Silverthyme

A CookBook Recipes & Other Stuff or How to Keep the Kids from Developing Beriberi After They've Moved Away From Home

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Cannoli

 These are really simple - you can add other stuff or leave out chocolate chips - kind of a whatever recipe ....

  • 2 3/4 cups (22 ounces) whole milk ricotta cheese
  • 3/4 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 3 tablespoons mini semisweet chocolate chips
  • 3/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3/4 teaspoon finely grated orange zest
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh lemon juice 
  • Cannoli shells 

Make the filling: Line a sieve with a layer of cheesecloth, and set over a bowl. Spoon ricotta into sieve. Cover, and let drain in the refrigerator overnight. (no need to do this unless ricotta seems watery)

With an electric mixer on medium speed, beat ricotta and confectioners' sugar until fluffy. Beat in chocolate chips, vanilla, zest, and lemon juice. Cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate.

Transfer filling to a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2-inch star tip (such as Ateco #826). Pipe filling into one end of a shell to the center, then into other end. Repeat with remaining shells and filling. Dust with confectioners' sugar, and serve immediately. 

Friday, December 06, 2013

Rugelach

These are really addictive - but they freeze well, which slows me down. Pat, this was your recipe - so if I've got anything wrong - let us know!

The fillings are each for an entire recipe - so if you're making various kinds you'll have to adjust. The fillings and amounts are just guidelines - not set in stone. If you devise some new filling you like, please post it ....


Dough
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 brick (8 ounces) cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
Fillings

Apricot/Almond
  • 2/3 cup apricot jam
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 3 tablespoons almonds, toasted and finely chopped
Cinnamon/Walnut
  • 3 tablespoons melted butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 5 oz walnuts, toasted and finely chopped
  • 3/4 c Currants
 Raspberry/Chocolate
  • 2/3 cup seedless raspberry jam
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 3 tablespoons almonds, toasted and finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped bittersweet chocolate  or mini chocolate chips
Glaze
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 teaspoon water

First make the dough.  In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat butter and cream cheese together until they are light and fluffy (a few minutes).  In a medium bowl, combine the dry dough ingredients, then pour flour mixture into the creamed butter mixture.  Beat on low speed until the flour just disappears.  Scrape the dough onto a large piece of plastic wrap/wax paper and shape into 3 disks. Wrap well in plastic/wax paper and chill in the fridge for two hours (or up to three days).

While the dough is chilling, prep the fillings and prepare the baking sheets by lining them with parchment paper or non stick foil.  Heat the jam just enough so that it loosens up a bit (I cheated and used the microwave for this step-worked just fine.)  Organize your fillings into four small containers- it will make the assembly a breeze.

Next, assemble the rugelach.  Take your chilled dough - Work with one third at time, and keep the others chilling in the fridge.) Roll the dough into a large, thin circle (about 12 inches in diameter).  The circle does not need to be perfect; this is intended to be a rustic dessert.  Spread 2-3 tablespoons of jam thinly (or butter for cinnamon/walnut version) over your dough.  Then, sprinkle with 3 tablespoons of the cinnamon sugar, 2 tablespoons chopped chocolate, and 1 heaping tablespoon chopped almonds/walnuts.  Use a piece of waxed paper to gently press the toppings into the dough to help reduce excess spillage.  Use a sharp knife/pizza cutter to cut the circle into 12 wedges.  Roll each wedge tightly from the outside to the center- keep the pointed end of each rugelach tucked underneath- and space them 1 inch apart on your baking sheets.  Pop the tray into the freezer/fridge for 15 minutes before baking.

While the dough rests in the freezer, preheat your oven to 350 degrees.  Repeat the rugelach assembly with the remaining dough.  Before baking, brush the rugelach with the egg wash.  Bake rugelach for 20-25 minutes, until puffed and golden brown.  Transfer the rugelach to cooling racks while they are still hot (this will prevent them from sticking to the parchment paper). 

Friday, June 28, 2013

Tomato Sauce

This is a good basic tomato sauce - I would double it when going to the trouble of making it - you can always freeze what you don't use! It comes from Hedonia and it's really nice to make on a day when you're sitting around the house with nothing much to do ...

  • 1/2 lb button mushrooms, finely diced
  • 1 onion, finely minced
  • several cloves garlic, minced or pressed
  • Sausage, sweet and/or hot
  • 1 26-oz box Pomi strained tomatoes, or one 29-oz can tomato puree (I prefer Contadina)
  • 1 6-oz box tomato paste (again, Contadina, please)
  • Olive oil
  • Splash of wine (red or white, whatever you prefer)
  • Stock or water
  • salt, pepper, oregano, basil
In a large Dutch oven, brown the sausage in a small amount of olive oil on all sides, and set aside.

