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 GOURMET RECIPES

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Going to the Dogs (March 10, 2003)

 
 

Just a quick sandwich tonight for supper? Got some wonderful leftovers in the fridge, and a fresh baguette from the lovely new bakery down the street, and I've the ingredients for a French crispy salad are on hand. A good glass of wine will finish it all perfectly, and I've earned it in spades! It's been the week from hell at work, I'm going to l unplug the phone and relax with the Brit Coms and my supper...

Whoa, but who is this snuffling at my knees?

"Barclay, enough. You've been fed and walked, now it's MY turn!" But those pleading eyes of your truest best friend simply won't look away, and in your heart you know he's earned a reward as well. Good thing you've got a bag of the best for your hairy buddy, and, best of all, you made them up yourself from the neatest cookbook to come along in, well, a dog's years!

OK, we just couldn't resist. Barker's Grub, by Rudy Edalati, is canine cuisine at its best, from everyday food to meals for doggie health problems. All the ingredients are at your supermarket, and all the recipes are simple and sound delicious. (Thomas J. Pussycat did not try any, thanks.)

We humans turned to Nancy Silverton's Sandwich Book. Silverton and her husband, Mark Peel, own and operate Campanile Restaurant and the La Brea Bakery in L.A. Silverton thought that an informal sandwich night at Campanile would be a wonderful way to serve guests and still have a relaxing time chatting with everyone. It turned out to be so popular that the restaurant is The place to be on Thursdays in Los Angeles, and Silverton is too busy to schmooze with hungry clients.

Trust us, these are not just quick snacks to eat out of hand – they're gourmet meals that happen to be placed on bread. So instead of PB&J, how about the only sandwich to have if you are trapped forever on a desert island? Thought you'd be interested! You'll love this book, and if you've got a dog... well, he deserves gourmet too!

Did you ever notice? "Woof" is "yum" in dogspeak!

On today's menu:

Download these recipes in printable form as an Adobe Acrobat PDF (83 KB)


 

French Baguette with Butter and Prosciutto

We had to put this sandwich in, as Ron has often said that if he had only one dish to eat the rest of his life, every meal, every day, it would be this one. Nancy Silverton agrees completely in the Sandwich Book, and told us that "If I'm ever stranded on a desert island with only three ingredients, I pray that they are prosciutto, butter and baguette." You'll need the best bread, sweetest butter and a great ham, and fortunately these ingredients are more widely available today. Go on, drop Barkley another treat, and turn on the TV!

Makes four sandwiches

  • I recipe Scallion Oil (recipe below)
  • 1½–2 baguettes, cut into four 7-inch pieces
  • 1½–2 sticks unsalted butter, slightly softened but not greasy
  • 6 ounces prosciutto di Parma, prosciutto di San Daniele, or Serrano ham, thinly sliced into about 24 slices

Slice through the center of each piece of baguette horizontally.

To assemble the sandwiches:

Smear 2–3 tablespoons of butter over the bottom half of each baguette piece. If you're using scallion oil, spoon 1–2 tablespoons of it over and place about 6 slices of rumpled prosciutto on top. Put the top half of the baguette over the ham and squeeze the sandwich together with your fingers to compress it before taking the first bite.

Scallion Oil

  • 1 bunch scallions, green parts only, coarsely chopped (about 1/3 cup)
  • 1/3 cup coarsely chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

In a food processor fitted with a metal blade, or with a mortar and pestle, process or pulverize the scallions and parsley until finely chopped. Add the olive oil and process or pulverize another few seconds to combine.

Accompanying wine? Tony recommends...
Prosciutto is salty and sweet, so you’ll need a medium-bodied white wine with good acidity but with a touch of residual sugar – oak-aged Chardonnay from California or Australia, or Oregon Pinot Gris.


 

Sort-of Frisée Lardon

This is my favourite bistro salad; it's ubiquitous in France, and no wonder. From the Sandwich Book, Nancy Silverton has turned this popular salad into a sort-of sandwich here, and it works. You get both items in one rich, satisfying dish... and while this recipe serves 4, two hungry souls can make a terrific meal of it!

Serves 4

  • 6 ounces bacon, preferable applewood-smoked, sliced off the slab into 3-½ inch thick strips.
  • For the Croutons:

  • 1 1-pound white sourdough loaf
  • 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled
  • For the Salad:

  • 5 extra large eggs
  • 1 medium head (about 8 ounces) radicchio, leaves removed and torn into large pieces
  • 1 medium head (about 4 ounces) frisée, center core removed, pulled apart into small bunches
  • 1 large bunch (about 4 ounces) dandelion greens, mizuna, or arugula, touch stems removed
  • For the Vinaigrette:

  • ½ cup bacon fat (or bacon fat topped up with olive oil to make ½ cup)
  • 1–2 shallots, peeled and finely chopped (about 2 Tbsp)
  • 2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp freshly cracked black pepper
  • 2 tsp Dijon mustard

Preheat the oven to 525°F.

