Tag Archives: light

finger… err thumbprint [cookies that is]…

Following a morning of battling the elements and snow blowing our property, then enjoying some warming peppermint hot cocoa’s it was onto the age of question… what’s for dinner, but more importantly what’s for dessert!
So again with the holidays in our near reach, and loads of creamy butter in every refrigerator in this house, it seemed fitting to whip up some thumbprint shortbreads with raspberry preserves and coconut!
Light, buttery and slightly sweet/tart circular luxuries… packing these up to send off to the hubbies’ office tomorrow seemed like the proper thing to do! Well maybe a few will go missing… I’m certain I’ll be able to find them later when everyone is fast asleep and enjoy with a hot cup of tea!

at a low simmer…
-R

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A rainy day masterpiece…

So on this yet again, rainy day… I decided to pull another interesting dish from my new cookbook! This recipe had quite a few steps involved so the prep work began in the early AM hours.
The entire bang started by marinating a boneless leg of lamb with rosemary, garlic, lemon zest, extra virgin, salt and crushed peppercorns for roughly eight hours.
While my meat was marinating, I began mixing rye, white and wholemeal flours, along with salt and then yeast in my mixer. To pull everything together, in went some water. Everything was kneaded and then it went into an oiled mixing bowl and set off to rise. As soon as the dough rose, I stretched it out into a rectangle, made some imprints with my fingertips and then pricked the dough with a fork. Again it was time for another rise and then a bake! The baking time was only thirty minutes and then off to cool.
While my bread cooled, the lamb was grilled until perfectly cooked… Then it was onto the fun part, to serve this gorgeous dinner up! The freshly baked bread [trencher as the recipe is called] is decorated watercress, haricot vert, scallions and radishes. On top of this vibrancy, were slices of the succulent lamb, along with its sexy juices…
As the finishing touch, a dressing of crème fraiche, lemon juice, salt and english mustard.
The flavors were incredible… earthy from the rosemary, citrusy from the lemon zest, cool yet spicy from the dressing, while the ‘trencher’ tasted nutty and light, while soaking up all the goodness…

at a low simmer…
-R

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A rainy day masterpiece…

So on this yet again, rainy day… I decided to pull another interesting dish from my new cookbook! This recipe had quite a few steps involved so the prep work began in the early AM hours.
The entire bang started by marinating a boneless leg of lamb with rosemary, garlic, lemon zest, extra virgin, salt and crushed peppercorns for roughly eight hours.
While my meat was marinating, I began mixing rye, white and wholemeal flours, along with salt and then yeast in my mixer. To pull everything together, in went some water. Everything was kneaded and then it went into an oiled mixing bowl and set off to rise. As soon as the dough rose, I stretched it out into a rectangle, made some imprints with my fingertips and then pricked the dough with a fork. Again it was time for another rise and then a bake! The baking time was only thirty minutes and then off to cool.
While my bread cooled, the lamb was grilled until perfectly cooked… Then it was onto the fun part, to serve this gorgeous dinner up! The freshly baked bread [trencher as the recipe is called] is decorated watercress, haricot vert, scallions and radishes. On top of this vibrancy, were slices of the succulent lamb, along with its sexy juices…
As the finishing touch, a dressing of crème fraiche, lemon juice, salt and english mustard.
The flavors were incredible… earthy from the rosemary, citrusy from the lemon zest, cool yet spicy from the dressing, while the ‘trencher’ tasted nutty and light, while soaking up all the goodness…

at a low simmer…
-R

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light and filling…

As summer starts to dig its heels into long hot days, I thought a light dinner was in order. A simple, delicious mix of fresh multi-grain bread that I toasted was decorated with slivers of creamy avocado, sharp cheddar, sliced chicken breast, ripe red tomatoes and a touch of mayo. It may sound simplistic, but every last bite was filled with flavors that screamed summer is hear to stay… And you know what, I’m ok with that.

at a low simmer…
-R

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home cooked for hump day…

With hump day upon us, what better way to lift our spirits than with a super delicious, home cooked meal!
After a trip to my favorite specialty food market and a chat with the fish monger… turned out that he had just received a shipment of some gorgeous monkfish… so that is just what I planned my meal around.
Once home, I wrapped my succulent fish in a pancetta hug and let it chill out in the fridge until it was time to cook! No salt, no pepper… just the pancetta was needed to infuse this filet with all the flavor it needed.
To cook, a searing hot cast iron pan was lightly coated with olive oil and the fish gently placed into it and cooked for three minutes. A quick turn and then it was into the oven for ten minutes on 425… out came a perfectly cooked monkfish with crispy pancetta.
As a side to this meal, some beautifully roasted sweet potato to play against the saltiness of the pancetta.
Light and flaky, full of wondrous flavors… I definitely recommend getting your hands on monkfish [or other firm white fish] and giving this dish a whirl!

at a low simmer…
-R

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birthday bonanza!

