Saturday, December 1, 2012

Stoner Cooking 12-1-12

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Uncle Fats Tasty Meal of the Week:
Thanksgiving Leftover Special

Turkey Croquettes

Familiar dishes return, cleverly camouflaged as these croquettes, which are formed from turkey and mashed potatoes and served with cranberry sauce on the side.
Martha Stewart Living, November 2008

Uncle Fats Notes
Changes:  Low fat mayo, non-trans fat butter substitute, Bell's Poultry Seasoning for the herbs, fat free half-and-half, and nowhere near that much oil for frying.  Used an 1/8 cup for measuring, and used regular Progresso bread crumbs.  Would use panko next time. Pulsed chopped up turkey a couple times in the food processor - perfect texture.

Makes 20

1 1/2 ounces (3 tablespoons) unsalted butter
1 medium onion, minced
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh sage
1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh savory or thyme
2 cups finely chopped cooked turkey
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 cup mashed potatoes
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 1/2 cups finely ground fresh breadcrumbs
Vegetable oil, for frying
Cranberry sauce, for serving

Melt butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion, 1 teaspoons salt, and teaspoon pepper. Cook for 3 minutes. Stir in sage and savory or thyme, and cook for 1 minute. Stir in turkey and cream, and cook until liquid evaporates, about 1 minute. Transfer to a large bowl, and let cool for 15 minutes.

Add potatoes, flour, and egg to turkey, and season with salt and pepper.

Drop 2 tablespoons turkey mixture into a shallow bowl of breadcrumbs, turn to coat, and pat into 2-inch disks. Arrange in a single layer on a baking sheet, and refrigerate for 10 minutes.

Heat 1/4 inch oil in a skillet over medium heat. Working in batches, cook croquettes in a single layer until golden brown, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer to paper towels to drain. Serve immediately with cranberry sauce.

Sunday Brunch: Leftover Mashed Potato Biscuits
Sydney Oland, November 21, 2010

The smell of freshly baked biscuits can create an atmosphere of warmth and comfort throughout the house—and this recipe can also help use up ample Thanksgiving leftovers. Mashed potato biscuits are tender and flaky, but have enough structure to hold up to a slice of turkey and a dollop of gravy. Warm out of the oven with some cranberry butter, these tender biscuits go well with a hot cup of strong tea.

To make a simple cranberry compound butter, combine 1/4 cup of soft butter with a tablespoon of cranberry sauce and mix gently with a fork until well combined. Some other excellent additions to these biscuits would be finely minced chives, crumbled bacon, grated cheese, minced scallions, or finely chopped peppers.

serves about 8 (makes 16 X 2 1/2 inch biscuits), active time 10, total time 30

3 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons baking powder
2 teaspoons salt
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup cold butter
2 cups mashed potatoes
1 egg, beaten
2/3 cup buttermilk

Pre-heat oven to 450°F. Combine all-purpose flour, baking powder, salt and sugar in a large bowl and mix with a fork to combine.

Cut the chilled butter into the dry ingredients using a pastry blender or two butter knives until the butter is pea-sized. Add the mashed potatoes to the mixture and mix with a fork until the potatoes are evenly distributed throughout.

Make a well in the center of the mixture and add beaten egg and buttermilk. Using a wooden spoon or fork, mix until a loose dough forms. Turn out onto floured work surface and knead until the dough comes together.

Pat dough into a square 3/4 of an inch thick and cut into 16 evenly sized portions. Place on lined or greased baking sheet and bake 15-20 minutes until golden brown.

For dessert:
Pear-Hazelnut Tart in a Puff-Pastry Crust
Abigail Johnson Dodge

This rustic tart, with its shingled sliced pears and frangipane-like hazelnut filling, is the perfect ending to a fall meal. Making puff pastry from scratch is vastly simplified when you use this rough puff pastry technique, but you can also substitute store-bought puff pastry in a pinch.

