Tag Archives: boozy

Reaching for the ‘clouds’ for the New Year!

Well hello to everyone… yes I realize it has been quite a while since my last posting, but there were many obstacles that prevented me from having the time to focus. Hopefully this will be a new blogging beginning for the New Year!
With 2015 finally upon us and an annual Holiday get-together with our friends approaching tonight, I felt this would be the best time to kickstart everything into motion.
Starting with ‘what can I bring’ to our amazing hostess, the words ‘how about dessert’ was music to my ears! After thinking about something out of the norm, I settled on a triple layered hazelnut mocha pavlova, with a hazelnut liquor cream filling…
It all started yesterday by roasting hazelnuts [the amount is your choice, but I went with six ounces] in the oven and also melting milk and dark chocolates [another six ounces] over simmering water. Both were set aside to cool…
While the nuts and melted chocolates cooled, six egg whites were whipped with a pinch of kosher salt until soft peaks formed, from there the sugar began to slowly get added until the whites became glossy and stiff. Once stiff peaks were evident, vanilla and almond extracts were added and the mixer then turned off. The chopped hazelnuts and a cup of chocolate chips were gently folded into the shiny pillowy mixture, as well as the cooled, melted chocolate to create a lovely marbled wonder.
Poured onto three parchment drawn discs and spread out, it was then into the 225*F oven for two and a half hours. Once cooked, the door was opened and the pavlova’s left to cool completely.
For the whipped filling, I beat cream and some hazelnut liquor until firm. This boozy filling was spread on each layer and stacked. The pavlova tier was popped into the refrigerator to ‘set-up’ overnight and then this edible beauty was dressed with some shaved dark chocolate on top before packing up and heading to the party!
The end result… crisp exterior with a slightly chewy center and a creamy delight to hold everything together… a total favorite!
What will I bake next???

-R

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what are you bananas!!

With a few bananas remaining from the cake I made this past weekend, I decided rather than tossing then out they’d do better mashed up into a wonderful banana bread! This wasn’t just any banana bread, but rather a boozy banana bread…
I soaked sweet little golden raisins in some delicious bourbon. Once plumped up and juicy, they went into my batter that was full of the mashed bananas, chopped pecans, vanilla, two eggs, one cup of flour, two teaspoons of baking powder, a half teaspoon of baking soda and salt, one stick of melted butter and sugar.
Once everything was combined, it was into a loaf pan and then off for a nap for fifty minutes on 325. After a quick test for complete doneness, I had to taste! There was very little willpower, but tasting this freshly baked beauty was a necessity. Served up with some vanilla-infused mascarpone made this luxurious delight even more spectacular!
The boozy raisins offered a wonderful addition to the sweetness of the bananas. This definitely will be on my breakfast menu tomorrow!

at a low simmer…
-R

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sticky and sweet!!

With the holidays in full effect, it’s time to celebrate all things sweet!
Tonight we are heading off to a holiday party and I’ll be the bearer of good gifts, sticky toffee pudding.
This recipe takes a little time to make, about an hour and a half + tons of butter and plenty of boozy goodness [to add to the holiday cheer], but believe me its worth the calories [and heck it’s the holidays]!
I’m including the full recipe since baking is a science and you should stick to the steps to get it right. I highly recommend trying this dessert, it’s sticky, dense, buttery and sweet! It’s guaranteed to leave the partygoers cheering for more!

Ingredients
For the ‘pudding’:
2 cups medjool dates [pits removed]
3/4 cup spiced rum
3/4 cup water
1 tsp vanilla extract
3.5 cups flour
1 tbls baking powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon
Pinch salt
2 cups light brown sugar [lightly packed]
1 stick butter [at room temp]
3 extra large eggs

For toffee sauce:
3 sticks butter
1 1/2 cups light brown sugar
1/2 cup cognac
1/4 cup water

