hey y'all! i'm scrambling to get all my work done before i leave town tonight - sam and i are heading up to portland, maine for a long weekend with some very good friends of mine who fled there from new york about a year ago. in the meantime, i wanted to do a quick food post of some snacks i've made for my officemates lately.
i'm a pastry chef by trade, but currently working in an office full time while sam & i save our pennies towards opening a bakery of our own someday, hopefully in the not-too-distant future. i'm fortunate to have enough down time at work, along with a fully functional kitchen, to be able to practice my passion on an almost-daily basis, whipping up snacks for the office; no one's complained yet. a couple weeks ago it was lobster rolls, and today i made an apple-pear crumble to usher in the fall (and make my absence tomorrow a little less painful.)
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tarragon lobster rolls
(makes 10 full sized rolls)
2 lbs lobster meat, cooked
1 package standard hot dog buns
2 T melted butter
1 T chopped tarragon
1 t good, smoked spanish paprika
~ 1/2 cup mayonnaise (to your taste)
salt & pepper
very simple - set aside the hot dog buns and butter; mix everything else in a bowl, tasting as you go. add paprika, salt, pepper & mayo as you want to get it the consistency you like - this is a jumping off point (i like mine pretty salty and a little heavy on the mayo.) then turn your oven to 300, brush the hot dog buns with butter, and toast them for just a couple of minutes; fill and serve immediately, as they'll get soggy if you let them sit around.
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easy apple & pear crumble
i say "easy" because i made this entirely with stuff that was in my office already - no need for anything fancy. i even used a pre-made pie crust, which is a NEVER for me except that there are no pie pans in the office and i don't have a choice.
about 2 T unsalted butter
about 1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 t cinnamon
1/2 t ground ginger
1 t vanilla
pinch of salt
about 2 T flour
about 1 1/2 cups whole almonds
4 T unsalted butter
3 T flour
heat oven to 350. put your pre-made crust in and bake it until it's just browned, about 10 to 15 minutes. take it out and set aside.
peel & core apples and pears; cut into thin slices and set aside. start the butter in a medium pot. once the butter is browned, add the pears & apples and cook until softened. add sugar and spices and cook until the liquid has thickened and there isn't much of it, stirring occasionally. remove from heat.
to make the crumble, start the almonds, sugar, flour and spices in a blender or food processor; pulse until the almond has been chopped up into little bits. add the butter and pulse until it forms a clumpy crumb. put it in the fridge until you're ready to use it.
pour the filling into the crust and smooth it out; place the crumble on top, crumbling it into bite sized pieces, and bake until the top and crust have browned, about 10-15 minutes. let it cook for ten minutes or so, and voila! delicious. i whipped up a little vanilla whipped cream to top them off. deeeelicious, and perfect for this season change (pears are so good right now.)
so have a great weekend everyone! i hope to come back refreshed, lungs full of northeastern air and legs exhausted from many dance-a-thons. i'll do my best to take lots of pictures.
*** edited to add lobster roll recipe for susanelle.