Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Texas Pecan Bourbon Bundt Cake, Merry Christmas Y'all!

Here's a decadent Texas Cake to celebrate the Holidays. This cake is saturated in Bourbon and left for  several days to soak up all of the Bourbon flavor!
Can I get a Yee Haw for this one?

Here's what you'll need:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
1 - 10 to 12 C Bundt Pan, your choice of design, brushed well with Pan Release Mix. (equal parts of Crisco, Vegetable Oil, Flour) I start with 1 C of each, mixed well and refrigerated in a jar. I always have it available for all of my baking needs.

2 C chopped Pecans
1 C Bourbon, divided
3 1/2 C Flour
1 1/2 tsp Baking Powder
1/2 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp Nutmeg
1/2 tsp Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Ground Cloves
8 Eggs
1 pound (2 sticks) Butter, room temperature
2 C Sugar
1 tsp Vanilla


In a small bowl:
Pecans
1/2 C Bourbon
Set aside.

In a medium mixing bowl, sift together:
Flower
Baking Powder
Salt
Nutmeg
Cinnamon
Clove
Set aside.

In a small bowl with a hand mixer:
Eggs
Beat until thick and light.

In a Stand Mixer with a paddle attachment:
Butter
Sugar
Beat for 5 minutes.

Add:
Vanilla
Eggs
Beat on low speed to incorporate then on high speed until thick and fluffy.
Gradually add Flour mixture just until combined.
Fold in the Bourbon soaked Pecans, by hand.
Pour the batter into the prepared Bundt Pan.
Smooth out the top so the batter is slightly higher on the outside and around the tube.
Cover the pan with a 12" square piece of Brown Parchment Paper.

Bake for 55 - 60 minutes.
Remove the pan to a rack to cool for 15 minutes
Invert the cake onto a Parchment Paper covered rack to cool completely.

Soak an 18" piece of Cheesecloth in 1/2 C of Bourbon.
Wrap the cake completely in the Cheesecloth and then wrap it tightly in foil.
Place in an airtight container and store at room temperature for several days.
Place the cake onto a serving platter and dust with Confectioner's Sugar just before serving.

Don't this sound dang good?

All I can say is......... can I get a Yee Haw in the Kitchen?


Groovy Holiday Recipes from the 60's!

Here are 3 Retro Recipes from 1960. Far Out Man!

For the Holidays I brought back these 3 recipes.

Retro 60's Cranberry Crunch
Cinnamon Crisps
Mistletoe Dip


Cranberry Crunch:

Here's what you'll need:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Brush a 9"X 9" pan with Pan Release Mix. (equal parts of Crisco, Vegetable Oil, Flour) I start with 1 C of each mixed well and refrigerated in a jar. I always have it available for all of my baking needs.

1 C Quick Oats
1/3 C Butter, cold and cubed
3/4 C Brown Sugar
1 can of Whole Cranberry Sauce
1/2 C Flour
1/2 C Coconut
1 TBS Lemon Juice

In a large mixing bowl:
Oats
Sugar
Flour
Coconut
Mix well.
Cut in Butter with your hands to create a crumble.
Place 1/2 the Crumble in the pan.

In a small bowl:
Cranberry Sauce
Lemon Juice
Mix well.
Pour over the first layer of Crumble.
Sprinkle the remaining Crumble evenly over the Cranberries.
Bake for 45 minutes.
Remove the pan to a rack and cool for 10 minutes.
Serve warm with Vanilla Ice Cream or Whipped Cream.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!


Mistletoe Dip:

1 Envelope of Onion Soup Mix
1 Pint of Sour Cream
1 Tomato, diced
1 Green Bell Pepper, diced
1/4 tsp Dill Weed

In a medium bowl:
Soup Mix
Sour Cream
Whisk well.
Add:
Tomato
Bell Pepper
Dill Weed
Blend well and refrigerate covered for 1 hour.
Serve as a Dip with your favorite Crackers or Chips.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!


Cinnamon Crisps in Holiday Shapes:

Here's what you'll need:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
A Sheet Pan lined with Parchment Paper,

16 TBS (2 sticks) Butter, room temperature
1 C Granulated Sugar
1 Egg
3 C Flour
1 1/2 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 tsp Salt
1 tsp Baking Powder

In a Stand Mixer with a paddle attachment:
Butter
Sugar
Beat for 3 minutes.
Add:
Egg and beat until incorporated.

In a small bowl, sift together:
Flour
Cinnamon
Salt
Baking Powder
Whisk well.
Gradually add to the mixer.
Beat until combined.
Wrap dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.
Roll dough onto a floured surface , 1/8" thick.
Cut out cookies with Holiday Cookie Cutters.
Bake for 11 - 12 minutes, until golden brown.
Remove pan to a rack to cool for 5 minutes.
Transfer cookies to the rack to cool completely.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!

Monday, September 29, 2014

Baked Pumpkin Doughnuts with Chocolate Glaze

I love baked doughnuts. I've gotten away from fried doughnuts since I discovered some great recipes for baked doughnuts. I have several recipes on the blog for baked doughnuts. You can search them.

Baked Pumpkin Doughnuts with Chocolate Glaze

Here's what you'll need:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Brush the wells of a full sized Doughnut Pan with Pan Release Mix. (equal parts of Crisco, Vegetable Oil, Flour) I start with 1 C of eau, mixed well and refrigerated in a jar. I always have it available for all of my baking needs.

1/2 C Vegetable Oil
3 Large Eggs
1 1/2 C Granulated Sugar
1 1/2 C 100% Pure Pumpkin
1 1/2 tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice
1 1/2 tsp Salt
1 1/2 tsp Baking Powder

In a large mixing bowl:
Mix all ingredients together with a hand mixer.
Beat until smooth.
Add:
1 3/4 C + 2 TBS Flour.
Beat until smooth.

Fill the well os the prepared pan 3/4 full.
Bake for 15 - 18 minutes.
Remove the pan to a rack and cool for 5 minutes.
Transfer the doughnuts to the rack and cool completely.

Chocolate Glaze.

1/2 C butter  (1 stick)
1/4 C whole milk
1 TBS light corn syrup
2 tsp vanilla
4 oz. bittersweet chocolate, chopped
2 C confectioner's sugar

In a saucepan, over medium heat:
butter
milk
syrup
vanilla
Whisk Well

Add chocolate and whisk until chocolate has completely melted

Turn off heat and whisk in sugar until smooth. Glaze the doughnuts immediately
To keep the glaze liquid, place the glaze over a pan of warm water while glazing the doughnuts

Allow Glaze to set 30 minutes before serving.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!


Pumpkin Cake with Cream Cheese Icing and Caramelized Pumpkin Seeds

This is another amazing recipe from Food52. It's perfect for the Fall Season.

Here's what you'll need:
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
1 - 9" round Cake Pan, brushed with Pan Release Mix. (equal parts of Crisco, Vegetable Oil, Flour) I start with 1 C of each mixed well and refrigerated in a jar. I always have it available for all of my baking needs.



Cake:

1 2/3 C Flour
1 1/2 tsp Baking Powder
1/2 tsp Baking Soda
1 TBS + 1 tsp Cinnamon
1 tsp Nutmeg
1/4 tsp Ground Cloves
1 C + 2 TBS 100% Pure Pumpkin
1 C Vegetable Oil
1 1/3 C Granulated Sugar
3/4 tsp Salt
3 Large Eggs room temperature, separated.

Cream Cheese Icing and Caramelized Pumpkin Seeds:

9 TBS Butter, room temperature, divided.
8 oz. Cream Cheese, room temperature.
2 1/2 C Confectioner's Sugar
A Pinch of Cinnamon
1 TBS Granulated Sugar
1/2 C Toasted Pumpkin Seeds

Cake directions.
In a medium mixing bowl, sift together:
Flour
Baking Powder
Baking Soda
Cinnamon
Nutmeg
Clove
Whisk well and set aside.

