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Lasagna Recipes Including Gluten-Free For National Lasagna Day

Lasagna
[1] This Indian-accented lasagna is gluten-free. The recipe is below (photo © Urban Accents).

Eggplant Parmigiana Lasagna Recipe
[2] Eggplant Parmigiana Lasagna combines two favorites. Here’s the recipe (photo © DeLallo).

Lasagna Soup Recipe
[3] Something different: lasagna soup! Here’s the recipe (photo © Wisconsin Dairy).

Ravioli Lasagna Recipe
[4] Ravioli lasagna. Here’s the recipe (photo © Oxmoor House [permanently closed]).

Dutch Oven Pumpkin Lasagna Recipe
[5] Who needs a lasagna pan? This recipe is made in a Dutch Oven (photo © Williams Sonoma).

 

A hot summer day doesn’t seem like prime time for lasagna, but July 29th is, in fact, National Lasagna Day, and the next celebration isn’t until October, National Pasta Month.

The dish dates back to Roman times, although Roman lasagna was not the classic style we know today, with layered noodles, cheese, and tomato sauce.

That’s because the Romans did not have tomatoes, which originated in Peru (as cherry tomatoes) and were brought to Europe by the Spanish Conquistadors in the 16th century. They were enjoyed as houseplants until the 18th century!

> The history of lasagna.

Our featured recipe today is an Indian-style lasagna that’s gluten-free and noodle-free, giving this popular comfort food gets a new twist.

We have 17 more lasagna recipes for you below, including more gluten-free options.
 
 
RECIPE: INDIAN-STYLE LASAGNA, GLUTEN FREE

Lasagna is an Italian dish made from noodles, but the recipe has been reinvented many times over with gluten-free options. This recipe uses thin layers of mashed potatoes instead of noodles.

To accent the Indian style, the recipe switches out the Italian bolognese sauce—ground beef and oregano for a spicy ground lamb sauce.

The recipe, from Urban Accents, uses their Punjab Red Tandoori Spice Blend.

This medium-heat Indian seasoning blend combines paprika, turmeric, ginger, and some 16 other spices and herbs. It adds “just the right amount of Indian-style heat” to chicken, lamb, marinades, rice, seafood, turkey, and vegetable dishes.

Prep time is 20 minutes, cook time is 90 minutes, total time 110 minutes.
 
Ingredients For 10 Servings

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, minced
  • 2 pounds ground lamb (substitute with ground beef or turkey)
  • 2-1/2 teaspoons salt, divided
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper, freshly grated
  • 1 cup chopped parsley
  • 3 cans (14.5 ounces) tomato sauce
  • 3-1/2 teaspoons Urban Accents Punjab Red Tandoori Spice Blend or substitute*
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • Zest of one lemon
  • 1-1/2 pounds Yukon gold potatoes, peeled & thinly sliced
  • 1/2 pound ricotta salata cheese
  •  
    Preparation

    1. PREHEAT the oven to 375°F. Lightly oil a 9″ x 13″ baking dish.

    2. MAKE the filling. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over med-high heat and sauté the onion until translucent.

    3. ADD the lamb, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper. Cook until the lamb is browned and cooked through. Stir in the parsley and set aside to cool.

    4. MAKE the sauce. In a medium saucepan, over low heat, combine the tomato sauce and Punjab Red Tandoori spice. Simmer for 5 minutes. Take off the heat and add 1-1/2 teaspoons of salt, the lemon juice, and lemon zest.

    5. ASSEMBLE. Spread a thin layer of sauce on the bottom of the baking dish. Place a layer of potatoes on top of the sauce, using half of the potatoes. Spread half of the meat mixture; then half of the remaining sauce.

