Monday, May 31, 2010

Lime Tart with Berries

Have you been looking for the perfect summer dessert to take to a party? I guarantee that this will not fail. It received ooo's and ahh's from family members and neighbors alike. It takes a little time, but it's not hard. Just make sure you use fresh ingredients. This recipe is adapted from this Bon Appetite recipe. The only difference you'll find is the jam that goes on top. I left it off because I forgot, but I think it was simply marvelous without.Ingredients:

Lime Curd:
*3 large eggs*
*3 large egg yolks*
*1 cup sugar*
*3/4 cup fresh lime juice*
*6 tablespoons butter, cut into 6 pieces*

*1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature*
*1/4 cup sugar*
*1 large egg yolk*
*1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour*
*1 large pinch salt*

*1 6-ounce container of fresh raspberries*
*1 6-ounce container of fresh blackberries*
*1 6-ounce container of fresh blueberries*


Lime Curd:
Set fine metal strainer over medium bowl and set aside. Whisk eggs, egg yolks, and sugar in another medium metal bowl to blend. Whisk in lime juice. Set bowl over large saucepan of gently simmering water (do not allow bottom of bowl to touch water). Whisk constantly until curd thickens and instant-read thermometer inserted into curd registers 178°F to 180°F, about 6 minutes. Immediately pour curd through prepared strainer set over bowl. Add butter to warm strained curd; let stand 1 minute, then whisk until blended and smooth. Press plastic wrap directly onto surface of curd, covering completely. (This helps a film to not form on the curd.) Refrigerate until cold, about 4 hours. DO AHEAD Lime curd can be made up to 2 days ahead. Keep chilled.

Using electric mixer, beat butter and sugar in medium bowl until well blended, 1 to 2 minutes. Add egg yolk; beat to blend. Add flour and salt and mix on low speed until mixture resembles large peas. Using hands, knead in bowl just until dough comes together.

Transfer dough to 9-inch-diameter tart pan with removable bottom. Break dough into pieces, then press dough evenly up sides and onto bottom of pan. Cover and chill 1 hour. DO AHEAD Can be made 1 day ahead. Keep chilled.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Uncover crust and bake until golden brown, about 35 minutes. Cool completely in pan on rack.

Remove sides from tart pan and place crust on plate. Spread lime curd evenly in baked crust. Arrange raspberries in one circle then blackberries in 2 concentric circle just inside edge of tart. Mound blueberries in center of tart.
Do ahead: Tart can be made up to 8 hours ahead; chill uncovered.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

French Onion Soup

Picture Source

Here is another recipe that I wanted to share with you. I can't say that is was anything out of the normal, but it was an easy, standard french onion soup recipe. It is certainly worth making on a cool night, and any excuse to use a kitchen torch is worth making too! I hope you like it!

Ingredients -

3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons all purpose flour
4 onions, chopped
1 ¼ cups water
3 cans beef broth, 10 ½ oz each
1 teaspoon white sugar
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 cup white wine
¼ teaspoon dried thyme
½ teaspoon dried parsley
8 oz shredded mozzarella
1 French baguette, in ½ inch slices


Sauté the onions in the butter in a big pot over a medium heat for 10 minutes or until they are soft.

Stir in the flour, sugar, and pepper, then add the water, beef broth, thyme, and parsley and simmer the soup for 10 minutes.

Add the wine and simmer it for another 10 minutes.

Preheat the broiler and fill individual bowls ¾ full with soup.

Put a slice of bread on top of each one and top it with the mozzarella.

Broil until the cheese is bubbly and starting to turn golden.

(Serves 6)

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Loaded Baked Potato Soup

I had always been leary of making potato soup. I'm not exactly sure of my reasoning, but I guess I always thought it would be very difficult. I can tell you that this was not, and it was so tasty. It did not have a cheesy taste, except for the bit of cheese on top, but it was smooth and delicious. I made it on Tuesday when their was just a bit of chill in the air, and it completely warmed me up. My husband told me it is the only potato soup that he has liked, and he is a tough critic.

