your thanksgiving butternut squash soup

butternut squash soup

People have certain rules about what should be on the Thanksgiving table. I, for one, am pretty loosey goosey about the whole thing. This is not surprising to anyone who knows me well because ‘loosey goosey’ pretty much sums up my approach to the culinary world. I like to adjust as I go, add a pinch of something if it feels right and go with what I have on hand. When I sat down to plan what I would bring to the three dinners we will be attending, I knew I wanted to stray a little from tradition but still stay within the lines of the season. Dressing, green bean casserole and pie all made the cut and will maintain their traditional integrity, but I still felt like we could shake things up just a little tiny bit, but don’t worry, I didn’t nix the mashed potatoes.

I understand that no one really needs to have an appetizer right before they consume a weeks worth of food, and most people think the idea is absurd, but sometimes you want dinner to be a little fancy and I don’t know any better time to be fancy than on Thanksgiving. Break out the cloth napkins, the candlesticks and the good china, even make seating cards if you’d like and enjoy the one meal a year where you can pull out all the stops.

Thankfully, this starter won’t take up much of your time (which I know is utterly precious on the big day), and most of the ingredients are likely in your kitchen anyway, so no large additions to the shopping list either. Make the soup and remove the seeds from the pomegranate the day before and throw them in the fridge. Take a few leaves off of the brussels sprouts you’re probably already making and all thats left to do is just throw it all together. We ate it at room temperature and it was delightful, but you can warm it up in a pot if you can stand one more minute at the stove. (more…)

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November 24, 2013. Tags: , , , , , , , , , . gluten free, quick and easy, sides, soup, vegetarian. 7 comments.

grilled sweet potato and green bean salad

grilled sweet potato and green bean salad

When we were first married, we moved to San Francisco. We fell madly in love with the city, even all the quirks like the fog and the naked men. Within the first year we started attending a church we really felt at home in and found ourselves immersed in a glorious community. Once a week we hosted a community group (part bible study, part hang out) that quickly became our favorite day of the week. We made friends that turned into family, we felt so at home. After living in SF for two years, we made the difficult decision to move to the south bay, about a 45 minute drive out of the city. Leaving (what felt like) our beating heart in San Francisco, we felt being closer to our jobs and my husband’s family would be the best thing for us as we planned to start a family. Even now, if you ask me if it was the right choice to leave the city, I don’t know that I could give you an honest answer. I want to believe moving was the right thing to do but that beating heart aches for those steep streets.

Life in the south bay is different. It’s slow and calm. Rarely do I ever hear our neighbors and there are few people who look like they are in need. Everyone is an engineer and has 2.5 kids. There are pools and backyards and strip malls. KFC, Burger King and Taco Bell are within walking distance as well as Big Lots and Lucky.  Starbucks is the closest thing to coffee and mediocre deep dish pizza fills in the gap on a desperately lazy evening. Our condo complex is like a silent secret garden with new and interesting people popping up all around us. There are four different couples in our immediate block who have children under the age of one year old. The neighbors across the way have a very friendly cat and a dog who will reluctantly warm up to you. The couple a few doors down has a little girl who will melt your heart. Less than two miles away, O has his grandpa, grandma, nana and papa. We have a group of friends we meet with on Wednesdays that have committed to navigate through life together as we all start to grow our families and learn what it means to follow Jesus within the craziness of this life.  Our condo is large with two bedrooms and two bathrooms. We even have a dishwasher.

As I watch Oliver grow and learn, smile and giggle, I realize that being close to family is important. There are all these people around who love him (and us) and want to share that with him. While San Francisco has it’s own charm (including one of my sisters), I can say I’m starting to warm up to life in the slow lane. I don’t know that my whole heart will ever be here, because I’m not convinced I can completely shake the adoration I hold for the city, but most of it feels very blessed to live where we do. To be able to make a quick dinner for nana and papa with little notice because we are lucky enough that they were literally ‘in the neighborhood’, makes me so happy. I hope that our son can grow up appreciating community like we have been fortunate enough to experience. Whether that’s in the city or the suburbs, it is integral to the satisfaction of our souls and fulfills in us something we were meant to long for. (more…)

July 26, 2013. salads, sides, summer, vegetarian. 4 comments.

