Thursday, February 27, 2014

a poem about pie!

make it
bake it
box it
take it
share it
cut it
eat it
taste it
take the box home
clean it
store it
the next time
when I
think of
read this poem
and realize....
make it
bake it
box it
take it
share it
cut it
eat it
taste it

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

New projects coming soon!

I'm researching two new categories. More to come soon!

Peace in the Kitchen!

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

St Patrick's Day Recipes / Authentic Irish Coffee , Irish Whole Wheat Soda Bread , Homemade Irish Cream Liqueur, Chocolate Mint Trifle, Irish Cocktail, Guinness Stout Bread

1945 – It is also said the original Irish Coffee was invented by Joe Jackson at the Ulster Hotel, which he purchased in 1945, located in Ballybofey, County Donegal. One of the specialties of the house was, and still is, is his Irish Coffee, which was made of strong black coffee, sugar, Irish whiskey, and then a layer of cream on top.
Joe, who was originally from Derry, was in the Merchant Navy during WWII. One night, in the north Atlantic, his ship was torpedoed by an enemy sub. To help him recover from hypothermia, Joe was given a traditional Navy remedy, a mixture of coffee and rum. Later, as he served on ships in the eastern Mediterranean, he tasted a number of drinks made from cream, sugar and various types of spirits.
In the early 1950s, a Scottish motoring magazine published an account of Joe Jackson’s Irish Coffee. The Jacksons maintain that the magazine described Joe’s drink a full year before the other Joe, Joe Sheridan, did his. A framed copy of the article used to hang in the Jackson’s Hotel lobby for many years until it disappeared during renovations.


The man who brought Irish coffee to America, by Carl Nolte, San Francisco Chronicle, November 9, 2008
Irish Coffee ... The Rest of the Story, Ulster Heritage Magazine, by Barry R. McClaim.
Jackson Hotel, Ballybofey, County Donegal, Ireland
Who Really Invented Irish Coffee, The Evening Herald newspaper, July 3, 2011.

Authentic Irish Coffee Recipe - Joe Sheridan's Recipe
The next time you’ve got chilly guests, follow Joe Sheridan’s example. Warm their spirits with a spirited beverage that has been a favorite since 1942: Irish coffee. 
Recipe Type: Beverage and CocktailsCoffee
Yields: 1 serving
Prep time: 10 min

Hot teaspoon
1 measure or shot (2 ounces) Irish whiskey
2 teaspoons brown sugar
5 to 6 ounces freshly-brewed strong black coffee
2 teaspoons heavy or whipping cream, lightly whipped*
* The cream should be "half whipped - not too stiff and not too liquid)

Place a teaspoon in a bowl with hot water to heat; let sit until ready to use.

Irish Coffe CupPreheat a stemmed whiskey goblet (7-ounce coffee cup or goblet may be substituted) with boiling water so that it is good and hot. Pour out the hot water and discard.
Add the brown sugar in the bottom of the goblet. Fill with strong black coffee to within 1 inch of the top; stir gently until sugar is dissolved. Add the Irish Whiskey; stir again and then let sit until the mixture is still.
Using the hot teaspoon, place the spoon (back side up) in the goblet. Gently pour the prepared whipped cream over the back of the teaspoon (held just above the coffee’s surface). Gradually raise the spoon as you slowly pour in the cream. This will result in a layer of liquid cream that floats on top of the coffee. Do not stir the cream in the coffee.

Drinking the coffee through the layer of cream results in the rich, authentic flavor that the coffee’s drinkers originally enjoyed. Do not stir. Irish coffee is best enjoyed by sipping the coffee through the cream.
Makes 1 serving.


I love handmade bread. I don't make it often enough. My aunt had a great recipe for Stoned Ground Whole Wheat Irish Soda Bread (recipe to follow). It's one of my favorite bread recipes. Here's another good Soda Bread recipe. It's made in a Cast Iron Skillet, that adds to the goodness and the homemade factor!

