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Weekend Cooking by Ricardo / ehBeth

ehBeth's picture

When we started talking about working with a single source, I realized that I'd need to find a book that I could use on the weekend - sometimes just for the two of us - sometimes for more and a bit "showier" - and organized that way for me.

I wanted a Canadian option (and have some great older Canajun cookbooks I could have worked with) and decided that adding a little bit of money to the Canadian publishing world would be a good idea.

Decided on Ricardo after trying a couple of the recipes he has on the Food Network site. Good flavour combos / some good technique points, someone I could work with and learn from.

The challenge was finding the book. Apparently, Ricardo's a bit 'popular' right now. "Everyone loves Ricardo" became the phrase I started to hate. Finally snagged the last copy in one of the chain stores downtown - not my favourite place to buy, but I NEEDED my Ricardo.

It seems that the magazines this year will simply have the recipes from the book divvied up between the issues - so no Ricardo magazines (though the photography in them is great) unless they start providing new recipes.

Walking through Ricardo. That's my plan.

from amazon.ca

Acclaimed chef Ricardo launched his new 26-episode Food Network Canada series, "Ricardo and Friends," in October 2006. In each episode, Ricardo cooks a three-course home meal for a group of friends, proving that it's easy to entertain while cooking simple, accessible and fun meals. Along the way, Ricardo explains the health and nutritional properties of the recipe, and shares his tips. "Ricardo and Friends" airs three times weekly.

Look for his magazine, Ricardo, a favorite already in Quebec and now available coast to coast in English. Published five times a year, it includes recipes from "Ricardo and Friends."

This cookbook by the first French Canadian with a show on the Food Network allows home cooks to enjoy a superb compilation of over 140 recipes, wine recommendations and stunning food photography. Inspired by intimate gatherings on weekends with family and friends, Weekend Cooking designs menus to awaken readers' appetites.

Among the selections:

* Ricotta-stuffed pancakes with orange sauce
* Sweet potato soup with apples and cloves
* Lasagna with eggplant caviar and grilled sweet red peppers
* Cold salmon roast with shrimp and vegetable stuffing
* Chicken supremes stuffed with ricotta and dried tomatoes
* Sublime coconut cake.

Home cooks will not want to miss out on this exceptional book by the Food Network's newest face.

If you can't play a sport, be one.
If you can't play a sport, be one.
courgette's picture

(post #67186, reply #1 of 57)

I have two of his mags and they look great. But, I haven't made anything from them. So, what else is new??????


Mo

ehBeth's picture

(post #67186, reply #2 of 57)

Maybe I'll start with a recipe from one of the mags - just to tempt you =; D

If you can't play a sport, be one.
If you can't play a sport, be one.
ehBeth's picture

(post #67186, reply #3 of 57)

We started with something almost obvious, but we'd never done it before.

It's in the Spring 2007 magazine as well as the book - and I'm going to retract something I said earlier. The magazine really does have some valuable things to offer - in fact, the book and a magazine subscription would make be a good wedding shower/off to first apartment gift package (maybe with an apron and a small tool or two).

The recipe is called "Boiled Eggs, revisited" in the book. Soft-boiled eggs with bacon/old cheddar/chive grilled toast 'soldiers'.
Good brunch/breakfast in the evening option (we needed more soldiers - they were yummy).

In the magazine, they're part of the issue's food chemistry section and are called "Bacon and Cheese Toast with Soft-Cooked Eggs". The recipe itself is presented in a slightly condensed version (not much, really, to begin with) - but around it is useful info for a beginning (or forgetful) cook. Three pages on very basic egg cooking chemistry, egg storage, centring an egg while cooking it (for devilled egg serving purposes), peeling, keeping the white intact, poaching and cooking eggs in the shell.

~~~~~~

so - a keeper recipe. I can imagine it would be great for a Saturday night movies at home munchie - or Sunday breakfast/brunch at the cottage. A bit 'dressier' than soft-boiled eggs with dipping toast - nice flavours - looked good on the plate.

(if I ever figure out how to get the photos out of the new camera, there will be pix).

If you can't play a sport, be one.
If you can't play a sport, be one.
ehBeth's picture

(post #67186, reply #4 of 57)

The Easter long weekend, so there's time for a bit more recipe-reading, not just toss-it-in-a-pan-toss-it-in-the-oven cooking.

Last night I made Pork Medallions with raspberries. The book says 10 minutes prep time, 15 minutes cooking time - and dang if they're not right. A really good dish in less than half an hour - and there was plenty of time to get some green beans ready as well.

Very nice, simple, prep. Really a nice bright-tasting Easter weekend dish.

I'd probably call it Pork Medallions with raspberry sauce, but that's a slight quibble. We'll try this with chicken another night - maybe up the garlic from one to two or more cloves.

