Tag Archives: desert

Free Form Fruit Tart

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free form fruit tart

Free Form Fruit Tart

Serves 4 to 8 (depending on sizes served)

 Easy as can be to make and delicious—that’s what this desert is.  Heavens, it takes no time what so ever to make (45 minutes at the most) and to bake;  everyone will for sure think that it took you all day and will ouuu and ahhhh and probably, you won’t have any left over’s—so you’ll have to make another the next day just to satisfy yourself.

Pre-Heat oven to 425F

Ingredients for the free-form pie crust:

  1. 1 ¼  C. flour
  2. 1/2 Tsp. salt
  3. 3 Tblsp. sugar
  4. 1 stick butter= 8 Tblsp. (room temp is the best, but if not, cut into small pieces)
  5. 3 Tblsp. very cold water (plus more if necessary)

Directions for making the pie crust:

  1. Whisk flour, salt and sugar in a medium sized bowl.
  2. Cut in the butter in the dry ingredients till mixture is well blended and looks like cornmeal. You can use two knives, forks or a pastry blender, but if you have a processor, do the following:  For the first 2 steps process the dry ingredients with a quick one, two pulse; then add the butter and process until blended and mixture looks like cornmeal.
  3. If you’ve used a processor, place your ingredients in a bowl. Add the water and mold with hands in order to make into a ball. Try to handle as little as possible so that the crust remains very light and flaky and will not become “heavy”.
  4. Place ball on a large piece of saran wrap; then place another sheet of saran wrap on top and flatten ball.
  5. Take a rolling pin and roll the top saran wrap sheet till your dough ball becomes a rough round of 9 or 10 inches (the dough should be about 1/4 inch thick).
  6. Remove your top saran wrap sheet, pick up the bottom saran sheet with the dough and quickly flip it out on a cookie sheet or pizza pan that has been lined with parchment paper or aluminum foil. Remove that saran sheet so that your dough is all by its lonesome on the prepared baking sheet. Now you are ready to place your desired filling in the middle of the dough.

Filling Ingredients for the free-form pie crust:

  1. Pitted, peeled, sliced soft fruit; thinly sliced apples, pears; crushed almonds, walnuts, raisins, currents  are all good filling choices.
  2. With fruit, you can toss them with crystallized ginger bits, cinnamon and/or sugar, honey and melted butter, lemon rind and whatever else you like.
  3. 2 Tblsp. melted butter

Final directions:

  1. Place fruit, whatever in the middle of the dough leaving a good 1 ½ inch free border all around.
  2. Fold up the edges of the crust up and around the fruit, pinching the outer edge dough together.
  3. Brush the dough with 2 Tblsp. melted butter and save some melted butter for brushing on the fruit itself.
  4. I also place a bit more sugar on the top of all.
  5. Place the free-form pie which is on the lined cookie sheet or pizza pan in your pre-heated oven until the dough is nice and brown and the fruit is bubbling (about 30 minutes but start checking after 20 minutes).
  6. Remove from oven, cool on a rack and serve warm dusted with confectioner sugar and ice cream or crème fraiche or whipped cream.

Cupcakes, Nice and Easy

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cupcakes 2cupcakes

Cupcakes-Coconut, Almond,  Chocolate, Lemon-The Easy Way

Makes 18-24 cupcakes

This is a super simple recipe that results in very light and rich tasting cupcakes.  They way you want them to taste is up to you—————-

Ingredients:

  1. 4 eggs
  2. 2/3 C. white sugar
  3. Dash of almond or vanilla extract or lemon zest  (optional)
  4. 1 ¼ C. all-purpose flour
  5. 1 Tsp. baking powder
  6. 3/4 C. total of the following 3 condiments—combination and amount to equal 3/4 C. wished for chosen by you (ie, it could be solely 3/4 C. coconut; or 1/4 C. coconut and 1/2 C. almonds; so-on-for the light flavor, don’t over dose):
    1. Shredded coconut
    2. Chopped or slivered almonds
    3. Chocolate chips
  7. 8 Tblsp. unsalted butter, melted

Directions:

