Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Fruit cobbler for Keegan and Tracy

Fruit Cobbler

4 1/2 Cups Flour (1 1/2)
1 1/2 Cups Sugar (1/2)
6 Tsp. Baking Powder (2)
3/4 Tsp. Salt (1/4)
1/2 Almond Extract (1/4)
1 1/2 Cups Unsalted Butter, cold, cut into cubes (1/2)
3 Eggs (1)
1 1/2 Cup Milk (1/2)

Use numbers in parentheses for 8" x 8" pan or 9" pie plate. Full recipe fills 9" x 13" or 12"x 16"  pan.

Sift together flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt.  Add almond extract.  In bowl of Cuisinart or with 2 knives, cut in butter until it is the size of peas.
Beat eggs and milk together.  Mix with dry ingredients until wet.

Fill 12" x 16" pan  or 9" pie plate with sliced fruit.  Add 3/4-cup sugar (1/4 cup), 3/4-cup flour (1/4 cup), mix all together and dot with 1/4 (2 Tbsp.) butter.

Pour topping over fruit mix.  Sprinkle with almond slices.
Bake at 350 degrees until crust is done.  It will take at least an hour, maybe 1 1/2 hours or 2 for the large pan. The smaller cobbler should take 50-55 minutes.
Serve with whipped cream or Vanilla ice cream.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Mattar Panir (Paneer) Cheese and Peas from India

Cheese and Peas

Indian Mattar Panir

My Favorite Vegetarian Dish

Can be Vegan using Tofu, pressed, cubed and sautéed.  We called "Give Peas a Chance" on the specials board at the Café.

For the Cheese:
Heat to scalding:
2 quarts whole Milk
1/2 cup Yogurt
When bubbles form around the edge, add:
3 Tbsp. Lemon Juice
Turn off the heat.  The mixture should curdle.  Line a colander with cheesecloth and pour the curds and whey through. Reserve the whey. Bring up the ends of the cheesecloth around the curds and press into a ball.  Weigh down for 8 hours between two boards topped with a heavy cast iron skillet, or some item of equal heaviness.
Remove cheese from cloth and cut into 1/2-inch cubes.

For the dish:
Sauté until golden brown on all sides:
3 Tbsp. Ghee
the Cheese cubes
Sauté for 1-2 minutes and remove from pan:
3 Tbsp. Ghee (clarified butter)
2 Tbsp. Ginger, grated
1 Tbsp. Garlic, minced
Sauté until translucent:
1 cup Onions, sliced thinly
Add and sauté for 2-3 minutes:
1 tsp. Salt
1 tsp. Turmeric, ground
1/4 tsp. Cayenne
1 tsp. Coriander
1 Tbsp. Garam Masala
Add and cook for 3 minutes:
2 cup fresh Tomatoes, finely chopped
the reserved Ginger and Garlic
Add and cook for another 3 minutes:
1 1/2 cups Peas, shelled (frozen peas are fine!)
1 tsp. Sugar
3 Tbsp. Cilantro
the sautéed Cheese Cubes
1 cup of reserved Whey
Serve over steamed Basmati Rice with a garnish of fresh Cilantro Sprigs and crisp Pappadums.

Garam Masala

Garam Masala is a toasted blend of spices used frequently in Indian cooking instead of the ubiquitous Curry Powder.  It can now be purchased in the spice section of many Natural Foods stores, but it is easy and fun to make your own, and the results are astronomically better.  I often halve this and store it in a glass jar.  It keeps for quite awhile.

Roast together in one layer, at 200 degrees, for 30 minutes.  Cool and grind in a spice or coffee grinder.

5     3" Cinnamon sticks
10 Cardamom Pods, whole
1/2 Cup Cloves, whole
1/2-Cup Cumin Seeds, whole
1/4-Cup Coriander Seeds, whole
1/2 Cup Peppercorns, whole

Friday, March 30, 2012

Gluten-free Pumpkin Cornbread

Sometimes I just crave a good cornbread to go with some beans or, as last night, with some BBQ chicken and cole slaw.  I've been experimenting with Flaxseed meal flour and Coconut flour, so I decided to experiment by combining them with cornmeal to make a tasty cornbread.  Coconut flour and Flaxseed meal absorb quite a bit of liquid, so I played around until I got the right consisitency.  It's best to let the batter sit a few minutes to let the flours absorb what liquid they will.
I also have a passion for making things out of squash and pumpkin; I had a package of homegrown in the freezer, so I used that.  It may have been a little moister that canned, so adjust accordingly.
Bob's Red Mill makes Flaxseed Meal and Coconut Flour.  I also buy coconut products in bulk at Tropical Traditions
I wish I had added a bit of orange peel, as the leftover cornbread tasted quite a bit like Poppyseed Cake in the morning..

