Saturday, November 6, 2010

Interview #1

Hello. Good morning. How do you do? A nice Egyptian lady got in touch with me recently and told me she wanted to interview me for her blog. So, I smiled. And I answered her questions. And... it felt funny but nice. 
You can find it here.

Friday, November 5, 2010

A broken finger deserves a Gratin Dauphinois

So, this is definitely not the best post ever. This is not even close to the best post ever. This post is a post that you might skip. A post that will make you go, "Naah, she's slacking." But trust in me, my children. Believe in me. Have faith. This is a truly miraculous side dish. This is a side dish that got me trying to cook a week after hand surgery. This is a side dish that I craved so deeply from the innermost innards of me that I got off my imaginary throne where I'm spoiled by my husband after surgery, wrapped my hand in latex and delved into the wonderful world we call "Stitched Up Successful Perseverance". P.S. Stitches came out. Hooray! I officially rename myself... SCAR FINGER. Please address me as so for the time being. :)

Gratin Dauphinois. We never actually asked what it was called in our mom's house. We just ate. Happily. And with the hopes and dreams of teenagers who aren't yet afraid of what carbohydrates can do to you. Don't add cheese. Or onions. You'll be cheating and you can just call it "cheesy potatoes" then. You won't have earned the right. No way. You shall not call it a Dauphinois if you add cheese. And yes, I know Julia Child adds cheese to hers, but I trust my mom, dude. Now let's get moving because I've got books to organize in a bit. Sigh.
Gratin Dauphinois 
(6 side servings but you can eat it all and pretend you're 6 people.)
1 clove of garlic, split in half, lengthwise
1 kilogram of potatoes
2 cups of hot milk
An extra full 1/4 cup of heavy cream
Salt and pepper to taste
Preheat your oven to 160 degrees Celsius. Peel and slice your potatoes to around 3mm in width. Rub down the sides and bottom of your baking dish with the garlic clove. Discard the garlic clove when you're done. Combine your sliced potatoes, milk and salt and pepper in a saucepan. Simmer for a good 7-8 minutes. You'll find the milk thickening. Transfer half of the potato-milk mixture to your garlic-rubbed baking dish and pour some cream. Add the second half of the potato mixture on top of the cream you just poured, and pour the final spout of cream all over the top. Pop it into your already preheated oven.   
Bake for 35-40 minutes. Open the oven door, once, after 20 minutes, and crack the creamy skin. This will give you a better, thicker crust. Let it stand for at least five minutes before serving. Enjoy and thank my mom. :)
Leftovers of this are always welcome. This never lasts for long anyway. Happy times.
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