Monday, November 24, 2003

Thursday night I made shrimp kung pao from Here In America's Test Kitchen (a cookbook which disappointed me a bit for including recipes I already had in back issues of Cook's Illustrated, but only a bit). As I've said before, I'm no expert on authentic Chinese cuisine, but this was a damn sight better than any kung pao I've had in LA. Its only fault was that it did not in any way require the use of the KitchenAid.

Saturday, though, I used the paddle attachment to make pie dough. I made up a full batch and froze 3/4 of it- I'll use 1/4 for my Thanksgiving pecan pie. The other 1/4 I rolled out to make the leek and goat cheese tart from that Martha Stewart magazine. Real Food? I picked it up on impulse and really liked it- I may replace my Cooking Light subscription with it, in fact. The tart was amazing. Jeff was perplexed how it differed from the other onion tarts I've made (this has pie dough, not puff pastry dough, and then a goat cheese/cream cheese/egg and thyme base, and leeks on top). You cook the tart for long enough that the raw leeks (tossed in olive oil) do roast, and it was delicious.

I also made bread dough from the starter I'd spent 10 days on. It was okay, but the mixed starter bread was tastier. You'd think something that smells like rotten feet in the starter stage would have some character, any character, once baked. I may look into alternate sourdough paths. Also, I nearly thought I was taking my KitchenAid to the limit, while mixing the dough. Turns out I just forgot to change the paddle attachment for the dough hook. I took that attachment to the limit, at least. And the bread, with roasted peppers and pickapeppa and goat cheese, makes an okay sandwich.

Sunday was a shopping bonanza. The Farmer's Market first. Two dozen eggs I bought! We got free parking at the new BB&B that opened on Sunset and Vine, since we had to buy a gravy boat, a pie tin, and a bundt pan. I think the temptation to buy something at Bed Bath and Beyond every Sunday may be strong (the parking was for once so easy!) but I will resist. I did mock the tilt head KitchenAids we passed, a little. (Sorry, Molly!) Then Ralphs and TJ's and a million of them, looking for pecans. Not a pecan to be had in Hollywood these days.

Anyway. Finally I got home and I made the chocolate chocolate chip cookies from Baking With Julia. The best cookies ever. I could've eaten the whole lot of them, uncooked. And they used the whisk attachment of the mixer. I've now used every attachment and I am even more pleased.