Sunday, March 31, 2013

Fresh Lemon Mousse #Ina Fridays

For those of you who love Ina Garten's recipes, a group of us get together and re-create on of her recipes at home.  This fresh lemon mousse is a summer dessert but it's elegant enough to serve to company any time of the year.

Fresh Lemon Mousse

3 extra-large whole eggs
3 extra-large eggs, separated
1 cup plus 2 Tbsp. sugar
2 tsp. grated lemon zest
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 3 lemons)
Kosher salt
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup lemon curd (recipe follows)
Sweetened Whipped Cream (recipe follows)
Sliced lemon, for garnish

In a large heat-proof bowl, whisk together the 3 whole eggs, 3 egg yolks, 1 cup sugar, the lemon zest, lemon juice, and a pinch of salt.  Place the bowl over a pan of simmering water and cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, for 8 to 10 minutes, or until with mixture thickens like pudding.  Take off the heat and set aside for 15 minutes.  Cover with plastic wrap directly on the surface and refrigerate for 1 to 2 hours, until completely chilled.

Lemon Curd

3 lemons
1-1/2 cups sugar
1/4 lb. unsalted butter, room temperature
4 extra-large eggs
1/2 cup lemon juice
1/8 tsp. kosher salt.

Using a carrot peeler, remove the zest of 3 lemons, being careful to avoid the white pith.  Put the zest in a food processor fitted with a steel blade.  Add the sugar and pulse until the zest is very finely minced into the sugar.

Cream the butter and beat in the sugar and lemon mixture.  Add the eggs, 1 at a time, and then add the lemon juice and salt.  Mix until combined.  The mixture will look curdled, but as soon as you begin to cook the mixture it smooths out fine.

Pour the mixture into a 2 quart saucepan and cook over low heat until thickened, (about 7-10 minutes), stirring constantly.  As soon as it begins to thicken, remove from heat, cool and refrigerate.

(Lemon Meringue Pie in a Jar)

Place egg whites and a pinch of salt in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment.  Beat on high speed.  Add the remaining 2 Tbsp. sugar and continue to beat until the whites are stiff and shiny.  Carefully fold the beaten whites into the cold lemon mixture with a rubber spatula.  Place the cream in the same bowl of the electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment (no need to clean the bowl) and beat on high speed until the cream forms stiff peaks.  Carefully fold the whipped cream into the lemon mixture.  Fold in the lemon curd and pour into a 7-inch diameter, 3-inch deep souffle dish.  Decorate with sweetened whipped cream and lemon slices.
Chill and serve cold.

Sweetened Whipped Cream

1 cup cold heavy cream
1 Tbsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla

Whip on high speed until the cream forms stiff peaks.
Spoon or pipe cream on top of mousse.

Visit all the participants who contribute to Ina Fridays!

Recipe from Barefoot Contessa
Free Download Lemon Curd Labels
Sharing with Weekend Potluck

Friday, March 22, 2013

Deviled Eggs with Pickled Jalapeños

Kick up your deviled eggs with some spicy pickled jalapeños instead of the standard pickle relish.
The celery adds a little crunch and makes for a great filling.
12 eggs
3 Tbsp. mayonnaise
3 Tbsp. sour cream
2 Tbsp. minced pickled jalapeños, plus more for garnish
2 tsp. yellow mustard
1 Tbsp. minced celery
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Paprika for garnish.

Put eggs into a 4-qt. pot of water and bring to a boil.  Remove pan from heat, cover and let sit 15 minutes.  Drain eggs and roll eggs around the pan to crack slightly.  Transfer to a bowl of ice water and let cool.  Peel eggs.  

Halve each egg; transfer yolks to a medium bowl.  Using a fork, mash yolks.  Add mayonnaise, sour cream, jalapeños, mustard and celery and season with salt and pepper.  Stir until smooth.

Transfer mixture to a plastic bag; snip off the corner of the bag; pipe into egg whites.
Garnish with a sprinkling of paprika, celery leaves or if you like, pieces of pickled jalapeños .
Serve cold.

