Gooey Butter Cake
My hometown of St. Louis Missouri is famous for lots of food items, but one of my favorite St Louis classics is Gooey Butter Cake.
Rachel Ray and Bobby Flay
As many of you may know Rachael Ray is from the Saratoga Springs area, at least from some where around Saratoga Springs.
Apple Curry Chicken
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Sunday, October 30, 2011
Tuesday, October 25, 2011
It's time for another edition of Fall Fest and this week the topic is pumpkins. Nothing says Fall like pumpkins. Whether they're made into a pie, soup, muffins or another family favorite dish, pumpkins are versatile and delicious.
Many years ago before Food Network, before Cooking Channel there were Saturday morning cooking shows on PBS. They featured fantastic cooks like Jacques Pepin and Julia Child. But there was another cook that I think doesn't get enough credit -- Jeff Smith, also known as the Frugal Gourmet. He wrote a number of cookbooks along with having his PBS show. One in particular was called The Frugal Gourmet Cooks American. Whether or not you agree that there is such a thing as "American" cuisine the recipes in this cookbook are interesting and not very challenging. On one of his shows he cooked a pumpkin pie in the pumpkin. How cool is that?! Looked interesting and easier since there isn't a crust. He attributed this dish to the Native Americans. I guess that's possible.
Many years after seeing this (it stuck in the back of my head) I decided to try it. It didn't turn out. I think it was because I didn't use a pie pumpkin. It's very important to use a pie pumpkin and not one that you would carve for a Jack O Lantern.
So here's the recipe, just in time for Fall baking. Just think how spectacular it will be for you to put a whole pumpkin full of custard and spices on your Thanksgiving table.
1 sugar pumpkin 5-7 pounds
2 cups heavy cream
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 Tablespoon molasses
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ginger
2 Tablespoons butter, cut into pieces
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Cut the top of the pumpkin and set it aside.
Scoop out all the seeds and innards. The seeds can be kept for roasting later.
In a mixing bowl cream together the sugar and eggs. <TIP> It's always best to use large eggs. I only had mediums so I used 7 instead of 6.
I did this step in order to have the sugar dissolved before pouring it into the pumpkin.
Add the rest of the ingredients except the butter to the mixing bowl.
<TIP> Molasses can be very sticky. It might be a good idea to spray your measuring spoon with cooking spray to make it easier to pour in the molasses.
|Black Strap Molasses|
Make sure all ingredients are well combined then pour the custard mixture into the pumpkin.
Top the custard with the butter pieces and place the top back on the pumpkin.
<TIP> The original recipes said to bake it for 1 - 1 1/2 hours but I found that it took mine closer to 2 1/2 hours and my pumpkin was 5 pounds exactly. Take the top off about half way and it will help the custard to set. Don't cook the pumpkin more than about 2 1/2 hours or it will start to collapse and ooze.
Once the custard is set, let the whole pumpkin cool to room temperature before serving.
|Excuse my well-loved baking sheet. It does work though.|
To eat this pie:
Remove the top from the pumpkin. Take a large, long handled spoon and scoop out the custard getting some of the cooked pumpkin from the sides. Serve it in a shallow bowl with or without whipped cream.
Granted this isn't your typical pumpkin pie. It's less sweet and there's no crust. It'll take some maneuvering with your spoon to get that perfect bite of custard and pumpkin, but it's delicious.
Doing something unusual for your Thanksgiving dinner?
Have a family tradition or recipe you'd like to share?
Or maybe an experiment that didn't quite work?
If you're looking for more pumpkin recipes look no further. The links below from the other Fall Fest contributors might be just what you need!
What's Gaby Cooking: Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bars
The Cultural Dish: Pumpkin Waffles
Cooking With Elise: Pumpkin Chip Scones
And Love It Too: Creamy Pumpkin Fruit Dip
CIA Dropout: Pumpkin Panna Cotta With Gingerbread
Haute Apple Pie Girls: Pumpkin Bread Parfait
I Am Mommy: Pumpkin Pancakes
Dishin and Dishes: Maple Pumpkin Creme Brulee
Pumpkin Pizza Farmhouse 1885:
Daydreamer Desserts: Pumpkin Fattigman
FN Dish: The Ultimate Pumpkin Soup
Cooking Channel: Pumpkin Risotto
The Sensitive Epicure: Pumpkin Whoopie Pies With Molasses Marshmallows
Daily*Dishin: Pumpkin Praline Cheesecake
ZaikaZabardast: Pumpkin Jalebi
Mooshu Pumpkin Nutella Bread:
Big Girls Small Kitchen: Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Loaf
Sunday, October 23, 2011
During my recent class at the CIA, one of the dishes that was made by one of the other teams was Corn Chowder. After the issue we had with the harissa (way too much was added to the lamb meatballs my team made, making them almost too spicy to eat), I was really looking forward to the corn chowder. Unfortunately this was also too spicy for me to eat and really enjoy. So I decided to try my hand at it at home, and this time it had a nice spice to it (not too much) and great flavor.
