Monday, December 31, 2007

Homemade Fettucine

3 c. flour
1/2 tsp. salt
3 eggs (or use egg beaters for cholesterol free)
3 tbsp. olive oil (optional)
1/4 c. water

Sift flour and salt in to large bowl; make well in center of flour; add eggs, oil and water. Work liquids into flour with fingers to make a soft dough.

Knead dough 10 minutes or until dough is soft and smooth. Cover with DAMP towel and let dough rest 15 to 20 minutes.

Cut dough into 4 quarters; roll each quarter to a very thin rectangle. Fold each rolled out dough into quarters lengthwise. Slice dough across into 1/4 inch wide strips. Unwind strips and allow to dry on clean dry towels for 1 hour or longer.

Lemon Ricotta Cake

150 g (7 oz) softened butter
150 g (3 oz) ricotta
250 g (1/2 lb) sugar
4 eggs
250 g self rising flour
125 g (1/2 cup) lemon juice

250 gm (1/2 lb) powdered sugar
50 gm (2 oz) lemon juice

Preheat your oven to 170 °C (340 °F). Cream together the butter and sugar until it is pale, light and fluffy. Add one egg, and mix well so it is fully incorporated. Continue adding the eggs one at a time until all 4 are used up. Add the ricotta and mix well. Tip all the flour in at once, and fold into the mixture while pouring in the lemon juice. Do not overwork the flour . Grease a 23 cm 10 ") cake pan (preferably with a removable base) with butter. Pour in the cake batter and bake for ~50 minutes - or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Remove from the oven and cool on a cake rack.

Mix together the icing ingredients and ice the cooled cake. Allow the icing to set for 30 minutes before serving. Softly whipped cream, or creme fraiche would be perfect with this cake.

Cinnabon Cinnamon Rolls


1/2 cup warm water
2 1/2 oz dry yeast
1 1/2 tbs sugar
1 3.5 oz package of vanilla pudding (instant)
1/2 cup butter melted
2 eggs
1 tsp salt
6 cups of flour
1 cup butter softened
2 cups brown sugar
4 tsp cinnamon


8 oz cream cheese
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 tsp vanilla
3 cups powdered sugar
1 tbs milk

First, make Cream Cheese Frosting: mix all frosting ingredients together until smooth; set aside.

In a bowl combine water, yeast and sugar. Stir until dissolved; set aside.

In large bowl, take pudding mix and prepare according to package directions. Add margarine, eggs and salt; mix well, then add yeast mixture; blend. Gradually add flour; knead until smooth. Place in a greased bowl. Cover and let rise until doubled. Punch down dough and let rise again.

Next, roll out on floured board to 34 x 21-inch size. Take 1 cup soft butter and spread over surface. In bowl, mix 2 cups brown sugar and 4 tsp cinnamon; sprinkle over top. Roll up very tightly. With knife, put a notch every 2 inches; cut with thread or knife.

Place on lightly greased cookie sheet 2 inches apart. Take hand and lightly press down on each roll. Cover and let rise until double again. Bake in a preheated 350F oven for 15-20 minutes. Remove when they start to turn golden. DON'T OVERBAKE. Frost warm rolls with Cream Cheese Frosting.

Makes about 20 very large rolls.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Orange Peel Beef

2 tbsp. frozen orange juice concentrate
2 tbsp. soy sauce
4 tbsp. sugar (or less)
1 tbsp. catsup
4 tbsp. water

1 lb. flank steak
10 dried red chili peppers (I used red pepper flakes, 1 tsp)
1/4 c. dried orange peel (or use tangerine peel)
1 tbsp. cornstarch dissolved in 1 tbsp. water
1/4 c. sliced onions
Just enough Veggie oil to coat pan

Combine sauce ingredients. Set aside. Cut the beef into thick slices across the grain. Pound until thin, about 1/4 inch.

Heat the oil for deep frying. Slide the beef into the oil one piece at a time so it doesn't stick together. Fry until crispy. Remove from pan, and then put it back into the pan and fry it all over again. Okay, drain the meat and remove it from the pan (again).

Reheat oil and stir fry the chili peppers, onions and the orange peel until you can smell them. Now add the sauce that you made in the beginning. Bring this to a boil and thicken with the cornstarch that you dissolved in the tablespoon of water. Add the beef. Stir fry 1 minute. Remove chili peppers before serving. Good over cooked rice.

This was very good, but I almost took Rex's face off with the red peppers.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Amaretti Cookies

2 ½ cups almond Flour
1 ¼ cup of baker’s sugar
3 egg whites
½ tsp vanilla
1 tsp almond extract
extra sugar for dusting

Preheat oven to 300 F and line baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a food processor mill together the almond flour and sugar. Add the vanilla and almond extract and pulse for a few seconds. Add the eggs, one at a time, and continue to process until the dough is smooth.

