South West Black Bean and Chicken Salad

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This salad can easily be converted to a fantastic vegetarian salad simply by omitting the chicken and cooking the quinoa in vegetable stock.

South West Black Bean and Chicken Salad

6 cups cooked shredded chicken

Two 15 oz. cans black beans, rinsed and drained

1 green bell paper, roasted , peeled, seeded and julienned

1 red bell pepper, roasted, peeled, seeded and julienned

1 jalapeno seeded, minced

2 cups, chopped Roma tomatoes

1 cup sliced green onions

1 clove garlic, minced

1/2 cup toasted pumpkin seeds

1/2 cup chopped cilantro

1 cup fresh or thawed frozen corn

1 cup quinoa cooked in 2 cups chicken or vegetable broth as directed on package

Lettuce greens

Dressing:

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon ground coriander

2 tablespoon sherry vinegar

1/2 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon lime zest

2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

salt and pepper; to taste

In a large bowl add all the ingredients for the salad and toss. Line the serving bowl/platter with lettuce greens; set aside.

Combine all the dressing ingredients and whisk until combined. Pour over the salad and toss. Place on greens lined serving dish.

Maggie’s Louise Slice Finger Cookies

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Maggie’s Louise Slice Finger Cookies

Base Layer:

125 grams butter, room temperature

3/4 cup super fine sugar

2 eggs, separated and at room temperature

1 3/4 cups flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

3/4 cup seedless raspberry jam

8 oz. almond paste

Coconut Topping:

2 reserved egg whites

1/4 cup super fine sugar

1 1/4 cups shredded coconut

1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

powdered sugar for garnish

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Spray a 9X13 inch pan with nonstick spray. Line the sprayed pan with parchment paper on bottom and sides with parchment  extending a little over the edge to use as handles, spray lightly again with nonstick spray; set aside.

In the bowl of stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg yolks one at a time until well combined. In a separate bowl whisk together the flour, salt, and baking powder. With the mixer set on low, mix in the dry ingredients until just combined.

Press the dough evenly into the bottom of the pan.  Roll out the almond paste into a rectangle that fits the inside of the pan., place on top of dough. Evenly spread the jam over the almond paste layer.

In a clean bowl beat the egg whites until stiff, gradually adding the sugar and vanilla extract. Fold in the shredded coconut. Spread the coconut meringue evenly over the top .

Bake for about 30-35 minutes or until top is just light golden. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely before cutting into finger sizes. Sprinkle lightly with powdered sugar.

French Provencal Pot Roast

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French Provencal Pot Roast

(1) 3-4 lb. chuck roast

salt and pepper

olive oil

1 onion, sliced

1 shallot, sliced

1 leek, light green to white part cleaned and sliced

1 cup or so red wine

3 carrots, peeled and cut into chunks

10-12 small red new potatoes, whole

2 ribs celery , cut into chunks

2 sprigs rosemary

1 lemon , cut in half

2 cloves garlic minced

1 cup beef stock

one 14.5 oz. can fire roasted diced tomatoes

12 large leaves basil, torn

1 tablespoon Herbs de Provence

2 tablespoons drained capers

8 oz. cremini mushrooms, sliced

1/4 cup chopped parsley

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Season both sides of the roast with salt and pepper. In a heavy iron pan with tight fitting lid heat on high. When hot add a bit of olive oil and sear the roast well on both sides. Remove seared roast to platter. Turn down heat to low and add the onions, leek and shallot and quick saute. Add the garlic. Pour in the red wine to deglaze the pot. Add the sliced lemon halves and place roast on top along with the Herbs de Provence, rosemary sprigs, and beef stock. Place tight fitting lid on pot and cook in oven for about 2 1/2 hours or until roast appears to have about 1 hour of cooking time left.. Remove from oven and add the carrots, potatoes, celery, mushrooms,  fire roasted tomatoes, 1/2 of the parsley, capers and 3/4 of the torn basil leaves. Place lid back on pot and finish baking until meat and vegetable or tender. Once finished remove lemons and place roast, vegetables and pan juices on platter and garnish with chopped parsley and rosemary sprigs.

Blackberry Torten

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Blackberry Torten

Cake Base:

4 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking soda

2 teaspoons ground cloves

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

2 teaspoons ground allspice

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 lb. butter, room temperature

1 1/2 cups sugar

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

4 eggs, room temperature

3/4 cup buttermilk, room temperature

2 cups quality blackberry jam

1 cup toasted sliced almonds

Blackberry Frosting:

1/2 lb. butter, room temperature

1 lb. cream cheese, room temperature

5 cups powdered sugar

2 tablespoons lemon zest

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1 cup fresh blackberries

Assembly:

1 lb. almond paste

1/2 cup toasted sliced almonds

2 quarts fresh blackberries

1 cup quality blackberry jam

Powdered sugar for dusting

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line bottom of a 12X18X2 inch baking pan with parchment paper; spray with nonstick spray; set aside.

