Hello Fellow Foodies!
This is just going to be a short one. My previous post on gluten was pretty long-winded. Whew!
First of all, I’m about to transition into a new style of photography. There’s more “stuff” and distractions in the pictures. I personally like them more than I thought I would, but I’ve received comments and emails suggesting that some think it’s a step in the right direction and some don’t. About 60% feel it was a good move. To the 40% that don’t … I’m sorry. I hope you eventually grow to enjoy this new evolutionary step.
Seeing as we’re coming up on Mother’s Day weekend, I’m going to be putting Mother’s Day inspired recipes out into the world. I post a recipe every day on my Facebook page. If you want to see the recipes come out during the week, make sure you like my Facebook page and/or visit it regularly. I tested sending daily emails, but it felt like I was spamming people (and they kept unsubsubscribing!). As a result, I send my blogs about once or twice a week. For those wanting TRUE interaction and live updates, check out the Facebook page. It’s more than just recipes; it’s discussion, videos, and all manner of healthy tidbit sharing.
Through that connection to my universe, you’ll see the following Mother’s Day Themed recipes over the next few days …
Spinach, Asparagus and Artichoke Heart Soufflés
Mushroom and Spinach Stuffed Crepes
Italian Sausage Stuffed Portobello with Sun Dried Tomatoes
Spicy Cumin-Cheddar Crackers (Mom, this is the one you requested. Good for guacamole!)
Coq au Vin
Salted Brown Butter Pie w/ Pecan Crust & Chocolate Ganache
I recently wrote a really long guest post for Karen, of Living Low Carb, One Day at a Time. It was so long that Karen opted to break it into two parts. Let’s just say … I like to type and I like to talk about food! I put a lot of thought and time into this recipe.
Both parts are interesting reads, all building up to the same glorious pie. I’ve seen a few comments from people suggesting it would be a fitting end to a low-carb mother’s day. Children of Moms … pay attention!
— Part 1: SNIP —
… When Karen asked me to do a guest post, I really wanted to do something special for her. I’m a big fan! I wanted to do something that covers a few interesting techniques, while still arriving at something COMPLETELY approachable, comforting and recognizable as a tantalizing foodstuff, not some weird science experiment. We’re going to get down and dirty with a Salted Brown Butter Pecan Pie topped with Chocolate Ganache and Whipped Cream. Oh yeah!I should say, however, that this is a LONG piece of pie! Don’t let the length intimidate you. I could’ve easily written this as a short and sweet recipe, but chose to make it educational. It’s instructional, rather than “simple step” oriented. …
Continue Reading Part 1: Low Carb Nut Crusts, Caramel Flavor and Emulsions
— Part 2: SNIP —
… We’re going to use the gelatin to firm up a brown butter custard emulsion that we’re about to make! This is done by “blooming” the gelatin in cold liquid, while heating the rest. Blooming means we’re going to sprinkle the unflavored gelatin powder evenly over the surface of (just about any) cold liquid. This allows the granules to “plump” in an even fashion, without clumping. It won’t work properly if the liquid is warm.
Continue Reading Part 2: Gelatin, Chocolate Ganache, and Salted Brown Butter & Pecan Pie Recipe
Today we have only 3 recipes. It’s only been a few days since my last one. One is Béarnaise sauce, in anticipation of the stuffed crepe recipe coming up, while also somewhat complementing the Fried Cauliflower Nibblets recipe. Finally, there’s a coconut flour based French Toast recipe, which I STRONGLY urge you to pay attention to. Is Mom low-carbing, these days? Wake her up with these delightful French Pucks of Goodness, this Sunday and she will love you forever!
We’ll chat more on Sunday!
