Duck Soup

After last week’s duck, I took home the carcass to make soup with. I very roughly followed a recipe for tteokguk, a Korean rice cake soup (that I have never had). That’s made with beef, and this isn’t, so this turns out to be a different thing. I didn’t do a lot of measuring on this one, so the amounts are mostly approximations, but if you follow along you can at least get an idea for your own next experiment!

IMG_3937Ingredients:

  • 1 leftover duck carcass
  • water
  • 5 carrots, divided
  • 1/2 onion
  • 1 pound sliced rice cakes, soaked 30 minutes and then drained
  • salt
  • black pepper
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 5 green onions, chopped

IMG_3928Roughly chop three of the carrots and the onion half and combine them with the duck carcass in a large pot. Fill the pot with water and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat until the mixture is simmering, and simmer for 4 hours, checking on it every 30-45 minutes to skim any gray gunk off the surface.

IMG_3925Strain the mixture, keeping both parts. Chill the stock in the fridge, and let the carcass cool until you can touch it without getting burnt.

IMG_3926Pick all the remaining meat off of the bones and keep that, while throwing out the bones, carrot, and onion.

IMG_3927Skim any fat that has collected on the surface of the stock and discard. Put the meat back in the stock.

Heat the mixture over medium heat. Add salt to taste. The stock will taste really pretty boring until you’ve reached the right level of salt, when it will suddenly taste like duck. You don’t actually need it to taste salty, just…ducky. Salt is a bit magical in how it amplifies flavors. Chop the other two carrots and toss them in, as well as a big pinch of pepper and the garlic.

Separate the eggs and add salt to both the whites and the yolks. Heat a pan over medium heat, spread some oil around the pan, then wipe off the excess with a paper towel. Turn off the heat. Beat the yolk/salt mixture, then spread it thinly and evenly in the warm pan. Let it cook for about a minute, then flip and let it cook on the other side for another minute. Remove from the pan and cut into thin slices. This isn’t something I’ve seen before, and I don’t think it worked quite perfectly because my stove is super un-level, but…practice makes perfect?

eggBring the broth up to a boil, if it isn’t already. Take your rice cakes, which have soaked and been drained, and add them to the pot. Let the boil until they are all floating. Add the fish sauce, sesame oil, and egg whites beaten with salt, and stir in. Sprinkle the green onions on, and serve. I brought this to a potluck, so had it half cooked at home, then heated it and added the rice cakes at my friends’.

This thing's gonna smell like fish sauce for the rest of eternity.

This thing’s gonna smell like fish sauce for the rest of eternity.

IMG_3932

I really need to get some proper tupperware/a pot with a lid…

I really love the texture of these rice cakes, and the flavor of this soup was excellent.

IMG_3934The rice cakes are best, texture-wise, day of, but leftovers of this will still be delicious for a few days. I really loved this, and everyone else who tried it seemed to as well.

IMG_3935Duck Soup with Rice Cakes

  • 1 leftover duck carcass
  • water
  • 5 carrots, divided
  • 1/2 onion
  • 1 pound sliced rice cakes, soaked 30 minutes and then drained
  • salt
  • black pepper
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 5 green onions, chopped

Roughly chop three of the carrots and the onion half and combine them with the duck carcass in a large pot. Fill the pot with water and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat until the mixture is simmering, and simmer for 4 hours, checking on it every 30-45 minutes to skim any gray gunk off the surface.

Strain the mixture, keeping both parts. Chill the stock in the fridge, and let the carcass cool until you can touch it without getting burnt. Pick all the remaining meat off of the bones and keep that, while throwing out the bones, carrot, and onion. Skim any fat that has collected on the surface of the stock and discard. Put the meat back in the stock.

Heat the mixture over medium heat. Add salt until it tastes noticeably duck-y. Chop the other two carrots and toss them in, as well as a big pinch of pepper and the garlic.

Separate the eggs and add salt to both the whites and the yolks. Heat a pan over medium heat, spread some oil around the pan, then wipe off the excess with a paper towel. Turn off the heat. Beat the yolk/salt mixture, then spread it thinly and evenly in the warm pan. Let it cook for about a minute, then flip and let it cook on the other side for another minute. Remove from the pan and cut into thin slices.

Bring the broth up to a boil, if it isn’t already. Take your rice cakes, which have soaked and been drained, and add them to the pot. Let the boil until they are all floating. Add the fish sauce, sesame oil, and egg whites beaten with salt, and stir in. Sprinkle the green onions on, and serve.

