Sep 2006

Cinnamon and Raisin Brown Bread

9

  • 3 cups whole-wheat flour
  • 1 3/4 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon double-acting baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1 cup of jumbo raisins
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 2 tablespoons honey

In a large bowl whisk together the flour, the salt, the baking soda, the baking powder, cinnamon and raisins. In a bowl whisk together the buttermilk, 3 tablespoons of the butter, and the honey, add the mixture to the flour mixture, and stir the dough until it is just combined. Turn the dough out into a buttered 9-inch ceramic or glass pie plate and with floured hands pat it into a 7-inch round loaf. Brush the top with buttermilk, cut an X 1/4 inch deep across the top, and bake the bread in the middle of a preheated 375°F. oven for 1 hour, or until it is golden and sounds hollow when the bottom is tapped.

Makes 1 loaf.

Adapted from Gourmet, October 1991

[For Printable Recipe Click Here]

Sep 2006

Field Greens with Craisins, Mandarin Oranges, Goat Cheese & Balsamic Vinaigrette

For dressing

  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons dark brown sugar, optional*
  • 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 3/4 cup olive oil

For salad

  • Mesclun salad mix
  • 1 orange or Mandarin oranges
  • Craisins
  • Goat Cheese

Beat the vinegar in a bowl with the optional sugar, garlic, salt and pepper until sugar and salt dissolves. Then beat in the oil by droplets, whisking constantly. (Or place all the ingredients in a screw-top jar and shake to combine.) Taste and adjust the seasonings.

Toss a few tablespoons of the dressing with the salad mix and desired salad ingredients, top with goat cheese and serve immediately.

If not using dressing right away, cover and refrigerate, whisking or shaking again before use.

*If using a good quality balsamic vinegar you should not need the sugar, but if using a lesser quality you might want the sugar to round out the dressing.

Substitutions: I did not use any oil in the salad dressing and used granulated sugar rather than brown sugar.

Sep 2006

Twice-Baked Potatoes with Goat Cheese, Leeks & Turkey Bacon

Piping the filling into the potato shells with a pastry bag makes an attractive presentation. You can also just spoon in the filling and crosshatch the top with the tines of a fork.

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vegetable oil
  • 8 6-ounce russet potatoes, scrubbed
  • 5 1/2 ounces soft fresh goat cheese (such as Montrachet), crumbled
  • 3/4 cup half and half
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 leeks
  • 4 slices of turkey bacon

Position rack in center of oven; preheat to 375°F. Rub oil over potatoes. Pierce in several spots with fork. Place directly on oven rack; bake until very tender, about 45 minutes. Transfer to rack; cool 10 minutes. Using oven mitts, grasp 1 potato in hand. Using serrated knife, cut off top 1/4 of potato. Using spoon, scoop out potato, leaving 1/2-inch-thick shell; transfer potato flesh to large bowl. Repeat with remaining potatoes. Mash potatoes until smooth. Mix in cheese, then half and half, butter, and chives. Season with salt and pepper.

In a separate pan saute the leeks and turkey bacon in a bit of olive oil until the leeks are tender. Mix the leeks and turkey bacon with the potato and cheese mixture.

Spoon about 3/4 of mixture into shells, dividing evenly. Transfer remaining potato filling to pastry bag fitted with large star tip. Pipe filling atop potatoes. Place potatoes on baking sheet. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and refrigerate.)

Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 375°F. Bake potatoes until filling is heated through and tops brown, about 20 minutes.

Makes 8 servings.

Adapted from Bon Appétit, November 2001

Substitutions: The original recipe does not include leeks or turkey bacon and instead calls for chives. To make the potatoes more of an entree rather than side, I decided to add the meat. I did not find it necessary to rub the potatoes with oil. Used 1% milk instead of half and half. Skipped the butter. Instead of baking them for 45 minutes in the oven initially, I put them in the microwave for 25 minutes. I spooned the mixture into the potatoes because I did not have a pastry bag or tip.