Serves eight

For the rough puff pastry
9 oz. (2 cups) all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. table salt
8 oz. (1 cup) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch pieces

For the hazelnut filling
2 oz. hazelnuts, toasted and skinned
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg, at room temperature
2 oz. (4 Tbs.) unsalted butter, softened
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

To finish the tart
2 medium ripe pears, peeled, cored, and sliced 1/4-inch thick
2 tsp. granulated sugar
1/8 tsp. ground cinnamon

Make the puff pastry:

In a large bowl, combine the flour and salt. Add the butter and toss to coat with flour. Using a pastry blender or two blunt table knives, cut the butter into the flour until the mixture is dry and rough with 1/2- to 3/4-inch chunks of butter. Add 1/2 cup very cold water and continue cutting until you get a shaggy dough that barely hangs together. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and pat into a rectangle, then roll into a 6x18-inch rectangle, flouring the rolling pin as necessary. It’s okay if the dough is ragged at first.

With a pastry scraper, fold both short ends toward each other so they meet in the middle. Fold one half over the other half to make a 4x6-inch rectangle. Turn the dough so that the fold is on the right. Roll into a 6 x 18-inch rectangle and repeat the folding technique. Wrap in plastic; chill for 20 minutes.

Position the dough so the fold is on the right. Roll into a 6 x 18-inch rectangle and fold the dough again as directed above, flouring lightly if needed. It should be smooth with visible flecks of butter. Divide the puff pastry crosswise into 2 rectangles, one about 3/4 inch longer than the other. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate until well chilled, about 2 hours or overnight.

Make the tart:

Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 425° F

On a floured surface, roll out the smaller pastry rectangle to a rectangle roughly 9 x 14 inches. Transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet and trim the edges to get a neat rectangle 8 x 13 inches.  Roll out the larger pastry rectangle to roughly 11-1/2 x 14 inches and trim the edges to get a neat rectangle 11 x 13 inches. Cut this rectangle into four 13x3/4-inch strips and four 8 x 3/4-inch strips. (You’ll have leftover dough, which can be refrigerated or frozen for another use).

Moisten two of the shorter strips with a bit of water and lay them, moistened side down, along the short sides of the smaller rectangle. Moisten two of the longer strips and lay them along the longer sides of the rectangle, overlapping the shorter strips at the corners. Repeat with the remaining four strips, stacking them on the first set of strips to make a double-high edge.

In a food processor, pulse the hazelnuts until coarsely chopped. Add the sugar and pulse until finely chopped. Add the egg, butter, and vanilla, and process until creamy.

Spread the hazelnut filling evenly over the bottom of the tart crust, up to the edges. Arrange the sliced pears in a shingled crosswise pattern over the filling, alternating directions with each row. Combine the cinnamon and sugar in a small bowl and sprinkle it over the fruit.

Bake until the crust is puffed and golden brown and the fruit is tender, about 23 to 26 minutes.


Mark Bittman’s Charred Tomato Bisque Recipe
Source: Reader's Digest

Bite into a vine-ripened tomato and summer itself bursts into your mouth.
Adapted from Mark Bittman's Kitchen Express by Mark Bittman from Reader's Digest | August 2009


4 to 6 large ripe tomatoes
3 garlic cloves, smashed Salt and pepper
2 or 3 tbs. olive oil
1 cup cream
1/2 cup basil leaves

How to make it

1 Heat broiler. Cut tomatoes into thin slices, and spread them out on a rimmed baking sheet; top with garlic, salt, and pepper, and drizzle olive oil over all.

2 Broil until tomatoes are beginning to blacken, turning as necessary, about 8 minutes total; remove garlic with tongs as soon as it turns golden.

3 Purée everything with cream and basil. Warm gently in saucepan or chill for a few minutes in freezer. Serve with grilled cheese sandwich or breadsticks.

Adapted from Mark Bittman’s Kitchen Express by Mark Bittman (Simon & Schuster)


Italian Mac and Cheese Muffins
Blogger Arlene Cummings of Cooking With Sugar shares a favorite recipe.

Servings # 6

prep time
20 Min
total time
50 Min

2 cups uncooked elbow macaroni (about 5 1/2 oz)
1/2 lb lean (at least 80%) ground beef, if desired
1/4 cup butter
2 cups milk
1 loaf (16 oz) prepared cheese product, cut into 1-inch cubes
1 bag (8 oz) finely shredded Italian cheese blend (2 cups)
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup Progresso® Italian style panko crispy bread crumbs

1 Heat oven to 350°F. Spray 12 regular-size muffin cups with cooking spray. Cook macaroni as directed on package—except cook 2 minutes less time. Drain; place in large bowl.

