Recipes

Eggplant Parmigiana

 

2 eggplants, 1 1/2  to 1 1/4 pounds each
2 tablespoons kosher salt
1/2 cup flour
3 eggs
2 tablespoons water
2 1/2 cups seasoned breadcrumbs
1 cup Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 cup to 1/4 cup olive oil
3 1/2 cups tomato sauce
2 cups bechamel sauce (see below)
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1. Trim ends and peel skins from eggplant. Slice eggplant into 1/4-inch rounds. Sprinkle with coarse salt and layer in colander. Place a plate with a weight on top and let drain 35-40 minutes. Pat slices with paper towels.

2. Spread flour on a plate. In a wide shallow bowl, beat eggs and water until well blended. On another plate, combine bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese. Dredge eggplant slices in flour, then in the beaten eggs and then the bread crumbs.

3. Heat 1/2 cup olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add eggplant slices to pan being careful to not to crowd the pan and cook 3-4 minutes until golden brown on both sides. Remove eggplant and drain on paper towels while cooking remaining pieces, adding more olive oil as needed.

4. Spread 1/2 cup tomato sauce over the bottom of a 13 x 9 inch baking dish. Place a single layer of eggplant on sauce. Spread 1/2 cup bechamel sauce over eggplant; top with 1 cup marinara sauce, 1/4 cup of the mozzarella and 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese. Make 3 more layers, ending with the Parmesan cheese.

5. Preheat oven to 350C. Bake eggplant parmigiana 30 minutes or until bubbly and brown on top. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

Bechamel Sauce

1 cup milk
1 cup chicken stock
4 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon thyme

1. In a saucepan, combine milk and chicken stock. Bring just to a simmer over medium heat. Keep warm.
2. In a heavy medium saucepan, melt butter over low heat. Add flour and cook, stirring 2-3 minutes without allowing the flour to brown.
3. Remove pan from heat and whisk in hot milk and stock. Return to low heat and cook, whisking occasionally, 4-5 minutes, until sauce is medium thick. Season with salt and pepper, nutmeg and thyme.

 

Indian Cream of Tomato Soup

 

1 1/2 LB ripe tomatoes, chopped
1 TB sliced lemon grass
1 TB dried or fresh curry leaves
1 thick slice of fresh ginger
1 1/4 tsp salt
4 TB unsalted butter
2 TB flour
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 cups whole milk
1/2 tsp ground roasted cumin seeds
1/8 tsp ground pepper
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
2 tsp fresh lemon juice
1 TB chopped fresh coriander

1. Combine the tomatoes, lemon grass, curry leaves, ginger, 1/2 tsp salt, and 1/4 cup water in a large sauce pot and bring to a boil. Cover, lower heat, and gently simmer for 15 minutes. Uncover, turn heat to medium, and simmer a little more aggressively for another 15 minutes. Put the tomatoes through a sieve. You should have about two cups of thick tomato juice. Bring this juice to a simmer and keep over a low flame.

2. Melt the butter in a heavy sauce pan. Add the flour. Sir and cook the flour on low heat for 2-3 minutes. Do not let it brown. Now pour in the hot tomato juice, stirring all the time. Add the cream and the remaining 3/4 tsp salt. Stir to mix and bring to a simmer. Add all the other ingredients except the fresh coriander. Stir to mix. Heat over a medium flame. As soon as the soup is about to come to a boil, turn off the heat. Ladle the soup into bowls and serve garnished with a little chopped fresh coriander.

Rasmalai (Chhena Balls in a Sweet Creamy Sauce with Cardamom and Pistachios)

 

7 cups whole milk
1/4 cup lemon juice
3 cups sugar
5 whole cardamom pods
1 tsp fine semolina
3-4 drops rose essence
1 3/4 cups heavy cream
1 3/4 cups whole milk
1/8 tsp cardamom seeds
1 TBS shelled, unsalted pistachios

1. Make the Chhena: Heat 7 cups milk in a large pot. As soon as it comes to boil, turn off the heat and slowly pour in the lemon juice, stirring constantly with a plastic or wooden spoon. All the milk should curdle, blobs of Chhena separating from the thin, watery whey. Line a sieve or colander with a triple layer of cheesecloth. Put the sieve over a bowl. Pour the curds and whey into the sieve. A lot of the whey will drain away. Lift the cheesecloth by its four corners. Tie the curd inside into a loose bundle using a piece of string. Suspend this bundle somewhere where it can drip for 2 hours. ie on the faucet of your kitchen sink. After two hours, the chhena should have dripped some more and be cool enough to handle. Squeeze out as much liquid with your hands. Knead thoroughly. Make a ball and set it aside.

2. Add 3 cups sugar, 5 cups water, and the cardamom pods in a deep frying or sauté pan. Bring to a fast simmer over medium heat. Once the sugar is dissolved completely, turn the heat to low and let the syrup simmer gently for 2 minutes. Turn off the heat.

3. Flatten the ball of Chhena and add the semolina as well as the rose essence to it. Knead for 5 minutes, making sure that the semolina and rose essence are well mixed in. Now make 20 crack-free balls, rolling each with a little pressure between the palms of your two hands.

4. Bring the syrup to a simmer over medium flame. Drop the balls into the syrup. bring to a simmer again. Adjust the heat so the syrup simmers gently for 5 minutes. During this period, move the balls around and turn them occasionally, using a gentle touch. . Make sure you do not damage the balls.

5. Turn the heat up and bring the syrup to a furious simmer. The syrup should look like a mass of tiny moving bubbles, but it should never boil over. Sprinkle the balls with 2 TBS water, cover and cook them for about 10 minutes. During this period, the balls should swell up.

6. Uncover, sprinkle another 2 TBS of water over the balls, cover and cook, simmering furiously for another 10 minutes. Turn off the heat. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the balls to a large bowl. ( You no longer require the syrup and may be discarded). Combine now the heavy cream and milk and pour over the balls. Let them soak in the mixture for 3 hours.

7. Take the balls gently of the of the milk and cream mixture with a slotted spoon and put them in another bowl. Pour the milk and cream is alarge sauce or sauté pan and boil it down until you have about 2 cups left. Turn off the heat. Crush the cardamom seeds in a mortar and pestle and chop the pistachios finely. Add the crushed cardamom, the finely chopped pistachios, and 1 TBS sugar to the reduced milk and cream mixture. Pour this over the Chhena balls. Allow to cool. Cover and refrigerate for a leat two hours, and serve cold.

Rasmalai
Rasmalai

Roasted Tomato Soup

Roasted Yellow or Red Tomato Soup

8 cups chicken stock
3 pounds ripe tomatoes, red or yellow, peeled and coarsely chopped
I small onion, chopped
3 Tbsp rice
1/2 tsp salt
pinch of sugar
2 Tbsp chopped fresh basil or parsley

Preheat broiler. Line large baking sheet with parchment paper and place tomatoes cut up on tray. Drizzle tomatoes with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Place tomatoes under the broiler and broil the tomatoes until there are a few dark spots and the tomatoes are sizzling.

In the meantime, in a large saucepan or dutch oven, bring stock to a boil. Then add the roasted tomatoes, onion, rice, salt and sugar. Cover, reduce heat to medium low and cook for 30 minutes.

Puree soup, in batches if necessary, in a blender, food processor or with hand-held immersion blender. If pureeing with blender or food processor, return soup to pot and simmer 2 minutes. Stir in basil just before serving.

Mexican Shrimp Crepes with Pasilla Sauce

Shrimp Crepes with Chile Pasilla Sauce

1 1/2 pounds small, cooked shrimp
12 thin crepes, about 5 1/2 inches, prepared according to any basic crepe recipe
6 pasilla chiles
6 medium-sized vine-ripened tomatoes, broiled
1/4 medium onion
1/3 cup oil
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1 1/4 cups cheddar cheese grated

To broil tomatoes: Line a baking sheet with foil and place whole tomatoes on it. Place them under the broiler- do not have them too close to the element or the tomato will burn without cooking.- and turn them from time to time so they cook through evenly – the skin will be blistered and charred.

Next, heat a cast iron pan over medium heat and toast the pasilla chiles lightly, turn them from time to time so that they do not burn. Set aside to cool a little. When they are cool enough to handle, remove the seeds and veins, being careful to remove them all or the sauce will be too picante. In a blender, blend the chiles, broiled tomatoes and onion, to a smooth paste. Strain the sauce through a medium-mesh sieve set over a bowl.

Heat the oil over medium heat and then add the strained sauce, sugar, and salt, and cook until the mixture becomes thick, about 15 minutes, mixing the sauce occasionally. Then add the heavy cream and cook another 10 minutes until the sauce thickens and coats the back of a spoon.

In a medium bowl, mix the shrimps with 1 cup of the sauce. Place a little mixture in each of the crepes and roll them loosely. Place crepes side by side on the serving dish and pour the remaining sauce over them. Sprinkle the cheddar cheese over the crepes.

Bake in a 350 C preheated oven until the crepes are heated through and the cheese melts. Serve immediately.

Source: Adapted from The Cuisines of Mexico, Diana Kennedy.

Note: The crepes and sauce can be made the day before, the sauce also freezes well. They can be filled hours ahead and the remaining sauce and cheese added just before they go in the oven which makes this a great dish for a dinner party.

Caramel Coated Cream Cheese Flan

 

2 Cups Sugar
3/4 Cup Water
1 3/4 Cups Whole Milk
1 Can Condensed Milk
1 tsp Vanilla
1/2 – 8 Oz package Cream Cheese
5 Large Eggs

Preheat Oven to 375° F. Combine 2 cups of sugar with the water in a heavy large saucepan. Stir over medium heat until sugar dissolves. Increase heat and boil without stirring, until syrup is a deep amber colour. Brush sides of pan down with a wet pastry brush and swirl occasionally, about 13 minutes. Spray a 9 inch diameter cake pan with non-stick vegetable spray. Pour the caramel into the prepared pan. Using oven mitts, tilt and swirl the pan to coat the sides.

Combine whole milk, condensed milk and vanilla in a blender. Blend for 15 seconds. With machine running, add cream cheese, 1 cube at a time and blend until smooth. Add eggs, one at a time, blending 5 seconds after each addition.

Pour custard into the prepared pan. Place the pan in a roasting pan and pour enough water into the roasting pan to come half way up the sides of the custard filled pan.

Bake about 50 minutes. Place flan uncovered, in refrigerator overnight.

To server, cut around flan to loosen. Invert a platter over the flan and flip the flan onto the plate.  Gently remove the pan, allowing the flan to settle onto the platter and caramel syrup to pour over the top. Crack the caramel in the bottom of the pan and use as a garnish.

Vanilla Caramel Budino with Salted Caramel Sauce

Vanilla Caramel Budino

8 Egg Yolks
9 Tablespoons Cornstarch
1/4 Cup Heavy Cream
1/4 Cup Whole Milk
1/2 Teaspoon Kosher Salt
1 1/2 Cups Packed Brown Sugar
3 Cups Heavy Cream
3 Cups Whole Milk
2 Teaspoons Pure Vanilla Extract
2 Sticks Unsalted Butter
1 1/2 Cups Granulated Sugar

Directions:

  • In a mixing bowl combine: egg yolks, cornstarch, first measurements of heavy cream, milk and salt.
  • In a heavy bottomed pot bring brown sugar, remaining cream, milk and vanilla just to a boil.
  • In a separate pot heat granulated sugar, until it is a deep amber colour, remove from heat immediately. Slowly pour hot cream mixture into cooked sugar, stir over heat until combined and smooth.
  • Carefully ladle hot caramel sauce slowly into egg mixture, whisking constantly. Keep adding until about half of the caramel has been added, then slowly add the tempered egg mixture back into the caramel. Cook over medium heat until thickened.
  • Remove from heat and add butter. Whisk until smooth. Allow mixture to cool to room temperature, stirring frequently and gently to allow steam to escape.
  • Mixture may now be poured into serving containers, or left in bowl. Cover with plastic wrap. Make sure plastic wrap is touching the surface of the custard to avoid a skin from forming. Chill for 6-8 hours until set.

Salted Caramel Sauce

3/4 Cups Whole Milk, Divided
1/2 Vanilla Bean, Split Lengthwise
1/2 Cup Sugar
2 Tablespoons Light Corn Syrup
4 Tablespoons Unsalted butter, cut into cubes
1/4 Teaspoon Kosher Salt

  • Place cream in a small pitcher. Scrape in seeds from vanilla bean, add bean. Set aside.
  • Stir sugar, corn syrup, and 2 tablespoons of water in a heavy saucepan over medium heat until sugar is dissolved. Increase heat to medium high, and boil, occasionally swirling pan (do not stir) until a deep amber colour forms, 5-6 minutes.
  • Remove from heat and gradually add vanilla cream (mixture will bubble vigorously). Whisk over medium heat until smooth and thick, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and whisk in butter and salt. Strain into a heatproof bowl and let cool slightly.

To server, spoon Budino into serving dishes, drizzle salted caramel over each.  If you wish you can top with whipped cream and crushed Amaretti biscuits or biscotti, and of course more salted caramel.

Duck Parmentier with 2 types of squash

Duck Parmentier with Butternut and Spaghetti Squash

1 Small butternut squash
1 small spaghetti squash
1/4 cup + 3 TBL olive oil
1 sprig thyme
1 branch of fresh rosemary
2 french shallots, minced
1/2 cup Sortilege Maple Whiskey
1 1/4 cups veal stock
salt and pepper
duck leg confit (2 legs, deboned)
2 Tablespoons Parmesan cheese

 

Preheat oven to 300º F

Cut both squash in two, from top to bottom. Remove seeds. Drizzle with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper, add a sprig of fresh thyme. Bake in oven, covered about 1 hour. Remove flesh from squash skins. Puree the butternut squash in a food processor. Pull apart flesh of spaghetti squash with a fork.

Place the shallots, sortilege, and rosemary in a saucepan. Bring to the boil and reduce by two-thirds. Add veal stock and bring back to the boil. Adjust seasoning. Put sauce through a sieve.

Preheat oven to 400º F. Use a cylinder 3 inches in diameter as  a mold (not mould). First place  shredded spaghetti squash in the mold. Add a layer of duck confit. Cover with butternut squash. press lightly.  Top each parmentier with a tablespoon of parmesan cheese. Remove the cylinder. Bake 5 minutes.  Garnish with a sprig of rosemary. Spoon warm sauce over.  2-3 servings.

Adapted from: Cooking with Quebec MapleSyrup, Anne Fortin

Parmesan Roasted Acorn Squash

One of the best things about this squash recipe is that you can eat the skins, as long as they are roasted long enough.

1 medium acorn squash, washed, dried and cut into 1/2” slices, seeds removed
1/2 cup Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese, grated
1/4 cup  bread crumbs
2 cloves garlic, minced
8 medium sage leaves, finely chopped
1 tsp  freshly grated lemon zest
1/4 cup  olive oil
salt and black pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400ºF.

