No Recipes vol. 1

When I first started this blog I wanted it to a be a place where I could share cooking inspiration. I’d planned to post pictures and write about the ingredients I used and perhaps share some history about the dish. It quickly became apparent to me that that wouldn’t fly, so I scrapped the idea and I busted out the measuring cups and started fastidiously documenting everything I made.

At first I worried it might stifle my creativity, but to be honest it’s actually been a pretty good exercise for me. Probably the biggest benefit is that I’m actually able to reproduce successes with some consistency. I also have a horrible memory, so documenting stuff here has ensured I can make something I liked again even if months have passed since the last time I made it.

Still, work and life have kept me busy and accurately measuring out and writing down ingredients and a reproducible process takes time. When time is scarce, I tend to throw together whatever is in the fridge, sometimes recycling left-overs 3-4 times, turning them into a new dish every night. That’s not something I could write a recipe for even if I tried, so until now these frankencreations have gone unshared. Well, you asked for them, so I’ll be posting a weeklyish roundup of all the stuff I made that I didn’t have time to document with a step-by step recipe.

Here’s the No Recipes roundup for this week:

Scallop Sashimi with Yuzu and CuminI went and saw Body of Lies today after going to the Japanese market and this is the result. Scallop sashimi with smoked salt and yuzu with a dusting of middle eastern spices including cumin, corriander, cinnamon, and cayenne pepper.

Butternut Squash Ricotta and Pecorino Romano PizzaL made a 4 cheese pasta earlier this week and as a result we had a ton of random cheeses sitting in the fridge. I also had half a butternut squash sitting in the fridge and a lone apple that was nearing the end of it’s edible life, so these two pizzas were born. I used Jim Lahey’s no-knead dough and topped it with olive oil, ricotta insalata, butternut squash, pecorino romano and salt and pepper. I’m not a huge fan of ricotta, but ricotta insalata is a dryer saltier version that works very well with the sweet butternut squash. Ideally I would have topped this with sage, but basil is what we had in the fridge, so it got a scattering of torn basil once it came out of the oven.

Apple Blue Cheese Fontina Pizza with Walnuts and HoneyThis one’s a bit more unusual as far as pizza’s go, but the flavours should be familiar… I call it the “cheese plate” because it’s got all the stuff you’d find on a cheese plate at a restaurant. The sweetness from the honeycrisp apples juxtaposes the salty Ewe’s Blue cheese while the nutty walnuts compliment both. The fontina adds some creaminess and a drizzle of honey as it comes out of the oven finishes it off.

Chicken AdoboI haven’t been to enough Filipino restaurants to be able to say this is at all authentic, but it’s got vinegar in the braising liquid which tenderizes the meat and gives it a pleasant tang. Other ingredients include soy sauce, brown sugar, ginger, garlic and scallions.

  • http://www.justgetfloury.com/ Ginny

    Delicious! I wish I could just throw together such a delicious pizza! :)

  • http://www.justgetfloury.com Ginny

    Delicious! I wish I could just throw together such a delicious pizza! :)

  • http://manggy.blogspot.com/ Manggy

    It’s really interesting how you were able to come up with these dishes– and amazing how you were able to make great dishes out of whatever’s in the fridge!
    The sugar makes it loosely a “Chinese” adobo. The inclusion of ginger is uncommon, though. But it looks and sounds still very much like an Adobo :)

  • http://manggy.blogspot.com Manggy

    It’s really interesting how you were able to come up with these dishes– and amazing how you were able to make great dishes out of whatever’s in the fridge!
    The sugar makes it loosely a “Chinese” adobo. The inclusion of ginger is uncommon, though. But it looks and sounds still very much like an Adobo :)

  • http://www.cookeatfret.com/ claudia (cook eat FRET)

    nice work – the scallops and those very cool pizza’s…. i loved all of that. lahey’s dough is just excellent.

  • http://www.cookeatfret.com claudia (cook eat FRET)

    nice work – the scallops and those very cool pizza’s…. i loved all of that. lahey’s dough is just excellent.

  • http://www.souvlakiforthesoul.com/ Peter G

    Marc, I don’t think your creativity could ever be stifled…all these dishes are very inventive and fantastic.

