Monday, October 26, 2009

Here is my pie crust, quite simple really, and much better results than Pilsbury, but you can be the judge of that.

1 1/2 c flour

1/2 tsp salt

1 TBL sugar

1 stick of butter, cold

4 TBLS ice water 
mix flour salt, and sugar, then pulse with mixer or cut in butter by hand until it forms small pebbles, about seven pulses in a mixer. then gradually add water just until dough forms. turn on to a floured surface and form into one or 2 discs, touching as little as possible, gotta keep that butter cold, cold, cold! wrap in plastic and chill till hard, at least an hour, then roll out.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

This is so yummy, it makes a nice lightish dessert or a great pastry treat in the morning with coffee.and makes me oh so happy. It's thin and crispy with chewy apples on top. And so rustic you want to uncork some red wine and feast on baguette and cheese for dinner. You start with a pie crust and take half and roll it out, so yes you can presumably make two, which I did. I made one to take to some friends for dinner then made another for us, thus the coffee. I am not going to post a pie crust recipe, but if you want one let me know and I will gladly post it. I do have a pretty good one. Tease, tease.

So take half of your pie crust and roll out a rectangle, place on a greased baking pan. Peel and core your apples ( I used Granny Smith) with a very sharp knife, slice length-wise and thin. It takes 3-4 apples. Arrange in rows, slightly overlapping. Don't use the chunky ends if you want it to look perty. Sprinkle about 1/3 cup white sugar on the apples. Disperse 1/3 stick of cold, chopped butter on top of sugared apples. Put in a 400 degree oven until golden, about 40 mins. Don't worry the juices make the edges burn pretty bad. Take 1/2 cup apricot jelly or preserves and heat with 1 TBL of water or better yet some brandy or whatever you may have on hand until liquidy. Brush over the entire tart ( if using preserves you will need to strain). Using a spatula release the tart and transfer to a cutting board, cut off burnt edges into a nice rustic rectangle, and you are done. .....molly.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Regular Poached Eggs on Toast

Good ole' Poached Eggs on Toast w/coffee!....Jaime

For the Love of Stuffing!

Stuffing, stuffing, oh glorious stuffing! If you are not a stuffing addict then you probablly won't want to read on or get nearly excited as a stuffing addict would. However everything else about the dish may be of some delicious interest...

Thanks  Local Lemons and Melissa Clark from The New York Times for the another great Stuffing idea!!!

I was so excited when I read these articles about baking chicken right on top of bread! Why didn't I ever think of that, being the stuffing lover I am? I have made this chicken twice now. Mike and the boys didn't care for the soggyish bread stuffing, but it is easy to leave behind and just endulge in the chicken. Basically season your chicken with anything you are in the mood for. I stuffed two lemons, after I pierced several holes in the lemon, into the cavity of the birdy. Rubbed a mixture of fresh chopped fennel, olive oil, salt and pepper all over the bird. The lemon gave it a nice fresh, clean taste! Wow!mmmm.

Some tips about this cooking method, which Local Lemons agreed on as well. You don't need to brush the bread with olive oil. There is plenty of fat and juices from the chicken to give it the right moisture and texture. Also do roast breast side down as stated and then flip for the remainder of the cooking time.I think this more evenly cooks the chicken and distributes the juices better. I added about 1 cup of chicken stock to the pan about 1/2 way through the cooking time. Then as the juices combined, with about 1/2 hour of cooking left to go, I uncovered and starting basting with the juices in the pan until it was nice and brown. As expected you really don't get more than 1/4 cup of gravy from this way of baking since the bread has absorbed most of it. Selecting your bread is easy....I always throw leftover peices of bread in a bag and keep it in the freezer for croutouns and breadcrumbs. This bread also works great under the chicken. You want to use baguette, sourdough types, as they hold up to all the juices, unlike a fluffy type. Lay one layer of bread pieces,  a bit of overlapping is okay, in your baking pan. Place your seasoned chicken right on top and try an make sure most of the bread is covered by the chicken. The little peices that aren't covered by the chicken get nice and toasty while the juices try and seep to the ends of the crust...Sooo super good!

Enjoy Stuffing Lovers!!! Jaime

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Cooking Up Your Halloween Decorations

"Exceptional" Winter Squash Soup


My friend Eliza made this soup for me last winter and forwarded me on the recipe because it was so tasty. The scanned in copy didn't upload so clearly so I had to improvise and basically just used the technique and ingredients they offered and still the soup turned out amazing. I was home sick and since I didn't want to make any trips to the store, got a little creative and pulled the small pumpkin off my front porch to use with the leftover butternut squash I had in the fridge. I remembered that the pumpkin was called a 'pie pumpkin' when I bought it, although I just bought it for it's cute little size. Molly helped me cut it up and scoop the seeds out and also helped me with the festive decorations at the end, as you see in the picture. She enjoyed the soup too, by the way.

The recipe goes something like this...

Winter squash (butternut, pumpkin, etc.) - cut into 1 inch cubes
1 small onion, chopped
Vegetable or Chicken Stock/Broth
Curry Powder
Half and Half
Salt and pepper

Saute the squash and onion in a large pot until the onion gets translucent. Add the seasonings and salt and pepper and sautee another minute until fragrant. Add the broth until the squash is covered and turn the heat up until the pot boils. Then put a lid on, turn down the heat so that it's simmering for another 30 minutes or so. You want the squash/pumpkin to fall apart when you fork it. Once you've reached that, turn off the heat and use an immersion blender to puree the soup. Then add some of the cream, a cup or so, then a dollop of butter, and let warm up again on the stove, adding more salt to taste. At this point I thought it needed a little sweetener so I added two tablespoons of brown sugar. Completely Delicious and addictive.