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Showing posts from January, 2019

Eggnog Rice Pudding

To me, rice pudding should always be served warm. I think the creamy texture is best showcased when this pudding is warm, and I think the pudding becomes a little too sweet when chilled. I am also horribly impatient, and can never wait for my pudding to chill before enjoying it. Something about that vanilla/ cinnamon/nutmeg aroma is quite intoxicating. If you prefer rice pudding cold, perhaps experiment with 1/3 cup sugar rather than the half cup listed here. Since the pudding will further solidify when chilled, you also may wish to stir in a little half and half or whole milk to your pudding to loosen it up. This is only one version of rice pudding that I enjoy; I have made it with jasmine rice, plain white rice, leftover cooked rice, added in raisins, cranberries, various other dried fruits, substituted coconut milk for the whole milk, etc. I particularly like using arborio rice; the texture of the finished product is lovely- intact grains of rice rather than mush, and t

Leftovers Quiche

I am still living in the land of leftovers; leftover charcuterie and crudite (aka, meats, cheeses and veggies). I love to snack on them with dip and a glass of wine for a very easy weeknight meal, but tonight I am craving something hot. I happen to have an extra pie crust in my fridge and I always have creams and eggs on hand for baking. The solutions is quiche! I prefer eating quiche as a lunch or dinner meal than breakfast or brunch; I find it to be incredibly filling and, if you use heavy cream like me, quite rich. Pair it with a simple green salad and a glass of white wine, and dinner is served. Enjoy! Ingredients: 6 large eggs, beaten 1 cup light cream 1/2 cup heavy cream 1 tablespoon olive oil salt and pepper 1 cup broccoli, chopped into small florets 8 ounces of summer sausage cut into half moons 4 ounces diced smoked cheddar 4 ounces shredded parmesan 1/2 sweet onion, minced 1 recipe of 9 inch pie crust (homemade or store-bought is fine) Me

Fancy Potato Salad

This potato salad is full of color; red, white, green, and purple. I love multi-colored fingerling potatoes; they add so much fun color to a dish without needing to lift a finger (that wasn’t a very good joke, I think).  I love the sweetness of the gherkins with the crunch of the celery and the peppery bite of the radish, married together with the tang of the goat cheese. I also quite like that despite using an olive oil dressing, this potato salad is still quite creamy. The potatoes break apart slightly, and their starch mingles with the oil to coat all the other components thickly with the lemon thyme dressing.  Make this for your next party; it is not your everyday potato salad and will be a colorful addition to any table. Enjoy! Ingredients: 1 cup sliced radishes 2 pounds of red, purple and white fingerling potatoes 3 stalks celery, chopped 1 half of a red onion, diced 1/2 cup diced sweet gherkins 4 ounces of crumbled goat cheese 1/2 cup olive oil

Mediterranean Chicken Salad

I grew up eating pizza at a local place; my parents call it Chief’s but all us townies call it GHOP. Their pizza is delicious, their mozzarella sticks are PERFECTION, but the one meal they make there that I am truly addicted to is their grilled chicken salad.  The owner of the store is Greek and this salad is tinged of Greek touches: Kalamata olives, oregano, lemon juice, etc. The basic ingredients of the salad are fairly simple (iceberg lettuce, tomato, carrots, cucumber, olives, red onions that I omit in my recreations, bell pepper, chicken breast) but the chicken marinade and the dressing are the most delicious things ever. The recipe as follows is the closest I have been able to come to a recreation. When I do order this salad, I also order a pint of their house dressing. The large salad comes with about a quarter cup of the stuff, but it is the most delicious dressing I have ever tasted and I must have it in my fridge. When I lived far away from home, I missed it so

Apple crisp energy bites

This is an excellent post work out snack. Made out of whole food, healthy, easy to make, and they taste like apple crisp (which is my very favorite dessert)! If you hate walnuts or pecans, feel free to swap in almonds. I use pecans and walnuts to make my apple crisp so I like their flavors here. I have just two quick notes about this recipe: make sure to soak the medjool dates. The paste will not come together unless you soak them. Just boiled water lessens the soaking time to 10 minutes; if you use room temperature water, I would give them at least 40 minutes to soften and plump up. Second: do not use freeze dried apples. They are too crumbly for this recipe and will prevent the paste from coming together. Dried apples are still fairly moist, and you need that moisture for these bites.  Whip some up today and enjoy with a glass of milk after your next sweat sesh, or frozen for a very satisfying dessert treat! Ingredients: 1 cup dried apples (not freeze dried)