Place teaspoons of the dough on the parchment paper and dust with sugar. Bake for 24-30 minutes or until golden brown. Cool completely before serving. They will be slightly chewy at first, but they will be nicely crispy as a day or two goes by. Store in a cool, dry place. (Note: I usually underbake mine since I like them chewy. If that's your preference, bake them for about 20-24 minutes.) Makes about 30 cookies.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

David Lebovitz's Caramel Ice Cream

2 cups (500 ml) whole milk, divided
1½ cups (300 gr) sugar
4 tablespoons (60 gr) salted butter
scant ½ teaspoon sea salt
1 cups (250 ml) heavy cream
5 large egg yolks
¾ teaspoon vanilla extract

To make the ice cream, make an ice bath by filling a large bowl about a third full with ice cubes and adding a cup or so of water so they're floating. Nest a smaller metal bowl (at least 2 quarts/liters) over the ice, pour 1 cup (250 ml) of the milk into the inner bowl, and rest a mesh strainer on top of it.

Spread 1½ cups (300 gr) sugar in the saucepan in an even layer. Cook over moderate heat, until caramelized, using the same method described in Step #2.

Once caramelized, remove from heat and stir in the butter and salt, until butter is melted, then gradually whisk in the cream, stirring as you go.

The caramel may harden and seize, but return it to the heat and continue to stir over low heat until any hard caramel is melted. Stir in 1 cup (250 ml) of the milk.

Whisk the yolks in a small bowl and gradually pour some of the warm caramel mixture over the yolks, stirring constantly. Scrape the warmed yolks back into the saucepan and cook the custard using a heatproof utensil, stirring constantly (scraping the bottom as you stir) until the mixture thickens. If using an instant-read thermometer, it should read 160-170 F (71-77 C).

Pour the custard through the strainer into the milk set over the ice bath, add the vanilla, then stir frequently until the mixture is cooled down. Refrigerate at least 8 hours or until thoroughly chilled.

Freeze the mixture in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's instructions.

*There is an additional caramel praline that can be added, but I did not enjoy it.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Parmesan Crisps

3/4 cup finely shredded Parmesan cheese (preferably Parmigiano-Reggiano)
1 1/2 teaspoons all-purpose flour

Preheat oven to 350°F and line a lightly-greased baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a small bowl stir together Parmesan and flour. On prepared baking sheet spoon level tablespoons of mixture in mounds 4 inches apart and spread mounds gently into 3 1/2-inch-long ovals. Bake crisps in middle of oven until golden, 8 to 10 minutes. Cool crisps completely on baking sheet and remove carefully with a metal spatula. Crisps may be made 2 days in advance and kept between layers of wax paper in an airtight container at room temperature.
Chocolate Raspberry Turnovers

1 (17.3 oz) package frozen puff pastry, thawed
1 large egg
1/3 cup raspberry jam (could use straw, black, or blueberry)
1.5 oz finely chopped chocolate (milk, dark, or white)

Preheat oven to 425. Roll out pastry sheet to a 12” square, cut into 9 squares. Place a tsp of jam and 2 tsp of chocolate into center of squares. Brush edges with beaten egg, fold squares over into triangles an pinch closed. Bake on lined baking sheets for about 20 min. My oven is a little cool and I would recommend 18-19 min. Cool for 5 minutes and server warm.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Chocolate Peppermint Bar Cookies

1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup cocoa
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup coarsely chopped peppermint hard candies

Preheat oven to 375. Line a 13x9 pan with foil and spray with non-stick stuff.

Whisk dry ingredients together and set aside. Cream butter and brown sugar, add the egg and mix until combined. Mix in flour until just incorporated, stir in chocolate chips and peppermint pieces. Spread evenly in pan. It just came out in a lump and I tried to smooth as best I could. Bake for about 20 minutes, until puffed and pulling away from sides of pan. It evened out on it's own. Remove from pan and cut into pieces when fully cooled.

These did not come out of the pan very nicely, they are really not fit for a dinner party.

Pasta with Browned Butter Sauce

pre-made ravioli
2 tbs olive oil
4 tbs butter
1 shallot, minced
2 tbs pine nuts

heat oil and butter in skillet. When butter is fully melted, add minced shallot. Cook on medium high heat until butter begins to brown. Add pine nuts and remove from heat. Add cooked pasta to skillet and toss to coat. Serve immediately.
Amy's Creme Brulee

8 egg yolks
1/3 c granulated white sugar
2 c heavy cream
1 tsp pure vanilla extract

¼ c granulated sugar (for tops)

Preheat oven to 300°. In a large bowl, whisk together egg yolks and sugar until the sugar has dissolved and the mixture is thick and pale yellow. Add cream and vanilla, and continue to whisk until well blended. Strain into a large bowl, skimming off any foam or bubbles. (Important for smooth custard)

Divide mixture among 6 ramekins or custard cups. Place in a water bath and bake until set around the edges but still loose in the center, about 40-50 minutes. Longer baking time will be required for larger, deeper ramekins. Remove from oven and leave in the water bath until cooled. Remove cups from water bath and chill for at least 2 hours, or up to 2 days.