wheat drop biscuits with marjoram + black pepper

I feel like I’m finally back in the groove. For awhile there, I couldn’t bring myself to cook anything at all. In the middle of summer, when we decided to move south, I just couldn’t find time with the many 4o mile trips back and forth between apartments to make anything even resembling food. Unfortunately, I never really regained consciousness until now. The coolness of fall has roused me and I’m back to finding flour in my hair every morning. Even if that’s inconvenient (and weird), I’m happy to be feeling like me again.  (more…)

October 9, 2011. baking, bread, breakfast, quick and easy, sides, Whole Wheat. Leave a comment.

birthday dinner: farro and a fresh spring salad

Birthdays are my favorite. They hold such joy and evoke beautiful things like gifts, love notes and good food. Growing up, our family always made our birthdays into large productions. We were conditioned at an early age to expect great things on our special day. Although I feel bad for those responsible for the birthday plans in my adult life (because it’s truly hard to live up to the expected hype) I would not trade those celebrations for anything. My mother however, has resigned to the quieter variations. I’m not sure if that’s due to the fact that it’s more fun for her to dote on us, or if it’s that she is trying to divert attention from her age. She doesn’t want all of her friends to find out that she has been 29 for the last 24 years. They’d be jealous.

This year, Mom’s request was a steak dinner with just the girls. We honored her request and hosted a small dinner, just the four of us, on my sister’s deck in the middle of the forest. It was wonderfully simple and I hope, the perfect way to show our love for her.

(more…)

April 20, 2011. quick and easy, sides, vegetarian, Whole Wheat. 8 comments.

cornbread

It has been unusually cold in the bay area lately. It’s raining today and has been off and on all week. The seasonal clock tells me to get ready for BBQ’s and the bounty of fresh summer produce but my body tells me to continue to hibernate. I fantasize about fresh tomatoes and grilled corn on the cob, but for now, those ingredients are finding their way into dishes like warm chili and comforting corn chowder. If the weather is going to thwart the warmer days that give way to the long, lazy days of summer, then I might as well make the most of it by making foods that seem to make me feel warmer inside than it is outside. click here for the full post

May 18, 2010. Tags: , , . bread, quick and easy, sides, vegetarian. 1 comment.

cauliflower puree and the failure of beef

I don’t love beef. It’s not something I keep stocked in the house (my poor husband), and it’s not something I’ll order at a restaurant. I don’t really know how it should taste so you can imagine that I have no clue how to cook it. When it comes to beef, I am completely lost. I know some things, like which steaks tend to be the juiciest, or which cuts need to be cooked low and slow, but there seems to be something I’m missing. 

The other night, I wanted to make Jon something special and when I say ‘special’ I mean beef. Because we eat it so rarely, I see it as a special occasion type food. So in preparation, I asked around the office about what cut I should get and received advice from a trusted and accomplished carnivore who said she had the moistest, most succulent london broil the other day. She gave me detailed instructions on the preparation and cooking method and sent me home with a plan. I stopped at Whole Foods, picked up an inexpensive piece of London Broil and whistled all the way home with expectations of wooing my man. On my way I remembered that we often ate london broil as kids and so I decided to call my mom for some extra advice. She assured me that the trick to a juicy, tender piece of meat was marinating, so we made up a concoction and when I arrived home, I got right to it. Now, trying to be a good wife and knowing my limitations, I asked Jon to do the actual cooking of the beef so at least I couldn’t fail at that! He was more than happy to do so. 

To pair with the beef, I decided I would try a cauliflower puree that I read about the night before in the Martha Stewart Cooking School cookbook. It seemed to be a wonderful alternative to a starchy mound of potatoes. I cut the cauliflower into florets and then simmered them in 1 cup heavy cream (so much for healthy!) and 2 cups fat free milk. I also added a little cumin and kosher salt to the mix to give it a little extra flavor. After about 20 minutes the cauliflower was fork-tender so I poured off most of the liquid, reserving a 1/4 cup and threw it in the blender to liquify. What resulted was a velvety smooth puree that was just as good as any mashed potato I’ve ever had. After tasting it I thought that this could be the best part of the meal, and after tasting the london broil, I was absolutely correct. click here for more cauliflower goodness and beef fail!

April 22, 2010. Tags: , , , , . beef, quick and easy, sides, vegetarian. 4 comments.

thanksgiving

What a wonderful time to focus on the many blessings in life. I just might have the best family in the world.