In a medium bowl combine Parmesan, bread crumbs, garlic, sage, lemon zest, olive oil; season with salt and black pepper.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place squash slices in a single layer onto pan. Sprinkle with cheese/breadcrumb mixture and gently pat to adhere. Bake for approximately 20 minutes or until fork tender. Remove from oven and serve.

Makes 4 servings

Spanish Seafood Caneloni

Canelones del Mare

Serves 6

1 recipe Fresh Pasta (see below)

Seafood Cream Sauce
1 yellow onion, diced
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
4 cups heavy cream
3/4 cups white wine
1/4 cups brandy
2 tablespoons chopped sage
salt and pepper
200 grams manchego cheese, grated (about 2 cups)
450 grams crap meat
340 grams cooked baby shrimp
1/2 cup parsley
1/2 bread crumbs

In a large sauté pan, sauté onion in olive oil and butter until soft. Add cream and bring to a simmer and reduce by about half approximately 15-20 minutes. Add wine, brandy, herbs, and salt and pepper. Cooke for 2 more minutes on medium high heat. Remove from heat and stir in the cheese. Set aside to cool.

Combine crabmeat, shrimp, parsley, 1 cup Seafood Cream Sauce, and bread crumbs.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place 3 tablespoons filling onto each pasta rectangle and roll up lengthwise. Place 1/2 cup of Seafood Cream Sauce in the bottom of an ovenproof baking dish. Arrange Canelones on top of sauce. Add the rest of the cream sauce evenly on top. Bake uncovered for 15 to 20 minutes, until the top is slightly browned and the filling is hot inside. Remove from the oven and let rest for 5 minutes. Transfer Canelones to serving plates with a spatula, 2 per person.

 

Fresh Pasta

4 Cups flour
5 Whole Eggs

Place flour in a mound on a smooth clean surface. Make a large well in the centre of the mound. Pour the eggs into the well and beat them with a fork. Slowly start mixing the flour into the eggs by hand, until all of the eggs and flour are mixed and a rough ball forms. Scrape work surface and add a little fresh flour. Knead the dough for about 10 minutes. The Ball of dough should be getting smoother and more elastic. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Cut the dough into 6 equal pieces. Roll the dough very thin, or run through a pasta machine. Cut into 4 X 5 Inch rectangles. Boil in a large pot of salted water for about 4 minutes, until just cooked. Dry with a towel. Your pasta is now ready to use.

Maple Creme Anglaise

Maple Gingerbread Souffle with Maple Creme Anglaise

This soufflé, although not as high as some dessert soufflés, has a rich gingerbread flavor and more dense texture. Serves 6 (or 2 if it’s movie night at the cottage)
1/4 Cup unsalted Butter
1/4 Cup all purpose Flour
1 1/2 Cups 2% Milk
1/3 Cup packed dark Brown Sugar
1/3 Cup light (unsulfured) molasses
1 TBL Ground Ginger
1 tsp Ground Nutmeg
1/2 tsp Ground Cloves
1 tsp Vanilla
1/4 tsp salt
4 large Egg Yolks

7 large Egg Whites
1/3 tsp Cream of Tartar

Maple Crème Anglaise (see below)

Position rack in centre of oven and pre-heat to 375° F. Butter one 6 – 8 Cup soufflé dish.

Melt 1/4 Cup Butter in a heavy medium saucepan over medium heat. Add Flour and whisk until roux is smooth and bubbles, about 2 minutes. Gradually whisk in Milk, bring to a boil. Continue boiling until smooth and thick, whisking constantly, about 1 minute. Remove from heat. Add sugar, molasses, spices, vanilla and salt; Whisk until blended. Cool until just warm, whisking occasionally, about 5 minutes. Whisk in egg yolks. (This soufflé base can be made up to one day ahead and chilled. Bring to just above room temperature over low heat, before egg whites.)

Using electric mixer, beat egg whites and cream of tartar until stiff but not dry. Fold 1/4 of egg whites into soufflé base to lighten. Gradually fold soufflé base back into egg whites. Transfer soufflé mixture into prepared dish.

Bake soufflé until puffed, brown and almost firm to the touch in the centre, about 45 minutes. Do not open oven while baking, or evil with befall you. Serve immediately with Maple Crème Anglaise.

 

Maple Crème Anglaise

 

4 Large Eggs
1/4 Cup Pure Maple Syrup
Pinch of Salt
1 Cup Half and Half Cream
1/2 tsp Vanilla

Combine yolks, syrup and salt in a heavy small saucepan and whisk to blend. Gradually whisk in half and half. Stir over medium-low heat until custard thickens and leaves a path on the back of a spoon when your finger is drawn across it, about 6 minutes. Do not boil. Add vanilla. If sauce is not smooth, use fine sieve and transfer to a bowl. Serve warm of at room temperature

Mouzillards aux Lait

Cream of Chestnut Soup

Nouzillards au Lait
1 1/2 Pounds fresh Chestnuts
2 TBL Butter
1 Onion, chopped
3 Stalks Celery, chopped
1 Quart Chicken Broth
Salt and Pepper
2 Cups Milk

Slit the end of each chestnut with a small sharp knife. Place in oven proof frying pan and roast in a 350° oven for 35 minutes. Cool and peel the chestnuts.

Melt the butter in a soup pot over low heat. Add the onion and celery and cook, stirring often, until softened, about 10 minutes. Add the chestnuts and broth and season with salt and pepper. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, shaking the pot occasionally, until chestnuts and nearly tender, about 15 minutes.

In a small saucepan, bring milk almost to a boil. Add the milk to the soup pot and continue to simmer gently, still uncovered, until the chestnuts are very tender, 15 – 20 minutes more.

Taste the soup and adjust the seasoning. Resist the urge to taste repeatedly, until you are worried there will not be enough for dinner… Soup may be pureed, either with an immersion blender, or tabletop blender.

Spoon into warmed serving bowls and serve very hot.

Ropa Vieja

Ropa Vieja Pot Pies

 

Makes 6 – 8 individual pot pies; Total time 2 1/4 hours

Saute:
4 Strips thick sliced Bacon
2 Cups Onion, diced
2 cups Red bell peppers, diced
1 cups Poblano, seeded, diced
1 cup Anaheim chiles, seeded, diced
1 Tbl Garlic, minced
1 1/2 lb flank steak (or brisket), trimmed, seasoned with salt and pepper

Stir in; Simmer ; whisk in:
1 bottle Beer (12 oz)
2 cups Beef broth
1 Tbl Chili powder
1 Tbl dried Oregano leaves
2 tsp ground Cumin
1/4 tsp Cayenne
1/8 tsp Cinnamon
1/3 cup Masa harina
2 cups roma Tomatoes
1 can black beans, drained, rinsed (15 oz)
1/2 cup pimento-stuffed olives, halved
juice of 1/2 Lime
salt and pepper to taste

Line a baking sheet with foil.

Saute bacon in a large saucepan or Dutch oven, over medium-high heat until crisp, 8 minutes. Transfer to paper towel-lined plate, set aside.  Saute onion, bell pepper, chiles and garlic in bacon drippings, until beginning to brown, 8 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.  Cut steak into thirds and sear until browned, about 5 minutes per side.

Stir in beer, broth and seasonings, bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, covered 45 minutes. Remove steak from pan and shred with 2 forks, and set aside.

Whisk Masa into broth, bring to a boil, and simmer to thicken slightly, 10 minute. Stir in reserved beef., vegetables, and bacon with remaining ingredients.

Divide filling among six 2-cup ovenproof dishes, transfer dishes to prepared baking skeet and top with biscuit topping (below)

 

Pepper Jack Biscuits
Whisk together and cut in:
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup Masa Harina
2 tsp Baking powder
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp table salt
6 Tbl unsalted butter, cold, cubed
1 cup pepper jack cheese, shredded
1/2 cup scallions

Blend in:
3/4 cup whole milk
3/4 cup sour cream

Preheat oven to 400

Whisk flour, masa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together, in a bowl until combined. Rub in butter, until pea-sized. Stir in cheese and scallions.

Blend milk and sour cream, in a small bowl, then stir into flour mixture until just combined.

To peach pot pie with 3 golf ball sized spoons of  biscuit topping. Baked until biscuits are golden and a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean, 25-30 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes before serving, to set up.

velencia orange flan

Valencia Orange and Cheese Flan with Orange Rum Sauce

 

This is a seductive flan, with the texture of a creamy cheesecake and the aroma of fresh oranges and orange blossoms.

Serves 8
2 cups sugar
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup whole milk
2 12 oz cans evaporated milk
1 vanilla bean
3 sticks Ceylon or Mexican cinnamon sticks (canela)
6 star anise pods
peel of 1/2 orange, cut into long strips
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
6 large egg yolks
2 whole eggs
1 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup orange flavoured liqueur (Cointreau)
1/8 cup spiced rum
1 Tbl orange blossom water
4 cups fresh orange juice (from 12-14 medium Valencia oranges)
peel of 1/2 orange, cut into thin slivers
orange slices for garnish

Have a baking pan at least 3 inches deep and large enough to hold flan mold ready.

Place 1 cup sugar  and the water in a small heavy saucepan, bring to the boil over medium heat, and cook until the liquid turns light amber.  Do not stir, but instead swirl the pan gently.  Pour into a 9 by 2 inch deep round cake pan and swirl to coat the bottom and sides. Let cool.

Place the whole milk and evaporated milk in a medium saucepan. Split the vanilla bean lengthwise, scrape the seeds into the milk and add the bean. Add the cinnamon, star anise, and orange peel and bring barely to the boil, over medium-high heat. Lower the heat and simmer gently for 2-3 minutes, then remove from heat and cool. remove spices and peel.

Preheat oven to 350 F

Place the cream cheese, egg yolks and eggs in a large mixing bowl and beat with a wooden spoon, while adding the condensed milk until smooth and well-integrated. Add the cooled steeped milk, 1/4 cup liqueur, and the orange blossom water and stir gently until all the ingredients are well incorporated.  Strain the mixture through a fine sieve into the caramelized mould. Place the baking pan with mold on the middle rack of the oven and pour in hot water to come halfway up the sides of the flan mold.  Bake until just set, 60 – 70 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool to room temperature.

While flan is cooking, place the orange juice, the last 1 cup of sugar and the slivered orange peel in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Lower heat and simmer, uncovered, until the mixture is reduced almost by half. Stir in the remaining 1/4 cup liqueur, 1/8 cup spiced rum and continue simmering for 10 – 15 minutes, until the sauce coats the back of a spoon. Remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature on a wire rack. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Chill flan for at least 3 hours before serving. unmold onto a decorative plate and garnish with orange slices. Pour the sauce into a decorative bowl and serve alongside flan.

Dark Chocolate Panna Cotta

Dark Chocolate Panna Cotta with Rasberry and Port Reduction

2 Cups Whole Milk
2 Tbsp Powdered Gelatin
2 Cups Whipping Cream
1/2 Cup Sugar
8 oz Dark Chocolate chopped
2 tsp Pure Vanilla Extract

Raspberry Port Sauce
3/4 Cup Tawny Port
1/2 Cup Sugar
2 Tbsp aged Balsamic Vinegar
2 Cups Raspberries

Grease 6 1-cup ramekins

Pour milk into medium bowl. Whisk in gelatin until dissolved, about 1 minute

Whisk cream and sugar in a heavy medium saucepan over medium-high heat until sugar dissolves and mixture comes just to the boil. Remove from heat.

Add chocolate and vanilla, and whisk until smooth. Whisk warm chocolate mixture into gelatin mixture until homogeneous.

Divide mixture into prepared ramekins cover and chill for 2 hours or until set.

For sauce, combine port, sugar and balsamic together in a skillet and bring to a boil. Boil for 8 to 10 minutes or until 1/2 cup remains.

Remove from heat and gently stir in raspberries. Cool to room temperatures.

To de-mould the panna cotta, pour hot water into a larger dish, to come halfway up the sides of the ramekins. Let stand 1 1/2 minutes. Wipe dry and invert on serving plate. Shake gentle to dislodge panna cotta.  Spoon  Sauce over.

Steamed PUdding

Chocolate and Whole Orange Steamed Pudding

1 Thin Skinned Navel Orange (smaller size)
1/2 Cup Butter
1/2 Cup Dark Chocolate (chopped)
1 1/2 Cups Flour
2 tsp Baking powder
3/4 Cup Cocoa Powder
1 Cup Granulated Sugar
2 Eggs
2 Tbsp Milk

Place Orange in a pot and fill with enough water to cover the orange. Bring to a boil and boil for 15 minutes. Remove and cool.

Grease a 5 Cup pudding mold or glass bowl.

Melt butter a chocolate together in a small pot, over low heat, just until smooth. Sift together flour, baking powder, cocoa and sugar into a large bowl. Whisk together eggs and milk in a small bowl. Stir chocolate into dry ingredients. Stir in Eggs and milk. Mix together until well combined. Batter should be fairly stiff.

Spoon 2/3 of the batter into the prepared bowl. Make a shallow well in the centre. Place 3 Tbsp of sugar on a plate. Pierce clementine all over with a fork and roll in sugar. Place clementine in the well. Dot pudding with 1/4 cup of butter. Sprinkle with remaining sugar.

Cover orange and batter with remaining batter. Cover bowl with Parchment, and secure with an elastic. Trim excess parchment. Cover parchment with aluminum foil.

Set-up a dutch oven for steaming. Place a cookie cutter, or tuna can with both ends removed in bottom of pot. Fill with water to come halfway up the bowl. Bring to the boil and gently place bowl on the cookie cutter. Cover with lid and reduce heat, so the water gently boils. Steam for 2 hours, topping up water if needed. Remove from steamer and remove cover.  The pudding should be firm and a toothpick should come out clean. Rest of rack for 20 minutes.

Turn out onto a serving dish. Slice  with a serrated knife, cutting right through the orange, so each slice has a little piece of the orange. Serve with crème fraiche, custard or cream.

Tomato Bisque with Roasted Lobster

Tomato Bisque with Roasted lobster

This soup has a thick, rich, not quite smooth texture, from the vegetables, and a hint of heat from the cayenne.
2 8 oz Lobster tails
2 tsp butter
8 Sundried tomatoes
4 Cups chicken broth
2 lb very ripe plum tomatoes
2 large sweet red peppers
2 Shallots
2 Large garlic cloves
1 tbsp. Olive oil
1/2 tsp Salt
1/4 tsp cayenne
2 tbsp Madeira wine
1 Cup Whipping cream
2 tbsp finely chopped parsley

Preheat oven to 350 F

Using kitchen shears, cut lobster tails along the back almost to the tail. Turn over and cut along each side, to prevent tail from curling. Place back-side up on a small ungreased baking sheet. Force sides together, to open the tail. Dot with butter. Roast 15-20 minutes or until shell is tender and meat is opaque and tender. Cool then remove from shell and coarsely chop.

