Thursday, September 20, 2012

Lemon Meltaways

These cookies are so yummy! Soft lemon shortbread with a tangy lemon buttercream center. And almost fail proof, thanks to the cornstarch in the shortbread.

Lemon Meltaways:
200g [7/8 cup, or approx 14 tablespoons] unsalted butter, room temperature
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup confectioners sugar
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup cornstarch
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
zest of one lemon

1 cup confectioners sugar
50 [ 1/4 cup, or approx 3.6 tablespoons] grams unsalted butter, room temperature
juice of one lemon

*an extra 1/2 cup of confectioners sugar was required for a thicker icing sugar. Please keep this in mind if a thicker consistency is preferred.

Preheat oven to 150 degrees Celsius / 300 F.

In a large bowl cream the butter, salt and sugar until light and fluffy on a medium setting, roughly 3 minutes. Reduce the speed to low and incorporate the vanilla and lemon zest, scraping down the sides as you go. Sift the flower and cornstarch into the mixture and beat on a low setting until just combined.

Take small portions of the mixture and roll into balls, continue until you have 25-30 (I made mine quite large, I ended up with roughly 23) pieces. If you want them to be as even as possible, roll out the mixture until it forms a log then use a clean knife to section into 30 pieces.

Place them on a baking tray lined with wax paper, gently press on each piece with a fork until it has left an imprint. You can also press on them gently with your fingers, if you do not wish to leave an imprint.
Bake for 20 minutes. let them cool completely.

For the filling beat the sugar, butter and lemon juice on a medium setting until incorporated. Use the back of a spoon, or a knife to ice one side of the cookie then sandwich them together. Try to find two which are similar sizes.

Recipe curtesy of ittybittykitchen

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Green Herb Rice Pilaf with Portabello Mushrooms

  • 1 1/2 cups (loosely packed) fresh baby spinach leaves
  • 1/2 cup (loosely packed) fresh basil leaves
  • 1/2 cup (loosely packed) fresh Italian parsley leaves
  • 2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 garlic clove, sliced
  • 2 1/2 cups low-salt chicken broth
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 medium leek (white and pale green parts only), thinly sliced
  • 2 cups short-grain rice (such as arborio) or medium-grain rice
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1 large portabella mushroom, chopped into medium cubes
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese plus additional for serving

Blend first 5 ingredients in processor until thick paste forms. Set aside.

Heat 2 tablespoons oil in heavy medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Add leek; sauté until soft, stirring often, about 10 minutes. Add rice; stir until heated through, about 3 minutes. Add wine; simmer until absorbed, stirring often.

Place rice/leek mixture in a rice cooker and add chicken broth. Follow instructions for your rice cooker and cook until rice is tender.

While rice is cooking, saute chopped portabellas in olive oil until golden brown. Set aside

Uncover; stir in herb paste to taste, 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, mushrooms, and 1 tablespoon olive oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Add more Parmesan if desired. Serve immediately in warm bowls, passing additional Parmesan cheese alongside.

*This was plated for April fools as an ice cream sundae, but served as a side dish it works great for any normal meal too. =)

April Fool's Dinner Party

I've Moved! To view this post click here.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Irish Stew with Mint Sour Cream

Do NOT skip the mint sour cream with the stew, it really makes the dish special and unique.

1/4 c. vegetable oil
12 ounces lean, boneless lamb, cut into 1-inch cubes(or beef stew meat works fine)
4 cups beef broth
tt. Kosher Salt
tt. pepper
1 bay leaf
3 medium red potatoes, skin-on, cut into medium dice
1 large onion, medium dice
5 carrots, peeled, medium dice
1 t. dried thyme
1 t. dried oregano
1/2 cup cold beer or water
3 T. all-purpose flour
1/2 c. Sour Cream
10 mint leaves, sliced into shreds
Mix the sour cream and shredded mint together and refrigerate.

In a medium stock pot, heat the oil until smoking. Add the lamb or beef and brown. Pour in the beef stock, thyme, and oregano, cover, and let simmer for 1 1/2 hours adding more water if liquid levels get too low. Add the onion, potato, and carrot and let simmer until vegetables are tender, at least 30 minutes.
In a small bowl, mix together flour and water. Pour through a fine meshed sieve into the stew and stir well until the soup thickens. Check seasonings, adding more salt or beef base if needed.
Serve with mint sour cream. Serves 4.

