Sunday, February 27, 2011

Eggs Benedict

With a few molasses rye rolls leftover from last night's dinner, I thought I would make eggs benedict for breakfast, well, my version of eggs benedict anyway.

Here's the benedict formula: bread base + protein/flavor layer (sometime I skip the ham and use sauteed spinach and mushrooms) + poached egg + hollandaise sauce.

Today I did two versions...one of the boys and one for me.

molasses rye roll + Canadian bacon + poached egg + hollandaise sauce



molasses rye roll + smoked salmon + poached egg + hollandaise sauce + capers

Balsamic Hollandaise Sauce

I am certain that I must block out how much butter is in this sauce every time I make it, which - probably because of the amount of butter - is not very frequently.  But it is so delicious and a must when  you make eggs benedict!










4 egg yolks

4 T lemon juice

1/2 t pomegranate balsamic vinegar

1 T water

1 C butter, melted

1/4 t pink Himalaya salt


In the top of the double boiler, whisk together egg yolks, lemon juice, pomegranate balsamic, and water.

Add the melted butter to egg yolk mixture a couple of tablespoons at a time while whisking yolks constantly. If hollandaise begins to get too thick, add a teaspoon or two of hot water. Continue whisking until all the butter is incorporated. Whisk in salt, then remove from heat. Place a lid on pan to keep sauce warm until ready to serve.

Here's my version of eggs benedict...

Beet-Cardamom Marshmallows


Being a permanent resident of Testosterone Land, I occasionally find myself wanting to use tulle and make things that are pink!  Last night I was feeling outnumbered by the Mann boys and decided to retreat to my kitchen and whip up some pink marshmallows. 

I used some organic beet juice for the girly hue.  Thankfully the bright magenta beet juice lightenedd to a soft pink when the marshmallows were whipped.


canola oil
powdered sugar
1 C cold water, divided
2 t organic beet juice
3, 1/4-ounce envelopes unflavored gelatin
2 C organic raw sugar
2/3 C blue agave nectar
1/4 t pink Himalaya salt
1/2 t ground cardamom
dash of ground ancho chili

Prepare a 9×13 inch pan by oiling it with canola oil. Dust powdered sugar over the oiled sides of the pan.  Place 1/2 C of water and 1 t of beet juice in a large mixing bowl. Sprinkle gelatin over water-juice mixture and allow to soften, 5 minutes.

Place remaining water, beet juice, sugar, blue agave nectar, and salt into a large saucepan. Melt all of the ingredients together, without stirring, and bring to a boil. Boil until the syrup reaches 240 F on a candy thermometer.

With the mixer on low speed, slowly pour hot syrup down the side of the bowl, being sure to avoid the whisk as it will splatter the syrup and could possibly burn you. Once all of the syrup is incorporated add the spices and gradually increase mixer speed and whip on high until the mixuture turns white and become very thick and stiff. Spread the marshmallow into the prepared pan and with wet hands, smooth the top.
Dust liberally with powdered sugar and allow to set at room temperature for at least 4 hours or overnight, if possible.

Because these marshmallows have such a strong aroma, they pair well with a spiced hot chocolate.

504 Main

Molasses Rye Bread

This is a moist, hearty roll.  I served them last night with piping hot bowls of yellow mung bean-pancetta soup.  Riley really wanted split pea-ham soup, but I went with what I had.


2 T dry, active yeast
2 C sour cream
4 eggs
1/4 C unsulphered molasses
2 T raw sugar
2 T melted butter
2 t ground ginger
2 t pink Himalaya salt
1/2 t baking soda
1/2 C warm water
4 C white whole wheat flour
1 C dark rye flour

Dissolve yeast in warm water. In a large mixing bowl, beat together the egg and sour cream until smooth. Add sugar, melted butter, molasses and yeast mixture. Add flour mixture slowly, beating vigorously after each addition till a stiff dough is formed. Cover dough with a cloth and let rise in a warm place for an hour or until dough is almost doubled in size. Punch down, knead for a minute, and roll into mini boules. Place on a buttered baking dish and sprinkle with sea salt. Cover and let rise for another 45 minutes. Bake at 350 degrees for one hour.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Spiced Chocolate Risotto

When Fudge Ripple's recipe for "Chocolate Malted Risotto" popped up on my blog reading list this morning, I was instantly roped in.  Risotto is a household staple, but it's always savory, usually with mushroom and kale, sometimes with sausage. 

