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Posts Tagged ‘butter’


Cheddar Oat Crackers - Meatballs&Milkshakes

I’ve had some rolled oats in the cabinet for a while, and I decided to try this recipe to use them up. It’s a healthier version of my cheddar parmesan crackers, and the oats give them a heft that makes them a more filling snack so you will eat fewer and get full faster. Perfect for the new year, as many try to balance out all the holiday eating.

Cheddar Oat Crackers

1/2 cup rolled oats

1/4 cup milk

3/4 cup flour

1/4 teaspoon baking powder

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

4 ounces cheddar, grated

2 tablespoons cold butter, cubed

2 eggs, 1 beaten with a splash of water for egg wash

flaked sea salt such as Maldon

Soak the oats in the milk for a few minutes while you combine the flour, salt, and baking powder in a food processor and pulse a couple times. Add the cheese and butter and pulse until it starts to resemble sand. Add in the oats and 1 egg, and pulse until it comes together. Turn out onto a piece of plastic wrap and form into a disc. Refrigerate for 2 hours until chilled.

Roll out in two sections between two sheets of parchment paper as thinly as you can, to about 1/8″. Cut or use a ravioli cutter or cookie cutter to create crackers. Put them onto a silpat or parchment-lined baking sheet. Brush the crackers with the egg wash and sprinkle sea salt on top.

Bake at 375 degrees for about 12-14 minutes, until they start to brown. Let cool before removing and serving.

Cheddar Oat Crackers - Meatballs&Milkshakes

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Chocolate Peppermint Cookies - Meatballs&Milkshakes

These crunchy chocolate mint cookies are a riff on Thin Mints, and I suppose if you dipped them in chocolate instead of drizzling, they would be exactly alike. I’ve always been a big fan of Thin Mints, and I will definitely be making these again. They’re a great addition to your holiday cookies, but they’ll be good all year long as well.

Chocolate Peppermint Cookies

1 1/2 cups flour

3/4 cups unsweetened cocoa

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 sticks butter

3/4 teaspoon peppermint extract

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup sugar

1 egg

6 ounces dark chocolate

1 tablespoon butter

1 tablespoon cream

Combine the flour, salt, and cocoa in a bowl. Beat the eggs and sugar together in a mixer until light and fluffy. Add the extracts. Add the egg and beat until combined. Add the dry ingredients in two halves, and beat until just combined.

Remove to two pieces of plastic wrap, and create 2 inch logs out of the two halves of dough. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to a couple days.

Slice the logs into 1/4 inch slices and adjust into rounds. Place and inch apart on parchment or silpats on cookie sheets and bake at 350 degrees for 12 minutes. Let cool on the cookie sheets.

Melt the chocolate, butter, and cream together until smooth. Drizzle over the cooled cookies and allow to harden by placing cookie sheets in the refrigerator.

Chocolate Peppermint Cookies - Meatballs&Milkshakes

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Chewy Ginger Cookies - Meatballs&Milkshakes

These chewy ginger cookies are really gingery from three kinds of ginger, and you can make them crispy if you bake them longer. They are also apparently great with peanut butter slathered between to make a cookie sandwich. It’s not the holidays until we have some spice cookies around the house.

Chewy Ginger Cookies

2 1/4 cups flour

1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger

1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon cardamom

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1/2 cup dark brown sugar

1/2 cup vegetable shortening

1 stick butter

1 egg

1/2 cup molasses

2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 cup finely chopped crystalized ginger or chocolate covered crystalized ginger

1/2 cup raw sugar

Whisk together flour, spices, baking soda, and salt. In a bowl of a mixer, whip together the butter, shortening, and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Reduce speed and add egg, molasses, vanilla, and grated ginger. Add flour mixture slowly, and beat until just combined. With the mixer off, stir in the crystalized ginger.

Roll into 1-1 1/2 inch balls and place on parchment covered baking sheets about 1 inch apart. Flatten a little and sprinkle the top with raw sugar. Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes until they start to crisp on the edges but are still soft in the center.

Chewy Ginger Cookies - Meatballs&Milkshakes

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Squash Ravioli with Crispy Sage - Meatballs&Milkshakes

I love making homemade ravioli because the process is so relaxing. It’s also fun to do with other people, and if you’re just getting into cooking, it’s very gratifying to see the final product that YOU made. It’s a time commitment, but you can make any kind of ravioli you feel like. I once made some with leftover short ribs braised in red wine that were memorable enough to remember years later. These might rival those for my favorite ravioli.

Delicata Squash Filling

1 pound delicata squash, large dice

1 cup grated fontina

1 cup grated pecorino

1 cup grated parmesan

1/2 cup ground hazelnuts

4 tablespoons finely chopped sage

4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon honey

1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

3 tablespoons Marsala or white wine (optional)

Roast the squash with a couple tablespoons olive oil and salt and pepper at 400 degrees for 15-20 minutes, until it starts to brown. Remove to a food processor  and add the rest of the ingredients. I use the Marsala or wine to thin it out if necessary. The honey gives it a slight sweetness, but you could tweak the filling ingredients to taste.

Make one recipe Basic Pasta Dough. Let it rest for a few minutes in plastic wrap in the fridge and then run it through your pasta roller in batches.