Shamrock Parfaits (Chocolate Mousse and Peppermint Cream)

Served 8-10


  • 4 cups chilled heavy cream
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 4 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 8 oz bittersweet chocolate chips
  • 1/3 c. Sugar
  • 3 drops doTERRA Peppermint Essential Oil
  • Green food coloring
  • 4-5 Mint chocolate cookies
  • Mint Leaves(optional)

Heat 3/4 cup cream in a saucepan until hot. Whisk together yolks, sugar, and a pinch of salt in a bowl until combined well, then add hot cream in a slow stream, whisking until combined. Transfer mixture to saucepan and cook over moderately low heat, whisking constantly, just until it thickens. Add in the vanilla and chocolate chips and whisk until the chocolate is melted and fully incorporated. Set aside to cool.

Beat remaining 3 1/4 cups cream and 1/3 c. sugar in a bowl with an electric mixer until it just holds stiff peaks. Divide Whipped cream in half and set other half aside. Whisk one fourth of cream(of the half that was set aside) into chocolate custard to lighten, then fold in remaining cream gently but thoroughly. Spoon into a piping bag and set aside.

Pipe chocolate mousse and mint cream in alternating layers into 8-10 parfait dishes. Top with half a chocolate mint cookie and a sprig of mint. Let set in the refrigerator for 2-3 hours. Serve well chilled.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Chicken Piccata with Scallion Parsley Mashed Potatoes

For the Chicken:

Ingredients -

  • 3 Boneless, Skinless chicken breasts, cut in half(horizontally).
  • Kosher Salt and Pepper to taste
  • All-purpose flour (for dredging)
  • 6 Tablespoons salted butter
  • 5 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1/3 c. Fresh squeezed Lemon juice(about 2 lemons)
  • 1/2 c. chicken stock
  • 1/4 c. Capers, drained and rinsed
  • 1/4 c. Fresh Parsley, chopped
To prepare chicken:
Lay out halved chicken breasts on a cutting board presentation side down and cover with plastic wrap. Pound out each halve until chicken is a uniform width all over, about 1/4" thick. Remove plastic wrap and sprinkle Kosher salt and pepper over the pounded sides of the chicken, pressing in the seasonings with your hands. Dredge each piece of chicken in the flour until thoroughly coated. Set aside.

In a large saute pan, melt 1 1/2 T. of the butter with 3 T. of Olive Oil. When the butter and oil are sizzling, add 3 pieces of chicken to the pan. Cook until the chicken is golden brown, flip, and brown on the other side. When the chicken is browned on both sides, remove from a pan to a plate and set aside. Add another 2 T. of oil and 1 1/2 T. butter to the pan, and again, when sizzling, add the remaining three pieces of chicken and brown in the same manner, removing to the plate when browned.

Add the lemon juice, chicken stock, and capers to the pan and de-glaze, loosening any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Add the chicken back to the pan and allow to simmer in the liquid for an additional 4-5 minutes. Remove the chicken to a platter and whisk in the remaining 3 T. butter into the pan sauce, until melted. Check the sauce for seasoning and pour over the chicken. Top the dish with the chopped fresh parsley. Serve alongside Scallion Parsley Mashed Potatoes(mashed potatoes with caramelized onions also work well with this dish).

For the Scallion Parsley Mashed Potatoes-

  • 6 large russet potatoes(or 10-12 small), peeled, diced, cooked, and drained
  • 1/3 c. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1/4 c. Fresh Parsely, roughly chopped and packed
  • 1/4 c. sliced scallions or green onions
  • 1/4 C. + warm Milk
Place the parsley and scallions in the bowl of a food processer. Lock the lid and begin processing. steadily pour in the olive oil in a thin stream. Process until the parsley, scallions, and oil have emulsified. Pour the oil through a tightly meshed sieve and press on the solids until all of the oil is extracted. Set aside.

Place the hot potatoes in the bowl of a stand mixer. Begin mixing on a slow speed and slowly pour in the flavored oil and milk. Mix until potatoes are smooth. Add seasoning to taste.
  • Salt and pepper to taste