Sunday, March 31, 2019

Homemade Corn Tortillas

After a fun afternoon at the park, I put the boys to work for our Cochinita Pibil dinner. They made the tortillas while I finished setting the table and plating our food. They did a great job!! And there's not much better than homemade tortillas.


Ingredients
  • 6 C masa harina
  • 4-1/2 C warm water
  • 2 t freshly ground salt
  • 2 T olive oil
  • corn meal for rolling
  • oil for cooking
  • Also needed: parchment paper, tortilla press


Procedure
Put masa flour in a large mixing bowl. Add water, salt, and olive oil. Mix in and let sit for 5 minutes or so. Begin working the masa with your hands to make the dough. Knead the dough for several minutes. If at any point through the tortilla making process the dough seems too dry or too wet, add a little more water or masa to the dough. Let stand for, at least, 30 minutes. This batch rested for over two hours while the boys played.


Take a piece of the masa dough and shape it into a ball the size of a plum, or slightly large golf ball.

Take two pieces of wax paper or parchment paper and lay one on the bottom of the tortilla press. Place the masa ball in the center. Place another piece of wax paper over the masa ball. Gently close the press and press down, until the dough has spread to a diameter of 4-6 inches.


Heat a griddle or a large skillet on high heat. Working one at a time, hold a tortilla in your hand, carefully removing the wax paper on each side. Allow the tortilla to rest half on your hand, and half hanging down, and gently lay the tortilla down on to the skillet. Start working on pressing the next tortilla. Cook the tortilla on the hot pan for 30 seconds to a minute on each side. The tortilla should be lightly toasted and little air pockets forming.

Saturday, March 30, 2019

Pesche Dolci #SpringSweetsWeek #Sponsored

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Dixie Crystals, a sponsor of #SpringSweetsWeekI received complimentary product for the purpose of review and recipe development,
but all opinions are honest and they are my own. This page may contain affiliate links.

It's the last day, last day, last day of #SpringSweetsWeek! Oh, my goodness this week has been filled with tons of sweet inspiration. You can read all about the prizes and enter the giveaway at the bottom of this post. But, first, a shout-out of gratitude for the organizational heroics of Heather of Hezzi-D's Books and Cooks and Christie of A Kitchen Hoor's Adventures. What an amazing week of recipes! I'm grateful to have been a part of it. Thank you. Now, let's look at today's offerings...


Pesche Dolci

To close out this event, I wanted to shine the spotlight on one of our event sponsors: Dixie Crystals. Sugar makes all of these sweet treats possible, right? I am lucky to have a supply of their powdered, light brown, dark brown, and granulated in my cupboard at the moment.

I first saw these sweets when I lived in Rome; I mistakenly thought they were formed out of marzipan. Then I bought one and realized it was a crisp cookie with a sweetened ricotta filling, rolled in sugar. Even better! And I loved them at first bite. 

Twenty years later, while doing some reading on cookies, I discovered many regions lay claim to them. They are called Pesche Dolci alla Siciliana by Sicilians, Pesche Dolci Abruzzesi by people in Abruzzo, Le Pesche Dolci all'Alchermes for the reddish liqueur with which they are brushed sometimes, and Peschette, little peaches literally. I am calling mine simply Pesche Dolci, sweet peaches.

So, while I waiting for R to return from his European adventure earlier this week, I tried to keep myself awake waiting for his plane to land in San Francisco and another mom to bring him back to the Monterey Peninsula. I decided to make a batch of one of my favorite Italian cookies and binge-watch Quantico.

One of the reasons these cookies are so adorable, in my mind, is the coloration. Traditionally, they are brushed with Alchermes, a red-colored liqueur. I didn't have that, so I experimented with my set of natural food dyes from Adams Extract and Spice, mixing them with maple syrup, to create the hues. Some were definitely too red; others were too yellow. But I like the way they look. You can read more about Adams Extract and Spice in my post: Spring Bling Meyer Lemon Cake.

And a disclaimer: this is not a traditional Pesche Dolci recipe. It's cobbled together from different elements that I have already created for other recipes. Enjoy.

