During the last week I ran across two really great food articles.
He wrote an article for the Wall Street Journal listing his five top cookbooks. (This is part of a regular feature in the Wall Street Journal, where various knowledgeable people will compile lists of their top five books on various topics and why each book belongs on the list. It’s a different person who writes it each week, about a different topic, and I’ve found a lot of good recommendations there.)
Mr. Brown’s recommendations were The Joy of Cooking by Rombauer, The Frugal Gourmet by Smith, Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking by Hazan, Outlaw Cook by Thorne, and Ratio by Ruhlman.
You’ll have to read the article to find out why he recommends each one.
I did not know the The Joy of Cooking dates back to the 1930s, or that even up until the 1960s it had instructions for how to skin a squirrel.
And based on his description, I think I might have pick up a copy of Ratio for myself.
While some of Bon Appetit‘s recipes are a bit exotic for me, each issue has tons of good recipes. For those of you who like my lemon cookies — that recipe came from an issue of Bon Appetit. The BA Foodist column is one of the articles I look forward to most — he almost always has good information or advice, such as if you are a starving college student who wants to cook tasty meals but not break the bank, two good and cheap foods that you can do an incredible number of things with are eggs, and also rice.
His article about nachos was very enlightening — I too love a good plate of nachos, but I had never realized part of the trick is to briefly heat each layer of chips and cheese as you assemble the nachos. I also like his admonition to not get fancy with ingredients when you don’t need to, and serve nachos with beer. Wine goes with lots of things, but not nachos.
And finally, a really good recipe I tried last weekend. This is a very slightly modified version of a recipe from the book that came with a Cuisinart Griddler.
Blueberry Oatmeal Buttermilk Pancakes
- 1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1-1/3 cups regular oatmeal or rolled oats (not quick or 1-minute oats)
- 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt (optional)
- 2 cups buttermilk
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 3 Tbsp vegetable oil
Put the blueberries in a small bowl and sprinkle with 1 Tbsp flour. Toss to coat.
Put the remaining flour, whole wheat flour, oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, soda, and salt (if using) in a bowl. Mix thoroughly, being sure to break up any brown sugar clumps.
Mix the buttermilk, eggs, and oil in a separate bowl. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and mix. Fold in the blueberries.
Drop by 1/4 cup (or slightly less) amounts onto a 375 F griddle, either greased or non-stick. Cook for 3-4 minutes or until bubbly on top, then flip and cook for another 2 minutes.
These pancakes are really good but really filling. I made a single batch of the recipe above, and between my mom, my dad and myself, we were all completely stuffed after finishing them.