So I have come to share that the Darin Kitchen has been in a bit of flux lately. There have been some changes in leadership though for no other reason then it was time to pass the torch. I have been somewhat a member in hiding for some time, and have not ever been really active. I have however attempted to do many of the challenges that were posted. It had been so long since I posted prior to posting the lovely Sachertorte that I realize I had missed many wonderful challenges, though not for lack of trying; I have the Korean chili paste for bibimbap and I have bulgar for maftoul. I have grand plans still that both of those recipes will be making it into our home before long!
So for the months of November and December as we had not host or hostess to provide us with a lovely challenge, the challenge was to do some of the dishes that had not been done, or had been "missed" for what ever reason, here is the link to the archived recipes, here.. I chose to start off with some dishes that I could actually get done as I have started a new job and the training week was going to be rough and leave me with little to no time off at all. My choices in the challenge for November to December have so far been the following things, some pâté and some cheese.
Blog Check in lines:
Our hostesses this month, Evelyne of Cheap Ethnic Eatz, and Valerie of a The Chocolate Bunny, chose delicious pate with freshly baked bread as their June Daring Cook’s challenge! They’ve provided us with 4 different pate recipes to choose from and are allowing us to go wild with our homemade bread choice.
Sawsan from chef in disguise was our March 2013 Daring Cooks hostess! Sawsan challenges us to make our own homemade cheeses! She gave us a variety of choices to make, all of them easily accomplished and delicious!
So I modified the challenges a bit to meet my time needs, and I did two of the Pâtés and one cheese so far; let me say though that they were all delicious!
For the pâté I chose the tricolor vegetable pâté and I also did the shrimp and trout pâté.
The first set of photos are of the tricolor vegetable pâté.
White Bean Puree
Roasted bell peppers
Roasted bell peppers with ricotta (WHICH WAS WRONG!!)
Hence the reason it looks as if I have scraped something off, I did, I had to take of the wrong bell pepper mixture!
Now it's right, bell pepper and feta.
The beginning of a beautiful pesto!
This pesto smelled so wonderful!
Pesto with the Ricotta, yes that is supposed to be what the ricotta was mixed with.
Now to let it sit in the fridge for a few hours.
The un-molding, frankly I am surprised it worked!
You can see all the layers, though the red is not as dark as I would like.
But it was so yummy, I served it with some thin crackers..
The next to attempt was the Shrimp pâté.
I was lucky that I remembered that I had gulf shrimp in my freezer.
This is some steel head trout, I was not sure what to use, steel head or rainbow, and this was the suggestion was from the fish market.
Getting ready for some serious blending.
OK, Let me say I was so excited to flambé and it was a success, just wish I had photos to show.
Here are the little decorative shrimp getting ready to have a firey time.
Flambé nope, you can't tell...
Shrimp pâté ready to bake.
Final Product with it's decorative shrimp on the top.
Nice cut view, you can see the shrimp that I layered peeking out...
So about these pâtés I was able to take some to my new job, and I think the new co-workers are thrilled to learn that by me saying I cook, I don't just mean blue box mac and cheese. The pâtés were good, the shrimp one I need to remember to add a touch more salt in the process, but all in all it was very tasty. The vegetable one is great especially if you are tired of the same party foods over and over. They were both rather easy to make, though there were many steps involved. ON TO THE NEXT...
The next project I did was a cheese called labneh, or yogurt cheese. I have found a new love. I am not kidding here, I never thought I would be able to find another cheese that I would enjoy as much as all the ones I have already fallen in love with, but the labneh it is amazing. It is a tart, creamy, cheese, almost similar in consistency to cream cheese. The best part about this cheese is how easy it is to make it. You MUST try this, you double fold cheese cloth, add 2.25 lbs of plain greek yogurt and salt, and then you let it sit for 4-8 hours. That is it, nothing real face but once it's done, you get to say you have made cheese. I served this with the same crackers that I used with the pâtés, and it was wonderful. I could see dressing this cheese up a bit though too. So here are the photos.
This is the the cheese sitting and waiting for the greatness it will become.
Here is the final product. I truly feel I could have sat down with this bowl and a spoon and finished it off at once, I would have been sick, but it may have been worth it.
I think out of the three recipes my favorite for sure with the cheese, in fact I will be doing that again this weekend. I cannot wait to start playing with all the possible accompaniments for this cheese. I hope you enjoyed, and keep coming back, there maybe another cooking challenge or two before the next "Official" Challenge is up.