Monday, December 15, 2014

Gingerbread Snowflake Cookies



Ingredients
6 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for work surface
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
1 cup packed dark-brown sugar
4 teaspoons ground ginger
4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cloves
1 teaspoon finely ground pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt
2 large eggs
1 cup unsulfured molasses
Fine sanding sugar, for sprinkling
Royal Icing recipe can be found here via Cupcakes and Cashmere.




Directions
1. Sift together flour, baking soda, and baking powder into a large bowl. Set aside.
2. Put butter and brown sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment; mix on medium speed until fluffy. Mix in spices and salt, then eggs and molasses. Reduce speed to low. Add flour mixture; mix until just combined. Divide dough into thirds; wrap each in plastic. Refrigerate until cold, about 1 hour.
3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Roll out dough on a lightly floured work surface to a 1/4-inch thick. Cut into snowflakes with a 7- inch snowflake-shape cookie cutter. Space 2 inches apart on baking sheets lined with parchment paper, and refrigerate until firm, about 15 minutes.
4. Bake cookies until crisp but not dark, 12 to 14 minutes. Let cool on sheets on wire racks.
5. Put icing in a pastry bag fitted with a small plain round tip (such as Ateco #7). Pipe designs on snowflakes; immediately sprinkle with sanding sugar. Let stand 5 minutes; tap off excess sugar. Let icing set completely at room temperature, about 1 hour.








Sunday, December 14, 2014

Rocky Road Fudge Recipe



4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
3 1/2 cups mini marshmallows
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 bag (12 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup almonds

Butter an 8-inch square baking pan; line with 2 crisscrossed pieces of parchment paper, leaving an overhang.
In a large saucepan, combine butter, marshmallows, sugar, cream, and salt; cook over medium, stirring occasionally, until marshmallows are melted, 8 to 10 minutes. Off heat, stir in vanilla, chocolate chips, 1/2 cup almonds, and 1/4 cup marshmallows until chocolate is melted.
Pour fudge into prepared pan, and smooth top; sprinkle with remaining almonds and marshmallows.
Let cool 30 minutes. Refrigerate until set, about 1 hour.

Using overhang, lift fudge onto a cutting board; cut into squares (6 rows by 6 rows).


Saturday, December 13, 2014

2014 GIFT GUIDES




A CUP OF JOE - Bestfriend, Children, Brother, Sister, Husband, and Mom

Damsel in Dior - A Little Something For Everyone

The Cut - Weirdly Specific Holiday Gift Guide

Cupcakes and Cashmere - Under $250

Honestly WTF - FreeSpirit, JetSetter, TheCountry, TheGuy, TheCityGirl, and LilTots

PopSugar - Best Holiday Gift Ideas

InStyle - Gifts for Him, Kids, and More

Rachel Zoe -  50 Gifts From 50 States


Sunday, December 7, 2014

DRAGON FRUIT BOWL



Ingredients:
1/2 dragon fruit (peeled)
1/2 frozen banana
1 cup frozen strawberries
1/4 cup almond milk


Toppings:
granola
fresh banana
fresh strawberry
shredded coconut


Blend all ingredients. Top with your favorite toppings.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

APPLE TART WITH POMEGRANATE SEEDS & CLEMENTINES


1 pie dough
4 tablespoons butter, melted
5 large Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, cut into 1/4 inch slices
4 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons cranberry sauce (I used THIS recipe from Typical Domestic Babe)
2 table spoons orange marmalade
seeds from 1 pomegranate
3 clementines, pith removed, and sliced




Roll out pie dough on a lightly floured surface.
Place dough in tart pan, and pierce bottom with fork.
Refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 400* F.
Arrange the apple slices in the tart pan, in a concentric circles.
Whisk together the melted butter, brown sugar, cranberry sauce and orange marmalade in a small bowl and drizzle over the entire tart.
Return tart to the refrigerator for 15 minutes.

Bake for approximately 1 hour, or until crust is golden brown and apples are tender when pierced with a toothpick.

While the tart is still warm, top with pomegranate seeds and clementine slices.

Serves 8.


Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Basil Lemonade


1 1/4 cup water
3/4 cup sugar
1 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 5 lemons)
1 Tablespoon lemon zest
6 cups cold water
15-20 basil leaves
1 extra lemon for garnishing

Bring the 1/4 cup water to a boil in a small pot and then remove from heat. Add the sugar and stir until well dissolved. Crumble and roll the basil leaves in your hands to release the oils. Add them to the water and sugar mixture along with the lemon zest. Let it sit until cool. Pour the cold water and lemon juice into a pitcher. Strain the contents of the pot, discard the basil and lemon zest and add the liquid to the pitcher. Stir well and enjoy. 

Monday, February 17, 2014

Beef Stew In Red Wine Sauce


TOTAL TIME: 2 HRS 40 MIN
SERVINGS: 4 

1 tablespoon unsalted butter 
2 tablespoons olive oil 
2 pounds trimmed beef flatiron steak or chuck, cut into 8 pieces 
Salt 
Freshly ground black pepper 
1 cup finely chopped onion 
1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic 
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour 
One 750-milliliter bottle dry red wine 
2 bay leaves 
1 thyme sprig 
One 5-ounce piece of pancetta 
15 pearl or small cipollini onions, peeled 
15 cremini mushrooms 
15 baby carrots, peeled 
Sugar 
Chopped fresh parsley, for garnish 

 Preheat the oven to 350°. In a large enameled cast-iron casserole, melt the butter in 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Arrange the meat in the casserole in a single layer and season with salt and pepper. Cook over moderately high heat, turning occasionally, until browned on all sides, 8 minutes. Add the chopped onion and garlic and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until the onion is softened, 5 minutes. Add the flour and stir to coat the meat with it. Add the wine, bay leaves and thyme, season with salt and pepper and bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve any brown bits stuck to the bottom of the pot. Cover the casserole and transfer it to the oven. Cook the stew for 1 1/2 hours, until the meat is very tender and the sauce is flavorful. Meanwhile, in a saucepan, cover the pancetta with 2 cups of water and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Drain the pancetta and slice it 1/2 inch thick, then cut the slices into 1-inch-wide lardons. In a large skillet, combine the pancetta, pearl onions, mushrooms and carrots. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil, 1/4 cup of water and a large pinch each of sugar, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer until almost all of the water has evaporated, 15 minutes. Uncover and cook over high heat, tossing, until the vegetables are tender and nicely browned, about 4 minutes. To serve, stir some of the vegetables and lardons into the stew and scatter the rest on top as a garnish. Top with a little chopped parsley and serve. 

 SUGGESTED PAIRING Robust, dark-fruited Cabernet Sauvignon.