I have never made - or even envisioned - a sweet risotto!  But, as always, not having some of Christy's ingredients, I used her recipe as an inspiration and used my own cooking experience for this culinary adventure.

I began by toasting the arborio rice* with a pat of butter in one pan and simmering milk - generously spiced with ground nutmeg, ground cinnamon, and ground cardamom and lightly sweetened with raw sugar - in another pan. 

Ladle by ladle, I spooned the hot milk into the risotto pan, stirring until the milk was absorbed.  While the rice was still firm, I added of unsweetened cocoa to the pan and continued adding milk and stirring till absorbed.  Once the rice was soft, but still with a bite, I removed the pan from the heat and stirred in marscarpone cream. 

Because this is such a rich dessert, I served it in mini soup tureens, garnished with shards of dark chocolate.  What a hit! 

Thanks to Christy at Fudge Ripple for the creative inspiration.

*The rule of thumb that I was taught in Italy: you use one handful of rice per person that you're feeding and add an extra one for the pot.

Photobucket


Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Cherry Cheesecake with a Hazelnut Oil Crust

My little seven-year-old is a great graham cracker-pulverizer!

CRUST
2-1/2 C finely ground graham crackers
1/2 C yellow cornmeal
2 T raw sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 C (1 stick) butter, melted
1 T hazelnut oil

Butter 10-inch-diameter springform pan with 2 3/4-inch-high sides. Wrap outside of pan with 2 layers of heavy-duty foil. Crush crackers, cornmeal, sugar and cinnamon together. Add butter and hazelnut oil; blend until moist clumps form. Press crumb mixture onto bottom and up sides of pan. Chill crust while preparing filling.

FILLING
3 - 8 oz. packages cream cheese, room temperature
1 C raw sugar
4 large eggs
2 C sour cream
1 T pure vanilla extract

COMPOTE
2 C fresh or frozen cherries
2/3 C raw sugar
1/3 C tangerine juice
2 T grated lemon peel
1/2 t ground cinnamon
1/4 t ground nutmeg
4 t vanilla extract

Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 350°F. Beat cream cheese in large bowl until fluffy. Beat in sugar. Beat in eggs 1 at a time. Mix in sour cream and vanilla.
Transfer 1/3 of filling to prepared crust. Dollop 1/3 of cranberry puree atop filling. Repeat layering of filling and puree 2 more times. Using knife, swirl puree through filling, creating marbled design.  I tried to do a sort of artistic spatter instead.

Place springform pan in large roasting pan. Pour enough boiling water into roasting pan to come halfway up sides of springform pan. Bake until cheesecake puffs around edges, about 1 hour 15 minutes. Turn off oven. Let cake stand in oven 1 hour, leaving oven door ajar.
Transfer cake to rack. Run knife around pan sides to loosen cake. Cool completely. Remove foil from pan sides. Cover cake and chill overnight. (Can be made 2 days ahead. Keep refrigerated.)

Remove pan sides to serve.  Drizzle slices with compote syrup.






Also shared on Sweet Tooth Friday.

Cherry-Caper Compote

Though fruit compotes are usually served as desserts, lacking a true sweet tooth, I lean towards the savory uses for my compotes.  The canonical compote is water plus sugar plus lemon juice plus liqueur cooked to a thick syrup, then fruit is simmered in the syrup to a desired consistency.

Because I was using frozen cherries, I figured that the water content in them was high enough and didn't add any more water.  I placed the frozen cherries in a sauce pan with some raw sugar and a splash of red wine.  And instead of lemon juice, I used some capers and their brine.  I brought all of that to a boil, then reduced the heat and simmered till it was a syrup.


I spooned my cherry-caper compote over mahi-mahi filets that were panfried quickly in butter and lemon juice...cherries in honor of George Washington's birthday and his inability to tell a lie.

Truth and Cherries

Image from history-for-kids.com.

Dylan was telling us all that he had learned about George Washington this weekend.  He was especially detailed about how many teeth George Washington had or, rather, how many he didn't have; Dylan told us that George Washington had carved fake teeth out of hippopotamus teeth.  I haven't determined the veracity of those claims, but when he started talking about George Washington copping to cutting down his dad's cherry tree, that rang some bells.  Dylan said, "George told the truth about cutting down the tree, so he didn't get in trouble."  I decided that anything to reinforce the important of telling the truth was a good thing.  So we talked about that more in detail and I found this children's poem by Paul Perro:

Little George Washington was a good boy

So his mummy gave him a brand new toy.
It was a little axe, a real sharp one,
And George thought that it would be lots of fun.

