March 28, 2013
Nom Adventures, Stuff to Make Noms
cooking classes, elle a cooking, french, lamb, lemon tart, salad nicoise, tarte au citron
We received the most pleasant email last week — an invitation from Lilia at Elle A Cooking to check out her Thursday evening cooking class! The menu was French themed with the lovely title We’ll Always Have Paris, featuring salad niçoise, grilled lamb chops with celery root purée, and tarte au citron. After the fantastic experience we had in her croissant-making class, we were very excited to learn from her again.
But before the learning begins, we snack!
I feel like the croissant class was relatively easier in that sense that we were able to make three different finished products once we got the hang of rolling out the buttery dough. Cooking a three-course menu from start to finish in just a few hours’ time, though, was a bigger challenge.
February 4, 2013
Nom Adventures, Stuff to Make Noms, Sweet Noms
baking, butter, cooking classes, croissant, danish, elle a cooking, french, pain au chocolat, pastry
That’s right, friends. Martin’s Christmas present to me was adding croissants to our culinary repertoire — best boyfriend ever! I was very pleasantly surprised when he proudly announced that we would be taking this class with Elle A Cooking.
Stunning, flaky butter croissants – a labor of love
July 12, 2012
Stuff to Make Noms
freezer, leftovers, tips and tricks, tomato paste
Don’t you hate it when a recipe calls for a few teaspoons, or even just a small dollop, of tomato paste and suddenly even the dinky little 6 oz cans seem giant? I mean, they’re already just about the smallest can in the canned food aisle, but what do you do with the rest of it? Leave it in the can and put it in the fridge? Scoop it into a tupperware container and put it in the fridge? Forget about it? Triple or quadruple the recipe in order to utilize the whole can? Throw it away?
I, too, used to have that dilemma. In the spirit of not wasting food, I would place a little square of plastic wrap over the top of the opened can, using a rubber band to hold it in place if needed, and gingerly place the leftover can in my fridge. Well-intentioned, of course, but over time, the can would make its way to a dark little corner of my refrigerator, long forgotten and definitely unusable. Until one day, I discovered by reading some online forums that you can indeed freeze tomato paste! And let me tell you, that little fact changed my culinary life.
Here’s my trick:
Spread out a sizable piece of plastic/saran wrap. Spoon out the remaining contents of the opened can of tomato paste.
Using a spatula or the back of a spoon, spread the tomato paste so that it is no more than about a 1/2 inch thick.
Fold the plastic wrap so that everything is covered and with minimal air bubbles.
Place the wrapped bundle of paste into a ziploc bag and store in the freezer.
The next time a recipe calls for tomato paste, you don’t even have to thaw it. Because we spread it out in a fairly thin layer, you can just pull the brick out of the freezer, break off as much as you need, re-wrap, and put it back. Easy peasy and nothing wasted!
Need ideas on what to make with tomato paste? Might I suggest some com do or nui xao? (No, we’re not biased at all…)
December 5, 2011
Stuff to Make Noms
condiment, french, maggi, seasoning sauce, vietnamese
After hearing some feedback on our previous posts, I realized I have taken for granted having grown up in the very large Vietnamese enclave in Garden Grove and Westminster of Orange County, so I thought I’d write a short post with some info and fun facts about the magical (maggi-cal!) Maggi Seasoning Sauce as a follow-up to our previous post regarding com do.
All varieties of Maggi (even the tiny and large sizes) have the same shaped bottle.
Read more about Maggi – what it is, where to find it, and how to use it!
November 14, 2011
Stuff to Make Noms
dark chocolate stars, holidays, ingredients, milk chocolate orange, palms, peppermint bark, pumpkin butter, rye mini toasts, trader joes
It’s that time of year, when stores pack away the Halloween orange and black goodies and start setting out the winter holiday wares. Snowflakes, snowmen, Santa Clauses galore. What I had hoped to be a quick trip to Trader Joe’s to pick up some ginger chews turned out to be an exciting kid-in-a-candy-store feeling with all of the holiday items back on the shelves.
My spoils of war after battling the after-work crowd at Trader Joes!
Read more about these delicious noms!