Philadelphia Home Fall/Winter 2009: Artists In Residence: Recipe

Try these delicious recipes from Eileen Togini's salon gathering of art and artists

Makes 10 whole pickles

5 Tbsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. caraway seeds
1/2 cup white wine vinegar
1 tsp. black peppercorns
1 Tbsp. pickling spice
5 c. water
10 baby cucumbers
1 bunch fresh dill
1  yellow onion, thinly sliced
10 whole, peeled garlic cloves

Combine the first six ingredients in a small pot, and boil for 3–4 minutes. After brine has cooled completely, place cucumbers, dill, onion and garlic in a non-reactive container (food-grade plastic or glass works best) just large enough to hold them and the liquid. Pour the brine over the cucumbers. Let sit in the refrigerator for 3-4 weeks or until sour.

Makes 24 hors d’oeuvres

1 large butternut squash
Olive oil
4 Tbsp. butter
1 leek, cleaned and chopped
1/4 c. dry vermouth
2 Tbsp. chopped black truffle, plus more for garnish
1/2 c. heavy cream
2 Tbsp. chopped tarragon
1 tsp. truffle oil
Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 425˚F. Peel squash and slice into 1-inch-thick rings. Punch out disks from the rings with a small, round pastry cutter. Using a melon baller, scoop out top of each squash disk, creating a bowl. Toss disks with olive oil, salt and pepper and roast on a sheet tray until the tip of a knife can cleanly pierce through the squash, about 10-15 minutes. Meanwhile, in a saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. Add leeks, and sweat without browning. Raise heat to high and add vermouth. Cook until almost evaporated. Add black truffle and heavy cream and cook until cream thickens, about 10 minutes. Turn off heat, add tarragon and truffle oil, and season with salt and pepper to taste. Let mixture cool. Fill squash disks with leek mixture, and top with a truffle slice for garnish.

Makes one drink

3 parts vodka
Splash of absinthe
Olives for garnish

Combine vodka and splash of absinthe in shaker with ice. Shake until chilled and strain into glass of your choice. Garnish with olives.

Serves 8 appetizer portions

2 c. kosher salt
1 whole boneless, skin-on Moulard duck, split
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
4 bay leaves, crushed
8 juniper berries, crushed
1 sprig thyme
1 sprig sage

Place one cup of salt in the bottom of a non-reactive container large enough to hold both duck halves snugly, but without touching. Sprinkle with remaining cup of salt, tightly cover, and refrigerate for 24 hours. Remove duck from salt mixture, rinse thoroughly, and pat completely dry with paper towels. Rub duck halves with spice mixture, wrap each in cheesecloth, and hang in the refrigerator or in a cool spot for about 7 days. Slice thin to serve.