In a Stand Mixer with a Whisk attachment on low speed:
Pumpkin
Oil
Sugar
Salt
Whisk well.
Increase speed to medium and add:
Egg Yolks, one at a time.
Scrape down the sides of the bowl after each addition.

Reduce speed to low and gradually add:
Flour mixture, just until incorporated.
Scrape down the sides of the bowl.

In a medium mixing bowl:
Egg Whites
Whisk until frothy.
Fold into the batter with a rubber spatula until well combined.
Don't over mix the batter.
Pour into the cake pan.
Bake for 40 - 45 minutes.
A toothpick in the center should come out clean.
The cake will continue to set as it cools in the pan.
Remove the pan to a rack and cool for 20 minutes.
Invert the cake onto the rack to cool completely. I invert it twice so it's right side up.



Icing directions:
In a Stand Mixer with a paddle attachment:
8 TBS Butter
Cream Cheese
Beat until creamy smooth.
Add:
Confectioner's Sugar, gradually until the icing is smooth with no traces of dry sugar.
Add a pinch of Cinnamon and continue beating until incorporated.

Caramelized Toasted Pumpkin Seeds.

In a saucepan on medium heat:
1 TBS of Granulated Sugar
Heat until it begins to caramelize and become reddish - brown.
Once the sugar is dark, add the last TBS of Butter until it melts and the sauce is smooth. Watch it carefully to avoid burning.
Add Pumpkin Seeds and stir constantly until well coated.
Transfer Seeds to a plate lined with parchment paper and allow to cool completely.

When the cake is completely cooled, frost the top only. (see NOTE below). Break up the Pumpkin Seeds and sprinkle them evenly over the top of the cake.

NOTE:
When the cake is released from the pan, I immediately wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate it until ready to Ice it. At this point, transfer the cake to a serving plate and Frost it.
It's a tip that I learned when I was a cake decorator. It guarantees that the cake will remain moist and the refrigerated cakes are easier to Frost.


Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!






  1. .

Fully Loaded Smashed Cauliflower from Melissa's Southern Style Kitchen

Another incredible recipe from Melissa's Southern Style Kitchen. I simply posted a link to the recipe with a photograph. It looks amazing.
Again, thank you Melissa for allowing me to post another one of your great recipes.

http://www.melissassouthernstylekitchen.com/2014/03/fully-loaded-smashed-cauliflower.html



Cranberry and Roasted Red Pepper Salsa and other favorite Salsas, Sauces and Relishes made with Cranberries!

This is a condiment to serve along with your main course at Thanksgiving. Its more of an accompaniment rather than a side dish.
It would be a nice spread for a leftover Thanksgiving Sandwich too.
I've previously posted a Tex - Mex Cranberry Sauce that i make at Thanksgiving and Christmas. I'll post it at the end of this recipe.
Make this a few days ahead of serving it, it only gets better as it sits.

1 C Fresh Cranberries
Juice of 1/2 Orange
1/3 C Granulated Sugar
1 (12oz.) jar of Roasted Red Peppers, diced
3 TBS Chopped Fresh Cilantro
3 TBS Chopped Pecans
Zest of 1/2 Lime
Zest of 1/2 Orange
Salt to taste........ just a pinch!

In a Food Processor:
Cranberries
Orange Juice
Sugar
Pulse for about 30 seconds.

Transfer to a mixing bowl.
Fold in, by hand:
Red Peppers
Cilantro
Pecans
Lime Zest
Orange Zest
Salt
Allow to sit for at least 30 minutes.
Refrigerate until ready to serve.
Transfer to a serving bowl.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!


I believe Texas has it's own special take on most recipes and I'm convinced that I can turn any recipe into a Texas or Tex-Mex version.
This one happens to be my current favorite Cranberry Sauce recipe!
Make it at least a week before serving, it just gets better!
Put it in a canning jar and refrigerate until needed.

I created it in 2003 and I should post a photograph of the page in my hand written book where I created it. It's a mess!
It's somewhat difficult to make sense of the recipe so I'm glad I have the opportunity to publish it in a form that I can read clearly!

Terry's Original Texas Cranberry Sauce:

1 pound (about 4 C) of Fresh Cranberries. I suppose you can just thaw some frozen ones if that's all
you can get.
1 1/2 C Sugar
1 Jalapeno, finely diced ( seeded ) If you want a kick of heat then keep the seeds!
1 C Water
2 TBS Fresh Cilantro, finely chopped
1 Whole Lime, finely chopped, including the peel
3/4 C Crushed Pineapple, drained
1/2 C chopped Pecans ( you know I believe that Pecans will make any recipe Texan)!
2 Green Onions, (the entire onion) chopped

Wash the Cranberries and set them aside
Bring Sugar and Water to a boil
Add the Cranberries and Lime
Simmer, stirring often until the berries pop
Add the PIneapple
Cool this mixture
When completely cooled ( you can refrigerate it)
Fold in the Cilantro, Onion, Jalapeno and Pecans.
Chill again before serving

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!
This is how I work..... nothing fancy about it.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!


Another favorite Cranberry recipe!

Cranberry Salsa:

This may seem unusual but it's really one of my Best of the Best recipes.
In my notes , I wrote that I doubled this recipe.
This can be served as a side dish or served with tortilla chips.( after all it is a Salsa and I live in Texas).

I'm always researching and testing new recipes. When I can't find exactly what I'm looking for, I begin taking from one and adding something from another until I create what I believe is the Best of the Best!

I created this one a few years ago and it was served at Thanksgiving, there were no leftovers!

I refer to blanching in this recipe. Blanching is simply bringing water to a boil and adding something to it and then remove the contents and plunge into ice water to stop the cooking.

2 C whole fresh or frozen cranberries. Blanch the berries. Boil enough water to cover the berries. Pour boiling water over the berries,  then plunge them into ice water to stop the cooking.
1 small jalapeno pepper,minced
2 TBS chopped red onion
2 TBS chopped green bell pepper
1 tsp minced garlic
2 TBS chopped cilantro

Sauce:
1/4 C Canned Cherry Pie Filling from 1 - 21oz. can.( remove the cherries, divide them in half and save until later)
1 tsp cider vinegar
1 TBS sugar
1/2 TBS corn starch

Preparation:
In a saucepan, mix the sauce ingredients together and cook just until heated and combined well.
Cool the mixture, add all of the other ingredients listed above and combine well.

Process the mixture by pulsing it in a food processor.

Remove half of the mixture from the processor to a bowl and stir in half of the cherries from the filling.

Add the remaining  half of the cherries to the processor and pulse again.

Combine both mixtures and gently stir them together.
Chill before serving.



Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!


This comes from my collection of the Best of the Best recipes. 2008
The note I have at the bottom of the page in the book says, "don't even make another kind, this is incredible."
I know that everyone has their favorite cranberry relish recipe and I would have to say, this is mine.
I make it a week ahead.

Cranberry Relish:

1- 12 0z. bag of fresh Cranberries
1 large Apple, peeled, cored and coarsely chopped
1C Golden Raisins
3/4 C Sugar
1/2 C Orange Juice
1/2 TBS Balsamic Vinegar
1/2 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 C chopped Pecans (added when cooled)

Place all ingredients except vinegar and pecans in a saucepan and stir to combine well.
Bring to a boil over medium heat.
Lower heat and simmer until thickened, about 5 minutes
Remove from heat, add vinegar.
Place in a heatproof container, cover and cool to room temperature.
Add Pecans when completely cooled.
Refrigerate covered.
It will keep up to 2 weeks refrigerated.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!







Pumpkin Pie Cake, A Best of the Best Recipe!

This is one of our family's favorite Pumpkin Cakes.
It's simple and it's delicious. It's a great combination of a Cake and a Pie. It's the filling that makes this Cake special.