Add the onion and garlic -- just enough to cover the bottom of the pan -- adding oil as necessary to keep from sticking or burning.

Cook until translucent, and scoop out and set aside. Repeat with the remaining onion and garlic, if necessary, until done. Add the mushrooms in the same fashion, cooking only enough at a time to cover the bottom of the pan, until dark brown and highly aromatic.


Once the last of the mushrooms are cooked, reintroduce all the previously cooked mushrooms, onion and garlic. Add the tomatoes, tomato paste, and a splash of wine.

Bring to a low boil, cover most of the way and reduce the heat to low. Keep at a low simmer, adding stock or water as necessary and stirring every 15-20 minutes. Be sure to scrape down the sides!

So when is adding more liquid necessary? Well, if instead of dainty little bubbles percolating to the surface of your sauce you get hoary, gloppy, volcanic GLOOPS, you might want to thin it out. Conversely, if the top of the sauce looks watery or transparent, it needs to cook down more. But stirring is of the essence, or you will end up with a layer of water over a layer of tomato mud. And that's no good.

Anyway, go on like this for, oh, three hours. Maybe more, maybe less. How do you know when it's done? I hate to be vague, but you will know. As if by some kind of pazzo alchemy, the sauce will magically begin to change. The color will turn more ruddy and brownish, and the aroma will become deeper and more savory. And the sauce -- if you've been stirring it! -- will take on a consistent, gravy-like texture. I mean, sauce-like.

Season to taste, reintroduce the meat if you used it, and cook another 20-30 minutes to meld the flavors. It's pretty good the day you make it, but it's always better at least a day later.

Spinach and Sausage Stuffed Shells

These are pretty much as I copied them from Simply Recipes:

You can mess with them as you like - use hot sausages, leave out the basil,  ...

  • 1 12-ounce package jumbo pasta shells
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup finely chopped yellow onion
  • 1 pound sweet Italian sausage, casings removed
  • 1 Tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 large egg
  • 16-ounces ricotta cheese
  • Mozzarella   - about 8 oz
  • 10-ounces chopped frozen spinach, thawed, squeezed dry, chopped further (or 10 ounces chopped fresh spinach)
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 Tbsp chopped fresh basil or 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/4 cup unseasoned bread crumbs
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 28-ounce can tomatoes with herbs, including the liquid, tomatoes broken up (or your favorite tomato or pasta sauce - like the one from Hedonia)

1 Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil (1 teaspoon salt per quart of water). Cook the pasta shells according to the instructions on the package. Drain, rinse in cold water, and set aside.

2 Heat olive oil in a large skillet on medium high heat. Add the onions and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the sausage to the pan, breaking up the sausage into smaller bits. Cook sausage until cooked through, and no pink remains, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds to a minute more. Remove pan from heat.

3 Beat the egg lightly in a large bowl. Mix in the ricotta, half the mozzarella, chopped spinach, 1/2 cup of the Parmesan cheese, basil, bread crumbs, salt, pepper, and sausage mixture. Fill each cooked pasta shell with some of the ricotta, spinach, sausage mixture.

At this point you can make ahead, to freeze (up to four months) or refrigerate before cooking.

4 Spread 1/2 cup chopped canned tomatoes over the bottom of each of the baking dishes. Arrange the stuffed pasta shells in the dishes.  Spread the remaining tomatoes over the top of the pasta shells.


5 Heat oven to 375°F. Cover the pans with foil and bake for 30 minutes, until hot and bubbling. Remove foil and sprinkle with remaining Parmesan cheese and mozzarella, bake uncovered for 10 more minutes.

Labels:

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Dulce de Leche No Cook Cheesecake

This was really easy and turned out well, but a little less gelatin next time?


  • 1 envelope (7 grams) unflavored gelatin 
  • 1/2 cup hot water
  • 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 can (13.4 ounces) NESTLÉ LA LECHERA Dulce de Leche
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup whipping cream and 1 tablespoon granulated sugar, whipped until soft peaks form
  • 1 prepared 10-inch (9 ounces) graham cracker crust
  • Chocolate syrup 

  • Mix gelatin and hot water in small bowl until gelatin is dissolved; set aside.
  • Beat cream cheese and dulce de leche in large mixer bowl until creamy. 
  •  Stir in gelatin mixture and vanilla extract. 
  • Fold in whipped cream. 
  • Pour into graham cracker crust. 
  • Refrigerate, covered for at least 3 hours or until set. 
  •  Serve drizzled with chocolate syrup.

Grandpa's Blueberry Sauce

This wasn't invented by Grandpa, but he likes it - and it can be frozen so Grandma doesn't poison him with outdated stuff ...

You can pour it over waffles, cake or ice cream or whatever ...


