Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Old Fashion Pandowdy

Before I found this recipe I had never heard of a pandowdy. According to, a pandowdy is a deep dish fruit dish that was created as a way to use leftover bread dough on baking day.
After reading the history about it and drooling over the picture, and because I am a sucker for any type of apple dessert, I had to try it. I'm happy to say I was not disappointed.

This apple dessert may not be the best looking apple dessert, but the
cinnamon spiced apples topped with a sweet crunchy dough, makes this dessert win first prize in the taste category. Serve it warm with vanilla ice cream or even eat it cold. It's a yummy apple dessert.

Old Fashion Apple Pandowdy

Adapted from

Fruit Filling

1/3 cup maple syrup

2 tablespoon water

2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon grated nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon salt

5 Gala or Granny Smith apples (2 to 2 1/2 lb), peeled, cored, and cut into 1/2-inch wedges

1 tablespoon all-purpose flour

1/2 cup sugar

2 tablespoon unsalted butter, cut into bits

Biscuit Top

2 cups all- purpose flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

1 teaspoon sugar

2 teaspoon demerara sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

3/4 stick cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

1 cup heavy cream plus more for brushing

To Make The Fruit Filling

Preheat oven to 375 degrees with rack in middle. Stir together maple syrup, water, lemon juice, nutmeg, cinnamon, vanilla and salt in a large bowl. Add apples and stir to coat. Stir in flour and sugar.
Transfer apple mixture to a 9-inch square baking dish and dot apples with butter pieces. Bake, covered with foil for 25 minutes.

While Apples Bake, Make The Biscuit Topping

Whisk together flour, baking powder, 1 tsp sugar, and salt in a large bowl. Cut in butter with fingertips until it resembles coarse meal. Add cream and stir with a fork until dough forms.
Turn out dough onto lightly floured surface and knead 4 or 5 times to bring dough together, Roll dough in an 8 inch square, brush with cream and sprinkle with 2 tsp of demerara sugar.

To Finish Pandowdy

Cover hot fruit with dough and bake uncovered until biscuit is just golden-about 20 minutes. Then use a spoon to break up biscuit topping. Mix slightly with filling and drizzle some of the apples and syrup over the biscuit.
Continue to bake until apples are tender and biscuit is golden brown in spots, 5 to 10 minutes.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Chocolate Crinkles

This recipe came from a cookbook created by church ladies who love to cook and for some reason put together a cookbook. I don't know why they created the "Un-'bear"ably Good Cooking" Cookbook, but I'm glad they did.

It's funny how we got this book since I didn't know the lady who put the book together (Betty Jo Young) or even the lady who gave this recipe (Monica Memmott Earl). We became the proud owners of this cookbook by luck. My hubby's boss gave him the cookbook as a way of thanking him one day. I don't remember why he was thanking him because it has been way too long to remember, but I chuckle each time I use the cookbook because this thoughtful gift was actually re-gifted. And how do I know this? Well his aunt who had been in charge of the cookbook had personally signed the book for him. Whoops. Well he may have not appreciated the cookbook, but I love it. So Betty Jo thanks for the cookbook. I appreciate the massive amount of work it must have been to put it together because I can imagine it must have been a pain in the butt.

I would also like to thank Monica who contributed this recipe to the " Un-'bear"ably Good Cooking" Cookbook. Her cookies were quick, delicious and easy to make. Which is a plus since we are all swamped with end of school projects.

Chocolate Crinkles

From "Un-'bear"ably Good Cooking" and Monica Memmott Earl

Mix together

1/2 cup oil

12 tablespoons of Dutch processed cocoa

2 cups sugar


4 eggs

2 teaspoon vanilla

2 cups flour

2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

Mix well and refrigerate for 2 hours or overnight. Roll into a ball and then in powdered sugar.

Bake at 350 degrees for 10 to 12 minutes

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Steamed Brown Bread

I used to eat a lot of this bread when I was a kid. It was usually severed along side Boston Baked Beans and the bread came from a can. Which I used to think was a strange. But I loved the dense, moist, sweet bread and got excited anytime my mom brought some home from the grocery store. I knew dinner that night was going to be a good one.

