Feed Your Soul

National Sachertorte Day

- Saturday, December 05, 2015


Invented by Austrian Franz Sacher in 1832 for Prince Wenzel von Metternich in Vienna, Austria, Sachertorte is a specific type of chocolate cake, or torte. The 5th of December is National Sachertorte Day and what better way to celebrate than by making one of the most famous Viennese culinary specialties.

Sachertorte

Torte Ingredients:

·         4 1/2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped

·         9 tablespoons (1 stick plus 1 tablespoon) unsalted butter, at room temperature

·         1 cup confectioners' sugar

·         6 large eggs, separated, at room temperature

·         1 tsp vanilla extract

·         1/2 cup granulated sugar

·         1 cup all-purpose flour (spoon gently into cup and level top)

For Assembly:

·         1 cup Apricot Glaze

·         Small Batch Chocolate Glaze

·         Sweetened Whipped Cream for serving

Directions

1. Heat oven to 400°F and position a rack in the center of the oven. Lightly butter a 9-inch springform pan, then line the bottom with parchment or wax paper. Dust the sides of the pan with flour, tap out the excess.

2.  Melt the chocolate in a microwave on medium power,. Remove from the oven, and let stand, stirring often, until cool.

3. Beat the butter in a heavy-duty standing mixer bowl fitted with the paddle blade on medium-high speed until smooth, about 1 minute. Then beat in the confectioners' sugar on low speed. Increase the speed to medium-high and beat until mixture is light in color and texture, about 2 minutes. Next, beat in egg yolks, one at a time, scraping down the sides of the bowl. Beat in the chocolate and vanilla.

4. With a handheld electric mixer on high speed, beat the egg whites and granulated sugar in a large bowl until they form soft, shiny peaks. Don’t overbeat. Stir 1/4 of the beaten whites into the chocolate mixture to lighten it, then fold in the remaining whites, leaving a few visible wisps of whites. Sift half of the flour over the chocolate mixture, then fold in with a large balloon whisk or rubber spatula. Repeat until you’ve used all the remaining flour.

5. Spread batter evenly in the prepared pan. Bake for 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean (The cake will dome in the center). Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes, then remove the sides of the pan, and invert the cake onto the rack. Remove the paper and reinvert on another rack to turn right side up and so the sachertorte can cool completely.

Assembly:

6. Use a long serrated knife to trim the top of the cake to make it level. Next, cut the cake horizontally into two equal layers. On an 8-inch cardboard round, place one cake layer and then brush the top of the cake layer with apricot glaze. Then place the second cake layer on top and brush the top and sides of the cake with the remaining glaze. Place the cake on a wire rack over a jelly-roll pan lined with waxed paper to let the torte cool until the glaze is set.

7. Make the chocolate glaze and pour the warm and freshly made glaze on top of the cake. Use a metal offset spatula to gently smooth the glaze over the cake. Let some of the chocolate glaze run down the sides so that it completely coats the cake. You’ll want to patch any bare spots with your spatula. When the glaze is mostly set transfer the cake to a serving plate and then refrigerate for an hour. You can remove the cake from the refrigerator an hour before you are ready to serve it.

8. Dip a sharp knife into hot water and then slice the sachertorte. Serve with a large dollop of whipped cream.

Bite-Sized Apple Fritters this National Fritters Day

- Wednesday, December 02, 2015


What better way to celebrate National Fritters Day than with this simple bite-sized apple fritter recipe.

Bite-sized Apple Fritters

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup chopped apple

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Mix all dry ingredients together, then stir in milk and egg until just combined. Stir in chopped apple and your dough is ready.
  2. In a large pot heat 1 1/2" of oil to 350F (180C). Carefully drop in small blobs of the dough using two teaspoons (one to scoop the dough, the other to scrape it off into the oil). Avoid dropping in more than a heaping teaspoon as it won't cook all the way through before turning dark brown on the outside. 
  3. Cook 2 minutes per side and then transfer to paper towels or a rack to drain and cool.  You can add a glaze if you like, but they're pretty tasty plain too! 

***Fritter is a fried food usually consisting of a portion of batter or breading filled with bits of meat, seafood, fruit, or other ingredients.

Slow Cooker Creamed Corn

- Tuesday, November 24, 2015


Prep Time 10 minutes

Cook Time 3 hours, 15 minutes

Total Time 3 hours, 25 minutes

 

Yield 6 servings

With just 5 ingredients, this slow cooker creamed corn recipe is rich, creamy and easy to make from scratch right in your crockpot.

