Honeyed Pear Clafouti Tart by Caitlin
This clafouti, a delicious confection of pear, honey and a hint of lemon, will not last long once you take it out of the oven. The quality of the honey will really influence the final product. For this reason, I highly recommend using at least 2 tb artisanal honey, out of the 5 tb the recipe calls for. I used a lovely autumnal honey blend from an organic farm in Quebec, which I bought in Montreal’s Jean Talon Market at a store that stocks food products from all over Quebec called Marche des Saveurs. The selection was incredible, I had so much trouble choosing just one jar to take home! This recipe is a perfect showcase for that really nice flavourful, you splurged at the farmers market jar of honey; in fact the taste of honey in the first bite of this clafouti can almost be overpowering when you have a warm piece, but the flavour seems to fade a little when it is served at room temperature.
We all reach a day where we ask ourselves: what the heck am I going to make for supper tonight? Tired of the traditional, same old recipes we've been making for years, we yearn for something new and different to delight our tastebuds. Look for no further: THIS is that dish. This is tonight's dinner. (okay it can be tomorrow's if you've already made something. But seriously. Try it. You won't regret it.)
I love reading, and sometimes I like to take a break from fiction and read a chef's memoir. I find them fascinating, learning about what the inner sanctum of a restaurant kitchen is really like, the chef's background, working oneself up from kitchen help to line cook to sous chef to executive chef - and of course I love the food, the descriptions, the different techniques and flavours. The last one I picked up was Yes, Chef by Marcus Samuelsson. Ethiopian-born, Swedish-raised, European-educated, he ended up settling in the U.S. At one point Marcus, now an established chef, goes back to Ethiopia and the first dish he cooks in his native country is Doro Wat. I was so inspired I immediately googled recipes and cobbled together something that resulted in the most flavorful, tender, tastiest piece of chicken I've ever had.
Marinated Salmon Cubes with a Fresh Green Salad
Delicious and so easy to make! This is less of a recipe, and more of a general technique to use for marinating the salmon.
Cube a filet of salmon
In a ziploc bag, add any or all of the following ingredients to your taste:
-soy sauce (just a dash or two of this)
-lemon juice (goes so well with fish)
I usually use equal amounts of the first three ingredients plus the lemon juice and garlic, but I was out of teriyaki sauce last night so I used duck sauce, soy sauce and white wine instead. Add the salmon cubes to the mixture in the ziploc bag and marinate for at least 30 minutes. Bake in the oven at 350 degrees for about 12 min. This technique can be used with whole slices of salmon as well, but of course the cooking time changes.
Enjoy with mashed potatoes, or for a healthy version on a bed of salad, as I did.
I made Caitlin's Garam Masala Soup last night as well. I didn't have any butternut squash, so I used sweet potato, carrots, and regular squash. I was so excited to find a kosher garam masala spice mix! I used a half teaspoon first but after blending I found it could use more so I added another half teaspoon.
It was delicious! It got rave reviews, my family loved it. Definitely going to be using garam masala in my soups from now on. Thanks for the recipe Caitlin!
Squash Garam Masala Soup by Caitlin
I decided to start with this recipe because it shows, in one word, how I often think about cooking. Improvisation is the word to remember when making this soup.
Soup is a perfect recipe to start improvising with your ingredients, because unlike a baking project where precise measurements are important, it is much more forgiving when you just make it with what you have on hand. I would never run out to the store before making this soup because I didn’t have one of the ingredients. The key to good soup making is understanding what substitutions you can make and I’ve given lots of different options, while also letting you know the way I usually make it.
First, you can change the type of aromatics you sauté at the start without any harm to the final taste of the soup. If you only have carrots, then the soup becomes a delicious Squash Carrot Soup. Have some leeks or shallots, but no onions- sounds like a good substitution. No olive oil? Use butter, or whatever neutral oil you have around. Only 2 cups of stock in a corner of your fridge that needs to be used? That’s fine, just add a splash more of your apple cider and make up the remainder with water, as long as you have a total of 5 ½- 6 cups liquid, this soup will taste great.
Second, as you change the amount of spice in the soup, the character of the soup will change as well. One teaspoon of Garam Malsala gives you a soup with a gentle warmness and only a hint of something exotic… a full on 1 tablespoon of Indian spice mix creates an assertive bold soup, telling in your mouth to add a big dollop of yogurt to your bowl and bring some samosas and chutney to the table.
Finally, you can be experimental with the garnishes. A dollop yogurt, white spirals swirled through bright orange soup is nice, but other additions, like cilantro, some nuts or pumpkin seeds or quick croutons (toss some bread in oil and toast in the oven at 350 for around 10 minutes) can be added, all changing the taste of the soup until it’s exactly right for you!
Just-crispy edges, soft chewy chocolatey inside, powdery sweet coating…. As a chocoholic I adore this cookie. Growing up I always heard it called ‘crinkle cookie’, I suppose due to the crinkled look it has as the cookie bakes and ‘cracks’ and the icing sugar topping becomes zig-zaggy (if that isn’t a word I just invented it). As an adult, my best friend Charlotte (aka Cupcake Princess!) told me it’s her favourite cookie to make but she called them chocolava cookies. Whatever you decide to call it, this confection is a delicious chocolate explosion, so a couple of weeks ago when my brother Chef Ari (expert on all things cooking) sent me this recipe, titled 'Chocolava Cookies' I knew I had to make it.
Thank you for coming to check out our recipe blog. Ess Eat is a spot where you can join Mindy and Caitlin on their culinary adventures. We both love to spend time in the kitchen and hope you will be joining us.
Just a few notes before we begin:
I'm sure you're wondering what the name of this blog means. Eat: to consume food. Ess means eat in Yiddish. Sharing food and having people eat and enjoy our food is what cooking is all about for both of us. We wanted the title of this blog to reflect where both of us come from and that is a kosher kitchen for Mindy, where Yiddish is often spoken, and a non-kosher kitchen in the prairies, bursting with ingredients from all over the world for Caitlin.
For as long as we have known each other, we've been exchanging recipes and food stories. Even when we're living in different cities, we still email photos of our culinary creations to one another. There is never more than a few weeks that go by without Caitlin getting a picture of what's for dinner in Montreal or Mindy seeing what's for dinner on Caitlin's table and we both really like that. We also share links of favourite food blogs, cookbooks and anything to do with food!
A few months ago an idea began percolating: why not publish our own blog? And that brings us to this happy day! Now, for a little from each of the authors, starting with Caitlin.