Saturday, November 22, 2014

Kale Salad - not another one!

Yes, I get it - it's on every menu - but this one is wonderful - really the best I've ever had - and I ate it at least 3 times when I was visiting in Phoenix at La Grande Orange - they were kind enough to share the recipe and I will be making this one again! Kale, quinoa, sunflower seeds, grapes, bell peppers and manchego cheese - what is not to love?!

Served with my favorite Tuna Tacos at Chelsea's Kitchen in AZ

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

More Veggie Pancakes!

 I told you I was going through my old recipe box and I found something cut out from some old newspaper for Tricolor Latkes - so since there were just a few more little zucchinis at the farmer's market - and lots of carrots I decided to try them - and in love I fell. I'm beginning to think any vegetable if grated and sautéed makes a damn good pancake - maybe next I'll try beets!
Tricolor Latkes serves 4 at least - but good leftover

2 medium zucchini - grated and salt with 1/4 teaspoon and let sit in a colander to drain
2 medium carrots - grated
2 medium baking potatoes - grated and squeezed of the excess liquid
1/2 onion grated
1 clove garlic chopped
2 eggs beaten
1/4 cup flour
oil for frying

Once you have let the zucchini sit for about 10 min, squeeze out the liquid then grate the rest and mix in all the remaining ingredients except for the oil. If it is really runny add another tablespoon of flour - this is not so exact since your idea of medium is probably different than mine. Heat a large pan and pour in a small amount of oil and make little pancakes - fry on both sides until browned -with each batch you may have to add a bit more oil - remove to paper towels and sprinkle with a bit of maldon salt and serve with apple sauce and sour cream - yum.

Post Note: I have also done sweet potato pancakes - so I'll try to remember and share those next.

Saturday, November 15, 2014


 A couple weeks ago I got a new cookbook by Kathleen Weber called Della Fattoria Bread (for the record I also donated 2 to the library sale - that's the rule - 1 goes in, another has to go out!) I highly recommend it - and this was the first recipe I tried - Brioche - an eggy, buttery, light dough that makes the most amazing loaf! Of course it is so yellow because my eggs are so fantastic - but still it was a beauty to behold - and didn't taste all that bad either! If you want to make it - buy the book because it is time consuming to make - but well worth the trouble as the recipe made 1 loaf of bread and 2 pans of sticky buns - plenty to share!

French Toast topped with apple compote

Egg in a hole

Cinnamon Sticky Buns
I've been doing plenty of incarnations with the bread - day after was Richard's specialty - egg in a hole and then a couple days later I made french toast - and let me say - it was the best ever! Topped with some apple compote (basically diced green apple tossed with a bit of sugar and apple cider and butter in a pan until tender - and then a dash of vanilla and salt) And I think I will freeze the rest and someday soon make my bread pudding to be topped with a bit of vanilla ice cream and some of that warmed apple compote... one last note - the sticky buns were good but I think I've decided I'm more of a cinnamon roll girl - even though I reduced the amount of sugar in her recipe - they were still super sweet. I prefer the type with a bit of cream cheese frosting on top - but the dough was amazing. Next time I will do them like the ones below - just a bit of nuts and brown sugar and cinnamon rolled into the dough and then iced. Xmas morning is coming.... if you are my neighbor you are one lucky ducky ; )
Last years xmas rolls pre-icing

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

I have nuts on the brain!

