Baked Rice Pudding
adapted from The Fanny Farmer Cookbook, by Marion Cunningham
4 cups milk
1/4 cup sugar or honey, or to taste
a pinch of salt
1/4 cup long-grained rice
1/2 cup raisins (optional – I stirred these in later)
Preheat the oven to 300°F. Put all the ingredients into a buttered baking dish and stir. Bake for 3 hours, stirring three times during the first hour of baking so that the rice doesn’t settle. Stir in the raisins (if you like) and eat warm, or chill until nice and cold. Serves 4.
Creamy Stovetop Rice Pudding
Although there are many, many similar versions of this stove-top rice pudding around, I took my initial direction from Dave Lieberman.
1/2 cup short grain (Arborio) rice
2 tsp. butter
2 cups whole milk or half & half
1/4 cup sugar (white or brown)
1 vanilla bean or 1 tsp. good vanilla
In a medium saucepan, bring the rice, butter and 1 cup water to a simmer; cook for 15 minutes, until tender. Add the cream, sugar and vanilla (bean or extract) and simmer for about 30 minutes, until the rice absorbs most of the cream and the mixture is thick and creamy.
Serve immediately, while still warm, or cool it down – if it thickens up too much, stir in a little more cream to loosen it up.
Individual Baked Rice Puddings: Put a heaping tablespoon of short-grain (Arborio) rice, two teaspoons of sugar and a half cup of milk or cream (half & half or heavy – it’s up to you) in each ramekin. Put them on a baking sheet (lined with a silicone mat to keep them from sliding around) and bake them at 325°F for an hour. I love that you could bake one of these, or two, or ten, it doesn’t matter. They will puff up, then sink back down. The edges of the ramekins will wind up coated with caramelized milk. Serve warm or chilled.
Homemade Eatmore Bars
These dense, chewy bars taste a lot like Eatmore chocolate bars, with nutritional benefits! The oats and dried fruit make them an excellent source of vitamins, minerals and fiber, while the peanuts and peanut butter contribute protein – important for kids (and grown ups) on the go. Cut them into bars and wrap individually in plastic wrap to pack for a hike or other outing.
3 cups Rice Krispies or Special K
1 cup oats
1 cup chopped dried fruit (such as raisins, apricots & cranberries)
½ cup chopped peanuts
¾ cup packed brown sugar
¾ cup honey
½ cup cocoa
½ cup peanut butter
Spray the inside of a large bowl and toss together the cereal, oats, dried fruit and peanuts.
In a medium saucepan, combine brown sugar, honey, cocoa and peanut butter over medium heat and stir until completely melted and smooth (it will be thick).
Pour the chocolate mixture over the cereal mixture, and stir until evenly coated. Press into a 9”x13” pan that has been sprayed with non-stick spray. Cool in the fridge or at room temperature before cutting into bars.
Makes 18 bars.
Chewy Granola Bars
These thick granola bars can be customized with any kind of nuts, seeds and dried fruit your kids like, in any proportion. If you don’t have oat flour, make some by processing oats in a food processor until powdery, or try substituting brown rice or quinoa flour.
1 3/4 cups quick rolled oats, barley flakes, or a combination
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/3 cup oat or barley flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
2 cups chopped dried fruit, nuts and seeds
1/3 cup canola oil
1/3 cup peanut butter, golden pea butter, or almond butter
1/3 cup liquid honey, maple syrup or Roger’s Golden Syrup
2 tsp. vanilla
Preheat the oven to 350°F and spray an 8?x8? pan with nonstick spray.
In a large bowl, stir together the oats, brown sugar, oat flour, salt and cinnamon. Stir in the dried fruit, nuts and seeds.
In a small bowl, whisk together the canola oil, nut butter, honey and vanilla. Add to the dry ingredients and stir until well blended and crumbly. Press into the prepared pan.
Bake for 30-35 minutes, until golden around the edges. Cool completely in the pan on a wire rack before cutting into bars. Makes 12 thick bars.
Cherry Cheese Blintzes
1 1/4 cups milk
2 large eggs
1 Tbsp. canola oil
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp. sugar
2 cups farmers’ cheese or ricotta
1/2 cup full-fat sour cream, crème fraîche or mascarpone
1 large egg
2 Tbsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla
3 cups fresh or frozen pitted sour cherries
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
1 tsp. vanilla
2 tsp. cornstarch (optional)
butter, for cooking
To make the crêpe better, put the milk, eggs, oil, flour, sugar and salt in a blender and pulse until well-blended and smooth (scrape down the sides once or twice) and let sit for 20-30 minutes. It should have the consistency of heavy cream.
To make the filling, stir together the farmers’ cheese, sour cream, egg, sugar and vanilla. To make the sauce, bring the cherries, sugar and water to a simmer in a medium saucepan; cook until the cherries collapse. If you’d like it thicker, stir the cornstarch into a tablespoon of cold water; add to the cherry mixture and bring to a boil. Cook for 4-5 minutes, then remove from the heat and set aside to cool.