Pumpkin Pie Cake

Here's what you'll need:
1 - 9"x13" baking dish, greased with Pan Release Mix. (equal parts of Crisco, Vegetable Oil, Flour) I start with 1 C of each, mixed well and refrigerated in a jar. I always have it available for all of my baking needs.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.


1- Boxed Yellow Cake Mix
8 TBS Butter, room temperature
4 Eggs, divided.
2- 15 oz. cans 100% Pure Pumpkin
1- 5 oz. can Evaporated milk
1/2 C Brown sugar
1/2 C Granulated Sugar
2 TBS Cinnamon

Topping:
2TBS Cinnamon
4 TBS chilled Butter, cut into pieces
1/4 C GranulatedSugar
1C chopped Pecans


Measure 1C of the cake mix and set aside for the topping.

In a medium Mixing Bowl:
Remaining Cake Mix
8 TBS Butter
1 Egg
Mix on low speed just until combined, about 1 minute.
Use your fingers and press evenly over the bottom of the pan.


Filling:
In the same mixing bowl ( no need to clean it):
Pumpkin
Evaporated Milk
1/2 C Brown Sugar
1/2 C Granulated Sugar
 3 eggs
 Cinnamon
 Mix on low speed for 30 seconds,
 Increase speed to medium and mix until it lightens in color and texture, 1-2 minutes more.
 Pour filling over the crust, spread evenly.

Topping:
In a medium bowl:
Cinnamon
Chilled Butter
1/4 C Sugar
Reserved Cake Mix
Work with your fingers to create a crumble.
Add pecans by hand and work the dough to incorporate the nuts.
Distribute evenly over the filling.
Bake 70 minutes until the middle no longer jiggles when the pan is shaken and the Pecans begin
to brown.
Cool before cutting into squares.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!

Recipes from a Recipe Exchange!

I received an invitation to participate in an online recipe exchange. I decided that I would post the recipes that I received. I have no idea how many people will participate and how many recipes I'll have. I'll continue to post them as I receive them.
Thanks to all that agreed to participate and thank you all for the amazing recipes.

Banana Pudding Cake from Cathey:




1 (10oz.) box of Yellow Cake Mix + Eggs, Oil and Water needed to make the cake according to the directions on the box for a 9" X 13" pan.

2 (3.4oz.) packages of Instant Banana Pudding Mix
4 C Whole Milk
1 (8oz.) container of Frozen Whipped Topping, thawed.
20 Vanilla Wafers, crushed with a rolling pin in a Zip Lock Bag + additional for Garnish.

Prepare and Bake the cake according to package directions.
Remove the pan to a rack and cool for at least 5 minutes.
Poke holes in the cake with the handle of a wooden spoon. (the holes need to be large enough to allow the pudding to soak in.)
Poke the holes to the bottom of the cake.

In a large mixing bowl:
Instant Pudding Mix
Milk
Whisk well until all of the lumps are gone and it's creamy smooth.
Allow to sit for 2 minutes. It should set , but still be pourable.
Pour evenly over the entire cake.
Spread with a spatula and gently press pudding into the holes.
Refrigerate for 1 hour.
Frost the cake with the Whipped Topping.
Sprinkle the crushed Wafers evenly over the entire cake
Cut into squares to serve and garnish each piece with a Vanilla Wafer.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!


Here's a copy of the letter I received for the exchange.

Hi everyone,We're participating in a collective and hopefully tasty experiment.  As such, you've been invited to be part of a recipe exchange.  We hope you'll participate. We've picked those who we think will make this fun. Please send a recipe to the person whose name is in position 1 below (even if you don't know him/her). The recipe should be something quick, easy and without rare ingredients.  Actually, the best recipe is the one that you know off the top of your head and can type right now.  Don't agonize over it, it's one that you make when you are short on time - anything, an old favorite, or a new one. 
After you send the recipe to the person in position 1 (and only that person), copy this letter into a new email, move my name into position 1 and put your name in position 2. Only our names should show when you send your email. Send to 20 friends.  If you can't do this within 5 days, let me know so that it will be fair to those participating.

You should receive 36 recipes and it's fun to see where they come from. Seldom does anyone drop out because it's so easy and we all need new ideas.  Turnaround is fast because there are only 2 names on the list and you only have to send one recipe to one person.  Hope you'll participate.











Sunday, September 28, 2014

Christmas Mint and Chocolate Chip Cookies

This recipe comes from Betty Crocker. It's a great cookie to take to a Holiday Cookie Exchange.
They're green for Christmas!

Christmas Mint and Chocolate Chip Cookies

Here's what you'll need:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
1 - Sheet Pan lined with Parchment Paper

1 pouch (1lb. 1.5oz) Betty Crocker Sugar Cookie Mix
1/2 C Butter, softened
1/2 tsp Mint Extract
6 - 8 drops of Green Food Coloring
1 Egg
1 C Creme de Menthe Baking Chips
1 C Semisweet Chocolate Chunks

In a large mixing bowl:
Cookie Mix
Butter
Mint Extract
Food Coloring
Egg
Stir to create a soft dough.
Fold in Creme de Menthe Chips and Chocolate Chips, by hand.
Use a 1 1/2 " Cookie Scoop and drop the dough 2" apart onto the sheet pan.
Bake 8 - 10 minutes.
Remove the pan to a rack and cool for 5 minutes.
Transfer the cookies to the rack and cool completely.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!




Jalapeño Cornbread and Buttermilk Biscuit Stuffing

There's a story here that needs to be shared. This recipe is from Beth at Local Milk. It's a recipe that is handed down from one generation to another and served at Thanksgiving. Those are the best recipes to make and the best recipes to share. Family tradition is strong when it comes to making great food during the Holidays. Our family has our favorite traditional recipes, the ones that always make it to the table for Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner. I know that every family has one or two recipes that they absolutely have to make, and is expected to be on the table, for your Holiday dinner. Ours are numerous and I'd like to add this one for future generations to add to that list.
There are so many aspects of this recipe that I love, Jalapeños, Biscuits and Stuffing.......... I think that says it all! It may appear to be complicated, but I believe the steps are all necessary to create this recipe. Don't cheat and use anything but Homemade Cornbread and Buttermilk Biscuits here!

I'll start this recipe by saying:
Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!

I've adapted the recipe without changing the integrity of the original one.



This is just the Skillet of Jalapeño Cornbread,
ready for the oven!
Baked and ready for the Stuffing!



Here's what you'll need:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
1 - 9"X13" baking dish, sprayed with a non stick cooking spray.
1 - prepared recipe of Jalapeño Cornbread (recipe below)
1 - prepared recipe of Buttermilk Biscuits (recipe below)

Jalapeño Cornbread and Buttermilk Biscuit Stuffing:

7 C Crumbled Jalapeño Cornbread (prepared ahead of time)
4 C  Cubed Buttermilk Biscuits (prepared ahead of time)
3 Hard Boiled Eggs, chopped
8 TBS (1 stick) Butter
2 X Finely Chopped Shallots (about 8)
2 Cloves of Garlic, minced
1 1/2 C Finely Chopped Green Bell Pepper
1 Large, Fresh Jalapeño, seeded and Finely Minced
1 C Finely Chopped Celery
1/2 C Buttermilk
Sea Salt and Fresh Ground Black Pepper to taste
2 TBS Apple Cider Vinegar
1 tsp Granulated Sugar
3 Eggs, beaten
1/2 to 1C Vegetarian Chicken Broth, just enough to moisten the stuffing mixture.

Instructions:

In a large bowl:
Cornbread
Biscuits
Hard Boiled Egg
Gently toss, just to combine well.
Set aside.

