Throw the sugar, milk (or whatever you are using), butter, salt and cocoa into a heavy bottomed pan. Cook on medium heat stirring occasionally until it comes to a boil. Stir constantly for 3 minutes while it is boiling. Remove from heat and add peanut butter and vanilla. Stir until the peanut butter has melted. Drop in the chocolate chips and give a good stir, then stir in the oats. If the mixture begins to seize up on you, place over a gentle heat to loosen it up a bit...if it still is being funky, add a bit more milk (cream, evap milk)...just a tad at a time. Using a tablespoon, drop onto a lined cookie sheet and let cool.
(or store bought if you are not an obsessive person like i am quickly becoming)
1 1/2 cups freshly grated parmesan
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 tsp grated nutmeg
1/4 cup finely chopped italian parsley
zest from 1 lemon grated on a microplane
salt and pepper
4 Tbs unsalted butter
8 fresh sage leaves
4 Tbs cream
divide pasta into 4 pieces, roll each one out through the thinnest setting a pasta machine. lay the sheets on a lightly floured work surface and cover with a damp kitchen towel.
make the filling: in a large bowl combine the ricotta, 1 cup of parmesan, the eggs, nutmeg, lemon zest and parsley and mix until thoroughly blended. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.
cut the pasta into 3" squares, cutting only 4 or 5 at a time. place a generous teaspoon of the filling in the center of each and fold the dough to form a triangle. press the edges together to seal. bring the two bottom points together and pinch to seal. transfer to a baking sheet lined with a kitchen towel.
bring a large pot of water to a boil and salt generously.
meanwhile, make the sauce. In a saute pan, melt the butter, add the sage leaves and let the butter get a little brown..do not let it burn. add the cream and let simmer just to thicken slightly.
cook the pasta in briskly boiling water for about 3-4 minutes. using a slotted spoon, drain the pasta well and transfer to the butter sauce. toss to coat and add the remaining 1/2 cup parmesan and cook over low heat until the pasta is well coated. serve immediately.
**i sometimes find that regular grocery store ricotta can be a bit watery...i usually drain it for a few hours or overnight in cheesecloth, a colander or coffee filter.
remove the stems of the kale and cut the leaves into nice size pieces (like potato chips). place on a lightly oiled sheet pan. drizzle just a bit of oil on top...just a little bit. sprinkle with sea salt. place in a 250 oven and bake for about 40 minutes. check periodically to see how it is crisping up. once crisped, remove from oven and drizzle with truffle oil. alternatively, you can replace the sea salt with truffle salt. who am i kidding---this is good even if you don't have truffle oil.
1 pre-baked pie or tart shell place the rhubarb, sugar, 1/4 tsp salt and lemon juice in a saucepan. cook on medium heat until the sugar is melted, the rhubarb is soft and the sugar syrup is nice and red and bubbly. meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, cornstarch, 1/4 tsp salt, cream and vanilla until pale yellow. slowly temper the eggs with the rhubarb and sugar, then put it all back into the saucepan. turn the heat to low and stir continually until it begins to thicken to a custard. allow the mixture to just bubble...don't let it go to a rolling boil, but you can let it bubble once or twice. pour into a clean bowl and stir in unsalted butter. let it cool to lukewarm, then pour into prepared crust. top with whole strawberry soldiers, or slice strawberries and lay flat on top. place in refrigerator to chill before serving. *if you are worried at all about your crust sogging, one of my tricks is to "seal" it with a bit of white chocolate. this just provides a layer between the moisture..which helps keep the crust, crusty.
