling and realized that I needed more as I poured them into the tomatoes. Don't ask me how much of each I ended up using!

                                                            This tasted really good. Love how the tomatoes go all soft and mingle with the Gruyère filling. I just served it with rice.

                                                             
                                                            3 Replies
                                                            1. re: always_eating

                                                              always eating: Wowie zowie, that looks so delicious. Anything containing roasted tomatoes and melted Gruyere is on my favorites list.

                                                              1. re: oakjoan

                                                                It was delicious! I will definitely be making it again throughout the Summer.

                                                              2. re: always_eating

                                                                Oh now that's perfection, I can almost taste this~

                                                              3. Pommes de Terre à l'Echirlète (F)

                                                                This is a lovely way of preparing potatoes that I will be returning to often. David says it's a recipe from the Périgord and calls for whole small potatoes, but says that halved or quartered larger ones "can also be successfully cooked by this excellent method." I used
                                                                Yukon gold creamers about 1 1/2" across.

                                                                Cook the potatoes and two garlic cloves (I cut these in half) in just enough water or stock to cover (I used boxed chicken broth), covered; she says by the time the liquid is absorbed, they should be cooked. I used a wide pan that could accommodate the potatoes in a single layer, and added broth to cover about 3/4 of the way, figuring I could add more if need be. It wasn't necessary, as when the broth was absorbed, the potatoes were perfectly cooked. Then brown the potatoes and garlic slowly in a tablespoon of goose or pork fat (I had none, so used olive oil), turning 2 or 3 times. The advantage of using a wide pan for the first step is that you can use the sme pan to brown the potatoes.

                                                                These were delicious, infused with the flavor of the cooking liquid and with their exteriors just a bit crisp, and very easy and quick to cook.

                                                                7 Replies
                                                                1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                  These sound really, really good and I am going to make them tonight for my FIL. Périgord is foie gras territory (I was there last week and woken every morning by the honking of geese!) so I guess that's why it's a speciality of that region.

                                                                  1. re: greedygirl

                                                                    Yes, I would assume goose and pork fat to be readily to hand in Périgord, land of foie gras and cassoulet!

                                                                  2. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                    Pommes de Terre à l'Echirlète (F) p. 354

                                                                    I've been meaning to make this recipe ever since Caitlin mentioned them in a post from another COTM (Around My French Kitchen). http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/7758...

                                                                    We served these tonight with Nigella’s roast chicken. We made these with quartered Yukon Gold potatoes and homemade stock (my stock was unsalted, so I added some salt to the stock). After the potatoes are cooked in the broth, they are browned in goose fat. (We started buying goose fat to make Nigella’s perfect roast potatoes for the holidays-which are amazing). These potatoes are delicious and my Mr. would be very pleased if we were to make them again.

                                                                    1. re: BigSal

                                                                      Thanks for drawing my attention to these BigSal, they sound great. I don't own the book but thanks to you and Caitlin I feel I could execute these without it. I like your idea of using the wide pan. Brilliant. Was your pan non-stick?

                                                                      1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                        I haven't used a nonstick pan, but a stainless steel casserole, sort of similar to a sauté pan.

                                                                        1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                          Thanks Caitlin, I have one of those so I'll go w that. btw, after reading your post I started reading through some of the threads for this COTM ( a pre-bc COTM) and I ended up ordering this book from Abes.

                                                                          1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                            I also used a stainless steel pan, but I think non-stick would work as well.

                                                                  3. Champagnons Chevenols [F]

                                                                    Bought some absolutely perfect medium size white button mushrooms at the farm on Wednesday so wanted to use them before they lost their... charm. This is a very nice recipe for an extra side dish that's easy and very tasty. I can see this as one of several antipasti, as well. Garlicky though, so be careful of the number cloves you use because they're raw.

                                                                    A pound of mushrooms are cleaned, and destemed, putting the stalks aside. Although ED doesn't say to, I sliced the mushrooms in half.

                                                                    Olive oil is warmed enough so the mushrooms cook gently "without actually frying." Cook for 10 minutes then remove them to a plate. Cut the stalks into small pieces and cook them in the same oil. When done spread them over the mushrooms. Finely chop some fresh parsley ( I used flat leaf), and garlic (I pressed 3 cloves). Next, into the same oil put "a handful" of fresh white breadcrumbs (I used artisan sourdough from the farm). When the crumbs are golden pour them with the oil over the mushrooms.