So for this addition of Mamatoga Recipes I thought I would share this tummy warming chowder just in time for Halloween. It can be made before the kids go out trick or treating and then warmed up when they are done. Serve with some bread and it will make a filling dinner. So filling the kids just might pass up all the treats.
The spice level can be adjusted. You know what you and your family can tolerate as far as that goes. But it's nice to have a little spice to balance out the creamy chowder.
This recipe calls for fresh corn cut from the cob so that you will have the "milk" from the cob that will help thicken the chowder. I made mine with frozen corn and it worked just fine. This recipe will make 8 servings. It can be served as a complete, hearty, tummy warming meal, can be a first course or a nice lunch with a sandwich. But make no mistake this is a filling chowder.
To make the chowder this is what you'll need:
6 ears of corn, shucked or 4 cups of frozen corn kernels
1 cup heavy cream
2 slices of bacon, minced
1 1/4 cups minced onions
1 cup minced red pepper
1/2 cup minced celery
1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
6 cups of chicken broth
3 cups of yellow or white potatoes, diced
3 cups chopped tomatoes, peeled and seeded (I used canned diced tomatoes, drained)
1- 4 ounce can green chilies, drained and chopped
1 cup grated Monterey Jack
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Tabasco sauce to taste
1 cup corn tortilla strips, toasted, optional
2 Tablespoons cilantro, finely chopped
If using fresh corn, cut the kernels from the cob with a sharp knife, capturing as much of the liquid as possible. Reserve 3/4 cup of the kernels for later. If using frozen corn reserve 3/4 cup of the kernels and add the remainder to a food processor with the cream-- puree the corn and the cream together. Set aside.
Cook the bacon in a soup pot over medium heat until crispy. Add the onion, red pepper, celery and garlic. Reduce the heat to low and cover. Cook, stirring occasionally until the vegetables are tender, about 10-12 minutes. Add the broth, potatoes and tomatoes. Bring to a simmer and cook, covered until the potatoes are tender, about 20 minutes. Skim any fat that may collect on the surface and discard.
Add the pureed corn and cream and the reserved corn kernels, chilies and cheese. Cook on low heat just until the corn is warmed, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and Tabasco to taste. Serve garnished with tortillas strips and cilantro.
That is the recipe provided by the CIA and found in the Culinary Institute Cookbook. I've followed this recipe pretty much to the letter, after all they are the CIA and know cooking. But I have to say that I have made a couple of modifications. When the vegetables are cooking, I season then and also add the chilies. I also found that using the Tabasco can take away from the creamy, lusciousness of the chowder so for a little spice I use Pepper Jack cheese, not only in the chowder but also as a garnish. If you'd like to follow the recipe verbatim, feel free. If you want to make your own modifications, go ahead.
|The version made at the CIA.|
Tuesday, October 18, 2011
Here are some more creative ways to use potatoes from the Fall Fest Contributors. Why not try them all?
Taste With The Eyes: Poached Salmon, Lobster Mash, Lentil Gumbo “Gravy”
And Love It Too: Twice Baked Potato - Paleo Style
What's Gaby Cooking: Smashed Potatoes
Chorizo and Potato Tacos Farmhouse 1885:
Cooking Channel: Cozy Up With In Season Potatoes
FN Dish: Best Potato Casserole Recipes
Cooking With Elise: The Irish Boxty
CIA Dropout: Potato and Leek Soup
The Sensitive Epicure: Potatoes Anna With Fresh Thyme and Truffle Salt
Glory Foods: Chicken Smashed Potatoes
Come back for more Fall Fest Recipes.
Next time it's all about Pumpkin! and I don't mean Jack O' Lanterns!!