  • 2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries
  • 1/4 cup water
  •  3/4 cups sugar
  • 1 cup orange juice
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/4 cup cold water
  • 1/4 tsp almond extract
  • 1/8 tsp cinnamon

  1. In a saucepan over medium heat, combine the blueberries, 1/4 cup of water, orange juice, and sugar. Stir gently, and bring to a boil.
  2. In a cup or small bowl, mix together the cornstarch and 1/4 cup cold water. Gently stir the cornstarch mixture into the blueberries so as not to mash the berries. Simmer gently until thick enough to coat the back of a metal spoon, 3 to 4 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the almond extract and cinnamon. Thin sauce with water if it is too thick for your liking.

Cream of Tomato Soup

I just got Marion Cunningham's book Lost Recipes. Since Michael had one of his rare colds, I saw this as an opportunity to increase his veggie intake and made this soup - I didn't change much from the original - just added a cup of chicken stock in place of one cup of milk and a bit less salt since I used salted butter and the stock and added a bit of pepper ...


3 cups peeled tomatoes - 28 oz can

1/2 tsp baking soda

4 tbsps butter

1/2 onion, chopped

1/4 cup flour

3 cups milk

1 cup chicken stock

1 tbsp honey

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp dried basil or 1 sprig fresh


Blend the tomatoes until smooth and stir in baking soda

Melt the butter in a large soup pot

Add the onions and cook until the onions are soft

Add the flour and stir for a minute or so

Slowly add the milk, stock, basil and honey and cook until slightly thickened

Stir in the tomatoes and bring to just a simmer

Strain the soup, add salt and pepper as needed

Reheat and serve
 

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Raised Waffles

Raised waffles - I would call them that because they really are a level higher than ordinary waffles - crispy and light. I first saw these years ago in the 1896 Fannie Farmer cookbook, but never got around to making them. This recipe comes by way of Smitten Kitchen  via Marion Cunningham’s Breakfast Book. 

It is pretty much the same as  the 1896 version, with much more butter - but these will be my waffles from now on.


1/2 cup warm water (about 105 to 110 degrees, so not too hot)
1 packet (1/4 ounce, 7 grams or 2 1/4 teaspoons) active dry yeast
2 cups milk, warmed (again, not too hot)
1 stick (4 ounces or 115 grams) unsalted butter, melted and cooled until lukewarm
1 teaspoon table salt (only if using unsalted butter)
1 teaspoon granulated sugar
2 cups (250 grams) all-purpose flour
2 large eggs
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
Oil or melted butter for waffle iron
Powdered sugar, syrup or berries for serving

The night before: Pour warm water in the bottom of a large (larger than you think you’ll need, because the batter will rise a lot) bowl. Sprinkle yeast on top and let it dissolve and foam ever-so-slightly for 15 minutes. Stir in milk, butter, salt, sugar and flour — I do a little bit of wet ingredients then a little bit of dry, back and forth, to avoid forming lumps. If lumps form, you can mostly whisk them out.

Cover bowl with plastic wrap and set out on counter overnight.
The next morning, whisk in eggs and baking soda until smooth. Heat waffle iron (a thinner one is better than a Belgian-style one, as these will not rise enough to fill a tall one out) and coat lightly with butter or oil. Ladle in 1/2 to 3/4-cup batter per waffle batch. The batter will be very thin and will spread a lot in the pan, so err on the side of underfilled until you figure out the right amount. Repeat with remaining batter.

Waffles can be kept crisp in a warm oven until needed. If you only want to make a few at a time, the batter keeps well in the fridge for several days. They also reheat well in a toaster from a frozen state, and retain their crispiness ....

Monday, April 08, 2013

Beef Stroganoff

I haven't made this in ages, but I found the old recipe I used ages ago in my new copy of the NYT International Cookbook, and decided maybe Grandma and Grandpa would like it - and they did (so did I, but I like almost everything if it includes sour cream).

I only made a two changes - I cooked the steak whole - if you slice the steak first and saute it, it always gets overdone - so I cooked it first, about 4 minutes per side and then sliced it. I also used ketchup instead of tomato paste - first because I didn't have any, and secondly because I remember making the sauce with ketchup years ago ....

Oh - I also used NY strip steaks because I like them better - both the texture and the flavor.


1/4 cup flour

1/2 tsp salt

about 1.5 pounds NY strip (about 1 pound after trimming and slicing)

1/4 cup butter

1 cup thinly sliced mushrooms

1/2 cup chopped onion

1 garlic clove, chopped

1 tablespoon ketchup

1 1/4 cups beef stock or 1 can condensed beef broth

1 cup sour cream

2 tablespoons dry sherry (optional)

a bit of chives or parsley (because otherwise it looks too blah)

Cook the steak in a large frying pan with a little oil or butter

Remove the steak and add the mushrooms and onions and garlic - cook 3 or 4 minutes ( I cooked it longer, until the mushroom juice was evaporated and the mushrooms started to brown a little)

Add the butter, and when melted whisk in the flour. Slowly add the beef broth and whisk until thickened.

