Brown Butter Cupcakes with Salted Dulce de Leche Cream Cheese Frosting

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Ingredients:

Cupcakes:

1 1/4 cup of cake flour

1 1/4 cup of all pupose flour

2 1/4 tsps of baking powder

1 1/2 cups of salted butter

4 eggs

1 tsp vanilla bourbon extract

1/2 tsp of almond extract

1 cup of cane sugar

1/2 cup of light brown sugar

1/2 cup of dark brown sugar

1 cup of milk

 

Frosting:

1 cup of Argentinian dulce de leche

8 oz cream cheese

3 1/2 cups of powdered sugar

1 1/2 cups of salted butter

1/2 cup of unsalted butter

1 tsp of vanilla bourbon extract

 

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 350 F;

In a small saucepan, melt butter over medium heat, stirring occassionally, until browned and speckled;

In an electric mixer bowl, beat sugars and eggs together on medium-high speed until creamy;

Place speed to medium and add milk, vanilla bourbon extract and almond extract;

Slowly add browned butter while adding flours and baking powder (to make sure it doesnt cook the eggs);

When ingredients are well mixed together, use large ice cream scooper to fill cupcake liners 3/4 of the way with batter (should make 24);

Bake in oven for 19 minutes, until toothpick comed out clean;

In the meantime, make the frosting by first beating the butter in an electric mixer bowl at medium-high speed;

Add dulce de leche, cream cheese and vanilla bourbon extract;

Add powdered sugar 1/4 cup at a time over medium speed;

When all the powdered sugar is added, beat on high for 20-30 seconds;

Keep cool until you are ready to use icing;

When cupcakes are cooked cool completely before frosting;

When cooked, frost each upcake and sprinkle with chocolate sprinkles; and

Serve immediately! To good to store!

Calf's Liver Pate with Apricot Gelatin

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 Ingredients:

Pate:

1 tbsp butter

1 pound of calf's liver

1 yellow onion, sliced

6 sliced of thick cut bacon, chopped

Couple sprigs of thyme

Couple sprigs of marjoram

1/4 cup of white wine

1/4 cup of cognac

1 baguette

 

Apricot Gelatin:

1 cup of apricot marmelade (homemade)

1/2 cup of white wine

1/2 pouch of gelatin

 

Preparation:

In a large skillet, place butter in skillet until melted;

Add onion and bacon until softened and cooked;

Add white wine and cognac and herbs without stems;

Add calf's liver and cook for about 2-3 minutes on each side;

Remove and place all ingredients into the food processor until smooth and well blended;

Place in ramekins and let sit at room temperature while preparing apricot gelatin;

In a small pot add the apricot marmelade over medium heat;

Add the white wine and stir continuously;

Add the gelatin and cook and stir until it boils;

Remove from heat and add on top of pate;

Garnish with small sprig of thyme; and

Place in fridge for severall hours until firm.

Serve with baguette or crisp toasts! Enjoy!

Cinnamon Tagliatelle with Stracciatella di Bufula & Spinach

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It is a perfect pasta that was inspired by the cinnamon we were able to get on our trip to Sri Lanka. The cinnamon farm we visited near Galle has bark and ground cinnamon that is earthy and less sweet than what you find in your average grocery store. I would encourage you to shop around for some to taste the difference! 

 Serves 6

Pasta

500 grams Type 00 Flour

Eggs

teaspoons Ground Cinnamon (Sri Lankan, More Earthy Cinnamon)

Semolina flour, for rolling and dusting

Sauce

ounces Fresh Mascarpone

packet Stracciatella di Bufula, sliced

pinches Freshly ground nutmeg 

pinches Freshly ground black pepper

pinch salt

bunch fresh spinach, stems removed and washed

1/3 cup Freshly grated parmigiano reggiano (for pasta sauce)

1/2 cup Freshly grated parmigiano reggiano (for serving, optional)

tablespoons fresh cream

garlic cloves, minced

tablespoons unsalted butter

Preparation: 

Take a large wooden cutting board out and place somewhere you have ample room to move around; Place flour on the cutting board and create a well with an opening in the center of the flour. Make sure you put the flour up high enough around the hole- think of a water reservoir. Your hole should be wide, about 4 inches or so in diameter but don't bring out any measurements! This is supposed to be messy; Pour the five eggs in the center of the well; Add the Cinnamon to the center and use a fork to beat the eggs slightly and begin to incorporate the flour; Continue to incorporate the flour using your hands until all of the flour and eggs are well mixed together. The dough should be a bit tough to work with but if the dough is too dry, soak your hands in a bit of water to help knead; if it is too soft, add a bit more flour; Continue to knead the dough with your hand for about 10 minutes or so and form a ball; Place in bowl and cover with plastic wrap and leave to rest for an hour in a darker location (not under the light) or in the fridge; When ready to roll out your pasta, dust your cutting board with flour and semolina; Cut your dough depending on the size of your pasta maker- mine is quite small so I cut the dough into an inch thick piece or so (came out to 5 slices); Roll out with rolling pin to make a longer piece with the width of the pasta machine size; Put the sheet through the pasta machine 2-3 times,continuously  making the setting smaller. This is how you get the right thickness you are looking for for your pasta. I usually end up on setting 4 or 5; Follow with the pasta machine addition to slice into tagliatelle; Place pasta through the pasta machine addition and then place pasta on another cutting board dusted with semolina; and Repeat for remaining dough.

In a large pot, prepare water for pasta to boil with some sea salt; When water starts to boil, add pasta, stir occasionally and cook for several minutes until it begins to float and is al dente when you taste it; Place pasta in colander and let it sit while you prepare the sauce; Place butter in pot over medium heat and add garlic once melted; Cook garlic for several minutes to add flavor to the butter; Add the spinach and saute in the garlic butter until almost weltering; Lower heat and add mascarpone in and mix in will with wooden spoon; Add straciatella di bufula and when it begin to melt well, re add the pasta along with the cream and 1/3 cup of parmigiano reggiano; Mix all together until well combined gently using tongs; Grate nutmeg and black pepper and season with salt; Taste to make sure well spiced and add more cream if the pasta needs it ;and Remove and serve immediately with freshly grated parmigiano reggiano on top.

Lavender Thyme Strawberry Rhubarb Mini Pies with Almond Crumble and Fennel Crust

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 Ingredients: (Makes 15 mini pies)

Pie Crust

  • 2 Homemade or Trader Joe's Pie Crust (enough for 2 9-inch crusts)

  • 1 tablespoon pestled fennel seeds

  • 1 egg white only

  • Coconut Oil Spray

Filling and Crumble

  • 1 pound fresh strawberries, diced

  • 1 pound fresh rhubarb, diced

  • 3/4 cup cane sugar

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract

  • 1/4 cup cornstarch

  • 1 lemon, squeezed

  • 4 sprigs of thyme, leaves only

  • 2 tablespoons butter

  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar

  • 1 tablespoon culinary lavender

  • 3/4 cup flour

  • 1/2 cup sliced blanched almonds

  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar

  • 3/4 cup dark brown sugar

  • 5 tablespoons butter, chopped into cubes

PREPARATION:

Either make your homemade pie crust or if you have to buy a store bought one the best I have every had is the one from Trader Joe's in the frozen section; With a mortar and pestle, crush the fennel seeds as much as possible until they become a powder. Sift through sieve to get one tablespoon worth of the fennel seed powder; Combine the one tablespoon of fennel seed powder with the pie crust dough and knead together until evenly distributed and form into a ball. Place in fridge if too soft; Roll out the dough on a floured surface with a rolling pin until flattened; Spray your cupcake pan with coconut oil; Using a circular cookie cutter or a knife, cut out a 4 inch circle or so and press it into the cupcake pan to make sure the dough is well situated and there are no air bubbles; Repeat for each one, should make 15 with filling; Use remaining pie crust with a ravioli cutter to create a trim for the miniature pies like the one in the picture; and Brush egg white on each pie crust.

To create the crumble, combine the flour, dark brown sugar, light brown sugar, sliced almonds together and use pestle to break up the almonds and sugar; and Add the cubes of butter and mix it with your hands until you have a flour crumble that is well mixed. Set aside.

Preheat the oven to 350 F; To create the filling, place the butter, culinary lavender and thyme leaves in a pan large enough to hold on the remaining ingredients over medium-low heat; Once the butter is melted and the mixture begins to smoke ever so slightly, add the lemon juice and rhubarb stir together for a couple minutes; Reduce the heat to low and add the sugars, extracts and strawberries. Mix well; Lastly, add the cornstarch and remove from heat once well mixed. This is just to help with the cooking process in the oven, not to actually fully cook the ingredients. Using a medium/ small ladle, scoop mixture into each miniature pie crust. I like to scoop the rhubarb and strawberries out first and then place the remaining liquid in each to make sure it is evenly distributed; Top with the almond crumble using your hands; Bake in oven at 350 F on the middle rack for 45-60 minutes; and Let cool completely before removing from the cupcake pan.

Miniature Banana Cream Pie Cupcakes

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Ingredients:

Cupcakes:

2 1/3 cups cake flour

1 tsp kosher salt

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda
1 1/3 cups cane sugar

1 cup of light brown sugar
3 large ripe bananas
3 eggs
1/2 cup buttermilk
2 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 cup of canola oil

 

Frosting:

8 oz of light whipped organic cream cheese

3 tbsp of creme fraiche

4 tbsp of butter

1-2 cups of powdered sugar (your preference of sweetness, I used about a cup)

1 tsp of vanilla

 

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 350 F and place your miniature cupcake liners in the corresponding pan;

Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt together in a bowl;

In the bowl of the electric mixer, beat the 3 bananas until smooth on medium speed;

Add the three egs and continue to beat until well blended;

Add the sugars until incorporated and then add the buttermilk, vanilla and oil;

Add the dry mixture to the liquid over low speed;

I like to place my batter into a batter dispenser to help control the placement into the cupcake liners. You should fill them 3/4 of the way;

Cook them in the preheated oven for 14 minutes until toothpick comes out clean; and

Remove from oven and place on cooling rack and do not frost until completely cooled.

To prepare the frosting, blend the cream cheese and creme fraiche in your electric mixer bowl until smooth;

Add the butter, which is better a room temperature, and the vanilla;

Add the sugar 1/4 cup at a time over medium speed. I like to jolt it up to high speed every so often and push down the powdered sugar and cream cheese that has built up on the side of the bowl with a spatula (not at the same time!). Those two things while adding the powdered sugar to your liking will help you get a smooth and fluffy frosting; and

Store in fridge until you are ready to frost.

I use a pastry bag to help frost each miniature cupcake with a tsp or so of frosting. Garnish with banana chip and serve! Store in fridge for several days if you don't eat them all!

Plantain Guacamole

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Ingredients:

1 plantain chopped

1/2 white onion, chopped

1 garlic clove

1 tbsp coconut sugar

1 jalapeno, chopped

2 tbsp cilantro

1 lime, squeezed

4-5 ripe avocados, peeled, pitted and mashed

1 tsp ancho chili powder

Salt & freshly ground black pepper, to taste

 

Tortilla Chips

 

Preparation:

Cook 1 chopped plantain with 1 tbsp coconut sugar, 1/2 chopped white onion and 1 whole garlic clove over medium heat until onions are transparent;

Place cooked garlic clove in mortar and use pestle to mince;

Add 1 chopped jalapeño; 2 tbsp of cilantro; 1 squeezed lime; plantain and onion mixture; 1 tsp of ancho chili powder; 1 tsp paprika; avocados, freshly ground pepper and salt. Mix until well combined; and

Enjoy with tortilla chips!

Charred Yellow & Red Tomato Salsa

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Ingredients:

10 oz fresh yellow tomatoes on the vine, stems removed (Trader Joes)

16 oz fresh red pearl tomatoes on the vine, stems removed (Trader Joes)

1 jalapeno, chopped

2 garlic cloves

1/2 red onion, chopped

14.5 oz can of diced & fire roasted tomatoes with green chilies (Trader Joes)

1 tsp paprika

1-2 tsp ancho chili powder

2 tbsp of fresh cilantro leaves

Salt & freshly ground black pepper to taste

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 350 F;

Place red and yellow tomatoes with garlic cloves on a well oiled oven pan and cook in oven until roasted and soft (20-30 minutes);

Remove and place garlic in mortar and crush with pestle;

Add the jalapeno, red onion and cilantro leaves and continue to crush;

Add the tomatoes until they are well broken up;

Add the can of diced and fire roasted tomatoes to thicken; and

Add the spices and serve warm with tortilla chips or place in fridge if preferred chilled.

Coconut Ancho Chile Shrimp Tacos

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The Coconut & Ancho Chilies Shrimp pairs well with my Plantain Guacamole  Recipe and Pineapple Cucumber Salsa with Freshly Crumbled Cojita and Corn Tortillas

 

Ingredients:

Shrimp:

1 pound of peeled and deveined tail off shrimp

1 tbsp of ancho chili powder (depends how spicy you like it, I added a bit more)

1 4 oz can of light and unsweetened coconut milk

1/4 cup of coconut sugar

1/2 cup of celery, chopped

1 small lemon worth of zest

1 garlic clove

1 bay leaf

1 cup of warm water

Kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper, to taste

 

Pineapple Salsa:

1/2 cucumber, peeled and chopped

4 slices of fresh pineapple, chopped

1 lime, juiced

1 jalapeno, minced

1 tbsp of fresh cilantro leaves, chopped

Koster salt, to taste

 

Corn Tortillas

Cojita Cheese, crumbled

Plantain Guacamole 

 

Preparation:

Mix all the ingredients for the pineapple salsa together and set aside;

In a medium sized pot, combine all of the ingredients in the shrimp section except for the shrimp. Stir the ingredients together with a whisk over medium heat until the liquid begins to boil;

Continue to cook over medium heat for another 10 minutes stirring occassionally to ensure the liquid doesnt foam and overflow;

Reduce the heat after 10 minutes and continue to let the liquid simmer for another 10-20 minutes;

Add salt and pepper to taste now that the chili powder is well combined;

Return to high heat and add the shrimp until no longer transparent and they begin to curl. Should take only several minutes;

Place shrimp and mixture through sieve. Keep the liquid and return to pot over medium-high heat so the liquid and reduce and thicken into a sauce. Remove shrimp from sieve and place in bowl in fridge to cool;

In the meantime, place corn tortillas in oven at 350 F while the sauce is thickening so they are warm for serving;

The sauce should thicken over time, but if you need to speed things up add 1 tbsp of cornstarch;

When thickened, toss shrimp in some sauce and serve the rest with the salsa, plaintain guacamole, cojita and tortillas; and

Assemble tacos and enjoy!

Scotch Eggs

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Ingredients: (Makes 4)

4 large eggs

100 g chicken sausage

125 g pork sausage

1/2 tsp of paprika

1 tbsp corn meal

2-3 tbsps of yellow mustard

Some salt and pepper

 

1 large egg with 1 oz of whole milk, whisked with fork in shallow bowl

1 heaping cup of flour in shallow bowl

1 heaping cup of bread crumbs in shallow bowl

 

Sunflower oil for frying

 

Preparation:

In a medium-sized pot, place 4 eggs at the bottom with water that only covers an inch over the eggs. Make sure your eggs are not floating, this means they are old and won't do well in a scotch egg. You want an egg from the farmer's market over store bought for this recipe;

Place pot over high heat and immediately when it comes to a boil, remove the pot from the stove;

Set timer for 3 minutes and let eggs sit in the pot;

While eggs are sitting in the hot water, prepare another bowl with ice cubes and cold water. When timer goes off, remove eggs carefully, but immediately and place eggs in ice water bowl. Allow the eggs to sit in the ice water for 15 minutes;

In the meantime, prepare the sausage mixture by placing the chicken and pork sausage, paprika, corn meal, yellow mustard, salt and pepper in a food processor. Let the ingredients blend together and then place in the fridge until ready to combine with eggs;

When the 15 minutes are almost up, separate the sausage mixture into four equal pieces and place in a slice of plastic wrap. With another piece of plastic wrap, place that plastic wrap on top of the sausage mixture and begin to spread out the sausage mixture with the palm of your hand until it forms a circle large enough to cover a whole egg. You can use a rolling pin, but this might thin out the sausage too much if you only have a heavy one. You can know its a large enough circle by taking an uncooked egg and placing it in the plastic wrapped sausage and seeing if the end of the circle come together over the egg. Repeat for all four sausage mixtures;

When each sausage circle is ready, carefully peel the shell of the egg. This requires some patience so be very careful when peeling. I recommend going one by one with the next step so every time you peel an egg you place it immediately in the sausage circle since they are so delicate;

Remove the top plastic wrap of one sausage circle and place the egg in the middle;

Take the parallel edges of the plastic wrap and come together over the egg. Do the same thing with the perpendicular plastic wrap edges. Mold the sausage casing through the plastic wrap over the egg. Make sure there are no visible parts of the egg and there are no holes at the top. Twist the plastic wrap at the top together and fold over. Place in the fridge for 20 minutes or so to help firm the casing over the egg. Repeat the last two steps for the remaining eggs;

While the scotch eggs are resting the fridge, prepare your egg and milk, flour with some salt and pepper, and breadcrumbs in their individual shallow bowls. You want to set them up in a station with the flour first, egg second and bread crumbs third;

When scotch eggs are ready, take one out of the fridge at a time for the next step to keep them cool. Cover the scotch egg in flour and brush off excess. Cover the scotch egg in egg and milk mixture and then place in bread crumbs and cover completely- turning over  a couple times to make sure completely covered. Place it back in the fridge on a paper napkin and let it rest of another 20 minutes. Repeat for the remaining eggs;

When almost ready to cook, preheat your oven to 375 F and start heating your oil in medium sized pot (enough oil to cover the scotch egg completely when frying) until oil reaches 375 F on thermometer. If you dont have a thermometer, make sure your oil is on medium-high heat and throw a breadcrumb in to see it really sizzle to know its ready;

Place one scotch egg at a time in the heated oil for 2 minutes exactly;

Remove the scotch egg from the oil and place on wire rack over oven pan and let it rest while cooking the remaining three eggs one at a time in the oil;

When all the scotch eggs have been fried, place in oven for 9 minutes; and

Serve Immediately! 

Blueberry Pancakes with Apricot Maple Compote

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I would call my blueberry pancakes famous with my family and friends. They are big and fluffly and full of so many ripe blueberries it's a bit out of control. We like to pile them sky high and serve it with warm apricot maple syrup and then cut it like a cake so everyone can enjoy warm, delicious slices of pancakes. Check out the video on my Instragram to really see how we roll at Johanna's table. I hope you recreate my recipe the next time you have a brunch party with loved ones!

 

Ingredients:

Pancakes:

3 tsp baking powder

1 1/2 tsp baking soda

2 cups of all-purpose flour

3 tbsp cane sugar

1 1/2 tsp salt

3 cups of buttermilk

3 small eggs

2 dry pints of fresh, ripe blueberries, washed and stems removed

Some good european butter

1 tsp of almond extract

1 tsp of vanilla extract

 

Apricot Maple Syrup:

4-5 apricots, split into four

1/3 cup of water

1 tbsp of sugar

1 tsp pumpkin spice or 1/2 ground cinnamon 1/2 ground nutmeg

1 tsp of vanilla extract

1 12 oz bottle of maple syrup

 

Special Equipment:

Small non-stick fry pans (4-5 inches like this)

 

Preparation:

  • Prepare the dry pancake mix. Mix all of the dry ingredients together;

  • In a small saucepan, combine the apricots, vanilla extract, sugar, water and spices and cook over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally.

  • In a large bowl, whisk the eggs and then slowly add the buttermilk, vanilla and almond extracts;

  • Mix in the dry pancake mix, 1/3 cup at a time and continue to mix together to make sure no clumps form;

  • When the batter is well combine, use a plastic spatula to fold in the blueberries;

  • Preheat oven to 300 F;

  • Over medium heat, melt some of the European butter over medium-low heat;

  • Use a laddle to scoop batter and place in pan. Make sure the batter is spread evenly and the blueberries are not toppled over one another. You want enough batter to cover the blueberries;

  • Cook over medium-low heat until bubbles have formed on the uncooked side of the pancake;

  • Use a metal spatula to help flip the pancakes over to the other side;

  • Cook for several minutes until both sides are lightly golden to make sure dough is cooked through;

  • Place in an oven friendly plate in the oven while you continue to cook the rest of the pancakes;

  • Make sure you are continually checking on your apricot mixture, the water should have reduced, but if not this is the time to turn the heat up a little and make sure that it does;

  • Continue making the pancakes following the steps above;

  • Turn off the apricot mixture and add the maple syrup immediately. This should warm the maple syrup for serving;and

  • Serve pancakes with european butter and the apricot maple syrup compote.

Gluten Free Cardamom Rhubarb Muffins

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Ingredients:

Muffins:

1 cup of gluten free all-purpose flour

1 cup of almond flour

1/4 cup cane sugar

1/2 cup coconut sugar

21/2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp cardamom

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp kosher salt

3/4 cup greek yogurt

1/4 cup sour cream

8 tbsp applesauce

2 large eggs

1 tsp pure vanilla extract

8oz diced rhubarb

 

Topping:

2 tbsp rolled oats

2 tbsp of light brown sugar or coconut sugar

1/2 tsp of cinnamon

Dash of cardamom

 

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 375 F;

Place 12 liners in cupcake/muffin pan;

In an electric mixer bowl with a dough paddle attachment, combine the eggs, applesauce, coconut sugar and cane sugar over medium-low speed;

Add the greek yogurt, sour cream and vanilla extract;

In another bowl, combine baking soda, baking powder, almond flour, gluten free flour, cinnamon, salt and cardamom;

Reduce to speed to low and add the dry ingredients slowly;

When ingredients are well combined, remove the electric mixer bowl and fold in your diced rhubarb with a spatula;

Use a a large ice cream scooper to place dough in muffin liners. You should fill to the top;

Combine the topping ingredients with your hands in a small bowl and top each of the muffins off;

Place in middle rack in oven and bake for 35-40 minutes, until toothpick comes out clean; and

Remove from oven and serve once slightly cooled. Can store for several days as well.

Fried Sage Zucchini Blossoms

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A light batter with sage that compliments the zucchini blossoms well and only calls for a sprinkle of sea salt on top before serving. No stuffing or dipping necessary!

 

Ingredients:

50 g of type 00 flour

2 tsp of extra virgin olive oil

1/3 cup of sparkling water

3 large sage leaves (like those pictured above), finely chopped

Pinch of sea salt, more for after frying

3 egg whites

Sunflower Oil, for frying

Up to 20-25 zucchini blossoms

 

Preparation:

In a medium-sized bowl, combine flour, pinch of salt and olive oil together;

As it begins to crumble, whisk in carbonated water until smooth and thickened;

Allow the mixture to sit for several minutes;

Heat the sunflower oil over medium-high heat in a small pot;

Mix in the chopped sage and then slowly add the egg whites;

Continue to whisk the mixture for 5 minutes;

When the oil is ready, drop a dab of the dough in to see if it puff and goldens, dunk and coat the zucchini blossom and place it in the hot oil. Make sure to turn sides of the blossom while frying and then remove when almost golden and place on paper napkin covered plate. Sprinkle with sea salt;

Repeat for each blossom, you can fry several at a time; and

Serve immediately while hot. 

Ginger Fried Rice & Sticky Finger Chicken

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 Ingredients:

Ginger Fried Rice:

4 eggs

4 cups jasmine rice, cooked

Couple tablespoons of duck or chicken fat

Remaining oil from cooking roast chicken below in cast iron

1-2 tbsp sesame oil

2 tbsp soy sauce

2 tbsp garlic, grated

2 tbsp of ginger, grated

Kosher salt, to taste

Chopped green onions for garnish

 

Chicken:

1 whole cut up chicken (skin on, bone in thighs, breasts, drumsticks & wings)

1 stalk of lemon grace, white part only, grated

1 knob of fresh ginger, grated

2 tbsp soy sauce

2 tbsp of rice wine vinegar

3-4 tbsp of Sriracha 

1 tbsp of fish sauce

4 black garlic cloves

2 tbsp of honey

1 tbsp sesame oil

extra virgin olive oil

kosher salt & black pepper, to taste

cilantro & limes for garnish and serving

 

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 450 F;

Season chicken pieces with salt & pepper;

Add some olive oil to your cast iron skillet pan, enough to cover the bottom of the pan and ensure the chicken does not stick;

Over high heat, cook your chicken, skin side down for 3 minutes;

Reduce heat to medium-high heat and flip the chicken pieces and cook for another 10-12 minutes. You can probably take out the wings and drumsticks first and then the breasts and thighs;

While the chicken is cooking, add all of the ingredients together for the marinade in a large bowl;

Once the chicken is ready, remove from heat and place directly in marinade. Make sure to move the pieces around while it is sitting in the marinade. Leave for 10-15 minutes to the flavor can sink in;

Place the chicken pieces on an oven pan (make sure it has edges so nothing spills over) and bake in oven for 25 minutes, until internal temp is 165 F of each piece. Once again you can remove the wings and drumsticks before the thighs and breasts. I would take the remaining marinade and brush it on the chicken halfway through the cooking process;

In the meantime, while your chicken is cooking, prepare your fried rice. The reason you need to use cooked rice that is at room temperature, rather than just recently cooked, is because it ensures the rice doesn't become soggy when mixing with the remaining ingredients. I used the same oil that was left in the cast iron skillet from cooking the chicken and added a couple tablespoons of duck fat.

With the remaining oil and duck fat at high heat in the cast iron skillet, add the grated garlic and ginger to fry;

Once golden and crisp, remove and set aside in bowl and sprinkle with salt;

Reduce heat to medium-high and add 1 tbsp of sesame oil and the cooked rice to  the cast iron skillet. Make sure to move the rice around coat completely with the mixture of oils;

Add the soy sauce and if it is to dry, add 1 more tbsp of sesame oil;

Add the cooked ginger and garlic and combine all the ingredients thoroughly;

Remove rice from the cast iron skillet and separate into four separate bowls for serving or one large bowl if serving less than four people. Sprinkle with chopped green onions;

Based on the number of people you are serving, each person should recieve one egg sunny side up. In your chicken's last couple minutes of cooking, cook the eggs in the cast iron skillet;

Remove chicken from oven for serving; and

Remove eggs and place over rice.

Spiced Lamb Burger

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Lamb Burger with Freshly Baked Pumpernickel Bread,  Harissa Ketchup, Grilled Za'atar Halloumi, Cucumber & Tomato. I made the burger with ground lamb, shallots, fenugreek powder, fennel seeds, marjoram, harissa, sumac, turmeric, celery seeds, lemon juice, black pepper and kosher salt. The most amazing explosion of flavor!

This is one of those recipes that I would really eye out the spices instead of taking the measurements to heart. I throw things in and just estimate how much I am using but I dont think you can ever go wrong with too much spice! Just not salt! :)

Makes 3 large burgers

Ingredients:

Burgers:

1-1.3 pounds of ground lamb

2 large shallots, minced

1 tbsp fenugreek powder

1 tbsp fennel seeds

1 tsp marjoram leaves

1 tbsp harissa

1/2-1 tbsp sumac

1 tsp turmeric

1/2 tsp celery seeds

1/2 lemon, squeezed

Kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper, to taste

 

Accompaniments:

6 slices of fresh pumpernickel bread (try to buy bakery bread rather than packaged bread or replace with hamburger brioche buns)

15 slices of cucumber, thinly sliced (5 per burger)

3 slices of Halloumi Cheese

1 tbsp of Za'atar

6 slices of tomato (2 per burger)

1-2 tbsp of red harissa (powder or paste)

3 tbsp of ketchup

 

Extra virgin olive oil for cooking

 

Preparation:

Mix all of the ingredients for the lamb burger together with your hands. Mix well so all ingredients are spread out and full incorporated. Lamb holds together well;

Using a hamburger maker press, create three large patties. Allow the burgers to rest on a rack for 5-10 minutes while you prepare all of the accompaniments and grill the Halloumi;

In a non-stick pan, sprinkle some olive oil and turn heat on to medium heat;

Cook the halloumi slices for several minutes on each side until golden;

Remove and sprinkle with za'atar;

In the same pan or a cast-iron skillet, add some more olive oil over medium heat;

When ready, place patties in the pan/ skillet and cook on each side for four minutes. Cover the pan when cooking;

When you have flipped the burgers, toast the pumpernickel bread and mix the harissa with ketchup;

Remove the burgers and allow them to rest for 4-5 minutes;

Place 1 tbsp of harissa ketchup on the bottom of the toasted pumpernickel bread;

Add the cucumber slices, the grilled Halloumi, the burger, the tomato and the top of the bun and place toothpick in center; and

Zucchini Pancakes

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Ingredients:

2 small zucchinis, finely grated

1/2 cup of fat free ricotta

2 eggs

1/4 cup of brown sugar

1/2 cup of pastry whole wheat flour

1/4 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg

1/4 cup of golden raisins

1/4 cup of toasted hazelnuts, crushed

Coconut oil spray for cooking

Maple Syrup

 

Preparation:

After grating the zucchini, squeeze as much moisture out as possible and sprinkly with salt;

Whisk eggs and then add in the following order: the ricotta, brown sugar, spices, flour, baking powder;

Fold in the hazelnuts, zucchini and golden raising;

Spray pan (I use a 3 inch small pancake pan, but any pan/ large griddle will do) with coconut oil spray over medium heat;

Add 2 heaping tablespoons worth of batter for each pancake;

Cook on each side for 3 minutes or so until golden and cooked through;

Repeat for each pancake and keep warm in the oven at 250 F; and

Serve immediately with warm maple syrup and crushed hazelnuts.

Zabaglione Mascarpone Ice Cream with Seasonal Peaches

Ingredients:

200 ml milk

200 ml heavy cream

100 ml marsala wine

1/3 cup mascarpone

100 g cane sugar

1 tsp vanilla extract

4 egg yolks

 

Peaches

Some honey

 

Preparation:

Place milk and cream in a pot over medium heat, heat and stir occasionally until it boils;

In the meantime, in a mixing bowl, combine egg yolks with sugar and whisk until lighter in color and fluffy;

Combine the marsala and vanilla extract and set aside;

When the milk and cream come to a boil, slowly add the liquid to the egg and sugar mixture with a spatula. Be sure to go very slow so you do not cook the eggs;

Place the bowl over a bain marie (simmering water in a pot) and continue to stir with a spatula and add the marscapone until a thermometer hits 160 F;

When it hits 160 F, add the marsala in slowly and remove from the heat;

Chill the mixture covered in plastic wrap in the fridge for 3 hours;

After three hours, churn in your ice cream maker according to you maker's instructions (25 minutes or so);

Remove and place in sealed container in freezer until it reaches the consistency you are looking for (may be overnight);

When you are ready to serve, slice your peaches in half and place some honey on the side with no skin;

Grill on your griddle for 5-10 minutes; and

Remove and serve with the ice cream.

Pumpkin Ice Cream

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The problem with pumpkin cravings and seasonal advertising is that it keeps moving to earlier and I find myself craving pumpkin anything while its still 80 degrees outside. Not exactly getting me excited for a hot pumpkin spiced latte or a pumpkin pie- but rather I found myself still looking for something refreshing. I wasn't ready to get into fall mode so I thought the best solution would be a pumpkin spiced ice cream. I haven't had this since high school. There was a cafe nearby that had the seasonal flavor and it would be the highlight of fall for me- except I was normally eating it while freezing cold because they actually served it "in season". So I experimented a little and came up with a recipe to be enjoyed a little earlier :) Hope you like it!

 

Ingredients:

5 egg yolks

Puree of pumpkin from a very small sugar pumpkin or 15 oz can of pumpkin puree

2 tsp of vanilla bourbon extract

3/4 cup of dark brown sugar

1 tsp of ground cinnamon

1 tsp of pumpkin spice

1/2 tsp of ground ginger

1/4 tsp of kosher salt

Some freshly grated nutmeg

2 cups of heavy cream

 

Preparation:

Combine the vanilla bourbon extract and pumpkin puree while preparing the other ingredients;

In a small pot boil 1 1/2 cups of the heavy cream with 1/2 cup of the dark brown sugar (stir occasionally) over medium heat;

While waiting for the heavy cream to boil, whisk all the spices with the 5 egg yolks, 1/2 cup of heavy cream and 1/4 cup of remaining brown sugar;

Once the heavy cream has boiled remove it from the stove and temper some of the egg mixture into the heavy cream while whisking vigorously. Continue to slowly add the remaining egg mixture and then return it to the stove over while stirring occasionally over medium/ low heat until it has thickened (about 5 minutes);

Remove from the stove and strain the mixture into a bowl. Place bowl in an ice bath and stir the mixture before lining with plastic wrap and placing in the fridge overnight (or at least 3 hours);

When ready, place the mixture in ice cream machine and churn according to manufacturer's instructions (took 25 minutes for my machine); and

Once ice cream has churned completely, place it in an ice cream container in the freezer for at least another couple hours until firm. Enjoy!

Spiced Pumpernickel Rye Bread

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 Ingredients:

3 cups of pumpernickel rye flour

1 1/4 cup of whole wheat flour

1 tbsp of active dry yeast

2 1/2 cups boiling hot water

1/2 cup of molasses

2 tbsp honey

1 tbsp grated apple

1 tbsp fennel seeds

1 tsp cardamom

1 tsp allspice

1 tbsp kosher salt

Hemp hearts or any type of seed for topping

 

Preparation:

In an electric mixer with the dough attachment, add the pumpernickel rye flour, salt, molasses, honey and boiling water and mix on lowest speed;

Add the yeast and whole wheat flour and mix until incorporated. You may need to turn it off and push everything to the center with a spatula one or two times to make sure that no flour is left underneath;

Add all of the spices and grated apple and once everything is thoroughly combined remove from mixer. Use a spatula or your hands to make sure everything is incorporated and form a ball at the bottom of the mixer bowl with the dough;

Cover the bowl well with cling wrap and kitchen linens and store it in a dark place that isn't too cool overnight;

The next morning, preheat your oven to 350 F and take out two 2 inch cake pans (8 or 9 inch, whatever you prefer;

Place parchment paper in one of them, covering the sides as well. It's OK if it crinkles or has creases, it will peel off the bread when done and cooled;

Add the bread dough to the parchment paper pan and evenly distribute it in the pan;

Place hemp hearts or any seeds you would like on top of the bread dough;

Place the bread in the oven and cover it with the second cake pan. Bake the bread for 30 minutes;

Remove the second cake pan after 30 minutes, reduce the oven temperature to 325 and bake the bread for another 40 minutes;

Remove from the oven after 40 minutes, or once the bread is thoroughly cooked (shouldn't have too much bounce if you press your thumb on it); and

Remove from the pan and let the bread cool in the parchment paper and once cooled remove the parchment paper.

Pumpkin Cupcakes with Pumpkin Spiced Cookie Butter Frosting

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Ingredients:

Cupcakes:

1 cup cake flour, sifted

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1/4 tsp ground cardamom

Some freshly grated nutmeg, about 1/4 tsp

1 tsp pumpkin spice

1/2 tsp kosher salt

1/2 cup grapeseed oil

2 eggs, room temperature

1 cup pumpkin puree

1/2 cup granulated cane sugar

1/2 cup dark brown sugar

1 tsp vanilla bourbon extract

1 tbsp pumpkin pie spice cookie butter

 

Frosting:

8 oz light, but not whipped, cream cheese, room temperature

3 tablespoons butter, at room temperature

Pinch of salt

7 oz Trader Joes pumpkin spice cookie butter

1 teaspoon vanilla bourbon extract

1 1/2 cups powdered sugar, sifted

 

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 350 F and place 12 cupcake liners in cupcake/muffin pan;

In a large bowl, combine the pumpkin puree, eggs and oil together with a whisk;

Add the cane sugar,  brown sugar, vanilla extract, salt and spices and mix until well incorporated;

Add the remaining dry ingredients slowly and just mix until the ingredients come together, do not over mix. This is also why this recipe is done by hand rather than in an electric mixer.

Place the cupcakes in the oven for 25 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean;

Remove from the oven and let the cupcakes cool completely;

When the cupcakes are cooled, place your cream cheese and butter in an electric mixer with the whisk attachment and whip them together on a medium high speed until fluffy (couple minutes);

Lower to a medium speed and start to add the sifted powdered sugar 1/2 cup at a time. I recommend you tasting after 1 cup worth to see if it is sweet enough for you because you will also be adding the cookie butter. Everyone's preference is different and you may even prefer 2 cups instead of 1 1/2;

Add the vanilla, pinch of salt and cookie butter;

Beat on high for 30 seconds to make sure everything is well incorporated;

Taste to see if you need anything else, a little more sugar, a little more cookie butter- everyone's different!

Place the frosting in a pastry bag, tip or no tip, and frost each cupcake. Top with anything you like- from glittered hearts to pumpkin cookie crumbs- anything will do!

Serve immediately or store in fridge and remove 30 minutes before serving. They are so moist and fluffy even the day after!

La Cocotte Chicken Pot Pies

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Ingredients:

1 lb of chicken (tenders or thighs depending on your choice of white or dark meat, cut into small pieces)

5 tbsp of butter

1 onion, finely chopped

6 tbsp of all-purpose flour

1/3 cup of vermouth

2 1/4 cup of chicken broth

2 small potatoes, very small cubes

1 corn, just the kernels

Couple baby bella mushrooms, chopped

1 cup of peas (frozen or fresh)

2 pieces of thawed puff pastry

Some chopped sage & marjoram (1 tbsp or so each)

Salt, red chili pepper flakes & white pepper, to taste

1 egg, beaten

Preparation:

Preheat the oven to 375 F;

In a saute pan, melt the butter over medium heat and add the onion until translucent;

Add the chicken pieces and continue to cook over medium heat;

Halfway through cooking the chicken, add the potatoes;

When the chicken is almost cooked, that you can't see anymore pink, add the vermouth;

When the vermouth is reducing, add the flour and combine it with the chicken, potato and onion mixture;

Slowly add the chicken broth, the marjoram, sage & the remaining vegetables;

Continue to stir occassionally so the mixture doesn't stick to the bottom of the pan and allow it to come to a boil;

Continue to boil for a couple minutes and then lower the heat until the mixture has thickened and reduced to a good consistency (for 5-10 minutes). While this is happening add your remaining seasoning (salt, white pepper, chili flakes) in small amounts until the right amount of flavor is there;

Turn off the heat and ladle the mixture into the cocottes or ramekins until full;

Place puff pastry on top of the cocotte and make an whole or x in the middle;

Brush with the beaten egg and place in the oven on a sheet pan for 30 minutes or so, until the puff pastry is crisp and golden brown; and

Remove from the oven and let cool for 5-10 minutes before serving.