Archive for August, 2012

Bistro Breakfast Panini

6 bacon strips
1 teaspoon butter
4 eggs, beaten
4 slices sourdough bread (3/4 inch thick)
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
3 ounces Brie cheese, thinly sliced
8 thin slices apple
1/2 cup fresh baby spinach
2 tablespoons butter, softened

In a large skillet, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp. Remove to paper towels to drain.

Meanwhile, heat butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add eggs; cook and stir until set.

Place eggs on two slices of bread; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Layer with cheese, apple, bacon, spinach and remaining bread. Butter outsides of sandwiches.

Cook on a panini maker or indoor grill for 3-4 minutes or until bread is browned and cheese is melted. Yield: 2 servings.

Recipe found here: Bistro Breakfast Panini

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Snowball Peaches

2 packages (3 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons apricot preserves
1 cup pineapple tidbits, drained
3 cans (15-1/4 ounces each) peach halves, drained
Leaf lettuce
Fresh mint, optional

In a small bowl, beat the cream cheese and preserves until blended. Stir in pineapple. Place peaches cut side up on a lettuce-lined serving platter; fill with cream cheese mixture. Garnish with mint if desired.

Recipe found here: Snowball Peaches

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Grilled Apple and Swiss Cheese Sandwich

2 slices whole wheat bread
1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
1/2 Granny Smith apple – peeled, cored and thinly sliced
1/3 cup shredded Swiss cheese

Preheat a skillet over medium heat.

Lightly brush one side of each slice of bread with the olive oil.

Place 1 slice of bread, olive oil side down into the skillet, and arrange the apple slices evenly over the top.

Sprinkle the Swiss cheese over the apple, then top with the remaining slice of bread, olive oil-side up.

Cook until the bread is golden brown, then flip the sandwich over, and cook until the other side is golden brown and the cheese has melted, 1 to 2 more minutes.

Recipe found here: Grilled Apple and Swiss Cheese Sandwich

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Quick Cherry Turnovers

1 tube (8 ounces) refrigerated crescent rolls
1 cup cherry pie filling
1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
1 to 2 tablespoons milk

Unroll crescent roll dough and separate into four squares; place on an ungreased baking sheet. Press seams and perforations together. Spoon 1/4 pie filling in one corner of each square. Fold to make triangles; pinch to seal.

Bake at 375° for 10-12 minutes or until golden. Combine sugar and milk to achieve drizzling consistency. Drizzle over turnovers; Serve warm. Yield: 4 servings.

Recipe found here: Quick Cherry Turnovers

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Chocolate Espresso Pots de Crème

6 oz fine-quality bittersweet chocolate (not unsweetened), finely chopped
1 1/3 cups heavy cream
2/3 cup whole milk
1 1/2 to 2 teaspoons instant-espresso powder*
6 large egg yolks
2 tablespoons sugar

Special equipment: 8 (4- to 5-oz) ramekins or pot de crème cups
Garnish: bittersweet chocolate curls

Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 300°F.

Put chocolate in a heatproof bowl. Bring cream, milk, espresso powder (to taste), and a pinch of salt just to a boil in a small heavy saucepan, stirring until espresso powder is dissolved, then pour over chocolate, whisking until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth.

Whisk together yolks, sugar, and a pinch of salt in another bowl, then add warm chocolate mixture in a slow stream, whisking constantly. Pour custard through a fine-mesh sieve into a 1-quart glass measure and cool completely, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes.

Line bottom of a baking pan (large enough to hold ramekins) with a folded kitchen towel and arrange ramekins on towel. Poke several holes in a large sheet of foil with a skewer. Divide custard among ramekins, then bake custards in a hot water bath , pan covered tightly with foil, until custards are set around edges but still slightly wobbly in centers, 30 to 35 minutes.

Transfer ramekins to a rack to cool completely, uncovered, about 1 hour. (Custards will set as they cool.) Chill, covered, until cold, at least 3 hours.

Chocolate Espresso Pots de Crème

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Peach Cobbler

1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup milk
3 cups sliced peeled fresh or frozen peaches

2 cups water
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon butter
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Ground cinnamon, optional
Half-and-half cream

In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Stir in the milk just until combined; fold in peaches. Spread into a greased 8-in. square baking dish.

