Friday, August 30, 2013

Baked Donut Holes

I've heard rumors of baked donuts so I decided to try my hand at them. I don't have a donut pan so I used mini muffin pans to make donut holes and used a recipe I found at Baker Bettie.

5 Tablespoons butter at room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 cups flour

Cream together the butter and sugar
Add the egg, milk and vanilla
Add the baking powder and flour
I spooned the batter into a greased mini muffin pan, filling each hole about half way

Bake at 325 for 10 minutes

Then coat the donuts
1/4 cup melted butter
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup cinnamon

Dip the donuts in melted butter then into cinnamon and sugar mixture

A few weeks ago I went to Half Baked and tried their bacon maple donut. Instead of a plain batter with a maple glaze and a few slices of bacon on top there was bacon in the batter! It was delicious! So I also did a bacon maple variation.

I cooked bacon up crisp and cut it into small pieces. I bought maple sugar  and used that in place of the granulated sugar.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Chocolate Peanut Butter Balls

I forgot to take a picture of this one. I used this recipe as a guide with a few twists

4 Tablespoons butter, room temperature
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 egg
2/3 cups chunky peanut butter
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup flour
3/4 cup spent grain flour
3/4 cup chocolate chips

Cream together butter and sugar
Add the egg
Add the rest of the ingredients except the chocolate chips until they're well mixed, then mix in chocolate chips
Roll dough into balls and place on parchment lined baking sheets
Bake at 375 for 12 minutes

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Pop Tarts Part II

I tried out a few new pop tart fillings. I am planning to do some hiking this weekend and wanted to be able to bring a snack with a little extra punch so I decided pop tarts with chia seeds fillings would be good.

I used the blueberry chia jam that I had made and also tried a Fig Compote

1/2 lb fresh figs
3 Tablespoons butter
3 Tablespoons brown sugar
3 Tablespoons honey
3 Tablespoons chia seeds

Cut the stems off the figs & quarter them
Everything will cook together in a pan on the stove
Start with the butter, brown sugar and honey and let them combine into a syrup
Add the figs and let them cook down
Add in the chia seeds and continue to cook a bit longer, stirring frequently throughout the whole process


Once it has cooled it can be used as a filling. I ended up making my pop tart dough a day ahead and leaving it in the fridge until I was ready to use it. I used different fork patterns on the tops of the pop tarts to I could differentiate the fillings.

(shown uncooked)

If you like yours with frosting, one they're out of the oven, mix together powdered sugar and water for a simple frosting. 

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Cornish Pasties

I first discovered Cornish Pasties when I lived in England for a year during college. When I took a day trip to Nantucket at the beginning of the summer I ended up at the Nantucket Pasty Company and was reminded of these delicious treats. Since then I've been wanting to try making them myself. I used the recipe I found on Farmgirl Fare.

First make the pastry
3 3/4 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter (straight out of the fridge)
3/4 cups cold water

Put the flour and salt in a food processor and mix together. Add the cold butter cut into small pieces and mix until begins to combine. Add the water so dough just holds together then remove from food processor, shape into a disk, wrap in plastic wrap and put it in the fridge.

Next prepare the filling
12 oz raw beef, I ended up with tri-tip, the recipe I used recommended skirt or chunk
2 cups onion
2 cups red or yukon gold potatoes
2 cups carrots
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/4 cup olive oil
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary

Chop the ingredients to 1/3 inch cubes and toss together with the other ingredients
Preheat oven to 400

Remove the pastry from the fridge and cut into 6 pieces.
One at a time roll out the dough to 9 inch round - add flour as necessary to prevent sticking
Fill dough with about 1 cup of filling and bring up the sides of the dough and pinch together
Brush the sealed pasties with an egg wash (1 egg mixed with 2 Tablespoons milk)

Put pasties on parchment lined cookie sheet to cook for 45 minutes.

Serve with mustard.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Quick Fig Appetizer

I made a random impulse buy at the grocery store today - figs. Then I had to think of something to do with them...

