Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Nonna's sweet buns

My grandkids love these sweet buns. They refer to them as Nonna's pa-pa. In reality, they are a copycat recipe for the Golden Corral's Buns! 

Ingredients

1 package dry yeast
1/4 cup warm water
1/3 cup ugar
1/4 cup butter
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
1 egg slightly beaten
4 1/2 cups all purpose flour

Mix all the ingredients into your bread maker. Set it for the dough cycle and let it knead. When it's ready, remove the dough, form it into balls, and then let it rise for another 45 minutes. 

Bake in a 375 degree oven for 18 to 20 minutes or until golden. When you take them out of the oven, brush them with butter. Enjoy!


Sunday, October 25, 2015

Bolognese Sauce - Authentically from Northern Italy!


1 1/2 cups diced Onion
3/4 cup diced Celery
2 1/2 lb Ground Beef or Veal or a mixture of both
3/4 cup Dry White Wine
1 1/2 cups Beef Stock
2 tbsp chopped Parsley
Parmigiano-Reggiano
3/4 cup diced Carrot
3 tbsp Tomato Paste
1 1/2 tbsp minced Garlic
1 cup milk
1 lb Pasta (cooked to al dente)
Olive Oil
ButterSalt & Pepper

Directions

Heat the olive oil and butter on medium until the butter is melted and blended. 
Stir in the chopped celery, carrot, onion, salt and pepper.
Cook until all the vegetables are nice and carmelized. 
Raise the temperature on the burner and then add all the meat,
Let it brown, approximately 5 to 10 minutes. 
Add the tomato paste and stir and blend it in. Let it cook for a few more minutes. 
Add garlic with wine and cook to reduce for several minutes.
Add the beef stock and turn heat down to low.
Cook, partly covered, and let the liquid evaporate. 
That's when to add the milk and let it simmer for 30 to 40 minutes or so. 
Add a touch more milk as the sauce reduces.
Stir in parsley.
Season with sea salt and pepper before serving.
It is traditionally served on tagliatelli pasta or penne - a hearty pasta that can bear the weight of the sauce.  
Garnish with the real parmiggiano/reggiano cheese and serve. 


Monday, December 22, 2014

Potato Gnocchi

Christmas will be here in two days. For my Christmas Eve menu, one of the dishes I'll be serving is Gnocchi. Here's my favourite tried and true recipe as my Christmas gift to you all! Buon Natale a tutti! 


In typical Italian style, my recipe will make enough to serve twelve. If this is too much, you can either half the recipe, or freeze some for another day! 
Ingredients:

6 pounds russet potatoes
4 cups all-purpose flour
2 large eggs
Pinch of salt

Directions:

Peel potatoes and then place them whole in a large pot.

Add cold water until they are all submerged. 

Boil the potatoes until they are soft, approximately 45 to  50 minutes. 

Drain and while they are still warm, pass them through a food mill or a ricer. 

Place the potatoes on a clean board or a clean kitchen counter. 

Make a well in the center of the potatoes and sprinkle with the flour. 

Place the egg and salt in the center of the well and, using a fork, stir the egg into the flour and potatoes. 

Bring the dough together, kneading gently until a ball is formed, and continue to knead for another 4 minutes, until the dough is dry to the touch. 

Cut some dough off the main ball and roll it into a dowel about 3/4-inch thick. 

Cut across the dowel into 1 inch long pieces.  

Flick each piece down the tines of a fork to form the traditional gnocchi shape. 

Repeat with the remaining dough.

When ready to serve the gnocchi, bring a minimum of  6 quarts of water to a boil. 

Add two tablespoons of salt. 

Drop the gnocchi into the boiling water and cook until they float. This will take about 4 to 5 minutes. 

With a large slotteed spoon, carefully remove them from the water and toss into a pan with your favourite sauce. Toss gently for a few seconds until coated. 

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Sugar Cookies


Sugar Cookies
It wouldn't be Christmas without holiday shaped sugar cookies. Yum, yum. These sugar cookies are tender, a little chewy, and melt in your mouth good. I think it's the sour cream that gives them such an awesome taste. They taste especially great with your favourite cookie frosting and / or sprinkles. 
INGREDIENTS
1 3/4 Cup Sugar
1 Cup Shortening or Butter or half a cup of each
3 Eggs
1 Cup Sour Cream
4 Cups Flour
1 Tsp. Baking Powder
1 Tsp. Baking Soda
1/4 Tsp. Salt
A dash of vanilla or almond extract
DIRECTIONS:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Blend together the wet ingredients: the sugar, shortening, eggs, sour cream, and extract. 
Sift together the dry ingredients: the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
Add to the wet ingredients. 
Roll out the cookies. Cut them with your favourite cookie cutters. Top with sprinkles or fancy sugar. 
Bake 8-12 mins. 

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

The Best Banana Bread



Favourite Banana Bread

My husband loves banana bread. So over the years, I've experimented with numerous recipes. One of the best ones I've ever found is one I've tweaked and tweaked to perfection. This is it...

1 cup butter — softened
1/2 cup vegetable oil or melted butter
3 cups brown sugar
4 large eggs
3 cups bananas — mashed ripe (I used 8 ripened bananas)
1 cup sour cream — (I used light sour cream)
2 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 cups flour
2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
Turbinado sugar or brown sugar to sprinkle on top of batter

1. With a mixer combine butter, oil, sugars, and eggs until smooth.
2. Add mashed bananas, sour cream, and vanilla, stirring together well.
3. Mix in flour, baking soda, and salt, stirring until it is blended. Do not over mix.
4. Pour into 3 well-greased standard loaf pans to about 3/4 full.
5. Sprinkle Turbinado or brown sugar generously over top of batter, using your hand to gently pat some of it into the batter.
6. Bake at 325° F for about 1 hour or until the center of the loaf reaches 205° on an instant read thermometer.
7. Allow bread to cool in pans for about 20 minutes.

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