Tag Archives: sugar

Gone with the Wind

Sweet Potato Pie

Sweet Potato Pie

Last week the /52weeksofcooking challenge was to prepare pie – no restrictions on what kind just have to make a pie.  I debated a few options, as I was doing this post-Thanksgiving I didn’t want something super sweet and also wanted to try something new.  Growing up I had heard of Sweet Potato Pie thanks to movies and TV shows (ER!), but I was in college the first time I ever had sweet potato pie.  It was amazing!  Not as sweet as pumpkin pie but still more sweet than savory.  At school they served it with a standard butter crust which was perfection when it came to flakiness but left me wanting something with a bit more bite.  Which is why I decided to do a pat-in-pan graham cracker crust for my pie, in the hopes it would provide a bit of a contrast to the uber soft sweet potato filling.

Graham Cracker Pie Crust

Ingredients

  • 7 oz graham crackers
  • 1/3 cup melted butter
  • 1/2 tbsp cinnamon (unless using cinnamon graham crackers)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375
  2. Crush the graham crackers in a food processor or blender, slowly adding the butter as the machine works.
  3. Remove from food process/blender and gently press into the bottom and side of a 10 inch pie pan. Crust should be at least 1/8 of an inch thick and no more than 1/4 inch
  4. Prebake the crust for 6 minutes, then remove and allow to cool to room temperature before filling.
http://www.dancingveggies.com/blog/2013/12/gone-with-the-wind.html

Sweet Potato Pie Filling

Serves: 1 10 inch pie

Serves 8-10

Ingredients

  • 3 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and quartered
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3 tbsp melted butter
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp cloves
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Bring the sweet potatoes to a boil in a large pot of salted water. Cook until sweet potatoes are soft, about 25 minutes. Rise with cold water and puree in a blender or food processor, then allow potato mash to cool to room temperature. Should be around 2 cups (if more than 2 1/2 cups remove access mash)
  2. Cream in the sugar and melted butter, then add the eggs along with the remaining ingredients. Pour into the prebaked pie crust
  3. Bake at 350 for 40-45 minutes, or until toothpick pulls out clean from the center.
http://www.dancingveggies.com/blog/2013/12/gone-with-the-wind.html

I served this topped with some homemade slow cooker caramel, and it was delicious!  Turns out this was my husband’s first time eating sweet potato pie and based on the large slices he cut himself the following day I’m going to say it was a success.

Live for the

Sour Red Cabbage

Brined Cabbage

Confession: I’ve never been a huge fan of pickled/brined vegetables – with the exception of dill pickles.  So when I saw the challenge for /52weeksofcooking this week was brining, I was more than a little nervous.  Since this isn’t the right time of year for cucumbers I decided I had to branch out – and while a full out canning operation is out of the question right now I found a number of quick pickle recipes and decided to give one of them a whirl.  While most of the recipes I found featured radishes and carrots, I had seen some great looking red cabbage at the market and decided to give that a go!

Live for the

Serves: Serves 5-6 as a side

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp butter (soy or dairy)
  • 1 red onion, diced
  • 2 lbs red cabbage, shredded
  • 1/2 cup white vinegar
  • 1/4 cup apple vinegar
  • 1/4 cup white sugar

Instructions

  1. Melt the butter in a wok or deep skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for 5-7 minutes, until glossy but not browned.
  2. Slowly add the shredded cabbage, making sure to not crowd the pan. Stir as you add the cabbage and once all has been added, and allowed to wilt add the vinegar and sugar.
  3. Bring mixture to a quick boil, then turn heat to low and allow to simmer for 45 minutes.
  4. Remove from heat, cool to room temperature, then place in fridge for at least 4 hours.
  5. To serve slightly heat the cabbage and enjoy!
http://www.dancingveggies.com/blog/2013/11/live-for-the.html

I served this warm with dirty rice and it was incredible!  The sour crunch of the cabbage was perfection, especially against the spicy and soft dirty rice.  The best part is how tasty this was the next day, which is why in the future I would make this dish the night before instead of the morning of.  All in all it was a great introduction to the world of brining, and maybe next fall I’ll be brave enough to make my own pickles.

Tweet Tweet

Thai Basil Kiwi Sorbet

Kiwi Sorbet

September is month full of holidays – both religious and personal since Joey and I are both September babies.  I always look forward to what new kitchen gadget will be added to my collection and this year did not disappoint!  I got an amazing new Doctor Who apron (cuz apron’s are cool), along with a Kitchen Aid Food Processor, and the ice cream attachment for my stand mixer.  While the food processor is currently in storage, look for a future post on all that, the ice cream attachment went straight to the freezer.  After looking at the instruction booklet I decided to go with a sorbet, that way I could figure out the basics of the machine before moving on to a more elaborate creation.  One of the /52weeksofcooking challenges I missed earlier this summer was to use tropical fruit, so I decided this was the perfect opportunity to knock that out!  To add a POP to my sorbet I picked some fresh Thai Basil from my garden, thinking that might enhance the sourness of the kiwi I decided to pick up at the store.