2 Meanwhile, in 10-inch skillet, cook ground beef over medium-high heat 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until thoroughly cooked. Drain; set aside.

3 In microwavable bowl, microwave butter, milk and prepared cheese product on High about 5 minutes. Remove from microwave; stir with whisk until cheese begins to melt. Microwave on High in 1-minute increments, stirring after each minute, until cheese is completely melted and mixture is smooth.

4 Add cheese mixture and ground beef to macaroni in bowl. Stir in 1 1/2 cups of the shredded cheese until well mixed. Add salt and pepper to taste.

5 Fill each muffin cup with macaroni mixture. Sprinkle bread crumbs and remaining shredded cheese over tops.

6 Cover pan loosely with foil, making sure foil does not touch cheese. Bake 20 minutes.

7 Remove from oven; remove foil. Cool at least 10 minutes before remove muffins from cups.

Expert Tips

Muffins will still be wet when first removed from the oven. But once they cool, they are easy to remove from the pan with a small metal spatula.

Kids can be picky. They might prefer them without the ground beef.

If you omit the ground beef, these cute little muffins make a great side dish. One is plenty to go with a grilled chicken breast or pork chop.

This recipe can also be made in a casserole dish for more of a traditional mac and cheese, or in individual ramekins.


Garlic Ginger Rib Roast With Zinfandel Pan Sauce

Ready In: 140 Minutes
Prep Time: 20 Minutes
Cook Time: 120 Minutes
Serves 4

 2 sweet onions (like Vidalia)

 1 tablespoon sea salt

 2 tablespoons cracked black or a mix of green, white, red and black peppercorns

 4 tablespoons minced garlic

 3 tablespoons grated fresh ginger

 1 8-pound rib roast (4 ribs)

 4 cloves roasted garlic

 1 tablespoon grated ginger

 ½ cup zinfandel wine

 1 tablespoon flour

 2 cups beef stock

 ¼ cup brown sugar

Remove roast from refrigerator and let stand at room temperature for 2 hours.

Preheat oven to 475° F.

Cut onions into ½-inch thick slices and lay on the bottom of a large roasting pan.

In a small bowl, blend together salt, cracked peppercorns, garlic and ginger. Rub mixture all over meat (roast may be rubbed and refrigerated the night before cooking; bring rubbed roast to room temperature before cooking).

Set the roast bone-side down on the onions in the pan. Roast uncovered in 475° F oven for 30 minutes. Reduce oven heat to 350° F. Continue cooking roast for 2 hours (about 15 minutes per pound) or until instant-read thermometer registers desired doneness (rare, 125°; medium-rare, 135°; medium, 145°).

Remove roast from oven. Transfer meat to a large platter and let stand for 20 minutes.

While roast is cooling, discard onion from pan. Pour pan juices into a 2- or 4-cup measure. Skim fat from juices. Add enough beef stock to make 2 cups of liquid.

Place roasting pan on stovetop burner set to medium-high heat. Stir in garlic and ginger, mashing garlic with a fork and scraping brown bits from pan’s bottom. Add wine to pan. Boil wine for 1 minute. Blend flour with beef stock and stir into pan along with brown sugar. Simmer sauce until slightly thickened.

Trim bones from the roast. Cut meat into 1-inch slices. Ladle sauce over slices.



3 jalapeños
Extra-virgin olive oil
1 large onion - half cut into 1/2-inch dice, half sliced 1/4 inch thick
1 clove(s) garlic, minced
1 pound(s) tomatillos - husked and chopped
1 Hass avocado, diced
1/2 cup(s) chopped cilantro
1 tablespoon(s) fresh lime juice
Salt and freshly ground pepper
2 links of fresh chorizo
1/2 pound(s) queso panela or halloumi cheese, cut into squares
1 1 1/2-pound flank steak

1. Heat a grill pan. Grill the jalapeños until charred. Stem and seed the jalapeños; finely dice 2 of them. Thinly slice the remaining jalapeño and reserve on a platter.

2. In a saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add the diced jalapeños and onion and the garlic and cook over moderate heat until golden, 10 minutes. Add the tomatillos and cook until softened. Transfer to a bowl and let cool. Stir in the avocado, cilantro and lime juice; season with salt and pepper.