We were fortunate enough to host Thanksgiving this year. The feast usually takes place at my Father-In-Law’s house, but he graciously humored my over anxious, newly wed fantasy of cooking Thanksgiving dinner for the whole family in our modest San Francisco apartment. As I’ve led on before, I’ve had a menu in mind for this very opportunity since about, I don’t know, June. At first, I had an illustrious list of dishes that would take days and would impress the most dedicated foodie, but as I sought the wise counsel of those who had previously tackled these types of things, I decided it would be best to stick to simple, tried and true items that would be a sure success.



Biscuits are foundational to the Thanksgiving meal. They serve a number of purposes including, but not limited to, dipping, sandwiching, buttering and smothering. I wanted to make sure they were light, flaky and perfectly golden. Check, check and check.


Brussel Sprouts are perfect any time, especially when sauteed with pork. How can that ever be wrong? This delicious side could not have been any easier. Just slice the mini cabbages lengthwise, cube some pancetta, and saute in a tablespoon of olive oil until tender. Top with freshly grated parmesan. Ridiculously delicious.



“These carrots are an explosion in my mouth!”, as stated by one guest at the table.There is definitely a lot going on in this side, but it is all crucial for the fantastic flavor that makes this dish explode.



Grandma thought this was the best turkey she had ever had. I think that pretty much seals it. This turkey is the product of Americas Test Kitchen. Those people really do know how to narrow things down until they work perfectly. This particular bird was brined and then air chilled overnight and then smothered with an herb paste inside and out to make the crispiest and tastiest skin you’ve ever had.


Stovetop has nothing on homemade stuffing. Even those at the table that are wholly dedicated to the stuff, asked for seconds and leftovers.My goal for Thanksgiving was to make everything from scratch. Part of this was because I’m stubborn and let’s face it, a bit of a food snob, but also it was in part to deliver the best possible result I could manage with the freshest ingredients.



After all of us had slipped into a tryptophan coma, we somehow managed to shovel down some pie a la homemade vanilla ice cream. My Father-in-Law makes the best homemade ice cream and it proved to be the epitome of perfection atop pumpkin pie.

This year, my husband and I are most thankful for the wonderful people in our lives. Although it wasn’t possible for all of them to be with us this holiday, a few could and we couldn’t have been more honored to have them with us.

Grandma G

Kevin, loving those brussel sprouts!

Auntie and Karen

The whole gang minus the handsome photographer. Karen is showing us her card.
Shortly she’ll realize this was not a good plan.
Buttermilk Biscuits
Gourmet, June 2005
makes 6 biscuits

I multiplied this recipe by 4. It was just right for 10 people with leftovers for a fabulous Friday morning breakfast.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar*
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • Rounded 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 stick (1/4 cup) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 3/4 cup well-shaken buttermilk
  • 1 tablespoon milk or cream for brushing biscuits

Preparation:

Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 425 F.

Sift together flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and baking soda onto a sheet of wax paper, (or into a bowl) then sift again into a bowl (or into a new bowl). Blend in butter with your fingertips until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add buttermilk and stir with a fork until a dough just forms (dough will be moist).

Turn dough out onto a well-floured surface and knead gently 6 times with well-floured hands. Pat out dough on a floured surface with floured hands, re-flouring surface and hands if necessary, into an 8 by 5 1/2 inch rectangle. Trim all 4 sides with a knife, dusting knife edge with flour before each cut. Cut rectangle in half lengthwise, then into thirds crosswise to form 6 (2 1/2 inch) squares, flouring knife between cuts. Transfer biscuits with a metal spatula to an ungreased baking sheet, arranging them 2 inches apart, and brush tops with milk or cream. Bake until pale golden, 12 to 15 minutes, then transfer to a rack to cool to room temperature.

* I found these to be a little too sweet. I would suggest only using 1 tablespoon of sugar.





Brussel Sprouts with Pancetta and Parmesan
serves 10

Ingredients:

  • 3 pounds brussel sprouts
  • 1/2 pound 1/2 inch thick pancetta, cubed
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Shaved parmesan to taste

Preparation:

Rinse brussel sprouts and pat dry. Thinly slice brussel sprouts lengthwise.

Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in large skillet over medium high heat.

Chop pancetta into 1/4 cubes and add to heated skillet. Saute until lightly browned about one minute. Add brussel sprouts and saute until tender about 8-10 minutes. Shave parmesan over brussel sprout mixture and serve.


November 28, 2009. bread, pumpkin, sides, turkey. 4 comments.

local fare

baby carrots

San Francisco is a wonderful place to live. It’s like no other city. If you have never visited, please do, and if it strikes your fancy, drop on by for dinner. We’d love to have you.

