Friday, March 30, 2012

surprise filled chocolate eggs

i have always loved
those giant chocolate eggs
from italy
this time of year
they line the shelves
of my local
italian market

large and hollow
a handful
of small candies tossed in
the cavernous hole
wrapped in bright mylar paper
easter basket ready

the real joy
is breaking through
the chocolate shell
to see what goodies lay within

this year
i am giving the easter bunny
helping hand

 extra special chocolate
 filled with
toys and jewels
hand chosen
for each recipient

this one
for a little girl
 a milk chocolate shell
molded of tempered chocolate
dusted with pink luster
in a nest of grass

this one

sealed shut
it has a very special
for a lucky
young woman
made of bittersweet chocolate
dusted in blue
  imagine the 
these beautiful eggs
are cracked open

a happy easter indeed

if you want more details on how to make these
leave a comment
drop me a line at
*it is hard to tell, but these eggs are well over 12"...but this works with smaller eggs as well

i'm posting this over at
Tickled Pink at 504 Main

Tip Junkie handmade projects

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

antelope guisado

once a year
hubster indulges 
in a good ol' fashioned
boys on the hunt, Hunt

the kind where they
pack in meals
stoke a fire for warmth
group lug fresh kill
walk for hours, in wet woods
it is a bonding experience

i am happy my husband hunts
what makes me more happy?
he doesn't care to have me by his side

we have a deal
he field dresses whatever he takes down
i will

i find antelope to be mild
extremely lean
quite delicious
for this spicy

antelope guisado

1 Tbs olive oil
2lbs antelope meat--in 1" cubes
1 small white onion--chopped
1 red jalapeno--finely chopped
1 green jalapeno--finely chopped
1 pasilla chile--chopped
3 cloves garlic--coarsely chopped
1 tsp ground chipotle pepper
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
1 bottle lager (or your favorite beer)
14oz can whole peeled tomatoes

preheat oven to 350F.  heat dutch oven over medium heat. add olive oil and onions.  cook onions until they begin to brown on the edges.  add the meat and saute until beginning to brown.  toss in the green jalapeno, red jalapeno, pasilla, and garlic. give it a good stir.  add the cumin, oregano, salt and pepper and cook for 3 minutes more.  add the beer and tomatoes, give another good stir.  cover, remove from heat and place in the oven for about 2 hours.  take a look at about 1 1/2 hours to make sure all the liquid has not evaporated. if it has, add a bit of water.  you want the guisado to be a bit loose, but not soupy

serve with tortillas, a bit of sour cream and a sprinkling of cilantro
*this would be equally good with lamb, beef or pork

Thursday, March 22, 2012

roasted radish & bacon tartine

not so long ago
i roasted radish
for a delicious
albeit a matter of taste

i loved
hubster did not

i wondered
how a veggie lovin' girl
and a
meat & meat lovin' guy
agree on radish

a radish referendum, if you will

here it is
mellowed by roasting
spiced with a sauce of its greens
open face
layered on
a toasted whole-grain raft
joined by
bacon and soft goat cheese

roasted radish and bacon tartine

Monday, March 19, 2012

st. joseph's day {re-post}

i know the 17th was a big day
for the irish
and the color green
corned beef and cabbage
shamrock shakes
but hear me and hear me now
is the day 
everyone should cheer
pull out your italian flag
fire up the stove 
pull out all your big pots
open a bottle of wine
prego, prego
at the top of your lungs
and you will be ready
st. joseph's day
as it is called in our house
the feast
san giussep
and here is the best part
not only is there amazing food
at the St. Joseph Table
there are desserts
the best being
which we only eat
this time of year
and the other best
which i eat 
all too often
and another best is
pasta chote
which is not how they are spelled
how it sounds
in a
 complete and total dialect
i think may actually be
pasta croce
but i don't know
because this is what we call it
and when i say we
i mean everyone i have ever known
who has ordered, made, or eaten
pasta chote

and today
as my offering to you
and your st. joseph's table
i pass to you
the secret
to fabulous italian pastries

find a really good
italian bakery
and spend your time
making friends

**this post is not fresh, but the pastry we will be eating today is!**

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Joy the Baker {cookbook review}

last month
an advance copy
joy the baker's new cookbook
arrived in the post

colorful and cheery
from the first visual
you know is.

