Monthly Archives: March 2010

Episode 8: Unpopular Fish

Do you enjoy stinky little fish like sardines, anchovies, mackerel, and herring? We do. So does Becky Selengut of “”: and Mission Sustainable, who joins us to help answer the age-old question: what is your power fish? We’re on a mission to get you to eat weird fish. Recipes: Triscuits with Sardines and Mustard; Kyoto Mackerel-Miso Hot Pot.

Triscuits with Sardines and Mustard; Kyoto Miso-Mackerel Hot Pot (Recipes from Episode 8)

Inspired by Gabrielle Hamilton, chef-owner of Prune

Triscuits (regular flavor)
Dijon mustard
Canned sardines, drained and coarsely chopped

Spread a Triscuit with a generous smear of mustard. Pile some sardines on top. Repeat, and serve.

Adapted from Japanese Hot Pots: Comforting One-Pot Meals, by Tadashi Ono and Harris Salat

2 mackerel fillets (about one pound)
1/4 pound daikon, peeled, quartered lengthwise, and cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
2 cups dashi
2 cups water
1/2 cup sake
1/2 cup white miso (or saikyo miso, if you can find it)
1/2 pound napa cabbage, sliced
1/2 pound firm tofu, cut into four pieces
4 ounces oyster mushrooms, trimmed and pulled apart
1/2 pound spinach, stemmed
4 teaspoons grated ginger
sliced scallions (optional)

1. Salt the mackerel fillets generously on both sides and place on a plate in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

2. Simmer the daikon in a small pan of water until tender, about 5 minutes. Rinse under cold water and set aside.

3. Bring a large pan of water to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Fill a large bowl with cold water. Slice the mackerel into 1-inch squares. Dip the fish, a few pieces at a time, into the simmering water for 15 seconds to blanch, then transfer to the cold water. When you’ve blanched all the fish, drain it and dry on paper towels.

4. Combine the dashi, 2 cups water, sake, and miso in a bowl and whisk to blend.

5. Place the cabbage on the bottom of a large stockpot. Add the tofu, daikon, and oyster mushrooms, arranging each ingredient in a neat bunch. Pour in the broth.

6. Cover the pot and bring to a boil over high heat. Uncover, reduce heat to medium-low, and add the mackerel in a separate pile. Simmer ten minutes, reducing heat further if necessary to maintain a low simmer.

7. Serve in individual bowls, garnished with grated ginger and optional scallions.

Yield: 4 servings

Episode 7: Irish Spring

Your hosts may not be Irish, but we make a mean corned beef and colcannon, not to mention fools of ourselves. Join us as we drink Guinness from the can (wrong!), discuss the etymology of bubble and squeak (not Irish!), and otherwise give St. Patrick an excuse to chase us out of Ireland. Recipes: Corned beef and colcannon.

Colcannon (recipe from Episode 7)

And don’t forget the accompanying “corned beef recipe”:!

**COLCANNON (Mashed Potatoes with Cabbage)**
Adapted from Gourmet, April 1993

1 1/4 lb. russet potatoes (about 1 1/2 to 2 large potatoes)
About 3 Tbsp. unsalted butter, divided
3 cups thinly sliced cabbage (about 1/4 of a large cabbage, cored)
1/2 cup milk, scalded

Peel the potatoes, and cut them into 1-inch pieces. Put the potatoes in a saucepan, cover with salted water, and simmer for 15 minutes, or until tender. While the potatoes are simmering, melt about 1 tablespoon of the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the cabbage, season with salt, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the cabbage begins to soften. Reduce the heat to medium or medium-low, cover the skillet, and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the cabbage is very tender. When the potatoes are ready, drain them in a colander, and then turn them into a bowl. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter to the potatoes, allow to melt for a minute or two, and then mash. Stir in the milk and the cabbage, and season to taste.

Yield: 2 to 3 servings

Corned Beef (recipe from Episode 7)

Don’t forget the accompanying “colcannon recipe”:

Adapted from Cook’s Illustrated, March 1997

_Order point cut brisket from a butcher. Don and Joe’s Meats at Pike Place Market, had it in stock and charged $4/pound. Our supermarket butcher couldn’t get it, but had flat cut in stock, which is also good; if you can only get flat cut, definitely still make the recipe._

1/2 cup kosher salt
1 tablespoon black peppercorns, cracked
3/4 tablespoon ground allspice
1 tablespoon dried thyme
1/2 tablespoon paprika
2 bay leaves, crumbled
1 fresh beef brisket (4 to 6 pounds), preferably point cut, trimmed of excess fat, patted dry

1. Mix salt and seasonings in small bowl. Spear brisket about 30 times per side with meat fork or metal skewer. Rub each side (including the ends) evenly with salt mixture; place in 2-gallon Ziploc bag, forcing out as much air as possible.

2. Place the bagged beef in a half-sheet pan to catch any leaks and place on the bottom shelf of the refrigerator. Refrigerate 7 days, turning once a day. (The original recipe calls for the beef to be weighted; I haven’t bothered to do this and it comes out fine.)

3. Remove the meat from the bag and soak the meat in cold water for a couple of hours, changing water several times.

4. Preheat oven to 275°F. Place the meat in a large pot (probably the same one you used to soak it) and add water to cover. Bring to a boil, partially cover, and put the pot in the oven. Cook 3 to 5 hours, or until meat is very tender.

5. If you have the patience, cool the meat completely in the braising liquid before slicing. Otherwise, eat immediately.

Episode 6: Junk Food

As a kid, Molly coveted Hostess Twinkies, and Matthew ate something called Jingles. This week, we bury our faces in childhood junk food favorites and ask: which salty and sugary sensations still make our mouths happy? We also find out, once and for all, what cherry snot tastes like. And we talk with our mouths full. Our mothers are furious.