4 C flour
3 TBS sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 C raisins ( I use 1 C golden and 1 C dark)
2 C buttermilk
1 large egg, beaten

Grease a 10" cast iron skillet generously with Crisco or any vegetable shortening

In a bowl, combine:
baking soda
Whisk gently to blend

Stir in raisins to coat well with the flour mixture

Make a well in the center and add the buttermilk and eggs.
Stir until a stiff dough is formed
Mix with floured hands at this stage
Remove the dough and mound it into the skillet to form a round loaf

Lightly moisten hands with water and smooth the top
With a serrated knife dipped in flour, score the top with an X - 1/2 " deep

Bake for 1 hour at 375 degrees

Aunt Faye's  Stone Ground Whole Wheat Irish Soda Bread.
Summer of 1974 , Steamboat Springs, Colorado

Stone Ground Whole Wheat flour is best. This makes 1 - 7" loaf. I often double or triple the recipe and make 2 - 3 loaves at a time.

1/2 C all purpose flour
2 1/4 C whole wheat flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
3 TBS butter
1 1/3 C buttermilk

Mix both flours, salt and soda, sift thoroughly.
Cut in butter with fingers.
Make a well in the center of the flour, add buttermilk and stir until blended,
Dough should be dry enough to knead, but not too dry.
Knead the dough on a floured surface about 30 seconds.
Make a 6" - 7" ball and place on a baking sheet with a little cornmeal.
Cut an X in the top with a  floured serrated knife.
Bake at 400 degrees for 30 minutes.
Remove, rub the top with butter and cool completely,
Most of the time, I don't wait to cool it. I slice it and serve it hot with butter.

Homemade Irish Cream Liqueur:

This recipe make about 5 cups.

1 3/4 C Irish Whiskey
1- 14 oz. Can of sweetened condensed milk
1 C - (1/2 pint) heavy cream
4 eggs
2 TBS chocolate syrup
2 tsp Medaglia D'Oro instant espresso coffee powder
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp almond extract

In a blender:
Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.
Store tightly covered in the refrigerator up to 1 month.
Stir or shake before using.

Chocolate Mint Trifle:
This is an original recipe that I created for St. Patrick's Day in 1985.
It's one of my favorite Trifles. It is a Best of the Best Recipe.

1/2 C sugar
4 eggs
1 quart of half and half
2 squares of unsweetened chocolate
2 TBS Creme de Menthe

1 box of Duncan Hines Chocolate Cake Mix
1/2 C chocolate syrup
Creme de Menthe
1 pint of heavy cream, whipped and sweetened with a bit of confectioner's sugar.
Chocolate shavings.

Pudding directions:

In a mixing bowl, combine sugar, eggs and beat with a hand mixer until creamy.

In a saucepan, scald the half and half.
Add squares of chocolate until melted and combined. 
Gradually add half and half mixture to the egg and sugar mixture.

Transfer to a double boiler and simmer until the pudding coats a spoon.
Add Creme de Menthe and continue to cook for just a few minutes.

Cake directions:
Follow the box directions, substituting Creme de Menthe for half of the water.

Bake in a buttered and floured Jelly Roll Pan, at 375 degrees for 15 minutes. (I use my Pan Release Mix), equal parts of Crisco, Vegetable Oil and Flour, mixed well and applied with a pastry brush. I always have a jar of it in the refrigerator).

Cut cake to line the bottom and sides of a straight sided glass Trifle Bowl. Sprinkle with Creme de Menthe, pour syrup over the cake. Add pudding into the center of the cake and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Top with  green whipped cream flavored with Creme de Menthe (fold in a bit of the liqueur to make it green) and garnish with chocolate shavings.

Irish Cocktail:

1 1/2 oz. Irish Whiskey
1/2 oz. Frangelico Liqueur
1/2 oz. Bailey's Irish Cream Liqueur
Hot Strong Black Coffee

In a coffee mug:
Stir Well
Top with Coffee
Option: Top with Fresh Whipped Cream

Guinness Stout Bread:
3 C self rising flour
1/2 C sugar
1/3 C molasses
1/8 tsp salt
1 - 12 oz. bottle of Guinness
Butter for greasing the pan and brushing the top

Grease a 9"X5" loaf pan well, with butter
In a large bowl:
Whisk Well

Slowly pour the beer into the flour mix.
Stir the beer and flour just to combine, don't over mix, but eliminate lumps.