Basic Pasta Dough - Meatballs&Milkshakes

Brush the dough all over with water to help seal them. Spoon the filling into about 1 teaspoon-sized balls onto one side of the pasta sheet so that you will be able to fold them over.

Squash Ravioli - Meatballs&MilkshakesSquash Ravioli - Meatballs&MilkshakesFold the dough over, making sure to seal in the filling and push out air bubbles. Make sure to press the dough down between the filling to make them closer to single-thickness so that the edges will cook at the same rate as the layer covering the filling. (If you do not do this, the edges will be twice as thick as the center, and will be chewy.)

Squash Ravioli - Meatballs&Milkshakes

Cut the ravioli out with you ravioli cutter. You could also use a cookie cutter or knife if you don’t have one. I was finally able to use the new one I picked up in Rome.

Squash Ravioli - Meatballs&MilkshakesSquash Ravioli - Meatballs&MilkshakesThey will keep in the fridge for a couple days, or preferably, in the freezer for a while. Make sure to coat them in flour or they will stick. I also recommend using parchment paper to separate layers, because any that touch will stick. They are best immediately after making them, however.

Squash Ravioli - Meatballs&Milkshakes

Delicata Squash Ravioli with Browned Butter and Crispy Sage

6-8 ravioli (per person)

6 sage leaves

2 tablespoons butter

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

Parmesan cheese

Cook the ravioli in salted, boiling water for about 4 minutes, until they start to float. Meanwhile, melt the butter with the olive oil and add the sage leaves. They will spatter when they hit the oil, so be careful. They will crisp up and the butter solids will start to brown. Add some of the pasta cooking water (about 1/4 cup) and allow to come together, about 1 minute. Add the ravioli and toss in the sauce. Grate some parmesan over the top and serve with the crispy sage on top.

Squash Ravioli with Crispy Sage - Meatballs&Milkshakes

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I love fall for so many reasons- apple picking, sweater weather, and of course, butternut squash. With the ongoing apartment craziness, I’ve been turning to quick recipes more than usual. This one combines the classic butternut squash with sage and butter in a way that makes it possible to have dinner on the table in 15 minutes. Including the chopping. It’s amazing. The key is a healthy bit of parmesan and to put a fine dice on that squash so it cooks quickly.

Angel Hair with Butternut Squash and Sage

1/2 box angel hair pasta

1/4 of a butternut squash, diced into 1/4″ pieces

1 garlic clove, minced

12 sage leaves, chopped

3 tablespoons butter

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

pinch of red pepper flakes

1/2 cup parmesan cheese, freshly grated

1 amaretti cookie per person, crumbled

Cook the angel hair in salted boiling water for half the time on the package instructions.

Meanwhile, saute the squash in half the butter and olive oil. Allow to caramelize and develop some color before moving them at all. Once you have browned one side well, give it a stir and add the garlic, sage, and red pepper flakes. Continue cooking for 5 minutes or until some of the squash starts to break down. Add some pasta cooking water along with the pasta. Turn in the sauce and cook for a final minute together. While stirring off the heat, add the parmesan cheese and the remaining butter and olive oil. Plate and garnish each with a crumbled amaretti cookie.

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While we are in the midst of trying to sell the apartment, I’ve been falling back on old favorites. Last night, I made a version of this Puglian specialty, orecchiette with broccoli rabe and sausage and every time I make it, it brings me back to a night in southern Puglia. The meatiness of the sausage is comforting and warm on a cold fall night.

Fall always means lasagna time for me…I love making it for company too, because I can put it in the oven when they come over and spend time with people, rather than in the kitchen. My favorites for fall are mushroom and roasted carrot and butternut squash.

My favorite fall fruits are definitely pears, and I love to make crostatas with pears and gorgonzola this time of year. I make big batches of dough and freeze them for later, so I can just defrost and put together the filling when I’m running low on time.

Cold weather makes me really crave a good Sunday breakfast, and there’s no better breakfast than egg and pancetta sandwiches on homemade sage biscuits. I still have a couple of these tucked away in the freezer, and I can’t wait to have one this Sunday.

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The best part about this cake is that it’s incredibly easy and done in half an hour. It’s part clafouti (which is a french pancake-like tart), part cake, and you can make it with any kind of fruit. I think next time I would cut the fruit smaller and try to squeeze in more, but it was an excellent quick dessert.

Plum Skillet Cake

1 pint small plums, halved

1 1/2 cups flour

3/4 cup brown sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1 stick butter

2/3 cup milk

zest of 1 orange

2 eggs

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

2 teaspoons sugar

Stir flour, brown sugar, baking powder, and salt together. Brown butter in a skillet for a couple minutes, until it smells nutty. Remove to a bowl and combine with the orange zest, milk, eggs, and vanilla. Whisk the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and combine.

If you’re using a non-stick skillet, the residual butter left in the pan should be enough. If you are using a cast-iron skillet, grease the pan with a little more butter. Pour the batter into the skillet and arrange the plums in a layer on top, pushing in a little. Sprinkle with the sugar. Bake for 30 minutes at 350 until it starts to brown a little and a tester comes out clean.

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