Friday, June 27, 2014

There are a lot of cooks in this kitchen!

Unfortunately I was born without the cooking gene. In fact, I'm the queen of take out! A million years ago, when I asked Ben to give me his list of friends for his eighth birthday party Monty the delivery guy from Picasso Pizza was number one. Let's put it this way, when the doorbell rings at my house everyone runs to answer it because chances are, it's dinner.

But now I am newly inspired by the amazingly talented staff at Fishs Eddy. I mean, Mary's gestapo soup,  or whatever it's called? Yum! And Kelly's cucumber and ginger infused vodka? Heeelllo Saturday night! I'm going to try to actually make some of these recipes, fine
cuisine that I could never expect from Panda Express!

Cucumber and Ginger Infused Vodka
From Kelly

  • 2 Cucumbers peeled and sliced - I used English Cucumbers because they have very little to no seeds.
  • 1 medium to large piece of Ginger root - I liked it a little spicier so I used a larger piece1 (750ml) bottle of good quality Vodka

Equipment Needed:
  • 1 Quart Mason Jar
  • Large Strainer
  • Sterilized Bottle or Jar for the finished product

Wash and peel both the cucumber and ginger. Cut into small pieces to fit in the mason jar.
Fill the ingredients approximately 1/3 of the jar.  Fill the remainder with vodka so that all ingredients are submerged. Screw the lid on tight and shake vigorously. Refrigerate until the vodka reaches the desired level of infusion, at least 3 days to 1 week. Once you feel that it is at your desired level of taste strain out the ingredients and discard.

Store the vodka in the fridge and you're ready to make yourself a delicious summer cocktail!
Just grab a highball glass. 2oz's of your vodka infusion, ice and top it off with some seltzer!

Gazpacho Soup
From Mary

"Soup that doesn't make you sweat."

  • 1 hothouse cucumber, halved and seeded, but not peeeled
  • 2 red bell peppers, cored and seeded 
  • 4 plum tomatoes
  • 1 red onion
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 cups of tomato juice
  • 1/4 cup wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup good olive oil
  • 1/2 tbsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
Chop in large cubes and keep separate: cucumbers, bell peppers, tomatoes, and red onion. Put each vegetable separately into a food processor until coarsely chopped - do not over process! After each vegetable is processed, combine in a large bowl. Add garlic, tomato juice, vinegar, olive oil, salt, and pepper. Mix well and chill before serving.

The longer it sits, the more the flavors develop.

Have your guests garnish their own soup...bodega medium or small are the perfect vessels.

Balsamic Ice Cream
From Jen

"People freak the fuck out for it."

  • 8 egg yolks, separated
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • Seeds of 1 vanilla bean  (scraped) or 1 tbsp good vanilla extract
  • 6 tbsp balsamic vinegar
In a medium bowl, combine egg yolks and sugar - mix until smooth and pale in color. In a large saucepan, bring cream, milk, and vanilla to a boil. Remove from heat and slowly temper into the egg mixture, whisking constantly. Add balsamic. Strain through a fine mesh sieve to remove any lumps. Chill custard mixture for at least one hour, then follow the directions specific to your ice cream maker.

Serve with seasonal fresh fruit - figs, blackberries, cherries, or strawberries all work well.

Keeps 2 days in the freezer.

Restaurant Style Ceviche
From Sophia

Great for summer festivities (I literally got this recipe from a Mexican restaurant in California, so good.)

About 1 tablespoon of each sauces:
  • Valentina (Salsa Picante)
  • Tapatio
  • Bufalo- Chipotle
  • Bufalo- JalapeƱo
  • El Yucateco- Chile Habanero (Red Sauce)
  • El Yucateco- Chile Habanero (Green Sauce)
  • 8-12 Lime
  • 1 White Onion
  • 2-3 lb. of Shrimp
  • 4 Tomatoes
  • 1 Cilantro Branch
  • 3-5 Avocados
  • 2-3 Cucumbers
  • 1 Cup Clamato
  • Tostada Shells

Boil Shrimp in water,1 cup of Clamato, and 1 lime juice. When Shrimp is pink, remove and throw a bowl of ice cubes in the pot. Stir until ice melts (this makes the shrimp soft). Chop onions, shrimp, tomatoes, cilantro, avocados, and cucumbers into a large mixing bowl. Squeeze limes and add each hot sauces to chopped ingredients. Toss and chill in refrigerator until serving.  Serve on your favorite tostada shells.

Lychee Mojito
From Courtney

  • 5-6 fresh mint leaves
  • 2-3 fresh lychees (or canned)
  • 1/2 tsp superfine sugar
  • 1/2 ounce fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 ounce simple syrup
  • 2 ounces good gin
  • 1 ounce club soda, or sparkling water
  • Ice
In a cocktail shaker, muddle mint leaves and 1/2 of a sliced lychee with 1/2 tsp of superfine sugar. Add lime juice, simple syrup, gin and ice. Shake well and strain into chilled glass. Top with the club soda or sparkling water and garnish with fresh lychees and mint.

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