Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Thursday, August 27, 2009
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Place 18 paper muffin cup liners in muffin cups and coat liners with cooking spray.
- Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour and next 4 ingredients (through salt) in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk. Make a well in the center of mixture. Combine sour cream and next 5 ingredients (through egg), stirring well with a whisk; add to flour mixture, stirring just until moist. Add carrot, currants, and pecans; stir just until combined.
- Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups. Bake at 350 for 25 minutes or until muffins spring back when touched lightly in the center. Remove muffins from pans immediately and place on a wire rack to cool.
Friday, June 12, 2009
Monday, June 8, 2009
- Process cream cheese, cheddar, pimentos and Tabasco in a food processor until pureed to your desired consistency. Transfer to serving bowl and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
So I'm sure that those of you who haven't yet completely lost interest in my blog are wondering what I've been up to lately. Well, here it is! Baby Cookie's first picture. We found out for sure a week after Valentine's Day. Since then I've been doing all kinds of things...not much cooking going on though. Fortunately I only suffered a little nausea in my first trimester but I was not in the mood to do much cooking or baking because making a baby can sure make you tired and I had some food aversions there for a while. I did manage to squeeze in a ski trip to Jackson Hole, WY at the end of February and a trip to Hawaii in April. My husband and I enjoyed both very much and we're trying to make the most of the time we have left with just the two of us.
Monday, February 16, 2009
- Spoon pumpkin onto several layers of heavy duty paper towels, spread to 1/2-inch thickness and cover with more paper towels. Let stand 5 minutes. Scrape pumpkin into a medium bowl using a rubber spatula and stir in breadcrumbs, Parmesan, salt, minced sage, pepper, and nutmeg.
- Working with 1 wonton wrapper at a time, spoon 2 teaspoons pumpkin mixture into the center of wrapper. Brush edges of wrapper with water and fold in half, pressing edges firmly to seal. Place on a large baking sheet sprinkled with cornstarch. Repeat with remaining wonton wrappers and pumpkin mixture.
- Fill a large Dutch oven with water and bring to a simmer. Add half the ravioli to the pot. Cook ravioli for 4 minutes (do not boil), or until done, stirring gently. They should float when perfectly cooked. Remove ravioli with a slotted spoon, lightly coat with cooking spray and keep warm. Repeat with remaining ravioli.
- Combine milk and flour in a saucepan, stirring with a whisk. Bring to a boil and cook for 1 minute or until thick, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Add butter, stirring until butter melts, then gently stir in Gorgonzola.
- Serves 6 - 5 ravioli, 3 tablespoons Gorgonzola sauce, and 1 1/2 teaspoons of nuts per serving. Serve immediately.
The salad is something my mom made for me a while back when she was trying to recreate a salad she had at a restaurant. The recipe is my own approximation of how I make it and you can adjust the amounts to suit your own taste.
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
2 TBS extra virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped (optional)
3 medium garlic cloves, minced
1 bay leaf
1 (28-ounce) can good quality whole peeled plum tomatoes packed in juice (unsalted)
2 tablespoons brown sugar (or to taste-- it depends on your tomatoes)
3 large slices commercial Italian bread, crusts removed, torn into 1-inch pieces
2 cups chicken-style veggie broth
1 teaspoon salt (less if you use salted tomatoes, in which case, salt to taste)
freshly-ground black pepper to taste
Monday, February 9, 2009
2 2/3 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 cup butter, room temperature
1 2/3 cup sugar
1 tbsp lemon zest (or 1 tsp lemon extract)
2 large eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup milk (I used fat free milk)
approx 1 1/2 cups lemon curd (see recipe below)
- Preheat oven to 350F. Line 24 muffin cups with paper liners.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.
- In a large bowl, cream together butter, sugar and lemon zest until light and fluffy. Adding the lemon zest early helps release more of its flavor. Blend in eggs one at a time, followed by vanilla extract. Stir in 1/3 of the flour mixture, followed by half of the milk. Add another 1/3 of the flour and the remaining milk, then stir in the remaining flour, mixing only until no streaks of flour remain.
- Divide batter evenly into prepared muffin cups, filling each approx 2/3 to 3/4 full.
- Bake for 16-19 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean and the top springs back when lightly pressed.
- Cool completely on a wire rack.
- To fill, use a melon baller to scoop a small hole in the top of each muffin. You can also use a small knife to carve a small cone of cake out. Fill the depression with 2 tsp lemon curd.
Serve shortly after filling. Unfilled cupcakes can be stored in an airtight container until ready to fill and serve. Makes 24 cupcakes.