Preheat oven to 350*.
Butter a 9×13 baking dish.
To make the ‘pudding’:
Combine dates, rum and 3/4 cup water in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer and simmer for five to seven minutes. Remove from heat and add the vanilla extract. Let liquid cool, and then purée in a food processor. Set aside
While the purée is cooling, sift the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt.
Combine the brown sugar and butter in a standing mixer on medium-high. Beat until combined. Next, beat eggs in one at a time. Then carefully mix in the flour mixture in thirds on low speed. Lastly, stir in the cooled purée.
Pour batter into the baking dish and bake in the oven for 35-45 minutes [cake tester should be clean].
For the toffee sauce:
Make this while the ‘pudding’ is baking. Combine the butter, sugar, cognac and 1/4 cup water in a saucepan. Bring the mixture to a simmer, whisking consistently. Cook until it thickens to a slightly saucy consistency, roughly 15 minutes.
For the finale, Remove the pudding and let cool for ten minutes. Using a skewer poke holes in the pudding about every inch or so [go crazy].
Pour half of the sauce over the cake and let it soak in for at least 20 minutes.
When serving [should be warm], drizzle some more sauce and finish with a nice dollop of freshly made whipped cream!

at a low simmer…
-R

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warm and gooey on the inside!!

While watching the news this morning, towards the end of the broadcast they happened to show a brief segment featuring one of my FAVORITE restaurants in NYC! The executive chef was on whipping up a stuffed French toast dish that looked sinful [and I’m all about sin]…
So I thought to myself I haven’t made stuffed French toast in quite a while and figured why not! So I made some minor tweaks to make it my own, as well as an adults only maple syrup…
I had a loaf of hearty bread that I picked up over the weekend and we all have the basics at home to make a super luxurious custard base to soak everything in.
I sliced up some thick pieces of the bread, made an incision and filled with peanut butter and raspberry jam. I placed the slices into a custard of heavy cream, cinnamon, good vanilla and eggs… I also added a little boozy stuff to the mix [there’s always booze at my party]!
Off to soak up and chill out in the fridge for a couple of hours [turning once] and it was time to butter a pan and toss these bad boys on to tan…
A dusting a powdered sugar and some homemade boozy maple syrup and we were in business! Buttery on the outside, warm and oozing on the inside with the perfect kick from the boozed up, hot maple syrup… You’re not finding this at your local diner!

at a low simmer…
-R

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The waiting game…

So even though the kitchen is closed tonight, there is no way that some kind of magic couldn’t happen! I decided to prepare one of my all time favorite desserts… tiramisu. Super simple, super creamy and SUPER delicious. The only downside [not really a downside] is this a definite plan ahead dessert! You can’t make it after work and expect it to set the way it does overnight. This dessert recipe should come with a label stating… RESTRAINT required!
The ingredients: eggs [I only use extra large], sugar, mascarpone, a good strong pot of espresso mixed with some boozy stuff [I play around and bounce back and forth with different liquors], lady fingers [not the wimpy little ones you get in the bakery section, but the hearty kind] and this time I incorporated mini chocolate chips [got this idea from a recipe on saw on food network].
So I started by whisking the eggs and sugar till combined, then onto a double boiler to gently cook the egg mixture till light and fluffy! Once cooked through, the egg mixture is whipped till very creamy and thick using a standing mixer, mascarpone and chocolate chips get added and whisked in till just blended. Into the refrigerator to chill for an hour or so, then the fun begins! I take the lady fingers and start to dunk them into the espresso mixture [I recommend letting it cool so you don’t burn yourself] and start to layer them into a baking dish. Once all layered, a healthy addition of the egg mixture [cream] is spread across the top, then another layer of dunked lady fingers, another layer of the ‘cream’ and the one last layer of lady fingers and final layer of ‘cream’! Lightly covered with plastic wrap and into the fridge to take a nap and get all snug.
Now the waiting begins and the anticipation for dessert culminates… Ok ok maybe, just maybe I licked the bowl of the ‘cream’ clean… [of course that was just to make sure everything was going in the right tasty direction].
Stay tuned for pics tomorrow night after the tiramisu gets its shaving of dark chocolate and gets plated!

at a low simmer…
-R

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