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Easter Pie

Italian Easter Pie

Our friend over at Bewitching Kitchen has this to say about the recipe:
“Each year I spot recipes for Easter Pie in websites and magazines, and I tell myself that I’ve got to see what it’s all about, but for one reason or another I never get around to making it. Still, the chances that this was the year to end my Easter Pie virginity were slim, because the thought of rolling dough in our nano-kitchen was downright scary. Yet, strange things happened. I read this post, and couldn’t stop thinking about it.”

I had a few problems with rolling the dough too even if I had a rolling pin at home. This recipe takes patience and determination. And you will find that it will all pay off in the end!

Read more... )
Italian Easter Pie2
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Turkey Gravy

Gravy from the Thanksgiving turkey pan drippings.

Total:25 min, Active: 10 min
Yield: 10 to 12 servings


1 Good Eats Roast Turkey, recipe follows
24 ounces reduced sodium chicken broth
8 ounces red wine
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon fresh herbs such as oregano, thyme or rosemary
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper

Roast Turkey:
One 14- to 16-pound frozen young turkey

For the brine:
1 gallon vegetable stock
1 cup kosher salt
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1 tablespoon black peppercorns
1 1/2 teaspoons allspice berries
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped candied ginger
1 gallon heavily iced water

For the aromatics:
1 red apple, quartered
1/2 onion, quartered
1 cinnamon stick
1 cup water
4 sprigs rosemary
6 leaves sage
Canola oil


Remove the turkey from the roasting pan and set aside to rest.

Leave the drippings from the turkey in the pan and place the roasting pan over medium heat.
Add the broth and wine at the same time. Whisk to combine, scraping the bottom of the pan until all of the bits have come loose. Cook for another 2 to 3 minutes in order to reduce the mixture slightly.

Transfer the liquid to a fat separator and let sit for 5 minutes to allow fat to separate.

Return 2/3 to 3/4 cup of the fat to the roasting pan and place over medium-high heat. Discard any remaining fat. Add the flour and whisk to combine.

Cook, whisking continuously, until the mixture starts to thicken and become smooth, approximately 2 to 3 minutes. Once this happens, gradually add the liquid back to the pan and whisk until smooth and you have reached your desired consistency, approximately 5 to 6 minutes.

Remember, your gravy should be slightly thin in the pan as it will thicken once you serve it. Add the herbs and whisk to combine. Season with salt and pepper.

~~~~~~~ Brining~~~~~~~
2 to 3 days before roasting:

Begin thawing the turkey in the refrigerator or in a cooler kept at 38 degrees F.

Combine the vegetable stock, salt, brown sugar, peppercorns, allspice berries, and candied ginger in a large stockpot over medium-high heat. Stir occasionally to dissolve solids and bring to a boil. Then remove the brine from the heat, cool to room temperature, and refrigerate.

Early on the day or the night before you'd like to eat:

Combine the brine, water and ice in the 5-gallon bucket. Place the thawed turkey (with innards removed) breast side down in brine. If necessary, weigh down the bird to ensure it is fully immersed, cover, and refrigerate or set in cool area for 8 to 16 hours, turning the bird once half way through brining.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F.

Remove the bird from brine and rinse inside and out with cold water. Discard the brine.

~~~~~~ Baking ~~~~~~~~

Place the bird on roasting rack inside a half sheet pan and pat dry with paper towels.

Combine the apple, onion, cinnamon stick, and 1 cup of water in a microwave safe dish and microwave on high for 5 minutes. Add steeped aromatics to the turkey's cavity along with the rosemary and sage. Tuck the wings underneath the bird and coat the skin liberally with canola oil.

Roast the turkey on lowest level of the oven at 500 degrees F. for 30 minutes. Insert a probe thermometer into thickest part of the breast and reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F. Set the thermometer alarm (if available) to 151 degrees F. A 14 to 16 pound bird should require a total of 2 to 2 1/2 hours of roasting. Let the turkey rest for at least 15 minutes before carving.

Recipe courtesy of Alton Brown, 2008
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apple cider gravy

Apple Cider Gravy

Easy make ahead dripless apple cider gravy. A flavorful addition to all of your holiday meals!


1/4C unsalted butter
1/4C all purpose flour

1 1/2C chicken broth*
1/2C apple cider*

1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper


In a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. When butter is fully melted, whisk in flour until thickened. Slowly add broth and cider, whisking well to combine. Season with salt and pepper. Bring to a low boil, continuing to whisk until desired thickness is reached.

Serve immediately or chill and reheat as needed.

