Sunday, January 30, 2011

God, America, and Apple Pie!

I have had numerous folks ask for my apple pie recipe. There is a picture of it at the bottom of my blog. This is so simple, not a ton of ingredients etc. The apples you use can make a difference though. I strongly suggest that if you are baking fruit pies, you learn the best varieties for what you want. Some folks want crunch in their apple pie, some want it very soft etc. What kind of apples you use can determine that.   And you can also use this recipe for making a straight pear pie. I have a recipe for a pear custard that is to die for.

This is just the filling, I can give a great pie crust recipe later.

Mom's Apple Rum Pie

6-7 thinly sliced apples
3/4 - 1 C sugar
2 tbs flour
3/4 tsp cinnamon
splash of fresh lemon
2 tbs rum
2 tbs butter

In a 1 gallon zip lock baggie, I combine the sugar, flour and cinnamon. Seal and shake together well, mixing it. Then ass the apples, reseal, and shake till all is coated. Place in pie crust in layers. Sprinkle lemon juice and rum over top, then cut butter into bits and dot the top before placing the top pie crust on.

Bake @ 425 for 40-50 minutes. This is for one pie.

The Best Peanut Butter Icing.....

Today is my 40th birthday. To quote Jack Benny,

"Age is strictly a case of mind over matter.

If you don't mind, it doesn't matter."

...-Jack Benny
To which I say AMEN!  My favorite cake and icing is actually the hazelnut torte that is a recipe from a great family friend, but I am not allowed to share that with threat of death. So next in line is chocolate cake with peanut butter icing.
I have to say I am very critical of most peanut butter icings. Most recipes call for using butter or shortening, which I HATE. It makes the icing less peanut-buttery, and often there is grease or lardy after taste plus it makes it heavy and very stiff. Ick.
Mine is CREAMY. Peanut buttery richness. And folks, the brand of peanut butter DOES make a huge difference. So don't substitute.
Peanut Butter Icing
1 C peanut butter (Skippy is best, Jiff in a pinch, no other substitutes)
4 C 10x (confectioners sugar)
10 tbs milk or more to creaminess desired
2 tsp vanilla
Combine all ingredients and mix slowly to start, can increased when mixed. Start with the 20 tbs milk, if you want it a little creamier, just keep adding in small amounts until desired creaminess is reached.
Chocolate Cake
3 C flour
2 C sugar
6tbs nestle quick
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 tbs vinegar
2 tsp vanilla
2/3 C oil or applesauce
2 C cold water
Combine ingredients and mix for about 2 minutes. Bake in a 9X11 baking dish @ 350 for 40 minutes or done.  There are variations on this that also use chocolate pudding mix too.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Turnips? Oh Yes!

A favorite casserole over fall and winter here is turnip casserole. Before you wrinkle your nose at turnips, they are absolutely delicious and soulful this way! Basically, a scalloped version.

Turnip Casserole
Cube a potato pan full of turnips, cook until tender and drain.
You will also need 1-2 C mild or medium cheddar cheese, sliced or shredded, italian bread crumbs, and a few tbs of butter aside.

White Sauce
1/4 C butter
1/4 C flour
2 1/2 C Milk
1 tsp salt

Melt butter on low heat, stir in flour makeing a rue and add milk slowly, stirring.

In a casserole dish, layer turnips, cover with mixture and shake to be covered. Add pats of butter and grated cheese or cheese slices on top and then sprinkle with italian bread crumbs. Bake @ 350 degrees for 40 minutes.

Red Velvet

Well, since Valentine's Day is around the corner, Red Velvet cake with cooked icing should be a thought! This is my other half's favorite cake, and is made for many of the family birthdays as well. This is his mom's recipe and it rocks.

1 stick butter
1 1/2 C sugar
2 eggs
2 red food color
2 tbs. cocoa
1 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla
1 C buttermilk
2 C cake flower
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tbs vinegar

Cream butter, add sugar and eggs. Beat thoroughly. Make paste of the cocoa and food coloring. Add to creamed mixture. Mix together salt, vanilla, and buttermilk. Add to creamed mixture alternately with four. Mix thoroughly low speed 3 minutes. Mix soda and vinegar and fold into batter. Do NOT beat after folding in soda/vinegar mixture. Bake @ 350 degrees 30 minutes for 9X13 pan.

1 C Milk
5 tbs flour
1/2 C butter
1/2 C butter crisco
1 tsp vanilla
1 C sugar

Shake flour and milk together until no lumps. Simmer on low heat and stir until thick, about 8 minutes.  Let cool. In large mixer cream butter and crisco. Add vanilla and sugar. Add COOL flour mixture. Beat high speed until it loses grainy texture, like whipped cream, aproximately 10 minutes. Keep refridgerated.

New Year, New Goals!

          First, I need to apologize. I sure meant to post long before now, especially with holiday/winter recipes. But I guess it still isn't too late. I was so swamped with work November and December and then got sick for Christmas besides that I just didn't have the time nor energy until this point. My goal is to update at least monthly, and eventually, weekly.
          Some New Year traditions include eating surf and turf New Year's Eve, and then having pork and saurkraut with mashed potatoes, dumplings and corn on New Year's Day. The custom to eat pork on the first day of the year is because pigs root and dig ahead, and so eating pork on this day brings good luck of moving ahead in the coming year. Oviously, this will leave my kosher friends out but we have meals for them as well for celebrating the JewishNew Year which is already past
       So, I am going to start sorting and sharing some recipes here, and try to make up for some lost time. It's cold and icy out, so a good time to look through recipes!