Going Galt (Cooking open thread edition)

There are days, kiddies, when I tire of politics and the heady whirl, and the thought of suffering through another fifteen pages of Kathryn Jean Lopez whining about young girls wearing makeup is enough to make me want to remove my own hand so I can’t operate the mouse any more.

There are days when I can’t muster the strength to tell you the story of the time when Chris Christie got stuck on the Tilt-A-Whirl at the Convent of St. Fidelis of Sigmaringen’s Annual Fair and ended up vomiting on Ann Coulter’s head during the ceremonial stoning of the adulteresses in the carpark out the back, despite the pleasure I know such a story would bring to you all.

Today is one such day. The final straw this morning was Jonah Goldberg offering congratulations to Ben Fucking Shapiro at the Corner on that basis that Ben has apparently:

gotten a whole bunch of liberal Hollywood muckety mucks to confess their very liberal agenda

in his new book, in addition to not soiling himself in public for five whole days. The Hollywood Reporter quotes several of the more shocking revelations from Ben’s book, including that:

MASH had a pacifist agenda, says co-creator and director Gene Reynolds. “We wanted to point out the wastefulness of war,” he says in the book.

Be still, my barely beating heart – a fine piece of investigative journalism that surely rivals the time Peggy Noonan photocopied her own vomit and sold it to the Washington Post as a hard-hitting expose of alcoholism in the news-media.

Peggy, by the way, is channelling Andrew Sullivan:

Democrats, on the other hand, should be forced to answer a question. If you oppose the highly specific Ryan plan, fine, but tell us your specific proposal. How will you save Medicare? Will you let it die?

questions to which my considered and carefully expressed response is “Screw you, you drunken asshole”.

On days like this, I like to bake, and I hope you won’t mind me sharing a recipe with you. You may need the distraction as much as I do.

Today I have been pottering around my charming kitchenette – I have grey granite benchtops, by the way, and Halston oven mitts which are the same cerise color as my refrigerator – cooking a little recipe which I snaffled from Julia Child. I don’t mean I cadged it from Mastering the Art of French Cooking, although I’m sure it’s in there. I mean I managed to grab it out of Julia’s pocket one evening in Paris when she was trapped under a drunken Simone Beck. There. Don’t say I never do anything for you. Now you’ve got a free recipe and you don’t have to watch that Julie and Julia crap either.

Julia calls it “Pommes Normande en Belle Vue” which is posh for “baked apple pudding”.

You need 2 pounds of apples, a little bit of water, the finely grated rind of a lemon, a cup and a half of sugar or so (depending on how sweet your apples are), a big slosh of brandy (I like to use Pommeau de Normandie because I’m dead fancy), a tablespoon of butter and two whole eggs plus one egg white.

Julia says that you need to have a two and a half pint, cylindrical fireproof mould but frankly, who the fuck would have one of those? I use a little rectangular perspex baking dish.

Set your oven to 400 degrees.

The first stage is to line whatever you are cooking the pudding in with caramel, just like a creme caramel, so that when you unmould it the pudding has a brown glaze and a delicious caramel sauce.

Put three quarters of a cup of sugar in a little saucepan with enough water to just wet it, turn up the gas pretty high and let it bubble until the water dissolves and the sugar melts and darkens. If it starts to burn in any spots, swirl the saucepan until the sugar mixes together. Don’t stir it or the sugar will crystalize, and for God’s sake don’t get it on yourself. I like both my caramel and my men dark brown, but it’s really up to you.

When the caramel has reached your preferred shade, pour it into your dish and then (wearing oven mitts, please) quickly tilt the mould around until the caramel has set and covered the whole of the inside. Then put it aside for later.

Peel the apples and chop them into quarters. Put them in a big saucepan with a little water, cover on a low heat and simmer for 20 minutes until the apple is soft and starting to fall apart. Stir in the lemon rind and the rest of the sugar. You can put a big pinch of cinnamon in at this point if you like.

Then turn up the heat and boil the mixture for about five minutes, stirring all the time, until you have a very thick apple sauce. Whisk in the alcohol and the butter and, when the butter has melted, the eggs one by one. You’ll need to be quick so the egg white doesn’t start to cook, but if you end up with some little bits of cooked white, just whisk until they go away.

