From buttermilk biscuits to Bolognese, here’s a rundown of our dining diaries’ greatest hits over the past seven days. What were your top eats of the week? Share the details in the comments section.
Elote corn Danish at Patisserie 46
Pastry chef Kate Goodpaster devised this remarkable savory beauty ($5) last summer, when she was training for the Coupe du Monde de la Boulangerie, aka the Bakery World Cup, and sweet corn was at its peak. “We had all this corn, and when Kate came up with the idea, people loved it,” said owner John Kraus. A few weeks ago, it reappeared in the bakery’s rotation, this time using frozen sweet corn as a perfectly acceptable out-of-season substitute.
“Creativity is great, originality is great,” said Kraus. “But there’s also nothing wrong with bringing something back.” Agreed. Following a formula that shadows but doesn’t mirror the classic Mexican elote model, Goodpaster mixes roasted sweet corn with roasted red peppers, salty cotija cheese and a bit of sour cream, and then adds festive finishing pops of lime, Espelette peppers and cilantro. The mixture is placed on a disk of absurdly buttery and flaky Danish pastry, and the weight of it sinks into the dough as the oven works its magic. The results are irresistible. Order 24 hours in advance. Curbside pickup 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wed.-Sun. (Rick Nelson)
4552 Grand Av. S., Mpls., 612-354-3257
Pork Bolognese at Kieran’s Kitchen Northeast
The northeast Minneapolis restaurant, which launched last summer as a showcase for the products made in the Food Building, has become a kind of grocery store while the dining room remains closed. Since the place opened, I’ve shopped for my bread there (the Complete whole wheat loaf from Baker’s Field is my go-to). Lately, I’ve added freshly milled flour, Alemar cream cheese and Red Table sliced salami to my online cart. I also picked up a quart of chef Ian Gray’s pork Bolognese sauce ($14), which I ladled over polenta for a rainy-day dinner. Gray calls it a “foundational sauce,” in that he utilizes whatever he can get his hands on from his kitchen’s neighbors.
Scraps from sliced salami go into the base, along with braised pork shanks, a fatty 65/35 cut of ground pork, loads of vegetables and aromatics, “dense” pork stock, and a lot of red wine. Gray lets it cook it for 5 to 6 hours. “It’s that pot stewing on grandma’s stovetop for Sunday gravy with all the leftover meat. It’s heavy.” True, it’s not exactly a warm-weather dish, and Gray is excited to see what else he can make with zucchini, asparagus and the other veggies coming his way. But the Bolognese — sold on its own or in a pasta meal kit — will probably stick around. “It’s just comfort,” he said. Curbside pickup 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily. (Sharyn Jackson)
117 14th Av. NE., Mpls., 612-354-5093
Blueberry muffins from Zoë François
I’ve been watching a lot of cooking videos on Instagram these days. For a story in Sunday’s paper, sure, but also because our local culinary talents are sharing their knowledge with the world, and I’m here to learn. Some of my favorite videos are the epic live baking shows from Zoë François, cookbook author and the person behind the ZoëBakes blog.
It’s fun just to watch and absorb her tips and tricks, but this past weekend I baked along with her as she made blueberry muffins. I even set up my mise en place like I was on a cooking show of my own. (It made it fun for my toddler to dump the ingredients into the bowl, but there sure were a lot of dishes afterward.) The muffins, with a good zesting of lemon and a crunchy streusel topping, were bright and moist, not-too-sweet and beautiful in the paper liners I learned how to make from her video. This is a recipe I’ll be making again; my toddler demands it. Find the recipe here and the video here. (SJ)
Buttermilk biscuits from Justin Sutherland
Forgive me, but I went down an Instagram rabbit hole this week, and was drooling over a video from chef Justin Sutherland making biscuits in chef David Fhima’s kitchen. (It doesn’t help that I watch these around lunchtime.) Biscuits are having a moment; they’re the new doughnut, which was the new cupcake. Despite how simple they can be, I haven’t yet made one I truly loved. These looked like they could be the ones.
Sutherland’s trick — which he learned from fellow “Top Chef” stars Sara Bradley and Kelsey Barnard Clark when they taught a class at his St. Paul restaurant Handsome Hog — was to freeze cubes of butter, and then fold them into the dough, almost like you’re making a croissant. The result: infinity flaky layers. (I didn’t have buttermilk at home, but I used this nifty guide to make my own.) The recipe isn’t written down; I just took notes as I watched the 15-minute video, which you can find here. (SJ)
Tomato soup with grilled cheese croutons
Tuesday’s nonstop rain triggered a craving for a favorite lousy-weather lunch from childhood. I’m fairly certain that my mother, a firm believer in the convenience of Campbell’s, would have never seen the wisdom of preparing tomato soup from scratch. But after interviewing “The Dahlia Bakery Cookbook” author Tom Douglas in 2012, I became an instant convert. I’ve been making his recipe ever since, in part because the soup is fantastic — there are so many more flavor nuances than the canned variety, and the color is strikingly rich — and because the idea of placing grilled cheese sandwich pieces into the soup is a stroke of lunchtime genius.
“When I was a kid and my mom made tomato soup, she would cut buttered toast into squares and float them on top of each bowl,” writes Douglas. “My twist on Mom’s toast is to make brown butter croutons, though when I’m feeling feisty I go all the way and make grilled cheese croutons to float in the soup.” When I asked him about the soup recipe, all those years ago, Douglas said, “We sell 10 gallons of it a day. It’s not full of cream, and a touch of cayenne puts a little heat at the back of your throat. I like that.” I like that, too. Find the recipe here. (RN)