Saturday, January 28, 2012

I am glad I was not born before tea.

Chocolate Chip Toffee Scones

3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup granulated sugar
4 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup semisweet mini chocolate chips
1/2 cup almonds, toasted and chopped
1/2 cup chocolate-covered English toffee baking bits
2 cups cold whipping cream

For Topping:
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
granulated sugar

Preheat oven 375 degrees and lightly butter two large baking sheets. In large bowl,combine the flour,1/2 cup sugar, baking powder and salt. Stir in chocolate chips, nuts and toffee. Beat the cream in separate large bowl until stiff peaks form, fold into dry ingredients. Turn dough out onto lightly floured surface, knead lightly until a soft dough forms. Gently shape into a circle and with serrated knife cut into wedges. Place on baking sheets a few inches apart. Brush with melted butter and sprinkle with sugar. Bake until golden brown, about 20 minutes.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Winter is not a season, it's an occupation. ~Sinclair Lewis

Tuesday, January 24, 2012


• 1 medium onion
• 1 rib celery
• 1/4 head cabbage
• 2 tablespoons butter
• 1 pound frozen hash brown potatoes
• 4 cups chicken broth
• 2 cups water
• 1/3 cup sour cream
• 1 tablespoon flour
• 1/4 cup milk
• 1 large smoked sausage link, cut into 1/4-inch slices
• Parmigiano-Reggiano, for grating
• freshly chopped chives, optional

1. Chop the onion and the celery. Shred enough cabbage to make one cup.
2. Melt the butter over medium heat. Add onion and celery. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion looks transparent, about 10 minutes.
3. Stir in the cabbage and potatoes, then add the chicken broth and the water. Cook over high heat until the mixture boils then simmer for 30 minutes.
4. Mix together sour cream and flour; add milk, 1 tablespoon at a time, stirring well after each addition. Stir the sour cream mixture and the sausage into the soup; heat.
5. Serve the soup with a generous grating of Parmigiano-Reggiano and a sprinkling of chives, if desired.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

  • Beans Baked Boston Style

  • 1 pound dried pinto beans (2 1/4 cups)
  • 12 bacon slices (about 8 ounces), cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 8 cups water
  • 1 1/3 cups chopped onion
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 1/3 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup dry mustard
  • 2 tablespoons mild-flavored (light) molasses
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons finely chopped garlic
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground pepper

  • Place beans in large bowl. Add enough water to cover by 3 inches. Let stand overnight. Drain beans; set aside.

    Preheat oven to 350°F. Cook bacon in heavy large pot until crisp, about 8 minutes. Add beans and all remaining ingredients to pot. Bring to boil.

    Transfer pot to oven. Bake uncovered until beans are tender and liquid thickens, stirring occasionally, about 4 hours. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and chill. Bring beans to simmer before serving.)

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Albert Anker, Still Life: Two Glass of Red Wine, a bottle of Wine; a Corkscrew and a Plate of Biscuits on a Tray, oil on canvas, 43 x 40cm, Private collection

Baked Brie with Dried Cherries & Thyme

1/2-lb. wheel of Brie (about 4-inch diameter), at room temperature
1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed
1/3 cup dried cherries, coarsely chopped
2 tsp. chopped fresh thyme
1 Tbs. unsalted butter, melted

Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 425°F.

Slice off the top rind of the Brie and discard. On a sheet of waxed paper or parchment, roll the pastry out to a 12-inch square and cut two 6-inch rounds from it. Put one of the rounds on a small rimmed baking sheet, sprinkle with half of the dried cherries and thyme, leaving a 1/2-inch border around the edge, and gently press so they adhere.

Set the Brie, rind side down, on top of the pastry, sprinkle with the remaining cherries and thyme, and cover with the other pastry. Crimp the edges together to seal in the cheese. Brush the top of the dough with the butter. Bake until the pastry browns, about 20 minutes. Let cool for 15 to 20 minutes and then serve.

Baked Brie with Dried Cherries & Thyme recipe

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Another fresh new year is here . . .