~~~~~~~

When I consider just these first two recipes, and the two/three I tried from the Food Network site, I'd definitely recommend this for a keen beginning cook and up (some of the flavour combos aren't obvious).

~~~~~~~~

Looking at the Tea-Smoked Chicken for later this weekend, and maybe the Sweet Potato Soup with apples and cloves for Sunday afternoon.

~~~~~~~~

I almost wish I was entertaining this weekend. The last page has the sweetest Sugar Easter Eggs - food colouring stirred into white sugar - packed into teaspoons - dry - unmould - decorate with simple icing sugar paste - sort of an Easter variant on decorated sugar cubes.

hmmmmm, might be nice for an upcoming baby shower!

If you can't play a sport, be one.
If you can't play a sport, be one.
deejeh's picture

(post #67186, reply #8 of 57)

Glad to hear the recipes are good - I've been watching his show and thinking that if the recipes taste as good as they look, the cookbook would be a smart investment.  (Smart investment - hah!  It's just another way of saying I've been enabled :))


deej

ehBeth's picture

(post #67186, reply #9 of 57)

You can always test a few of his recipes from

http://www.foodtv.ca/recipes/browse/browse_result.aspx?PageNumber=1&10&2&DropHost=41070

about 100 of his recipes there - not much duplication with the book

ie. the pork medallions on the site are

http://www.foodtv.ca/recipes/recipedetails.aspx?dishid=8404

Pork Tenderloins Glazed with Maple-Beet Sauce

prep's different, as are the flavours

If you can't play a sport, be one.
If you can't play a sport, be one.
shoechick's picture

(post #67186, reply #10 of 57)

I have all three of his English Magazines and really like them.  Everything I've done has turned out wonderful.  Really looking forward to reading you working your way through the book.

The World is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.  ~St. Augustine

The World is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.  ~St. Augustine

ehBeth's picture

(post #67186, reply #15 of 57)

Sweet Potato Soup with apples and cloves.

leek/apple/sweet potato - softened in butter, deglazed with chicken stock (white wine was optional, not an option here)

more chicken stock, cloves - simmer 20 minutes

process in blender (I used my Braun stick blender). salt/pepper

garnish with fried apple slices

Really really good.

I wouldn't have ever thought of frying the apple slices.

Definitely on the repeat list.

~~~~~~~~

Tea-smoked chicken didn't work as planned. My fault - I didn't try hard enough to find the gunpowder green tea leaves. It'll have to be a re-try. I ended up making it as a roast chicken with the balance of the ingredients. Served it with the recommended Earl Grey tea-based sauce, which I thought was great. S.O. was unconvinced of its brilliance.

~~~~~~~~

Served the chicken with the Maple-Glazed Bok Choy - fantastic. We both loved the flavours.

baby bok choy
non-toasted sesame oil
garlic
s/p
soy sauce
maple syrup
green onions

Perfect. S.O. says he'll make this again. This is HUGE !!!

~~~~~~~

Also served Ricardo's Mashed Root Vegetables. potatoes/turnips/cream/butter/salt/pepper/parsley/thyme.

Awfully tasty, but we're trying to reduce the fats in our cooking, so the cream won't be used again. I'm going to try this with fat-free sour cream - I definitely liked this more than I thought I would - turnip's never been high on my preferred list.

~~~~~~
~~~~~~

no rejects yet - maybe they're in the recipes I haven't tried yet?