  1. Combine the 4 eggs, sugar and optional extracts and beat for about 5 minutes until mixture is very thick, pale and forms a ribbon.
  2. Sift the flour with the baking powder .
  3. In the egg mixture, fold in some of the flour mixture and then some of your condiment selection and continue doing that till all folded in.  Lastly, fold in the melted butter.  Fold in well till you can’t see the butter any longer.
  4. Put the dough in the refrigerator for 25 minutes.  By that time, the mixture should be quite thick.
  5. When you’ve put the dough in the refrigerator, pre-heat the oven to 450. As well, spray your muffin pans or line them with paper cupcake liners.  I really like the latter.
  6. After 25 minutes take your mixture out of the refrigerator and scoop the dough out to fill the muffin pans/or liners till each is filled about 3/4 of the way full.
  7. Place on the middle rack in the 450 degree oven and bake for 5 minutes.  Turn the heat down to 400 and bake for 5-7 minutes longer or until the tops are golden brown and a toothpick will come out clear.
  8. Let cool at least 10 minutes before serving.
  9. Try not to eat them all at one sitting.

For easy access and printing of this and past recipes, visit Margot’s blog http://blog.tempinnkeeper.com  Call Margot for personal cooking help or hosting

 @ 721-3551.

Margot is a self-taught enthusiastic & passionate cook. Having been an inn-keeper for 5 years at her own inn, she accumulated a lot of good recipes which she loves to share.

 

Strawberry-Nut Quick Bread

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strawberry nut quick bread

Strawberry-Nut Quick Bread

Makes one 9 X 5 Loaf

I found some very sweet and tasty California strawberries at the Ketchum Atkinsons’ store at a nice price- under $2 for a 1 lb. Clamshell.  So, I of course ate some fresh but the thought of making this very tasty quick moist bread came to mind, so I did create a half a loaf, just for me.  With some whipped cream cheese as a topping, it was delicious.  Of course, I wanted to share this easy recipe so here it is.

Ingredients:

  1. 2 eggs
  2. 1 C. sugar
  3. 1/2 C. oil
  4. 1 ½ C. all-purpose flour
  5. 1 Tsp. baking soda
  6. 2 Tsp. cinnamon
  7. 1/2 Tsp. salt
  8. 1 ½ C. of your favorite chopped nuts
  9. 10 Oz. sliced strawberries –fresh preferably but they can be frozen

Directions:

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 350 and oil well a 9 X 5 X 3 loaf pan.  I also sprinkled some sugar on the bottom.
  2. Beat eggs, sugar and oil until well combined.
  3. Mix together well the flour, soda, cinnamon and salt.  I use my whip for this.
  4. Beat or mix all until well blended.  Batter will be thick.
  5. Add the berries and chopped nuts.
  6. Spread the batter in the pan and bake on the middle rack for 55 to 65 minutes.  For half a loaf, I used the same sized pan so the break turned out a bit less thick and it baked in about 40-45 minutes.
  7. Let cool in pan for about 10 minutes and remove to a wire rack. 

For easy access and printing of this and past recipes, visit Margot’s blog http://blog.tempinnkeeper.com  Call Margot for personal cooking help or hosting

 @ 721-3551.

Margot is a self-taught enthusiastic & passionate cook. Having been an inn-keeper for 5 years at her own inn, she accumulated a lot of good recipes which she loves to share.

Marmalade Drop Cookies–Quick, Easy and Yummy

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marmalade drops with almonds and powder sugarmarmalade drop cookies

Marmalade Drop Cookies

24 cookies

Here is an easy and yummy cookie to make for your family and friends.  They also look pretty.

Ingredients:

  1. 1/2 C. unsalted butter (1 cube), softened
  2. 1/4 C. sugar
  3. 3 Tblsp. sugar on a plate for dipping the dough
  4. 1 egg yolk, beaten with the following:
    1. 1 Tblsp. lemon juice
    2. 1 Tsp. grated lemon peel
    3. 1 Tsp. vanilla extract
    4. 1/4 Tsp. almond extract
  5. 1 C. plus 1 Tblsp. flour

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 325.
  2. Place parchment paper on a cookie sheet
  3. Beat  softened butter and 1/4 C. sugar with electric beater and when smooth, add the egg yolk mixture.
  4. In a medium sized bowl, place the flour and then mix the butter mixture into it until a smooth dough forms.
  5. Form the dough into about 24 small balls and roll in the plated sugar before placing them on the parchment paper lined cookie sheet.  Lastly, make an indentation in each ball with your finger or thumb.
  6. Place on middle oven rack and bake until tops are lightly golden, about 24 minutes.
  7. Cool on cookie sheet for about 5 minutes before removing to a platter.
  8. Place some marmalade or jam of your choice in each indentation. If you wish, you can further decorate with some powdered sugar and sliced almonds.