Ingredients

•3 (15.25-ounces) cans whole kernel corn, drained

•1 cup milk

•1 tablespoon sugar

•1/4 teaspoon pepper

•8 ounces cream cheese, cubed

•1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into thin slices

Instructions

•Place corn into a slow cooker, then stir in milk, sugar and pepper until well combined. Top with butter and cream cheese. Cover and cook on high heat for 2-3 hours.

•Uncover and stir until butter and cream cheese are well combined. Cover and cook on high heat for an additional 15 minutes.

•Serve immediately.

Make Ahead Sweet Potato Souffle

- Saturday, November 21, 2015


            Are side dishes threatening to bog you down this Thanksgiving? Consider making this mouthwatering sweet potato soufflé ahead, store in your freezer and then thaw out the day before.

Sweet Potato Soufflé (serves 15)

Ingredients

·         5 -6  baked peeled and mashed sweet potatoes

·         1 cup sugar

·         1 teaspoon salt

·         1⁄2 cup butter

·         4  eggs

·         1 cup evaporated milk

·         2 teaspoons vanilla

Topping

·         1 cup brown sugar

·         1⁄2 cup flour

·         1 cup chopped pecans

·         1⁄2 cup melted butter

·         1⁄3 cup coconut

Directions

1     Bake sweet potatoes in oven until soft 1 to 1 1/2 hours at 350°F Pierce with fork to test.

2     Peel then mash sweet potatoes with egg beater.

3     Mix in each ingredient one at a time and beat after each addition until light and fluffy.

4     Pour mixture into 15x10-inch Pyrex pan or two 9x13-inch.

5     Next, mix topping ingredients and sprinkle over sweet potatoes.

6     Bake at 325°F for 25 minutes.

 

***Don’t fill the pans too full as this will puff up.

***This recipe freezes quite well. If you use yams, they are much dryer than using sweet potatoes.

Fresh Cranberry Relish

- Tuesday, November 17, 2015


Cranberry sauce is a Thanksgiving favorite for many families, except for the added sugar you find in most canned varieties. This year consider making a healthy alternative with this easy fresh cranberry relish recipe.

Ingredients:

·         1 medium unpeeled orange—scrubbed, halved, seeded and cut into 2-inch chunks

·         1 medium Granny Smith apple—peeled, cored and cut into 2-inch chunks

·         1/4 medium unpeeled lemon—scrubbed, seeded and cut into 2-inch chunks

·         2 cups fresh or frozen cranberries (1/2 pound)

·         1/2 cup sugar

·         1/2 cup coarsely chopped walnuts (about 2 ounces)

Directions:

1.    In a food processor, combine the orange, apple and lemon

2.    Pulse until finely chopped

3.    Next, add the cranberries and pulse until berries are coarsely chopped.

4.    Transfer chopped ingredients to a bowl and stir in the sugar and walnuts.

Keep relish refrigerated up to 1 week.

Carne Asada Pizza

- Thursday, November 12, 2015


In honor of National Pizza with the Works Except Anchovies Day here is a Carne Asada Pizza Recipe that will satisfy your crew’s hunger at dinner time. Pick up some queso fesco at your local market and enjoy this beefy pie with all the zingy flavors of a street taco: fragrant cilantro, tangy lime, pungent onion, and smoky, spicy chiles.

You’ll need:

·         12 ounces refrigerated fresh pizza dough

·         2 small poblano peppers

·         8 ounces flank steak, trimmed

·         1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

·         1/2 teaspoon chipotle chile powder

·         1/8 teaspoon salt

·         Cooking spray

·         1 small red onion, cut into 1/2-inch-thick rings

·         1/2 cup lower-sodium marinara sauce

·         1 tablespoon adobo sauce from 1 can chipotle chiles in adobo sauce

·         1 tablespoon cornmeal

·         1 ounce part-skim mozzarella cheese, shredded (about 1/4 cup)

·         1 ounce cheddar cheese, shredded (about 1/4 cup)

·         1 ounce queso fresco, crumbled (about 1/4 cup)

·         1 cup chopped seeded tomato

·         2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

·         2 tablespoons minced red onion

·         Cilantro sprigs (optional)

Prep:

1. Remove dough from refrigerator and let stand at room temperature, covered, for 30 minutes.

2. Preheat broiler to high.

3. Arrange poblanos on a foil-lined baking sheet and broil for 8 minutes or until charred on all sides, turning occasionally. Wrap peppers in foil and close tightly. Let stand 15 minutes, then peel and seed peppers; discard skin, membrane, and seeds. Cut into 1/4-inch-thick strips.

4. Preheat oven to 500°F and place a pizza stone or heavy baking sheet in oven as it preheats.

5. Sprinkle steak with cumin, chipotle powder, and salt. Coat pan with cooking spray and grill steak over high heat for 4 minutes on each side or until well-marked. Let stand 10 minutes and then thinly slice steak across the grain.

