Apricot Foldovers

apricot foldoversPastry
!/2 c. butter
4 oz. finely shredded sharp Cheddar cheese (1 cup)
1 ½ c. all-purpose flour (I prefer King Arthur)
2 T. water

Filling
1 c. dried apricots
2 ½ c.  hot water
1 c. granulated sugar

Chop the dried apricots by hand into ¼ inch pieces.  Place in a medium saucepan and cover with the hot water.  Allow to soak for about an hour.

Cream the butter and cheese on medium speed until light and fluffy.  Blend in the flour. Add the water and mix well.  Roll into a ball and flatten to a six inch disc.  Wrap disc in plastic wrap and chill for 4-5 hours.

Meanwhile, cook the apricots and water over medium heat.  When the mixture is boiling, turn the heat down, continue to simmer and stir frequently for about 30-45 minutes.  Apricots should be soft and mushy, and the sauce thick.  Add the sugar and continue to stew stirring constantly for another 5-10 minutes until very thick. Remove from heat and cool.

Divide the chilled dough into quarters.  On a lightly floured board, roll one quarter of dough into a 6” x 8” rectangle.  Cut the rectangle into 2” squares.  Place ½ teaspoon of filling on each square; fold over and seal.  Bake the cookies on a parchment lined sheet in a preheated 375 degree oven for 8-10 minute, or until lightly browned on the edges.  Makes 4 dozen cookies.

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Best of Summer Squash Frittata

Summer Squash Frittata1-Small zucchini squash, pared and cut into ½ inch cubes (a heaping cup)
1-Small yellow summer squash, pared and cut into ½ inch cubes (a heaping cup)

¼ c. chopped onion

1-2 Tbs. Olive Oil (I like 1 Tbs. extra virgin, and 1 Tbs. butter infused)

6 large or extra large eggssummersquash

¼ c. sour cream

1-1/2 t.  Weber’s Veggie Grill Seasoning

1 t. salt

½ t. ground pepper

2 Tbs. fresh basil pesto

6-10 grape tomatoes, halved

1/3 c. shredded mozzarella cheese

¼ c. fresh basil leaves, chopped

 

squash pan frittataPreheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Heat oil in an eight inch cast iron skillet over medium high heat; add the vegetables and sauté covered until tender, about 10-12 minutes. Stir occasionally.

Meanwhile, add remaining ingredients to a large bowl.  Whisk eggs, cream and spices until eggs are frothy and thick.  Pour egg mixture over vegetables in the skillet. Gently place tomatoes decoratively on top of eggs.  Bake in preheated oven for 30-35 minutes, until eggs are set, sprinkle cheese on top and return to oven for another 2 minutes and  top is starting to get browned.  Sprinkle the basil on top. Serves 6.

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White Chicken Chili

Trust me we don’t serve this soup for breakfast, but sometimes I just need to share a tasty dish that I feel my guests will love as much as we do. After all, if you’ve eaten a James Manning House breakfast you probably believe me when I say this is good and easy to make.
WhiteChickenChil2 c. cooked chicken breast (cut into pieces)
½ c. onion, chopped coarsely
2 cloves garlic, minced through a press
1 T. olive oil
2 c. chicken broth
1/2t. cumin
1 c. white wine, dry or table wine
1 can (15.5 oz.) great northern beans, drained
1 can (15.5 oz.) cannellini beans, drained
1 c. frozen corn (white is best)
1 can (15.5 oz .) creamed corn
6-8 oz. Colby jack shredded cheese
1 t. salt
1 t. white pepper
1 t. parsley
Add diced green chilies to your taste (I like just enough for color)
Extra cheese for garnish

In a 6 qt. Stockpot, sauté the onion and garlic in the olive oil. Stir in the chicken broth and add the chopped chicken.  Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer.  Meanwhile, mash the drained cannellini beans. Stir in the mash and all other ingredients, except the cheese.  Simmer the chili for approx. 15 minutes (or pour all into a crock pot on low for 4 hours).  Stir in the cheese and heat until melted.  Garnish as desired.

Serves 6-8.

