Monday, November 23, 2009

Oh Snap! Martha says it like it is

Don't mess with Martha!  Last week, Martha went on Nightline to do her first interview since her release from prison in 2004.  When asked about Rachael Ray, this is what Martha had to say:
"Well, to me, she professed that she could -- cannot bake," said Stewart. "She -- just did a new cookbook which is just a re-edit of a lot of her old recipes. She -- and that's not good enough for me. I mean, I really want to write a book that is a unique and lasting thing. Something that will really fulfill a need in someone's library. So, she's different. She's -- she's more of an entertainer than she is, with her bubbly personality, than she is a teacher, like me. That's not what she's professing to be... She does it very differently than I do, she's a totally different kind cook than I am. I don't know if she has a garden, I don't think so, but if she does, she doesn't show that on her show so much."

Nightline then followed up with Rachael Ray, who pretty much agreed with Martha.

"Why would it make me mad?" said Ray. "Her skill set is far beyond mine. That's simply the reality of it. That doesn't mean that what I do isn't important too... I don't consider it needling. I really just think she's being honest. She does have a better skill set than I do when it comes to producing a beautiful, perfect, high-quality meal. I'd rather eat Martha's than mine, too." 

Martha then went on her show today (Monday) and issued a formal apology to Rachael Ray stating:

"there are no bad feelings between us nor have there ever been. I truly believe that Rachael has done a terrific job bringing people — many people who would of never have even stepped into the kitchen or made a dish — to cook."

I myself am not a fan of Rachael Ray (I worship Martha).  Every time she says EVOO or Yum-o, it's like nails on a chalkboard to me.  Absolutely drives me nuts.  But I will have to agree with Martha that she does introduce cooking to many people who would normally never cook.  She really does simplify cooking. Whenever anybody asks me about getting into cooking, I always recommend Rachael Ray's books because all of her recipes are easy to make.  In fact, I think my first cookbook was a Rachael Ray book.

You can watch the Nightline video footage here

Then later at a red carpet event, Martha was asked about Sarah Palin.

"She's very boring to me, very boring. And a very, to me, kind of a dangerous person. I mean, she's dangerous. She speaks, she's, she's so confused. And anyone like that in government is a real problem."

The reporter then asked Martha whether or not she was catching any of the hoopla and publicity surrounding Sarah Palin's new book. In which she replied:

"Oh I wouldn't watch her if you paid me."


Blizzard Dog Ice Cream

There was an article in the NY Times about sixteen year old New Yorker, Christian Liendo. Christian invented an ice cream for dogs.  He came up with the idea for an entrepreneurial competition. Inspired by his afternoons at his grandmother's eating ice cream but not being able to share his delicious treat with her dog, Max, Christian experimented with dog friendly ingredients such as carbo powder, soy milk, lactose free milk. With Max as his taster, Christian soon developed flavors doggies craved! He hopes to sell his doggie ice cream  alongside regular ice cream at ice cream stores. Hopefully sooner than later, Christian.  I know Hank and George would like to try some!

You can read more about Blizzard Dog at the NY Times.

Photo: Robert Stolarick/NY Times 

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Bacon MMMvelopes -Mailing letters has never been so tasty!

This bacon craze has gone too far. Now there are Bacon Flavored MMMvelopes. From the bacon obsessed peeps at J&D's , makers of Baconnaise and Bacon Salt, now you can get the flavor of bacon when sending your snail mail. These standard 10" envelopes look like bacon and taste like real bacon. It does not contain real bacon so there is no need for refrigeration and your vegetarian friends can enjoy the taste they miss the most. According to Gizmodo "you get the taste of bacon and a deep feeling of emptiness inside yourself." You can buy this great invention at, $6.99 for 25. Also be sure to check out the J&D's website for their other bacon products.

Source: Serious Eats

Monday, November 16, 2009

Homemade Dog Biscuits

I have been so bored! This lack of weather in my new home is really driving me bonkers. To pass the time in between dog walks on the golf course and Farmville sessions, I have been experimenting with baking in the high altitude (The town of Mammoth Lakes is at an elevation of 7800). For my first experiment I thought I would make dog biscuits because dogs don't care about texture or whether or not the dough has risen properly.

After some Internet research, I found this great website It has a ton of great dog biscuit recipes as well as information and tips about bulldogs and owning dogs. I made the Everyday Dog biscuit and my dogs LOVE them. These dog biscuits are super easy to make and are made with ingredients that are found in any typical pantry. The high altitude didn't affect the recipe too much (I added a little extra of water) and I omitted the garlic because I read somewhere that garlic may not be so great for dogs digestion. Also since I just moved and didn't have any honey I substituted black strap molasses. I've heard of molasses dog treats so I don't think the molasses substitution affected the outcome too much. Hank and George still gobbled up the treats.