In a large skillet on medium heat:
Melt Butter
Add:
Onion
Garlic
Saute until soft.
Add:
Green Pepper
Celery
Cook for 3 minutes.
Season to taste with Salt and Pepper.
Allow to cool.
Add:
Buttermilk
Vinegar
Sugar
Stir to combine.
Add this to the Cornbread Bowl.
Gently stir to combine.
Add:
Beaten Eggs and just enough broth to moisten the stuffing. (start with 1/2 C and gradually add more until the stuffing is moist and not wet and soggy)
Transfer the mixture to the prepared dish.
Place the dish in a large roasting pan and add boiling water, half way up the baking dish.
Bake 40 minutes.


Homemade Buttermilk Biscuits:

2 C Flour
1 TBS Baking Powder
1 tsp Sea Salt
4 TBS (1/2 stick) Butter, Cold and Cubed.
1 C Buttermilk

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
In a large mixing bowl:
Flour
Baking Powder
Salt
Whisk well.
Cut in the Butter with a Pastry Cutter or your fingers until no pieces larger that a Pea remain. DOn't over work the Flour and Butter.
Gently stir in the Buttermilk with a wooden spoon, just to combine.
Drop the dough by the spoonful onto a sheet pan sprayed with a non stick cooking spray.
Bake 15 minutes.
Remove the pan to a rack and cool completely.
If you have more Biscuits than the recipe requires....... slather them with butter and eat them immediately!


Homemade Jalapeño Cornbread:
Here's what you'll need:
1 - 9" or 10" Cast Iron Skillet
3 TBS Butter

1 1/4 C Cornmeal
3 TBS Flour
1 C Shredded Sharp Cheddar Cheese
1/2 C Pickled Jalapeños, roughly chopped.
1 tsp Sea Salt
3/4 tsp Baking Powder
3 TBS Butter, melted
2 Eggs, beaten
1 C Buttermilk
1/4 tsp Baking Soda dissolved in a bit of water.

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
Grease the Skillet with the 3 TBS of Butter and place it in the oven as it preheats.

In a medium mixing bowl:
Cornmeal
Flour
Salt
Baking
Powder
Whisk well.
Gradually add the melted butter with your hands and create a sandy texture.
Fold in the Cheese and Bell Peppers by hand.

In a small bowl:
Eggs
Buttermilk
Whisk well.
Gradually add this to the dry ingredients.
Stir by hand with a wooden spoon.
Add the Baking Soda and stir just to combine.
Pour the batter into the hot skillet.
Bake for 20 minutes.
Transfer the Skillet to the stovetop to cool, just enough to handle.
Invert the Cornbread onto a cooling rack to cool completely.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!



Saturday, September 27, 2014

Granola Harvest Cake with Espresso Coffee Glaze

Here's a favorite Holiday Bundt Cake. I thought it was perfect for The Hippy in the Kitchen Blog.
It's served with a decadent Espresso Coffee Glaze.
I hope you take time to make and enjoy this cake. I know that I'll be baking it for Christmas.

Granola Harvest Cake with Espresso Coffee Glaze:

Here's what you'll need:
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
1 - 10 - 12 C Bundt Pan, your choice of design, brushed well with Pan Release Mix. (equal parts of Crisco, Vegetable Oil and Flour) I start with 1 C of each mixed well and refrigerated in a jar. I always have it available for all of my baking needs.



Cake Ingredients:
1 3/4 C Boiling Water
1 C Granola (your choice)
1C of Raisins
1 C Granulated Sugar
1/2 C Brown Sugar
1 C Crisco Shortening
3 Eggs
2 1/2 C Sifted Flour
2 tsp Baking Powder
1 tsp Baking Soda
1 tsp Salt
1 tsp Nutmeg
1 tsp Cinnamon

In a medium bowl:
Pour the boiling water over the granola and raisins.
Cool to Lukewarm.

In a Stand Mixer with a paddle attachment:
Crisco
Granulated Sugar
Brown Sugar
Beat for 3 minutes, until creamy smooth.
Add Eggs, one at a time.

In a medium bowl, sift together:
Flour
Baking Powder
Baking Soda
Salt
Nutmeg
Cinnamon
Whisk well.

While the mixer is on low speed, gradually add the dry ingredients.
Mix until just incorporated.
Fold in the Granola/Raisin mixture by hand.
Pour batter into the pan and Bake for 40 - 50 minutes.
A toothpick in the center of the cake should come out clean.
Remove the pan to a rack and cool for 15 minutes.
Invert the cake onto the rack, place it right side up and cool completely. (invert it twice)
Transfer the cake to a serving platter,
Drizzle with Espresso Coffee Glaze before serving.

Coffee Glaze:
1 tsp Medaglia d'Oro Instant Espresso Coffee.
3 TBS Hot Milk
2 C sifted Confectioner's Sugar
1 TBS Butter, softened

Dissolve Coffee in the Milk.

In a small bowl, whisk together:
Sugar
Butter
Whisk well.

Gradually add the Milk mixture just until desired consistency.
Whisk until creamy smooth.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!








Chocolate - Whiskey Bundt Cake from Epicurious Magazine

This recipe is part of  Epicurious magazine's, America's Best Recipes.
"Most of the alcohol in this cake cooks off, but - thankfully - a whiskey flavor remains."
I've adapted parts of the recipe while keeping the integrity of the original one.

Here's what you'll need:
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
1 - 10" Bundt Pan, your choice of design, brushed well with Pan Release Mix. (equal parts of Crisco, Vegetable Oil, Flour) I start with 1 C of each, mixed well and refrigerated in a jar. I always have it available for all of my baking needs. Once you try this in a Bundt Pan, you'll never use any other for of greasing a pan.


1 C unsweetened Cocoa Powder (not Dutch Process) + 3 TBS for dusting the pan.( See picture and note at the end of the recipe.) I only use Hershey's Special Dark Cocoa Powder.
1 1/2 C Brewed Coffee
1/2 C Good Irish Whiskey
2 sticks of Butter (16 TBS) , cut into 1" pieces.
2 C Granulated Sugar
2 C Flour
1 1/4 tsp Baking Soda
1/2 tsp Salt
2 Eggs
1 tsp Vanilla
Confectioner's Sugar

After you brush the pan with Pan Release Mix, dust it with the 3 TBS of Cocoa Powder. Tap the pan to knock off the excess.

In a 3 quart, heavy saucepan, on medium high heat:
Coffee
Whiskey
Butter
1 C  of remaining Cocoa Powder
Heat until the Butter is melted.
Remove from heat.
Add:
Sugar
Whisk by hand for 1 minute.
Transfer to a large mixing bowl and set aside to cool for 5 minutes.

In a medium bowl:
Flour
Baking Soda
Salt
Whisk well.

In a small mixing bowl:
Eggs
Vanilla
Whisk well.
Add to cooled Chocolate mixture and whisk until well combined.
Add Flour mixture and whisk just until combined.
Pour into the prepared pan.
Bake for 40 - 50 minutes until a toothpick in the center comes out clean.
Remove the pan to a rack and cool for 2 hours.

Loosen the cake and place a cooling rack onto the pan, release the cake right side up onto the cooling rack. Place the rack on a sheet pan and dust the cake with Confectioner's sugar.

NOTE:
The cake improves with flavor if made at least 1 day ahead and kept in a cake keeper or wrapped in plastic wrap, at a cool room temperature.
It can be made up to 5 days ahead and refrigerated.
Bring to room temperature before serving.
Dust again with Confectioner's Sugar just before serving.


This is the only Cocoa Powder that I use in all
recipes that call for a Cocoa Powder.
I used to use Dutch Process until I researched it
and discovered that it's not really the best Cocoa Powder.
I recommend that you research it before making
any decisions about the product.


Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!










Cranberry Crumb Cake

I love any recipe made with Cranberries. I have many recipes on the blog. This would make a good Thanksgiving or Christmas morning cake.

