Yields 16 bundles
2 sheets frozen puff pastry, thawed overnight
1 cup(8oz) soft brie cheese, without the rind
2/3 cup cranberry chutney, recipe follows
¼ cup toasted almond slices (optional)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Take each sheet of puff pastry and slice into 8 equally sized squares.
In a small bowl mix together egg and water to make an egg wash and set aside
Place a Tablespoon of brie and 2 teaspoons of chutney in the center of each square. Place a few almond slices as well if desired. Brush edges of each square with egg wash and fold each corner up into the center to close.
Place puff pastry bundles 2 inches apart on a parchment lined cookie sheet. Brush outside of bundles with egg wash. Bake in oven until a golden brown on the outside, approximately 15 minutes.
Serve warm with additional chutney if desired.
1/2 cup dried or fresh cranberries
¼ cup white wine vinegar
2 Tablespoons fresh orange juice
1 Tablespooon orange zest
2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
1 Tablespoon crystallized ginger, chopped
1 apple, peeled and diced
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon salt
In a medium sized sauce pan, combine all ingredients and cook until apples are tender. Adjust flavors to taste.
Warm Butternut Salad
1/4 cup olive oil, divided
1 Butternut squash
1/4 lb. thinly sliced prosciutto
1 Tbsp. fresh sage, minced
1 cup white button mushrooms, sliced
2 cloves garlic
6 cups fresh spinach leaves, washed
2 cups fresh Arugula, washed
1 cup parmesan cheese flakes
1 cup walnuts, toasted
Salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 400°.
Cut butternut squash in half and place on a baking sheet. Remove seeds and sprinkle with salt and 2 Tbsp. olive oil. Allow squash to roast until tender. Remove from oven and allow to cool. Cut into medium dice and set aside.
Reduce oven temperature to 350°, place prosciutto on a baking sheet and allow to bake until crisp. Remove and set aside to cool.
In a sauté pan, heat 2 Tbsp. oil and garlic. Add mushrooms and sage and sauté until mushrooms are cooked. Set aside.
Toss arugula and spinach in a large bowl with most of the dressing (reserving some dressing to drizzle onto the finished salad).
Plate the lettuce and arrange the other salad components on top. Drizzle with remaining dressing.
Balsamic Mustard Vinaigrette
1 cup Balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup Dijon mustard
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper
Whisk ingredients together adding oil last to create an emulsion. Adjust seasonings to taste.
Red Panic Button
With many people, especially children and young adults getting their first smart phone this Christmas, here's some piece of mind. Red Panic Button can send emergency emails, texts and social media posts.
Pre-program an emergency contact in the app's settings. If the phone's owner is ever in an accident, in trouble or just plain lost, press the icon on your screen and it will get send your alert to your emergency contact.
Free for Android with in-app add-ons to purchase
Full version available for iPhones and iPads: $2.99
*The paid version includes emergency calling, unlimited panic contacts and of course, no ads.
Swiss Army Knife / App Box Pro
This app is an all-in-one of useful tools. Instead of downloading separate apps for a flashlight, a timer, stop watch, calculator and bubble level, this app has them all.
Swiss Army Knife: Free for Android Includes: A flashlight, unit converter, timer, stop watch, compass, bubble level, calculator, magnifying glass, mirror and ruler.
App Box Pro: $0.99 on itunes Includes a few more goodies in addition to those mentioned above: Battery Life, loan calculator, a secure wallet, tip calculator and an alarm clock.
1 cup pumpkin puree
½ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon clove
1/3 cup milk
3 Tablespoons butter
1 loaf challah bread
Maple syrup and powdered sugar for garnish
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together eggs, puree, cinnamon, nutmeg, clove and milk until thoroughly combined. Dunk thick slices of challah bread into the mixing bowl allow the bread to soak up the pumpkin mixture.
Heat a large sauté pan on medium heat. Add butter and allow to melt. Add slices of bread and cook until a golden brown crisp on the outside. Serve with syrup and sprinkled with powdered sugar.