To make the crêpes, set a medium skillet (I like my well-seasoned cast iron skillet) over medium-high heat and drizzle with oil or spray with nonstick spray. Consider the first a practice; pour a few tablespoons’ worth of batter into the pan and quickly swirl it to coat the bottom – or make an even circle. Cook until the edge starts to curl from the pan and it’s golden on the bottom – at this point it will be easy to slide a thin heatproof spatula under the edge and flip the crêpe. Cook for another minute, until golden on the other side. Repeat with the remaining batter. (The crêpes can be made a day ahead; keep covered with plastic.
Filling a blintz is like filling a burrito: place a crêpe on your work surface and put about 1/4 cup filling in a strip down the middle, leaving about an inch at each end. Fold one long side over to enclose the filling; fold each short end over, then flip the whole thing over to close. Fill all the crêpes and set aside (or refrigerate for up to a day).
When you’re ready to cook your blintzes, heat a good-sized pat of butter in your skillet set over medium-high heat. Cook a few at a time, without crowding the pan, until browned and crisp on both sides. Serve warm, with cherry compote on top.
Makes 8-10 blintzes.
Here’s a recipe for a simple but elegant first course or appetizer that’s festive and light. It’s made with a delicate blini – silver-dollar sized Russian pancakes made to hold a dollop of crème fraîche and a pile of smoked salmon or caviar.
1 cup all-purpose flour (or half all-purpose, half buckwheat flour)
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1 cup milk
3 Tbsp. butter, melted, plus extra for cooking
1 large egg
canola or other mild vegetable oil, for cooking
crème fraîche or sour cream
smoked salmon or caviar
chopped fresh chives or dill
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. In a smaller bowl, whisk together the milk, butter and egg; add to the dry ingredients and whisk just until combined – don’t worry about getting all the lumps out.
Heat a large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat and add a dab of butter and drizzle of oil. Tilt the pan to coat the bottom, and when the foam subsides, pour the batter by the tablespoon into the pan to make 2-inch circles of batter, spacing them an inch apart. Cook until bubbles start to appear on the surface, then flip with a thin spatula and cook until golden on the other side.
Set aside on a cooling rack as you cook them, and serve topped with crème fraîche or sour cream, salmon or caviar and a pinch of chopped fresh chives or dill. Makes about 2 1/2 dozen blini.
Russian Ponchiki Doughnuts
1 cup farmers’ cheese or ricotta
2-3 Tbsp. sour cream (if the cheese is very dry)
1/3 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 cup all-purpose flour
½ tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. salt
¼ cup raisins or currants (optional)
extra flour, for rolling
canola or other mild vegetable oil, for cooking
icing sugar or cinnamon sugar, for dusting
In a medium bowl, stir together the cheese, sour cream, sugar and egg. Add the flour, baking powder and salt and stir until you have a thick batter. If you like, stir in some raisins or currants.
Put some flour in a shallow bowl or pie plate. Scoop large spoonfuls of batter and roll in flour to coat. Heat a couple inches of oil over medium-high heat until hot but not smoking – a crust of bread should sizzle if you dip it in. Gently lower a few ponchiki at a time into the oil – don’t crowd the pot – and cook until golden on the bottom. Flip and cook for a few minutes on the other side, until deep golden. Transfer with a slotted spoon to a paper towel-lined plate.
Dust with icing sugar or cinnamon sugar while still warm. Makes lots.
Crispy Chinese Meyer Lemon Chicken
1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken thighs, patted dry and cut into strips or 1-inch pieces
2 tsp. soy sauce
1 tsp. grated fresh ginger
1 egg white
½ cup cornstarch
canola oil, for frying
1 cup chicken stock
finely grated zest of a regular or Meyer lemon
½ cup lemon juice
1 ½ Tbsp. cornstarch
2 Tbsp. sugar
2 Tbsp. honey
1 tsp. soy sauce
Cut the chicken into 1-inch pieces or strips and put into a zip-lock bag with the soy sauce and ginger. Refrigerate for an hour, or overnight. When you’re ready to cook, add the egg white to the bag and squish it around to coat the chicken. Put the cornstarch into a shallow bowl.
To make the sauce, bring all the ingredients to a boil in a medium saucepan; cook for a couple minutes, until thickened.
Heat a couple inches of oil in a heavy pot or skillet set over medium-high heat. When it’s hot but not smoking (a scrap of bread should sizzle when dipped in), dip pieces of chicken in the cornstarch to coat, then gently lower into the hot oil. Cook in batches, then remove from the oil with tongs or a slotted spoon and transfer to paper towels to drain. Pour the lemon sauce overtop and toss to coat; serve immediately, over rice.
Meyer Lemon & Key Lime Possets
Adapted from the May, 2007 issue of Bon Appétit.
2 1/4 cups whipping cream
3/4 cup sugar
3 Tbsp. lemon juice
2 Tbsp. lime juice
Bring the cream and sugar to boil over medium-high heat, then cook for 3 minutes, stirring it with a whisk, turning the heat down or lifting the pot from the burner as it tries to boil over.
