The Cincinnati Enquirer from Cincinnati, Ohio on October 9, 1991 · Page 24
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October 9, 1991

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The Cincinnati Enquirer from Cincinnati, Ohio · Page 24

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Cincinnati, Ohio
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Wednesday, October 9, 1991
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C-2Food THE CINCINNATI ENQUIRER Wednesday, October 9, 1991 Getting to the heart of the chestnut Shelling and cooking take time, but process will bear fruit in the end - . ; - , .. til ft '"it i 'm. yJif!i- , .Vv'' " ft I I , , -' v ' -I " ,; i Nutty ideas Buckeyes, growing, left, and hulled, right, are bitter and poisonous. Leave buckeyes for squirrels meats, or puree Into soup. Braise whole chestnuts with red cabbage or Brussels sprouts. Season cooked, pureed chestnuts with butter, salt and pepper for a savory side dish, or sweeten with sugar and cream and use as dessert. Chopped, candied chestnuts (marrons glacees) may be added to ice cream, dessert sauces or other sweets. Sweetened chestnut puree (creme de marrons) can be used as a filling or garnish for cakes and other desserts. THE CINCINNATI ENQUIRER these trees is bitter and poisonous, Ehrlinger admits. But when chestnut season rolls around, "There is a little bit of confusion as to which is which." Just for the record, chestnuts, slightly egg-shaped with a point on the end, are about an inch in diameter. Buckeyes, about twice that size, are glossy, round and resemble the eye of a buck hence the name. Chestnut burrs are as prickly as porcupines; .the pods in which yellow buckeyes grow are smooth. Drain broccoli and rinse it briefly in cold water to stop further cooking and help retain color. Return broccoli to pan in which it was cooked. Add hot chestnut mixture and reserved bacon bits. Stir gently over low heat until well combined. Turn into a warm serving bowl and finish with a few turns of a pepper mill. Makes 8 servings. From The Thanksgiving Cookbook by Holly Garrison (Macmil-lan, 1991, $22.95). CHESTNUT TRUFFLES 1 pound fresh chestnuts (see note) 4 cups water 2 cups milk Va cup butter, softened 1 cup sugar 1 tablespoon cocoa V teaspoon vanilla 1 ounce semisweet chocolate, grated Make a shallow crisscross cut on the side of each chestnut with the tip of a pointed, sharp knife. Heat chestnuts and water to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer 15 minutes. Remove about V of the chestnuts at a time from the water. Peel off shell and skin while chestnuts are warm. Note: One can (16 ounces) unsweetened whole chestnuts, drained, can be substituted for fresh chestnuts. Do not make crisscross cut or boil in, water. (Whole canned chestnuts from France are often labeled "marrons entiers." Do not buy "marrons glacees," chestnuts packed in heavy syrup.) Heat chestnuts and milk to boiling. Reduce heat slightly. Boil gently uncovered 15 minutes. Remove milk skin from surface; drain chestnuts throughly. Place chestnuts in food processor; cover and process until smooth. Beat butter in medium bowl on high speed until fluffy. Beat in chestnuts, sugar, cocoa and vanilla until smooth paste forms. Shape into 1-inch balls; roll balls in chocolate. Refrigerate at least 1 hour. Makes about 30 truffles. From Betty Crocker's Italian Cooking, Recipes by Antonio Cec-coni (Prentice Hall, 1991, $17.95). It isn't just for Christmas anymore. The versatile chestnut also available dried, candied or pureed fits handily into recipes from soups to desserts all year long. Jane Horn offers the following suggestions for using the various forms of chestnuts in Cooking A to Z (California Culinary Academy, Ortho Books, 1988; $32.95): Add chopped, cooked chestnuts to your favorite poultry stuffing. Simmer peeled chestnuts in stock or milk and serve as an accompaniment to game or rich chestnuts into your menus. ROASTED CHESTNUT SOUP 1 pound chestnuts in shell 4 tablespoons butter 4 green onions, chopped 3 cups chicken broth or beef broth 2 cups milk 1 tablespoon flour Salt, pepper to taste Vi cup heavy cream Preheat oven to 400. With