Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Chocolate Cherry Cookies

1/2 cup butter
1 egg
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1 (10 ounce) jar maraschino cherries
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C).

Beat butter and sugar. Add egg and vanilla and beat well. Add dry ingredients and stir until smooth.

Roll into 1-inch balls about the size of a walnut (larger if desired). Place on ungreased cookie sheet. Drain cherries and reserve juice. Press center of each ball with thumb. Place a cherry in indentation.

In a saucepan, heat condensed milk and chocolate chips until chips are melted. Stir in 4 teaspoons of cherry juice. Spoon about 1 teaspoon of mixture over each cherry and spread to cover cherry. (More cherry juice may be added to keep frosting of spreading consistency.)

Bake for 10 minutes.

**Rex used glace cherries and there was no juice, he simply put a dollop of the chocolate mixture on the cookie and it tasted great. Had a bit of a chewy texture from the frosting.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Spaghetti with Meatballs

For the meatballs:

1 pound ground pork
1 pound ground beef
1 1/4 cup seasoned dry bread crumbs
2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 extra-large egg, beaten
Vegetable oil
Olive oil

For the sauce:

1 tablespoon good olive oil
1 cup chopped yellow onion (1 onion) ***I used ~2 tbs of onion
1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
1/2 cup good red wine, such as Chianti
1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes, or marinara sauce
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1/2 Tbs dried basil
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
*** I would add whatever seasonings or veggies you like, probably not mushrooms

Place the ground meats, bread crumbs, parsley, Parmesan, salt, pepper, nutmeg, egg, and 3/4 cup warm water in a bowl. Combine very lightly with your hands, lightly form the mixture into 2-inch meatballs. You will have 14 to 16 meatballs.

Pour equal amounts of vegetable oil and olive oil into a large (12-inch) skillet to a depth of 1/4-inch (I used less). Heat the oil. Very carefully, in batches, place the meatballs in the oil and brown them well on all sides over medium-low heat, turning carefully with a tongs. This should take about 10 minutes for each batch. Don’t crowd the meatballs. Remove the meatballs to a plate covered with paper towels. Discard all but 1 Tbs of the oil but don’t clean the pan.

For the sauce, heat the olive oil in the same pan. Add the onion and saute over medium heat until translucent, 5 to 10 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Add the wine and cook on high heat, scraping up all the brown bits in the pan, until almost all the liquid evaporates, about 3 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, parsley, salt, and pepper.

Return the meatballs to the sauce, cover, and simmer on the lowest heat for 25 to 30 minutes, until the meatballs are cooked through. Serve hot on cooked spaghetti and pass the grated Parmesan.

This says it would serve 6, I would say more like 8. (I cut the recipe in half and had 9 or 10 meatballs, big ones.)

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Chicken and Sausage

1 large onion
1/2 cup olive oil
2 tsp English mustard
1 tbs dried sage
1 lemon
1 tbs Worcestershire sauce
2 Kg chicken cut into 10 pieces (or 10 thighs)
12 sausages
2 tbs chopped sage leaves

Peel and cut the onion into eighths, and put into a freezer bag with the oil, mustard, dried sage, a good grinding of pepper, the lemon juice, the squeezed-out husks cut into eighths, and the Worcestershire sauce. Squidge everything around to mix (the mustard needs help to combine) and then add the chicken pieces. Leave to marinate in the fridge overnight, or for up to two days.

Preheat the oven to gas mark 7/220°C/425F. Allow the chicken to come to room temperature in its marinade.

Arrange the chicken pieces in a roasting tin, skin-side up, with the marinade, including all the bits and pieces, and tuck the sausages around them. Sprinkle the fresh sage leaves over the chicken and sausages and then put the tin into the oven to cook for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Turn the sausages over halfway through to colour them evenly.

Serves 6
Nigella Lawson

Arugula (Rocket) Pesto with Linguine

3/4 cup pecans (3 oz), toasted
1 large garlic clove
1/2 teaspoon salt
10 oz arugula, coarse stems discarded
1/2 cup finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano (1 1/2 oz)
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 lb dried linguine

Finely chop 1/4 cup pecans (preferably with a knife).

Mash garlic to a paste with salt using a mortar and pestle (or mince and mash with a large heavy knife). Blend remaining 1/2cup pecans, arugula, cheese, oil, pepper, and garlic paste in a food processor until smooth, about 1 minute.

Cook pasta in a 6- to 8-quart pot of boiling salted water until al dente, 10 to 12 minutes. Ladle out and reserve 1 1/2 cups cooking water. Drain pasta in a colander, then return to pot and toss with pesto, 1/2 cup cooking water, and chopped pecans, adding more cooking water as necessary if pasta seems dry.

Lemon Curd Cupcakes

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
~ 1 1/2 cups lemon curd

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. Alternatively, you can 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

Friday, February 06, 2009

Amy's Salmon

4 salmon fillets (4 oz each)
1/2 c garlic and herbs flavored spreadable cheese or Boursin (from 4 oz package)
1 pint cherry tomatoes, quartered

Bake salmon for 25 minutes from frozen in a 400 degree oven.(Lightly oil then heat grill pan. Rub salmon with oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill salmon 4-5 minutes per side or until salmon is just barely opaque in the center.)

Meanwhile, heat cheese in a bowl in the microwave until just melted. Stir in 1 TB water. Serve salmon topped with sauce and garnished with cherry tomatoes. (if no cherry tomatoes, it's still good.)

I stole this from Amy Duke.

I make this for 2 people,not 4.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Pickled Beet and Endive Salad

1 shallot, minced
1/3 cup sherry wine vinegar
1/2 cup canola oil
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

3 pickled beets
30 small Belgian endive leaves
1 pear, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced
1 cup soft goat cheese, crumbled (optional)
3/4 cup walnuts, toasted and coarsely chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

To prepare the vinaigrette: Place the shallots and sherry wine vinegar in a small bowl and slowly whisk in the canola and olive oils. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

To prepare the salad: In a large bowl, toss the endive, pear, goat cheese, and walnuts with the vinaigrette and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Arrange the salad in the center of a large platter and top with julienned beets. Top with freshly ground black pepper.

Blueberry Coffee Cake

220 g packed brown sugar
85 g all-purpose flour
2 g ground cinnamon
115 g butter

250 g all-purpose flour
9 g baking powder
3 g salt
115 g butter
200 g white sugar
1 egg
5 ml vanilla extract
120 ml milk
145 g fresh blueberries

Heat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Coat a Bundt pan well with cooking spray. Make the streusel topping: Mix 1 brown cup sugar, 2/3 cup flour, and cinnamon in a medium bowl. Cut in 1/2 cup butter or margarine; topping mixture will be crumbly. Set aside.

For the cake: Beat 1/2 cup butter or margarine in large bowl until creamy; add 1 cup white sugar, and beat until fluffy. Beat in egg and vanilla. Whisk together 2 cups flour, baking powder, and salt; add alternately with the milk to the creamed mixture, beating well after each addition. Spread half the batter in the prepared pan. Cover with berries, and add remaining batter by tablespoons. Cover with streusel topping.

Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 55 to 60 minutes, until deep golden brown. Remove pan to wire rack to cool. Invert onto a plate after cake has cooled.