Tag Archives: nutty

sweet treats for special ladies…

What better way to celebrate the women in your life than with baked goods… so for this special day, a classic British dessert… the Bakewell Tart. A buttery shell encased the lovely sweet frangipane filling and raspberry jam slathered base, while the flaked almonds offered a slightly extra nutty crunch. It is, and always will be my favorite of puddings so why not share it with the ones you love! Wrapped tenderly in a sheet of parchment these sliced gems were tucked gently into a precious pink bag and secured with a colorful ribbon…

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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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farro[SO] yummy!

Since the weather took a turn from warm and summer-like, to a slight bit cooler it seemed fitting to make a hearty, warming meal for dinner…
After raiding my fridge and pantry, it was easy! A nutty farro dish with an Asian flavor base to it! Shredded carrots, diced onions, some minced garlic and ginger, chopped porcini mushrooms and sautéed shrimp all came together with a hint of sesame oil, a few tablespoons of soy sauce and a dash of hoisin…
The dish literally takes no time to prepare, but the incredible depth of flavor would make you think otherwise!

at a low simmer…
-R

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the best things since sliced bread… hey wait a minute!

With the baking bug still quite heavy in my heart, I decided that I’d crank out another beautiful loaf of bread… this time the loaf was a half white flour and half wholemeal! The half and half idea was a suggestion from a friend who lives in the UK, and boy was it a fantastic one at that… the completed flavors were intense and so well rounded! Slightly nutty, this wonderful loaf paired beautifully when sliced and toasted with a creamy, triple crème and fig jam… it’s a miracle that there is any left for breakfast in the morning!

at a low simmer…
-R

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my inner cookie monster…

After a sweets craving, I decided to churn out a quick batch of chocolate chip cookies, but to elevate these cookies, I added in some chopped hazelnuts.
I started by creaming two sticks of butter, along with some regular sugar and brown sugar. To the mix, in went two eggs and vanilla.
While everything was mixing, in a separate bowl I added flour, baking powder, salt and some cinnamon. The dry mixture was slowly added into the mixing bowl until combined. Lastly, into the batter went the chopped hazelnuts and semi-sweet chocolate chips.
Scoopfuls of the scented batter went onto baking sheets and into the preheated oven. The fragrance of fresh baked cookies wafted throughout the entire house! After eighteen minutes, it was time to take the cookies out. Once out of the oven, a sprinkling of fleur de sel finished these gorgeous beauties…
Almost cake-like, these chocolatey and nutty cookies were the perfect end to the evening with a large glass of ice cold milk!

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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this little piggy went right into my belly…

Realizing it has been such a long time since I’ve enjoyed that fatty, porky goodness of pork belly, a trip to the market and an overnight bath in a fragrant marinade yielded one hell of a dinner!
I seasoned up this beautiful slab with hefty handfuls of salt. While letting the salt permeate into the belly, I prepped a marinade full of healthy veggies and yummy seasonings… and of course wine was invited to this party!
Once the marinade was ready it was poured into a baking dish. The belly was then cozily tucked into the baking dish and surrounded by its luxurious bathing liquid… After a long nights sleep, it was time for a five hour bath until completely tender and a quick tan under the broiler to darken and crisp that fatty skin!
To enjoy this meal, the belly was nestled on a bed of nutty farro that I cooked with sautéed onions and garlic in some chicken stock until fully absorbed… the farro was swirled together with some chopped parsley to finish the story…
Fatty, crisp, sweet, sour, nutty and tender… I can go on and on!

at a low simmer…
-R

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quite the cookie!

After a grueling day of shopping for Christmas presents and finishing decorating around the house, it was finally time to sit down, turn on the television and relax. Before doing that, I decided to make us some classic espresso coffees served with some beautiful, homemade Italian biscotti!
The biscotti were crunchy, nutty and a bit tart. Simply made, all that it took to make were pistachios, dried cranberries [or honestly any dried fruit you like], some lemon or orange zest, flour, salt, baking powder, sugar, butter, salt and eggs.
The most difficult part of baking these tasty little lovelies, wasn’t the cooling process, but the fact that these cookies were twice baked so it felt like the waiting game was just that…

at a low simmer…
-R

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say cheese[cake that is]…

After a fantastic holiday weekend full of spending time with family and friends, unfortunately reality is kicking back in…
To prepare for another week, what better way to gear up than with a slice of velvety caramel pecan cheesecake in a graham cracker crust!
Two packages of cream cheese, sugar, vanilla, eggs, pecans, caramel and a graham cracker crust [store bought or homemade, there are no judgements here!] are all that is needed to create this delightful masterpiece…
For the pecan caramel base, chopped pecans are stirred into a sultry caramel sauce and poured into the graham cracker crust… The cream cheese and sugar are whipped until combined, then the vanilla and eggs are added in and blended together. This creamy mixture is gently eased into the crust and then baked in a 350 degree oven until set. After cooling down and then chilling in the refrigerator, it was time to slice and enjoy…
Sweet, creamy, nutty and buttery… this slice of heaven is well deserved and for me guilt-free!!

at a low simmer…
-R

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