Increase oven to 400 F

Coat a large baking sheet with non-stick spray. Cut sundried tomatoes into strips and soak in stock, while vegetables roast. Core unpeeled tomatoes, cut in half and seed. Cut peppers in half, core and seed. Peel and cut shallots in quarters. Place vegetables cut side down on a large baking sheet. Place unpeeled garlic cloves in centre area of pan. Drizzle with olive oil, season with salt and pepper. Roast uncovered for 30 to 35 minutes, or until tomatoes are lightly browned and very soft. Remove peels from roasted tomatoes, garlic and peppers, discard.

Puree roasted vegetables and sundried tomatoes with stock in a blender.  Whirl in salt, cayenne and Madeira. Adjust stock if needed, for desired consistency.  Taste and adjust seasoning (as in add more pepper). Soup can be covered and refrigerated for up to 3 days.

Heat soup gently in a large saucepan over medium-low heat until very hot, but not boiling.  Divide warmed lobster among  warmed soup bowls, ladle in the soup and garnish with chopped parsley. Serve immediately, with bread.

Serves 8.

Chestnut Mousse with Almond Milk sauce

Chestnut Mousse with Almond Milk

This is a lovely light holiday themed dessert. I came up with a quick recipe for candied Chestnuts, while our guests were eating the main course.
1 Cup Whipping cream
1 Package Unflavoured Gelatin
1/2 Cup Granulated sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 Cup Unsweetened Chestnut puree (recipe follows)
1 tbsp Cognac
2 Egg whites
SAUCE:
1/2 Cup Whole blanched almonds
1 Cup Whole milk
2 Tbsp almond Liquor
1/2 tsp cornstarch
Candied Chestnuts for garnish (recipe to follow)

Pour 1/4 Cup cream in to a small saucepan. Sprinkle gelatin over the top. Meanwhile ship remaining cream with 1/4 cup sugar and vanilla, until soft peaks form.  Refrigerate.

Heat gelatin and cream mixture over low heat, stirring until gelatin dissolves.  Remove from heat and stir in chestnut puree and Cognac.

with an electric mixer, whisk egg whites until frothy. Add remaining sugar beat until stiff peaks form.

Fold whipped cream and chestnut mixture together. then fold egg whites into the mixture. Pour into 6 individual soufflé dishes or custard cups. Smooth the surface and refrigerate for 4 hours.

For Sauce, place almonds and milk in a saucepan and bring to the boil. Simmer 5 minutes, then remove from heat. Cover and let stand for 30 minutes. Puree in blender, then strain through a fine sieve into a clean saucepan.

Mix almond liquor and cornstarch together. Whisk into almond milk and bring to the boil. Cook 1 minute, whisking constantly. Pour into a small bowl and cover the surface with plastic wrap. Cool and refrigerate.

To serve, run a knife around the sides of dishes and dip in hot water for 1 minute, then turn out onto serving plate. Pour 2 Tbsp of sauce around mousse and garnish with candied chestnuts.

Chestnut Puree

7 oz  vacpac of roasted chestnuts
1 1/4 Cups whole milk (more if needed)
Pinch of Salt
1/2 Vanilla bean, split lengthwise

Combine chestnuts, milk, and salt in a saucepan. Using the tip of a paring knife, scrape seeds from vanilla bean into pan, and toss in pod. Bring to a simmer, and cook, partially covered, until chestnuts are very soft and all but about 1/2 cup of the liquid has been absorbed, about 20 minutes.

Pour mixture through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl, reserving chestnuts and cooking liquid separately and discarding vanilla pod. Process chestnuts in a food processor until very smooth, adding reserved cooking liquid (and additional milk if needed), 1 tablespoon at a time, until mixture is the consistency of a thick spread. Pour through a large-mesh sieve. Cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until ready to use.

Candied Chestnuts

3/4 cups sugar
1/2 cup water
1/2  vanilla bean split lengthwise
1 vacpac roasted whole chestnuts

In a heavy saucepan, combine the sugar and water. Split the vanilla bean in half lengthwise. Using a sharp paring knife, scrape the seeds into the pan, then add the pod. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the sugar has dissolved. Bring to a boil.

Add the chestnuts. (If using vacuum-packed nuts, separate them carefully so they don’t break apart.) Bring the syrup to a simmer. Simmer until the chestnuts look translucent but are still firm, about 25 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool.

Boeuf en Croute

Boeuf en Croute with Madeira Sauce

 

6 Tbl unsalted butter
6 beef tenderloin medalions, each 6 ounces and 1 1/2 inches thick
2
shallots, minced
1 pound
mushrooms, finely chopped
4 tablespoons
heavy cream
salt
Freshly ground black pepper

2 pounds puff pastry
1 egg lightly beaten together with 1 tablespoon of water

Madeira Sauce
1 cup Madeira
2 tablespoons minced shallots
1 teaspoon minced thyme leaves
1 cup veal stock
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
Freshly ground black pepper

  • Heat a large skillet over high heat. Melt 3 tablespoons of the butter and sauté the steaks in it for 30 seconds per side. Remove the steaks from the pan and set them aside to cool completely.
  • In the same skillet over high heat, melt the remaining 3 tablespoons of butter, add the shallots and mushrooms, and sauté until all the liquid given off by the mushrooms evaporates. Add the cream and season with salt and pepper. Reduce the heat to medium and continue sautéing until the mixture forms a thick puree, 3 to 5 minutes more. Transfer to a bowl or plate to cool.
  • Preheat the oven to 450°F.
  • Divide the pastry into 6 equal portions. On a lightly floured board, roll out each portion to a rectangle about 6 by 12 inches and 1/4 inch thick. Place a steak on one side of each pastry rectangle, leaving enough room to fold over.
  • Divide the mushroom puree among the steaks, spreading it evenly on top. Brush the edges of the pastry with the egg wash and then the pastry over the meat, molding the pastry to the steak’s contours and sealing the edges by pressing down. With a knife, trim off excess pastry. Decoratively flute the edges with your fingertips or the tines of a fork. Brush more egg wash over the top of each pastry-enclosed steak.
  • Transfer the packages to a baking sheet or dish and bake them until the pastry is golden brown, 15 to 20 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, make the Madeira Sauce: In a saucepan, bring the Madeira, shallots, and thyme to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook until only 1/3 cup remains. Add the stock; continue to reduce, over medium heat, until slightly thickened. Whisk in the butter. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Place a pastry-enclosed steak on top of each heated serving plate and garnish with watercress. Spoon the sauce around it and serve immediately.

Roasted Pear and Caramel Trifle

Roasted Pears
10 large ripe but firm Bosc pears
2 tbsp butter melted

Custard
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 Litre 18% cream divided
4 egg yolks
1 tsp pure vanilla extract

Caramel Sauce
1/4 cup water
1 cup granulated sugar
1 tbsp butter
3/4 cup whipping cream
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract

Assembly
7 oz ladyfingers
2 tbsp rum
1 cup whipping cream
1 ripe red pear

1. To roast pears, preheat oven to 400 F.

2. Coat a baking sheet with sides with nonstick spray. Peel, core and slice pears into �-inch (1-cm) slices. Lay in a single layer on sheet; drizzle with melted butter. Bake for 35 to 45 minutes, turning and rearranging slices every 15 minutes as needed, until slices are richly golden. Cool on sheet.

3. Meanwhile, stir sugar with flour. Whisk 1 cup (250 mL) cold cream with egg yolks; then mix in sugar mixture. Heat remaining cream in a saucepan over medium-low heat until hot, but not yet simmering. Slowly whisk half of hot cream into cold cream mixture; continuing to whisk, pour mixture back into saucepan containing remaining hot cream. Stirring almost constantly with a wooden spoon, continue cooking for 10 minutes or until mixture becomes glossy and thickens. Do not boil. Remove from heat; stir in vanilla. Press a buttered piece of waxed paper or piece of plastic wrap directly onto custard surface; cool. Custard sets even more as it cools.

4. To make caramel sauce, measure water into a medium heavy-bottom sauce pan. Add sugar and butter; do not stir! Measure out whipping cream, set near the stove along with vanilla. Place saucepan over medium-high heat and bring to a boil without stirring. Let bubble briskly for 5 to 7 minutes or until the sugar begins to change colour. Swirl pan gently on the unit until the colour becomes deeply golden. Avert your face (as hot steam rapidly rises) and near the side of the pan, pour in whipping cream. Stir until smooth. Slide pan off heat; stir in vanilla. Cool until lukewarm before using or pour into a container; sauce thickens as it cools. (Once cooled, cover and refrigerate for a week or more.)

5. To assemble trifle, choose a large deep bowl, preferably glass. Line bottom with half of the ladyfingers; drizzle with 1 tbsp (15 mL) rum. Evenly top with half of roasted pears and 2 tbsp (25 mL) caramel sauce. Pour over half of custard. Repeat. If making a day or 2 ahead, cover and refrigerate. Refrigerate remaining caramel sauce.

6. To serve, whip cream until soft peaks form when whisk is lifted; spread over top of trifle. Core unpeeled red pear and very thinly slice. Decoratively arrange on top of trifle. Drizzle with some of the reserved caramel sauce.

Shrimp Bisque

Shrimp Bisque

 

Ingredients:

  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, divided
  • 1 1/2 pound medium shrimp (about 45), peeled, deveined, shells reserved
  • 2 bay leaves, divided
  • 2 carrots, peeled, chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup brandy
  • 1/4 cup long-grain white rice
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 3 sprigs fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon (or more) cayenne pepper
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh chives

Method:

Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a large heavy pot over medium-high heat. Add shrimp shells and cook, stirring frequently, until they begin to brown, about 5 minutes. Add 1 bay leaf and 8 cups water. Simmer uncovered for 25 minutes. Set a fine-mesh strainer over a large bowl. Strain, discarding solids. DO AHEAD: Shrimp stock can be made 3 days ahead. Let cool slightly; chill uncovered until cold, then cover and keep chilled.

Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a large heavy pot over medium heat. Add shrimp and cook, stirring occasionally, until just opaque in center, 3-4 minutes. Transfer shrimp to a plate. Add remaining 2 tablespoons butter to same pot. Add carrots, celery, and onion and cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until very soft, about 20 minutes.

Remove pot from heat; add brandy. Return pot to heat and stir until almost evaporated, 2-3 minutes. Add rice and tomato paste; stir for 1 minute. Add shrimp stock, remaining bay leaf, parsley, thyme, and 1/4 teaspoon cayenne. Simmer uncovered until flavors meld and rice is soft, about 20 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Reserve 4 shrimp for garnish and stir remaining shrimp into bisque. Remove parsley, thyme, and bay leaf.

Working in batches, purée bisque in a blender until smooth. Pour through a fine mesh strainer set over a clean pot. Discard solids in strainer. Stir in cream and reheat bisque over medium heat. Add lemon juice. Season to taste with salt, pepper, and more cayenne, if desired.

Mince reserved shrimp and mix with chives in a small bowl. Place 1 heaping tablespoon shrimp mixture in the center of large, shallow soup bowls. Ladle bisque around garnish and serve.

 

Croissant banana bread pudding with Sortilege Sauce

Croissant Banana Bread Pudding with Sortilege Sauce

Ingredients:

Bread Pudding
1 cup whole or 2% milk
1 cup heavy cream
3 egg yolks (reserve whites)
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon orange zest, minced
5 large croissants, torn into large pieces
2 ripe bananas, sliced
1/4 cup brown sugar
lemon juice to taste
3 egg whites
1 pinch salt
2 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
powdered sugar, as needed

Sortilege Sauce

2 cups whole milk
1/4 cup sugar
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup Sortilege Maple Whiskey
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 egg yolk

Method:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Spray 6-oz. size ramekins with non-stick spray.

Bread Pudding: In a large mixing bowl, whisk together milk, cream, egg yolks (reserve whites), sugar, vanilla, and orange zest.

Tear the croissants into large pieces, add them to the egg mixture, and toss gently to coat. Soak croissants 15 minutes, stirring once or twice to make sure the bread is saturated.

While the croissants are soaking, stir together the banana slices, brown sugar, and lemon juice. Set aside to use when assembling the puddings.

In a clean bowl, whip reserved egg whites and salt with an electric mixer until soft peaks form; don’t overbeat! Gently fold whites into soaked bread.

To assemble, spoon a little banana mixture into ramekins. Top with 1/3 cup bread mixture, and then divide remaining banana mixture among ramekins. Top with bread mixture – they will be full.

Transfer ramekins to a baking sheet; combine sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle on top of puddings. Bake until puffed and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 30 minutes.

While puddings bake, prepare sauce.

In a small saucepan over medium heat, simmer milk, sugar, and salt.

In a small bowl, combine the Southern Sortilege, cornstarch, and egg yolk. Temper hot milk into egg mixture, then add egg mixture back to the pan.

Reduce heat to medium-low; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and add vanilla; let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Dust puddings with powdered sugar; pour sauce into and over the top. Serve immediately.

Curried Roasted Squash Soup

Curried Roasted Squash Soup

Ingredients:

2 Cloves Garlic, Minced
1 Tbl Finely Chopped Ginger
1/2 tsp Ground Cardamom
1/2 tsp Freshly Grated Nutmeg
1 Green Chili (or jalapeno)
1/4 Cup Butter
1 Butternut Squash, Split lengthwise, seeds removed
8 Cups Chicken stock
Salt and freshly ground pepper

Directions:

Preheat oven nto 375 F

Divide the garlic, ginger, cardamom, nutmeg, chili and butter between the  cavities of the squash halves

Place cut side up on a baking sheet and cover loosely with foil. Bake for 1 hour, until soft to the touch. Let the squash cool until you can handle them.

Scrape the squash from its skin and transfer to  a soup pot. Discard skin. Add the stock and bring to the boil, then reduce  heat and simmer for 15 minutes stirring occasionally. Using and immersion blender, puree the soup. Season with salt and pepper. Ladle into bowls and top with crème fraiche.

This can also be topped with Squash chips, made by slicing squash thinly. Blanche for 1 -2 minutes, pat dry and lay out on a parchment lined baked sheet and bake for approximately 10 minutes, until crisp.

Chocolate Espresso Dacquoise

Serves 8-10

Meringues

2 Cups blanched almonds, chopped
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 TBL cornstarch
8 large egg whites, room temperature
pinch of salt
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 Cups sliced unblanched almonds

Position the racks in the top and bottom  thirds of the oven and preheat to 350ºF.  Trace 3 8-inch circles on 2 pieces of parchment paper, and place the paper on 2 large baking sheets, tracing side down.

Toast the blanched almonds on a large baking sheet for about 15 minutes, until golden brown.  Transfer to a plate to cool. Reduce oven to 250ºF.

Pulse the toasted nuts in a food processor just until finely ground.

