Summer Vacation – Day 3

Today started with a lovely German Pancake

IMG_0744Blend together 8 eggs, 1 cup flour, 1 cup cream, and a pinch of salt.
Preheat a large cast iron skillet to 425 degree oven, add 6 T of butter and then follow quickly with the blended mixture.  Bake for 25 minutes and serve with lemon juice and icing sugar.

I cleaned up the old caulking in the guest bad and repaired the plaster.

…Made some quick curtains for the back door using vintage towels / tablecloths.


…Pulled out the bolted spinach from the vegetable garden.

…Hung some muslin on the upper deck for a bit of shade.


…Planted a few geranium into the screen porch before the coming hot snap (106 degrees?).

IMG_0746….Wash some of the linens and put them on the clothesline to dry in the breeze.




Clotted Cream



We had quite a bit of cream piling up and I ran into a wonderful new cookbook at the thrift store so I decided to combine the two and try my hand at clotted cream.  The book is called Forgotten Skills of Cooking by Darina Allen

img_9535-300x300The process of making clotted cream was time consuming (about 12 hours) but really easy.

  • I skimmed the cream layer off the top of the milk and put it into a heat proof casserole.
  • Then covered that with a layer of aluminum foil.
  • Next I popped it into a very cool (175 degree) oven for about 11 hours.
  • Before bed I took it out to cool a bit and then transferred it into the refrigerator overnight.
  • The next morning I scraped off the top layer that formed and popped it into the mixer for a quick whip up.
  • The liquid portion left behind was used to make some lovely scones.

Boccone Dolce

I first had this dessert with my BFF on “girls day” at a local restaurant called Papa Hayden in Portland, Oregon.  It’s crunchy and creamy, light and fruity, and altogether delicious.  It looks so difficult to make, but when I found instructions online (thank you SubRosa) it didn’t look to bad to try.

This morning I started the meringue.

  • 1 1/2 cup egg whites – about 10 eggs
  • 2 cups white sugar
  1. Preheat the oven to 225 degrees.
  2. Beat the egg whites until stiff.
  3. Gradually add the sugar (1-2 T at a time) to incorporate it. Continue beating until glossy.
  4. Draw 3 8″ circles onto sheet of parchment – flip over and divide the meringue between them.  Spread it ou to the edges of the circle with a spatula
  5. Bake until dry and crispy – about 2.5 hours

…….more to come

Filling – whip until fairly stiff cream

  • 4 cups whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 T vanilla

Put one layer of meringue onto the serving plate.  Add 1/3 of the whipped cream.  Layer on strawberries drizzle with melted chocolate (I used dark chocolate chips.  Add a second, then a third layer to complete the dessert.

Citrus-Coconut Granola

4 cups rolled oats
1 1/2 cups walnut pieces
1 cup shredded coconut
1/2 teaspoon salt
zest of two oranges
1/3 cup butter
1/6 cup agave maple syrup
1/6 cup tangarine honey
1/3 cup of orange juice

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees

Combine the oats, walnuts, coconut, salt, and orange zest in a large bowl. Heat the butter in a saucepan over and stir in the syrup, honey and juice. Pour the mixture over the oat mixture and stir until everything is well coated. Divide the mixture equally between the two silpat-lined baking sheets and spread into a thin layer.

Bake, stirring occasionally, for 35 to 45  minutes, until the granola is toasty and golden.

Let the granola cool completely and store in an airtight container.

Fantastic Oatmeal – What?

I’ve always been okay with eating oatmeal, but I’ve never loved it.  Today, I fell in love.  I followed the recipe at Kath Eats Real Food.  This is the creamiest, most flavorful and delicious oatmeal I have ever had.

1/2 cup skim milk
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup oats
3/4 banana – sliced

Combine the ingredients in a pot and bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer 4-5 minutes or until the liquid is absorbed.  During the cooking, stir like crazy to break up the bananas and make everything creamy.

Remove from the heat and add 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract.

Divide into two bowls and, to each, add 1 teaspoon light brown sugar and a tablespoon of peanut butter.


Bread Pudding with Dried Fruit and Sour Lemon Sauce

Kris Kringle Bread Pudding

(adapted from: Martha Stewart December 2005) click here for gift tag link


  • 1 1/3 cups Brandy
  • 12 ounces assorted dried fruits, such as peaches, apricots, and pears, cranberries, raisins
  • 5 cups heavy cream
  • 2 cups half-and-half
  • 3/4 cup vanilla or granulated sugar, plus more for sprinkling
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 vanilla beans, split lengthwise and scraped
  • Zest of 1 orange
  • 12 large egg yolks
  • 2 large loaves day-old brioche, cut into 1 1/4-inch cubes (18 cups)
  • Unsalted butter, room temperature, for parchment paper

1.  In a medium saucepan, combine Brandy and dried fruits. Bring to a simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, about 8 minutes. The fruit should absorb all of the Brandy. Remove from heat. Coarsely chop; set aside.

2. In a large saucepan, combine heavy cream, half-and-half, sugar, cinnamon sticks, vanilla pod and seed scrapings, and orange zest. Bring just to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally.

3. In a medium bowl, whisk egg yolks. While whisking constantly, gradually ladle half the hot cream mixture into the yolks. Return to saucepan over medium heat. Cook, whisking constantly, and scraping the sides and edges of the pan until thickened enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon, about 5 minutes. Strain through a large sieve into large bowl, discarding the cinnamon sticks, vanilla pods, and orange zest.

4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place brioche cubes in a large bowl. Add dried fruit, reserving 1/2 cup. Pour custard over brioche cubes; toss to combine. Divide brioche cubes evenly between two 2-quart ovenproof bowls; the cubes will mound on top. Sprinkle reserved fruit over the top of each pudding. Sprinkle tops of puddings with sugar. Let stand until bread is saturated, about 20 minutes.

5. Brush two 12-by-12-inch pieces of parchment paper with butter. Place parchment paper, butter side down, over bread. Cover parchment with aluminum foil to seal. Place puddings in a large, deep roasting pan. Place in oven, and add enough boiling water to roasting pan to come 3 inches up sides of bowls. Bake for 1 hour. Uncover, and bake until set, 30 to 45 minutes more. Serve warm or at room temperature. Will keep refrigerated 3 days.

6. To reheat; preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place puddings in a deep roasting pan. Place in oven, and add enough water to roasting pan to come 3 inches up sides of bowls. Reheat until warm through, about 20 minutes.

Sour Lemon Sauce


Makes about 3 cups

  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2 1/2 cups hot water
  • 7 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons freshly grated lemon zest


  1. In the top of a double boiler, combine sugar, cornstarch, and salt. Add 2 1/2 cups hot water, and cook, stirring, until thick, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in butter, lemon juice, and zest. Continue to cook until smooth. Remove from heat, and bring to room temperature. May be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.