Sunday, December 25, 2011

Yorkshire Pudding

Jamie Oliver's Yorkshire Pudding (the best I've had)

1 cup milk
4 Tbsp flour
Pinch salt
3 eggs
Vegetable oil

Preheat oven to 450º

Mix ingredients and let rest for 10 minutes. While batter is resting, preheat muffin tins with about 3/8 inches of oil in each section. Pour batter into 10 sections (this has to be done quickly and carefully while the oil is hot!) Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until puddings are puffy and golden brown. Turn out and serve immediately.

Note: Don't open the oven door while they are baking or they won't rise.

Note 2: Be careful when turning them out as there may be a little hot oil in the puddings.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Turkey Soup

Originally called Turkey Carcass Soup, I have decided to temper the name for the purpose of public relations.

1 turkey carcass
1 onion, chopped
1 cup celery, chopped
1 quart water.

Boil for 2 1/2 hours. Remove turkey bones. Process broth with blender til chunky.

2 celery sticks, chopped
5 or 6 carrots, chopped
1 package frozen corn
whatever you have lying around, in this case:
1 jalapeno, chopped
1/2 pound mushrooms, sliced
1 cup Masoor Dal (orange split lentils)

Cook until vegetables are done. Add 1 tsp mace, 1 can condensed milk, salt and pepper to taste.
chicken broth and water to cover

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Cinnamon Rolls

1 cup boiling water
1 tsp salt
3/4 cup shortening
1/2 cup sugar

Mix and dissolve. Stir until lukewarm so as not to kill yeast.

Dissolve 2 packets dry yeast (2 Tbsp bulk) in half cup warm (140º) water with 1 tsp sugar.

Add yeast to cooled mixture, then add:

2 eggs
3 to 4 cups flour, one cup at a time then stir. Mixture should be sticky.

Beat thoroughly, cover then rise til double in size. (Takes about an hour if the room is reasonably warm).

Roll into oblong shape. Brush with melted butter, sprinkle with cinnamon, raisins, and brown sugar. Roll lengthwise.

In pan melt 1-1/2 cups brown sugar, 4 Tbsp butter, and 2 Tbsp corn syrup. (I double this recipe as I like them stickier.) Pour quickly into three small round cake pans.

Cut dough into 1" sections and line pans. Cover and rise until double.

Bake at 425º for 15 to 25 minutes (until very lightly browned on the top). The correct time is closer to 15 even though they might look like they aren't quite done. If you overbake them they will be dry.

Turn out immediately. For best results set a rack on top of the pan then flip the whole thing together. Be aware that hot sugar mixture will pour out and be careful.

Oh yeah. The rule on these is that you have to give one of them away. It hurts because they are so good, but that's the rule so what else can you do.

Lemon Curd Tarts

Super easy, once you've made the lemon curd.

Fill small, pre-baked tartlette shells with lemon curd and refrigerate or fill a large pre-baked tart shell with lemon curd and refrigerate. Sprinkle with powdered sugar.

So a couple things you need to know.

First of all, you have two choices when it comes to making shells. Make a pie crust, line a tart pan with small rounds of crust or buy pre-made tart shells. There are advantages and drawbacks to both.

1) I have experimented with a variety of pans including a regular muffin tin, two different sized tiny tart pans (which I haven't been able to find at any store or website), and I just bought a Nordic Ware tartlette pan. The muffin tin and Nordic Ware tarts make the tarts a little larger than I would like, the mini tart pans result in tarts that do not have flat bottoms since the bottoms puff up when you bake them. I haven't made tarts in the Nordic Ware yet but will be making a batch soon and will post an update.

2) Buy pre-made tartlette shells. The problem in the Pacific Northwest is that no one carries them. The only ones I've been able to find are Phyllo (avoid for this application). Popping across the border to Canada I picked up Tenderflake shells in two sizes. The smaller ones are pictured above and worked quite nicely but they are a bit heavier than I would like.

UPDATE: I tried out the Nordic Ware pan last night and it is just right. I filled each well with pastry, about a three inch circle, poked some holes with a fork to keep it from swelling up, then lined each one with a mini-muffin liner and a few pie weights. Baked for five minutes, took out the weights and liner, and baked another five. They came out great.

Lemon Curd

Originally used as topping for toast and scones, generally Lemon Curd is now used for tarts. You can make a full sized tart or, in my family, the small one or two bite sized.

2 cups sugar
juice of 4 lemons
rind of 3 lemons

Melt in a double boiler over medium heat.

Beat 6 egg yolks and 4 egg whites until thick and lemon colored.

Add eggs
Add 1/4 pound butter.

Stir in double boiler until curd has the consistency of honey. This will take a while, maybe twenty minutes.

If the curd doesn't seem to be thickening, turn up the heat but KEEP STIRRING.

Note: I made a double batch so you won't have as much as shown in the picture.