« April 2020 | Main | June 2020 »

May 2020

Quick Loaf Pan Lasagna For Two

Quick Loaf Pan Lasagna serving

Generally, lasagna is reserved for large gatherings, but this scaled down recipe makes a mini version that serves two generous portions. Using jarred tomato sauce saves time, but you can use your favorite homemade if you have it on hand.

Download Quick Loaf Pan Lasagna For Two

1 tablespoon olive oil

8 ounces 85% lean ground beef

2 cups jarred tomato sauce, Rao’s or Muir Glenn, or homemade

4 ounces whole-milk or part-skim ricotta cheese

1 ounce Parmesan cheese, grated (1/2 cup), plus 2 tablespoons

3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil

1 tablespoon freshly chopped parsley

1 large egg, lightly beaten

⅛ teaspoon salt

⅛ teaspoon pepper

4 no-boil Barilla lasagna noodles

4 ounces whole-milk mozzarella cheese, shredded (1 cup)

1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 400 degrees.

2. Heat oil in large saucepan over medium heat until shimmering. Add ground beef and cook, breaking up meat into small pieces, until no longer pink, about 4 minutes.

3. Stir in tomato sauce and cook until slightly thickened, about 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove from heat and set aside.

4. Combine ricotta, 1/2 cup Parmesan, basil, parsley, egg, salt, and pepper in bowl and set aside.

5. Cover bottom of 8 1/2 by 4 1/2-inch loaf pan with 1/2 cup sauce. Top with 1 noodle and spread one-third of ricotta mixture evenly over noodle. Sprinkle with 1/4 cup mozzarella and cover with 1/2 cup sauce. Repeat twice, beginning with noodle and ending with sauce. Top with remaining 1 noodle, remaining 1 cup sauce, remaining 1/4 cup mozzarella, and remaining 2 tablespoons Parmesan.

6. Cover pan tightly with foil sprayed with vegetable oil spray and bake until bubbling around the edges, 25 to 30 minutes. Discard foil and continue to bake until browned, about 10 minutes. Cool on wire rack for 20 minutes. Sprinkle with chopped basil or parsley. Serve.

Quick Loaf Pan Lasagna recipe


Best Blueberry Whole Oat Buttermilk Pancakes

Best Blueberry Whole Oat Buttermilk Pancakes

These pancakes might be my favorite – fluffy, tender, flavorful, satisfying, and somewhat healthier than most recipes. It is from a great cookbook called Nutritious Delicious which features a collection of “bright, fresh-tasting dishes that takes healthy cooking to a new level” and promises to “leave everyone at the table satisfied".

Download Best Blueberry Whole Oat Buttermilk Pancakes recipe

Makes about 16 four-inch pancakes (or you can easily cut recipe in half to serve 2)

2 cups buttermilk, plus extra as needed

1 cup (3 ounces) old-fashioned rolled oats (Bob's Red Mill Oats)

1½ cups (4½ ounces) oat flour

½ cup (2½ ounces) all-purpose flour

2½ teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

½ teaspoon salt

⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg

2 large eggs

3 tablespoons vegetable oil or melted unsalted butter

3 tablespoons sugar

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

7½ ounces (1½ cups) blueberries

*BEFORE YOU BEGIN

Bob’s Red Mill Oat flour works best here, as it has a very fine grind and creates the most fluffy pancakes, but you can make your own in a pinch: Grind 1½ cups (4½ ounces) old-fashioned rolled oats in a food processor to a fine meal, about 2 minutes; note pancakes will be denser if using ground oats. Do not use toasted oat flour, or quick, instant, or thick-cut oats in this recipe. Serve with maple syrup and additional blueberries if desired.

1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 200 degrees. Set wire rack in rimmed baking sheet and place in oven. Combine 1 cup buttermilk and oats in bowl and let sit at room temperature until softened, about 15 minutes.

2. Whisk oat flour, all-purpose flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, and nutmeg together in large bowl. In separate bowl, whisk remaining 1 cup buttermilk, eggs, 3 tablespoons oil (or cooled melted butter), sugar, and vanilla together until frothy, about 1 minute. Whisk buttermilk mixture into flour mixture until smooth. Using rubber spatula, fold in oat-buttermilk mixture.

3. Heat 1 teaspoon oil in 12-inch nonstick skillet (or griddle) over medium heat until shimmering, 3 to 5 minutes. Using paper towels, wipe out oil, leaving thin film in pan. Using ¼-cup measure, portion batter into pan, spreading each into 4-inch round using back of spoon. Sprinkle each pancake with 1 tablespoon blueberries. Cook until edges are set and first side is golden, 2 to 3 minutes.

4. Flip pancakes and cook until second side is golden, 2 to 3 minutes. Serve or transfer to wire rack in oven. Repeat with remaining batter, whisking additional buttermilk into batter as needed to loosen, and adding remaining oil to pan as necessary.