Whisk together 1/2 cup of the sugar and the cornstarch, in a small bowl, and reserve. With an electric mixer, on medium speed, beat the egg whites in a large bowl until foamy. Increase the speed to medium-high, add the salt, and beat just until the egg whites form soft peaks. Add remaining 1 cup sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating well after each addition, and continue to beat just until stiff peaks form. With rubber spatula, fold in the reserved sugar mixture in three batches. Fold in the vanilla. Fold in the ground almonds in 3 batches.

Spoon the meringue onto the paper circles (about 2 2/3 cups per disk) and smooth with a spatula; you want them to be level on the top, not domed.  Bake the meringues for 3 hours, or until medium golden brown, switching the baking sheets halfway through cooking.  transfer the meringues, still on the parchment paper, to a wire rack and cool completely.  Increase oven to 350ºF.

Ganache

1 Cup Heavy Cream
8 Ounces dark chocolate, chopped

Toast the sliced almonds on a large baking sheet, for about 10 minutes, or until golden brown. Transfer to a plate to cool.

Bring the cream just to the boil in a medium saucepan, over medium heat. remove from heat and add the chocolate. Let stand for 2 minutes.  Whisk until smooth, then transfer to a bowl and cool to room temperature. Refrigerate, tightly covered, until thick enough to spread, about 30 minutes.

Buttercream

6 large egg yolks
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 TBL instant espresso powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/4 cups (2 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into tablespoons, at room temp.

Meanwhile make the buttercream. With an electric mixer on high-speed, beat the egg yolks with 1/2 cup sugar, in a medium deep bowl, until very thick and pale (about 5 minutes)

Bring the cream, the remaining 1/2 cup sugar and the espresso powder to a boil, in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Whisk until the sugar is dissolved. Beating on medium-high speed, slowly pour half of the hot cream mixture into the yolks. Return the yolk mixture to the saucepan, with the remaining cream and whisk in the salt.  Cook over medium heat whisking constantly, for 6 minutes, or until the custard registers 170ºF, on a candy thermometer. Do not allow to boil.

Immediately transfer the mixture to a large deep bowl and, with an electric mixer, on high-speed, beat for about 6 minutes, until cooled to room temperature. Beating on high-speed, add the butter, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating well after each addition. Transfer to a bowl and refrigerate, tightly covered, for about 45 minutes, until firm enough to spread. If buttercream gets too cold to spread, beat on high-speed until spreadable.

Peel of the parchment, from the meringues. Reserve the best one, for the top layer. Place the remaining 2 layers on a baking sheet and  spread half of the ganache over each one, stopping 1/2 inch from the edge. refrigerate for about 10 minutes, to set the chocolate.

Spread a scant cup of buttercream over the chocolate on each layer. Stack the 2 meringues, and place the reserved layer on top. Spread the remaining buttercream over the top and sides of the cake. Press some of the sliced almonds into the sides of the cake and sprinkle the rest over the top. refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or up to 12 hours, to allow the buttercream to chill and set.

To serve, dust the top of the cake with confectioners sugar. Cut into slices, with a serrated knife, using a gentle sawing motion.

marinated shrimp with champagne beurre blanc

Marinated Shrimp with Champagne Beurre Blanc

Sauce base

  • 2 cups Champagne or other dry sparkling wine
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped shallots
  • 2 tablespoons Champagne vinegar or other white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon whole black peppercorns

Shrimp

  • 1 cup Champagne or other dry sparkling wine
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons minced shallots
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 24 extra-large uncooked shrimp (about 2 pounds), peeled with tail left intact, deveined
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh chives
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh tarragon
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley
  • Nonstick vegetable oil spray
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 16 pieces

Method

For sauce base:
Combine Champagne, shallots, vinegar, and peppercorns in heavy medium saucepan. Boil until reduced to 1/4 cup liquid, about 20 minutes. (Can be made 4 hours ahead. Cover and let stand at room temperature.)

For shrimp:
Combine Champagne, olive oil, shallots, and ground pepper in resealable plastic bag. Add shrimp to bag and seal; shake bag to coat shrimp evenly. Marinate shrimp at room temperature at least 30 minutes and up to 1 hour, turning bag occasionally. Mix chives, tarragon, and parsley in small bowl.

Preheat broiler. Spray broiler pan with nonstick vegetable oil spray. Drain shrimp; discard plastic bag with marinade. Arrange shrimp on prepared pan in single layer. Broil shrimp until just opaque in center, about 2 minutes per side. Stand 3 shrimp, tails upright, in center of each plate.

Rewarm sauce base over medium-low heat. Whisk in butter 1 piece at a time, just allowing each to melt before adding next (do not boil or sauce will separate). Season beurre blanc to taste with salt and pepper.

Spoon warm sauce around shrimp. Garnish with fresh herbs and serve.

Salted Caramel Ding-Dong Cake

Salted Caramel Ding-Dong Cake

Ingredients

Cake:

  • Nonstick vegetable oil spray
  • 1 cup natural unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 4 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1 cup hot strong coffee
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 cups cake flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3 large eggs

Caramel ganache:

  • 9 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1 1/8 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Filling and assembly:

  • 1 1/4 teaspoons unflavored gelatin
  • 1 1/2 cups chilled heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
  • Flaky sea salt (such as Maldon)
  • Two 9″-diameter cake pans with 2″-high sides; a 9″-diameter springform pan

 Preparation

For cake: Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat cake pans with nonstick spray. Line bottom of pans with parchment-paper rounds; coat paper. Place cocoa powder and chocolate in a medium metal bowl. Pour hot coffee over. Let stand for 1 minute. Stir until smooth. Stir in buttermilk and vanilla; set aside.

Whisk cake flour and next 3 ingredients in a medium bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat sugar and butter in a large bowl until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Add eggs one at a time, beating to blend between additions and occasionally scraping down sides and bottom of bowl. Beat until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Add dry ingredients in 3 additions, alternating with chocolate mixture in 2 additions, beginning and ending with dry ingredients. Divide batter evenly between pans; smooth tops.

Bake cakes until a tester inserted into the centers comes out clean, about 35 minutes. Transfer to wire racks; let cakes cool in pans for 10 minutes (cakes will deflate slightly). Run a knife around pans to loosen cakes; invert cakes onto racks. Peel off paper and let cakes cool completely. Turn cakes over.

If needed, use a long serrated knife to cut off bumps or trim dome from top of each cake to create a flat, even surface.

For caramel ganache: Place chocolate and salt in a medium bowl. Stir sugar and 1/4 cup water in a medium deep saucepan over medium-low heat until sugar dissolves. Increase heat and cook without stirring, occasionally swirling pan and brushing down sides with a wet pastry brush, until sugar is deep amber, about 9 minutes. Remove from heat and gradually add cream (mixture will bubble vigorously). Stir over medium heat until caramel bits dissolve. Pour over chocolate in bowl. Add vanilla; stir until mixture is smooth. Let cool slightly.

Place 1 cake layer in springform pan. Pour 1 cup ganache over. Chill until set, about 30 minutes. Cover remaining ganache and let stand at room temperature.

For filling and assembly: Place 2 tablespoons cold water in a small heatproof glass or metal bowl. Sprinkle gelatin over; let stand until gelatin softens, about 10 minutes.

Pour water to a depth of 1/2″ into a small skillet set over medium heat. Transfer bowl with gelatin to skillet; stir until gelatin dissolves, about 2 minutes. Remove bowl from skillet. Set aside.

Place cream and powdered sugar in a large bowl. Scrape in seeds from vanilla bean. Using an electric mixer, beat cream until soft peaks form. Add gelatin; beat filling until firm peaks form.

Spoon filling over chilled ganache on cake layer in pan; smooth top. Gently place second cake layer on top. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and chill until cream layer is set, at least 6 hours or overnight.

Remove sides from springform pan. Using a knife or offset spatula, scrape off any filling that may have leaked out from between cakes to form smooth sides. Transfer cake to a wire rack set inside a rimmed baking sheet.

Rewarm remaining ganache until just pourable. (Microwave in a microwave-safe bowl, or set a metal bowl over a large saucepan of simmering water until just warm, not hot.) Pour ganache over cake, tilting cake as needed to allow ganache to drip down sides and using an offset spatula to help spread ganache, if needed, to cover sides of cake. Chill until ganache is set, about 1 hour. DO AHEAD: Cake can be made 2 days ahead. Cover with a cake dome; chill. Let stand at room temperature for 1 hour before serving.

Sprinkle cake with flaky sea salt.

Dark Chocolate Soup with Caramel whipped cream

Spiced Chocolate Soup with Caramel Whipped Cream

Spiced Chocolate Soup with Caramel Whipped Cream

Makes 4 servings

  • 8 Tbsps. granulated sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. unsalted butter
  • kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 7 oz. semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 2 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1 Tbsp. Sichuan peppercorns, crushed
  1. Warm a small saucepan over medium-low heat; add 5 Tbsps. sugar to the pan, a little at a time, adding more as the sugar melts; when caramel has turned a deep golden brown, add butter, a pinch of salt and 1 cup heavy cream; bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the caramel; remove from heat; reserve in refrigerator for at least 6 hours.
  2. Put cooled caramel cream into the bowl of a mixer fitted with the whisk attachment; whip until medium peaks form; reserve in refrigerator.
  3. Place the chocolate in a medium bowl; bring milk, remaining 1/2 cup heavy cream, and remaining 3 Tbsps. sugar to a boil in a medium saucepan; add peppercorns; remove from heat; cover to infuse for 15 minutes; strain liquid through a fine-mesh sieve into a saucepan; bring to a boil; pour over the chocolate; stir until the chocolate has melted and the mixture is smooth; strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl.
  4. To serve: ladle soup into warm soup bowls; top with a dollop of the caramel whipped cream.
Braised Lamb Shanks with spring vegetables and mint gremolata

Braised Lamb Shanks with Spring Vegetables and Spring Gremolata

Braised Lamb Shanks with Spring Vegetables and Spring Gremolata

Yield: Makes 6 servings
 

Ingredients

Lamb:

  • 6 1-to 1 1/4-pound lamb shanks
  • All purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 cups finely chopped onions (about 2 medium)
  • 2 cups finely chopped peeled carrots
  • 1 1/4 cups finely chopped celery
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon (generous) tomato paste
  • 3 cups low-salt chicken broth
  • 1 1/2 cups Sauvignon Blanc or other dry white wine
  • 6 fresh Italian parsley sprigs
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
  • 2 bay leaves

Gremolata:

  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
  • 1 tablespoon (packed) finely grated lemon peel
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh green garlic or 1 garlic clove, minced

Vegetables:

  • 1 1/2 pounds unpeeled 1 1/2-to 1 3/4-inch baby red potatoes or baby Yukon Gold potatoes
  • 8 ounces slender baby carrots, trimmed, peeled
  • 8 ounces sugar snap peas, strings removed
  • 2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
  • 3 ounces fresh pea tendrils

Preparation

For lamb:
Sprinkle lamb shanks generously with salt and pepper; dust with flour. Heat oil in heavy large deep pot over medium-high heat. Working in 2 batches, if necessary, add lamb to pot and cook until browned on all sides, turning often, about 10 minutes per batch. Transfer lamb to large bowl. Add onions, carrots, and celery to same pot; sauté until vegetables begin to soften, about 10 minutes. Add garlic and tomato paste; stir 1 minute. Stir in broth, wine, parsley, thyme, and bay leaves. Return lamb to pot; bring to boil (liquid may not cover lamb completely). Reduce heat to medium-low; cover and simmer until lamb is very tender and begins to fall off bones, turning occasionally, about 3 hours.

Using tongs, transfer lamb to platter. Discard bay leaves and parsley sprigs. Spoon off fat from surface of pan juices; discard. Using immersion blender, puree pan juices until almost smooth. Season with salt and pepper. Return lamb shanks to pan juices. DO AHEAD: Can be made 1 day ahead. Cool slightly. Chill uncovered until cold, then cover and keep chilled.
For gremolata:
Mix all ingredients in small bowl. DO AHEAD: Can be made 2 hours ahead. Cover and chill.
For vegetables:
Bring large pot of salted water to boil. Add potatoes; cook until tender, about 18 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer potatoes to medium bowl. Add carrots to same pot; cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer carrots to bowl with potatoes. Add sugar snap peas to same pot; cook 1 minute. Drain. Add to bowl with potatoes and carrots. DO AHEAD: Can be made 2 hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature.

Bring lamb and pan juices to simmer over medium heat until heated through.

Meanwhile, melt butter in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add all vegetables; sauté about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Transfer lamb and pan juices to large platter or bowl. Surround with vegetables; scatter pea tendrils over vegetables. Sprinkle lamb with gremolata and serve.

Courtesy:  www.Epicurious.com

 

 

Savory Crème Brulee, with Frisee Salad and pickled Kohlrabi

SHALLOT CREME BRULEE WITH SMOKED TROUT

Ingredients

Smoked Trout
1 bunch watercress
6 oz smoked trout
½ cup pickled Kohlrabi, see recipe below
Lemon Shallot Vinaigrette, see recipe below

Shallot Creme Brulee

1 L heavy cream
1 cup shallots, thinly sliced
2 Tbsp sugar
½ tsp salt
8 egg yolks

Pickled Kohlrabi

2 cup distilled white vinegar
2 cup water
¾ cup sugar
5 Tbsp kosher salt
1 tsp yellow mustard seed
½ tsp dried hot red-pepper flakes
1 red onion, sliced
4-5 kohlrabi, peeled and cut into thin slices

Lemon Shallot Vinaigrette

1 shallot, finely diced
1 lemon, juice and zest
1 tsp Dijon mustard
½ cup olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Shallot Creme Brulee

1. In a medium saucepan over medium high heat, combine the cream, shallots, sugar and salt. Scald the cream until it is very hot to the touch but not boiled. This should take about 5 minutes. In a large mixing bowl, whisk the egg yolks together then slowly add the hot cream to the yolks while whisking constantly. Strain the mixture into 6 ceramic ramekins and place in a baking dish. Carefully pour boiling water into the pan to come halfway up the sides of the ramekins. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until the custards are set when gently shaken. Remove the custards from the water bath, cool to room temperature, and refrigerate until firm.

Pickled Kohlrabi

1. Combine all of the ingredients, except for the onion and kohlrabi in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Place the onions and kohlrabi in another saucepan and stain pickling liquid over the vegetables. Bring to a boil, and then remove from heat. Set aside to cool to room temperature. Pour into mason jars and refrigerate.

Lemon Shallot Vinaigrette

1. Whisk shallots, lemon juice, zest and mustard together. Gradually whisk in olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.

Serve

1. In a bowl toss the watercress with the smoked trout, vinaigrette, pickled kohlrabi and red onion.  Top the shallot crème brulée, with prepared salad and serve.

