While I'm constantly providing you with tons of fabulous party plans and innovative entertaining ideas, to host a successful and memorable event — at any time and any place — you really need to remember these top 10 important tips. Besides these simple basics, the key to any event's success is to have fun! It's a party after all!
Posts for July 7th 2010
- Desserts, Pies/Tarts
- North American
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, plus more for work surface
8 cups (about 4 pints) blueberries, picked over
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1 large egg yolk
1 tablespoon heavy cream
- On a lightly floured work surface, roll out one disk of dough to a 12-inch round. With a dry pastry brush, sweep off excess flour; fit dough into a 9-inch glass pie plate, pressing it into edges. Trim dough to a 1/2-inch overhang all around. Fold edge of dough over or under.
- Roll out remaining dough in the same manner; transfer dough (on parchment) to a baking sheet. Chill pie shell and dough until firm, about 30 minutes.
- Place blueberries in a large bowl; with your hands, crush about 1/2 cup of berries, letting them fall into the bowl as you work.
- Add sugar, butter, cornstarch, flour, and lemon juice; stir to combine.
- Spoon mixture into chilled pie shell, mounding berries slightly in the center.
- Remove dough from refrigerator. Using a sharp knife or pastry wheel with fluted edge, cut 3/4-inch-wide strips from dough round. Arrange dough strips atop filling, forming lattice; trim dough strip overhang to 1/2 inch. Fold bottom crust up over ends of strips and crimp edges to seal. Tuck edge of top dough between edge of bottom dough and rim of pan. Using your fingers, gently press both layers of dough along the edge to seal, and crimp as desired.
- In a small bowl, whisk together egg yolk and cream. Brush surface with egg wash, being careful not to let it pool. Freeze or refrigerate pie until firm, about 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400 degrees, with rack in lower third.
- Place pie on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake until crust begins to turn golden, about 20 minutes.
- Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees. Continue baking, rotating sheet halfway through, until crust is deep golden brown and juices are bubbling and have thickened, 40 to 50 minutes more. Transfer pie to a wire rack to cool completely. The pie is best eaten the day it is baked, but it can be kept at room temperature, loosely covered with plastic wrap, for up to 2 days.
Makes 1 pie.
- Main Dishes, Pizza
2 teaspoons olive oil, plus more for baking sheets
2 whole-wheat sandwich wraps (12-inch)
2 ounces Asiago cheese, shredded (1 cup)
2/3 cup part-skim ricotta
1 package (10 ounces) white mushrooms, trimmed and thinly sliced
1 small red onion, halved and thinly sliced
Coarse salt and ground pepper
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees, with racks in upper and lower thirds. Brush two rimmed baking sheets with oil, or for easy cleanup, line with parchment paper then brush with oil. Place one wrap on each sheet; brush with 1 teaspoon oil.
- Sprinkle wraps with Asiago, then dollop with ricotta. Sprinkle with mushrooms and onion; season with salt and pepper.
- Bake pizzas until crust is crisp and very brown all over, 20 to 25 minutes, rotating sheets from top to bottom and front to back twice during baking. Cut in half with a pizza cutter or knife; serve one half per person.
Whether it's Spain or the Netherlands taking top prize this Sunday, the World Cup will undoubtedly end with a spectacular bang, not a whimper. To ensure you have fun as a spectator — regardless of whether or not your team wins — have some solid South African wine in your drinking glass.
Since it's so hot outside, I'd skip the red wine in favor of a white that the country produces quite well: Chenin Blanc. Often known there by the name of Steen, this variety has a reputation for being bland, flabby, or sweet — but not when it's done right, as it often is in South Africa.
Recently, I tried an accessible version by Mulderbosch, one of the most notable wineries in the nation.
It was dry, but not bone-dry, with pleasant notes of lemon and lime, and a nice amount of body. On the nose, it smelled exactly like jalapeños, in a pleasantly smoky way. And for well under $20, I consider it to be a spectacular value. What South African wines are you drinking in celebration of the World Cup?
At his sous vide demo in Aspen, chef David Chang talked about his affinity for cooking with gojuchang. Gojuchang (pronounced "go-joo-chong") is a Korean red pepper paste. Usually fermented, it contains dried chile peppers and an emulsifying sweetener such as molasses. The paste is used sparingly for marinating, cooking, and as a condiment for marinated beef, mixed vegetables over rice, noodles, and other dishes. It can be purchased at most Asian markets.
Have you ever tried gojuchang?
Source: Flickr User joyosity
YumSugar member girlA offers up a super speedy, three-ingredient dressing in The Dairy-Free Diva Recipe Exchange cooking group. This dressing has the perfect combination of saltiness, creaminess and nutty flavor that would be great on salads, wraps, sandwiches, baked tofu, steamed veggies or as a veggie dip. It’s also a breeze to make. To see her recipe, read more.
- Condiments/Sauces, Dressings
1/4 C white, sweet miso
1/4 C tahini
1/3 C or more warm water
In a medium bowl whisk together the miso and tahini to form a creamy paste. Slowly pour in warm water, gently whisking a little at a time until a creamy dressing forms. If thinner dressing is desired, dribble in a little more water. The dressing will thicken if allowed to sit a while. Keep refrigerated until ready to use. Enjoy!
- Mario Batali's latest cookbook stresses simple, straightforward cooking.
- Mario Batali's latest cookbook stresses simple, straightforward cooking. — San Francisco Chronicle
- How the Obamas wield their political influence at the nation's top restaurant tables. — Los Angeles Times
- Conservationists are creating consumer demand for a top predator, lionfish. — Washington Post
- Three topping ideas to spice up tonight's tilapia. — Chicago Tribune
- Rooftop gardens are sprouting up everywhere in Beantown. — Boston Globe
- Trials and tribulations of adults who are picky eaters. — Wall Street Journal
- Why you should place more trust in the sommelier. — New York Times
When made correctly, coleslaw can be a wonderful Summer side. It's cooling, crunchy, and filled with vegetables. Since the supermarket variety is often drenched in a liquidy mayo-based dressing that's unappetizing, I prefer to make my own coleslaw. Sure, the recipe requires mayonnaise, but I control how much is added to the salad.
This version — my current fave — follows a classic and easy technique: you chop the veggies and coat them in the dressing. It consists of green cabbage, bell peppers, carrots, and onions; cider vinegar provides a necessary acidic tang. It's great served alongside ribs and beans, or sandwiched with pulled pork between two toasty buns. To learn how to make coleslaw, keep reading.