He took the little hatchet out into
The garden, where lots of plants and weeds grew.
He chopped at some weeds, chopped them to the ground,
After that he began to look around.

He looked around for something else to chop,
He was having a ball, and could not stop.
Right at the bottom of the garden he
Came across his daddy's best cherry tree.

He chopped at it with his little hatchet
The tree was big, he could only scratch it.
So he tried much harder, chopping the wood,
Until at last it fell down with a thud.

Then George was happy and put down his axe
And he sat down and started to relax.
Suddenly, a cry, it was George’s dad;
He’d seen the felled tree and was really mad.

“Who has chopped down my lovely cherry tree?”
His face was red he was really angry.
George was scared to tell the truth but he knew
Telling the truth was the right thing to do.

So George said “Sorry daddy, it was I,
I killed the tree, I cannot tell a lie.”
At first dad was cross, then he realised
As he looked into his little boy’s eyes,

George’s behaviour had been outrageous
But he’d been honest, which was courageous.
“My boy” said dad, “I’m very cross, but still,
Your honesty is quite admirable.

I cannot punish you because I’m so
Proud that you’re my son. I love you, you know.”

If you’re brave and honest, you can go far,
You can grow up to be a superstar.
Yes George grew up to be one of the greats
A President of the United States!

Then, you know me, I came up with a dinner that was all about the cherry.  Dylan was tickled that his story had spawned a menu.  I know many people make cherry pies to commemorate George Washington's birthday.  I still need to embrace simplicity.  Tonight I made: mahi-mahi with a cherry-caper compote, bulghur wheat pilaf with pistachios and dried cherries, and a cherry cheesecake.  Recipes to follow.

Piña Colada MOwinkie


"A what?!?" you might ask.  Well, I couldn't come up with a name for this tasty treat, so this is what came about from my three boys:  Pineapple + Coconut + Mochi* + Twinkie-shaped = Piña Colada MOwinkie.

*Mochi is rice flour.

A huge number of my culinary adventures come about because I do not have the ingredients listed and I refuse to go to the grocery store before six in the morning.  So, I make adjustments, usually, to great success.  For this, I started with my ChocoCoco MOffins...but didn't have any milk.  What I did have was some leftover crème fraîche and pineapple juice.

3 eggs
1/2 C canola oil
1 C crème fraîche
1 C pineapple juice
1/2 C organic raw sugar
1 T baking powder
2 T shredded coconut
1 box of rice flour
young coconut in a jar**

**You should be able to find this young coconut in a jar in any Asian market, or maybe even the ethnic food section of a regular grocery store.

Mix the eggs and oil. Then mix everything else except for young coconut. Pour half the batter into an oiled cream canoe pan.







Add about teaspoon of young coconut, top it off with more batter. Bake for about 30 minutes at 375˚F till the top of the MOwinkie is slightly browned and firm to the touch.  Let cool in the pan for 5 minutes before inverting.

The BEET Goes On...

With my amuse-bouche dinner behind me, I am looking forward to my next big culinary adventure: I'm hosting a birthday dinner for a friend in March, and it is all about beets. 'The Beet Goes On' as we march steadily to the big 4-0; we have a couple more years to go, but just a couple.

Bright magenta beets, comically-stripped chioggia beets, golden beets. You name it, I'm going to cook it.  I even found a recipe for a Beet-Nyk, a beet-infused martini.

I know the dessert will be some configuration of chocolate and beet. I might make a chocolate-beet cake, but I might mix it up and do a chocolate-beet mousse. I might make beet-asiago gnocchi. Who knows? I have a month to concoct some tasty treats.

Just giving you fair warning...get ready for beet-mania.  And for those who claim "I DON'T eat beets," give some of my recipes a try, I think you'll be pleasantly surprised.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Beef-Chestnut Stuffed Mushrooms

One of the best compliments I've had about my cooking this week was at my amuse-bouche party.  A friend of mine does not eat mushrooms; you have to hear her tell the story about having to pluck them out of the woods when she was a child, then you would understand.  But when she saw me pull my beef-chestnut stuffed mushrooms out of the oven, she gave one a try.  I was flattered.  I don't think I converted her to a mushroom-lover, but I was pleased that they were intriguing enough for her to taste.