Add back the steak (which is now thinly sliced) and mushrooms. Stir in the sour cream and heat briefly - do not boil!

Serve over noodles.


Friday, March 22, 2013

Spinach Colcannon Bake

This is our family version of colcannon - (most versions are made with boiled potatoes and cabbage) - and slightly fancied up for reheating - and they do reheat well. This version can be made the day before and baked when you want it. Your great great grandmother simply baked the potatoes, then added butter, milk, cooked spinach, salt and pepper, and served them for lunch to Grandma.

The ingredient amounts are just an approximation - potatoes don't come in standard sizes.

Why your great great grandmother switched from boiled potatoes and cabbage to baked potatoes and spinach is lost in the mists of time - but I am glad she did ....


Recipe makes about 8 servings 
  • 5 large baking potatoes
  • 6 - 8 tablespoons butter
  • .5 cup of sour cream or buttermilk or milk
  • 1 bag baby spinach  (about 15 oz)
  • 1/2 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
    2 egg yolks
    salt and pepper 


    Bake the potatoes at about 350F  until soft (don't forget to prick them before baking so they don't explode).

    Wash the spinach and throw in a pot while still wet, cook until wilted. Drain and press out excess water. When cool enough, chop it all up a bit.

    Mash the potatoes while warm, add the butter and milk or whatever, salt and pepper to taste. mash in the spinach. Then add the egg yolks and mash some more ...

    Dump it all in a casserole and sprinkle cheese on top.

    Bake for about 30 minutes at 350F, or until hot. 

    I am sure you could add other things, like bacon bits, chopped corned beef or ham - and I've made it with broccoli instead of spinach ... so you can be a bit creative.

Coconut Bread


This was nicely coconutty (is that a word?) ... I snatched it from Smitten Kitchen, and will definitely make it again - oh, as usual I didn't add any vanilla - and added just one tsp of cinnamon.


2 large eggs
1 1/4 cups (295 ml) milk
1 teaspoon (5 ml) vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups (315 grams) all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon table salt (didn't add this because I used salted butter)
2 teaspoons (10 grams) baking powder
1 to 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 cup (200 grams) granulated sugar
5 ounces (140 grams) sweetened flaked coconut (about 1 1/2 cups)
6 tablespoons (85 grams) unsalted butter, melted or melted and browned, if desired
Vegetable oil or nonstick cooking spray for baking pan


Heat oven to 350 degrees.

In a small bowl, whisk together eggs, milk and vanilla.

In a medium bowl, sift together flour, salt, baking powder and cinnamon.

Add sugar and coconut, and stir to mix.

Make a well in the center, and pour in egg mixture, then stir wet and dry ingredients together until just combined.

Add butter, and stir until just smooth — be careful not to overmix.

Butter and flour a 9×5-inch loaf pan, or coat it with a nonstick spray.

Spread batter in pan and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, anywhere from 1 to 1 1/4 hours. Cool in pan five minutes, before turning out onto a cooling rack.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Walnut Mocha Torte


Snatched from Simply Recipes, everyone seems to like this - so I'll be making it for Easter this year. It may seem a bit difficult - but it isn't - and makes up quicker than you might think ...

While I may not make this very often - the mocha topping is liked by almost everyone - so I'll probably be making it more often than the torte ...

 



Cake:
  • 6 eggs
  • 1 cup (200 g) white granulated sugar (divided into 3/4 cup and 1/4 cup)
  • 1 cup (120 g) finely ground walnuts (from about 1 1/3 cup of shelled walnuts)
  • 1/2 cup (55 g) fine dry bread crumbs (plain, unseasoned)

Mocha Topping:
  • 1/2 cup (100 g) white granulated sugar
  • 2 Tbsp corn starch
  • 1 cup (8 fluid ounces) strong coffee (twice the amount of coffee for the liquid as I would usually use to drink)
  • 1 ounce (30 g) of chocolate chips (a little less than 1/4 of a cup)
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (8 fluid ounces) heavy whipping cream

1 Separate the eggs, into yolks and whites.  Take care to make sure there are no pieces of shell or egg yolk in the whites, and that the bowl you are using to contain them is completely clean with no residue of fat. Any fat from yolks or oil will make it difficult to beat the egg whites.

2 Prepare two 9-inch cake pans. Line the pans with parchment paper or wax paper. Lightly butter the sides of the pans (not the paper, but if you get some butter on the bottom of the pan, it actually helps the paper stick down better).

3 Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C). Mix together the ground walnuts and the bread crumbs in a small bowl and set aside.

