Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Classic Peach Pie


I generally don't spend time making sweets in the kitchen, but apparently this summer peach pie is the exception. I made this pie a total of six (6!) times this summer during the height of peach season. I did cheat and use Trader Joe's frozen pie crust, but I'm quite fond of it and it's the rolled pie crusts like what they have in France. Most places only have the pre-pressed uncooked pie crust in an aluminum pie plate in the frozen section and I've been chronically unimpressed with. However, if you are feeling so inspired, you can of course make your own (double) recipe of pate brisee.


Note: This pie releases a lot of liquids as it cooks. Either place a tray lined with parchment paper or a non-stick pad underneath the pie as it cooks, or be prepared to go through your oven's self-cleaning cycle after making this pie.

Classic Peach Pie
makes 9" pie or larger
from America's Test Kitchen from Garlic and Zest 

Ingredients:
- double batch of rolled pie crust
- 3 lbs. peaches (or more if you want a larger pie)
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 Tbs. corn starch
- 1 Tbs. lemon juice
- 1/8 tsp. cinnamon
- 1/8 tsp. nutmeg
- 2 Tbs. cream or egg wash, for brushing on crust
- 1 Tbs. demerara sugar

Instructions:
1. Peel peaches (or don't) and slice how you wish in a bowl. Add the sugar, stir well to combine, and let sit on counter for 1 hour.
2. Roll out pie crust and place in pie pan or tart pan. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate while peaches rest with sugar.
3. Once peaches have rested with sugar for 1 hour, start oven preheating to 425 F. Then drain off liquid from peaches, reserving 1/4 cup. Combine 1/4 cup reserved peach liquid, corn starch, lemon juice, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Stir well to combine.
4. Take pie crust out of fridge, unwrap, and pour peach mixture into the crust. Roll out second crust, and make desired design on top of pie. I did lattice crust, there are lots of options out there.
5. Brush crust with cream or egg wash. Sprinkle the demerara sugar on top of the pie. Wrap edges of the pan with foil such that the crust is shielded, being careful not to let the dough come into contact with the foil.
6. Cook at 425 F. for 25 minutes. Reduce heat to 375 F and cook for another 30 minutes. Take foil off and cook for another 10-15 minutes or more if you used a larger tart pan.
7. Let pie sit for at least 2 hours before cutting into.

Note: the remainder of the peach liquid makes a killer peach bellini when mixed with bubbly.


Friday, July 21, 2017

Broccoli Bacon Salad


This salad is incredibly un-healthy. I know, not my usual, but my fiance loves it and requests it every time he's down. I'm making it slightly healthier every time, so we'll get there but here it is so far. I highly recommend making the night ahead.


The pictured salad has a three dashes of Chinese black vinegar, no mozzarella, and honey vs granulated sugar (I find it combines easier with the dressing) but other than that it is the exact recipe below.

Broccoli Bacon Salad
adapted from food.com

Ingredients:
- 2.5 lbs. fresh broccoli florets, chopped small (I recommend Costco bag of florets)
- 1 cup sweet red onion, chopped small
- 1/2 lb. bacon
- 1/4 cup vinegar
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 4 oz. mozzarella, shredded

Instructions:
1. Cook in microwave until slightly firm, then chop bacon into 1/2" pieces. Drain fat.
2. Mix together broccoli, onions, bacon, and mozzarella in a large bowl.
3. In a small bowl, combine vinegar, sugar, and mayo.
4. Pour mayo mixture over broccoli and stir well to coat.
5. Let marinate overnight in refrigerator before serving.

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Slow Cooker Carnitas

No-fail carnitas. Delicious and makes enough for a party. Even more delicious if you reduce the meat amount and remove the broth/beer. No need to change spice levels.






















Slow Cooker Carnitas
from Buzzfeed

Ingredients:
4 lbs. boneless pork butt/shoulder, cut into 6 equal pieces
2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper
1 Tbs. oregano
1 Tbs. cumin
8 cloves garlic, crushed
3 bay leaves
1 cups broth or beer (not necessary is using smaller amount of pork)
1 lime, juiced
1 large orange, juiced (save juiced halves)

Instructions:
1. In slow cooker, combine all ingredients (including spent orange juice halves) and combine until meat is well coated.
2. Cover and cook low for 8-10 hours, until meat pull apart easily.
3. Remove pork, and transfer to foil-lined baking sheet. Shred pork and spread across the baking sheet in single layer.
4. Pour 1 cup remaining slow cooker liquid over shredded pork. Broil for 5-10 minutes until meat is brown with crispy edges.
5. Serve and enjoy.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Thai Iced Tea

The delicious Thai iced tea that seems only available at Thai/Vietnamese restaurants for $3-4 a pop is incredibly inexpensive and easy to make. If you have an Asian grocery store nearby, you will likely be able to find the exact Thai iced tea mix that 99% of places use for ~ $4/lb.

Next time you can get your Thai as take-out and make the drinks at home. My version is much less sweet than the Southern-sweet-tea level of sweet restaurants generally serve. If you want it sweeter, add more sugar to the tea when it's steeping and/or more sweetened condensed milk at serving time to taste.


