We finish off volume 4 with a lovely egg dish for breakfast. This simple dish calls for slowly cooking onion, pepper and tomato until it’s pretty mushy. I used a bit of thyme for the added herb. You then scramble the beaten eggs in, and enjoy! Simple and comforting, as long as you can wait patiently for the very slow cooking of the vegetables. I think you could add bits of diced cooked bacon if you’re inclined to such things, although that’s probably not authentic anymore.
The Aardappel-purée Met Ham en Uien is Mashed Potatoes with Ham and Onions, while the Spruiten Purée is Purée of Brussels Sprouts. The ham and onion dish is a nice change of pace for a casserole, and useful for leftover ham. The Brussels Sprouts have a hint of nutmeg in them which, frankly, could maybe be changed to something else – cumin maybe? We really like Brussels Sprouts and it was nice to have a change of pace for them too, but this is not my new favorite approach. Good for an experiment, not going on the weekly menu. Both of these are baked, so are good dishes for a variable weather month like April in Minnesota.
These are amazing – Danish meatballs, with a hint of allspice, plus sour cream added to the sauce. We took these for a potluck, and they seemed quite popular. The meat is a combination of ground beef and pork in equal proportions. I think the Swedes are going to have to move over and make room for another version of meatballs at the table. Fantastic!!!
These are very thin pancakes. VERY thin. This month brings us Dutch cookery, among others, and so I took the opportunity to get in touch with my little bit of Dutch heritage. These are quite amazing – basically a thin skin of batter that bubbles all over (you can see the resulting lacy pattern) and you only have time to brown one side. They recommend sprinkling with sugar and rolling them up and eating with jam. Instead, I rolled then sprinkled some with powdered sugar. I also tried some with hazelnut chocolate spread (you know the brand!) and fresh bananas. Whipped cream would not have been amiss. Jam is also good. You could also serve these with some savory filling or topping. They are very much like crepes – and yet not exactly. Enjoy!
I have been looking at these for years, but never made them until this month. I think watching the Great British Bake Off has emboldened me to try these fussier cookies. And they are indeed fussy. The dough is a bit on the dry side and somewhat hard to work, and getting the two colors even is tricky at best. I think they look okay, but I wonder how many times they had to try them in order to get the perfect pictures in the book.
Then, I have to say the flavor was a little disappointing. I thought the chocolate would pop a lot more than it did. That could be the chocolate I used in the recipe, though, so your experience might be different.
All in all, fun, but not as amazing as I hoped.
Volume 3 includes the chicken section, and what a versatile ingredient for those who are eat meat. It also includes cheese, which as we have learned is a Midwestern staple. Put the two together and you have what Minnesotans call a hot dish.
These two chicken recipes both have a creamy type of sauce. On the left, Chicken Fricassee. This dish was one my partner fondly recalls from childhood, so we tried it. I wanted to add carrots though, so just chopped some up and added them. YUM! We served this over mashed potatoes with a side of cornbread stuffing. You could happily add a green vegetable on the side.
On the right, Chicken, Cheese and Cauliflower Casserole (that’s New Englandish for Hot Dish). We made it with two types of cheese – a medium cheddar and a mild cheese sort of like a Havarti – and it was just wonderful! I think you can vary the personality of this dish widely, depending on the cheese(s) you use. This one was going to a pot luck, by the way, hence the not very elegant presentation in the photo. I’m really not sure how people would feel if I insisted that they fix their plates and then let me photograph their food, haha.
Happy birthday to J (a few days ago) and also happy birthday to this blog! On this day, 5 years ago, I started this blog – my first one. I thought I should celebrate with cake! Now I have to admit the actual cake recipe is from another of my favorite vintage cookbooks, my mother’s copy of To the Bride. The filling and frosting are both from volume 3 of the Encyclopedia though. The filling is crème pâtissière from the Cremes and Custards section. Honestly, I thought I got it thick enough but you can see that once on the cake it definitely oozed down the sides. It is the most amazing tasting stuff, but not as stiff as needed. The icing is Semisweet Frosting from the Chocolate section. It was a good consistency and generally good but I think I should have gone with the bittersweet chocolate approach. For my first effort at Boston Cream pie completely from scratch, not bad, but not perfect either. This means I’ll just have to try again, right?