Saturday, March 26, 2016

Meyer Lemon Tart

On a recent trip to Trader Joe's, I picked up a bag of Meyer Lemons. They sat in the fridge, waiting patiently to be used, but I had neither the time nor desire to work with them until today. A day off. A day off with nothing else to do. No shopping, no meetings, nothing. So I pulled up Martha Stewart's recipe recipe for a tart.

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If you've never had a Meyer lemon, they are a cross between a mandarin and a lemon, and the filling is much milder and sweeter than a typical lemon curd. It's hard to tell from these photos, but the color is a golden yellow, much different from a plain lemon.

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The crust is good enough to eat alone. Seriously, it's that good!

1 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons sugar
1/4 teaspoon finely grated Meyer lemon zest
1 stick cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Make the crust: Whisk together flour, sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and the lemon zest in a large bowl. Cut in butter with a pastry cutter or your fingers until dough begins to hold together.
Stir together 1 tablespoon water and vanilla, then mix into dough. Shape dough into a disk, and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Using your fingers, press dough evenly into bottom and up sides of a 9-inch* fluted tart pan with a removable bottom. Freeze for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 375 degrees and bake until golden, about 25 minutes. Let cool completely.

2 large eggs plus 3 large egg yolks
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1/4 teaspoon cornstarch
3 tablespoons finely grated Meyer lemon zest, plus 1/3 cup fresh Meyer lemon juice (from 3 lemons)
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces

Make the lemon curd: Whisk together eggs, egg yolks, sugar, and cornstarch in a medium saucepan. Whisk in lemon zest and juice. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until thick enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon, about 7 minutes. Remove from heat and whisk in butter, 1 piece at a time.
Pour filling into cooled tart shell. Bake until filling is browned, slightly puffed, and set, about 30 minutes. Let cool completely.**

*I only have a 10" tart pan, so I increased the crust by 1/4.
**I didn't let it get brown on top, but instead used the discarded egg whites to make a meringue. I spread it on top of the cooled tart and then ut it under the broiler until the meringue was a perfect shade light brown.

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And the final product....

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Tuesday, March 8, 2016


I always wanted to make a true bolognese. I found Martha Stewart's recipe and bought the ingredients. I got a knife sharpener for Christmas and it made my knives a pleasure to work with.

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Just look at that mise en place!

Here is the recipe I used:

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 ounces pancetta, cut into 1/4-inch pieces (2/3 cup)
2/3 cup minced yellow onion (1/2 medium)
2/3 cup minced carrot (2 medium)
2/3 cup minced celery (1 rib)
1 pound ground beef, such as chuck or sirloin
1 pound ground pork
3 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon tomato paste
1 cup dry white wine
1 1/4 cups whole milk
5 sprigs thyme, tied into a bundle with kitchen twine
1 to 2 fresh bay leaves
1 can (28 ounces) whole peeled tomatoes, pureed (with juice) in a blender (or through a food mill)
6 to 7 cups Basic Chicken Stock
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper

Heat butter and oil in a large pot over medium-high heat until butter starts to sizzle, then reduce heat to medium. Add pancetta, and cook until golden and fat has rendered, about 2 1/2 minutes. Add onion, carrot, and celery, and cook, stirring often, until just beginning to brown around edges, about 10 minutes (adjust heat if mixture is browning too quickly).
Add beef and pork and cook over medium heat, stirring frequently and separating meat with the back of a wooden spoon, until no longer pink, 8 to 10 minutes. Once meat is completely browned, pour off any excess fat. Add tomato paste and cook 1 minute, stirring to intensify sweetness.
Pour in wine and cook, stirring to scrape up browned bits from bottom of pot, until liquid has evaporated, 6 to 7 minutes. Add 1 cup milk and cook until reduced by half, about 3 minutes (don't worry if it appears slightly curdled, it will smooth out again). Add thyme bundle and bay leaves, and then pour in tomatoes and 6 cups stock. Season with 1
Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a very low simmer and cook, partially covered, 3 to 3 1/2 hours, skimming the fat from the surface with a ladle periodically. If at any time the sauce appears too dry, add up to 1 cup more stock as necessary. The finished sauce should have the consistency of a loose chili. Stir in remaining 1/4 cup milk and season with salt and pepper, as desired. If not serving immediately, let cool completely before transferring to airtight containers. Refrigerate up to 3 days or freeze up to 3 months; defrost in the refrigerator before using.

This is Mario Batali's recipe:

6 Ragu Bolognese Recipe by Mario Batali ­
For the Meat Sauce:
1/4 cup xtra Virgin Olive Oil
2 talepoon utter
2 medium Onion (finel chopped)
4 ri Celer (finel chopped)
2 Carrot (finel chopped)
5 Garlic clove (liced)
1 pound ground Pork
1 pound ground Veal
4 ounce Pancetta or Sla acon (run
through the medium hole of the
utcher' grinder)
1 ; 4 1/2-ounce tue of Tomato Pate
1 cup Whole Milk
1 cup Dr White Wine
1/2 cup Parle (leave picked and
For the Pata:
1 1/2 pound Freh Taglietelle
1/2 cup frehl grated ParmigianoReggiano
(plu more for garnih)

1 For the Meat Sauce:
2 In a 6- to 8-quart heav-ottomed pot, heat the olive oil and utter over medium heat until melted.
Add the onion, celer, carrot, and garlic, eaon with alt, and cook until the vegetale are tranlucent ut not rowned,
aout 5 to 7 minute.
Add the veal, pork, and pancetta, increae the heat to high and rown the meat, tirring frequentl. Cook for 10 to 15 minute,
or until the meat i dark rown and the fat ha rendered out completel. There will e a hallow pool of fat in the pan. Thi i
3/8/2016 Ragu Bolognese Recipe by Mario Batali ­ The Chew­chew/recipes/ragu­bolognese­mario­batali 2/2
Similar categorie: Ingredient, Pata, Coure & Meal, Dinner, Pizza & Pata, Cuiine,
Add the tomato pate and cook it in the fat for 2 to 3 minute, or until the color i rut orange. Add the milk and cook until
almot completel reduced.
Add the wine and ring jut to a oil, then reduce the heat to medium-low and immer for 2 to 3 hour. Seaon the ragu with
alt, remove from the heat, and let cool.
7 Sauce can e tored in an airtight container for 1 week in the fridge or frozen for up to 6 month.
8 For the Pata:
To erve, ring a large pot of alted water to a oil. Cook pata 1 minute hort of the packaged intruction. Drain, reerving
pata water for auce.
In a large aute pan heat aout 1 1/2 to 2 cup of auce over medium. Add the cooked pata and aout a 1/2 cup of reerved
pata water. Stir to coat pata.
11 Add 1/2 cup of Parmigiano and 4 talepoon of olive oil. Stir until cream. To in the chopped parle.
12 Serve and garnih each plate with a generou amount of frehl grated Parmigiano-Reggiano.

Can you see a difference? I kept thinking that it could use garlic. And perhaps the 6 to 7 cups of chicken stock?!

The sauce was bland and watery

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and I have a couple of quarts in the freezer.

I think that I will add some tomato paste and garlic to it when I heat it up, but next time, I will try Mario Batali's recipe.