Saturday, November 6, 2010

Homemade Cranberry Sauce {winner!!}

Homemade Cranberry Sauce from Lauren:

2 tsp corn starch
2 T fresh squeezed orange juice
2 cups fresh cranberries
1 cup sugar (you can add an extra 1/2 cup if you like it really sweet)
1/2 cup water
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1 1/2 tsp orange zest (finely grated orange peel)

In a small bowl whisk corn starch and orange juice. Set aside. Simmer remaining ingredients for five minutes. Bring to a boil. Whisk. Add starch mixture. Simmer for 3-5 minutes longer, stirring infrequently. Pour into jars. Makes three 8 ounce jars.

Personal Cheesecakes.

Personal Cheesecakes from Randi:

1 can of sweetened condensed milk
1/3 cup lemon juice
1 8 ounce brick of cream cheese
1 tsp vanilla

Mix together in mixer until smooth. Spoon into individual graham cracker crusts. Refrigerate for 2 hours before serving. Top with strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, chocolate sauce, chocolate shavings, caramel sauce, whipping cream… etc.

Can also be made into a large single graham cracker crust.

Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes.

Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes from Kelly:

5 pounds potatoes
1/2 cup butter
1 cup sour cream*
8 ounces of cream cheese, softened*
1 tsp salt

Scrub, peel and rinse the potatoes, and cut them into 2 inch pieces. Place them in a large stockpot and cover with water. Boil until fork tender, approximately 18-20 minutes.

Drain the potatoes and add remaining ingredients. Mash and mix well. To thoroughly mix ingredients you may want to use a hand or stand mixer. Taste and adjust amount of salt if you want.

Transfer mashed potatoes to a shallow baking dish and cover with foil. Potatoes can be kept warm in the oven at this point, refrigerated or frozen. Makes 10 to 12 servings.

Make-ahead tip: These can be made several days ahead and kept in the refrigerator. Preheat the oven to 350 and bake for 30-45 minutes or until hot.

*can add bacon, cheese, onions, etc to your liking.

Swedish Rolls - Basa.

Swedish Rolls - Basa from Brittany:

1 pkg yeast (approx 1 T)
1 cup warm water
1 T sugar
1 cube butter (1/2 cup), melted
3 cold eggs
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 tsp salt
1-2 tsp ground cardamom
4 cups flour
additional butter for dipping
crushed walnuts and sugar

Add yeast and 1 T sugar to warm water. Allow to grow 5-10 minutes (until foamy). Melt butter. Add 3 cold eggs to cool it off and mix. Add yeast mixture to butter and eggs and mix. Add 1/2 cup sugar, salt and cardamom. Mix in 4 cups flour. Dough will be very sticky. Transfer to buttered bowl, cover with syran wrap and refrigerate 2 hours and up to overnight.

When ready, divide dough into two balls. Roll out on floured surface. Spread with melted butter. Fold dough over from top and bottom and both sides. Roll out again and brush with melted butter. Fold up again in same manner and roll out quite thin. Cut into strips. Roll in flour, tie in a knot, dip in sugar and walnut mixture. Let rise 1 hour or until double in size. Bake at 400 degrees for 8 minutes.

Yummy Rolls.

Yummy Rolls from Erin:

1/2 cup tap-hot water
pinch sugar
2 pkg. yeast (or 4 1/2 tsp)
1 cup butter
2 tsp salt
3/4 cup sugar
1 cup boiling water
4 eggs (beaten)
1 cup warm milk
8 1/2 cups flour (I use the real "bread" flour)

Mix water, yeast and a pinch of sugar in a bowl. Set aside until foamy. Cream butter, salt and sugar. Add boiling water (I just boil mine in the measuring cup in the microwave). Mix until dissolved.

Cool to 105 to 115 degrees (if you don't have a thermometer I think you could just wait a few minutes while it cools off and go on…the butter cools the boiling water pretty fast).

Beat in yeast mixture and eggs. Beat in flour gradually along with the warm milk. Knead for five minutes or until silky (dough will be pretty sticky). Let rise until doubled in size (approx. 1 1/2 to 2 hours).