Best Blueberry Whole Oat Buttermilk Pancakes ingredients


Festive Strawberry-Rhubarb Fool

Strawberry Rhubarb Fool Flutes

Fool is a popular British dessert that is similar to Eton Mess but without the crumbled meringue shells. It is super easy to throw together – any combination of berries and cream will work, but they look particularly festive in tall stemmed glasses. This version based on an old recipe from Cook’s Illustrated Rhubarb Fool features rhubarb, which is a classic pairing with strawberries, and great to use during its peak season. If you have a bigger crowd, the recipe easily doubles, and you might make them easy to serve by using stemless wine glasses.

Download Festive Strawberry-Rhubarb Fool recipe

Serves 4

FILLING:

½ pound fresh rhubarb, trimmed of ends and cut into 6-inch lengths

8 ounces fresh strawberries, cleaned and hulled; each berry quartered (about 6 or 7 large berries)

3 tablespoons orange juice

6 tablespoons granulated sugar

1/8 teaspoon salt

CREAM/TOPPING:

1 cup heavy cream (cold)

¼ cup sour cream

2 tablespoons sugar

½ teaspoon vanilla

4 Carr's Whole Wheat Crackers or Graham Crackers, finely crushed (about 1/4 cup)

4 sprigs fresh mint leaves (optional)

1. Soak rhubarb in a one-quart cold water for 20 minutes. Drain, pat dry with paper towels, and cut rhubarb crosswise into slices 1/2-inch thick.

2. Bring orange juice, 6 tablespoons sugar, and salt to boil in medium nonreactive saucepan over medium-high heat. Add rhubarb and strawberries and return to boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, stirring only 2 or 3 times (frequent stirring causes rhubarb to become mushy), until rhubarb begins to break down and is tender, 7 to 10 minutes. Transfer rhubarb and strawberries to nonreactive bowl, cool to room temperature, then cover with plastic and refrigerate until cold, at least 1 hour.

3. Place cream, sour cream, vanilla, and remaining 2 tablespoons sugar in chilled bowl of stand mixer. Beat on low speed until bubbles form, about 30 seconds. Increase speed to medium and continue beating until beaters leave trail, about 30 seconds. Increase speed to high; continue beating until mixture has nearly doubled in volume and holds stiff peaks, about 30 seconds.

4. To assemble fool, spoon 1/4 of the rhubarb and strawberries into each of two 8-ounce glasses, then spoon in about 1/4 of the whipped cream (you can also use a piping bag to help keep edges clean. Repeat, ending with dollop of cream. Sprinkle with crushed crackers and garnish with mint sprigs, if using. Serve or can be covered with plastic wrap and refrigerated up to 6 hours.


Classic British Bakewell Tart (Almond Frangipane Jam Tart)

Classic British Bakewell Tart Almond Frangipane Jam Tart sliced

If you’re a fan of The Great British Baking Show, you may remember this recipe from an episode where the bakers are challenged by Mary Berry to make a Bakewell Tart,   an English confection consisting of a short pastry shell beneath layers of jam, frangipane, and a topping of sliced almonds. Recently, pastry chef/author Gesine Prado posted a helpful instructional video on the King Arthur Facebook page  demonstrating her take on the King Arthur recipe for this wonderful dessert. She made it look so easy, that I decided to give it a try. Watching the video allays any fear one might have when tackling a new recipe, and the result is spectacular. I made a couple of minor changes to the crust and filling recipe, but otherwise followed the recipe as printed, and followed Gesine’s mixing tips for the filling.

Download Classic British Almond-Jam Tart Bakewell Tart recipe

Crust:

1 1/2 cups (7.5 oz/180g) unbleached all-purpose flour

½ cup (2 oz/60g) confectioners’ sugar

¼ teaspoon salt

8 tablespoons (4 oz/113g) cold unsalted butter

1 large egg yolk; reserve the white for the filling

2 tablespoons heavy cream

½ teaspoon vanilla

Frangipane filling:

1 1/4 cups (4 ¼ oz/120g) almond flour

1/2 cup (3.5 oz/99g) granulated sugar

1/4 cup (28g) unbleached all-purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 large egg

1 large egg white

½ teaspoon almond extract

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

8 tablespoons (113g) soft unsalted butter, cut into ½” pieces

¼ cup (2¾ oz/80g) seedless raspberry jam

½ cup (43g) sliced almonds

Confectioners’ sugar and raspberries, for decorating, if desired

FOR THE CRUST:

  1. Whisk together yolk, cream, and vanilla in small bowl. Combine flour, sugar, and salt in food processor with four 1-second pulses. Scatter cold butter pieces over flour mixture; pulse to cut butter into flour until mixture resembles coarse meal, about twenty 1-second pulses. With machine running, add egg mixture and process until dough comes together, about 12 seconds. Turn dough onto sheet of plastic wrap and press into 6-inch disk; wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 1 hour or up to 48 hours.
  2. Remove dough from refrigerator (if refrigerated longer than 1 hour, let stand at room temperature until malleable). Unwrap and roll on a lightly floured work surface into a 12” circle. Gently transfer the dough circle to a 9” tart pan, pressing it into the corners. Trim the dough with kitchen scissors so that you’re left with just 1/2” of overhanging dough around the perimeter of the tart. Fold the overhang down to reinforce the sides of the pastry then use the tines of a fork to poke holes across the bottom.
  3. Freeze the crust for 30 minutes. In the meantime, preheat the oven to 400°F.
  4. Line the crust with parchment or foil and fill with pie weights, rice, or your favorite blind-baking weights.
  5. Bake the crust on a baking sheet (to catch any butter drips) with the weights for 20 minutes then remove the parchment or foil with the weights and bake for 5 to 10 minutes longer, until the edges and bottom of the crust are lightly golden.
  6. Remove the crust from the oven and allow it to cool while you prepare the filling.
  7. Reduce the oven temperature to 350°F

FOR THE FILLING:

  1. Add almond flour, sugar, flour and salt to the bowl of a food processor and pulse 3- times to combine. Add egg and egg white, almond and vanilla extracts; process until combined, about 10 seconds. Add butter and process until no lumps remain, about 10 seconds. Scrape bottom and sides of bowl with rubber spatula and process to combine thoroughly, about 10 seconds longer. (Can be refrigerated in airtight container up to 3 days. Before using, let stand at room temperature about 30 minutes to soften, stirring 3 or 4 times.)
  2. Spread the raspberry jam evenly into the bottom of the slightly cooled crust. Using a piping bag (or use a plastic freezer bag and cut a ½” opening in the corner) pipe the almond filling in a circular motion to cover the jam. Alternatively, you can spoon the almond mixture over the jam, but be careful not to mix the jam into the almond filling. Once the jam is covered, gently spread it to the edges of the tart, and smooth out the surface. Sprinkle the sliced almonds evenly on top.
  3. Bake the tart on the baking sheet for 35 to 40 minutes, until the top is golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  4. Remove the tart from the oven and allow it to cool completely on a rack. Transfer to serving plate and dust with powdered sugar and decorate with fresh raspberries, if desired. Serve at room temperature.

Classic British Bakewell Tart Almond Frangipane Jam Tart crust 

Classic British Bakewell Tart Almond Frangipane Jam Tart filling 

Classic British Bakewell Tart Almond Frangipane Jam Tart photo
Classic British Bakewell Tart Almond Frangipane Jam Tart photo


Ina Garten’s Quick and Easy Weeknight Bolognese

Ina Garten Weeknight Bolognese plate

This recipe from Ina Garten’s cookbook – How is Easy is That? - gets rave reviews online, but some reason I had yet to make it. I thought that a good Bolognese needed hours to make, but this streamlined version manages to nearly rival the depth and richness of a long-cooked version. It comes together fast, with readily available ingredients, making it an easy at home recipe.

Download Ina Garten’s Quick and Easy Weeknight Bolognese recipe

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 pound lean ground sirloin (90%)

4 teaspoons minced garlic (4 cloves)

1 tablespoon dried oregano

¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

2 tablespoons tomato paste

1¼ cups dry red wine, divided

1 can (28 ounces) crushed tomatoes, preferably San Marzano

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 pound dried pasta, such as orecchiette or small shells

¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

¼ cup chopped fresh basil leaves, lightly packed

¼ cup heavy cream

Freshly grated Parmesan cheese

  1. Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large (12-inch) skillet over medium-high heat. Add the ground sirloin and cook, crumbling the meat with a wooden spoon. Cook for 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the meat has lost its pink color and has started to brown. 
  2. Stir in the tomato paste, garlic, oregano, and hot red pepper flakes and cook for one minute. Pour the wine into the skillet and stir to scrape up any browned bits. Add the tomatoes, 2 teaspoons kosher salt, and 1½ teaspoons ground pepper, stirring until combined.  Bring to a boil, lower the heat, and simmer for 10 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, bring a medium pot of water to a boil, add a tablespoon of salt and the pasta and cook according to the directions on the box.
  4. While the pasta cooks, finish the sauce. Add the nutmeg, chopped basil, cream and add the remaining ¼ cup of wine to the sauce and simmer for 8 to 10 minutes. When the pasta is cooked, transfer it with a slotted spoon or sieve to the pan with the sauce, saving the ½ cup of the pasta liquid.  Cook for one minute, adding pasta water, a bit at a time, if necessary to achieve desired consistency. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve hot with Parmesan on the side.

Ina Garten Weeknight Bolognese Orchiette Pasta
Ina Garten Weeknight Bolognese Orchiette Pasta
Ina Garten Weeknight Bolognese Orchiette Pasta