Ingredients for a good winter soup by Anjuli

Posted on 11-11-09 · Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Turnip Chicken soup

…November 11, 2009 in Connecticut, around 3:30pm to be exact…
Girl wants to make soup for boy on a chilly afternoon. A lazy, delicious conversation ensues.

Boy: What do we have on hand?
Girl: Turnips, carrots, onions, potatoes, and homemade soup stock, some tomatoes, cannellini beans, and all the spices and herbs (at least dried) we could want. Let’s stick to the things that are in season together, and nix the tomatoes. I’ve never made a turnip soup, but let’s try one. They’re a little starchy, sweet, and a little tangy, I think. That’s a good place to start.

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A South Indian dal in spite of my CSA by Anjuli

Posted on 07-13-09 · Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Indian Molahootal and Mom's Carrots and Seed Salad

We recently joined a CSA in the West Village. For those unfamiliar, CSAs are local agricultural programs where an organizer establishes a drop point and relationship with a local farm. Members can apply for a “share” of produce, ranging from $200-500 for a 20 week season. Being a member means coming to collect your produce once a week at the designated time, and being flexible enough to cook whatever you get. (Check out Just Food for more information.)

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The What, Why, and How of Miso by Anjuli

Posted on 06-26-09 · Tags: ,

Really bad photo of really good miso

We all know it’s been raining like WHAT??!!, and apparently won’t end anytime soon. While I can’t suggest cures for rain blues and b*tchiness (other than a shot of Whiskey), I can offer up my tricks for the rain: miso, a rain shell with a billed hat (mine is a simple EMS), and giant green rain boots with tiny tennis rackets (yes, that’s right). The shell will keep you dry outdoors, the miso cozy and healthy indoors, and the boots… they let you to stomp around in puddles. These tricks (all three) may make you stick your tongue out. I’m not going to argue style and function with you, but I will speak to the food. Miso, how the Japanese it, and how any who make it at home eat it, is not how you find it at a Westernized sushi restaurant in a US city.

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Building flavors: Potato and leek soup by Anjuli

Posted on 04-05-09 · Tags: , , , , , ,

Seriously adulterated potato-leek soup

It’s a mellow Sunday and one of the first gorgeous days of spring. Outside thousands of New Yorkers are tucking into baked eggs and already on their second Bloody Mary.

My mother, Matt, and I are inside discussing the flavor whereabouts of a certain Potato-Leek soup we’re attempting out of The America’s Test Kitchen. We’ve decided that the recipes in the book are deliberately more about technique than flavor, partially because we love Cook’s Illustrated and want to give them props and partially because we can’t imagine why the soup is soo bland. The traditional Vichyssoise and this hot adaptation may be mild, true. But while my mother rightly pointed out, “it is potato and leek soup, so it’s not like it’s going to kick ass,” we’ve spent the brunch period building some elegant flavors out of these potatoes and leeks.

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Lebanese Lamb Stew by Anjuli

Posted on 02-23-09 · Tags: , , , , , ,

Lebanese Lamb Stew

Nothing can bring you out of the depths of jet lag, writer’s block, and the melancholy from hating the recession, NY produce in winter, and NY restaurants in general like a rich, savory Lebanese lamb stew. I am a lamb and stew newbie so this was a small revelation. We actually had to look up lamb to verify its animal origin: sheep. This post is not without some myth busting and prejudice, specifically my relegation of lamb to the gamey, smelly variety of meat that I would never touch. Thanks to this recipe and Harold McGee, I have overcome my judgments. Mutton, though, is a different story.

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Mulligatawny by Anjuli

Posted on 10-18-08 · Tags: , , , , , ,

Making mulligatawny

Mulligatawny, an Indian-Brit recipe, means “pepper water” in Tamil (“millagu” is pepper and “thanni” is water). This was my favorite soup growing up. The list of ingredients may seem a little daunting, but just think of the cooking spread over two days (like we do), and it’s a cake walk. There is nothing complicated to make this (other than the prep and measuring of spices). I have made it with my mother before, but this time documented while she cooked, and am now presenting her recipe to you.

It’s got a complex flavor coming from the sweetness of the coconut and onion, spiciness of the chili and pepper, and a complex aroma from the broth and Indian spices. The soup is a beautiful golden yellow color, specked with green, and has a soft texture and smooth finish. The chicken basically just melts in your mouth. Served on brown rice it is an excellent and complete dinner.

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