Test it out!!!!
A relaxing smoke – my Sunday afternoon was predestined. I bought a light Cojimar cigar at my local cigar shoppe and headed to the park by my house. I spent the next 20 minutes strolling the trails which had two beautiful bridges crossing a gentle creek. I ended my walk at the dog park. Yesterday was sunny with brisk air – perfect for any mongrel to get their park on. At any given time there were 30+ dogs running around! This particular park is designed with a holding pen, giving owners a chance to detach their pup’s leash before swarmed by anxious noses in the open space. Once the final gate is opened, the anxious dogs are released like a day at the Derby. I was colorfully narrating my entertainment to my boyfriend over the phone and we came to this happy conclusion: A day at the dog park must be similar to entering Heaven. As we enter those gates, we will be bombarded with our heavenly family so excited to see & celebrate with us. And once we get through the welcome line our souls will jump, run, and holler with joy! I MADE IT! I’M HERE! I LOOOVE THIS PLACE! I’M SO HAPPY!
The wine industry… many people love its luxurious personality but few hold a well rounded education. My sweet friend, who sold wine for years, hosted a wine party this past weekend, doing her best to educate us in a short period of 4 hours. You can imagine the small percentage retained as we kept drinking! We drank wines from many regions in France. Our pre-selected menu by Kimberly Stewart (author of Eating Between the Lines – http://eatingbetweenthelines.net/) consited of, you guessed it, french recipes! Each guest volunteered to make an item off the menu. As I love to bake, I jumped on the dessert ~ Blueberry Apple Kuchen with hot cream sauce! Our party of 14 seemed to be pleased. Note: The dessert would be nothing without the cream sauce, so don’t skip it!
Sally Schmitt’s Cranberry and Apple Kuchen with Hot Cream Sauce
(Makes 8 servings)
6 tablespoons (3 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus butter for the baking pan
3/4 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 cup milk or light cream
3 to 4 Gravenstein or Golden Delicious apples
1 cup cranberries or firm blueberries
Cinnamon sugar: 1 tablespoons sugar mixed with 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
For hot cream sauce:
2 cups heavy cream
1/2 cup sugar
8 tablespoons (4 ounces) unsalted butter
For the kuchen: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9-inch round cake pan.
In a mixer bowl or by hand in a large bowl, beat butter, sugar and egg together until the mixture is fluffy and lightened in texture.
In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt and nutmeg. Add dry ingredients and the milk alternately to the butter mixture. Do not overbeat; mix just until the ingredients are combined.
Peel and core apples. Slice them into 1/4-inch wedges
Spoon batter into the pan. Press apple slices, about 1/4-inch apart and core side down, into the batter, working in a circular pattern around the outside edge (like the spokes of a wheel. Arrange most of the cranberries in a ring inside the apples and sprinkle remainder around the edges of the kuchen. Sprinkle kuchen with the cinnamon sugar.
Bake for 40 to 50 minutes, or until a cake tester or skewer inserted into the center of the kuchen comes out clean. Set on a rack to cool briefly, or let cool to room temperature.
For the hot cream sauce: Combine the cream, sugar, and butter in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat (to reduce the chances of scorching or boiling over) and let sauce simmer for 5 to 8 minutes, to reduce and thicken slightly. Serve hot sauce with the kuchen.
From “The French Laundry Cookbook” by Thomas Keller
My boyfriend and I sat by the fire enjoying our delicious soup next to the fireplace. And in true Halloween spirit we watched Casper the Friendly Ghost – who new Devon Sawa would diappear from our lives… I mean, where has that boy been???
I would absolutely recommend this recipe and hope you will try it too!
I will post the recipe in the next couple days.
I wanted to suprise my co-workers with a little Halloween treat this week. I chose Paula Dean’s Old Fashioned Cupcakes recipe. However, due to cost and availability, I had to substitute a few ingredients. Instead of whole milk, I used 1 cup of half n’ half. And I did not buy cake flour but sifted all purpose flour instead (I don’t recommend this).
- 1 3/4 cups cake flour (not self-rising)
- 1 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 sticks unsalted butter, cut into cubes
- 4 large eggs
- 1 cup whole milk
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Old Fashioned Frosting, recipe follows
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line cupcake pans with paper liners; set aside.
Combine in a bowl both flours, sugar, baking powder and salt. Mix on low speed until combined for about 3 minutes. Add in cubed butter, mixing until just coated with flour.
Add eggs 1 at a time until combined. Slowly add milk and vanilla to batter until completely mixed scraping down the bowl as you mix.
Scoop batter into baking cups filling about 2/3 full. Bake until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean, 17 to 20 minutes.
Cool and decorate with Old Fashioned Frosting.
- 2 sticks butter, room temperature
- 8 cups confectioners’ sugar
- 1/2 cup milk
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract or other flavoring
Cream softened butter and add 4 cups sugar, milk and vanilla. Beat with paddle attachment until smooth gradually add the rest of sugar to reach frosting consistency*.
*Cook’s Note: Add more sugar to get this consistency.
May I introduce you to CHOCOLATE MOUSSE. Not Mouse, MOUSSE. She is named after the dessert, not the giant antlered creature; although we love those majestic beasts as well. That sphere in her mouth is a small tennis ball that she will fetch until the world ends…seriously. If there were a Balls Anonymous, I would sign her up. And yes, I know how disturbing that sounds. She is the love of my life and makes me smile constantly. You can’t have her 🙂
Howdy! My name is Katie. I work in the city but I’m at country girl at heart. My childhood was spent on a retired, 15 acre dairy farm in northern Colorado. My younger brother Joey & I raised livestock for 4-H. I enjoy cooking, decorating, scrapbooking, gardening, playing basketball and watching TV (Ha!). Chocolate Mousse is the name of my 4 pound toy, chocolate pomeranian. This blogg is an attempt to share my sarcastic, sweet, onrey & very real experiences with you. Please leave comments or add to the experiences you read!