Pour the mixture into your baking dish, stick the baking dish in a larger baking dish and stick the lot in the oven. Pour boiling water into the outside dish three quarters of the way up the side of the inside dish and let it cook for an hour. It should puff up quite nicely. If it is browned on top put a piece of baking paper over it, and then cook for up to another half an hour until it seems quite set and starts to pull away from the edge of the baking dish.

This is wonderful hot and spooned out of the dish, or you can put it in the refrigerator overnight and then turn it out onto a plate for serving. It is really quite delicious – light and yet full of the flavor of the apples.

This picture may not look particularly appetizing, but if you pair this it a nice ice cream (like my never fail vanilla and poached pear), you will have to beat the family off with sticks. I was going to unmould it and take a picture of that, but I said ‘Fuck it” and ate the damn thing.

The pudding is quite smooth, so any additions from your personal pharmacopoeia will need to be carefully ground before mixing them in after the eggs. However, the bitterness of the caramel is very good for camouflaging the taste of almost anything. Cyanide in particular imparts a quite lovely almond hint to this dish.

What has been cooking at your house?

[Cross posted at Sarah, Proud and Tall.]






51 replies
  1. 1
    Agoraphobic Kleptomaniac says:

    a fine piece of investigative journalism that surely rivals the time Peggy Noonan photocopied her own vomit and sold it to the Washington post as a hard-hitting expose of alcoholism in the news-media.

    This sentence deserves a pulitzer.

  2. 2
    JGabriel says:

    Gretchen Carlson on Weiner (via TPM video):

    This is the biggest thing to me, he’s admitted to taking sexual photos! How many people are doing this? … I haven’t.

    This is a picture of Weiner’s underwear. Gretchen Carlson probably doesn’t take a picture of her underwear, because she doesn’t need to. Carlson flashes her undies so frequently on Fox & Friends that a YouTube search of Gretchen Carlson Upskirt yields 89 results.

    Hypocrite.

    .

  3. 3

    […] [Cross posted at Balloon Juice.] […]

  4. 4
    Rick Massimo says:

    gotten a whole bunch of liberal Hollywood muckety mucks to confess their very liberal agenda

    “And I’ll just keep saying liberal over and over like an incantation! Liberal! LIBERAL LIBERAL LIBERAL!

    It’s still 1995, right? That’s still all you have to do to win a political argument in America, right Mom?”

  5. 5
    Chrisd says:

    It’s too hot to fuss. Lately I’m mixing Irish oats, butter, turbinado sugar, a little salt, and nutmeg and sprinkling the crumbs over whatever berries I can find. Bake at 350 until it’s done. Serve warm with ice cream.

  6. 6
    Bulworth says:

    MASH had a pacifist agenda, says co-creator and director Gene Reynolds. “We wanted to point out the wastefulness of war,” he says in the book.

    And how very successful at stopping the wastefulness of war that was.

  7. 7
    adolphus says:

    Since this is an open thread about baking it is perhaps appropriate to point out that tomorrow is National Donut Day.

    Both KK and DD are offering free donuts.

  8. 8
    aimai says:

    That is very, very, very, good. And this is much needed. Thanks for posting it.

    I’m usually cooking something elaborate, or planning to, so usually I’d have some great thing to share up my sleeve but I’m just emotionally exhausted and morally bankrupt these days. Here’s a cheat sheet for a quick apple dessert that can be as amazing or as simple as you like.

    Take a very good brand of puff pastry and bake it in single rectangles. Take a great cooking apple and slice it into eighths. Make a caramel, as you have done, in a pan on top of the stove with lots of butter, lemon peel, and sugar and carefully poach the apples in this mixture (you can add calvados, as well). Split the puff pastry and put the caramelized apples inside just before serving and serve with whipped cream.

