Tag Archives: treats

Strawberry and Rhubarb Galette

6 Mar

Nothing says spring to me like strawberries and rhubarb. And, now that I’m living in Florida, I have the pleasure of getting local strawberries. I’m sure I’ve bored you all before with my rants on fresh local ingredients, but the simple truth is… the shorter the distance between you and your food, the better.

I was in the grocery store this afternoon and the sale was 3 pounds of local strawberries for $5. I wasn’t really shopping for fruit. In fact, I was there getting a toothbrush, but I couldn’t resist this deal. The rhubarb was cleaned and broken down and conveniently merchandised right next to the strawberries. It was kismet. Dessert was a must for tonight.

I love making galettes. They are rustic free form pies that are less stuffy and finicky than traditional pies. The technique is simple enough. Just make a simple pie dough and roll it out on a cookie sheet. Place your fruit in the center of the rolled out dough and then fold the edges in toward the center. Brush the outside with egg wash and sprinkle with sugar. In this case I used pearl sugar. (The pearl sugar doesn’t melt so it gives the effect of salt on a soft pretzel.)

Here’s the full recipe. Make this soon, as rhubarb season is short and the frozen stuff just isn’t the same.

Strawberry Rhubarb Galette

For filling:1 pound strawberries, hulled
1/2 pound rhubard, cleaned and cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1/4 cup sugar

For crust:
1 1/2 cup AP flour
6 T butter, chilled and cut into small pieces
1 T sugar
1/2 t salt
1/2 t vanilla
1 egg
2 T water

Start by making the crust. Combine the dry ingredients together and then cut the butter into the dry ingredients with your fingers until the mixture resembles cornmeal. In a separate bowl combine the wet ingredients. Add the the wet to the dry and kneed to combine. Once everything is incorporated, chill the dough for approx. 30 minutes. While the dough is chilling, make the filling. Combine the fruit with the sugar and allow to macerate.

Preheat the oven to 375 degree. When the dough is chilled, roll it out into a 14-16 inch circle. place all of the filling in the center of the dough leaving a 3 inch border around the sides. Then fold the edges in toward the center leaving a 2 inch hole. Brush the dough with egg wash and sprinkle with sugar. Bake for 35-45 minutes or until the dough is GBD (golden brown and delicious.) Serve at room temp with either vanilla ice cream or whipped cream.

Always thinking of the next meal


Holiday Cookies

14 Dec

So here’s the update to my earlier cookie dilemma. I feel like I’ve been baking around the clock for the past week. Between cookie tray orders and prepping for the impending holiday rush, I literally feel like I’m living in a bakery. So what types of cookies made it to my list? Well here’s the list of what I’ve made so far…

Peppermint bark: first batch turned out just ok, but the second batch is great (mostly due to the fact that I used the correct chocolate the second time around)

Iced Sugar Cookies: Snowflake shaped of course

Gingerbread: not happy with the way these turned out at all, they will not be made again

Peppermint marshmallows: delicious, although next time I’ll cut them smaller

Lemon Raspberry thumbprints: very cute and tasty, although small and not very dramatic on the tray

Peppermint Brownies: yes, I cheated and used a box mix, but hey I had a hole on the tray and I needed to fill it

Chocolate Chip: my signiture, turned out great

Checkerboard Icebox cookies: a lot more involved than anticipated, but they look great

Chocolate Shortbread with green chili sugar: very interesting, I called them naughty and nice cookies

Still to come… maybe

Palmiers: one of my favorites

Pressed butter cookies: Every year I make these and every year I break my cookie press… I’m debating if I want to sacrifice my sanity, but I guess it is tradition

Rum Balls: I saw these on TV and they look really delightful, however, not one for the kiddies

Chewy Molasses Spice Cookies: Since the gingerbreads were such a colossus failure I’d love to have spicy winner

So the cookie adventure continues. I’m debating cooking more tonight, although I’ve been at it all day. It might be a good night to relax and make some decisions

Always thinking of the next meal


Plum Perfect

11 Oct

IMG_0861Plums are hitting the peak of their season. Late summer and early fall produce sweet, spicy plums that yield beautifully fulfilling flavors. I think that plums can be easily overlooked as an ingredient. Sure plenty of people eat plums out of hand, and eat them dried as prunes, but there are far fewer recipes that include plums when compared to say apples or peaches.

At work one day they were giving out plums for free. Being that free just happens to be one of my favorite words,IMG_0863 I couldn’t resist. I grabbed a few without knowing how I was going to use them. When I got home I looked through a few of my cookbooks only to be disappointed with average sounding recipes for plum, raspberry tarts and plum preserves. So I looked online and found a recipe for plum tatin by Ina Garten. I brought it to my aunt’s house on Thursday and it was a huge hit. Although everyone had a few reserves about a dense cake with plums, it happily surprised everyone. The cake was sweet but not overwhelming. The plums paired nicely with the additional allspice and cinnamon added into the recipe. Although we didn’t have any, the cake would have been great with a little french vanilla ice cream.

Since I didn’t use all of the plums I took the remaining fruits and quartered them. I tossed them with some avocado honey and gray sea salt. I put them in the oven for 30 minutes at 350 degrees. I wanted to serve them like that with vanilla yogurt but fate had other plans.

Later in the week I had an urge to bake. Since I had already made the cake I didn’t want to repeat, so this time I made a plum apple crisp. Here’s the recipe:

Plum Apple CrumbleIMG_0873

1 1/2 cups flour
3/4 cup oatmeal
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1 stick butter
1 pound apples sliced
1 pound plums, quartered

Combine all the dry ingredients in a bowl and add in the butter until the mixture looks like cornmeal and holds together. Arrange the fruit in the bottom of a shallow baking dish. Cover with the crumb mixture and bake at 350 for 45-50 minutes or until the top is brown and the fruit is bubbling. If you want, you can let the crumble cool and drizzle with a glaze made with powdered sugar and maple syrup.

Give plums a shot at the spotlight when it comes to dessert.

Always thinking of the next meal


Dog Treats

29 Jul

I’ve discovered the best recipe in the whole world. Why? Well, it’s simple. It’s for my dog! First of all who loves you more than your dog, and second (and probably more importantly) dogs will eat ANYTHING.

For Christmas 2 years ago our dog Titus gave me a dog treat cookbook. There were a lot of interesting treats like Liver Crunchies and Tuna balls (yum…). I opted for something a little less umm… let’s say smelly. My choice? Applesauce Cheddar Biscuits. Here’s the recipe:

Applesauce Cheddar Biscuits

1/3 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/3 cup applesauce
1/3 cup cold water
1 1/2 whole wheat flour
1/2 cup oatmeal

Preheat oven to 375. Combine the cheddar, applesauce, and water. Add in the flour, and oatmeal and mix to combine. Drop onto greased cookie sheet and press down with the tips of your fingers. Bake for 20 minutes, and cool completely before serving to your pup.

IMG_0709This is a shot of my dog Titus not letting me get a shot of the biscuits. You can take his word (or bark) for it that they are good. Since they are made with all natural ingredients and “normal” food you can actually eat them too. (Although, without salt or sugar I can’t image them being overly amazing.)

I’ve also made garlic treats in the past and Titus liked them to…and the peanut butter ones…alright Titus will pretty much eat anything. But, seeing as he knows when the cheese drawer in the fridge is opening I think these cheddar ones are at the top of the list!

Always thinking of the next meal-