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June 2017 Cooking Challenge: Saffron - Page 2

post #31 of 57
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brulo View Post
 

So last night I tried a little smoething.

 

Pumpkin gnocci (with whole flour) and portobello mushrooms cream with saffron.

 

 

The smell it's UNBELIAVABLE, I feel I want to try using it on everything, sweet or salty, no matter what :P I've used around 4/5 stems, maybe could have used a little more.

 

 

Served topped with some tomato concasse and ciboulette.

 

Being the first time I make this specific pasta I would notice for next time:

 

- Use less flour (the little fellas turned out pretty stiff, eating around 5 of them and you are ready for bed).

- Use just all purpose white flour (using a part of whole flour added a texture that I didn't quite liked for this particular recipe).

- Use less flour overall (I kept adding fkour since the dough was really moisty, but really that's the way gnocci are!)

- Maybe use more saffron! :D

 

Thanks for this great "monthly challenge" this, it really makes one want to try cooking new stuff!

 

That is an interesting recipe - you have a nice big jar of saffron there. I reckon you could have used more! I had to look up ciboulette which turns out to be chives! 

post #32 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by morning glory View Post
 

 

That is an interesting recipe - you have a nice big jar of saffron there. I reckon you could have used more! I had to look up ciboulette which turns out to be chives! 

Yeah! I vas about to use "chives" but wasn't completely sure it was the same thing (even when we speak spanish here we call that ciboulette) :)

post #33 of 57
No, neither soups are in the running this month. I just felt like posting them for the fun. 🙃
What a relief! To find out after all these years that I'm not crazy. I'm just culinarily divergent...
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What a relief! To find out after all these years that I'm not crazy. I'm just culinarily divergent...
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post #34 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by morning glory View Post
 

 

What an intriguing list of ingredients and seasonings. But does it count as an entry? The dishes are supposed to be cooked and photographed during this month. 

Doesn't count as an entry, it's one of the rules.

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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post #35 of 57

For me saffron is most heavily associated with South Asia or Middle Eastern cuisine. Also, Spanish but I have spent more time with the former. This is a very simple Iranian dish that imparts saffron into ice cream called Bastani or I guess more commonly Persian Ice Cream. Traditionally this includes rose water but I can't stand rose water in anything! It's finished with chopped pistachio nuts.

I went the quick route and used a good quality store bought vanilla ice cream. The saffron is bloomed in a little tepid water and then stirred into the ice cream. The mixture is more of a soup at that point so you have to re-freeze it. Nothing particularly fancy but for this American boy it's pretty exotic! :D

 

 

 

post #36 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by eastshores View Post
 

For me saffron is most heavily associated with South Asia or Middle Eastern cuisine. Also, Spanish but I have spent more time with the former. This is a very simple Iranian dish that imparts saffron into ice cream called Bastani or I guess more commonly Persian Ice Cream. Traditionally this includes rose water but I can't stand rose water in anything! It's finished with chopped pistachio nuts.

I went the quick route and used a good quality store bought vanilla ice cream. The saffron is bloomed in a little tepid water and then stirred into the ice cream. The mixture is more of a soup at that point so you have to re-freeze it. Nothing particularly fancy but for this American boy it's pretty exotic! :D

 

 

 

Looks pretty awesome!

 

Can you please explain a little more on that liquid? it's just water or did you add something else?

I wonder how would some honey bourbon work (because it's basically what I have on the freezer :P I might make a test inspired by this :D

post #37 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brulo View Post
 

Looks pretty awesome!

 

Can you please explain a little more on that liquid? it's just water or did you add something else?

I wonder how would some honey bourbon work (because it's basically what I have on the freezer :P I might make a test inspired by this :D



Yes for my case it was just water. I bet honey bourbon would be really good but it might alter the freezing of the ice cream since alcohol slows/prevents freezing. Let us know how it turns out if you give it a go!

post #38 of 57
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brulo View Post
 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by eastshores View Post
 

For me saffron is most heavily associated with South Asia or Middle Eastern cuisine. Also, Spanish but I have spent more time with the former. This is a very simple Iranian dish that imparts saffron into ice cream called Bastani or I guess more commonly Persian Ice Cream. Traditionally this includes rose water but I can't stand rose water in anything! It's finished with chopped pistachio nuts.

I went the quick route and used a good quality store bought vanilla ice cream. The saffron is bloomed in a little tepid water and then stirred into the ice cream. The mixture is more of a soup at that point so you have to re-freeze it. Nothing particularly fancy but for this American boy it's pretty exotic! :D

 

 

Very pretty!

post #39 of 57

Just a simple side dish for now.  Unfortunately all I had on hand was uncle bens rice which is not ideal for pilaf.  But it was quite tasty nonetheless.  I make my pilaf bby sauteeing rice in butter, then adding lemon juice, and chicken stock and of course, saffron.  The other stuff on the plate was roasted broccoli and carrots, and a glazed pork chop.