Pour batter into the pan about, it should be about 2/3 full
Bake at 350 degrees for 50 minutes.
A toothpick inserted in the center of the bread should come out clean.

Cool about 5 minutes in the pan.
Remove the bread and transfer to a cooling rack and cool completely.
Slather the top with softened butter.

Peace in the Kitchen!

Cherry Cream Freeze Pie

When I was a child, my mother made a Cherry Cream Freeze Dessert. It was my favorite dessert. She made it for me every Christmas. The recipe is on the blog.
Here's my contemporary version made into a pie!

Cherry Cream Freeze Dessert

1 - box of Pillsbury Pie Crust
Prepare according to package directions for 1 single baked 9" pie shell.
Bake in a 9" glass pie plate.
Bake according to package directions.

1 C sweetened flaked coconut
1 can (15.25oz.) crushed pineapple, well drained
1 C maraschino cherries, drained, chopped. Reserve 1 TBS
4 oz. (1C) slivered almonds
1 1/3 C  (15oz. can) sweetened condensed milk
5 TBS fresh lime juice
Reserved cherry juice
1/4 tsp almond extract
1 1/2 C frozen  whipped topping, thawed

In a large bowl:
Combine the first 8 ingredients

Fold in Whipped Topping
Pour into crust
Refrigerate overnight

Peace in the Kitchen!

Vegetables with three versions of Aioli: Avocado Aioli, Cumin Aioli and the traditional Provencal Aioli.

Yesterday I went to our local market. I bought some beautiful Avocados and Haricots Verts. This morning I was researching recipes using avocados. We love traditional Provencal Aioli. We serve it  with steamed Asparagus and Hard Boiled Eggs that we learned to prepare while staying with our friends in the South of France. It's not a complicated recipe, but it's delicious. I'm posting two contemporary versions of Aioli. Both can be served with my list of fresh or steamed vegetables and hard boiled eggs.

Serve either Aioli with the following vegetables.
You can also use make a traditional Provencal Aioli, recipe included at the end.
The vegetables can be steamed or served fresh.

Small Carrots, cut to 1" pieces
French Green Beans (Haricots Verts)
Sugar Snap Peas
Red New Potatoes
Small Beets

Hard Boiled Eggs

Avocado Aioli:
2 ripe avocados
2 TBS freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 large clove of garlic, minced
2 TBS extra virgin olive oil
1/4 C fresh chopped cilantro
Salt and Pepper to taste
6 Hard Boiled Eggs (halved lengthwise)

Halve the avocados, scoop out the flesh.
In a bowl, mash the following ingredients together:
Lime Juice

Transfer to a food processor and puree
With the machine running, drizzle with oil.
Transfer to a serving bowl.
Fold in cilantro.
Season wit salt and pepper.
Refrigerate 2 hours.

Cumin Aioli:
1 TBS cumin seeds
1 large egg
1 tsp Dijon Mustard
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 clove of garlic, minced
1/2 C vegetable oil
4 tsp fresh lemon juice
1/2 C extra virgin olive oil

In a small dry skillet, saute cumin seeds on medium heat for 2 minutes, shaking the pan.
Remove from heat
Grind seeds in a mortar and pestle

In a food processor:
ground cumin seeds

Process briefly to blend.

With the processor running, slowly drizzle in olive oil until the aioli is emulsified.
It it appears too thick, add a bit of water.
Transfer to a bowl and fold in whole cumin seeds.
Cover and refrigerate 2 hours.
Serve with fresh or steamed vegetables listed above.