Remove from heat and stir in the lemon and lime juice and let it sit for 5 minutes or so to cool a bit. Stir again and divide among six 1/2-cup ramekins or small dishes. Cover (or not) and chill for an hour or two, until set.
Makes 6 possets.
2 pork tenderloins
1 cup orange juice
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 Tbsp. lime or lemon juice
1 Tbsp. packed brown sugar or honey
1 Tbsp. grated fresh ginger
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tsp. curry powder or paste
2 green onions, chopped
Cut the pork into strips and put in a large, heavy zip-lock bag or bowl; add everything else and stir or toss to coat. Refrigerate for 2 hours or overnight, or freeze for up to 6 months.
Soak bamboo skewers in water while the pork is marinating. Thread strips of pork onto the skewers and grill or broil for about 3 minutes per side, just until cooked through. Serve hot, warm or cold, with peanut sauce for dipping.
Makes about 1 1/2 dozen satay.
1/3 cup peanut butter
3 Tbsp. soy sauce
2 Tbsp. brown sugar or honey
2 Tbsp. rice vinegar or lime juice
1 clove garlic, crushed
2 tsp. grated fresh ginger
1 tsp. sesame oil (optional)
1/4 – 1/2 tsp. curry paste (optional)
water or coconut milk, to thin if necessary
Combine all the ingredients in a blender and whiz until smooth. Add a bit of water or coconut milk if the mixture is too thick – or if you want to toss it with noodles. Refrigerate until you’re ready to serve.
Makes about a cup.
Browned Butter Kale Salad with Hazelnuts and Pears
½ bunch kale, leaves removed and thinly sliced
4-5 Brussels sprouts, thinly sliced or shaved (discard stem ends) – optional
¼ cup butter
1-2 Tbsp. lemon juice
salt and pepper, to taste
1 ripe but firm pear, chopped
½ cup roughly chopped hazelnuts, almonds or walnuts, toasted
¼-1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese or aged Gouda
Put the kale and Brussels sprouts in a bowl. In a small saucepan, melt the butter over medium-high heat; continue cooking, swirling the pan occasionally, until the foam starts turning golden and nutty-smelling. Remove from the heat and cool slightly.
Pour over the kale, scraping out the bottom of the pan to get all those browned bits, and toss to coat well. Add the lemon juice and season with salt and pepper.
Add the pear, hazelnuts and Parmesan cheese, toss and serve. Serves 4.
Braised Bison Short Ribs
canola oil, for cooking
2 lb. bison or beef short ribs (about 8)
salt & pepper
1 small onion, chopped
1 carrot, chopped
1 celery stalk, chopped
4 garlic cloves, crushed
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1 cup red wine
beef or chicken stock (or more wine)
Heat a drizzle of oil in a heavy skillet or oven-proof pot set over medium-high heat. Season the ribs with salt and pepper and brown on all sides; set aside. Add the onion, carrot and celery to the pan and cook for a few minutes, until they start to soften and loosen any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Add the garlic and cook for another minute. Pour in the balsamic vinegar and cook for a minute, scraping up the browned bits from the bottom of the pan.
Return the ribs to the pot with the vegetables. Pour the wine overtop, and add enough stock to come about halfway up the sides of the ribs.
Cover and cook at 300F for 3 hours. Serve warm, with mashed potatoes or crusty bread to mop up the sauce. Serves 4.
Braised Chicken in Milk
adapted from Jamie Oliver
1 whole chicken
salt and freshly ground black pepper
canola oil or butter, for cooking
zest of a lemon
1 head garlic, divided into cloves (no need to peel their skins)
2 cups milk
1 cinnamon stick (optional)
Preheat the oven to 375 F. Pat the chicken dry, season it with salt and pepper, and heat a heavy, ovenproof pot on the stovetop over medium-high heat. Add a drizzle of oil and brown the chicken all over, turning it with tongs.
Add the remaining ingredients to the pot, cover and bake for 1 1/2 hours, removing the lid for the last half an hour if you like to brown the top a little more.
To serve, pull the meat off the bones and drizzle with sauce; add a few cloves of garlic and squish them up with your fork.
Quick French Baguettes
1 1/2 cups very warm water
1 pkg. yeast (or 2 1/4 tsp.)
1 Tbsp. sugar
4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. salt
Preheat the oven to 425F. Fill a shallow cake pan with water or ice and put it on the bottom rack. (This will create steam, which produces a better crust.) In a large bowl, whisk together the warm water, yeast, and sugar. Set the bowl on top of your preheating oven for ten minutes. Add half the flour and the salt, then add the rest of the flour and knead it for a few minutes, until it’s smooth and elastic. (You can totally do this with the dough hook on your stand mixer, if you have one.)
Cut the dough into four pieces and roll each into a long, thin rope. Twist two together to make two baguettes and set them on a parchment lined baking sheet. Let it sit for another 15-30 minutes on top of your warm oven.
Bake on the middle rack of your oven for 15-20 minutes, until golden and crusty.
Makes 2 loaves.
June 02 2008 10:15 am