Real Italian Limoncello From Scratch

I made this years ago and the longer it sits, the better it is, (I think).

  • 9 lemons, peeled thinly, no white,
  • squeeze lemon juice into a bottle and place  in the refrigerator*
  • 1 bottle vodka, plain – not flavoured

Okay, that is the hard part….Pour this into a container with a tight fitting lid and store in a cool, dark place for 20 days. Only the vodka and lemon skins.

Once a week, gentle move the peels in the container (do not open, just gently shake).

After the 20th day, boil 6 cups of water and add 3 1/2  cups white sugar. Stir this really well to dissolve the sugar. Strain the lemon solution and discard the peel. Add the lemon solution to the simple syrup and pour into clean and sanitized bottles. Make sure you have corks or similar tops.

This should be served really cold, in small glasses and sipped following a special dinner. In a word: YUM!!!!

 

*this way you will have freshly squeezed lemon juice for any recipe you may be making.

Olive Varieties With Orange And Rosemary

When we were on vacation a few years ago, we travelled with 2 ladies who became friends and one of them loved olives as much as my husband and these two would ‘steal’ the dishes of olives off all the other tables in the dining room. So…Liz and Don here is a recipe for the two of you (and any one else who loves these little critters).

  • 3 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp. coriander seeds, crushed
  • 1 large sprig of rosemary
  • 2 bay leaves
  • zest from 1/2 orange, peeled in long strips with swivel peeler
  • pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 16 oz. mixed olives like Liguria, kalamata, nicoise, cerignola (green)
  • 1 tsp. fennel
  • zest from 1/2 lemon

In a skillet on medium high heat, put the olive oil, coriander seeds, herbs, orange and lemon zest, pepper flakes. Swirl the pan and heat this mixture until it becomes fragrant (about 3-4 minutes).

Add the olives and cook, occasionally stirring  until the garlic is golden and the zest begins to curl. This should only take about 2 minutes.

Serve these warm or room temperature.

Vacation Recipes

As the reason for the lack of recipes being posted for a bit is we are in the sun and, yes, having fun. I ask that you follow me now on damnigottareadthis and you will be apprised of what there is to see, places to go and eateries we have been to.

Have fun and the recipes will be back soon.

p.s. the one thing we have become addicted to is avocado toasts in the morning with fresh fruit. OMG!

Saskatoon Cheesecake Brownies

I have to put this recipe out and tell my son-in-law it is for him. He is the only person we know who goes crazy for saskatoons. Victor, this is for you.

Brownie Batter

  • 1 1/2 cups salted butter
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups cocoa powder
  • eggs, beaten
  • 1 1/2 cups flour

To make the brownies, melt the butter in a saucepan over low heat until thoroughly blended.

Remove from the heat and stir in the sugar until well mixed. Add the cocoa powder, stirring until smooth.

Add the eggs and stir well. Now add the flour and stir just until combined. Do not over mix. Pour into a prepared 9 x 13 pan.

Cream Cheese Topping

  • 2 pkgs. cream cheese, softened and cubed
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

In electric mixer, place all n ingredients in the bowl and beat until smooth.

Drop by generous spoonfuls on top of the brownie mixture, followed by the sauce (recipe following). Take a butter knife and swirl the cream cheese mixture and sauce together, creating a pretty marbled look.

Saskatoon Sauce

  • 2 cups fresh or frozen saskatoon berries
  • 1 cup cold water
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3 tbsp. cornstarch
  • 1 tbsp. lemon juice

In a saucepan place the berries an 3/4 cup of water and bring to a slow boil over a medium heat, cooking for 10 minutes. Stir occasionally so as not to burn the bottom the saucepan.

Whisk briskly the cornstarch with the remaining 1/4 cup of water and then rapidly whisk into the berries.

Stir in the lemon juice, cooking until it thickens. remove from he heat. This should be the consistency of a pie filling. If you must add a bit more cornstarch.e for 45-50 minutes until the topping begins to brown  at the edges. The center will still be a bit wobbly. Remove from the oven and let set and cool for about 5 hours.

Store any leftovers in a covered container in the refrigerator for 2-3 days or in the freezer for about 3 months.

 

*Note. this recipe was in the Look magazine so enjoy.

 

 

Beer Battered Cod The English Pub Way

I love Fish and Chips and this is the best way to make it and make it the right way. This recipe should feed 4 but if you are really hungary….just sayin’, and make the tartar sauce below to go with it.

