Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Mixed Berries with Double Vanilla Creme Anglaise

Mixed Berries with Double Vanilla Creme Anglaise, ButterYumFresh Summer Berries...

ButterYum's Double Vanilla Creme Anglaise...plus Double Vanilla Creme Anglaise = Love!

I start this incredible dessert by macerating the berries in a little vanilla sugar* before I drown them in luscious pools of creme anglaise. You don't have to do this step, but it brings it one notch closer to heaven if you ask me. Plain ole white granulated sugar, or even brown sugar would work well too - just sprinkle a little sugar on, stir the fruit every now and then, and before you know it, they'll be all juicy and super delish.

Double Vanilla Creme Anglaise
makes about 2 cups - plan ahead and serve chilled or room temperature

2 cups heavy cream, light cream, or half & half (or a mixture of them all)
2 egg yolks
Seeds from 1/2 of a vanilla bean
pinch of salt
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 teaspoons Amaretto (optional)

In a heavy bottomed saucepan, combine the cream, egg yolks, vanilla bean (seeds and pod), and salt. Heat over medium, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens and coats the back of a spoon. Remove vanilla pod (reserve to make vanilla sugar). Pour cream mixture through a sieve to remove any cooked egg bits. Cool - serve chilled or at room temperature (you can speed this process along with an iced water bath). Just before serving, stir in vanilla extract and optional Amaretto. Can be made several days in advance.

*To make Vanilla Sugar: Rinse used vanilla pod, dry completely overnight, then submerge in regular or superfine sugar. Top off your container as needed with more bean pods and sugar to ensure you always have a supply on hand. Use it for baking - great stuff!

Don't forget to enter my $65 Cookware.com Giveaway here.

A Giveaway - Just Because I Love You!

What's better than a bowl full of fresh summer berries?

How about a bowl full of fresh summer berries drizzled with rich and creamy Double Vanilla Creme Anglaise? Oh how I wish I could send you a big bowl full this amazing lusciousness, but I'm afraid it wouldn't travel well.... so I guess I'll have to send you a $65 Gift Certificate instead.

I know, you're so disappointed, right?

Yep, one lucky person will receive a $65 Gift Certificate to spend as he/she wishes at Cookware.com, or any one of the over 200 online CSN Stores. I'll pick a winner on September 14, 2010. This giveaway is open to US and Canadian residents only.
(international shipping charges may apply to Canadian addresses)

To enter, all you have to do is click on the link I'll provide below, lookie at all the purdy Dutch Ovens, then come back here and tell me which one you like best. That's all.

If you're like me, you might have a soft spot for shiny sparkling stainless steel.....

Or maybe you prefer the look of hard anodized aluminum.....

Or maybe you drool over saucy little numbers like this enameled cast iron....

Oooh... this one is definitely going on my wish list!

Of course there are many more options to choose from, so get ready to Oooh and Ahhh over all of them and come back to tell me the SKU# of the one you like the best. Only one entry per person please.

Click Here ----> Dutch Oven

PS - The recipe for the Mixed Berries with Double Vanilla Creme Anglaise will be posted shortly.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Oven Roasted Hoisin Pork Tenderloin Strips

Oven Roasted Hoisin Pork Tenderloin Strips, ButterYum
Oven Roasted Hoisin Pork Tenderloin Strips - ButterYum
Here's my take on a nearly 40 year old pork dish from Gourmet Magazine. The original recipe called for basting the pork tenderloins with used marinade. That's a huge no-no today, so I've updated the cooking technique to meet our current safety standards. I've tweaked the ingredients a bit to better suit my family's taste as well. We loved it... hope you do too.

Oven Roasted Hoisin Pork
serves 4-6

2 pork tenderloins (approx 1 to 1.25 pounds each)
3/4 teaspoon ground ginger (a bit more if you like a lot of heat)
10 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
2 tablespoons Mirin** (or sherry)
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
1-2 scallions, sliced

Preheat oven to 350F. To make the marinade mixture, whisk together the soy, mirin, sugar, honey, and hoisin. Half of this recipe will be used to marinade the pork; the other half will be used later in the recipe.

