Monday, June 30, 2014

Corn Souffle

Ingredients: 5 eggs, whisked 1 can, creamstyle corn 1 can, corn kernels 1 C flour 1 T baking powder salt 1 C cream 1 C milk Preparing the souffle: Stir together all the ingredients. Pour into buttered casserole. Bake 45 to 60 minutes, in moderate oven.

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Deep-Fried Candy Bars

Ingredients: self-rising flour carbonated water Mounds candy bars Prepare: Mix flour with water until it's a thick paste. Dip candy bars into the batter, and into a deep-fat fryer until golden brown.

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Bojangles' Biscuits

Ingredients: 2 C self-rising flour 2 teaspoons baking powder 2 teaspoons confectioners' sugar 1/2 cup solid vegetable shortening (such as Crisco) 1 1/2 cups buttermilk melted butter, about 1/4 cup Preparing the biscuits: Sift together the flour, baking powder and confectioners' sugar. Cut in the shortening until pieces are about the size of grains of rice. Stir in the buttermilk (you may need less buttermilk; start with 3/4 cup and add more as needed). Knead a few times, roll out on a floured board or countertop to 3/4 -inch thickness. Be careful not to work the dough too much or add too much flour, or you'll have dry biscuits. Cut with an oversized biscuit cutter (about 3 inches). Place on an ungreased cookie sheet, brush tops with melted butter and bake about 12 minutes in a preheated 450-degree oven. Makes 10 to 12 biscuits

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Grandma's Vanille Kipferln

Ingredients: 1 1/4 C flour 1/2 cup unsalted butter at room temperature 1 cup finely ground almonds or walnuts 1/3 cup granulated sugar 1 teaspoon vanilla powdered vanilla sugar as needed Preparing the cookies: Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Knead together the flour, butter, almonds, granulated sugar and vanilla until the dough comes together and can be shaped into 1-inch-thick rolls. Chill briefly if the dough seems too soft to cut. Cut into 1/2-inch pieces and shape into crescents by bending the pieces and tapering the ends. Bake on an ungreased cookie sheet for about 20 minutes, until the cookies are light gold in color. Let cool on the baking sheet, then roll in the powdered sugar. Vanilla Sugar: At least a day or two before baking, cut 1 vanilla bean open lengthwise and combine with 1 cup powdered sugar in a jar with a tight-fitting lid. You may not need all the sugar for this recipe. Store any leftover sugar in its jar, at room temperature.

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Dark Chocolate Fondue

Ingredients: 8 ounces 70% dark chocolate 1 cup boiling water 3/4 cup granulated white sugar 1/4 cup plus 2 T light corn syrup 3 T unsalted butter 1 teaspoon vanilla extract Assorted fruits and pound cake, cut up into bite-sized pieces. Prepare: Place ingredients in a small saucepan on medium heat. Simmer for 5 minutes and serve warm in a fondue pot with the fruits and cake. Serves 4 to 6

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Fresh Corn Custard

Ingredients: 8 ears of corn (about 4 cups of kernels), kernels cut from the cob Butter, at room temperature, to coat ramekins 3 large eggs, beaten 1 1/2 cups half and half 3 T butter, melted 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, preferably white 1 T minced fresh tarragon Preparing the corn custard: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Fill a tea kettle and bring the water to a boil. Select a baking or roasting pan large enough to hold a 1 1/2 quart souffle dish or 6 8-ounce ramekins. Butter the souffle dish or ramekins. Meanwhile, puree the corn kernels in a food processor. Set a strainer over a large bowl and scrape the pureed corn into the strainer. Use a large heavy wooden spoon to press the corn milk into the bowl, stirring and rubbing the puree to extract as much liquid as possible. Stir the eggs and the half and half into the milk. Add the butter, salt, pepper and tarragon and mix well. Pour the custard into the souffle dish/ramekins and set in the large pan Set in the oven and pour enough hot water to come halfway up the sides of the dish. Bake until the custard is just turning golden brown at the edges and the custard is just set. Remove from the oven, transfer to a rack and cool slightly. Serve warm or at room temperature. Serves 6

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Guacomole

Ingredients: 1/2 medium white onion, minced 2 fresh garlic cloves, peeled 2-3 serrano chilies, finely minced 1 teaspoon kosher salt 4 T cilantro leaves, minced 3 large Hass avocados 1 ripe tomato, minced Prepare: Place 2 tablespoons of the onion in a small bowl, set it aside, and put the remainder of the onion and the garlic in the base of a molcajete (see note below). Add the serranos and the salt, and pound the mixture into a paste. Add 2 tablespoons of the cilantro, and crush it into the paste. Add the remaining cilantro to the reserved onions. Cut the avocados in half, remove the pits, scoop out the flesh and place it in a medium bowl. Use a fork to mash the avocado and then add it to the molcajete, using the fork to fold the onion paste into the avocado. Add all but 2 tablespoons of the chopped tomato to the avocado, mix together lightly, and then scatter the reserved onion and cilantro and the remaining tomato over the top. Serve immediately. Note: If a molcajete (a Mexican mortar and pestle made of granite) is not available, it is best to use knife to mince the onions, chiles, salt and cilantro together until they nearly form a paste. Add it to the mashed avocados and then continue as above. Do not use a food processor. Serves 4

