Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Malted and Salted: Milk Chocolate Pots de Creme

Malted & Salted:  Milk Chocolate Pots de Crème

The term “Petits Pots de Crème” refers both to a soft baked custard and to the small ceramic pots, often with lids, that they are baked in. The dainty authentic petits pots pictured above were made in France. They belonged to my grandmother-in-law, Evelyn Dawn. While I only have six porcelain petit pots, and am cooking for a crowd, I supplement my collection with espresso cups.

Pots de Crème are a fabulous dessert to serve at a diner party. They look adorable, are impossibly rich and velvety, and petite enough to be elegant and sophisticated. Adding malted milk powder to a supremely French dessert gives this version an unexpected light-hearted twist. And as a bonus, they are prepared a day ahead. Just add the quick garnish of fleur de sel and/or malted milk balls, and they are ready to go.

Malted milk powder was invented by James Horlicks in 1883. It is a combination of sprouted grain that is quickly dried (barley malt) then ground up and added to powdered milk and wheat flour. It was originally meant as a nutritious non-spoiling supplement for babies’ diets, but gained popularity among explorers who found it portable as well as tasty…and became a hit at soda shops all around the country when added to ice cream to make a “malt” and as a candy marketed as “malted milk balls.”

Pots de Crème Recipe

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Friday, October 24, 2014

Palos Verdes Pastoral @ Terranea Resort

Palos Verdes Pastoral

A Garden-to-Table Dining Experience on the Peninsula

Candlelit tables elegantly dressed in white linen with sparkling glassware were arranged on a hill overlooking the moonlit Pacific. The vibrant autumn menu was created by Executive Chef Bernard Ibarra – showcasing the best of California-grown food expertly paired with hand-picked wines. For the third year in a row, the event was a smashing success.

Palos Verdes Pastoral @ Terranea Resort
The evening is designed to bring people together amidst nature for an exclusive dining experience featuring the best of California hand-crafted, organic, and sustainable foods. After a fabulous wine and appetizer reception on the patio, 200 guests took their seats at sunset to enjoy the artisanal creations by the Chef and his talented team.

Palos Verdes Pastoral @ Terranea Resort

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4 comments • Filed in: Restaurants

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Elegant Braised Leeks with Feta, Almond, Raisin, Mint
Elegant Braised Leeks with Feta, Almond, Raisin, Mint

Once again inspired by Yotam Ottolenghi and his vibrant vegetable cooking, here I serve a braised leek dish instead of a salad to begin a recent dinner party. Its rich warm hues and luscious sweet-and-sour notes make it a fabulous Autumn starter. Or serve it with couscous for a stellar vegetarian main course. “I find the creaminess of leeks and their sweet oniony flavor very satisfying,” penned Ottolenghi.

Elegant Braised Leeks Recipe

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1 comments • Filed in: Meatless

Wednesday, October 15, 2014
Chef Sam Choy and Sustainable Ahi

Chef Sam Choy and Sustainable Ahi

Born and raised in Hawaii, Chef Sam Choy explains how the islanders would watch the old Hawaiian “landkeepers” take care of the environment, and how they would embrace the magic of kapu.

Kapu represents a period of time when there is no fishing, no taking from the earth. “It is when we leave the earth time to replenish itself,” Choy said. “If we keep depleting, there will be nothing left for our great great grandkids. We need to protect. We need to care. We want them to have what we are enjoying.”

Choy’s philosophy has always been like that – protecting, caring. He lives that way, he says. Keeping the ocean pristine and vibrant, allowing the nature of the ocean to be plentiful. “Living in Hawaii, you have to believe in that, we are surrounded by water, after all.”

sustainable seafood

This post is the third in a series promoting sustainable seafood.

Sam Choy’s Bow-tie Mahimahi Salad

Crusted Ahi with Roasted Garlic Tahini

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Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Chef Sam Choy's Bow-tie Mahimahi Salad

Chef Sam Choy’s Bow-tie Mahimahi Salad

“Pasta salads and poke are made for each other – both are best served cold, both use a blend of multiple flavors, and both taste great. The best thing about this dish, aside from the taste, is its versatility. If mahimahi is not your favorite, simply substitute ahi, wahoo, or any other fish. You simply cannot go wrong.” -Sam Choy

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