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    Food Porn: Canoli

    The Picture is mine, the text below is from Wikipedia. We’re testing out the robustness of the new blog engine -Kate

     

    Cannoli are Sicilian pastry desserts. The singular is cannolo (or in the Sicilian language cannolu), meaning “little tube”, with the etymology stemming from the Latin ”canna”, or reed. Cannoli originated in Sicily and are an essential part of Sicilian cuisine. They are also popular in Italian American cuisine and in the United States are known as a general Italian pastry, while they are specifically Sicilian in origin (in Italy, they’re commonly known as “cannoli siciliani”,Sicilian cannoli).

    Cannoli consist of tube-shaped shells of fried pastry dough, filled with a sweet, creamy filling usually containing ricotta. They range in size from “cannulicchi”, no bigger than a finger, to the fist-sized proportions typically found in Piana degli Albanesi, south of Palermo, Sicily.

    More Food Porn: Fig Berry Tart

    Yup. I posted a piece on politics. This is my penance.


    Vanilla Buttercream Icing

    butter cream icing

    Well, in actuality, this is Vanilla Neoclassic buttercream icing, at least according to Rose Levy Beranbaum, authos of the rightfully lauded Cake Bible. The difference between classic and neo-classic is that the neo has corn syrup, whilst the classic recipe uses water.

    Icing is one of those foodstuffs that remind me of childhood, what with the ritual of “The Licking of the Spoon” after my mom had completed the icing recipe. However, unlike the childhood cliche of the smiling kid enjoying this rare treat, whomever recieved the icing spoon at our house was looked upon with suspicion and malice. Post-Icing, the household broke down into a scene out of “The Call of the Wild”.

    At any rate, I’m a huge fan of butter cream icing, enjoying them more than your typical Whipped cream icing that you see in use at Supermarket bakeries. However, if you use this icing, use a light hand when applying it to your cake. Too much icing will overwhlem the taste of the cake.

    • 6 egg yolks
    • 3/4 cup granulated sugar (The iner the grain, the better)
    • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
    • 2 cups unsalted butter, softened and at room temperature
    • 3 Tablespoons Vanilla extract

    In a large glass bowl, place the egg yolks. Whisk together thoroughly.

    Place a small sauce pan over medium heat, and pour in the sugar and the corn syrup. Stir constantly until the sugar is incorporated and the syrup comes to a rolling boil. Remove from heat and immediately pour into a small glass bowl in order to prevent any further cooking of the syrup.

    Pour the syrup into the egg yolks, beating the egg yolks all the while. This is a task that an electric better (or better yet, a stand up mixer) excels.

    Once the syrup is mixed into the egg yolks, beat in the softened butter and the vanilla until thick and fluffy.

    Technorati Tags: Recipes, Icing, Buttercream Icing


    Banana Bread

    Banana Bread

    They say (whomever they are) that banana bread is a quick bread. But let’s be honest – it’s a cake. A tasty, scrumptious cake made in loaf pan and served in slices, but a cake nonetheless.

    This is a good baseline recipe from which one could improve upon with additional spices(cinnamon) or other pieces of fruits (raisins).

    • 1 1/3 cup all purpose flour
    • 3/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
    • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter (room temperature)
    • 2/3 cup sugar
    • 2 large eggs (room temperature)
    • 2 very ripe bananas, mashed
    • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts

    Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees F.

    In a large mixing bowl, sift together the flour, salt, baking soda and baking powder. Set aside.

    In a smaller mixing bowl, cream together the sugar and butter. Add to the dry ingedients and mix together. Whisk in the eggs until the batter has the consistency of wet sand.

    Add the bananas and walnuts and mix in thoroughly. Pour batter into a greased 8 1/2″ by 4 1/2″ (or 6 cup) loaf pan.

    Place the pan in the oven and bake for 50-55 minutes. Remove from the oven to cool for 10 minutes. Remove from loaf pan and serve.

    Serves 8 – 10

    tags technorati : recipes banana bread


    Strawberry Shortcake

    Strawberry Shortcake

    Whilst we debate the virtues of both vegetarianism as omnivorianism, let me take us to a place where all of us can confer equally – at a plate of strawberry shortcake. Sure, the vegans may be put off by the use of butter and milk, but that’s their loss. “More for us” I say!

    This is one of the better recipes for the summer. Currently, Tara and I live only two blocks from a farmer’s market, which is where I was able to pick up a lovely bunch of strawberries, which really is the key for a great shortcake. Well, that and a good cake…and whipped cream Freshly made whipped cream is also important.

    Strawberries

    • 2 pints strawberries, hulled and sliced
    • 1 cup sugar
    • 1/8 cup lemon juice

    Shortcake

    • 2 cups All- Purpose flour
    • 2 tablespoons sugar
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1 Tablespoon baking powder
    • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, chilled and diced
    • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
    • 1/2 cup cream + 3 Tablespoons

    Whipped Cream

    • 1 1/2 cups cream
    • 1/4 cup sugar
    • 1 Tablespoons vanilla

    Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F.

