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Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Fusilli with Pecorino Romano and Black Pepper ala ~DKBB~

I saw this on Giada at Home and just had to try it; I love black pepper!

Kosher salt
1 lb. fusilli pasta (or any kind of corkscrew-type pasta)
1/4 cup olive oil
2 cloves garlic, lightly crushed
2 cloves garlic, minced
5 cups baby spinach leaves (5 oz.)
Freshly ground pepper

1 1/2 cups grated Pecorino Romano cheese (6 oz.)*
1 cup mascarpone cheese (8 oz.), at room temperature
* If you can't get this in the backwater you live in, other Italian cheeses will do in a pinch.
  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender but firm to the bite (about 8 to 10 minutes). Reserve 3/4 cup of the cooking liquid, then drain the pasta.
  • Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large, high-sided skillet over medium heat. Add the crushed garlic and cook until lightly browned. Remove the crushed garlic and discard. Add the spinach, 2 tsp. freshly ground pepper, and 2 tsp. minced garlic. Cook until spinach is wilted.
  • Remove skillet from heat, add pasta. Add Pecorino Romano cheese and 2 tsp. each Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper. Toss all until well coated.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the mascarpone cheese and the 3/4 cup reserved pasta water until smooth. Pour over the pasta and toss until well coated. Season with Kosher salt.
  • Transfer the pasta to a large bowl and serve.
If you like bold flavors, you'll likely enjoy this, little ones!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Lemon-filled Cream Puffs

My Mom used to make these as a special dessert treat for us when I was a kid. I found the recipe in one of her old cookbooks and gave it a whirl...and they are just as wonderful as I remember!
Cream Puff Shells ala ~DKBB~
(from High Altitude Recipes, ©1951)
1 cup water
½ cup shortening
1 cup flour
4 eggs
·         Place water and shortening in pan and bring to a rapid boil.
·         Add flour all at one time; stir and beat vigorously, while still over heat, until mixture forms ball which leaves sides of pan.
·         Remove from heat; cool slightly.
·         Add unbeaten eggs one at a time, beating thoroughly after each addition until mixture is smooth.
·         Drop in portions about the size of a half-dollar on oiled baking sheet, allowing space for expansion between each portion. Make portions bigger to get bigger, but fewer, shells.
·         Bake at 450̊ F (hot oven) for 20 minutes; reduce heat to 350̊ or 325̊ F and continue baking about 20 minutes longer. Puffs must be well-baked or they will fall after they are taken from the oven (it is well to remove 1 puff from the oven as a test).
·         Allow to cool.
·         Cut in horizontal crease toward top of puff; fill with desired filling and replace top; sprinkle with powdered sugar or frost with your choice of Chocolate Icing (2 recipes below).
Makes 2 doz. small or 1 doz. large. Fill shells with lemon pudding (or anything else your heart desires).

Never Fail Chocolate Icing ala ~DKBB~
2 squares baking chocolate
1⅓  cups condensed milk
1 Tbsp. water
1 tsp. vanilla
·         Melt chocolate in double boiler.
·         Add milk and stir over boiling water until mixture thickens.
·         Add water and spread icing on cooled cake. This is a smooth fudge-like texture and not too sweet.

Bittersweet Chocolate Icing ala ~DKBB~*
4 squares baking chocolate
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup powdered sugar
3 Tbsp. hot milk
3 Tbsp. butter ~or~ margarine
1 tsp. vanilla
·         Melt chocolate over hot water in double boiler.
·         Beat eggs; add sugar gradually.
·         Add hot milk and egg/sugar mixture to melted chocolate.
·         Cook in double boiler until thick, stirring constantly.
·         Remove from heat; add 1 Tbsp. butter (or margarine) at a time, blending thoroughly after each addition.
·         Add vanilla.
* This one is my favorite!

So, little ones, think back to simpler times when you were but a wee one, and recall those wondrous treats your Mom made...then go dig out the old recipes and go for it! It's pure joyous memories in each bite!

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Bacon Cheesburger Rice ala ~DKBB~

This is surprisingly yummy, and rather kid-friendly! And according to my husband, it goes great with smoked amber beer.

1 lb. ground beef
1¾ c. water
2/3 c. barbeque sauce
1 Tbsp. prepared mustard
2 tsp. dried minced onion
½ tsp. pepper
2 c. uncooked instant rice
1 c. (4 oz.) shredded cheddar cheese
1 c. chopped dill pickles
1 medium onion, diced
4 bacon strips, cooked and crumbled
  • Brown ground beef in a large skillet over medium heat until no longer pink; drain.
  • Add water, barbeque sauce (I prefer Pine Ridge Jalapeno Barbeque sauce –, mustard, dried minced onion, and pepper.
  • Bring to a boil, then stir in the rice; sprinkle with cheese, cover and simmer for 5 minutes or until liquid is all absorbed.
  • Sprinkle each serving with pickles, onion, and bacon.
(Original recipe by Joyce Whipps of Des Moines, IA, in Dec 2011/Jan 2012 issue of Taste of Home magazine.)