a little of each

A family's cookbook

Poinsettia Cocktails May 20, 2013

Filed under: Drinks — alittlemoreofeach @ 8:25 am
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Stephanie made these for both Thanksgiving and Christmas 2012.  They are festive looking and very tasty, too.  Each time she thought she was only going to make one batch, but guests clamored for another.  Only running out of vodka put a stop to making a third.

poinsettia cocktail

Ingredients
1 bottle of Champagne or any sparkling wine, chilled
1 bottle cranberry juice (the real stuff), chilled
1/2 bottle orange-flavored vodka, chilled
1 cup fresh cranberries, frozen
1 orange, sliced
bag of ice, quantity as needed

Directions

Mix the first three ingredients together in a large pitcher.  Pour into ice-filled glasses, garnishing with fresh cranberries and a slice of orange.

 

Cuban Sandwiches a la George

Filed under: Sandwiches — alittlemoreofeach @ 8:18 am
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Having grown up in Tampa, George knows a good Cuban sandwich when he sees one (or rather, eats one).  According to him, it should be made with Cuban bread.  It should have roast pork.  It should have pickles.  It should be pressed.  Anything less would just be a sub.  Being in North Carolina and far from Cuba and its bread (or even a Publix), Stephanie took on the challenge to try to make as authentic a Cuban as she could.  Lucky for her, it got two thumbs up.

cuban sandwiches

 

Ingredients
1/2 pound thinly sliced ham (Stephanie used Boars Head)
1/3 pound thinly sliced roast pork*
1/4 pound thinly sliced Genoa salami
1/4 pound Swiss cheese
One loaf Cuban bread**, cut in half lengthwise
Kosher dill sandwich pickles
Yellow mustard
Mayonnaise
1/2 stick butter, melted

 

Directions
Open up bread and spread surfaces with both mayo and mustard.  Evenly layer the meats, topping with cheese.  Distribute pickles down the length.  Assemble sandwich with top.  Use a sandwich press if you have one, brushing the outer surfaces of the sandwich with melted butter and cooking on medium to medium high heat until golden, pressing and flipping once.  The cheese should be starting to melt.  Cut on the diagonal into as many pieces as you want – 2″ if you want to serve as an appetizer, otherwise into sandwich serving sizes. Makes one to two long sandwiches, depending how long your Cuban loaf is, and how high you stack your ingredients (warning:  the more meat and cheese, the harder to press).
*Stephanie cannot find Boars Head roast pork in NC, so she buy a small tenderloin, roast it in the oven and slice it as thinly as possible.

**Cuban bread is difficult to find, so she uses the closest thing.

 

Blueberry Scones

Filed under: Breads,Breakfast — alittlemoreofeach @ 8:13 am
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blueberry scone.2

 
Ingredients
1 1/4 sticks unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries
1/2 cup whole milk
1/2 cup sour cream
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp grated lemon rind
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking soda
2-3 Tbl raw sugar for sprinkling on scones

 

 

blueberry scone

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 425.  Freeze, then grate one stick of butter.  Put blueberries into the freezer until needed.  Whisk the milk and sour cream together and refrigerate until needed.
  2. Blend flour, sugar, lemon rind, baking powder, salt and baking soda together.  Add frozen grated butter and gently toss with your hands until thoroughly coated.  Fold in the chilled milk with a spatula until just combined.
  3. Turn the dough mixture onto a well-floured surface.  Flour your hands and the dough, knead gently until six to eight times until it barely holds together.  Add flour as needed to prevent sticking.
  4. Roll dough out to approximately a 12″ square.
  5. Sprinkle the cold blueberries evenly over the dough, pressing lightly into the dough.  Roll the dough into a log shape, then press with a roller until about 4″ wide by 12″ long.
  6. Cut into four equal rectangles, and then each rectangle into triangles.
  7. Place scones on a parchment-lined baking sheet.  Melt the remaining 1/4 stick butter, and brush each scone with butter and sprinkle with raw sugar.
  8. Bake until lightly golden brown, 18 to 24 minutes.
  9. Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes.  Serve warm or room temperature. Makes 8 scones.
 

Cream of Tomato Soup May 16, 2013

Filed under: Soups and Salads — alittlemoreofeach @ 9:33 am
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From America’s Test Kitchen Family Cookbook

Ingredients
4 Tbl unsalted butter
2  cans (28 oz) each diced tomatoes, drained with 3 cups of the juice reserved
1 onion finely chopped
2  Tbl light brown sugar
1 Tbl tomato paste
2 Tbl all-purpose flour
1 3/4 cups  low sodium chicken broth
1/2 cup heavy cream
Salt & pepper to taste
Cayenne pepper to taste

Directions
1. Melt the butter in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the drained tomatoes, onion, brown sugar and tomato paste. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is softened and the tomatoes begin to caramelize, about 15 minutes.

2. Stir in the flour and cook for 1 minute. Slowly stir in the broth and the reserved tomato juice, scraping up any browned bits. Bring to a simmer, cover, and cook for 10 minutes. Puree the soup in batches in a blender  (or food processor) until smooth.

3. Return the pureed soup to the pot and stir in the cream. Bring to a brief simmer, then remove from the heat. Season with salt, pepper, and cayenne to taste and drizzle with a little balsamic glaze before serving.