There are a couple of fantastic farmers markets here in the city. The most notable is the Ferry Building Farmers Market. This takes place on Tuesdays and Saturdays. It is such a lovely indulgence of the senses. Beautiful color, interesting people, wonderful smells, and of course superb food. All of the vendors with whom we had the pleasure to meet, were extremely helpful. People that grow their own food really know it well. This is very helpful for me as the consumer. I was looking for some salad greens that would go well with a pasta and proscuitto salad and we were introduced to baby chard by a weathered man who knew his salad greens. He gushed about it’s saltiness and the way it shines when flash cooked. We took home a huge bag of it, and fell in love.

The husband and I were having some dinner company and I wanted to do my very best to get local food. Local, fresh food. For the most part we succeeded. Along with the baby chard, we made it home with baby carrots, italian parsley, and a couple of well priced pork tenderloins from the local butcher. pork tenderloin

I paired the pork tenderloin and baby carrots with a warm pasta salad. The salad looked nice in the picture, but I was a little worried about how it would taste. However, it was intriguing enough to make me want to try it, and let me tell you what, it was good. We nearly finished the whole thing between the three of us.

pasta and proscuitto salad

Spice-Rubbed Pork Tenderloin with Roasted Baby Carrots
serves 6
Bon Appetit, April 2009

Ingredients:

Carrots:

  • 2 pounds baby carrots, peeled, trimmed, leaving 1/2 inch of green tops attached
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 small jalapeño (preferably red), seeded, coarsely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon honey*
  • 1/2 teaspoon ancho chile powder**
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarse kosher salt

Pork:

  • 2 1-to 1 1/4-pound pork tenderloins
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ancho chile powder
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika***
  • 1 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

Preparation:

For carrots:
Arrange carrots on large rimmed baking sheet. Whisk 2 tablespoons water and all remaining ingredients in small bowl; pour over carrots and toss to coat. Cover tightly with heavy-duty foil. DO AHEAD: Can be made 2 hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature. Toss to coat before continuing.

For pork:
Preheat oven to 400°F. Roast carrot mixture covered until just tender, about 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, arrange pork tenderloins on another rimmed baking sheet. Stir oregano, cumin, chile powder, smoked paprika, and 1 teaspoon coarse salt in small bowl; rub mixture all over tenderloins. Heat oil in heavy large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add pork to skillet and cook until browned on all sides, about 5 minutes. Return to rimmed baking sheet.

Remove foil from carrots. Nestle pork among carrots on baking sheet, arranging carrots in single layer around pork. Roast uncovered until instant-read thermometer inserted into center of pork registers 145°F, stirring carrots occasionally if beginning to caramelize, about 18 minutes. Let rest 5 to 10 minutes.

Transfer pork to work surface. Cut crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Arrange carrots on platter. Top with pork slices, drizzling any pan juices over.

* I didn’t use honey because I felt that the carrots would already be fairly sweet on their own. I was right.

** This was not something I had in my pantry so I just used plain old chili powder.

*** Also, another thing that I tragically do not have in my pantry. I used regular Paprika, but next time I will have and use the smoked kind because it’s so good.

Pasta with Peas, Asparagus, Butter Lettuce and Proscuitto
serves 6-8
Bon Appetit, April 2009

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter*
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil plus additional for drizzling
  • 1/2 pound spring onions or green onions (dark green parts discarded); white parts cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices, pale green parts cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices
  • 2 tablespoons minced shallot
  • Coarse kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1/2 cup low-salt chicken broth
  • 1 1/2 pounds asparagus, cut crosswise into 3/4-inch pieces
  • 2 cups shelled fresh peas (from about 2 pounds peas in pods)
  • 1 pound campanelle (trumpet-shaped pasta) or medium (about 1-inch) shell-shaped pasta
  • 1 head of butter lettuce or Boston lettuce (about 6 ounces), cored, leaves cut into 3/4-inch-wide slices**
  • 1 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese plus additional for sprinkling
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
  • 4 ounces thinly sliced prosciutto, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch-wide strips

Preparation:

Melt butter with 2 tablespoons oil in heavy large skillet over medium heat. Add onions and shallot. Sprinkle with coarse salt and pepper. Sauté until tender (do not brown), about 8 minutes. Add wine; increase heat to medium-high and simmer until liquid is reduced to glaze, about 3 minutes. Add broth and bring to simmer; set aside.