point of sharp knife, cut an X in skin of each nut. Roast nuts in oven about 15 minutes until tender; test with skewer. When nuts are cool enough, peel off outer shell and remove inner skins. Chop nuts. In large skillet, melt 2 tablespoons butter. Saute nuts and onions in butter 6 minutes. Stir in chicken broth and milk and bring to boil. In small saucepan, make a roux by blending remaining butter and flour. Cook 3 minutes. Gradually add some soup mixture to roux, stirring. Pour this thickened mixture into hot soup, mixing thoroughly. Season with salt and pepper, stirring well. Mix in cream thoroughly. Makes 6 servings. From Cooking with Nuts by Dorothy C. Frank (Clarkson N. Potter, 1975, $12.95). THE CINCINNATI ENQUIRER "Squirrels don't have any trouble with them," says Dave Ehrlin-ger. "Even deer eat them to a certain extent." But you shouldn't. We don't have a lot of chestnut trees in these parts, according to Ehrlinger, director of the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden. "They're fairly uncommon around Cincinnati." But we do have a lot of native yellow or sweet buckeyes growing wild in parks and even at the zoo. Most people know the fruit of Nuts CONTINUED FROM PAGE C-l 13 years ago. "I ended up planting about 65 of them. They were doing beautiful. Then one year, spring came and the chestnuts didn't," victims of either a killing freeze or some mysterious disease, he says. Thirteen of the bushy specimens survive, sandwiched between a row of apple trees and a field of soybeans. From those, Maureen collects enough nuts to satisfy regular customers as well as curiosity seekers. "I'd say we could sell 500 pounds if we had 'em," Switzer says. At this stage, the Chinese trees are adolescents, no more than 20 feet tall, with low-slung, multiple limbs branching from squatty trunks. Compared to the hulking native American specimens, some of which grew to 100 feet with ,fiaU Guilt-free recipes from the American Heart CHILI FESTIVAL BY TOM CASHNELLI The Cincinnati Enquirer First, you peel them. It sounds simple enough. But for novice chestnut shellers, removing the husk and papery brown skin is tedious and time-consuming. Here's how it's done. To shell chestnuts Cut an X down to the meat in the flat side of each nut and roast in preheated 350-oven for 10 minutes. (Those X's keep the nuts from exploding.) You can also blanch them in boiling water 3-4 minutes. Cool and peel. Peeled chestnuts can be eaten raw as a snack. Further cooking makes chestnuts moist and crumbly. To cook chestnuts In the oven (for 2 dozen chestnuts): Preheat oven to 425. Cut an X in flat side of each unshelled chestnut. Place chestnuts in casserole with a tight-fitting lid; add a few drops of olive oil. Toss nuts to coat lightly. Add 2 tablespoons water, and cover. Bake until chestnuts feel tender when squeezed and peel easily, 25-30 minutes. In the microwave: Cut an X in flat side of each unpeeled chestnut and place in single layer in microwave-safe baking dish. Cook on High power (uncovered) 8 minutes (10 minutes in low-wattage ovens). Cool slightly before peeling. In water: Boil unshelled chestnuts in lightly salted water 45 to 60 minutes, until tender. In the fireplace: Cut an X on flat side of each unpeeled chestnut. Put nuts in a fireplace popcorn popper or a chestnut roasting pan with a perforated bottom. Shake nuts gently over fire until shells open and nuts become toasty and brown. Shopping tips: There are about 36 chestnuts to the. pound; that equals about 2V2 cups of nutmeats. Buy more than you need; chestnuts that look perfect on the outside may be moldy on the inside. Here are three ways to work Today's recipes are winners in the American Heart Association's Food Festival recipe contest. All recipes submitted were analyzed for fat, cholesterol, caloric and sodium content. Those meeting the Heart Association dietary guidelines were then judged by volunteers on the Food Festival Committee. First-place winners in each category received a $50 gift certificate for John Morrell products and a Food Festival apron. Each second-place winner received an American Heart Association cookbook and a cutting board. POTATO AND