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Savory Brioche

Some time ago, my Russian speaking friends were praising Hans Ovando’s brioche with camembert, olives, and bacon. I’ve been thinking about trying this idea with my favorite brioche recipe and local ingredients for a few years. I couldn’t fit it into my schedule until the last December request for brioche class. I suggested making a Sweet Snowflake brioche, for it’s the season. My guests suggested making a savory aka “соленую” salted brioche as it is known in Russian. We made both. The savory brioche turned out to be so good, all of us made it several times after the class for family meals and to gift our friends!

January 3, 2020
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Rhubarb Cake with Hazelnut Meringue

This is one of my old, before-culinary-school recipes. I was tweaking some rhubarb cake recipes six years ago, and this one was my final ever since. It came to my mind again a few days ago when I saw beautiful bright pink, glossy rhubarb stalks at Central Market. I tend to improve either proportions or techniques when revisiting recipes from the past. This cake escaped any changes at all. It doesn’t require any pro equipment or special skills, very easy to make, just follow the steps.

April 5, 2017
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Salo #3 | Cured in Hot Brine and Smoked Pork Belly

As I mentioned earlier, Salo in a Jar (сало в банке) is a highly popular way of wet curing salo at home, and there are recipes with cold and hot brine. But where the idea hot brine comes from? Can I speculate that someone impatient decided to try it hot? The result was somewhat in between cured and cooked salo, which is another widely used cooking method for pork belly in Ukraine. Cured with hot brine salo was so pleasing that the recipe quickly became popular. Using sous vide allows full time and temperature control in this recipe.

February 8, 2017
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Huazontle Salad

Think broccoli with thinner and more fibrous stalks and stems. That’s huazontle, just with more tiny green buds and fewer stems and leaves. Huazontle bud clusters are simmered in salty water for 5-15 minutes (different sources give different timing) first. Then they are cooked as tortas (patties), which are formed by pressing huazontle clusters around a portion of queso fresco, dipped in flour then into an egg foam, and deep-fried. This recipe is sort of the same, but deconstructed.

January 18, 2017
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Apfelstrudel | Apple Strudel

I’ve never took pictures of my apple strudels before, because I was never satisfied with the result. A few weeks ago, I finally found a perfect recipe. It is smart, logical, with detailed instructions — Original Viennese Apple Strudel (Apfelstrudel). I am adding it to my collection of favorite recipes with many thanks to Ursula & David.

October 31, 2016
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Experimenting with Kvass in Texas

“What’s more absurd than a novel about salmon fishing in Yemen?” Kvass Madness 2016 It’s time to summarize my 2016 kvass quest. Last Sunday, my kvass-craving guests came to Lyukum Cooking Lab to celebrate kvass! I had 5+ batches of kvass and three traditional Russian cold kvass-based summer kinds of soup to taste. Everybody was…

May 31, 2016
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4th of July Crackle Buns

It became a tradition in our family to bake these buns for the 4th of July burgers. They are very attractive and entertaining to bite. This recipe is based on Dutch crackle bread.

July 1, 2015
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Fresh Linguini with Cuttlefish and Ramps Sauce

I like when my students can take home what they made during the class and finish or use it for cooking at home. This recipe is a perfect example how to fix a quick and beautiful meal at home using what you learned and prepared during my cooking classes. Frozen ramps paste and ramps compound butter are the products of Wild, Wild, Wild Ramps! workshop, and fresh linguini are the result of Fresh Pasta cooking class.

May 9, 2015
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More Ramps! Salad Dressing

Blanching is a must for herbs and vegetables to stop the enzyme action and to destroy any microorganisms present on the surface. Freezing only helps to remove extra moisture. Are there any other techniques to replace blanching benefits? Yes. There is heat-shocking.

May 3, 2015
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Cooking is…

Sometimes I try to imagine people, whose lives have never been affected by cancer, who don’t have any relatives, friends, or co-workers ever diagnosed with this disease. It seems impossible. Most people are aware of it. Yet, when it comes to caregiving and helping to cancer patients many of us might feel helpless. We hope…

March 21, 2015
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