2 Sticks (8 oz.) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup light brown sugar
½ cup canned pumpkin puree
1 ½ teaspoons baking soda
2 cups AP flour
1 ½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup chocolate
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add pumpkin puree and egg and mix until combined. Add baking soda, flour, spice, vanilla and salt and stir until combined. Do not over mix. Fold in chocolate chips.
Scoop onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake 10-12 minutes until golden brown.
4 cups all purpose flour
1 pkg. dry active yeast
1 cup warm milk, scalded & skimmed
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup butter, melted
1 tsp. salt
2 granny smith apples, peeled, cored, and diced small
1 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
3 Tbsp. cinnamon
1/3 cup unsalted butter, softened
Dissolve yeast in warm milk.
Cream together sugar, butter, eggs, and salt. Add flour. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth.
Place in a very lightly greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place free from draft from a minimum of 1 hour until dough as nearly doubled in size. Can be refrigerated overnight.
When dough is ready, in a separate bowl mix brown sugar and cinnamon and apples.
Punch down dough and roll out on a lightly floured surface. Roll the dough into a rectangle shape about 1/4” thick. Spread the softened butter, from the filling, evenly over the surface of the dough, and sprinkle evenly with apple cinnamon sugar mixture. Roll up the dough like a jelly roll.
Cut the rolled dough into 1 3/4” slices and place on a parchment lined baking sheet, allow about 1” of space between each roll. Put rolls into a warm place and allow to double in size, approximately 30 minutes.
Bake for 10 to 15 minutes until lightly golden. Ice the rolls when still warm.
Cream Cheese Drizzle
2 sticks butter, softened
3 cups confectioners’ sugar
1/2 cup cream cheese
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 tsp. salt
Whip together all ingredients. Drizzle over warm buns.
For the Base
1 Cup Oreo cookie crumbs
3 tsp Instant Espresso Powder
4 Tbsp Butter, unsalted, melted
For the Cake
1 lb Cream Cheese, at room temperature
1/2 Cup Brown Sugar, packed
1/3 Cup Sugar, granulated
1 Tablespoon Instant Espresso Powder
2 Eggs, large, room temperature
2 Egg Yolks, large, room temperature
1 Tbsp vanilla extract
For the Topping
3/4 Cup Heavy Cream
1/8 tsp Cocoa Powder
1. In a food processor, combine crumbs, espresso powder, and butter until it resembles wet sand. May end up using more or less butter for this. Press into bottom of a 6-inch cheesecake pan. Place in refrigerator to chill while you are mixing together the filling.
2. Heat oven to 325 degrees. Fill a kettle with water and bring to a boil. and combine in it the cream cheese, brown sugar, white sugar, espresso, eggs, egg yolks and vanilla. Process to make a smooth mixture with no coffee powder visible.
3. Cover outside of pan with a protective layer of plastic wrap covered with a double layer of foil. Fill with cream cheese batter, and place in a roasting pan. Pour boiling water into roasting pan to come about halfway up side of pan. Bake until middle of cake is set but not firm (it should still wobble), 30 to 45 minutes.
4. Remove cheesecake from water bath and place on a rack. Remove outer layers from pan and allow to cool completely. Refrigerate for at least a few hours, preferably overnight.
5. Remove cheesecake from refrigerator 20 to 30 minutes before serving. To remove from pan, slide a knife around inside edge of pan, then release sides. Place cheesecake on a platter.
6. Whisk cream into soft peaks, and spread on top of cake. Push cocoa through a fine-mesh sieve to dust cake.
Grilled Pork Tenderloin
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 Tbsp. dried Herbs de Provence
2 lbs. pork tenderloin
Sea salt and pepper, to taste
Place olive oil, balsamic, garlic, herbs and pork in a large re-sealable plastic bag or shallow baking dish. Allow meat to marinate for 2 to 3 hours in the refrigerator.
Heat the (indoor or outdoor) grill. Remove meat from marinade and pat dry with a paper towel. Discard marinade juices.
Sprinkle tenderloin with salt and pepper on all sides and grill meat until the middle inside of the pork is an internal temperature of 145°F. Note: if the outside of the pork is getting too cooked, without the inside getting to the right temperature, you can transfer the pork to a cookie sheet covered with a little olive oil and roast the tenderloin at 350 degrees F until it is able to reach the proper cook temperature. Set aside to rest for 5 minutes.