If making ahead, press plastic wrap to the surface of the gravy to prevent a skin from forming. Reheat in a saucepan or in the microwave, stirring to ensure an even temperature.

*Vegetable broth may be used in place of chicken broth for a vegetarian option.
*If apple cider is not available, apple juice may be used instead.
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mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes

Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes with Gingersnap Crust

The perfect two bite Thanksgiving treat. Creamy spiced pumpkin cheesecakes baked on top of a gingersnap crust.


20 gingersnap cookies
2 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
1/2 tbsp granulated sugar

8oz cream cheese, softened
1/2C packed brown sugar

1/2C canned pumpkin
1 tbsp sour cream
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp allspice
1/8 tsp cloves

1 egg

Fresh whipped cream


Preheat oven to 350. Lightly grease mini cheesecake pan with baking spray.

In a food processor, process cookies into fine crumbs. Add granulated sugar and melted butter, combining well. Divide equally among cheesecake pan cavities. Use a small flat bottom item such as a shot glass to press down on cookie crumb mixture. Bake for 5 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside.

Reduce oven temperature to 325.

In a medium to large bowl, beat cream cheese and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Add pumpkin, sour cream, salt, vanilla and spices. Mix well. Finally, add egg mixing only until completely combined. Do not over mix. Divide among cheesecake pan cavities.

*Roughly 6 teaspoons or 2 tablespoons of filling per pan cavity. Using a small OXO cookie scoop, add roughly three scoops per cavity. Do not overfill. There should be a 1/4" gap between cheesecake mixture and top of the pan.

Tap pan on counter gently to force any air bubbles to the top.

Bake for 15-18 minutes in a 325 degree oven. Allow to cool completely on a wire rack before transferring to the refrigerator to chill overnight.

Top off with optional fresh sweetened whipped cream prior to serving.
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Potatoes Dauphinoise

potatoes Dauphinoise

Of all the ways to cook potato, this is my absolute favourite. Potato + cream + cheese with a hint of garlic and thyme created by the French = pure heaven. This recipe is based on Julia Child's recipe, the queen of French Cooking. The original recipe calls for gruyere cheese which is quite expensive here in Australia so I usually substitute with tasty or cheddar, or any other great melting cheese.

Serves: 4 - 6 (15 min prep, 45 min baking, reheats very well)

2 lb /1 kg starchy potatoes (Note 1)
½ clove unpeeled garlic
4 tablespoons butter, chopped into small cubes (Note 3)
1 teaspoon salt
⅛ teaspoon pepper
1½ cups grated gruyere cheese (or tasty or cheddar)
1½ cups cream
2 tsp thyme leaves (optional - but highly recommended)


Preheat oven to 350F/180C.

Rub a baking dish or round skillet (square 21 x 21 cm / 8 x 8" or round 23 cm / 9" diameter) with the cut garlic, then smear with 1 tbsp of butter.

Peel the potatoes and slice them ⅛"/3 mm thick. Or use a slicer - makes the job much faster!

Spread ⅓ of the potatoes in the dish, then scatter over ⅓ of the cream, salt, pepper, cheese, thyme and butter (Note 3).

Repeat for the 2nd and third layer, finishing with the cheese.

Cover with lid or foil, and bake for 1 hour to 1 hr 15 min or until the potatoes is soft (use a knife to test), then remove the foil and bake for a further 10 until the top is bubbly and golden. Rest for 10 minutes before serving.

1. You need to use starchy potatoes as they breakdown when cooked, becoming nice and fluffy on the inside and golden and crunchy on the top. The best to use are Russet (common in the US), Dutch creams, King Edwards or red delight. However, great all rounders like golden delight, coliban, red rascal and Sebago (popular in Australia) still works great.

2. To make ahead: After trying various ways during the course of 2016, I have found that the best way to make ahead is to assemble it all EXCEPT for the final layer of cheese. Cover with foil and bake until potato is soft. Let cool then drizzle with a bit of extra cream, top with cheese, refrigerate until required. Reheat covered in foil in a 180C/350F oven for 20 - 35 min or until hot, then remove foil and bake until cheese is golden. To speed things up you can microwave it then pop it in the oven (this is dense so takes quite a while to reheat in the oven, depends on depth of baking dish you use).

3. You could just melt the butter and drizzle. I've written the recipe the way it is traditionally made.

Serving size: 110g Calories: 167 cal Fat: 10g Saturated fat: 6.0g Unsaturated fat: 4.0g Trans fat: 0g Carbohydrates: 14.2g Sugar: 1.6g Sodium: 281mg Fiber: 2.1g Protein: 5.7g Cholesterol: 31mg
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It says:
These are super easy to make, and come with a sweet and salty combination of flavors that we absolutely go nuts for! A crisp cookie base is covered with a chewy filling, and that chewy filling is topped with a delightfully delicious swirl of caramel and nuts. Our secret here is to toast the nuts before they go on top of the bars. Toasting really brings out that nutty flavor and makes the cookie taste a little more decadent and rich than it would otherwise.

