Sunday, November 14, 2010

Jalapeno-Cheese Bread

Jalapeno Cheese Bread

1 cup water (+ or -) as needed
3 cups bread flour (+ or -) as needed
3 tablespoons nonfat dry milk
1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 tablespoons butter, in small pieces
2 teaspoons active dry yeast (1 packet)or (1-TBS Instant yeast)
4 to 5 tablespoons chopped canned jalapeno peppers or fresh ones chopped
1 cup finely shredded Monterey Jack or Colby cheese, or finely shredded Mexican blend of cheeses.

Optional Ingredients:

Garlic granules (1-tsp)
Cumin (1/2 tsp)


For Bread Machine

Add the ingredients to the bread machine pan according to your bread machine manufacturer's suggested order.

For KA Stand Mixer

Use fewer jalapenos or mild chile peppers for a milder bread. Makes a 2-pound loaf or two 1-pound loaves. I did mine in the Kitchen Aid stand mixer - starting with the paddle, then switching to the dough hook - as a standard bread loaf.

Add the yeast and sugar to the bowl, mix well, and let stand until frothy. Add remaining ingredients and knead until you have a smooth and slightly tacky dough. Shape for the pan. Cover and let rise until it's about 1" above the pan. Bake in 325F. pre-heated oven. Sorry, but I didn't time it.

Monday, June 08, 2009

Kaiser Rolls-Knotted

This recipe makes great Kaiser rolls. It's a long one, but worth the effort. It requires a Pate Fermentee that is shown at the end of this recipe.

Kaiser/Hard Rolls

Makes 6 large rolls or 9 smaller rolls.

1 1/2 cups (8 ounces) pate fermentee
2 1/4 cups (10 ounces) unbleached bread flour
3/4 teaspoon plus a pinch (.2 ounce) salt
1 teaspoon (.17 ounce) diastatic barley malt powder
1 teaspoon (.11 ounce) instant yeast
1 large (1.65 ounce) egg, slightly beaten
1 1/2 tablespoons (.75 ounce) vegetable oil or shortening, melted
10 tablespoons
to 3/4 cup (5 to 6 ounces) water, lukewarm (90 to 100 degrees)
Poppy or sesame seeds for topping (optional).
Semolina flour or cornmeal for dusting.

1. Take 8-ounces of the pate fermentee out of the refrigerator 1-2 hour2 before making the dough. Cut it up into about 10 small pieces with a pastry scraper or serrated knife. Cover it with a towel or plastic wrap and let sit for 1-2 hours to take off the chill.

2. Stir together the flour, salt, malt powder, and yeast in a 4-quart bowl (or in the bowl of an electric mixer). Add the pate fermentee, egg, oil, and 10 tablespoons water. Stir (or mix on low speed with the paddle attachment) for 1 minute, or until the ingredients form a ball. If there is still some loose flour, add the remaining 2 tablespoons of water.

3. Lightly dust the counter with flour, transfer the dough to the counter, and begin kneading (or mix on medium speed with the dough hook). Knead for about 10 minutes (6 minutes by machine), adding flour, if needed, to make a dough that is soft and supple, tacky but not sticky. The dough should pass the windowpane test and the internal temperature should register 77 to 81 degrees. Lightly oil a large bowl and transfer the dough to the bowl, rolling it to coat it with oil. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap.

4. Ferment at room temperature for 2 hours, or until the dough doubles in size. If the dough doubles in size before 2 hours have elapsed, remove it, knead it lightly to degas it, and return it to the bowl to continue fermenting until doubled from original size or until 2 hours have elapsed.

5. Remove the dough from the bowl and divide it into 6 to 9 equal pieces (4 ounces for large rolls, 2 2/3 ounce pieces for smaller rolls). Form the pieces into rolls as shown on page 82. (attached) Mist the rounds lightly with spray oil, cover with a towel or plastic wrap, and let the dough relax for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, line a sheet pan with baking parchment, lightly mist it with spray oil, and then dust with semolina flour or cornmeal.

6. Prepare the individual rolls by cutting them with a Kaiser roll cutter or knotting them. Place the rolls, cut side down, on the parchment, mist lightly with spray oil, and loosely cover the pan with plastic wrap or a food-grade plastic bag.

7. Proof the rolls for 45 minutes at room temperature, then flip them over so the cut or folded side is facing up. Mist again with spray oil, cover the pan, and continue proofing for another 30 to 45 minutes, or until the rolls are double their original size.

8. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees with the oven rack on the middle shelf. Uncover the rolls and prepare them for baking. If you want seeds on your rolls, mist them with water and sprinkle poppy seeds over the top. If not, just mist them with water.

9. Place the pan in the oven, spray the oven walls with water, and close the door. After 10 minutes, rotate the pan for even baking and lower the oven setting to 400 degrees. Continue baking until the rolls are a medium golden brown and register approximately 200 degrees in the center. This will take 15 to 30 minutes for large rolls, or less for smaller rolls.

10. Remove the rolls from the pan and transfer to a cooling rack. Wait at least 30 minutes before serving.

Pate Fermentee

Makes 16 to 17 ounces.

1 1/8 cups (5 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
1 1/8 cups (5 ounces) unbleached bread flour
3/4 teaspoon (.19 ounces) salt
1/2 teaspoon (.055 ounce) instant yeast
3/4 cup to 3/4 cup plus (6 to 7 ounces) water, at room temperature plus
2 tablespoons of additional water

1. Stir together the flours, salt and yeast in a 4-quart bowl (or in the bowl of an electric mixer). Add 3/4 cup of the water, stirring until everything comes together and makes a coarse ball (or mix on low speed for 1 minute with the paddle attachment). Adjust the flour or water, according to need, so that the dough is neither too sticky nor too stiff. (It is better to err on the sticky side, as you can adjust easier during kneading. It is harder to add water once the dough firms up.)
2. Sprinkle some flour on the counter and transfer the dough to the counter. Knead for 4 to 6 minutes (or mix on medium speed with the dough hook for 4 minutes), or until the dough is soft and pliable, tacky but not sticky. The internal temperature should be 77 to 81 degrees.
3. Lightly oil a bowl and transfer the dough to the bowl, rolling it around to coat it with oil. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and ferment at room temperature for 1 hour, or until it swells to about 1 1/2 times its original size.
4. Remove the dough from the bowl, knead it lightly to de-gas, and return it to the bowl, covering the bowl with plastic wrap. Place the bowl in the refrigerator overnight. You can keep this in the refrigerator for up to 3 days, or freeze it in an airtight plastic bag for up to 3 months.

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Chicken Wrapped Asparagus with Lemon Cheese Sauce

2 Boneless skinless chicken breasts
10 Asparagus spears about 5” to 6” long
4 strips fresh orange zest/peel (3 by 1 inch)
2 TBS of butter
2 TBS of olive oil


Lemon Cheese Sauce:

2 tablespoons of butter
2 tablespoons of flour
1 cup of hot milk (not boiling)
1 dash of salt
1 dash of pepper
2 egg yolks, beaten
1/2 cup of shredded sharp cheddar cheese
2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice


Heat oven to 400F.

Trim the asparagus to about 6 inches long. Season the chicken breasts with salt and pepper and place them on a cutting board. Cover with a layer of plastic wrap and pound with the smooth side of a meat mallet until thin, even and flat.

Lay 5 asparagus across the narrow side of 1 flattened breast. Add 2 strips of zest and wrap the chicken around the asparagus to make a bundle. Secure with toothpicks. Repeat with the remaining chicken and asparagus.

Heat the butter and oil in a large skillet on medium heat, and sauté the chicken bundles 2 minutes on each side, seam down first to maintain the shape of the roll. Transfer the chicken rolls to a parchment paper-lined cookie sheet; cover with foil until ready for the final baking.

In the meantime, make the cheese sauce. Melt butter in a sauce pan over low heat. Whisk in flour gradually and constantly until you have a paste (roux), gradually add the milk and cook over low heat, whisking constantly until thick and bubbling. Season with salt and white pepper.

Slowly add a small portion of the heated sauce to the whipped egg yolks to “temper” the yolks. Whisk constantly so the yolks do not cook or harden. Add the remainder of the hot/heated sauce; add cheese and lemon juice. Stir 2-3 minutes over low heat.

Brush the chicken rolls with the remaining butter/olive oil from the sautéed chicken rolls, and bake the chicken rolls in a pre-heated 400F.oven for an additional 12-15 minutes.

Spoon cheese sauce over the entire chicken roll. Serve with your favorite salad and dressing. Raspberry vinaigrette goes extremely well with this recipe.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Shrimp/Scallop Etouffee

This recipe is a modification of Emeril's recipe for Etouffee. We don't do crawfish here (YUCK!) - way too muddy tasting. The combination of the shrimp and scallops was great. It takes bunches of prep chopping all the greens and stuff, but it's really worth the time and effort.

6 tablespoons butter
4 tablespoons flour
2 cups chopped onions
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped bell pepper
6 cloves garlic, minced
3 bay leaves
3 sprigs fresh thyme
2 1/2 cups fish or shrimp stock
1-1/2 cup peeled, diced tomatoes
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
2 tsp Louisiana hot sauce
2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
8-10 Jumbo Shrimp peeled
1/2 Pound bay scallops
1/2 lemon, juiced
1 cup chopped green onions
1/4 cup chopped parsley

Cooked white rice, for serving

In a large, heavy saucepan, melt 4 tablespoons of the butter and whisk in flour to combine well. Continue to cook, stirring constantly, until roux is a peanut butter color.