While this recipe is rich, I have made it a lot less rich by reducing the amount of dairy and substituting 1/2&1/2 for the cream
1/2 lb fettucine
1/2 lb spinach fettucine
2 large garlic cloves, smashed but kept whole
2 Tbs unsalted butter
1/4 cup diced pancetta
3 Tbs finely chopped shallots
1 1 /2 cups sliced crimini or porcini mushrooms
1/2 cup frozen or fresh peas
3/4 cup dry white wine
1/2 cup half and half
finely grated parmesan cheese
salt and pepper
cook pasta in boiling salted water. meanwhile, make sauce. heat a large skillet and pour in enough olive oil to make a very thin layer. drop in the garlic and cook until the garlic browns. remove the garlic and throw away. put heat on low and toss in pancetta. do not let the pancetta crisp up. add the shallots and after a few minutes, pour in about 1/4 cup of the wine, and let it absorb. toss in the mushrooms. as they begin to soften and cook, drop in the peas. add the remaining wine, the half and half, and the butter, and slowly simmer to thicken a bit. Add the cooked pasta and toss to coat. add as much parmesan as you like...but it doesn't need much. don't add salt and pepper until after you add the cheese.
strawberry, raspberry, mixed berry, or apricot jam
chocolate pastry cream (recipe follows)
4 egg yolks
1/4 cup granulated sugar
4 tsp cornstarch
1 Tbs dark rum or 1 tsp vanilla
2 cups milk
5 oz bittersweet chocolate-chopped or chipped
1 Tbs unsalted butter
Roll out dough and place into tart or tartlet pans as directed. Blind bake until completely done. Let cool. Meanwhile, make the pastry cream.
Whisk together the sugar, salt, egg yolks and cornstarch until light yellow. Whisk in the rum or vanilla. Scald the milk in a saucepan, then temper the egg mixture, whisking as you add the milk. Return to saucepan and low heat. Cook over low heat until it begins to thicken and just starts to bubble a bit...do not let it simmer or boil. Pour through sieve into a clean bowl. Add chocolate and butter and stir to melt and combine. Let cool a bit.
Spoon and spread a thin layer of jam in the bottom of the tart shell. Top with chocolate pastry cream. Whip up meringue and top the tart or tartlets in design of your choice. Pop in a 350 oven and bake until meringue begins to firm up, but does not brown....note: if you are making this as a non-queen of hearts tart, keep the meringue it's natural color and let it bake away until brown or use a torch to color as you please. Chill before serving
1 whole fryer chicken--cut into parts (or 8-10 of your fave pieces)
2 cups flour
1/4 tsp turmeric
2 tsp sugar
1 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp dried parsley flakes
1/2 tsp dried thyme leaves
1/2 tsp dried marjoram leaves
1 tsp black pepper
2 tsp kosher salt
1/4-1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp garlic powder
peanut oil for cooking
Clean and dry the chicken pieces. Place in a large freezer/storage bag. Give the Tabasco about 5 or 6 shakes into the bag, then put enough buttermilk in the bag to coat all chicken pieces. Mix it around a bit to insure every piece gets coated with tabasco and buttermilk. Place in the fridge and let "marinate" for 4 hours or overnight. Remove chicken from fridge about an hour before cooking to bring to room temperature (if it is a very hot kitchen, use your judgement on this). You do not want to put ice cold chicken into the hot pan, but you also do not want it to sit out for more than 1 hour. Heat peanut oil in a heavy bottomed pan (i use a cast iron skillet), to about half-way up the sides. Meanwhile, prepare the flour. Mix the flour, turmeric, sugar, onion powder, parsley flakes, thyme, marjoram, pepper, salt, cayenne, and garlic powder in a shallow dish. Remove chicken pieces from the buttermilk and immediately drop into the flour mixture. Coat evenly and generously. Drop into the hot oil and be patient. Do not crowd the pan...do it in several batches if necessary. The chicken will take about 10-13 minutes per side depending on the size of each piece. Dark meat takes a bit longer, so put it in the oil first. Turn each piece only once...and keep the oil below 375..but at or above 350. Remove from oil and drain on brown paper or other kitchen paper.
combination of equal parts sour cream and salsa mixed into a dressing
(i have an aunt that uses nacho cheese doritos and swears by it--i like tortilla strips)
Heat olive oil in a saute pan. Cook onions until they are translucent and start to brown around the edges. Toss in the ground beef and cook through, breaking up into pieces. Scatter in the taco seasoning along with 3 Tbs water. Stir to coat, let cool.
Meanwhile, chop lettuce and toss in all ingredients into a large salad bowl...including chips. Once the meat is cooled, toss into salad and add dressing. Serve immediately.