Pumpkin Cornbread
The Recipe:
Dry Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups yellow cornmeal
1/2 cup flaxseed meal
1/4 cup coconut flour
1 Tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
Wet Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups pureed squash or pumpkin, use homemade or canned
4 eggs
4 Tbsp. Coconut Oil, melted (or butter or vegetable shortening)
4 Tbsp. Honey
A little almond milk if batter needs to be moistened

Grease an 8" x 8" pan with coconut oil or other shortening.  Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Bake for 35-45 minutes.  This recipe takes a little longer than regular cornbread as it is dense.  Test with a toothpick until it comes out clean.

Friday, March 2, 2012

PRESERVED LEMONS Organic Eureka and Meyer, Moroccan Style

I had these with fresh fried anchovies and fennel the other night. They are with Moroccan Food and grilled meats. I think they would do well with Vegetable Tagines and grains also. I have to wait until mine are cured until I try them.  You can top them with oil when they are ready.  Just take out a quarter of a lemon when you are ready to use them, scrape off the pulp, and dice the soft peel.  I had them in a Chicken Liver saute over Quinoa last night, and this AM, in a Chilaquiles Egg and Avocado dish.  You can also toss the peel in salads and use the oil in the dressing.
There are 2 colors of lemons, as i did not buy quite enough Meyers to fill up the jar, so I used some Organic Eureka lemons to fill.  Either one works, and it's always a good idea to have extras on hand to top off the juice.

If you wish to soften the peel first, soak the lemons in luke warm water for 3 days, changing the water daily.

I have been using these tangy salty tidbits in everything from guacamole, sauteed fish, pork chops, salads, tabbouleh and more.

Preserved Lemons, Moroccan Style
Makes one quart jar

* 6-8 organic meyer lemons, washed and dried plus a couple of extra for juice, if needed
* Salt (use either kosher salt or a coarse sea salt, do NOT use table salt)
* Sterilized quart jar with lid
1. Remove any stems and slice a deep X into each end of the lemon - you're basically cutting each lemon nearly into quarters but not going all the way through.

2. Working over a stainless bowl, pour  salt into both ends of the semi-open lemon to cover the exposed pulp.

3. Pour a layer of salt into the bottom of the quart jar and then press the salt-filled lemon into the bottom of jar and repeat with the remaining lemons.

4. Press the lemons down to release their juice - the liquid should cover them or nearly cover them if you're working with less juicy lemons. You can fill the jar right up to the top since the lemons will reduce as they pickle. Top with a couple tablespoons of salt.  If you don't have enough juice, use freshly squeezed to bring the level up and over the lemons.  Leave some air space before sealing the jar.

You can also add spices if you like - some of the more common options are bay leaf, cinnamon stick, peppercorns and whole cloves.

5. Seal the jar well and leave out for 2-3 days, turning the jar upside down each day to distribute the salt and juice; press the lemons down once a day to make sure they're sitting below the lemon juice to ensure preservation and to soften them.

6. Move the lemons to the fridge and wait three weeks before using to allow the rinds to pickle fully. To use, rinse the lemons, scrape off the pulp, discard any seeds and chop or mince the rind. They'll keep in the fridge for up to 6 months.  Top off with Olive Oil if necessary.

Alternatively, Paula Wolfert uses this method, although I used the above refrigeration method:

"Let the lemons ripen in a warm place, turning the jar upside down each day to distribute the salt and juice.  Let ripen for 30 days.
To use rinse the lemons, as needed, under running water, removing and discarding the pulp, if desired--there is no need to refrigerate after opening.  Preserved lemons will keep up to a year, and the pickling juice can be used two or three times over the course of a year.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Paleo Coconut Flour Berry Pancakes Gluten-free

Paleo Gluten Free Coconut Berry Pancakes

What cave people ate for breakfast? Probably not.  Even so........

This is a good low-carb way to start the day. The high protein content also helps keep one satisfied for many hours. The berries add antioxidants and just plain deliciousness. The recipe is adapted from a recipe by Brokeassgourmet.com While I am not following a strict Paleo diet (I find it too strict for me), I find that the baking recipes which use coconut, flax, or almond flour and lots of eggs, are great and easy to make. I don't know how they hold up leftover; there weren't any.

4 eggs
1 cup almond milk
2 tsp agave syrup
1/2 cup coconut flour
1/4 cup almond flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup frozen huckleberries (if you are so industrious and lucky) or blueberries, fresh or frozen
oil for frying

Beat eggs until fluffy (I used a stand mixer here). Whisk in milk and agave until well-incorporated.
Combine, in a separate bowl coconut flour, almond flour, baking powder and salt. Pour in liquid ingredients and stir just until combined, and then gently stir in the berries.
Heat a griddle or large non-stick frying pan. and heat enough oil to coat over medium heat.
Working in batches, pour batter in 1/8-cup increments into the hot oiled pan. Cook until pancakes are brown on the bottom and the edges begin to dry out, about 2-3 minutes. It's very important to give them enough time, longer than other wheat pancakes, or they will fall apart. You will get it after the first try or so. Gently flip and cook until the other side is golden brown (this doesn't take as long as the first side).
Serve hot with butter or pseudo-butter, syrup, honey, jam or on their own.
Makes about 16 dollar size pancakes.
Serves 2-3.