Here's what you'll need:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
1 - 9" round cake pan, brushed well with Pan Release Mix. (Crisco, Vegetable Oil, Flour) I start with 1 C of each , mixed well and refrigerated in a jar. I always have it available for all of my baking needs.

The Cake ingredients.
6 TBS Butter, room temperature.
3/4 C Granulated Sugar
2 large Eggs, room temperature.
1 tsp Vanilla
1 tsp Orange Zest
2/3 C Sour Cream
1 1/4 C Flour
1 tsp Baking Powder
1/4 tsp Baking Soda
1/2 tsp Salt
1 C Fresh Cranberries
Confectioner's Sugar for dusting each serving.

Crumb Topping ingredients.
1/4 C Granulated Sugar
1/3 C Brown Sugar
1 tsp Cinnamon
1/8 tsp Nutmeg
8 TBS (1stick) Butter, melted
1 1/3 C Flour

Cake directions.
In a Stand Mixer with a paddle attachment:
Butter
Sugar
Beat on high for 5 minutes.
Reduce speed to Low.
Add:
Eggs, one at a time.
Add:
Vanilla
Orange Zest
Sour Cream
Beat just to combine.

In a medium mixing bowl, sift together:
Flour
Baking Powder
Baking Soda
Salt
Gradually add this to the mixer on Low Speed.
Beat just to combine.
Spoon batter into the Cake Pan.

Crumb Topping directions.

In a medium bowl:
Granulated Sugar
Brown Sugar
Cinnamon
Nutmeg
Whisk well.
Stir in the Butter.
Add Flour and mix with your hands to create a Crumble.
Sprinkle evenly over the Batter.
Bake for 40 - 45 minutes, until a toothpick in the center comes out clean.
Remove pan to a rack and cool completely.

To serve, dust each piece with Confectioner's Sugar.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!


Friday, September 26, 2014

Crock Pot Pumpkin / Cranberry Bread

Sometimes I like to get out the Slow Cooker / Crock Pot and let it do all of the work Here's a great recipe to start with for the Fall Season.

Slow Cooker Pumpkin / Cranberry Bread

1 - 4 quart Slow Cooker / Crock Pot, sprayed with a non stick cooking spray.

3/4 C of canned Pumpkin
1/2 C Half & Half
2 TBS Brown Sugar
2 C Flour + 1 TBS Flour, divided
2 tsp Baking Powder
1 1/2 tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice
1/2 tsp Salt
4 TBS Cold Butter, cubed + 2 TBS Butter, melted, divided
3/4 C Dried Cranberries
1/2 C Maple Syrup
1/2 C Chopped Pecans

In a medium mixing bowl:
Pumpkin
Half & Half
Brown Sugar
Whisk well, set aside.

In a large mixing bowl:
2 C Flour
Baking Powder
Pumpkin Pie Spice
Salt
Whisk well.
Cut in the cold Butter with a Pastry Blender or 2 Forks, until pieces are Pea sized.
Add Pumpkin mixture to the Flour mixture, mix just until combined.

In a small mixing bowl:
Cranberries
1 TBS Flour
Toss until well coated.
Fold into the dough by hand.
Transfer the dough to the Slow Cooker.
Drizzle the Maple Syrup and Melted Butter over the dough.
Sprinkle with Pecans.

Cook on High, covered, for 2 - 2 1/2 hours.
Turn off the Slow Cooker.
Remove the lid and wipe off the condensation.
Cover the opening of the pot with paper towels and replace the lid.
Cool, covered for 45 minutes.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!




Thursday, September 25, 2014

Quick Crescent Pecan Bars from Pillsbury

This is one of Pillsbury's best Holiday desserts.
It's easy, quick and delicious.
Pillsbury now makes a seamless Crescent Dough.

Quick Crescent Pecan Bars






I've adapted it slightly.

Here's what you'll need.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
1 - 9"X13" baking pan. un greased.

1- (8oz.) package of Pillsbury Crescent Recipe Creations. (Refrigerated Seamless Dough Sheet).
1 C Chopped Pecans
1/2 C Granulated Sugar
1/2 C Corn Syrup
1 TBS Butter, melted
1/2 tsp Vanilla
1 Egg, beaten

Unroll the dough and cut it into 2 long rectangles.
Place them in the pan.
Press into the bottom and 1/2" up the sides to form the crust.
Bake for 18 minutes.

In a medium mixing bowl:
Pecans
Sugar
Corn Syrup
Butter
Vanilla
Egg
Whisk well and pour over the crust.
Bake an additional 18 - 22 minutes.
It should be Golden Brown.
Remove the pan to a rack and cool 1 hour.
Cut into squares to serve.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!


Palets de Dames, Lille Style. A preview recipe from the upcoming book by Dorie Greenspan," Baking Chez Moi"

Dorie Greenspan is one of my favorite bakers. I recently pre-ordered her new cookbook, "Baking Chez Moi". If you haven't heard about it, and you have a passion for baking, I highly recommend it. I have other books by Dorie and I also share a passion for France like she does. Here is one of the recipes from her upcoming cookbook. Enjoy!



Palets de Dames, Lille Style
Makes about 40 cookies
The word palet means “puck,” and you find it used most often by chocolatiers, who make pucks of ganache and enrobe them in chocolate. But the only thing puckish about these cookies is their adorableness. With wide, flat uppers iced in white, and rounded bottoms, they look like toy tops or open parasols. I saw these cookies in all sizes in every pâtisserie I visited in Lille, the northern French city that borders Belgium. Then I saw them finished with melted rose pralines, the red candies that are the sweet symbol of Lyon, the gastronomic capital of the Rhône- Alpes region. And everywhere I saw them, I bought them—the combination of cakeish cookie and sweet icing is irresistible.
While a plain icing made with confectioners’ sugar is the tradition in Lille, there’s no reason not to have a little fun with these. Think about adding food coloring to the icing or dividing the icing and creating a few tints. And to make these already festive cookies even more so, you can speckle the still-wet glaze with sanding sugar.






For the cookies
9 tablespoons (41⁄2 ounces;128 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature 2/3 cup (132 grams) sugar
Pinch of fine sea salt
2 large eggs, at room temperature

1⁄4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
11⁄4 cups (170 grams) all-purpose flour

For the icing
1 cup (120 grams) confectioners’ sugar, sifted About 11⁄2 tablespoons whole milk
A few drops of freshly squeezed lemon juice

To make the cookies:
~ Working in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl with a hand mixer, beat the butter on medium speed until smooth and creamy. Add the sugar and salt and beat for another 2 to 3 minutes, until the mixture is again smooth and creamy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating for 1 minute after each egg goes in. Don’t be discouraged if the mixture curdles; it will be fine as soon as you add the flour.

~ Beat in the vanilla extract. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the flour in 3 additions, mixing only until it disappears after each addition. You’ll have a very soft dough that might look more like a cake batter than a cookie dough.

~ Scrape the dough into a bowl, press a piece of plastic film against the surface to create an airtight seal and chill the dough for at least 1 hour, or until it is firm. (The dough can be wrapped airtight and kept in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.)

~ When you’re ready to bake: Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.

~ You need about 2 teaspoons of dough for each cookie. You can use a small (2- teaspoon capacity) cookie scoop—my favorite tool for this job—or you can use a spoon to scoop out rounded teaspoonfuls of dough, in which case it’s best to roll the dough gently between your palms to form balls. Place the scoops or balls of dough about 2 inches apart on the baking sheet.

~ Bake for 7 to 9 minutes, or until the cookies are set and just slightly brown around the edges. Carefully transfer the cookies to a rack and allow them to cool to room temperature. Repeat with the remaining dough, cooling the baking sheet between batches.

