Thursday, May 04, 2006

Cooking Videos on the Web

I was very happy to discover a mine of information on this PBS web site: hundreds of video clips of Julia Child's Lessons with Master Chefs. You can search on ingredients, chefs, key words... there's even a transcript of each video so you can start the playback from a given word (ah, so that's what metadata is for: skipping the boring bits!).

The photo above is an example of something I made after watching one of their videos: Potato Thyme Wafers, by chef Christopher Gross.

These are very tasty and light and crisp, and surprisingly thin. Will I make them very often? Hmm... not sure, it seems like an awful lot of effort to replace potato chips. But perhaps as a fancy garnish for a main course or something.

Recipe: Potato-Thyme Wafers
Source: PBS Julia Child Lessons with Master Chefs, Christopher Gross (I'll keep this recipe brief, the video says it all)

- Four parts mashed potatoes
Such as Idaho baking potatoes (no idea what that translates to in Europe, I used some kind of mealy potatoes)
- One part egg white
- One part melted butter
- Salt and pepper
- Thyme
I forgot to add the thyme, but they still tasted good

I assumed by parts they meant volumes. So I first measured how many egg whites I had (3 I think), then melted the same amount of butter and used four times that volume in mashed potatoes.

1. Boil and mash the potatoes in a food mill.

2. Add the egg whites without whisking (you don't want to add air).

3. Add the melted butter, making sure it's not too hot so it won't cook the egg whites. Add salt and pepper.

4. Preheat oven to 350°.

5. Make a stencil. I cut tear or pear shapes the size of a child's hand from a cereal cardboard box.

6. Lightly oil a cookie sheet with olive oil, using a brush.

7. Use the stencil to spread very thin layers of dough on the cookie sheet (it seems a bit messy but if you watch the video the chef has the same difficulties I did).

8. Sprinkle with thyme

9. Bake for about 10 minutes, or until nice and brown.


zorra said...

There you will find also some good "bread videos". ;-)

Your "chips" look great, but for me - lazy cook - too much work. ;-)

Astrid said...

Hi Zorra,

I'll check out the bread videos, maybe they will convince me to try making bread!

Yes, it is a bit too much work for chips, but I was curious about using a stencil. And it's a fun way to dispose of leftover mashed potatoes.

Yuzuki said...

I forgot that i've been on your blog before, loved the stock post ^-^

Yuzuki said...

oh yeah and i really love your photos too ^-^ wish i could take such photos ^-^

Kai Carver said...

Wow. Julia Child ("in the wealthy community of Pasadena, California, she grew up eating traditional New England food prepared by the family maid"). I just listened to a bit. Great find. Esp. for people like me who don't have a TV.

Astrid said...

"traditional New England food prepared by the family maid"

I wonder if that included our grandmother's favorite: aspic (made from jello and V8) on top of a slice of canned peach on top of cottage cheese on top of iceberg lettuce, liberally doused with dressing from a bottle?

Did I dream Kai or were we served this as kids? I told some (French) friends about it recently and they thought I was making it up.