What better way to end a week than with a birthday celebration! This wasn’t just any birthday, but rather one for our little, well I guess not so little nine-year old pup…
No birthday would be complete without a vanilla cake baked from scratch and filled with a glorious vanilla custard between the layers… Topping off this towering delight, a light buttercream frosting [this was for the adults though, plain for the pups]!
After a little singing, blowing out candles, photo-ops including birthday hats and the opening of presents, it was then time to cut into the cake. The birthday boy and his brother both got to enjoy some cake, while we did as well, but also had cleanup duties…

at a low simmer…
-R

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kissing the ‘toad’…

So tonight we took a culinary journey ‘across the pond’ and paid homage to my family roots…
For an interesting dinner, we enjoyed ‘toad-in-the-hole’… may sound unappealing to those unfamiliar with this lovely dish, but don’t worry no toads were harmed in the making of this meal.
The dish is quite simple to prepare, basically everything that would be in your pantry and freezer. To make the batter, 2 cups of flour, salt, six eggs and 1 1/2 cups milk are all combined and set aside. Then sausages [can be any you like] are panfried and browned. The batter is poured into a pretty hot pan of oil, the sausages then nestled into the batter and everything tossed in the oven to bake until puffy, crisp and golden. To go along with the ‘toad’ a beautiful, homemade onion gravy.
The flavors are wonderful and rich, yet not heavy at all, but rather almost light as a cloud!

at a low simmer…
-R

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French pastry Sunday baking…

Today was an amazing Sunday! A fun-filled day of baking with my niece who is an outstanding executive pastry chef. Get the two of us together in a kitchen and only delicious eats could be made!
We started off by preparing dough for freshly made croissants. After rolling out, folding and resting the butter-filled dough a few times, it was eventually time that we fill with an almond paste filling and bake off these gorgeous pastries. Flakey layers of buttery seduction with a sweet nutty interior made me think of breakfast in the European countryside with a captivating cup of freshly pressed coffee and the breeze blowing past…
In addition, French macarons were whipped up with a homemade pistachio filling. These light and chewy, pillowy sandwiches practically melted in our mouths, and one, two, three… well who really counted! All I can say is these were absolutely delightful.
The day could not have been better spent, or more enjoyable. I’m looking forward to our next baking adventure together and what incredible edibles we will create!

at a low simmer…
-R

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under the sea and onto our plates!

After a trip to the specialty food market this AM for some dinner inspiration, I happened upon the fish counter… While looking around at what were some real beauties, I noticed that there were gorgeous handmade lump crabmeat, crab cakes being prepared! I have always made crab cakes in the past, but they weren’t even making it into the casing [people were buying them like they were gold] so I knew they must be a hot commodity and a must try…
To cook these thick, circular lovelies, a touch of olive oil in a cast iron pan and into the oven until browned and golden on each side!
Once cooked, these gorgeous ‘coins’ were rested on top a bed of baby spinach that I sautéed with some rendered pancetta…
The crab cakes were incredibly light, but full of intense flavor! They were definitely the right choice… Now I grasp why those people were intent on getting their hands on them!

at a low simmer…
-R

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nuts about these cookies!!

Tonight I felt like something a bit sweet, so I decided to crank out some pignoli cookies using an old family recipe…
For something that may seem intimidating, the recipe is actually quite simple to follow! Almond paste, confectioners sugar, egg whites, salt, honey, cinnamon and pine nuts all make up these mounds of delight…
After following the recipe, piping these little guys out and baking them off, all that was left was to EAT, EAT, EAT!!!
These cookies were wonderfully light, and crisp with beautifully chewy-centers… I always remember these cookies from when I was little and now I know why!!

at a low simmer…
-R

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