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Apple Bread

Apple breadIt’s January, winter is a time we all seem to need some comfort food to warm our bellies and our souls.  To quote Oprah, “I love bread!”.  The other day I was in the mood for beef stew and, of course, that requires tasty, crusty bread.  Remember bread machines, the “hot” food appliance of the nineties? breadmachineIf you don’t have time to knead, rise and bake by hand…….

1 package yeast
2 ¼ c. bread flour (I prefer King Arthur)
¾ c. whole wheat flour
½ t. salt
4 T. sugar
½ t. cinnamon
¼ t. nutmeg
2/3 c. warm applesauce
1 T. unsalted butter
½ c. warm unsweetened apple juice
½ c. apple, peeled and chopped fine

Put all ingredients in bread machine pan, in order as listed in your instruction guide, or as listed above.  (some machines prefer the yeast added after dry ingredients)  Use the white bread setting on your machine and press start.  This bread is not suitable for the delayed timer mode.

If you have the time and love to make bread, you can mix the dough and hand knead until smooth and silky, about 10-15 minutes.  Let rise until double in size, about 1-1/2 hour.  Shape into two loaves.  Let rise a second time, until double, about 45 min.  Bake at 350 degrees, about 40 minutes.

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Veggie and Herb Frittata

4 c. leftover home-fries
¼ c. corn flake crumbsSouthwestern Egg Bake
½ c. finely chopped onion
1 Tbsp. Olive oil
½ c. chopped  mushrooms
½ c. finely chopped broccoli
6 eggs
¾ c. skim milk
¾ c. spinach and herb dip
1-1/4 c. shredded mozzarella cheese
2 T. melted butter
1 c. small curd cottage cheese
¼ c. King Arthur gluten free flour
½ t. baking soda
½ t. salt
1 t. freshly ground pepper

Directions:  Spray a 9×13 baking dish with cooking spray.  Spread potatoes evenly in the bottom and slightly mash down.  Sprinkle the corn flake crumbs on top.  Sauté the onion until translucent.  Add broccoli and mushrooms and continue sautéing  until soft and cooked.  Spread this vegetable mixture on top of potato mixture.

In a large bowl, beat the six eggs.  Add the remaining ingredients and stir until well combined.  Pour the egg combination over the vegetables and potatoes and gently spread to the corners.  Refrigerate at least 3 hours or overnight.

Take the frittata out of the refrigerator and let stand on counter for 15 minutes.  Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Bake for one hour or eggs are browned and solid.   Serves 12.

Variations can be made by changing vegetables; I like to use spinach or kale from the garden.

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Pumpkin Squares

pumpkin squares reCake Mixture:
1 box yellow cake mix, reserve ¾ cup.
1 stick butter, melted
1 egg, slightly beaten

Blend the butter and egg into the cake mix and press into a greased and floured 9x13x2” pan.  Use the back of a tablespoon to pat this mixture evenly over the bottom and 1” up the sides of the pan.

Pumpkin Mixture:
1 large can pumpkin
3 eggs, lightly beaten
½ c. brown sugar
¼ c. white sugar
2/3 c. evaporated milk
1 ½ tsp. Cinnamon
½ tsp. Ginger
½ tsp. Ground cloves

Topping:
¾ cup cake mix
½ cup white sugar
¼ cup butter, softened
½ -1 cup nuts, chopped, optional

Gently mix the pumpkin, eggs, sugars, milk, and seasonings.  Pour over unbaked mixture.  Blend the reserved cake mix with sugar and butter.  Roll into walnut sized balls and place over the pumpkin mixture.  Sprinkle with nuts if desired.  Bake at 350 for 55 minutes.

Serves 18, 2 x 3” squares.  Prep time 20-30 min.  Can freeze.

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Auntie’s Butter Crust Apple Squares

Crust:                                                                                                                                 3 cups all-purpose flour                                                                                                       1-1/2 t. salt                                                                                                                            ¾ + 1/3 c. butter flavor Crisco                                                                                              apple squareserve auntie apple squarere7-1/2 T. very cold water                                                                            Directions:  Put the flour, salt and Crisco in a food processor.  Pulse to mix.  While pulsing, slowly add the water continuing to pulse until a ball is formed.  (if needed, add 1-2 additional tablespoons of water to form the ball)  Remove the dough from the processor and refrigerate for a minimum of 2 hours.