  • Crisco Oil for frying
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1 cup beer
  • 2 lbs. cod or haddock
  • salt and pepper to taste

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with paper towels and set a wire rack on top. Set aside.

In a medium size pot, heat about 3 inches of oil to a temperature of about 360-365 degrees.

Mix the flour with the 1/4 tsp. salt and then whisk in the egg until smooth and slowly add the beer.

Cut the fish into 3 inch strips, dip into the batter and carefully set on the wire to drain while you dip all the fish. Any leftover batter, just double dip what you can to use it all up.

Doing 2-3 at a time, cook the fish for about 3 minutes, turn over and cook until golden and cooked through. Set on the racks to drain and while hot, sprinkle with salt and place in the oven to keep warm while you finish all the fish off.

Now go and get the tartar sauce you made and set it on the table along with the french fries you have made. (your recipe – just make sure you double fry them for the best).

Tartar Sauce

  • 1 celery stalk, cleaned and chopped fine
  • 2 tbsp. finely chopped garlic dill pickles
  • 1 tbsp. horseradish
  • 1 tbsp. flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • 1/4 tbsp. dry mustard powder
  • 6 -7 tbsp. good mayonnaise (not salad dressing)
  • 1 tsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • pinch of salt and pepper

Combine in a bowl, mixing really well. Cover and place in the refrigerator for about an hour before serving. This is a real WOW tartar sauce.

I Missed You Too

Sorry, but we got to play B & B this past week and I missed doing it. Our guests were a lot of fun and so appreciative.

I will be back next week with recipes and we will carry on.

Thanks for staying with me. See you soon.

Peach Crisp

I know, I know. I have been lazy this summer but with very good intentions. This is, by the way, probably the very best fresh peach crisp you will ever dive in to.

  • 6 peaches, free-stone if you get them, peeled and sliced thin
  • 1/2 tsp. almond flavouring
  • 1/2 cup oatmeal (not instant)
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup butter

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Butter an 8″ square baking dish and set aside.

Prepare the peaches by dipping in boiling water for about 8-10 seconds and then put into really cold water. The skins all but slide off without any help. Slice thinly and put them in the baking dish and sprinkle the almond flavouring over. Set aside.

In a bowl combine the flour, oatmeal, both sugars, cinnamon and salt. Cut the butter in until you have a crumb-like texture. You may have to rub it between your hands to finish this off.

Sprinkle this mixture over the peaches evenly and bake for approximately 45 minutes. Have the vanilla ice cream and/or whipping cream at the ready. The only thing left just might be a crumb.

Go for it!

French Apple Pie

I have had this recipe in the box for years and just now decided to share. I don’t know why it took so long but give it a go. It is delicious.

  • 6 cups Granny Smith apples, pared and sliced
  • 1 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 3/4 cup half and half cream
  • 2 tbsp. softened butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup Bisquick mix
  • streusel (recipe follows)
  • Whipped cream

Heat oven to 325 degrees. Grease a 10 inch pie plate and set aside.

Mix the apples and all the spices and pour into pie plate.

Beat the remaining ingredients up to the streusel, until smooth. This could be 15 seconds in the blender or about 1 – 1/2 minutes by hand. Sprinkle the top with the streusel.

Bake until a knife inserted in the middle comes out clean. This could take 60-70 minutes, Cool completely and serve with a dollop of whipped cream.

 

Streusel Topping

  • 1 cup Bisquick mix
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 3 tbsp. butter.

Mix all together until crumbly. Continue on with the recipe to complete.

Make a pot of coffee and call

 

Better Than I Make Braising Beef Stew

On Sunday, Don decided to make a stew. I always made them but said go ahead. He did, and this is better than I would/could ever make.

  • 4 tbsp. good olive oil
  • 2 tsp. grated garlic
  • 2 lbs. trimmed stewing beef, cut into 1-2 inch cubes
  • 1/4 cup flour (approximately)
  • 5-10 baby red potatoes, cut in half
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • l small turnip, peeled and cubed
  • 2 cups, sliced carrots (2-3)
  • 2 cups sliced celery (3 large stalks)
  • 1 large yellow beet, peeled, halved and sliced
  • 1 cup red wine
  • 1 cup beef stock
  • 1 can diced tomatoes (14.5 oz.)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 tsp. dried thyme
  • 1 tsp. dried parsley
  • 1/2 tsp. allspice
  • 1 beef boullion cube
  • 2 tsp. cornstarch
  • salt and pepper to taste

Put the potatoes, tomatoes, carrots, celery, turnip and yellow beet in a large pot and set aside. Have the beef broth and wine measured out and set aside.

