Kinda Traditional Cole Slaw

1 medium head green cabbage, shredded

2-3 large carrots, shredded or shredded

1 large onion, grated

3 tablespoons mayonnaise

3 tablespoons sour cream

¼ cup cider vinegar

1 tablespoon honey or agave

1 teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon pepper

  1. Combine the cabbage, carrots, and onion in a large bowl.
  2. In a separate bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, sour cream, vinegar, honey salt and pepper.
  3. Pour the sugar mixture over the cabbage mixture. Season with salt and pepper. Chill for at least 30 minutes (or overnight, which is better), and season to taste with more vinegar, salt and pepper.

Makes 10-12 servings

Grilled Marinated Flank Steak

¼ cup olive oil

1/3 cup red wine

¼ cup soy sauce

2 tablespoons lemon juice

5 cloves garlic, peeled and minced

1 tablespoon mustard

2 tablespoons honey

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

2 shakes Tabasco Sauce

2 pounds flank steak

Combine all of the ingredients, except the steak.  Then add the steak, and marinate for two-eight hours in a non-reactive pan.

To cook: Grill, broil, or pan-fry (in a cast iron skillet, if possible) over a medium-high to high heat for 4-5 minutes per side.

Serves 4-5

NOTE: Flank steak is best served between rare and medium.  If it’s well done, it’ll probably be very tough and chewy.

Classic Bread and Butter Pickles

1 ½ pounds pickling cucumbers, cut into ¼ inch slices

1 ½  tablespoons pickling or kosher salt

1 large onion, peeled and thinly sliced

1 cup sugar

¼ cup brown sugar

1 cup white vinegar

½ cup apple cider vinegar

1 ½ teaspoons mustard seed

½  teaspoon celery seed

1/8 teaspoon ground turmeric

  1. Combine cucumbers and salt in a large shallow bowl; cover and refrigerate for 1 ½ hours.
  2. Rinse the salt off the cucumbers, and drain the excess water in a strainer or colander. Move cucumbers into a colander and rinse thoroughly under cold water. Drain well.
  3. Place the cucumbers and onions in a nonreactive bowl.
  4. Combine the sugars, vinegars, mustard seed, celery seed, and turmeric in a saucepan, and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Once the sugar has dissolved, pour the hot mixture over the cucumber slices and onion, and let it rest at room temperature for 1 hour.
  5. Cover and refrigerate overnight and store in an airtight container in refrigerator for up to 4 weeks

Coconut Biscotti

1 ½ cups all-purpose flour

¾ teaspoon baking powder

¼  teaspoon salt

¼  teaspoon baking soda

1/8  teaspoon grated

¾  cup sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon coconut extract

2 large eggs

1 cup flaked sweetened coconut

Parchment paper

 

Preheat oven to 300°

Cover a sheet pan with parchment paper

  1. In a bowl, whisk together the flour baking powder, salt, baking soda, and nutmeg.  Set aside.
  2. In a mixer, beat together the  sugar, vanilla, coconut extract, and eggs.  Beat with at medium speed for 2 minutes, or until thick.
  3. Add the flour mixture and coconut; stir to combine (dough will be very sticky).
  4. Turn dough out onto a heavily floured surface; knead lightly 7 or 8 times.
  5. With dampened hands, shape the dough into 2  12 x 3-inch logs on the parchment-covered sheet pan. Bake for 35-40 minutes or until the logs are golden brown. Cool for 5 minutes on a wire rack.
  6. Cut the logs diagonally into approximately 25-30  ½ -inch-thick slices Place them cut-side down on baking sheet. Bake for 10 minutes.
  7. Remove from baking sheet, and  cool completely on wire rack

Yield: approximately 40 biscotti

NOTE:  If splitting this recipe into 4 equal-sized logs, and not two (log size:  approx 10”x1.5”), the yield is approx. 50-60 biscotti.  If you make the smaller ones, bake for 22 minutes, and again for 8 minutes.

