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Monday, June 18, 2007

Ode to Help I Have a Fire In My Kitchen

Written & Sent in by Paula & Appreciated:

Ode to Help I Have a Fire In My Kitchen

The welcome mat in place
For all who wish to join
Submit or ask a question
Be it chicken or tenderloin

You’ve shown us you fear nothing
Armed with spatula or knife
You hosted our little pie fight
Brought those recipes to life

Novices and pros alike
Gather at your site
Always finding what we need
Morning, Noon and Night

Raspberry Shortbread Thumb-Print Cookies

Man oh Man...Paula is driving me crazy for cookies! Getting out the Oreo's!

Since I’m on a cookie kick.. here is another favorite of mine. During the holidays I make all different kinds of cookies and make trays up for people.. These never really make it onto the tray. They get eaten up too quickly.

I prefer them without the glaze but if you tend to like a sweeter taste, use the glaze.
Raspberry Shortbread Thumb-Print Cookies

Help! I Have A Fire In My Kitchen

  1. 1 Cup of Butter (2 sticks) Softened ( you can replace with margarine)
  2. 2/3 Cup Sugar ( I use powdered sugar instead of granulated)
  3. 1/2 Teaspoon Almond Extract
  4. 2 Cups Flour
  5. 1/2 Cup Raspberry Jam (or preserves, not jelly as jelly melts down to liquid)
Ingredients For Glaze:
  1. 1 Cup Powdered Sugar
  2. 1 ½ Teaspoons Almond Extract
  3. 2-3 Teaspoons Water
  1. Powdered Sugar in the dough (makes a smoother dough , in my opinion)
  2. Boysenberry Jam
  3. Blueberry Jam
  4. Strawberry Jam
  5. Serve without glaze.
Utensils You Need:
  1. Electric Mixer
  2. Large Bowl
  3. Small bowl (for glaze)
  4. Cookie Sheet
  5. Whisk (for glaze)
  6. Thumb (yes that is right - YOUR THUMB!)
  1. Combine butter, sugar and 1/2 teaspoon almond extract in a large bowl
  2. Mix at medium speed, scrape sides of bowl often
  3. Mix until creamy
  4. Reduce speed to low, add flour
  5. Continue to mix until well blended
  6. Cover bowl and refrigerate for an hour
  7. Heat oven to 350 degrees F
  8. Shape dough into 1 inch balls
  9. Place two inches apart on cookie sheet
  10. Make an indentation in the center of the cookie ball with your thumb (edges may crack slightly)
  11. Fill each indent with Fruit Jam , approx ¼ teaspoon(Raspberry , etc.)
  12. Bake for 14 – 18 minutes until edges are lightly browned.
  13. Cool completely
  14. Prepare glaze with a whisk and drizzle across the tops of cookies
A-Z of Cooking

They are cookies so we will leave it at a three. But with these Paula proves that she is one hell of a cookie maker - and leaves my mouth watering. Well folks, let us see which one of you cookie makers can top this! (I would use the butter here, but if you use margarine well, parve!)

Ginger Cookies

Paula has gone insane over cookies:

Seeing as though cookies are my favorite, I thought I’d send this one in. Ginger is a natural way to settle a queasy tummy, perhaps not in the form of a cookie, but good to know none the less.

Ginger Cookies
  1. 1 Cup Sugar
  2. 1 Cup Margarine, melted
  3. 1 Cup Dark Molasses
  4. 1/2 Teaspoon Ginger
  5. 1/2 Teaspoon Cloves
  6. 1 Teaspoon Cinnamon
  7. 1 Teaspoon Baking Soda
  8. 1/2 Cup Boiling Water
  9. 1 Large Egg
  10. 3 Cups Flour

Utensils You Need:
  1. Large Bowl
  2. Measuring Cup
  3. Rolling Pin
  4. Cookie Cutter or Glass with small mouth
  1. Dissolve baking soda in boiling water
  2. Mix all other ingredients in large bowl
  3. Add baking soda mixture and mix well
  4. Roll dough thin
  5. Cut with cookie cutter (or glass)
  6. Bake @ 325 degrees (Fahrenheit) until light brown.. watch carefully as they brown quickly.
Cookies Family Style


Gets a two cause you need to bake em...and you need to roll the dough! one here! Cookies .. yummmmmmyyyyyyyy! And these are Parve too!

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Italian Cookies

When Paula makes cookies - Man does she make cookies! She writes:

Cookies.. my favorite indulgence.. keep the chocolate, keep the pies and cake but you better hide the cookies. My idea of the perfect dessert is a variety of them. This looks difficult but honestly, it is easy and delicious.
Italian Cookies

  1. 5 1/2 Cups Flour
  2. 1 1/4 Cup Sugar
  3. 4 Large Eggs, Separated, beat the yolks (reserve the whites)
  4. 2 Cups Butter or Margarine
  5. 1 Ounce Whiskey
  6. ***Zest of 1 Lemon
  7. Confectioner’s Sugar for dusting

***Lemon Zest is the outermost part of the rind of an orange, lemon, or other citrus fruit, used as flavoring. On a lemon, it is the yellow part of the peel on the outside of a lemon. It has an intense lemon/citrus flavor with very little bitterness. The bitterness is primarily found in the white part of the lemon. When removing the skin from lemons or other citrus fruits, be sure to take only the thin outer zest or colored portion. The white pith will give your dish a bitter undertaste.