Add onions, celery, bell pepper, garlic, bay leaves, and thyme and cook until vegetables are soft, about 4 to 5 minutes. Add stock, tomatoes, salt, red pepper, hot sauce, and Worcestershire sauce and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a very low simmer, and cook uncovered for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add shrimp, lemon juice, green onions, and parsley and cook for 15 to 20 minutes; add scallops and simmer for an additional 5-minutes stirring occasionally. Add remaining butter and stir to combine well. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary. Serve over hot rice.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Sicilian Meatball Soup

Flavored with Parmesan and garlic and studded with raisins, scrumptious Sicilian meatballs turn vegetable soup into a tempting meal. If the soup waits, the pasta may absorb much of the liquid; just add water or more stock.

1/2 pound ground beef
5 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
2 tablespoons raisins
2 tablespoons dry bread crumbs
1 egg, beaten
5 cloves garlic, minced
2 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 carrots, cut into 1/4-inch dice
1 onion, chopped
2 ribs celery, cut into 1/4-inch dice
1 zucchini, cut into 1/4-inch dice
1 1/2 quarts canned low-sodium chicken broth or homemade stock
1 cup canned crushed tomatoes in thick puree
1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary, or 2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary
1 cup small pasta shells or other small macaroni

In a medium bowl, mix together the ground beef, 4 tablespoons of the parsley, the Parmesan, raisins, bread crumbs, egg, half of the garlic, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt, and 1/4 teaspoon of the pepper until thoroughly combined. Shape the mixture into 24 meatballs.

In a large pot, heat the oil over moderate heat. Add the carrots, onion, celery, and the remaining garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables start to soften, about 5 minutes. Add the zucchini and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. Stir in the broth, tomatoes, rosemary, and the remaining 2 teaspoons salt. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, partially covered, for 10 minutes.
Add the remaining tablespoon parsley, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, and the pasta to the soup. Simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in the meatballs and simmer gently until the meatballs and pasta are done, about 5 minutes longer. Serve with additional Parmesan.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Delicious Whole Wheat Bread

This bread will rise 3 1/2" to 4" tall at its center, and will have a moderately fine, even texture inside. It is an extremely mild whole wheat bread, and great for toasting


• 2 1/2 teaspoons SAF Perfect Rise dry yeast
• 1 cup potato water (boil 2-4 potatoes and save the water)
• 1/2 cup lukewarm milk
• 2 tablespoons melted butter
• 1 teaspoon sea salt
• 3 tablespoons honey
• 1/4 cup nonfat dry milk
• 3 3/4 cups King Arthur white Whole Wheat Flour
• ¾ cup AP Flour


1) Dissolve the yeast in ¼ cup lukewarm water with a pinch of sugar (1/4 tsp; stir well so as to blend the yeast, sugar, and water. Allow it to rest for 15 minutes until it becomes frothy.

2) Combine the yeast/water with the remaining ingredients, and mix and knead—by stand mixer mixer, or bread machine—until you've made a cohesive dough. If you're using a stand mixer, knead at low speed for about 9-10 minutes. Note that 100% whole wheat dough will never become smooth and supple like white bread dough made with all-purpose flour; it will feel more grainy under your hands, and may appear a bit rough.

3) Place the dough in a lightly buttered bowl turning once or twice to coat all sides of the dough, cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and allow it to rise until doubled in bulk, about 60 to 90 minutes. Note that dough kneaded in a bread machine will rise faster and higher than bread kneaded in a mixer.

4) Lightly grease a 9" x 5" loaf pan. Gently shape the dough into a smooth log, and settle it into the pan, smooth side up.

5) Tent the pan with lightly greased plastic wrap, and allow the loaf to rise till it's crowned over the rim of the pan by about 3/4" to 1", about 75 minutes. Don't let it rise too high; it'll continue to rise as it bakes. Put the dough in a cold oven and turn to 350F.

6) Bake the bread for 15 minutes starting in a cold oven. Lightly tent it with aluminum foil, and bake for an additional 30 to 35 minutes, or until the center registers 190°F on an instant-read thermometer. Remove it from the oven, and turn it out of the pan onto a rack.

7) Rub a stick of butter over the top of the hot loaf, if desired, for a softer crust. Allow the bread to cool completely before slicing.

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Chicken Thighs with Zucchini and Green Peppers with Pasta

The thighs are probably the most flavorful part of the chicken, and goes wonderfully with this dish.

½ Cup Olive Oil
½ Cup Butter Melted Butter

4 Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs
1 Medium Zucchini cut in ½ inch julienne
1 Large Green Pepper cut in ½ inch julienne
3 Large Garlic Cloves Chopped
2 TBS Granulated Garlic
½ Cup Sweet Marsala Wine

Add oil, butter and chopped garlic to large pan with a fitted cover. Bring to medium high heat until the garlic starts to get golden in color. Add the chicken thighs and then the Marsala; sauté until cooked about half way through, turning once.

Add peppers and zucchini slices, sprinkle granulated garlic over the peppers and zucchini, stir well. Cover and turn heat to medium low. Stir once or twice while cooking. It should take only about 20-minutes once the veggies are in the pan.

Serve over linguini or vermicelli. Pour remaining juices over the chicken, veggies and pasta.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Portobello Mushroom-Alfredo Sauce


1 (12-ounce) package fettuccine
1 (6-ounce) package Portobello mushrooms
1/2 cup butter
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup whipping cream
1 cup milk (*)
1 cup (4 ounces) shredded Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian flat-leaf parsley
Garnish: Italian flat-leaf parsley sprigs


Prepare pasta according to package directions; drain.
Remove brown gills from undersides of mushroom caps using a spoon, and discard gills. Chop mushrooms.

Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium heat; add mushrooms and garlic, and sauté 5 to 6 minutes or until tender. Stir in cream and milk. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat; reduce heat, and simmer, whisking constantly, 10 minutes. Stir in cheese, pepper, and salt; stir constantly until cheese melts and mixture thickens. Stir in 2 tablespoons parsley. Serve over hot cooked pasta. Garnish, if desired.


(*) For a seafood Alfredo sauce, substitute the 1-cup of milk with 1-cup of seafood broth.(Boil the shells from one pound of shrimp in 1 1/2 cups water until reduced to 1-cup; or, use Penzey's Seafood Base per directions.)

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Orange Scallops with Vermicelli and White Wine Sauce©

You'll never realize the full potential of the flavor and the delicacy of scallops until you combine them with orange which brings out the absolute best in bay scallops.

1/2 Lb Bay scallops

2 TBS Garlic Olive Oil
2 TBS butter
¾ Cup White Wine
1 tsp Orange Early Rise
1/3-1/2 cup Heavy Cream
1 tsp chopped fresh tarragon
S & P to taste
Linguini or Vermicelli pasta

1 Roasted, Julienned red pepper (optional)

Add olive oil and butter to sauté pan. Turn heat to medium high until butter melts and just begins to brown; add scallops and turn heat to high stirring and turning scallops constantly until translucent. Once cooked (3-4 minutes) remove scallops to a separate plate leaving the heat on high. Add wine, whisk and reduce mixture to ½ volume. Add cream and Orange Early Rise, whisking constantly. Reduce the heat, and cook until sauce is reduced by half. Add the tarragon and scallops to the reduced sauce. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cook on low for 3-5 minutes until scallops are heated through.

Place scallops over the cooked vermicelli, and spoon the reduced sauce over all. If you use the roasted red pepper, arrange the julienned strips in a pinwheel design. Serve with a glass of Chardonnay and REAL garlic bread.

Garlic Bread - the REAL thing!

• 1 loaf of fresh Italian bread
• 2-3 cloves of garlic - peeled and cut in half lengthwise
• Olive oil

Cut 1" thick slices of Italian bread. Place on pan under the broiler. When toasted to your liking, turn bread over and toast the second side. Remove toasted bread, rub one side of the bread with the sliced garlic buds and lightly spritz the slices with olive oil. Try it! Everyone I know who has made it this way, has never gone back to the grease soaked, bitter garlicky stuff they used to make.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Red Sauce For Baked Ziti and Sausage

2 (28) ounce cans tomatoes or 20 fresh, large tomatoes(Fresh are best)
2 Medium stalks celery
1 Medium onion
2 TBS dry parsley or 4 TBS fresh chopped
1 Large carrot scraped clean and cut in pieces
1 Medium green pepper
1 Medium-sized zucchini (Unpeeled)
2-4 cloves garlic
S&P to taste
Tabasco or a hot pepper to taste
2 T. Sugar
2 TBS Parmesan cheese

Chop onions and peppers and saute in a little olive oil until slightly done. Put everything in blender (NOT THE CHEESE OR PARSLEY) and puree. Bring to boil then simmer on very low heat until the raw taste is gone and the sauce is thick. This will take several hours on simmer, so be patient. That's the basic sauce. You can add chicken, pork, meatballs, sausage, or seafood. Sometimes I skip the onion/pepper saute, but it definitely improves the flavor.

Add the chopped parsley and the Parmesan cheese about 30-minutes before you decide to stop simmering.

Optional - add a TBS of Porcini Mushroom Powder - it kicks the flavor up a few notches.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

New York Deli Style Rye Bread

Preparation time: Start to finish is 3 days because you will have to make a starter.


Sour Starter

1 cup warm potato water*
1 cup rye flour
1 tsp instant yeast

Stir well then cover with plastic wrap and let sit for 3 days at room temperature (65-70 degrees) Stir the second day.

(*) Potato water---Peel and quarter 2 pounds of regular potatoes, cover with water and season with salt. Cook like you would for boiled or mashed potatoes, drain---saving the water the potatoes were cooked in. This potato water gives bread a moist and compact texture. Save or eat the potatoes as you like.

