Sunday, December 9, 2007

Persimmon Butter

Lac and I visited Dad to tell him I was pregnant with Aiden in early December of 2006. The first thing he said when we walked through the door was "I just finished the persimmon butter. Too bad you missed it. It was very good." We hung out for for about 45 minutes before we told him the news. I was so nervous, I couldn't say anything so Lac finally asked him. "Do you like buns?" "I'm trying to keep away from carbs" Dad replied. "Well, we have a bun in the oven" Lac said. First Dad gave us huge bear hugs. Then he said, "I'll make you some persimmon butter".

Persimmon Butter

Several large Fuyu persimmons

1. Peel (a potato peeler works well) several large Fuyu (the roundish non-astringent ones) persimmons
2. Cut into eighths and put into a large stock pot
3. Add enough water to cover the persimmons
4. Cook over medium heat until the persimmons are easily penetrated by a fork then mash with a potato masher
5. Cool and enjoy

-use orange juice instead of water.
-season with cinnamon to taste

Dad notes: I have heard that the astringent ones loose their astringency when they are cooked, but I have no experience with them.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

My Indian Rice

Well actually this is "Simple Yellow Rice" from Yamuna Devi's The Art of Indian Vegetarian Cooking with just a little more spice. Lac loves this rice and asks for it all the time; I consider this is a major accomplishment. I've made it so many times that I've internalized the recipe and can wing it (aka no measuring and changing it up regularly - the other day it became Mexican rice). Mom and Helena have asked for the recipe and when they do, they do you make your rice?

My Indian Rice

1 cup basmati rice
1 3/4 cup water
2 tbs ghee or oil

whole spice mixture
1 tsp cumin seeds
8 whole cloves
1 cinnamon stick (about 3 inches) broken into 1 inch pieces
1/4 tsp ajwain seeds (whole oregano seed)

ground spice mixture
3/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1/2 tsp tumeric

1/4 c chopped fresh cilantro- optional

1. Rinse rice and soak in bowl of water while prepping other ingredients. Drain.
2. Heat Ghee or oil in a heavy 1.5 quart pot over med heat. When hot, add whole spice mixture and saute until spices give off aroma and cumin seeds start to lightly brown (about 1 min).
3. Add rice. Turn heat to low and cook stirring continuously until rice starts to look transparent in spots. You will see individual rice kernels really stand out and rice start to clump.
4. Add water and ground spice mixture. Stir once. Increase heat to high. Bring water to a boil.
5. Cover pot with lid. Set heat to low. Cook until rice is cooked and water absorbed. About 15 min.
6. Lift lid, add fresh herb and quickly cover. Let rice sit for 5 to 10 min. Fluff and serve.

-Saute 1/4 c minced onion until soft prior to adding whole spice mixture.
-Add 1 tsp orange zest with or instead of the cilantro (last step).
-Super Easy Mexican rice - Saute 1/4 minced onion and 2 cloves of garlic before adding rice. Remove whole spice mixture and tumeric. Use 1 c tomato juice and 3/4 cups water in place of water.