Courtesy of Lynn Crawford – Food Network TV

Chicken Satays with Peanut Sauce

Chicken Satay with peanut sauce

Peanut Sauce:

1 tsp Safflower Oil
1 Tbl Red Curry Paste
1 TBL Sugar
1 1/2 Cups coconut milk
1 1/2 Cups Chopped roast peanuts
1 TBL Soy sauce

Method:
Add oil to a medium saucepan set over high heat.
When the oil is very hot, add the curry paste and sugar and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute
Add the coconut milk and bring to the boil
Stir in the peanuts and soy sauce. Taste and adjust seasoning, if needed.

Marinade:

1 Tbl Coriander seeds
1 tsp Cumin seeds
3 Shallots, finely chopped
1/4 Cup Peanuts, toasted and chopped
1/2 Cup Coconut milk
1 tsp Ground turmeric
1 TBL Sweetened condensed milk
1 Tbl Palm sugar
2 Tbl Nam pla (Thai fish sauce)
1 Tbl Whiskey
1/4 tsp salt

Method:

Put the coriander and cumin seeds in a small skillet, set over medium heat. Toast, shaking the pan occasionally, until lightly browned and fragrant.
Remove from the heat and cool completely, then grind to a fine powder in a spice grinder.
Put the shallots, peanuts, ground coriander and cumin in a blender. Blend until the mixture becomes a paste.
Add the coconut milk, turmeric, condensed milk, palm sugar, nam pla, whiskey and salt.
Blend again until smooth and set the marinade aside in a shallow baking dish.

Assembly:

1 Pound boneless/skinless chicken breast, cut into 1 inch cubes
Bamboo skewers, soaked in water for 1 hour
Salt and freshly ground pepper

Method:

Thread the chicken cubes onto the skewers, leaving 3 inches at the end. Dip and roll each skewer in the marinade and let sit while you start your charcoal (or gas). The fire should be medium-hot. You can also leave the meat in the marinade for up to one day.
Season the skewers with salt and pepper, and grill for 5 minutes a side, or until lightly browned all over and cooked through.
serve immediately with the peanut sauce.

From Asian Flavours of Jean-Georges

plating the pork belly

Braised pork belly with Shallot Confit

Think of this recipe as a dressed up variation on sweet and sour pork. The honey and vinegar glazed cubes of pork simply melt in your mouth.

Braised Pork Belly:

A 2 pound piece of pork belly
3 Onions, chopped
2 Carrots, chopped
3 Celery stalks, chopped
1 Small bunch fresh thyme
1 Small bunch Fresh parsley stems
1 1/2 Tbl Black peppercorns

Method:
Preheat oven to 300ºF
Put all the braised pork ingredients in a Dutch oven.
Add enough water to cover the pork and bring the mixture to a simmer over medium-high heat.
Transfer to the oven and braise, uncovered, until the pork is tender, about 2 hours.
Remove from the oven and set aside to cool.

Meanwhile make the Shallot Confit:

1 1/2 Cups Thinly sliced shallots
2 Tbl Thinly sliced fresh ginger
1/4 Cup Honey
1/3 Cup Red wine vinegar
1/4 tsp Cracked black pepper
Salt

Method:
Put the shallots, ginger, and honey in a medium saucepan.
Set over medium-high heat and cook, stirring occasionally, until the shallots are softened and caramelized, about 10 minutes.
Add the vinegar and cook until it has evaporated.
Add 1/2 cup water and turn the heat to low. Simmer the mixture until it is almost dry.
Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.

Assembly:

1/4 Cup Honey
1/2 Cup Red wine vinegar

Remove the pork from the braising liquid and cut into 1 inch cubes.
Put the honey in a large saucepan and set over medium heat.
Cook until thickened and a deep amber colour, about 5 minutes.
Add the vinegar and stir well.
Add the pork and cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes, until brown.
If the mixture becomes too thick, add a tablespoon of water.

Divide the shallot confit among serving plates and top with the pork.
Serve warm.

Based on a recipe from “Asian Flavors of Jean-George”

Scallion Pancakes

Scallion Pancakes

This item is labour intensive, similar to making puff pastry. Don’t let the simple ingredients fool you though. These are crispy, flaky, chewy and aromatic.

1 Tbl Rice vinegar
1 Tbl Soy sauce
4 Scallions, trimmed and minced. green and white parts separated
2 Cups All purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp Salt
1 Tbl Safflower oil, plus more for frying
3 Tbl Sesame oil, plus more as needed.

Method:
In a small bowl, whisk together the vinegar, soy sauce, half the minced white scallions, and 2 tablespoons water. Set the dipping sauce aside.

Combine the flour and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer, with the dough hook.
With the mixer running on medium-low, add the oil and 1/4 cup boiling water, then add more water as needed, to make a soft pliable dough.
Divide the dough into 3 pieces and knead well on a floured board.
Cover with a kitchen towel and let rest for 20 minutes

Roll each piece of dough into a 6 inch long cylinder and cut into 3 2-inch pieces.
Roll each piece into a circle, 6 inches in diameter.
Brush each circle with the sesame oil and sprinkle with the remaining scallions.
Roll up each circle, as you would a jelly roll, and seal the edges.
Slightly flatten the dough, then coil like a snail and seal the end.
Flatten the dough, with the palm of your hand.
Repeat this process. Roll, flatten, coil and flatten again.

Let the pancakes rest, covered for 20 minutes, then flatten with your hand and roll out into a thin flat circle.
Stack the pancakes between floured sheets of parchment paper.

Pour oil to a depth of 1/4 inch in a large skillet and place over medium-high heat.
Add a pancake and fry until crisp, then turn and fry the other side until crisp.
Drain on paper towels and repeat with the remaining pancakes.
Cut each pancake into quarters and serve with the reserved dipping sauce.

From “Asian Flavors of Jean-Georges”

Fig and goat cheese crostini

Fig and Goat Cheese Crostini

INGREDIENTS

  • 3 tablespoons minced shallot
  • 2 (3-inch) fresh thyme sprigs plus 1/2 teaspoon minced fresh thyme
  • 1/2 Turkish or 1/4 California bay leaf
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/4 lb dried Black Mission figs, finely chopped (3/4 cup)
  • 3/4 cup Port
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 12 (1/2-inch-thick) diagonally cut baguette slices
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 6 oz soft mild goat cheese at room temperature
  • 2 fresh ripe figs, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • Garnish: fresh thyme leaves

PREPARATION

Make savory fig jam:
Cook shallot, thyme sprigs, and bay leaf in butter in a 1- to 1 1/2-quart heavy saucepan over moderately low heat, stirring, until shallot is softened, about 2 minutes. Add dried figs, Port, salt, and pepper and bring to a boil. Simmer, covered, until figs are soft, about 10 minutes. If there is still liquid in saucepan, remove lid and simmer, stirring, until most of liquid is evaporated, 3 to 4 minutes more. Discard bay leaf and thyme sprigs and transfer jam to a bowl. Cool, then stir in minced thyme and salt and pepper to taste.

Make toasts while jam cools:

Brush baguette slices with oil and grill until lightly browned, or toast under the broiler.

Assemble crostini:
Spread each toast with 1 teaspoon fig jam and top with about 1 1/2 teaspoons goat cheese and 2 pieces fresh fig.

Planked Crab Cakes with Horseradish Mayonnaise

PLANKED CRAB CAKES WITH SPICY HORSERADISH MAYO

SEAFOOD PLANK SEASONING:

1⁄2 cup            light brown sugar
1⁄4 cup            coarsely ground fresh black pepper
1⁄4 cup            kosher salt or coarsely ground sea salt
3 Tbsp             granulated onion
2 Tbsp             mustard seeds, cracked
1 Tbsp             dried dill weed
1 Tbsp             dill seed
1 Tbsp             coriander seed
1 Tbsp             lemon pepper seasoning
2 tsp              granulated garlic

 

In a large bowl, mix all ingredients together. Transfer to a tightly sealed container and store in a cool, dry place for up to 6 months.

CRAB CAKES

1                      regular red cedar plank, soaked in water
2 lbs                 lump crabmeat, picked over to remove shells
2                      large eggs, beaten
2                      green onions, chopped
1                      small red onion, finely diced
1⁄2 cup            saltine crackers, crushed
1⁄2 cup            mayonnaise
3 Tbsp             Dijon mustard
1 Tbsp             chopped fresh dill
2 tsp                Seafood Plank Seasoning (see above)
2 tsp                Worcestershire sauce

SPICY HORSERADISH MAYO:

1 cup               mayonnaise
1⁄2 cup            brick-style cream cheese, softened
1⁄4 cup            extra hot prepared horseradish
1 tsp                hot sauce
1 tsp                white vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste

Combine the crabmeat with the eggs, green onion, red onion, crackers, mayonnaise, mustard, dill, Seafood Plank Seasoning and Worcestershire sauce. Mix well. Form the crab mixture into cakes, each about 3–4 inches (8–10 cm) in diameter and 1 inch (2.5 cm) thick.

Evenly space the crab cakes on the plank. Cover with plastic wrap and set in the refrigerator for 1 hour to rest.

SPICY HORSERADISH MAYO:

Meanwhile, in a bowl, combine the mayonnaise, cream cheese, extra hot prepared horseradish, hot sauce and white vinegar; season with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to a small serving bowl; cover and refrigerate until needed.

Preheat the grill to medium-high. Place the plank on the grill and close lid,  for 12 to 15 minutes, until cooked through, and browned. Remove crab cakes from plank and serve 2 per person topped with horseradish mayo.

SERVES 8

Based on Ted Reader’s recipe

 

Turkish Love Cake

Turkish Love Cake

Ingredients

Candied rose petals

  • 2 large egg whites
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • Petals from 2 organic roses

Cake

  • 1 cup cake flour
  • 14 tablespoons baker’s sugar or superfine sugar, divided
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
  • 3 large eggs, separated
  • 6 tablespoons water
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
  • 1/4 teaspoon whole cardamom seeds (removed from about 5 green cardamom pods)

Frosting

  • 2 1/2 cups chilled heavy whipping cream, divided
  • Pinch of saffron threads
  • 2/3 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon rose water
  • 2 tablespoons natural unsalted pistachios

Preparation

For candied rose petals:

Whisk egg whites in small bowl until foamy. Using pastry brush, brush rose petals on both sides with egg whites; sprinkle on both sides with sugar. Dry on nonstick rack at least 6 hours or overnight.
For cake:

Preheat oven to 325°F. Butter two 8-inch-diameter cake pans with 1 1/2-inch-high sides. Line pan bottoms with parchment paper; butter parchment. Sift flour, 7 tablespoons baker’s sugar, baking powder, and salt into large bowl. Whisk yolks and next 4 ingredients in small bowl until smooth. Add yolk mixture to dry ingredients; whisk until smooth. Beat egg whites in medium bowl until soft peaks form. Gradually add 7 tablespoons baker’s sugar; beat until whites resemble thick marshmallow fluff. Fold whites into batter in 3 additions. Divide batter between prepared pans. Bake until cakes are golden and tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 25 minutes. Cool in pans on racks 15 minutes. Turn out onto racks, peel off parchment, and cool completely. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Wrap and store at room temperature.)
For frosting:

Combine 1/2 cup cream and saffron in small saucepan. Bring to simmer. Remove from heat; let steep 20 minutes. Chill until cold.

Beat remaining 2 cups cream, powdered sugar, and rose water in large bowl until soft peaks form; strain in saffron cream. Beat until peaks form.

Place 1 cake layer, flat side up, on platter. Spread 1 cup frosting over. Top with second cake layer, flat side down. Spread remaining frosting over top and sides of cake. Chill at least 1 hour and up to 6 hours. Garnish cake with rose petals and pistachios.

Turkish Braised beans

Turkish Braised Beans

Ingredients

  • 2 medium tomatoes
  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound green beans, trimmed and halved crosswise
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Preparation

Cut a small X in bottom of each tomato with a sharp paring knife. Blanch tomatoes in a 3-quart saucepan of boiling water for 10 seconds, then immediately transfer with a slotted spoon to a bowl of ice and cold water to stop cooking. Drain, peel, and coarsely chop.

Cook onions and garlic in oil in a wide 5- to 6-quart heavy pot over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until onions are softened, about 5 minutes. Add tomatoes and cook, stirring occasionally, 4 minutes.

Add beans, water, sugar, salt, and pepper and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to moderately low, then cover and simmer until beans are very tender, about 45 minutes.

Remove from heat and season with salt and pepper. Cool to room temperature, uncovered, about 45 minutes. Serve beans with juices.

Yoghurt marinated chicken kebobs with Aleppo peppers

Yoghurt-Marinated Chicken Kebabs with Aleppo Pepper

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Aleppo pepper* or 2 teaspoons dried crushed red pepper plus 2 teaspoons Hungarian sweet paprika, plus additional Aleppo pepper or paprika for sprinkling
  • 1 cup plain whole-milk Greek-style yogurt** (8 ounces)
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 teaspoons coarse kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 garlic cloves, peeled, flattened
  • 2 unpeeled lemons; 1 thinly sliced into rounds, 1 cut into wedges for serving
  • 2 1/4 pounds skinless boneless chicken (thighs and/or breast halves), cut into 1 1/4-inch cubes

Preparation

If using Aleppo pepper, place in large bowl and mix in 1 tablespoon warm water. Let stand until thick paste forms, about 5 minutes. If using dried crushed red pepper and paprika combination, place in large bowl and stir in 2 tablespoons warm water and let stand until paste forms, about 5 minutes. Add yogurt, olive oil, red wine vinegar, tomato paste, 2 teaspoons coarse salt, and 1 teaspoon black pepper to spice mixture in bowl; whisk to blend. Stir in garlic and lemon slices, then chicken. Cover and chill at least 1 hour. Do ahead Can be made 1 day ahead. Keep chilled.

Prepare barbecue (medium-high heat). Thread chicken pieces on metal skewers, dividing equally. Discard marinade in bowl. Sprinkle each skewer with salt, pepper, and additional Aleppo pepper or paprika. Brush grill rack with oil. Grill chicken until golden brown and cooked through, turning skewers occasionally, 10 to 12 minutes total. Transfer skewers to platter. Surround with lemon wedges and serve.

Roasted red pepper bisque

Roasted Red Pepper Bisque

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons butter
1 medium onion, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 carrot, minced
4 roasted red peppers, chopped
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 cups chicken broth, homemade or low-sodium canned
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup minced fresh basil
Optional garnishes:
Thyme Crackers
1/4 cup crème fraîche

Directions:

1. In a pan over medium heat, melt the butter and gently sauté the onion, garlic and carrot, stirring to avoid burning, for 5 minutes. Reduce the heat to the lowest possible setting, stir in the bell peppers, season with salt and pepper, add the chicken broth, cover and cook until barely warm, about 5 additional minutes.
2. Transfer the warmed mixture to the container of a blender or a food processor and blend until smooth.  Return the mixture to the pan and place over medium heat.
3. Stir in the cream and continue to cook, stirring frequently, until hot. Serve garnished with fresh basil, crème fraîche, and Thyme Crackers.