Ingredients 
makes approximately 2 dozen peaches

Cookies
  • 1 C softened butter
  • 1 C organic granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 t pure lemon extract
  • 3 C flour
  • 1 t baking soda
  • 1/2 t baking powder
  • Also needed: baking sheet, silicone mat or parchment paper, scoop 
Filling
  • 1 C whole milk ricotta
  • granulated sugar (prefer Dixie Crystals)
  • zest from 1 organic orange

Finishing
  • natural food dyes (I used Adams Extract and Spice)
  • maple syrup
  • water, as needed
  • granulated sugar (prefer Dixie Crystals)
  • organic mint leaves, for garnish

Procedure

Filling
Whisk together the filling ingredients. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Cookies
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.  In a small mixing bowl, blend together flour, baking soda, and baking powder. Set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until lightened and fluffy. Beat in egg and pure vanilla.

Gradually blend in the flour mixture until you have a smooth dough. Pinch off pieces of dough and roll them into 1" balls.


Place onto prepared cookie sheets. Bake for 10 to 11 minutes in the preheated oven - or until golden. If you prefer more crunchy cookies, bake for a minute or two longer.  Remove to a wire rack to cool.


Finishing
Place sugar on a plate. Pour 2 to 3 T maple syrup in a small bowl and mix in natural food dyes until you get the color you want. I experimented and ended up liking a more yellow peach.



Brush the cookies with the colored maple syrup and place them face down in the sugar to give them a fuzzy look.


Place them sugar-side up on the wire rack to dry completely.


Select two cookies that are close in size. Dip the flat edge in the ricotta mixture and press them together. Roll the edges in sugar and place on a baking sheet. Chill cookies, covered with plastic wrap, for a few hours before serving. This will harden the ricotta and moisten the cookies.


Garnish the cookies with small mint leaves before serving, to mimic peach leaves. Leave them out at room temperature for about 10 to 15 minutes before serving.

The Giveaway*
Click to read all about the prizes at my kick-off post: A PEEP Into Upcoming #SpringSweetsWeek.

a Rafflecopter giveaway Thank you #SpringSweetsWeek Sponsors: Dixie Crystals, Swiss Diamond, Nancy’s Yogurt, Barlean’s, Sprinkle Pop, PEEPS, Melissa’s Produce, and Adams Extracts for providing the prizes free of charge. These companies also provided the bloggers with samples and product to use for #SpringSweetsWeek recipes. All opinions are my own. The #SpringSweetsWeek giveaway is open to residents of the United States who are 18 years of age or older.   All entries for the winner will be checked and verified. By entering you give the right to use your name and likeness. The number of entries received determines the odds of winning. Six (6) winners will be selected. The prize packages will be sent directly from the giveaway sponsors. The #SpringSweetsWeek Bloggers are not responsible for the fulfillment or delivery of the prize packages. Bloggers hosting this giveaway and their immediate family members in their household cannot enter or win the giveaway. No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited by law. This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter or any other social channel mentioned in the #SpringSweetsWeek posts or entry.

Friday, March 29, 2019

Aquavit-Scented Blood Orange Galette #SpringSweetsWeek #Sponsored

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Dixie Crystals and Melissa's Produce
sponsors of #SpringSweetsWeekI received complimentary product for the purpose of review and recipe development,
but all opinions are honest and they are my own. This page may contain affiliate links.

Here we are at Day Six of #SpringSweetsWeek. Can you believe it's almost over? I've been having so much fun with this event. You can read more about the prizes and enter the giveaway at the bottom of this post. Today I will be sharing a recipe featuring ingredients from a couple of the event sponsors: Dixie Crystals and Melissa's Produce.* But first, all of today's posts...


Aquavit-Scented Blood Orange Galette

If you have been following my blog, you might remember that my family and I spent the holidays in Denmark. I was intrigued by several combinations of flavors that I don't usually see here. One such combination was caraway seeds in sweets. So, I made a leap and used aquavit, a caraway-infused booze, in place of vodka in my crust. Then, because they are dramatic and gorgeous, I used blood oranges from event sponsor Melissa's Produce, as the centerpiece of this sweet treat.