I cut serrano ham into strips
I put a piece of arugula
then quarter or sixth of a fig
put a small piece of blue cheese
then wrapped the ham around everything
put some balsamic reduction on top

And it turned in to a nice little appetizer

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Beer Pickles

My garden has felt unusually slow this year. My green beans and snap peas came and went quickly without producing much. Arugula and lettuce did ok and I have some kale but my broccoli and cauliflower are only leaves and my root vegetables and tomatoes, peppers and eggplants seem to be taking their time. The one thing I have an abundance of is pickling cucumbers. While looking up spent grain recipes I also came across a recipe for pickles brined in beer on on the Brooklyn Brewshop website.

12 oz beer
1/4 cup water
2 cups vinegar
1 cup sugar
1 T salt

1 T peppercorns
1 T mustard seeds
2 cloves of garlic smashed
1/2 teaspoon chili flakes

In a saucepan combine beer, water, vinegar, sugar and salt, heat and stir to dissolve sugar.
Bring it to a simmer and then turn off the heat.
Put seasonings in the jars, add sliced cucumbers and fill with liquid from saucepan. Feel free to use your own favorite seasoning combinations, I mixed it up and did a few jars with the seasonings listed and then a few with fresh dill from the garden and garlic and pepper.
Keep pickles in the fridge - leave for at least two days before eating.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Spent Grain Pie Crust

We brewed two batches of beer a few months ago - a pale & a brown - and made flour from the spent grain. I found a lot of great spend grain recipes on the Brooklyn Brewshop website. 

I had some peaches that were looking a little worse for wear and some strawberries on hand so today I decided to try out the spent grain graham cracker crust recipe and make little fruit pies.

1 full size package or graham crackers
1/2 cup spent grain flour - I used the flour from our brown beer for this
1/4 cup brown sugar
6 Tablespoons salted butter, melted (or unsalted butter and add salt)

Put all the dry ingredients in a food processor and mix, then while the processor is running pour in the butter and continue to mix until clumps form. 
Press mixture into pie pan to cover the bottom and the sides.
Bake at 350 for 14 minutes. 

I used small pie pans and then filled them with a mixture of chopped peaches, strawberries, a little flour, cinnamon and sugar and baked another 15 minutes or so. 

Monday, August 5, 2013

Brownies from Spent Grain

We brewed two batches of beer a few months ago - a pale & a brown - and made flour from the spent grain. I found a lot of great spend grain recipes on the Brooklyn Brewshop website. Today I tested out their brownie recipe. 

5 oz unsweetened chocolate
3 oz bittersweet chocolate
1 1/2 sticks of butter
4 eggs
2 cups sugar
3/4 cup flour
1/2 cup spent grain flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

Melt the chocolate and butter in a double boiler and let cool 
Beat the eggs and add in to the chocolate mixture
Combine the dry ingredients then fold them into the wet ingredients

I made them in greased mini muffin tins

Bake at 325 for 30 minutes

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Cheesy Spent Grain Crackers

We brewed two batches of beer a few months ago - a pale & a brown - and made flour from the spent grain. I found a lot of great spend grain recipes on the Brooklyn Brewshop website  and tested out a few myself with some of my own twists.

These crackers were so quick to make that I've already made them twice! Today's batch I made to bring to a party. 

1/4 cup spent grain (I used the grain from our pale ale)
1/2 cup flour
1/8 t salt
1 1 /2 cups grated sharp cheddar
2 T butter

Put all the ingredients in a food processor and mix until it's evenly moist, remove from food processor and form in to a ball then roll out into a log and either keep it round or push down on the log and turn and push and turn to make the sides flat so you'll have square or rectangular crackers.

Preheat oven to 350, bake 10 minutes
Let cool and enjoy!

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Watermelon Appetizer Bite

I had seen a picture of this simple watermelon treat but couldn't remember where I'd seen it or what all it involved so I created my own version. 

balsamic reduction - I used a rhubarb, ginger balsamic reduction I had made
fresh mint

Cut the watermelon into cubes and remove and small hole in the center that goes about half way down, I used the handle from a small spoon to make the hole
thinly slice feta and cut it to fit under the watermelon
To assemble place the cheese, then a piece of mint, a watermelon cube, fill hole in watermelon with balsamic and top with a blueberry. 

It's quick and easy to make and a nice fancy treat.