Indian Pudding Recipe

5 Mar

The Savory Sisters grew up with this dessert that can mainly be found as part of traditional New England food.  We’ve tried it at Durgan Park in the center of Quincy Market in Boston but mostly enjoyed it in our Mom’s kitchen. The “Indian” in the name is referring to its Native American flavors including molasses, corn meal and cinnamon. It may not be the prettiest dessert but oh is it delicious and perfect for a cold day to warm you up. We love serving the pudding hot with vanilla ice cream as the hot and cold combination does wonders to the senses.

indian pudding

Ingredients:

  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup molasses
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 4 cups milk
  • 2/3 cup yellow corn meal
  • 3 tbs butter

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Spread in deep 3-4 quart dish. Combine everything but corn meal & milk, add 2 1/2 cup milk then whip in cornmeal. Cook until it begins to bubble and becomes stiff. Remove from heat then add butter and remaining 1 1/2 cup milk until smooth. Turn into baking dish and cook until slightly soft in center (1 1/4) hours.  Serve warm with vanilla ice cream.

Andrew’s Birthday Cake

1 Mar

My hubby’s birthday is coming up and I am making him this:

Image

I took this photo of his birthday cake last year, which is Giada de Laurentiis’ Hazelnut Crunch Cake with Mascarpone & Chocolate. And I am making the cake again because:

1. The cake is heaven in every bite. Light mascarpone frosting, moist chocolate cake, fresh chocolate orange zest and crunch hazelnut candy = perfection.

2. My hubby LOVES Giada.

3. My hubby requested I make it again.

4. Presentation is to die for and makes me feel like I am a cake artist (even though I am far from one).

5. The cake is surprisingly EASY to make.

You are probably thinking, yeah right, how could a cake that looks like that be easy? Well, it is boxed cake. Yes, you heard me right. Giada’s recipe calls for boxed cake, and I am all about the short cuts if it doesn’t take away from flavor. I used Duncan Hines Dark Chocolate Fudge Cake and the cake was so moist and delicious with this mix. And the hazelnut crunch, while it looks intimidating, wasn’t hard to make at all. Simply boil sugar and water for 10 minutes then pour the mixture over hazelnuts on parchment paper.

So the next time you want to impress guests or that special someone with an amazing cake that will cause them to crown you king/queen and bow at your feet, try this cake. And enjoy!

Recipe on the Food Network’s Website: Hazelnut Crunch Cake with Mascarpone & Chocolate

Israeli Couscous with Apples, Cranberries and Herbs

17 Jan

Hello friends! We hope everyone had a scrumptious holiday season and a happy new year. After taking a little bit of a hiatus we are back and armed with delicious recipes, some even life changing, that we cannot wait to share with you. A percentage of these are family recipes, others we have discovered online or through word of mouth, and a few are a result of experimenting in our own kitchens.

So without further ado, let’s get cookin’ :).

Served at room temperature, this Israeli couscous recipe is the perfect side dish for a potluck or get together with friends. It also makes for great leftovers. Add some grilled chicken to it and,  voila!, you have a delicious and healthy lunch. A Giada de Laurentiis recipe with a few tweaks, I’ve made this dish several times for friends and have only received rave reviews.

NOTE: Giada says the dish serves between 4 to 6 people but I find it really serves up to 20 as a side dish. Unless you are cooking for an army, there is no need to double this recipe.

Ingredients

Couscous:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cups Israeli couscous (Do not substitute regular couscous for Israeli couscous. Trader Joes  sells Israeli couscous and most grocery stores sell it in their kosher or international section. If you cannot find Israeli couscous you can use barley or orzo.)
  • 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary leaves
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 medium green apple, diced
  • 1 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup toasted almonds slices

Vinaigrette:

  • 1/8 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1/2 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup olive oil

For the couscous: In a medium saucepan, heat the olive oil on medium-high heat. Add the couscous and cook, stirring occasionally until slightly browned and aromatic, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add the chicken broth and bring to a boil. Simmer for 10 to 12 minutes or until the liquid has evaporated. Transfer the cooked couscous to a large bowl and set aside to cool. Once cooled, add the parsley, rosemary, thyme, apple, dried cranberries, and almonds.

For the vinaigrette: In a small bowl, combine the vinegar, maple syrup, honey, salt, and pepper. Whisk in the olive oil until smooth. Pour the vinaigrette over the couscous and toss to coat evenly. Let sit for at least 1 hour before serving.

Baked Truffle Parmesan Mashed Potatoes

7 Oct

Mmmmm mashed potatoes, how I heart thee. You are so rich and creamy and just utterly delicious.

My magic touch to mashed potatoes is a half teaspoon of truffle oil. In my opinion, almost everything tastes better with truffle oil. There is something about its delicate flavor that can turn the ordinary into the extraordinary. I think it has gourmet powers.

At about $15 a bottle, truffle oil is pretty pricey, but just a few drops will go a long way. No worries though if you don’t have truffle oil. The mashed potatoes recipe below is still fantastic without it.

The recipe is essentially a combination of recipes from some of my favorite Food Network stars, Ina Garten and Giada de Laurentiis, with some healthy substitutions so I don’t feel so guilty after multiple helpings. Great texture with the perfect amount of creaminess and cheesiness, this recipe is a Savory Sisters must try.

Ingredients (serves 4):

1 pound red potatoes

1/2 cup milk (I used skim but you can use whatever you have on hand)

2 1/2 tablespoons butter

1/4 cup light sour cream

3/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan

2 tablespoons plain dried bread crumbs

salt & pepper to taste

1/2 teaspoon truffle oil (optional)


Place potatoes in pot. Cover with cold water and a teaspoon of salt. Bring to a boil. Simmer covered for about 25 to 35 minutes or until tender. Drain.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

In small saucepan heat milk with butter until hot and combined.