For the Bacon:
Cut each strip of bacon into 4 pieces. In a skillet, over medium-low heat, cook the bacon until cooked all the way through but not crisp. Drain it on a paper towel, and reserve the fat.

For the Croutons:
Cut the loaf of bread in half and reach in beneath the crust to pull out 1½- to 2-inch pieces of bread. Place the bread chunks on a baking sheet, drizzle them with the olive oil, and toss well. Toast them in the oven for about 15–20 minutes until they're lightly browned, shaking the pan occasionally to ensure they're evenly baked. When the croutons are cooked enough to handle, rub them with the garlic clove and set aside.

To cook the eggs:
Place the eggs in a medium saucepan with water to cover. Bring them to a boil, then turn down the heat to a low simmer. Simmer the eggs for 5 minutes, then plunge them into a large bowl of ice water for a minute or so. Take them out as son as they're cooled engough to handle. In a huge bowl, toss to combine the radicchio, frisée, dandelion greens, toasted bread and bacon.

To make the vinaigrette:
In a medium-sized skillet, over medium heat, warm the bacon fat. Add the shallots, and cook them for 2–3 minutes, until they just begin to sizzle. Whisk in the vinegar, salt and pepper, and cook for about 1 minute. Whisk in the mustard, and cook another 30 seconds. Remove the vinaigrette from the heat, and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Pour most of the vinaigrette over the salad, and toss well to combine. Cut the top ½ inch off the eggs and, using a spoon, scoop them out of the shells in large spoonfuls into the bowl. Pile the salad onto 4 plates, and drizzle the remaining vinaigrette over each.

Accompanying wine? Tony recommends...
A medium-bodied dry white wine, preferably Sauvignon Blanc – New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc, Sancerre from the Loire or Ontario Sauvignon Blanc.


 

Charly's Apple-Peanut Butter Treats

What a great book, Barker's Grub – gourmet and great eating for the doggies in your life! Author Rudy Edalti ought to know, she's the owner of a popular dog food catering business in Maryland! So forget kibbles and chow, how about Lo Mein Barking Style, or Juju Chicken and Rice, or these great treats right here – you will be tempted to try a couple yourself.

They'll go wonderfully well with crisp, natural spring water.

Yield: 5½ pounds of treats, or a 1-month supply

  • 6 cups whole-wheat flour
  • 10 cups oatmeal, traditional or instant
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • 4 cups apples, finely grated in a food processor (5 to 6 medium apples)
  • 5 Tbsp blackstrap molasses
  • 10 heaping Tbsp peanut butter (any kind)
  • 4 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2cups lukewarm water

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Combine the flour, oats and baking powder in an 8-quart mixing bowl. Then add the grated apples, molasses, peanut butter and olive oil, stirring with a wooden spoon and/or kneading with your hands as necessary. Add the lukewarm water 1 cup at a time. Continue to mix well until the batter is smooth and there are no dry clumps remaining.

Lightly dust a flat surface with flour so the dough won't stick. Roll the cookie dough flat, spreading it evenly to a ½-inch thickness. Cut the dough with any type and size of cookie cutter. Put the dough shapes on a nonstick or greased cookie sheet and bake for 30 to 40 minutes. Cookies will be done when they are golden brown on the edges. Remove from oven. Let cool and serve.

Variation: Carrot-Peanut Butter Treats
Substitute 4 cup grated carrots for the apples. The cooking instructions are the same.

Accompanying wine? Tony recommends...
Unless it's a French Poodle, forget it.


 

We wish to thank the following for permission to publish material and photographs:

Knopf, Borzoi Books and Random House, Inc. for Nancy Silverton's Sandwich Book, by Nancy Silverton. © 2002 by Nancy Silverton. Photographs copyright © by Amy Neunsinger.

Three Rivers Press, NY, NY, a member of the Crown Publishing Group and Random House Inc. for Barker's Grub by Rudy Edaliti. ©2001 by Rudy Edaliti.

Raincoast Books Canada and Chronicle Books, San Francisco for What Dogs Do, Too, photographs by Sharon Beal. © 2002 by Sharon Beal.

 

Happily tested by Helen Hatton and Ron Morris.

Download these recipes in printable form as an Adobe Acrobat PDF (83 KB)

 

 

 

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