Andrew Schloss is a cooking teacher, food writer, food industry consultant, and cookbook author. He authored The Art of the Slow Cooker and co-authored Fire It Up and Mastering the Grill for Chronicle Books. He is the former president of The International Association of Culinary Professionals and former director of the culinary curriculum for The Restaurant School in Philadelphia. He lives with his family in eastern Pennsylvania.
Alan Benson is a food and lifestyle photographer based in Australia, whose cookbook work includes Rustica and Indochine.
Delicious home cooking is the cornerstone of gracious living. The six simple slow-cooking techniques in COOKING SLOW manifest big flavor with little hands-on time in the kitchen.
In these pages, discover slow simmering (popularly known as braising), slow roasting, slow baking, slow grilling, slow frying, and slow steaming–and use your slow cooker and sous vide machine to their best advantage with more than a dozen new leave-it-and-love-it recipes.
Imagine Sunday afternoons filled with the scent of slow-simmering Brisket with Prunes and Oranges and the bright Overnight Lemon Cheesecake that slow-baked while you slept. Imagine mingling with your guests by the pool while a Coffee BBQ Brisket smokes, browns, and goes meltingly tender over the gently glowing coals on your grill.
This is maximum flavor with minimum effort: cooking at low temperatures over a length of time means you don’t have to devote personal time in the kitchen to make a gorgeous and satisfying meal. These 94 recipes are geared to cooks of every skill level.
Makes 12 servings
I hesitate calling this confection “fruit cake,” because I know what that means to most of you—cloying, dank, and leaden, a perfumed doorstop—and this masterpiece is none of those things. It is substantial, packed with pounds of figs and walnuts, and has only enough batter to keep the fruit and nuts from falling apart. The result is closer to a cake-size energy bar—chewy, and crunchy, and wholesomely rich.
Vegetable oil spray
1 pound/455 g walnut halves and pieces
1 pound/455 g dried figs, stems removed, quartered
3/4 cup/90 g all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
1 cup/200 g sugar
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup/75 g diced candied orange peel
1/4 cup/60 ml walnut brandy, such as Nocello
Preheat the oven to 225°F/110°C/gas ¼. Coat the inside of a 9-by-13-in/23-by-33-cm baking pan with the vegetable oil spray; set aside. Toss walnuts and figs in a large mixing bowl; set aside.
Mix flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar in a medium bowl. Toss 3 tbsp of the dry ingredients with the nuts and fruit to coat.
Add the eggs and vanilla with the remaining dry ingredients and mix with a wooden spoon to form a smooth batter. Mix in the candied orange peel. Scrape into the nuts and fruit and toss with a rubber spatula until everything is evenly coated.
Scrape the batter-coated nuts and fruit into the prepared pan, wet your hands with cold water, and pack the nuts and fruit firmly into the pan. Set in the oven and bake for 8 hours until the top is golden brown and a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean. (An instant-read thermometer inserted in the center of the cake should register 215 to 225°F/101 to 110°C).
Remove the pan from the oven and spoon the brandy over top. Cool on a rack for 30 minutes. Run a knife around the edge to loosen, invert onto a rack, remove the pan, turn right-side up, and cool to room temperature.
Variation: in a slow cooker
You can “bake” this cake in a slow cooker; you will need a 1½-qt/1.5-l soufflé dish and a 6 qt/5.7 l or larger slow cooker. Once the batter is in the soufflé dish, put it in the slow cooker and cook on low for 6 hours.
Makes 6 servings
Roasting pork loin is hit or miss; a few minutes too long can be the difference between juicy and dry. But not anymore. By immersing the loin in an oil bath, in this case flavored with mustard seed, the pork is protected from drying out. Strain and save the delicious oil in the refrigerator for making salad dressings or mayonnaise, or for sautéing meat. Serve with Slow-Fried Potatoes.
1 pork loin, about 3 pounds/1.4 kg, trimmed of fat and silver skin
1 tablespoon coarse sea salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
4 cups/960 ml canola oil
1 cup/130 g brown mustard seed
Rub the pork with the salt and pepper. Set on a rack on a baking sheet and refrigerate for at least 12 hours and up to 24 hours.
Preheat the oven to 175°F/80°C.
Combine the oil and mustard seed in a Dutch oven and place over medium heat until the oil reaches 350°F/177°C on a deep-frying thermometer. A wooden chopstick or the end of a wooden spoon inserted into the oil will emit bubbles when the oil is at the right temperature.
While the oil is heating, remove the pork from the refrigerator. Pat dry. When the oil is up to temperature, turn off the heat. Using tongs, carefully submerge the meat in the hot oil. Cover the pot, transfer to the oven, and cook until the pork is 150°F/66°C, about 2 hours.
Lift the pork from the oil onto a baking sheet to catch any oil drips. Carve the pork across the grain on the diagonal into thin slices. Drizzle with some of the mustard-scented oil and serve.
These recipes may be reproduced with the following credit:
Recipes from Cooking Slow by Andrew Schloss. (Chronicle Books; September 2013; $35.00/Hardcover; ISBN-13; 978-1452104690). http://www.chroniclebooks.com/
Contact: David Hawk