A Breeze to Make Oreo Truffle Eggs Especially for Easter

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A Breeze to Make Oreo Truffle Eggs Especially for Easter

Makes around 40-45egg truffles for Aubrey

You may have run into this yummy truffle recipe however it escaped my attention until I was introduced to it at a party just recently.  It was so delicious that my iron will in regards to sweet temptations broke down and I indulged in several. But, I wondered what made them so good because when I asked the gal who had brought them, she said that they were deceivingly easy to make and even kids with parental help could make them. So lo and behold, I found the recipe on the net and true enough, they are a breeze to make. You all know how I love to share good things so here is this breeze to make recipe.  I thought that one could actually form the shapes to look more like chocolate Easter eggs— give that a try—and enjoy.

Ingredients:

  1. One 16. Oz. package of OREO Chocolate Sandwich Cookies, divided
  2. One 8 oz. package of Philadelphia Cream Cheese, softened or one 8 oz. carton of softened Cream Cheese.
  3. Two 8 oz. packages Bakers Semi-Sweet Chocolate, melted. Kraft suggests placing the unwrapped chocolate in a microwaveable bowl and to microwave on high 2 ½ minutes or until chocolate is completely melted, stirring every 30 seconds.  For myself, I place the opened chocolate in a microwave bowl, put about 2 ¼  Tsp. of unsalted butter on top and micro on medium for about 2 minutes, then stir and continue microwaving on medium for 30 to 60 seconds more stirring intermittently until chocolate and butter are all melted. Sometimes I omit the butter.  If you are into professional looking exteriors, you probably should temper the chocolate which takes a bit of patience and time.  For tempering instructions, look that up on the net or a good cookbook.

Instructions:

  1. Crush 9 of the cookies to fine crumbs in food processor(about 1/4 C.); reserve this for later use.   You can also crush the cookies in a plastic bag using a rolling pin.
  2. Crush the remaining 36 cookies to fine crumbs and place in a medium bowl.
  3. Add cream cheese and mix until well blended. I used my hands.
  4. Roll cookie mixture in 40 balls or if for Easter, into egg shapes. They should be about one inch in diameter to give you a general idea of the appropriate size.
  5. Dip balls/eggs in the melted chocolate; place on a wax or parchment papered baking sheet.
  6. To easily coat the truffles with the melted chocolate, add truffles, in batches, to bowl of melted chocolate.  Use 2 forks to roll the truffles in the chocolate until evenly coated.  Remove the truffles with the forks letting any excess chocolate drip back in the bowl.  Place truffles on your papered prepared baking sheet.   If you have any left-over chocolate, store that in the frig. for some other later use.
  7. Sprinkle the balls with the reserved crumbs if you wish.
  8. Refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.
  9. I have frozen these and they turn out just fine.  In fact, I eat them straight out of the freezer and they are delicious. I also have put some crushed lavender culinary buds in the cream cheese and that has turned out well.

I dare you not to eat them all immediately.  However, if you are that strong of will and constitution, store in a tightly covered contained in the frig. for a later serving.  Don’t plan on any left-over’s.

A breeze to make coffee and Other Flavored Ice Creams (no ice-cream maker necessary)

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No Churn Icecream & Pear

No Churn Coffee Ice Cream and Other Flavored Ice Creams (A BREEZE TO MAKE)

Picture is of a fresh cut up pear and some no churn coffee/chocolate ice cream

YES!!!!  You can also make Lemon and Orange and vanilla and  ????????