~Adapted from Saveur
Sharing with: Weekend Potluck

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Tortellini & Spinach Salad

Soup, salad and pasta - in one bowl!
Warm broth ladled over the fresh spinach just wilts it slightly,
just enough to still call it a salad.
1 lb. frozen cheese tortellini
1/2 cup diced onion
1/4 cup diced carrot
1 Tbsp. minced garlic
1/2 tsp. oregano
1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
3 Tbsp. olive oil, divided
2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
3/4 cup dry white wine
1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1 can chick peas (or cannellini beans), rinsed and drained
1 cup halved grape tomatoes
1/2 panko bread crumbs
1 tsp. minced lemon zest
Salt and pepper
4 cups fresh spinach, washed and stemmed
Shredded Parmesan

Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water according to package directions; drain and set aside.
While pasta is cooking, saute onion, carrot, garlic, oregano and red pepper flakes in 2 Tbsp. olive oil in a large saute pan over medium low heat, until carrots and onion are slightly softened, about 5 minutes.

Stir in broth, wine and lemon juice; bring to a boil.  Add pasta, beans, and tomatoes;  simmer to heat through.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Toast crumbs in 1 Tbsp. oil in a small skillet over medium heat until golden, stirring often.  Toss with lemon zest and season with salt and pepper.

Place 1 cup spinach in bowl or plate.  Top with broth, pasta, breadcrumbs and Parmesan.

Best served warm.

Sharing with:  Floptimism National Nutrition Month

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Roasted Beet Salad with Oranges & Beet Greens

Blood red and looking like a badly shaped tennis ball with a tail, beets are not high on the favorite food list.  Beets contain phosphorus, magnesium, calcium, iron, potassium, fiber, Vitamins A and C, niacin, and biotin and folic acid.  All those nutrients packed into an ugly looking ball with a tail.  I guess you really can't tell a book by it's cover!

I happen to love beets.  I grew up on them.  Polish and Slovak cuisine include many beet dishes (borscht - beet soup, pickled beets and Red Beets with Horseradish Relish )

Use every bit of the beet - the leafy tops are very mild, and if you didn't tell anyone, they would think they are eating spinach.

6 medium beets with greens attached
2 large oranges
1 small sweet onion, sliced into thin wedges
1/3 cup red wine vinegar
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 tsp. grated orange peel
Feta or goat cheese and walnuts for garnish

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Trim greens from beets.
Cut off and discard stems.
Coarsely chop leaves and reserve.
Wrap each beet in foil.  Place beet packets directly on oven rack and roast until tender when pierced with a fork, about 1 hour.  Cool and peel beets (I suggest you use gloves or paper towel to do this, beet juice stains everything.

Cut beets into wedges and place in a medium bowl.

Cook beet greens in a medium saucepan of boiling salted water until tender, about 2 minutes.  Drain and cool.  Squeeze greens to remove excess moisture.  Add greens to bowl with beets.  Cut and peel skin and pith from oranges.  Working over a bowl, cut between membranes to release segments.  Add orange segments and any juice that has collected along with onion to beet mixture.  Whisk vinegar, olive oil, garlic and orange peel in small bowl to blend;  add to beet mixture and toss to coat.  Season with salt and pepper.  Let stand at room temperature 1 hour.  Garnish with feta or goat cheese and walnuts.

~Adapted from:  All Natural Health - Epicurious

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Shrimp Egg Foo Yung & Gravy

A lacy golden omelette with crunchy vegetables and fresh shrimp, Egg Foo Yung deserves a second look.
I doubt you will ever get take-out again!

1-1/2 cups beef stock
1 Tbsp. minced garlic
2 Tbsp. oyster sauce
2 Tbsp. soy sauce
1 Tbsp. cornstarch
1/2 tsp. cracked black pepper

Ingredients for the Egg Foo Yung:
2 shrimp, peeled, deveined, sliced in half
1 green onion, thinly sliced
1/2 tsp. sesame oil
1/2 Tbsp. sherry
1 cup bean sprouts
1 Tbsp. soy sauce
3 whole eggs, beaten
1 Tbsp. canola oil
1/2 tsp. unsalted butter

To a mixing bowl, beat the eggs.  Toss in the sesame oil, soy sauce, bean sprouts, sherry and shrimp.  To the skillet, add the canola oil and butter and heat over medium-high heat until butter is melted.  Add the egg mixture, and spread the mixture evenly in the pan.  Once the egg is set, flip and cook until puffed and brown, about 2 minutes.
Serve drizzled with warm sauce.

Make the gravy:
Add the gravy ingredients to a saucepan and bring to a boil.  Reduce and simmer until thickened, about 2 minutes.

