Mother's Day

Cherry Almond Quick Bread

May 9, 2013

CherriesCherry Almond Quick Bread

If you need Mother’s Day Brunch ideas how about baking up my Cherry Almond Quick Bread.

INGREDIENTS

2 Cups Unbleached Flour

1 Cup Sugar

2 Teaspoons Baking Powder

1/2 Teaspoon Kosher Salt

1/2 Cup Chopped Dried Tart Cherries

3/4 Cup Milk

3 Eggs

8 Tablespoons Softened Butter

1 Teaspoon Almond Extract

Preheat your oven to 350º F.  Either grease or line with parchment paper an 8×4 inch loaf pan.  In a large size bowl whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.  Add the cherries and toss to distribute evenly.  In a separate medium size bowl whisk together the milk, butter, eggs and almond extract.  Add to the flour mixture.  Stir until combined, but make sure not to overmix.  Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan.  Bake for 1 hour or until done.  Remember that every oven heats differently so check at 50 minutes.  Remove from the oven when done and transfer to a wire rack.  Cool for 15 minutes and then turn the loaf out onto a rack.  Let cool completely.  Makes 1 loaf

 

Weekend Cinnamon Buns

April 27, 2013

Cinnamon Buns 2Weekend Cinnamon Buns

Surprise your family this weekend with these delicious Weekend Cinnamon Buns!

INGREDIENTS

Dough:

1/2 Cup Sugar

3/4 Kosher Salt

5 Tablespoons Melted & Cooled Unsalted Butter

1 Tablespoon Active Dry Yeast

1 Egg

1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract

3 1/2 Cups Unbleached Flour

1 Cup Room Temperature Whole Milk

Filling:

1/2 Cup Sugar

7 Tablespoons Plus 1 Teaspoon Room Temperature Unsalted Butter

2 Tablespoons Cinnamon

Glaze:

1/2 Cup Powdered Sugar

1/2 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract

3 Tablespoons Heavy Cream

Mix the powdered sugar, vanilla and heavy cream in a small size bowl.

In a large size bowl whisk together the egg, vanilla, milk, butter and yeast.  Add the flour, sugar and kosher salt.  Knead until smooth.  Cover the dough with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.  The next day remove from the fridge and allow the dough to come to room temperature.  Preheat your oven to 350º F.  Grease a 9×13 inch metal baking pan with 1 teaspoon unsalted butter.  Roll the dough into an 8×14 inch rectangle.  For the filling: Spread the rectangle with the 7 tablespoons of butter and sprinkle with the sugar and cinnamon.  Roll and slice into 15 equal pieces.  Place the pieces in the baking pan.  Let rise at room temperature for about 4 hours until almost doubled in size.  Place into the oven and bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown.  Remember that every oven heats differently so let your eyes be the judge.  Remove from the oven.  Let cool completely and then drizzle the glaze over the buns.  Makes about 15 buns.

Afternoon Peach Cake

March 8, 2013

Afternoon Peach Cake

It’s about that time of year when I start posting “Tea Time” recipes.  My mother-in-law was from England and always liked to have her cup of tea around 4pm accompanied by some sweets.  My children grew up having their grandmother’s tea time and the black tea they drank was always served with milk and loads of sugar.  You can imagine what I thought of that!

INGREDIENTS

1/2 Cup Canned Peach Slices

3/4 Cup Unsalted Butter

1 1/4 Cups Sugar

Grated Zest of 1 Orange

4 Room Temperature Eggs

2/3 Cup Sour Cream

2 Cups Unbleached Flour

1/2 Teaspoon Baking Soda

1/2 Teaspoon Kosher Salt

Powdered Sugar for Garnish

Preheat your oven to 350º F.  Grease and flour a bundt pan.  Drain the peach slices and chop them into coarse pieces.  In a large size bowl beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  Add the orange zest and beat in the eggs one at a time.  Fold in the sour cream and the peaches.  Combine the flour, baking soda and kosher salt in a medium size bowl.  Gradually add the flour mixture into the batter.  Pour into your prepared bundt pan and place into the oven.  Bake for 45 minutes until golden brown.  You may need to add 5 more minutes depending on your oven.  Remove from the oven and let cool in the pan for 10 minutes.  Turn the cake out and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.  Sift the powdered sugar over the cake and serve.  Serves 8

Cosmopolitan

July 31, 2012

Cosmopolitan

Ever wondered how to make a Cosmopolitan?  Perfect for backyard barbeques, holiday or dinner parties. 