Chewy Nutty Squirrel Bars

chewy nutty squirrel bars

40 minutes to prepare 24-32 bars


2 sticks unsalted butter, softened and divided
1 cup powdered sugar
1 ¼ cup flour
⅓ cup cocoa powder
1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 cup caramel baking chips
½ cup chopped almonds, pecans or walnuts
4 tablespoons heavy cream
1 teaspoon salt


Set aside 2 tablespoons of butter.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 9x13-inch baking dish with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, beat sugar and 1 ¾ sticks butter until fluffy. Slowly add cocoa powder and flour and mix until well incorporated.

Transfer batter to baking dish. Press to spread around baking dish. Bake for 15 minutes.

In a medium saucepan on low heat, melt 2 tablespoons butter with sweetened condensed milk. Stir until thickened, remove from heat and add vanilla. Pour sauce over top of baked crust. Return to oven and bake until golden brown, 8-10 minutes.

Toast nuts in a dry pan until fragrant. Cool slightly then rough chop and set aside.

Melt caramel chips in microwave with 4 tablespoons heavy cream; 30 second intervals, stirring each time, for 2 minutes. Fold nuts and salt into caramel sauce, and pour over top and spread out to edges. Cool completely before cutting into bars.
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Creamy Lemon Squares

The lemon bars of your dreams take just 15 minutes of prep: Stir together a mere three ingredients to create a sunny, puckery filling for a buttery shortbread crust.



1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pan
1/2 cup confectioners' sugar, plus more for dusting
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup all-purpose flour, (spooned and leveled)

4 large egg yolks
1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
3/4 cup fresh lemon juice (from about 3 lemons)


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Butter an 8-inch square baking pan.
Line bottom with parchment paper, leaving an overhang on two sides; butter paper.

Make crust:
Using an electric mixer, beat butter, sugar, and salt until light and fluffy.
Add flour, and mix on low just until combined.
Press dough into the bottom and 1/2 inch up sides of prepared pan; prick all over with a fork.
Bake until lightly golden, 15 to 20 minutes.

Make filling:
In a large bowl, whisk together yolks, condensed milk, and lemon juice until smooth.
Pour over hot crust in pan; return to oven, and bake until filling is set, 25 to 30 minutes.
Cool completely in pan.
Refrigerate until filling is firm, about 2 hours or up to 3 days.
Using paper overhang, lift cake onto a work surface; cut into 16 squares, and dust with confectioners sugar.
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Pineapple Lemonade

This punch is delicious!

1 Cup Countrytime Lemonade Mix
3 Cups Cold water
1 Can of chilled pineapple juice ( 46 oz)
2 Cans of Sprite

Mix all ingredients and add in lemon slices ( if you wish) and ice.

Pineapple Lemonade
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Grandma’s Old Fashioned Custard Style Rice Pudding


4 eggs

3/4 cup sugar

3 cups milk

1 cup heavy cream

2 tsp vanilla

1 1/2 tsp cinnamon

3 cups cooked, cooled, rice (leftover rice works great!)

1 cup raisins


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Beat the eggs and sugar together. Slowly pour in the milk and cream and mix well. Add the vanilla and cinnamon and mix well. Add the rice and raisins and stir to combine. Pour mixture into a greased casserole dish.

Place the filled casserole dish inside a larger, oven-proof dish. Add about 2 inches of water to the larger pan (or enough to fill about halfway up the side of the rice pudding dish). This method will help the pudding to have a custard texture.

Bake for 30 minutes. Gently stir. Bake for an additional 30 minutes or until a knife inserted comes out clean. Serve warm.

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Good with Ham, Turkey leftovers

Honey-Mustard Cranberry Sauce
Read more... )
BON APPÉTIT DECEMBER 2002 YIELD---Makes about 2 1/2 cups

Read more... )
Cranberry Honey Mustard
Recipe by Aroostook Makes about 3 1/3 cups.

