In Short Measures & The Tasha Tudor Family Cookbook
Makes 4 servings
A roasted chicken may be served hot with a main meal, later as chicken sandwiches or chicken salad, and finally as chicken soup. Little remains by then. Tasha burned the bones in the woodstove and later spread the ash on the garden to raise the pH. For traditional meals such as Christmas and Thanksgiving, Tasha used a reflector oven to roast a turkey. For special occasions involving a smaller number of dinner guests, she roasted an appropriate-size fowl. She emphasized the importance of using fresh herbs in baking, and a common sight around mealtime was Tasha going to or from the herb garden with a small basket and a very long pair of scissors.
1 roasting chicken
6 pounds Salt Pepper Butter or cold bacon drippings
4 cloves garlic, peeled
1 large onion, peeled
4 fresh bay leaves
Preheat oven to 350°F. Wash and dry chicken, and place in roasting pan. Put salt and pepper on chicken. Rub with butter or bacon drippings. Cut a slot beside each drumstick and put 1 clove of garlic in each. Stuff chicken with onion, bay leaves, tarragon, sage, and remaining garlic. Truss chicken, and bake 2 hours or until 160°F. Baste often.
1 quart (1 liter) of water
4 tablespoons of powdered sugar 1 tablespoon of white wine
Juice of ½ lemon
3 passion fruit or papayas
3 peeled peaches
1. Boil the water and add the sugar, making a light syrup. Remove from the heat and add the white wine and juice of the lemon. Put aside for a while.
2. Cut up the passion fruit (or papaya) and mash. Pass the pulp through a strainer.
3. Add the juice from the passion fruit/papaya to the syrup. Then add the peaches and mix well. Keep in the refrigerator for a minimum of 24 hours. Finally, serve in dishes or cups with the grapes as a garnish.
Makes 9-16 squares, depending on how you cut them
Indoor s’mores in cookie form! The trick to browning the marshmallows is using your oven’s broiler. Vegan marshmallows are pretty easy to find these days in health food stores or online.
1 batch Graham Cracker dough (page 106)
1 cup chocolate chips
2 cups vegan marshmallows, cut into fourths OR vegan marshmallow cream
Preheat oven to 350°F. Prepare the graham cracker dough according to its instructions, then press into an 8×8-inch baking pan lined with parchment and bake for 18–20 minutes, until the bars are firm and golden brown. Remove from oven and immediately scatter the chocolate chips evenly over the surface. When they start to get melty, spread them around with a knife. Set aside. Preheat your oven’s broiler to 500°F. Scatter the marshmallows (or dollop on marshmallow cream, if using) over the surface of the bars and put under the broiler for about 3 minutes until they turn golden. Rotate the pan if necessary. Don’t let them get too melty, though. Remove from oven and let cool, then cut and devour! Alternatively, if you want to make s’mores with crispy graham crackers, make the graham crackers, let cool, and break into squares. Melt the chocolate chips and spread some chocolate on half the graham cracker squares. Place a half or whole marshmallow atop each of the chocolaty halves and put under the 500°F broiler on a cookie sheet until the marshmallow turns golden. Place the other graham cracker halves on the marshmallows and eat!
BAKED SWEET POTATO FRIES (gf, df, v)
makes: 4 servings … prep time: 10 minutes … bake time: 30 minutes helpful tools: chef’s knife, 2 rimmed cookie sheets, aluminum foil, nonstick cooking spray, large resealable freezer bag, tongs
Have you ever tried to eat just one sweet potato fry? It’s impossible. With just the right mix of salty, crunchy, and sweet, sweet potato fries are on our list of favorite foods. This baked variety manages to preserve the fried crisp texture but with just a fraction of the calories. Dip them in our Chimichurri Sauce (page 20) for an added flavor kick.
4 small sweet potatoes (about 2 pounds), skins on, ends trimmed
and cut into K-inch thick sticks
(try to make the sticks the same size so they cook evenly)
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1. Preheat oven to 450°F. Line 2 rimmed cookie sheets with foil and spray lightly with nonstick cooking spray.