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Duck with Cherries and Lemon

Two weekends ago, my friend Hillary and I spent a day at a bunch of food-related places outside DC. At the Chinese supermarket, we saw duck for so cheap that we couldn’t pass it up, and decided to get one and cook it together the following week. The duck came out to something like $10, which was great until it came time to cook it, and the thing was plucked but otherwise intact. We got some hot duck-cleaning tips from the internet, got our hands dirty, and then were prepped to actually cook!

20141013_150125IMG_7964 IMG_7969 IMG_7975Ingredients:

  • 1 duck, about 4-5 pounds
  • 1 lemon, zested, juiced
  • 1 lemon, cut into thin slices
  • 1 tablespoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 cup red wine
  • 2 cups frozen cherries
  • 2 tablespoons butter, softened
  • salt
Hillary has better knife skills than I.

Hillary has better knife skills than I.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

In a saucepan, combine all the ingredients except the duck, butter, and salt. Simmer this mixture until the cherries are soft.

Rinse the duck and then pat dry and place in a roasting dish. Prick the duck all over with a fork. Rub the butter all over the skin, then sprinkle lightly with salt. Pour half of the cherry-lemon mixture over it and place the dish in the oven.

IMG_7978Bake 1 1/2 hours, basting occasionally with a large spoon, then check for doneness.

IMG_7988

Google knows all!

Google knows all!

Remove to a serving platter for several minutes to rest, then serve with the other half of the cherry sauce.

IMG_7992I really liked the sauce, and kind of thought we should have put the extra on ice cream, although that idea wasn’t met with a lot of enthusiasm. We served with some bread and crispy smashed potatoes. (Boil potatoes until soft, rub with olive oil, sprinkle on some salt and whatever herbs you like, lightly press until about half crushed, then bake until crispy.)

IMG_7989Duck with Cherries and Lemon

Adapted (in part because of poor reading comprehension skills) from The Inn at the Crossroads, the official Game of Thrones food blog.

  • 1 duck, about 4-5 pounds
  • 1 lemon, zested, juiced
  • 1 lemon, cut into thin slices
  • 1 tablespoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 cup red wine
  • 2 cups frozen cherries
  • 2 tablespoons butter, softened
  • salt

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

In a saucepan, combine all the ingredients except the duck, butter, and salt. Simmer this mixture until the cherries are soft.

Rinse the duck and then pat dry and place in a roasting dish. Prick the duck all over with a fork. Rub the butter all over the skin, then sprinkle lightly with salt. Pour half of the cherry-lemon mixture over it and place the dish in the oven. Bake 1 1/2 hours, basting occasionally with a large spoon, then check for doneness.

Remove to a serving platter for several minutes to rest, then serve with the other half of the cherry sauce.

Posted in Dinner | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

Caramel Apple Shortbread Bars

This recipe is actually one that I tried this spring in Greece with one of my classmates, but it didn’t work out quite right then. It turned out delicious, but the caramel was rock hard, so eating it was a challenging, somewhat drooly event. This time, though, thanks (I think) to the use of a candy thermometer, the caramel came out soft enough to bite, but still firm enough to hold its shape. Everyone that had some of this batch loved it, and it feels fall-appropriate!

IMG_3923Ingredients:

Shortbread:

  • 10 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temp
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 2/3 cup all-purpose flour

Apples:

  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 apple, peeled, cored, and diced
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar

Caramel:

  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup golden syrup or light corn syrup
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 4 tablespoons sugar
  • 4 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste or extract

Line a 9X9″ pan with parchment paper and set aside. I only had an 8X11″ (and last time I used a 10″ round), and the ingredients still seemed sufficient for the slightly greater area.

In a large bowl, combine the butter, sugar, and salt for the crust with a fork, then stir in the egg yolk.

Villy did lots of the work when we tried it in the spring!

Villy did lots of the work when we tried it in the spring!

Add the flour, the combine with your hands until flaky. For me, this means squashing the butter bits until they’re super thin.

IMG_3911Transfer the dough to your lined pan and press down evenly across the bottom of the pan. Refrigerate 30 minutes.

IMG_3913During that time, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Bake 25 minutes, until lightly browned, then take out and set aside.