                                                                    She suggests serving the dish cold the next day but I served it at about room temperature along with her Salade Espagnole from the Summer book.
                                                                    These were side dishes for steamed lobster served cold as well.....YUM!!! I *was* going to make ED's Romesco sauce as an accompaniment to the lobster but DH wanted an aioli instead. Next time, for the mushrooms, I'm going to sauté the garlic just a little to temper the totally rawness of those cloves.

                                                                    5 Replies
                                                                    1. re: Gio

                                                                      Gio, look for my report on the romesco on the fish thread (though I did not serve it with lobster).

                                                                      Oh, and these mushrooms sound very nice!

                                                                      1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                        Thanks Caitlin....on my way to read your report.

                                                                        The mushrooms were delicious!

                                                                        1. re: Gio

                                                                          Oops, I meant, keep an eye out for it - will post it today, haven't yet!

                                                                          1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                            Hah... Just ran back to tell you it isn't there.....I'll wait.

                                                                      2. re: Gio

                                                                        I love mushrooms. I would like to try the mushrooms with cream...

                                                                      3. Marinated aubergines, "Summer Cooking," p. 139 of my edition.
                                                                        I got the book from the library and I used it on the last day of the month. Better late than never. I posted earlier that I am used to recipes with precise measurements, so this one was a stretch. You are supposed to cut the eggplants (one eggplant in my case) in half, score them and pour olive oil, chopped garlic and herbs, salt and pepper onto the exposed flesh. You leave the eggplant halves to marinate for an hour or two and then bake them. I used fresh basil, mint and oregano. The result was very tasty! I'm not sure how much olive oil I used. A lot, since eggplants are sponges. David says these are good with roast mutton (!) or grilled chops. I enjoyed them on toasted homemade bread as a bruschetta.

                                                                        9 Replies
                                                                        1. re: NYCkaren

                                                                          I just received a couple of eggplants from my neighbor and I remembered this recipe when I was looking through Summer Cooking. I think I'll give it a try. It sounds good. Thanks for posting.

                                                                          1. re: NYCkaren

                                                                            NYCkaren -- My copy is back at the library but I would really like to try this. Any way you could give me an idea of the amounts that YOU used for the marinade, as well as cooking time/temperature? Sounds yummy, definitely as bruschetta yes!

                                                                            This will actually be my second marinated eggplant COTM recipe. I've done loooong marinated no-cook eggplant for Silver Palate's Eggplant Livia. That marinade is olive oil, dried chilies, garlic, red wine vinegar, oregano, and basil, plus a lot of freshly ground black pepper. It marinates for THREE days and then is absolutely yummy. I love it on sandwiches with prosciutto and ricotta.

                                                                            1. re: foxy fairy

                                                                              I didn't measure the oil. Somewhere between a pour and a drizzle. And I used one big garlic clove and a handful of herbs for one globe eggplant. Salt and black pepper. Then you marinate at room temp for an hour or two and bake in a moderate oven (I figured that's 350 F) for an hour. The first 45 minutes you do them cut side down, then 15 minutes cut side up. Baste with juices from the pan and squeeze some lemon juice over.
                                                                              The Silver Palate version sounds good too!

                                                                              1. re: NYCkaren

                                                                                I think I'm going to make this to go with a Kofte recipe from Spice that greedygirl linked to. Do you think it would be good at room temp?

                                                                                1. re: MMRuth

                                                                                  Yes I think it's good either room temp or warm.

                                                                                  1. re: MMRuth

                                                                                    MMRuth -- Great idea on that combo! The red lentil koftes are soooo good! don't forget the pomegranate salsa! Here's how mine turned out --

                                                                                     
                                                                                    1. re: foxy fairy

                                                                                      Those look great - but I'm making lamb & pistachio ones:

                                                                                      http://www.cookthink.com/recipe/16816...

                                                                                  2. re: NYCkaren

                                                                                    This sounds absolutely delicious, and perfect for summer.

                                                                                2. re: NYCkaren

                                                                                  Do you have the recipe for the Marinated Eggolant? I have looked to no avail!