Spritz Cookies

  • 1 c softened butter
  • 1/2 c granulated sugar
  • 1 t almond extract
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1 egg
  • 2 1/3 – 2 1/2 c flour (it depends on the size of the eggs we collect that day)
  1. Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
  2. Add the almond extract, salt and egg and mix to incorporate well.  Be sure to scrape the sides of the bowl.
  3. Mix in the flour until just combined.
  4. Use a cookie press (mine is a Kuhn Rikon) to make various shapes on an ungreased cookie sheet.  I had to use a clean, cold cookie sheet for each batch or the cookies would not come off of the press and stick to the cookie sheet.
  5. Add jam, candies, or sugar crystals to the cookies for decoration.
  6. Bake them at 400 degrees for 6-8 minutes or until just beginning to color.  We do not want these cookies to brown.
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Panettone

Ingredients

  • 1 T dry yeast 
  • 1 cup warm water 
  • 1/4 cup castor sugar 
  • 2 eggs 
  • 1/2 cup nonfat plain yogurt 
  • 1 t vanilla extract 
  • 1 T lemon zest 
  • 1/4 t salt 
  • 4 cups flour 
  • 1 T confectioner’s sugar
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries 
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  1. In a medium bowl, combine the yeast, water and sugar.  Cover it and let it stand  for 10 minutes, or until it goes foamy.
  2. Add the eggs, yogurt, vanilla, lemon zest, and salt. Mix well.
  3. Mix in the flour 1/2 cup at a time until dough forms into a manageable ball (I sometimes have to add 1/4 c extra).
  4. Use the mixer to knead for 5 to 10 minutes until dough is soft but not sticky.
  5. Proof until the dough doubles in size.
  6. In a small bowl, toss dried fruit with confectioners’ sugar.
  7. Punch down the dough in the bowl and transfer it to floured surface. Knead in the fruit.
  8. Place in prepared cake pan (buttered 8″ pan with parchment in the bottom and a buttered 4″ parchment collar).  Cover it loosely with dish towel, and let rise for 30 minutes.
  9. Brush the top with melted butter. and bake for 45 minutes at 350 degrees.

Bramley’s Seedling Pie

Included in our box from Queener Farm this week, were enough Bramley’s Seedling apples to make a pie.  The Bramley’s seedling is a classic English cooking apple.

The first Bramley’s Seedling tree grew from seeds planted in 1809 bya young girl, Mary Ann Brailsford, in Southwell, Nottinghamshire, UK.  The tree in the garden was later included in the purchase of the cottage by a local butcher, Matthew Bramley, in 1846. In 1856, a local nurseryman, Henry Merryweather, asked if he could take cuttings from the tree and start to sell the apples. Bramley agreed but insisted that the apples should bear his name.

In 1900, the original tree was knocked over during a storm. The tree survived, and is still bearing fruit two centuries after it was planted.

The variety is now the most important cooking apple in England and Wales

I decided to make a classic apple pie with my Bramleys – – COnclusion below.

I don’t really like this apple for pie – not bad, but maybe not for the whole pie.  It was really, really tart and turned to apple sauce in the pie.  I like a little more bite in my apples.

Zucchini Bread 2018

Ingredients

  • 3 1/2 c granulated sugar
  • 6 whole eggs
  • 4 t vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 c vegetable oil
  • 1/3 c kefir milk
  • 6 c flour
  • 2 t baking soda
  • 1/2 t baking powder
  • 2 T ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 t ground nutmeg
  • 6 c grated zucchini

Instructions

  1. Combine the granulated sugar, eggs, vanilla extract, vegetable oil and kefir milk in a bowl and mix until well blended.
  2. Combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder. ground cinnamon and ground nutmeg in a separate bowl.
  3. Toss the grated zucchini in the dry ingredients to coat.  
  4. Add in the wet ingredients and mix to bend.
  5. Spoon into 4 greased loaf pans .
  6. Bake for 60-75 minutes at 350°.

*Modified from The Martha Stewart Cookbook, 1995

Blackberry Cobbler

  • 4 cups blackberries (these were Columbia Star
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup flour
  • 6 tablespoons butter, melted
  1. Butter two 4×8 loaf pans and add half of the blackberries to each. Pour the lemon juice over blackberries.
  2. Combined the flour, sugar and beaten egg until crumbly.  Add half to each pan.
  3. Pour the melted butter over the topping.**
  4. Bake for 35- 40 minutes at 350 degrees or until the juices are bubbling.

** Whoops – I added the butter to the crumble mix so I put it on top in patties.  We’ll see how this goes.

Sourdough Starter

I purchased a packet of San Fransisco Sourdough starter from Cultures for Health and am working through their instructions on rehydrating and activating it……

  1. Combine the dehydrated starter with 1 T flour and 1 T water in a quart-size glass jar and stir thoroughly with a non-metal spoon.
  2. Cover the jar with a coffee filter and store in a warm place for 12-24 hours.
  3. After 12-24 hours, add 2 T of flour and 2 T water. Stir briskly. The starter should have the consistency of batter, add more flour or water if necessary.
  4. After 12-24 hours, add ¼ C of flour and ¼ C water. Stir briskly.
  5. After another 12-24 hours, add ½ C of flour and ½ C water. Stir briskly
  6. Every 12-24 hours for the next several days, keep ½ C of starter (discard the rest or use it in some pancakes) and add it to ½ C water and ½ C flour.
  7. Continue this schedule.  After 3 to 7 days, the starter should be bubbling within a couple hours after you  feed it.

It’s been a little slow, and I’m not always as good a sourdough parent as I should be, but we finally have bubbles.  IT’S ALIVE!

Soda Bread for March

I made a batch of Soda Bread yesterday for St. Patrick’s Day supper.  I forgot to take a photo of the loaf, but I have one of the leftovers and the butter I made from fresh, raw cream to go along with it.

Recipe

  • 1 pound white flour
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 t baking soda
  • 1 3/4 buttermilk
  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
  2. Sift the dry ingredients together in a large bowl.
  3. Make a well and pour in the buttermilk.
  4. Stir to just combine and then pat into a round, about 1 inch thick.
  5. Slice the top with an X about 1/2 inch deep.
  6. Bake for 15 minutes
  7. Reduce the oven temperature to 400 degree and bake an additional 30 minutes.
  8. Cool on a rack.