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No Knead Bread in a Dutch Oven

No Knead Bread in a Dutch Oven

This has got to be the easiest bread there is to make and it’s only 4 ingredients and very little mucking about. Stir them together, leave them in a covered bowl overnight and bake in the morning. I had to adapt the baking times from 

Breakfast Cookies #2

Breakfast Cookies #2

This breakfast cookie recipe is easy, quick and makes 18 breakfast cookies. I was going to use honey or agave instead of sugar but discovered I was out so I ended up using brown sugar. You could substitute any kind of nut butter for the 

Almond Thumbprint Cookies with Blueberry and Raspberry Jam

Almond Thumbprint Cookies with Blueberry and Raspberry Jam

Almond thumbprint cookies are easy and can be made with any kind of jam that you like. This recipe is based on Martha Stewart’s Iced Thumbprint Cookies recipe, but instead of the icing sugar mixture I used a half-and-half mixture of blueberry and raspberry jam and followed the usual instructions for making jam thumbprint cookies. Some recipes added the jam after but I opted to bake the jam. The cookie base is not overly sweet (which I like).

Ingredients

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup ground almonds
  • 1/4 blueberry jam
  • 1/4 rasberry jam

Method

  1. Cream butter and sugar in KitchenAid or electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment on medium-high until pale and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes.
  2. Reduce speed and add vanilla.
  3. Mix flour, ground almonds and salt together.
  4. Reduce speed to low, and gradually add dry ingredients until combined.
  5. Wrap the dough in plastic, and refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.
  6. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  7. Line baking sheet with a silpat or baker’s parchment.
  8. Mix the jams together.
  9. Shape dough into 1″ balls, and space 2 inches apart on baking sheet.
  10. Press thumb into center of each cookie. Dip your thumb in flour or water will prevent sticking.
  11. Fill the indents with 1/2 tsp of the jam mixture.
  12. Bake 15-20 minutes or until golden brown.
  13. Let cool completely on sheets.
  14. Dust with icing sugar (optional).
Roasted Tomato Soup

Roasted Tomato Soup

One of my resolutions for 2022 is to do what I can to combat food waste. That means when I go to the local green grocer I look for the veg that is on special and needs to be used immediately. Today Kin’s Apple Farm 

Salmon Cakes Take 2

Salmon Cakes Take 2

Salmon cakes can made from fresh or cooked salmon. Last time I made Fresh Salmon Cakes. This time I baked up a salmon filet that I had in the freezer and used that. This would also be a great recipe for using up left over 

Fresh Salmon Cakes

Fresh Salmon Cakes

These salmon cakes are the product of salmon fillets from Skipper Otto that I bought just before the holidays thinking I was going to make a tonne of gravlax…nope, didn’t get to it. So, now I’m playing with ways to use up eight rather large fillets. I may still make some gravlax but I have to find a whole whack of fresh dill and replenish my kosher salt supply first!

I found a couple recipes for salmon cakes made from fresh salmon but the one I liked best was from Marie at prouditaliancook.com. See her original recipe for Healthy Fresh Salmon Cakes. I tweaked it a bit.

Ingredients

  • 1-1/2 lbs. fresh (or defrosted frozen) salmon filets, skin removed and hand chopped into small chunks. Do NOT use a food processor, you’ll lose the texture.
  • 1 celery stalk, minced
  • 1 small onion, minced (about 1/2 cup)
  • 2 green onions, finely sliced
  • 1 half large red pepper, minced
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 2 Tbsps capers, rinsed and dried
  • 1 tsp teaspoon Old Bay seasoning – if you don’t have any you can either make your own (Old Bay DIY) or use another fish seasoning you like.
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • handful of Italian flat leaf parsley, chopped
  • ⅓ cup mayo
  • ⅓ cup panko bread crumbs with extra to coat the top and bottom of the cakes
  • 1 tablespoon of Djon mustard
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper

Instructions

  1. Sauté all the minced onions, peppers, and celery in a bit of olive oil until translucent. Turn off heat and add the garlic and green onions. Let the mixture cool down completely.
  2. Into a large bowl add the hand chopped salmon, the cooled veg, mayo, lemon zest, Panko, Dijon, Old Bay, parsley and salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Gently fold the ingredients together until well mixed.
  4. Form your salmon cakes into 3×1 inch deep patties and place on a tray lined with baker’s parchment.
  5. Refrigerate uncovered for at least 2 hours.
  6. Preheat oven to 450F.
  7. Drizzle the bottom of an oven-safe frying pan with olive oil.
  8. Coat your fish cakes in a little extra Panko and place in the heated frying pan.
  9. Sauté the cakes until lightly golden (3-4 minutes per side) and finish them off in the oven (6-8 additional minutes).

Serve with Rémoulade or tartar sauce or a fresh squeeze of lemon juice. I served this up with Carrot fries, brown basmati rice, and a simple green salad.

