Outlander Kitchen Does It Again
A few years back, after cracking open my copy of Outlander Kitchen, I wrote about the delicious savory pie I made. Well, I actually made four recipes created by Chef Theresa Carle-Sanders who, like me, is a devoted Outlander fan. So when I learned that Theresa was writing a follow up Outlander cookbook, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on it.
As the crow flies, Theresa lives about 60+ miles northeast of me on an island off the coast of Vancouver Island, the big island to which both our homes neighbor– hers on the east and mine on the west. We have become internet friends and hope that someday we might meet up in person for a cup of tea and a visit. But that 60+ miles is as the eagle flies. The ferry route that is the first leg of the journey on my side has been shut down during the Covid-19 epidemic and it will still be yet a while before our shared border opens up and the ferry runs again. (I was very heartened to hear the familiar blast of the Coho ferry horn yesterday from the harbor just below my house.) Anyway, as much as I would love to place my hands on standing stones to travel to Theresa’s island, and then click my heels three times to come home, I will wait until it is safe to do so. In the meantime, I can enjoy Outlander Kitchen 2.
As Theresa does in her new book, I call them OK1 and OK2. After a few fits and starts, (my local bookstore ordered up her first by accident), I sat myself down with a cup of tea for a first look. OK2 features a bit of historical cooking of what was considered the “new world,” so it is no coincidence that the full title of the book is Outlander Kitchen: To the New World and Back Again.
You can eat your way from breakfast to dessert with lovely snippets of prose from Diana Gabaldon’s books and Theresa’s notes. I imagined with whom I would be sharing these recipes…mainly me…so I chose some that could be cooked and enjoyed for a few days. I started with 4 recipes (I will definitely be making these again and more from the book, too) and I apologize in advance for not taking photos of everything.
Cassava Bread p. 234
I started here since I actually had cassava flour on hand from a pie crust experiment a few months ago. It’s not my favorite but it didn’t stop me from eating it as it is an alternative for those like me who have to be gluten-free. I will try it again using the suggestion of a recipe tester to thin it out and make cassava crepes. (Note to self and Theresa: I wonder how and if this recipe would work with the green banana flour I have on hand from other pie crust explorations.)
Chicken Cornmeal Stew p. 113
My freezer, pantry, and garden had everything needed for this delicious one-pot stew so I didn’t have to mask up and head out to the store. If you make it, you’ll want to be sure to have whole fennel and coriander seeds to toast. I’m usually not a fennel flavor fan, but I loved how it added to this stew. It’s definitely a keeper.
Cuban Black Beans and Rice p. 194
Next up was beans & rice. Having grown up in the 60’s and 70’s this combination has been a staple for me. I’ve learned how to cook beans and rice well, and enjoy new recipes to vary the ones I make. I didn’t let the fact that I had a different kind of rice on hand (it calls for long-grain white rice and I only had short-grain brown) and some white wine (I used saké which is a white wine although probably not what Jamie and Claire would have had had) to make a potful. I added a favorite hot sauce and enjoyed it with a green salad from my garden.
Almond Biscuits p. 260
Finally, I made the excellent shortbread style cookies that also can be adapted to be gluten free. It is a total winner and I will make again and again. I cut the recipe in half, which should have made only 15 (the full recipe says it makes 30) but maybe it’s the way that I rolled and cut them but I found that the recipe makes about a third more than that. Not a hardship at all! The beauty of this recipe is that if you don’t want to bake all of it at one time, you can keep a “roll” in the fridge for a few days or in the freezer for up to 1 month.
Thanks Theresa for another great book and way to celebrate all things Outlander.
P.S. If you are looking for creative ways to use duck, venison, and rabbit, you’ll love the game chapter, too.