    For an even simpler version here is what a patisserie I know used to call a “Montpellier.” Take a square of puff pastry and brush it with butter and sprinkle a one inch border around the edge with sugar. Put down an inner base of apple butter or caramel sauce (yes, just regular caramel sauce if you have some left over from an ice cream bash). This square within a square should leave a one inch border around the edge. Slice two or three green apples very thinly and toss them with melted butter and cinnamon, if you like that sort of thing, and a squeeze of lemon. Then layer the apples in long rows, or for a killer presentation in a scalloped pattern like roof tiles on the diamond grid. Sprinkle lightly with granulated sugar to keep the apples from getting too moist and bake at a high heat at the bottom of the oven (greatest heat helps the laden puff pastry rise and cook).

    aimai

  9. 9
    merl says:

    MASH was anti-war? No shit. I didn’t need the virgin ben to point that out.

  10. 10
    Dave says:

    This sounds like a book that may be even dumber than “Liberal Fascism”. And that’s no mean feat.

  11. 11
    FormerSwingVoter says:

    Democrats, on the other hand, should be forced to answer a question. If you oppose the highly specific Ryan plan, fine, but tell us your specific proposal. How will you save Medicare? Will you let it die?

    The proposal that was already signed into law: the IPAB (which Republicans are still desperately trying to kill) will recommend specific changes to reduce spending (read: changing rates the same way private insurance does) whenever Medicare costs grow by more than a certain amount, and these changes will take effect automatically unless Congress approves equivalent cost reductions.

    Also, remember when President Obama gave a speech on deficit reduction? Yeah, he had the specific plan to strengthen the IPAB considerably and reduce the threshold for where their recommendations become law.

    So, dear political reporters everywhere – STOP BLINDLY PARROTING THE REPUBLICAN TALKING POINTS AND READ THE BILL, YOU WORTHLESS FUCKERS.

  12. 12
    Chris says:

    in his new book, in addition to not soiling himself in public for five whole days. The Hollywood Reporter quotes several of the more shocking revelations from Ben’s book, including that:
    MASH had a pacifist agenda, says co-creator and director Gene Reynolds. “We wanted to point out the wastefulness of war,” he says in the book.

    Asking why there are so few conservatives in Hollywood is like asking why there are so few conservative comedians: maybe it’s something conservatives just don’t do very well.

    Many people complain about the lack of creativity in Hollywood today. But imagine how much sooner the well would have dried up if the place had been a conservative bastion, unable to turn out anything but 1940s war propaganda films and 1950s classic westerns.

  13. 13
    Bulworth says:

    The proposal that was already signed into law: the IPAB (which Republicans are still desperately trying to kill) will recommend specific changes to reduce spending (read: changing rates the same way private insurance does) whenever Medicare costs grow by more than a certain amount, and these changes will take effect automatically unless Congress approves equivalent cost reductions.

    But the Republicans don’t like this one.

    So Democrats must be forced to offer something else. And if the Republicans don’t like that either, Democrats should be forced to offer still another. Rinse, repeat.

  14. 14

    @Bulworth: Dumbass ben shapiro does realize MASH was based on a movie, right? And that movie was based, wait for it, on a book?

    What is with these morans?

  15. 15
    LesGS says:

    I haven’t been baking, but my daughters have. The 22 yo found a phallus shaped cake tin in a sex shop a while back, and the 19 yo used it this week-end to bake a birthday cake for a friend. She decorated it by putting an H at the top end of the shaft with an N at the base, with a bunch of squiggles in-between. She then told her friend that that represented a tattoo and were the phallus to reach its full dimensions, it would read, “Happy Birthday, Benjamin.”

    They’ve also discovered it makes a fine jello mold and are thinking of making a rainbow arrayed platter of penii for Pride.

  16. 16
    Kyle says:

    @arguingwithsignposts:

    Expecting them to actually read a book is like Kryptonite.

    “Books” are ghostwritten by Rush, or Hannity, or Doughy Pantload, and purchased for 99c from the remainder bin at the librul bookstore (or thrown in free with the Weakly Standard subscription). Then they are Ostentatiously Displayed around the house as proof to your friends of your Ideological Correctness. Who actually reads them?

  17. 17

    From the linked “Hollywood Reporter” story:

    “I was shocked by the openness of the Hollywood crowd when it came to admitting anti-conservative discrimination inside the industry,” Shapiro told The U.K. Independent on Sunday. “They weren’t ashamed of it. In fact, some were actually proud of it.”

