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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.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Nutella Popsicles

Decadent! Make these, make these right now!
Ingredients:
3/4 cup of Nutella
1/2 cup of Sweetened Condensed Milk
1 cup of Whole Milk
1/2 cup of Heavy Cream

Directions:
1. Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.
2. Pour mixture into popsicle molds and pop them in the freezer overnight.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

The Most Decadent Chocolate Cake



This is a gooey, delicious, moist cake, and easy to make. Very decadent indeed. It's also known as a Texas Sheet Cake, but when I made it in the Jelly Roll sheet, the cake overflowed in my oven. Goodness, they must have bigger jelly roll pans in Texas than they do here in Canada. Now I make it in a casserole or rectangle cake pan. Trust me, it's OMG Good!







Ingredients:

1 cup butter
1 cup water
1/4 cup cocoa
2 cups sugar
2 cups flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla



Frosting

1/2 cup butter 
1/4 cup cocoa 
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons milk 
1 box (1 pound) confectioners' sugar, sifted (4 1/4 cups sifted) 
1/2 teaspoon vanilla 
1/2 cup chopped pecans, optional

Preparation:

Cake
Combine 1 cup butter, water, and 1/4 cup cocoa in saucepan over medium heat; heat until butter melts. Add sugar, flour, salt, eggs, soda, sour cream, and 1 teaspoon of vanilla; mix well. Pour into greased large cake pan. You can use a 15x10x1-inch jelly roll pan. Bake at 350° for about 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Frost while still hot.
Frosting
Combine 1/2 cup of butter, 1/4 cup of cocoa, and milk in a saucepan; bring to a boil. Add the confectioners' sugar and 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla mix well with electric mixer. Stir in pecans, if using, and pour over the cake. Spread to cover the hot cake.