Traditional Provencal Aioli:
3 large cloves of garlic
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 large egg yolk, room temperature
1 C extra virgin oil

Crush the garlic and sea salt using a mortar and pestle, create a paste.
Add the egg yolk
Whisk by hand and slowly drizzle in the olive oil.
The aioli will begin to thicken.
This recipe can easily be doubled and it can also be prepared in a food processor. The taste and texture is actually better when made by hand. I prefer to make it by hand using the traditional mortar and pestle method.

Peace in the Kitchen!

Monday, February 24, 2014

Praline French Toast Casserole / reposted

This is another Best of the Best Recipes!
What a great aroma to wake up to on Christmas morning, Easter morning...... or tomorrow morning!

8 Eggs
1 1/2 C Heavy Cream
1/3 C Maple Syrup ( the good stuff)
1/3 C Packed Brown Sugar
10 - 12  1/2" slices of French Country Bread


1 Stick of Butter
1/2 C Packed Brown Sugar
2/3 C Maple Syrup
2 C Chopped Pecans

(I never said it was healthy)

Generously butter a 9"X13" Casserole Dish

In a bowl, whisk together:
Heavy Cream
Maple Syrup

Place Bread slices in the Casserole dish and cover with the Egg mixture
Cover the dish with plastic wrap and let it sit overnight in the refrigerator
Remove and let it reach room temperature

Melt the Butter in a saucepan
Add Sugar and Maple Syrup and cook for 1-2 minutes
Stir in the Pecans
Pour over the Bread
Bake at 350 for 45-55 minutes
Allow to rest for 10 minutes before serving

In my book, I wrote WOW!

Peace in the Kitchen!

Herbed Shortbread Wafers

These would be great as an appetizer, served with a Cabernet Sauvignon Wine.

This recipe is an adaptation of an adaptation of a recipe from Ina Garten....... Oh well! It looks good enough for me. We have an extensive herb garden and I will make these.

1 stick (8 TBS), butter, softened
1/4 C grated fresh parmesan cheese (grate fresh parmesan cheese yourself for maximum flavor)
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 tsp fresh chopped thyme
1 tsp fresh chopped rosemary
1 1/4 C flour
1 TBS water

In a stand mixer with a paddle attachment:
Mix medium low until creamy
Add cheese, salt, pepper, herbs, flour ( incorporate each ingredient separately and mix until incorporated).
Add water
Form the dough into a disc, wrap in plastic and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Roll out the dough on a floured surface to 1/4" - 1/2" thick. Use a 2" - 3" round cookie cutter. You can also form the dough into a log and refrigerate it for 30 minutes and then slice it into rounds.

Line a sheet pan with parchment paper and place the wafers 1" apart and bake for 22 - 25 minutes.

Peace in the Kitchen!

Translate into your own language!

This is a reminder that for a recipe in your language, there is a Translate search for other languages. All recipes can be translated to any language in the world!

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Welsh Cakes / to celebrate St. David's Day on March 1st.

Saint David's Day (WelshDydd Gŵyl DewiWelsh pronunciation: [dɨːð ɡʊɨl ˈdɛui]) is the feast day of Saint David, the patron saint ofWales, and falls on 1 March each year. The first day of March was chosen in remembrance of the death of Saint David. Tradition holds that he died on that day in 569.[1] The date was declared a national day of celebration within Wales in the 18th century.

We have a very good friend that is Welsh. We worked together for many years and we both retired from Macy's. She asked me to post this recipe in celebration of St. David's Day.
Thank you Joan for sharing your heritage , and all things British with us! 
I look forward to making these.

Welsh Cakes are a traditional tea-time treat that are easy to make. Eat them warm from the stove with butter, or store them in an airtight container for up to a week.

1 1/3 C self rising flour
1/2 C (1 Stick) butter, cut into pieces + a additional for the griddle
1/4 C of sugar + additional
1/4 C raisins
1 egg, beaten
milk, if needed

In a mixing bowl:
Sift the flour
Add the pieces of butter, rub with your fingertips, create a mixture resembling breadcrumbs.

