Friday, February 15, 2008

Like a kid in a candy store

Dear Williams-Sonoma,

I love you. Very very much. Your bright and shiny kitchen tools beckon me to enter through your hallowed doorway. You seem to have something new for me everytime. It's like you knew I'd be coming and wanted me to feel welcome.

On this Valentine's Day, I ask you just one thing in return for all the marvelous things you gave (sold) me. For the love of all things holy, please let me go. Please. I simply can't afford you. One day soon when I walk past you in the mall, just look away. Like we never meant anything to each other.

Oh, I love you. And how I'll miss you. But if you ever think of me (by slashing your prices), I'm just an email away.

Warmly (350 F),


Williams-Sonoma: Essentials of Healthful Cooking:
I can't believe I haven't mentioned this book before! It's absolutely one of my favorites. I go back to it time and time again. If you've tried "my favorite side dish of all time" - sweet potatoes and cranberry hash, then you know that this book contains some real gems.

The recipes, stunning pictures and helpful techinques within this book is just the tip of the iceberg. When I first started out cooking with health in mind, this was my playbook. The first few pages offer an ingredient list for a healthy kitchen. Then later it illustrates which kitchen equipment and tools are essential for maintaining a healthy lifestyle. I sincerely believe this is a "must-have."

One last thought, that many of you will appreciate: the pages don't stick! This is a well made book and takes a beating well. Even my puppy has chewed on the hard cover edges and it kept on ticking.

Goat Cheese and Potato Gratin
from Williams-Sonoma Essentials of Healthful Cooking

2 t extra virgin olive oil
1 1/2 lb small round white potatoes
2 T finely chopped Italian parsley
1 t fresh thyme
1 T all purpose plain flour
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
3 oz crumbled very cold fresh goat cheese (about 3/4 cup)
1 1/4 cups 1 percent fat milk
1 T grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

Preheat the oven to 350 F. Brush an 8 in. square or other shallow 1 1/2 quart baking dish with olive oil.

Using a mandoline or a large sharp knife, slice the potatoes paper thin.

In a small bowl, stir together the parsley and 1 t thyme. In another small bowl, stir together the flour, 1/4 t s and a grind of pepper. Place the goat cheese in a third bowl.

Arrange 1/3 of the potato slices, slightly overlapping them, in the baking dish. Sprinkle evenly with half of the herb mix, half of the flour mix and one third of the goat cheese. Arrange 1/2 of the remaining potato slices on top, again overlapping them slightly. Sprinkle evenly with the remaining herb mix, flour mix, and half the remaining cheese. Arrange the remaining potato slices in a layer on top and sprinkle with the remaining goat cheese. Pour the milk evenly on top.

Cover the dish tightly with foil. Bake until the potatoes are tender with pierced with a knife. About 1 hour. Uncover, sprinkle with Parmigiano-Reggiano, and continue to bake until golden. About 15 minutes longer. Remove from oven and let stand 15 min. before serving. This will allow it time to thicken.

Garnish with thyme leaves and serve.

  • Can anything with potatoes and cheese ever be bad? Even if you're not a goat cheese fan, this dish might win you over. Thank you to my hubby for introducing me to goat cheese several years ago. I've loved it - and you- ever since.

Happy Valentine's Day everyone.


Kitchen Queen Victoria said...

Karen, my only (and I do mean only saving grace when it comes to stores like Williams Sonoma and Sur La Table is that they are located in areas of town that I do not frequent very often. But when I do... ;)

Since you've tried the recipe, do you think that a cheese other than goat cheese would be good in this? Although I can get my husband to try recipes containing goat cheese, if it is a dominant flavor he makes "the face". I do not like "the face"...

Anonymous said...

i can't believe this...

i bought turnips the other day because i thought i recalled you had a recipe that included turnips. alas i come home with my 2 turnips ready to cook them and i don't see a recipe on tis blog with turnips. boo hoo.

anyway, i'll try to cook with the turnips and will tell you how it is.

thanks for helping me be more adventurous in the veggie aisle! -jill

Josie said...

Tag! You're it!!

Can I add my name to the bottom of your letter to WS?? :)

Fab Grandma said...

Oh, this is near and dear to my heart! I have many things from Williams Sonoma in my little home, BUT, I have never paid a dime for any of it. HOw, you might ask? Because my FabDaughter is the assistant manager of one.

Did you know that even if you work part time, say 1 Day a month, that you get a huge employee discount there? If I was living in a town near to one, and I had a day or two a month to spare, I just might be tempted to get a job there just so I could be in the store and look at all the stuff in there every day.