This is a quick, easy appetizer.  Or stuff larger mushrooms and serve them for dinner.

ground beef
egg
chestnut flour
minced garlic
pink Himalaya salt
fresh ground pepper
shaved asiago cheese

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Mix all of the ingredients together.  It should be moist enough to form a ball.  Add chestnut flour if it's too soft.  Wash, dry, and destem your mushrooms.  And in the hollow where the stem was, press your beef-chestnut mixture.  Drizzle the mushrooms with pomegranate balsamic and a pinch of pink Himalaya salt.  Place on a baking sheet and bake until the mushrooms are tender and the tops are firm, usually about 30 minutes.  You can redrizzle them with balsamic before serving if you wish.

Hunk of Meat Mondays

Linguiça Torta, Revamped

Because I usually have leftovers and because my boys are notorious food-snobs - I don't know where they get that? (wink, wink) - I revamp my leftovers so that they look a little bit different than when they were served the first time around.  Otherwise, my little one will usually make some comment along the lines of "Mom, didn't we already eat this?!?"

I had some leftover Linguiça Torta from my amuse-bouche party.  For my revamp, I sliced the torta into larger squares then topped them with fresh avocado, sour cream, and fresh salsa. 

And just like that, I have a totally different dish...sort of!

Hazelnut Syrup-Star Anise Marshmallow

Just as different salts create distinct flavors, I was curious about using different kinds of syrup in my marshmallow-mania. While these were cooking, the hazelnut scent was unmistakable. But, in the end, I think that the star anise overpowered the hazelnut. So, for the next batch, I'll skip the infused water and see if I can't bring out the hazelnut flavor!


canola oil
powdered sugar
unsweetened cocoa
1 C star anise-infused cold water, divided
3, 1/4-ounce envelopes unflavored gelatin
2 C organic raw sugar
1/3 C organic maple syrup
1/3 C hazelnut syrup
1/4 t pink Himalaya salt
1 t ground ginger

Prepare a 9×13 inch pan by oiling it with canola oil. Dust powdered sugar and unsweetened cocoa over the oiled sides of the pan.

Place 1/2 C of water in a large mixing bowl. Sprinkle gelatin over water and allow to soften, 5 minutes.

Place remaining water, sugar, syrups, and salt into a large saucepan. Melt all of the ingredients together, without stirring, and bring to a boil. Boil until the syrup reaches 240 F on a candy thermometer.

With the mixer on low speed, slowly pour hot syrup down the side of the bowl, being sure to avoid the whisk as it will splatter the syrup and could possibly burn you. Once all of the syrup is incorporated gradually increase mixer speed and whip on high until the mixuture turns white and become very thick and stiff. Spread the marshmallow into the prepared pan and with wet hands, smooth the top.

Dust liberally with powdered sugar and allow to set at room temperature for at least 4 hours or overnight, if possible.

Once they are set, cut them, roll them in more powdered sugar and unsweetened cocoa. Then dip one side in melted semi-sweet chocolate.

Fennel Pollen Honey Butter

This is the honey butter I concocted to serve with our Presidents' Day Hoecakes, but I would use this in place of plain honey butter any ol' day!

1/2 C softened butter
3 T wildflower honey
a pinch of fennel pollen

Mix in a bowl till well combined.  Place in serving dish and sprinkle a few more pieces of pollen on top.

Happy Presidents' Day Hoecakes

When I read the blogpost that creative maven Jenn Erickson, of Rook No. 17, penned about George Washington - last year - I knew that I had to shamelessly steal her idea.  I love tying in food and history for the boys; they eat it up (pun fully intended)! 

Then I saw Jenn's post again a couple of weeks ago, revisiting her family's tradition of celebrating Presidents' Day with a hoecake breakfast, and I hopped on online to order the book: George Washington's Breakfast by Jean Fritz.*  The book came and the very same day D came home with the very same book.  He had picked it out of the school store; they earn "dollars" for good behavior and are able to use those dollars in the classroom store to purchase books.  So we actually now own two of those books.  However that didn't help me one bit when, in a cleaning frenzy this weekend, I stashed both copies somewhere.  Late last night I scoured my cookbook shelf and their bookshelves, but the books were nowhere to be found.  Perhaps I'll get it together next year - book and breakfast. 

Still I did manage to make the hoecakes for breakfast and they were a hit.  They especially liked when Jake brought the garden hoe in and showed them how the cakes were traditionally cooked. 


