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Keep Guacamole from Turning Brown

IPAGuacFWLWhen I was writing the process steps for the IPA Guacamole in my cookbook I thought it a good idea to offer some advice on how to take the avocados from intact to in the bowl. I did a bit of old-fashioned crowdsourcing and it turns out that you’ve already cracked this nut.

To my amazement, just about everyone named a different method: peel the avocado with a vegetable peeler (seriously?); or with a paring knife; pry the pit out with a spoon; or try to flick it away with your thumb. Obviously, I would’ve been wasting space on a problem that was already vaguely under control. (more…)

Ambassador of Cheese

SimplePleasuresCheese

Last August an email arrived in my inbox that invited me to participate in a programme that the Dairy Farmers of Canada are running. Over a year-long stretch that started in September 2013 they are going to send cheese to bloggers who will then post “action shots” of Canadian cheese on Instagram and other social media channels.

For participating I get a selection of cheese each month this winter and have agreed to post an Instagram photo once a week during that period.

You’ll be able to find my photos under the hashtags #CDNCheese and #simplepleasures. This is all part of the Simple Pleasures campaign that also includes this short YouTube video. DFC posted a profile of the three bloggers and are collecting our photos on this page. (more…)

January Kitchen Tasks

Season cast iron and sharpen knivesOnce the guests have been blown away by their first roast goose and you’ve recovered from the champagne hangover, the subsequent calm may leave you with some time on your hands. These are the tasks that I try to check off my list every year some time in early January. (more…)

No-Knead Bread: The Burnt Bottoms

No-knead bread with a beautiful crust.
I know, I know my recipe crush on the Lahey-Bittman no-knead bread is glaringly obvious. Hell, I’ve even gone as far as making a stop-motion video homage to it. But, this obsession goes beyond an appreciation for the concept that great bread can be made with very little effort; it’s something that I actually do two or three times a week.

A detailed description of the method probably isn’t necessary since: a.) the original youtube video has been played about 1.75 million views, so I’m guessing it’s fairly widely known; and b.) I’ve gone into some detail in previous posts. Today’s post has a special focus so let’s say that a sufficient summary of the recipe is: mix dough, ferment overnight, allow a second countertop rise while the over heats with a Dutch oven inside, bake inside the closed Dutch oven for 30 minutes, and then remove the lid and bake for 15 to 20 minutes more. (more…)

Probiotic Salad

A probiotic salad of sauerkraut, dill pickles, and a yogurt dressing.

The recipes I share here on Food With Legs vary along a spectrum that runs from Old Favourites straight to What the Hell Experiments. This one happens to fall much closer to the latter end than the former. I was having friends over for dinner, had plans for rich and meaty pasta and main courses and wanted to start with a salad. I figured I could lay down an acid base and get everyone salivating for what was up next. And that’s how the “probiotic salad” that combines both my wild-fermented dill pickles and spicy Sichuan sauerkraut was conceived.

I am being a bit tongue-in-cheek by using that word “probiotic” in the title. Yogurt companies have adopted it–along with belly-dancing models and stomach-shapes lines–to make a back-handed claim about their products’ health benefits. The connection between live bacteria in food and the digestive health of those who eat hasn’t been definitely established, but I’m willing place a tentative bet that it will pan out–especially when the probiotic food is cultured with more than just a yogurt companies patented strains of lactobacilli. (more…)