Add sugar, raisins and egg. Mix well to form a dough ball. Add a splash of milk , if needed.
Roll the dough to 1/2" thickness on a floured surface.
Use a 3" or 4" round biscuit cutter to cut the cakes.

Rub a cast iron griddle or a cast iron skillet with butter on medium heat.
Cook the cakes a few at a time about 2 - 3 minutes on each side. They'll be golden brown.
Remove from the griddle and sprinkle with sugar while they're still warm.

Here's another version:

2 C self rising flour
1 TBS baking powder
1/2 C (1 stick) butter, cubed + additional for the griddle
1/2 C sugar + additional
1/2 C currants
1 egg. beaten
2 TBS milk

Sift flour and baking powder together in a large bowl.
Add butter and rub with your fingertips or a pastry blender to create a mixture like breadcrumbs.
Add sugar, currants and stir to mix.
Add egg and just enough milk to form a dough.
Roll out on a floured surface to 1/4" thick
Use a 3 - 4" round biscuit cutter to cut the cakes.

Rub a cast iron griddle or a cast iron skillet with butter on medium heat.
Cook the cakes a few at a time about 2 - 3 minutes on each side. They'll be golden brown.
Remove from the griddle and sprinkle with sugar while they're still warm.

Peace in the Kitchen!

Tex-Mex Rice Casserole / reposted

I've spent the morning playing around with a new recipe.
My Mother always made what she called Spanish Rice, remember we lived in Michigan. Maybe it was a food trend when I was young. It just seems out of place on the menu as I look back at my childhood. But then we also ate a lot of Chinese Food too, maybe because of the movie, A Christmas Story!
Food trends have always fascinated me. Julia Child created the French food trend in America. The 60's loved Fondue and Health Food. I don't think Tex-Mex is a trend in Texas. It seems to be a staple in every kitchen here. We love our Tex-Mex cuisine! I've lived in Texas for 35 years, I still refer to Michigan as home, I'm not sure why, but I'm glad I had the opportunity in my lifetime to get to know Tex-Mex! I hope some of you reading this outside of Texas will embrace some of my Texas recipes............!

I don't remember my mother's Spanish Rice to be as spicy as I have grown to love Tex-Mex food.
This recipe is quite spicy and very.......  Tex-Mex!

Tex-Mex Rice Casserole:

This recipe could easily be cut in half, it makes enough for a family gathering or a block party!

4 TBS vegetable oil ( I always say, cook with Vegetable oil, eat Olive Oil)
4 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
2 stalks of celery, roughly chopped
1 large onion, chopped
2 C long grain white rice
2 C long grain brown rice
2- 14.5 oz. cans of diced tomatoes with juice
1- 10 oz. can Rotel Tomatoes with Chiles, with juice
1- 4oz. can diced green chile peppers.
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp turmeric
1 tsp Adobo Seasoning
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
6 C vegetarian Chicken Broth ( the real stuff for the non Vegetarians) 2C water added just before covering with cheese and baking.
2C freshly grated Sharp Cheddar Cheese
2C Shredded Mexican Blend Cheese
Fresh Cilantro, chopped, for garnish
Pickled Jalapenos for garnish

Heat oil in a large ( 6 or 7 quart Cast Iron Casserole or Cast Iron Dutch Oven)
Saute onion, celery and garlic about 5 minutes, stirring constantly

Reduce heat to simmer, add rice, stir constantly for 5 minutes
Add Tomatoes, Rotel and Green Chiles
Add all spices and seasoning and stir to combine well

Add broth and bring to a boil

Reduce to low heat, cover and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally
At this stage, I added an additional 2 C of water, stir well and then continue....

Top with Cheddar Cheese and bake at 375 for 15 minutes

After baking, remove from oven, top with Mexican Blend Cheese, cover
and allow the cheese to melt.

Serve in bowls topped with freshly chopped cilantro and pickled jalapenos.
I serve my Black Peppered Cheese Bread with it.

After tasting it, I think that it could easily be turned into a soup by adding water to individual servings, microwave it and serve topped with Tortilla Strips.

