Episode Information

FMS: The Food Schmooze!
Aired:
12/23/2009
Share this Content

In this episode:

Clever food ideas from the Food Buddies!

 

Guest(s):
Contributor(s):
Episode Audio

49:39 minutes (23.83 MB)
Download this Episode

Faith chats with her food buddies, Chris Prosperi, Cam Henning and Lori Mack, with special guest, Terry Walters, author of "Clean Food"!

Featured recipes from today's show:

Hollandaise sauce has a bad rap. It's temperamental, difficult to make and fattening - or so they say. Actually hollandaise is rather easy once you understand how egg yolks react to heat and a gentle whisking. Modern appliances like blenders or food processors make hollandaise even easier. And there's nothing like the creamy plushness of hollandaise to dress up poached eggs, roasted asparagus or steamed asparagus. As for fattening, well, just consider how healthful eggs and butter are considered now. To make hollandaise is to engage in a slow dance with egg yolks and melted butter. Beating the egg yolks over low heat denatures their proteins - a fancy way of saying that you loosen up the yolks, introduce a little air to change the color slightly and change the yolk's molecular structure so they become very, very thirsty. The yolks will drink up whatever you pour in, be it hot butter for hollandaise or oil for real homemade mayonnaise. The key is to go slowly. No matter whether you make hollandaise by hand or use a blender, the yolks can absorb only so much at one time. Go slowly - almost boringly slow - or you risk curdling the sauce. Another factor is heat. You must heat the sauce to no more than 160 to 165 degrees or you risk scrambling the eggs. Now 160 is hot but not hot enough to eliminate the dangers of using what the government calls "undercooked" eggs. So make sure you know your source for eggs before beginning. Here's how you separate egg yolks from whites: Crack the egg gently on the side of a cup or small bowl. Open the shell carefully, allowing the yolk to be cupped in one half of the shell. Pass the yolk back and forth slowly from one shell half to the other, allowing the white to drop away into the bowl. When the yolk is white-free - easy to tell - place the yolk in the blender or a saucepan and repeat until you have the desired number of yolks. Save the egg whites for meringues. The whites freeze well.

Traditional Hollandaise:

Some recipes call for making hollandaise in a double boiler or other fancy rig. Forget it. Use an ordinary heavy-bottomed pan. If the yolks seem to be getting too hot, you simply slide the pot off the heat until things cool down. Use a whisk for maximum efficiency.

• 3 egg yolks

• 1 teaspoon water

• 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

• 2 sticks unsalted butter, 8 ounces, cut into 1/2-inch slices

• 2 teaspoons kosher salt

• Couple dashes Tabasco sauce (optional)

Set a heavy-bottomed saucepan on medium-low heat. Add the egg yolks and water and beat gently. The yolks will change color slightly, turning lemon yellow, as they warm up. Add the lemon juice; the acid will help the yolks accept the butter. When the yolks are hot to the touch, begin beating in the butter piece by piece. Work slowly. Allow the butter pat to melt and become incorporated completely into the yolks before adding the next piece. As the butter is absorbed, you'll see the yolk mixture begin to swell in volume, turn creamy and then, near the end, become somewhat stiff. Stir in the salt and the optional Tabasco and serve immediately. Makes about 2 cups.

*****

Blender Hollandaise:

Using your blender in conjunction with your microwave oven to melt the butter makes hollandaise so simple and fast you might begin considering it an "ordinary" sauce. Chris prefers the blender to a food processor because it emulsifies the sauce almost immediately and the fast-moving rotor blades help keep the yolks from scrambling. Microwave the butter in a heatproof covered container until the butter is completely melted and begins to bubble. This will ensure the butter is hot enough to "cook" the egg yolks to create the hollandaise.

• 3 egg yolks

• 2 8-ounce sticks unsalted butter

• 1 tablespoon lemon juice

• 2 teaspoons kosher salt

• Couple dashes Tabasco sauce (optional)

Place the egg yolks in the blender. Melt the butter in the microwave until the melted butter begins to bubble. Turn the blender on high. Pour in the lemon juice and add salt to the yolks. Pour in the hot melted butter. Go slow: Don't dump the melted butter in. Finish with the optional Tabasco sauce. Serve immediately. Makes about 2 cups.