When ready to serve, sprinkle 2 tsp sugar over each custard and use hand-held torch to caramelize tops.

I totally stole this from Amy's blog.

1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup superfine sugar (I used regular sugar for both)
8 egg whites
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla or almond extract

Preheat the oven to 250 degrees.

Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or foil. On each, draw 10 4-inch circles.

Mix the sugars and set aside.

In a bowl or electric mixer, beat the egg whites until foamy. Add the cream of tartar and salt. Continue to beat, adding 1 tablespoon of sugar at a time and beating well after each addition. This will take about 10 minutes.

Add the vanilla and beat at high speed until stiff and glossy.

Using a pastry tube fitted with a large plain tip, pipe the meringue in coils starting at the center and continuing to the outside of each circle. (I just dropped in large blobs)

Bake about 1 hour, until cream colored and firm. Leave the meringues in the turned-off oven for several hours or overnight without opening the oven door.

When ready to serve, carefully peel away the paper or foil.

Note: The meringues can be made up to 2 weeks ahead. Seal them in plastic bags and store in an airtight container.

Makes 20 meringues.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Chocolate Biscotti

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 stick (6 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 cup walnuts, chopped
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350°F. and butter and flour a large baking sheet.

In a bowl whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. In another bowl with an electric mixer beat together butter and granulated sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs and beat until combined well. Stir in flour mixture to form a stiff dough. Stir in walnuts and chocolate chips.

On prepared baking sheet with floured hands form dough into two slightly flattened logs, each 12 inches long and 2 inches wide, and sprinkle with confectioners' sugar. Bake logs 35 minutes, or until slightly firm to the touch. Cool biscotti on baking sheet 5 minutes.

On a cutting board cut biscotti diagonally into 3/4-inch slices. Arrange biscotti, cut sides down, on baking sheet and bake until crisp, about 10 minutes. Cool biscotti on a rack. Biscotti keep in airtight containers 1 week and frozen, 1 month.
Orange Almond Biscotti

3 2/3 cups flour
1 1/3 cups sugar
1cup almonds coarsely chopped
1 orange, zest of
1/2 lemon, zest of
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 eggs
1 egg yolk
3 teaspoons orange extract
4 ounces butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F

In a large bowl, combine all of the dry ingredients (first 7 ingredients on list above).

In a small bowl slightly beat eggs& egg yolk together, and add to the dry ingredients along with the extract& the melted butter. If dough is too stiff, add some juice from the zested orange. Turn dough out onto work surface; knead lightly and form into two logs. Place logs on lightly greased cookie sheet& flatten slightly. Brush logs with beaten egg white. Bake 35 minutes; let cool 5 minutes, then slice each log diagonally into 1" slices with serrated knife, using a sawing motion( I used a kitchen knife and just cut). Stand the slices on the cookie sheet and return to the oven. Bake an additional 20 minutes or until crisp(This time really varies for me).

Chocolate Pudding

2 tbs sugar
2 tbs potatoe starch flour (could use corn starch)
2 tbs unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup heavy cream
4 oz milk chocolate (3/4 cup)
1 tsp vanilla (I used Madagascar Bourbon last time, could use Mexican)

Whisk together sugar, starch, cocoa powder and a pinch of salt in a 2 quart pan, then gradually whisk in milk and cream. Bring to boil over moderately high heat, whisking constantly, then boil whisking 2 minutes. It should be thick at this point. Remove from heat and add chocolate and vanilla. Transfer to bowl, cover surface with waxed paper to prevent skin, chill at least 2 hrs.

Friday, January 05, 2007

Pasta with Sausage and Broccoli Rabe

1/2 pound (about 2 cups) I prefer a large fusilli with this dish
1/2 pound (about 3 links) sweet Italian sausage
1 bunch (about 3/4 pound) broccoli rabe, tough and hollow stems discarded, washed well
1 garlic clove, minced
1 cup pasta water
2 tablespoon unsalted butter

In a kettle of boiling salted water cook pasta until al dente.

While pasta is cooking, squeeze sausage from its casings into a large heavy skillet and sauté over moderately high heat, stirring to break up chunks, until no longer pink. With slotted spoon transfer sausage to a bowl, reserving drippings in skillet.

Cut broccoli rabe into 1-inch pieces and sauté in reserved drippings, stirring occasionally, until it begins to brown. Add garlic and sauté, stirring frequently, 1 minute. Add water and simmer until broccoli rabe is just tender, about 3 minutes. Add butter, stirring until incorporated.

Drain pasta and return to kettle. Add broccoli rabe mixture and sausage and heat through if necessary.

Serve pasta with Parmesan.
Dream Bars

1/2 cup butter
1/2 packed brown sugar
1 cup flour

Press into 8x8 pan lined with tin foil and bake for 10 minutes at 350.

2 eggs
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp baking powder
2 tbs flour
1 1/2 cups shredded coconut(they only had sweetened and this seemed to work well)

Pour filling into pre-baked crust and bake for another 25 minutes. This could be 20, depending on your oven. Let cool and cut into small squares.