SORREL SOUP (First place, Appetizers and Snacks, Molly Talbot, Montgomery) 2 large or 4 small leeks 4 cups chicken broth (low-salt) 3 potatoes, about 1 pound (Idaho or all-purpose white), peeled 14 teaspoon salt Freshly ground pepper to taste Nutmeg 4 to 5 leaves sorrel, or spinach seasoned with lemon juice Discard the green ends from the leeks. Slice the white part and rinse it thoroughly. Place the sliced leeks in a 2'2-quart saucepan with . enough chicken broth to half cover, cover the pan, and boil gently for 8 minutes or until leeks are softened. Dice the potatoes. Add them to the leeks with the remaining chicken broth, salt and pepper. Simmer, covered, for 30-35 minutes. Rub potato leek mixture through a sieve into a bowl or puree in a food processor or blender. Scoop what won't go through the sieve into the soup. Season with nutmeg. Stack sorrel or spinach leaves, roll tightly in jelly roll fashion and slice thinly crosswise. Add the leaves to the hot soup until wilted. If serving the soup cold, allow at least 4 hours chilling time and overseason slightly; chilling weakens the flavors. Per serving: 101 calories; 1.6 gm. fat; 173 mg. sodium; 0 cholesterol; .9 gm. fiber. TOASTED ZUCCHINI SNACKS (Second Place, Appetizers and Snacks, Holly Spielman, White Oak) 2 cups shredded zucchini 1 teaspoon salt Vt cup reduced calorie mayonnaise Vi cup plain, low-fat yogurt V cup grated Romano cheese 4 thinly sliced green onions 1 minced clove garlic 1 teaspoon Worcestershire Sauce V teaspoon hot pepper sauce Sliced party rye bread :W91-': West Court Street Downtown Cincinnati trunks 8 feet in diameter, these will always be pipsqueaks. Clinging to branches, chestnut burrs exhibit the same defensive puffiness as spiny sea creatures from the deep. When they drop, burst and turn dusty brown, Maureen starts collecting. "We've got to beat the squirrels to 'em," she says. The grass beneath the branches, littered with prickly pods, looks like a graveyard for porcupines. To get to the meat, "I go like this," she says, squishing a burr underfoot to scatter the trio of nesting chestnuts. According to her husband, the creamy yellow prize inside is worth every ouch. "I could make a meal of them," he says. For Cincinnati's To Chili Madness Plus, Hot Chili Concoctions Hydrants of Cold Beer Continuous Entertainment For The Kids Professional and Amateur Chili Cookoffs RreflghHng Equipment And Demonstrations Dalmatian Contest -fc -Km-, (u.m-. CAROL GELLE'S BROCCOLI WITH BACON AND CHESTNUTS 8 slices bacon, cut into Vi-inch pieces 2 tablespoons butter 2 large bunches broccoli or 3 smaller bunches 14 pounds chestnuts, roasted or steamed and peeled and cut into small pieces Freshly ground black pepper to taste Cook bacon in a medium-size skillet over medium-high heat until it is crisp. Remove bacon and let drain on paper towels. Discard all but 2 tablespoons of the fat in the skillet. Add butter to skillet and set aside. Rinse broccoli and cut off main stems. Break bunches into even-size flowerets, leaving short stems. (May be done ahead up to this point, but keep the broccoli covered with cold water until ready to cook.) Cook broccoli in large saucepan of lightly salted, simmering water over medium-low heat until tender-crisp, about 5 minutes. While broccoli is cooking, heat butter and bacon fat in skillet over medium-high heat. When it is hot, stir in chestnuts and cook until heated through, 2 or 3 minutes. Association and 1 teaspoon of oil for a whole egg. cup oil for 1 cup margarine or solid shortening. Chicken breasts for veal steaks and ground turkey for ground beef. cup skim milk plus V3 cup liquid oil for 1 cup heavy cream. 3 tablespoons dry cocoa powder plus Vz teaspoons oil for 1 square of chocolate. For more information on substitutions and modifying recipes, send a self-addressed, stamped envelope to: Recipe Modifications, American Heart Association, 2936 Vernon Place, Cincinnati, Ohio 45219. 