Follow the culinary adventures and misadventures of the Cooking Agents (Ray and Katie). Watch as we eat/cook our way into adulthood.
In preparation for the day ahead of stock and soup making, today is pantry stocking day. I was out of town recently and busy using Groupon, Living Social and other group buying coupons, so my pantry was rather bare. My quest included a trip to the liquor store to grab some dry white wine in the form of Woodbrige by Robert Mondavi California 2009 Chardonnay and stops at Whole Foods (beef shank to be eaten in the main dish), Safeway (onions, garlic, mushrooms) and Giant (beef shank for beef stock, spices, and other vegetables for stock). One recipe in and I’m already down, but fear not! Store bought stock will be a money saver down the line. The total was somewhere north of $60, but that includes plenty of beef and leftovers ingredients that are frequent in the cookbook like white pepper and soup making vegetables.
Welcome To The Pantry, Here, Drink This.
Cafe Boulud Cookbook offers some additional tips and guides on basic kitchen tools and basic recipes like stock in the back of the book, which helps the home cooks make a more authentic meal. These are the parts of the book that I like to read first after browsing through the recipes first. Even if you can work with offal, you’re not a chef until you get your sauces and stock right.
Beef Shank, Lots of Beef Shank
Over the last couple of years I’ve been steadily purchasing tools for my kitchen (I should be the unofficial spokesman of Cuisinart), and I’m quite glad about having everything I need at my finger tips, but a good pantry is going to require fresh ingredients. That means trips to the store. I guess I’m a little spoiled in that I live within walking distance to a grocery store, but that doesn’t mean I don’t have days when two blocks just seems too far. If you can try planning a few meals ahead of time or pick recipes that use similar ingredients so that your greens don’t wilt and proteins don’t go bad.