IMG_3916While the shortbread bakes, combine the apples, butter, and sugar in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, then let simmer until the apples are soft. It may seem weird at first, expecting some apples, with no liquid but the melted butter, to boil, but the apples release some liquid and it does happen.

IMG_3914Combine the butter, brown sugar, golden syrup, salt, sugar, and cream for the caramel in a large pot. Bring to a boil, then stir for 5-10 minutes until thick and bubbly, at about 248 on a candy thermometer.

IMG_3918

Apparently if it looks like this for too long, you might be over heating it?

Remove the heated mixture from the stove, stir in the vanilla, then add the softened apples.

IMG_3919Pour the caramel mixture on top of the shortbread and spread evenly.

IMG_3920Refrigerate 2-4 hours, until firm. Slice cold, and keep chilled when not serving.

IMG_3922There is a lot of butter in this, and you can tell because it is really delicious! When you don’t overcook the caramel, it’s a good chewy texture that’s nice with the slight flakiness of the crust, with just a bit of gooeyness. It’s quite delightful!

Caramel Apple Shortbread Bars

From Culinary Concoctions by Peabody.

Shortbread:

  • 10 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temp
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 2/3 cup all-purpose flour

Apples:

  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 apple, peeled, cored, and diced
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar

Caramel:

  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup golden syrup or light corn syrup
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 4 tablespoons sugar
  • 4 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste or extract

Line a 9X9″ pan with parchment paper and set aside.

In a large bowl, combine the butter, sugar, and salt for the crust with a fork, then stir in the egg yolk.  Add the flour, the combine with your hands until flaky.  Transfer the dough to your lined pan and press down evenly across the bottom of the pan. Refrigerate 30 minutes. During that time, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Bake 25 minutes, until lightly browned, then take out and set aside.

While the shortbread bakes, combine the apples, butter, and sugar in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, then let simmer until the apples are soft.

Combine the butter, brown sugar, golden syrup, salt, sugar, and cream for the caramel in a large pot. Bring to a boil, then stir for 5-10 minutes until thick and bubbly, at about 248 on a candy thermometer. Remove the heated mixture from the stove, stir in the vanilla, then add the softened apples.

Pour the caramel mixture on top of the shortbread and spread evenly. Refrigerate 2-4 hours, until firm. Slice cold, and keep chilled when not serving.

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Pluot and Cheese Galette

Recently my friend Hillary told me about Relay Foods (if you use that link to buy food, you and I both get $30 off), a local-ish food shopping website for Charlottesville, Richmond, DC, and Baltimore. With the $30 off from that discount, I got a variety of things, including some fancy cheeses. This particular cheese, the Brillat-Savarin Triple Creme Cheese, is a soft white cheese made slightly tangy bit a bit of lemon flavor. It’s really nice!

IMG_3744I really like pluots, and get excited every time I see them, so I was relieved when this flavor combo came out as well as hoped – would have hated to have wasted fancy cheese and pluots! Instead, the flavor is sort of like an amazing plum jam, with everything you love about pie crust. I’m into it!

IMG_3755Ingredients:

Crust:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 9 tablespoons unsalted butter (you can swap out up to half for shortening if you desire)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3-4 tablespoons water

Filling:

  • 2 large pluots
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 1/2-3 ounces soft white cheese
IMG_3741

Good news: I ordered a cutting board last night!

IMG_3745To prepare the crust, first cut the butter into small cubes. Place the butter and some water in the freezer for 15-20 minutes.

Combine the flour and salt in a food processor, then add your chilled butter. Process for 3 pulses, each of about 3 seconds. Turn the machine to ‘on’ and drizzle in the water, a tablespoon at a time, until the mixture just starts to clump. Turn the food processor on, dump the contents into a bowl, and use your hands to press the dough into a ball. It will seem quite dry, but should stick together.

Looks real dry...

Looks real dry…

Add any remaining water, if necessary, to help it all stick together. Roll it all into a large ball, then flatten into a disk, rolling the edges along your hand/counter to smooth them out. Wrap in saran wrap and chill at least 30 minutes.

Came together, though.

Came together, though.

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Combine the cinnamon, flour, and sugar in a medium bowl. Slice the pluots into thin slices, then stir them into the flour mixture.

IMG_3743Roll the crust out on parchment paper or a silpat. Slice the cheese as thinly as possible, and spread it around the crust, leaving at least one inch clear around the outside. Because it’s a soft cheese, it may clump up when you cut it, but just spread it back out as thinly as possible.