Dough for the bread

2 cups warm water, about 120 degrees F.
1 TBS. sugar
1 TBS. Instant yeast

2 cups AP flour
2 TBS. kosher salt
2 TBS caraway seeds and ½ tsp charnushka seeds
4 ¾ cups high gluten bread flour


1 cup water
1 ½ tsp. cornstarch mixed with 1/4 cup cold water---no lumps

Bread Preparation:

In a mixer, combine 2 cups warm water with sugar and yeast, mix and let sit for 10 minutes.Add all of the sour starter and the remaining ingredients. Mix on low speed for 2-3 minutes with a dough hook, then increase to speed (2) and mix 6 minutes longer, be sure all the flour has hydrated the dough by raising and lowering the bowl from time to time.

Remove from the machine and cover with plastic wrap. Let rise 2 hours @ 70 Degrees F. or until doubled in size.

Portion into 3 - 1 1/2 pound pieces of dough or 2-pieces for larger loaves and shape into large, balled loaves, place on baking pans that have been sprinkled with semolina flour or fine cornmeal Cover with a damp but not wet cloth – or dry waxed paper - and let rise for 40 minutes.

Carefully remove the damp cloth or waxed paper, then slash the dough 3 times across the top with a very sharp knife or razor blade about 3/4 of an inch deep.

Immediately place in a pre-heated 375 degree F. oven, and place a pan of boiling water on the oven's bottom. Remove the pan after 10 minutes, this will create steam and help with crust development. Continue to bake for 30 minutes or until center is 180 degrees F.

For the glaze: boil 1 cup of water, mix the cornstarch with ¼ cup cold water, then combine with boiled water and stir continually until thickened. Cover with plastic wrap.

Remove the bread, and with a pastry brush, brush the top crust with the cooked cornstarch. A small amount of this glaze is enough, It's used to create a shiny surface. (Optional: While the bread is still hot, rub the tops with a stick of butter.) Let cool, and place in a plastic bag. This will further soften the crust.
Cool the bread on wire racks for at least 1 hour before slicing or wrapping.

Friday, June 13, 2008

The UNcommon Burger

Hamburger - Blue Cheese

• 1-1/2 pounds lean ground beef
• 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
• 1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
• 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
• 1 3-ounce package cream cheese, softened
• 3 tablespoons crumbled blue cheese
• 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
Combine the ground beef, Worcestershire sauce, garlic salt and pepper, mixing well. Shape mixture into 12 patties about 4 inches in diameter.

Mix the cream cheese, blue cheese and mustard until smooth. Divide the mixture among 6 of the beef patties, spreading to within 1/2 inch of the edge. Top with a remaining patty, sealing edges firmly.

Grill patties about 4 inches from coals or heating element, turning once, 5 to 7 minutes on each side for medium. Makes 6

Friday, February 22, 2008

Cheesy Clam Manicotti


• 26 ounces meatless spaghetti sauce
• 1/4 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
• 2 cans (6-1/2 ounces each) minced clams
• 1 carton (8 ounces) ricotta cheese
• 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
• 1/4 cup spreadable chive and onion cream cheese
• 2 cups (8 ounces) shredded mozzarella cheese
• 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
• 1 teaspoon minced garlic
• 1/2 teaspoon pepper
• 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
• 8 manicotti shells, cooked and drained


In a large saucepan, combine the spaghetti sauce and hot pepper sauce. Drain one can of clams; add clams to sauce. Stir in clams and juice from second can. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a large mixing bowl, beat ricotta and cream cheese until smooth. Stir in the mozzarella, Parmesan, garlic, pepper and oregano. Stuff into manicotti shells.

Spread 3/4 cup clam sauce into a greased 11-in. x 7-in. x 2-in. baking dish. Arrange manicotti over sauce; top with remaining sauce. Bake, uncovered, at 350° for 25-30 minutes or until bubbly. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving. Yield: 4 servings.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Almond (Pecan) Coffee Ring

This goes great with a cup of coffee or espresso any time of day or night.

3 1/2-3 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, (more if needed)
1 package (1/4 ounce) active dry yeast or 1 TBS SAF Instant yeast
1 cup milk scalded (do NOT boil)
1/3 cup butter
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg beaten

Place butter, sugar and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer. Attach the bread hook. Pour heated milk over the dry ingredients. Turn mixer on at low speed, and stir until butter is melted and cooled. Add beaten egg and continue stirring until well blended.

Add two cups of flour and the yeast, then turn mixer to speed #2 if you are using a Kitchen Aid mixer. Continue adding flour until you have a silky dough that pulls away from the sides of the bowl.

Turn out on a floured surface. Knead 4 to 6 minutes (or continue on with the mixer/dough hook). Place in a greased bowl,turning once to grease top. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.

Once risen, pound down and let it rise a second time. It will rise faster on the second rising. Be sure to re-cover the dough or it will dry out.


Almond/Pecan Paste Recipe

10 oz dried blanched almonds (or pecans)
10 oz powdered sugar
5 oz sugar
1/4 cup corn syrup
1 cup water


Make a sugar syrup by placing the water, sugar, and corn syrup in a saucepan. Stir it to combine. Bring it to a boil and let it boil for a few seconds. Let it cool.

Place the almonds/pecans in a food processor and process them with the steel blade to a fine powder. Add the powdered sugar. With the food processor running, slowly add the sugar syrup until the mixture forms a paste. If you use pecans, add 5-drops of almond oil to this mix if you want an almond flavor.

Store the paste in a tightly covered container until you are ready to use it. If you will be storing it for more than a week, store in the refrigerator.

Roll the dough out on a floured counter to 18" x 12" rectangle. Spread the paste on the rolled out dough, leaving an inch from all edges. Roll up in jelly roll fashion. Shape into a round, and seal the ends where they meet. Make 1/2" deep slices every two inches on the round. Bake at 375 on parchment paper lined cookie sheet until done - golden colored.


2 or 3 tablespoons milk or heavy cream
3-drops of almond oil
1 3/4 cups confectioners’ sugar

Blend glaze ingredients. Drizzle or spread over cooled coffee cake and sprinkle with almonds.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Pot Roast with vegetables

If you are going to do a pot roast, you can't go wrong with the Tyson Chuck Roast With Vegetables® - EXCEPT for one feature. The gravy mix they include with the package is worse than abominable!! It's the most horrible thing I've ever tasted in all my years.'s WORSE than horrible!!! If you decide to get this product - which is great, and I hope you try it - use the following recipe for the gravy:

Onion Gravy

1 medium onion halved and thinly sliced
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour mixed with ½ tsp corn starch
1 TBS Onion powder
1 1/4 cups water
½ tsp Kitchen Bouquet (optional for color – or you can use carmel coloring)
1 cup beef broth
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/4 teaspoon black pepper


Cook onion in oil and butter in a heavy skillet over moderately high heat, stirring frequently, until onion is softened and slightly browned, about 15-20 minutes. Add flour and cook, whisking for at least 1 minute. Stir in water, broth, Worcestershire sauce, onion powder, Caramel coloring, and pepper; whisk. Simmer, stirring and scraping up brown bits, until gravy is thickened, 8 to 10 minutes. Season with salt and additional Worcestershire sauce if so desired. Simmer until gravy is thick. Pour over mashed potatoes, pot roast, and/or meatloaf.

Beef Stroganoff

This recipe was given to me by a student of mine way back when, while teaching back east. It has been a standard in this household for forty-plus years. If you see this recipe Rich, leave a comment with your eMail address and I will get back to you.

1 Lb. Beef cubes (sirloin or tenderloin is the best, but just about any cubed, lean cut will work with this recipe.)
2 TBS butter
1 Cup Sour Cream (you could try plain yogurt)
1 Envelope dried onion soup mix
1 Can Cream of Mushroom Soup
1 3-Oz can of sliced mushrooms (undrained)
2 TBS Ketchup (This is secret ingredient #1)
2 TBS Dry, red wine (Secret ingredient #2)

Take small cubes of beef and dredge them in flour, shake off excess flour, then brown in hot fat (melted butter) in a large pan or Dutch oven. Combine remaining ingredients; keep heat on VERY low. Cover the pan – stirring frequently so the mix minimally sticks to the pan bottom.

Serve over al dente egg noodles. REAL garlic bread goes great with this meal, as do green beans almandine. (REAL garlic bread recipe is posted here somewhere!!)

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Chateaubriand with Portobello Mushrooms and Madeira Wine au Jus

Beef tenderloin - or filet mignon - is hard to beat for taste, tenderness, or texture.


1 to 1 1/2 Lbs center-cut beef fillet
2 large portobello mushrooms, washed & unpeeled
2 cloves garlic
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon brandy
½ cup (4 fl oz) Madeira Wine (or red wine if you prefer)
salt and freshly milled black pepper


For this recipe, you will need a large cast iron or steel frying pan or skillet - one without a wooden or plastic handle that can go inside the oven. If you don't have one, use a medium size, lightly oiled heavy based roasting pan for the oven cooking, and a frying pan for the stove top cooking.

Preheat the oven to 445F. If you are using a different pan for the oven cooking, put it in the oven to get really hot.

Unwrap the chateaubriand and season with freshly milled black pepper.

Put the pan that you are using on the stove over a medium/high heat and add 2 tablespoons of oil. Allow it to get very hot until it just starts to smoke.

Keeping the heat on high, add the beef fillet to the pan and quickly sear on one side, and then the other. This should only take a minute or two at the most to achieve a crusty golden seal.