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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post #40 of 57

So.. one of the places I think of when I imagine spice markets, and particularly saffron is Morocco. I'd seen kefta (kind of a grilled meat kabob) and had wanted to try it for some time, but in researching saffron recently I realized one of the popular condiments for kefta is a saffron yogurt sauce. That sealed the deal! So, in this dish I am cooking for the first time kefta, saffron yogurt sauce, and a saffron couscous.

 

I am making beef ketfa, lamb is another popular option traditionally. I decided sinceI kept the ingredients somewhat separate for the image I'd have a little fun and label them there. I misspelled a few of them. Sorry! I've corrected the spelling in the list below.

 

If it's hard to read, the base is ground round 85/15, paprika, cumin, coriander, cayenne, fresh chopped parsley, fresh grated onion, and minced garlic.

 

Now you use your hand to mash, mash, mash! You're looking to create some serious protein strands and tighten this whole mixture up so it holds very tightly when we get to the skewering part. I use this same basic approach when I am making gyro meat.

 

The saffron yogurt sauce is greek yogurt, lemon juice, minced garlic, saffron threads (steeped in a little hot water), a little olive oil, and salt to taste.

 

 

I should mention after mixing the meat, it should set up in the refrigerator for a couple hours. I did this again after forming it onto skewers so it would hold it's shape well. The basic procedure is to squeeze it into an oblong shape, skewer it, then proceed to shape it evenly along the skewer. When I was done I ended up with this.

 

Now time to fire up the grill. Such things in Florida are risky, as it may immediately trigger a down pour. That was the case today. But, hey.. this is no clown show.. this is the monthly challenge so I pushed through. No need to grill on really high heat. I went low and turned often to avoid too much char for this particular cook.

 



Quick note on the couscous.. it was nothing more than some roasted vege stock, saffron threads, and couscous. I will say this was one of the most delicious meals I've made. I ate everything but the skewers!

 

Edit - alternate view of the finished dish

post #41 of 57
@eastshores an inspiring submission! Makes me wish I was there to partake. I love how everyone is getting so creative with their photos, plating, and even editing the photos!

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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post #42 of 57
Paella con pollo y chorizo





post #43 of 57
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by eastshores View Post
 

So.. one of the places I think of when I imagine spice markets, and particularly saffron is Morocco. I'd seen kefta (kind of a grilled meat kabob) and had wanted to try it for some time, but in researching saffron recently I realized one of the popular condiments for kefta is a saffron yogurt sauce. That sealed the deal! So, in this dish I am cooking for the first time kefta, saffron yogurt sauce, and a saffron couscous.

 

I am making beef ketfa, lamb is another popular option traditionally. I decided sinceI kept the ingredients somewhat separate for the image I'd have a little fun and label them there. I misspelled a few of them. Sorry! I've corrected the spelling in the list below.
 

 

A great squence of phots @eastshores and a very appetising looking dish!

post #44 of 57
Thread Starter 

Some great entries so far! I am getting lots of ideas. I noticed most entries are savoury except for the ice-cream from @Brulo, I think. Now it happens that I prefer savoury to sweet but I felt I should put in a word for for saffron used in baking too. Here are some chocolate and saffron muffins I cooked for Easter a while ago:

 

 

post #45 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by morning glory View Post

Some great entries so far! I am getting lots of ideas. I noticed most entries are savoury except for the ice-cream from @Brulo
, I think. Now it happens that I prefer savoury to sweet but I felt I should put in a word for for saffron used in baking too. Here are some chocolate and saffron muffins I cooked for Easter a while ago:






Oooh those look sooooo good! I'm not that much into pastry yet, but I should start someday.

BTW the ice cream wasn't my submission but I'm seriously thinking on giving it a try (I've asked the poster for some insight). I've submitted the pasta dish! biggrin.gif

I'll try to make some more things to submit smile.gif
post #46 of 57

I made my attempt. It's not pretty, and the plating is sad, but I was late for other appointments. Took longer in the prep and cooking than I expected. 

 

Built a rub of ginger, cumin, coriander, salt, pepper, chile pepper, smoked paprika, turmeric and saffron. Made about 50% more than my reference recipes suggested. I'll explain why below.

 

Season chicken thighs. I slit along the bone on the hopes it would make for easy removal late in the cooking. Just an idea that occurred to me at the time. I chose bone in and skin on because I wanted the rendered fat and the flavor from the bone. 

 

 

 

Season the skin side. 

 

 

Into a hot dutch oven, this is technically an 8 quart stock pot with a tablespoon of butter. The high sides helped control the oil splattering. 

 

 

Flip when browned. 

 

 

This is essentially a braise. And braised chicken skin is unpleasant. So I removed the skin and seasoned the now exposed flesh. Those other two thighs are cooking a little slower. I wasn't evenly over my gas burner I suppose. This is why I wanted extra seasoning. I wanted a fully seasoned thigh but knew I would be pulling the skin. 

 

 

Flip and cook the now skinless side again.You'll notice there is a fair amount of rendered fat. I ended up pouring some off, but reserved it for possible later use depending how things turned out. It had plenty of flavor in it. 

 

 

Toss the onions through the surplus rub on the baking sheet. No need to waste it. 

