Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Pancetta & Pear Waffles

There's a little taste of salt and a hint of pears in every bite of these waffles.  I chose pancetta over bacon because it's thinner and easier to crumble on top of the batter and bake into the waffles.  You can substitute apple or peach butter instead of the pears.  I happened to have pears on hand so that's what I went with.  I did not add any sugar when I cooked the pears since you already add in sugar in the waffle batter.

1 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp salt
3 tbsp sugar

2 large eggs, separated
3 tbsp pear butter (recipe below)
1 cup milk

3 oz pancetta, cooked, drained and crumbled

Sift all dry ingredients and zest into a large bowl.  In a small bowl, beat egg whites until light and fluffy.  Gradually mix milk, egg yolks, butter and pear butter.  Gently fold in beaten egg whites into dry ingredients.

Bake per your waffle makers instructions.

Makes 8 waffles

Pear Butter

4 pears, peeled, cored and cut into small pieces
1 tbsp. lemon juice
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1 dash nutmeg

Cook the pears and lemon juice medium heat until pears release their juices and are tender.  Remove from heat and blend until smooth.  Add in spices and allow to cool.  Refrigerate.

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Pizzelle S'Mores

These are not your ordinary pizzelles but ones that have graham cracker crumbs added into the batter to make an authentic S'more.  I used jumbo time I might just go for the regular sized ones.

Pizzelle S'Mores

3 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup canola oil
3/4 cup sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs
1 cup flour

Beat eggs until they are light.  Add in sugar, oil and vanilla extract.  Fold in dry ingredients.  Drop by teaspoonfuls into the center of your heated pizzelle maker.  Close the lid for about 30 seconds.  Carefully remove the pizzelle and place on a wire rack.  Place 4 Hershey bar squares on top of the bottom pizzelle.  Roast your marshmallow over an open fire until a nice, toasty brown and place on top of the chocolate.  Top with another pizzelle and enjoy.  

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Chocolate Chip Toffee Cookies

Rainy days are made better by baking a batch of cookies.  I happened to have open packages of chocolate chips and toffee bits in my pantry so I whipped these together (creating as I went) and luckily they turned out.

Chocolate Chip Toffee Cookies

1 cup butter, softened
¾ cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
2 large eggs
2 tsp vanilla
1 tsp salt
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp baking powder
2 ½ cups flour
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup toffee pieces
Cream together butter and sugars.  Add in the eggs and vanilla.  Stir in the dry ingredients gradually.  Fold in the chocolate chips and toffee pieces.  Scoop out onto parchment lined baking sheets.  Bake for 10-12 minutes at 350°

Makes 4 dozen cookies

Friday, May 19, 2017

Italian Bread

The smell of bread baking on a chilly Spring day is always welcome.  This is a great bread to make to serve with soups or dips or slice it and make garlic bread.

Italian Bread

2 1/4 cups bread flour
2 1/2 tsp active dry yeast (1 pkg)
1 cup warm water
1 tsp salt
1 tsp honey
2 tbsp extra light virgin olive oil

Mix together warm water, honey, olive oil and yeast in a bowl and let it bloom for 10 minutes.  In your mixing bowl combine 2 cups of bread flour and the salt.  When the yeast mixture is ready, pour into the flour with the mixer with the dough hook on a low speed.  Let the dough come together and gradually add in the additional 1/4 cup of flour.  Increase speed to medium and knead for 4-5 minutes.  Remove from the mixer and pour 1 tbsp. of olive oil in the bowl and turn the dough so it's covered on all sides.  Cover the bowl with a towel and allow the dough to rise for an hour or until it has doubled.  Turn out and shape into a loaf on a parchment lined baking sheet.  Allow the dough to rise again.  Cut 3 slits 1/4" deep into the top of the dough.  Bake for 20 minutes at 400°.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Grilled Apricot Chicken Skewers

Perfect grilling weather is here and I combined some chicken with fresh apricots and peppers for an easy outside dinner.

Grilled Apricot Chicken Skewers

1# chicken tenders (cut into small skewer size pieces)
2 apricots
red & orange peppers 
Salt & freshly ground pepper


2 tbsp. soy sauce
2 tbsp. white wine
1/2 tsp chipotle powder
1/4 cup apricot preserves

Cut the chicken tenders, apricots and peppers into skewer size pieces.  Carefully thread onto the skewers and season.  Grill until nice grill marks appear and turn.  As the second side cooks, brush on the sauce.  

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Blueberry Lemon Cookies

Soft lemon cookies with bursts of blueberries make these cookies a light dessert or leave them without icing and you can convince yourself they are a great breakfast...yes, that happened.  I use frozen blueberries just so they keep their shape a little better.

Blueberry Lemon Cookies

1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 tbsp lemon zest
1/8 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup milk
2 1/4 cups flour
1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries

Cream together butter and sugar.  Add in eggs and lemon zest.  Alternate adding in the remainder of dry ingredients and milk.  Scoop out onto parchment lined baking sheets.  Bake for 12 minutes at 350°.  

Allow to cool before icing.  

Icing -

1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
juice from 1 lemon