Monday, June 13, 2011

Back in the Game

Boy-o is improving. Turns out he did not have strep, but Hand, Mouth, Foot Disease, which is a gross virus. I'll leave it at that. Since he's feeling better, I was able to steal away and cook some recipes today. One was Caramelized Onion Dip (pg 41).

The America's Test Kitchen team devised a strategy for creating creamy dips, while cutting back on the fat and calories. They say that most dips rely on sour cream and/or mayo. Their solution is to blend lowfat cottage cheese with boiling water in a food processor to smooth it out, and then add a bit of lowfat sour cream.

I was skeptical as to how this would taste, and I'm still not sold on it. I made one fatal error that very much impacted the flavor of this dish. The scallions I expected to use had gone bad in the fridge, so I omitted them altogether. It turns out that one caramelized onion is no match for 1 cup of cottage cheese and 1 cup of sour cream (I used Greek yogurt, b/c I prefer it to sour cream.) The flavor of my lovely purple carrot overwhelmed the dip. It was an exceptionally flavorful carrot, but come on. What I wouldn't give for some scallions.
How often can you say that raw carrots are the tastiest food on your plate?
My biggest problem with this dip was the texture. On my finger, it was not creamy and velvety smooth, as promised, but quite gritty. However, when actually used as a dip, the texture was less noticeable. Matt dipped one pretzel into it, and immediately returned it to the fridge.

Conclusion: Just okay. I didn't enjoy what flavor was there enough to make it again with scallions. I'd consider re-examining this in a few years, when my wee one starts demanding snack foods.

Thai Red Curry with Chicken (343) came together easily enough. Poach chicken breasts in a mixture of red curry paste (I used panang, because I have it), coconut milk, fish sauce, and brown sugar. Shred the chicken, then cook red bell pepper, onions, and snap peas in the broth. Basil and lime juice top it off.
The flavor wasn't very complex or interesting. I asked Matt how he liked it, and he said, "I love Dorie's cookbook." Me too. I'm not very present in this cookbook. I find myself either wanting to return to Dorie or daydreaming about my next book, whatever it may be.

Conclusion: Just okay. Not very good, not very bad. This dish is like purgatory.

1 comment:

  1. Ooh, sounds like this cookbook isn't winning your favor at all. I will search for purple carrots at the farmers market on Thursday however!