When I saw this recipe I had to try it since it had been a long time since I had eaten steamed bread. I wondered if it would taste as good as I remembered and would I still love it?

This bread has a stronger molasses taste then I remember the one from the can having and since molasses is not my most favorite flavor, I didn't love this bread as much as I did when I was a kid. I guess my taste buds have changed.

Steamed Brown Bread

Adapted from Cooking Light October 2008

4.75 ounces whole wheat flour (about 1 cup)

4 ounces rye flour (about 1 cup)

1 cup cornmeal

1 cup raisins

2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 cups buttermilk

3/4 cup molasses

2 tablespoon butter melted

1 tablespoon grated orange rind

Cooking spray

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Combine flours, cornmeal, raisins, baking soda, and salt into a large bowl; stir with a whisk. Combine buttermilk, molasses, butter, and rind. Add to dry ingredients; stir just until moistened. Divide batter evenly between 2 (8-inch) loaf pans coated with cooking spray. Tightly cover each pan with foil. Place pans in a 13x9-inch baking pan. Add boiling water to a depth of 1 inch. Cover larger pan with foil.
Bake for 1 hour and 10 minutes or until a knife inserted in center comes out clean. Top of bread will be slightly sticky. Remove pans from water. Cool 10 minutes on a wire rack and then remove from pans. Cool completely.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Tangy Mustard Coleslaw

One of the things I love about summer is grilling. Along with grilling I love a good slaw to go with the meal. This recipe from Cooking Light is low in fat without losing any flavor. It's creamy, tangy and goes well with everything. It would taste spectacular on fish tacos or a pulled pork sandwich.

Tangy Mustard Coleslaw

Adapted from Cooking Light June 2008

7 cups finely shredded green cabbage (about 1/2 a head)

1 cup thinly vertically sliced red onion

1 cup grated carrot

1/4 cup white wine vinegar

2 tablespoon sugar

2 tablespoon whole-grain mustard

2 tablespoon reduced-fat mayonnaise

1/8 teaspoon of salt

1/8 teaspoon black pepper

1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper

Combine cabbage, onion, and grated carrot in a large bowl. Whisk together white wine vinegar, sugar, mustard, mayonnaise, salt, black pepper, and red pepper in a small bowl. Pour mixture over cabbage mixture and toss well to coat. Cover and chill for 20 minutes or longer. Stir before serving.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Zucchini-Pinapple Quick Bread

Last week I made this bread and it made a lot. Two loaf pans plus an 8'' cake. I had extra batter because my loaf pans were smaller than the 9x5 size the recipe called for. Well I figured that's a lot of bread and there is no way we can eat it all. So I froze the cake and one of the loaves thinking I would give some to my parents when they came up. They tell me every time they read my blog, they would love to eat whatever I have made. I thought I would be thoughtful and save some of my baking for them. Well to make a long story short,

I have no bread for my parents. Sorry folks, but the hungry vultures known as my family, ate it all. And yes, I would be one of the hungry vulture. Maybe I'll be able to save whatever I make next time, but with a hungry growing family and a thirteen year old son who is already eating everything but the kitchen sink, I doubt it.

One thing that made this bread so good was the wonderful addition of crushed pineapple which made this cake very moist. If you like nuts like I do, then add some chopped pecans to the mix and you will be in heaven.

This is now my favorite zucchini bread recipe.

A few notes on the bread: I didn't have egg substitute so I just added another egg and omitted the egg substitute. I also added about a half of cup of chopped pecans.

Zucchini-Pineapple -Quick Bread
Adapted from Cooking Light. June 2008

3 cups shifted all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

2 large eggs

2 cups sugar

2 cups grated zucchini (about 1 1/2 medium zucchini)

2/3 cup canola oil

1/2 cup egg substitute

2 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 (8-ounce) cans crushed pineapple in juice, drained

Baking spray with flour

Preheat oven to 325 degrees

Combined flour, salt, and next 3 ingredients (through ground cinnamon) in a large bowl, stirring well with a whisk.

