Tuesday, February 24, 2009


Technically: "crumiri", but I do like the letter "K."  Regardless of the spelling, these crescent shaped cookies get their texture from cornmeal and butter and they are truly delicious dipped in coffee.

Weigh out 200 g butter and 150 g sugar.

Hey, you've got some Maker's Mark, pour yourself a drink and cream that butter and sugar in a mixer using the paddle attachment for a nice long time.

Add two eggs, one at a time.  This is a simple cookie and it owes a lot of its charm to emulsification, so beat well after each addition.


Use your creepy ghost hand to sift 240 g of AP flour with a pinch of salt and 120 g of yellow cornmeal.

And slow mix your dries into the butter/sugar mixture.

If you have some lemon hanging around, add some zest, why not?

Now is the fun part, fill a pastry bag (fitted with a star tip) with the dough.  It will be both thick and sticky, so this may not be the easiest thing you've ever done, but a good bench scraper makes all the difference.

Once all your dough is in the bag, twist the excess at the top so you can easily hold the bag with one hand placed at the top, while using your other hand to squeeze out dough from the middle of the bag.  Pipe the dough into crescent shapes (or any shape really).  

The cookies will spread a little tiny bit, so don't pipe them right next to each other.

If you don't have a SILPAT, you can use parchment paper.  But how come you don't have a SILPAT?  Oh, because they are expensive?  It's worth it!  You'll use it all the time, plus it should last a long time.  Aren't you worth a long lasting multi-tasker?  

Bake the cookies at 325 degrees F for about 12 minutes or until they get a little color around the edges (I like to turn the sheet half-way through cooking to avoid the pitfalls of cheap oven hotspots).  For an extra fancy touch, sprinkle with sanding sugar half-way through baking. 

Once they are done, let them cool on a rack and then nomnomnom!


Potato Goulash

Potato Goulash. A vegetarian - what am I saying? - a vegan (!) classic (if you choose to not add any Franks to it, as is fairly common around here). But why should you? It's good as it is. It's also easy and cheap. Simply: it can't get any better. Here is what we need for a about 2 people:
2 onions
2 garlic cloves
5 potatoes
salt, pepper, marjoram, caraway seed AND paprika (hot or sweet, I go with sweet)

Saute onions and garlic, add the peeled and cubed potatoes and paprika as you see fit. I personally go by color. The paprika quickly dries what's been going on in your pan so splash a little vinegar to cool it down. Then add the rest of your spices and cover the potatoes with water and cook until tender. You can balance the vinegar with a bit of sugar if necessary. In order to thicken it, I usually mash some of the potatoes. Done. Winter just got a little better.

PS: This is the fast little vegetarian sibling of the beef goulash, which needs a few hours for the onions to cook down until they are the sauce, basically. Next time, I'd like to try to give the sauce more time though and will add the potatoes after I've cooked the onions with the spices a little longer, similarly to the beef goulash!


Friday, February 20, 2009

Molten Mocha Mini cakes

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for ramekins
  • 1/3 cup confectioners sugar, plus more for ramekins and serving
  • 2 ounces semisweet chocolate, broken into pieces
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 teaspoon espresso powder
  • Pinch salt
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
Tips and Tricks: I made my own espresso powder by dehydrating some used coffee grinds. I didn't think of this ahead of time so I just dumped out the coffee maker, and popped them in the oven for 30 min. or so. Instant espresso is quite expensive so this is definitely a "money saver" in these tight times ;)

I would also recommend not putting these in the oven until you are ready to eat them otherwise you'll be eating tepid mocha cake.
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Butter two 6-ounce ramekins, then dust with sugar. Place butter and chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high in 20-second increments, stirring after each, until melted. Let cool slightly.
  2. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together egg, egg yolk, sugar, espresso powder, and salt. Add chocolate mixture; whisk to combine. Add flour, and whisk just until combined (do not overmix). Pour batter into prepared ramekins. (Recipe can be made ahead up to this point.)
  3. Bake until a toothpick inserted 1/2 inch from edge of ramekins comes out clean, and a toothpick inserted in center comes out wet, 10 to 12 minutes (do not overbake). Cool 10 minutes on a wire rack. Run a knife around inside of ramekins to loosen. Invert cakes onto serving plates. Dust with sugar; serve immediately.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Roasted Tomato Soup

The extra time spent on roasting the tomatoes for this soup is worth the wait! the roasting brings out the sweetness in both the tomatoes as well as the garlic and your kitchen will smell heavenly, too. Here's what you need and what you do:

1 kg tomatoes
4 garlic cloves, minced
fresh thyme
1 onion
4 slices of country style bread, cubed
3 cups of stock
olive oil, salt, pepper

Cut your tomatoes in halves, core them if you like, and sprinkle with garlic, thyme, salt, pepper and olive oil and roast them in the oven for about 2 hours or until the skin bursts. Puree when done. I would skin the tomatoes next time, rather than fishing them out, as we did, but do as you prefer. Saute the onion and add the tomato puree, the stock, as well as the cubed bread, let simmer for a few minutes and mix with a blender. Season with (herb)salt and fresh pepper.

Additionally, you can top it off with this deliciousness: a blend of mascarpone and parmesan (equal parts of both mixed together).


Sunday, February 8, 2009

Baby's 1st Quiche

We recently upgraded our modem at home, which meant that the 50/60 Hz power adapter was now free for use with our US-wired food processor, yay! This gave me great excitement, the fact that I could now make pastry dough like magic; no more cutting the butter into the flour with knives, oh no. We also had broccoli in the fridge that needed to be eaten, and therefore, a quiche was born...

1 1/4 C all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
8 Tbs. butter
2-3 Tbs. icy water

3/4 C heavy cream, room temp.
3/4 C milk, room temp.
3 eggs, room temp.
1 C grated parmesan
1 Tbs. butter, melted
1 C broccoli, blanched & chopped

1. Crust: Mix together flour and salt, add butter (cubed), and pulse in a food processor until it resembles coarse bread crumbs. Add the water 1 Tbs. at a time and mix with a fork until it starts to stick together. Form it into a ball, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 min.

Preheat oven to 425

On a floured surface, flatten dough ball into a disk, dust with flour and roll into an 11" round. Place over a tart pan, and fold the excess dough inward on itself. Prick the dough with a fork several times, and bake until it just starts to color. Remove and set aside.

Turn oven down to 375

2. Filling: whisk together cream, milk, eggs and melted butter. Add cheese, broccoli and season with salt and pepper. Pour into pastry shell and bake 25 -30 min, or until the tip of a knife pressed into the center comes out clean.

enjoy! -Kellie