    6. REPEAT, layering the potatoes, meat mixture, and sauce. Spread the cheese on top; cover and bake for 50 to 60 minutes. Uncover and bake for an additional 10-15 minutes to brown the top. Allow to rest  
     
    17 MORE LASAGNA RECIPES

  • Asparagus & Pesto Lasagna
  • Butternut Squash & Pumpkin Lasagna
  • Dessert Lasagna
  • Dutch Oven Pumpkin Lasagna
  • Eggplant Parm Lasagna
  • Lasagna Hack: A Pasta Bake With Chicken Parm
  • Lasagna Soup
  • Mexican Chicken Lasagna
  • Pasta Al Forno: Lasagna Made With Ziti
  • Polenta & Pesto Lasagna, Gluten Free
  • Pumpkin Lasagna With Ricotta & Swiss Chard
  • Pumpkin & Mushroom Lasagna
  • Ravioli Lasagna
  • Ravioli Lasagna With Pumpkin Sauce
  • Rice Pesto Lasagna, Gluten Free
  • Scamorza Cheese & Porcini Lasagna
  • Spinach Lasagna
  •  
     
    ________________

    *There are many different Indian spice blends. You can substitute curry powder or garam masala, both of which are composed of numerous spices. You can look for recipes online, or simply pull ground spices from your pantry: black pepper or cayenne, coriander, cumin, dry mustard, fenugreek, garam masala, garlic, ginger, mint, paprika, salt, tumeric, etc. Now you see how the Urban Accents Punjab Red Tandoori Spice is a blend of 19 different spices!

     

     
     

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    Scattered California Roll, California Roll Chirashi Sushi

    This Scattered California Roll comes under the category of “Why didn’t we think of this?” But we’re thankful that Grace Parisi came up with the idea (more about Grace below).

    This recipe is in the chirashi sushi category. The name means “scattered sushi” in Japanese, and it’s the easiest sushi to make because, rather than rolling everything nice and tidy in a sheet of seaweed (it takes both practice and seaweed), the ingredients are scattered atop a bowl of rice.

    Grace combined the idea with grain bowls, and you can substitute your grain of choice for the rice.

    Wine pairing: The flavors of toasted sesame seeds, seasoned sushi rice, and sweet crab pair well with a crisp, aromatic Austrian Riesling.

    > Check out the different types of sushi and sashimi in our Sushi Glossary.

    > The history of sushi
     
     
    RECIPE: CHIRASHI SUSHI “CALIFORNIA ROLL” a.k.a. SCATTERED CALIFORNIA ROLL

    This recipe is made with fresh Dungeness crabmeat, but if you can’t get it, substitute one whole bairdi crab cluster (1 body, 4 legs, 1 claw), a type of snow crab.

    Other options: canned lump crabmeat or crab stick (the different types of crabmeat).

    Prep time is 30 minutes.
     
    Ingredients For 4 Servings

  • ¼ cup unseasoned rice vinegar, divided
  • 1½ teaspoons sugar
  • Kosher salt
  • 1½ cups Japanese or sushi rice, rinsed and drained (or substitute)
  • 2 Dungeness crab clusters (2 bodies, 8 legs, 2 claws), thawed
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 4 teaspoons vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped pickled ginger†
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons wasabi paste, depending on heat preference
  • 4 radishes, cut into fine matchsticks
  • 2 scallions, cut into 1-inch matchsticks
  • 2 Persian cucumbers, thinly sliced
  • 1 ripe avocado, thinly sliced (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds
  • 1 8-by-7½-inch sheet of nori (Japanese seaweed), finely shredded
  •  
    Preparation

    1. MAKE the rice. In a small bowl, combine 2 tablespoons of the rice vinegar with the sugar and ½ teaspoon salt, stirring until dissolved. Set aside.

    2. COMBINE the rice with 2 cups of water in a medium saucepan, and bring to a boil over high heat, Reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook until the liquid is absorbed, about 15 minutes. Let the pot sit off the heat, covered, for 10 minutes.

    3. SPREAD the rice in a large shallow bowl or on a baking sheet and toss with the reserved sweetened vinegar. Refrigerate briefly until cool. Meanwhile…

    4. STEAM the crab. Fill a large skillet with 1 inch of water and bring to a boil over high heat. Add the crab, cover, and steam for 2 to 3 minutes, until just heated through. Remove the meat and break it into 1-inch pieces. You can save shells for stock (stick them in the freezer for future use).

