Search this blog


Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Cranberry Eggnog Muffins

I came across this recipe in the Food Network Magazine. At first I didn't think I would make it, but then I bought some eggnog and barely had a glass. For some reason it wasn't agreeing with my preggo gag reflex! So I had a bunch of eggnog left over and thought I should use it up in these muffins. I love the flavor of eggnog just not a huge fan of it straight up. I made them without the streusel topping and the cranberries, to keep it simple for the boys. But if I was making them for me, myself and I, they would be yum-o with the extra goodies. And I added extra cinnamon and nutmeg, otherwise I think they would be a little bland in the flavor department. So here's the recipe, give it a try!


For the Muffins:

  • Cooking spray or muffin liners
  • 1 cup dried cranberries, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup rum or apple juice
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 1/2 cups eggnog
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract

For the Topping:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, melted
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 cups packed light brown sugar


Prepare the muffins: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Mist a 12-cup muffin pan with cooking spray. Warm the cranberries and rum in a small saucepan over medium heat, then remove from the heat and let steep 5 minutes. Drain.
Whisk the flour, baking powder, brown sugar and salt in a medium bowl.
Whisk the butter, eggnog, eggs and vanilla in another bowl. Gently fold into the flour mixture. (The batter will be lumpy; do not overmix.) Fold in the cranberries. Divide the batter evenly among the muffin cups.
Make the topping: Mix the flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, butter, salt and brown sugar in a bowl with your fingertips until it looks like wet sand. Sprinkle generously over the batter.
Bake until the muffins are golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 30 minutes. Cool slightly in the pan, then carefully remove to a rack.

Print Friendly and PDF

Sunday, December 26, 2010

2010 Christmas Feast

Christmas Eve, 1st Course hors d'oeuvres: smoked salmon and spread on blinis

2nd Course: Fois Gras with fig jam, violet jam, and marrow on toasts

3rd Course: Cray fish, gambas, whelks, and smoked salmon with homemade mayonaise!

4th Course: Scallops
5th course: Truffled Boudin (not pictured)

6th Course: Fried Maroille Cheese...mmmm
I didn't get the 7th course (dessert,) but it was a delicious ice cream log cake.

Christmas Day main course: Turkey with wild girolles mushrooms and chestnuts and stuffing..
with potatoes and green beans.

Dessert: mini pastries and..
Which translates to "Log" because it is a French cake shaped like a log!

So now I'm going to be fasting for a while... but as I'm typing, my stomach is growling =)

Print Friendly and PDF

Homemade Pizza Dough

After many many attempts to make pizza at home, I finally figured out that it's all in the dough! I'd been buying ready made dough at the store, and it just doesn't cut it the way homemade does. This pizza feeds 2
350 g flour
1 tsp yeast
1 tsp salt
1 cup warm water
4 Tbsp EVOO
elbow grease
Toppings I used:
tomato sauce
fresh mozzarella
cooked italian sausage
sliced tomatoes patted dry
swiss and parmesan cheese
1. Mix the yeast in the warm water and let sit for a few minutes.
2. In a large mixing bowl, mix the flour with salt, then add the water/yeast mixture. Knead well and add some EVOO little by little while kneading until the dough is elastic and doesn't stick. Take your time with the kneading. It is very important.
3. Once you're all kneaded out, cover with a damp towel and let the dough sit for 45 minutes. It should have risen.
4. Roll out the dough to form a pizza. Mine was about 3/4 inch thick. Try to keep it even so it doesn't over cook in some areas and undercook in others. Add your toppings and pop in the oven at 450°F for about 15 minutes and then check on it every 5.
If you use an egg yolk, add it during the last 5 minutes of cooking time, otherwise it will be hard.

Voila!! No more need for take-out!

Print Friendly and PDF

Friday, December 24, 2010

Leek and Mushroom Pasta

I love how you can add just about anything to a pasta sauce an its almost ALWAYS good! I didn't make this one up, actually, but I thought it was an interesting combination and I LOVE leeks!
1 white part of a leek, sliced thinly
1 pack fresh mushrooms, sliced
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup white wine
some cubed ham or sliced bacon
1/2 tsp thyme
1 cup heavy whipping cream
fresh ground pepper
1 pack pasta (I used fettuccini)
1 cup water from pasta cooking
1. Cook your pasta in some salted boiling water and reserve 1 cup of the cooking liquid.
2. In the meantime, sautée the leek and garlic with thyme in some olive oil until translucent.
3. Deglaze with some white wine and add the mushrooms and ham. Cook until mushrooms are tender and stir in some of the heavy cream.
4. When your pasta is cooked and drained, mix the leek and mushroom mixture into the pasta and stir until the pasta is evenly coated. Add some pasta water and heavy cream until desired sauciness is obtained.

Serve hot with fresh ground pepper, parmesan,and shredded swiss..

Print Friendly and PDF

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Zuppa Toscana REMIX!

I can't get over this soup! I could seriously eat it every day. Luckily, it's been really cold and snowy here, so I have every excuse to make it often.

This time, though, I added used fresh mushrooms and used 1 less bouillon cube.
It turned out DELISH!

I haven't had much time to post thanks to this guy:

he's taking a nap on my lap as we speak.. aww

Print Friendly and PDF