3. Oil the chorizo and grill over moderate heat until cooked through. Remove the chorizo casing and crumble the meat into a bowl. Lightly oil the cheese and grill for 1 minute per side, then oil the pan and grill the sliced onion until charred; transfer both to the platter.

4. Oil the steak; season with salt and pepper. Grill over moderately high heat, turning once, 8 minutes for medium-rare. Transfer to a board and let rest for 5 minutes. Thinly slice the steak and serve with the accompaniments.


Crazy for Rustic Kale Pies

1 package TJ's Frozen Gourmet Pie Crusts
3/4 bag TJ's Kale
4 tablespoons TJ's Garlic Infused Olive Oil
1/4 cup Water
1 cup TJ's Mini Pearl Tomatoes, sliced
TJ's Salt and TJ's Pepper, to taste
1/2-1 cup TJ's Bavarian Bratwurst (or Frozen Falafel), cut into small pieces
1/2-1 cup TJ's Shaved Parmesan, Romano & Asiago Cheese
1/8 cup TJ's Milk

Preheat oven to 350º F. Defrost both pie crusts according to directions on package. In a large frying pan, heat garlic oil and add kale; add water, cover and steam, stirring occasionally for about 10-15 minutes. Add the tomatoes to the pan and continue to cook for a few more minutes (add a little more oil, if desired); season with salt and pepper. While the kale is cooking, split each pie crust in half and roll into 4 rounds of dough. Scoop kale mixture into the center of each dough round and top with desired amount of sausage (or falafel) and cheese. Fold dough up and pinch around; kale mixture will stick out of the top. Top with more cheese, if desired. Brush dough with milk. Place in oven and bake for about 30-40 minutes or until crust is golden brown. Serves: 4

Cooking Time: 60 - 80 Minutes


Sourdough Strata With Tomatoes and Greens

Total Time: 2 hr 20 min
10 min
2 hr 10 min

Yield: 6 servings

8 plum tomatoes, quartered lengthwise
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 cups whole milk
8 large eggs
10 ounces Italian fontina cheese, grated (about 3 cups)
1 cup grated parmesan cheese
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 1-pound loaf sourdough bread, cut into 1-inch cubes (about 8 cups)
4 cups chopped greens, such as kale, spinach or arugula

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Toss the tomatoes with the thyme, olive oil and 1/2 teaspoon each salt and black pepper in a bowl. Spread on a baking sheet and roast, stirring once or twice, until the tomatoes are slightly dried and browned in spots, 1 hour to 1 hour, 15 minutes. Cool completely.

Whisk the milk, eggs, fontina, 3/4 cup parmesan, the cayenne, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper in a large bowl. Add the bread cubes and greens and toss to coat. Pour into a 3-quart baking dish, then top with the roasted tomatoes. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

The next day, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Sprinkle the strata with the remaining 1/4 cup parmesan and bake, uncovered, until golden brown and almost set, about 45 minutes. Turn off the oven, but keep the strata inside 10 minutes before serving.


Peppermint Bark
Elizabeth LaBau

Peppermint bark is a Christmas classic. Who can resist dark chocolate, white chocolate, and crisp bites of minty candy canes?

This delicious, easy peppermint bark makes a wonderful holiday gift.

If you don't have the time or inclination to temper the chocolate, you can either use candy coating, or use untempered chocolate. If you use chocolate chips, don't try to temper them, simply melt them. Just be aware that untempered chocolate bark will melt easily, so it should always be stored in the refrigerator.

Cook Time: 25 minutes

12 ounces (about 2 cups) dark chocolate, chopped, or chocolate chips
12 ounces (about 2 cups) white chocolate, chopped, or white chocolate chips
8 peppermint candy canes

1. Unwrap the candy canes and place them in a food processor. Pulse on/off several times for 5-10 seconds each, until the canes have been crushed into small pieces. Alternately, place the candy canes in a large Ziploc bag and seal tightly. Use a rolling pin to roll/smash the candy canes until they are the size you desire.

2. Prepare a cookie sheet by covering it with smooth aluminum foil.

3. Melt or temper the dark chocolate. Pour the chocolate onto the prepared cookie sheet and use an offset spatula or knife to spread it to an even thickness, a little more than 1/8" thick. The chocolate does not have to reach all sides of the sheet, as it will be broken up later anyhow. Place the tray in the refrigerator to firm up while you prepare the white chocolate.