Thai Basil Kiwi Sorbet

Serves: Makes 4 Cups

Ingredients

  • 6 kiwi fruits, about 2 cups cut and squished (with juices!)
  • 1 cup simple syrup
  • 2 tbsp thai basil, minced
  • 2 cups water

Instructions

  1. The night before place ice cream attachment in the freezer. Once frozen attach to the stand mixer. Add all the ingredients to mixer and set stand mixer to 1. Allow to mix for 15 minutes, and then pour the sorbet in to a freezer safe container.
  2. Seal and freeze for at least 2 hours - then enjoy!

Notes

these instructions are based on my Kitchen Aid Ice Cream attachment so adjust as needed!

http://www.dancingveggies.com/blog/2013/09/tweet-tweet.html

Simple syrup is something I normally keep on hand, mostly for iced coffees but it’s insanely easy to make.  Just bring equal parts sugar and water to a boil, then turn to a simmer and stir for 15 minutes before placing in an ice bath.  Chill and then place in the fridge until it’s ready!

Come Together

Sukkerbrunede Kartofler – Caramel Potatoes

Caramel Potatoes

This week /52weeksofcooking challenged everyone to try a Scandinavian dish, something totally new to me.  Outside of reading Yes, Chef last year and various Kirsten books growing up I’ve had very little exposure to Scandinavia in general, let alone the cuisine.  So I decided to reread a few chapters of Marcus Samuelsson’s memoir to see what dishes he mentioned and quickly realized that wasn’t going to work since most of the dishes he mentions are fish centered and not easily vegetarianized.  However more searching led me to Aquavit, the Nordic restaurant that Samuelsson cut his teeth on in NYC – and their incredible seasonal menu and cookbook.  I was quickly drawn to a side dish from the cookbook: potato brulee.  I’m a huge fan of anything that involves caramel, or caramelization, and was intrigued by the idea of caramelizing potatoes.  A few more Google searches brought me numerous recipes for Sukkerbrunede Kartofler, caramelized potatoes, and with that I had my dish.  These potatoes are beyond simple to make and come out more earthy than sweet, which I was pleasantly surprised by.  I decided to use some new red potatoes from the local farmers market, but I have a feeling that most potatoes would work well for this dish.

Come Together

serves 5-6, as side

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs baby red potatoes or new red potatoes, well washed
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup soy butter (or regular)
  • 2 tbsp white sugar

Instructions

  1. Put the potatoes in a large pot and cover with cold water, bring to a boil then add the salt and allow to boil uncovered for 15 minutes. Drain, rinse, and then set aside the potatoes to slightly cool. Once cool, half the potatoes and set aside.
  2. Melt the butter in a deep sauce pan over medium high heat, allow to slightly brown and then slow stir in the sugar. Once the mixture has turned a deep brown/mahogany color add the potatoes. Coat the potatoes in the caramel mixture and then cook until potatoes start to brown on all sides about 5 minutes per side stirring only when moving to a new side.
  3. Remove to a serving dish, sit for 5 minutes and enjoy!
http://www.dancingveggies.com/blog/2013/06/come-together.html

I served these potatoes with some BBQ tofu, a simple salad, and some homemade bread.   I’m not sure how well these potatoes would reheat and didn’t have a chance to find out since those of us at the dinner table quickly finished off these crunchy potatoes.  I’m looking forward to trying a few more dishes, specifically the beet and asparagus dish (minus the roe) which sounds like the perfect spring meal.

On to the Next

Banana Snickerdoodles

Banana Snickerdoodle

I’m writing this post as the smell of cinnamon and banana deliciousness slowly takes over my kitchen.  I happened to be on Facebook this afternoon when I saw there was a possible orphan in group C of the Secret Recipe Club.  Never one to pass on trying a new recipe I volunteered and was linked up with the awesome Toni of Mommy’s Menu.  I was instantly pulled in by her incredibly vibrant header which features all sorts of sweet and savory treats.  Knowing that going to the grocery store wasn’t an option I set out to find the perfect recipe that would incorporate things I had on hand.  In the end my husband found the recipe, looking over my shoulder and saying “those look gooood”.  After verifying the ingredients with those on hand I headed to the mixer and got baking!  I wound up being a little short on shortening so I subbed some unsalted butter and carried on.

Banana Snickerdoodles

Serves: makes 4 dozen cookies

Ingredients

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 Tablespoon cream of tartar
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup shortening
  • 1-1/2 cups granulated sugar, plus 1/2 cup for dipping
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 ripe bananas, mashed
  • 2 tbsp cinnamon

Instructions

  1. In a medium bowl, sift flour, cream of tartar, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl cream shortening and sugar; about 2 minutes. Add eggs and banana, mix well. Add flour mixture and mix until blended.
  3. Once the dough is mixed it will be very sticky so allow to chill for 30 minutes. (or use a cookie scoop to form the balls)
  4. Roll into 1 inch balls and coat in a mixture of cinnamon and sugar (1/2 cup sugar 2 tbsp cinnamon) and bake on a baking sheet at 400° for 9 minutes. Cool cookies on a wire rack. Store in an airtight container and they will stay soft for several days.
http://www.dancingveggies.com/blog/2013/03/on-to-the-next.html

These cookies were OUTSTANDING!!!!  The banana wasn’t overpowering but it was clearly there, which was perfect. I also pinned more than a few recipes for the future, when I’m not limited by ingredients or time.  Thanks Toni for some awesome cookies and some delicious treats to look forward to.