Category Archives: ArtIsIn

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Sous Vide Potato Salad

I use Paul Prudhomme’s hot German potato salad recipe from his Seasoned America.  Really excellent potato salad.

The trouble with potato salad, though, is really in the preparing of the potatoes.  His recipe calls to boil the small potatoes and then slice them (if memory serves).  Slicing hot potatoes is painful and sticky.  Not so easily done.

That’s not the even the most important bit.  Potatoes, like so many things in life, cook from the outside in.  So they will always be more done nearer the surface than in the center.  But, you shout at your screen, that’s precisely where sous vide shines!  Yes.  My thoughts exactly.

As I contemplated the path to potato perfection, I deeply pondered the shape of the potato pieces that should carry this most luxurious of salad sauces.  So I busted out my mandolin and crinkle-cut those bastards!

The hardest part is now the easiest part.

Tons of extra surface area for capturing sauce.  Cooked to perfect doneness via sous vide.  Nothing crumbles in the mixing process.  Even the smallest potato fragments tend to keep their structural integrity.  Yes, pure dining pleasure.  Farfegnugen for your tongue.

Submerge your vacuum sealed bag of crinkle-cut potatoes into the water bath at a temperature 185f for 90 minutes.  Mix with your favorite sauce.  Nom nom nom.

I do highly recommend Seasoned America.  One of my favorite books.


Some Notes on Adding Oats to Banana Bread

I usually just use the Joy of Cooking banana bread recipe.  Uncluttered and does a great loaf.  I add some chopped up dark chocolate but otherwise just the strait recipe.

Modulation with Dairy

I want to try adding oats.  Many of the recipes out there where the use oatmeal in banana bread also add a lot of dairy.  Not where I want to go but may as well start there.  I have made the following alterations to my usual.

  • sub 1/4 C of the sugar with brown
  • add 1/4 C yogurt (honey was what I had on-hand)
  • add ~1/4 C 2% milk (since the mixture was thicker (gloppier) than preferred (and it was what I had on-hand)
  • Also, I always sub 1/3 C whole wheat flour and continued that here

We shall see how that bakes up.

Baked up fine.  I am going to try adding a third banana and getting around the milk/yogurt thing.  Also, I’m going to try either grinding the oats (blender or food processor) or I’ll try using oat flour.

Modulation without Dairy

My latest version included 1/3 C whole wheat substitution though I forgot the brown sugar.  I added 1/3 C oatmeal and about 1/3 C combined oat bran and ground flaxseeds.  Rated excellent by those who tried it I would like to see the baked loaf be a little more crumby and less gooey.

Modulation Next

Repeating this last attempt but with four bananas and lowering the baking temperature to 325f (and extending the baking time from sixty minutes to 70 then bumped the temp up to 350f for another maybe twenty) and adding probably a tablespoon of molasses (and remembering to substitute in the 1/3 C of brown sugar).

Larger mass of dough/batter and I was a bit worried the loaf pans could overflow during baking, but after half an hour the pans were nearly full but looking just fine.

Still a bit on the chewy-gooey side.  I suspect the flax.  Contemplating the next version.


Smoked Almonds

I did this once before.  It was great.  Thought I might try adding a bit of brown sugar this time around.  We’ll see where that takes it.

I started with the below.  I vaguely remember using a combination of olive oil and butter last time.  Could be wrong though.   We’ll see what I do next time.


  • 48 oz bag of almonds (about 11 C)
  • 2 t cayenne
  • 2 T salt
  • 2 T brown sugar
  • 2 T peanut oil

Put the almonds into a large bowl and coat thoroughly with olive oil.  Combine spices in a mortar and pestle or a ramekin.  Sprinkle and mix into almonds, again coating thoroughly.

Put them in a single layer in pans for your smoker of choice.  Smoke hot (250f to 300f) for some time (twenty minutes or until satisfyingly roasted).

Not as good as my previous batch (down to good from amazing).  I’ll have to experiment more.

Maybe borrow from this one next time.

New attempt…

  • almonds
  • 3 T butter + 2 T peanut oil combined
  • 2 T salt
  • 2 T brown sugar
  • 2 t cayenne
  • 1 t nutmeg
  • 1 t molasses

Note to self, coat the almonds in oil first and then apply the dry spices.  Combining those makes it impossible to distribute the dry spices.

Into the smoker at 275f (top temp) and check in half an hour but I would guess a couple of hours.  If memory serves it took some time previously.  (Roasting almonds is typically done at 325f for maybe twenty minutes.)

This batch was better excluding the aforementioned idiocy about mixing ingredients.  Watch for the third attempt which I hope to solidify the recipe and the technique.


Smoky Roasted Almonds

Smoked Almonds with Olive Oil and Kosher Salt

Smoked Almonds

How to Roast Almonds



Black Rice and Cheese with Broccoli

New food experiment.  Mac and cheese but with black rice as the starch and add some broccoli because why not.


  • 2 cups black rice
    • 2 cups water (or stock)
    • 2 cups whole milk
    • 1 t mushroom paste (Better than Bouillon)
  • roux from 1 cube butter and 1 cup flour
    • pepper
    • nutmeg
    • cayenne
    • maybe 1/2 C each Parmesan and Asiago
    • couple cups milk or so
    • 1 lb shredded medium cheddar
    • 1 lb frozen chopped broccoli
    • salt

Add in order above (though that extra milk can be added as needed).  Use lowest heat throughout so the oils don’t break the emulsification.

Pretty thick.  Maybe too thick?  I was lazy and used pre-shredded Parmesan, Asiago, and cheddar.  The Asiago and cheddar contain starches which can interfere with emulsification and make the final sauce less smooth so that’s likely a factor.  Flavor is pretty good but can likely be made better.  Arguably the flavor of the broccoli overpowers all else; it’s very strong compared to the rest.