6. Next grill onion rings for 4 minutes on each side or until well-marked then place in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Combine marinara and adobo sauce.

7. Roll dough into a 15 x 9-inch rectangle on a lightly floured surface and pierce liberally with a fork. Sprinkle cornmeal on pizza stone, place the dough on hot stone and bake at 500° for 5 minutes. Remove stone from oven and spread sauce mixture over dough, leaving a 1/2-inch border. Top evenly with mozzarella and cheddar, then arrange poblano and onion slices over pizza; top with steak. Sprinkle queso fresco over steak and other ingredients, then return the stone to the oven and bake the pizza 9 minutes or until crust is done.

8. When you’ve pulled the pizza from the oven, combine tomato, juice, and minced red onion, then the sprinkle tomato mixture over pizza. Top with cilantro sprigs for added flavor.

Chorizo and Cornbread Stuffing

- Saturday, November 07, 2015


This tasty Chorizo and Cornbread Stuffing is a fantastic way to combine Latin cooking with your family’s Thanksgiving traditions.

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. fresh Mexican chorizo
  • 1 medium white onion, finely chopped
  • 1 medium carrot, finely chopped
  • 1 celery stalk, finely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 cups coarsely crumbled cornbread
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro, plus more for garnish (optional)
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock (low-sodium store-bought is fine)
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • Grated cotija cheese, for garnish (optional)

Directions

·         Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

·         Heat a large skillet over medium heat and cook the chorizo until it starts to brown, breaking it up with a spoon and stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. Add onion, carrot, celery and garlic to the chorizo and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables have browned, about 10 minutes. Add crumbled cornbread and cilantro. Then gradually pour in enough of the stock so the stuffing is not too dry or too wet, stirring gently.

·         Butter a small casserole dish and spread the stuffing in an even layer. Bake for 20 minutes or until heated through and lightly browned on top. Serve right away. Garnish with the cilantro and cotija, if you like.

Happy Sandwich Day A Grown Up Grilled Cheese Sure to Please

- Tuesday, November 03, 2015


Happy Sandwich Day! 

In honor of John Montague’s (Fourth Earl of Sandwich and creator of the sandwich) birthday, here is a grown up grilled cheese sandwich recipe that’s sure to please. .

Fontina, Apple, Honey Grilled Cheese (For 1 sandwich)

1/2 an apple (Granny Smith, Fuji or your favorite)

2 slices grainy, nutty, rustic bread, buttered

1/2 a round good quality washed rind cheese, like Taleggio, Fontina, Reblochon

2 tsp honey, preferably organic

2 TBSP toasted walnuts, broken up

Dash of salt and pepper

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

- Saturday, October 31, 2015


After your little goblins are done carving the pumpkin, it’s time to roast the pumpkin seeds. Whether you’re craving sweet or salty, these four variations are sure to please.

Start by preheating your oven to 300° F and cleaning the seeds: Separate them from the stringy pulp and rinse colander under cold water, then shake dry. Avoid blotting with paper towels; the seeds will stick.

Next, dry the seeds out by spreading them in a single layer on an oiled baking sheet. Roast 30 minutes to dry them out.

Remove the seeds from the baking sheet and toss with olive oil, salt and your choice of spices then roast for an additional 20 minutes.

For sweet pumpkin seeds toss with cinnamon and sugar (no salt).

For Indian flavors toss with garam masala then mix with currants after roasting.

For Spanish flavors, toss with smoked paprika; then mix with slivered almonds after roasting.

For Italian pumpkin seeds toss with grated parmesan and dried oregano.

For Barbecue flavoring toss with brown sugar, chile powder, chipotle and ground cumin.

Bella's Zucchini Bites Recipe

- Saturday, September 12, 2015


My daughter Bella was born with Down Syndrome and is almost 18 and very independent. As adults, many people with Down Syndrome will grow up to live independently and it is important that one of the many things they learn is how to cook for themselves. Bella makes her own meals quite often and I thought it would be fun to share some recipes that she can make. She is learning nutrition and the importance of health so we will attempt to share mainly healthy meals or snacks that others can teach their child with different abilities. Enjoy!


Zucchini bites

1 whole zucchini, sliced
Pasta sauce
Shredded mozzarella cheese
Sprinkle of oregano
Shredded basil
Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

Set toaster over to 350 degrees
Lay out zucchini slices
Spread the pasta sauce overtop
Sprinkle cheese over sauce
Sprinkle oregano and basil over cheese
Add salt and pepper to taste

Bake in toaster over for 10-12 min or until cheese is melted.

 

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