~ To make the icing: Put the confectioners’ sugar in a wide bowl and add 1 tablespoon milk and the lemon juice. Using a small whisk or a fork, stir until you have a smooth icing that forms a ribbon when the whisk or fork is lifted. If the icing is too thick to flow smoothly, add more milk; you might need even more than 11⁄2 tablespoons milk total, in which case it’s best to add the additional milk in nano-droplets.

~ One by one, pick up the cookies and dip one side into the icing, then lift the cookie up and give it a little twirl, so that the excess icing falls back into the bowl. Put the cookie icing side up on a rack and let the icing dry and firm at room temperature.

Serving: A cup of coffee, a palet de dames and la vie est belle.
Storing: Once the icing is dry, the cookies can be put in a covered container; they’ll keep for up to 3 days at room temperature. Because of the icing, the finished cookies can’t be frozen. However, if you’d like, you can pack the undipped cookies airtight and freeze them for up to 2 months; defrost and then ice them.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen! 

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Pumpkin Cornmeal Cake in a Cast Iron Skillet

One of my favorite Cast Iron Skillet desserts is my Blueberry/Blackberry Cornmeal Cake.  I make it in the Summer when the berries are in season.You can search it on the blog.
Here's another great Cast Iron Skillet Cake recipe for Fall.

Pumpkin Cornmeal Cake in a Cast Iron Skillet.

Here's what you'll need:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
1 - 9" Cast Iron Skillet brushed well with Pan Release Mix. (equal parts of Crisco, Vegetable Oil, Flour) I start with 1 C of each, mixed well and refrigerated in a jar. I always have it available for all of my baking needs.


Cake:
1 1/2 C Cake Flour
1/2 C Cornmeal
2 tsp Baking Powder
1/2 tsp Baking Soda
1/2 tsp Salt
2 tsp Cinnamon
1 tsp ground Ginger
1/2 tsp Nutmeg
1/8 tsp ground Cloves
1/2 C Coconut Oil
1 C Brown Sugar
2 large Eggs
1/2 C Sour Cream
1/2 C  100% Pure Pumpkin Puree (not Pumpkin Pie filling) Photograph to follow.
1/4 C Buttermilk




Topping:
1/4 C Brown Sugar
1/4 C All Purpose Flour
6 TBS Cold Butter, cubed
1/4 tsp Salt
1/3 C Roasted and Salted Pepitas. (see note and photograph below)

Glaze:
2 TBS Buttermilk
3/4 C Confectioner's Sugar

Preparation:

Dry Ingredients.

In a large mixing bowl:
Cake Flour
Cornmeal
Baking Powder
Baking Soda
Salt
Cinnamon
Ginger
Nutmeg
Clove
Whisk well, set aside.

Wet Ingredients.

In a small mixing bowl:
Sour Cream
Pumpkin Puree
Buttermilk
Whisk well, set aside.

In a Stand Mixer with a Paddle Attachment:
Coconut Oil
Brown Sugar
Beat for 3 minutes on low speed.
Add: (with mixer on low speed)
Eggs, one at a time, scraping the bowl after each addition.
Add:
Dry ingredients and Wet ingredients to the mixer in 3 addition, starting with Dry and ending with Wet. Beating after each addition, just to combine. Don't over mix the batter.

Pour into the prepared skillet.
Bake 20 minutes.
While the cake is baking, make the Topping.

Topping Preparation.

In a medium bowl:
Brown Sugar
All Purpose Flour
Cinnamon
Butter
Salt
Mix with your hands, or 2 forks, to create a crumble.
Mix in the Pepitas by hand.
Sprinkle evenly over the baked cake and continue baking for an additional 25 - 30 minutes. A toothpick in the center should come out clean.
Remove the skillet to a rack and cool completely.

Make the Glaze.

In a small bowl:
Confectioner's Sugar
Slowly whisk in the Buttermilk by hand, 1/4 C at a time.
Continue whisking until smooth.
Drizzle evenly over the cooled cake.
Serve from the skillet!


NOTE:
Pepita (from Mexican Spanishpepita de calabaza, "little seed of squash") is a Spanish culinary term for the pumpkin seed , the edible seed of a pumpkin or other cultivar of squash (genus Curcubita). The seeds are typically rather flat and asymmetrically oval, and light green in color inside a white hull. The word can refer either to the hulled kernel or unhulled whole seed, and most commonly refers to the roasted end product.






Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!



Chocolate Espresso Layer Cake from Savory Simple

I love the idea of an Espresso Chocolate Cake, so I researched it. This is what I consider to be The Best of the Best. It was too complicated and time consuming to re write the recipe so I simply copied it to the Blog. I know it's an advanced baking recipe and not really for the beginning baker, but I love a baking challenge. I remember being a beginning baker. Believe me, practice really does make perfect when it comes to baking. I hope some of my readers take the time to make this very impressive and delicious cake from Savory Simple!



You need a kitchen scale to measure out this recipe but there are plenty of cheap scales available in stores and online. It's a worthy investment! See below the recipe for a list of all equipment I used for making this cake.
Serves: 1 8-inch triple layer cake
Ingredients
Chocolate Espresso Cake:
  • 10½ ounces all purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons espresso powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1½ teaspoons salt
  • 3 ounces unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1½ cups half and half (or 50% cream and 50% whole milk)
  • ¼ cup espresso vodka, such as Van Gogh
  • 1½ tablespoons pure vanilla extract
  • 9 ounces (2¼ sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 21 ounces granulated sugar
  • 6 large eggs, room temperature
Chocolate Espresso Italian Meringue Buttercream:
  • 13 ounces granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 teaspoon corn syrup
  • 5 egg whites
  • 16 ounces (4 sticks) unsalted butter, cubed and at room temperature
  • 3 ounces unsweetened chocolate, melted
  • 1 tablespoon espresso vodka, such as Van Gogh, room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon brewed espresso, room temperature
Instructions
Prepare the cakes
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Place an oven rack in the middle position. Lightly spray the bottom of 3 8-inch cake pans with baking spray and then cover them with parchment rounds. Set aside.
  2. Whisk together the flour, espresso powder, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl. Sift in the cocoa powder and whisk until the dry ingredients are evenly combined. In a separate small bowl, combine the half and half, espresso vodka and vanilla extract.
  3. In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar together on low speed for 5 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, allowing each egg to incorporate before adding the next. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. With the mixer still on low speed, swiftly alternate between adding the dry and liquid ingredients over the course of a minute. Scrape down the sides well, making sure to reach the bottom of the bowl. Turn the mixer on medium speed for 30 seconds.
  4. Distribute the batter evenly between the 3 prepared cake pans, using a spatula to even out the tops.
  5. Bake until the a toothpick comes out of the center of each cake clean, approximately 30-35 minutes. Allow the cakes to cool completely in the pan before removing.
Prepare the frosting
  1. Add sugar, water and corn syrup to a medium sized sauce pot. Cover and turn the heat to high. Once the liquid begins to simmer and steam has developed, remove the cover (this helps prevent crystallization). Using a candy thermometer, cook the sugar to the soft boil stage, 235-240 degrees F.
  2. While the sugar is cooking, whisk the eggs on high in a stand mixer with the whisk attachment until a soft peak has formed.
  3. Turn the mixer speed down to medium low and very slowly pour the syrup down the side of the bowl into the egg whites. Don’t pour the hot syrup directly into the meringue.
  4. Once the syrup is completely incorporated, turn the speed to high and allow the meringue to continue to form a stiff peak while cooling down. Mix on high until the meringue has reached room temperature. To speed up this 15-20 minute process, ice packs can be placed around the bowl.
  5. Once the meringue is room temperature, slowly begin incorporating the soft butter on medium speed. Once all of the butter has been incorporated, turn the mixer speed up to high and very slowly add the chocolate, espresso and vodka.
Assemble the cake
  1. Place the first layer of cake on a revolving cake stand and remove the parchment paper. Placing a cardboard round below the cake is optional but will make transporting the cake easier after it is assembled.
  2. Spread approximately one cup of buttercream on the cake and spread it around evenly with an offset spatula. Add more buttercream as needed to reached the desired thickness. Repeat with the second and third layer (don't forget to remove the parchment each time). Use an offset spatula to apply a thin layer of frosting to the side and top of the cake. Chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to set this first layer of buttercream. Cover the entire cake with a final layer of frosting. Grate some unsweetened or semi-sweet chocolate on top of the cake for decoration, if desired.
  3. Cake is best when served at room temperature.
Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!


