Strawberry picking was great fun this week. This is another great recipe we tried with our fresh berries. It was perfect with homemade whipped cream.
1/2 cup butter softened 1 cup granulated sugar 1/2 cup buttermilk 2 eggs 1 teaspoon vanilla 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 1/2 tsp salt 2 tsp baking powder
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Cream the butter and sugar with a spoon, beating well until the mixture is light and slightly fluffy. Add the buttermilk, eggs and vanilla and mix well. Add the flour, salt, and baking powder. Mix well until there aren’t any dry clumps remaining.
Grease a 9×9 spring cake pan and pour in the cake mixture. Bake for 25 – 30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
Serve with fresh strawberries and whipped cream.
Whipped cream is super easy to make on your own.
2 cups heavy cream 3 tbsp sugar 1 tsp vanilla
Whip the cream until thickened. Sprinkle over the sugar and vanilla and gently fold in with a spatula. Put in the fridge until you are ready to use!
Tis the season for strawberry flavored everything.
Strawberry Simple Syrup 1/3 cup sugar 2/3 cup water 1/3 cup strawberries, chopped
3 tbsp strawberry simple syrup 1 strawberry, hulled 4 mint leaves, torn 1 tbsp lemon juice 2 ounces gin 3 ounces sparkling water
Make the simple syrup a head of time. Put all three ingredients into a small sauce pan and bring to a simmer until the sugar dissolves. Transfer to a glass jar and refrigerate. Don’t strain. Chill at least an hour or more.
To mix the cocktail:
Pour the strawberry simple syrup, strawberry and mint leaves into a glass and muddle. Top with lemon juice, gin and sparkling water. Finish with filling the glass with ice and enjoy!
This may be Paul’s favorite quarantine dish. We have had this several times with varying amounts of heat.
2 chicken thighs, cut up into small cubes 1 tsp salt 1 tbsp shaoxing wine 3 tsp potato starch 1/4 tsp ground white pepper
2 inch piece ginger cut into thin coins 15 dried chinese peppers, seeds removed, soaked in water, cut into pieces and drained 5 cloves garlic, sliced thin 5 tsp red Sichaun pepper corns, crushed in mortar and pestle 2 green onions cut into 2 inch pieces 2 tbsp soy sauce 1 tbsp shaoxing wine 2 cups vegetable or canola oil
Seed and soak peppers for 1 hour. Drain and chop into 1/2 inch sections.
Sort Sichuan pepper corns. Remove twigs and pits.
Marinate chicken in first four ingredients for at least 30 minutes. Refrigerate chicken until you are ready to cook.
Heat 2 cups of oil in a wok until the oil hits 325 F. Deep fry chicken in wok over medium heat for 8 – 10 minutes, bubbling steadily. Remove chicken and bring oil up to 375F. Retry chicken for 2-3 minutes until golden brown, vigorous bubbling. Remove chicken and oil except for 1 tbsp.
Heat oil for stir fry. Add ginger to oil, cook for 1-2 minutes. Add drained peppers and garlic, cook for 1-2 minutes. Add peppercorns, cook for 30 seconds.
Add chicken and green onions, stir. Turn off heat. Add in soy sauce and wine, stir to coat.
Street tacos are one of our family favorites. During this quarantine, we have enjoyed these tacos several times. We have used corn and flour tortillas as well as stuffing corn tortillas and baking to make them crispy.
3 small potatoes 6oz Mexican chorizo half an onion, diced 2 mini bell peppers, diced 1 tbsp fresh cilantro
Poke potatoes, microwave for 5 minutes. Once cool enough to handle, peel and cut into small cubes.
In a large skillet, brown the chorizo for 2-3 minutes. Add diced onion and peppers, cook until chorizo is done and onions are tender. Remove mixture from skillet.
Add 1 tbsp oil, set to medium high heat. Add cubed potatoes along with some salt and pepper. Cook until browned and cooked through, 8-10 minutes.
Stir in chorizo mixture and cilantro, turn off heat Serve in tortillas
This recipe can be used for hotdogs or brats buns or I have also made them into larger baguettes for hot beef sandwiches. Best eaten fresh, but can be used after a few days before they start getting stale.
4 cups bread flour 2 tsp yeast 1 1/2 tsp kosher salt 10oz warm water 1 tsp sugar
Mix all ingredients together and knead in kitchenaid mixer for 6 minutes or so until dough is has come together. Let rise for 1 hour or until risen twice in size.
Roll out to desired shape. I have made brat bun shapes, and longer baguettes. Let rise again for 1 hour.
Bring oven up to 400 degrees F. Brush rolls with milk and bake for 20 – 30 minutes until golden.
We are still under quarantine, and attempting to use up what is in the fridge. I accidentally opened phyllo dough last week thinking it was puff pastry. So in an attempt to use it up, I made a recipe that was found on the box for phyllo pizza. It was fine, but was left with half of the box of dough and no idea what to do with it. I didn’t feel like making it into Baklava. We ended up coming up with two different recipes (very different and worth a try). These two rolls turned out to be perfect and very easy. One is obviously sweet and one roll we enjoyed with cocktails.
