Archives for December 2011

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Bourbon Sauce #2

by TT December 29th, 2011| Desserts, Recipes, Spreads & Sauces
On Monday, I shared my ridiculously easy recipe for Eggnog Ice Cream.  While the ice cream is delicious in its own right, a simple ice cream such as this really begs for toppings.  Of course, my kids would prefer to top their ice cream with hot fudge, but that is not something either my husband or I enjoy.  So, the decision of what to use as our topping began.

Some toppings were quickly discarded, such as caramel because it seemed too sweet.  Macerated strawberries were considered, but I wasn't sure how well strawberries and eggnog would pair.  Then it
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New Year’s Appetizers- Part 4

by TT December 28th, 2011| Appetizers, Recipes
We're at the halfway point of the holiday week:  three days past Christmas and three days until New Year's Eve.  If you are celebrating at home and haven't planned the menu or the dish you're bringing, it is time to do so!  The benefit of delaying until this point is that you now have four weeks of New Year's appetizers from which you can choose.

This week we are finishing the series with a trio of recipes from Todd English.  These three appetizers offer a little bit of something for every nibbler:  fish, produce, cheese.  All of these dishes are
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by Elizabeth Skipper December 27th, 2011| Ask the Chef
I’ve been reading a lot about meats that are cooked in a confit style.  What does confit mean?

In its simplest terms, confit means meat that has been preserved by cooking and storing in fat, usually its own. The word comes from the French word "confire" which means to conserve. ("Confiture" is the French word for jams, jellies, and the like, just as English uses the word "preserves" for fruits prepared for long-term storage.)

In the days before refrigeration, other methods were required to store food, including salting, drying, fermenting, and preserving in fat. Nowadays we use these methods more for
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Eggnog Ice Cream

by TT December 26th, 2011| Desserts, Recipes
On Christmas Eve, we celebrated with a six-course meal.  I know, that does sound like a lot of food.  However, the original plan my husband had suggested was a ten-course meal.  After a little discussion, it was determined that six was far better than ten.  With the meal eaten over a six-hour time frame, the portions small, and the dishes kept light, a six-course meal wasn't so daunting.

My husband and I took turns creating each course.  I was assigned the appetizer course, which was a cranberry-pear chutney served with fresh mozzarella cheese and lavash crackers.  My husband created the
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Lussekatter – Swedish Christmas Saffron Rolls

by TT December 22nd, 2011| Breads, Desserts, Recipes
This Thursday brings the final installation of holiday treat recipes from the WMG team.  This recipe is courtesy of the newest member of our team, Jessica.  Jessica joined us in November and writes about a variety of topics, including politics, holidays, fitness, gadgets, and outdoor activities.

These saffron buns are a traditional Swedish dish.  Jessica explains, "This is a traditional Swedish baked good served during the month of December. It is based on the holiday St. Lucia, on December 13th, but can be found on Christmas tables as well. It is not very sweet, but makes a nice roll to
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New Year’s Eve Appetizers- Part 3

by TT December 21st, 2011| Appetizers, Recipes
New Year's Eve is a week and a half away and still is probably pretty far from everyone's mind.  There's no need to plan that menu when you still have Hanukkah or Christmas menus to plan.  However, it is good to start considering what you'll want to serve if you are hosting or attending a New Year's Eve party.

Today I have two more tasty recipes to share.  Conveniently, one is a cold appetizer that can be prepared in advance, leaving you free to make other preparations or making it a great dish to bring.  The other appetizer is hot
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Pork & Apple Meatballs

by TT December 20th, 2011| Appetizers, Recipes, Tapas Monday
Even though this dish was not part of our Iron Chef Thanksgiving, it did seem appropriate to follow my recent theme of apples.  This recipe is from a Tapas Monday early in November.  The inspiration for this recipe was quite simple.  We had a fruit bin filled with apples from a local orchard and a freezer filled with pork from a local farm.  Combining the two in a meatball seemed like a terrific format for our late night meal.

The trickier part of this recipe was deciding what would be the simmering liquid.  While I could have baked the meatballs right
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Italian Sesame Cookies

by TT December 15th, 2011| Desserts, Recipes
It's Thursday, which means that it is time for another holiday treat recipe from one of the WMG team members.  Today's recipe is courtesy of our Assistant Editor, Lori.  As she explains, this treat is "not too sweet. . .great with tea or coffee."

Lori is a newer member of the team, joining us as a columnist this past January.  She gladly shares her knowledge on a variety of topics, including pets, health, parenting, and home repairs. In April, Lori added the role of Assistant Editor to her title.  She manages the content for our Circuitry, Health & Fitness,
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New Year’s Eve Appetizers- Part 2

by TT December 14th, 2011| Appetizers, Recipes
On New Year's Eve, I can't think of a better menu than one that consists of an assortment of appetizers.  Sure, you could plan the evening as a formal event with a sit-down dinner, but isn't it more fun to have trays of finger-sized snacks?  Not only will you be able to serve a wide array of appetizers, but you also can provide food for your guests throughout the evening.

I find that a mixture of hot and cold appetizers is the best way to plan a menu.  Most cold appetizers can be made in advance and just need to
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Which Fat for Cookies?

by Elizabeth Skipper December 13th, 2011| Ask the Chef
When making cookies, I have noticed that different recipes suggest different fats: butter, margarine, shortening.  Is one better than the others?

Which fat a cookie recipe calls for will give you some clue as to how old the recipe is. Because margarine and shortening only entered the food chain in the last 100 plus years or so, this question is a relatively new one!

Flavor and cost aside, the purpose of using fat in cookies is to tenderize them and to extend their keeping qualities. The major functional difference between butter and margarine vs. shortening is that butter and margarine are
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Apple Ravioli

by TT December 12th, 2011| Appetizers, Desserts, Recipes
As I wrote two weeks ago, we had an Iron Chef Thanksgiving at our house.  With a secret ingredient of apples and the assigned course of lunch/appetizer, I had fun making a trio of tapas plates.  Apple Skins were a hit with our 15 year old, and Apple Ravioli were popular with our 13 year old.

The ravioli really could act as an appetizer or as a dessert depending on how you serve it and the palates of your diners.  The filling is comprised of cream cheese and an apple/vinegar mixture, which gives it a savory taste.  I served it
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Pumpkin Loaf

by TT December 8th, 2011| Breads, Recipes
pumpkin breadLast Thursday I shared my family's recipe for Almond Cookies.  As I was considering what family recipe I should share next, I decided it would be more interesting to share recipes from other members of the Wasabi Media family.  Today, I am  pleased to share a recipe from an Associate Editor, Jane Wangersky.

Jane has been with Wasabi Media Group since early 2009, making her one of the first ten team members.  At that time Jane worked as a columnist who specialized in articles on animals, books, travel, and humor.  Since then, Jane has been promoted to the role
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