Translate the Blog into your own language!

Translate the blog into your language!

I just wanted to take some time and say hello to everyone and thank you all for checking out the blog.

I have many international followers and I want to remind you that you can  TRANSLATE  the blog into any language you speak.

There is a link on the right side of the page to translate...... scroll down until you see " translate",
Open the drop down box and choose any language.

Please check out the section where you can comment. At the end of every recipe it says, No Comments ( click on it to leave a comment). I would love to hear from everyone.

Bonjour a tous mes amis en France!

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Caramel Apple Oatmeal Squares

I collect recipes, create recipes and post recipes that are from my family's collections. Here's another great family recipe from Aunt Faye. It's a great Fall dessert.

Here's what you'll need:
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees
1 - 9"X 13" baking pan, un greased


Caramel Apple Oatmeal Squares:

1 C Brown Sugar
1/2 C Butter, softened
1/4 C Crisco
1 3/4 C + 3 TBS Flour, divided
1 1/2 C Quick Cook Oats
1 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp Baking Soda
4 1/2 C peeled, cored and coarsely chopped Apples
1 - (14oz.) bag of Caramel Squares
1/2 C Chopped Pecans

In a Stand Mixer with a paddle attachment:
Brown Sugar
Butter
Crisco
Beat 3 minutes.
Add:
1 3/4 C Flour
Oats
Salt
Baking Soda
Beat until well combines.
Reserve 1 C and set aside.
Press remaining into the pan.

In a small bowl:
Apple
3 TBS Flour
Toss well to coat the Apples.
Distribute Apples evenly in the pan.

Melt the Caramels in a saucepan on low heat until melted and smooth. (or you can melt the Caramels in a microwave (in a glass bowl or Pyrex measuring cup) , stirring often until creamy smooth. Watch it carefully so it doesn't burn.
Pour over the Apples.

Sprinkle with reserved Oats and press lightly into the caramel.
Sprinkle evenly with Pecans.
Bake for 25 - 30 minutes.
Remove pan to a rack and cool completely before cutting into squares.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!






Stuffed Fresh Plums and Fresh Plum Crisp

We just ate at one of our favorite restaurants. It's an interesting concept. There's a chef that's very visible, cooking in front of the guests. The menu changes according to what's available at the time. All of the ingredients are organic and it's very vegetarian friendly. They always have a great assortment of items available. The concept of the restaurant is to take only what you feel you can eat and pay only what you can afford. Cash only, is placed in homemade envelopes, made from recycled magazines and dropped into a vintage watering can. Today was one of the best meals I've ever eaten there. I had  Goat Cheese and Sun Dried Tomato Quiche, Braised Kale, Chickpea and Zucchini Salad, Cajun Okra and the most amazing dessert. The Chef had some Fresh Plums that his father brought from their farm in Colorado. He stuffed some of them and served them chilled and the remaining ones, he made into a Plum Crisp.  We had both. Here are adapted versions of both of the recipes.

Stuffed Fresh Plums:

Fresh Chilled Plums, skin on, sliced in half and the stone removed.
Process the Pecans in a food processor to form a pecan meal, coarser than a flour.
In a small bowl:
1 C Cream Cheese
1/2 C Blue Cheese
Whisk well.
Fold in the Pecans.
Drizzle with a bit of Honey and whisk well.
Refrigerate for 1 hour.

Stuff the chilled Plums and serve chilled.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!

Fresh Plum Crisp:

Here's what you'll need:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
1 1/2 quart  un greased casserole dish.

Filling.
4 C sliced, un peeled Plums
1 TBS Flour
2 TBS Sugar
1 tsp Vanilla
1/2 tsp Cinnamon

Topping:
1/2 C Flour
1/2 C Oats
1/2 C Brown Sugar
1/8 tsp Salt
1/4 C Butter, melted.

In a medium bowl:
Plums
Flour
Sugar
Vanilla
Cinnamon
Toss to coat the plums well.
Pour into the casserole dish.

In a small bowl:
Flour
Oats
Brown Sugar
Salt
Butter
Mix well with a fork to create a crumble topping.
Sprinkle evenly over the Plums.
Bake for 40 - 45 minutes, until golden brown.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!










An example of the menu!



Pumpkin Pie Squares

I can't get enough recipes using Pumpkin, especially when Fall arrives. This is another vintage 70's recipe from the family archives.

Here's what you'll need:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
1- un greased 9"X13" baking dish.

Pumpkin Pie Squares:
1 C Flour
1/2 C Quick Oats
1 1/2 C Brown Sugar, divided
10 TBS Butter, divided
2 C Pumpkin Puree
1 (13oz.) can of Evaporated Milk , Not Sweetened Condensed Milk!
2 Eggs
3/4 C Granulated Sugar
1/2 tsp Salt
1 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 tsp Ground Ginger
1/4 tsp Cloves
1/2 C chopped Pecans

In a medium mixing bowl:
Flour
Oats
1/2 C Brown Sugar
8 TBS Butter
Mix together with a Pastry Knife or two forks to form a crumble.
Press  evenly into the bottom of the pan, not up the sides.
Bake for 15 minutes.
Remove to a rack and cool while you make the filling.

Filling.
In a medium mixing bowl:
Pumpkin
Evaporated Milk
Eggs
Granulated Sugar
Salt
Cinnamon
Ginger
Cloves
Whisk well.
Pour over the crust.
Bake 20 minutes.
Remove to a rack and cool while preparing the Pecan Topping.

Pecan Topping.
In a small bowl:
Pecans
1/4 C Brown Sugar
2 TBS Butter
Create a crumble with your hands.
Sprinkle evenly over the baked filling.
Bake an additional 15 - 20 minutes.
Remove the pan to a rack and cool completely.
Cut into squares to serve.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!






Holiday Potato Casserole with Sweet Potatoes and Red Potatoes

There are so many recipes for Escalloped Potatoes and this one is similar. The interesting twist to this recipe is the combination of Red Potatoes and Sweet Potatoes. The recipe is from the 70's and was recommended as a side dish forThanksgiving and Christmas.

Here's what you'll need:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
1 - 11" X 7 " baking dish, sprayed with a cooking spray.

1 1/2 pounds of Red Potatoes, sliced  into1/8" slices. Put them in cold water for 20 minutes.
1 pound of Sweet Potatoes, sliced into 1/8" sliced. Put them in cold water for 20 minutes.
5 TBS Flour
4 TBS Butter, room temperature
1 1/2 C Whole Milk
1 C Vegetarian Chicken Broth
1/2 C grated Parmesan Cheese + 1/4 C for topping
1 tsp Dried Thyme
1/2 tsp Salt
1/8 tsp Black Pepper


In a small bowl:
Flour
Butter
Mix together until smooth.

In a saucepan on medium low heat, make the Sauce:
Milk
Broth
Whisk well.
Add:
Flour mixture and whisk until it thickens and bubbles.
Reduce heat to low.
Add:
1/2 C Cheese
Thyme
Salt
Pepper
Mix well.

Remove from heat.
Drain the potatoes.
Pat dry with paper towels.

Place a layer of Sweet Potatoes in the bottom of the dish.
Top with 1/4 of the Sauce.
Add a layer of Red Potatoes.
A layer of Sauce.
A layer of Sweet Potatoes
A layer of Sauce
Another layer of Sweet Potatoes.
End with a layer of Red Potatoes and remaining Sauce.
Top with 1/4 C Cheese.

