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November 01, 2015

Food Thread: Brownies and Commies [CBD]


Yes....I have brownies on the brain. Last week I asked about the use of browned butter in chocolate chip cookies and brownies (which I didn't mention), but chickened out making it, mostly because the recipe was complicated. Come on folks; it's brownies. Keep it simple. And the reason I am obsessing over brownies is the thoroughly crappy batch of boxed brownies I had to struggle to eat. Really crappy, with chemically chocolate flavors and dry edges.

Anyway, I tried this one from David Lebovitz, and it worked out very, very well. I couldn't find "black cocoa," so I just used regular cocoa powder in its place (as Lebovitz suggests). It's available on Amazon, but it's a bit pricey. And...I will not use the sea salt as a garnish next time -- it's an acquired taste -- and definitely do not overcook them. My first batch looked underdone, but the additional few minutes I thought was warranted was too much. But I persevered, and have put this in the rotation for great desserts. It's not much more trouble than boxed mixes, and it's worlds apart.

I am all for saving time with prepared foods. For instance, when I make fish tacos I buy a pint of cole slaw from the deli, because it's really good, and saves me lots of time. Is my homemade cole slaw better? Sure....but it's not that much better! And when I make pressed sandwiches I like to use broccoli rabe. I need a cup of it, so there is no way in hell I am going to make a whole batch just for a few sandwiches. So my deli to the rescue!

But....brownies and chocolate chip cookies are two things I will always try to make fresh. And chicken stock.

And....what does the Horde insist upon making in your kitchens?


Mario Batali is known as quite the chef, and having eaten in a couple of his restaurants I can attest to that. He also has created an impressive cooking and restaurant empire, and is probably one of the richest chefs in the world. His TV personality is endearing and comfortable, and his joy in the simple pleasures of cooking and eating is infectious.

He is also a hard-core leftist who has carefully rejected the ideals of the political and economic systems that have made him a very wealthy man, and has decided to go full-bore progressive, complete with that lovely "Let's kill the rich bankers" mentality that is oh so maddening when it comes from rich people.

I would have to say that who has had the largest effect on the whole planet without us really paying attention across the board and everywhere is the entire banking industry and their disregard for the people that they're supposed to be working for...So the ways the bankers have kind of toppled the way money is distributed and taken most of it into their hands is as good as Stalin or Hitler and the evil guys...They're not heroes, but they are people that had a really huge effect on the way the world is operating.
Last week I asked Moki to send me her apple fritters recipe, in the forlorn hope that they would be as good as the ones I used to get from King Pin Donuts on Durant Ave. in Berkeley. I haven't made them yet, but they sure look good.....

Take it away Moki!

Moki's Apple Fritters

12 oz Granny smith apples, peeled, cored, cut into 1/4 inch pieces
2 cups all purpose flour
1/3 cup granulated sugar (although you could sub brown sugar too
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
3/4 cup apple cider (apple juice isn't a good substitute for this, according to the recipe author. Simply Apple is the liquid to use if fresh cider isn't available)
2 large eggs, beaten
2 tablespoons butter, melted
3 cups peanut oil
2 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup apple cider
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

1. Spread the apples in a single layer on paper towels, and pat dry.

2. Combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg in a large bowl. Whisk the cider, eggs and melted butter in a medium bowl. Stir the apples into the flour mixture and stir the wet ingredients until incorporated.

3. set a wire rack over a rimmed baking sheet. Heat the oil in a Dutch oven or other heavy pot over medium high heat until it reaches 305 degrees (use a candy thermometer or instant read thermometer to check) Us a 1/3 cup measuring cup to carefully drop batter into the oil, being careful not to crowd the pan. Fry, adjusting the burner as necessary, to keep the oil between 325-350 degrees. Cook 2-3 minutes per side, or until golden brown. Carefully remove from the hot oil and allow to drain on the wire rack.

4. to make the glaze, whisk together the powdered sugar, apple cider, cinnamon and nutmeg. When the fritters have cooled for 5 minutes, dip the top half of each fritter into the glaze and return to the cooling rack. Let the glaze set for 10 minutes. Enjoy!

I found this recipe at OurBestBites, so I give them credit for it. Hope it works for you!

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posted by Open Blogger at 04:00 PM

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