In a bowl, mix potatoes for a  few seconds with a mixer using the paddle attachment to break them up (or simply use a potatoes masher). Slowly add the milk butter mixture, mixing on the lowest speed. Fold in sour cream, 1/2 cup parmesan cheese, salt & pepper to taste. Add truffle oil if desired.

Place mashed pototoes in baking dish. Mix together remaining parmesan and bread crumbs. Sprinkle cheese bread crumb mixture on top of potatoes. Bake in oven for 20 minutes. At last minute put underneath broiler for browning on top.

NOTE: If entertaining, you can make the mashed potatoes ahead of time but just wait to bake them until guests arrive.





Amy’s Chicken Marsala

5 Oct

I love chicken marsala. The richness of the sherry with the sweetness of the shallots with moist chicken is pure deliciousness. Best of all, it is pretty easy to make a healthier savory version at home. Restaurants tend to add a lot of cream and butter to this dish.  My version has zero cream and only a touch of butter. Plus, I personally believe it tastes better than any restaurant version.

This past weekend I made my chicken marsala  for my hubby. Served with baked parmesan mashed potatoes and some sauteed broccoli, it was a pretty sweet meal. Recipe below:

Chicken Marsala (serves 2)

Ingredients:

1 shallot – diced

1 package sliced baby bella mushrooms

2 chicken breasts, pounded thin and dusted with flour & preferred seasoning (I use garlic salt, pepper and thyme)

3/4 cup marsala wine or sherry

1 cup chicken stock

1 tablespoon butter

Saute chicken in pan with olive oil for 3 to 4 minutes on each side or until chicken is cooked

Remove chicken from pan (leave drippings in)

Add a little bit more oil to pan if needed. Saute shallots until translucent/slightly carmelized. Add mushrooms and cook for about 8 minutes. Add sherry/marsala wine, cook until reduced by half.

Add chicken stock & butter. Season to taste.

Add chicken then transfer to plate to serve. Garnish with parsley if desired. Enjoy!



Apple Pancake Family Recipe

24 Sep

Even though it is in the 90s today in Washington DC and Virginia, fall is upon us and that means it is apple season. We love apple season as it gives us an excuse to not only bake apple pies and apple crisp but also apple pancakes.

When the Savory Sisters were growing up, we frequently would wake up on weekend mornings to the sweet smell of cinnamon and butter.  The minute we smelled it we could not bring ourselves to go back asleep as the smell wafted throughout the house.  Instead, we would go downstairs and wait with salivating mouths for our mom’s special apple pancake to come out of the oven. Oh the torture but so worth the wait.

A sort of breakfast apple pie, apple pancake is a baked breakfast dish made up of apples, cinnamon and butter mixed into a slightly sweet batter.  Our family recipe is derived from a somewhat sweeter version created by the Walker Brothers Restaurant located a couple of miles from our mom’s hometown outside of Chicago.

Apple Pancake

The recipe is as follows:

1/2 cup milk

1/2 cup flour

3 eggs beaten

pinch of salt

vanilla

1-2 apples, peeled and sliced.

Saute the apples with a tablespoon of butter until soft but not soggy.  Mix the rest of the ingredients together and add the apples.  Pour into greased 9 x 13 pan or a pan of similar size.  Bake at 500 degrees for 15 minutes.  Dot with sugar and butter and sprinkle with cinnamon.  Place back into the oven for another 5 minutes.  Drizzle with maple syrup and you have delicious breakfast treat! Enjoy!

The Pioneer Woman’s Homemade Cinnamon Bread

10 Sep

Photo Courtesy of The Pioneer Woman

Looking for something to do this weekend or do you just want to try the most amazing cinnamon bread in the world? If yes, do yourself a favor and make The Pioneer Woman’s homemade cinnamon bread.

I’m not sure how many of you have heard of the The Pioneer Woman. She is basically my hero as she combines my two loves, food and photography, into a witty blog that is truly inspiring. If you haven’t already, I highly recommend checking out her blog at http://thepioneerwoman.com/ and also check out this post http://thepioneerwoman.com/blog/2009/06/a_hobby_of_mine/ for an afternoon smile.

After salivating over The Pioneer Woman’s recent post on homemade cinnamon bread (http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2010/08/homemade-cinnamon-bread/) I decided to try making it myself. It was a good six hour process, as you have to let the dough rise for a total of 4 hours, so don’t start making this recipe late at night. However, it is totally worth the time and effort as the bread is truly life changing. Toast a slice of this bread and then spread some butter on top and I am pretty sure you will enter food euphoria. Just try it.

I’m not going to re-write The Pioneer Woman’s recipe as it is all on her website and she already does a  fabulous job explaining all the steps. Instead, I’m just going to post some photos of my cinnamon bread making experience.

Melting butter with milk. The Pioneer Woman says she feels like a rebel cooking with whole milk. I feel like a rebel cooking with 2%.

Watching my Kitchen Aid work its magic.

That looks better

Now it is rising time. I hope the yeast likes my kitchen.

Yup, the yeast clearly likes my kitchen. Yay for hot humid Virginia and being too cheap to keep the AC turned up high :).


Mmmm butter

Mmmmm cinnamon & sugar

Rolled up and risen

Time to coat in an egg milk mixture

ok, so I'm a little messy when I bake.

yum yum yum

Taking a slice to my hubby on the ship because I'm a pretty awesome wife :).

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