In the spirit of tying up loose ends, we're recapping some of our favorite food-related finds of the year. We've already recapped the Best Books, Battle of the Dishes, and Just Offal favorite posts from 2010; today we bring you our favorite recipes.
The recipe picks for 2010 are as varied as our range of posts and contributors. Recipes were gladly shared by Valley chefs and bartenders in Chef Chat, Sweet Talk, Ask the Chef and Behind the Bar; we had recipe trials and triumphs from our Chow Bella writers/kitchen warriors in Monday Night Martha, Crunchy Granola, Thrifty Cook, and staff showdowns -- as well as recipes inspired by local talent in What Are You Eating and What Are You Baking?
We chose recipes with simple, straightforward and complete instruction. Here are five picks easy enough for those a bit timid in the kitchen, yet complex enough in flavor or taste to earn a nod from the discerning cook as well.
And a bonus: Here's our favorite recipe box/card set (pictured above), which you can buy on etsy.
follow the jump for the top 5 picks
Huitlacoche Crepes from Los Sombreros from Ask the Chef.
Azucena Tovar came to the rescue when we were searching for a local source for huitlacoche, offering to sell the mushroom smut (Los Sombreros buys it in large quantities frozen) to curious cooks challenged to find the stuff in markets. The crepe recipe from Los Sombreros includes beer batter crepe, vegetable filling, pomegranate sauce, and cream topping. The results, just what we wanted, a restaurant recipe we reproduced in our own kitchen with satisfying results.
Sausage and Feta Hand Pies, a favorite from Monday Night Martha.
Sativa Peterson retired Monday Night Martha after a year of cooking and baking Martha Stewart recipes once a week. We predict pies will continue to trend in 2011, and who doesn't love all forms of pie? Savory or sweet, master the dough and you can make a pasty, empanada, tart and turnover. Use this Martha recipe as a baseline. Once conquered, change up the filling for an entrée or dessert. Add to the list for a New Year's Eve appetizer!
Pumpkin Curry by Carrie Wheeler from the Chow Bella staff Pumpkin Showdown.
Our staff eagerly jumps on our showdown challenges-hey we like to cook as much as we like to eat and write! Carrie's Japanese style curry recipe is versatile: Change up the protein (chicken, beef, seafood) or the main ingredient (pumpkin, squash, potatoes) and have it your way. The recipe includes the made from scratch version, making your own roux, and the faster version using a pre- packaged curry blend. Either way -- delicious!
Moment's Notice Cinnamon Rolls by Heather Hales from What Are You Baking?
Heather Hales, is a freelance designer and blogger who loves to bake. Heather shared a recipe for yeasty Cinnamon Rolls that can be prepared and baked in about an hour. A yeasty sweet roll in one hour? Thanks Heather, for a recipe that delivers a sweet spontaneous weekend morning treat.
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Valrhona Chocolate Truffle Recipe by Valrhona.
Intimidated by working with chocolate? Truffles may look and taste like a challenge to make in your kitchen, but they are simple to prepare. Choose quality chocolate and cocoa powder, designed for baking and candy making, for the first step in taking so-so truffles into wow territory. Valrhona's truffle recipe adds a rich flavor and smooth texture with an infusion of honey in the cream, and provides simple instruction for an impressive treat that deserves its own glossy box and ribbon.