~Adapted from Shu Lee West, Manhattan
Sharing with:  Melt in Your Mouth Monday

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Impossible Chocoflan - #ChocolateParty

The theme for this months #ChocolateParty  is Caramel.
The first thing that came to mind was Caramel Flan.
Creamy custard swimming in caramel.

What could be better than mixing this classic mexican dessert with chocolate?
Chocoflan is called Impossible because the flan is poured over the cake batter, then forms a layer of custard and a layer of cake.  

For more information about the #Chocolate Party,
visit Roxana, our hostess, at Roxana's Home Baking
For the cake pan:

Softened butter
1 cup store-bought or homemade cajeta (caramel)
For the cake:

10 Tablespoon butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 egg
2 Tbsp. espresso powder dissolved in 1-1/2 Tbsp. hot water
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup cake flour
3/4 tsp. baking powder
3/4 tsp. baking soda
1/3 cup plus 1 Tbsp. cocoa powder
9 ounces buttermilk

For the flan:
1 can (14 oz.) sweetened condensed milk
1 cup milk
4 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
Prepare the mold: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Generously butter the bottom and sides of a 10-inch fluted cake pan.  Microwave caramel for 30 seconds to soften it, then pour over the bottom of the pan.  Set out a deep pan that's larger than your cake pan (a roasting pan works well) that can serve as a water bath during baking.

Make the cake:  With an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar at medium-high speed until light in color and texture.  Beat in the egg and espresso.  Sift together the flour and cake flour, baking powder, baking soda and cocoa.  Beat in about 1/2 of the flour mixture, at medium-low speed, followed by 1/2 of the buttermilk.  Repeat.  Raise the speed to medium high and beat for 1 minute.

Make the flan:  In a blender, combine the two milks, the eggs and vanilla.  Blend until smooth.

Layer and bake:  Scrape the cake batter into the prepared cake pan and spread level.  Slowly pour the flan mixture over the cake batter.  Set the cake into the large pan, then set on oven rack.  Pour hot water around the cake pan to a depth of 1 inch.  Cover cake pan with foil.  Bake for about 1 hour or until cake tester comes out clean.  Remove from the water bath and cool to room temperature, about 1 hour. 

Carefully run a thin-bladed knife around the edge of the cake to free the edges.  Invert a plate over the cake pan and flip over.  Gently jiggle the pan back and forth to insure that the cake and flan have released from the pan.
Serve with remaining caramel topping.
Store in refrigerator.

If you want to participate in Chocolate Party, just make a recipe with chocolate and caramel. And follow these rules, and then link up below:
1.) Blog about your chocolate treat. Your recipe must include the two ingredients we choose. It can be a simple no bake treat or a sophisticated layer cake, the complexity level of the recipe is totally up to you.
2.) Include a link back to a monthly round-up or the Chocolate party page. Optional, add the Chocolate Party logo in your blog post or on your sidebar.
3.) Your recipe must be published during the current month. Please do not link old recipes, they will be deleted.

Sharing with Melt in Your Mouth Monday and Weekend Potluck - The Country Cook

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Beef and Bean Burrito Burger

Here is a different way to enjoy a juicy burger.  Refried beans combined with the ground beef make this burger almost like the consistency of meat loaf.  It also makes one pound of ground beef go a long way.  I got 5 huge burgers from this recipe!

  • 1 cup cold leftover rice
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1/2 can (15-ounce) refried beans
  • 3 tsps. chili powder
  • 1-1/2 tsp. cumin
  • 1-1/2 tsp. coriander
  • 1 Tbsp. grill seasoning (I used McCormick Montreal Steak Seasoning)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 Tbsp. canola oil
  • 2 ripe avacados
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 clove garlic, grated
  • 1 lime zested and juiced
  • 2-3 tsps. Cholula hot sauce (or to taste)
  • 1/2 small red onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • Lettuce leaves
  • 1 ripe tomato, sliced
  • Crusty rolls, split or Texas Garlic Toast
Combine rice, meat and beans with spices and grill seasoning.  Add egg and mix well.  Form 5 big patties from the meat mixture.  Heat 1 Tbsp. oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.  Cook patties 5-7 minutes on each side.  Top with lots of cheddar cheese, cover patties until cheese melts.

While burgers cook, combine avocado with garlic, lime zest and juice, hot sauce and red onion.  Mash to roughly combine.

Place burgers on buns with lettuce, tomato, guacamole and sour cream.

~Adapted from Rachel Ray
Sharing with NeighborFood - Burger Round UP

Artisan Cast Iron Dutch Oven Bread

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