Trim silver skin and any excess fat from tenderloins and pat dry. Cut each tenderloin lengthwise, with the grain, into about 1-inch wide strips. Pour half the marinade mixture over the pork strips and refrigerate for an hour. After an hour, remove the pork from the used marinade; discard used marinade.

Place marinaded pork strips on a rack suspended over a shallow pan and bake for 25-30 minutes until pork is cooked through. Meanwhile, simmer the unused reserved marinade and reduce slightly; brush several tablespoons of the reduced sauce onto the pork strips during the last 5 minutes of roasting. Add the sliced scallions to the remaining unused marinade and serve as a dipping sauce.

**Mirin is a Japanese sweet rice wine. It can be found in the Asian section of your grocery store.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

ButterYum's Vanilla Nut Bars

ButterYum's Vanilla Nut Bars

Ina Garten is one of my favorite TV Personalities - I just love her food, her style, and her on-camera personality. You know how you can kinda tell how you're going to get along with a person before you really get to know them? Well, I'm convinced she and I would get along wonderfully.

Anyway, I love how Ina encourages her viewers to master a really good recipe or technique, and then change it up a bit to make different variations. That's exactly what I did with her Pecan Squares - I used her fabulous recipe as a starting point, tweaked it here and there, and ended up with these delicious nibbles that I call Vanilla Nut Bars. I think Ina would approve :).

The changes were simple - I omitted the lemon and orange zest from the original recipe, I replaced half of the pecans with almonds, I added lots of vanilla extract, and I replaced the honey with Lyle's Golden Syrup**. I also cut the recipe in half so my family isn't tempted to eat an entire sheet pan full of these delicious treats. Double the recipe if you want to feed a crowd!

Vanilla Nut Bars, Pecan Squares, Ina Garten - Barefoot Contessa
ButterYum's Vanilla Nut Bars
a variation of Ina Garten's Pecan Squares
Makes one 9x13 pan

2 1/2 sticks (20 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
6 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon fine salt

1/2 pound (16 tablespoons) unsalted butter
1/2 cup Lyle's Golden Syrup (or honey)
1 1/2 cups light brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 tablespoons heavy cream
1 pound chopped nuts (I used almonds and pecans)

Preheat oven to 350F. Make the crust by combining the softened butter and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer. Use the paddle or BeaterBlade attachment (LOVE my BeaterBlade) - mix for 3 minutes. Add the eggs and vanilla and mix well. Sift the dry ingredients together and add to the butter/sugar mixture on low speed just until all the ingredients are completely incorporated. Using well floured hands, press dough into ungreased 9x13 metal cake pan or lined 9x13 quarter sheet pan (see notes below). Bake crust for 15 minutes. Cool. Make the filling.

To make the filling - combine the butter, honey, and brown sugar in a heavy-bottomed saucepan. Heat, stirring constantly until mixture boils; continue to boil for 3 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the heavy cream, vanilla, and chopped nuts. Pour mixture over the crust and bake for 20-25 minutes. Cool until set. Cut and serve!

**Lyle's Golden Syrup is an all natural sugar cane syrup imported from England - it has an addictive caramel-like flavor and I absolutely love it. It can be used interchangeably in any recipe that calls for honey. I've been finding it more easily at grocery stores lately, so have a look around and pick some up.

Notes - if baking in a sheet pan, build up the edges a bit with foil to catch any possible spills. A double recipe will fit in one half sheet pan or two 9x13 cake pans.

Lyle's Golden Syrup

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Oven Roasted Tomato Dip-Sauce-Spread-Stuff...