Now, put the pan straight into the oven (or transfer to the preheated oven pan) on the middle shelf and roast for 10 to 15 minutes depending on how rare you like it.

While that's happening, cut the mushrooms into thick slices. If you are using the garlic (some folk prefer not to mix romance with garlic!), chop it finely. Now pour yourself a glass of wine and relax for a few minutes....this chateaubriand recipe virtually cooks itself!

When the chateaubriand is ready, remove it from the oven and carefully transfer to a warmed plate and cover loosely with a piece of tin foil. Then leave it to rest for 15minutes.

Reheat the stove top pan or skillet with about 2 tablespoons of the fat and juices from the beef pan. When it's hot, add a knob of butter.

Add the garlic to the pan and quickly stir through the hot fat to color slightly. Then add the sliced mushrooms and a seasoning of salt and freshly milled black pepper.

Now, sauté the mushrooms for about 2 minutes turning frequently adding a little more oil if the pan becomes too dry.

Turn the heat up to maximum and deglaze the pan by adding the brandy. If you are feeling like a professional chef by now ;-) and you are cooking with gas, tilt the pan towards the open flame to let it flambé.

Once the brandy has all but evaporated, turn the heat down to low and add the Madeira wine. Allow it to simmer gently and reduce for about a minute. Check the seasoning.


Carve the beef fillet in thick slices and arrange on a warm serving plate. Pile the mushrooms on top and drizzle the Madeira jus over.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Spicy Buttermilk Fried Chicken

There are few things better than crispy, spiced fried chicken served up with Parkerhouse rolls slathered with fresh creamery butter, corn, mashed potatoes, gravy, and a nice green veggie or cauliflower. This recipe takes a little planning, but OH - is it EVER so good!!

3 cups buttermilk
1/4 cup TABASCO
3 teaspoons salt, divided
1 (2 1/2- to 3-pound) chicken, cut up into 8 pieces
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon pepper
A small dash of Cardamon
Canola oil for deep-frying

Combine buttermilk, TABASCO, and 1 teaspoon of the salt in a large bowl or large resealable plastic bag and mix well. Add the chicken and cover bowl or seal bag; refrigerate for 6 to 24 hours.

Combine flour, remaining 2 teaspoons salt, garlic powder, onion powder,cardoman, and pepper in a shallow dish. Remove chicken pieces from marinade and allow excess buttermilk to drip off. Dredge chicken pieces in flour mixture and let chicken sit for 10 minutes.

Add about 1-inch of oil to a large, deep skillet. Attach a deep-fry thermometer and, over medium-high heat, bring oil to 350°F.

Fry chicken in batches of four, turning occasionally, until golden brown and cooked through, about 10 minutes per side. Transfer chicken to a wire rack set on a baking sheet.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Outback Steakhouse Bushman Honey Whole Wheat Bread

This bread is excellent, but you'll need to be patient with the rises. It is very slow on the first and second rise, but you will be VERY pleased with the final result.

It should be served hot - or at least warm on the last legs of cooling - with a meal. It is a very soft bread with a sweetish taste (the honey), a nice soft crust, and a mild, yet robust flavor. The texture, even the crust, should be quite soft. A nice sharp serrated bread knife is used for the best slices. It has lots of potential for making it into a rye - especially Russian rye bread - with the addition of finely ground caraway and/or kalonji seeds. Using this bread for the base for a roast beef or pastrami sandwich will put you in culinary heaven. This bread is among THE BEST you will ever taste. It's delicate- yet ambitions; hearty - yet light. It has a flavor like you've probably never had - that is unless you've eaten at the Outback Restaurant.

Recipe: Yields 4 medium-sized loaves or 8 small loaves or make a half recipe for one 6” loaf in a medium sized glass bowl.

2 cups whole wheat flour
2 cups bread flour (up to 2-1/2 cups if needed)
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa
2 teaspoons instant coffee
1 teaspoon caramel color (*)
1 teaspoon salt
2 1/4 teaspoons instant yeast
1/2 cup honey
2 tablespoons butter -- softened
1 1/2 cups warm water

* If caramel color is not available, substitute food coloring by adding to the warm water before adding it to the rest of the ingredients:
75 drops red food coloring
45 drops blue food coloring
30 drops yellow food coloring

1.BREAD MACHINE METHOD: Add all of the ingredients for the dough in the exact order listed into the pan of your machine. Set it on "knead" and when the machine begins to mix the dough, combine the food coloring with 1/4 cup of water and drizzle it into the mixture as it combines. After the dough is created let it rest to rise for an hour or so. Then remove it from the pan and go to step #3.

2. MIXER METHOD: In a mixing bowl, whisk together the whole wheat flour and 2 cups of the bread flour with the cocoa, sugar, coffee, caramel color, yeast and salt. Add the butter, honey and water... With the mixer set on low speed, mix with the dough hook for 3 minutes, using a spatula to keep scraping down the sides of the mixer to dry the dry ingredients into the wet. Turn the mixer speed to medium and mix 1-2 minutes or until the dough begins to come together to form a ball, adding more flour if necessary up to the additional 1/2 cup.

NOTE! The dough will be very wet and sticky, but try not to add too much flour or else the bread will be very dry and crumbly.

Liberally flour the work surface and turn the dough out onto the flour. Loosely cover the dough and let it rest for at least 10 minutes. Gently knead the dough until it barely comes together into a soft tacky ball. Transfer the dough to a well-oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place for 1 hour.

After 1 hour, remove the cover and gently stretch and fold the dough. Replace the plastic wrap cover and let the dough finish rising until almost doubled, about 45-50 minutes.

3. When the dough has risen to about double in size, punch it down and divide it into 4 even portions, by dividing dough in half and then dividing those halves in half (and then once more if 8 very small loaves are desired.). Form the portions into tubular shaped loaves. (If desired, sprinkle the entire surface of the loaves with a small bit of fine grind cornmeal.

Place the loaves on a parchment-lined large baking sheet. Cover the loaves with a proof box or loosely with lightly greased plastic wrap. Let the dough rise once more for 45-50 minutes. OR – use a 6” bowl for 1-loaf, half recipe

4. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Uncover the dough and slash the tops lengthwise if desired. Bake for 23-24 minutes. Loaves should begin to darken slightly on top when done, and the internal temperature should reach 190-195 degrees F. on an instant read thermometer. Cool on a wire rack until still just barely warm. Serve with a sharp serrated bread knife and whipped butter on the side.

  • shaboomskitchen

  • This variation is compliments of Check out her great web site at

    Saturday, August 11, 2007

    Boneless Pork Loin Roast with Apple Horseradish Sauce

    To me, pork IS the 'other white meat.' Where would we be without ribs, chops, boneless loin, tenderloins, sausage? This is a delightful version of a boneless pork loin center cut roast.


    1 boneless Pork Loin - Center Cut - about 3 pounds
    1 cup chunky applesauce
    1/2 cup red currant jelly or raspberry jelly
    2 teaspoons horseradish


    Heat oven to 325°F. Place roast on rack in shallow roasting pan. Do not cover. Roast to an internal temperature of 150°F.

    Meanwhile, make sauce by heating applesauce, jelly and horseradish in small saucepan only until blended.

    When roast reaches 150°F. spread about 1/4 cup of sauce over roast. Continue roasting about 15 minutes to glaze roast and until internal temperature reaches 160°F. for medium doneness. Serve remaining sauce with roast.

    Serve with a twice baked potato, fresh-steamed green beans with Hollandaise Sauce or asparagus, baked sweet potato, cauliflower....actually, serve with whatever you like. :-)

    Saturday, August 04, 2007


    Ethnic soups or stews are always a nice change from the everyday recipes that we always seem to make. This Bosnian recipe is sure to please. You can also used leftover lamb.

    2 lbs. boned shoulder of lamb, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
    2 oz. lard
    1 onion, finely chopped
    2 lbs. cabbage, trimmed, core removed and roughly chopped
    Freshly ground pepper
    3 tomatoes, peeled and sliced
    2 cloves garlic, crushed
    1-2 c. (8-16 fl. oz.) dry white wine
    1 TBS. paprika

    1. Brown the lamb in the lard, add the onions and sauté them until they are soft.
    2. Put the lamb and onion mixture in the bottom of a casserole dish, arrange the cabbage over it and season with salt and pepper. Lay the tomato slices and garlic on top.
    3. Cover the casserole and cook over low heat for 2-3 hours. Add the wine gradually while the stew is cooking.
    4. 30-minutes before the end of the cooking time sprinkle the stew with paprika. Do not stir the stew.
    5. Serve hot with chunks of crusty bread and generous amounts of chilled dry white wine.

    Friday, August 03, 2007

    Fried Cucumber Slices With Tomato

    When a cooking/baking cohort suggested fried cucumbers, I nearly had a culinary siezure. I stand before you in naked humility. This recipe has been slightly modified; the end result was awesome!! Sometimes a recipe can not be perceived by the ingredients (as I found out); this one is a keeper.

    Fried Cucumber Slices

    1 Medium size Cucumber (9” – 10”) – skin on
    Beaten egg
    Parmesan Cheese
    Garlic Powder
    2 TBS Butter
    2 TBS Olive oil
    1 Small tomato

    Serves 2

    Have two separate bowls or dishes with flour – the first for dredging - no spice added. The second, mixed well with the garlic powder and parmesan.

    Slice cucumber to ¼” rounds. Dry both sides with paper towel. Dredge in flour and shake off excess. Dip in egg mixture. Dredge once again in second bowl of flour (spiced/flavored)flour – shake off excess.

    Fry in the olive oil and melted butter on medium heat, and turn only once. The finished cucumber should be golden and still have a little crunch to it – not soggy. Drain on paper towel, and cool.

