Category Archives: Cooking

Modernist Kitchen – Pressure Cooker Garlic Confit

To kick off my challenge of cooking through the Modernist Cuisine at Home and also trying my hand at producing a cooking video I’ve decided to keep it simple.  The writers of Modernist Cuisine at Home developed some really great uses for the pressure cooker.  They realized that it was a kitchen device far too underutilized with home cooks, and chose to dedicate a lot of space in the book discussing different uses and techniques for the pressure cooker.  Besides saving cooks time when braising tough cuts of meat, the pressure cooker can be used to speed up browning vegetables and developing intense flavors in stocks and purees.  In this case the chef authors are using the advantages of the pressure cooker to quickly produce an intensely flavored confit of garlic in a relative short period of time.  The garlic produced in this video is very rich in flavor and spreadably soft in texture, almost like a butter.  The olive oil has wonderful garlic flavor and aromas, and can be reused on such things as salads, finishing dishes or to cook things with in hot pans. Take a look at our video and let us know what you think, as our foray into the writings of the Modernist Cuisine at Home begins. Stay Hungry Y’all!

-The Hungry Southerner

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Filed under Cooking, Cooking Tutorial, Food, Modernist Cuisine at Home, Southern Food, Southern Kitchen, Southern Recipes, Southern Video

Southern Kitchen – Modernist Cuisine at Home

MCAH with kitchen manual in slipcase

[Photo Credit:Chris Hoover/ Modernist Cuisine, LLC]

After a long vacation for the Hungry Southerner I felt the time was right to dip a toe back into writing and challenge myself to cook my way through an entire cookbook.  The Little Southerner often reminds me of the growing collection of cookbooks that continue to flow into our house and I figured it was time to put them to good use.  I often spend my evenings at home reading through several of my favorites Thomas Keller’s  The French Laundry & Ad Hoc, Heston Blumenthal’s Fat Duck, Grant Achatz’s Alinea and My New Orleans by John Besh. The collection I’ve had the greatest fascination with has been the epic 5 book tome The Modernest Cuisine by Nathan Myhrvold.  Unfortunately The Modernist Cuisine collection, on a good day, weighs in at a whopping $450.00 so it has been financially out of reach. Until now….

Chicken wing variations

[Photo Credit:Chris Hoover/ Modernist Cuisine, LLC]

Realizing the general population had a desire to get into the Modernist Cuisine material without the need for combi ovens and centrifuges, Myhrvold and his team recently introduced The Modernist Cuisine at Home. It’s an epic book containing over 456 pages of technique, commentary and recipes utilizing modern approaches to common dishes.  It takes a sort of  procedural scientific approach to breaking down recipes and the techniques used to produce dishes in a whole new way.  It makes home cooks, like myself, reconsider all those gadgets  laying around and calls them all into action.  It also helps to change your whole perspective on how to approach the household kitchen.

Gelato Variations

[Photo Credit:Chris Hoover/ Modernist Cuisine, LLC]

Modernist Cuisine at Home is the perfect companion book to Alinea, Fat Duck and Eleven Madison Park.  It elegantly breaks down most, if not all, of the concepts used in those other books giving the reader a much clearer picture of the individual techniques required to work through procedures such as gellation, emulsions and sous vide cooking.  It also presents the material in a beautiful way; this book has the largest pages, beautiful images and layout of any book I own.  It is truly a great book to behold. Which brings me to the price.

Modernist Cuisine at Home is not a cheap book.  It is easily a $100.00 investment, which means for the price, you could own all 3 of  Fat Duck, Alinea and Eleven Madison Park. It’s not cheap by any stretch of the imagination but you get a lot for  your money.  The authors graciously include a separate manual just of the recipes and techniques, which is really great considering no one wants to spill spaghetti sauce on their $100.00 investment.  It’s also the heaviest cookbook I own, weighing in at 11 pounds if you include the secondary recipe book and special boxing sleeve. At about $9.00 a pound or about $4.30 a chapter (23 chapters in total) you get what you pay for.  It’s truly my favorite cookbook this year, and I can’t recommend it more to anyone who is looking to challenge themselves to expand the way they approach food.

