A spice often used in Mediterranean and Moroccan cooking that is the dried point of pollination of the purple crocus (a flower similar to the iris). Each flower only provides three strands of saffron that must be carefully and painstakingly hand picked and dried, making it the most expensive spice in the world. For one ounce of saffron, 14,000 tiny strands must be harvested. Saffron adds a deep yellow color to dishes and was at one time a dye used to color cloth. A little goes a long way with most recipes calling for a small pinch of saffron threads to add a pleasant spicy smell and aromatic flavor.
Posts for May 31st 2007
Looks like our favorite controversial British chef, Gordon Ramsay might be opening a Los Angeles restaurant with the Beckhams. As Ramsay told the News of the World:
"We've been friends for a while and have spoken about it. There's always been something in the pipeline."
The restaurant would be Ramsay's second in the US and first on the West Coast. No word on what the menu will be
like, but since dear ol' Posh is a vegetarian, she has reportedly insisted upon a wide range of vegetarian options. And something tells me she won't be thrilled if Ramsay drags a deer through this one...
Also, speaking of Ramsay, he's finally caved to government and conservationists and has decided to take endangered bluefin tuna off his restaurant’s menus.
There's a lot of peanut butter in Thai food and other Asian fare, so why not have Asian ingredients on your peanut butter sandwich? - The Amateur Gourmet
I don't think this is an authentic Moroccan recipe, but it certainly sounds delicious. This cocktail is made with cardamom - a slightly sweet floral spice that smells heavily of eucalyptus- infused simple syrup. Although the name may be unfamiliar, this is actually a pretty common, kosher spice that they sell at your local Safeway. Mixed with pomegranate vodka, lemon juice, and fresh pomegranate juice, this is a cocktail that will take you to an exotic place. Come away with me to Morocco, to find out how, just read more
I love the look of these Moon & Stars Watermelon - which gets its name from the striking pattern of small dots and one larger one. This extra sweet Amish heirloom variety was once on the verge of extinction, but is making a comeback. If you're interested in growing them in your garden, a packet of purple variety seeds costs $2.39 and a packet of the green variety costs $2.69.
When I lived in southern Spain, very near Morocco, one of my favorite afternoon activities was drinking tea at a local Moroccan style tea house. If you have never been to a bona fide Moroccan tea house, you must go. Think seductive dim lighting, low tables, elaborate pillow cushions, snake-like hookahs, and the most amazing variety of tea. The tea is served in ornately beautiful little glasses, like these ones. There's something so deliciously intimate about these tea glasses that I now prefer to drink my tea in a small glass, rather than an oversized American mug or tiny British tea cup. This set of 6 glasses is available for $32.
During the summer, kebabs are an ideal quick fix meal. For super busy nights choose meats that don't need a long time to marinate and grill rapidly, such as poultry. In tonight's recipe the creamy marinade mixes together in minutes and the chicken soaks for 20 minutes. Blanching the vegetables before grilling allows them to get fully cooked without being charred on the outside and raw on the inside. Transform these tasty kebabs into an impromptu dinner party by pairing with purchased hummus, tabouleh, and crisped pita. Get a taste of Morocco with this recipe, just read more
The folks at Cook's Illustrated really know their way around a kitchen. Not only do they have great recipes and fantastic ideas, but they've got an assortment of kitchen tips too. In fact they've got 834 of them and lucky for us they've put them in their book 834 Kitchen Quick Tips. The tips are laid out alphabetically and cover everything from almond paste (how to soften) to zucchini (how to seed). The hints inside (like spraying your knife with nonstick cooking spray before chopping sticky dried fruit) are quite clever and a book like this will be a great reference in your kitchen. I personally found the tips fun to read, and think it's going to become the gift I give at housewarmings!