Friday, August 12, 2011

Corn Filled Pimiento Cups and Apricot Rice Salad-Gourmet July 1972 and October 1973

These were both rather easy to do, with a bit of planning ahead. The corn recipe called for pimiento from a jar. I had both red and green peppers, so I roasted my own. I wouldn't turn my nose up at red peppers from a jar-if I had any, they would have been used. The recipe calls for these to be made quite small in fluted tart tins. I decided to do a couple large ramekins so I'd have a more of a dish than a decoration. Your call. I'll post the recipe as published, but know that it adapts well to larger sizes.

The rice salad, I changed quite a bit as far as seasonings. I used fresh peas, raisins rather than sultanas, and I skipped the coriander and sesame oil. Instead, I used fennel and mint. Still, the technique works as promised in the magazine, and you end up with enough rice salad to get through a busy weekend when there isn't enough time to cook. I tend to cook in quantity on Friday, and most weeks that keeps me out of the kitchen all weekend.

I had a bit of corn filling left, so I baked it alone in a ramekin-you can see it in the photograph. That's what the interior of the pepper cup looks like. Really striking, I think. The chickpea salad is little more than tinned chickpeas tossed with slow-roasted tomatoes, garlic, thyme, and bay leaves. Olive oil, salt and pepper-and that's about it. Really, couldn't be simpler.

For The Corn-Pimiento Cups:

In a small saucepan melt 1 tablespoon butter over medium heat. Add 1 tablespoon flour and cook the roux, stirring for 1 minute. Remove from heat and stir in 1/2 cup scalded milk. return pan to to the heat and cook, stirring with a whisk until it is thick and smooth. Add salt and pepper to taste. Simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool.

In a skillet, saute 1 cup cooked corn in 3 tablespoons butter for 3 minutes. Add the corn to the sauce, with 2 teaspoons snipped chives, 2 egg yolks, and salt and pepper to taste.

Butter 6 deep fluted tartlet tins 2 3/4 inches across the top. Line them with whole pimentos, and cut them flush to the top of the tins. Fill with corn mixture. Arrange on baking sheet and bake at 350 degrees f. for 15 minutes or until set. Loosen sides with a sharp knife, and turn out on a serving platter. Garnish each cup with a sprig of parsley (because in 1972, parsley garnish and snipped chives showed you were all classy-n-stuff).

ce Salad With Peaches and Apricots:

In a single thickness cheesecloth tie 3 tablespoons chopped ginger root a 1 teaspoon coriander seed, bruised. In a saucepan, add the spicebag to 4 1/2 cups water, and 2 teaspoons salt, and bring to the boil. Add 2 cups rice, and cover. Simmer until water is absorbed-about 15 minutes. Remove spice bag.

In a small saucepan, simmer 6 dried apricots, and 6 dried peach halves, both slivered. Place in water to cover and cook 10 minutes. Add 3 tablespoons sultanas and simmer five minutes longer. Drain fruits. Add them to the rice along with 6 scallions, thinly sliced (I used shallots).

In a small bowl, combine 2 tablespoons each sherry and white wine vinegar and salt and pepper to taste. Pour in 1/3 cup olive oil and 1/4 cup sesame oil (I used all olive) in a thin stream whisking. Pour dressing over fruit and rice. Toss well. Chill. Add 1 cup diced red pepper, and toss the salad before serving (I omitted the red pepper).

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