Friday, December 31, 2010

Champagne Cocktail Discovery: The Korbel Poinsettia

Tom was sent one of those promotional pdfs from Korbel, the kind with recipes. He sent it on to me and, although I was too frenzied at the time to take interest in the food ideas, I did pick up this champagne cocktail idea for Hannah and Rose to try at Christmas. They loved it and so did we, even though champagne does not need any enhancement for us to enjoy it.

It makes a lovely pink drink and we always have cranberry juice and triple sec on hand so it is easy also. We didn't float any berries in the top of the drink as in this Korbel photo, but obviously that is a nice touch.

Korbel Poinsettia

Korbel Champagne
1/4 oz triple sec
Splash Ocean Spray Cranberry Juice or Cranberry Juice Drink

Put triple sec and cranberry juice in a champagne flute and top with Korbel.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Pecan Rolls

Our family's traditional Christmas breakfast, these Pecan Rolls are probably actually Schnecken from Germany. However, as pecans are native to America, these have been Americanized.

We have one pan on Christmas morning and I freeze the other to thaw and warm for New Year's breakfast. A sweet start to the new year, right?

These are simple and the result is impressive. The only thing you need to have plenty of is time as the recipe is a fairly forgiving one. 

It originally came from the Meta Given's Modern Encyclopedia of Cooking which was my mother's go-to book for many recipes that became family favorites ... such as the Tuna Puff Log. Yes, it sounds strange but it was a brioche loaf which one baked and then cut off the lid to in order to hollow out and fill with a delicious creamed tuna (fairly stiff but with walnuts and a dash of nutmeg). It made a surprisingly sophisticated dish which I seem to recall my parents serving to company ... who would eat seconds.

I have adapted the dough recipe for this somewhat to modernize it and I divided it into steps to make it easier to follow. I also simplified it as I am used to kneading yeast breads, etc. But the rest is pure Meta Given.

Pecan Rolls

Step 1:
1/3 cup butter, melted
1 cup warm milk
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon yeast (or 1 package yeast)
1/2 teaspoon malt powder (optional, I get it from King Arthur flour, not in the original recipe)
4 cups flour

Combine and knead as usual for yeast dough. Let rise. Punch down dough, turn out on a lightly floured counter and let rest 10 minutes.

Step 2:
1-1/3 cups moist light brown sugar
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
1/4 cup white corn syrup
Pecan halves or pieces

Meanwhile, mix brown sugar, butter and corn syrup until smooth and spread in the bottom of two 9” cake pans. Place pecan halves (upside down) in circles covering pan spread. If using pieces, press enough cover thoroughly firmly into mixture. Set pans aside until after rolls have been made.

Step 3:
1/2 cup soft butter
1/2 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon

Roll half of dough into a 8x10” rectangle, about 1/3” thick. Spread with butter and sprinkle with sugar mixed with cinnamon. Starting on wide side, roll up snugly. Cut into twelve 1” slices. Place into one pan in circles, with rolls not quite touching. Brush with melted butter. Repeat with remaining dough. Cover lightly and let rise in warm place until double, about 1 hour.

Bake at 350° for 25-30 minutes.

Remove from oven; let stand 2-3 minutes, then loosen edges with a knife and turn upside down onto serving plate. Hold pan over rolls a minute for syrup to drain out on rolls. Serve warm nut-side-up.
These freeze well. Dough can be used for any sweet rolls.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Let It Dough

Creation of many things ... amusingly illustrated using cookie dough and sprinkles ... from the NY Times. Brilliant!

Many thanks to Mom for the heads up on this one!

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Salsa Mac 'N' Cheese

When I did a little lagniappe episode featuring Velveeta on my podcast, Forgotten Classics, I promised to link to this recipe. Only to discover I never shared it.

Not surprisingly, this recipe came from the Pace Picante Sauce website. It is one our family's favorite dishes. Easy, quick, and tasty. Though, you must like Velveeta. Which we do!

Salsa Mac ‘n’ Cheese
Step 1:
    1    pound extra-lean ground beef
Brown beef; drain.

Step 2:
    1    16-ounce jar Pace Picante (chunky salsa)
    2    cups water
    7    ounces dried elbow macaroni
Stir in all. Simmer, covered 10-15 minutes until macaroni is tender.

Step 3:
    12    ounces Velveeta, cut up
Add and stir till melted.

Monday, December 06, 2010

We Can't Never Get Enuff o' Turkey Bone Gumbo

Made the broth using the turkey bones and skin on Thanksgiving weekend. Froze it along with enough turkey to make it.

Thawed the whole buncha it out and made Turkey Bone Gumbo yesterday.

Yes, you've heard about it before, but it's good enough to take another look. Once again, my thanks to Sara Roahen for graciously taking the initiative to send me that recipe. I love it so much that I'll make a turkey just to have the gumbo later.

Though I'm considering saving up roasted chicken carcasses during the year so we can have some Chicken Bone Gumbo.