Beat eggs with a mixer at medium speed until foamy. Add sugar, zucchini, oil, egg substitute (or 1 egg) and vanilla, beating until well blended. Add zucchini mixture to flour mixture and stir until moist. Fold in pineapple (and nuts if using them). Spoon batter into 2 (9x5-inch) loaf pans coated with baking spray. Bake for 1 hour or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes in pans on a wire rack; remove from pans. Cool completely on wire rack.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Pureed Potato and Broccoli Soup With Parmesan Croutons

What to do when the spring weather has suddenly turned to winter again? Instead of being sad by the rain and cold, I made soup. I love when summer comes around but that means I have to say goodbye to hot soup, one of my favorite entrees. So when I woke up to a wet and cold day, I took advantage of it and made probably my last bowl of hot soup for the season.

The soup I chose to make came from the New York Times Recipes for Health. I recently discovered this gem of a web site. If you have never looked at it, take a moment and peruse over the many recipes it has for healthy meals. It truly is my new best friend. So don't be surprise to see me making many dishes from the web site.

Now I know the Purred Broccoli and Potato soup with Parmesan croutons has the funky green color that may scare some people away, but once you get past the color it truly is a silky, garlicky and creamy soup. Even my nine year old who has a hard time eating foods of this color loved the soup. The garlicky toasted croutons might have done the trick.

Pureed Potato and Broccoli Soup With Parmesan Croutons

Adapted from the New York Times

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 large onion, chopped

2 leeks, white and light green only, sliced and cleaned

3 garlic cloves, chopped, plus 1 small clove, cut in half

Salt, preferably kosher salt, salt to taste

2 pounds starchy potatoes (russets or Yukon gold), peeled and cut in large dice

A bouquet garni made with a bay leaf and 2 sprigs each parsley and thyme

2 quarts of chicken stock

1 pound broccoli crowns, coarsely chopped

Freshly ground pepper to taste

12 thin slices baguette or country bread

1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan

Heat oil in a large, heavy pot over medium heat and add the chopped onions. Cook, stirring until translucent.

Add garlic and 1/2 teaspoon salt, cook, stirring until fragrant.

Add the leeks, potatoes, bouquet garni, chicken stock and salt to taste. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and cook covered for 30 minutes. Add broccoli and turn up the heat to bring back to a boil. Reduce heat and cook uncovered until broccoli is tender but still bright. Remove the bouquet garni.

Blend the soup in batches with a blender or with a hand blender. Be sure to cover the blender top with a towel to avoid being splash by the hot soup.

Pour purred soup through a strainer. Use the back of a ladle to push the soup through. Return to the soup pot and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Lightly rub each slice of bread with the cut garlic. Top with grated Parmesan Cheese and toast under a broiler or toaster oven until cheese has melted. Watch carefully as bread can quickly burn.

Serve the soup with two toasted croutons.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Raspberry Swirl Cake

With Mother's Day right around the corner, I decided it was time for a cake.

A simple cake, one that uses a cake mix.

Because some days you don't want to spend a lot of time in the kitchen.

Not when there is baseball practice, a history project due and laundry and-well you get the picture.

I got this recipe from the Duncan Hines web site.

I like to add sour cream to my mix. It adds another level of flavor and makes it more moist and dense.

After the cake has cooled, cut off the top if it is not flat.

I cut this cake into three layers. That way you get more frosting and filling with each bite. Which in my book is always a good thing because I'm a frosting loving freak and I'm not afraid to admit it.

Spread the raspberry filling on the first two layers. Then on top of the raspberry filling, top with the cream cheese frosting.

Frost the cake with a crumb coat (a thin layer of frosting to seal in moisture and crumbs before the final frosting). Refrigerate for an hour or two to let the frosting set. Finish with a final coat of frosting and top with raspberries.

And to all the wonderful moms out there, especially my mom-

Happy Mother's Day!

To find the recipe for this cake, click on the link.