Based on a recipe from Dean and Deluca

almond financier with seedless grapes

Warm Almond Financier with Grapes

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon Brandy
  • 1 tablespoon Cointreau
  • 1 cup seedless grapes, halved
  • 3/4 cup whole blanched almonds
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • Crème Fraiche

Preparation

Put oven rack in upper third of oven and preheat oven to 400°F.

Toss grapes with Brandy and Cointreau in a small bowl.

Pulse half of almonds with 1 tablespoon sugar in a blender until finely ground. Transfer to a small bowl and repeat with remaining almonds and 1 more tablespoon sugar.

Beat together butter and remaining 6 tablespoons sugar in a bowl with an electric mixer at high speed until pale and fluffy, then beat in vanilla. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Reduce speed to low and beat in ground almonds, flour, and salt until just combined.

Divide batter among  4 lightly buttered gratin dishes and press grapes lightly into batter. Bake in dishes on a baking sheet until cake is firm and pale golden with slightly darker edges, about 20 minutes.

Transfer cakes to a rack and cool slightly in dishes before serving, topped with crème fraiche.

Sage/lemon vinaigrette

1/4 Cup white wine vinegar
3 Tbl chopped sage leaves
1 clove garlic, chopped
2 tsp lemon zest
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
1/2 Cup olive oil

Put all but the oil in a blender and blend until smooth. With motor running, drizzle in the olive oil and blend until emulsified.

Use as a drizzle on fish, chicken and pretty much everything else!!!

Lobster and Guacamole Salad with vodka-spiked tomato sauce

Lobster and Guacamole Salad with Vodka-Spiked Tomato Sauce

Although this recipe has a long list of ingredients, it is very doable and has the wow factor, to impress you guests.

Tomato Sauce:

2 Medium sized tomatoes, halved.
2 tsp tomato paste
2 tsp vodka
1 tsp strained white horseradish juice
1 Tbl Sherry vinegar
1 1/4 tsp fine sea salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
1/3 cup olive oil
8 drops tabasco sauce

Up to 1 day ahead, make the tomato sauce: Squeeze out the tomato seeds and cut the tomatoes into large chunks. Puree in a blender or food processor, then strain through a fine-mesh sieve, pressing firmly on the tomatoes to extract as much juice as possible. Place the juice in a bowl and whisk in the tomato paste, vodka, horseradish juice, vinegar, salt and pepper.. Whisking constantly, slowly drizzle in the olive oil. Whisk in the tabasco and refrigerate until very cold.

Lobster Salad:

2 (1 1/2 lb) lobsters, poached
3 TBL mayonnaise
1/4 tsp chopped fresh tarragon
1 tsp fresh lemon juice
Fine sea salt to taste
Freshly ground pepper to taste

4 hours before serving, make the lobster salad. Cut the lobster into medium-fine dice. Place it in a bowl and mix in the mayonnaise, tarragon, and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper. Cover and chill

Guacamole:

1 medium avocado
1 scallion, white part only, thinly sliced
1 small ripe tomato, peeled, seeded and cut into 1/4 inch dice
1/2 small jalapeno, seeded and finely chopped
2 tsp fresh lemon juice
1/2 tsp fresh lime juice
1 tsp olive oil
sea salt to taste
Fresh pepper to taste

2 hours before serving, make the guacamole. Halve the avocado, pull out the pit and peel, and cut the flesh into cubes. Place the cubed avocado in a bowl and mash in coarsely with a fork. Mix in the scallion, tomato, jalapeno, coriander, lemon and limes juices, and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate.

Garnish:

3 medium-size ripe tomatoes, peeled and seeded, each cut into 8 wedges
4 tsp vinaigrette
2 tsp Dijon
1 tsp sea salt
2 pinches pepper
3 TBL red wine vinegar
3 TBL sherry vinegar
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup corn oil
8 fresh basil leaves, cut across into 1/4-inch wide stripes

Set aside 20 tomato wedges. Cut 5 1/2 inch squares out of each of the rest. Season with salt and pepper and toss with the vinaigrette.

Up to 30 minutes before serving, put a 2 1/4 inch mold or cookie cutter in the centre of the serving plate and spoon 1/4 of the guacamole into it. Smooth the top and remove the mold. Using an ice cream scoop, top with a ball of lobster salad. Arrange 5 tomato wedges evenly around the plate, skin side down. The wedges should look like flower petals. Put 1 of the tomato squares under the centre of each tomato wedge to lift the petal off the plate. Refrigerate the plates until just before serving.

Just before serving, spoon the tomato sauce around the tomatoes and guacamole to cover the plates. Scatter the sliced basil over the lobster salad and in between the tomatoes.

Based on a recipe from : Le Bernardin Cookbook: Four-Star Simplicity by Eric Ripert and Maguy Le Coze

Chocolate pot de crème with raspberries

Chocolate pot de crème with raspberries

Ingredients
  • 2/3 cup whole milk
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • Pinch salt
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 2 tablespoons hazelnut liqueur or Amaretto
  • 4 dessert glasses or demitasse cups
  • Fresh raspberries, optional
Directions

Heat milk in a small pan over moderate heat until it comes to a boil.

In blender or food processor combine egg, sugar, a pinch of salt, semisweet chips, and liqueur. Turn on blender to low setting. Pour in boiling milk in a slow stream. The hot milk will cook egg and melt chocolate. Blend 1 minute, until smooth.

Spoon chocolate into serving dishes and chill. To serve top with a few raspberries, or whipped cream.

Place cups on saucers and serve with demitasse spoons. If you use teacups, this recipe will yield 2 cups, rather than 4.

Broiled Shrimp with Garlic Butter Sauce

Broiled Shrimp with Garlic Butter

Ingredients
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped garlic
  • 1 tablespoon chopped shallots
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh Italian parsley
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • Fine sea salt, to taste
  • 24 uncooked large shrimp, shell and tail on
  •  1/3 cup white wine
Directions

Preheat the broiler. Place the butter in a small bowl and stir in the garlic, shallots, parsley, lemon juice and salt. Cut the shrimp in half lengthwise, leaving them attached at the tail. Spread the shrimp open and arrange them in a shallow, oval casserole. Top the shrimp with generous dabs of the butter mixture and pour wine into the dish. Broil the shrimp until they are cooked through, about 4 minutes. Arrange the shrimp in a line across 4 plates, so that the tail of each shrimp fits inside the shrimp in front of it. Whisk the liquid in the casserole dish and pour it over the shrimp. Serve immediately.

Based on Eric Rupert – Le Bernadin Cookbook

Short rib lasagna

Short Rib Lasagna

Ingredients

Short Rib Sauce

  • 5 fresh thyme sprigs plus 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 2 fresh rosemary sprigs
  • 2 fresh parsley sprigs
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 ounce dried porcini mushrooms
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 4 pounds short ribs
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 4 medium carrots, chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup tawny Port
  • 2 cups dry red wine
  • 2 1/2t cups beef broth
  • 6 garlic cloves, peeled

Lasagna

  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 3 cups whole milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 2 cups freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 18 lasagna noodles (fresh preferred)

Method

 

Short Rib Sauce

  • Tie all herb sprigs and bay leaf in cheesecloth for bouquet garni; trim excess cheesecloth. Set bouquet garni aside. Place mushrooms in heatproof bowl. Add 1 cup boiling water; cover and let stand until mushrooms soften, about 20 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer mushrooms to work surface; chop. Reserve mushroom soaking liquid.
  • Meanwhile, preheat oven to 325°F. Sprinkle ribs with salt and pepper. Place flour in medium bowl. Dredge ribs in flour, shaking off excess; place on rimmed baking sheet. Reserve flour. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Working in batches, cook ribs until browned on all sides, about 6 minutes per batch. Return ribs to baking sheet.
  • Heat remaining 2 tablespoons oil in heavy large pot over medium heat. Add carrots, celery, and onion; cook until softened, stirring often, about 10 minutes. Stir in chopped mushrooms. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon reserved flour over vegetables (discard remaining flour). Add tomato paste; stir until tomato paste begins to brown on bottom of pot, about 1 minute. Add Port and stir until almost all liquid is absorbed, scraping up any browned bits, about 1 minute. Deglaze pan with red wine. Pour in reserved mushroom soaking liquid, leaving any sediment behind. Bring to boil; simmer until reduced by about 1/3, stirring often, about 7 minutes. Add broth, garlic, and bouquet garni. Return to boil. Return ribs to pot, arranging meat side down in single layer. Cover pot; place in oven and braise ribs until very tender, about 2 1/2 hours.
  • Using tongs, transfer ribs from pot to rimmed baking sheet to cool. Discard bouquet garni. Shred beef; discard bones. Spoon off fat from top of sauce in pot. Boil sauce until reduced to 51/2 cups, about 8 minutes. Return meat to sauce. Season sauce to taste with salt and pepper. Stir in chopped thyme. DO AHEAD Can be made 3 days ahead. Cool slightly. Refrigerate uncovered until cold, then cover and keep chilled.

Lasagna

  • Melt butter in heavy large saucepan over medium heat. Add flour; whisk until smooth. Cook until light golden brown, whisking frequently, about 6 minutes. Add milk; bring to boil, whisking constantly. Boil 1 minute. Add nutmeg. Season béchamel to taste with salt and pepper. DO AHEAD Can be made 1 day ahead. Cool slightly; cover and chill.
  • Preheat oven to 375°F. Butter 15x10x2-inch baking dish. Spoon 1 cup meat sauce over bottom of dish; spread in thin layer. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons cheese over. Arrange 6 lasagna noodles over to cover (noodles may overlap slightly). Drizzle 1 cup béchamel over noodles, spreading in even layer; sprinkle 1/4 cup cheese over. Spread 2 cups meat sauce over. Repeat with noodles, béchamel, cheese, and meat sauce. Cover with remaining 6 noodles. Spread remaining béchamel over noodles. Sprinkle remaining cheese over.
  • Bake lasagna uncovered until edges are bubbling and top is golden brown in spots, about 45 minutes. Let rest 10 minutes.

 

Lobster Bisque

Lobster Bisque

The lobsters can be cooked your favorite way, or have them steamed at the store.  We boiled them in salted water for 10 minutes. Use all of the lobster bodies except for antennas and eyes. Once you have removed the claw and tail meat see if you can dig out extra meat from the legs and reserve for the soup. Any roe and the green tomalley also gives the soup flavor.
2 tbsp (25 mL) olive oil
Shells of 4 lobsters
1 cup (250 mL) each of roughly chopped onion,
carrot and fennel
1 tbsp (15 mL) chopped garlic
1 cup (250 mL) white wine
1 cup (250 mL) chopped fresh or canned tomatoes
4 cups (1 L) fish or chicken stock
4 to 5 tarragon sprigs
4 parsley stems, leaves removed
1 inch (2.5 cm) piece orange rind
Bay leaf
Pinch cayenne
¼ cup (50 mL) basmati rice (raw)
½ cup (125 mL) whipping cream

 

1. Heat oil in a large stock pot over medium heat. Add lobster shells and sauté, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes or until bodies are slightly browned. Add onion, carrot and fennel and sauté until softened slightly, about 4 minutes. Add garlic and sauté 1 minute.

2. Pour in wine and bring to boil. Boil for 1 minute or until reduced by half. Add tomatoes, stock, tarragon sprigs, parsley stems, orange rind, bay leaf and cayenne. Add enough water to cover lobster shells. Simmer for 1 hour 30 minutes or until full of flavour.

3. Strain stock and discard solids. Place stock in pot on medium heat and reduce slowly until about 8 cups (2 L) remain. Add rice, some of the reserved lobster meat and any roe. Simmer for 30 minutes or until rice is very soft. Place contents of pot in blender and purée until smooth. Add cream and simmer 10 minutes longer. Top with any reserved lobster meat.

 

Serves 4 to 6
Swiss chard lasagna with ricotta and mushrooms, on homegrown tomato sauce

Swiss Chard Lasagna with Ricotta and Mushrooms

Ingredients

  1. Béchamel sauce:
    • 2 1/2 cups whole milk
    • 1 Bay leaf
    • 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter
    • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
    • 1/2 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
    • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
    • Pinch of ground cloves
  2. Swiss chard and mushroom layers:
    • 1 pound Swiss chard, center rib and stem cut from each leaf
    • 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
    • 1 1/3 cups chopped onion
    • 4 large garlic cloves, chopped, divided
    • 1/4 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
    • Coarse kosher salt
    • 1 pound crimini mushrooms, sliced
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  3. Lasagna:
    • 9  lasagna noodles
    • Extra-virgin olive oil
    • 1 15-ounce container whole-milk ricotta cheese (preferably organic), divided
    • 6 ounces Italian Fontina Cheese, coarsely grated (about 1 1/2 cups packed), divided
    • 8 tablespoons finely grated Parmesan cheese, divided

Preparation

  1. For béchamel sauce:
    1. Bring milk and bay leaf to simmer in medium saucepan; remove from heat. Melt butter in heavy large saucepan over medium-low heat. Add flour and whisk to blend. Cook 2 minutes, whisking almost constantly (do not let roux brown). Gradually whisk milk with bay leaf into roux. Add 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt, nutmeg, and cloves and bring to simmer. Cook until sauce thickens enough to coat spoon, whisking often, about 3 minutes. Remove bay leaf. DO AHEAD: Béchamel sauce can be made 1 day ahead. Press plastic wrap directly onto surface and chill. Remove plastic and rewarm sauce before using, whisking to smooth.
  2. For swiss chard and mushroom layers:
    1. Blanch chard in large pot of boiling salted water 1 minute. Drain, pressing out all water, then chop coarsely. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in heavy medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion, half of garlic, and crushed red pepper. Sauté until onion is tender, 3 to 4 minutes. Mix in chard and season to taste with coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper.
    2. Heat remaining 2 tablespoons oil in heavy large nonstick skillet over medium- high heat. Add mushrooms and remaining garlic. Sauté until mushrooms are brown and tender, 7 to 8 minutes. Mix in nutmeg and season with coarse salt and pepper.
  3. For lasagna:
    1. Cook noodles in medium pot of boiling salted water until just tender but still firm to bite, stirring occasionally. Drain; arrange noodles in single layer on sheet of plastic wrap.
    2. Brush 13 x 9 x 2-inch glass baking dish with oil to coat. Spread 3 tablespoons béchamel sauce thinly over bottom of dish. Arrange 3 noodles in dish to cover bottom (2 side by side lengthwise, then 1 crosswise). Spread half of chard mixture over pasta, then half of mushrooms. Drop half of ricotta over in dollops and spread in even layer. Sprinkle with half of Fontina, then 4 tablespoons Parmesan; spread 3/4 cup béchamel over. Repeat layering with 3 noodles, remaining chard, mushrooms, ricotta, Fontina, Parmesan, and 3/4 cup béchamel. Cover with 3 noodles and remaining béchamel. DO AHEAD: Can be made 2 hours ahead. Cover with foil. Let stand at room temperature.
    3. Preheat oven to 400°F. Bake lasagna covered 30 minutes. Uncover and bake until heated through and top is golden brown, 20 to 30 minutes longer. Let stand 15 minutes before serving.
chocolate panna cotta with port and balsamic glazed cherries

Chocolate Panna Cotta with Port- and Balsamic-Glazed Cherries

Ingredients

  1. Panna Cotta
    • Canola oil
    • 1 cup whole milk
    • 2 1/4 teaspoons unflavored gelatin
    • 2 cups whipping cream
    • 1/2 cup sugar
    • 5 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped
    • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  2. Cherries
    • 1 pound cherries, stemmed, pitted
    • 3/4 cup ruby Port
    • 1/2 cup sugar
    • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

Preparation

For panna cotta:

  1. Brush six 3/4-cup glass custard cups with canola oil. Pour milk into medium bowl. Sprinkle gelatin over; let stand until gelatin softens, about 5 minutes.
  2. Stir cream and sugar in heavy medium saucepan over medium-high heat until sugar dissolves. Bring to boil; remove from heat. Add chocolate; whisk until melted. Whisk warm chocolate mixture into gelatin mixture; stir to dissolve. Stir in vanilla. Working in 2 batches, transfer mixture to blender and use only 3 on/off turns to just fully blend mixture (do not overmix). Divide mixture among custard cups. Cover and chill 24 hours. (Can be made 2 days ahead. Keep chilled.)