Last week was Pepitas - this week it's Sally's Walnuts - lightly sweetened and delicious. In a "fall cleaning" moment I went through an old recipe box - you know the wooden kind? and found a bunch of nostalgic recipes - you know the kind - written in your mom's handwriting, or a couple of grandma's recipes you can't ever throw out. Well this one was from a wonderful lady I met a million (almost) years ago at the SF farmer's market - her name was Sally and I can't remember what else she sold but she made these wonderful Candied Walnuts - she also used to have a UFO mobile that hung from her stand, yes she was a bit of a character but she shared her recipe with me. Luckily I was able to piece together my notes and make them. And now I can't put them down. Good thing for me is that the first fresh walnuts of the season are at my Healdsburg Farmer's Market now and I can make another batch!
Sally's Walnuts

1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup water
1 tablespoon butter
10 oz of fresh whole walnuts (if you have a pound bag, use another tablespoon of sugar and water)
1/4 teaspoon salt

In a large saute pan melt the sugar with the water and butter then toss in the nuts and sauté on medium heat until mostly dry. Then spread out on a foil lined baking sheet sprinkle with salt and roast at 275 degrees for about 20 min, tossing them once. Let cool completely then sprinkle with more salt if you like and try not to eat them all in one night! They are wonderful on top of salads or a hot fudge sundae - or by the handful!

Post Note: That other bowl is apple compote that I made to top my brioche french toast - which is coming up!

Post Post Note: I'm expecting my Pecans any day now in the mail from Texas - so look out for a spiced pecan recipe too!

Friday, November 7, 2014

Spiced Pepitas

If you know me you know roasting whole pumpkins is not something I take lightly - it's a pain in the you know what! So no I did not carve a pumpkin and then reserve the seeds -not to mention take them out of their shells. I went to the store and bought them in bulk - they are called Pepitas - basically shelled pumpkin seeds. This recipe I got from Donna at The Gardner and I think they are the perfect snack and so nice with a little cocktail. Thanks for sharing!

Spiced Pepitas

3/4 pound of raw pepitas
2 tablespoons olive oil
about 1/8-1/4 teaspoon chipotle powder or cayenne pepper basically to taste
1 teaspoon Taste of Tierra Salt  (if you can't get this add salt instead)
juice of 1/2 a lime

Heat up a large sauté pan and add the oil. When that is warmed -medium heat - add the seeds and toss to coat - they should start popping! Then sprinkle in the chipotle powder (Tierra makes this too) and the salt - keep tossing and coating - you want them to get lightly browned - they will keep popping too. After a few min (just don't burn them) squeeze in the lime juice and continue tossing until the juice is absorbed. Let cool and add more salt to taste if you like. Enjoy!

Friday, October 31, 2014

Giants Checkerboard Cake - World Series Champs Again!!!

Batter UP!
 Well, that title could have gone both ways; especially since I made this cake on one of the nights they lost... but my cake was celebrating the SF GIANTS as they are always the champs in my book!

Anyway, this is my silly cake story. It seems actually fitting as if you've looked below you can see from the pictures that a sort of earthquake hit my cake! Well, maybe not an actual earthquake, but I don't know what really happened because I iced the cake, went out to dinner and when I got home half of it had fallen off. When I walked in and saw it I screamed and scared Richard half to death! Then we "repaired" it by placing the top back on and stabbing a couple skewers in to keep it there - now that was quite a "fault".  That didn't keep us from eating it!
Arrgh - what happened??

Repair Job - aka Loma Prieta Cake Zone

GIANTS World Series Winners 2014!!

Post note - don't even ask how to do this - you have to have special equipment (it was a gift) so don't try this at home! 

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Orange and Black! GO GIANTS!!

Ok, last night was our monthly Soup Night and when I realized that the Giants were going to be playing that night in the 3rd game of the World Series - the theme was set! I emailed everybody in the group (ok, just the girls as we are the planners for now) and said we HAVE to watch the game AND everything must be orange and black - including clothing! And let me just say this group went all the way! From pumpkin beer and Orange wine (i had never heard of this but apparently it's all the rage) to persimmon salad with pumpernickel croutons (Sarah you are Queen of Salad!) and a delicious pureed mushroom soup. And then my silly checkerboard cake. But that is another story for another day - stay tuned!
Orange wine - only made by Nuns

Soup night Giants style!

Orange wine and the series!

Persimmon Salad 

Thanks everybody for getting on board!! And tonight I'm hoping for a WIN!