i began to wonder
did she change her name
to meet her personality?
or is it just
wonderful coinkydink?

joy the baker cookbook
a great big
bubblegum pink
smiley face

only joy
can present
 on the surface
looks like stuff your face
after a brutal break-up
(chocolate hazelnut spread w/orange cream cheese grilled sandwiches)
in such a way
that you think


this would be a great treat
for a girlfriend's brunch
(buttermilk skillet cake with walnut praline topping)


grams 90th
(araby spice cake with lemon glaze)


an rainy afternoon, never get out of your pjs
all alone-comfy couch
 bridget jones double-feature
(single girl melty chocolate cake--chased by  parmesan seaweed popcorn
and maybe?--a  pineapple malted milkshake for the final act)

please don't misunderstand
this is not all fun and games

the recipes
 carefully crafted

wholesome ingredients
like flax seed and honey
weave into puds as casually
well worn kickers at a rodeo
making it almost possible
not only is it good
it is good for ya'
without the accompanying
smirk and snicker

i have done a bit of baking with joy
flax seed crackers
baked coffee cake french toast
whole wheat honey and goat cheese drop biscuits

my smattered copy
sports plenty more
earmarked pages

definite, definite
wanna trys

chili cheese fries
dark chocolate and anise biscotti
chocolate and salty peanut butter ice cream
toasted coconut dutch baby
vegan pumpkin pecan bread

this book
like joy

This post is part of the Joy the Baker Cookbook Spotlight and Cook-Off sponsored by Hyperion and hosted at girlichef

Thursday, March 1, 2012

baked coffee cake french toast {joy the baker}

i'm a topping kinda gal

muffin tops

make me weak 
in the willpower

when i saw this french toast
brown sugar crumble
i gathered the ingredients
whipped it up

i halved the recipe
because of the willpower thing

this is good
pure comfort food

baked coffee cake french toast

for the french toast
1 Tbs unsalted butter
10 slices stale white or whole wheat sandwich bread
4 large eggs
1 cup whole milk
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 Tbs pure vanilla extract
for the topping
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, cold, cut into cubes
powdered sugar for garnish
to make the french toast: melt butter in an8-inch cast-iron (or any oven friendly) skillet.  coat the entire pan, including the sides of the skillet with melted butter.  remove from heat.  Slice the bread diagonally. fan and stack the bread atop the melted butter, cut side down, point side up.  In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together eggs, whole milk,  buttermilk, sugar and vanilla.  once well incorporated, pour the custard over the bread slices into the skillet.  gently press the bread slices into the custard to coat; bread slices will not completely submerged in the egg mixture.
cover the skillet with plastic wrap and refrigerate for anywhere from 30 minutes to overnight.  
just before you are read to bake, place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 350F.  to make the topping: whisk together flour, sugar, cinnamon, and salt.  use your fingers to work the butter into the dry ingredients until the butter is in pea-sized lumps.  remove the soaked bread from the refrigerator and sprinkle with crumb topping.
bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the custard has set and the bread tops are toasted.  allow to cool for 15 minutes.  sift powdered sugar over the top of the toast and scoop into bowls to serve.  serve with fresh berries if you'd like.  this dish is best served the day it is made.

**my notes: obviously i didn't make this in a skillet.  i used about 1 1/2 slices of bread per mug, and tore them into large pieces.  i fully submerged in the custard and then topped with the crumble.  i knew they were done when they began to souffle and the crumble was crisp.  i also used 2% milk and reduced the sugar just a little because i heaped on the topping. lastly, i threw in a bit of nutmeg, because i love it.  

This post is part of the Joy the Baker Cookbook Spotlight and Cook-Off sponsored by Hyperion and hosted at girlichef


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