Makes almost 2 Pints

Thanks go to NPR and to hearing Nigella Lawson, fabulous Italian cook and author of cook books, talk about her recipe for this ice cream.  Well, I love coffee flavored goodies and I LOVE ice cream; so, this recipe was just up my alley.  I couldn’t wait to look it up on the net.  I couldn’t wait to get all of the proper ingredients to make it.  I couldn’t wait to get it in the freezer.  And that wasn’t till a late PM so guess what I had for breakfast–  So, now, just in case you are not in the “know” I wanted to share her recipe with you.  I hope you’ll enjoy it as much as I have (oh dear, I hate to get on the scales in the morning because honestly there are a TON of calories here), however, as Nigella says, she’s never without it and I know why.  I haven’t priced this out; however, I do think that it is cheaper than buying a good coffee ice cream and certainly it is better.  I can’t wager how good it’s for the waist line though—sorry.

Ingredients:

  1. 2/3 C. SWEETENED CONDENSED milk
  2. 2 Tblsp. instant espresso powder (I couldn’t find this here so I bought instant espresso coffee which I now keep in the freezer and mixed 2 Tblsp. of the granules with 2 Tsp. boiling water)
  3. 2 Tblsp. of some sort of coffee liqueur
  4. 1 ¼ C. HEAVY cream
  5. Two one-pint airtight containers

Directions:

  1. Put the condensed milk in a bowl and stir in the espresso powder or the substitute I’ve listed and the liqueur.
  2. In a separate bowl beat the cream until it reaches soft peaks.
  3. Fold the cream into the condensed milk mixture and pour into your airtight containers.
  4. Freeze for 6 hours at least or overnight. I found that I had to do it overnight for it to reach its properly frozen state.
  5. Delicious and you can serve the coffee flavor  with melted chocolate.  Or I was thinking that you could even swirl melted chocolate in the coffee flavor which I’m going to try next time I make that flavor. For a great vanilla, I put 1-2 Tblsp. good vanilla flavoring (taste to see you don’t have too much vanilla) and a splash of vodka for a bit of kick.  You won’t taste the vodka but I think that it makes it a bit richer.

OK–now you want to make another flavor?  Today, 2/23/13, I made Lemon Ice Cream substituting 2 Tblsp. Crystal Light Natural Lemonade Drink Mix Powder and 2 Tblsp. lemon flavored vodka for the coffee recipe ingredients.  I bought that airplane size vodka bottle for $1.50.  I also added some lemon zest/peel in the mixture.  Delicious.  I can’t wait to make orange, berry and you name it.  So much more economical than buying and also so much better.

Oven Baked Cinnamon Sugar Tortilla Strips and South of the Border Berry Salsa

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sugar cin. tortilla strips

Oven Baked Cinnamon Sugar Tortilla Strips and South of the Border Berry Salsa for appetizers

Serves 8

This is such an easy delectable tidbit to make as an accompaniment to a nice fruit dish or even just for a good nibble or as guest appetizers (and maybe even desert?).  I served it with a Mexican breakfast consisting of my Mexican Egg Casserole which I served with Peppered Corn Muffins and a beautiful bowl of freshly made Poached Pears with Cinnamon and Fennel.  Of course, kids will really go for these and probably you will too.  So beware—put them away before you or your family  eat them all.

Ingredients:

  1. 8 inch Corn or Flour Tortillas—at least eight—the fresher the tortilla the better
  2. 1/2 C. Sugar
  3. 1 Tsp. Cinnamon

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375.
  2. Cut the tortillas with a pizza cutter or a serrated knife in 8 long strips.
  3. Mix the sugar and cinnamon together.  I put this mixture in an empty spice bottle that had a shaker top on it. I actually did not use all of this mixture.
  4. Arrange the wedges on a large cookie sheet lined with parchment paper and spray the strips with nonstick cooking spray (I used olive oil spray).
  5. Immediately sprinkle the wedges with the sugar/cinnamon mixture—as much or as little as you wish.
  6. Bake the wedges in a preheated 375 degree oven for 10-12 minutes or until lightly brown and crisp.
  7. Let them sit for a minute or so.  If you are not going to use them immediately, place them in a paper bag and seal till ready to serve.

This goes very nicely with another appetizer:

SOUTH OF THE BORDER BERRY SALSA

Combine 1 cup fresh blueberries, 1 cup fresh sliced strawberries, 1 cup fresh raspberries, 1 seeded and finely chopped yellow bell pepper and 1 seeded and minced jalapeño chili in a medium bowl; toss gently. Add 2 tablespoons each of finely chopped red onion, finely chopped green onion and finely chopped cilantro; toss lightly. Combine 1 tablespoon each of cider vinegar, olive oil, freshly squeezed lime juice, orange juice and honey in a small bowl; mix well. Drizzle vinegar mixture over berry mixture; toss to coat. Serve in a large bowl or in individual bowls with the tortilla chips mentioned above.   Makes 8- ½-cup servings.