~~~~~
~~~~~

this is definitely fun - and S.O's food horizons continue to broaden - he's not even freaking out that there are 4 types of mushrooms in the house right now.

If you can't play a sport, be one.
If you can't play a sport, be one.
Wolvie's picture

(post #67186, reply #16 of 57)

try that mash with yogurt - the greek kind if you can get it. Works very well as a sub.


These recipes sound great. :-)


"Progress lies not in enhancing what is, but in advancing toward what will be."


Khalil Gibran

 

ehBeth's picture

(post #67186, reply #18 of 57)

I'm walking distance to Greektown, so I'll try it with yogurt once - fat-free sour cream once - compare and contrast. Some of the fat-free sour cream is luscious.

mmmmmmmm

The mash really was quite good. We'll try a few more of his mash options. There's one with spinach and celeriac that is verra tempting.

If you can't play a sport, be one.
If you can't play a sport, be one.
collwen's picture

(post #67186, reply #17 of 57)

These recipes sound really good. I'm going to check out the links to Ricardo you posted. Thanks.

ehBeth's picture

(post #67186, reply #19 of 57)

Do try him out - nothing too outrageous so far - just good reliable recipes.

A colleague of mine uses this bi-colour celery/beet soup in her small catering business now

http://www.foodtv.ca/recipes/recipedetails.aspx?dishid=7926

(and plans to serve it at her own wedding in June - even her tween kids love it)

If you can't play a sport, be one.
If you can't play a sport, be one.
collwen's picture

(post #67186, reply #20 of 57)

Oh, that's pretty.

ehBeth's picture

(post #67186, reply #21 of 57)

I've been cooking/assembling, not posting.

Time to catch up a bit. I've actually been using the cookbook a bit more than I'd promised myself. I thought I'd have to hustle to be a walker in this project - 1 recipe a week was going to do it.

But S.O. has been getting into it. Not that he knows it's an official project - he just knows that the same cookbook and magazine are ALWAYS next to where he sits at the computer - and the main ingredient of something interesting ALWAYS just happens to be at the front/top of the fridge.

~~~~~~~

Made 2 out of the 3 Cheese Trilogy at the back of the book.

1. Warm Goat Cheese on Apple. 5 minute prep time, 7 minute cooking time. Horizontal cheese slices with the core taken out. Brush with oil, broil 5 minutes. Top with slice of good fresh goat cheese, sprinkle with chopped hazelnuts. Bake 2 minutes. Fleur de sel, pepper, drizzle of honey, bitta chopped chive.

I could snack on these around the clock. But I won't. But I could. Goat cheese/hazelnuts/fruit - can't go wrong.

2. Brie and Pistachio "Candies". 15 minutes prep time, 15 minutes cooking time. Soften shallots in butter/saucepan. 2 buttered phyllo sheets with crushed pistachios in between. Cubed brie and shallots in squares of the phyllo. Wrap like candies. Cook at 350 about 15 minutes.

I said good, S.O. said more.

~~~~~

We'll negotiate after we've worked through a few more recipes.

If you can't play a sport, be one.
If you can't play a sport, be one.
ehBeth's picture

(post #67186, reply #22 of 57)

from the Spring 2007 magazine

(and here's where I learned that if there's bok choy on the plate, my S.O. will eat anything - the man - former king of Bob Evans - loves bok choy)

Poach chicken breasts in maple syrup/soy sauced water. Set poached chicken aside.

Cook garlic and sesame seeds in sesame oil til golden. Add bok choy and maple syrup. Salt/pepper. Stir fry. Add chicken broth, simmer gently for about 5 minutes. Take out the bok choy. Turn heat up under garlic/maple/broth and reduce til syrupy. Whisk in cold butter til smooth (easier than I expected).

Slice chicken breasts - plate - drizzle sauce over. Serve with bok choy and mash.

~~~~~~

mmmmmmm. hard to go wrong with this. will try this on a friend's kids. I think it's going to be a winner.

~~~~~~

Ricardo's got lots of mash variants. We've tried a couple.

The one from the mag with this recipe was Mapled Butternut Squash and Potato Puree. Really tasty - but too many hints of maple in one meal for me. Next time I do the maple chicken/bok choy combo, I'll do either the mashed root vegetables (potatoes and turnips), or experiment with the Mashed Celeriac with Spinach. (both from the book)

~~~~

The discovery of the week for me - I don't really want to do any of the desserts. I don't have the sweet tooth. Will mull. Perhaps have S.O. work them up, and take half to work for sampling. I know S.O. will happily eat half a pan of brownies.

If you can't play a sport, be one.
If you can't play a sport, be one.
Nightrider's picture

(post #67186, reply #23 of 57)

Well darn it, you've made me think that perhaps I need this cookbook.


