Sunday, May 29, 2011

Williams-Sonoma watermelon knife

I'm such a sucker for kitchen gadgets, and this watermelon knife from WS looks pretty sweet, pricey though at $24.99.

Here's the link if you like it, too. ;o)

Friday, May 27, 2011

The World’s Best German Potato Salad

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My neighbor, a German lady who is ninety-three years young, and the most wonderful cook, gave me, with a twinkle in her eye, I might add, her recipe for German Potato Salad.  She’s made it for the past seventy years, always to rave reviews, and is very different in others I’ve tried in the past, as she uses equal proportions of sugar, water, and vinegar.  Most recipes just use a few tablespoons of sugar at the most, she uses a whole cup, but trust me, it isn’t too much.  I also made this using Splenda instead of sugar with great results, but I would suggest the first time, you make it fully leaded.

I know, we all tweak our recipes, but please, don’t change a thing, make this exactly like the recipe and your family will love you forever!  It’s good warm, but better if you make it ahead and let it set at room temperature for a couple of hours.  It’s also great cold.  Oh, what an amazing recipe this is.

~ jan

LeeAnn’s Amazing Potato Salad
4-6 red skinned potatoes, leave the peeling on
1 large onion, diced
1/2 red or orange pepper diced
1/2 green pepper diced
4 hardboiled eggs
6 slices of bacon, diced (cut into small dice, then cut in half vertically so that you have really small pieces)
salt and pepper to taste

1 heaping tablespoon flour
1 cup apple cider vinegar
1 cup water
1 cup sugar

Steam potatoes until tender.  Cook hardboiled eggs.

Saute diced bacon until crisp and remove with slotted spoon.  Saute onion, red and green pepper in bacon drippings until limp and tender.  Add heaping tablespoon of flour and stir until incorporated into the drippings.  Add water, sugar and vinegar and cook for several minutes until it thickens slightly. (Mixture won’t be thick, it will be slightly runny).  Taste and correct with salt and pepper to taste, I use probably an additional 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a teaspoon of freshly ground pepper.

Slice potatoes thinly, then cut in half so they are smaller bites (I don’t remove the skin) and chop eggs.
In 9x13 pan or large casserole dish, spread out potatoes, then sprinkle eggs on top of the potatoes, then sprinkle the reserved bacon on top and pour the bacon drippings, peppers, onions, water sugar and vinegar over the potato mixture.  Let it sit for a bit for the flavors to marry.  This is great warm, at room temperature, or cold.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

VERY Cherry Stuffed French Toast

  • 8    eggs
  • 1/4  cup  evaporated milk
  • 1  teaspoon  vanilla
  • 1/2  teaspoon  ground cinnamon
  • 1/4  teaspoon  ground nutmeg
  • 1/4  teaspoon  salt
  • 6 thick slices of french bread, slit in the center to make a pocket
  • 1  8-ounce package  cream cheese, softened
  • 1  21-ounce can  cherry pie filling
  • 2  tablespoons  butter, margarine or cooking oil
  •     Granulated or powdered sugar (optional)
  •     Maple-flavored syrup (optional)
  • Directions

    1. In a large mixing bowl, beat together eggs, evaporated milk, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt. Set aside.

    2. Spread each slice of the bread with some cream cheese. Top six of the slices with cherry pie filling, spreading almost to the edges.

    3. Cover each with the remaining bread slices, cream cheese side down. Dip in the egg mixture.

    4. In a skillet or on a griddle, cook the sandwiches in hot butter over medium heat for 2 to 3 minutes on each side or until golden brown.

    5. Cut filled French toast into halves or quarters and dip in or sprinkle with sugar, if you like. Serve with hot maple syrup, if you like. Makes 6 servings.

    Source: Adapted from a recipe from Midwest Living

     

    Lime Angel Food Cake with Lime Glaze and Pistachios

     

    ingredients

    Cake:
    • 1 cup cake flour
    • 1 1/2 cups superfine sugar, divided
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 10 large egg whites, room temperature
    • 2 teaspoons finely grated lime peel
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1 teaspoon cream of tartar

    Lime syrup and lime glaze:
    • 1/2 cup sugar
    • 4 tablespoons fresh lime juice, divided
    • 1/2 cup unsalted raw pistachios (about 2 ounces), finely chopped in processor
    • 1/2 cup powdered sugar

    • Special equipment: 10-inch-diameter angel food cake pan with 4-inch-high sides and removable bottom (do not use nonstick pan)

    preparation

    For cake: 

     
    Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 350°F. Sift flour, 1/2 cup superfine sugar, and salt into medium bowl; repeat sifting 3 times. Using electric mixer, beat egg whites, lime peel, and vanilla on medium speed in large bowl until frothy (mixture may turn neon green but color will change when remaining ingredients are added). Add cream of tartar; increase speed to high and beat until soft peaks form. Gradually add remaining 1 cup sugar, 2 tablespoons at a time, beating until stiff peaks form. Sprinkle 1/3 of flour mixture over whites and gently fold in until incorporated. Fold in remaining flour mixture in 2 more additions just until incorporated. Transfer to ungreased 10-inch angel food cake pan with 4-inch-high sides and removable bottom (do not use nonstick pan); smooth top.

     

    Bake cake until pale golden and tester inserted near center comes out clean, about 38 minutes. Immediately invert cake onto work surface if pan has feet, or invert center tube of pan onto neck of bottle or metal funnel and cool cake completely.

     

    Using long thin knife, cut around cake sides and center tube to loosen. Lift out center tube with cake still attached; run knife between cake and bottom of pan to loosen. Invert cake onto rack, then turn cake over, rounded side up. Set rack with cake atop rimmed baking sheet.

     

    For lime syrup and lime glaze: 

     
    Combine sugar and 3 tablespoons lime juice in small saucepan; stir over medium heat until sugar dissolves. Brush syrup all over top and sides of cake. Immediately press pistachios onto top and sides of cake, pressing to adhere.

     

    Stir powdered sugar with remaining 1 tablespoon lime juice in small bowl until smooth. Drizzle glaze over top of cake. Let stand until glaze sets, about 10 minutes. DO AHEAD: Cake can be made up to 1 day ahead. Cover with cake dome and store at room temperature.

    Transfer cake to platter; cut into wedges and serve.

    Test-kitchen tip:Be sure not to use a nonstick pan or to grease or butter the cake pan for this cake. Because this cake is cooled upside down, you want it to stick to the sides a bit. If your angel food cake pan doesn’t have feet, have a metal funnel or a bottle with a slim neck nearby. You'll invert the tube of the pan onto the funnel or bottle as soon as the cake comes out of the oven.



    Source:  Epicurious