Thursday, December 29, 2011

Maple Freddo. or Maple Semifreddo or Maple Mousse

Sister S. just moved back to the states after a chapter in Nova Scotia. To commemorate her birthday this year, we had a meal of recipes from The Taste of Nova Scotia Cookbook by Charles Lief and Heather MacKenzie. This included a main dish of pork with-- get this-- a savory blueberry sauce AND a topping of scallops.

For dessert, we had a blueberry grunt (must be why they have such high life expectancies in Nova Scotia-- all those antioxidants from blueberries) and a maple mousse (pg 112). I was quite taken with the maple mousse. The whole affair is frozen, which makes serving it and enjoying it quite like eating ice cream. However, it is a mousse-- a custard folded into whipped cream. Then perhaps it is a semifreddo? But it is entirely frozen, so I want to just call it freddo. So I will.

Maple "Freddo"

6 egg yolks
3/4 c (175 mL) pure maple syrup
dash of salt
2 c (500 mL) whipping cream

Combine egg yolks, maple syrup, and salt in top of a double boiler set-up. Cook until thickened, stirring constantly (approximately 10-15 minutes). When custard coats the back of a spoon, remove from heat. Pour into a large bowl and beat with a wire whisk until cooled-- custard will appear light and frothy. Set aside. Meanwhile, place the whipping cream in a large bowl, and whip until thickened, but not stiff. Fold gently into custard until blended. The recipe suggests pouring it into 8 individual serving dishes or molds; we just poured it into a couple larger containers. Freeze for at least 6 hours. The recipe also suggests serving with whipped cream and fresh mint leaf; I probably won't. It's plenty whipped cream-y enough.

It also occurs to me that it might be fun to make a "baked Nova Scotia," with the egg whites leftover from harvesting the 6 egg yolks.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Lemon Clam Pasta

I do not think I like clams. Clam chowder is much better, for me, as simply chowder. But my friend Betsey posted this recipe to her blog and facebook at least four times, and, because I trust Betsey, I finally wrote it down and decided to make it. Turns out I really liked it when fresh, but not as leftovers. When fresh, it was delicious and didn't have any tinny, fishy flavors. Those came with just a day of leftoverdom. My friend who came over to make and eat it with me really liked this recipe and ate tons.

Lemon Clam Pasta

1/2 c butter
3 T olive oil
1/2 c finely chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, crushed
2 8 oz cans clams, drained; save liquid
3 T lemon juice
1 T chopped parsley
2 t grated lemon peel
1/4 t pepper
1 bay leaf
1 lb spaghetti, cooked, drained
6 lemon wedges
2 green onions, chopped
Parmesan cheese

Heat 3 T of the butter and the olive oil in a heavy pan. Cook onion and garlic until tender. Add the clam juice, the lemon juice, parsley, lemon zest, pepper, and bay leaf. Simmer till reduced to about 1 cup. Remove the bay leaf. Stir in clams and heat through. Add the rest of the butter and stir it in. Pour over the spaghetti. Serve with Parmesan cheese, green onions, and lemon wedges.