2. In a resealable plastic bag, combine sweet potatoes, cornstarch, salt, pepper, and chili powder. Seal bag and shake potatoes to coat evenly. Add olive oil to the bag and shake again to coat the fries.
3. Divide fries among the prepared cookies sheets. Do not crowd pan. The fries will steam and won’t get crispy if they are too close together. Place cookie sheets on the middle rack and top rack.
4. Bake for 15 minutes and use tongs to flip fries over. Move the top pan to the middle rack and the middle pan to the top rack to ensure even crispiness. Bake 10–15 more minutes, until golden brown. Serve warm.
Trick: Using cornstarch helps absorb moisture and achieve that delicious crunch. Substitute russet potatoes for sweet potatoes to make spicy french fries. Slice the potatoes into thin strips to get them extra crispy.
SWEET POTATO OMELET
1 cup finely diced sweet potato
1 Tablespoon + 1 Tablespoon butter, divided
6 small eggs
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese Dried thyme
¼ cup thinly sliced onion
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Blanch* the sweet potato chunks for 3 minutes.
2. Melt 1 Tablespoon of butter in a small frying pan over medium heat and cook the sweet potatoes for 7 minutes, stirring occasionally. Separate into two bowls, with two-thirds of the potato in one, and the remaining one-third in the other.
3. Cook the onions in the pan until softened, about 2 minutes. Add more butter if needed. Add cooked onion to the two-thirds portion of sweet potato.
4. Beat the eggs in a small mixing bowl, add dried thyme, and set aside.
1. Melt 1 Tablespoon of butter in a medium frying pan.
2. Pour about one-third of the eggs (err on the side of too little, rather than too much) into the pan and cook until the eggs are nearly finished.
3. Add one-third portion of sweet potato (onion-free!) and half of the cheddar cheese to one half of the pan. Fold the plain half of the egg over the cheesy sweet potato half with a spatula, and continue cooking to desired consistency.
4. Remove to a plate, cut into small pup-size bites, and allow to cool.
Dutch Ovens and sourdough bread go together, if for no other reason than they are so tied together in the history of western America exploration. Chances were good, and still are, that if you found an outfitter, miner, homesteader, or trapper they had/have a cast iron Dutch Oven and a jar of sourdough starter at camp.
Sourdough bread is just as good today as it was for the miners of Alaska in the late 1890s or the cowboys who drove cattle to the railheads in the late 1800s and early 1900s. For this reason, we are including a starter recipe and a basic sourdough bread recipe.
You cannot have sourdough bread, pancakes, muffins, or cakes without having a starter. The starter can be stored in a clay pot or glass jar in the refrigerator for use at a later time.
I got this starter recipe from the Alaskan Cooperative Extension Service many years ago.
Dutch Oven: 10-inch
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups warm water
1 package dry yeast
1. Combine all ingredients in a plastic bowl.
2. Place the bowl in a warm location overnight.
3. In the morning, put ½ cup of the starter in a scalded pint jar. Cover the jar and store in the refrigerator for future use.
4. The remaining batter, called sponge, can be used immediately to make sourdough bread.
2 cups sourdough starter
2 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
2 tablespoons Crisco shortening
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 tablespoon sugar
½ teaspoon salt
½ stick butter
1. Preheat the Dutch Oven.
2. Put the flour in a large mixing bowl and create a well in the center.
3. Add the sourdough starter.
4. Add the baking powder, sugar, and salt. Next, cut in the Crisco.
5. Mix the dough to form a soft ball.
6. Break off walnut-sized pieces of dough and roll them into balls. Place the balls into a greased 9-inch aluminum pan so the sides are touching.
7. Baste the tops with melted butter.
8. Cover the pan and place it in a warm spot for 10 minutes so the dough will rise.
9. Place the pan inside the Dutch Oven and bake until golden brown.
Serve hot. Sourdough biscuits can become very firm when cold. Reheated, they become soft again. Leftover sourdough biscuits are great for making bread pudding.
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