    5. PREPARE the dressing. In a small bowl, combine 2 tablespoons of rice vinegar with the soy sauce, oil, ginger, and wasabi paste. Season with salt.

    6. ASSEMBLE AND SERVE. Add the radishes, scallions, and cucumbers to the rice, pour the dressing over them, and toss gently to combine. Fold in the crab and spoon the mixture into bowls. Garnish with the avocado, sesame seeds, and shredded nori just before serving.

    You can wrap any leftover crab, rice, and avocado in green leaf or butter lettuce leaves for a light lunch or snack.
     
     
    WHAT IS JAPANESE RICE? WHAT IS SUSHI RICE?

    Japanese rice, the rice served at every Japanese meal, is a cultivar of Japonica (a.k.a. sinica) rice. It is one of the two major domestic types of Asian rice varieties*.

    The plump, short grains have a characteristic sticky, firm texture and are slightly sweet. When cooked, they are sticky enough to easily be picked up with chopsticks. (Here’s more about Japanese rice.)

    Sushi rice is made by seasoning this Japanese short-grain rice with a mixture of rice vinegar (a mild form of vinegar), sugar, salt, and often kombu (kelp). These seasonings impart a balance of sweet, salty, and sour taste flavors that pairs so well with the raw fish.

    The term sushi means vinegared rice: su = vinegar, shi = rice.
     
     
    THANKS TO SITKA SALMON SHARES & GRACE PARISI

    Sitka Salmon Shares’ Culinary Director Grace Parisi is a cook, writer and cookbook author. Formerly the Senior Test Kitchen Editor at Food & Wine Magazine and Executive Food Director at TimeInc Books, her work has appeared in Cooking Light, Health, O Magazine, Epicurious, Fitness, Today, Serious Eats, Martha Stewart, and many more. She’s the author of more than 6 books, among them The Portlandia Cookbook and Get Saucy, which was nominated for a James Beard award for Best Single Subject Cookbook.

     

    Chirashi Sushi California Roll Bowl Recipe
    [1] California roll ingredients turned into chirashi sushi (photo © Sitka Salmon Shares).

    Whole Dungeness Crab On Ice
    [2] Dungeness crab (photo © Good Eggs).

    Bottle Of Nakano Rice Vinegar
    [3] Rice vinegar is available seasoned and unseaoned. For this recipe, you need unseasoned. (photo © Nakano Rice Vinegar).

    A Bowl Of Japanese Rice With Chopsticks
    [4] A bowl of Japanese rice (photo © Mgg Vitchakorn | Unsplash).

    California Roll Uramaki (Reverse Roll)
    [6] A classic California Roll uramaki, or reverse roll, with the rice on the outside (photo © Umami Information Center).

     
    ________________

    *Japonica rice is extensively cultivated and consumed in East Asia, whereas in most other regions of Asia, indica rice is the dominant type of rice. Here’s the difference between the two.

    In California, rice production is dominated by short and medium-grain japonica varieties, including cultivars developed for the local climate, such as Calrose.

    A cultivar is a type of plant that people have bred for desired traits (selective breeding). Many cultivars of rice are grown worldwide. The two major subspecies (indica and japonica) have more than 40,000 varieties. Here’s a small list of them.

    Pickled ginger recipe: If you can’t find pickled ginger in the Asian products aisle of your supermarket or a local Asian grocer, make your own. Use 1 teaspoon each grated fresh ginger, rice vinegar, and sugar. Allow the flavors to meld for an hour or more.

     
     

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    Shiraz Vs. Syrah: The Difference For National Shiraz Day

    Shiraz Wine Bottle & Glass Of Wine
    [1] Shiraz wines have a deep red color. Learn more about Australian Shiraz, the first “modern” Shiraz (photo © Best Wines)

    A Glass Of Red Wine With Filet Mignon
    [2] Shiraz is a happy pairig with any kind of beef or lamb (phot © LT Bar & Grill).