The great thing about galettes is you can just shout RUSTIC whenever anyone judges your skills at rolling out an even/round crust!

The great thing about galettes is you can just shout RUSTIC whenever anyone judges your skills at rolling out an even/round crust!

Arrange the fruit slices over the cheese, and spread any remaining flour mixture over the pluots.

IMG_3748Fold the edges of the crust in, leaving a gap in the center, and press the sides together to hold in place.

IMG_3749Bake 35-40 minutes, until the crust is golden brown and the filling is bubbling hot. Let cool several minutes before slicing and serving.

IMG_3752It’s really nice, and the crust stays crisp enough that you can pick any chilled leftovers up like pizza the next morning evening.

IMG_3756

Setting a terrible example, as you really shouldn't cut on a silpat!

Setting a terrible example, as you really shouldn’t cut on a silpat!

Pluot and Cheese Galette

Crust:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 9 tablespoons unsalted butter (you can swap out up to half for shortening if you desire)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3-4 tablespoons water

Filling:

  • 2 large pluots
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 1/2-3 ounces soft white cheese

To prepare the crust, first cut the butter into small cubes. Place the butter and some water in the freezer for 15-20 minutes.

Combine the flour and salt in a food processor, then add your chilled butter. Process for 3 pulses, each of about 3 seconds. Turn the machine to ‘on’ and drizzle in the water, a tablespoon at a time, until the mixture just starts to clump. Turn the food processor on, dump the contents into a bowl, and use your hands to press the dough into a ball. It will seem quite dry, but should stick together. Add any remaining water, if necessary, to help it all stick together. Roll it all into a large ball, then flatten into a disk, rolling the edges along your hand/counter to smooth them out. Wrap in saran wrap and chill at least 30 minutes.

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Combine the cinnamon, flour, and sugar in a medium bowl. Slice the pluots into thin slices, then stir them into the flour mixture.

Roll the crust out on parchment paper or a silpat. Slice the cheese as thinly as possible, and spread it around the crust, leaving at least one inch clear around the outside. Arrange the fruit slices over the cheese, and spread any remaining flour mixture over the pluots. Fold the edges of the crust in, leaving a gap in the center, and press the sides together to hold in place.

Bake 35-40 minutes, until the crust is golden brown and the filling is bubbling hot. Let cool several minutes before slicing and serving.

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Banana Fluffernutter Bundt

IMG_3729This past weekend was SPX, the Small Press Expo, outside DC, which brings together, among other folk, lots of web comic artists I like. The last time I went, in 2011, I brought cookies to the artists that I liked. This year, with my current kitchen situation, a bundt made the most sense. I asked around a tiny bit, and peanut butter/banana was a combo people like, so I went with it, and this cake seemed to go over well with everyone I gave a slice to! This was also probably the first time I ever opened a container of fluff without ending up with fluff in my hair, so really, success all around!

The single photograph I took at SPX this year was of the food map, because it was awesome.

The single photograph I took at SPX this year was of the food map, because it was awesome.

Ingredients:

Batter:

  • 3 cups mashed bananas
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups peanut butter chips

Fluff Center:

  • 8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 8 ounces marshmallow fluff
  • 2 egg
  • 6 tablespoons flour

Peanut Butter Glaze:

  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
Banana-y!

Banana-y!

First prepare the fluff center. Beat together the cream cheese and fluff until well mixed. I eventually decided that that meant 8 ounces by weight, not volume, which is the larger amount. (Side note, a block of cream cheese and a 16 ounce container of fluff mixed together is a fantastic fruit dip!) Beat in the eggs, then the flour, beating until smooth. Set aside.

Oh hey that spatula thing is from Mary Kate!

Oh hey that spatula thing is from Mary Kate!

Grease a bundt pan and set aside. Line a baking sheet with foil or parchment and set aside. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt, and set aside.

In a large bowl, combine the mashed bananas and the sugar and mix together for about three minutes on medium-high speed.

Not attractive.

Not attractive.

Beat in the oil until well mixed, then add the eggs one at a time, beating after each. Beat in the vanilla.

Still not so hot.

Still not so hot.

Add the flour mixture to the banana mixture and stir together on low, or by hand, until the ingredients just begin to come together. Add the peanut butter chips, and continue to stir just until everything is well incorporated.

IMG_3719 Pour half of the batter into the prepared bundt pan.