Place the egg yolks into a mixing bowl and beat until smooth. Slowly add  3/4 cup of white sugar and continue to beat the egg yolks until thick and pale. 

5 Beat the egg whites with the whisk attachment until foamy.  Slowly drizzle in 1/4 cup of white sugar, and beat until soft peaks form.

6 With a rubber spatula, gently fold the egg whites into the yolk mixture, alternately with the walnut mixture.

7 Spoon the batter into the prepared, parchment-lined cake pans. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes at 350°F (175°C) until a slight imprint remains when touched.

8 While the cake is cooking prepare the mocha frosting base. Place 1/2 cup of white sugar and 2 tablespoons of cornstarch into a saucepan. Turn the heat onto medium and gradually stir in the coffee and the chocolate chips.  Stir continuously until the mixture starts to simmer and thicken. Continue to stir while the mixture simmers for 1 minute. Then remove from heat and stir in the butter and vanilla extract until well blended.  Let cool completely.


9 Remove the cakes from oven and cool in the pans for 10 minutes. Run a dull knife around the edges of the cakes to separate it from the sides of the pans. Carefully invert the cakes onto a rack. Carefully peel back and discard the parchment or wax paper. Let cool completely.  Note that if you want to make ahead, you can cook the cakes first, let cool to room temp, wrap with plastic wrap, and freeze until you are ready to frost and serve.

10 Complete the frosting. Whip the cream until it is rather thick, just before that point to which if you kept on whipping it would turn to butter. This will help it hold up as a frosting. Once whipped, fold the whipped cream and mocha base together. It may be a little speckled, and if you fold it only lightly, you can have almost a marbling effect of light and dark with the frosting, if you wish.  Place one cake on a serving platter. Frost the top. Place the second cake on top of it, and frost the top and sides of the cake.  Serve immediately, or keep chilled until serving.
Yield: Makes 12 servings.



Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Beef Stew or Beef Bourguignon

This is the beef stew I've been making for years - I thought I already had a recipe for it here, but I was wrong ...

It isn't quite Beef Bourguignon, but it isn't just plain stew either - but a sort of hybrid between them. I stole copied the recipe from Simply Recipes and rearranged it to my own version, but the basic recipe is very close to what I do myself.

You could change this recipe up quite a bit - add mushrooms or pearl onions, or parsnips or turnips or whatever. After it's done, you could bake it in a pie crust and make a beef pot pie. You could use half wine and half beef stock if you want it less winey.

  • 4 Tbsp butter, divided
  • 4 pounds trimmed beef chuck, cut into 2-inch cubes, patted dry with paper towels
  • Salt
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 4 large, peeled carrots, 1 chopped, 3 cut into 2-inch chunks
  • 1 large or 2 small cloves of garlic
  • 2 Tbsp tomato paste or tomato sauce
  • 1/2 cup brandy, plus 2 Tbsp or leftover Port, or just more red wine
  • 1 bottle Pinot Noir, or other red wine (about 2.5 cups)
  • Beef Stock, at least 1 cup, quite easily more
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 4 whole cloves
  • 4 medium potatoes (Yukon gold or red)
  • Beurre manie: 3 Tbsp flour blended with 2 Tbsp butter 

Heat saute pan on medium-high. Working in batches so that you do not crowd the pan, brown the beef. Leaving space around each piece of sizzling meat ensures that it browns and does not steam. Don't move the pieces of beef in the pan until they get a good sear, then turn them so they can get browned on another side. Take your time. This will take 15-25 minutes, depending on how large a sauté pan you have. Once browned, remove the beef from the sauté pan and place in the Dutch oven.

When all the beef has browned, add the onions, and the one chopped carrot.. Stir in the pot to remove any browned, stuck-on bits in the pan. Cook for 2-3 minutes, then add the garlic and the tomato paste. Cook another 2-3 minutes, stirring frequently.

Add the brandy and stir to combine. Scrape any remaining browned bits off the bottom of the sauté pan and pour the contents of the pan into the Dutch oven.

To the Dutch oven add the bottle of wine and the beef stock - almost cover the beef; the beef pieces should be barely poking up out of the liquid. Add the parsley, thyme and cloves. Cover and bring to a bare simmer. After 1 hour, add the rest of the carrots and potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks of 1-2 inches. Continue cooking for another hour, or until the beef is tender.

Reduce the heat and stir in the beurre manie. Stir in a third of the paste, wait for it to incorporate into the sauce, then add another third of the beurre manie, and so on. Do not let this boil, but allow it to simmer very gently for 2-3 minutes. Stir in the remaining 2 tablespoons of brandy. Taste for salt and add some if needed.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

King Ranch Chicken

This is seriously good - I changed it up very little. You all have this recipe in the Homesick Texan cookbook I gave you last Christmas, and although this was lifted from the Homesick Texan website - it is really the same recipe. It is the sauce that makes this sooo good, so don't change anything about it - but of course I did anyway.  I used chipotle chili powder instead of ancho. I knew this would make it a lot hotter, so I skipped the cayenne pepper and used more cheddar and less pepper jack cheese. I also forgot to drain the Ro-Tel - but that didn't seem to bother anything, and I made it in a 13 x 9 inch pan - so there could've been more chicken in it.

