Saturday, September 15, 2012

Cream of Chicken and Wild Rice Soup

Cream of Chicken and Wild Rice Soup, photo by whitneyinchicago

A delicious velouté-based soup. Serves 6.

1 stick unsalted butter (1/2 cup)
1 yellow onion, chopped
2 ribs celery, chopped
3 carrots, chopped
1/2 cup plus 1 Tbsp. flour
7 cups chicken broth (low-sodium)
3 sprigs flat-leaf Italian parsley
3 sprigs fresh thyme
1 bay leaf
2 1/2 cups cooked, diced chicken
1/2 cup wild rice, cooked separately
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 Tbsp. kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
2 Tbsp. chopped flat leaf parsley

Melt the butter in a large soup pot over medium heat. Add the onion, celery, and carrots, and sweat ingredients, stirring occasionally, until soft, about 10 minutes. Add the flour and cook, stirring with a wooden spoon, for 2 minutes more. (This creates a roux in the pot.)

Pour in the broth and bring to a boil while whisking constantly. Tie the parsley sprigs, theme, and bay leaf together with a piece of kitchen twine and add to the soup. Lower the heat and simmer for 15 minutes. (This is now a velouté base.)

Stir in the chicken and cooked wild rice and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat.

Whisk the heavy cream and salt into the soup and season with pepper to taste. Remove and discard the herb bundle. Divide among soup bowls, sprinkle the top of each soup with the chopped parsley and serve.

From my Cooking with Style: Soups and Sauces class.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Alisha's Chocolate Coconut Birthday Cake

from The Little Red House
2 ounces semisweet chocolate
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
3/4 cup boiling water
6 TBS butter, melted
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 large eggs
1 cup coconut milk
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
toasted coconut (for topping, optional)

Preheat oven to 350°F.
Line bottom of 9" pan with round of parchment paper, butter paper, and sides of pan.

Finely chop chocolate and in a bowl combine with hot water and cocoa powder. Let mixture stand, stirring occasionally, until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth.

In a bowl add flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. In another large bowl with an electric mixer beat butter and sugar until combined. Add eggs (adding one at a time) until thickened slightly and light colored (about 3 minutes). Slowly add coconut milk, and melted chocolate mixture, beating until combined well. Add flour mixture and beat on medium speed until just combined.

Pour batter into pan, and bake in middle of oven until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, 25-30 minutes.

Cool cake completely before frosting.

From Sugar and Spice by Celeste

Coconut Cream Cheese Icing
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
4 cups confectioners' sugar
2 tablespoons heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon coconut flavoring
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup sweetened shredded coconut

Beat cream cheese and butter in a mixer bowl until light and fluffy. Gradually add the confectioners' sugar, one cup at a time, alternating with heavy cream. Beat in the salt, coconut flavoring, and vanilla extract. Continue beating until mixture is smooth and spreadable. Add additional powdered sugar if necessary to thicken the frosting, or more cream to thin. Add in coconut.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Chocolate Raspberry Layer Cake with Chocolate Ganache Frosting

(Jennica's Birthday Cake)

From Picky Cook

For cake layers3 ounces fine-quality semisweet chocolate
1 1/2 cups hot water
3 cups sugar
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups unsweetened cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
3 large eggs
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups well-shaken buttermilk
3/4 teaspoon vanilla

For ganache frosting
1/2 pound fine-quality semisweet chocolate
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoons light corn syrup
2 tablespoons unsalted butter

Make cake layers
Preheat oven to 300 F and butter pans. Line bottoms with rounds of parchment paper. Butter again and dust both pans with cocoa powder. Tap and swirl around the cocoa to lightly coat the pans.

Finely chop chocolate and in a bowl combine with hot water. Let mixture stand, stirring occasionally, until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth.

Into a large bowl sift together sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. In another large bowl with an electric mixer beat eggs until thickened slightly and lemon colored (about 3 minutes with a standing mixer or 5 minutes with a hand-held mixer). Slowly add oil, buttermilk, vanilla, and melted chocolate mixture to eggs, beating until combined well. Add sugar mixture and beat on medium speed until just combined well.

Divide batter between pans and bake in middle of oven until a tester inserted in center comes out clean, 1 hour to 1 hour and 10 minutes.

Cool layers completely in pans on racks. Run a thin knife around edges of pans and invert layers onto racks. Carefully remove parchment paper and cool layers completely. Cake layers may be made 1 day ahead and kept, wrapped well in plastic wrap, at room temperature.

Ganache frosting
Finely chop chocolate. In a small saucepan bring cream, sugar, and corn syrup to a boil over moderately low heat, whisking until sugar is dissolved. Remove pan from heat and add chocolate, whisking until chocolate is melted. Cut butter into pieces and add to frosting, whisking until smooth.

Transfer frosting to a bowl and cool, stirring occasionally, until spreadable.

Raspberry Filling
2 10-ounce bag frozen raspberries, thawed
1/2 cup sugar
zest of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons cornstarch

Mash the thawed raspberries and heat them in a small pot with the sugar and cornstarch until mixture boils, stirring constantly. As it boils, it should quickly thicken. Stir in lemon zest at the end.

