Archive for April, 2009

veg candy

roasted cauliflower

Wow, how did I live this long without enjoying roasted cauliflower?

These days I’m always looking for tasty ways to get more vegetables into my diet. Someone suggested roasting cauliflower (apparently I missed the trend from a few years ago). Okay, truly, this is delicious – roasting brings out so much sweetness you never knew was hiding within that lumpy white head of veg! It’s easy too.

There are several recipes out there; here’s how I did it: Pre-heat oven to 450°. Cut a head of cauliflower into 1 1/2″ pieces, arrange in a shallow baking pan, toss with a couple tablespoons olive oil, some salt and pepper, and some herbs if you like, maybe fresh thyme. Roast for 15 minutes. Add a couple cloves of minced garlic and toss (with more oil if needed). Roast for another 10 – 15 minutes.

Eat like candy. Or as an accompaniment to some protein.

If it’s good enough for NOLA…

sazerac
The Sazerac

Now the official cocktail of the city of New Orleans (by countless accounts the birthplace of the cocktail), some say the Sazerac was the very first such spirited concoction. The story goes that apothecary Antoine Peychaud made an elixir of brandy, a spoonful of sugar (helps the medicine go down?) and his proprietary aromatic bitters in his French Quarter shop in the 1830s. The drink became popular in New Orleans bars, and a few decades later the restaurateur Thomas Handy switched the liquor from brandy to rye whiskey. At some point a bit of absinthe was added, and the recipe reached its pinnacle.

Chill an old fashioned glass, then coat the inside with absinthe* (rinse out the excess).
*The green fairy is legal again in the United States, but if you can’t get your hands on any, you could substitute with a pastis such as Pernod. Note that pastis is sweeter, so you’ll probably want to use less sugar.

In a mixing vessel, combine:
a sugar cube & a splash of water OR 1/4 oz simple syrup
4 dashes Peychaud’s bitters
1 dash Angostura bitters*

*Thanks to Jeffrey Morgenthaler for this suggestion – it may anger the purists, but it gives the drink a bit more flavor and body, so they can just hush.

Muddle til the sugar is dissolved (skip this step if using simple syrup).

Add several ice cubes and 2 oz. rye whiskey, such as Old Overholt.

Stir – don’t shake – til well chilled, then strain into the glass.

Squeeze a lemon twist over the glass to release the oils, then discard, or be saucy and drop it into the drink.