INGREDIENTS

2 Ounces Vodka

1 Ounce Orange Liqueur

1 Ounce Cranberry Juice

1/2 Ounce Lime Juice

Lime Slice For Garnish

In a cocktail shaker combine the vodka, orange liqueur, cranberry juice and lime juice.  Add ice cubes.  Cover and shake until very cold.  Strain the liquid into a chilled glass.  Garnish with a slice of lime.  Makes 1. 

Saturday Morning Scramble

July 7, 2012

Saturday Morning Scramble

Classical haute cuisine preparation calls for serving scrambled eggs in a deep silver dish, but you can serve them in any dish you feel like.  Hey, you could even eat them out of the pan if you like. 

 

INGREDIENTS

4 Strips Good Quality Bacon

2 Green Onions

6 Large Organic Eggs

5 Tablespoons Half & Half

2 Ounces Finely Grated Cheddar Cheese

3 Tablespoons Olive Oil

1/8 Teaspoon Kosher Salt

1/8 Teaspoon Freshly Ground Pepper

 

Rough chop the bacon and green onions and place in a small sauté pan. Cook over a medium heat for 3 minutes.  In a small mixing bowl, combine the eggs and half & half with a whisk or a fork.  In a separate large sauté pan add the olive oil and heat over a medium low heat for 1 minute.  Pour the eggs into the pan and slowly stir with a heat resistant spatula.  Add the bacon and green onions.  Keep stirring.  Sprinkle with the salt and pepper.  Keep stirring.  Sprinkle in the grated cheese. As soon as the curds begin to form turn the heat up to high.  Instead of stirring now fold the eggs over themselves.  As soon as there is no more liquid remove from the heat and serve immediately.  You don’t want them to look too done in the pan as they will continue to cook on the plate.  Serves 4

 

Strawberry Milkshakes

July 5, 2012

Strawberry Milkshakes

It’s hot out and time for a good old fashioned Strawberry Milkshake! 

 

INGREDIENTS

1/2 Pound Fresh Strawberries

3 Tablespoons Sugar

1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract

1 Pint Good Quality Vanilla Ice Cream

1/2 Cup Milk

 

Hull and slice the strawberries.  Place the sliced strawberries in a medium size mixing bowl.  Add the sugar and vanilla extract.  Stir to combine and let sit out for 1 hour.  In a food processor or mixer place the strawberry mixture, ice cream and milk and blend until smooth.  Pour into glasses and serve immediately.  Serves 2

 

Thyme Lemonade

June 29, 2012

Thyme Lemonade

Since the weather has turned hot I have to admit that I’ve been really into making iced drinks lately.  Lemonade is hard to beat as the summer beverage.  Here is a nice variation on the much loved basic lemonade.  If you want to make this an adult drink then add 6 ounces of vodka and make sure to hide your “amped” lemonade from the kids!

 

INGREDIENTS

1 Bunch Thyme

1 1/2 Cups Sugar

1 1/2 Cups Water

2 Cups Fresh Lemon Juice

2 Cups Cold Water

Extra Thyme Sprigs For Garnish

Lemon Slices For Garnish

 

In a medium saucepan bring the thyme, sugar and water to a simmer over a medium heat.  Stir until the sugar dissolves.  Remove from the heat and let cool for 15 minutes.  Strain the sugar water into a pitcher filled with ice.  Now stir in the lemon juice and the cold water.  Serve over ice with thyme sprigs and lemon slices for garnish.  Serves 4

Mom’s Minestrone Soup

May 13, 2012

Mom’s Minestrone Soup

 

This easy and delicious soup can be made ahead.  I like to make it to have for lunch after church.  Mom’s Minestrone Soup can be made for lunch, dinner or a first course.  Great in all seasons!

