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Tuesday’s Taste Tempter 10.14.08

Tuesday’s Taste Tempter 10.14.08

Posted: Tuesday, October 14, 2008 9:26 pm

The Messenger, each Tuesday, will feature a recipe on the Community Lifestyles page.
Recipes will include those submitted to The Messenger by manufacturing companies, publicists and local readers.
In order for a local reader to have a recipe considered for publication, the recipe must be typed. No handwritten recipes will be accepted. No exceptions. Measurements such as tablespoon and teaspoon should be spelled out. No abbreviations, please. Submissions must also include the cook’s name, address and day-time telephone number.
Recipes may be submitted by mail to Donna Ryder, Associate Editor, Tuesday’s Taste Tempters, P.O. Box 430, Union City TN 38281 or by e-mail at dryder@ucmessenger.com.
Today’s recipe comes from the cookbook “Cooking Beyond Measure: How to Eat Well without Formal Recipes,” (ISBN:978-0-9815271-0-9) by Jean Johnson. It includes 212 pages with 82 photographs, costs $16.95 and is published by Seventy-Six Avenue Press.

Rolled Up Pancakes
They’re called crepes today, but when I was growing up we just called them rolled ups. Mom made them on weekends because although they are easy, they do take time. If you give these a try and get some confidence going, know that they’re great for corralling cooked vegetables as well.

Recipe Note
Beat in one egg for every cup of milk you use. Sprinkle in a little whole wheat pastry flour at a time and whisk. The goal is a silky batter comparable to a thin gravy. Add a pinch of salt and some vanilla, and let it set 10 minutes or so.
Bring your pan up to medium heat and oil with a dab of butter. Then get ready to be quick on the draw. Ladle on some batter, very quickly lift the griddle and swirl the batter around to coat the surface. Cook until the edges start to lift. Flip the thin pancake so the other side gets golden brown as well.

Details
Mom and Aunt Kirsten Wilson, who was also known for her rolled ups, used white flour for theirs. But once I got swept up in the late-1960s and its “Appetite for Change” — a phrase coined by Warren Belasco as the title for his book on “how the counterculture took on the food industry” — I’ve favored whole wheat pastry flour. Buckwheat flour also works as the world of blini makers well know. Actually, finely ground flours from the range of whole grains will work in rolled ups: cornmeal masa, quinoa, brown rice, millet, you name it.
The secret to rolled ups is being quick once the batter hits the griddle. It takes some practice, so expect rolled ups that look more like maps than perfect discs at first. Even these, though, will work since the edges are hidden once you roll them.
It’s often the case that you have to go back and add more milk or flour to get a batter that flows just right. With patience, though, you’ll find that making this special breakfast is not hard — only so time consuming that if you’re cooking for a crowd you’ll inevitably want to get two griddles going.
When I was young we ate rolled ups with butter and sugar, but these days a filling of warmed poached fruit and cottage cream sends me over the top. Sometimes I’ll even go for pear wedges and beanpaste (see below). Then again, there’s the Scandinavian way that Aunt Kirsten favored: butter and raspberry jam — or the more traditional lingonberry.

On Learning Curves
If rolled-ups sound daunting to you, all you have to remember is to make them the next time grandpa s around. Then just whisper to him that no matter how they turn out, he’s supposed to ooh and ahh. That’s what they do in Hopiland. Cooks learning to make piki bread, something much more difficult than rolled-ups, always present their first efforts to grandpa. That’s the patriarch’s cue to tell the fledging cook how delicious her creation is and eat the offering with great delight, even if it’s thick and the ladies are teasing her about how it looks a map.

On the Griddle
There’s nothing like a cast iron griddle. Not only does it carry heat that cooks evenly and browns beautifully, all there is to cleaning is a quick wipe with a cloth. Between my griddle and cast iron wok, each of which have staked out rather permanent claims on the stove top, there is little washing of pots and pans going on in my kitchen.

Beanpaste
Smash cooked beans with balsamic vinegar and pinches of salt, turmeric and red chile flakes. A blender is the fastest way to get a creamy, fluffy paste. Pinto beans make for a peachy brown blend, while limas and white beans yield a lighter colored paste. Turn your sights on garbanzos, of course, and you’re on your way to making hummus.
Published in The Messenger 10.14.08

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