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Citrus Kosho

INGREDIENTS

  • 0.7 oz citrus zest, from any whole, clean citrus fruits
  • 2.8 oz green chiles, fresh, hot, stemmed, seeded, finely chopped
  • 0.35 oz salt, sea or kosher

 

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Combine the zest, chilies, and salt in the bowl of a small food processor.
  2. Blend until a smooth, almost uniform texture forms.  Alternatively, grind the mixture to a paste using a mortar and pestle or a suribachi.
  3. Spoon the mixture into a glass jar.
  4. Seal the lid.
  5. Ferment in the refrigerator for 5 to 10 days.

Notes:  The kosho will keep in the refrigerator for up to six weeks once it’s fermented.  Yuzu is the citrus of choice for kosho but it is very expensive and difficult to find in the US mainland.

Good Easy Pasta Sauce

INGREDIENTS

  • 28-oz tomato, canned, whole, peeled
  • 1 onion, peeled, halved
  • 5 tbsp butter, unsalted
  • 1 to 2 pinch salt

 

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Put everything together in a single pot.
  2. set it to simmer over medium heat on the stove for 45 min, uncovered.
  3. Stir occasionally.
  4. Toss out the onion halves after 45 min.
  5. Pour the sauce over your favorite pasta.

Notes:  It doesn’t have to be hard to be good.

Homemade Squid Ink Pasta

INGREDIENTS

  • 4 large egg
  • 1 tbsp squid ink
  • 10 to 11 oz flour, Italian 00
  • 5-1/2 oz flour, fine semola

 

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Place egg and squid ink in a blender.
  2. Mix on low speed for a second or two until uniformly colored.
  3. Combine flours in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.
  4. Mix briefly to combine.
  5. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in egg mixture.
  6. Turn mixer to low speed until combined.
  7. Remove paddle and attach dough hook.
  8. Knead on low speed for 3 to 4 min or until dough, while it might appear crumbly, will stick together when squeezed.
  9. Add a tsp or two of water until dough just comes together if your dough seems particularly dry.
  10. Knead in some more flour until it’s nice and smooth if it’s still sticky.
  11. Press dough into a ball.
  12. Split in half and shape each half into a squashed ball.
  13. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap.
  14. Allow to rest at cool room temperature for an hour, or in the fridge for longer.  Let return to room temperature for 30 min prior to rolling.
  15. Attach the flat roller to your mixer (or follow manufacturer’s instructions for other pasta rollers).
  16. Adjustment roller thickness to 1, the thickest setting.
  17. Cut each dough ball into quarters.
  18. Press and flatten using your hand one piece of dough to about 3/8-in thick.
  19. Turn on the mixer to low speed and feed dough through rollers.
  20. Dust off excess flour.
  21. Fold the rolled dough into thirds.
  22. Keep the width of the piece approximately 4 to 5 in.
  23. Lightly dust with more flour as needed.
  24. Feed the dough through again.
  25. Repeat this rolling and folding process once or twice more until the dough is smooth.  You are basically kneading the dough and establishing the shape/width of the dough.
  26. Stop folding once smooth.
  27. Start increasing the roller settings one notch at a time until the desired thinness is achieved. For fettuccine noodles go up to 6 or 7.
  28. Lightly flour rolled strip of dough.
  29. Set aside while you roll out the remaining dough.
  30. Remove roller attachment and attach desired cutting attachments.
  31. On medium-low speed, feed each rolled piece of dough through the cutter.  Dust noodles liberally with a mix of flour and semolina flour.
  32. Either spread pasta out on a pasta drying rack, or gather into loose bundles.
  33. Pasta can be used immediately or frozen for up to 1 month.

 

COOKING INSTRUCTIONS

  • Fresh pasta cooks very quickly compared to commercial dried pastas.
  • Cook in a pot of boiling salted water for about 2 to 3 min or until al dente (slightly more or less if you used a thicker/thinner setting).

Notes:  If you want to use all 00 flour, use 3-1/4 cups (or about 14-1/2 oz). It’s slightly less flour by weight since the semola flour weighs quite a bit more than the 00 does.  Homemade squid ink pasta has a mildly briny flavor and dramatic black color, making it perfect for seafood pasta recipes.  One thing that is not optional when making homemade pasta is the rest period.  Resting your dough allows the flour to fully hydrate and the gluten to relax, making for a pasta dough that’s much smoother and more workable than if you tried to roll it out immediately.  You need to let it rest for AT LEAST 30 minutes, ideally more like an hour.  You can also pop it in the fridge overnight to rest, just be sure you take it out at least 30 minutes before rolling to let it come to room temperature.

 

Whey Ice Cubes

INGREDIENTS

  • ~ whey, a byproduct of making yogurt/cheese/paneer

 

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Pour whey into an airtight container.  Look for containers that are advertised as “freezer safe” or “freezer quality.”  They protect your whey from being contaminated by other items in the freezer, and they keep out air, which may discolor the whey.  Leave about 1-in at the top of the container for expansion.  Alternatively, use a zip-close freezer bag.
  2. Seal the container or zip-close bag firmly.  Use a permanent marker to write the date on a stick-able label.
  3. Place the labeled whey in the freezer and use it within three to six months.