Those cheesy things both sounded like MAJOR yums, as did the chicken.  What are the proportions for the maple/soy/broth sauce?


I'll be following your progress with interest!

ehBeth's picture

(post #67186, reply #24 of 57)

Hi there!

I'll ask S.O. to scan these for you - if he dawdles or doesn't hear me because "it's too late", I'll either scan or type the info for you tomorrow.

~~~~~~~~

Did you try Relish at Danforth/Woodbine? We're going to try to get there this weekend - it's at the end of the street - you'd think we could get there more than semi-annually.

If you can't play a sport, be one.
If you can't play a sport, be one.
Nightrider's picture

(post #67186, reply #25 of 57)

Oh yeah, my entire family loves Relish!  They've got great food for REALLY reasonable prices.  I could eat a whole lot of the lamb empanadas and the butternut squash crepes!  Have fun this weekend :)


DH and I really love Globe Bistro at Danforth and Broadview as well.  Yummy.

ehBeth's picture

(post #67186, reply #27 of 57)

Did you know we have a Brazilian-influenced restaurant in town? I had no idea.

http://www.caju.ca/menu.sampler.asp

Tasting menu. Hmmmmmmmmm.

~~~~~

The Globe location's been the site of more than a few good times over the decades. We were supposed to go in the winter and then my mother's first cataract surgery was bumped. Maybe we'll go to celebrate the completion of # 2.

If you can't play a sport, be one.
If you can't play a sport, be one.
ehBeth's picture

(post #67186, reply #29 of 57)

... and you know we liked the recipe a lot ... we picked up some Shanghai Bok Choy in Kensington Market after a quick meal at Jumbo Empanada coming back from the ball game.

S.O. will be doing the chicken/bok choy combo again on Tuesday - it'll be perfect when I get back from dance class.

If you can't play a sport, be one.
If you can't play a sport, be one.
ehBeth's picture

(post #67186, reply #30 of 57)

Spinach Phyllo Bites earned a "enhh" from both of us. There is lean ground beef in the filling and that just didn't make us happy. We'll stick with spinach/feta/herbs. Nothing wrong with them.

If you can't play a sport, be one.
If you can't play a sport, be one.
ehBeth's picture

(post #67186, reply #31 of 57)

on the "if you want to hear me moan, make these" side of the ledger

Smoked Trout Rosti with lime-flavoured sour cream.

3 parsnips/peeled/grated
2 potatoes/peeled/grated
(hooray for that nice microplane I bought with my Hallowe'en costume winnings)
6 tbsp butter
1/3 cup sour cream (I used fat-free)
1 tbsp lime juice
2 tbsp minced fresh chives
tabasco to taste
s/p (I used my new treat - fleur de sel with olives)
1/4 lb smoked trout, thinly sliced
chives to decorate

mix parsnips/potatoes, season with s/p
divide into 4 portions

in non-stick skillet(the new Calphalon - what have you people done to me?) melt half of the butter over low-medium heat. add 2 parts veggies - 5 inch circles. brown 10 minutes - flattening with spatula (silicone, another result of enabling), flip carefully, brown another 10 minutes

transfer to serving dish/keep warm. prepare other two rosti.

mix sour cream/lime juice/chives/tabasco/s/p

plate each rosti - add a little flavoured sour cream and a few slices of smoked fish on each. decorate with chives and season with s/p

mmmmmmmmmmmm

I need a private moment.

So simple - but with good ingredients - simple perfection.

I had some fantastic Manitoulin Island Smoked Trout to work with. I'm going on the hunt for some Winnipeg Golden Eye or some smoked whitefish to do this again.

It's a party keeper - and decadent comfort food.

If you can't play a sport, be one.
If you can't play a sport, be one.
Wolvie's picture

(post #67186, reply #38 of 57)

too funny - I can see you doing the private moment thing. :-)


These sound very good - ty for posting the recipe!


"Progress lies not in enhancing what is, but in advancing toward what will be."


Khalil Gibran

 

ehBeth's picture

(post #67186, reply #43 of 57)

ohhhhh the butternut sage crepes at Relish

thought of you as I was trying to sneak more than my share

~~~~~

Inspired by their chilled cucumber/avocado soup, I dove into Ricardo's Spring 2007 magazine for Chilled Green Pea Soup with Mint Ice Cubes. Loved the soup, liked the ice cubes, not 100% into the ice cubes with the soup. Maybe the ice cubes were too minty for the soup, which was flavorful but a bit delicate.