    Shiraz Bottle & Glass
    [3 Penfolds Bin 28 from Australia, one of the world’s great Shiraz wines. Here’s more about it (photo © Dmarge).

    Glasses Of Shiraz Red Wine With Pasta
    [4] Shiraz stands up to garlic, spice, and robust flavors—including pepperoni pizza (photo © Brooke Lark | Unsplash).

    A Glass of Red Wine with a Washed Rind Cheese
    [5] Shiraz likes hearty cheeses: Cheddar, blue cheese, aged cheeses like Parmigiano-Reggiano, and strong cheeses washed rind cheeses (photo © Louis Hansel | Unsplash).

    Syrah Grapes On The Grapevine
    [6] Shiraz grapes (photo © Max Delsid | Unsplash).

    Rack Of Lamb With Pesto & Red Wine
    [7] Yes, please: rack of lamb and a bottle of Shiraz (photo © DeLallo).

    Red Wine With A Roast Chicken
    [8] Roasting a chicken? Open a bottle of Shiraz (photo © Corto Olive | Facebook).

     

    National Shiraz Day is the 4th Thursday of June. It celebrates a wine that is also known as Syrah. The better-known Syrah has its own holiday, International Syrah Day, on February 16th. So what’s the difference of Shiraz vs. Syrah?

    Food holidays are an opportunity for THE NIBBLE to discuss a particular food or wine. This article will explain:

  • Why Syrah is called Shiraz.
  • Ideal Shiraz food pairings.
  • The history of Shiraz.
  •  
     
    A BRIEF INTRODUCTION

    Shiraz/Syrah is a dark-skinned red wine grape variety that is grown around the world.

    The modern Shiraz grape is identical to Syrah, which originated in southeast France.

    Modern Shiraz has no established connection to the city of Shiraz, Persia (modern Iran), where a wine of that name was made for centuries (but can now no longer be made*).

    In addition to the wines called Syrah and Shiraz, the grape itself is widely used as a blending grape in the red wines of many countries. Its fruit flavors balance out the lesser fruitiness of other grapes, resulting in a more complete wine.

    Neither Syrah nor Shiraz should be confused with Petite Sirah, a different wine that cross-bred Syrah with another grape‡.
     
     
    WHY IS SYRAH CALLED SHIRAZ?

    In the “why is this so complicated” category, Shiraz wine refers to two different wines. Forget the old, embrace the new.

  • Historically, the name refers to a wine produced around the city of Shiraz in present-day Iran. By the ninth century, the city had a reputation for producing the finest wine in the world. As mentioned, that wine is no longer made*.
  • In the 19th century, Shiraz became an alternative name for the Syrah grape (explanation below), which is mostly used in Australia and South Africa.
  • There is no proven connection between the city of Shiraz and its wines, and the modern-day Shiraz, or Syrah, that is made in Australia, South Africa, and other countries.
  • The modern Shiraz or Syrah grape, was brought to Australia in 1832 by Scottish horticulturist, James Busby, the father of Australian wine. He brought vine cuttings from varietals in France and Spain that became the foundation of the Australian wine industry.
  •  
    So why did Syrah become Shiraz in Australia? Yes. No one has uncovered the smoking gun, but here’s what we do know.

  • Busby did not rename the grape Shiraz. But he labeled his cuttings Scyras and Ciras, which, in a heavy Scottish or Australian accent, could be pronounced somewhat like Syrah or Shiraz.
  • The earliest Australian documents use the spelling Scyras. It has been speculated by some wine historians that Shiraz is a so-called “strinization” of Syrah via Scyras (strine, also spelled stryne, describes the broad accent of Australian English).
  • “Shiraz” seems to have replaced “Scyras” in Australia from the mid-19th century [source].
  •  
    Those who wish to put bets on the mystery of exactly how Syrah became Shiraz should probably look to the “strinization” of Scyras (and wait for the smoking gun).