  • http://www.souvlakiforthesoul.com Peter G

    Marc, I don’t think your creativity could ever be stifled…all these dishes are very inventive and fantastic.

  • http://www.everydaycookin.blogspot.com/ Darius T. Williams

    Wow – I’m loving the scallops and the pizza!

    -DTW
    http://www.everydaycookin.blogspot.com

  • http://www.everydaycookin.blogspot.com Darius T. Williams

    Wow – I’m loving the scallops and the pizza!

    -DTW
    http://www.everydaycookin.blogspot.com

  • http://chezannies.blogspot.com/ Nate

    Wow, butternut squash slices on pizza – that’s very inventive!

  • http://chezannies.blogspot.com Nate

    Wow, butternut squash slices on pizza – that’s very inventive!

  • http://feistyfoodie.blogspot.com/ Yvo

    Ooh, hey, surprised I didn’t see you at dinner on Saturday, but Adriana from What I made for dinner was asking me about yuzu and how to use it, I didn’t know how to answer… I will direct her your way since apparently you have some idea!

  • http://feistyfoodie.blogspot.com Yvo

    Ooh, hey, surprised I didn’t see you at dinner on Saturday, but Adriana from What I made for dinner was asking me about yuzu and how to use it, I didn’t know how to answer… I will direct her your way since apparently you have some idea!

  • http://foodhappens.blogspot.com/ Lo!

    I know what you mean about a blog functioning as documentation. I often stumbled upon great combos in years past, but no recipes meant I could seldom recreate a good thing.

    Those pizzas look particularly inspired. Love the butternut squash in particular!

  • http://foodhappens.blogspot.com Lo!

    I know what you mean about a blog functioning as documentation. I often stumbled upon great combos in years past, but no recipes meant I could seldom recreate a good thing.

    Those pizzas look particularly inspired. Love the butternut squash in particular!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/05752371044060690705 cakewardrobe

    I tend to move on with things too quickly.. Trends, boys, hehe, food trends – this is why I started a blog too. Even though I work with recipes, I always forget what I made that I loved!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/05752371044060690705 cakewardrobe

    I tend to move on with things too quickly.. Trends, boys, hehe, food trends – this is why I started a blog too. Even though I work with recipes, I always forget what I made that I loved!

  • http://www.debbiesmochame.blogspot.com/ Debbie

    Your dishes are great and the pizza looks wonderful. I have never made a homemade pizza!!!

  • http://www.debbiesmochame.blogspot.com Debbie

    Your dishes are great and the pizza looks wonderful. I have never made a homemade pizza!!!

  • Marc

    Thanks Ginny, pizza is actually pretty simple once you get the dough down. I struggled with the dough forever, but the recipe I linked to for Jim Lahey’s no-knead dough is a no-brainer, it just takes some planning ahead.

    Manggy, thanks for the info about Adobo. I’d love to visit the Philippines sometime to get a better understanding of the food.

    Thanks Claudia, finding that dough recipe really transformed my thinking about home made bread.

    Thanks for the vote of confidence Peter:-)

    Thanks Darius!

    Nate, well my fridge gets a little of the credit because I found the butternut squash in the bowels of the vegetable drawer crying out to be used:-)

    Yvo, yea I don’t think the organizer saw my reply to her comment… Ahh well, hopefully I get to join for the next one. If she does a search for Yuzu I’m sure she’ll find all kinds of recipes, it’s one of my favourite ingredients.

    Thanks Lo! It’s a tough discipline to keep up with, but when you figure out something good it’s nice to write it down for later.

    Cakewardrobe, LOL! I think I’m a little bit like, wearing out some hot new ingredient I find and then moving on, but I like having some familiar ones on standby too.

    Thanks Debbie, you should give it a try sometime. It’s MUCH cheaper than ordering one and it’s about the simplest thing in the world to make. I like taking flavours I like in other dishes and putting them on top of pizza.

  • Marc

    Thanks Ginny, pizza is actually pretty simple once you get the dough down. I struggled with the dough forever, but the recipe I linked to for Jim Lahey’s no-knead dough is a no-brainer, it just takes some planning ahead.