 

Chicken Divan

Filed under: Main Dishes — alittlemoreofeach @ 9:31 am
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From Parade Magazine, August 5, 2012

Ingredients
1 bunch broccoli, trimmed and cup into 4-inch-long spears
1/2 stick unsalted butter, diced
5 Tbl all-purpose flour
2 cups chicken broth
1/2 cup heavy cream, well chilled
3 Tbl medium-dry sherry
Fresh lemon juice
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
2 whole boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and sliced thin

Directions

1. In a large saucepan of boiling, salted water cook broccoli for 6-8 minutes or until tender. Drain and set aside, covered.

2. In a heavy saucepan, melt butter over low heat. Add the flour and cook, stirring for 3 minutes. Add the broth and bring mixture to a boil. Cook on low, stirring, for 10 minutes or until thick.

3. In a mixing bowl, beat cream with an electric mixer until stiff peaks form, then add to flour mixture, along with the sherry and lemon juice to taste. Season with salt and pepper.

4. Arrange broccoli on a flameproof platter. Top with half the sauce. Stir 1/4 cup of Parmesan into the other half of the sauce. Arrange chicken on broccoli, pour remaining sauce over top, and sprinkle mixture with remaining 1/4 cup Parmesan.

5. Broil, about 6 inches from the heat, for about 1 minute or until sauce is golden and bubbling.

 

Green Beans with Warm Mustard Vinaigrette

Filed under: Fruits and Vegetables — alittlemoreofeach @ 9:29 am
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Ingredients

2 pounds fresh green beans, ends trimmed
2 shallots, minced
2 Tbl Dijon mustard
2 Tbl balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup Fresh dill, chopped
salt & pepper

 

Directions

1. Heat a large pot of water to boiling. Add the green beans and cook until crisp tender, 2 to 4 minutes. Drain well.

2. While the beans are cooking, place the shallots, mustard, vinegar, oil, salt & pepper in a small saucepan. Heat, whisking constantly, just until mixture is hot to touch.

3. Toss the hot green beans with the dressing to coat. Quickly add the dill and toss to combine. Serve at once.

 

Grilled Chicken Breasts with Lemon and Rosemary

Filed under: Main Dishes — alittlemoreofeach @ 9:28 am
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Ingredients

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup fruity olive oil
2 large cloves garlic, minced
3 Tbl fresh rosemary, coarsely chopped
Salt & pepper to taste

Directions

1. Arrange chicken breasts in a single layer in a shallow glass or ceramic pan. Whisk the lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, and rosemary together in a small bowl and pour over chicken breasts. Let marinate in the refrigerator, turning once or twice, at least 4 hours.

2. Grill the chicken breasts 5 to 6 inches above the hot coals 4 to 6 minutes per side, brushing with any marinade remaining in the dish. Serve at once.

 

Cilantro-Lime Vinaigrette May 15, 2013

Filed under: Soups and Salads — alittlemoreofeach @ 3:32 pm
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Ingredients

1/4 cup fresh lime juice
2 Tbl sugar
3 Tbl rice wine vinegar
2 Tbl olive oil
2 tsp finely chopped fresh cilantro
1 garlic clove, minced
1 shallot, minced
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp coarsely ground pepper

Directions

Whisk together all ingredients until blended.

 

Fish Tacos with Lime-Cilantro Crema

Filed under: Main Dishes — alittlemoreofeach @ 3:25 pm
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Jen first made this 2006 Cooking Light recipe with fish as called for, but then she tried it with shrimp and fell in love.  For a healthier variation, she uses Bibb lettuce leaves, doubled up, in lieu of the taco shell and add carrot and avocado as toppings.

She really wanted to share this delicious and refreshing meal with everyone in the family so I figured out a way to make it into an appetizer: Shrimp Bites.

Ingredients

Crema:
1/4 cup thinly sliced green onions
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
3 Tbl mayonnaise
3 Tbl sour cream
1 teaspoon grated lime rind
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 garlic clove, minced

Tacos:
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
1 1/2 pounds red snapper fillets
Cooking spray
8 (6-inch) corn tortillas
2 cups shredded cabbage

Directions

To prepare crema, combine the first 8 ingredients in a small bowl; set aside.

To prepare tacos, combine cumin and next 5 ingredients (through garlic powder) in a small bowl; sprinkle spice mixture evenly over both sides of fish. Place fish on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Bake at 425° for 9 minutes or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork or until desired degree of doneness. Place fish in a bowl; break into pieces with a fork. Heat tortillas according to package directions. Divide fish evenly among tortillas; top each with 1/4 cup cabbage and 1 tablespoon crema.

 

Shrimp Bites

Filed under: Appetizers — alittlemoreofeach @ 3:11 pm
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These tasty treats will fly off the plate as quickly as you can make them.

Ingredients
1.5 pounds of shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 cucumbers
2 avocados
2 cloves of garlic
1/2 a lemon
salt and pepper

Directions

To do ahead of time:
Cook shrimp according to the Fish Taco recipe. Allow to cool.

To do just before serving:
Peel and slice the cucumbers to 1/8″ pieces. Peel and mash the avocados. Add 2 crushed garlic cloves, a little salt and pepper and the juice of half a lemon. Stir. Line a serving dish with the cucumber slices. Using two spoons, scoop and apply 1/2 tsp of avocado mixture to each cucumber slice.  Place 1 shrimp (a whole shrimp if medium sized and half a shrimp if large) on top of the avocado mixture.  Place a small dollop of Crema sauce recipe on top of the shrimp.