    Ready for more confusion? In different parts of the world, the grape is called Antourenein noir, Balsamina, Candive, Entournerein, Hignin noir, Marsanne noir, Schiras, Sirac, Syra, Syrac, Serine, and Sereine.
     
     
    THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN FRENCH SYRAH & AUSTRALIAN SHIRAZ

    Any wine (or other agricultural product) will taste different based on its terroir†. Chocolate from beans grown in the Côte d’Ivoire tastes different than chocolate from Venezuela.

    After terroir, the next differentiator is style, a reflection of the winemaker’s taste in making the wine.

    Let’s start with Syrah from France.

    Syrah

    The world’s most famous Syrah wines, the classic Northern Rhône reds, are elegant and tannic, with restrained fruit. They tend to be dark, earthy, smokey, and even leathery, reflecting their terroir and cold climate.

    Syrah is the main grape of the northern Rhône and produces classic, world-famous wines such as Hermitage, Cornas and Côte-Rôtie.

    In the southern Rhône, Syrah is used as a blending grape in such wines as Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Gigondas and Côtes du Rhône (Grenache usually makes up the bulk of the blend).

    The finest Rhone wines will age for decades. Some winemakers make less-extracted styles that can be enjoyed young for their lively red and blueberry characters and smooth tannin structure.

    Syrah wines made in the French style, from grapes grown in other cooler climates, tend to use the Syrah names.
     
     
    Shiraz

    Beyond Australia, Shiraz has become a preferred name for the wines produced by New World winemakers, who fashioned their wines in the Australian style. It’s a stylistic choice—plus the qualities provided by their terroir—to vinify their wines in a separate way from French Syrah.

    (It may be confusing to the consumer, but if you’ve ever wondered how Shiraz is different from Syrah, here you have it!.)

    In warmer climates, Syrah yields riper berries that create rich, lush, intense, fruit-forward wines (often notes of blackberries), and generally bolder wines. These wines are higher in alcohol and less tannic than French Syrah. Accents are peppery rather than smokey [source].

    While the best Rhone Syrahs are vinified for aging, Shiraz wines are more approachable when young.
     
     
    SYRAH FOOD & WINE PAIRINGS

    Shiraz wines tend to be full-bodied with big, bold flavors, so they pair easily with big- and bold-flavored food.

  • Beef (including roast beef, steaks, even burgers)
  • Cheddar, blue cheese, aged cheeses like Parmigiano-Reggiano, and strong cheeses washed rind cheeses
  • Grilled and barbecued foods
  • Lamb chops, roast leg of lamb
  • Mushroom dishes
  • Pizza, especially pepperoni
  • Roast chicken and duck
  • Sausage
  • Stews
  •  
    As with most red wines, avoid pairing Shiraz with lighter foods like seafood and white fish.
     
     
    THE HISTORY OF SHIRAZ

    Syrah has a long documented history in the Rhône region of southeastern France, but for a long time, its origins were unknown. Then came the advent of DNA research.

    In 1998, a study conducted in the Department of Viticulture and Enology at University of California, Davis used DNA typing and extensive grape reference material from the viticultural research station in Montpellier, France.

    The conclusion: Syrah was the offspring of the grape varieties Dureza (father) and Mondeuse Blanche (mother) [source]. Both parents come from a small area in southeastern France, close to northern Rhône River. Based on these findings, the researchers concluded that Syrah originated in the region of the northern Rhône (southwestern France).

    And thence to Australia. It was long thought that Shiraz arrived in Australia in 1832 as French Syrah cuttings that were part of the original James Busby collection.

    Busby’s cuttings were planted in the Sydney Botanical Gardens, then the Hunter Valley, before making it to South Australia in the middle of the 19th century.

    However, Shiraz may have arrived a bit earlier, as part of the Macarthur collection which arrived in Sydney aboard the Lord Eldon in 1817 [source].