Raspberry Pomegranate Jam

Tis the season to be making homemade gifts! Pomegranates are in season and their juice is a festive deep ruby red color. I knew I had to make them into a jam to give away. Straight pomegranate flavor is a little tart for me; I added raspberries for the texture of their seeds and their sweetness. This is a very simple recipe to make and will yield 6 to 7 8 ounces jars of jam or 12 to 14 4 ounce jars, if you like to give away sample sizes during the holidays. Enjoy! Ingredients: 3 1/2 cups pomegranate juice 1 cup mashed raspberries 7 cups sugar 1 tablespoon butter 1 1/75 ounce package Sure Jell Method: Sterilize your jars and lids. Set aside. In a heavy bottomed large stock pot, add the pomegranate juice, raspberries and butter. Mix well. Add in the sugar. Bring to a full rolling boil then stir in the Sure Jell. Allow to boil hard for 1 minutes. Remove from the heat and skim off any foam. Ladle into the sterile jars, twist on the lids and pr

Classic Shortbread

Shortbread is my very favorite cookie. Buttery, sweet, full of floral vanilla flavor and incredibly tender, these cookies are perfection. Serve them with tea in the afternoon or hot chocolate at night, and you have a perfectly cozy treat. I like to make them for gifts around the holidays; I have several shortbread pans that make decorative patterns on the tops of the cookies. Press the dough into the patterned pan, bake it, then flip it over and voila! A little festive holiday scene is etched into your cookies. Be careful not to crumble your cookies when you wrap them; I suggest using a cookie tin or cellophane bag carefully placed into a gift box. And make sure you make an extra batch to stay home with you! Ingredients: 2 sticks softened butter 1 cup confectioner’s sugar 2 teaspoons vanilla extract 2 cups all-purpose flour Method: Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Prepare your shortbread pan with Baker’s Joy spray.  Cream together the butter a

Pomegranate Molasses Mustard Glazed Swordfish

It took me a while for me to appreciate seafood. I have always loved flakey white fish, like haddock, tilapia and flounder (and cod when I can find it). The flavor of that fish is very mild and the texture is flakey and light. It wasn’t until I went to a summer program for opera singing at Schrod Lake that I appreciated salmon. The chef there baked a very simple but delicious salmon dish; salmon fillets with butter and dill. I was hooked. Soon came a love of shrimp, scallops and many other shellfish and seafoods I would never before touch. My first experience with fresh tuna was quite recently when a client of mine gave me a few steaks from a tuna he had caught (by the way, how cool is that?!). The tuna was fresh enough that I could have eaten it raw; as it was, I ate it well-seared but medium rare. Heaven! Tuna is a lot like swordfish in that it is a solid, meaty fish that stands up well to grilling, and pan frying.  This marinade/glaze is very flavorful and fresh. The

Puff Pastry Egg Tartlets with Smoked Salmon, Cheese and Asparagus

It’s the holidays, which generally means house guests and leftovers, especially leftover charcuterie. If you have guests and leftovers and still intend to make brunch, this recipe will be a winner! I always have smoked salmon and some kind of garlic and herb cheese spread when I host a cocktail hour. Often I will have used a sheet of puff pastry to make a warm hors d’oeuvres to serve alongside credit and various charcuterie. The odds and ends get put away in the refrigerator, but what to do with them? And after cooking a time intensive holiday feast, who wants to repeat anything as laborious the next day for brunch? Baking eggs is an obvious solution. No need to stand by the stove, cooking eggs to order or carefully watching a simmering pot to perfectly poach eggs. Instead, use up the extra sheet of puff pastry, the leftover cheese and smoked salmon, add asparagus and a runny yolk egg and voila! The star of brunch is served. Enjoy!  Ingredients: 1 9 by 9 inch sheet