What is buttermilk pie? You may have heard it called 'chess pie' by older generations (but a true chess pie recipe uses cornmeal - this one doesn't). It's a custard-y pie, originally from the United Kingdom, and now a staple on many dessert tables in the South. A very basic recipe consisting of a filling made with sugar, butter, eggs, buttermilk and wheat flour, buttermilk pie is smooth, creamy, and just right after a heavy main dish meal. This recipe came from JustAPinch.com, and is one of my favorites.
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 3/4 cup sugar
2 large eggs
3 Tbs flour
pinch of salt
1 stick butter, melted
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp nutmeg
- Preheat oven to 400F.
- Mix all ingredients together and pour into a nine-inch, unbaked pie shell.* Sprinkle the top lightly with nutmeg.
- Bake 15 minutes.
- Reduce oven to 350F and bake for 45 minutes.
- Cool on a rack to allow filling to set.
* Not a fan of your homemade pie crust, or are short on time? Here's a link to an interesting review of 10 different store-bought pie crust brands. Take your pick.
These longer days mean summer is not so far away, and that also means fishing season will soon be upon us.
Alaska's king salmon are considered the "best of the best" when it comes to a high oil content, firm flesh, and a beautiful color. That same oil content also makes it perfect for grilling, and that's why I love this miso and sake version. Simple, succulent, and perfect for Valentine's Day (guys, that's today).
1/3 cup white miso (fermented bean paste)
1/3 cup mirin (Japanese sweet rice wine)
1/3 cup sake
1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
3 Tbs soy sauce
2 Tbs chopped green onion (for garnish)
4 nice chunks of king salmon, about four ounces each
In a nonreactive bowl (glass or plastic), mix the first five ingredients.
Pour mixture into a large zipper bag, and add fish pieces.
Knead the bag gently to coat salmon evenly, and place the bag into the refrigerator for at least three hours (and up to six hours).
Fire up the grill to medium heat. Grill your fish for three to four minutes per side, or until salmon flakes easily with a fork. Do not overcook!
Plate and top with chopped green onions.
Have a case of the Mondays? Here's a delicious recipe sure to cheer up everyone in the house. Ragu Bolognese is a rich, red sauce that originated in, of course, Bologna, Italy. It's a meat-based sauce that packs a punch because it also takes some time to prepare, allowing ingredients like white wine, pancetta (pork belly), half-and-half, and a few vegetables to blend flavors and create a thick, creamy sauce. Serve it over your favorite pasta accompanied by a green salad and crusty bread.
Ragu Bolognese (serves 4)
3 Tbs butter
4 Tbs olive oil
1 clove garlic, sliced
1 carrot, peeled and diced
1 onion, diced
1 stalk celery, diced
1 cup dry white wine
1/2 can tomato paste (8 oz)
1 cup half-and-half
1/4 lb pancetta (or bacon if you must), ground**
1 lb ground veal (find it at Butcher Block 9 in Anchorage)
1 lb ground pork (same place)
Salt and pepper to taste
Parmesan cheese to top the dish
Heat butter and olive oil in 8-quart saucepan over medium heat. Add onion, garlic, and celery, and saute' until translucent. Add pork, veal, and pancetta or bacon, and turn heat to high. Heat until meat is browned, stirring only so that the meat is broken up.
Add the half-and-half, tomato paste, and wine. Simmer 1 to 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally.
Season with salt and pepper, then remove from heat.
Serve over your favorite pasta, and sprinkle with parmesan cheese.
** How do you grind bacon or pancetta? You ask your butcher, or give it a few pulses in a food processor. Dice the pancetta or bacon, put on a cookie sheet and freeze for about 30 minutes until firm. Place in the food processor and grind.
Favorites from Chef Mark Bly
Looking for a copy of a favorite Flying Chef recipe? Need a tip for your next gathering? This is the place.