Oven Roasted Tomato Dip, ButterYumI don't know what you should call it, but do yourself a favor and grab some Roma tomatoes - you're going to want to make this delectable dip-sauce-spread-stuff right away.

Did I mention how versatile this stuff is? Use it as a great dip for fresh veggies or pita chips, use it as a sauce on chicken or pasta**, use it as a flavorful mayo substitute on cold cut sandwiches, or use it as a delicious accompaniment to your favorite cooked eggs. Let me know how you decide to enjoy this yummy concoction.

As usual, it's really easy to make - let me show you how. Here we go...

Oven Roasted Tomato Dip, ButterYumFirst we roast Roma tomatoes and whole cloves of garlic in a hot oven. Cool to room temperature and proceed to the next step.

When tomatoes and garlic are cool, peel the papery skin off the garlic cloves. Put peeled garlic, tomatoes, cream cheese, sour cream, salt, and pepper into food processor bowl fitted with a metal cutting blade. Process until mix is smooth. Serve at room temperature. May be made up to 2 days ahead. Refrigerate leftovers.

Oven Roasted Tomato Dip-Sauce-Spread-Stuff, ButterYum

Oven Roasted Tomato Dip-Sauce-Spread-Stuff
makes about 2 cups

6 Roma Tomatoes, quartered
2 clove garlic, whole and unpeeled
2-3 tablespoons olive oil
6 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup sour cream
1 1/4 teaspoons Kosher salt
1 1/2 teaspoons ground black pepper
Garnish with chopped chives, scallions, or parsley

Place tomatoes and whole, skin-on garlic cloves on a baking sheet. Sprinkle with olive oil and toss to coat. Roast in a preheated 450F oven for 25-30 minutes. Remove from oven and cool completely. Remove paper skin from garlic cloves. Place tomatoes, peeled garlic, cream cheese, sour cream, and s&p into the work bowl of a food processor fitted with metal chopping blade. Process until smooth. Garnish and serve at room temperature. Can be made up to 2 days in advance. Refrigerate leftovers.

**To use as a sauce for pasta, thin it slightly with a bit of milk or cream. Use it sparingly - it's very intensely flavored.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Shoyu Chicken

Shoyu Chicken Aida Mollenkamp, ButterYum
ShoyuChicken - ButterYum

In the time if takes you to order Chinese take-out, you can have this delicious dish on the table. Start to finish it takes about an hour.  This dish is a specialty in Hawaii - the word shoyu means sauce in Japanese.  The original recipe didn't include any veggies, so I added strips of sauteed red and orange bell pepper for color. My family loved it - will definitely make again.

Shoyu Chicken
Serves 6
Printable Recipe

3 pound boneless and skinless chicken thighs, cut into bite size pieces
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1 cup low-sodium soy sauce
6 tablespoons *Mirin (either 1% or 8% alcohol)
1/2 cup light brown sugar
4 medium garlic cloves, smashed and peeled
fresh ginger, 2-inches long by 1/2 inch thick, smashed (skin on is fine)
3 tablespoons cornstarch mixed with 3 tablespoons water
2 red, yellow, or orange bell peppers, sliced (optional)
Thinly sliced scallions for garnish

Combine chicken, black pepper, chicken broth, soy, mirin, brown sugar, garlic, and ginger in a large sauce pan. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and cook for 20-30 minutes until the chicken is cooked through and tender. Remove chicken, garlic, and ginger from pan; reserve chicken and discard garlic and ginger. Bring leftover sauce to a boil; reduce for 10-15 minutes.

While sauce is reducing, saute optional peppers in a little olive oil until crisp tender; reserve.  When sauce is reduced, stir cornstarch and water together and add to sauce; whisk until it comes back to a boil. Turn off the heat and stir in the cooked chicken and optional sauteed peppers. Serve over rice or noodles.

*Mirin is a Japanese Sweet Cooking Wine. I found it in the international aisle at my local grocery store.  Recipe adapted from Aida Mollenkamp.