Sunday, October 16, 2011
Once the pops are dipped stick them into a styrofoam block to dry.
Monday, October 10, 2011
Here's my latest post for Fall Fest hosted by FN Dish. This time it's all about spinach. Be sure to read all the way to the bottom for more delicious recipes by the other Fall Fest contributors. They'll make a spinach lover out of you!
When I met my husband over 22 years ago, I had never gardened before. I hadn't really cooked before. I was lucky that he was the type of person who ate almost anything. So I could experiment and since he was a wannabe farmer I learned to garden. The first year we grew almost everything. He had an old book called Back To Basics that was all about gardening, canning, preserving, almost everything you needed to know to be self-sufficient. It became my Bible.
One Fall I grew broccoli, cauliflower (the kind that had to be blanched by tying up the leaves over the heads-another thing I learned from the book), and all kinds of greens. So from then on I associated Fall with those kinds of veggies. Especially greens like spinach.
I've never been a spinach fan. My son and husband on the other hand love it. I'm more of a meat and cheese person, so I thought, "why not come up with something that combines it all?" Here's what I came up with: Cannelloni Stuffed with Ricotta, Spinach and Italian Sausage.
Cannelloni is a long pasta shell that is sold dry in the pasta aisle. But if you'd like to make your own I've included the instructions and ingredients for that too. The homemade ones are easier to stuff since they're basically a crepe. Traditionally cannelloni are covered with tomato sauce and cheese, but I thought I'd shake it up a little bit by covering mine with a cheesy bechamel sauce.
Here's what you'll need:
1 frozen package spinach, defrosted and drained
8 ounces of ricotta cheese
1 large garlic clove, grated or finely minced
1 egg, beaten
salt and pepper to taste
2 sweet Italian sausage links
1/2 onion, chopped
1 cup flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
1 egg beaten
Cheesy Bechamel Sauce:
2 tablespoons oil (if the sausage didn't have enough drippings)
2 tablespoons flour
1 cup milk
1/4 cup Parmesan and more for the top.
This recipe should make 7-8 cannelloni.
To make the filling:
1. In a large skillet brown the sausage and onion together adding olive oil if needed.
2. In a large bowl combine ricotta, spinach, garlic, beaten egg and salt and pepper to taste.
3. Once the sausage is browned and the onions are cooked, set it aside to cool slightly.
4. Combine the sausage mixture and ricotta mixture until well combined.
To make the cannelloni
1. Combine the flour and salt.
2. Combine the egg and milk.
3. Pour the egg and milk into the flour and stir to combine.
In a small nonstick skillet pour a ladle full of the batter into the pan and swirl to coat. Cook the crepe until it's set. Flip and cook on the other side.
The crepes can be stacked onto a plate until all of them are cooked. Fill each crepe with 2 tablespoons of filling. Roll them up and place them into an oblong baking dish.
To make the cheesy bechamel sauce
In the same pan that you cooked the sausage add enough olive oil to add up to 2 tablespoons. To the oil add 2 tablespoons of flour and cook on medium heat for about a minute, just to cook out the raw flour taste. Add the milk and cook until thick. Add the parmesan, reserving some for the top.
Pour sauce over the cannelloni. Bake at 425 degrees until bubbly and brown, about 10 minutes.
The result is a garlicky, cheesy dish that is loaded with sausage and spinach.
The dish could be made completely vegetarian by eliminating the sausage and adding some mushrooms.
That's my attempt at combining my favorites -- meat and cheese and my husband's and son's -- spinach.
Here are the links for more delicious recipes and ideas for using spinach. Give these a try and let them know how it worked out for you. I know I will!!
What's Gaby Cooking: Spinach-Artichoke Cups
And Love It Too: Bacon Infused Wilted Spinach
Spinach-Pesto Tacos With Roasted Tomatillo Salsa Farmhouse 1885:
Virtually Homemade: Spinach Pepita (Pumpkin Seed) Pesto
Cooking With Elise: Spinach and Artichoke Fondue
Glory Foods: Creamed Spinach
The Sensitive Epicure: Catalan Spinach With Raisins, Pine Nuts and Bacon
CIA Dropout: Spinach and Cheddar Frittata
FN Dish: Stuffed Spinach Recipes
Have a favorite way to make spinach? Have a recipe to share?
Next time FN Dish, Fall Fest will be all about potatoes, so be sure to stop by.