Son of Mom
OMM French Toast
I’m a big fan of Chowstalker.com. They do an excellent job of attracting recipe developers within the paleo/primal/low-carb world and then sharing their collective recipes via a very simple image display. In addition to their main page, they also share recipes via their Facebook page. One day, I was lurking on their page and noticed a post about “Paleo-friendly English muffin in a hurry”. It seemed interesting, so I read about it. At its core, it’s a one-minute-muffin, made with coconut flour and shaped a little more like an English muffin, rather than a … hmmm … puffy American one? (People of England … what do you call Muffins, over there?)
Then, I read the comments on the Facebook page. Someone named Sve Ta suggest that “you can do french toust, too”. Immediately, I knew I wanted that!
So, this whole recipe came about because Chowstalker shared this paleo English Muffin recipe and someone else commented that French Toast could be a way to go.
(just so I don’t feel like I’ve TOTALLY stolen this, note that I have made French-Toast like goodies with OMM’s before)
This one, however, somehow took it to a new level. This may very well be the best thing to come out of my kitchen in a good long while (and some decent stuff comes out of there, too!)
Baking Note: It makes some sense to simply grease a 12-cup muffin pan and bake these for about 12 minutes at 400 F. Then, pop them out of their cups and slice them in half, so they can cool and will absorb the egg mixture more quickly and fry more evenly. Will result in 24 discs, instead of 12.
Fried Cauliflower Nibblets
Hollandaise sauce for this, as a dipping sauce. However, rather than using butter as the fat, I used rendered bacon fat. This made for a more bacon-y flavor, while also giving me a use for the bacon fat I’ve always got lying around the house! Here’s a Béarnaise sauce recipe. Use this as the basis for your Hollandaise. Just leave out the herbs. To make it lighter in color and bacon flavored, simply swap out the fats!
Béarnaise sauce is like a cooked mayonnaise, with Tarragon added to it. That’s about as simple as I can put it. It CAN be a bit prickly to make, but it’s got ENORMOUS flavor, is rich with healthy fats and is extremely low carb. It’s also versatile. Put it on your eggs for breakfast or your steak at dinner!
In classical French cooking, there are 5 “mother” sauces. The 5 sauces are Béchamel (thick milky gravy), Espagnole (thick brown gravy), Velouté (thick chicken gravy), Hollandaise (cooked thick eggy gravy) and Tomate (thick tomato gravy). I feel like when I was in cooking school, I was taught that there were actually 7 mother sauces, with the other two being mayonnaise (uncooked thick eggy gravy) and demi-glace (thick veal gravy, made via reduction). The idea is, adding a few ingredients to each of these mother sauces will transform them into a totally new sauce!
Béarnaise sauce is a child of the mother sauce “Hollandaise”. The method of preparation is essentially the same, with some minor variations (the biggest being the tarragon).
My Béarnaise sauce recipe isn’t a “true” Béarnaise. It is, in fact, an abomination. Mine is thoughtfully constructed, tastes VERY similar and just makes more sense to me as a fully realized sauce, even though most French chefs would like to speak French at me … harshly! The big changes are: I’ve omitted chervil, simply because it’s such a challenge to find. If you do find it, add some. It’s delightful!. I’m also not using clarified butter. Instead, I’m using whole melted butter. Butter is roughly 80% butter fat, 19% water and 1% “tasty butter bits” (milk solids). More often than not, water is needed to thin the sauce as it is built. Why not use the water in butter? The milk solids just add more flavor … why remove them? Also, I know Ghee is like the new butter, but … I suspect more people have old-school butter than ghee. It is also common to strain out the shallots. I never do this. I like them! Finally, I’m adding a smidgen of heavy cream. This is purely optional, but because a cooked egg based emulsion can be such a fickle sauce, the store bought homogenized cream helps the emulsion take place and HOLD.
Each of these variations take a step further away from a true Béarnaise. Escoffier is probably turning in his grave, but … he evolved food from his predecessors … I’m simply throwing in my spin!
Video Note: Béarnaise sauces can break very easily and make something that looks like scrambled eggs, floating in oil. Here’s a little video that shows how easy is it to fix!
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