Apple Pie Filling:                             8 to 10 large baking apples, peeled and sliced                                          1 cup white sugar                              4 T. flour                                              2 t. cinnamon                                                                                                Directions: Place apple slices in a large bowl.  Whisk dry ingredients to mix in a small bowl.  Sprinkle the sugar mixture on the apples and toss to coat.            Allow to sit for 20 minutes.

Butter Crust Topping:                                                                                                          1 c. granulated sugar                                                                                                          ½ c. flour                                                                                                                              1 c. butter (or margarine), softened                                                                               Directions: Combine sugar, and flour.  Mix in butter until well combined.

Assembly: Roll out chilled crust on a lightly floured surface and place in a jelly roll pan (15 ½” x 10 ½” x 1”) bringing the crust up the sides.  Pour the apple filling on the crust and spread evenly.  Drop the butter crust topping by teaspoons over the filling and gently spread covering as much filling as possible.

Bake at 350 F for 90 minutes or until the top is golden.

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Apple Cider Mimosas

golden cider mimosaThese are delicious and so easy to make.  September is a time for apple cider fresh from the orchard.  It’s always fun to stop, kids pop out of cars, smiles are on all the adult faces.  This year we thought we’d see the smiles on the faces of our family by purchasing our own cider press and pressing our own apples.  The cider was so sweet and refreshing and the family gathering around was priceless!  You don’t need to go to this extreme for your cider.

1 quart of cider                                                                                                                     1 bottle of champagne (to your taste)                                                                                 1 T. cinnamon                                                                                                                     2 T. sugar

Mix cinnamon and sugar in a shallow flat rimming dish.  Pour water into another flat rimming dish, enough to be 1/8 to 1/4 inch deep. (I used refrigerator containers).  Dip the champagne flutes into the water then the cinnamon sugar mix.  Pour about half the glass full of champagne and top with cider.  cider mimosa

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Easy Cheese Danish

While this recipe may not be on the diet list, it is a favorite among our guests.  It’s a sin to share, as the danish are so quick and easy to make. (You’ll know I’m not slaving all day in the kitchen!)  It is also great to take along to a brunch party for a special treat as it makes a big pan.

Ingredients:

 2 – Pkg. Crescent Rolls                       1/8 c. egg beaters (or 1 egg yolk)

2 – 8 oz. 1/3 fat cream cheese             1tsp. vanilla

1 C. granulated sugar                          1tsp. lemon juice

1/8 tsp. Almond extract

 

Preparation:

Spread one pkg. of rolls on the bottom of a 9” x 13” greased pan. Beat the cream cheese, sugar, egg, and extracts until smooth.  Spread batter on top of rolls.  Spread the second package of rolls on top, sealing to the sides of the pan.

Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until golden in color.

Frosting:

Mix 2 T. milk and 1 cup of powdered sugar.  Spread over hot, baked Danish as a glaze. Easy Cheese DanishCool. Cut into desired shapes, (we like triangles).   Makes about 24.

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Best Ever Banana Bread

3 Ripe Bananas, mashed                                                                                                       1/3 c. melted butter                                                                                                               3/4 c. granulated sugar                                                                                                           1 egg, beaten                                                                                                                           2 T. non-fat sour cream                                                                                                             1 t. vanilla                                                                                                                                1 t. baking soda                                                                                                                      ¼ t. salt                                                                                                                                   1 ½ c. flour                                                                                                                           For streusel:                                                                                                                            2 T.  ground cinnamon                                                                                                          ¼ c. of sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Grease a 9” x 5” loaf pan, and flour.Best Ever Banana Bread

In a medium bowl mix dry ingredients.  Set aside.  In a large bowl, combine butter, sugar and egg, and beat by hand until well mixed.  Blend in sour cream and vanilla.  Add mashed bananas and mix until blended.  Add flour mixture and stir just until combined, taking care not to overmix.  Mix the streusel ingredients in small bowl, set aside.

Pour half the batter into the greased loaf pan and spread evenly.  Sprinkle about two-thirds of the streusel over the batter in the loaf pan.  Slowly add the remainder of the batter, trying to pour evenly.  Sprinkle the remainder of the streusel over the top.

Bake for 50-60 minutes.  Can be checked for doneness by inserting a toothpick in the center, and it comes out clean.

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