July 2013 COTM Companion Thread: Cindy Pawlcyn Companion Titles
Use this thread to discuss recipes from all of Cindy Pawlcyn's other books: Mustards Grill Napa Valley Cookbook; Cindy's Supper Club: Meals from Around the World to Share with Family and Friends; Cindy Pawlcyn's Appetizers and Fog City Diner Cookbook. When posting your reviews on this thread, please specify the name of the recipe, page number, and the also the name of the cookbook in your report.
Chocolate Pecan Jack Daniel's Cake with Jack Daniel's Chocolate sauce, Mustards Napa Valley Cookbook @ p. 254
Just made the Chocolate Pecan Jack Daniel's Cake with Jack Daniel's Chocolate sauce. It caught my eye because of Cindy's side note that it was the first thing on the menu and the only dessert she claims to be able to make. I can relate, as I am a cook and not a baker. The baking recipes that make it into my tried and true file are ones that are fool proof. This one will go in that file.
The recipe is easy to make, but be forewarned, lots of dishes. You will dirty the food processor for chopping nuts, the mixer (twice), once for yolks, the second for whites, the double boiler (also twice), a bunch of measuring spoons, cups and bowls, and of course the spring form pan.
I think I may have overbaked it, because when I took it out after 40 minutes, after it sat and cooled a bit, it looked a little under done, so I popped it back in again at 325 but accidently set the timer for 30 minutes, not 5 minutes! I realized my mistake with 7 minutes remaining on the timer, so 18 minutes too long! After cooling, I took off the spring form sides and it is gorgeous! Just like the picture on page 255. Overbaked or not, it was moist and so flavorful!
The chocolate sauce sets up nicely and there is way too much for this cake. Will need to make use of it over ice cream, I guess.
Bottom line: make this one!
ETA: It is gluten free too!
Gratin of Belgian Endive and Ham, Cindy's Supper Club @ p. 74.
Ironically, I just made a rendition of this for my supper club but not out of this book. It was out of The Little Paris Kitchen. My friend Michelle used to live in Belgium and this was one of her favorite comfort foods when living there. This is a pretty standard recipe for Endives au jambon, though I think the Paris Kitchen might be more approachable. For anyone who has never made this surprising dish, it is amazing. Makes a great light meal when accompanied by a side salad.
I just finished copying all the copies I want to make out of the Mustards Grill cookbook, so I can return it to the library before I leave town.
Here are the recipes I have copied as must tries:
Spicy Mustard and Garlic Poussion with Black Beans and Tomatillo Avocado Salsa, p. 90
Erasto's Black Beans, p. 183 (can be found online)
Crispy Black Bean-Rice Cakes, p. 184
(Will be making all 3 of these at or near the same time so I can reuse Erasto's beans.)
Chinese Chix Salad, p. 79-80 (can be found online)
Jack Daniel Cake (made it already) (can be found online)
Those nuts, p. 212 (component recipe for Chinese chix salad)
Blueberry Cornmeal Upside Down Cake, p. 256
Let me know if I have left out any not to be missed recipes before I send this one back!
Crispy Black Bean-Rice Cakes, Mustards Grill, page 184.
This recipe is posted here:
The only change I made was to substitute garlic scapes for about half of the scallions. I had the same trouble with these cakes as I had with another black bean cake I tried some time ago, which is that they just didn't hold together that well. The taste was great, but only a few of them came out as recognizable patties. It seemed like they needed some kind of binder, but it's possible that I just didn't form or compress my patties well enough.
Anyway, we enjoyed the flavor of these, and the crispy texture. I served them with sour cream and lime wedges. (The option is to serve sour cream or salsa.)
Grilled Chicken Breast with Greens and Ginger Mint Butter, Fog City Diner, page 135.
I think the intro really dates the book, as it says "This also works well on chicken thighs if anyone is still eating dark meat anymore." I think everyone is eating dark meat these days! I'm still a fan of the chicken breast, so I jumped on this one, which was an easy after work dinner. The breasts are marinated in fresh ginger, Dijon mustard, ground black pepper, olive oil, and chervil. Mine barely made the required two hours due to my schedule. The breasts are grilled, then topped with a butter made from more fresh ginger, chopped mint, sea salt, and white pepper.
While the chicken grills, the greens are cooked up. Mine included a bag of mixed greens from the CSA (some of which I couldn't even identify), plus beet greens, and turnip greens. They are sautéed in butter with minced shallots. Then a bit of chicken stock is added and cooked off. The greens are finished with balsamic vinegar, sea salt, and ground pepper.
The additional side recommended is mashed potatoes. I had one little potato, so I cooked it and mashed it. This was a delicious and nicely balanced dinner. I loved the ginger-mint butter, and it worked beautifully with the grilled, marinated chicken.