Archive for the ‘Appetizer’ Category

Liptauer Cheese

February 11th, 2015 1 Comment

    I finally got a good photo of the Ukrainian jackets at the International Paralymic Championships here at Telemark, they’re beautiful.  I wish I would have had a cool jacket to trade with him…     Twenty countries! For more amazing footage check out the video of the 2014 Paralymic Winter Games in Sochi.     A much better shot of the Russian jacket.  The Russians and the Ukrainians were even hanging out part of the time….   A week after the IPC

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Pepita Dip

December 23rd, 2014 No Comments

  If it’s going to continue to be gray outside, it might as well snow a little—and it is!  White flakes are showering down and I’m grateful for even a small change in these overcast days.   Here’s a tasty and healthy little snack for the holidays. ‘Sikil P’aak’ is the Mayan name for this kind of dip, though usually it would include tomatoes since ‘p’aak’ means tomato.  ‘Sikil’ means pepitas, or pumpkin seeds, which were also an important part of the diet

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Sweet Soup (Søtsuppe)

December 16th, 2014 No Comments

    “When it is dark enough, you can see the stars.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson. . This week’s quote can be taken different ways, but it seemed good for the long nights of the solstice season.  Our weather pattern has been stuck in a dreary, foggy, drabness for the last week and I’ve kept my colored holiday lights on all day just to have some hue in my life other than gray.  November and December have reversed themselves and we have no bright snow

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Burned Leeks with Dill Cream Cheese

December 2nd, 2014 No Comments

  Another Faroe Island dinner delight. All I had was a blog photo from a dinner at the Faroe Islands restaurant KOKS and the deducing began.  Regardless of what their version actually was, these niblets may have been my favorite part of the dinner—this and the celeriac purée.  Fortunately there were extra burned leeks for snacking as we cleaned up the feast and sipped our sherry and aquavit.       It takes a zen approach in separating these leek layers intact…ease…don’t rush….    

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Star Anise Pickled Onions

November 19th, 2014 No Comments

  This is a stone tile creation by Scott of limestone and onyx.  A fun little bathroom design and another photo distraction to entertain—like the previews before the movies, sometimes they are the most captivating part of the show!     Speaking of star anise… A couple of months ago I heard on the radio (my main form of outer world communication these days) an interview with my former chef/teacher Lenny Russo at the Minnesota State Fair.  He made the comment that star anise is grossly overused in the

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Thanksgiving Flashback

November 13th, 2014 1 Comment

  I often trot through our nearby wooded parks and recently stumbled upon this fire pit.  Most of our trails were built by volunteers in the mountain biking community…can you tell?  Knowing some of this crew I would guess this pit will be used well into the winter months, for “neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds” …or at least from having fun in the woods with their buddies.  

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Savory Roasted Pears

November 4th, 2014 1 Comment

  My sister and I recently went to this display of Flora Metamorphicae, 4,000 flower sculptures created by six Norwegian artists.  The flowers travel the world and the displays are changing and unique to the surroundings in which they reside.  Each flower is different, some resemble natural flowers and some spring from the imagination realm of its maker.  All are incredible.     More images of Flora Metamorphicae                  .   This exhibit is

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Plum Ketchup

October 14th, 2014 1 Comment

  (A visit to the Niagara Escarpment, more photos below…)     Close your eyes and open your mind to let ketchup become more than you think it is.   That red puree we think we know so well has origins in China (doesn’t nearly everything?!?) as a fish-sauce condiment called kê-chiap or ke-tchup (From slate.com “the syllable tchup—pronounced zhi in Mandarin—still means “sauce” in many Chinese dialects”) made from fermented fish and spices.  During centuries of its evolution the base ingredient of ketchup has shifted to salted anchovies, then soybeans were used in certain regions,

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Mini Eggplant Pizzas

October 7th, 2014 No Comments

  For the last month or two colorful eggplants have been brightening the palette of our local Farmer’s Market.  This picture of dazzling garden abundance is from my friend and photographer David Cavagnaro of the Pepperfield Project.  Color and shapes!  Many of these varieties can be used but the size and sweet flavor of the skinny Asian eggplants make them perfect for these little pizza bites.   Part of the nightshade family, eggplant are high in potassium, fiber, vitamin B’s and numerous phytonutrients.  Read more about their

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Tarragon Sugar and a Faroe Islands dinner

September 23rd, 2014 8 Comments

… Fresh tarragon with sugar was not my original idea, but reading it in a menu convinced me this was the meal I wanted to attempt to recreate for a Scandinavian dinner for my friend Dennis, the generous Dane who loves to host elaborate festivities. The Faroe Islands were the geographical highlight of this year’s feast, small bits in the North Atlantic between Norway, Scotland and Iceland, an autonomous country within the Kingdom of Denmark.  Puffin, seal and whale blubber are common foods eaten there…but we

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