Friday, September 12, 2014

Homemade Fennel Pollen BBQ Sauce

Homemade Fennel Pollen BBQ Sauce

Texans love their bbq and we are down right snobby when it comes to bbq sauce. For me, it happened when I moved to Austin, Texas. I found myself waiting in lines that wrapped around buildings and required lawn chairs. Hours of patiently waiting, while forced to smell the sweet aroma in the air and panicking when you hear a rumor that they're out of ribs. Maybe the secret is in the sauce. I'm almost hesitant to divulge my bbq sauce recipe, but it's too good not to share. The Californian fennel pollen and Texas honey are the secret ingredients in this nectar of the gods. You too can turn your nose up at that cheap bottled, store bought stuff. 

2 tablespoons Lucky Layla Golden Butter
1/2 medium red onion, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup ketchup
1/4 cup Native Nectar Wild Texas Guajillo Honey
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 cup Organic Raw Bragg Apple Cider Vinegar 
1 teaspoon Colman's mustard powder
1 teaspoon Pollen Ranch Fennel Pollen
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Melt butter in medium pot over medium heat. Add onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add ketchup, honey, brown sugar, vinegar, and spices, stir to combine. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer until slightly thickened, about 30 minutes, stirring frequently. Transfer sauce to a food processor or use an immersion blender to blend until smooth. Let cool to room temperature, transfer to a jar and store in refrigerator for up to two weeks.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Spinach & Lemon Ossau-Iraty Risotto

It's fair to say that cheesemongers never find themselves in a "risotto rut". It's a dish that lends itself to creativity and the Dairymaids basically have a library of cheese to make countless adaptations from. This variation is the perfect risotto to end the Summer with - ultra creaminess and not heavy. I used Ossau-Iraty, a French sheeps milk cheese, that is surprisingly a delightful melter. Now one could argue that making risotto is labor intensive. Sometimes taking your time in the kitchen is a welcomed change. After a week of play doh, pirates and adventures in potty training, come 6pm on Friday, I'm ready to burry myself in the kitchen. I fear my husband is on to me.

3 cups spinach
2 tablespoons Calivirgin Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 cup Arborio Rice
1/2 large yellow onion, chopped 
1/3 cup dry white wine
4 cups Homemade Broth
1/4 lb Ossau-Iraty, grated
1 large lemon, juice and zest

Heat a pot over medium heat and add evoo and onion. Cook until onions are fragrant and translucent. Stir in the rice and toast for about a minute, then add the wine. Once the wine has evaporated, add the broth, one 1/2 cup ladle at a time. Stir the rice constantly and add another ladle of broth once the previous addition has been absorbed. Continue this process until you have no more broth or risotto is done to your liking. While rice is cooking, blanch the spinach in boiling salted water for 30 seconds and then submerge in an ice bath to keep the color bright. Transfer spinach to a food processor and blend until smooth, set aside. When risotto is done, remove from heat and add lemon juice, grated Ossau-Iraty and pureed spinach. Garnish with lemon zest. 

Friday, August 29, 2014

Shaved Brussels Sprouts SarVecchio Salad

Shaved Brussel Sprout SarVecchio Salad

A mandolin is one of the best culinary tricks to keep up your sleeve. With this wonderful tool, you can present food like the professionals. This dish consists of just a few simple ingredients. I ALWAYS have SarVecchio on hand, because it's the perfect cheese to finish a dish with. By thinly shaving the brussels sprouts, it sort of hides the fact that you're eating brussels sprouts. Feel free to toast the pinenuts, but I like them raw. This versatile side pairs well with just about anything.

1 lb Brussels Sprouts
about 1/2 cup Pinenuts
1/4 lb SarVecchio 
1 Lemon, juice and zest
Calivirgin Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt and pepper, to taste

Using a mandolin, shave brussels sprouts. Place in a bowl, add pinenuts and toss with lemon and a light drizzle of evoo. Season with salt and pepper to taste and finish with finely grated SarVecchio.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Hoja Santa Strudels

Hoja Santa Strudles

All the Dairymaids have a special place in their hearts for Hoja Santa. Firstly, it's made by hand in Deep Ellum/Dallas by the Godmother of Texas cheese. We would be perfectly happy skipping the cake and putting a birthday candle in one of theses beauties. Hoja Santa is delicate, yet decadent. And it's already gift wrapped. If you can control yourself to not devour it all alone, hopefully this fresh goat cheese can make it's way to these incredible little pastries.

1 Hoja Santa 
Alfonzo Olives (about 1/2 cup chopped)
Sun-dried tomatoes in oil (about 1/2 cup chopped)
2 sheets frozen puff pastry, thawed
1 egg + 1 teaspoon water (for egg wash)

Heat oven to 425. Lay out some parchment to thaw puff pastry on and use as a work surface. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper. Remove meat from olives, discarding the pits and chop. Chop sun-dried tomatoes, mix with olives. Slice Hoja Santa into quarters, then cut each quarter into 5 pieces, keeping Hoja Santa leaf intact. Use a sharp pairing knife to slice the pastry sheet in half lengthwise, then the opposite direction into 5 strips around 2 inches wide, 10 strips total per pastry sheet. Top the center of puff pastry with a teaspoon of olive/sun-dried tomato mix and a piece of Hoja Santa, then fold one side over the top. Use a little egg wash on the inside of the strip to "glue" it together. Gently press to seal. Flip over, crease side down and place on prepared sheet pan. Repeat and space the finished pastries 1 inch apart on the pan. Use your sharp pairing knife and cut three slits on the top of each strudel; you don’t have to cut all the way through, just make a slit. Using the pastry brush, lightly coat the top and down the sides with egg wash. Bake for about 15 minutes, until golden and puffed. Remove and let cool. Serve warm and consume day of.

*Makes 20 mini-strudels

Friday, August 15, 2014

Sandia de Tejas Cornbread Crepes

Sandia de Tejas Cornbread Crepes

Skeptical about a Texas inspired crepe? Well, have you ever heard of a little town called Paris, Texas? How about London, Texas or Dublin, Texas? My point being; Texas is big and it's a cornucopia of food culture. Basically, I made a southern version of a crepe by thinning out cornbread batter. It's buttery, it has a nice crunch and it's welded together with the Summer seasonal from Eagle Mountain Dairy, Sandia de Tejas. This sandia hatch laced gouda from the father/son team is perfectly spicy. Top with some cilantro, a fried egg and call it breakfast.

1 cup yellow corn meal
1 cup all purpose flour
1 tablespoon sugar
4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 farm fresh egg
2 cups Mill King Whole Milk, or more
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
Lucky Layla Golden Butter
1/2 lb Sandia de Tejas, grated

Combine dry ingredients with a whisk, set aside. Whisk egg with milk and mix with dry ingredients until smooth. You may need to add more milk, you want the consistency of pancake batter. Lastly, add vegetable oil, stir to combine. Heat a seasoned cast iron skillet over medium heat. Add a dollop of butter to coat skillet. Pour a thin layer of cornbread batter into skillet, about pancake size. Cook until top begins to bubble. Flip and cook until just lightly browned on the other side. Top omelet with a generous bit of cheese, fold over and cook just until cheese begins to melt.

*Yields 8 crepes. 

Cows in Repose on Veldhuizen Family Farm. Dublin, TX