Read more... )


Cranberry Honey Mustard
By Kathie N. Lapcevic of

Read more... )

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Bacon-Jalapeno Dip

Mix together

8 oz cream cheese
2 C shredded cheese
1/2 C sour cream
1/4 C milk
4 slices bacon, cooked and chopped
1 T bacon drippings
1 t white vinegar
2 jalapenos sliced thin

Spread evenly in baking dish and top with bread crumbs.
Bake at 350 degrees F for 30 mins.
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Brown Sugar Caramel Pound Cake

1 ½ cups butter softened
2 cups light brown sugar, packed
1 cup granulated sugar
5 large eggs
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup whole milk
1 8oz bag toffee chips
1 cup pecans, chopped

Carmel Drizzel:
1 – 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk
1 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons butter
½ teaspoon vanilla extract


Preheat oven to 325 spray a 12 cup Bundt pan with cooking spray with flour
Beat butter until creamy. Add sugars beating until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time. In medium bowl combine flour, baking powder and salt. Add flour mix to batter alternately with milk, beat until just combined. Stir in toffee buts and pecans. Spoon batter into pan and bake 85 minutes or until wooden pick comes out clean. To prevent excess browning, cover cake with foil while baking.
Let cake cool in pan for 10 minutes. Remove from pan, and let cool completely on a wire rack. Spoon Caramel Drizzle over cooled cake.
Directions for Caramel Drizzle
In a medium saucepan, combine condensed milk and brown sugar; bring to a boil over medium-high heat, whisking frequently. Reduce heat, and SIMMER for 8 minutes, whisking frequently. Remove from heat; whisk in butter and vanilla. Let cool for 5 minutes before using. NOTE: Make sure you drizzle the caramel while it’s still HOT.
When cooled the caramel does somewhat harden.
Original source unknown
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Cinnamon Bun Cake Recipe

3 cups flour
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup sugar
4 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 cup milk
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
4 T butter, melted
2 sticks (1 cup) butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar
2 T flour
1 T cinnamon
2/3 cups nuts (optional)

2 cups powdered sugar
5 T milk
1 tsp vanilla

With an electric mixer or stand-up mixer, mix flour, sugar, salt, baking powder, milk, eggs, and vanilla.
Once combined well, slowly stir in 4 T melted butter. Pour batter into a greased 9×13″ baking pan.
In a large bowl, mix the 2 sticks of softened butter, brown sugar, flour, cinnamon, and nuts until well combined.
Drop evenly over cake batter by the tablespoon and use a knife to marble/swirl through the cake.
Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until toothpick comes out nearly clean from center.
Place powdered sugar, milk, and vanilla in a large bowl. Whisk until smooth. Drizzle over warm cake.
Serve warm (we like it straight out of the oven) or at room temperature.
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Caramel Apple Cheesecake

2 cups crushed graham crackers
1/4 C. Sugar
1 stick (melted) butter and press into 9x13 pan.
(stick in the freezer while making the topping so it sets)

Cream togethe:,
16 ounces cream cheese (softened)
4 C powdered sugar.

Fold in:
12 ounces Cool Whip.

Put atop the graham cracker crust.
Top with diced red & green apples & drizzle with sundae caramel sauce.
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KISSES Coconut Macaroon Blossoms
• 1/3 cup butter or margarine , softened
• 1 package (3 oz.) cream cheese , softened
• 3/4 cup sugar
• 1 egg yolk
• 1-1/2 to 2 teaspoons almond extract
• 2 teaspoons orange juice
• 1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
• 2 teaspoons baking powder
• 1/4 teaspoon salt
• 5 cups Sweetened Coconut Flakes , divided
• 48 HERSHEY'S KISSES Brand Milk Chocolates

•1. Beat butter, cream cheese and sugar in large bowl until well blended. Add egg yolk, almond extract and orange juice; beat well. Stir together flour, baking powder and salt; gradually add to butter mixture, beating until well blended. Stir in 3 cups coconut.

•2. Cover; refrigerate 1 hour or until firm enough to handle. Remove wrappers from chocolates. Heat oven to 350°F. Shape dough into 1-inch balls; roll balls in remaining 2 cups coconut. Place on ungreased cookie sheet.

•3. Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from oven; immediately press chocolate into center of each cookie. Cool 1 minute; carefully remove from cookie sheet to wire rack. Cool completely. Makes about 48 cookies.
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Pecan Praline Fudge


2 cups packed brown sugar
¾ cup butter
1/2 cup evaporated milk
3 cups powdered sugar
1 tablespoon bourbon
1 cup chopped candied pecans


1. Spray bottom and sides of 8-inch square pan with cooking spray. In 3-quart saucepan, cook brown sugar, 3/4 cup butter and the milk over medium heat about 2 minutes, stirring constantly, until butter is melted and sugar is dissolved. Heat to full rolling boil; boil and stir 1 minute. Remove from heat.
2. Add powdered sugar and bourbon. Beat with electric mixer on low speed 1 minute. On medium speed, beat 10 minutes or until mixture begins to hold its shape and is warm to the touch. Quickly stir in pecans.
3. Spread in pan. Refrigerate 2 hours or until firm. Cut into 8 rows by 8 rows. Store tightly covered at room temperature.

