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Showing posts from February, 2021

meyer lemon olive oil cake

We had our house inspected by the fire department so we could make it safer during wild fire season, which is now several months of the year in California.  One of the suggestions was to remove several large ornamental grasses from the front yard because embers from a wild fire could start a fire inside the grasses and they were all too close to the house.  The large grasses actually die completely back in the winter and were just starting to leaf out again when we ripped them all out, good-bye 👋   The good news is I don't miss the decorative grasses at all but the other news is the front of our house now looks like my Meyer lemon 🍋  olive oil cake photo, very simple, less is more.  Preparing our surroundings for fire season or even just thinking about fire season sucks but lemon cake will help with that.  This cake is simple and definitely delicious with the lemony glaze, make it before the red flag 🚩 warnings start. Ingredients and Recipe for Meyer Lemon Olive Oil Cake makes a

two families fancy banana nut breads

  Why make one loaf of fancy banana bread just for yourself when you can just as easily make two loaves of banana bread - enough to share with another family.  Spread the joy, especially now during COVID when we all need our days to be brightened.  After years of using the Joy of Cooking banana bread recipe which is also a very popular one I switched to making this fancier moist and delicious banana bread recipe.  To keep it interesting I do vary a few ingredients, like using chopped walnuts, cinnamon sugar, mini chocolate chips or sliced bananas on top of the loaves.  I also use different bread pans, like the ones in the above photo with the fancy ruffle edges.  The recipe makes enough for two large size 9x5" loaves so plan accordingly. Ingredients and Recipe for Two Families Fancy Banana Nut Breads Makes 2- 9x5" loaves 3 & 1/2 cups all purpose flour 2 teaspoons baking powder 1 teaspoon fine sea salt 1 teaspoon cinnamon 16 tablespoons or 2 sticks unsalted butter, cut int

spicy orange chicken with fancy small chopped hot house tomatoes

  My first Chinese cooking classes covered: the extremely important exercise of boning an entire chicken, why we often find too much chopped celery in Chinese food, tips on dating in a Chinese family, and a handful of simple stir fry recipes, like plum chicken with walnuts, to make at home in a wok.  Over the years I've incorporated those first basic concepts I learned in my classes into every stir-fry I make, going rogue on many a recipe.  The final class was a tour of Chinatown in San Francisco and a visit to the Wok Shop to purchase an authentic carbon steel wok with the necessary tools.  I was nine months pregnant and gave birth right before the last class, so I missed my Wok Shop visit and tour.  I've since had a tour visiting many interesting shops in Chinatown in San Francisco.  If you've never visited Chinatown- you're in for a treat-it's fun for shopping and of course- a delicious multi-course Lunch in a Chinese restaurant.  Ok, I know you're dying to k

tahini halva cookies with grey sea salt

Today I'm sharing a recipe for highly snack-able buttery tahini halva cookies made with Irish ☘️ 🇮🇪 butter, tahini, date syrup and a wonderful finishing touch, French 🇫🇷 grey coarse sea salt sprinkled on top to balance their sweetness.  I love these date syrup sweetened cookies and have made them too many times since I found the recipe card from my favorite, Soom Tahini.  They're easy and fun to bake, I've shared a few cookies but mostly eaten more than my share.  I've changed a few details of the recipe, a gentle tinkering that makes the cookies come together quite nicely.  This recipe makes the perfect amount, 24 medium large soft cookies, half for you and half for sharing, everybody's happy now. Ingredients and Recipe for Tahini Halva Cookies with Grey Sea Salt Makes 24 cookies Adjust an oven rack to the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 350F. Line two cookie sheets with parchment or Silpats. 3/4 cup or 1&1/2 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperat

pepper jack jalapeño poppers

  Once a year around the first week in February I get a craving for a cheesy baked jalapeño popper, preferably with buttery bread crumbs dusted on top.  So, I make Jalapeño poppers for a Super Bowl nibble or appetizer.  They are easy to make, requiring very little time and even during a COVID-19 Super Bowl party with a small socially distanced group-poppers will always be enjoyed.  They also can be made ahead, frozen and baked right out of the freezer, just add about 5 extra minutes to the baking time.  I made mine in the morning and baked them off right before the big game.  I like using pepper jack in my jalapeño poppers because of the spicy heat flavor as well as the look of the bright red and green pops of color from the peppers 🌶 🫑 The crunch from the buttery bread crumbs on top of the melted cheeses is the crowning touch to the poppers, don't forget your crumbs 😍 Ingredients and Recipe for Pepper Jack Jalapeño Poppers Makes 24 1 dozen jalapeños 5 ounces full fat cream chee

no-knead overnight pane integrale

  Everyone loves an easy overnight no knead bread recipe, but in order to achieve the perfect overnight no- knead pane integrale or whole grain loaf for your taste, you must tinker with the ratio of bread flour and whole grain flour.  You must tinker with the flours by using a scale and keeping track of your flour ratios for the success of your future loaves.  Introducing whole grains to a loaf can be tricky, add too much and the resulting loaf may be too dense and gritty.  I love the flavor of whole grains in my bread but I prefer only a third of the flour to be whole grain while the rest of the loaf is straight bread flour.  I like the super 10 grain blend from KAF at about a 30 percent ratio to the bread flour in my pane integrale.  I discovered this while experimenting with whole grain flours to add flavor to my loaf.  The Super 10 grain blend has, spelt, millet, rye flakes, barley flakes, quinoa flakes, chia seed, amaranth, teff, buckwheat and sorghum.  I counted 10 grains, includ