Archive for baking

Butternut Squash Biscuits with Jalapeno Butter

You can make these vegan – details at the bottom of the page:

1 1/2 cups butternut squash, cooked and pureed (I mix in freshly ground nutmeg, sea salt, and black pepper)

1 egg, beaten

1/4 cup canola oil

1/4 cup buttermilk

2 tablespoons brown sugar

2 cups whole wheat flour

1/2 cup oatmeal

4 teaspoons baking powder

1/3 cup pecans, chopped (you can skip these if you make the jalapeno butter, but they are especially nice if you are just topping w/regular butter)

Preheat oven to 450°F.

Peel and seed squash.  Cut into chunks and steam until tender (10 minutes or so).  Cool, mash, season with sea salt, black pepper, and a little nutmeg.  Measure out 1 1/2 cups of puree into a large bowl for this recipe, and freeze the rest for another time.

Add in the oil, egg, buttermilk, and brown sugar and mix well.

In a separate bowl, mix the rest of the ingredients, then add to squash and mix until all the dry is incorporated.

Combine all ingredients in large bowl and mix with fork or spoon until well blended.

Drop heaping tablespoons onto a sheet pan with parchment (I use a 1/4 cup q1scoop).  Brush with jalapeno butter (recipe below), and bake.

Bake for 10-12 minutes.

To make the biscuits vegan, skip the buttermilk.  Add 1/4 cup soy yogurt or soy sour cream, and 1 teaspoon egg replacer powder beaten with 2 T. water.  Sub vegan margarine for the butter in the following recipe.

To make Jalapeno Butter:

1 T. minced jalapeno (no seeds or pith unless you want it really hot)

1/2 t. sea salt

1/2 t. galangal (or dried ginger)

zest of one orange

Start with 2 T. butter in a small saute pan.  Slowly melt the butter with the rest of the ingredients over low heat, and saute until it smells great.  Add 4 T. more butter and turn off heat.  Allow to melt, whisk together, and let the butter cool.

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Happy Thanksgiving!

Hello friends and family! Just thinking of you on this holiday, so I thought I’d get motivated and post about our day and especially our meal. It’s all a work in progress, so I’m sure I’ll be posting all day about it. Feel free to comment and tell me what you are eating today.

Chris and I are chillin’ today. No big plans, nothing too social. It’s actually quite nice – I’ve been gone a lot for school and work and we’ve been keeping different schedules, so this will be some quality time for us . Heh. Plus, I’m not going to think about school or work all day, which is a treat for me.

Here’s what my menu plans are for the day…I got hooked up with a farmer out of Dallas, OR who models his farming practices after Joel Salatin’s Polyface Farm…the name might ring a bell if you’ve read Omnivore’s Dilemma. My shortcut way to explain this is Happy Meat. I’m not a vegetarian by any stretch, but I want to know that my meat was brought up on a farm in a humane way by people who care about the animals and the land, something that is getting harder and harder to find these days with our food systems focused on factory farms and cheap meat. I’m not going to soapbox here, today anyway. If you want to know more, please ask me.raw duck

So I met my Abundant Life Farm farmer on Monday night and purchased a pasture-raised 4 1/2# duck. It was happy, at least until recently. 🙂 I’ve cooked duck before, but not very often, and there is only one dish I’ve made that I want to recreate – a smoked duck breast that we used to make at Viking Culinary in Franklin. I turned to a cookbook that my mother-in-law gave me a few years back that is co-authored by Jacque Pepin and Julia Child, Cooking at Home. Mom, remember our Julia Child cooking shows? I’ve used this cookbook before for some great recipes and instructions on traditional French-style dishes, and it doesn’t disappoint. I love Jacque’s Roast Chicken.

Anyhoo, in order to use the duck to its fullest, I am going to smoke the duck breast and serve it sliced with a fresh grapefruit sauce over greens and cranberries. I then plan to pan-roast the legs with parsnips and shallots, and make a killer sauce from cooking the carcass down into stock and then into a lovely brown sauce. And cracklins with the skin! squash

Also on the menu are a version of a sweet potato roll that some of you have had before – they are dipped in honey butter and rolled in graham cracker crumbs before baking. mmmmmmmm. This time I’m using butternut squash instead of sweet potatoes and I started the dough last night to get a jump on it. In fact, I should go shape those rolls and start the duck stock now. I’ll be back later to tell you about the additional sides and general updates. What are you cooking today? dough

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Honey-Buttermilk Cornbread with Blueberries

Hmmmm, you think. Interesting. Trust me. Fabuloso with a capital F.

This is a sweet cornbread recipe (sans blueberries) that I’ve used for years. I’d make it at Grins Cafe as both regular and vegan cornbread whenever we’d have our chili, and there was nothing better. One of the most important ingredients is the honey that is brushed on the top right after coming out of the oven. Read the rest of this entry »

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Toast the Nuts

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Really Good Banana Bread

I mentioned a few posts ago (pre-plum craziness) that I had a couple favorite banana bread recipes, and promised to write about them. It just so happened that I had three perfectly ripe bananas (spotted but not rotten), so I made a quick batch Friday. I based my bread on The Best Recipe by Cook’s Illustrated. This is a desert island cookbook for me – assuming my desert island had a kickin’ kitchen.

I do a few things differently than their published version and have made it as a vegan bread with success. Read the rest of this entry »

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Baking thoughts and banana bread

(pictures to come shortly)

I started baking at an early age. My mother maintained a house of healthy food choices so cookies and fresh breads factored in only special times of the year like birthdays or the holidays. I figured out when I was ten years old that the novelty of a kid in the kitchen overrode any concerns about extra fat and sugar in our diets, so I jumped right into Baked Alaska from the Joy of Cooking. That was a big hit and I followed up by playing around with any recipe that looked good to me – the key theme being that it was something I wanted to eat. I spent a lot of time browsing through my Mom’s recipe box and cookbooks for all the traditional and soon-to-be favorites.

Read the rest of this entry »

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