    This reminds me of the way PZ Myers reacts to similar charges. Of course we discriminate against idiots. We don’t want to hire idiots.

    This isn’t about discriminating against people with the wrong political affiliation on their voter registration card; it’s about an industry that trades in ideas rejecting people with stupid ideas.

  18. 18
    MonkeyBoy says:

    oooh. Another book begging for people to add snarky tags to its near virginal Amazon tags page, similar to Bobo’s tags.

    Being pressed now for time I haven’t thought up any yet.

  19. 19

    Aw, damnit! A cooking thread and I don’t even have any pretty new pictures to show. I’m taking a class this summer towards an eventual masters (I hope), and it’s got me so swamped with homework that I haven’t had as much time to cook. I have been making carnitas in two stages this week… hopefully finish it up tonight.

    I did make some homemade chili-scallion oil and use it on some vegetarian pho… but that was like two weeks ago.

  20. 20

    @arguingwithsignposts: Dumbass ben shapiro does realize MASH was based on a movie, right? And that movie was based, wait for it, on a book?

    But really, the TV series developed into very much its own entity. I didn’t read the book, and I didn’t care for the movie, but it’s safe to say that over eleven seasons M*A*S*H really transcended its origins.

  21. 21
    ruemara says:

    Knock you naked brownies. Fuck the caramel, just fill the layer with chocolate chips and candied ginger chips. Sweet, spicy, not as goopy as the caramel and chocolate version.

    Plus my regular brown bread for the week, and sour cream biscuits with sundried tomatoes. Working on a new recipe for sweetened goat cheese and pear tarts, but that’s back burnered for now.

    And I loved M*A*S*H. Since I was 7, I would watch MASH and Monty Python and Dr. Who with mad passion. I adored Hawkeye, even though I thought he was a jerk to women, but he was nice. I was practically born a hippy, considering what my childish fancy made me a fan of, even way back then. Not much for Silver Spoons or whatever kids watched back in the 80’s, but put on a M*A*S*H rerun block and then cut over to PBS for Nature, David Attenbourough Talks With Gravitas About Animals, then some BritComs, I was in heaven. With a book nearby, just in case there was a commercial. Ben Shapiro is moron.

  22. 22
    cyntax says:

    Here’s something tasty and easy: flageolet bean puree.

    Basically it’s hummus made with flageolet beans instead of chick peas and tahini. Just soak some flageolet beans over-night, then simmer them, then combine in a food processor with fresh tarragon, olive oil, lemon zest, and drizzle a little water to get the consistency smooth. Serve with corstini.

    It comes out the same pale green color as the beans and tastes like spring.

  23. 23
    FormerSwingVoter says:

    @Bulworth: It would be great if there could be a debate on anything in the world and the media didn’t pretend that Republicans were the only ones talking.

  24. 24
    Legalize says:

    I knew MASH was anti-war!! To my knowledge, until now, this was never pointed out by anyone with specificity or thoughtfulness. Or what the fuck ever.

  25. 25

    MASH had a pacifist agenda, says co-creator and director Gene Reynolds. “We wanted to point out the wastefulness of war,” he says in the book.

    OH MY GOD NO! THE HORRAH! THE HORRAH!

    Next they’ll tell us k.d. lang is gay!!!

  26. 26

    @Southern Beale: k.d. lang is gay?!?@Cris (without an H): While MASH the series did eclipse the movie and book, i highly recommend the book. I recall laughing hysterically at some of the scenes in there, even ones that didn’t make the movie.

  27. 27
    ruemara says:

    @cyntax:
    think I have to try that. Maybe some blue corn crackers and the puree. thanks for the recipe.

  28. 28
    mcmullje says:

    YUM! Thank you. I won’t read any more politics today so the nausea will abate and I can enjoy your lovely recipe!

  29. 29
    thruppence says:

    I love baking bread, but I’ve almost always been disappointed in the results. Until. Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day by Jeff Hertzberg. Great Results. Dead easy. Check your local library.