    Once the slices are cooled, top with thin (1/8”) slices of fresh tomato. Serve these cold without broiling them. Before serving, spritz or sprinkle a few drops of Balsamic vinegar on each slice. You can also do the same procedure and ingredients using eggplant or zucchini squash.

    This is an excellent accoutrement to serve with a lamb roast, along with scrubbed, whole, oven baked new potatoes that have been coated with a top quality olive oil sprinkled with garlic powder and baked in a covered pan

    Thursday, August 02, 2007

    Baked Stuffed Eggplant

    A delicious recipe, and easy to make. Glenna's recipe for the Chimichirri sauce (following post) also works wonders.

    3 (1/2-pound) eggplants
    1 teaspoon salt, plus 1 teaspoon
    1 tablespoon olive oil, plus 3 tablespoons
    2 cups chopped onion
    2 garlic cloves, minced
    1 pound lean ground lamb
    1/3 cup minced fresh parsley leaves
    3 tablespoons minced fresh mint leaves
    3 plum tomatoes, halved lengthwise, seeded, and cut into julienne strips
    1 cup crumbled feta cheese

    Halve 2 of the eggplants lengthwise, score their pulp deeply with a sharp knife, being careful not to pierce the skins, and with a grapefruit knife scoop or tablespoon, scoop out the pulp, reserving it and leaving 1/2-inch-thick shells.

    Sprinkle the shells with 1 teaspoon salt and invert them on paper towels to drain for 15 to 30 minutes. Cut the reserved pulp and the remaining whole eggplant into 1/2-inch pieces, in a colander toss the pieces with the remaining salt, and let them drain for 15 to 30 minutes.

    Rinse and pat the shells dry with paper towels, brush them with 1 tablespoon of the oil, and broil them on the rack of a broiler pan, skin side down, under a preheated broiler about 4 inches from the heat until they are tender, about 5 minutes.

    In a skillet, heat the remaining 3 tablespoons oil over moderately high heat until it is hot but not smoking. Saute the onion and the garlic until translucent. Add the ground lamb and the eggplant pieces stirring, until meat loses all color and eggplant is tender.

    Remove the skillet from the heat, stir in the parsley, mint, tomatoes, feta, and salt and pepper to taste, and divide the filling among the shells, mounding it. Broil the stuffed eggplants in a large flameproof baking dish for 5 minutes, or until the filling is bubbling and golden.

    Saturday, June 30, 2007


    In a quest to find something different in flavor and foodie excitement, I was fortunate to discover this exquisite recipe by Glenna and Gene. I thought - well - it's 'interesting' but I wasn't sure it would work for me and my spouse's birthday party. WOW!! Was I ever wrong. This is one of the most exciting dishes I have eaten in years. Be sure to visit Glenna's web site - (Glenna's site is at the right - "Food Fit For Royalty") you will be pleasantly surprised. The left photo is Glenna's Chimichurri sauce over lamb chops; the right photo is Chimichurri over steak.

    Chimichurri is a thick herb sauce that in Argentina is typically served with steak. The first column (bold) contain the quantities for a doubled recipe; the second column contains the normal quantities for one recipe.

    3 1-1/2 lb trimmed flank steak (We used sirloin steak)
    3 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
    1 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
    1 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
    ½ 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
    2 1 large garlic clove
    3 1-1/2 cups fresh cilantro
    3 1-1/2 cups fresh flat-leaf parsley
    ½ 1/4 cup distilled white vinegar
    2/3 1/3 cup olive oil
    ½ 1/4 teaspoon cayenne

    Preheat broiler.

    Pat steak dry. Stir together 2 teaspoons salt, cumin, coriander, and pepper in a small bowl and rub mixture onto both sides of steak. Broil steak on a broiler pan or on a char-broiler about 4 inches from heat 6 minutes per side for medium-rare. Transfer to a cutting board and let stand 5 minutes.

    Meanwhile, with motor running, add garlic to a food processor and finely chop. Add cilantro, parsley, vinegar, oil, cayenne, and remaining 1 teaspoon salt, then pulse until herbs are finely chopped. Holding a knife at a 45-degree angle (bias), slice the steak thinly. Serve topped with sauce.

    Wednesday, June 20, 2007

    Bruschetta with Diced tomato and Globe basil

    This recipe is from one of my very dearest friends in CT. Thanks Harriet. This is THE best!! For a light dinner or a snack. For a light dinner, use the whole loaf cut lengthwise. For a snack, do individual thick slices.

    1 Large crusty loaf of Italian or French bread

    2-4 large garlic cloves minced
    3 medium-sized tomatoes diced to ¼ inch
    1 Bunch of (1/2 cup) globe basil chopped
    ½ Cup quality olive oil
    ¼ Cup Romano, Asiago or Parmesan cheese grated
    Garlic Salt and pepper

    2 Cups mozzarella cheese

    Slice bread in half lengthwise. Combine the next six ingredients in a large bowl. Spread on bread. Top with 2 Cups mozzarella cheese. Bake 20-minutes at 320F. until cheese sizzles.

    We made this recently and added oven roasted B/S chicken breast 1/2" dice; it was awesome!! You can add just about anything you like - sausage, pepperoni - and what you get is a French bread pizza. One major recommendation is to use mozzarella cheese sliced from a block as opposed to the pre-packaged shredded. You'll get a much more flavorful meal. If there are any bruschetta slices left over, they freeze beautifully for another meal or snack, but I seriously doubt there will be leftovers. This is the last meal that I had the privilege of sharing with Alan and Harriet. Alan has since gone to the Lord.

    Tuesday, April 24, 2007

    Cheesecake With Chocolate Graham Cracker Crust

    There is nothing that beats a well-tuned cheesecake for dessert. This recipe will have you kicking up your heels, and wondering why you haven't tried making a cheesecake before now!!


    1 Package of graham crackers (there are normally three packets in a box)
    3/4 stick butter melted
    1/2 cup sugar
    2 TBS Bakers unsweetened chocolate powder

    Crush the graham crackers finely. You can get this result easily by first crushing by hand in the sealed packet as best you can, then adding them to the bowl of a food processor with the steel blade and run it until you have very fine crumbs. In a separate bowl, add the crumbs, sugar, chocolate, add the melted butter. Mix well.

    NOTE: A dash of ground cardaman and or cinnamon to the crust will add a unique taste.

    Pour the crumb mixture in a 9" springform pan. Press crumbs along bottom (and sides -optional) so it is firmly packed.

    Bake at 375F. for 8-minutes. Remove from oven and let completely cool.

    Cheesecake Filling

    4 eight oz. packages cream cheese room temperature
    1-1/3 cups sugar
    5 eggs room temperature
    1 teaspoon vanilla
    1 1/2 tsp Hazelnut syrup (Optional)
    1-1/2 teaspoon lemon, lime, or orange zest (optional)
    2 Tablespoons heavy cream
    2-2/3 Tablespoons AP Flour

    Using the paddle attachment in a stand mixer, beat cream cheese until creamy and smooth. Add sugar, mix. Add eggs, mix slowly 1 egg at a time. Scrape sides of the bowl between each egg addition. Add flavorings and heavy cream; mix well. Add flour and mix slowly until well blended; but do not over beat once added. Pour mixture into pre-baked crust.

    Bake in preheated 325F. oven in a water bath, 1 hour and 30 minutes. When finished baking, the middle 1" or 2" will still be wobbly. Turn off oven, leaving cake inside with oven door wedged open about 1 inch. Let sit in there for an additional 1 hr. This will complete the baking cycle. Remove from oven, set on wire rack, loosen outer ring but do not remove the ring. Let cool, then refrigerate for several hours (six or more) or overnight. Remove the ring.

    Serve topped with your favorite sliced fruit, and/or chocolate whipped cream.


    If you want a perfect cheesecake with NO cracks on the top, cover the outside of the springform pan bottom with aluminum foil and place the foil-bottomed springform in a pan of hot water before baking. The steam from the water eliminates cracks in the cake. Be sure there is room (an inch or so) between the foil covered springform pan and the sides of the pan of water it has been placed in for baking. The water should come up about 1/2 to 2/3 of the way of the springform pan.

    Also, if you want a perfectly white top to the cheesecake, cover loosely with a piece of aluminum foil AFTER the initial 45-minutes baking time; leave the foil on for the remainder of the baking time.

    Thursday, April 19, 2007

    KFC Cole Slaw

    This is the real thing. Delicious. :-)


    8 Cups Cabbage Finely Chopped
    ¼ Cup Carrots Shredded
    2 TBS Onion Minced
    1/4 cup cucumber diced (optional)
    1/3 Cup Sugar
    ½ Tsp Salt
    1/8 Tsp Pepper
    ¼ Cup Milk
    ½ Cup Real Mayo
    ¼ Cup Buttermilk
    1 ½ TBS White Vinegar
    2 ½ TBS Lemon Juice


    Chop/shred cabbage, carrots, and cucumber into pieces the size of rice

    Combine sugar, salt, pepper, milk, mayo, buttermilk, vinegar, and lemon juice in a separate bowl. Add the cabbage, carrots, cucumber and onion; mix well. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2-4 hours

    Thursday, March 15, 2007

    English Lemon Shortbread Scones

    Brian Wood is a frequent and prolific contributor to the King Arthur Baking Circle. His recipes have always proven reliable, consistent, and delicious. To find more of Brian's recipes, and more - visit the Circle, and find thousands of recipes from many of the loyal members and contributors, as well as many wonderful recipes by King Arthur personnel.

