Friday, February 21, 2014

Berry Berry Tarts

Oh sweet Summer Berries.  You gotta love them, weather they are Strawberries, or Blueberries or Blackberries they are simply delicious and nutritious.  I always stock up when they are in season and at the best price.  I either can or freeze them, depending on what I want to use them for.  I have never done a tart before, but with a fresh crop of berries to play with I was the right solution.It isn't necessary, although it is tastier, to use a scratch dough for the crust.  Pop a can of crescent rolls open and roll them out.  It works perfect.  This recipe makes 2 dozen tarts.  My husband loved them with his lunch.

Basic Dough
.25 oz active dry yeast
1/2 cup warm water (110 degrees to 115 degrees)               
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
1/21 tsp salt
1/2 cup butter or margarine
Mix all ingredients into a large mixing bowl.  Using hands turn dough inside several times for about five minutes.  Cover bowl with a warm towel and let raise for 20 to 30 minutes until dough has significantly risen.
While dough is rising prepare the filling:
1 12oz Pkg Blackberries
1 12oz Pkg Blue Berries
1/4 cup Orange Juice
1 Tbs cinnamon
1 Tsp ginger
1 Tsp Nutmeg
1/4 Cup Sugar
1/4 Cup Corn Starch
1/2 Cup Cold Water
Place berries and juice in a large pan on medium heat.  When mixture begins to boil with a work gently mash the berries.  Do not over mash.  Once berries are broken up add the next four ingredients and let simmer for 10 minutes.  Mix corn starch in cold water with a whisk until smooth and creamy looking.  Gently pour into berries stirring constantly.  Add small portions of corn starch at a time until mixture is nice and thick.  Remove from heat to cook.
Punch risen dough until all of the air is released.  Turn to a floured surface and kneed a couple of more times.  Using a rolling pen (or large can or coke bottle) roll dough until it is approximately 1/4 inch think.  Dip the top of a medium size drinking glass into flour using it to cut circles into the rolled dough.  Fit each circle into the holes of a mini muffin pan that has been coated with cooking spray. I Fill each Muffin until the cup  is 3/4 of the way full of the berries.  Bake in oven at 350 degree fox 15 minutes.  Can be served either warm or cold.  TIP:  If  you have any leftover filling you'll love it on 9 grain toast for breakfast.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Southwest Chipolte Grilled Burger

In our house it is never to early in the season to start up the grill.  You can never go wrong with a good hamburger fresh off of the fire.  So if you love a tasty burger with lots of flavor fire up the mesquite and give this one a try.  You'll love it.  This recipe makes four 1/4 LB burgers.

1LB Ground Beef or Ground Turkey
1/4 Cup Southwest Marinade
1/4 Cup Chipolte Pepper Marinade
1/2 Cup Mushrooms Chopped
4 Slices crisply cooked bacon
1/2 Cup Minced Onion
4 Onion Rolls

Many big seasoning companies will make this particular marinade combination.  I found these at my local Kroger store.  Mix the two marinade packages together in a large bowl.  This way the southwest blends with the chipolte to create a smooth flavor.   Add 1/2 cup total of mixture (or simply 1/4 cup of each if  you prefer).  Crumble bacon and add with all vegetables to meat.  There is no need to add salt or pepper unless you prefer.  The two seasonings have all the flavor you are looking for.  Form patties and let set in refrigerator for at least an hour before grilling.  This will infuse the seasoning and allow the patties to keep their shape when cooking on the grill.  Cook at least 10 minutes an each side turning once.  Slice buns in half  and place face down on grill for 2 minutes until toasted.

Place patty on bun and add your favorite condiments such as:


Monday, February 3, 2014

Santa's Brussels Sprout Hash

Winter has got to be sole reason for all of the wonderful comfort food created.  Dishes just like this one prepared by my daughter.  Look at the color this bowl full of nutrition has?  Why is it called Sana's Brussels Sprout Hash?  Because it is so warm and cozy, just like Christmas Eve.

1 tsp. Fresh Grated Ginger
4 Minced Garlic Cloves
4-5 Bay Leaves
1 Whole Green Onion
3/4 pound Brussels Sprouts
1 Vegan Sausage (we used Field Roaster's Apple & Sage)
1 Yukon Gold Potato
1 tbsp. Vegan Butter
Salt & Pepper to taste

Sauté first 4 ingredients in a large skillet on medium heat. While sautéing, chop Brussels Sprouts in half and add to skillet when green onions start to look translucent and garlic is golden, about five to seven minutes. Cover and reduce to medium-low. Slice sausage about 1/2" thick and add to the Brussels Sprouts.  Add finely diced potatoes and 1 tablespoon of butter. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Keep covered until  Brussels Sprouts are soft and tender in the center when piecred with a fork. Makes two full servings.