    The first commercial Shiraz vineyard was believed to have been planted by George Wyndham, who started planting his vineyard at his property Dalwood in 1831. Shiraz may have been planted in that vineyard, which predated the Busby vines (any newly planted wine vines need a few seasons to propagate before they can make acceptable wines).

    As a result of any and all of these situations, Australia now has some of the oldest Shiraz vines in the world [ibid].

     
    ________________

    *In modern Iran, Shiraz wine cannot be produced legally due to the prohibition of alcohol in Islam. Before the Islamic Revolution in 1979, there were up to 300 wineries in Iran; now there are none [source].

    †Terroir, pronounced tur-WAH, is a French agricultural term referring to the unique set of environmental factors in a specific habitat that affects a crop’s qualities. These include climate, elevation, proximity to a body of water, slant of the land, soil type, and amount of sun. These environmental characteristics give the wines produced from these grapes a unique character.

    ‡Syrah is a cross between the Dureza and Mondeuse Blanche grapes of southwestern France. Petite Sirah is a cross between Syrah and Peloursin, a rare French variety from the Rhone-Alpes region, dating from 1880. It may have gotten its name because the berries are small, i.e., petite.
     
     

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    Creme Brulee Recipes & History For National Creme Brulee Day

    July 27th is National Crème Brûlée Day, celebrating a French dessert that has remained on menus across the U.S. long after Coupe aux Marrons, Île Flottante, Mont Blanc, and other classic French desserts have disappeared from menus in the U.S.

    Crème brûlée first came to America with Thomas Jefferson’s return from France in 1789 [source]. But it didn’t take hold (more about that below).

    Crème brûlée is a type of custard made of all heavy cream (no milk), egg yolks, sugar, and vanilla. It’s topped with a brittle layer of caramelized sugar (brûlée is French for burnt, crème brûlée means “burnt custard”).

    In addition to the delicious flavor, some fun is to be had by cracking the hard sugar with one’s fork.

    Who created such a delectable dessert?
     
     
    THE HISTORY OF CRÈME BRÛLÉE

    Crème brûlée recipes seem to have emerged in the 16th century, in the English countryside (some sources say the 15th century). During the spring calving season, the milk was especially rich, and farm women would prepare a very thick custard to use up the milk and take advantage of its richness.

    Some say the burnt sugar was added later, at Trinity College, Cambridge University, in 1879. A student is credited with the idea of branding the school crest into a topping of sugar, burnt with a hot iron rod fashioned with the crest.

    The recipe was called Cambridge Cream or Trinity Cream and has been a popular item on the school’s menu ever since [ibid].

    But let’s step across the Channel to France, 200 years earlier.

    The earliest known printed recipe anywhere for crème brûlée appeared in the 1691 French cookbook, Le cuisinier royal et bourgeois by Chef François Massialot (1660-1733—click on the first link to read the book for free).

    In Massialot’s recipe, the sugar topping was melted and burnt with a red-hot fire shovel*, then placed on top of the custard [source].

    By the 18th century, kitchen tools included a salamander. A round, flat, thick plate attached to a long handle, it was heated over the fire and then used to brown foods (photo #7).

    (The first blowtorch, from which the kitchen torch is adapted, wasn’t invented until 1882. Here’s an early adapted version used by Julia Child around 1963.)

    Massialot’s crème brûlée recipe added a disc of caramelized sugar onto the custard, instead of burning the sugar directly on the dessert as was done later.

    A bit more about this great chef:

    An innovation in Massialot’s cookbook was the alphabetization of recipes, a step toward the first culinary dictionary.

    The recipe for meringues also made its first appearance published by Massialot [source].
     
     
    CRÈME BRÛLÉE COMES TO AMERICA

    As mentioned earlier, Thomas Jefferson brought the recipe back from France in 1789, and had his cook make it. But it didn’t become part of the American dessert repertoire.

    Over the centuries, as crème brûlée became better known internationally, recipes began to appear in American magazines and cookbooks in the 1950s and 1960s.

    But its breakout came in the 1980s, thanks to Le Cirque restaurant, one of the top French restaurants in New York City. It got lots of press and became one of the “it” desserts [source].