  30. 30
    Origuy says:

    The TV show was much more anti-war than the book. The author, Richard Hornberger, is quoted in his Variety obit:

    Hornberger said he couldn’t understand why the Robert Altman-directed film and the TV series were assailed for anti-war themes during the Vietnam War.
    __
    “I intended no messages in the book. I am a conservative Republican. I don’t hold with this anti-war nonsense,” he said.

    I should add that my Republican father, who was in the Corps of Engineers in Korea, loves the show.

  31. 31
    CynDee says:

    What has been cooking at your house?

    Um, I made some Luzianne decaf iced tea and had it with a Fig Newman. Does that count?

    my charming kitchenette – I have grey granite benchtops

    I just have a plain 1925 kitchen that’s too small, with pretty strawberry plants on the wallpaper and 1980s cheap goldish-grain faux butcher-block laminate countertop with papery blisters in it in a few spots. However, this countertop does not affect the quality of my tuna casseroles, in which I do not use canned peas.

    I guess I’ll try the apple custard; it sounds lovely. It’ll be good without the peas, too. Thank you.

  32. 32
    cyntax says:

    @ruemara:

    You bet. And have a lot of tarragon on hand; I went through two bunches when making about ~3 cups of beans.

    And I’d add Star Trek to your list of favorite childhood shows.

  33. 33
    David Brooks (not that one) is a dickhead. says:

    Which reminds me. Since Murkans have appropriated the word “pudding” for any obnoxious, heaving blob that you and I might call blancmange, what do they call what we call a pudding? Any idea?

    Oh dear. That syntax tells me I should take a few more sips. Or a few fewer.

  34. 34
    Butch says:

    Can I throw in – last month I moved from my mountain home, which was at 9,000 feet, to a farmhouse in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, where the elevation is right around 600 feet. I’ve had to learn to cook all over again; my first loaf of bread here resembled nothing so much as a doorstop and the first mashed taters would have needed more texture to be baby food. I’m getting there, though.

  35. 35

    @David Brooks (not that one) is a dickhead.: Heaven. That’s what I call it.

    Oh, Ms. Sarah, thank you very much for this post. The hearty laugh is just what I needed. That pudding looks absolutely TO DIE FOR, and if I could just have one sliver, I wouldn’t even mind having to run to the bathroom immediately after.

    But, when you are feeling better, I would love to hear about your threesome with Reagan and Gorbachev. Rumor is, the three of you weren’t seen for days.

  36. 36
    Elliecat says:

    MASH had a pacifist agenda, says co-creator and director Gene Reynolds. “We wanted to point out the wastefulness of war,” he says in the book.

    Seriously, this is just sad. In the day, I remember friends telling me excitedly about how MASH was really about the Vietnam War and how pointless and wasteful it was, and since that horrible war was still going on wasn’t that so cool? These were not political kids and most of their parents were either Republicans (like mine) or didn’t vote at all. But they all watched MASH.

    The only person I ever met who didn’t like MASH was a nurse at my doctor’s office who had been a nurse in the Korean War. She talked about fellow nurses who had been pretty much destroyed by the experience and she resented any part of it being depicted as “funny.”

  37. 37
    Paul in KY says:

    @Cris (without an H): Man, I loved that movie! The part where they inject the running back from the other team, the microphone under the bed for Frank & Hot Lips, rigging the shower when she went in! MASH was one of the funniest movies I’ve ever seen.

  38. 38
    redactor says:

    @David Brooks (not that one) is a dickhead.: The last time I was in the UK, “pudding” not coupled with “Yorkshire” was the generic term for what we Yanks would call “dessert.” Presumably you have a more specific definition in mind.

  39. 39
  40. 40
    JR in WV says:

    @Cris (without an H):

    But the poor stoopids, won’t someone think of their pride?

    Duhhh!

    Rejecting Repugnants because they can’t do anything is like… like… breathing fresh air on a sunny cool spring morning!

    The films made by conservatives, imagine the decreativity of the movie version of Liberal Nazis… or the real world example of Atlas Shrugged on film… Gross of $1MM and a cost of $44MM…

    And that boys and gurls is why Hollywood is mainly operated by Liberals… they know how to do complicated AND creative things.