Ingredients

Crust
  • 1-1/4 C all-purpose flour, plus extra for rolling
  • 1/4 C finely ground blanched almonds or almond flour
  • 1/4 C powdered sugar (prefer Dixie Crystals)
  • 1/2 C butter, very-cold, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 1 T ice water
  • 2 to 3 T aquavit
Filling
  • 1/3 C ground almonds
  • 2 to 3 blood oranges (peeled and thinly sliced, prefer Melissa's Produce)
  • 1/2 C + 1 T granulated sugar (prefer Dixie Crystals) 
  • 1/4 C melted butter
  • 1 egg, slightly beaten
  • zest from blood orange
Procedure

Crust
Place flour, ground almonds, sugar, and butter in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until large crumbs form. Add liquid 1 T at a time, until mixture just begins to clump together. If you squeeze some of the crumbly dough and it holds together, it's ready. If the dough doesn't hold together, add a little more liquid and pulse again. Note that too much water will make the crust tough. Once the dough comes together into a ball, wrap tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before using.

Roll out the Pâte Brisée between two pieces of parchment paper and place the crust on a parchment paper or silicone mat-lined baking sheet. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

Stir ground almonds and sugar together and spoon into the center of the dough. Drizzle melted butter over the almond mixture. Arrange the slices to cover the ground almonds. Gently pull the edges of the galette up and over the top of the blood oranges to form a rim.


Brush the exposed crust with beaten egg. Sprinkle with 1 T sugar and orange zest.


Bake the galette for 45-50 minutes. The crust will be slightly browned and crisp to the touch. Let cool for a few minutes before slicing and serving.


The Giveaway
Click to read all about the prizes at my kick-off post: A PEEP Into Upcoming #SpringSweetsWeek.

a Rafflecopter giveaway Thank you #SpringSweetsWeek Sponsors: Dixie Crystals, Swiss Diamond, Nancy’s Yogurt, Barlean’s, Sprinkle Pop, PEEPS, Melissa’s Produce, and Adams Extracts for providing the prizes free of charge. These companies also provided the bloggers with samples and product to use for #SpringSweetsWeek recipes. All opinions are my own. The #SpringSweetsWeek giveaway is open to residents of the United States who are 18 years of age or older.   All entries for the winner will be checked and verified. By entering you give the right to use your name and likeness. The number of entries received determines the odds of winning. Six (6) winners will be selected. The prize packages will be sent directly from the giveaway sponsors. The #SpringSweetsWeek Bloggers are not responsible for the fulfillment or delivery of the prize packages. Bloggers hosting this giveaway and their immediate family members in their household cannot enter or win the giveaway. No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited by law. This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter or any other social channel mentioned in the #SpringSweetsWeek posts or entry.

Thursday, March 28, 2019

A #SpringSweetsWeek G & T #Sponsored

This recipe is intended for individuals ages 21 & up. Please drink responsibly.
This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of SprinklePop, PEEPS, and Melissa's Produce, 
sponsors of #SpringSweetsWeekI received complimentary product for the purpose of review and recipe development,
but all opinions are honest and they are my own. This page may contain affiliate links.

Here we are at Day Five of #SpringSweetsWeek. You can read more about the prizes and enter the giveaway at the bottom of this post. Today I will be sharing a recipe made with items from several of our event sponsors, including: SprinklePop and PEEPS®.* But first, all of today's posts...


A #SpringSweetsWeek G & T
It's Friday! So, I opted to post a #SpringSweetsWeek version of one of my favorite cocktails: the gin and tonic. And I made it festive by rimming my glass with the Cottontail Confetti sprinkle mix from SprinklePop and a PEEPS® garnish. Going back to event sponsor PEEPS®' question of Team Chicks and Team Bunnies, I am solidly #PEEPSBunnies. Sorry, Chicks, you didn't sit on my glass as well.

