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Amaretto Cherry Focaccia

Focaccia, normally a savory flatbread steeped in herbed olive oil, becomes a sweet pastry by using light oil, dried fruit, and a topping of sugar. We make it in a smaller pan, which results in a taller, softer bread. The retarded rise (placing in the refrigerator overnight) allows better bread flavor development. Time is always…

Caramelized Onions

Comments: It may seem unnecessary to go through all this for just onions, but the end result is truly worth the time. The vinegar adds an acidic punch, the sugar makes these sweeter than they naturally would become, and the Vermouth adds complexity. I use this recipe to prepare a large batch that I then…

Easy Peasy Grilled Shrimp

This simple and quick recipe is part of our Friday Evening Appetizer gathering almost every week. I like it because it is so easy, but our guests like it because it tastes really good. The excessive amount of oil creates a lot of smoke, which becomes the dominant flavor. In fact we often call this…

Recipe for Baked Pears in Honey-Mint Sauce

Baked Pears in Honey-Mint Sauce Comments: Be sure to adjust baking time according to how ripe the pears are. This recipe actually works better with hard, less ripe pears. Ingredients4 Pears6 stems fresh mint4T honey2T butter¼ t ground cinnamon¼ t ground cardamom Procedure1. Preheat oven to 350F. Halve each pear, core, then make a series…

Recipe for Grilled Bruschetta

Grilled Bruschetta(Most of us say Broo-shetta, but an Italian corrected me to say Broos-ketta. However you say it, simple and delicious) Comments: Easy to do on the grill, which adds a smokey flavor that can’t be replicated any other way. As with most simple recipes, the quality of ingredients really makes a difference. Use sturdy…

Recipe Strawberry Coulis

Coulis is basically any sauce made from berries. We usually use strawberries, but raspberry coulis is the ‘red stuff’ that is often poured over cheesecake. Blackberries or blueberries also work well. It is OK to mix the berries into the same batch. This is pretty free-form, no exact quantities of anything. This is an excellent…

Recipe for Cream Filled French Toast

Cream Filled French Toast Comments: A Castle in the Country Classic. Made with our own sourdough bread to add a little sweet/sour balance. Serves: 6-8 Ingredients: Filling4 oz cream cheese3T powderd sugar, vanilla infused if you have it1t vanilla extract French Toast 6 eggs-.75 egg per serving1 C Heavy Cream or Half & Half½ t…

Recipe for Baked Egg Custard with Cheese and Herbs

Baked Egg Custard with Cheese and Herbs Source: Gourmet Dec. 2008, pg 178 Comments: quiche-like. Bake in batches-holds well, but long baking time. Variations of cheese/herbs has potential. Tried the Smoked Gouda this morning and everyone thought it was outstanding. Might also try cheddar with basil/parsley. Serves: 8 Ingredients:2C coarsely grated Cheese such as Gruyere…