Cook asparagus in large pot of boiling salted water until just tender, 2 to 4 minutes, depending on thickness of asparagus. Using skimmer or slotted spoon, transfer to large bowl of ice water. Return water to boil. Add peas and cook until just tender, about 2 minutes. Using skimmer, transfer to bowl with asparagus. Drain vegetables.

Return water in pot to boil. Cook pasta until tender but still firm to bite, stirring occasionally. Drain, reserving 1 cup pasta cooking liquid.

Meanwhile, reheat onion mixture. Add lettuce and stir just until wilted, about 1 minute. Add drained asparagus and peas; stir until heated through.***

Add pasta, 1 cup Parmesan cheese, and parsley to skillet with vegetables; toss, adding reserved pasta cooking liquid by 1/4 cupfuls if dry. Season with salt and pepper.

Transfer pasta to large shallow bowl. Sprinkle prosciutto over; drizzle with olive oil. Serve, passing more cheese alongside.

* I ommitted the butter. I thought that the oil was enough.

** I used baby chard. It was yummy.

*** After reading reviews for this recipe, I decided to not wilt the lettuce at this step. I just stirred it in at the end with the hot pasta and a splash of pasta water. It was wilted perfectly. I think it would be pretty limp and wimpy if it was wilted the way the recipe suggests.

August 15, 2009. Tags: , , , , , . pork, salads, sides. 2 comments.

grilled salmon

There are certain foods that I can only eat occasionally. Salmon is one of them. I love the texture, the flavor, the versatility, but if you feed it to me too often, it makes me sick. I’ve learned to pace myself. I’ve also learned that Costco is an absolutely fantastic place to get it. It was so fresh that I even ate some raw after I seasoned it. It was like butter. Next up for this orange beauty: salmon tartar.salmon

I have to admit, I didn’t measure anything for this. I sort of sprinkled some of this, drizzled a little of that, and voila! It was succulent.

salmon

I served it with a green bean and mushroom saute that has pretty much become my favorite side dish ever. I hope you like it just as much as I did.

Grilled Salmon with Green Bean and Mushroom Saute
serves 4

Disclaimer: I am merely guessing on these measurements. Please use ‘to taste’ for all of them!

Ingredients:

For salmon:

1 uber large salmon from Costco (cut out four 3 in wide strips and freeze the remaining fish. I’m thinking salmon chowder for the rest.)

chili powder (enough to generously cover all four pieces)

ground ginger (light sprinkling on each piece)

extra virgin olive oil (drizzle lightly over each piece)

salt and pepper to taste

For green bean and mushroom saute:

4 cups green beans, washed and stemmed

3 cups crimini mushrooms, washed and sliced

1-2 teaspoons red pepper flakes

1/2 tablespoon minced garlic (Or more to taste. I am of the thought that more is always better.)

olive oil for sauteing

1/4 cup water for steaming

fresh grated parmesan

salt and pepper to taste

Preparation:

For Salmon:

Pre-heat grill to medium-high heat. Prepare a piece of foil large enough to accommodate all four pieces of fish. Spray lightly with cooking spray. Cut four generous pieces off of giant salmon slab. Place on the prepared foil. Sprinkle the chili powder, ginger, salt and pepper onto each piece of fish. Drizzle lightly with olive oil. Transfer to grill. Grill covered until the salmon is firm and is flaky when pierced with a fork, about 8-10 minutes.

For Saute:

Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet on medium-high heat. Add green beans, mushrooms, and garlic. Saute for 2-3 minutes, until garlic is fragrant. Add red pepper flakes and saute for 1 minute. Add the water and cover tightly. Let steam for 3-5 minutes. Serve with grated parmesan and salt and pepper to taste.

July 28, 2009. Tags: , , , , , , , , . quick and easy, sides. 1 comment.

tomato and corn salad followed by ridiculously good strawberry shortcake.

strawberry shortcake

Fathers Day is synonymous with grilling. I tried for days to come up with a menu that didn’t include the grill, but really that would just go against all things man, or Dad as it were. I don’t mind grilling, in fact it’s a wonderful way to cut calories, and get incredible taste out of so many things. I just love to do new things, but when you’re cooking to honor someone else, it’s good to make something you know they’ll like. So, I decided on hamburgers (always a hit) with a tomato and corn salad, some smashed potatoes, and to top it all off, fresh strawberry shortcake. It all turned out to be fantastic, especially the dessert, which is of course, the most important part.

shortcake

The burgers were pretty normal as far as burgers go. Some sirloin, some chuck, a little garlic along with a few splashes of Worcestershire. I can’t actually tell you if they were good, because I made myself a little turkey burger (I don’t  really eat red meat if I can help it),  but everyone seemed to like ’em. The shining stars of the evening were undoubtedly the so-good-you-have-to-take-a-doggy-bag strawberry shortcake and the succulent tomato and corn salad.

tomato and corn salad

This tomato and corn salad is extremely easy and can be tweaked in so many ways. I think I’ll add some feta next time, because as you’ll learn, it’s basically my favorite thing on earth.

