Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Iron Foodie 2010...The treasure box has arrived!!

Update...I've decided on a recipe for my signature dish!!  My ingredient choices are...Tellicherry Pepper, Dried Aji Panca Chili, Wild Porcini Mushrooms, Smoked Sea Salt and Dulse Seaweed...I'm going shopping this Saturday to purchas all my other ingredients and will be spending Sunday and Monday preparing my dish...keep your fingers and toes crossed so I don't burn or ruin anything.  What you see on the plate is all I have to work with and if something goes wrong... I'm in deep dodo!!
Rushing home in a blizzard last night, I was hopeful to find my treasure box filled with gourmet goodies from Marx Foods.   Sure enough, my little box was sitting on the first step just inches away from the wet and snowy conditions.  I ran inside with my treasure, eager to unveil it's gourmet contents. 

As I sliced open the box, my senses were overcome with the sweet, smokey and pungent  aromas of  the contents.  What treasures inside this tiny box could offer such an array if diversity to my senses? 

Let's take a look at each item individually, starting with the most intriguing.
Dulse Seaweed

The Dulse Seaweed is one of the most intriguing ingredients in the box.  The smell is nothing like most seaweed varietals I've eaten or cooked with.  The fragrance reminded me of tobacco, slightly sweet and earthy.  Filled with antioxidants this seaweed is a super-food!  I'm really hoping to incorporate Dulse seaweed into my signature dish!

Fennel Pollen:

A delightful aroma with a light hint of licorice and lemon, crisp and refreshing. 

Dried chilies generally have very little aroma until reconstituted in water.  The Anji Panca Chilies have just a hint of the smells reminiscent of my youth, while living in Albuquerque, New Mexico.  I adore red and green chilies and the foods of the South West.  I  learned how to eat some of the finest Mexican food on the planet at a very young age, thanks to my parents!  I'm really looking forward to comparing the taste and heat of these lovely chilies to my favorite New Mexican dried red Chilies.

Strong and pungent are these little beauties!  Like the damp forest smells after a rain. I imagine they will be filled with powerful woodsy flavors and add a dimension of hearty goodness to any dish!

 Smoked Fine Sea Salt:

Naturally smoked, the fine, black grains conjure up the smell of a camp fire but with a sweetness that is indescribable for salt.  This salt is filled with layers and layers of  complexity, smooth salinity that's  not overpowered by the natural smokiness.  I love sea salt and this one ranks very high on my scale of perfectly balanced and tasty.

Madagascar Bourbon Vanilla Beans: 

A vanilla bean soaked in Bourbon...yup, that's a match made in heaven! Plump, and filled with flavor, I can't wait to slice open the brown slender bean to reach the lusciousness inside...YUM! 

 Maple Sugar:

Wow!  I'm not much for maple flavor but this sugar was the bomb!  Growing up with Aunt Jamima on the table I  never became accustom to the "real" flavor of maple syrup.  To strong for my taste in it's natural form, but not overpowering in the least, in this fine sugar.

Tellicherry Peppercorns:

After being introduced to Tellicherry  Peppers  four years ago, I haven't cooked with any other variety since!!   A complex little peppercorn with fruitiness and good heat, is a staple in my kitchen! 

Marx Foods did a wonderful job of choosing a diverse array of ingredients for this challenge.  My head has been spinning since I opened the I must choose which 3 treasures to use for my signature dish.  How will I choose my 3 ingredients?  I have no idea at this very moment!!  Stay tuned for the answer to that question as I need to cogitate for a bit! 

The deadline for posting my signature dish is December 3 and starting December 7th, the entire Foodie Blogroll will vote to award one person the title of Iron Foodie 2010! 

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  1. Wow! Very interesting treasure box! Quite unexpected list of ingredients, I think! I love the Madagascar vanilla bean! Which one would you choose? Well, looks like you will be busy with this exciting challenge. Can't wait to see your signature dish! Good luck!

  2. kf, I'm kinda overwhelmed with the diversity of ingredients...I think I'm leaning toward the seaweed, anj panca chili and porcini mushrooms...but that changes about every two seconds! It's making my brain hurt!! Wow, this is going to be very difficult!

  3. Hi Rebecka! I was so excited to join foodie blog roll and I was checking out the latest news and I stumbled upon this contest and saw your name listed and I was so excited to see a hearth and soul hop member in the mix! Deb of Kahakai kitchen is also playing along! I am featuring both of you in my thoughts on friday link love this week at a moderate life! What a lovely care package! the vanilla beans alone would make me swoon! Good luck and we will be rooting for you! Alex@amoderatelife

  4. How exciting! Everything looks so good. I loooove fennel pollen, but haven't seen it in forever. Looking forward to seeing what do with all that goodness!

  5. Heather, I've never cooked with fennel pollen before but I plan to now that I have some. I think it would make a delicious flavored butter to go with fresh grilled salmon...yum!

    Alex, I'm so happy you finally joined the Foodie Blogroll! It's great to have you on board. I was also happy to see Kahakai in the competition..I really have to come up with a totally awesome dish to compete with all of these great chefs...

    I've finally decided what I'm going to make.....aaahhhhh!! I'm going shopping this weekend and plan to cook everything on Sunday. Yikes!

  6. This is so exciting - what a great treasure box. I can't wait to see what you make! Good luck!

  7. Hi Brenda, Thanks for the moral support!! Knowing what I'm making for my signature dish is very little comfort as I've never made the recipe before and it's way out of my comfort zone...I also have to change the recipe to incorporate my three ingredients. I think I need a stiff drink!!

  8. Woo hoo! Good for you girly! Now those are indeed some awesome ingredients to work with!

  9. Hey there,

    I did put you button on my Friends page but it takes up a huge amount of space...which isn't a problem but it overlaps the page. It's up anyway. I just wanted to let you know! Thanks for entering my giveaways btw!

    And a big thank you for putting up my button!

  10. Wow!

    I'm a contestant in the contest as well,, my efforts were worth is just to get my hands on this recipe!

    I can't wait to make this!


  11. Hi Perry, Thanks for visiting my blog! I see that you're a very accomplished writer and by the looks of your food blog, a very accomplished chef! I'm happy to meet you and wish you the best of luck in the contest! I'm also looking forward to perusing your book selection!

  12. this soup looks amazing Rebecka!So beautifully photographed both the ingredients and the finished product. It looks soooo tasty and warming. Good luck in the challenge.


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