    Home cooks as well as restaurants could burn the sugar under the broiler. There was also the salamander, although few home cooks would want to use one (a very hot metal rod!).

    Then came the butane torch, or kitchen torch (photo #5). Suddenly, crème brûlée was relatively easy. Today, you can find one for less than $20 (although we’d go for a brand name, at possibly twice that).

    And they’re not just for crème brûlée. Here are 15 more uses for a kitchen torch.

    As crème brûlée evolved, it became flavored: butterscotch, chocolate, cocktail-flavored (Irish Coffee, Margarita, Piña Colada, White Russian, etc.), coffee, Earl Grey, eggnog, fresh and dried fruit of every description, green tea/matcha, lavender, mocha, Nutella, pie-flavored (Key lime, pumpkin), salted caramel, s’mores, snickderdoodle…need we go on?

    And then, of course, the crème brûlée flavor was ported to everything else: brownies, cakes/cheesecakes, chocolates, coffee, coffee creamer, cookies and cupcakes, doughnuts, French toast, fudge, ice cream, even McCormick Flavor Inspirations Crème Brûlée Seasoning to sprinkle on coffee drinks and “your favorite breakfasts, desserts, and dips.” It’s a limited edition: Get it while you can.
     
     
    WHAT ABOUT CREMA CATALANA?

    Crema catalana (“Catalan cream”) is the name used for the dish in most of Spain (photo #7), but strangely, it is called crema cremada (“burnt cream”) in its home province of Catalonia.

    The dish is similar to crème brûlée. Similar, but not identical.

    While both are custards made from egg yolks and sugar, crème brûlée is made with cream, while crema catalana is made with milk.

    The basic crème brûlée recipe is flavored with vanilla, while crema catalana is often flavored with lemon zest or cinnamon, as well as vanilla.

    Both have a burnt sugar topping.

    In the annals of time, crema catalana is older.

    The first known recipe appears in the medieval Catalan cookbook Llibre de Sent Soví, in the mid-14th century.

    That’s three centuries before Massialot’s crème brûlée recipe.

    As with crème brûlée, the sugar was sprinkled over the cooked custard and subsequently burnt with a hot iron rod.
     
     
    MORE TO KNOW

    > The different types of French crèmes.

    > The different types of custard.

    > Types of custard: creme brûlée, creme caramel, pot de crème.

    > The history of custard.

    > The difference between custard and pudding.
     
     
    CRÈME BRÛLÉE & OTHER BRÛLÉE RECIPES

  • Burnt Caramel Cheesecake Brûlée
  • Classic Creme Brulee
  • Grand Marnier Creme Brulee
  • Red Grapefruit Creme Brulee
  • Passionfruit Rice Pudding Brulee
  •  
     
     
     

    ________________

    *The definition of a fire shovel from the 1770’s is, “an instrument to throw coals on a fire with.” They were initially made of iron [source].

     

    Classic Creme Brulee Recipe
    [1] Classic creme brulee (photo © Mad Max Chef | Unsplash).

    Creme Brulee With Cherries & Peaches
    [2] You can get creative with creme brulee. Here, poached peaches and cherries are embedded into the top before the sugar is added and torched (photo © Parmigiano Reggiano | Facebook).

    Raspberry Chile Creme Brulee
    [3] Raspberry chili crème brûlée. The recipe is in (photo © Melissa’s Produce).

    Creme Brulee Garnishes
    [4] Beaucoup des garnitures (that means lots of garnishes): blackberries, grapes, mint leaf, strawberries, and sesame crunch candy (photo © shameel Mukkath | Pexels).

    A Kitchen Torch Torching The Sugar Top Of Creme Brulee
    [5] Torching crème brûlée with a home-size butane torch (photo © Bonjour).

    Torching Creme Brulee In A Restaurant
    [6] Torching a number of ramekins in a restaurant kitchen. Note that the butane torch is much larger (photo © Tania Mousinho | Unsplash).