Let it cool complete before spreading it thinly over the layers.

To Assemble
Lay the bottom layer on cake stand. Take 1/3 the raspberry filling and spread it over the layer. Stay about 1/2 inch away from the edge. Put the final layer on the top of the cake. Gently make sure that all the layers line up.

Pour some of the ganache in the middle of the top layer and with an offset spatula start smoothing out the frosting, gently pushing it toward the edge. Add more until you have worked the ganache down over the sides of the cake.

You can decorate the top with fresh raspberries.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Fabulous Cookie Recipe

4 Cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 ½ C (3 sticks) butter, softened
1 ¼ C granulated sugar
1 ¼ C packed brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
1 C milk chocolate chips
1 C semi-sweet chocolate chips
½ C white chocolate chips (optional)
1 C chopped nuts (walnuts or pecans are best)

Preheat oven to 375°

Combine flour, baking powder, and baking soda in a medium bowl. Beat butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar in a large mixing bowl until creamy. Beat in eggs and vanilla extract. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts. Drop dough by level ¼ C measurement, 2 inches apart onto ungreased baking sheets. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes, or until light golden brown. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes. Remove to wire racks to cool completely. Makes about 2 dozen cookies.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Pizza Factory-like Breadsticks

1 1/2 cups hot water
1 Tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 Tbsp yeast
2 Tbsp olive oil
3 1/2 – 4 cups flour

2-3 Tbsp melted butter
1/4 tsp garlic salt
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp dill weed
1/8 tsp Italian seasoning
4 Tbsp Kraft parmesan cheese

Combine warm water, sugar, and yeast. Let yeast dissolve and foam. Mix together flour, salt, and olive oil. Add in yeast, sugar, and water mixture to make a soft dough. Knead for 3-4 minutes. Let the dough rise once before you form your twists. On a floured surface, break off pieces of dough and roll into thin ropes that are about 1 1/2 times the length of your skewers. Twist the rope around the skewer and place on a cookie sheet lightly coated with olive oil. If you don’t have skewers and are just twisting your dough ropes together, they will need to bake longer because they are thicker.Repeat until all dough is used. Let twists rise till doubled, about 30 minutes. While they are baking, combine the glaze ingredients so the flavors will blend. Bake twists at 375 for about 12-15 minutes or till golden brown. Remove from oven and brush with the butter glaze.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Raspberry Bread Pudding

1 pound loaf of white bread, cut in 2-inch squares
1 cup melted butter, toss with bread
8 large fresh eggs
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon vanilla
5 cups milk, scalded
1/2 cup raspberry jam
4 tablespoons cranberry juice (can substitute apple or orange)
cinnamon and nutmeg, to taste

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lay the bread cubes into a 8-by-13-inch pan. Mix together eggs, sugar, salt and vanilla until thoroughly combined. Gradually stir in the hot milk.
  2. Pour the egg mixture over the bread in the pan. Mix thoroughly the raspberry jam and cranberry juice. Drizzle over egg mixture and swirl with a fork. Sprinkle with cinnamon and nutmeg.
  3. Set the pan in a larger pan containing 1 inch of hot water. Bake pans for 35-40 minutes until set. Serve with whipped cream or vanilla custard sauce.

Vanilla Custard Sauce

6 egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
2 cups milk, scalded
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
  1. Review the guidelines for preparing custard following this recipe.
  2. Combine the egg yolks and sugar in a bowl of a mixer or glass bowl. Beat with a whip attachment or hand mixer until thick and light.
  3. Scald the milk in a double boiler.
  4. With the mixer running at low speed, very gradually pour the mixture back into the double boiler.
  5. Heat it slowly, stirring constantly, until it thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon (or until it reaches 185 degrees).
  6. Immediately remove the top part of the double boiler from the heat and set it in a pan of cold water. Stir in the vanilla. Stir the sauce occasionally as it cools.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Raspberry Crumble Muffins

Recipe from Beyond Oatmeal, by Carlene Duda. I actually baked the muffins for the food photo shoot to get pictures of the recipes for the book.

This pretty muffin placed with a ribbon at the Western Washington State Fair. One bite and you’ll understand why.

2½ cups flour
1 cup sugar
2½ tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. salt
¾ cup sour cream
¼ cup milk
2 eggs, beaten
½ cup butter, melted
1½ cups fresh or frozen

Crumb Topping:
1/3 cup flour
2 Tbsp. sugar
2 Tbsp. butter, softened

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. In large bowl, stir together fl our, sugar, baking powder, and salt.
  3. In small bowl, combine sour cream, milk, eggs, and butter; blend well. Add to fl our mixture;
  4. stir just until dry ingredients are moistened—do not over mix. Gently fold in raspberries.
  5. Topping: In small bowl, combine fl our with sugar; cut in butter to form crumbs.
  6. Spoon batter into buttered 2½-inch muffin cups, filling ¾ full. Top with crumb topping.
  7. Bake 20 minutes or until golden brown. Cool in muffin pan on wire rack 5 minutes.
  8. Remove from pan. Serve warm.
Makes 12 muffins.