For cherries:

  1. Stir cherries, Port, sugar, and vinegar in heavy large skillet over high heat until sugar dissolves. Bring to boil; reduce heat to medium and simmer until cherries are soft and wooden spoon leaves path in sauce when drawn across bottom of skillet, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat. Cool to room temperature. (Can be made 2 days ahead. Cover and refrigerate. Bring to room temperature before continuing.)
  2. Set custard cups in large baking dish. Pour enough hot water into dish to come halfway up sides of cups. Let stand 11/2 minutes. Take cups out of water; wipe bottoms dry. Invert each onto plate, shaking gently to dislodge panna cotta. Spoon cherries and sauce over panna cottas and serve.
Veal tenderloin with brandied peppercorn, cream sauce.

Veal Tenderloin with Brandy-Peppercorn Cream Sauce

Ingredients

2 veal tenderloin, 10-12 oz each
2  Tbs Butter, divided
1 Tbs Chopped Shallots
8 oz Heavy Cream
1 oz Strauss Veal Demi Glace
1 oz Green Peppercorns
5  oz  Brandy
Kosher salt, to taste
Fresh cracked black pepper, to taste

Veal

  1. Heat oven to 375 degrees. Heat a large stainless steel sauté pan over medium high heat.
  2. Season the veal with kosher salt and black pepper.
  3. Add a couple of Tbs of olive oil to one pan and heat until smoking.
  4. Add the veal to the pan and sauté on all sides until browned on all sides about 3-4 minutes, adding 1 Tbs of the butter, sage and thyme the last minute of sautéing.
  5. Place the veal in the oven for 2-4 minutes or desired doneness. Remove from the pan and hold on the side. Discard all cooking fat from the pan.
  6. Add 1 Tbs of butter and shallots to sauté pan and sauté 30 seconds.
  7. Add the green peppercorns and sauté for another 30 seconds. Deglaze with brandy – be careful of the flames!
  8. Add the cream and demi glace and reduce until thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 3-5 minutes.
  9. Take the veal and slice, placing a few slices on each plate with some potato puree, drizzle the sauce over the veal. Serve and Enjoy!
poached pears with mascarpone, chocolate and caramel sauce

Poached Pears with Mascarpone, chocolate and caramel sauce

Poached Pears:

2 1/2 cups white wine
5 cups water
2 cups sugar
3 cinnamon sticks
6 cloves
6 peeled rips but firm Bosce pears, cored from the bottom, leaving the stems intact

Mascarpone sauce:

1/2 Cup mascarpone cheese
3/4 Cups heavy cream divided

Caramel sauce:

2/3 Cup sugar
1/4 Cup water
1/4 tsp lemon juice
1/2 Cup heavy cream
2 TBL light corn syrup
1/4 tsp vanilla extract

Chocolate sauce:

8 ounces semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
1 Cup heavy cream

Garnish:
fresh raspberries

Poach the pears:
In a large saucepan, combine the white wine, water, sugar, cinnamon sticks and cloves. Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture comes to a boil. Add the pears. Place a piece of parchment paper, folded in 4, on the surface of the liquid. This will help keep the pears submerged. Simmer for 35 – 40 minutes, or until they are fork tender. remove the pan from the heat. Remove from the heat. Cool the pears in the liquid and refrigerate (can be prepared 2 days in advance).

Make Mascarpone Sauce:
In a small bowl, whisk together the mascarpone and 2 tablespoons of the cream until completely smooth. In a chilled small bowl, using a whisk attachment beat 1/4 cup cream just until soft mounds start to form. Using a rubber spatula gently fold the whipped cream into the mascarpone mixture. Gently fold enough of the remaining cream into the mascarpone until it is the consistency of pancake batter. Cover the surface of the sauce with plastic wrap and refrigerate until serving.

Make the caramel sauce:
In a heavy, small saucepan, combine the sugar, water and lemon juice. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon until the sugar is completely dissolved. Raise the heat to medium-high and bring the mixture to a boil. Continue to cook for 6 to 8 minutes, until the mixture turns to an amber coloured caramel. Remove the pan from the heat and using a long handled wooden spoon, stir in the cream and corn syrup. Return the pan to the heat stirring constantly. until the caramel is dissolved and the sauce is smooth. Let cool to room temperature and stir in the vanilla.

Make the chocolate sauce:
Place the chocolate in a medium bowl. In a small saucepan cook the cream over medium-high heat until the mixture comes to a gentle boil. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate and the let mixture stand for 30 seconds. Gently whisk until smooth. keep warm until serving.

Assemble the dessert:
Drain the pears on a wire rack set over a baking sheet. Spoon a thin layer of mascarpone cream on a dessert plate. Fill a plastic bottle with caramel sauce. Beginning at the centre of the plate, squeeze a spiral of caramel sauce over the mascarpone sauce, working toward the edge of the plate. Drag the back of a small knife from the centre of the plate to the edge at 1-inch interval, all around the plate. Place a pear in the centre of a dessert plate. Drizzle some chocolate sauce over the pear. Garnish with raspberries. Serve immediately.

(Based of a recipe from Chocolatier Magazine)

Chicken braised with apples and cider

Chicken Braised with Apples and Cider

Spice Mixture:
1 tsp cracked Fennel
1 tsp cracked coriander
2 tsp chopped fresh thyme
tsp cracked black pepper

Chicken:
6-8 Chicken Supremes
1 tbsp. vegetable oil
2 tbsp. butter
2 royal gala apples, peeled and diced into 1/2 inch cubes
1 cup apple cider
1/2 cup whipping cream
1 tbsp. lemon juice
2 tbsp. chopped parsley
salt and freshly ground pepper

Preheat over to 300F

Combine the spice mixture. Reserve 1 tsp spice mixture and season chicken all over with remaining mixture, adding a little inside.

Heat oil and 1 tbsp. butter in an ovenproof casserole over medium-high heat. Brown chicken about 2 minutes per side or until golden. Remove from pan. Discard fat and wipe out pan.

Add remaining butter and apples to pan and sauté for 2 minutes, or until tinged with gold. Pour in cider and cider vinegar, add remaining spice mixture and bring to boil. Boil for 1 minute.

Return chicken to casserole, cover and bake for 1 hour. Remove lid and bake 15 minutes longer or until juices run clear.

Remove chicken and apples from casserole. Add cream to sauce and bring to boil. Boil for 2 minutes or until sauce begins to thicken. Add lemon juice, reserved apples an chervil and simmer for 1 minute more. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve chicken pouring sauce over the top, and surround with apples.

(based on a recipe from Food & Drink Magazine)

Butter Chicken - Makkhani Murghi

Prep time: 10 minutes (sauce can be made the day before)
Cooking time: 10 minutes
Serves 4-6

Ingredients:
Boneless, tandoori chicken cut up into 1-2” cubes (Can also use roasted chicken, but it will not have the same flavour)
Sauce:
4 tbsp tomato paste
Water to make 1 cup when mixed with tomato paste
1” fresh ginger, peeled and grated
10oz/300ml cream
1 tsp garam masala
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp sugar
1 fresh green chili, seeded & finely chopped
¼ tsp cayenne pepper
4 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp toasted cumin seeds, ground
4 oz/100g unsalted butter or ghee (Indian clarified butter)
Directions
1. In a large measuring cup, add tomato paste and add enough water to make 1 cup, mixing as you go. Add everything except the chicken to blend the sauce well.

2. In a large sauté pan or skillet, melt the ghee/butter and add the sauce. Bring to a simmer and stir until butter is well incorporated in the sauce. Heat for one minute or so.

3. Add the chicken and stir until they chicken is heated through – just a few minutes. It’s ready to serve

Pumpkin Spice Cake with caramel cream cheese frosting

Pumpkin spice cake with caramel cream cheese frosting

Ingredients

Servings: 8

Cake

  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 115-ounce can pure pumpkin
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 1/4 cups vegetable oil
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons finely grated orange peel

Frosting

  • 11-pound box powdered sugar, divided
  • 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon heavy whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 18-ounce package cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup(1/2 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • Candied orange peel

Preparation

Cake

  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter and flour two 9-inch cake pans with 1 1/2-inch-high sides, tapping out any excess flour. Whisk first 9 ingredients in large bowl. Using electric mixer, beat pumpkin, sugar, and oil in another large bowl. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating to incorporate between additions. Mix in orange peel. Add flour mixture; beat on low speed just to blend. Divide batter between prepared pans.
  • Bake cakes until tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 33 minutes. Cool in pans 10 minutes. Invert onto rack, then turn top side up and cool completely.

Frosting

  • Sprinkle 1/2 cup powdered sugar over bottom of small nonstick skillet. Cook over medium heat until sugar melts (do not stir). Continue cooking until sugar turns deep amber, stirring occasionally, about 2 minutes. Carefully stir in 1/2 cup cream, vanilla, and salt (mixture will bubble vigorously). Stir until any caramel bits dissolve. Stir in remaining 1 tablespoon cream. Strain into small bowl. Cool caramel to room temperature.
  • Sift remaining powdered sugar into medium bowl. Using electric mixer, beat cream cheese and butter in large bowl. Gradually beat in powdered sugar. Beat in cooled caramel. Cover and chill frosting until firm enough to spread, about 2 hours.
  • Using long serrated knife, trim rounded tops from cakes. Place 1 cake layer on cake plate, cut side up. Spread 3/4 cup frosting over. Place second cake layer, cut side down, atop frosting. Cover top and sides of cake with remaining frosting, creating smooth surface. DO AHEAD Can be made 2 days ahead. Cover with cake dome or large bowl and chill. Let stand at room temperature 2 hours before serving.
  • Sprinkle candied orange peel over top of cake. Cut into wedges and serve.
Pumpkin and apple spiced soup with apple crisps and candied pecans

Pumpkin & apple spiced soup with candied pecans and apple crisps

¼ cup (50 mL) butter
3 cups (750 mL) chopped onion
6 cups (1.5 L) chopped pumpkin
2 cups (500 mL) peeled and chopped Spy apples
1 tsp (5 mL) brown sugar
Pinch ground cinnamon
Pinch ground allspice
Tiny pinch cayenne
1 tsp (5 mL) salt
5 cups (1.25 L) chicken broth
Salt and freshly ground pepper

Garnish
2 tbsp (25 mL) pecans (candied with hone and maple syrup)

Apple crisps

 

1. In a large pot, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until softened, about 3 minutes. Add the pumpkin and apples and cook until softened, another 3 minutes. Add the brown sugar and spices, then pour the stock over and simmer for 30 minutes.

2. Remove from heat, blend until smooth with a hand blender or in a food processor. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

3. For candied pecans. Place pecans in a cast iron or non-stick pan. add honey and stir over medium-high heat, until glazed. place on parchment paper to cool.

4. Using a mandolin slicer very thinly slice apples.  Arrange slices in a single layer on a parchment-lined baking sheet; sprinkle with icing sugar. Top with another sheet of parchment and another baking sheet.  Dry in a 225ºF (110ºC) oven for 45 minutes. Remove top baking sheet and top layer of parchment; continue drying in the oven for at least another 45 minutes, until crisp. The more moist the fruit the longer it will take to dry. Let cool completely; store in an airtight container.
5. To serve, Place pecans in the serving bowls, ladle in soup and float and apple crisp on the surface. Crème fraiche can be warmed and drizzled on top.
Serves 6 to 8

Zucotto

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons cherry liqueur
  • 2 tablespoons orange liqueur
  • 2 tablespoons grappa or brandy
  • 1 10.75-ounce loaf pound cake
  • 5 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
  • 2 cups chilled whipping cream
  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 3/4 cup blanched slivered almonds, toasted, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup hazelnuts, toasted, husked, coarsely chopped
  • Unsweetened cocoa powder

 

Preparation

  1. Moisten large piece of cheesecloth with water; squeeze out excess. Line 1 1/2-quart bowl with cheesecloth. Mix liqueurs and grappa in small bowl. Cut pound cake crosswise into 3/8-inch-thick slices. Cut each slice diagonally in half, forming two triangles. Lay cake triangles in single layer on baking sheet; brush with liqueur mixture. Line bottom and sides of prepared bowl with cake triangles (wet sides facing in) in sunburst pattern. Reserve extra triangles for top.
  2. Stir 2 ounces chocolate in metal bowl set over small saucepan of simmering water until chocolate melts. Cool just to room temperature. Beat cream and powdered sugar in large bowl until firm peaks form. Fold in 3 ounces chopped chocolate and nuts. Spread half of mixture over cake, covering completely and creating well in center. Fold cooled melted chocolate into remaining whipped cream mixture; spoon into center well of filling. Cover filling with remaining cake triangles (wet side down), trimming to fit if necessary. Cover with plastic. Chill at least 5 hours and up to 1 day.
  3. Invert cake onto plate. Remove cloth. Sift cocoa powder over and serve.

For this special version, we coated the Zucotto in dark chocolate ganache:

Ingredients

  • 9 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  1. Place chocolate in a medium bowl. Heat cream in a small saucepan until bubbles begin to appear around edges (scalding); pour over chocolate. Let stand 5 minutes, then stir until smooth. Set aside at room temperature until cool but pourable, stirring occasionally.
  2. Place a wire rack on top of bowl, and invert zuccotto onto rack. Place on a rimmed baking sheet. Remove bowl and plastic wrap. Using a ladle, pour ganache over top of dome, letting excess drip down sides onto rack. Make sure to coat entire surface of the zuccotto. Cut into wedges. Ladle with creme anglaise. Serve immediately.

