Sunday, April 24, 2011

Thank you, Barefoot Contessa

I worked from Denver this week, one of the first weeks in months, and I took the opportunity to go grocery shopping (gasp!) and do some cooking (gasp gasp!). After not cooking for months, I felt a little like this...

Thanks to my Barefoot Contessa book, which is packed full of delicious recipes, I whipped up a few dishes, cooking way more than one person can consume. I have a tendancy to not scale down recipes for the appropriate number of eaters. Bad habit. Luckily I was able to pawn off some leftovers on friends.

This first photo is just a salad, not from the book, but it turned out pretty so...

Next I made Warm Goat Cheese in Phyllo with basic but tasty greens. Holy crap I will never work with phyllo dough ever ever never ever never again! It's like a bratty stepchild. And I can say that because I am was one. It has to be thawed just right and then you have to maintain the right moisture as you're working with it. Ugh. It took a whole box of phyllo just to make 2 pastries, and no, that's not how it was supposed to go. Oh and the dressing for the greens is delish! (recipe below)

2 tablespoons champagne vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup good olive oil

Then I made some Savory Palmiers. I had made these before and knew they were a winner. This time I used different puff pastry and they turned out even better. Here's a photo of the prep work before rolling the puff pastry...

And the final goods...

I also made a Creamy Cucumber Salad. It turned out too creamy for my tastes but the flavor was great and others seemed to enjoy it...

And here's a photo that sums up the joy of cooking for me...

I really do love this book... "barefoot contessa back to basics"

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