Linzer Torte and an option of mini-tortes and a bonus of Meringue Kisses

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Linzer TorteLinzer Torte

Serves 8 (but don’t expect any leftovers)

Festive for anytime of the year

 

linzer torteindividual-mini-ltmeringue-kisses

 

Linzer Torte ( in a large spring form pan or mini kinds)

Serves 8 or makes 36 mini Linzer Tortes

Bonus recipe for no-waste egg white Meringue Kisses (makes 30)

Ingredients:

  1. 1 ½ C. sifted flour
  2. 1/4 Tsp. salt
  3. 1 C. sifted sugar
  4. 1 C. sweet butter, room temperature –2 cubes
  5. Grated rind of 1 lemon
  6. 3 egg yolks (keep them separated in their shell half) and save the egg whites in another bowl
  7. 1 C. slivered almonds, blanched or un-blanched (I mostly use the blanched ones); grind them in a grinder( I use my mini-Cuisinart) and then add 1/2 Tsp. cinnamon and 1/4 tsp. ground cloves and grind the nuts with these spices a bit more.  
  8. 1- 10 or 12 oz. jar jam (NOT JELLY or it will leak like mad) of your choice. If you wish, you can mix in well 1 ½ Tblsp. Brandy in it.   Traditionally the torte was made with Lingonberries but you can use your imagination for whatever you wish however makes sure that the filling is of a substantial consistency.  I use the Red Raspberry Preserve bought straight from the store.
  9. Turbinado Sugar for light dusting before baking.
  10. Confection sugar for the final dusting just before serving; Fresh berries for final décor.                                                                                                            Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 375F AFTER your dough has been refrigerated for an hour or more.
  2. In a bowl, sift the flour once more with the salt.
  3. In a larger bowl, cream the sugar with the butter with electric beaters until the mixture is light and fluffy.(about 3 minutes).
  4. Add the grated rind of 1 lemon to this mixture (juice the grated lemon for the meringues) and then add the 3 egg yolks (one yolk at a time) beating well after each addition. (Save 2 of the egg whites in a separate bowl and let sit at room temp to make easy and delicious meringues. See recipe below.)
  5. Gradually add the dry ingredients (in about 3 divisions for each) to the creamed mixture alternately with the 1 C. ground almonds which has been already mixed with the cinnamon and cloves.
  6. Chill the dough in the refrigerator for an hour or more. If it becomes too cold to be pliable when you remove it, leave it out for a bit and keep testing it for the right pliability.
  7. Prepare an 8”,9”,or 10” spring-form pan. This will take a bit of time so patience please. First measure the round pan pieces on parchment paper; with a pencil draw its circle and cut it out. Save the left over pieces to fit around the pan sides. Before placing the parchment paper in the pan, brush the bottom and sides with Crisco oil, then place the parchment paper pieces on the oiled bottom and around the oiled sides. Then brush the parchment side and bottom once more with Crisco oil. Then lightly dust some flour on the bottom and shake the pan all over so that the sides get flour dusted as well. Then carefully shake out any residual flour.
  8. First, before placing the dough on the bottom of the pan, save a fist full of dough for making the top decorative strips. You’ll probably want about 6-8 strips. (See picture above.)The remainder of the dough place on top of the bottom of your prepared pan. Then with your knuckles, gently spread the dough over the bottom and up the sides about one and a half inch up.
  9. Spread the dough with the jam of your preference. I use a rubber spatula to do this. If you have homemade jam, all the better—but no jelly please.
  10. Now is the time to roll with your hands several long thin strips to use as a lattice. Intertwine the strips so that it’ll look pretty when served and place each on top of your torte. If the strips break when placing them on top don’t worry—just combine them in any way to make a long strip.  Rustic is the theme here.
  11. Then, lightly sprinkle it all with Turbinado Sugar which will make the top look a little shinny.
  12. Place the torte on a pizza or cookie sheet that has been lined with parchment paper (not aluminum foil because of possible extra heat conducting).This is because your torte may possibly leak.
  13. Bake the torte in your preheated 375F oven on the middle rack for 30-45 minutes till it is golden brown on top and the jam is slightly bubbling. I watch it carefully so that it doesn’t get overdone and too brown because then the crust will be tough.
  14. Cool the torte thoroughly and then gently run a steel spatula or a sharp knife around the sides to make sure it’ll release properly after unlatching. Then place the torte, covered with aluminum foil or saran wrap, in the refrigerator for several hours or even overnight. It must be very cold to release properly. Then unlatch the pan and the torte should release easily. Then you can run a knife under the bottom or just under one tiny side just to make sure that it will lift. At this point, I can usually tip the torte (with the pan’s bottom still on) on its side. It should come apart easily. At this point you can tear off your bottom parchment sheet. Place the torte on whatever dish you wish to use to serve it. I many times use a Chinette plastic plate for the top and bottom which then allows me to wrap it well, store it in the refrigerator for a week or so or wrapped well in the freezer safely without fear of breakage. The torte freezes just beautifully and you’ll be hard pressed to notice it when serving it. Before last minute serving, if you wish, you can spread a little more jam in the holes and dust it all with powdered sugar. Then you can surround your torte with fresh raspberries which does present a nice look.
  15. You can also make mini-cupcake like Linzer Tortes. I use the mini-cupcake paper liners which I brush lightly with the Crisco oil and follow the same directions as for a large one. Bake them in a mini-cup cake pan from anywhere from 12 to 15 minutes in a 375F oven. Watch carefully so they won’t get overdone.  Use your middle oven rack.  One recipe will make 36 mini-cupcake-like Linzer Tortes.            