I didn't have all of the ingredients that Jenn uses in her recipe, so I tweaked and twisted to create my own version. And, though I am fairly certain that George Washington did not use it in his honey-butter, I added a pinch of fennel pollen to mine.


Ingredients

  • 1 C white whole wheat flour
  • 1 C yellow cornmeal
  • 1 t baking powder
  • 1 T raw sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 C organic heavy cream
  • 1 T tangerine juice
  • 1/3 C water
  • 1/2 C butter, melted


Procedure
Put all of the dry ingredients in a bowl.  Add wet ingredients and stir till just combined.  Let batter rest while you heat your griddle/pan.  Swab the griddle/pan with butter.  Place tablespoons of the batter on your griddle/pan and cook till bubbles begin to form.  Flip and cook till golden brown.  Serve with honey-butter.  Click here for my fennel pollen honey butter recipe.


*This blog currently has a partnership with Amazon.com in their affiliate program, which gives me a small percentage of sales if you buy a product through a link on my blog. It doesn't cost you anything more. If you are uncomfortable with this, feel free to go directly to Amazon.com and search for the item of your choice.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Twinkie Fail II

For those of you who have followed my Twinkie saga, I had grand plans for my attempt this year - I purchased a cream canoe baking pan with filling injector; I thought about doing a trio of Twinkies with various cakes and fillings; I even toyed with the idea of making a DIY Twinkie dessert table for some added fun. 

All of that went by the wayside as my afternoon waned and the guests were arriving shortly.  Oh, and I still didn't have cake flour.  So, I bit the bullet and made a chestnut flour sponge cake. 

First Kevin unsuccessfully attemped to inject the chestnut Twinkie with whipped cream.  Then he took a bite and chewed and chewed and chewed...and asked for a glass of milk.  Okay, maybe the raw sugar and chestnut flour made it a wee-bit heartier than a real Twinkie.  Maybe more than a wee-bit. 

So we sliced the Twinkie into thick coins and topped them with a dollop of whipped cream.  As an amuse-bouche, it worked well, but it definitely wasn't a Twinkie.

Thankfully I discovered that his flippant claim of Twinkie as his favorite cake was a complete fabrication.  So I do not have to attempt a Twinkie for a third time, next year, and no one else has to suffer through that said attempt!  There is a god.

Still, as a small bite, the chestnut flour sponge cake was actually quite tasty.

  • 6 eggs


  • 3/4 C raw organic sugar


  • 1-3/4 C chestnut flour


  • 1/2 t pink Himalaya salt


  • 1 t pure vanilla extract



  • Preheat oven to 375°F. Coat the cream canoe hollows with canola oil. Combine eggs and sugar in a large bowl. Set the bowl over a pot of simmering water, and whisk it continuously until the eggs are warmed and sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and continue whisking until thick, foamy and pale yellow.

    Sift flour and salt over eggs all at once, and fold together, being careful not to deflate. Transfer batter to prepared pans, filling each hollow about 3/4 full. Bake until golden brown and firm, about 15-20 minutes. Cool cakes 10 minutes, and while still warm, invert to remove from pan.

    Smoked Salmon Rosettes


    When I was trying to decide what to put in my leaf dishes, I was thinking about something floral.  I decided to make some salmon rosettes.  Another easy addition to an array of amuse-bouche plates.


    Roll a slice of smoked salmon into a flower shape.  Place on your serving dish.  Top with a dollop of crème fraîche.  Add some capers for "stamen."

    Spicy Langostino Cocktail in a Cucumber Cup

    This is simultaneously spicy and refreshing - all in one bite.  Perfect for an amuse-bouche menu. 

    Langostino is a crustacean, like a shrimp or a lobster, but is actually neither.  Even more confusing, the word langostino refers to different animals in different parts of the world.  Here in the US, it usually refers to the squat lobster while in Spain it is a species of prawn; in Cuba, it refers to a crayfish and in South America it's a kind of red prawn.  In any case, I picked up a bag of peeled, cooked langostino at Trader Joe's.

    I minced the meat, added some mayonaise, a dash of Worcestershire Sauce, a dash of spicy chili sauce, a squeeze of lemon juice, and some pink Himalaya salt.  Then I cut an English cucumber into thick slices and scooped out a hollow with a melon baller.  Place the langostino cocktail in to the hollow and serve.

    Easy!

    Pork Tenderloin with Pistachio Mousse

    For another amuse-bouche offering, I made my Hot Cocoa Pork Tenderloin, sliced it into medallions, and topped it with a pistachio mousse, seasoned to match the pork.