This is a large recipe. I just created a soup with the leftovers ( about 1/3 of it)
I added a 14.5 oz. can of diced tomatoes with the liquid, a 14.75 oz. can of creamed corn, water and milk.
I diced half of an onion and added that too.
It's very forgiving, you can make according to your own personal taste.

That's the way we do it in Texas!

Peace in the Kitchen!

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Cinnamon Roll Cake

My wife made homemade Cinnamon Rolls today. It reminded me of this Cinnamon Cake Recipe. I adapted it from Hugs and Cookies. I'll post a photograph when I make it.

  • 3 C flour 
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 C sugar
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 C milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 C (1 stick) butter, melted 
  • 1 C butter, soft
  • 1 C brown sugar
  • 2 TBS flour 
  • 1 TBS cinnamon
  • GLAZE 
  • 2 C powdered sugar
  • 5 TBS milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9×13 glass baking pan with a cooking spray, or grease it with my Pan Release Mix. (equal parts of Crisco, Flour and Vegetable Oil, brush the pan using a pastry brush. Set aside.
  2. In a mixer, add the flour, salt, sugar, baking powder, milk, eggs, and vanilla. Once combined well, slowly stir in the melted butter. Pour into pan.
  3. For the topping, mix the butter, brown sugar, flour and cinnamon together until well combined and creamy. Drop evenly over the batter by the Tablespoonfuls and use a knife to marble / swirl it through the cake.
  4. Bake at 350 for 40 - 45 minutes or when a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.
  5. Glaze: Whisk the powdered sugar, milk and vanilla. Drizzle evenly over the warm cake.
Peace in the Kitchen!

Apple Crepe Pancake from Comfy Cuisine

I wish I had the authority to post the picture of this recipe. It's what sold me on the recipe. The only thing I would suggest to alter the recipe would be to double it and make it in a 10" Cast Iron Skillet. I believe it's a more common sized skillet and I would certainly make this for a family breakfast or if I were hosting a Brunch. Other than that it looks and sounds perfect. I simply re posted their recipe here.
This recipe reminds me of Dutch Babies that I used to make in the 70's. I reposted the recipe at the end of this one that includes my photographs.

1/4 C  (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
1/4 C milk
1 apple (I used Granny Smith)
2 TBS sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 large egg
1/4 C all-purpose flour
Pinch of salt

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.  Melt butter in a 5-inch cast iron skillet over low heat.  While the butter melts, pour the milk into a 2-cup measuring cup.  Peel, core and thinly slice the apple.  In a small bowl, toss the apple slices with sugar and cinnamon until well coated.

Pour half of the melted butter into the milk and whisk well.  Add the apple and any loose sugar from the bowl, into the skillet.  Cook the apple slices over medium-low heat, turning them a few times, until softened; the sugar and butter will get nicely browned and bubbly.

Remove the skillet from the heat.  Add the egg to the milk mixture and whisk to combine.  Add the flour and salt and whisk until smooth.  Pour the batter over the apples in the skillet.

Bake until the pancake puffs up and gets lightly golden on top, about 10 minutes.  Enjoy straight from the skillet or invert onto a serving plate.

I love any recipe using Cast Iron cookware. Here's a great example:

I just received a version of this recipe from Bisquick. I've made a few changes and adapted it.
I have other recipes for Dutch Babies with Ham and Miniature Dutch Babies in a Muffin Tin that can be found on the blog. I always loved serving Dutch Babies for a family Holiday Breakfast, or a Brunch with friends. I've had the Dutch Babies with Ham recipe since 1979. Since I've been a Vegetarian for 20 years, I had put that recipe in the back of my files. I resurrected it for my non Vegetarian friends.

I've posted a home made recipe for Bisquick because I have many followers around the world that may not have access to the product. You can make a recipe for it and keep it in the refrigerator up to 4 months. You would use it in any recipe asking for Bisquick.

