Family favourites (old and new)

Month: November 2017

Dilly Beans and Quickles aka Quick Pickles Experiment #1

Dilly Beans and Quickles aka Quick Pickles Experiment #1

My friend Tracy Rowand of A Taste to Savour Catering and Cafe makes her home at Windsor Market, and I was invited to Customer Appreciation Night last week. While I was there being “appreciated” ha, I ended up buying some things (as I usually do […]

London Fog Sugar Cookies….’Cause winter is coming…and with winter…comes Christmas!

London Fog Sugar Cookies….’Cause winter is coming…and with winter…comes Christmas!

Ice box cookies are a good thing, as Martha would say. And this recipe for London Fog Sugar Cookies from Sarah (of the voracious appetite) at Devour is so good I am still thinking about them. Thank you, Sarah! If you are looking for a […]

Corn Syrup Oatmeal Bread

Corn Syrup Oatmeal Bread

This bread is a variation on Bob’s Red Mill, Honey Oatmeal Bread. I bought some Vital Wheat Gluten to see whether it would make a difference in the rise for a whole wheat flour bread. (more…)

Vegetable Dill Soup

Vegetable Dill Soup

I had a tonne of dill left over from making gravlax and gravlax cream cheese slather so I thought I’d make some vegetable soup for Souper Sunday…with leftovers for Meatless Monday, ha ha!

Joulutorttu – Finnish Prune Cookies

Joulutorttu – Finnish Prune Cookies

My Mummu used to make joulutorttu when we came to visit in the winter time. The combination of a sweet buttery pastry and a tart prune filling are etched in my memory as one of my favourite things. It also happens to be a Finnish […]

Pumpkin Mini Scones aka Not Starbucks Hockey Pucks

Pumpkin Mini Scones aka Not Starbucks Hockey Pucks

I hate Starbucks’ scones. Ok, maybe “hate” is a bit strong but they typically suffer from over mixing. Therefore, they end up akin to little chunks of concrete rather than what a scone should be which, IMHO, is crumbly, light, and melt in your mouth delicious. However, I DO like the taste of their pumpkin scone. So, I set out to make a version that meets my exacting texture standards. Yes, I know that makes me sound like a twat, but some things (like scones) are sacred. I am also very fond of the “mini” scone (less guilt involved) so I decided to make my pumpkin scone a mini version.

Caution: I am one of those people who loves a LOT of spice in her pumpkin pie. If you prefer a milder flavour then by all means feel free to half the spice quantities in this recipe to your taste. No point baking something you don’t like is there? No, and quite right too.

Pumpkin Mini Scone Ingredients

  • 2 C all-purpose flour
  • 1 C whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 C sugar
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • ½ tsp ground cloves
  • ½ tsp ground allspice
  • ½ tsp ground cardamom
  • ½ C pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 C buttermilk
  • 10 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted (if all you have is salted, don’t sweat it, nothing terrible will happen)

 

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F (or 200°C). Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl whisk together the flours, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, ground spices, and salt until evenly mixed.
  3. Whisk the buttermilk with the pumpkin puree and the melted butter.
  4. Create a well in the center of the flour, pour the wet mixture into the dry. Gently mix with a wooden spoon until the flour mixture is just moistened. Don’t over-mix (I have to confess I failed a bit on this one but learn from my mistakes grasshoppers). The mixture should look very shaggy.
  5. Divide the mixture into 4 balls, and flatten each onto a floured surface into a 1-inch thick, 6-inch wide circle. Slice each round into 8 wedges.
  6. Transfer to the parchment paper-lined baking sheet, spacing at least an inch apart.
  7. Bake for 18-20 minutes. Cool on a rack completely before glazing.

Plain Glaze

  • 1 C and 1 Tbsp icing sugar
  • 2 Tbsp milk (I used Buttermilk)

Whisk together until smooth and use a pastry brush to paint each cooled scone. Allow to dry at least an hour before drizzling on the spiced glaze.

Spiced Glaze

  • 1 C and 3 Tbsps icing sugar
  • ¼ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
  • pinch of each of ginger, cloves and cardamom
  • 2 Tbsp milk (again I used Buttermilk)

Whisk together and drizzle over scones. Allow to dry.

To store, allow first to cool to room temperature, then seal in a freezer bag.

Makes 32 lovely mini scones.

Thank you Percy the Pumpkin (again).

 

Pumpkin, Carrot and Red Lentil Soup

Pumpkin, Carrot and Red Lentil Soup

Percy the Pumpkin is the gift that just keeps on giving. So far he has been resurrected as delicious dog treats approved by both large and small breed representatives, melt in your mouth pumpkin mini scones, and now he’s about to make his debut on […]

Gravlax Cream Cheese Slather

Gravlax Cream Cheese Slather

So, I thought I had an expensive, epic fail on my hands with the Gravlax I made BUT I soaked it in cold water, dried if off, sliced it up and it was actually pretty good. However, I was still worried about the salt and […]

Lemon Curd in the Microwave – Yes, it’s a (really good) thing

Lemon Curd in the Microwave – Yes, it’s a (really good) thing

So, I’ve been using a lot of lemon zest for this and that lately and had a total of 3 lemons sans zest. It was time to use some lemon juice. Thank you to Ioanna Limberopoulou of Ioanna’s Notebook for this super easy, super fast, super delicious lemon curd recipe. I live in fear of links breaking so I’ve put the English translation below and I did leave out a few of Ioanna’s steps (they were not necessary to acheive a great finished produce IMHO).

Ingredients

  • 1 C white sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 C fresh lemon juice
  • zest of 3 lemons
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted

Method

  1. In a large microwave-safe bowl, whisk together the sugar and eggs until smooth.
  2. Whisk in lemon juice, lemon zest and melted butter.
  3. Cook in the microwave on full power for 1-minute intervals, stirring after each minute. This process will take about three to five minutes depending on the strength of your microwave. You will know the lemon curd is done cooking when it coats the back of a metal spoon.
  4. Remove from the microwave. Once the curd has cooled to room temperature, cover it with a lid and store it in the refrigerator for about 2 weeks. The curd will thicken as it cools.

I ended up using the juice of one Cara Cara orange to make up the 1 C of lemon juice and I only had one lemon with the zest still on so I didn’t quite follow the recipe but it still turned out well.

I’ve got a bunch of limes in the fridge as well and I think I might just give this a go with lime juice to see what happens. I can see folding the curd into a light ricotta cream or good ol’ whipped cream for a light dessert or using it as the base for a fruit flan. Speaking of flan…hmmm that’s next.

Pumpkin Peanut Butter Dog Treats or The Reincarnation of Percy the Pumpkin

Pumpkin Peanut Butter Dog Treats or The Reincarnation of Percy the Pumpkin

Percy the Pumpkin did double duty this year. He guarded the balcony and when he was done, I roasted him up to make pumpkin puree for dog treats. Most people know that carving pumpkins aren’t what you want for baking (too stringy) but they are […]