In a large bowl sift the flour, baking soda, spices and salt . In the bowl of a stand mixer cream together the butter and sugar. Beat in the vanilla and add eggs one at a time; combine well. Blend in buttermilk until incorporated.

Stir in the blackberry jam and almonds.

Pour batter into prepared pan and spread out evenly with a offset spatula. Bake for about 30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the center. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely on pan.

Using 8cm cake rings, cut parchment paper strips 1 inch taller than the cake ring and enough in length to completely go around inside circumference. Place the parchment sheet inside cake ring like a collar. Cut the sheet cake out into rings using the same size cake rings;set aside.

Roll the almond paste out into a thin sheet on parchment paper. Using the same size cake rings, cut out enough almond paste disks as there are cake cut out.

In the bowl of a stand mixer combine all the frosting ingredients until well combined and fluffy.

Assembly:

Place a collared cake ring on a cake board, serving plate or large muffin liner.

Insert a cake into the collared ring. Lightly spread a thin layer of blackberry jam over the top of the cake. Carefully place an almond paste disk over the top of the jam cover cake. Spread another thin layer of jam. Spread evenly to about a 1/2 thickness the frosting over the jam cover almond paste. Place fresh berries decoratively over the top of the frosting, gently pressing in slightly. Sprinkle some toasted almonds over the top. Place the tortens in the refrigerator to set up. Once the tortens are set, remove from refrigerator and gently slide the cake ring off the torten. Gently pull the parchment away from the sides. Dust with powdered sugar.

Apple and Potato Cake with Caramel Sauce

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Apple and Potato Cake

ingredients

Apple and Potato Cake

  • 1/4 cup mashed cooked apple
  • 3/4 cup mashed cooked potatoes
  • 1 tsp. butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 beaten egg
  • 1/2 cup sultanas
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 2 cups self rising flour
  • 1 tsp. nutmeg
  • Topping:
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup melted butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • Mix well together.
  • Mix together the apples and potatoes. Beat the butter into the apple and potato mixture. Add the remaining ingredients. Place in greased 9x 10 baking dish. Sprinkle with topping. Bake at 350 for 40 minute or until golden brown and toothpick comes out clean.
  • Leave to cool in baking dish.

Caramel Sauce

  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 Tbsp. water

directions

Combine the cream and butter in small saucepan and warm over medium-low heat until butter melts. Keep warm over low heat. Combine the sugar and water in a medium saucepan and cook over medium-high heat, gently swirling pan occasionally; do not stir. Use a pastry brush dipped in water to brush down any sugar crystals that have formed on the sides of the pan. Let mixture come to boil until deep golden brown. Take the pan from heat and slowly whisk in the warm cream-butter mixture. Keep in fridge in airtight container, until ready to serve.

Potato Tacos

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Potato Tacos

ingredients

Potato and Pepper Filling:

  • 3/4 lb. red potatoes, unpeeled
  • 3 fresh poblano chili peppers, roasted peeled and seeded
  • 2 red bell peppers, roasted, peeled and seeded
  • 1/2 yellow onion , diced
  • 1 cup shredded Pepper Jack Cheese
  • 1/2 cup grated, Cotija cheese
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro

Ancho Sauce:

  • 1 Tomato
  • 4 dried ancho chili peppers, stemmed and seeded
  • 2 cups hot tap water
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 ground black pepper
  • 1/2 yellow onion , diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. white vinegar
  • 2 tsp. dried oregano, crumbled
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • directions

    • 1

      1/2 cup Vegetable oil for frying

    • 2

      12 corn tortillas

    • 3

      Garnish

    • 4

      Grated cotija cheese

    • 5

      shredded cabbage

    • 6

      sliced tomatoes

    • 7

      lime wedges

    • 8

      To make filling, in a saucepan, combine the potatoes with water to cover. Bring to boil until fork tender. Drain and let cool, then cut potatoes into 1/2 inch dice. Place in bowl. Add the poblano chilies, bell peppers, onion and both cheeses, cilantro and stir to mix well. Set aside.

    • 9

      To make the sauce, preheat a broiler. Place the tomato in a small shallow baking pan. Place under broiler 4-6 inches from heat source. Broil turning occasionally, until charred on all sides. Remove from broiler, let cool slightly and cut out core. Set aside.

    • 10

      In a small, dry frying pan over medium heat, toast the chilies, turning once, until fragrant and the skins begin to blister. Remove from the heat and let cool, then place chilies in bowl, add hot tap water and let soak for 15 minutes to soften.

    • 11

      Transfer the chilies and their soaking liquid to a blender and add the salt, pepper, onion, garlic, cumin, vinegar, oregano and roasted tomato. Puree until smooth, then strain through a sieve into shallow bowl. Add chopped cilantro and set aside.

    • 12

      In shallow heavy bottomed pan heat oil. Meanwhile, take tortillas and fill each with potato filling and fold over. Place in batches the filled tortillas in hot oil and fry until golden on each side, about 3 minutes total.

