Sunday, August 26, 2012

Zucchini "Noodles" with Pesto

Zucchini "Noodles" with Pesto

2 C tightly packed basil leaves
1/2 C olive oil
3 T pine nuts
2 medium cloves garlic, minced
1/2 t salt
1/2 C grated parmigiano-reggiano

Zucchini Noodles
3 medium zucchini
1 T olive oil
3/4 lb dried spaghetti
shaved parmigiano-reggiano for serving

First make the pesto.  Put all the ingredients, except the parmigiano-reggiano into a food processor or good blender.  Process to a smooth, creamy consistency, stopping once or twice to scrape down the sides.  Transfer to a bowl and stir in the grated parmigiano-reggiano. Set aside.
Put a large pot of salted water over high heat.
Using a mandoline, or a sharp knife, cut zucchini into long skinny "noodles." Warm the oil in a large skillet over medium heat.  Add the zucchini and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender but not mushy. 5-8 minutes. 
When the pot of water boils, drop in the spaghetti.  Cook until al dente.  Using a pair of long handled tongs scoop the pasta directly from the pot into the skillet of cooked zucchini.  Add 1/2 cup of the pesto and toss the mixture well to ensure that each noodle-zucchini and spaghetti alike-has a thin, even coat of sauce.  Serve immediately, with additional salt and lots of grated Parmigiano-Reggiano.

**From A Homemade Life by Molly Wizenberg
**Such a fantastic summer side dish and adding the garden cherry tomatoes makes it divine!
**Before I had a mandolin, I would just make the zucchini, as a side dish, so good!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Peaches and Cream Pie

 Peaches and Cream Pie

1/2 C unsalted butter, softened
3 T sugar
1 lg egg yolk (room temp)
3 T heavy cream
1 1/2 C flour
1/4 t salt

1 pound (2 - 8oz pkg) cream cheese, softened
1 1/2 C powdered sugar
1/2 C heavy cream
2 t vanilla

2 1/2 C sliced ripe peaches

Crust: In mixer, cream butter and sugar until smooth.  Add the egg yolk and cream, and mix well.  Add the flour and salt, beat until just combined.  Gather the dough into a ball and roll it out on a lightly floured surface to fit a 9 inch pie plate. Fold the edges under all around the rim and crimp.  Prick the bottom and sides all over with the tines of a fork (to prevent crust from puffing up). Cover the edge of the pie crust with aluminum foil. place on a baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes at 375.  Carefully remove foil and continue baking 10-15 more minutes, or until crust is crisp and golden.  Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
Filling: In mixer, beat together the cream cheese and sugar until smooth and creamy.  Add the heavy cream and vanilla.  Beat on low until well combined. Refrigerate the filling until crust is completely cool. When crust is cool, spread the filling evenly in the crust with a rubber spatula.  Arrange the sliced peaches on top of the filling.  Refrigerate pie for at least 8 hours for filling to set.

**From Magnolia Bakery
**I refrigerated the filling after putting it in the pie shell, but just added the peaches before I served to prevent browning.  The peaches slid all over when I served the slices, but they were fresh and yummy!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Granola Cookie

Granola Cookie

3/4 C butter
1/2 C sugar
1/2 C brown sugar
1/4 C honey
1 egg
1 T vanilla
1 t cinnamon
1 t salt
1 T baking soda
1 3/4 C flour
2 1/4 C oats
1/2 C coconut
1/2 C chopped pecans (toasted if you like)
1/2 C chopped almonds (toasted or sliced if you like)
1/2 C golden raisins
1/2 C chopped dried apricots
1/2 C chopped white chocolate (or chips)

In a mixer, cream together butter, sugars and honey.  Add egg, vanilla, cinnamon and salt.  Mix well.  Add soda and flour. Mix well.  Add oats and coconut.  Mix until just incorporated.   Remove bowl from mixer, add coconut, pecans, almonds, raisins, apricots and white chocolate and then mix by hand with a heavy wood spoon.  It's a very stiff dough and you might actually need to use your hands.  I do.  Measure 1/4 C of dough, roll into a ball and flatten to an inch thick on the parchment or silpat lined baking sheet.  Bake at 350 for 9-10 minutes or until golden and toasty around the edges and a bit on top.

**This is my first ever invented recipe.  It is a collaboration of several cookie recipes as well as a few favorite granola recipes.  I worked on it last year for a bit and couldn't get it right, so I walked away for a bit.  I decided to try it again and I'm closer than ever.  I may still tweak it a bit, but I need to walk away from ALL the granola cookies.  Test batches are killing me, I can't stop eating them. 
 **This recipe doesn't produce a huge batch, because this particular cookie is only eaten by me, Hans and Chloe.  So I don't like having a ton around.  However, it's super easy to double! And they are great frozen.
**A variation that I played with that is super good is substituting the 1/2 C of almonds and pecans for 1 C salted cashews. Yummy too.  You could sub anything you want for the last 5 ingredients and still have a great cookie. 
**PS. This wasn't the prettiest cookie of the batch, Chloe ate that one.... :)

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Richest Ever Chocolate Chip Cookies

Richest Ever Chocolate Chip Cookies

2 C butter
3 eggs
2 C sugar
2 C brown sugar
2 t vanilla
7 C flour
2 t salt
2 t baking soda
2 t baking powder
3 C chocolate chips

In heavy mixer, mix cold butter and sugar until combined. Add eggs.  Add in vanilla, salt, soda, powder and then flour.  Add chocolate chips.  Bake at 375. 1 T cookies 6-7 min, 1/4 C 10-11 min.

**This was one of the first recipes I ever asked for, probably when I was 16.  My amazing sister in law has always been the best cook!  I changed it just a bit, and I don't know if it's better, but I'm lazy and I like measuring 2 t instead of 1 1/2! This makes a huge batch, hense the heavy mixer.  I've halved it before and just added 2 eggs.
**PS, best dough EVER to just eat out of the bowl.  We make it sometimes and just skip the eggs to eat the dough....and when I say we, I mean me and Chloe!