4. While the dark chocolate hardens, melt or temper the white chocolate. Stir in most of the candy cane bits, reserving about a quarter of the mixture to put on top.

5. Remove the tray from the refrigerator and spread the white chocolate in an even layer over the dark chocolate.

6. While the white chocolate is still wet, sprinkle the remaining candy cane pieces over the entire surface evenly. Press down very slightly to ensure they stick. Place the tray back in the refrigerator to firm up for 30 minutes.

7. Once the peppermint bark bark is completely set, break into small, uneven pieces by hand.


Chewy Peanut Butter and Chocolate Hazelnut Sandwich Cookies

Prep Time: 60 min
Cook Time: 10 min
Yield: 24 sandwich cookies

1 cup sugar
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup Jif® Extra Crunchy Peanut Butter
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups quick rolled oats
1 cup Pillsbury BEST® All Purpose Flour
1 cup sweetened coconut flakes
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 (14.1 oz.) jar Jif® Chocolate Flavored Hazelnut Spread

HEAT oven to 350°F. Beat sugar, brown sugar, butter and peanut butter in large mixing bowl on medium speed of electric mixer until creamy. Beat in eggs, milk and vanilla. Stir in rolled oats, flour, coconut, baking powder and baking soda until well blended.

DROP dough by tablespoonfuls, 2 inches apart, onto ungreased cookie sheets. Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until light brown around edges. Cool 2 minutes before removing to wire rack to cool completely.

SPREAD 2 teaspoons chocolate hazelnut spread on bottom side of half the cookies. Top with remaining cookies, flat side down, to form sandwich cookies.


Peanut Butter and Jelly Pizza

1 whole-wheat or multi-grain English muffin
2 tablespoons Jif® Creamy Reduced Fat Peanut Butter Spread
2 tablespoons Smucker's® Low Sugar™ Reduced Sugar Strawberry Preserves
OR Smucker's® Squeeze™ Strawberry Reduced Sugar Fruit Spread
8 banana slices
Smucker's® Sugar Free Hot Fudge Topping, heated according to package directions
Flaked or shredded coconut (optional)

1 SPLIT and toast English muffin. Spread peanut spread on both sides of muffin. Spread or squeeze fruit spread over peanut butter.

2 TOP with banana slices. Drizzle with warmed fudge topping to taste. Sprinkle with coconut, if desired.


Hot Cocoa Pudding Mugs

2-1/2 cups milk, divided
2 env. (1/4 oz. each) KNOX Unflavored Gelatine
2 oz. BAKER'S Bittersweet Chocolate, melted
1 pkg. (3.9 oz.) JELL-O Chocolate Instant Pudding
12 miniature pretzel twists, broken crosswise in half
1-1/2 cups thawed COOL WHIP Whipped Topping
1/4 cup JET-PUFFED Vanilla MALLOW Bits

Save 30 calories and 4g of carbs, including 4g of sugar, per serving by omitting the bittersweet chocolate, reducing the MALLOW Bits to 2 Tbsp., and preparing the desserts with fat-free milk, 1 pkg. (1.4 oz.) JELL-O Chocolate Fat Free Sugar Free Instant Pudding and COOL WHIP Sugar Free Whipped Topping.

MAKES 24 servings

ADD 1-1/2 cups milk to dry gelatine in small saucepan; stir. Let stand 3 min. or until gelatine is softened. Cook and stir on medium heat 3 min. or until gelatine is completely dissolved. Remove from heat; whisk in melted chocolate. Cool 5 min.

BEAT pudding mix and remaining milk in medium bowl with whisk 2 min. Whisk in gelatine mixture. Spoon into 24 shot glasses sprayed with cooking spray. Refrigerate 3 hours or until firm.

UNMOLD desserts onto tray just before serving. Insert pretzel half into side of each for the mug handle. Top each with 1 Tbsp. COOL WHIP and a few MALLOW Bits.

Decrease milk to 2-1/4 cups. Prepare pudding mix using 3/4 cup cold milk and 1/4 cup crème de cocoa or peppermint schnapps.


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