Image Compliments of My Recipes

Loaded Baked Potato Soup
from Disneyland's Carnation Cafe

Yield: six 8-oz portions

1 pound bacon, roughly chopped
*tip: place slices of bacon in the freezer to make it easier to cut*
2 large stalks celery, diced
1medium yellow onion, diced
1 large carrot, peeled and diced
4 large Russet Potatoes, peeled and diced
4 medium Red Potatoes, diced
1/4 cup flour
2 cups chicken stock or vegetable stock
4 cups heavy whipping cream
Salt/pepper to taste

chives (chopped)
bacon bits
sour cream
shredded cheddar or monteray jack cheese

1. Place stock pot, (6-8 quart pot) over medium heat. Fry bacon until crisp.
2. Remove and set aside on a paper towel. In the bacon fat, cook onions, carrots, and celery until the onions turn translucent.
3. Add potatoes and cook for 4 minutes.
4. Add the flour and stir constantly over low heat for 5 to 7 minutes. Add stock and half of the bacon back. Season with salt and pepper.
5. Over medium high, bring the soup up to a simmer and cook for 25 minutes or until the potatoes are soft and tender. Mash some of the potatoes for thicker, creamier texture. Add cream and simmer for 5 minutes.
6. Adjust thickness by adding water or stock for a thinner soup. It should have a creamy consistency.
7. Season to taste, and garnish with toppings.

Monday, May 17, 2010

I'm Back with a Bang

Do you see this picture? Enough said.Source : Under the High Chair

So what is in this tasty treat you ask? Sugar and spice and vinegar... that's right. For our teachers' birthday celebration, I made Sour Cream-Chocolate Cake with Peanut Butter Frosting and Chocolate-Peanut Butter Glaze.
This recipe is from Sky High : Irresistible Triple Layer Cakes. (I finally got it thanks to a gift card from Mamaw!)

Here is the recipe:

Sour Cream-Chocolate Cake with Peanut Butter Frosting and Chocolate-Peanut Butter Glaze
(Makes an 8-inch triple-layer cake; serves 12 to 16)
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/2 cups sugar
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, preferably Dutch process
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup neutral vegetable oil, such as canola, soybean or vegetable blend
1 cup sour cream
1 1/2 cups water
2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter the bottoms and sides of three 8-inch round cakepans. Line the bottom of each pan with a round of parchment or waxed paper and butter the paper.

Sift the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt into a large bowl. Whisk to combine them well. Add the oil and sour cream and whisk to blend. Gradually beat in the water. Blend in the vinegar and vanilla. Whisk in the eggs and beat until well blended. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and be sure the batter is well mixed. Divide among the 3 prepared cake pans.

Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until a cake tester or wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out almost clean. Let cool in the pans for about 20 minutes. Invert onto wire racks, carefully peel off the paper liners, and let cool completely.

To frost the cake, place one layer, flat side up, on a cake stand or large serving plate. Spread 2/3 cup cup of the Peanut Butter Frosting evenly over the top. Repeat with the next layer. Place the last layer on top and frost the top and sides of the cake with the remaining frosting. (Making a crumb coat of frosting–a thin layer that binds the dark crumbs to the cake so they don’t show up in the final outer frosting layer–is a great idea for this cake, or any with a dark cake and lighter-colored frosting. Once you “mask” your cake, let it chill for 15 to 30 minutes until firm, then use the remainder of the frosting to create a smooth final coating. Also, once the cake is fully frosted, it helps to chill it again and let it firm up. The cooler and more set the peanut butter frosting is, the better drip effect you’ll get from the Chocolate-Peanut Butter Glaze.)

To decorate with the Chocolate–Peanut Butter Glaze, put the cake plate on a large baking sheet to catch any drips. Simply pour the glaze over the top of the cake, and using an offset spatula, spread it evenly over the top just to the edges so that it runs down the sides of the cake in long drips. Refrigerate, uncovered, for at least 30 minutes to allow the glaze and frosting to set completely. Remove about 1 hour before serving.

Peanut Butter Frosting
Makes about 5 cups
10 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
5 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
2/3 cup smooth peanut butter, preferably a commercial brand (because oil doesn’t separate out)

In a large bowl with an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese and butter until light and fluffy. Gradually add the confectioners’ sugar 1 cup at a time, mixing thoroughly after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl often. Continue to beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes.

Add the peanut butter and beat until thoroughly blended.

Chocolate-Peanut Butter Glaze
Makes about 1 1/2 cups
8 ounces seimsweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
3 tablespoons smooth peanut butter
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/2 cup half-and-half

In the top of a double boiler or in a bowl set over simmering water, combine the chocolate, peanut butter, and corn syrup. Cook, whisking often, until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth.

Remove from the heat and whisk in the half-and-half, beating until smooth. Use while still warm.

And school is out in nine days...look forward to more recipes, decorating ideas and diy(s) coming soon!