    Lemon is a flavorful complement to this traditional buttery shortbread recipe that is remarkably easy to make.

    Preparation time: 15 min Baking time: 30 min Standing time: 30 min
    Yield: 5 dozen cookies

    Shortbread Ingredients:

    2 cups butter, softened
    1 cup sugar
    1/4 cup lemon juice
    4 tsp freshly grated lemon peel
    4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

    Glaze Ingredients:
    1 cup powdered sugar
    2 tbsp butter, softened
    2 tbsp lemon juice

    Garnish Ingredients:
    1 tbsp freshly grated lemon peel

    Heat oven to 350°F. Combine all shortbread ingredients except flour in large bowl. Beat at medium speed, scraping bowl often, until creamy.
    Reduce speed to low; add flour. Beat until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
    Press dough evenly into lightly greased 15x10x1 jelly-roll pan. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until light golden brown. Cool completely.

    Combine all glaze ingredients in small bowl with wire whisk until smooth. Spread thin layer of glaze over cooled shortbread; sprinkle with 1 tablespoon lemon peel, if desired. Let stand 30 minutes to set. Cut into 2-1/2 x 1-inch strips.

    Another of Brian's wonderful recipes:

    Blueberry-Pecan Muffins

    1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
    1/4 cup sugar
    1 1/2 tsp baking powder
    1/2 tsp salt3/4 cup milk
    1/3 cup cooking oil
    1 egg, well beaten
    1 tsp vanilla
    1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries thawed and drained
    1 cup chopped pecans
    1 tsp grated lemon peel
    1/2 tsp fresh grated nutmeg
    4 Tbsp sugar
    Dipping sugar
    Melted butter

    Mix together by hand the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in large mixing bowl. Combine the milk, vanilla, egg together and then add all at once to dry ingredients until moistened. Do not over mix. Gently mix the 4 tablespoons sugar, drained berries, lemon peel and pecans together. Fold the berry mixture lightly into the batter. Fill greased and dusted muffin pans half full. Bake for 20 minutes at 400 F or until done. While muffins are still warm, dip the tops in melted butter, then in the sugar.

    Friday, March 02, 2007

    Seasoned Skewers

    One of the most innovative roasting, BBQing, and flavoring aids I’ve seen in a number of years is Callison’s Seasoned Skewers. They come in six different flavors: Thai Coconut Lime, Citrus Rosemary, Indian Mango Curry, Honey Bourbon, Mexican Fiesta, and Garlic Herb.

    Callison & Sons is a family-owned supplier of botanical oils and flavors that has been responsible for putting the “mint” flavoring into chewing gum since 1903.

    Barbecue, that very American way of flavoring and grilling meats has its history in the Native American Indian populations. Spanish explorers observed the Cherokees and Creek Indians of the Carolinas using crude wooden racks to smoke or dry fish, birds and meats. As they grew accustomed to the idea, the Spanish added beef and pork as meat components.

    BBQ in the U.S. has many regional variations and traditions. Traditionally, the flavor has been added by either the material burned in the fire (woods, charcoal, etc.) or by rubs or marinades placed on top of the food. The problem with all of these methods is the need to use large amounts of flavoring material or having to prepare the meat hours or even days ahead to get the flavor fully infused into the meat.

    Most seasoning forms use the outside of the food to adhere to, and then fall off during cooking or eating. Adding seasoning inside the food adds more flavor. These Seasoned Skewers are available in packages of 10 sticks.

    Many foods, not just meats, can be flavored with this product: chicken, shrimp, halibut, zucchini, mushrooms, tiny red potatoes fruit, shrimp and turkey, and they are 100 percent natural. And one of the nicest things about them is that the sticks season from the INSIDE, out.

    Seasoned Skewers started with a simple, but revolutionary, idea: what if we added flavor to our food from the inside out? In a world of marinades, sauces and rubs, flavor just doesn’t make it all the way inside. But what if the sweet tang of your barbecue chicken actually got past the skin? Imagine the center of your roast having the same garlic herb taste as the crust.

    Seasoned Skewers to the rescue. The skewers are made from untreated, Maine wood and steeped in all-natural oils. So all you have to do is skewer your food, and it gets infused with flavor. The skewers do the work and your food tastes delicious-inside and out. It’s fast. It’s convenient. And, yes, it really works.

    If you would like to learn more about the ‘Sticks’ and where to get them, visit the web site at They have some great recipes there as well.

    Here's two of their exciting recipes.

    Garlic and Herb Roasted Lamb Rack

    Makes 4 servings

    4 Callisons Mediterranean Garlic and Herb Seasoned Skewers
    or other Seasoned Skewer of your choice
    2 Frenched lamb racks (about 2 1/2 pounds total)
    1 tablespoon olive oil
    1 teaspoon kosher salt
    1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper

    There should be only a thin layer of fat over the meaty side of the racks; if too thick, trim fat carefully with a sharp knife.

    Dry lamb well with paper towels. Skewer each rack lengthwise through the meaty portion with 2 skewers. Space the skewers so that there is maximum flavor infusion. Let sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes or refrigerated overnight.

    Preheat oven to 450°F.

    In a shallow roasting pan, set the lamb racks with flat bony side down with meaty side up. Rub lamb with olive oil and then season meat on all sides with the salt and pepper. Roast for about 20 minutes, to 135 – 140°F internal temperature (medium-rare), or to the doneness you like. Let rest a couple of minutes before removing the skewers and before carving or serving. Carve into chops, cutting between bones.

    Serve 3 to 4 chops per person. Serve with pan juices.

    Seasoned Roasted Pork Loin with Pears & Onions

    Makes 6 – 8 servings

    4 Callisons Indian Mango Curry Seasoned Skewers
    1 boneless pork top loin roast (about 2 1/2 pounds)
    1 tablespoon olive oil
    2 teaspoons kosher salt

    Pears & Onions
    1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
    3 tablespoons cider vinegar
    1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
    4 medium pears, unpeeled, cut lengthwise into eighths and cored
    1 small onion, cut into 1″ dice
    2 tablespoons chopped parsley or minced fresh chives

    Pat the pork roast dry with paper towels, and insert the skewers through the meat lengthwise, spacing the skewers evenly apart for maximum flavor infusion.

    Let sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes or refrigerated overnight.

    Preheat oven to 375°F.

    Smear the pork on all sides with the olive oil and season on all sides. Set the roast on a sided baking sheet pan.

    To make the Pears & Onions: In a large bowl, whisk the oil, vinegar, and salt. Mix in the pears and onions, coating well.

    Distribute the pears and onions around the pork and drizzle the liquid over the pears and onions. Roast for about 40 – 50 minutes, or until the pork reaches an internal temperature of 160°F and the pears and onions are tender.

    Transfer the roast to a platter to rest for 10 minutes before carving. Remove skewers before carving or serving.

    With a spoon, move the pears and onions around in the baking pan to coat them with pan juices and toss with parsley or chives. Serve the pork, sliced, with the pears, onions, and juice spooned over it.

    Recipes have been created by Chef Kathy Casey

    Recipe from

    Sunday, February 25, 2007

    Chocolate-Banana Coffee Cake

    Deliciously different, and easy to build


    3/4 cup sugar
    1/2 cup softened butter
    3-4 mashed ripe bananas
    1 TBS Hazelnut syrup
    1/2 cup sour cream
    2 eggs
    2 cups all-purpose flour
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    1/2 teaspoon salt


    1 cup chopped walnuts
    1/4 cup packed brown sugar
    2 Tablespoons melted butter
    1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

    Mix all filling ingredients together and set aside.

    Beat sugar and butter in large bowl until fluffy. Stir in bananas, sour cream, hazelnut syrup, and eggs. Stir in flour, baking soda and salt. Spoon half the batter into 9 x 13-inch greased pan. Sprinkle with half the filling. Spread remaining batter over filling. Sprinkle with remaining filling. Bake at 375 degrees for 45 minutes or until browned on top and knife or metal skewer comes out clean when inserted into center.

    This is absolutely superb served with a large dollop of hazelnut whipped cream.

    Hazelnut Whipped Cream

    For each cup of heavy cream:

    1 Cup Whipping/Heavy Cream
    1/4 Cup Granulated Sugar
    1-1/2 tsp Hazelnut Syrup
    1 tsp unflavored gelatin
    3-4 TBS water

    Sprinkle 1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin over 3 tablespoons cold water and let stand until gelatin is softened. Slightly heat till the gelatin completely dissolves. Cool, but do not let it set.

    Beat the cream, sugar and hazelnut syrup until slightly thickened. While beating more slowly, gradually add the gelatin to the whipped cream, then whip at high speed until stiff.

    TIP: Place the bowl and the beaters or whip you will be using for the whipped cream in the freezer for 30-minutes or longer before starting to whip the cream. Cover the whipped cream bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate immediately until you are ready for it.

    Friday, February 23, 2007

    Tuna Noodle/Macaroni Casserole

    A super quick meal for a meatless day.


    1 can Cream of Celery Soup
    1/2 cup milk
    1 cup cooked peas
    2 tbsp. chopped pimiento
    2 6 Oz. cans tuna, drained and flaked
    2 cups hot cooked medium egg noodles
    2 tbsp. dry bread crumbs
    1 tbsp. butter melted


    PREHEAT oven to 400°F.
    Mix soup, milk, peas, pimiento, tuna and noodles in 1 1/2-qt. baking dish.
    BAKE for 20 miutes or until hot. Stir.

    MIX bread crumbs with melted butter. Sprinkle on top. Bake 5 min.

    Serve with your favorite vegetables as a side.