Slice into medallions and serve with mashed potatoes and wine sauce.
Dark Cherry Wine Sauce
1 cup vegetable stock
1 bouquet garni
1 pound frozen dark cherries, chopped
salt, pepper and sugar to taste
Heat oil in a saucepot and sauté garlic. Add wine, stock, cherries, and bouquet garni. Simmer until liquid is reduced in half. Add salt, pepper and sugar to taste.
3 large eggs
¾ cup whole milk or cream
3 teaspoons flours
½ teaspoon salt
Whisk together custard ingredients and place in a pourable bowl or liquid measuring cup.
1 cup minced fresh spinach
1 cup minced onion
1 cup minced red pepper
1 cup minced mushroom
1 Tablespoon butter
Heat butter and sauté vegetables until tender. Drain well.
2 cups All Purpose flour
½ lb (8oz) unsalted butter, chopped into small pieces and chilled
8 oz. grated sharp cheddar cheese
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
In a food processor, pulse together cheese, flour, cayenne pepper and butter just until mixed. Remove dough from processor and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate dough for 20 minutes to re-chill butter in the mixture. Once chilled, make 24 equal sized pieces and flatten them into greased muffin tins. Make sure the dough covers the bottom and sides of each tin.
Place a small amount of the cooked filling in each of muffin tins and pour about 1 to 1 ½ tablespoons of custard over the filling to fill up the muffin tin.
Bake for 10-15 minutes until custard is set.
Salmon Corn Chowder
1 Tbsp. olive oil (or blended oil)
1 cup Pancetta, diced
3 cups potatoes, diced
½ cup Vidalia onion, diced
½ cup celery, diced
3 Tbsp. all purpose flour
4 cups chicken stock
1 cup heavy cream
3 cups grilled corn
2 cups smoked salmon, flaked
2 Tbsp. fresh sage, minced
Salt and pepper to taste
Heat oil in sauté pan. Add pancetta and potato. Cook pancetta until almost done. Add celery and onions. Cook until onions are transparent. Lower heat and add flour and 1 Tbsp. of sage. Mix well. Stir until flour begins to brown slightly. Add cream and stock. Allow to boil. Add corn. Simmer for 10 minutes. Add remaining sage and serve.
Chicken & marinade:
6 oz. boneless skinless chicken breast
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. brown sugar
1/4 tsp. ground cayenne pepper
2 Tbsp. mayonnaise
2 Tbsp. rice wine vinegar
4 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 tsp. honey
2 red onions, sliced thinly
4 cups cabbage, sliced thinly
3 new crop apples, julienne
1/2 cup carrots, julienne
Salt and pepper to taste
Combine marinade ingredients and add chicken. Cover and place in refrigerator for 1 hour. Do not allow chicken to sit in marinade for longer than 2 hours.
Cook chicken until chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165° F. Allow chicken to cool completely. Place chicken in food processor and pulse until chicken is shredded. Set aside.
Combine slaw ingredients and stir in shredded chicken.
Whisk together slaw dressing and then combine thoroughly with slaw. Adjust seasonings to taste. Serve cold.
3 medium beets, trimmed, peeled, and cut into chunks
2 large eggs
1/2 cup olive oil
2 Tablespoons pure vanilla extract
¼ cup buttermilk
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Boil beets until fork tender. Rinse under cold water and puree in a food processor until smooth. You want to end up with 2 cups of beet puree.
Mix together the beet puree, eggs, buttermilk, sugar, and olive oil. Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt. Add sifted flour mixture into the egg mixture and stir until combined.
Coat 2 8-2inch round cake pan with cooking spray and line the bottoms with parchment. Coat parchment bottoms with spray. Evenly distribute the batter into the two pans. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 30-40 minutes. Allow cakes to cool.
1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
2 lb. cream cheese, at room temperature
3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
3 Tablespoons pure vanilla extract
Beat the butter at medium speed until soft and light. Beat in the cream cheese and continue beating until very smooth. Add the sugar and vanilla and beat until smooth. Continue beating for about 5 more minutes to aerate. Frost the cake.