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Chicken with Spinach, Chevre and Roasted Garlic Cream Sauce

Ingredients: 1 garlic bulb 1 T butter extra virgin olive oil Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper 1 thyme sprig 4 bone-in skin-on chicken breasts or 4 large chicken thighs 1 cup heavy cream or half-and-half 10 ounces baby spinach leaves 5 ounces fresh chevre 1/3 cup pine nuts, toasted 1 T minced fresh Italian parsley Prepare: Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Put the garlic bulb into a small ovenproof container, press the tablespoon of butter on top of the bulb, slowly drizzle about 3 tablespoons of olive oil over it and add enough water to the pan to come up about inch. Season with salt, add the thyme sprig, cover the container and set in the oven. Bake until the garlic is as tender as soft butter. To test, quickly press your thumb into a clove, at its fattest part. If there is plenty of give, the garlic is tender. Remove from the oven and let cool. Increase the heat to 375 degrees F. Brush the chicken all over with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Set in a roasting pan and bake until the chicken reaches about 145 to 150 degrees at its thickest part. Remove from the oven, cover with aluminum foil and let rest 10 minutes. While the chicken cooks, pull the garlic from its cooking liquid and set it on a work surface. Pull out the root end and use the heal of your hand to press out all the pulp. Use a fork to mash the pulp into a smooth puree. Pour the cream or half-and-half into a small saucepan set over medium-low heat and whisk in the roasted garlic puree. Heat through, taste and season with salt and pepper. Set aside and keep warm. Pour about cup of the garlic cooking juices into a wok set over medium high heat. Add the spinach and cook, tossing all the while, until the spinach wilts, about 2 to 3 minutes. Use tongs to transfer the spinach to a serving dish or individual plates. Scatter chevre on top of the spinach and set the chicken on top. Taste the sauce, heat through if needed and spoon over the chicken and spinach. Sprinkle the pine nuts on top, if using, add the parsley and a few turns of pepper and serve immediately. Serves 3 to 4

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Monday, December 16, 2013

Rum Cake

Ingredients for the cake: 1/2 cups walnuts, crushed 1 1/2 cups granulated white sugar 1 stick (1/2 cup) butter, softened 3 T + 1/2 cup grapeseed or canola oil, separated 1 3/4 cup all purpose flour 1/4 cup cornstarch 4 teaspoons baking powder 1 teaspoon kosher salt 1 cup vanilla instant pudding mix 4 large eggs 3/4 cup dark rum (recommended: Tortuga Rum) 1 T pure vanilla extract * * * * * * * Ingredients for the rum syrup: 1 stick (1/2 cup) butter 1/2 cup water 3/4 cup granulated white sugar 1 teaspoon Kosher salt 1/2 cup dark rum 10-15 cup Bundt pan Preparing the rum cake: Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease and flour bundt pan, and drop crushed walnuts into the bottom of the pan. Set aside. In the base of a mixer, cream the 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar and the 1/2 cup butter. Add the 3 tablespoons oil, flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and kosher salt combining until evenly distributed. (Mixture will look like fine crumbs.) Mix in the pudding mix. In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, rum, vanilla extract, and remaining vegetable oil. Add to the dry mixture and mix well until combined. The batter will be smooth, thin, and pour easily. Pour into the prepared bundt pan and bake for 50 to 60 minutes, or until a tester inserted in the cake comes up clean. Let cool in pan for 10 minutes, then invert onto a rack. Let cool for 20 to 30 minutes. While the cake cools, prepare the rum syrup: In a large saucepan with high sides, combine the butter, water, granulated sugar, and salt. Cook over medium heat until the butter completely melts and the sugar dissolves. Let reduce slightly, keeping an eye on it so it doesn’t boil over. Remove from the heat and stir in the rum (it will bubble). Wash and dry the bundt pan, then place over the cool cake and invert the cake back into the pan. Pour the hot rum syrup all over the cake and let soak for 8 hours (overnight). In morning, invert the cake back onto a serving platter. Keeps covered for 1 week at room temperature.

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Vanilla Instant Pudding Mix

Ingredients: 3/4 cup non-fat dry milk powder 3/4 cup cornstarch 1 cup granulated white sugar 2 whole vanilla beans 1 teaspoon Kosher salt Preparing the mix: In a large mixing bowl, combine the dry milk, cornstarch, white sugar, and salt. Use a knife to slice down the center of the vanilla beans lengthwise and scrape out the seeds. Add the seeds to the dry ingredients and whisk well until evenly distributed (you may need to use the back of a spoon or spatula to break up the little clumps of seeds). Cut the scraped-out vanilla beans in 2-3 pieces each, and drop into an air-tight jar or container (such as a mason jar). Pour the mixture in, seal, and shake a couple times to distribute the vanilla bean pieces. Store in a cool dry place. To make the pudding: Combine 1/2 cup of the mix with 2 cups of milk in a medium saucepan over high heat, whisking constantly. Bring to a boil (keep an eye on it because this happens quickly!), then reduce heat to a simmer and continue whisking until the mixture thickens and coats the whisk or spoon. (About 3-5 minutes). Pour in a container and let set for at least 5 minutes before serving. Can be served warm or cold.

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