 

 

Hazelnut Biscotti

This is a crisp, but not dense, biscotti. Following the recipe are notes on how to peel hazelnuts. This method is easier than the common ne of toasting and peeling the nuts.

1 ½  cups toasted hazelnuts (7 ounces)

¼ cup baking soda

3/4 cup sugar

¾ stick (3 oz) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature

2 cups flour

1 teaspoons baking powder

½ teaspoon salt

2 large eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon hazelnut extract

 

Place oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 350°F

Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper

See notes below to remove the skin from hazelnuts

  1. To toast hazelnuts, place them on a sheet pan, and place in preheated oven for 15 minutes, or until slightly golden in color. Check the nuts every 5 minutes to make sure they don’t burn. Cool nuts completely, then very coarsely chop.
  2. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt, and set aside.
  3. Pulse together sugar and 1/2 cup chopped hazelnuts in a food processor until finely ground. Transfer to a mixing bowl, and add the butter. Beat for two minutes, or until a bit fluffy.
  4. Add the eggs, vanilla, and hazelnut extract, and beat until combined.
  5. Add the flour mixture, and beat until just combined. Add the chopped hazelnuts.
  6. Halve dough and, with dampened hands, form each half into a roughly 10- by 2- by 1-inch log on lined baking sheet, arranging logs 3 inches apart.
  7. Bake until golden and set but still soft to the touch, 25 to 30 minutes. (Leave oven on.) Cool logs on baking sheet on a rack 5 minutes.
  8. Transfer logs to a cutting board, discarding parchment, and cut logs with a serrated knife on a slight diagonal into 1/2-inch-thick slices.
  9. Arrange slices, cut sides down, in 1 layer on unlined baking sheet. Bake slices until golden, approximately 10 minutes more. Cool biscotti completely on cooling rack, about 10 minutes.

Yield: Approximately  32 cookies

NOTE:  If splitting this recipe into 4 equal-sized logs, and not two (log size:  approx 10”x1.5”), the yield is approx. 50-60 biscotti.  If you make the smaller ones, bake for 22 minutes, and again for 8 minutes.

To peel hazelnuts:

2 cups of water

3 tablespoons of baking soda

1 cup of hazelnuts

 

  1. In a medium saucepan with high sides, bring the water to a boil. Add the baking soda to the water. Note that the water will foam up.
  2. Add the nuts to the boiling water and boil for about 3 minutes. The water will turn black. This is fine. While the hazelnuts are boiling, Set aside a medium bowl of ice water.
  3. After the three minutes, remove one nut, and place it into the ice water. Use your fingers to remove the skin. If it doesn’t come off easily, boil the nuts for 1 minute longer, and try another test nut.
  4. When a test skin rubs right off, add the rest of the nuts to the ice water and peel them once they’re cool enough to handle.
  5. Place the peeled nuts in a cloth or paper towel and thoroughly dry them.

 

The hazelnuts are now ready to be toasted.

 

 

Double Chocolate Walnut Biscotti

This is a recipe I borrowed from my sister, Bea Grossman. It is awesome in every way.

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened, Dutch-processed cocoa powder

1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt

zest of one orange (optional)
3/4 stick (6 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 cup walnuts, chopped
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips

 

Preheat oven to 350°F, and butter (or spray) a large baking sheet

  1. In a bowl whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, salt, and optional orange zest.
  2. In another bowl with an electric mixer, beat together butter and granulated sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs and beat until combined well. Stir in flour mixture to form a stiff dough. Stir in walnuts and chocolate chips.
  3. On prepared baking sheet with floured hands form dough into two slightly flattened logs, each 12 inches long and 2 inches wide. Bake logs 30-35 minutes, or until slightly firm to the touch. Cool biscotti on baking sheet 5 minutes.
  4. On a cutting board cut biscotti diagonally into 3/4-inch slices. Arrange biscotti, cut sides down, on baking sheet and bake until crisp, about 10 minutes. Cool biscotti on a rack. Biscotti keep in airtight containers 1 week and frozen, 1 month.

