Archive for the ‘Culinary’ Category

Documentary for Dinner: Know your Mushrooms (2008)

Know your Mushrooms takes us on a journey to the Colorado rockies to learn about various types of fungi; poison, medicinal, edible and psychotropic!

Easter Cooking Chez Karma: Sacrelasagna (Four Cheese Scalloped Potatoes with Peameal Bacon)

This American-South-meets-Canada dish is delish and succeeds at offending all three major religions! Not only will we be cooking with pork it’s going to be virtually poached in dairy for bonus points.

You will need:

  • Potatoes, pealed (optional) and sliced thinly (not optional)
  • Milk
  • A bunch of different cheeses that are appropriate for cooking, I used:
    • Swiss
    • Cheddar
    • Monterey Jack
    • Parmigiano (essential in any baked cheese dish for its sharpness)
  • Butter
  • Margarine or shortening if you are lazy about greasing
  • Black Pepper
  • Salt
  • Flour
  • Garlic (minced, pressed or powder)
  • Onion (finely diced or powder)
  • BACON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!11one

Grease a large baking dish and arrange potato slices in a relatively even layer. Top with seasonings and a small hunk of butter here and there. Sprinkle with flour or corn starch – this will thicken the milk into a nice creamy sauce while baking.

Top the layer with mixed grated/crumbled cheese.

Add your layer of bacon. We’re using peameal bacon (actually cornmeal) which is what you should be served in an American restaurant when you ask for Canadian Bacon, not the dry slice of ham they will actually give you. Strip bacon probably works fine (maybe better for taste) but will kill you faster – which is something you ought to be concerned about tossing around all this cheese. I cut this bacon into bite-sizes because I shave it off the block steak-thick and this would otherwise prevent making a clean scoop when it comes time to serve.

Top your bacon with another layer of potatoes, seasoning and cheese. Slowly pour milk in until it just covers the top of the potatoes.

Foil that badboy up and bake on 400F for a little over an hour.

Now that it looks and smells fully cooked remove the foil. You might want to add another layer of parmigiano or even breadcrumbs to produce a crunchier top. Return to the oven until you have achieved the level of browning that suits you.

If I don’t post again in a week call the amberlamps!

Heart-Stopping Cheese Sauce in Under 5 Minutes

Making cheese sauce is a delicate process but you should have no trouble producing a smooth, consistent result if you follow these steps.

I don’t cook with measurements but the ratios are something like this: one part flour to one part butter, six parts milk and five+ parts cheese. It is important to have your cheese grated beforehand since this is a time-sensitive procedure.

Melt the butter on medium low until it begins to lightly bubble.

Whisk in your flour and stir consistently. Let the mixture thicken a little; it will yellow slightly but you do not want it to darken much. This is called a blond roux.

Slowly stir in cold milk with the roux. At first the consistency will be very thin, keep cooking until it thickens to about the same viscosity the roux had. Under-stirring will cause milk to crust, break off and form lumps in your sauce so pay attention! At the same time you want to gently raise the temperature of the sauce base until it is steaming hot. Remove from heat when you feel it is about half as thick as the sauce you want to make.

Slowly stir in your cheese to taste. It will disappear quickly, but if the sauce becomes too cold it is safe to put the burner on very low.

Now you may season your sauce to taste. Salt is not necessarily required if you are using a good old cheddar and salted butter. I like to add a little onion powder to give it character. Traditionally, fine ground white pepper is used in lighter sauces but I put fresh cracked black pepper in virtually everything; I think it tastes better and it makes the sauce look pretty swanky!

You may now turn your delicious, healthy vegetables…

into the massive heart failure they were always meant to be!


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Made in Canada  •  There's a fox in the Gibson!  •  2010-12