    Friday, February 09, 2007

    Lemon-Lime Pie with Banana Whipped Cream

    When I was a pre-teenager, I absolutely hated lemon-lime - of ANY kind. How our tastes change as we mature. This pie is the epitome of lemon-lime ANYTHING!! It's fairly easy to make, but a little time consuming. The end result is beyond description.

    Lemon-Lime Pie Filling Ingredients:

    1/3 cup sugar
    2 tablespoons cornstarch (or Tapioca Powder)
    1/8 teaspoon salt
    2 cups milk
    2 egg yolks, well beaten
    2 tablespoons softened butter
    2 Lemon Myrtle Leaves
    2 Lime Kaffir leaves


    Blend sugar, cornstarch and salt in 2-quart saucepan. Combine milk and yolks, and gradually stir into sugar mixture. Add leaves and simmer for 10-minutes on very low heat. After 10-minutes, remove leaves. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens and boils. Set aside. Once pudding boils, stir for 1 minute, remove from heat, and stir in butter. Cover tightly and put in refrigerator until it solidifies.

    Make your favorite graham cracker pie crust. Bake until done. Let cool. Spread pie filling over the cooled crust; cover and refrigerate.

    Banana Whipped Cream

    For each cup of heavy cream:

    Sprinkle 1-1/2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin over 3-5 tablespoons cold water and let stand until gelatin is softened. Slightly heat till the gelatin completely dissolves. Cool, but do not let it set. Beat the cream, granulated sugar and 1/2 small overripe banana until slightly thickened. While beating a little more slowly, gradually add the gelatin to the whipped cream. Whip at high speed until stiff. Refrigerate for several hours.

    Be sure to refrigerate the bowl and beater(s) for at least 30 minutes. The cream must be cold when beaten. Do not overbeat.

    Saturday, February 03, 2007

    Milk Chocolate Cake

    This is a light textured, light chocolate cake that chocolate lovers will enjoy. The filling can be of your choice, as can the icing. If you like the flavor of a 'light' chocolate, I suggest either a vanilla or rum pudding filling, and a butternut icing.


    2 cups flour
    2 cups sugar
    1/4 cup baking cocoa
    1-1/2 tsp. baking soda
    1-1/2 tsp. baking powder
    1/4 tsp. salt
    2 eggs
    1 cup whole milk
    1/2 cup oil
    2 tsp. vanilla
    1 cup boiling water


    Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and dust two 9" layer cake pans. Set aside.

    In a large bowl, combine sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir with wire whisk until well mixed.Add eggs, milk, oil, and vanilla and beat well with wire whisk or mixer until combined, about 2 minutes. While beating, heat water in microwave oven to boiling. Stir boiling water into cake batter.

    This is a VERY thin batter, so fear not. Pour the thin batter into the two prepared cake pans. Bake at 350 degrees F for 30-35 minutes or until cake pulls away from sides of pan, top springs back when lightly touched, and a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool for 5-10 minutes, then remove from pans and cool completely on wire racks.


    Tuesday, January 30, 2007

    Banana-Peach Cobbler

    Frozen peaches are easier to use here - and less work - than fresh.

    1/2 cup melted butter
    1 cup flour
    1 cup sugar
    2 teaspoons baking powder
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    2/3 cup room temperature milk
    1 room temperature egg


    1 large can sliced peaches (or frozen) and drained
    1 banana - 1/4 inch sliced
    1 cup sugar
    1 teaspoon cinnamon
    1/2 teaspoon nutmeg


    1. Melt butter in a 9 x 13 inch pan.
    2. Mix together flour, sugar, baking powder& salt.
    3. Stir in milk and egg.
    4. Pour evenly over melted butter.
    5. Combine peaches and banana, sugar and spices and spread over batter-DO NOT STIR!
    6. Bake 30-40 minutes at 350 degrees until batter rises and is golden brown.

    Spoon into individual dishes, and serve warm or cold with ice cream or whipped cream, Or both :-)

    Sunday, January 21, 2007

    Sole Florentine

    Sole is a very mild, sweet salt water fish. The lemon/cucumber sauce(*Below) adds a wonderful dimension to this dish. Serve with baked potato and steamed asparagus.

    4 tsp. butter
    1/2 cup onion, chopped
    Pinch of rosemary crushed or powdered
    8 ounces frozen chopped spinach (optional)
    1/2 cup chopped almonds
    2 tsp. lemon juice
    1 lb. Sole fillets
    2/3 cup lemon/cucumber white sauce
    2 Tbs. plus 2 tsp. water
    Sprinkling of smoked paprika

    Preheat oven to 350F. Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Saute onions and rosemary 4-5 minutes until onions are tender. Add next 4 ingredients. Heat 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Let cool. Place 1/4 cup mixture on each fish fillet. Roll up and secure with toothpicks. Arrange fish rolls in a shallow buttered baking dish. Bake 20 minutes. Combine soup and water in a bowl. Pour white sauce over baked fish. Bake another 15 minutes, or until heated through. Sprinkle with paprika and serve.

    Lemon-Cucumber Sauce

    3 TBS Butter
    3 TBS Flour
    1/2 Medium Cucumber – Peeled and sliced in ½” thick slices
    1 Cup Chicken Broth
    1-1 ½ Cups milk or cream
    2 Large Lemon Myrtle Leaves

    Make the white sauce (roux) by melting the butter. Remove from heat. Whisk in the flour. Add the milk, cream, and chicken broth. Place on medium flame until it starts to bubble; turn to very low. Add cucumber slices and the lemon myrtle leaves. Simmer on very LOW HEAT UNTIL THE CUCUMBER FALLS APART. Blend into the sauce for a smoother sauce, or leave the chunks.


    Friday, January 19, 2007

    Rum Pudding-Cake Filling

    This recipe is hard to beat for a devil's food cake filling. Topped with whipped cream or raspberries - or both, it is a superb dessert.


    2 Tablespoons unflavored gelatin
    1/2 cup cold water
    1 cup boiling water
    2 cups whipping cream
    1/3 cup white or golden rum
    1/2 cup powdered sugar (granulated for a sweeter filling)
    1 teaspoon vanilla

    Dissolve gelatin in cold then add hot water; cool until partially set. Whip cream, then add to gelatin with sugar, rum and vanilla. Lete cool in a large bowl. Refrigerate. When ready to use, coat the bottom cake layer. Place second layer on top, then frost top layer and sides of the cake with rich, fudge icing.


    Friday, January 12, 2007

    French Coconut Pie

    I don't know of too many people who do NOT like coconut in one form or another. This pie is quick to make and is a wonderful way to finish off a meal - especially with a cup of breshly brewed hazelnut coffee. Permission was given to me by the author - creator to publish this recipe; she is an encyclopedia of cooking and baking knowledge on the King Arthur Baking Circle, as well as being a mainstay to the message board, and the question and answer point person if you ever have inquiries about cooking and baking or equipment/ingredient resources.


    • 3 eggs, beaten
    • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
    • 1 stick butter, melted
    • 1 Tbsp. vinegar
    • 3 cups coconut


    Combine well, and pour ingredients into unbaked pie shell. Bake at 350 degrees until firm...about 1 hour. This is much like pecan pie.

    An extra addition - a topping - for this pie that goes really well is an ALMOND praline.

    Almond Praline Crunch:

    3/4 cup Butter
    1/2 cup Sugar
    1 cup coarsely chopped and toasted almonds.

    Stir all together in a heavy duty pan until the sugar is completely dissolved and the mixture comes to a boil. Remove from heat. Once the mixture solidifies and cools, remove from the pan and place the chunks between several folds of waxed paper and break it up with a heavy rolling pin (marble works the best) and crush the chunks into very small pieces. Sprinkle over pie before serving. If you REALLY want more calories and want to be decadent, a few dollops of whipped cream on top is delicious.

    Posted by Il Fornaio (The Baker) at 9:57 AM 1 comments

    Easy Enchiladas

    A delicious meal in no time flat!!

    2 Lbs shredded beef
    1 TBS Chili Powder
    4 Garlic buds crushed and finely diced
    ½ Large Onion Chopped
    2 tsp Cumin
    1 Cup Taco Sauce
    1 Cup Sliced Black Olives
    1 Can (16 Oz.) Refried Beans
    1 Cup Corn Niblets (Optional)
    2 Cans Green Enchilada Sauce
    1 ½-2 Cups Shredded Cheddar Cheese

    Cook beef in crock pot overnight on low. Cool and shred coarsely in food processor; remove to large bowl. In a separate pan, sauté the garlic and onion. To the bowl with the shredded beef, add onion and garlic, refried beans, chili powder, cumin, taco sauce, corn and olives. Mix well so all is blended.

    In a heatproof casserole dish, pour one (1) can of the enchilada sauce. Place meat filling in the center of a tortilla, then roll up and arrange in dish. Pour remaining can of enchilada sauce over the rolled up tortillas. Sprinkle the shredded cheese over the filled tortillas. Bake in a preheated 375F. oven for 20-25 minutes.

    Serve as is, or with chopped tomatoes, shredded lettuce, sour cream, and guacamole.


    Monday, January 08, 2007

    Lemon Myrtle/Banana White Sauce

    3 TBS Butter
    3 TBS Flour
    1 Medium banana mashed
    1 Cup Chicken Broth
    ¼ Cup Slivered almonds
    ¼ Cup shredded coconut
    1-1 ½ Cups milk or cream
    1 Lemon Myrtle Leaf
    ¼ tsp curry
    ½ tsp Accent
    1 Dash of Angostura Bitters

    Sautee mashed banana in melted butter on medium heat. Remove from heat and whisk in flour. Add all remaining ingredients. Return to low heat whisking constantly. Keep on low heat until thickened and the flavors develop.