Cardamon Bread Pudding with White Chocolate and Grand Marnier Sauce

Cardamon Bread Pudding with White Chocolate and Grand Marnier Sauce

Cardamon Bread Pudding came about this year because I was going to make Gingersnap Bread Pudding but the gingersnaps didn’t get made (2021 strikes again). We also had a bunch of whipping cream that need to be used up so I had to improvise. Ingredients 

Turkey Croquettes

Turkey Croquettes

Turkey croquettes are a great way to use up leftover turkey and mashed potatoes. This recipe is adapted (with thanks) from the Baked Turkey Croquettes recipe from Skinnytaste.com. Ingredients 2 cups cooked leftover turkey, minced fine 1 cup mashed potatoes – left overs or boil 

Dry brined Spatchcocked and Roasted Turkey

Dry brined Spatchcocked and Roasted Turkey

This is the dry brined (spatchcocked) turkey we made during the surreal and disasterous Christmas of 2021. It looks burnt, but trust me it was moist and delicious. And, it only took an hour and 45 minutes to cook at 12lb bird!

ALERT: This is not a “same day” recipe. You need 1-3 days depending on your ingredients and how long you want to brine the bird so read the order of operations and decide whether this recipe is for you. Personally, it’s my favourite way to roast a turkey.

You need to start 24-72 hours ahead to dry brine. 24 hours is the minimum. Prepping to dry brine the bird takes about an hour and then you need to pop it in the fridge uncovered to let the brine do its thing.

Order of operations – Read this first!

  1. Get a fresh 12-18 lbs turkey or make sure that your turkey has been thawed overnight in the fridge. Note: make sure your turkey is not kosher, saline injected or otherwise pre-salted. If it is, pick another recipe.
  2. Spatchcock the Turkey and flatten it out on a tray, set aside while you prepare the turkey stock. Spatchcocking a turkey or chicken means you take the neck and back bone out with kitchen schears and reserve. Need instructions on how to spatchcock? Check out the video from Serious Eats, Knife Skills: How to Spatchcock a Turkey
  3. Prep Turkey stock and get it to the point where you have reduced it to a simmer. Now move to brining the  bird.
  4. Mix up dry brine ingredients.
  5. Pat the turkey dry, loosen the skin over the breast and legs, and push the dry brine underneath, massage in.
  6. Sprinkle turkey with the salt and baking powder mixture and put in on rimmed baking sheet. Pop it into the fridge uncovered and let it brine at least 24 hours (up to 72 is ok). Leaving it uncovered lets the salt do it’s work on skin to produce a more crispy result.
  7. Then you’ll roast the bird for about 1 hour and 45 minutes or until a meat thermometer reads 160 F.

Dry Brine

  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 Tbsp minced parsley (optional)
  • 1 Tbsp minced fresh rosemary
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp fresh thyme
  • 3/4 tsp dried sage
  • 1 1/4 Tbsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 Tbsp Morton’s Kosher Salt (add 1 1/2 tsp if you are using Diamond Crystal). Note: the type of salt matters. DO NOT use regular table salt.
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp sugar
  • Zest of 2 lemons
  • Juice from 1 lemon
  • 3 1/2 Tbsp of olive oil

For outside of the turkey:

  • 6 Tbsp Morton’s kosher salt (or 1/2 cup Diamond Crystal kosher salt)
  • 2 Tbsp baking powder

Turkey stock

  • Turkey neck, back and giblets
  • 1 onion cut in half and studded with 4 whole cloves
  • 1 allspice ball
  • 10 black pepper balls
  • 1 Tbsp rock salt
  • 1 large carrot cut in quarters and then lengthwise
  • 2 sticks celery with leaves chopped in quarters
  • 8 cardamon pods
  • 6 clove garlic, smashed
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 10-12 cups water

Method – Stock

Put all the ingredients into a large pot and add the water – ingredients should be covered by a couple inches of water (at least). Bring to a boil, skimming off any foam that rises to the top. Reduce heat to a gentle simmer and let it simmer for 1 hour. Let cool, strain and store in the fridge. You’ll use it later for making stuffing, the gravy and basting the bird (if needed).

Method – Roasting the Turkey

  1. Position a rack in the bottom third of the oven and preheat oven to 425 F.
  2. Dust off excess baking power and salt. Transfer bird to a clean rimmed backing sheet with a rake inserted.
  3. Tuck wings under the back of the turkey.
  4. Roast at 425 F until the skin starts to brown in spots, about 20 minutes.
  5. Baste the turkey with pan juices (or warm turkey stock if you don’t get enough juices). Rotate the roasting pan, tent the breast with foil to prevent it from overcooking.
  6. Continue roasting and basting every 15 minutes until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of a thigh without touching registered 160 F. This should take an additional 30 to 45 minutes, check the temperature and keep basting and rotating until you get to 160 F.
  7. Remove turkey from oven and tent with foil. Let it rest for 20 minutes.
  8. Carve and serve.

Gravy

Make a roux with 1/4 butter (or pan drippings if you have enough), and 3 Tbsp flour. Melt the butter and sprinkle in the flour stirring with the back of a spoon. Cook out the roux until nice and brown. Slowly add 2 cups of cold turkey stock to the roux, stirring constantly. Keep stirring until the gravy starts to thicken.

Nordic Accord Meatballs

Nordic Accord Meatballs

Nordic accord meatballs are a mash up of Finnish, Swedish and Norwegian meatballs. My mom couldn’t decide which recipe to follow so she took the best bits from each and put them altogether in one. We serve our meatballs with my Mummu’s onion and mushroom