    Speaking of food

    I recently started making a pepper sauce that goes with any spicy cuisine, based upon a condiment I ran into at a Thai place in Arizona. I slice serrano peppers into dime sized slices, and crush dozens of cloves of garlic and mince the squashed garlic into little shreds.

    Meanwhile I boil vinegar to dissolve some salt, and a tiny bit of suger… and if I’m feeling asian I add a quarter cup of fish sauce.

    I put the peppers in a mason jar that I’ve rinsed well with boiling water, and pack them in pretty well, and cover the peppers with the hot vinegar. Let it sit around for a few days, and then use the contents with BBQ, Cajun, Italian, Chinese, Thai, Indian or Korean food. Or pintos and corn, which is West Virginian comfort food. I’ve gotten to where I’ll use any dulse (bean) and enjoy it.

    For dessert.

    I’ve been making fruit salad with cherries, grapes, navel oranges, grapes and strawberries. Sprinkle a tiny bit of some kind of sugar, maybe some Cointreau or other fruitty booze. Stir and chill with a glass of some alcoholic fluid for a while before doing the next step.

    Then whip heavy cream, a lot of it, in a very cold glass/ceramic bowl. Add a little sugar and some more Cointreau or vanilla or almond extract. Dish up and dig in!

  41. 41
    Tuttle says:

    On days like this, I like to bake, and I hope you won’t mind me sharing a recipe with you.

    Me too! My recipe tonight will be along the lines of; one part Sour Diesel and one part White Rhino/Train Wreck hybrid.

  42. 42
    TG Chicago says:

    The great thing about the Hollywood Reporter article is that the radical leftist positions being advocated were things like “don’t kill people” and “don’t hate gay people”. Stuff that really shouldn’t be objectionable.

    I can sort of understand conservatives being mad at an “anti-gun agenda”… but MacGyver was a show about a guy who used brains rather than brawn (guns) to be a hero. It’s a typical underdog story. It’s not like MacGyver was telling people to picket the NRA or take guns out of the hands of hunters or something.

  43. 43
    jayjaybear says:

    @JR in WV: The millions and millions of people who didn’t go see An American Carol would agree with you on that point.

  44. 44
    Commenting at Balloon Juice since 1937 says:

    @<a href="#comme@CynDee: nt-2615173″>CynDee:

    I made some Luzianne decaf iced tea and had it with a Fig Newman

    I think Sarah would agree that you’re doing it right.

  45. 45
    Amir_Khalid says:

    Okay, this has nothing to do with food. But of all the places for Henry freaking Kissinger to turn up …

  46. 46
    a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q) says:

    Avocado hummus: A can of chickpeas drained/rinsed mixed with a clove of minced garlic, the juice of a medium lemon, a bit of olive oil and a ripe avocado. Blend all that with a nice bunch of cilantro (or parsley if cilantro gives you soap) and enjoy with pita or tortilla chips or both. It’s tasty and pretty.

  47. 47
    becca says:

    No baking for me in this heat. Not even bread, if I can get away with it.

    I keep the freezer container for my ice cream maker frozen all summer so I can make ice cream on a whim. I use egg substitute so it’s quick.

    I like to make syrups for the ice cream. Lavender is nice, as are rose hips and hibiscus.

    Got some rhubarb and orange sauce made up now. Dee-vine on buttermilk ice cream.

    Bet brown sugar and cinnamon ice cream would suit your pudding very well, SPT.

  48. 48
    AAA Bonds says:

    There are plenty of people who don’t know that MASH had a pacifist agenda. They’re all idiots, but nevertheless, if that somehow became a “story” on the “news”, imagine the SPLIT POLLS

  49. 49
    Ecks says:

    Democrats, on the other hand, should be forced to answer a question. If you oppose the highly specific Ryan plan, fine, but tell us your specific proposal. How will you save Medicare? Will you let it die?

    I’m assuming she was in a coma for the entire year and change in which we debated nothing else ad nauseum and then passed a bill doing it. That is some serious ass drinking right there.

  50. 50
    Queensbridge says:

    Reading through this thread, listening to Radio France FIP online when just now they played the Suicide is Painless theme from MASH.

  51. 51
    Yutsano says:

    @a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q): Consider this stoled. Next work potluck it might make it to the table.

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