Bake, covered with foil for 45 minutes.
Remove the foil and continue baking for 45 - 50 minutes.
The potatoes should be golden brown and tender.
Remove the dish to a rack and cool for 10 minutes before serving.


Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!

















Vegan Chocolate Mousse

A friend in Sweden just sent me this recipe. I have not tried it. I know that many of my readers are Vegan and may like it.
I will definitely try it.


Vegan Chocolate Mousse:

1 Ripe Avocado
1/4 C Cocoa Powder
1/4 C Raw Agave Nectar
1/4 C Almond Milk
1 tsp Vanilla

Puree until smooth.
Refrigerate and serve chilled.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!








Monday, September 22, 2014

The Ultimate Hippy Bran Muffin

This one comes from my wife's recipe box collection. It's a vintage Bran Muffin recipe and it's the best! Hey, it's made with Raisin Bran Cereal, that's cool enough for me to be officially Hippy!

If you don't like Raisins or Nuts, simply remove the raisins and eliminate the nuts!

The Ultimate Hippy Bran Muffin:

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Muffin Tins sprayed with a cooking spray.

This recipe makes a very large batter. We make it and whatever we don't use, we keep it refrigerated up to 6 weeks until we want to make more.
You'll know as soon as you see the amount of batter that it makes.

1 (15oz.) box of Raisin Bran Cereal
5 C Flour
3 C Granulated Sugar
5 tsp Baking Soda
2 tsp Salt
1 C  chopped Walnuts
4 Eggs, beaten
1 C Vegetable Oil
1 qt. Buttermilk

In a large mixing bowl, the Dry ingredients:
Cereal
Flour
Sugar
Baking Soda
Salt
Walnuts
Mix well.

Wet Ingredients:
In a small bowl:
Eggs
Oil
Buttermilk
Whisk well.

Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour the wet ingredients into the well.
Do not beat, mix by hand, until moist.
Bake for 15 to 20 minutes.
The batter will keep in the refrigerator up to 6 weeks.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!



Black Bean Burgers and Homemade Refried Black Beans from The Pioneer Woman, Ree Drummond

I appreciate the fact that Ree did these burgers on her show. I'm vegetarian and these looked incredible. I will definitely make them and I wanted to post the recipe on my blog for others to have.
This recipe makes one large or two small burgers.

2 C  canned Black Beans, drained and mashed with a fork. I'll post her recipe for homemade refried Black Beans at the end. You can use them in this recipe or canned Black Beans.
1 C Seasoned Bread Crumbs
1.4 C  grated Onion
1/2 tsp Chili Powder
1 Egg
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste.
Canola Oil or Vegetable Oil for frying.


In a mixing bowl:
Beans
Breadcrumbs
Onion
Chili Powder
Egg
Salt and Pepper to taste.
Form the mixture into 1 large, or 2 small patties.
Preheat a grill pan on medium high heat.
Brush it with oil and cook the burger for 4 minutes on each side.

Homemade Refried Black Beans:

1 pound of Dried Black Beans, soaked overnight in cold water.
4 Garlic Cloves, minced
1 large onion, diced
1/2 tsp Cumin
Salt and Pepper, to taste.
1 TBS Butter

Drain the beans and add them to a stock pot.
Cover with two inches of water.
Add:
Garlic
Onion
Cumin
Salt and Pepper to taste.
Simmer until the beans are tender and the liquid has turned into a thick sauce, about 11/2 - 2 hours.
Melt Butter in a skillet and add the beans.
Mash them, leaving some texture and cook on medium heat for 3 - 4 minutes.
Use these beans in the bean burger recipe or canned black beans and follow the directions for the burgers.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!









Sunday, September 21, 2014

Apple Pie Cake or Peach Cake in a Springform Pan, the perfect Fall Desserts

This is the perfect Fall Thanksgiving dessert. This is an adaptation of several editions of similar recipes.
It's a take on the traditional  French Tarte Tatin and a cross between an American Pie and Cake.

Apple Cake in a Springform Pan

Here's what you'll need:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
1 - 9 1/2"-10" Springform pan brushed well with Pan Release Mix. (equal parts of Crisco, Vegetable Oil and Flour) I start with 1 C of each mixed well and refrigerated in a jar. I always have it available for all of my baking needs.
Cut a piece of round parchment paper for the bottom and brush it too.
I wrap the entire outside of the pan, including the bottom in a double layer of heavy duty foil.

8 - 12  Granny Smith Apples (I use Jonagold), sliced.
1 1/2 TBS Cinnamon/Sugar Mix. (1 1/4 TBS Sugar + 1/4 tsp Cinnamon)
3 Large Eggs
1 1/2 C Superfine White Sugar (Put granulated sugar in a food processor and pulse to create a superfine sugar)
1 1/2 C Vegetable Oil
3 TBS Vanilla
1 1/2 C Flour
Additional Cinnamon/Sugar for the top of the cake.

Begin by layering the apple slices in a spiral around the pan and coming up a little more that 2/3's up the side of the pan.
Sprinkle the entire top, evenly, with Cinnamon/Sugar mix.

In a Stand Mixer with a paddle attachment:
Eggs
Sugar
Beat for 3 minutes, until light and fluffy.
Add:
Oil
Vanilla
Continue beating.
Gradually add the flour, mixing on low speed, just until combined well.
Pour the batter evenly over the Apples.
Sprinkle the top evenly with additional Cinnamon/Sugar.
Tap the pan on a flat surface , several times, to allow the batter to sink into the Apple slices.

Bake 1 hour and 20 minutes, until a toothpick in the center comes out clean.
Remove the pan to a rack and cool completely.
Cover with plastic wrap.
Refrigerate several hours after it has cooled.
Release the cake to a serving platter.
Slice into wedges to serve.
The individual slices can be heated in a microwave.
Serve with Whipped Cream or Vanilla Ice Cream.


Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!

Peach Cake in a Springform Pan:

Here's what you'll need:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
1 - 9 1/2"-10" Springform pan brushed well with Pan Release Mix. (equal parts of Crisco, Vegetable Oil and Flour) I start with 1 C of each mixed well and refrigerated in a jar. I always have it available for all of my baking needs.
Cut a piece of round parchment paper for the bottom and brush it too.
I wrap the entire outside of the pan, including the bottom in a double layer of heavy duty foil.

3 Large Ripe Peaches, cut into cubes.
1/2 tsp Nutmeg
1/2 tsp Cinnamon
1 C Granulated Sugar, divided
6 TBS Butter, room temperature
1 Egg
1/2 C Buttermilk
1/2 tsp Vanilla
1/4 tsp Almond Extract
1 C Flour
1/2 C finely ground Almonds
1 tsp Baking Powder
1/4 tsp Baking Soda
1/2 tsp Salt
Turbinado Sugar

In a bowl:
Peaches
Nutmeg
Cinnamon
2 TBS granulated Sugar
Mix well and set aside.

In a large mixing bowl: (Wet Ingredients)
Butter
Remaining Sugar
Cream together with a wooden spoon until smooth.
Add:
Egg
Buttermilk
Vanilla
Almond Extract
Stir to combine well.

In a bowl: (Dry Ingredients)
Flour
Baking Powder
Baking Soda
Salt
Whisk well.
Add to the Wet Ingredients, stirring just to combine.

Spoon batter into the pan.
Press Peaches evenly into the top of the batter.
Sprinkle evenly with Turbinado Sugar.

Bake for 10 minutes at 350 degrees.
Reduce temperature to 325 degrees and continue baking for 45 - 55 minutes. Until a toothpick in the center comes out clean.
Remove pan to a rack and cool for 10 minutes.
Release the cake onto a serving platter and cool completely.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!