In a large saucepan, combine the water, sugars, butter and nutmeg and cinnamon if desired. Bring to boil, stirring until sugars are dissolved. Pour over top.

Bake at 400° for 40-50 minutes or until filling is bubbly and a toothpick inserted in topping comes out clean. Serve warm or cold with cream. Yield: 8 servings.

Recipe found here: Peach Cobbler

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Tomato Tea Sandwiches

pumpernickel bread

Spread 12 slices white and/or pumpernickel bread with mayonnaise. Top half of the bread with sliced tomato and cucumber or avocado. Season with salt and pepper and cover with the remaining bread. Trim off the crusts and slice the sandwiches in half. Pack in an airtight container or wrap in plastic wrap.

Tips: Can add avocadoes or bacon for a fun variation. Or use a different variety of mayonnaise for a spicy change.

Recipe found here: Tomato Tea Sandwiches

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Peach Pie

Pastry for double-crust pie (9 inches)
5 cups sliced peeled fresh peaches
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup quick-cooking tapioca
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons butter

Line a 9-in. pie plate with bottom crust. Trim pastry to 1 in. beyond edge of pie plate; set aside.
In a large bowl, combine the peaches, lemon juice and extract. Add sugar, tapioca and salt; toss gently. Let stand for 15 minutes.

Pour into crust; dot with butter. Roll out remaining pastry; make a lattice crust. Seal and flute edges.
Cover edges loosely with foil. Bake at 425° for 20 minutes. Remove foil; bake 20-30 minutes longer or until crust is golden brown and filling is bubbly. Cool on a wire rack. Yield: 6-8 servings.

Recipe found here: Peach Pie

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Midsummer Sponge Cake Recipe

4 eggs
1-1/4 cups sugar
1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 cup water
1-1/2 cups cold milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 package (3.4 ounces) instant vanilla pudding mix
2 cups whipped topping
3 tablespoons lemon gelatin
1/2 cup boiling water
10 to 12 ribbons with small charms attached
Assorted fresh fruit

In a large bowl, beat eggs until light and fluffy. Gradually beat in sugar until light and lemon-colored. Combine flour and baking powder; add to egg mixture alternately with water, beating just until smooth. Pour into a greased and floured 10-in. springform pan.

Bake at 375° for 20-25 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly touched. Cool on a wire rack for 1 hour.

Carefully run a knife around edge of pan; remove sides. Invert onto a wire rack. Remove bottom of pan; invert cake so top is up. For filling, in a large bowl, whisk the milk, vanilla and pudding mix for 2 minutes or until thickened; chill for 10 minutes. Fold in whipped topping.

For glaze, dissolve gelatin in boiling water. Add enough cold water to measure 1 cup. Chill for 15 minutes or until slightly thickened.

Cut cake in half horizontally. Place bottom layer on a serving plate. Tuck charms under edge of cake. Spread filling over cake layer; top with second cake layer and fruit. Drizzle with glaze. Chill until serving. Yield: 10-12 servings.

Recipe found here: Midsummer Sponge Cake

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Tuscan Pasta With Tomato-Basil Cream

1 (20-oz.) package refrigerated four-cheese ravioli*
1 (16-oz.) jar sun-dried tomato Alfredo sauce
2 tablespoons white wine
2 medium-size fresh tomatoes, chopped**
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Garnish: fresh basil strips

1. Prepare pasta according to package directions.

2. Meanwhile, pour Alfredo sauce into a medium saucepan. Pour wine into sauce jar; cover tightly, and shake well. Stir wine mixture into saucepan. Stir in chopped tomatoes and 1/2 cup chopped basil, and cook over medium-low heat 5 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Toss with pasta, and top evenly with 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese. Garnish, if desired.

*1 (13-oz.) package three-cheese tortellini may be substituted.
**1 (14.5-oz.) can petite diced tomatoes, fully drained, may be substituted.
Note: For testing purposes only, we used Buitoni Four Cheese Ravioli and Classico Sun-dried Tomato Alfredo Pasta Sauce.

Recipe of the Day: Tuscan Pasta With Tomato-Basil Cream

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