Saturday, March 28, 2009
Inaugural of The Great Cooking Magazine Challenge
I adore cooking magazines. I subscribe to a couple and used to subscribe to a lot more. I love to see a new one in my mailbox..I rip off the plastic and flip through the pages and ooh and ahh. I pick out recipes in my mind that I'd love to try. Sometimes I even foldover the corners or put a little book marker in the pages I want to revisit. Then inevitably within a week or so it gets lost in the stack of all my hundreds of other cooking magazines and I never see it again. I have vowed many times to change this..giving myself challenges to make at least one recipe from each of my magazines a week..or maybe 3 a month..ya..maybe that will work... But the stacks still grow!! So I am giving myself a new challenge and maybe if I do it in public here on my blog I will stick to it! From here on out when I get a new cooking magazine I will do a recipe within a week from it and post it here. I've got to give this challenge a name and even a little logo to make it official and more binding lol. How about The Great Cooking Magazine Challenge! Very original huh?
I am cheating a little since I am starting this challenge when I know I will succeed at least the first time. I got a new Taste of Home in the mail this week and there are some great recipes I want to try. They had a brunch contest and there were 12 wonderful recipes that made the cut. I really would love to try each and every one of them, but because I had all of the ingredients for Benedict Eggs in Pastry it made my cut! Here is the photo from the magazine that inspired me...both to cook it and to take this challenge. I have to add that now that I have a blog not only do I want to try new recipes for how I think they will taste also I now try and improve my photography skills by taking cues from their photos. So maybe this challenge will have a dual purpose.
They really do have great photos in their magazine. Mostly served in everyday dishes, but great lighting and with a very real-life presentation.
Here is my interpretation. Not a total copy cat, but I did like the orange juice and strawberries they used.
The recipe itself had a tasty result. I would absolutely skip the hollandaise step next time and use a packet. I failed miserably with the consistency of mine, although the taste was there. That is why mine doesn't have the sauce drizzled on top. It broke apart...drizzling would not have been pretty. Chunky yes..pretty no.
Benedict Eggs in Pastry
2 eggs yolks (reserve egg whites for wash)
2 Tbsp. lemon juice
1 tsp Dijon Mustard
1/2 cup melted butter
Dash cayenne pepper
2 cups cubed fully cooked ham
2 green onions, chopped
1 Tbsp butter
2 Tbsp milk
1 pkg frozen puff pastry, thawed
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese (Yikes..just realized I forgot the cheese! I never missed it)
1 Tbsp water
Minced tarragon, optional (I used more green onions)
In a double boiler over simmer water or in a small heavy saucepan constantly whisk egg yolks, lemon juice and mustard until mexutre begins to thicken and reaches 160°. Reduce heat to low. Slowly drizzle in warm melted butter, whisking constantly. Whisk in cayenne.
Transfer to a small bowl if necessary. Place bowl in a larger bowl of arm water. Keep warm, stirring occasionally, until ready to use.
In a large skillet over medium heat, cook and stir ham and onions in butter until onions are tender. In a large bowl, whisk six eggs and milk. Add egg mixture to the pan; cook and stir until set. Remove from heat; stir in 1/3 cup reserved hollandaise sauce. Set aside.
On a lightly floured surface, unfold puff pastry. Roll each sheet into a 12x9 inch rectangle; cut each in half widthwise. Place approx 1 cup egg mixture on half of each rectangle. Sprinkle with cheese. (I used my rolling lattice cutter on half of the pastry rectangles and folded the latticed part over the eggs.)
Mix water and reserved egg white. Brush over pastry edges. Fold pastry over and pinch seams to seal. Transfer to a greased baking sheet or use your silicone liner (I LOVE mine). Brush pastries with more wash. Bake at 400° for 18-22 minutes or until golden brown. Serve with remaining hollandaise sauce. Sprinkle with tarragon or chopped green onions if desired.
So is anyone else up for the challenge? No need to commit to anything...just use the the logo and link back to me if you try a new recipe from your stacks of cooking magazines....I KNOW that many of you reading this have them too!!!!