Monday, August 31, 2009
Wild Maine Blueberry Honey Coffee Cake
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour (or spelt flour)
3 tablespoons rolled oats
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
1/4 teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped
1/4 teaspoon fresh rosemary, chopped
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/3 cup maple syrup, room temperature (I used honey)
1 large egg, room temperature
zest of one lemon
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 cup buttermilk (I used soy milk with 1 tsp lemon juice)
1 1/3 cups fresh wild huckleberries (or other berries), well picked over (I used wild blueberries
1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour
4 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut 1/4-inch cubes
1/3 cup maple sugar (or brown sugar) (I used brown sugar)
1/4 teaspoon fresh thyme
1/2 cup chopped pecans (I used walnuts)
special equipment: a 1-pound loaf pan
Preheat the oven to 350F degrees, rack in the middle. Butter a 1-pound loaf pan, and line with parchment paper. Alternately, you could just butter and flour the pan, but I've found that lining the pan with parchment makes removing the cake from the pan after baking no problem.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda, salt, thyme, and rosemary. Set aside. In a separate large bowl beat the butter with an electric mixer or by hand - until light and fluffy. Drizzle in the maple syrup and beat until well incorporated, scrape down the sides of the bowl a couple times along the way. Beat in the egg, lemon zest, and vanilla extract, scraping the sides again. Add half of the flour, stir just a bit, now add a splash of the buttermilk, stir again, but not too much. Add the rest of the flour and stir a bit, and now the rest of the buttermilk. Stir until everything barely comes together and then very gently fold in one cup of the huckleberries. Scrape the batter evenly into the prepared pan and set aside.
To make the streusel topping, place the flour, butter, maple sugar, thyme and pecans in a food processor and pulse 20-30 times or until the topping is a bit beyond sandy/crumbly. It should be moist-looking - on its way to being slightly doughy. Crumble 2/3 of it over the cake batter, sprinkle the remaining 1/3 cup huckleberries on top of that, and then add the last of the crumble. Barely pat in place with your fingertips.
Place the coffee cake in the oven and bake for 45-50 minutes or until the top is golden and a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Let the cake cool for five minutes and then remove it from the pan to cool on a rack (this way the cake won't steam in the pan as it's cooling.
Serves 12 - 16 modest slices.
This bread is not sweet, it's more savory - and the fresh thyme and rosemary really comes through. Its such a great alternative to the super sweet breakfast breads and coffee cakes that we are so used to.
Rating - Damn Good
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
Makes 4 servings
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 1 onion
- 1 red bell pepper
- 1 green bell pepper
- 1 medium eggplant
- 1 medium zucchini
- 4 tomatoes
- 1 cup tomato juice
- 2 cups water
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- fresh or dried herbs: basil, oregano, thyme, parsley
- fresh grounded black pepper
Chop the onion.Cut bell peppers in thumb sized slices.Peel and dice eggplant.Dice zucchini.Peel, seed and chop tomatoes.
Heat the olive oil in a large nonstick pan over medium heat. Add onions and cook, stirring constantly until golden.
Add 1 cup water and the sliced bell peppers; cook, stirring frequently, until liquid has evaporated, 5 minutes.
Add 1 cup water, the eggplant and zucchini; cook, stirring frequently, until liquid has evaporated, 7 minutes.
Add tomatoes, tomato juice, garlic, basil, oregano, thyme and black pepper. Cover the pan and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally; add additional water if necessary.
Uncover, reduce heat to medium-low and continue cooking until vegetables are tender but still retain their shape and liquid has evaporated, 10 minutes.
Divide evenly among 4 plates, garnish with parsley and serve.
The Ratatouille may be served hot, cold or at room temperature.
3 g Total Fat, 0 mg Cholesterol
Rating = Damn Good
Friday, August 21, 2009
All cold, all requiring absolutely no heat at all because it has been HOT AS BALLS here in the northeast.
Man, I wanted to cook, I wanted to bake and use all the carrot recipes that you sent me, but I would rather chew glass than turn that oven on. So. I leave you with this random thought that was sent to me this morning.
Have you ever been walking down the street and realized that you're going in the complete opposite direction of where you are supposed to be going? But instead of just turning a 180 and walking back in the direction from which you came, you have to first do something like check your watch or phone or make a grand arm gesture and mutter to yourself to ensure that no one in the surrounding area thinks you're crazy by randomly switching directions on the sidewalk.
This made me laugh out loud. Because I've done it. Not a lot, but it's happened on occasion.
I swear people, as soon as it's not so hot that you get boob sweat just sitting around. I'll be baking and cooking again. Also, my dad is going to come up and help me attempt to can for the first time. I'm going to try and make relish and jelly. Wish me luck and all that crap.
Have a great weekend, see you on the flip side.