    Kitchen Salamander Tool For Browning
    [7] Old school: before there was a broiler or a butane kitchen torch, there was a low-tech salamander, shown here with crema catalana (photo © Grey Salt Restaurant | Tampa).

     

     
     

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    Osmo Cocktail Salt Rimmer & Glass Rimming Salts, For Home Or Gifting

    Bottles Of Osmo Cocktail Glass Rimming Salt
    [1] A salt rimming tray and three flavored salts (photos #1, #3, and #4 © Osmo Salt).

    A 3-tier Cocktail Salt Rimmer
    [2] Rimming trays without the salts are also available (photo © Ton Jim | Amazon).

    A Bottle Of Grapefruit Lime Rimming Salt
    [3] How about this grapefruit-lime rimming salt instead of plain salt on a Paloma cocktail?

    A Bottle Of Osmo Mango Chili Glass-Rimming Salt
    [4] Beyond cocktails, try this Mango Chili salt on a glass of orange juice or tomato juice.

     

    In every Margarita recipe we’ve printed (more than 33 of them), we’ve advised applying the salt rim with a saucer of salt. Now there’s a fun gadget for glass rimming salts, a boon for those who make a lot of rimmed drinks—or need a gift for someone who does.

    It’s the Rimming Accessory from Osmo Salt, making it easy to rim Margaritas and other cocktails. Three trays give you the option of using three different salts—and you can store the salts inside the tray for the next time you need them.
     
     
    EASY RIM GARNISHES FOR YOUR COCKTAILS

    Durable and dishwasher safe, the three-tier glass rimmer tray is made of high-quality, food-safe ABS plastic. It closes for compact storage. There’s no need to throw out the salt left in a bowl or saucer.

    Osmo Salt’s rimming set includes three rimming salts:

  • Mango Chili Rimming Salt
  • Strawberry Lime Rimming Salt
  • Grapefruit Lime Rimming Salt
  •  
    There are numerous other choices to add to your collection, from Black Flakey Sea Salt to Smokey Sea Salt to Flakey Sriracha Sea Salt.

    If you want only the rimming tray, you can find versions online.

    Ready to add some pizzazz to your drinks? Head to OsmoSalt.com.
     
     
    TYPES OF COCKTAIL RIMS

    Rimming salts get the most attention, either plain coarse salt (“Margarita salt”) or flavored salts. Beyond salts, you can pair your cocktails with:

  • Sugar rims: in a broad variety of flavors.
  • Spice rims: cayenne pepper, celery salt, chili powder, cocoa powder, fennel pollen, sesame seeds, and za’atar, for example, along with dried herbs.
  • Spice blend rims: dukkah, Tajin.
  • Crushed candy rims: assorted hard candies, candy canes, lemon drops, Pop Rocks, sour balls, sprinkles, etc.
  •  
    Popular cocktails that use a salt rim include the Bloody Mary, Caballito, Margarita, Michelada, Michelada, Salty Dog, and almost any mezcal drink.

    Sweet rims are traditional on the Brandy Crusta, Lemon Drop, and Sidecar, and you can add them to anything from a Cosmopolitan to a Mojito, a Mai Tai and all the Tiki and tropical drinks.

    Beyond cocktails, you can add fun and flavorful rims to:

  • Chai
  • Hot chocolate
  • Juices
  • Soft drinks and more
  •  
    BONUS: If you add salt to an apple or other fruit (it amplifies the fruit’s natural sweetness*), try fruity finishing salts instead of table salt. You’ll be pleasantly surprised!

     
    ________________

    *When you sprinkle a bit of salt on a slice of apple that isn’t sweet enough or flavorful enough for you, or if it’s too tart, the apple tastes much sweeter. Of course, the apple has the same amount of sugar as it had before. But the salt diminishes your perception of the acidity in the fruit, allowing you to taste the sugar compounds better. This works with other fruits, too, including melons and overly-tart grapefruit. It’s a way to “salvage” taste-challenged fruit.

     
     

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