IMG_3720Top with the fluff mixture, spreading evenly around the pan.

IMG_3721Cover with the remaining banana batter.

IMG_3722I was not positive this was all going to fit in the pan, but it just did. Because it was so full, I put it on a baking sheet to catch any overflow, and, while I was impressed how little overflow there was… still better to have the pan.

Bake for 70-90 minutes. Check at 70 minutes – it is hard to be sure that the batter is cooked/dry, because melted peanut butter chips may stick to the toothpick or knife you use to check with, but make your best guess.

No drips around the edges...

No drips around the edges…

This blob was inside the center cutout of the pan, though.

This blob was inside the center cutout of the pan, though.

Cool in the pan until no longer hot to the touch, several hours, before turning out.

IMG_3727Prepare the glaze by whisking together the peanut butter and milk, then adding the powdered sugar 1/2 cup at a time. Drizzle over the top of the cake, then let set up about an hour before serving.

IMG_3730 IMG_3731I sliced and wrapped mine for traveling, and it held up quite well. It’s quite peanut butter-y and banana-y, as you’d hope, and any leftovers stay moist for days. And if you don’t want to take my word for it that this was good, for once you don’t have to!

cake tweet

Banana Fluffernutter Bundt

Doubled from Culinary Concoctions by Peabody.

Batter:

  • 3 cups mashed bananas
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups peanut butter chips

Fluff Center:

  • 8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 8 ounces marshmallow fluff
  • 2 egg
  • 6 tablespoons flour

Peanut Butter Glaze:

  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 cups powdered sugar

To prepare the fluff center: Beat together the cream cheese and fluff until well mixed.  Beat in the eggs, then the flour, beating until smooth. Set aside.

Grease a bundt pan and set aside. Line a baking sheet with foil or parchment and set aside. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt, and set aside.

In a large bowl, combine the mashed bananas and the sugar and mix together for three minutes on medium-high speed. Beat in the oil until well mixed, then add the eggs one at a time, beating after each. Beat in the vanilla.

Add the flour mixture to the banana mixture and stir together on low, or by hand, until the ingredients just begin to come together. Add the peanut butter chips, and continue to stir just until everything is well incorporated.  Pour half of the batter into the prepared bundt pan. Top with the fluff mixture, spreading evenly around the pan. Cover with the remaining banana batter. Place on the baking sheet to catch any overflow.

Bake for 70-90 minutes, until cooked through. Cool in the pan until no longer hot to the touch, several hours, before turning out.

Prepare the glaze by whisking together the peanut butter and milk, then adding the powdered sugar 1/2 cup at a time. Drizzle over the top of the cake, then let set up about an hour before serving.

Posted in Dessert | Tagged , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Dutch Oven Apple Fluff

IMG_3710Why hello there, blog friends! It’s been a while, again, because I have moved, again. It just keeps happening! This time I’m in DC. My kitchen is pretty tiny, has terrible lighting for photos, and has a really weird set of tools right now – I have a bundt, an immersion blender, and a flour sifter, but not a single bowl of any size or shape. Going to be a tricky one until I get a more permanent situation sorted, but I’ve finally baked something beyond granola bars, and it was delicious! I have never actually eaten Bickfords’ Big Apple Pancake, but I sort of picture it tasting something like this? The name remains unclear even halfway through baking, but by the time this is cooked through, it has poofed up impressively.

Some serious poof.

Some serious poof.

I got this recipe from a website that’s all dutch oven recipes and tips, intended mostly for using with your big black cast iron dutch ovens over/in campfires. Luckily, this recipe translated well to my enameled dutch oven and indoor cooking.

Ingredients:

  • 6 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 2 apples (the website used granny smith, I got golden delicious because they were on sale…)
  • 3 tablespoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • syrup, jelly, or powdered sugar for topping (optional)

Put the butter in a dutch oven and place on the stove over low heat until melted. When melted, swirl the dutch oven around to coat well with the butter. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

I guess you probably could have pictured this one without the photo...

I guess you probably could have pictured this one without the photo…

Beat the eggs together in a large bowl, then stir in the milk, flour, and salt. Combine the cinnamon and sugar in a ziplock bag and shake to mix.

Cut the apples into slices. A few at a time, put the apple slices in the ziplock and shake to coat well with the cinnamon sugar mixture. Use the apple slices to coat the bottom of your dutch oven.