P.S. This being kind of a special day, I really didn’t take inventory of the calories for any given dish. I did lighten my meal by using a whole wheat bun, and having turkey instead of beef. The tomato and corn salad is something that is definitely on the lower side of caloric consideration. The strawberry shortcakes however, can be as bad as they want because something that good can just be that way, and we’ll let it.



Tomato and Corn Salad

serves 6

Ingredients:

3 ears corn

3 pints cherry tomatoes

1 bunch chives, finely chopped

2 medium cloves garlic, minced

1 1/2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, plus a little extra for brushing

juice of half a lemon

salt and pepper to taste

Preparation:

1. Pre-heat the grill to high heat.

2. Shuck the corn and remove all of the hair like things (real name anyone?).

3. Brush the corn with a bit of olive oil.

4. Place corn on the grill, turning occasionally to avoid burning, roughly about 8-10 minutes.

5. While the corn is cooking to perfection, cut all of the tomatoes in half, crosswise. Place into medium size bowl.

6. Add the rest of the ingredients except for the corn. Mix to incorporate.

7. Once the corn is done, let it cool a bit. Then with a knife, remove the kernels by slicing down the cob. Try not to slice too deep or you’ll get the tough stuff underneath.

8. Mix well.

This salad can be made up to an hour or two ahead of time. Letting it rest a bit helps all of the juices to blend well.



Strawberry Shortcakes
 

Parade, May 2008

via epicurious.com

serves 6

Ingredients:

Strawberries-

  • 4 pints strawberries, lightly rinsed, hulled and halved*
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon sugar**
  • 2 cups heavy (whipping) cream
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 6 shortcakes (see recipe below), for serving
  • 6 whole strawberries, for garnish

Shortcakes-

  • 2 cups self-rising flour***
  • 2 1/2 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) cold, unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 2 tablespoon heavy (whipping) cream

Preparation:

For the shortcakes:
1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Grease a baking sheet.

2. Combine the flour, sugar and salt in a bowl.

3. Add the butter. Using a pastry blender or your fingers, rub it into the dry ingredients until mixture resembles a coarse meal. Stir in the milk until a very soft dough is formed. Do not overwork.

4. Drop the dough in 6 equal portions onto the prepared baking sheet. Lightly pat the dough into rounds—3 to 3 1/2 inches in diameter—and lightly brush the tops with the cream.

5. Bake the shortcakes in the center of the oven for 15 to 20 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on a wire rack.

For the Strawberries:
1. Place strawberries in a bowl. Sprinkle with lemon juice and sugar, then gently toss with a rubber spatula. Let rest for 1 1/2 to 2 hours for juices to develop.

2. Just before serving, whip cream with 1 Tbsp sugar until it holds soft peaks.

3. To serve, slice off the top third of each shortcake. Place the bottoms on 6 dessert plates and top with 1/3 cup of the prepared berries and juice, plus a spoonful of whipped cream. Cover with the top. Spoon over more berries and juice, then dollop with whipped cream. Garnish each with a whole berry and drizzle with any remaining juice.

*This seems like a lot of strawberries, but I promise you’ll want at least this much. You may even want to make extra so that you can have some on your cereal, or on oatmeal, or on ice cream. Oh the possibilities are endless.

**I definitely like my whip cream a little sweeter than this. I used about 2 1/2 tablespoons of sugar and also added a splash of vanilla. To me, without those things, it just tastes like fluffy milk, which is less sweet than what I was going for.

***I could not find self-rising flour, so my husband, being the extremely resourceful one that he is, figured out that all that means is they have already added baking powder and salt for you. So, we just added our own to the mix. For this recipe I used 3 teaspoons of baking powder and 1 teaspoon of salt in addition to the salt that the recipe already called for.

June 22, 2009. Tags: , , , , , , , , . dessert, quick and easy, salads, sides, vegetarian. 6 comments.