Ingredients

Cocktail
  • 2 ounces gin
  • 3 to 4 ounces tonic
  • 2 to 3 lime wedges (I used Key limes from Melissa's Produce)
  • ice

Garnish
  • sprinkles (I used the Cottontail Confetti from SprinklePop)
  • PEEPS® (I used a bunny)

Procedure
Pour sprinkles out onto a small plate. Moisten the rim of your glass and press it gently into the sprinkles. Fill the glass with ice.

Pour in the gin. Squeeze in lime wedges and discard the peels. Pour in tonic water. Stir to combine. Garnish with a PEEP.


The Giveaway*
Click to read all about the prizes at my kick-off post: A PEEP Into Upcoming #SpringSweetsWeek.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
This recipe is intended for individuals ages 21 & up. Please drink responsibly.
Thank you #SpringSweetsWeek Sponsors: Dixie Crystals, Swiss Diamond, Nancy’s Yogurt, Barlean’s, Sprinkle Pop, PEEPS, Melissa’s Produce, and Adams Extracts for providing the prizes free of charge. These companies also provided the bloggers with samples and product to use for #SpringSweetsWeek recipes. All opinions are my own. The #SpringSweetsWeek giveaway is open to residents of the United States who are 18 years of age or older.   All entries for the winner will be checked and verified. By entering you give the right to use your name and likeness. The number of entries received determines the odds of winning. Six (6) winners will be selected. The prize packages will be sent directly from the giveaway sponsors. The #SpringSweetsWeek Bloggers are not responsible for the fulfillment or delivery of the prize packages. Bloggers hosting this giveaway and their immediate family members in their household cannot enter or win the giveaway. No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited by law. This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter or any other social channel mentioned in the #SpringSweetsWeek posts or entry.

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Cottontail Confetti Krispies #SpringSweetsWeek #Sponsored

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Adams Extract and Spice and SprinklePop, 
sponsors of #SpringSweetsWeekI received complimentary product for the purpose of review and recipe development,
but all opinions are honest and they are my own. This page may contain affiliate links.

Here we are at Day Four of #SpringSweetsWeek. You can read more about the prizes and enter the giveaway at the bottom of this post. Today I will be sharing a recipe made with items from several of our event sponsors, including: Adams Extract and Spice and SprinklePop.* But first, all of today's posts...


Cottontail Confetti Krispies

Inspired by SprinklePop's Cottontail Confetti Sprinkle Mix, a blend of pearlized grass green sprinkles and pastel Easter egg confetti, I decided to make our favorite easy dessert: rice krispies treats. I also added a few drops of the natural food coloring from Adams Extract and Spice. You can read more about them in my Spring Bling Meyer Lemon Almond Cake post.

Ingredients

  • 6 T butter + more for greasing pan
  • 6 C marshmallows
  • 6 C rice krispies (I use an organic puffed brown rice cereal)
  • 1 t lemon extract 
  • food coloring, optional (I used red and yellow from Adams Extract and Spice)
  • sprinkles (I used the Cottontail Confetti mix from SprinklePop)


Procedure

Butter a pan; I used a 9" round. Cover the bottom with a layer of sprinkles and set aside.


Place the butter and marshmallows in a large pot and heat until melted. Add in the extract and food coloring, if using. Stir until mixed.


Fold in the rice krispies and stir until well-coated. Turn the mixture into the prepared pan. And, with slightly moistened hands, press firmly down to compact the mixture.


Let cool in the pan for 10 minutes until slightly hardened. Invert onto a serving platter. Let it cool completely before slicing.


There are so many possible variations you can make with rice krispie treats. What's your favorite?


