Thursday, February 26, 2009

Balsamic Orange London Broil

3/4 cup balsamic vinegar
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon mustard
1 tsp minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper
1 tsp orange zest
London Broil

Combine balsamic, brown sugar, mustard, garlic, salt, pepper, and orange zest in a bowl. Stir until sugar dissolves. Pour over meat. Marinate in fridge at least two hours turning meat occasionally.

Grill or broil. I broiled it for 15 minutes on each side. It was well done on the ends but still pink in the middle.

Strawberry Amaretto Vanilla Freezer Jam

1 box Ball No Sugar Needed Fruit Pectin
3 cups crushed strawberries
1-1/4 cup apple juice
1/2 cup amaretto
1 vanilla bean, sliced in 1/2 seeds scraped
1-1/2 cups Splenda

Combine pectin, apple juice, vanilla bean seeds and vanilla bean and amaretto in sauce pan. Bring to a boil. Boil one minute stirring constantly. Remove vanilla bean and discard.

Remove from heat stir in fruit. Stir one minute using a whisk. Whisk in Splenda until well combined.

Pour in containers leaving 1/2 inch at the top. Place lids on top. Place in refrigerator 24 hours or until set.

Can be stored in fridge 3 weeks or freezer for 1 year.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Pasta with Prosciutto and Spinach

Original Recipe1 package cheese tortellini
1/4 cup pine nuts
1 teaspoon olive oil
3 teaspoons minced garlic
1 (6-ounce) package fresh baby spinach
1 cup Parmesan cheese
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 ounces prosciutto, thinly sliced

Cook pasta according to the package directions, omitting salt and fat; drain. Transfer pasta to a large bowl.

Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add nuts to pan; cook 1 1/2 minutes or until toasted, stirring occasionally. Add nuts to bowl.

Heat oil in pan over medium heat. Add garlic to pan; cook 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add spinach to pan; cook 2 minutes or until spinach wilts, stirring constantly. Add spinach mixture, cheese, and remaining ingredients to bowl; toss well.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Butterscotch Fondue

1/2 cup milk
1 bag butterscotch chips
1 jar Marshmallow Creme
1/2 cup peanut butter

Heat milk in saucepan over high heat until warm. Do not boil. Reduce heat to low stir in butterscotch chips, marshmallow creme, and peanut butter. Stir until smooth (about five minutes).

Serve with fresh fruit.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Double Vanilla Sugar Cookies

2 sticks butter, softened
3/4 cups sugar
3 egg yolks
1 vanilla bean, sliced in half and seeds scraped
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2-1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt

Combine flour, baking powder, and salt in bowl. Set aside.

Beat butter and sugar in mixing bowl until light and fluffy.

Add egg yolks one at a time; beating well after each addition.

Add in vanilla beans and extract.

Slowly add flour mixture.

Divide dough into 3 equal portions. Place each dough chunk on wax paper. Roll into a ball. Press into disc. Roll disc 1/4 inch thick. Put wax paper on pan and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate over night.

Preheat oven to 350. Line cookie pans with parchment paper.

Cut cookies as desired. Place on cookie sheets. Bake 8 minutes or until edge starts to brown. (Time will vary depending on size of cookies you are making.)

Gather scraps, roll, and cut more cookies. If the dough gets too soft put in back in the fridge for a few minutes.

Cool on wire rack. Decorate as desired.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Cowboy Mashed Potatoes

Original Recipe
2 lbs butter gold potatoes
12 ounces baby carrots
1 tbsp minced garlic
1 (10 ounce) package frozen white corn, thawed
1/4 cup butter
1/2 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
salt and pepper to taste (I used a black & red pepper mix)

Place potatoes, carrots and garlic in a large pot. Cover with water, and bring to a boil over high heat.

Cook 15 to 20 minutes, or until potatoes are tender. Drain water from pot.

Stir in corn and butter. Mash the mixture with a potato masher until butter is melted and potatoes have reached desired consistency.

Mix in cheese, salt, and pepper. Serve hot.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Hot Dog Buns

Recipe from King Arthur2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 packets or 2 scant tablespoons active dry yeast
1/2 cup warm water (105°F to 115°F)
2 cups warm milk (105°F to 115°F)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 teaspoons salt
6 to 7 1/2 cups All-Purpose Flour*
egg wash: 1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon cold water

Seasonings/seeds of choice

*We give you this fairly wide variation for a couple of reasons. First, you'll find in the summer that you'll need a bit more flour to absorb a given amount of liquid than you will in the winter. This is because it's humid and flour acts somewhat like a slightly dampened sponge as a result.

Second, this particular dough should be quite slack, i.e., very relaxed in order to make soft and tender buns. So you want to add only enough more flour, past the 6-cup point, to make the dough just kneadable; sprinkling only enough more to keep it from sticking to you or the board.

Mixing: In a large bowl, dissolve the sugar and then the yeast in the warm water. Add the milk, oil, salt and 3 cups of flour to the yeast mixture. Beat vigorously for 2 minutes.

Gradually add flour, 1/4 cup at a time, until the dough begins to pull away from the sides of the bowl. Turn the dough out onto a floured work surface.

Kneading: Knead until you have a smooth, elastic dough. Because this dough is so slack, you may find that a bowl scraper or bench knife can be helpful in scooping up the dough and folding it over on itself.

Rising: Put the dough into an oiled bowl. Turn once to coat the entire ball of dough with oil. Cover with a tightly-woven dampened towel and let rise until doubled, about one hour.

Shaping: Turn the dough out onto a lightly oiled work surface. Divide into 18 equal pieces. This is done most easily by dividing the dough first into thirds, then those thirds into halves, then the halves into thirds.

Shape each piece into a ball. For hamburger buns, fla
tten the balls into 3 1/2-inch disks. For hot-dog buns, roll the balls into cylinders, 4 1/2-inches in length. Flatten the cylinders slightly; dough rises more in the center so this will give a gently rounded top versus a high top.

For soft-sided buns, place them on a well-seasoned b
aking sheet a half inch apart so they'll grow together when they rise. For crisper buns, place them three inches apart.

Second Rising: Cover with a towel and let rise until almost doubled, about 45 minutes.

Baking: Fifteen minutes before you want to bake your buns, preheat your oven to 400°F. Just before baking, lightly brush the tops of the buns with the egg wash and sprinkle with whatever seeds strike your fancy.

Bake for 20 minutes or until the internal temperature of the bread reaches 190°F. (A dough thermometer takes the guesswork out of this.)

When the buns are done, remove them from the baking sheet to cool on a wire rack. This will prevent the crust from becoming soggy.

Leftover dough experiments:
Braided dough with two ropes, three ropes, and four ropes - Brushed with mixture of butter and vanilla sugar
Snail, Roll, & Pretzel - Brushed with mixture of butter and cinnamon
This makes a TON of dough! If you don't need over a dozen hot dog buns split the recipe in half.