 

INGREDIENTS

3 Cups Vegetable Broth

2 Diced Tomatoes

2 Cups Cooked Navy Beans (Canned or Home Cooked)

2 Chopped Carrots

1 Chopped Onion

1 Chopped Zucchini

2 Cups Ditalini Pasta

1 Teaspoon Thyme

1/2 Teaspoon Sage

2 Bay Leaves

1/2 Teaspoon Kosher Salt

1/2 Teaspoon Freshly Ground Pepper

4 Tablespoons Grated Parmesan Cheese (Optional)

2 Tablespoons Basil (Optional)

 

In a stock pot combine the vegetable broth, tomatoes, beans, carrots, onion, thyme, sage, bay leaves, salt and pepper.  Cover and cook on low for 6 hours.  If you want to cut down on the cooking time you can cook on high for 3 hours.  35 minutes before the soup is done cooking add the pasta and zucchini.  Cover and cook for 35 minutes.  Remove from the heat and remove the bay leaves.  Transfer the soup to individual bowls and sprinkle with parmesan cheese or basil if you like.  Serves 4

 

Mother’s Day Breakfast Cobbler

May 12, 2012

Mother’s Day Breakfast Cobbler

 

Don’t be afraid to make this fruit dessert for Mother’s Day breakfast.  Serve it with a scoop of plain yogurt on the top.  Everyone loves this breakfast treat. 

 

INGREDIENTS

1 Cup Unbleached Flour

2 Teaspoons Baking Powder

1/2 Teaspoon Salt

1 1/4 Teaspoons Ground Cinnamon

4 Tablespoons Chilled Unsalted Butter

1/4 Cup Room Temperature Honey

1/2 Cup Milk

1 Pound Ripe Plums (Split In Half & Pitted)

3 Tablespoons Light Brown Sugar

3 Tablespoons Wheat Germ

Plain Yogurt For Serving

 

Preheat your oven to 375° F.  Lightly butter and flour a medium size glass baking dish.  Whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt and 1 teaspoon of the cinnamon in a large size bowl.  Using a hand held pastry blender or two forks cut 3 tablespoons of the butter into the mixture until it is all crumbly.  In a small size bowl whisk together the honey and milk.  Add all at once to the dry ingredients.  Stir to combine all of the dry ingredients.  The spread the batter into the prepared baking pan.  Using a knife score an X through the skin of each plum half.  Arrange the plums skin side up in a single layer over the batter.  Mix the brown sugar, wheat germ and remaining 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon in a small bowl.  Cut in the remaining 1 tablespoon butter to form a cumbly topping.  Sprinkle the topping over the plums.  Bake for 30 minutes until the center of the cobbler is set and the topping is nicely browned.  Remove the cobbler from the oven and cool in the pan for 10 minutes.  Slice into wedges and serve topped with plain yogurt.  Serves 4

 

Mother’s Day Eggs Benedict

May 11, 2012

Mother’s Day Eggs Benedict

 

Disgustingly Delicious!  Eggs Benedict is known as that special occasion breakfast dish.  Don’t be intimidated by making the hollandaise sauce.  It really is easy especially if you have a food processor or blender.  Make this fancy breakfast for your deserving mother this Mother’s Day!

 

INGREDIENTS

12 Poached Eggs

Hollandaise Sauce:

4 Large Room Temperature Egg Yolks

1 Tablespoon Fresh Lemon Juice

1 Tablespoon Hot Water

1/4 Teaspoon Kosher Salt

1/4 Teaspoon Freshly Ground White Pepper

1 Cup Unsalted Melted & Hot Butter

To Assemble:

2 Tablespoons Butter

12 Slices Canadian Bacon or Ham Slices

6 Split & Toasted English Muffins

 

Make 12 poached eggs.  To make the hollandaise sauce put the egg yolks, lemon juice, hot water, salt and pepper in a food processer or blender.  Pulse for just 4 seconds.  While the food processer is running slowly pour in the hot melted butter.  Pulse for 1 minute until the mixture is thick and creamy.  To assemble add 2 tablespoons of butter to a large skillet over a medium heat.  Melt the butter.  Add the Canadian bacon or ham slices.  Cook for 2 minutes on each side.  Arrange 2 toasted muffin halves on each plate.  Place 1 Canadian bacon or ham slice and 1 poached egg on each muffin half.  Spoon 2 tablespoons of hollandaise sauce over each.  Serves 6

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