2/3 cup strained, fresh lemon juice
4 tsp fresh lemon zest
1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract
- In a small sauce pan, over medium heat, combine sugar and lemon juice. Add zest and stir until sugar is dissolved completely.
- In a medium bowl, lightly beat eggs. Whisking constantly (or with an electric mixer on low), very slowly stream the hot lemon-sugar syrup into the egg. Beat for 2 minutes (only 1 if you’re using a mixer), then transfer back into the saucepan by pouring the mixture through a sieve.
- Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until the curd just comes to a boil. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Watch it closely when you return the lemon mixture to the saucepan. It doesn't take long to boil and will burn if you don't remove it from the heat quickly. Transfer to a small airtight container and store in the refrigerator.
Friday, January 30, 2009
Preparation time batter 10 minutes, waiting time 30 minutes, baking time: 5-10 minutes per batch.
65 grams / ¼ cup / 2.3 ounces softened butter (not melted but soft)
60 grams / ½ cup / 2.1 ounces sifted confectioner’s sugar
1 sachet vanilla sugar (7 grams or substitute with a dash of vanilla extract)
2 large egg whites (slightly whisked with a fork)
65 grams / 1/2 cup / 2.3 ounces sifted all purpose flour
1 table spoon cocoa powder/or food coloring of choice
Butter/spray to grease baking sheet
Using a hand whisk or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle (low speed) and cream butter, sugar and vanilla to a paste. Keep stirring while you gradually add the egg whites. Continue to add the flour in small batches and stir to achieve a homogeneous and smooth batter/paste. Be careful to not overmix. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes to firm up. (This batter will keep in the fridge for up to a week, take it out 30 minutes before you plan to use it).
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or grease with either butter/spray and chill in the fridge for at least 15 minutes. This will help spread the batter more easily if using a stencil/cardboard template such as the butterfly. Press the stencil on the baking sheet and use an off sided spatula to spread batter. Leave some room in between your shapes. Mix a small part of the batter with the cocoa and a few drops of warm water until evenly colored. Use this colored batter in a paper piping bag and proceed to pipe decorations on the wings and body of the butterfly.
Bake butterflies in a preheated oven (180C/350F) for about 5-10 minutes or until the edges turn golden brown. Immediately release from baking sheet and proceed to shape/bend the cookies in the desired shape. These cookies have to be shaped when still warm, so you might want to bake a small amount at a time. Or you can place a baking sheet toward the front of the warm oven, leaving the door half open. The warmth will keep the cookies malleable until you can shape them.
If you don’t want to do stencil shapes, you might want to transfer the batter into a piping bag fitted with a small plain tip. Pipe the desired shapes and bake. Shape immediately after baking using for instance a rolling pin, a broom handle, cups, cones….
Wednesday, January 7, 2009
- My husband thinks it's gross that I put ketchup on my grits. I never used to do that until a few years ago when I was doing Weight Watchers and needed something to flavor them besides butter or cheese. Yummy! I also like ketchup on french fries, hash browns and veggie burgers.
- Speaking of veggie burgers, I was raised a vegetarian and never tasted meat until I was 19. My mom never learned how to cook meat or fish because my grandma is vegetarian too so we never ate it. My first taste of meat was barbecue chicken from KFC. Yuck! I ate fish and chicken occasionally for a while but now I prefer to stick to the veggie stuff.
- I am a Registered Nurse. I haven't worked since I got married almost two years ago, but before that I worked as a critical care nurse for almost four years after college. My last job was in a combined Neuro and Trauma ICU. It was exciting, sometimes too exciting and I was pretty burned out when I left. Eventually I'll go back to work and when I do I would like to work in a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.
- I'm not the only nurse in my family. Besides me there are at least a dozen other RNs including my brother, both my parents and a bunch of aunts, uncles and cousins.
- I consider myself to be one of the luckiest women on the planet because my husband doesn't watch sports! And I mean never! I don't have to care about the Super Bowl or the World Series or any other sporting event. I will never be a football widow. I will never have to listen to those annoying Nascar races blaring in the background. It is so awesome! (Obviously I'm not a sports fan either.)
- I met my husband on the Internet, on a Christian dating website. I realize it's not that uncommon these days, but I can't say I know any one else personally who met their spouse that way. At the time we met, we lived 550 miles apart.
- Bright light, particularly sunlight, makes me sneeze. Some people may think I am crazy, but I looked it up and it has an official name - Photic Sneeze Reflex. It occurs in 17-25% of humans, is more common among Caucasians and is an autosomal dominant trait. I inherited it from my Dad. Apparently it can prevent you from becoming a fighter pilot. Bummer.
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