    • 13

      Garnish with cabbage, tomatoes and cheese. Squeeze on lime juice and add ancho sauce to taste.

Chicken Provencal Wrap

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Chicken Provencal Wrap

Package of Tomato Basil Wraps; set aside

6 cups shredded cooked chicken

1 red onion, cut in half and sliced into rings

1 Tablespoon butter

1 Tablespoon olive oil

1/2 cup sun dried tomatoes, chopped

one 15 oz. can/jar of water packed quartered artichoke hearts, drained

3 Roma tomatoes, diced

2 tablespoon capers, drained

6 large basil leaves, chiffonade

Dressing:

1/4 cup balsamic vinegsr

1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes

1 Roma tomato, diced

2 green onions, sliced

1 clove garlic, minced

1 tablespoon capers, drained

3 large basil leaves, chiffonade

1/4 cup olive oil

1/2 cup canola oil

salt and pepper; to taste

Hearty Greens

Caramelize the red onion in the 1 tablespoon of olive oil and 1 tablespoon of butter. Place cooled caramelized onions in a large bowl. Add the remaining ingredients and toss.

Line the center of the wrap with hearty greens and add some of the filling; wrap.

Rosemary Parmesan Focaccia Bread Machine Method

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I was baking like a crazy person today and had to bring out all my weapons, that being my bread machine. This allowed me to compress time with other baking I was doing.

Rosemary Parmesan Focaccia Bread Machine Method

2 1/4 cups water

1/4 tsp sugar

1 3/4 teaspoons instant yeast

5 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt

5 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons fresh rosemary leaves

1/4 cup grated Parmensan

Topping:

Olive oil

freshly cracked black pepper

kosher salt

Parmesan, grated

rosemary leaves

Place all the ingredients except the topping ingredients in the required order as stated with your bread machine. Set machine on dough setting. When completed, line bottom of pan with parchment paper, oil with olive oil liberally a 9X13 pan or jelly roll sheet. It only depends on the thickness you want to achieve. I used a 9X13 for a specific sandwich I was making. Press the dough into the pan evenly or with a jelly roll pan lined with parchment pres dough to a 1/2 inch thickness. With your fingers poke dimples into the pressed out dough. Brush with olive oil and sprinkle lightly with salt , pepper, rosemary leaves and Parmesan cheese. Bake in preheated oven set for 400 degrees for about 30 minutes or until top is golden.

*This same recipe can be made conventionally just as you would any other yeast bread recipe using 2 rises, baking on second rise.

Glazed Chewy Oatmeal Cinnamon Chip Cookies

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Glazed Chewy Oatmeal Cinnamon Chip Cookies

1/2 lb. butter,room temperature

1 1/4 cups packed brown sugar

3/4 cup granulated sugar

2 eggs, room temperature

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 cups all-purpose flour

4 cups rolled oats

1 teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon salt

10 oz. bag cinnamon chips

1 cup toasted chopped walnuts

2 cups, bourbon soaked and drained raisins

Glaze- powdered sugar and water

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside.

Cream together the sugars and butter. Add the vanilla and the eggs one at a time, combining well after each addition.

Combine the flour,oats, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt in a separate bowl.

Add the flour mixture to the egg mixture and blend well. Stir in the chips, raisins and nuts.

Using a small ice cream scoop, scoop out onto lined baking sheets.

Bake for about 12-13 minutes and remove from oven to cool on sheet.

Make the glaze by combining powdered sugar and a bit of water to a good drizzle consistency. Drizzle over cooled cookies and allow the glaze to set up.

Cinnamon Spiced Pumpkin Bread

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Cinnamon Spiced Pumpkin Bread

3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 tablespoon cinnamon

1 tablespoon nutmeg

2 1/2 cups granulated sugar

4 eggs

1 cup canola oil

one 15 oz. can pumpkin puree

1/2 cup water

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

one 10 oz. package cinnamon chips

1 cup toasted chopped pecans

1 cup bourbon soaked and drained raisins * see note at bottom

Crumble Topping:

1 1/2 cups toasted chopped pecans

1/3 cup all-purpose flour

1/3 cup packed brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

pinch of salt

3 tablespoons butter,melted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray two 9X5X3 inch pan with nonstick spray; set aside.

Sift the flour,soda,baking powder, cinnamon , nutmeg and salt into a bowl; set aside.

In a separate bowl whisk together the sugar,eggs,oil,water,vanilla and pumpkin puree until combined.

Stir in the raisins into the pumpkin mixture and stir in the nuts and cinnamon chips into the dry mixture. Add the dry mixture to the wet mixture and stir until combined. Pour batter evenly into the prepared pans.

Prepare the crumble by combine all ingredients and stir to combine. Sprinkle with the crumble topping evenly over each pan.

Bake for about 1 hour or until toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the center.

*If you do not have bourbon soaked raisins, simply soak raisins in a jar which can be sealed at least overnight or place in a small pan and heat raisins needed in recipe with some bourbon. Bring to just boil , remove from heat allow to cool.