Saturday, May 29, 2010

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Bun Thom Nuong & Vinho Verde




Everything needed for this dish came from huong vuong for modest $$. We used their shrimp along with their roasted pig for the thit part. One addition was the amazing crookneck cucumber from Blooming Glen.

A frosty bottle of vinho verde was shockingly perfect accompaniment to this dish. A delightful light supper on a steamy May night.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Tasty Market Grub



At HeadHouse on Sunday I traded Barb Shelly a bunch of caramels for a chicken and Blooming Glen Tom gave me some escarole. Those mushrooms came from one of the Clark Park farmers.

Canelé biz was booming.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Ebay Canele Tools and Fools

I keep my eye on Ebay auctions for canele molds. I once got a great deal on a set of Mauviel Molds.

Earlier in the week I saw this auction on Ebay and I noticed that the seller had swiped one of my pics to use in his listing. I gave him grief about it and he apologized. We chatted a little bit about canele. He told me that he had not had any luck making canele. He was disappointed At that time I was still holding on to the possibility of an online deal.

In the auction description seller says that he spent the equivalent of $180 while in Paris on these molds! Hmmmm the dollar must have been at an all time low then. These exact same molds are widely available for roughly $17 to $21 each.
I swiped the photo here from his auction listing. These molds have been bid over $160 for 6 with 8 hours to go! YIKES






















Friday, May 21, 2010

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Smells Like a Wiener



These two are both stinkers.

The purple globe is an Allium species not sure which one.

The white blooms belong to Styrax japonica 'Emerald Pagoda'. Their scent is similar to the water left after boiling hot dogs.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Sunday at HeadHouse


This was a fine Spring market Sunday. Blooming Glen was back, Tom Culton was there, and things were real green with loads of red ripe strawberries thrown in.

Blackbird Heritage farm
, a new vendor (I think) was in the house with great looking heirloom lettuces.





Detroit beets from Tom Culton

Friday, May 14, 2010

OMFG. FLYERS DID IT!


Wow! Amazingly impressive perseverance and determination.

That's how we roll in Philly (Reid's eagles an exception)
.




Brian Babineau / Getty Images Contributor

Greens Greens Greens This Weekend?


I'm wondering if Blooming Glen and the other produce folks will be at HeadHouse this weekend. The bowl in the pic was filled with an asian mix from Thu's garden in Camp Hill. Those delicious leaves raised my hopes for green goodies this Sunday.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Teuscher 66 Black Pearl Cake



The Lil Lady made another one of these spicy chocolate beauties. This time she used the Teuscher 66%. I can't say how delish it is because we handed it over as a gift. I can say that the chocolate cake crumbs were imbued with the sublime chocolaty-ness that is Teuscher's alone.

I'm reusing photo's from back in Feb. My camera is on the fritz.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Fighting The (coffee) Man In the Golden Age of Crap


Several consecutively outstanding batches of coffee from Joe etc has been percolating through my thoughts for a few weeks. I've had the El Salvador, Honduran, Guatemala and Nicaraguan, and today I'm on the Peru Vienna roast. Every one was a delight. IN ACCORDANCE WITH BLOGOLA TRANSPARENCY I am stating that I work with Joe all the time. We trade canele for coffee all the time. I give Joe my candid feedback on his brews all the time, as anyone who knows me could probably guess.

Joe roasts every week. When we go to market his coffee is usually just a few hours out of the roaster. It is excellent to be at market explaining to customers that these coffees are super fresh, fair trade and organic. Since I drink them all, I'm able to sell my favorites like a champ.

Tim Carman at Washington City Paper is my new bud. First I saw his canele post. Then I read this piece from April which is super informative and quite different from the pandering, lowest common denominator style that is common in Philly.

In the article Tim chats with Joel Finkelstein.
"Part of this is fighting the man," Finkelstein says about chains like Starbucks and Caribou. “Let’s take coffee back." I think he and I are in the same army. The battles are many in the golden age of crap.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Canele Blabber


This post at the Washington DC City Paper contains a vid by Scott Hocker. Does he fancy himself the queen of canelé? Scott brings us to a stoic and sanctimonious baker who prepares one dozen canelés a day. You get the impression that these two were primary consultants on Isabelle Bunisset's Cannelè tome (photo).

There are several things I'd like to point out about this vid:

#1 A sanctimonious mien will taint your canelé batter.

#2 Candles and canelés are different objects. Use just a film of wax, not enough to set a wick.

#3 Scott is mistaken when, with regard to silicone, he whines "no textural contrast whatsoever."

#4 In my view, baking 12 canele a day is really not experience enough to hold forth on the subtleties of the canelé.

#5 Finessing the batter is a bit more involved than just steeping a few beans in milk. She uses enough rum so that you might imagine that you taste it.

#6 Scott has checked out the canelés in Bordeaux. So what? Has he sampled our fare here in Philly?

On the positive side their technique is close to what you see in the vids here at Baillardran. Their canelé do look lovely and I bet they taste pretty good too.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Terrific Tenderloin for Less Coin



Beef or bison tenderloin is not often on our table. The main reasons are the high price or the scary quality. Some spots offer a low price, but the meat looks as if it's been macerated in cryovac bag fluids. The outer fat and inner marbling are nearly the same color as the beef. In my experience filet with those visuals is as useful and tasty as tuna which has oxidized to a chocolate hue.

On Monday morning after our deliveries, we stole away for an overnight respite in West Cape May. We wisely grabbed all our dinner needs before we got to the house. First stop, The Lobster House where we found a 3.3#'er @ 8.95/#. Lobster House cole slaw and a dz local oysters completed our order. Next stop was West Side Market, THE beef supplier in the Cape May area. We were thinking surfy/turfy but not really fixed on tenderloin. Since the lobster was larger than what we forecasted, a smaller piece of beef seemed sensible. I asked for two 10 oz filets. The counter guy went to the walk-in and came back with a whole cryo'd tenderloin. He opened it up, did a little trimming and placed 2 beauties on the scale. They were $20 or 15.99/#.

That night we slurped down the delicious oysters with Coronas. The lobster went in the steamer while I made a batch of fries and pan fried the beef.
We ended up sharing just one filet and saved the other for the next day. The beef was seared on all sides, then finished with shallots, cucarachas, a little butter and fleur de sel. WOW. The last time time I had a tenderloin this good, the late great Harry Ochs sliced it from a non-cryo'd aged filet. It was very long ago. This was a really outstanding product. Congrats and thanks to West Side Market.

I didn't take any pics of that dinner. The 2nd filet is in the pics.With that we made a steak sandwich with BirchRun Hills Blue and Metro cracked wheat. This too was tasty but a closer focus on the beef would have made more sense and better taste.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

HeadHouse Opening




We had a great day at market. Spirits were as high as the temps.

Mayor Nutter is grittin' on the goods at BirchRun Hills in the photo.

It's was great to be back and say hello to our regulars and the new folks too.

So far it is slim pickings in the produce dept, but that adds to the excitement as the season unfolds.