3 TBS butter
4 Apples, peel, core and slice thin. (I use Jonagold, you can also use GrannySmith or Rome) There are many other varieties of Apples that are great for baking.
1/4 C Brown Sugar
2 TBS Cinnamon
1 1/2 C Bisquick Mix
1/4 C Granulated Sugar
1 C Buttermilk
1 TBS Lemon Juice
1 tsp Almond Extract
2 Eggs
1 TBS Cinnamon/Sugar mixture
Warm Maple Syrup

Heat the oven to 450 degrees.

Place the butter in the oven  in a 10" Cast Iron Skillet and melt it, about 2 minutes.
Brown Sugar
Toss to coat well.

Bake for 2 minutes
Stir and bake an additional 2 minutes.
Stir again and bake an additional 3 minutes.
Stir for the last time.

Reduce heat to 400 degrees.

In a large bowl, whisk together:
Granulated Sugar
Lemon Juice
Almond Extract
Whisk Well

Pour Batter evenly over the Apples.
Bake at 400 degrees for 25 - 30 minutes.
Sprinkle with Cinnamon/Sugar

Serve with Warm Maple Syrup.

Peace in the Kitchen

Homemade Bisquick Mix: (use this mixture whenever a recipe calls for Bisquick)

6 C flour
3 TBS Baking Powder
1 TBS salt
1 C Vegetable Shortening

In a large bowl, sift together:
Baking Powder
Sift this mixture 3 times ( don't skip this process)
Cut in Shortening with a Pastry Blender or 2 Forks until the mixture is crumbly!
Store this in an airtight container for up to 4 months in the refrigerator.

Peace in the Kitchen!

Peace in the Kitchen!

Friday, February 21, 2014

Texas Queso Blanco

Just another Queso Dip , just another recipe that we can't get enough of in Texas. We all have a great recipe collection of Queso dips. I just like the fact that it doesn't have Velveeta in it! I've created many dip recipes and this "white" Queso is one of my favorites.

Texas Queso Blanco:

8 oz. Pepper Jack Cheese, grated
4 oz. Queso Quesadilla Cheese
2 Jalapenos , seeded and diced
1/2 C diced onion
1 TBS fresh chopped Cilantro
1 Roma tomato, seeded and diced
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
2 dashes of Tabasco Sauce

Preheat oven to 400 degrees

In a bowl:
Mix all ingredients together and pour into a 2 quart casserole.
Bake 10 - 12 minutes.
Serve with Tortilla Chips.

Peace in the Kitchen!

Irish Whiskey Cake

I've been fortunate enough to travel to many countries and experience the food and culture. My wife and I have friends in France, Switzerland, Morocco, Hong Kong, Sweden .....! We were in Great Britain recently during Christmas and loved everything about it. Our son travels a lot and he and his wife have both been to the British Isles, England, Scotland and Ireland. He came home from a trip once with some really good Whiskey and we sat around and had a tasting. I'm not much of a Whiskey drinker but I eventually bought a bottle of good Irish Whiskey. I decided that I would use it to make a cake. Here's the recipe for an Irish Whiskey Cake and Whiskey Icing. What a great way to enjoy good Irish Whiskey.

1/2 C + 2 C of the best Irish Whiskey you can afford.
6 oz. (70%cocoa) of the best Bittersweet  chocolate you can find, Scharffen Berger, Valhrona, Lindt, etc., chopped.
2 tsp Medaglio D'Oro instant Espresso Coffee, in 6 TBS of water.
1/3 C skinless whole almonds, toasted , approximately 2 oz.
6 TBS flour, divided.
3/4 C (1/1/2 sticks) butter, toom temperature, divided.
8 TBS vanilla sugar, divided.
3 large eggs, separated. ( when baking, it's important to use large eggs if the recipe calls for them)
A pinch of fine sea salt
2 oz. semi sweet chocolate, chopped. Again, buy the best, it makes a difference.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Grease a 10" Springform Pan with my Pan Release Recipe. (equal parts of Vegetable Oil, Flour and Crisco), mixed well and applied with a pastry brush.