As soon as I get some ancho chili powder and a deeper lasagne pan, I'm going to double the recipe and  remake it, using a pre cooked roast chicken (I am too lazy, I'll just add the lime juice and chili powder) and I won't bother to heat the tortillas, I don't think that will make too much difference ...


1 1/2 pounds of chicken, without skin and bones
4 teaspoons of lime juice
1/4 cup of olive oil
3 cloves of garlic, minced
4 tablespoons of butter
1/2 an onion, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 poblano pepper, diced
1 10oz. can of Ro-Tel tomatoes, drained (or you can use a can of regular diced tomatoes and a 4 oz. can of diced green chiles, or if tomatoes are in season, can use two cups of diced fresh tomatoes with 1/4 cup of diced green chiles, such as a jalapeno)
4 teaspoons ancho chile powder (or chili powder)
1 teaspoon of cumin
1 cup of chicken broth
2 tablespoons of flour
1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper
1/2 cup of half and half
1/3 cup of sour cream
1/2 cup of cilantro, chopped
3 cups of grated pepper jack and cheddar
10 corn tortillas
Salt and pepper to taste.



1. Season the chicken with the lime juice, 2 teaspoons of ancho chile powder and a dash of salt. In a skillet heated on medium, cook the chicken in the olive oil on each side for about 10 minutes.
2. When chicken is done (after about 20 minutes), shred it with two forks and set aside. Taste and see if it needs more salt and pepper. Should yield about 3 cups.
3. Melt the butter in a saucepan on medium, and add the onions, red bell pepper and poblano pepper. Cook for 10 minutes.
4. Add the garlic, flour, cumin, cayenne pepper and 2 teaspoons of ancho chile powder, and cook for 1 minute.
5. Add the chicken broth and cook on low until mixture is thickened, a few minutes. Stir in the half-and-half and Ro-Tel cover the pot, and simmer for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
6. Uncover the pot, and add the sour cream, 2 teaspoons of lime juice and 1/4 cup of cilantro, and add salt and pepper to taste. Turn off heat.
7. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
8. Heat up the tortillas (you can do this by adding a bit of oil on an iron skillet and then cooking the tortillas for about 30 seconds on each side).
9. Ladle 1/2 cup of the sauce onto the bottom of an 11 x 7 inch baking pan.
10. Layer half the tortillas along the bottom of the pan (on top of the sauce). To make sure entire pan is evenly covered, you can rip some of the tortillas into strips to fill any gaps.
11. Add half the chicken, half the remaining sauce, half the remaining cilantro and 1 1/2 cups of grated cheese.
12. Repeat the layering, leaving the cheese layer on top.
13. Cook uncovered for 30 minutes or until brown and bubbling. Serves 6-12, depending on how big a portion you distribute. Goes great with sour cream and cilantro on top.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Sauerbraten

This isn't sauerbraten from John Duck's or Luchow's - It isn't one Grandma made, although it incorporates a bit of each, at least in memory ... It follows a recipe from Craig Claiborne's An Herb and Spice Cookbook, which I probably bought in a bookstore in Penn Station about 1968 or 69.

I lost the book many years ago, but I recently found a copy on Amazon - so here it is again...

 
1 cup red wine vinegar

1/2 bottle red wine (about 1.5cups)

1 tsp salt

6 cloves

2 cloves garlic

2 strips lemon rind

1 onion, halved

1/4 tsp nutmeg

3 stalks celery, chopped

2 carrots, chopped

3 sprigs parsley

1 4 - 6 lb round of beef

2 cups beef stock

3 tablespoons cornstarch

Combine everything except beef stock and cornstarch refrigerate to marinate for 3 days. Turn meat at least once a day.

Remove meat and dry with paper towels. Keep the marinade - put it in a pot and simmer on the stove.

Brown the meat in a Dutch oven with a bit of added fat because roasts these days are trimmed of most of their fat ...

After browning, pour off any excess fat, put the meat back in the dutch oven and add 1 cup of beef stock. Cover and simmer for about 2 - 2.5 hours, basting once in a while with the rest of the beef stock and the marinade.

Actually, I'm not sure why you can't just add all the beef stock and marinade from the start - I did this I think the last time I made sauerbraten and it turned out fine ....

Remove the meat and place on a platter. Strain the liquid and pour back in the pot - skim off any excess fat from the top. Mix the cornstarch with a bit of water and use this to thicken the gravy.