8-inch-square baking dish. Cover and bake 20 minutes or until chicken is tender. Meanwhile, in small saucepan over medium heat, melt remaining margarine. Remove bundles from oven and sprinkle with wheat bran; drizzle melted margarine over top. Increase oven heat to broil. Broil chicken 3 to 4 inches from heat 1 minute, until browned. Per serving: 277 calories; 6.8 gm. fat; 76 mg. sodium; 79 mg. cholesterol; .6 gm. fiber. LAZY DAY BRUNSWICK STEW (Second Place, Chicken and Fish Entrees, Karen Nagel-Smith, Loveland) 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cubed 1 large onion, chopped 4 large fresh tomatoes, chopped 2 cups fresh lima beans 3 medium potatoes, cubed 2 cups fresh corn, cut from the cob 1 teaspoon pepper 1 tablespoon sugar Water to cover Wheat flour to thicken Add above ingredients to crock pot and simmer on "low" all day. Just before serving, thicken with whole wheat flour. Ladle into bowls. Serve with a crunchy salad. Makes 4 servings. Per serving: 419 calories; 4.8 gm. fat; 79 mg. sodium; 79 mg. cholesterol. PORK CHOP CASSEROLE (First Place, Beef and Pork Entrees, Joni Fussner, Anderson Township) 4 lean pork chops 1 large onion, sliced Get Fired Up Annual Salute ibro 3, TrishaYearwood Headlines 1 green pepper, sliced Vi cup uncooked Minute Rice 1 6-ounce can tomatoes 8-ounce can tomato sauce Dash sugar Salt and pepper to taste Place pork chops in casserole. Layer onion, pepper slices and rice in dish. Mix tomatoes and tomato sauce and pour over all. Add seasonings. Bake at 350 for 1 hour. Per serving: 312 calories; 10.49 gm. fat; 579 mg. sodium. COUNTRY POT ROAST (Second Place, Beef and Pork Entrees, Charles Norris, Groesbeck) 2-3 pound chuck, blade rump or pot roast 1 2-pound can plum tomatoes 2 teaspoons caraway seeds Vi teaspoon'for less) salt 2-3 drops Tabasco sauce (optional) 1 bay leaf V teaspoon black pepper 4 potatoes, peeled and quartered 6 carrots, peeled and quartered 6 stalks celery, peeled and quartered 4 small onions 12 fresh mushrooms Brown meat in a small amount of tomato liquid, drain, remove any excess fat. Add tomatoes and seasonings. Cover and simmer for V2 hours. Add potatoes, carrots, celery and onions. Cover and simmer about 1 hour until vegetables are crisp-tender. Add mushrooms and simmer 15 minutes. Serves 6. Per serving: 320 calories; 8.29 gm. fat; 324 mg. sodium. Readers' exchange does not appear in today's Food section. It will return next week. LOSE Vi LB. A DAY FROM ONE OF OUR 6 PROGRAMS The Sutkamp Clinic Jerry C. Sutkamp, M.D. 2000 Memorial Parkway Ft. Thomas, KY 41075 441-9611 MM'tljnlAIMautai,! Tips for the heart You don't have to give up all your favorite foods if you want to eat heart-healthy. The key is learning how to modify recipes. To make a favorite recipe healthier, try these tips to lower saturated fat and calories. You can substitute: Whipped non-fat dry milk or canned evaporated milk for whipped cream. Polyunsaturated margarine for butter. Plain yogurt, low-fat cottage cheese blended until smooth, or skim-based ricotta cheese for sour cream. 1 cup of dry low-fat cottage cheese blended with 4 tablespoons of margarine and skim milk for cream cheese. 2 egg whites or 1 egg white Mix zucchini and salt in bowl. Let stand 1 hour and drain. Rinse and press out excess liquid. Stir in mayonnaise, yogurt, cheese, onions, garlic and sauces. Spread a teaspoon of mixture on each bread slice and bake at 375 for 12 minutes. Makes 48 rye bread snacks. Per serving: 40 calories; 4.8 gm. fat; 146 mg. sodium; .8 mg. cholesterol. CHICKEN BUNDLES (First Place, Chicken and Fish Entrees, Jerri Brock, Morrow) 2 whole chicken breasts, split, skinned and boned (1 pound boneless) 3 teaspoons unsalted margarine, divided 2 tablespoons finely chopped onion 1 cup mashed sweet potatoes (about 2) 2 teaspoons dry white wine 2 teaspoons honey Vi teaspoon grated orange peel Ve teaspoon ground cinnamon Dash ground nutmeg Dash ground black pepper 2 tablespoons wheat bran Preheat oven to 400. On cutting board with meat mallet, pound chicken to Vi-inch thickness; set aside. , In small skillet over medium heat, melt 1 teaspoon margarine. Add onion and cook 3 minutes or until soft. Stir in sweet potato, wine, honey, orange peel, cinnamon, nutmeg and pepper; cook about 1 minute. Spoon mixture by tablespoons-ful onto each chicken breast; roll up and secure with toothpicks. 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