    Serve this over boneless/skinless chicken with orzo or Jasmine rice pilaf.


    Friday, December 15, 2006


    Quick, easy, and delicious.

    1-2 tablespoons olive oil
    1 onion, cut into 1/4-inch-thick wedges
    12 ounces skinless boneless chicken, cut into 1/4-inch-wide strips
    1 garlic clove, minced
    1 1/2 cups Basmati rice or medium-grain white rice (Orzo works too)
    1/4 cup dried cranberries
    2 cinnamon sticks, broken in half
    4 cups chicken broth
    2 tablespoons sliced almonds, toasted

    Heat oil in heavy large deep skillet (preferably nonstick) over medium-high heat. Add onion and sauté until golden, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. Add chicken and garlic to skillet; sauté until chicken is no longer pink, about 4-6 minutes. Stir in rice, cranberries, and cinnamon sticks. Add broth and bring to boil. Reduce heat to low; cover and cook until rice is tender and most liquid is absorbed, about 20 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer to bowl. Discard cinnamon sticks. Sprinkle with toasted almonds.


    Friday, December 01, 2006

    Triple Chocolate Cream Pie

    This recipe originated from Cooks Illustrated. I hope they don't mind me posting this recipe, but if you are chocoholics like we are, they will want to get it out to the entire civilized world. I claim absolutely NO creativity here. This pie will give you a buzz like you've never had before. There's a few back-and-forth steps in making it, and it can be a little confusing. When you taste the final result, however, you'll never remember all the steps. It is wonderful as a stand alone dessert, and especially good with a demitasse of espresso.

    Two kinds of chocolate and Oreo cookies are used to produce a pie with rich chocolate flavor, and an easy-to-slice crust. We wanted a super rich and decadent creamy pie, with a well-balanced chocolate flavor somewhere between a milkshake and a melted candy bar, and a delicious, easy-to-slice crust.

    A combination of semisweet and unsweetened chocolate produced the ultimate rounded, intense chocolate flavor. The custard texture depends upon carefully pouring the egg yolk mixture into simmering half-and-half, then whisking in cold butter.

    Pulverized Oreos (regular or the double chocolate ones) and a bit of melted butter afford the tastiest, most tender, sliceable crumb crust.

    Chocolate Cream PieFor the best chocolate flavor and texture, I recommend either Callebaut semisweet and unsweetened chocolates, Hershey's Special Dark and Hershey's unsweetened chocolates, or Ghiradelli semi-sweet chocolate and Bakers unsweetened chocolate. Do not combine the yolks and sugar in advance of making the filling--the sugar will begin to denature the yolks, and the finished cream will be pitted. Makes a 9-inch pie.

    Chocolate Cookie Crumb Crust

    16 - 18 Oreo cookies (with filling), broken into rough pieces, about 2 1/2 cups
    2 TBS butter , melted and cooled

    Chocolate Cream Filling

    2 1/2 cups half-and-half
    pinch table salt
    1/3 cup granulated sugar
    2 TBS cornstarch
    6 Large egg yolks at room temperature, (protein strands attached to yolk) removed
    6 tablespoons butter (cold), cut into 6 pieces
    6 ounces semisweet chocolate or bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
    1 ounce unsweetened chocolate finely chopped
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract

    Whipped Cream Topping

    1 1/2 cups heavy cream (cold)
    1/4 Cup granulated sugar
    2 tsp vanilla extract

    (For an added dimension, add 1-1/2 tsp cinnamon. It REALLY enhances the chocolate)

    1. For the Crust: Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. In bowl of food processor fitted with steel blade, process cookies with 15 one-second pulses, then let machine run until crumbs are uniformly fine, about 15 seconds. (Alternatively, place cookies in large zipper-lock plastic bag and crush with rolling pin.) Transfer the crumbs to a medium bowl, drizzle with butter, and use fingers or a wooden spoon to combine until butter is evenly distributed.

    2. Pour crumbs into 9-inch pie plate. Press crumbs evenly onto bottom and up sides of pie plate. Refrigerate lined pie plate 20 minutes or more to firm crumbs, then bake until crumbs are fragrant and set, about 10 minutes. Cool on wire rack while preparing filling.

    3. For the Filling: Bring half-and-half, salt, and about 3 tablespoons sugar to simmer in medium saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally with wooden spoon to dissolve sugar. Stir together remaining sugar and cornstarch in small bowl, then sprinkle over yolks and whisk, scraping down sides of bowl, if necessary, until mixture is glossy and sugar has begun to dissolve, about 1 minute. Whisk yolks thoroughly in medium bowl until slightly thickened, about 30 seconds. When half-and-half reaches full simmer, drizzle about 1/2 cup hot half-and-half over yolks, whisking constantly to temper; then whisk egg yolk mixture into simmering half-and-half (mixture should thicken in about 30 seconds). Return to simmer, whisking constantly, until 3 or 4 bubbles burst on the surface and mixture is thickened and glossy, about 15 seconds longer.

    4. Remove to a cool burner. Whisk in butter until incorporated; add chocolates and whisk until melted, scraping pan bottom to fully incorporate. Stir in vanilla, then immediately pour filling into baked and cooled crust. Press plastic wrap directly on surface of filling and refrigerate pie until filling is cold and firm, about 3 hours. (The plastic wrap will stick at first, but then release once solidified.)

    5. Just before serving, beat cream, sugar, Cinnamon, and vanilla in bowl of standing mixer on low speed until small bubbles form, about 30 seconds. Increase speed to medium; continue beating until beaters leave a trail, about 30 seconds more. Increase speed to high; continue beating until cream is smooth, thick, and nearly doubled in volume and forms soft peaks, about 20 seconds. Spread or pipe whipped cream over chilled pie filling.

    NOTE: If you are not confident in getting a stiff whipped cream, dissolve a tsp. of gelatin and 3 TBS water. Place on low heat until completely dissolved. Drizzle the gelatin/water mixture in the whipped cream just before you feel the peaks are stiff enough; continue beating until well-incorporated. Refrigerate immediately. Spread the whipped cream once it has set up.


    Monday, November 27, 2006

    Mincemeat for Pies and Filled Cookies

    Some folks like mincemeat...others don't. In any event, here's a recipe worth trying. We've made this recipe over and over again for the past 41-years. If you DO like mincemeat, then you are in for a real treat.


    1 Orange peel Grated
    1 Lb. Ground Beef (wild game – deer, antelope is particularly good) and will work here fine)
    Enough water to cover the ground beef
    1 Lb Apples
    2 ½ Cups Currants
    2 ¾ Cups Raisins
    ½ Cup Brandy
    ½ Cup Dry Red Wine
    ¼ Lb Citron
    1 tsp salt
    1 TBS ground nutmeg
    1 ½ Cups sugar
    1 Cup Apple Cider
    1 TBS cinnamon

    1 Cup meat liquor (broth after boiling ground meat)

    Boil ground beef (or game) for about 45-minutes and let it cool in the water; save 1-cup of the broth. Put all ingredients in a big pot -EXCEPT for the brandy and wine. Simmer very slowly for 1-hour while stirring occasionally. Let cool to luke warm, then add brandy and wine. For best results, refrigerate it and let it gather the flavors of the brandy and wine which will further tenderize the product. If you’re not going to use it right away, pack in sterilized jars and pressure cook for 60-minutes at 10-Lbs of pressure.


    Saturday, November 25, 2006

    Roast Beef and Yorkshire Pudding

    After eating pounds and pounds of turkey and ham for Thanksgiving, we're ready for something different for the Christmas food fest. For the past 15 years, it has been a standing beef rib roast for us. The leftovers are delicious for sandwiches, or you can make your own roast beef hash. The following is a summation of the roast beef dinner.

    Roast Beef

    This may seem like a very different way of roasting a prime beef cut, but I can guarantee you will never go back to your standard method.

    Prime Rib Roast or rib eye at room temperature (very important)

    Dijon or brown mustard

    Fresh thyme (Lots of it)

    Fresh garlic cloves minced

    Kosher salt

    Freshly cracked black pepper

    Place the rib roast, bone side down, starting at the tail or narrow end, make a flap by cutting the fat strip on top of the meat, going toward the thicker part, as far as you can without severing it. Lay the fat strip back, and set aside. If you can get a roast with the ‘lip’ on, that’s the way to go. Mix Dijon, thyme, garlic, salt and pepper in a small bowl.

    Spread this mixture on the meat underneath the flap/lip which you just made. Replace the flap and use kitchen string to loosely wrap the meat to keep the flap in place as it roasts, otherwise the flap will curl up. Place the roast in the oven in a shallow roasting pan.

    Make sure your roast is at room temperature before you place it in the oven, otherwise you will have an under cooked roast at the end of the cooking cycle. Set the oven temperature at 500° degrees F.

    Multiply the roast poundage on the package times 5 minutes to determine the amount of time the meat will roast at 500° degrees F. Be as accurate as possible! Example: if your roast weighs 5.53 pounds, then multiply 5.53 (pounds) times 5 (minutes) which equals = 27.65. This means you will roast your meat for (27.65) or 28 minutes.

    At the end of the 28 minutes, turn the oven temperature off. Leave the roast in the oven for at least 2 hours - or more according to your liking as to doneness. During this 2 hour+ time, do not open the oven door as the meat is still cooking. This time is primarily for rare.

    Serve with steamed asparagus, green beans, or Brussels sprouts. Mashed potatoes and gravy are aslo recommended. Plan for having brown and serve rolls. Yorkshire pudding is strongly recommended and is posted here further down on the list.