IMG_3699Pour the egg mixture over the apples.

IMG_3700Sprinkle the remaining cinnamon sugar over the top of the mixture.

IMG_3701Place the lid on the dutch oven, and bake for at least 20 minutes. Cut with a knife to determine if the batter is cooked all the way through. Mine took closer to 35 minutes, which reminds me I should actually put the oven thermometer I have (But no bowls? I really brought the weirdest combo of things.) in there and see how it’s working!

This was halfway through, and probably it's most visually attractive state, but the batter was still uncooked.

This was at 20 minutes, and probably it’s most visually attractive state, but the batter was still uncooked.

As the dough cooks it will get huge, but then deflate once it's out of the oven.

As the dough cooks it will get huge, but then deflate once it’s out of the oven.

Top with syrup, powdered sugar, jam, or other topping. Where it has pretty similar ingredients to a pancake, I’ve voted for syrup, and it’s delicious!

IMG_3707 IMG_3709

Dutch Oven Apple Fluff

Lightly adapted from The Dutch Oven Dude.

  • 6 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 2 apples
  • 3 tablespoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • syrup, jelly, or powdered sugar for topping (optional)

Put the butter in a dutch oven and place on the stove over low heat until melted. When melted, swirl the dutch oven around to coat well with the butter. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Beat the eggs together in a large bowl, then stir in the milk, flour, and salt. Combine the cinnamon and sugar in a ziplock bag and shake to mix.

Cut the apples into slices. A few at a time, put the apple slices in the ziplock and shake to coat well with the cinnamon sugar mixture. Use the apple slices to coat the bottom of your dutch oven, then pour the egg mixture over the apples. Sprinkle the remaining cinnamon sugar over the top of the mixture.

Place the lid on the dutch oven, and bake for at least 20 minutes. Cut with a knife to determine if the batter is cooked all the way through. Top slices with syrup, powdered sugar, jam, or other topping.

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Mini Polenta Pizzas

This is slightly more of a suggestion than an exact recipe, it’s an easy way to make some cute, tasty little pizzas without having to mess with kneading dough or rising times. The polenta also happens to be gluten-free, without requiring you to buy any (other) gluten-free specialty ingredients.

IMG_3511You can top however you like, though I’ll be describing the spinach pizzas I made.

Ingredients:

  • 1 18 ounce tube polenta
  • tomato sauce
  • shredded cheese (I used parmesan and cheddar)
  • 1 bag baby spinach (or other toppings)
  • olive oil

Cook the spinach with a drizzle of olive oil, covered, over medium low heat until wilted. The volume of spinach will decrease significantly.

That was a whole bag of spinach.

That was a whole bag of spinach.

Drizzle some olive oil in a cast iron pan and heat over medium high heat. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees, and line a large baking sheet with greased foil.

Remove the polenta from the packaging, draining off any liquid, and slice into 1/4″ slices. Cook the polenta on both sides until lightly browned.

They turn a more bold yellow, like those two at the bottom right, before starting to brown. (I flipped those back to cook further.)

They turn a more bold yellow, like those two at the bottom right, before starting to brown. (I flipped those back to cook further.)

IMG_3505Remove each cooked slice of polenta to the prepared baking sheet as they finish browning.

IMG_3506Spoon tomato sauce onto each slice of polenta.

IMG_3507Cover with cheese, then spinach (or other toppings as desired).

IMG_3508Bake for 15 minutes.

IMG_3509IMG_3510Serve using a spatula. You can eat these by hand, but it’s a bit easier/less messy to use a fork.

This was a good number for 3 people, and pretty quick to throw together. This was not actually the first time I’ve made these mini pizzas, and I don’t expect it will be the last!

Mini Polenta Pizzas

  • 1 18 ounce tube polenta
  • tomato sauce
  • shredded cheese
  • 1 bag baby spinach
  • olive oil

Cook the spinach with a drizzle of olive oil, covered, over medium low heat until wilted. The volume of spinach will decrease significantly.

Drizzle some olive oil in a cast iron pan and heat over medium high heat. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees, and line a large baking sheet with greased foil.

Remove the polenta from the packaging, draining off any liquid, and slice into 1/4″ slices. Cook the polenta on both sides until lightly browned. Remove cooked polenta to the prepared baking sheet.

Spoon tomato sauce onto each slice of polenta, then cover with cheese and toppings. Bake for 15 minutes, and serve using a spatula.

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