Quick Tip: Fudge stores well wrapped in wax paper and in an airtight container.
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5 Minute Blender Eggnog
This light and deliciously creamy homemade eggnog can be made in just 5 minutes in your blender! Nothing hits the holiday spot more than a cup of eggnog!

4 large eggs the freshest you can find
3/4 cup granulated sugar (or superfine sugar)
1/2 tsp dried nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
3 oz cognac (about 1/3 cup + 1 Tbsp)
3 oz bourbon (about 1/3 cup + 1 Tbsp)
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1 cup heavy cream

1. Add whole eggs to blender and blend on MED speed (or LOW if you only have a HIGH and LOW setting option) for 30 seconds.
2. Add sugar and blend another 20 seconds.
3. Add nutmeg, cinnamon, cognac, bourbon, milk and heavy cream and blend until combined, about 10-15 seconds.
4. Transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate for a day or so to allow flavors to combine and mellow.

1. Eggnog may have settled in the refrigerator, so either give it a good shake or two, or pour into a mixing bowl and give it a whisk to get everything combined.
2. Serve with some additional grated nutmeg on top, and an optional cinnamon stick.

1.  Separate eggs.
2.  In a large mixing bowl, beat egg yolks until lighter in color.  Add sugar in 3 batches, beating after each addition, until fluffy.
3.  To a saucepan, add milk, nutmeg and cinnamon and heat over LOW to MED-LOW heat, until steaming but not boiling.
4. Take 1 cup of hot milk mixture and SLOWLY, while whisking continuously, pour it into the egg yolk mixture.  This tempers the eggs and ensures they won't scramble.
5.  Transfer tempered egg yolk mixture to the saucepan with the rest of the steamed milk.
6.  Cook over MED heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon until mixture has thickened somewhat.  You'll know it's ready when you dip the wooden spoon into the mixture, turn it over and run your finger down the back of the spoon, and the mixture coats the spoon but leaves a bare line where you ran your finger.  Don't let the mixture boil!
7.  Take mixture off the heat and stir in the heavy cream.  Let cool for approximately 1 hour.
8.  Stir in cognac and bourbon and transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate for a day or so before serving.

If you prefer a thicker eggnog, beat egg whites on MED/MED-HIGH speed until soft peaks form.  Add a pinch of sugar and beat until stiff peaks form.  Fold whipped egg whites into eggnog mixture before serving. 

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 1 cup
Serves 5
Amount Per Serving
Calories 465
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 23.9g 37%
Cholesterol 221.3mg 74%
Sodium 106.9mg 4%
Total Carbohydrate 35.4g 12%
Sugars 35.1g
Protein 8.3g 17%
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Apple Cider Gravy

YIELD:Makes 3 cups

1/4 cups flour
3 cups turkey stock
1 cup apple cider
2 teaspoons sage (finely chopped)
ground black pepper
kosher salt

1.Melt butter over medium high heat in medium saucepan. Whisk in flour and cook, stirring frequently, until golden blonde, about 2 minutes.

2.Gradually add in turkey drippings or stock in a steady stream, whisking constantly, then add apple cider. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook until reduced to 3 cups, 10 to 15 minutes. Stir in sage and season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately or store in an airtight container in refrigerator for up to a week, reheating over medium-low heat before serving.

Hmmmmm and if it's Ham...
cloves in place of sage?
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Salted Chocolate Pretzel Bark
1 C butter
1 C brown sugar
8 oz unsalted pretzels
8 oz chocolate chips
Sea salt

Melt butter, add sugar and cook until forms caramelizes.
On lined baking sheet spread pretzels. Pour caramel over pretzels.
Back 400 degrees 5 - 7 min.
Melt chocolate chips and spread over pretzels.
Sprinkle with sea salt.
Freeze 1 hour.
Break into pieces.
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Snowball Cookies/ Italian Wedding Cookies

1 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup powdered sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup pecans, chopped
powdered sugar

Blend softened butter with powdered sugar. Add vanilla.
Mix in salt, flour and chopped pecans.
Form dough into 1 inch balls or flattened cookies and place on an ungreased cookie sheet.
Bake in a 325 degree oven for 20 minutes. While hot roll in powdered sugar. Let cool and roll again in powdered sugar.


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