The Giveaway*
Click to read all about the prizes at my kick-off post: A PEEP Into Upcoming #SpringSweetsWeek.

a Rafflecopter giveaway Thank you #SpringSweetsWeek Sponsors: Dixie Crystals, Swiss Diamond, Nancy’s Yogurt, Barlean’s, Sprinkle Pop, PEEPS, Melissa’s Produce, and Adams Extracts for providing the prizes free of charge. These companies also provided the bloggers with samples and product to use for #SpringSweetsWeek recipes. All opinions are my own. The #SpringSweetsWeek giveaway is open to residents of the United States who are 18 years of age or older.   All entries for the winner will be checked and verified. By entering you give the right to use your name and likeness. The number of entries received determines the odds of winning. Six (6) winners will be selected. The prize packages will be sent directly from the giveaway sponsors. The #SpringSweetsWeek Bloggers are not responsible for the fulfillment or delivery of the prize packages. Bloggers hosting this giveaway and their immediate family members in their household cannot enter or win the giveaway. No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited by law. This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter or any other social channel mentioned in the #SpringSweetsWeek posts or entry.

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Spring Bling Meyer Lemon Almond Cake #SpringSweetsWeek #Sponsored

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Nancy's Yogurt, Adams Extract and Spice, 
Melissa's Produce, Dixie Crystals, and SprinklePop, sponsors of #SpringSweetsWeek.
I received complimentary product for the purpose of review and recipe development,
but all opinions are honest and they are my own. This page may contain affiliate links.

Here we are at Day Three of #SpringSweetsWeek. You can read more about the prizes and enter the giveaway at the bottom of this post. Today I will be sharing a recipe made with items from several of our event sponsors, including: Nancy's Yogurt, Adams Extract and Spice,  Melissa's Produce, Dixie Crystals, and SprinklePop.* But first, all of today's posts...



Fun, Natural Colors
Adams Extract & Spice is one of the #SpringSweetsWeek sponsors and I was a little sad to find out that they were no longer able to ship to bloggers in California. Something about California regulations. I wasn't surprised by my state's rules, but a little shocked at the timing. I had taken part in two events last year and received product just fine from them. So, maybe it's a new-to-2019 restriction. In any case, I was happy that I still had the food dyes and some of the extracts from a previous event.

So, while I can't get these in California anymore, I loved this set of natural food dyes. I am excited that the green and blue were made with spirulina extract and the yellow made with turmeric. That's definitely my kinda dye. But, as with everything you are using for the first time, there was a learning curve. For instance, the red is a beautiful carmine hue...until you heat it...because it's made with beets. I tested it and it went from red to purple, which was not what I had in mind. Whoops. And everyone commented that the colors fade in the sunlight. So, these aren't as vibrant as colors made with Red No. 40 or Blue No. 1, but I love that they are naturally derived!

I used the spirulina-derived green dye for this and kept the cake away from the sunlight!

Spring Bling Meyer Lemon Almond Cake

Ingredients makes one 9" cake layer (I doubled this for the cake I photographed)
Cake
  • 1-1/2 C flour
  • 1/2 C ground almonds or almond flour
  • 1 t baking powder
  • 1 t salt
  • 1/4 t baking soda
  • zest from two lemons (I used Meyer lemons from Melissa's Produce)
  • 3/4 C whole milk plain yogurt (prefer Nancy's Yogurt)
  • 1/4 C freshly squeezed lemon juice, approximately from 1 to 2 lemons (I used Meyer lemons from Melissa's Produce)
  • 1-1/4 C brown sugar (I used brown sugar from Dixie Crystals)
  • 3/4 C olive oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 t vanilla extract (prefer Adam's Extract & Spice)
  • Also needed: butter for greasing pans, parchment paper, 9" cake pan

Meyer Lemon Glaze
  • 1 C powdered sugar + more, as needed (I used powdered sugar from Dixie Crystals)
  • 2 to 3 T freshly squeezed lemon juice (I used Meyer lemons from Melissa's Produce)
  • food coloring, optional (prefer Adam's Extract & Spice)

Finishing
  • two marzipan tubes
  • sprinkles (prefer SprinklePop)


Procedure
Cake
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9" round cake pan and line the bottom with parchment paper. Set aside.

Whisk together all of the dry ingredients in a medium mixing bowl. Whisk together the yogurt, lemon zest, and lemon juice in a separate bowl until very smooth. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the brown sugar and olive oil until well-combined. Add the eggs to the olive oil mixture, one at a time, whisking very well after each, then stir in the vanilla extract. 