To jazz up a cake box mix add:

1 cup of sour cream

3 eggs

1/2 cup vegetable oil

Add the sour cream, eggs and oil to dry mix and blend for 1 minute in a mixer. Then scrape down the sides of the bowl and mix on medium speed for two minutes.
Bake according to the instructions on the box.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

No-knead overnight parmesan and thyme rolls

Who doesn't love bread dough you can throw in a pan and not kneed it? I love that the dough can be made the day ahead. The drawback- you have to wait a day to enjoy the rolls, but it is so worth the effort.

I loved how these rolls made my house smell like a pizzeria while they baked. I can have my kitchen smelling like a pizzeria anytime of the day and week. Seriously. I could really live off of pizza. I know my kids wished we did.

These rolls also make really good sandwiches. If they cool before you can eat them, they can be reheated in the microwave for 8-12 seconds.

No-Knead Overnight Parmesan and Thyme Rolls
Adapted from Cooking Light April 2010

I used whole-wheat flour in place of the whole-wheat white flour. The dough is more like a thick batter so do not add more all-purpose flour than what is called or the rolls will come out dry.

1/2 teaspoon dry yeast

2 tablespoon warm water (100 to 110 degrees)

2 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, divided

1 teaspoon dried thyme

1/3 cup 2% reduced -fat milk

1/2 cup (2 ounces) grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, divided

1 tablespoon sugar

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1 large egg, lightly beaten

1.1 ounces whole-wheat white flour (about 1/4 cups)

5.6 ounces all-purpose flour (about 1 1/4 cups), divided

cooking spray

1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper

1. Dissolve yeast in 2 tablespoons warm water in a large bowl; let stand 5 minutes or until bubbly

2. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add thyme to pan; cook 1 minute or until bubbly and fragrant. Add thyme mixture and milk to yeast mixture, stirring with a whisk; add 1/4 cup cheese, sugar, salt, and egg, stirring well.

3. Weigh or lightly spoon whole-wheat white flout into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife, Using a wooden spoon, stir whole-wheat white flour into yeast mixture, Weigh or lightly spoon 4.5 ounces (about 1 cup) all-purpose flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Add enough of remaining all-purpose flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, to form a smooth, but very sticky dough. Place dough in a large bowl coated with cooking spray, turning to coat top.
Cover and refrigerate overnight.

4. Remove dough from refrigerator. Do not punch dough down. Turn dough out onto a floured surface; sprinkle dough lightly with flour. Roll dough into a 12x7-inch rectangle. Brush dough with remaining 1 tablespoon oil. Sprinkle remaining 1/4 cup cheese evenly over dough; sprinkle with pepper.
Beginning with a long side, roll up dough jelly-roll fashion. Pinch seam to seal (do not seal ends of roll). Cut roll into 8 (1 1/2-inch) slices. Place slices, cut sides up, on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper. Cover and let rise in a warm place (85 degrees), free from drafts, 1 hour or until rolls have risen slightly.

5. Preheat oven to 400 degrees

6. Place pan in oven, and immediately reduce heat to 375 degrees. Bake rolls at 375 degrees for 12 minutes or until golden brown. Serve warm. Yield: 8 rolls

Monday, May 3, 2010

Whole wheat blueberry pancakes with pecans

Sometime you need a hearty breakfast.

Cereal just won't do.

Eggs would be good, but it's not an egg in the morning type of morning.


You need something with substance.

Like whole-wheat pancakes with blueberries, toasted pecans and a hint of orange in them.

Yeah, something like that.

Because when you have a new yard that looks like this

and you have to spend the day doing this

and this.

Then your going to need to start the day off right.

Whole wheat blueberry pancakes with pecans

1 1/4 cups whole wheat flour

2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 salt

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1 egg

1 cup milk, or more if needed

1 tablespoon of orange juice

1 teaspoon of orange zest

1/4 cup toasted pecans

1/2 cup fresh or frozen blueberries

Mix together the flour, baking powder, brown sugar and salt

In separate bowl, mix together milk, egg, orange juice, zest and pecans

Add the liquid mixture to the flour mixture. Fold in blueberries

Pour a 1/4 cup of batter for each pancake onto a hot, lightly heated griddle or heavy skillet.

Turn pancakes when the surface is bubbly.

Cook until golden brown.