 

Meringue Kisses—makes about 30

Ingredients:

  • 2 large egg whites @ room temp
  • 2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 2/3 C. granulated white sugar

 

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 225F.
  • Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • In a medium size bowl, with your electric beaters using the whisk attachment beat the egg whites at a medium-low speed until foamy.
  • Add the lemon juice and beat at medium speed until the whites begin to form soft peaks.
  • Add the sugar one third at a time, then increase the speed to high and beat until stiff peaks form.
  • With a spatula and a small butter knife to help slip the mixture off, pick up some of this mixture and drop onto your parchment covered baking sheet. Let your drops go upwards to form the “kiss” mode (like those chocolate ones).  The size can be around 2” circumference rounds. You should be able to place all of the kisses on a 17” X 12” pan.  Also, you can place around 4 or 5 across—they don’t spread much.
  • If you wish you can sprinkle sifted good chocolate unsweetened cocoa and a dusting of fun colorful cake décor sprinkles. (see picture)
  • Bake for about 60 to 70 minutes until they are firm to the touch and seem thoroughly dry.
  • Store the “kisses” in an airtight container for up to 2 months.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Balsamic Roasted Pears with Pepper and Honey

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pears in a bowlBalsamic Roasted Pears with Pepper and Honey

Serves 8

 

This is a very simple but elegant desert.  I used the Manchego Mexican cheese which is delicious.  If the pears in your market are not quite ripe enough, buy them a couple of days before serving and place them in a paper bag along with an apple.  Close the bag and several days later, they should be perfect.

 

Ingredients:

  1. 4 Tblsp. sweet butter
  2. 4 firm-ripe pears, halved lengthwise and cored
  3. 6 Tblsp. balsamic vinegar
  4. 8 Oz. Manchego cheese or mild goat cheese, cut into 8 pieces—room temp.
  5. 1/2 C. honey

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400
  2. Melt butter in an oven proof dish in the oven—about 3 minutes
  3. Arrange pears, cut sides down, in 1 layer in butter and roast in middle of oven until tender-about 20 minutes.
  4. Pour vinegar over pears and roast 5 minutes more.
  5. Transfer pears, cut sides down, to serving plates with cheese and spoon some of juices from baking dish over pears.  Drizzle pears and cheese with honey and sprinkle with pepper.

Cranberries, Cranberries–4 nice and delicious recipes

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jellied cranberry sauce with fuji apple cranberry Clementine and Pumpkin Seed Conserve

 

 

 

Cranberries are so versatile and freeze easily and well.  They also are very healthy for you.  However, their grand color makes them a favorite for Thanksgiving and Christmas.  But don’t forget that “red” in Valentines day.  Frankly I think that this is a great fruit to use anytime of the year.  So please do enjoy these 4 recipes which are among my favorites.