 

 

Work up the fond and season with some extra rub. There was more and darker fond than I anticipated. This impacted the color of the final dish more than the saffron. Cook the onion slowly over medium low heat. You want it soft but not caramelized. 

 

 

Add a little water and puree. This is an idea I've seen in Indian cooking and having just read it again it seemed something that could work well here. 

 

 

Add extra seasoning, in this case the long cinammon stick and two dried lemons. Also add the vegetables, some roll cut carrots and triangular cut sweet potatoes. 

 

 

Return the chicken to the pot and add the chickpeas. Add water sufficient to braise. Most recipes added the dried fruit later in the cooking. I used some crisp dried apples as that's what I had on hand. Being so crispy, I thought they'd benefit from longer cooking. Simmer about 40 minutes stirring every 10 minutes. Add some honey in the last 10 minutes, 1-2 tablespoons. At that last 10 minutes I tried to pull the bones. They didn't want come out cleanly or readily yet, so it was served with the bones in.

 

 

I used a whole wheat pearl cous cous that also hid the color of the saffron that seasoned it. Garnished with cilantro.Certainly darker than anticipated. If I'd used cream in the sauce as at the restaurant, it would probably be yellow.  I used the surplus rendered seasoned chicken fat on the cous cous instead of butter.

 

I offered to crisp up squares of the seasoned chicken skin as a final garnish for anyone so interested. I had no takers. 

 

 

The flavor was quite good, my wife liked it better than at the restaurant. But not a handsome presentation. 

Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
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Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
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post #47 of 57
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brulo View Post


Oooh those look sooooo good! I'm not that much into pastry yet, but I should start someday.

BTW the ice cream wasn't my submission but I'm seriously thinking on giving it a try (I've asked the poster for some insight). I've submitted the pasta dish! biggrin.gif

I'll try to make some more things to submit smile.gif


Oops. I will go and correct this... oh - too late to correct it. The credit for the ice-cream goes to @eastshores

post #48 of 57
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by phatch View Post
 

I made my attempt. It's not pretty, and the plating is sad, but I was late for other appointments. Took longer in the prep and cooking than I expected. 

 

 

 

 

This seems like quite a complicated preparation - but I can imagine the result is tasty. I personally don't think cream needs to go anywhere near this recipe so I'm glad you left it out. I didn't understand the reference to 'fond'. What is a fond? My ignorance, I think!

post #49 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by morning glory View Post

This seems like quite a complicated preparation - but I can imagine the result is tasty. I personally don't think cream needs to go anywhere near this recipe so I'm glad you left it out. I didn't understand the reference to 'fond'. What is a fond? My ignorance, I think!

I assumed he meant something like a "base" or "stock", in Spanish we use "fondo" which literally means "bottom" to refer to what's left in the bottom of the pan that you want to use since it have the flavors very concentrated. I'm not really sure what's the correct English culinary term for that.
post #50 of 57

In French, "stock" is called "fond".

post #51 of 57

Fond is the browned bits left in the bottom of the pan from cooking meat. I meant that I was using the onions to render liquid and work that off the pan to keep the flavor but prevent the fond from burning. Sort of like deglazing with wine, but a drier method.

Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
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Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
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post #52 of 57
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by phatch View Post
 

Fond is the browned bits left in the bottom of the pan from cooking meat. I meant that I was using the onions to render liquid and work that off the pan to keep the flavor but prevent the fond from burning. Sort of like deglazing with wine, but a drier method.


Thank you for clarifying. I realised after I had posted that 'fond' was French for 'base or bottom' so it all now makes sense. :)  Thanks to @frenchfries and @Brulo too for the input.

post #53 of 57
Thread Starter 

There have been some lovely dishes posted so far but it seems to have gone a bit quiet of late. Still 5 days to go though....  meanwhile, here's one I cooked earlier: Gingered Prawns with Orange Rapture Sauce and Linguine. The sauce is with saffron and variety of tomatoes called Orange Rapture, hence the title.

 

post #54 of 57
Yummy looking!
post #55 of 57

Beautiful colours!

post #56 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by morning glory View Post
 

There have been some lovely dishes posted so far but it seems to have gone a bit quiet of late. Still 5 days to go though....  meanwhile, here's one I cooked earlier: Gingered Prawns with Orange Rapture Sauce and Linguine. The sauce is with saffron and variety of tomatoes called Orange Rapture, hence the title.

That looks fantastic. A friend of mine, who was no cook, knew only one dish. One time he had us over for dinner and made that one dish he knew. It was saffron linguine with lobster... your plate reminds me of that dish (it was absolutely delicious).

post #57 of 57

Saffron is a very important spice in indian cooking in northern regions.

I worked at pastry station for couple of months at a high end indian restaurant..and made rice pudding called Phirni with saffron...its essentially rice paste  and full cream milk and sugar reduced to a thick pudding by stirring continuously over medium heat.

did plating with some white sesame chocolate, pomegranate, micro cilantro, masala streusel and milk jam.

 

 

 

will post pics of saffron tea also later...its masala tea with infused saffron, cardamom, cloves and indian basil leaves 

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