Everyday Dog Biscuit
Originally published at

2 tsp. dry yeast
1/2 cup lukewarm water
2 TBSP dry parsley
2 TBSP minced garlic (I omitted the garlic)
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
3 TBSP honey ( I used black strap molasses)
1 egg
5-6 cups whole wheat flour

Preheat oven to 350˚F.

In a bowl, dissolve yeast into water. After it foams (about 5 minutes), stir in parsley, garlic (if using), honey, egg and chicken broth. Gradually add flour, stirring to combine until a stiff dough forms. If using a stand mixer, using the dough hook, mix until dough pulls away from the side of the ball, forming a ball on the hook. It should be smooth. If mixing by hand, knead on a floured surface, until smooth. Shape dough into a disk and roll to 1/4 inch thickness.

Using dog bone cutters, make biscuits. Gather scraps, re-roll and cut out more biscuits. Transfer to parchment lined baking sheets and bake for 30 minutes, remove from oven and turn over. Bake for another 15 minutes. After the biscuits are done baking, transfer all the biscuits to a baking sheet and leave in oven overnight to crisp.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Thumbprint Cookies

My neighbor in Costa Mesa gave me two jars of apricot jam she made from her backyard apricot trees. I am a huge fan of the thumbprint cookies with the jam filled centers so I used her apricot jam for my cookie filling. You must try making these cookies. They are far superior to the store bought kind. I used a great recipe from the December 2007 issue of Gourmet magazine. You can find the recipe here at

Jam Thumbprint Cookies
recipe by Gourmet magazine

2 1/2 cups AP flour
1 tsp. salt
2 sticks (8 oz) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
your favorite jam

To make cookie dough:
Whisk together flour and salt. Beat butter and sugar in bowl with electric mixer until light colored and fluffy. Beat in egg and vanilla. At low speed, add flour in three batches, mixing until dough forms. Divide dough in half and flatten into a disc and chill until firm, at least an hour.

To assemble and bake cookie:
Roll 1 oz (about 1 TBSP) of dough into a ball, then flatten slightly. Place on parchment lined baking sheet. Continue with the rest of dough. When all the cookies are rolled out, using the end of a wooden spoon, make an indentation in the center of each cookie.

Place your favorite jam in a pastry bag or a plastic bag with one of the corners snipped off. Pipe enough jam to fill the indentation in each cookie, about 1/8 tsp. I like to refrigerate the cookies for at least another 45 minutes after assembling the cookie to prevent overspreading.

After cookies have chilled, bake in 350˚F oven for 15-20 minutes or until the cookies are baked through and the edges are golden brown. Cool on baking sheets for 5 minutes and then transfer to wire racks to cool completely.

Makes 3 1/2 dozen cookies. These cookies are best eaten the day they are baked but they can be stored for two days in an air tight container.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Corn and Bacon Pasta

I have been a terrible blogger. I apologize. I have actually been cooking up a storm. I have been trying to perfect my pie technique and am proud to say, I am pretty close! But more on pie later. I just recently moved to Mammoth Lakes home of Mammoth Mountain Ski resort. Hopefully I will be working at the Westin Monache Resort but in this economy one cannot put all her chickens in a basket. I am SO bored right now as there is no snow so no work. This is the perfect chance for me to catch up on my blogging. I have so many recipes and pictures backed up from last month!

Because of the big move, money has been kind of tight and I was also trying to use some of the ingredients that wouldn't survive the 5 hour drive to Mammoth. This is another great pantry dinner. It's probably not the healthiest but I love the salty bacon with the sweet corn. It is one of my favorite flavor combinations. This is also one of my go-to-recipes when I don't feel like cooking. With a green salad, this meal is super simple and takes less than 30 minutes!

TBC's Orecchiette with Corn and Bacon
serves a generous 2 portions

4 slices bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces.
1 shallot, finely chopped
1 TBSP butter
2 ears of corn, shucked and kernels removed or 2 cups frozen corn
8 oz. orecchiette pasta or other short pasta
2 TBSP cream
chives for garnish

Cook pasta in large pot of boiling water. Drain and reserve.

Cook bacon in a medium size saute pan over medium heat until crispy. Drain on paper towel and reserve.

Pour out bacon grease. Add the butter and wait until foam subsides. Add the chopped shallots and cook until translucent. Add the corn and cook until corn starts to make popping noises.

Combine cooked pasta with corn mixture. Add the cream and toss pasta to coat. Divide servings among bowls and add bacon and chives.
Blog Widget by LinkWithin