Thursday, April 30, 2009

Check out my article in Madison Originals Magazine

Check out the article I wrote for Madison Originals Magazine about the Aldo Leopold Nature Center- pg 13 (click on the title of this post to go there)

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Blueberry Cream Cheese Puff Pastry

Obviously I'm on a bit of a puff pastry kick...well, actually anything with dough is good...
So here's what I did with the other sheet of puff pastry that I had kept in the freezer after I made the lamb puff pastry. Thawed the pastry for about 35 minutes, rolled it out, cut it into three pieces and then laid it on a lined baking sheet and baked it for 20 minutes at 400°. Then, I took 8 oz of softened cream cheese, mixed it with 1/4 cup sugar and spread that on two of the sections of puff pastry and topped that with a handful of blueberries on each. I then layered the puff pastry one atop the other, finishing with the untopped section, which I basted with egg wash and then sprinkled a little sugar on top. I then baked it for an additional 20 minutes at 400°.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Lamb and Asparagus Puff Pastry

Last week I made a leg of lamb and wanted to do something fun with the yummy leftovers. I came up with this:

I took a sheet of puff pastry dough, rolled it out, diced about 1 cup of meat and spread that down the middle of the puff pastry, topped that with about 3/4 cup blanched asparagus, topped that with crumbled French style feta cheese from Capri Farm, drizzled that with a little extra virgin olive oil and sprinkled some Herbs de Provence on top, then folded over the pastry and the ends, placed it seam down on a greased sheet pan and slashed the top diagonally a few times. I baked it at 400° for about 40 minutes and voila...a beautiful dinner from leftovers.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Peep Drill

Seen in Madison...The Bunny giving instructions to the Peeps just prior to their grand entrance...

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

At The Bayou

The Bayou comes to Madison in grand fashion.

On Saturday we made our first visit to The Bayou on Butler Street in Madison. We arrived while brunch was still serving, which sounded very good, but had a hankering for lunch so we waited until noon to order and had some tasty items off the lunch menu.
Tim and I are Bloody Mary snobs and are often disappointed with Bloody Marys at restaurants--not so at The Bayou. We thoroughly enjoyed the kick of heat in their special mix, which was a hint of things to come. One of only a handful of places in town where you can order fresh oysters on the half shell and they were outstanding. Tim ordered a dozen of the James River oysters from Virginia and although they were tiny little buggers, the taste was extremely fresh and clean. The Bayou offers a choice of three sauces with the oysters and we chose the house-made hot sauce. It was the beginning of a beautiful thing! Although the oysters need no sauce other than their own brine, the hot sauce was great with some of the other items we ordered.

The bayou offers traditional Nawlins-syle fare including Po Boys, Gumbo, Crawfish Etouffee. There were so many yummy sounding things we'll definitely be going back to try more. We tried the BBQ Shrimp appetizer which comes on a bed of rice with one skewer of shrimp and two skewers of vegetables. The rice was super with the hot sauce on it.

Tim had a crawfish Po Boy with a side of house made Baked Beans with Applewood Smoked Bacon, and I had the Gumbo, which was chock full of seafood and tasty but not too spicy. As usual we had too much food but fortunately I had ordered only a cup of the Gumbo so I helped polish off the crawdads from the Po Boy. The decor at The Bayou is something worth seeing, and it ought to be--the owners took about four years getting the place done up Mardi Gras style. The murals alone took over a year to paint. We plan to go back and try brunch some Saturday--they're closed on Sundays. If you go, check out the beer octopus over the bar. Apparently it comes down from the ceiling for a group beer chug--I'm sure that goes over well with the college crowd. As with all new restaurants The Bayou is still working out some of their menu and service details, but they seem to be off to a roaring start.

Also available on
The Bayou on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

The 3/50 Project

Have you heard about the 3/50 Project? Do you want to do something to help local businesses during these difficult economic times? Do you care about possibly losing the locally owned bookstore, hardware store, coffee shop, or restaurant? Visit the 3/50 Project and see how you can make a difference!