NOTE:  If splitting this recipe into 4 equal-sized logs, and not two (log size:  approx 10”x1.5”), the yield is approx. 50-60 biscotti.  If you make the smaller ones, bake for 22 minutes, and again for 8 minutes.

Thanksgiving!

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Thanksgiving is just hours away.  I’m sure you’re completely ready.  And what could possible go wrong?  When you combine lots of food, family, perhaps a little travel, and the weight of culinary expectations, it always works out well, doesn’t it  Of course it does!

Well, on the outside chance that you’re stressed, here are a few video things that can help you.  Yesterday, on Mass Appeal, we covered the Thanksgiving basics: making cranberry sauce, stuffing, and gravy from the pan drippings, plus a quick turkey carving 101. And just because there’s a box of Stove Top stuffing there doesn’t mean I used it. Nooooooo! It was a prop to show that homemade stuffing is sooo easy to make.  And tastes better, too! And yes, all of the recipes are on the videos.  How easy is that?

But I also have a longer, 7 ½ minute carving video. This is a new version of my classic how-to-avoid-carving-mishaps video of a few years ago.  After you watch it, you’ll be able to carve with confidence.  My big advice is to not give in to temptation by carving your turkey at the table.  Do it in the kitchen. You’ll have more room for carving there. And you won’t risk getting your tablecloth a wee bit messy with turkey juices. Plus, everyone will be soooo impressed when you bring your beautifully cared turkey to the table!

Happy Thanksgiving!  I hope your holidays, and beyond, are everything you want them to be!

 

 

 

 

Potato Knishes

6 large-ish Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cut into large pieces
¼ cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
3 cups flour
½ cup cold water
1 egg

For the Filling
1 large onion, peeled and minced
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper

1. In a large pot of water, boil the potatoes until they’re cooked through. Drain and mash.
2. Remove 1 cup of the potatoes, for the dough, and set aside the remaining potatoes.

The Dough
1. In a bowl, combine the flour and baking powder.
2. In a separate bowl, add the oil to the reserved cup of potatoes, and combine. Add in 1 cup of the flour mixture, and mix well. Add the remaining flour mixture and combine.
3. Make a well in the dough, and add the cold water. Knead the dough until it comes together. Let the dough rest in a bowl for 30 minutes, with a damp towel or paper towel on top.

Preheat the oven to 425°.

The filling (while the dough is resting)
1. In a skillet over a medium heat, add the olive oil and sauté the onion until it’s soft and golden, approximately 20 minutes.
2. Add in the remaining mashed potato (approx 1 ½ cups)
3. Season to taste, as needed, with salt and pepper

Put it All Together
1. Flour a work surface and rolling pin. Cut to dough into 4 equal pieces. Roll each one to 1/4” thickness, either round or rectangular.
2. Put the filling in the middle of the dough pieces, and fold the up the sides to seal.
3. Beat the egg, and add in 1 tablespoon of water.
4. Brush the egg on top of the dough. Bake, with the seams on the bottom, until golden brown, approx 20-25 mins.

Yield: 4 large knishes, or a bunch of small ones.

Optional: roll out into a long oval. Fill w/filling, and roll over like a log. Bake as a long knish, and slice after baking.

You can also substitute gluten-free flour to make a very nice knish.

Italian Wedding Soup

4 cups (1 quart) chicken stock
2 cups water
1 pound turkey burger
2 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup dried bread crumbs
4 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 head escarole, cleaned and chopped
salt
pepper

1. In a large stockpot, add the stock and water, and bring to a simmer.
2. While the stock is simmering, prepare the meatballs: combine the burger, eggs, bread crumbs, parmesan cheese, and basil. Roll into mini-meatballs, approximately 1+ in diameter.
3. Add the meatballs and escarole to the stock, and cook for approximately 10 minutes, or until the meatballs are cooked through.
4. Adjust the stock’s seasoning with salt and pepper

Yield: Approx 2 ½ quarts; approx 6-8 servings

NOTE: You can make this gluten free by skipping the breadcrumbs, or using gluten-free breadcrumbs