    1 C of ricotta cheese
    1/2 C roasted pistachios, chopped
    a bunch of Italian Parsley, chopped
    pink Himalaya salt
    olive oil
    garlic, minced
    ancho chili powder

    I put all of the ingredients into a blender and processed till smooth.  Add more cheese or oil to create the texture you want.  Top each pork medallian with a spoonful of mousse and garnish with a pinch of ancho chili powder.

    Dressing Up a Chocolate Mousse

    I typically like my chocolate mousse naked.  Minds out of the gutter, please! I don't like to eat chocolate mousse while unclad, though I've never tried that.  I could like that, but what I meant to say is that I like to eat my chocolate mousse plain...with no toppings.  I have so many rich flavors at play in my mousse - with espresso and liqueur - that unadulterated seems best - just the mousse and a spoon. 

    But every now and then I come across something, a new flavor, that speaks to me.  And when I smelled fennel pollen, it said, "Sprinkle me on top of chocolate mousse!"  Just to be clear, food doesn't really speak to me.  I don't hear little voices in my head.  But I do have bursts of culinary inspiration and for my canister of fennel pollen, chocolate mousse was it.

    I topped my Strega Chocolate Mousse with a dollop of whipped cream and a pinch of fennel pollen.  Here's one of my friends' reactions when I put them out on the table.  Jaw-droppingly tasty, too!

    (Nitrite-Free) Linguiça Torta

    For my amuse-bouche party I wanted the flavors of the one-bite of egg torta to pop in your mouth.  So, I decided to use the mildly spicy, smoky linguiça, a classic Portuguese sausage.  But I didn't want one laden with sodium nitrites.

    I stood in the meat section of the Filipino-Indian market for a long time, flipping over package after package of linguiça.  Riley danced around me and the proprietor made his way to the back of the store, "Miss, do you need any help?"

    Riley stopped dancing and looked at the man, "My mom is looking for that sausage without any nitrites.  Do you have any?"

    No.  So, we walked out empty handed.  Pia finally located some for me at WholeFoods Market.

    I browned one large sweet Vidalia onion, chopped, in a splash of olive oil, then added chunks of the linguiça.  Then I spooned all of that into a buttered baking dish and topped it with eggs, beaten with a bit of organic heavy cream.  Topped it all with shavings of manchego cheese.  Baked it in a 350 degree oven, covered, till the egg is set.  Then I removed the cover and allowed it to brown slightly. 

    For amuse-bouche, cut into small squares and serve with a sprinkling of freshly ground black pepper.

    Scallops with Pesto

    When the weather decided not to cooperate, I had to do a quick change.  I had originally planned to wrap these scallops with prosciutto, skewer them, and have Jake do a quick grill job. 

    But since the rain was pouring down last night, and he objected to being out there in the deluge despite offers to hold an umbrella over his head, I ended up searing them in a pan with a sprinkling of pink Himalaya salt and serving them with a dollop of pesto. 

    This pesto came from Trader Joe's, but when basil abounds at the farmers' markets during the summer, I make batches of pesto at least every other week. 

    Pesto is just a mix of fresh basil, garlic, pine nuts, parmesan cheese, and olive oil.  In a blender, I start with a bunch or two of fresh basil, washed and trimmed, 4 cloves of garlic, 1/2 C of grated parmesan cheese, 1/2 C of pine nuts.  I pulse the blender a few times, drizzle in olive oil, and resume pulsing.  Pulse. Oil. Pulse. Oil.

    If you want a smoother, sauce-like pesto, add more olive oil and blend longer; if you want a chunkier pesto, use less oil and blend for less time.  So simple. So fresh. So fragrant.

    Lavender Truffles

    10 oz high-quality semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped into small pieces

    1/2 C heavy whipping cream
    1 t organic lavender florets, plus more for rolling
    unsweetened cocoa powder

    In a small, heavy saucepan bring the whipping cream and teaspoon of lavender to a simmer. Place the chocolate in a separate bowl. Pour the cream over the chococlate, straining out the lavender florets. Let stand for 3 minutes. Whisk till smooth. Allow the ganache to cool, then place in the refrigerator for at least two hours. Roll half-teaspoon sized balls in your hands as quickly as you can. Roll in unsweetened cocoa and a pinch more of lavender. Refrigerate overnight before serving.

    504 Main

    Share Buttons