Lemon Zester - A tool for removing the zest of a lemon. A lemon zester allows one to remove the zest (and only the zest) in long strips. A zester has tiny cutting holes that create threadlike strips of peel. If you do not have a zester, use a vegetable peeler or a small, sharp knife. You will also note that many recipes call for grated zest or peel. In this case, use a cheese grater to remove the peel.

Utensils You Need:
  1. Large Bowl
  2. Electric Mixer
  3. Rolling Pin
  4. Pastry brush
  5. Cookie Sheet
  6. Cookie Cutter (you can use a small glass if you do not have a cutter)
  1. Mix flour and sugar in large bowl
  2. Make a well (moving flour mixture against the sides of the bowl, creating a well in the middle)
  3. Slice butter or margarine into pieces, place in the center of the bowl
  4. Sprinkle with lemon zest
  5. Add whiskey and beaten egg yolks
  6. Knead mixture with your hands (clean, Ted insists) until it is well mixed, and you havea large ball.
  7. Lightly flour surface and rolling pin and roll out dough to medium thickness.
  8. Cut with cookie cutter
  9. Gather excess dough and re-roll, then cut out more.
  10. Continue until dough is used up
  11. Beat egg whites until frothy
  12. Brush on cookies
  13. Baked at 350 degrees for approximately 10 minutes
  14. Watch close as they burn quickly.
  15. Sprinkle lightly with confectioner’s sugar.
Vitrine Lu


I love the addition of whiskey (only Paula would have thought of that!) This is a 3 star for difficulty (tempted to make it a four but it does take cookie baking to a new height. Great recipe. Try it folks. Used with margarine this is Parve, with butter of course Dairy or Milchig.

Potato and Eggplant

Paula sent in this side dish. She writes:

This is a great side dish. It goes with anything and is fairly easy and inexpensive. Served over rice as a side to chicken, fish or beef.
Potato and Eggplant

  1. 5 Medium to Large Potatoes , cubed
  2. 1 Medium Eggplant, peeled and cubed
  3. 2 Medium Onions, diced
  4. 2 Medium Tomatoes, diced
  5. 1 Clove Garlic, minced
  6. 1/4 Teaspoon Ginger
  7. 1/4 Cumin
  8. 1/4 Teaspoon Turmeric
  9. 1/4 Teaspoon Coriander
  10. 1/2 Cup Cilantro, chopped (Coriander is commonly called cilantro in North America)
  11. Olive Oil for sauté , Plus 4 Tablespoons

Utensils You Need:
  • Large skillet

  1. Heat olive oil in skillet
  2. Add onions, garlic and sauté for about one minute
  3. Add ginger, cumin, turmeric and coriander
  4. Mix well and continue to cook for two minutes
  5. Add potatoes and eggplant and continue cooking for 20 minutes
  6. Stirring occasionally
  7. Add tomatoes and cook for three minutes and sprinkle with cilantro

*Paula calls for both Coriander and Cilantro. These are basically the same plant just by another name. Fairly easy if you like eggplant which in the Middle East is very common. I personally am not an eggplant fan, but this recipe does the taste buds well. I love the mix of spices in it. This is a great recipe for Vegetarians.

Lemon Caper Chicken

I want to thank those who sent amazing emails to me asking if all was o .k. Actually, I had just decided that I needed a bit of a break from Blogging and all the work that goes into it. But now we are back in business. And with quite a few recipes waiting in the queue as well. And I have not forgotten the Great Cake Recipe Contest - I will be putting up the winners in the next few days.

I left promising a recipe which would include the Pepper Sherry recipe. This one is from Nancy.

Lemon Caper Chicken

  1. Kosher salt (I just sprinkle enough salt to lightly coat the bottom of the skillet. Besides bringing out the good flavor of the meat, the large Kosher salt granules kind of hold the meat up off the bottom of the pan so it doesn't stick. I know....sounds crazy, but it works)
  2. 4 large chicken breast halves
  3. 1/4 Cup Pepper Sherry
  4. 2 Tablespoon(s) Olive Oil (subsituted for butter)
  5. Juice of 1/2 medium Lemon
  6. 1 Tablespoon(s) capers, drained
  1. Sprinkle surface of nonstick skillet with salt.
  2. Place breast halves in pan over salt.
  3. Turn heat to high.
  4. Brown chicken on one side; turn and brown on second side. (If you want to crack off some of the salt, now's the time to do it.)
  5. Remove from heat
  6. Stir in pepper sherry to dissolve browned particles in skillet.
  7. Reduce heat, stir in olive oil, lemon juice and capers. Cover.
  8. Cook over low heat, about 20 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.
Chic Chatter

Millions of ways to make chicken, and every time I think I have seen it all, along comes another delicious recipe. This requires the Pepper Sherry of the previous post as well, so we are leaving this at a 3-star for difficulty.