 

Italian Style Duck Confit

Italian style Duck Confit

Marinade:

8 Tbs  Coarse Salt
1 Small bunch fresh thyme, leaves picked
10 Fresh bay leaves
1 Small handful dried juniper berries
Zest of two oranges

For Braising:

8 Large duck legs
4 1/2 lb Duck fat
1 Handful fresh rosemary, leaves picked
1 Tbs Dried juniper berries
1 Tbs Peppercorns
10 Fresh bay leaves

Preparation:

  1. With mortar and pestle, bash up marinade ingredients and rub over duck legs. Refrigerate overnight.
  2. Preheat oven to 325ºF. Brush off marinade, from duck legs, and place in roasting pan. Cover with duck fat.
  3. Braise for 2 hours, spooning duck fat over the legs, every so often, until the skin is crisp. Five minutes before the end, add rosemary, bay leaves, juniper berries and peppercorns, to the pan to crisp.
  4. Take the pan out of oven and let cool. Put duck legs in Tupperware, with herbs and pour sieved fat over.  Refrigerate.
  5. To serve, wipe dick fat from legs and reheat at 450ºF for about 20 minutes.

(courtesy of Jamie Oliver)

Gingery cauliflower soup

Gingery Cauliflower Soup

Ingredients:

3 Tbl vegetable oil
6 oz onions chopped
1 inch piece fresh ginger peeled and chopped fine
4 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped fine
1 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp ground coriander
1/4 tsp ground turmeric
1/4 tsp chili powder
8 oz potatoes peeled and diced (1/2 inch)
8 oz cauliflower florets
2 pints chicken stock
salt and pepper to taste
5 fl oz heavy cream

First combine the cumin, coriander, turmeric and chili powder and set aside.

set the oil over medium high heat in a saucepan. When hot put in the onions, ginger and garlic. stir for about 5 minutes or until the onions are somewhat browned.  Put in the spice mix. Stir once and add the potatoes, cauliflower and stir, then add chicken stock. If using unsalted broth, add 1/2 tsp salt. Stir and bring to the boil. Cover and turn heat to low. Simmer for 10 minutes, or until potatoes are tender. Adjust seasoning, if required.

Put the soup in a blender, in batches and blend thoroughly. Strain through a fine mesh strainer, if the soup is not smooth enough, pushing down to get all of the pulp.  Add cream and mix.  The soup can now be reheated and served.

Based on  a recipe from Madhur Jaffrey

chicken breasts baked with green chilis and onions

Chicken breasts baked with green chilis and onions (oven ki murghi)

Ingredients:

Sauce:
2 Tbl tomato puree
1 Tbl Dijon mustard
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp garam masala
1 Tbl lemon juice
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp chili powder
8 fl oz heavy cream

To finish:
6 chicken supremes (or boneless skin on chicken breasts)
salt
freshly ground pepper
4 Tbl oil
2 inch cinnamon stick
6 cardamom pods
6 whole cloves
5 oz onions cut into fine half rings
1 inch piece fresh ginger cut into fine strings

Method:

Pre-heat oven to 350° F

Put the tomato puree in a bowl. add 1 Tbl of water and mix. Add all the remaining sauce ingredients in the listed order, mixing as you go.

Spread out the chicken pieces and salt and pepper generously on both sides.

Put the 3 Tbl of oil in a non-stick frying pan, and set over high heat.  When hot, put in the cinnamon, cardamom pods and cloves. Ten seconds later, add the chicken pieces in a single layer and brown them lightly on both sides. Remove with a slotted spoon and place in an ovenproof dish in a single layer.  Put the onions, ginger and green chillies into the oil that remains. Stir and fry them until they are light brown in colour. Remove with a slotted spoon and spread evenly over the  chicken.

Add the last Tbl of oil to the frying pan  and let it heat. Add the mustard seeds. As soon as they start to pop, add the garlic. Stir, and as soon as it starts to brown, pour in the sauce. Once the sauce heats up and starts bubbling, our it over the chicken, without displacing the onion mixture. Bake for 25 minutes. Serve immediately.

Cauliflower soup with seared scallop and lemon oil

cauliflower soup with seared scallop and lemon oil

Ingredients

•3 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
•1 cup chopped white onion
•1 garlic clove, sliced
•3 3/4 cups (1/2- to 3/4-inch pieces cauliflower (from 1 large head)
•1 1/2 cups low-salt chicken broth
•1 1/2 cups whipping cream
•Coarse kosher salt
•Freshly ground white pepper
•1 leek (white and pale green parts only), cut into 1/8-inch-thick rounds
•6 sea scallops, patted dry
•6 teaspoons purchased lemon-infused olive oil
•Finely chopped fresh chives

Preparation

  1. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in heavy large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and garlic. Sauté until onion is soft, about 5 minutes. Add cauliflower, broth, and cream. Bring soup to boil. Reduce heat to low, partially cover, and simmer gently until cauliflower is tender, about 18 minutes. Puree soup in small batches in blender until smooth. Return to same saucepan. Season soup with kosher salt and white pepper. Do ahead Can be made 1 day ahead. Cool slightly. Cover and chill. Rewarm before serving.
  2. Blanch leek in small saucepan of boiling salted water 1 minute; drain. Place some of leek in center of each bowl. Heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in medium skillet over high heat. Sprinkle scallops with salt and pepper. Sear until brown and just opaque in center, about 1 1/2 minutes per side. Place 1 scallop on leek in each bowl. Ladle soup around scallop, drizzle with 1 teaspoon lemon oil, and sprinkle with chives.

Asian Braised pork belly

Ingredients:

1 Piece 2-3 lbs pork belly
1/2 cup light soy sauce
2 Tbsp Balsamic vinegar
1/4 Cup mirin
1 Tbsp Sugar
1 Cup water
4 slices ginger
2 whole garlic cloves, peeled
3 star anise
6 cardamom pods

Glaze:
1 Tbsp brown sugar
1/2 tsp kosher salt

Method:

  1. Preheat Oven to 350°F
  2. Score fat of pork with sharp knife in 1 inch intervals. Place pork belly in a cold skillet, fat side down, and turn heat to high. Sear belly for 5 minutes or until browned, pouring off fat as needed.  Flip over and sear for 1 to 2 minutes or until second side is browned. Remove and place, fat side up, in an ovenproof casserole.
  3. Combine the 9 ingredients for the braise is a small pot and bring to boil. pour over pork belly. Liquid should come halfway up pork.  Cover tightly an d place in the oven. Braise for 4 hours, checking occasionally and basting with liquid.
  4. When pork is very tender and practically falling apart, turn oven up to 500°F
  5. Sprinkle top with brown sugar and kosher salt and bake, uncovered for 15 to 20 minutes(watching carefully to avoid burning) or until top is golden brown and skin is crisp.
  6. remove from the oven, place pork on a baking sheet, top with a clean skillet and weight down with cans, for about 15 minutes, to remove extra fat. Remove weights and return pork to marinade in a casserole and chill until fat congeals.
  7. Remove far from marinade. Cut pork into pieces, or slices, or shred, and reheat in cooking liquid, before serving. serve with rice and duck crepes.
sweet potato soup with ginger and lime, and crisp mushroom rolls

Sweet potato soup with ginger and lime, with crisp mushroom rolls

Sweet Potato Soup

Ingredients:

2 Tbsp butter
2 Tbsp chopped ginger
3 leeks cleaned and chopped
4 sweet potatoes peeled and diced
1 Tbsp ground cumin
2 tsp ground coriander
Pinch of cayenne
6 cups chicken stock
1 tsp grated lime zest
1/4 cup whipping cream
salt and freshly ground pepper
1 tbsp. lime juice

  1. Melt butter in a saucepan on medium heat. Add ginger, leeks, and sweet potatoes.  Saute until vegetables are softened slightly, about 2 minutes. Sprinkle in cumin, coriander and cayenne and stir together. Pour in chicken stock and grated lime zest, bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer 15 minutes, or until sweet potatoes are tender.
  2. Puree in a food processor. Return to pan, add cream. Bring to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes. Season well with salt, pepper and line juice.  Serve with crisp mushroom rolls (below).

 

Crisp Mushroom Rolls

Ingredients:

1 Tbsp vegetable oil
1 tsp grated ginger
8 shitake mushrooms, thinly sliced
2 green onions, chopped
2 tsp soy sauce
Freshly ground pepper to taste
8 rice paper wrappers
1 bunch arugula
24 mint leaves
1/4 cup vegetable oil

  1. Heat oil in a skillet, on medium-high heat. Add ginger and mushrooms and fry 1 minute. Scatter in green onions and season with soy sauce and pepper. Remove from heat.
  2. Run rice paper wrappers under warm water, until dampened.  Lay on counter to finish softening
  3. In centre of each wrapper, lay 3 arugula leaves, 3 mint leaves and 2 Tbsp of mushroom mixture. Roll wrappers, tucking ends in.
  4. Heat oil in skillet and fry rolls about 1 minute, per side, or until golden brown. Drain on paper towels. cut into 1 inch lengths and serve beside, or on top of soup.
Thai Rack of lamb

Thai Rack of Lamb

Ingredients

1 regular hickory or cedar plank, soaked in water
2 frenched lamb racks, 1 1/2 lb (750 g) each
1/2 cup (125 mL) soy sauce
1⁄4 cup (60 mL) peanut or vegetable oil
1/4 cup (60 mL) tamarind paste, strained
1⁄4 cup (60 mL) rice vinegar
1/4 cup (60 mL) chopped fresh cilantro
3 tbsp (45 mL) brown sugar
3 red chilies, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 green onions, thinly sliced
2 limes, zested and juiced
1/2 cup (125 mL) coconut milk
2 tbsp (30 mL) Bone Dust™ BBQ Seasoning

Method

The flavors of cilantro, lime, coconut and chili pepper blend well with the flavors of lamb and the hickory plank. If you cannot find hickory planks, try this recipe with cherry or apple wood planks. If you like your food really spicy, add additional chili to the marinade.

In a large bowl, whisk together soy sauce, peanut oil, tamarind paste, rice vinegar, cilantro, brown sugar, chilies, garlic, green onions, lime zest and juice. Set aside 1⁄2 cup (125 mL) of the marinade.

Pour remaining marinade over the lamb racks, turning to coat evenly. Cover and refrigerate for a minimum of 2 hours or marinate overnight, turning occasionally.

Preheat grill to medium-high heat. Pour coconut milk and reserved marinade into a small saucepan and bring to a simmer set over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to low and simmer until sauce thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon. Remove from heat and keep warm.

Remove lamb racks from marinade. Season lamb with Bone Dust BBQ Seasoning and place on plank, crossing the bones from each rack to form an X above the plank. Close lid and plank grill the lamb racks for 12 to 15 minutes. Open lid and baste lamb liberally with sauce. Close lid and continue to plank grill for an additional 3 to 4 minutes for medium-rare. Remove plank from grill and allow to rest for 5 minutes.

Slice lamb between each bone and serve with coconut-enhanced sauce for dipping.

Taken from Ted Reader.

Beef Dishes

Recipes show alphabetically:

[wp_cpl_sc cat_id=7 css_theme=0 list_num=99 sort_using=4 how_author=false show_comments=false]

Limoncello Tiramisu

Limoncello Tiramisu

Yield
Makes 12 servings or more

Ingredients

 

  • 5 large eggs
  • 5 or 6 lemons
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups limoncello liqueur
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 pound (2 cups) Mascarpone, at room temperature
  • 40 ladyfingers (preferably imported Italian savoiardi), or more as needed

Preparation

Pour just enough water in the double-boiler pan so the water level is right below the bottom of the mixing bowl when it is sitting in the pan. Separate the eggs, putting yolks into the large bowl of the double boiler and the whites into another stainless-steel bowl for whipping by hand or with an electric mixer.

Remove the zest of two or more of the lemons, using a fine grater, to get 2 tablespoons of zest. Squeeze out and strain the juice of these and the other lemons to get 3/4 cup of fresh lemon juice.

To make the base for the tiramisù, heat the water in the double boiler to a steady simmer. Off the heat, beat the egg yolks with 1/4 cup of the sugar and 1/2 cup of the limoncello until well blended. Set the bowl over the simmering water, and whisk constantly, frequently scraping the whisk around the sides and bottom of the bowl, as the egg mixture expands and heats into a frothy sponge, 5 minutes or longer. When the sponge has thickened enough to form a ribbon when it drops on the surface, take the bowl off the double-boiler pan and let it cool.

Meanwhile, pour the remaining cup of limoncello, all of the lemon juice, 1 cup water, and 1/2 cup of the sugar in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar, and cook for 5 minutes, evaporating the alcohol. Let the syrup cool completely.

In another large bowl, stir the mascarpone with a wooden spoon to soften it, then drop in the grated lemon zest and beat until light and creamy. Whip the egg whites with the remaining 1/4 cup sugar, by hand or by machine, until it holds moderately firm peaks.

When the cooked limoncello sponge (or zabaglione) is cooled, scrape about a third of it over the mascarpone, and fold it in with a large rubber spatula. Fold in the rest of the zabaglione in two or three additions. Now fold in the whipped egg whites in several additions, until the limoncello-mascarpone cream is light and evenly blended.

Pour some of the cooled syrup, no deeper than 1/4 inch, into the shallow-rimmed pan to moisten the ladyfingers (savoiardi). One at a time, roll a ladyfinger in the syrup and place it in the casserole or baking dish. Wet each cookie briefly—if it soaks up too much syrup, it will fall apart. Arrange the moistened ladyfingers in neat, tight rows, filling the bottom of a 9X13″ pan completely. You should be able to fit about twenty ladyfingers in a single layer.

Scoop half of the limoncello-mascarpone cream onto the ladyfingers, and smooth it to fill the pan and cover them. Dip and arrange a second layer of ladyfingers in the pan, and cover it completely with the remainder of the cream.

Smooth the cream with the spatula, and seal the tiramisù airtight in plastic wrap. Before serving, refrigerate for 6 hours (or up to 2 days), or put it in the freezer for 2 hours. To serve, cut portions of tiramisù in any size you like, and life each out of the pan and onto dessert plates

 

 

 

8 thoughts on “Recipes”

    1. Ah yes, it’s not part of the recipe. It is just french bread, toasted, with a slice of provolone and the a little moment under the broiler. There is also a chiffonade of Basil (roll it and slice it thin).

  1. Well, I made it tonight, with red roma tomatoes, since Lady York grocery store is simply bursting with Ontario produce. I think it worked out pretty well, although, I confess (since I am a musician) I do have this tendency to improvise just a little – can’t ever seem to stick to the recipe religiously ; )

  2. Mondaynightdining is simply fabulous Shawn…What is not to like? Everything looks so delicious; the dishes so beautifully laid out & oh the colors…#just scrumptious

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Join us in our adventures through cooking and sharing with friends!