Add the dry ingredients and yogurt mixture to the olive oil mixture and whisk until well-combined. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, approximately 40 to 45 minutes. 

Let cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto to a wire rack to cool completely.


As I mentioned, I double the cake recipe. To finish, roll the marzipan tubes together to form a disc and place it between the cake layers.

Meyer Lemon Glaze
Add the powdered sugar and lemon juice to a medium mixing bowl and mix until it comes together into a spreadable glaze. If the glaze is too thick, add a couple drops of water until it's thin enough to spread. If it's too thin, add more powdered sugar. Whisk in the food coloring, if using.

To decorate: Spread the glaze over the top of the cake, then scatter with Spring Bling also known as sprinkles!


Let the glaze set before serving. Slice into small slices as this is a rich cake.


The Giveaway*
Click to read all about the prizes at my kick-off post: A PEEP Into Upcoming #SpringSweetsWeek.

a Rafflecopter giveaway Thank you #SpringSweetsWeek Sponsors: Dixie Crystals, Swiss Diamond, Nancy’s Yogurt, Barlean’s, Sprinkle Pop, PEEPS, Melissa’s Produce, and Adams Extracts for providing the prizes free of charge. These companies also provided the bloggers with samples and product to use for #SpringSweetsWeek recipes. All opinions are my own. The #SpringSweetsWeek giveaway is open to residents of the United States who are 18 years of age or older.   All entries for the winner will be checked and verified. By entering you give the right to use your name and likeness. The number of entries received determines the odds of winning. Six (6) winners will be selected. The prize packages will be sent directly from the giveaway sponsors. The #SpringSweetsWeek Bloggers are not responsible for the fulfillment or delivery of the prize packages. Bloggers hosting this giveaway and their immediate family members in their household cannot enter or win the giveaway. No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited by law. This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter or any other social channel mentioned in the #SpringSweetsWeek posts or entry.

You're Invited: Marvel-ous Sips and Nibbles #FandomFoodies #MarvelUniverseEats


I am hosting a month-long homage to the Marvel Universe, in conjunction with Fandom Foodies, as we prepare for the release of Avengers: Endgame near the end of this month. April 26th, in case you didn't know.

I used to just say that I liked the Marvel movies because I am a permanent resident of Testosterone Land...with two teenage sons and a husband. But, it's more than that. I actually really love the story-telling in Marvel movies. It's hard to pick a favorite, really.

So, I'm inviting you to watch - or rewatch as the case may be - any of the Marvel movies and whip up something inspired.

How to Participate
Check the announcement post to see what the theme entails. Done. You're already here! If you’re already a fan of the Marvel movies and have immediate inspiration, great! If not, watch/read/play relevant things to drum up inspiration for a recipe.

Cook up something or make a recipe! Foods can be taken directly from a Marvel movie or even just loosely inspired. Do you have something you think a specific character would love to eat? Is there a food in the show you’ve always wanted to try in real life? As long as it’s related to the theme, it’s fair game. Everything else is up to you. Get creative!

Post your food photo or recipe on your blog or on social media. Instagram, Twitter, Tumblr, or a blog… it’s all good. Be sure to use both the #fandomfoodies tag and #MarvelUniverseEats for this month’s theme, and @ Fandom Foodies if possible! Each submission should include a link to Fandom Foodies, a link to the hosting blog, and the month’s hashtag. If you post a recipe on your own blog, submit it to the link-up. 

The Link-Up




Make Something MARVEL-ous
Back in 2017, I posted A Mutated Kyushiki + Ginger-Miso Petrale inspired by Wolverine.

 

Maybe you'll be inspired by some Hulk-hued cocktails such as my Kale Margarita or Captain America-colored Chia Pudding.


How about a cocktail that Black Widow would be proud to make...



...or a salad with scarlet pomegranate arils? Will you join me in my April quest to share Marvel-ous Sips and Nibbles? I hope so and look forward to what inspires you.

Share Buttons