Countertop tools opener

[Photo Credit:Chris Hoover/ Modernist Cuisine, LLC]

All this said I figured it was time to kick start the Hungry Southerner with a new challenge going into 2013.  I’ve never cooked my way through an entire cookbook and I feel The Modernist Cuisine at Home is the book I’d like to attempt.  I won’t be cooking through the book sequentially, and each chapter often has several derivatives on the same concept so I probably won’t recreate 20 different versions of their BBQ sauces but I do plan to tackle each and every chapter’s concepts and initial recipes.  I’ve decided this isn’t a race to see how quick I can survive the entire book but rather an experience in mastering the material presented.  I’ll also be looking to see how these newer ideas can enhance the Southern cooking concepts that have been used for generations. Buckle up it’s going to be a fun ride.  Stay Hungry Y’all!

– The Hungry Southerner

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Filed under Cooking, Cooking Tutorial, Southern Kitchen, Uncategorized

Southern Cooking – Collard Greens

We had a really great opportunity this month to sit down with Executive Chef Chip Ulbrich of South City Kitchen. If your not familiar with South City Kitchen, it’s a great Southern style restaurant with two locations in and around the Atlanta,GA area known for dishes like their Fried Chicken and Fried Green Tomatoes.  Chef Chip spent some time showing us how to cook Collard Greens in less than 30 minutes that are flavorful, full of texture and easy to prepare. He gave us every instruction we needed to make this fool proof.  So if you’re looking for a modern way of cooking Southern Style Collard Greens Chef Chip’s recipe will point you in in the right culinary direction.  Stay Hungry Ya’ll !

-The Hungry Southerner

This is the first of a 2 part series with Chef Chip Ulbrich.  Check back soon for our interview with him in this month’s Local, Fresh, Sustainable Series where we talk about what South City Kitchen is doing with local farmers and ingredients and what they have coming for Thanksgiving.

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Sneak Peak of Chef Chip’s Collard Demo

We sat down with Chef Chip Ulbrich of South City Kitchen in Atlanta,GA and he showed us a great way to cook up some great Southern Collard Greens.  Want a quick sneak peak at next weeks first of 2 videos two come from our visit?  Check out these Collard Greens and then come back on Monday. We will have the full video where Chef Chip will walk us through step by step instructions for an easy way to preparing a great and delicous pot of Southern Collard Greens that will have your mouth watering just like they make at South City Kitchen.  Stay Hungry Y’all! See you on Monday!

– The Hungry Southerner

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Yankee Ingredients – Pumpkin Puffs

puffs

Until I met my husband, I thought that everyone liked pumpkin. There is nothing like a big piece of pumpkin pie smothered with homemade whipped cream after a 1000 calorie feast on Thanksgiving, haha. No really, though. Pumpkin pie always has and always will round out my meal on the fourth Thursday in November… it’s just not right if it doesn’t.

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Chicken and Dumplings Challenge

c and d

Not many people know much about me, except for the fact that I am a Yankee married to a Southerner who lives in Maryland and likes to cook. After I started working with The Hungry Southerner, I entered into the terrific world of teaching first grade. I never thought that I would wish so much more for extra hours in a day until I spent one full week in the classroom. I love my little kiddies, but I miss my free time. And the kitchen. My poor husband has had two home cooked meals in the past 30 days.

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Southern Kitchen – Sweet Tea Roasted Chicken

chicken

I’ve been working on new Sweet Tea delivery systems and decided it was time to explore brines for my birds.  It was a beautiful idea for two great reasons, the first being brining a chicken will help prevent it from drying out during the roasting process and two it will help introduce some great flavor and character to the meat.  Besides everyone loves chicken right?  Get ready for some super moist Sweet Tea Chicken born in the South that is ready over night.

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Filed under Cooking, Southern Food, Southern Kitchen