    In a glass bowl, place the sliced strawberries and mix with lemon juice. Top with the sugar, and set aside for an hour.

    In a large mixing bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, salt and baking powder. Add in the butter, and combine with the flour until the dough becomes the consistency of a coarse meal. Add the almond extract and cream and mixing by hand for until the dry and wet ingredients are just combined. Be careful not to over mix. Place on a floured countertop and roll until 1/2″ to 3/4″ thick. Cut or tear into circular pieces, about 2″ in diameter. Brush each piece with milk and top/garnish with a sprinkle of raw sugar. Place on a buttered baking and place in oven for 18-20 minutes, until lightly golden. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.

    In yet another bowl, combine the cream, sugar and vanilla. Whip with a hand mixer, making a nice whipped cream.

    Take a shortcake and remove the top. Place a dollop of whipped cream on the bottom layer and a spoonful of strawberries. Place the top of the shortcake back on, and top with another dollop of whipped cream and spoonful of strawberries. Serve.

    Serves 8 – 12

    Technorati Tags: food, recipes, Strawberries, Strawberry Shortcake


    Lime Tart

    Lime Tart

    It has been a while since I’ve made a tart, and with Tara having a bit of a sweet tooth when it comes to limes, so this was a perfect match.

    Lime Tart – It’s two words that go great together. This recipe, based off of one from the Barefoot Contessa, takes some time to make, but it’s well worth it.

    Tart Shell

    • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
    • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
    • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1 3/4 cups All-Purpose Flour, sifted
    • salt

    Filling

    • 4 limes
    • 1 1/2 cups sugar
    • 1/4 lb. unsalted butter
    • 4 extra-large eggs
    • 1/8 teaspoon salt

    ** Crust **

    In a medium glass bowl, mix together the butter and sugar until creamed together. Whip in the vanilla. Add the flour and salt and knead together. Place on a floured counter and roll into a 10″ circle.

    Place the dough into a 10″ round tart pan, and press until the dough is evenly distributed. Place in the refrigerator for 30 minutes, allowing the dough to firm.

    Pre heat oven to 350 degrees F.

    Remove the dough from the refrigerator and place pie beads ontop of the bottom of the crust bottom. Place in the oven and bake for 20 minutes. Remove the pie beads. Prick the tart crust with a fork and place back in the oven and back for another 20 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool to room temperatue.

    ** Filling **

    Remove the zest from each of the four limes. Cut the limes in half and juice, which should allow for approximately 1/2 cup of lime juice.

    Take the zest and place in a food processor with e sugar. Mince together for 3 minutes.

    In another bowl, cream together the butter and zested sugar. Add the eggs one at a time, whisking together well until adding the next egg. Then whisk in the lime juice and the salt.

    Place the lime filling in a 2 quart sauce pan. Set heat to medium. Stir continually until the filling thickens. This will happen when the filling reaches 175 degrees F. Using a thermometer for this is far more efficient than any set period of time. It should be thick enough that you can drag a spatula across the bottom and it takes a second or so for the filling to fall in behind.

    Once sufficiently thickened, remove from heat and fill the tart shell. Allow to cool for 1 hour. Then either serve immediately or refrigerator.

    Serves 8

    tags technorati : recipes tart lime tart


    Pound Cake

    Pound Cake

    Here’s another rationalization to use the Brand Spankin’ new Mixer. My rationalization is pretty good when I think about it, for if I don’t use it, then the cost of the mixer would be built into the one or two recipes already completed.

    And trust me on this, there’s nothing more difficult than explaining to your partner why your biscuits cost $150 to make. But I digress…

    Speaking of said partner, it was her discovery that pumpkin butter tastes pretty damn good on pound cake.

    There’s no reason why I should praise the pound cake, correct? It’s butter and eggs and butter and sugar and butter and flour and butter…It’s not the type of recipe that one makes if one is worried about fat intake.

    But damn it’s good. Especially with pumpkin butter.

    • 3 Tablespoons whole milk, room temperature
    • 3 large eggs
    • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    • 1 1/2 cups cake flour, sifted
    • 3/4 cup sugar
    • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 13 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened

    In a medium bowl, whisk together the milk, eggs and vanilla. Set aside.

    In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Add the butter and half of the egg mixture. Using a a hand mixer, mix on low speed until a batter is formed. Increase the mixer speed to high, and beat for one more minute. Add the rest of the egg mixture and beat for 30 more seconds

    Scrape the batter into an 8″x 4″ x 2 1/2″ loaf pan (4 cups). Place in the oven for 55 minutes, covering with aluminum foil at 30 minutes (It prevents overbrowning).

    Remove from oven and allow to cool for 15 minutes before removing from pan.

    Serves 8

    Technorati Tags: Food, Recipes, Cake, Pound Cake