*****

Rescuing Hollandaise:

Saving a curdled hollandaise is so easy, Julia Child once famously broke her sauce on television for the express purpose of showing how it could be reconstituted. The key is to put about a tablespoon of fresh lemon juice or vinegar into a bowl and then slowly - SLOWLY - add the curdled sauce glop by glop. Don't add more until what you've already put in the bowl is fully incorporated and creamy. "Rescued" hollandaise is a bit tarter than normal, but most people won't notice the difference.

*****

Basic Quiche:

This quiche is made with grilled portobello mushrooms and sundried tomatoes because those were the leftovers Chris had on hand. Use your imagination and what's in your refrigerator to come up with your own combination. Just make sure all the fillings are cooked or can be safely eaten as-is before assembling.

Chris uses white wine in his quiche to cut the richness and give the cooked pie a certain tang, but you can replace it with milk or cream, if you wish.

-1 pre-baked pie shell (see instructions above)

-4 eggs

-½ teaspoon kosher salt

-1 cup heavy cream

-1 cup dry white wine

-¼ teaspoon hot sauce

-1/8 teaspoon black pepper

Filling:

-1 cup grilled, sliced portobello mushrooms

-½ cup sundried tomatoes

-2 cups grated cheese, gruyere, Swiss or cheddar

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place the eggs in a large bowl. Using a fork or whisk, stir the eggs until broken and uniformly mixed. Pour in the heavy cream and white wine. Stir until mixed. Season with hot sauce and black pepper. Set aside.

Pick out six or so of the best-looking mushroom slices and reserve for a garnish. Combine the rest with the sundried tomatoes in a small bowl. Assemble the quiche filling. Layer the bottom of the pre-baked pie shell with half of the grated cheese. Spoon in the portobello mushroom slices and sundried tomatoes and arrange evenly over the grated cheese. Top the mushrooms with the remaining grated cheese. Slowly pour the egg mixture into the shell. Pour until the liquid reaches the edge of the crust. Leave about ¼ inch of room at the top so that the custard can puff up during baking without spilling over. Arrange the reserved mushroom slices on top of the quiche in a decorative pinwheel pattern.

Bake the quiche in the middle of a preheated oven for about 45-50 minutes. The quiche is ready when it has puffed up slightly (it will jiggle when you move the dish but won't feel loose) and is colored a light golden brown. Let the quiche rest for about 30 minutes to firm up before you begin slicing. Makes eight servings.

*****

The middle of the holiday week is likely to bring drop-in visitors, family parties, and casual get-togethers. Whether you will be hosting an afternoon brunch or have house guests expecting a great breakfast it’s a good idea to have an easy, crowd pleasing dish at hand. Corned beef hash does the trick. Grab a pound of corned beef from the supermarket deli and chop it in a food processor to make it fine like Chris did or mince it by hand with a knife. Serve with poached, fried, or scrambled eggs along with a spicy Bloody Mary to celebrate the season.

Corned Beef Hash:

-1 tablespoon oil

-1 cup small diced onion

-1 pound corned beef chopped fine in a food processor

-½ teaspoon curry powder

-½ teaspoon paprika

-1 quart ½ inch diced cooked potato

-1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

-2 tablespoon whole grain mustard

-½ cup low sodium chicken broth

-2 tablespoon maple syrup

-1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

-2-4 dashes Tabasco

Heat the oil in large pot over medium heat then add the diced onions. Cook for 1 minute then incorporate the corned beef. Cook for 1 additional minute. Stir in the curry powder, paprika, and diced potatoes. Pour in the Worcestershire sauce, whole grain mustard, and chicken broth. Cook and stir frequently for 3 minutes over medium low heat. Finish with maple syrup, parsley, and Tabasco.

Makes 4-6 servings.

*And remember: Never eat more than you can lift!*


 
Related Content:
Links for this Episode: