Sunday, September 23, 2018

Parmesan Roasted Zucchini

My daughter is not a big fan of vegetables.  She prefers fruit - peaches, plums, berries and apples.  In our house we all eat vegetables.  However, she really liked this zucchini side dish, so I had to share.  It is from Ina!

And late summer is zucchini season in New England.

6 medium zucchini (about three pounds) - washed
Olive Oil
Kosher salt and ground black pepper
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 T minced fresh parsley
2 T julienned fresh basil
1/2 c freshly granted Parmesan cheese (NOT from the can)
3/4 c Panko

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees

Trim the stems off the zucchini.  Cut them in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds using a spoon (I use a regular small spoon).  Take a baking sheet and cover with tin foil.  Put the zucchini in one play on the pan and brush the scooped out side with olive oil.  Turn over the zucchini so the cut side is down.  Sprinkle with 1 teaspoon of kosher salt and then some ground pepper.

Roast for 14 minutes.

While roasting, make the stuffing by placing the garlic, parsley, basil, Parmesan, 1 teaspoon regular salt, ground pepper, panko and 3 T of olive oil.  Mix well.

When the zucchini is ready, please about a tablespoon of panko in each zucchini.  Bake for 8 more minutes.  Serve hot.


Sunday, September 16, 2018

Chicken for Rosh Hashana

I really enjoy trying new recipes for the holidays.  One recipe that is perfect for Rosh Hashana is from Kosher By Design - Cooking Coach by Susie Fishbein

Pomegranate Honey Chicken

1 chicken - cut into pieces
1/2 cup honey (to measure honey spray PAM on the measuring cup, and then pour the honey into the measuring cup)
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 pomegranate juice
1/4 cup teriyaki sauce
2 T cornstarch
1 t tomato paste
1/2 t dried thyme
2 cloves fresh garlic, minces
1 T non dairy margarine
fresh pomegranate seeds (garnish)

Line a roasting dish with tin foil.  Arrange the chicken into a single layer.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees

In a pot over medium heat, whisk the honey, brown sugar, pomegranate juice, teriyaki sauce, cornstarch, tomato paste, thyme and garlic.  Bring to a summer over medium heat until thickened (maybe two minutes).  Whisk in the margarine.  Reduce heat.  Cook for one minute.  Brush the sauce on each piece of chicken, and then pour the extra on all the pieces of chicken.

Bake uncovered for 45 minutes.  Baste every 15 minutes.  Transfer chicken pieces to a serving dish and spoon the sauce over the chicken.  Place a few pomegranate seeds onto the chicken pieces.


Thursday, August 2, 2018

Classic Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe

Sometimes I just really want a freshly made chocolate chip cookie.  And sometimes I have to make it NOW.  Even if it is 90 degrees outside.  I use butter and not margarine. 
Here is the recipe:

·        2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
·        1 teaspoon baking soda
·        1 teaspoon salt
·        1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened (and as I learned in class this is an important part)
·        3/4 cup granulated sugar
·        3/4 cup packed brown sugar
·        1 teaspoon vanilla extract
·        2 large eggs
·        2 cups Nestlé Toll House Semi-Sweet Chocolate Morsels

1.     Preheat oven to 375°F (Convection if possible)
2.     Combine flour, baking soda, and salt in small bowl. Beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla extract in large mixer bowl until creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in morsels. Drop by rounded tablespoon onto greased baking sheets.  (I have a tablespoon scoop from King Arthur Flour so every cookie is the same size)
3.     Bake for 9  minutes or until golden brown. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.

TTry not to eat all of the cookies at once.

Saturday, July 7, 2018

Cake - King Arthur Flour Cooking Class

I signed up for a cake class at King Arthur Flour (KAF) in VT, and the class was this past week.  First, if you have been thinking about signing up for a class at KAF, you should sign up.  It is an amazing experience and the chef baker, Melanie, that taught the class was out of this world.

Every one had their own station (which was set up with all the proper instruments) and ingredients.  Chef Melanie demonstrated how to make Dark Chocolate Cake but before she did that she explained that there were three different types of mixing methods:  Blending, Paste and Creaming.  She also told us that there are different ways to add ingredients, and the Dark Chocolate Cake would use the Dry and Wet method.  She also explained there are different types of cake - moist, with irregular crumb structure; tender, light and fluffy that has a tight crumb structure and then a moist denser cake with a more open crumb structure.  After she demonstrated the Dark Chocolate Cake, each of us made our own.  She then demonstrated the Tender White Cake (traditional wedding cake) and then we each made our own.  Then she demonstrated the Classic Yellow, which we did not have time to make.  We then cracked our eggs for the frosting, and then broke for an amazing and delicious lunch.

After lunch we made our two types of frosting:  chocolate American buttercream and Swiss Meringue buttercream.

After 8 hours of cake, I had learned so much (besides the above crumb structure and blending).

Random other pieces of knowledge:
*  weigh ingredients whenever possible;
*  use a conventional oven to bake cakes and a convection over for breads, vegetables and meat
*  buttermilk can be frozen and used later
*  buttermilk has the acid that re-acts with the baking soda, so you can't substitute regular milk and get the same result
*  when a recipe calls for room temperature ingredients in a cake use room temperature ingredients as it affects the way butter interacts with the ingredients
*  baking powder is baking soda with cream of tartar and cream of tartar is made from the residue inside wine casks
*  Whole wheat flour has a high amount of gluten and makes chewy baked goods.  The most tender flour is pastry flour.

Monday, July 2, 2018

Brittish Baking


For the cake

For the drizzle

To decorate

For the icing

  • 125g/4½oz icing sugar
  • 1 tbsp limoncello (alternatively use lemon juice)
  • 1 unwaxed lemon, juice only


  1. Preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan/Gas 4. Grease a 25cm/10in non-stick, fluted ring cake tin with cake release spray or vegetable oil.
  2. Sift the flour and baking powder into a large bowl. Add the rest of the ingredients (except the water) and whisk until smooth using an electric hand mixer. Add about 100ml/3½fl oz hot water from the kettle to slacken the mixture to a soft dropping consistency, if necessary. Pour into the prepared tin and bake for about 35 minutes, or until the cake starts to come away from the sides. To check the cake is ready insert a skewer, if it comes out clean the cake is cooked.
  3. Meanwhile, make the drizzle. Put the lemon juice and sugar in a small saucepan and heat gently until the sugar is dissolved. Increase the heat a little and let it boil for about a minute, or until thickened and syrupy. Add the limoncello, boil for another minute and set aside.
  4. For the decoration, add the lemon slices to the drizzle syrup. Reheat the syrup and simmer for 1-2 minutes or until the lemon slices have softened. Turn off the heat and, using tongs, carefully transfer the lemon slices to a plate lined with greaseproof paper. Leave to cool and reserve any leftover syrup.
  5. When cool enough to handle, make a cut from the centre of the lemon slices to the skin and twist the ends in the opposite direction (so they resemble a bow). Repeat with all the slices, sprinkle with caster sugar and place on a baking tray lined with non-stick paper.
  6. When the cake is cooked, reduce the oven temperature to 100C/80C Fan/Gas ¼.
  7. Leave the cake in the tin while you apply the drizzle. Make holes using a skewer and brush or spoon about a third of the drizzle over the cake. Allow to cool for 5 minutes then turn the cake out onto a wire rack. Make some more holes in the top of the cake (these will be covered with icing later) and brush or spoon the rest of the syrup over the whole cake. Allow to cool completely. When the cake is cool, transfer it to a serving plate or cake board.
  8. Meanwhile, put the lemon twists in the oven to dry out for 30 minutes to 1 hour, until they are chewy (rather than crisp).
  9. Toast the flaked almonds in a dry frying pan until golden-brown, then set aside to cool.
  10. For the icing, mix the icing sugar, limoncello and a little lemon juice until you have a thick icing. Drizzle it over the top of the cake, encouraging it to run down the sides a little. Decorate with the lemon twists, flaked almonds and poppy seeds.

Grilled Zucchini and Basil Salad

  1. 4 medium zucchinis; halved then cut diagonally
  2. ½ cup hazelnuts; chopped
  3. 3 oz Parmigiano-Reggiano, pecorino, sliced thinly
  4. 1 cup basil
  5. olive oil
  6. salt and pepper

  1. Heat a grill pan medium high. 
  2. Slice the zucchinis in 1/2 inch slices at an angle. Toss in olive oil, salt and pepper.
  3. Grill each side just enough to get grill marks but the zucchini are still firm.  About 2 min each side.
  4. Let cool in a large salad bowl.
  5. Add basil
  6. Add hazelnuts
  7. Add cheese

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Basic Pesto

  1. 2 cups packed fresh basil leaves.
  2. 2 cloves garlic.
  3. 2 T pine nuts, roasted
  4. 6 T extra-virgin olive oil, divided.
  5. Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste.
  6. 1/2 cup freshly grated Pecorino cheese.

In a food processor, combine the garlic and the pinenuts.  Add the basil and process.  Slowly add the olive oil.  Add salt and pepper and the cheese.

Put on hot pasta.