Thai Ice Tea
Inspired by Cooking is Messy

Ingredients:
5 cups water
1 cup iced tea blend
1/2 cup sugar
Ice
Half-n-half
Sweetened condensed milk

Instructions:
1. Bring water to a boil in a pot. Once boiling, add tea mix and simmer for 3 minutes on medium heat. Give the tea a good stir in the pot.
2. After the 3 minutes of simmering, turn off heat and let tea steep for 30 mins.
3. Using a fine mesh, strain tea and store liquid in a pitcher or mason jar. Refrigerate.
4. To serve, put a small handful of ice in a tall glass. Fill 3/4ths with tea, 1/4th with half-n-half and stir in a tablespoon of sweetened condensed milk. Enjoy!

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Gnudi Ricotta pasta


Hi everyone! It's been a while

I always buy a gallon of milk because it's the best price, but never consume the entire thing. I hate throwing out food, so I generally make ricotta. What do I do with all this ricotta? That's a good question, one I have to ask myself frequently.

This delicious ricotta pasta (think gnocchi but ricotta instead of potato) is easy to make, delicious, and can be used in a variety of ways. It's like cheese ravioli but nicely mixed with the pasta component so you aren't chewing lumps of cheese like in ravioli. Easy to freeze too for later.



Gnudi
from little scratch kitchen

Ingredients:
1 cup ricotta
1/4 cup parmesan, grated
2 tsp. olive oil
1 egg
1/4 tsp. salt
2/3 cup flour, plus more for dusting

Instructions:
1. In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients except for flour. In two parts, add flour stirring fully to incorporate in between.
2. Kneed dough into a ball adding flour as needed so the ball sticks together but is still wet.
3. Dust a workspace with lots of flour, and cut dough into three equal pieces. Roll each piece into a snake until it's about 9" long. Cut into 3/4" pieces, and roll pieces into little balls.
4. Sprinkle flour on a cookie sheet and place gnudi balls on flour. Sprinkle on more flour on-top and let sit for an hour to develop a skin.
5. At this point, you may freeze the gnudi or cook. To cook, bring a pot of water to boil. Add gnudi in batches so they don't touch, and they are done once floating.
6. Serve hot by plating and adding sauce, or pan-frying gnudi once boiled in sauce such as butter or oil.

Monday, March 28, 2016

Slow Cooker Biryani

Easy and quick Biryani recipe. You can add or change out vegetable or even the protein as desired. I've added quite a few recipes compared to the original. Delicious with raita sauce (recipe not included).


Slower Cooker Biryani
Serves 4
Adapted from Awaken Living

Ingredients:
1 lb. chicken, cut into small cubes (optional, can make as veg by adding hard boiled eggs sliced at serving time)
4 Tbs. ghee (or butter)
1 green chili, chopped
1 cup fresh mint, chopped
2 Tbs. ginger & garlic paste
1/2 cup cilantro leaves, chopped
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
1 tsp. black cumin
1 tsp. cayenne pepper or chili powder
1/2 tsp. tumeric powder
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cumin powder
2 tsp. coriander powder
2 bay leaves
1" stick cinnamon, whole
2 cloves, whole
3 green cardamom, whole
2 black cardamom, whole
1 star anise, whole
1 1/2 cups yogurt
2 cups rice
3 cups water
1/4 cup onions, diced small
1 large carrot, diced small
1 potato, diced small
1 handful green beans, cut into small circles
1 handful corn kernels
1 handful peas
1 handful cooked Lima beans

Quick raita sauce:
1/2 sweet red onion, sliced into thin quarter-circles
1 cucumber, diced small
1 tsp. salt
2 cups yogurt, plain

Instructions:
1. Heat some oil in a frying pan on medium heat. Add carrot, onion and potato and cook until carrots are semi-soft. Add green beans, corn, and peas and fry for a few more minutes.
2. In a medium mixing bowl, combine all ingredients except rice and sauteed vegetables.
3. Place chicken and spice mixture in the bottom of your crock pot. In the same mixing bowl, add vegetables and rice and stir to combine.
4. Pour rice and vegetable mixture over chicken and spice mixture in crock pot.
5. Cook on high for 2-3 hours, until chicken and rice is cooked. Serve with raita sauce.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

German Tomato Salts (TomatenSalz)

I was introduced to the deliciousness that is tomato salts by my Canadian boyfriend, who hosted German couch surfers and left some as a gift. They are absolutely delicious! But completely unavailable in the US. I scoured and found some places in Germany to order them, but alas they do not ship to the US. Thankfully, it seems that German labeling laws are stricter, and I found an explicit recipe on one of the brands of German tomato salts! 


 I made a batch to bring down to one of my bestie's weddings. It's a potluck, but I'll be doing some traveling before and don't have a good way to bring down something more intricately crafted. So, I'll pick up some local tomatoes day-of, along with some pumpernickel and liverworst pate and make small hand sandwiches garnished with the salt.

Note: I am still tweaking this recipe, but will update each discovery/trial.

TomatenSalz

Ingredients:
4 Tbs salt
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1.5 tsp thyme
2 tsp basil
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp rosemary (optional)

Instructions:
1. Combine all ingredients. Server sprinkled generously over fresh tomato slices.