Punch down and divide into four balls. Roll out approx 14 inch circle. Paint surface with melted butter, and cut up (in a slicing pie fashion) with a pizza cutter into 12 pieces. Roll each piece from big end to small end (like a croissant) and place on greased cookie sheet with point tucked under. Let rise, covered with a cloth until doubled in size (again, approx 1 to 1 1/2 hours).

Bake at 400 for 10-12 minutes.

Sharon's Perfect Apple Pie.

Sharon's Perfect Apple Pie from Jenn:

9 cups sliced apples
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp salt
2 T lemon juice

3 T flour
Pie pastry for 9 inch, 2 crust pie
1 T butter

Put apples in a bowl with sugars, cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla, salt and lemon juice. Mix well. Let sit at room temperature overnight or 8-12 hours. When ready to bake:
Preheat oven to 425.

Roll out pastry for bottom crust and place in pie pan. Using a slotted spoon, place apples in crust, mounding slightly above top of pie tin. Add 3 T flour to juices remaining in bowl and mix well. Pour over apples in pie pan.

Dot apples with butter (optional) and place top crust over. Make slits in top crust for air to escape. Sprinkle lightly with sugar.

Place pie on rack in lower third of oven. Bake 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 350 and bake another 45-60 minutes, or until apples are tender when pierced with a fork in the center of pie.

Place on a rack to cool. Makes one 9 inch pie.

Basic Pie Pastry (in a Cuisinart)

Makes 3 9-inch pie shells (or 2 pie shells and some pie crust cookies)

2 2/3 cups flour
2 sticks very cold unsalted butter cut into 1 inch pieces
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup ice water

Use metal blade to process flour, butter and salt until mixture is like coarse meal, about 8 seconds. Add ice water and pulse until dough begins to clump together. Do not let it form a ball. Divide dough into 3 equal parts and put each in a plastic food storage bag. Work through each bag to press dough together into a ball, then flatten into a disc.

Refrigerate dough at least 1 hour.

Roll each disc of dough on a lightly floured surface into a circle about 1/8 inch thick. Press into place in pie pan. Trim dough, leaving 1 inch overlap beyond edge of pan. Fill pie crust and continue as instructed for recipe. For a pre-baked crust, bake 12 minutes at 400.

Garlic Mashed Potatoes.

Garlic Mashed Potatoes from Michelle:

5 lbs potatoes, peeled and cooked (cut up and boil with 1 tsp. salt until soft (at least 10 min.))
8 oz cream cheese
3-4 stalks of green onions, chopped
1 tsp garlic salt
1/4 tsp pepper
6 T butter
2 cups whipping cream

Cut up cream cheese and butter into chunks. Put in bottom of big mixing bowl (I use my Bosch). Put drained potatoes over and let sit for a few minutes. Then mix. Add rest of ingredients and mix well. Bake at 375 for 30 minutes.

Sweet Potato Casserole.

Sweet Potato Casserole from Shauna:

3 cups cooked, mashed sweet potatoes (yams are actually better)
3/4 stick butter or margarine
1/2 tsp cinnamon
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt

Mix with mixer until smooth. Put in greased casserole dish. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Make topping and spread on casserole. Return to oven and bake for 10 more minutes.

3/4 cup crushed corn flakes
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/2 stick margarine/butter melted

Pear & Gorgonzola Salad

Pear & Gorgonzola Salad from Kristen!!

anjou pear
gorgonzola cheese
pine nuts, carmelized
sugar (for pine nuts)
Blush wine vinaigrette (Brianna's)
criaisins (optional)

Carefully melt sugar in a medium frying pan over medium-high heat. Stir in pine nuts. Stir until pine nuts are well coated, then transfer to a plate lined with wax paper coated with cooking spray. Allow to cool. Store in an air tight container if making ahead of time.

Rinse and cut 4" slices of endive, dividing between serving plates. Arrange on plates with slices of pear, sprinkle cheese and pine nuts on top. Drizzle dressing on and serve.