Feta Phyllo Rolls
Ingredients 8 oz Feta Cheese 1 egg 1/2 cup fresh herbs (Basil, Parsley, Mint & Chives) 1/2 stick of butter 8 sheets of Phyllo Dough
Mix together the cheese, egg and herbs and set aside. Cover a baking sheet with a Silpat and use that as your work and prep area. Melt the butter and brush butter onto half of the phyllo. Fold the other half over and press down. Cut up the middle of the folded phyllo sheet to make two lengths. Put your cheese mixture along the bottom of both prepped sheets and roll up. Do this with all 8 sheets. Butter the tops of the rolls before you bake.
Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes.
Nutella Phyllo Rolls
Ingredients 1/2 cup Nutella 1/2 stick of butter 8 sheets of Phyllo Dough
Put the Nutella into a piping bag and set aside until ready.
Prep the phyllo sheets by placing either one whole sheet out and buttering and cover with another phyllo sheet or doing the method above by buttering half of the sheet and folding over. Cut into 4 lengths (if doing the whole sheet). Pipe the Nutella along the bottom of the sheet and then roll up. Butter the tops of the rolls before you bake.
Bake at 400 degrees F for 10-12 minutes or until gold brown on the top. Let cool before you enjoy.
Mix all ingredients together until a dough forms. While this rests in a covered bowl, put a large sauce pan of salted water on the stove and bring to a boil.
Carefully cut the gnocchi in half, and then in fourths. Take one fourth of the gnocchi and roll out into a long ribbon. If the ribbon is too long, cut in half. I usually use a bench scrapper, but you can use a knife to cut. Put the cut pieces of gnocchi on a floured sheet pan. Continue until all of the gnocchi is cut. At this point, you can either cook or roll each piece of gnocchi down a fork to give it ridges. For the sake of time, and energy, I usually skip this step and move quickly onto cooking.
Cook about a third of the gnocchi at a time in boiling water. Once they float and cook for about 3 minutes, pull them out unto a strainer and continue to cook.
Serve with your favorite ragu sauce or butter and parsley are great as well.
We had some leftover rice Paul made for an Indian inspired dinner and thought that it would make great rice pudding. So this is an experiment! During quarantine, what else do we have to do?
Ingredients 2 cups cooked rice 3 cups milk (I used 2 cups half/half and 1 cup 2%) 2 eggs 1/2 cup sugar 1/2 tsp vanilla extract Cinnamon
Preheat over to 350 degrees F.
Combine the rice and milk into a sauce pan and bring to a boil. In a bowl, whisk the eggs, milk and vanilla together. Once the rice and milk come to a boil, temper the eggs with a little of the hot milk. Then add all of the egg mixture into the rice mixture and whisk. Pour into a baking dish and sprinkle with cinnamon. Bake for 30 minutes or until set.
This was made while we were quarantined at home, with leftovers and frozen veggies. It is easy to substitute fresh vegetables if you wish, but this turned out really great and was easy to throw together for a quick lunch.
Heat large wok or sauté pan and swirl oil into pan to heat. Add in meat and sauté for 3 – 4 minutes to crisp. Add in frozen vegetables for 5 minutes until heated through. Add ginger and garlic; cook another minute. Make a well in the middle of the pan and add in the whisked eggs. Let cook without moving the eggs around for 2 minutes.
Add in soy sauce, sesame oil and rice and mix well. Serve immediately.
During this quarantine, we have been making a lot of our old standbys, as well as new recipes that we have come to love. This is one of them, changed from the original recipe into our own version.
Ingredients 2 large eggs and 2 large yolks, room temperature 1 oz Grana Padano or Pecorino Romano 1 oz Parmesan Coarse ground black pepper Kosher Salt 1/2 tsp granulated garlic 1 tbsp olive oil 4 oz pancetta 16 oz pasta 1/2 cup frozen peas
In a small bowl, mix together the eggs, yolks and grated cheeses. Season with a pinch of salt and a generous amount of black pepper and garlic.
In a large sauce pan, heat slightly salted water (no more than a tbsp) over high heat until brought to a full boil. Boil pasta until al dente (time may vary depending on pasta used). Once finished, poor into a colander with a bowl underneath to catch the cooking water. Reserve all cooking water until ready to serve, in case you need more than the cup called for.
In a high sided sauté pan, cook pancetta in the olive oil until crispy. If done before the pasta, set aside until pasta is ready. Once pasta has finished, pour one cup of pasta water into the pancetta, then the drained pasta and heat over low. Stir for a minute. Turn off the heat.
Stir in the cheese mixture, adding some additional reserved pasta water as needed for more creaminess (about 1/2 a cup additional). Serve immediately with more grated cheese and pepper.