Cranberry and Dried Fruit Compote (serves 6)

Ingredients:

  1. One 12-ounce bag fresh cranberries
  2. 3/4 cup golden raisins
  3. 1/2 cup dried cherries
  4. 1/2 cup dried black mission figs, quartered
  5. 2/3 cup sugar
  6. 1- 1/4 cups water

Directions:

  1. In a medium saucepan, combine the cranberries with the raisins, cherries, figs, sugar and water.
  2. Bring to a boil and cook over moderately high heat until the cranberries burst, about 6 minutes.
  3. Place into a bowl and refrigerate until chilled, about 3 hours.

Make Ahead: This compote can be refrigerated for up to 2 weeks. Serve chilled or warmed.

Jellied Cranberry Sauce with Fuji Apple (serves 6)

(This turns out like a loaf that can be sliced with a serrated knife.)

Ingredients:

  1. One 12-ounce bag fresh cranberries plus more for decorating purposes
  2. 1 large Fuji apple, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch dice
  3. 1 cup sugar
  4. 3/4 cup water
  5. 1 sprig or more of rosemary (for decorating purposes)

Directions:

  1. Line an 8-by-4-inch loaf pan with plastic wrap and spray the plastic wrap with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a medium saucepan, combine the cranberries with the apple, sugar and water. Bring to a boil and cook over moderately high heat, stirring frequently until the cranberries are completely broken down and the sauce is very thick, about 15 minutes.
  3. Place the cranberry sauce into the prepared pan and refrigerate until chilled, about 3 hours or longer, however, make sure to keep the loaf in the frig. before serving.  Don’t let it get to room temp before serving or you’ll be spooning it instead of slicing it.  No matter though, it’ll be good either way.
  4.  Invert the jelly onto a serving plate and remove the plastic wrap.
  5.  Garnish with fresh cranberries and rosemary sprigs. Slice with a serrated knife before serving.

Make Ahead The cranberry sauce can be covered in plastic wrap and refrigerated for up to 2 weeks. Serve chilled.

Cranberry, Clementine and Pumpkin Seed Conserve

Ingredients

  1. 3 Clementine
  2. 1 1/4 cups sugar
  3. 1 cup water
  4. One 12-ounce bag fresh cranberries
  5. 1/2 cup roasted pumpkin seeds  (see note below how to roast seeds)

Directions:

  1. In a medium saucepan, cover the Clementine with water. Bring to a simmer and cook over moderately high heat until the skin softens, about 8 minutes. Drain and let stand until cool enough to handle. Coarsely chop the whole Clementine and discard any seeds. Wipe out the saucepan.
  2. In the same saucepan, combine the chopped Clementine with the sugar and water. Bring to a simmer and cook over moderate heat until the Clementine peel is sweet, about 30 minutes. Add the cranberries and cook over moderately high heat until they burst, about 6 minutes.
  3. Put into a bowl and refrigerate until chilled, about 3 hours.
  4. Fold in the pumpkin seeds just before serving.

Make Ahead The conserve can be refrigerated for up to 2 weeks however, don’t put the seeds in till just before serving.

Note: To roast seeds, place seeds in a large sauté pan so there’s only one layer and cook over medium heat, shaking and stirring oven, till seeds brown and pop (anywhere from 5 to 10 minutes). They are best done right before using; however, you can store in a tight container for a day or so.

Compote of Ruby Cranberries with Sun-Dried Cherries(serves 6)

I love this recipe because it has a zing to it

Ingredients:

  1. 2/3 C. dark brown sugar
  2. 12 oz. fresh or thawed cranberries
  3. 4 oz. sun-dried cherries
  4. 12 whole black peppers
  5. 1 C. water
  6. A pinch of salt

Instructions:

  1. In a medium-size heavy saucepan put 1 C. water, brown sugar, a pinch of salt and 12 whole pepper corns.
  2. Bring to a boil; add cranberries and cherries and return to a boil.
  3. Reduce heat and cook over medium heat for 10 minutes or until the cranberries have popped and the sauce has thickened.
  4. Cool to room temp, cover and refrigerate till cold.

Make Ahead The compote can be refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.