Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Tyler Roasts While Whoopi Sneers

Tyler's been busy. On Memorial Day weekend, he cooked at a quarter mile long grill at NASCAR's longest race, the Coca-Cola 600.

On today's View, Tyler had his hands full trying to get Whoopi to eat her vegetables. He was all suited up in his white chef's jacket, which I'm sure looked great on the New York City streets next to all the sailors on this last day of Fleet Week. (Sailors are cute, but really is anything more attractive than an attractive CHEF?!!) 

Tyler did some really interesting things with vegetables and Whoopi just kept making faces as she tasted his creations. He just kept keeping on, no matter how she reacted. At least Joy appreciated his cooking.

Tyler's first suggestion was an Ina standby - roasted vegetables. He said it concentrates the flavor. He didn't use quite the same amount of oil or salt that the Contessa does, but his zucchini looked wonderful. He roasts other vegetables too - cauliflower and butternut squash - and uses them all as bases for wonderful pasta dishes that were so good that even Whoopi approved.

His last recipe was a healthy spin on Red Velvet Cake.  I'm always hesitant to add the full amount of red food coloring and I love Tyler's idea of coloring it with beets. Unfortunately, they rushed through the recipe and one thing was slightly unclear. 

Do me favor and take a look at the recipe and tell me if you think the beets are UNCOOKED before they go into the batter. I do, because Tyler says to peel them and then process them. But I can't decide if it's weird to add raw beets. I use them in the juicer raw, but in a cake? I guess in this case we're USING them RAW, but EATING them COOKED.   

NOTE: I was reading the comments on the View site and a few folks were wondering where to get Pomegranate Molasses. Zingerman's is one good mail order place and here's a recipe for making your own. 


Vanda Calmeyer said...

I think they are raw. Had a great raw beet salad at a friend's house the other day and it was very good. For those of us that can't buy butter in sticks, how much (in grams)is one stick?

Tom said...

Hi Sue,

A good question about the beets. I like Tyler's recipes, but have found they often contain a lot of errors and omissions. This cake recipe doesn't tell you how many pans or what size they are. That seems like an awful lot of frosting for a two-layer cake, so is it three? (On the other hand, it's a neat recipe -- I love pomegranate molasses and think it's a great ingredient here.)

I used to make a chocolate cake that called for canned julienned beets. Those are cooked but even though there were some larger pieces they completely dissolved in the cake. I didn't see the show so I don't know how finely chopped the beets are, but beets can take a fairly long time to cook and the interior of the cake doesn't get much above 200 degrees F, so you could end up with raw-ish beet chunks unless they're really well chopped (or pureed beforehand).

It's like making a carrot cake, I guess, sometimes the shredded carrots don't cook completely, but if I chop them very finely with the food processor steel blade, they're completely cooked at the end.


Anonymous said...

I bet the beets are raw. I've been watching Lifetime's Cook Yourself Thin, and they are constantly using grated raw veggies in place of oil. Here's their recipe for red velvet cupcakes:

Interestingly, they still use some red food color.

Sue said...

Hi Vanda!!!
I heard about a wonderful family reunion recently. I'm sure it was great.

I think you're right about the beets, but it should have been spelled out.

One stick of butter is a 1/4 pound, 4 ounces, 1/2 cup, 8 tablespoons (24 teaspoons) OR 125 grams.

Hope to see you one of these months!

Sue said...

I thought exactly the same thing about the frosting, but Tyler DID have LOT of icing on it and the middle, in particular, was VERY generously iced. And it was two layers.

Tyler did say the beets were puréed, and, the more I think about it, the more I think he meant them to be raw.

Thanks so much for that. It looks like a good recipe. And they use RAW grated beets. That icing, though, looks kind of blah. And I would definitely leave out the red food coloring.

DebCarol said...

I'm for anything that uses natural ingredients in place of food coloring. So bring on the beets, raw or canned.

Emily said...

I would love to try beets as a replacement to the food coloring. Last time I made red velvet cake, I thought the dye made it taste funky. I think I added two bottles.

I wouldn't want my red velvet cake to be healthy, though. I would still use lots of butter.

It makes more sense to me to cook the beets and mash them up. Better texture for the cake, I think. Do you think?