Heat a large braising pot  on high heat. Add 2 tbsp. oil and garlic. When hot, add the beef and sear each piece about 2 minutes each side. Transfer out after 5 minutes.

Without washing the pan, add the remaining 2 tbsp. oil, scraping up the wonderful beef bits on the bottom of the pan. Add the onions and cook for about 5 minutes. Add the wine and beef broth. Once this begins to boil, turn off the heat and pour the entire mixture into the reserved pot with all the vegetables.

Add the spices and seasonings and bay leaf. Stir gently to combine. Turn the heat to low and braise for about 4 hour to 4 1/2 hours.

About 30 minutes before serving 1/2 cup of the liquid, add the cornstarch, whisking until smooth. Add the the stew and stir gently to combine. This will thicken the ‘gravy’.

Add a small crisp salad, dinner roll and a glass of a nice red wine.

**I told you this was the best.

Lime and Nut Shortbread

As you can see from my site, this is another shortbread recipe you can make up. If you were to make them all up, you would have quite the selection and your guests will never want to leave.

  • 1 cup softened, unsalted butter
  • 3/4 sifted icing sugar (this way, no lumps)
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 cups flour, sifted

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. In electric mixer, whip together the butter, sugar, vanilla and salt until light and fluffy (about 5 minutes on a medium high speed). Stir in the flour until just combined.

Press dough into a 9 inch tart pan with removable bottom and use your hand to smooth the surface. With a sharp knife, score dough into 16 wedges. Prick surface with a fork several times and refrigerate for approximately half an hour.

Bake until firm and a pale golden colour. This should take 50-55 minutes. Remove from oven, cool for 5 minutes then cut through score lines. Leave in pan to completely cool.

Topping

  • 1 cup sifted icing sugar
  • 2 tbsp. lime juice
  • 1 tbsp. lime zest
  • 1/4 cup salted, shelled pistachios, toasted and chopped

In a small bowl, whisk together the icing sugar and juice with zest until smooth and no lumps. Picking up each slice of cookie, press into glaze to evenly coat and set on racks to dry, Sprinkle with the nuts and let set on racks for 60 minutes to completely dry.

You just may make this several times when entertaining.

 

 

Corn and Crab Bisque

This was one of the dishes that was made at the New Orleans School of Cooking and believe me when I say when the offer for seconds was announced, there was a mad rush of almost all 50 people to the front for more. It was fabulous.

Here it is for you to try and you’re welcome!

  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/4 lb. butter (1 stick)
  • 1 qt. heavy cream
  • 1 qt. chicken stock
  • Joe’s Stuff seasoning to taste
  • 1/2 lb. crab meat (both canned and claw)
  • 1 cup green onion, chopped
  • 24 oz. whole corn with liquid (do not use creamed)
  • crab boil to taste (flavouring)
  • 1 tbsp. chopped parsley for garnish

In a large pot, place stock, spices, 1/2 of the corn and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer for about 10-12 minutes.

Make a blonde roux with equal parts butter and flour. Add roux to your simmering pot. Add the cream and then stir in the remaining corn, crabmeat and simmer for another 5 minutes. DO NOT LET THIS BOIL.

Add in half of the onions.

 

**Use the balance of the onions and parsley for garnish, if you wish.

You can substitute crab for lobster or shrimp if you wish.

 

Lobster Ravioli Cream

Finally! This is the missing part of the recipe for Lobster Ravioli. Here we go. It makes a ton, so use what you need and freeze the rest or, have a family reunion. They will love it.

 

  • 4 lbs. butter
  • 17 oz. Grana Pandano, pre-grated cheese
  • 20 oz. lobster base
  • 12 oz. Dijon mustard

Put butter in mix master with paddle attachment and whip on medium speed until the butter becomes smooth and malleable. Do not add too much air or you will have a whipped butter.

Mix all ingredients in a stainless steel bowl until well incorporated. Place in appropriate container,cover, label and refrigerate.

Finished butter must be well mixed and homogeneous.