Notes:  If you’re looking for an easy way to introduce probiotics to your smoothie, consider freezing leftover whey into ice cubes.  Those ice cubes can later be blended with fruit, juice, more cultured dairy, or other flavorings, for a delicious, probiotic-rich smoothie.  Whey is one of two principal proteins found in milk.  It is the liquid by-product from cheese and yogurt production.  Consuming whey protein may help prevent heart disease, diabetes and genetic disorders such as allergies. 

You can freeze whey to use later and to prolong its shelf life.  When you are ready to use the whey, defrost it for 24 hours and do not refreeze it.  Alternatively, fill ice cube trays with whey protein and then place the frozen whey cubes in a plastic bag.  Put the ice cube trays on a flat surface in the freezer and cover them to prevent any other liquids in the freezer from contaminating the whey.  Use several containers to freeze the whey in portion sizes.

Ryazhenka / Russian Baked Milk

INGREDIENTS

  • 2-1/2 qt milk
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk, cultured

 

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350-deg F.
  2. Pour milk into an oven-safe 9-in x 13-in casserole dish.
  3. Bake 4 to 5 hours until a golden-brown crust forms on top of the milk.
  4. Remove from oven and cool slightly so the crust can be removed.  The milk should be a light tan.
  5. Continue to cool to 70-deg F to 77-deg F.  At this point, the baked milk is very sweet with caramel notes.  You can stop here, if you like, and chill for a sweet, rich milk, or continue with the fermentation.
  6. Prepare a vessel for fermentation while the milk is cooling.  A thermos incubator, works well.
  7. Pour the baked milk into the vessel and stir in buttermilk.
  8. Cover the container.
  9. Leave it in a warm place for 10 to 12 hours or overnight.
  10. Pour the finished ryazhenka into a bottle or pitcher and store in the refrigerator.  It will be somewhat thick, much like drinkable yogurt.

Notes:  Ryazhenka somewhat resembles sweetened condensed milk.  The initial slow heat gives the milk a dense, caramelized quality, and a rich creamy color.  The caramelized milk is then cultured with buttermilk. Because it is fermented, it can be safely stored at room temperature for up to 40 hours.

Skyr / Icelandic Yogurt

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 qt skim or low-fat milk, or whatever percent milk you prefer
  • 1 generous tbsp plain, non-flavored commercial Icelandic yogurt (once you make your own yogurt, you can use it as a starter)

 

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Pour milk into microwave-safe container.
  2. Heat in microwave until temperature reaches 170-deg F.
  3. Allow the milk to cool down to 100 to 110-deg F.
  4. Remove any “skin” formed over the top.
  5. Add approximately 1 tbsp of starter to cooled milk.
  6. Whisk well to distribute starter evenly.
  7. Incubate between 100 to 110-deg F about 4 to 5 hours until set.
  8. Allow the yogurt to strain in a commercial paper coffee filter and a plastic colander until it reaches the thickness desired.  It readily separates from the paper filter for easy clean-up.

Notes:  Skyr, also know as Icelandic yogurt, is a popular style of yogurt originating from Iceland.  It has been enjoyed in Iceland for centuries.  It is described as “a combination of milk and cultures that is rich and creamy…simplicity on a spoon.”  Skyr is thicker than Greek yogurt and contains a higher level of protein than other yogurts.  This makes sense when you consider it takes 4 cup of milk to make one cup of Skyr.  Traditionally, Greek yogurt requires 2 cup of milk to make one cup of yogurt.

You can use skim, 2% or whole milk to make Icelandic yogurt or like me and use half-and-half.  So does whipping the final product (optional) and/or adding a bit of heavy cream.  The fat adds creaminess.  Since the “tartness” of any homemade yogurt can be affected by the length of incubation and type of milk used, go for the shortest incubation period possible that still produces a firm product.

Homemade Marshmallow Sauce

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup water, divided
  • 1 tsp gelatin, powdered, unflavored
  • 1-1/2 cup sugar, granulated
  • 1 cup corn syrup, light
  • 1/8 tsp salt, kosher
  • 1-1/2 tsp vanilla extract, pure

 

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Place half the water in a large mixing bowl.
  2. Sprinkle the gelatin on top.  Set aside.
  3. Place the remaining water, granulated sugar, corn syrup, and salt in a small pot.
  4. Place the pot over medium-high heat.
  5. Cook until the syrup registers 240-deg F on a candy thermometer, occasionally swirling the pot gently.
  6. Carefully pour the hot syrup over the gelatin mixture.
  7. Whip on medium low speed for 2 min.
  8. Increase the speed to high.
  9. Continue to whip until the sauce becomes thick, shiny, and white.
  10. Stir in the vanilla bean paste.
  11. Transfer to a large mason jar.

Notes:  So simple to make and great for so many uses, from ice cream sundaes to fluffernutter sandwiches.