~~~~~

From the same issue - Chicken, Potato and Grape Salad. Simple, good, will make it again. Not on the 'to-die-for' list, but it's a nice standard - and since it's quite pretty, it will probably go into picnic/party rotation.

If you can't play a sport, be one.
If you can't play a sport, be one.
ehBeth's picture

(post #67186, reply #44 of 57)

I've been cooking. I've been cooking.
But I haven't been keeping up on my posting.

Will do a quick listing now - try to get back on a non-beachy day with more details.

~~~

To begin with - we've had more of the Chilled Green Pea Soup. I made the mint ice cubes less minty, and now I'm really happy with the result.

~~~

does shopping from the Finds section of the magazine count for anything? because I bought more Laguiole knives. Found them at HomeSense, and did a little happy dance.

~~~

Made Devilled Eggs with Smoked Salmon from the food chemistry article in the Spring issue. Hard to go wrong with eggs and smoked salmon - but this was a nice variant (ground fennel seeds and dill), and I learned a bit about 'centring the yolk'.

~~~

oh - the book's getting sticky. That's a good sign that S.O's actually using it to cook with. Makes me happy.

~~~

Mushroom Flans with Milk and Parsley Foam. Quite good, though I didn't go the extra step of cooking the flans in the eggshells set into egg cartons. I'm just not that kind of cook. I used small ramekins instead.

~~~

Leek and Celery with Dressing (from foodtv.ca). Good, though we fought over the leek and apple, and kinda just ate the celery. Apparently, neither of us is really a fan of cooked celery.

~~~

Rhubarb lemonade with frozen blueberries on skewers. Really nice. We'll be having this again.

~~~

Beef Salad with bean sprouts and green apples. I was doubtful, but I was convinced. I foresee S.O. turning this into one of 'his' recipes.

If you can't play a sport, be one.
If you can't play a sport, be one.
wonka's picture

(post #67186, reply #45 of 57)

Could you, would you post the Rhubarb lemonade recipe?

ehBeth's picture

(post #67186, reply #46 of 57)

Hi Wonka - this is from the foodtv.ca website

Rhubarb Lemonade

Ingredients:

* 6-1/2 cups water
* 3/4 cups sugar
* 4-1/2 cups coarsely chopped fresh rhubarb
* Juice of 1 lemon
* Fresh blueberries
* Wood or bamboo skewers, about 4 inches long

Directions:

1. In a saucepan, bring the water and sugar to a boil. Add the rhubarb. Return to a boil and simmer over low heat for 5 minutes. Strain into a bowl, allowing the pulp to drain for 10 minutes without pressing. Transfer the liquid to a pitcher and add the lemon juice. Refrigerate about 4 hours.

2. Thread the blueberries on the skewers. If desired, freeze for about 1 hour.

3. Serve the rhubarb lemonade over ice and garnish with a blueberry skewer. A real thirst-quencher!

~~~

My first go at it, I did it exactly as written (per the 'rules'). It was nice and sweet-tart tangy - next time I added more lemon - even zippier.

If you can't play a sport, be one.
If you can't play a sport, be one.
Jean's picture

(post #67186, reply #47 of 57)

Question -- how late in the season is it OK to pick Rhubarb? Is there a general cut-off date, or doesn't it matter?




Birthdays are good for you. The more you have, the longer you live.
http://www.thebreastcancersite.com/

A  clear conscience is usually the sign of a bad memory.
http://www.thebreastcancersite.com/
help to provide free mammograms for women in need
madnoodle's picture

(post #67186, reply #49 of 57)

I never use ours much beyond July 1. I'm not sure if that's because I'm sick of it by then, or if it really does taste bitter after that.  I think Assibams knows--we "talked" about it a year or so ago.

Saskatchewan:  our mountain-removal project is nearly complete.

What if there were no hypothetical questions?

 

Jean's picture

(post #67186, reply #50 of 57)

That's about what I remember.  Thanks.



Birthdays are good for you. The more you have, the longer you live.
http://www.thebreastcancersite.com/

A  clear conscience is usually the sign of a bad memory.
http://www.thebreastcancersite.com/
help to provide free mammograms for women in need