Boil 1/2 C Whiskey in a saucepan and reduce it to 1/4 C, about 2 minutes.

In a small stainless steel bowl:
bittersweet chocolate
espresso coffee mixture
boiled whiskey
Place the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water and stir until smooth.
Remove the bowl and set aside.

Finely grind the almonds in a food processor with 2 TBS of flour.

In a bowl:
1/2 C butter
6 TBS of vanilla sugar
Beat well with a hand mixer until fluffy.
Add egg yolks, one at a time until incorporated.
Add sea salt.
Fold in the chocolate mixture.
Fold in the almond / flour mixture.

With clean beaters, beat the egg whites to soft peak, gradually add 2 TBS of vanilla sugar and continue beating to stiff peak.
Fold egg whites into the batter alternately with remaining 4 TBS of flour.
Pour batter into the prepared pan.

Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean in the center of the cake.
Remove from oven and cool in the  pan for 30 minutes.
Invert onto a cooling rack and cool completely.


In a small stainless steel bowl:
semisweet chocolate.
remaining 2 TBS of Irish Whiskey.

Place over a saucepan of simmering water and stir until smooth.

Remove the bowl and add remaining 1/4 C of butter, 1 small piece at a time until each piece is fully incorporated before adding the next piece.
Place the bowl over a larger bowl of ice water and beat with a an electric hand mixer until smooth, about 1 minute.

Ice the entire cake.

Peace in the Kitchen!

Brownie Kiss Cups

What a simple way to enjoy Chocolate Brownies and Chocolate Hershey's Kisses.
Chocolate on Chocolate...... Yummy!

1 - (19 3/4 oz.) Duncan Hines Fudge Brownie Mix, Family Style
1 egg
1/3 C water
1/3 C vegetable oil
24 Hershey's Kisses

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees

Place 24 2" Cupcake liners in muffin tins
Combine mix, egg, water and oil in a large bowl.
Stir with a spoon, about 50 strokes..... that's all!

Fill each cup with 2 TBS of batter
Bake for 17 - 30 minutes

Remove from the oven.
Place 1 Hershey's Kiss in the center of each cup.
Return to the oven and make 1 more minute.
Cool in the pan for 5 minutes.
Transfer the  paper cups to a cooling rack and cool completely.

Peace in the Kitchen!

Tamale Cobbler / Regular and Vegetarian / reposted

Just because I'm Vegetarian doesn't mean I have to sacrifice a good recipe.
I transform many recipes to  be Vegetarian. 
This is a favorite, as well as a Vegetarian King Ranch Casserole.
Another Tex - Mex Best of the Best Recipe.

Vegetarian Tamale Cobbler

1 12 ounce package of Vegetarian Ground Beef, browned in a little vegetable oil. ( I use the brand, Quorn) ( Yves makes a good one too). 1 pound of ground beef for all you others! Just brown it.

1 can , 14 1/4 ounce Fiesta Style Corn or Mexi Corn, drained
1 jar, 30 ounces of your favorite Salsa , I prefer a chunky version.
1/2 tsp Cumin
1/2 tsp Chili Powder ( homemade recipe follows)
1/4 tsp garlic salt
1- 8oz. container of sour cream
1 C Shredded Mexican Style Cheese
1 box of corn muffin mix, prepared according to instructions, but not baked.

Homemade Chili Powder:
2 TBS Paprika
2 tsp Oregano
1 1/4 tsp Cumin
1 1/4 tsp Garlic Powder
1 1/4 tsp Cayenne Pepper
3/4 tsp Onion Powder
Make a bunch and store it in a jar in your Pantry! ( Texans always have it on hand)!

Combine Beef, Corn, Salsa, Cumin, Chili Powder, Garlic Salt, Sour Cream and Cheese in a large bowl and mix well.
Pour into a greased 2 1/2 QT Casserole.
Evenly dropped the prepared Muffin Mix by heaping tablespoons onto the mixture.
Bake at 375 degrees for 40 minutes. The top should be golden brown.

Peace in the Kitchen!