Serve with potato dumplings or potato pancakes and string beans (I will always call them string beans, even though I know the have been stringless for many years), and of course the infamous red cabbage.







Friday, December 21, 2012

Mincemeat Cookies

I love mincemeat - or maybe I just love the idea of mincemeat - I remember mince pies from my great grandmother, but even though I don't really like mince pie - I can't resist buying a jar of mincemeat at Christmas ...

These are nice soft cookies with lots of raisins and apples - nothing special, just really nice cookies. The original recipe was from Taste of Home, I didn't change much - just added some brandy to the mincemeat - these are really quite sweet, so I didn't frost them.


1 cup softened butter (if you use unsalted butter - add 1/4 tsp salt to recipe)

1.5 cups sugar

3 eggs

1 jar (about 29 oz) mincemeat

3.75 cups flour

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1 tbsp brandy (optional - to add to mince meat))

1 cup chopped, toasted nuts (walnuts or pecans)


In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar. Beat in the eggs. Add mincemeat; mix well. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon; add to the creamed mixture and mix well. Stir in pecans. Drop by rounded tablespoonfuls 2 in. apart on to greased or parchment lined baking sheets. Bake at 350° for 14-16 minutes or until edges begin to brown. Remove to wire racks to cool.

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Almond Madeleines

 I found this recipe at the Odense page, and pretty much followed it exactly - well except for slathering them with melted dark chocolate. I had tried another recipe using ground almonds, but it just wasn't right

1-7 oz box almond paste or 8 oz can
1 stick (8 tablespoons) butter, melted
2/3 cup sugar
3 eggs, room temperature
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
Powdered sugar or dark chocolate chips
Madeleine pan



  1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Grease and flour a madeleine pan or just spray with that spray stuff.
  2. Using an electric mixture, beat Almond Paste, butter and sugar until smooth.
  3. Add eggs one at a time, beating well between each.  Beat on high for 5 minutes or until mixture is thick and pale colored.  Beat in extract. 
  4. Sift flour, baking powder and salt (if you use salted butter, don't add more salt) together.  Pour flour mixture into almond mixture a third at a time, folding gently until incorporated.
  5. Spoon one tablespoon batter into each mold. Bake 11-13 minutes until light golden and top springs back when pressed. 
  6. Cool pan on wire rack for a few minutes and gently unmold.  Cool cookies on wire rack and dust with powdered sugar.  Repeat steps 5-6 until all batter has been used.
What I did differently was to freeze them plain, then when they were defrosted, melt some dark chocolate chips and coat the wide ends with the chocolate.

Made a batch with chocolate almond paste!

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Thursday, July 26, 2012

Parmesan Chicken Wings

Easy chicken - I usually just use butter and Parmesan - but the herbs might be nice. These are just as good cold, so make more than you need and you can snack on the leftovers ...


1/2 cup (2 ounces) Parmesan cheese, grated
2 tablespoons parsley, chopped
2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 pound chicken wings, disjointed and tips removed

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Combine cheese, parsley, paprika, oregano, basil, salt and pepper. Toss to mix.

Pour melted butter into a shallow bowl. Dip chicken pieces into butter, then coat with cheese.

Place chicken on foil−lined baking sheet and bake for 45 minutes. Serve hot or cold.

Thursday, July 05, 2012

Sangria

Sangria always reminds me of summer ...

I didn't add brandy this year - because I forgot to buy some - and it seems like this was way too much fruit - so I only added one orange and one apple, a lime and a lemon. I dumped it all in a 1 gallon pitcher and then added ice to fill just before serving.



  • 3/4 cup simple syrup, equal parts sugar and water
  • 2 bottles red wine - used white merlot, but any red wine will do
  • 3/4 cup brandy
  • 1/2 cup triple sec
  • 3/4 cup orange juice
  • 2 oranges, sliced into thin round
  • 2 green apples, cored and sliced thin
  • 1 lemon, sliced into thin rounds
  • 1 lime, also sliced
        
   
T o make simple syrup - boil water and  pour over the sugar to dissolve or boil the water and sugar together - it's simple - either way is fine .... Cool. 
Combine all ingredients in a pitcher and refrigerate, covered, 2 hours or up to 2 days. Serve over ice.

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Friday, June 22, 2012

Coleslaw from Duck's

 Parade on the 4th, nights at the Post House, and sauerbraten and duck with cherry sauce and coleslaw from Johnny Duck's ...

I didn't add any salt because it didn't seem to need any  - and I added both a little celery seed and caraway seed.