    Manggy, thanks for the info about Adobo. I’d love to visit the Philippines sometime to get a better understanding of the food.

    Thanks Claudia, finding that dough recipe really transformed my thinking about home made bread.

    Thanks for the vote of confidence Peter:-)

    Thanks Darius!

    Nate, well my fridge gets a little of the credit because I found the butternut squash in the bowels of the vegetable drawer crying out to be used:-)

    Yvo, yea I don’t think the organizer saw my reply to her comment… Ahh well, hopefully I get to join for the next one. If she does a search for Yuzu I’m sure she’ll find all kinds of recipes, it’s one of my favourite ingredients.

    Thanks Lo! It’s a tough discipline to keep up with, but when you figure out something good it’s nice to write it down for later.

    Cakewardrobe, LOL! I think I’m a little bit like, wearing out some hot new ingredient I find and then moving on, but I like having some familiar ones on standby too.

    Thanks Debbie, you should give it a try sometime. It’s MUCH cheaper than ordering one and it’s about the simplest thing in the world to make. I like taking flavours I like in other dishes and putting them on top of pizza.

  • http://www.eatingclubvancouver.com/ [eatingclub] vancouver || js

    I love the middle eastern dusting on those scallops! Love the pizzas too.

  • http://www.eatingclubvancouver.com [eatingclub] vancouver || js

    I love the middle eastern dusting on those scallops! Love the pizzas too.

  • http://shizuokagourmet.wordpress.com/ Robert-Gilles Martineau

    Dear Marc!
    Greetings!
    (if I have made a mistake with the name, start shooting!)
    Robert-Gilles from Shizuoka, Japan!
    You seem to do very well over there!
    “smoked salt and yuzu” is not so easy to obtain after all!
    Take it easy on the salt!
    Beautiful blog!
    Cheers,
    Robert-Gilles

  • http://shizuokagourmet.wordpress.com/ Robert-Gilles Martineau

    Dear Marc!
    Greetings!
    (if I have made a mistake with the name, start shooting!)
    Robert-Gilles from Shizuoka, Japan!
    You seem to do very well over there!
    “smoked salt and yuzu” is not so easy to obtain after all!
    Take it easy on the salt!
    Beautiful blog!
    Cheers,
    Robert-Gilles

  • http://www.sugarbar.org/ diva

    wonderful roundup! beautiful pictures as usual..those pizzas are so tempting..
    how do you come up with these wonderful dishes all the time marc?? it’s simply genius!

  • http://www.sugarbar.org diva

    wonderful roundup! beautiful pictures as usual..those pizzas are so tempting..
    how do you come up with these wonderful dishes all the time marc?? it’s simply genius!

  • http://appetiteforchina.com/ Diana @ AppetiteforChina

    Recipe or no recipe, the pizzas still look amazing!

  • http://appetiteforchina.com Diana @ AppetiteforChina

    Recipe or no recipe, the pizzas still look amazing!

  • http://mimikatzchen.blogspot.com/ mimi

    thanks for visiting my blog! i love the pizzas, especially the “cheese plate” one, so yummy looking!

  • http://mimikatzchen.blogspot.com mimi

    thanks for visiting my blog! i love the pizzas, especially the “cheese plate” one, so yummy looking!

  • http://ricocoffeeshop.blogspot.com/ Rico

    absolutly delish looking dish …just love it so had to share that with you.

    http://ricocoffeeshop.blogspot.com

  • http://ricocoffeeshop.blogspot.com/ Rico

    absolutly delish looking dish …just love it so had to share that with you.

    http://ricocoffeeshop.blogspot.com

Welcome!

I'm Marc, and I want to teach you some basic techniques and give you the confidence and inspiration so that you can cook without recipes too!

Coconut Chicken Fingers
Vegan Caprese Salad
Wallpaper Wednesday: Audubon Zoo, New Orleans
Pork Sugo with Strozzapreti
No Recipes vol. 4
Moving On & How to Peel a Kiwi
Corn & Crab Croquettes (かにクリームコロッケ)
Green Beans with Garlic Black Bean Sauce