Say Good Night, Duck’s


By SUSAN SAITER
NYT Published: May 11, 2008
   
SOUTHAMPTON

In the Region

Long Island, Westchester, Connecticut and New Jersey
IT was Main Street, U.S.A., as much as it was Main Street, Southampton. It was where everybody knew everybody and could linger over meals like sauerbraten with potato pancakes and rice pudding.
But times and tastes change, and now so has John Duck’s Restaurant. John Duck’s threw itself a farewell party in March to dish up the last orders of its century-old signature dish, roast Long Island duckling with Bing cherry sauce, and a version of coleslaw that some people said elevated the humble cabbage to legendary heights.
The restaurant’s sign — with a wooden duck in a red vest — was long a folksy note in a  village downtown where pretension is not unknown. But the sign will go the way of the old décor as the restaurant, once a 19th-century farmhouse, is renovated by a new owner, Jean Mackenzie, 57, and becomes a catering business.
Ms. Mackenzie, who owns the Clamman Seafood Market just down the street, promised that her business, Four Seasons Caterer, would still be open for celebrating first communions, bar mitzvahs and similar occasions, and that civic groups would still be welcome to meet there, as they were at John Duck’s for decades.
But many Southampton residents are feeling a twinge of nostalgia for an old family and a way of life. Mayor Mark Epley said: “It’s a very sad occasion. No restaurant was as big a part of the community as John Duck’s.”
Joseph Krajewski, owner of the Baywoods nursery in Water Mill, said, “It was where the in crowd hung out.”
Lee Allen, membership chairman of the Southampton Kiwanis Club, said that because the owners lived locally, diners felt comfortable there. “It wasn’t like some of these new restaurants that cater to New Yorkers, where you feel like you owe them a favor just for walking through the door,” he said.
Four generations of the Westerhoff family operated Duck’s. The original was opened in Eastport in 1900 by John Westerhoff. The most recent Duck’s opened in Southampton in 1946, and a special welcome soon went out to civic clubs.
Mark and John Westerhoff, great-grandsons of the restaurant’s founder, were the most recent owners, along with their mother, Gloria, and they said John Duck’s built a room in 1952 for the Rotary Club. The Kiwanis Club, the Rotarians and the Southampton Fire Department, a volunteer force that includes the Westerhoff men, regularly met there. They considered the dinner meeting price of $20 a person ($14 for lunch) a bargain.
Veterans marching in the Fourth of July parade got an even better deal — full breakfast, with a bloody Mary included (if you could handle it at 7 a.m.), all on the house.
John Westerhoff, 50, worked up front while Mark, 49, manned the kitchen, cooking favorites like Wiener schnitzel and New York sirloin and baked stuffed shrimp with Newburg sauce. Gloria, 82, greeted customers. “It was my social life,” she said. “And were we busy. On holidays, we would serve 600 dinners.”
John Duck’s did not lack for glamorous patrons back in the day, said Roger Westerhoff, the brothers’ uncle, who sold his share of the restaurant in 1995. He said that Woody Allen, Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor had dined there.
“Jackie Kennedy had a funeral reception here when her aunt, Edith Ewing Bouvier Beale, died,” Roger Westerhoff, 72, said.
The Westerhoffs acknowledge that what made the restaurant essential in its heyday led in part to its demise.
“We didn’t want to do a different thing, though a lot of people said we should,” Roger Westerhoff said.
William Frankenbach, a Duck’s regular for 60 years and the chairman of the village’s Commission on Veterans Patriotic Events, which puts on the Fourth of July and other parades, said, “The summer crowd wanted something more glitzy.”
Ms. Mackenzie has high hopes for her catering business, which will be run by her daughter, Mackenzie Koster, 25. The chef, Jeremy Palmer, will emphasize fresh ingredients, like salmon with local strawberry salsa.
Bob Schepps, the Southampton Chamber of Commerce president, is thankful that another local family bought the place.
“If this were a case of someone from outside coming in and saying to heck with the local people, I’d be the first one to say the sky is falling,” he said. “But this is not the case.”





2 carrots, trimmed, peeled and 
chopped coarsely
1 medium sweet onion such as a 
Vidalia, peeled and chopped 
coarsely
1/2 each red bell pepper and green bell 
pepper, seeded, chopped coarsely
1 head cabbage (about 2 pounds), 
outer leaves discarded
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
1 tablespoon kosher salt or to taste
1 teaspoon celery seed or caraway seed
1 1/2 cups Hellmann's mayonnaise or 
more to taste.

 1. In batches, pulse carrots, 
onion, peppers and cabbage 
separately, until each is finely 
chopped. Do not overprocess! 
Combine ingredients in a bowl. 


2. Combine sugar and vinegar in 
a pan and stir over low heat until 
sugar melts, Pour over vegetables 
and mix. Add salt and caraway or 
celery seed and mix. Add 
mayonnaise and mix.

Add more 
salt and/ or mayonnaise if desired. 
Chill for an hour and serve.


Yield: About 10 cups .•