Tag Archives: Party

Cornflake-Chocolate Chip-Marshmallow Cookies from Momofuku Milk bar

Kevin here. You would think we had a white Christmas in Florida by the looks of our kitchen – flour, confectioner’s and granulated sugar is everywhere. We have been wanting a Kitchen Aid mixer for years and finally got one for Christmas (thanks to our wonderful and generous parents; I mean Santa). The newness hasn’t worn off and I have been baking up a snow storm!IMG_0009
We have been hoarding baking cookbooks for years but I knew exactly which one I wanted to work through first: Chrstina Tosi’s Momofuku Milk Bar Cookbook.  She is a baking genius that matches expert techniques with the familiar flavors of the American South and our collective childhoods. Her recipes incorporate latch key cupboard staples such as Ritz Crackers, Fruity Pebbles, Funfetti Cake and Kellogg’s Cornflakes. Match these with familiar Southern favorites such as kitchen sink cookies (she calls them Compost Cookies) and Crack Pie (her version of Chess Pie) and you are on a trip down a delicious memory lane.
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What follows is the first recipe I tried. I loved them and immediately made another batch to share with our friends. We took them to a New Year’s Eve party and not a single crumb was left at the end of the night. Proceed at your own risk…these are highly additive!

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 2/3 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons coarse salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3 cups Cornflake Crunch
  • 2/3 cup mini chocolate chips
  • 1 1/4 cups mini marshmallows

Directions

  1. Cream together butter and both sugars in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment on medium-high, 2 to 3 minutes. Scrape down sides of bowl and add egg and vanilla; beat for 7 to 8 minutes.IMG_0005

  2. Reduce speed to low and add flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Mix just until dough comes together, no longer than 1 minute. Scrape down sides of bowl with a spatula.IMG_0011

  3. With the mixer on low, add cornflake crunch and chocolate chips; mix until just combined, 30 to 45 seconds. Add mini marshmallows and mix until just incorporated.IMG_0006

  4. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Using a 2 3/4-ounce ice-cream scoop or 1/3-cup measuring cup, portion dough out onto prepared baking sheet. Pat tops of cookie domes flat. Wrap baking sheet tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour and up to 1 week. Do not bake cookies from room temperature or they will not hold their shape. IMG_0007

  5. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line additional baking sheets with parchment paper or non-stick baking mats.

  6. Arrange chilled dough at least 4 inches apart on prepared baking sheets. Transfer to oven and bake until puffed, cracked, spread, and browned on the edges, about 18 minutes. Let cool completely on baking sheets.

Cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days, and frozen for up to 1 month.
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Wild Rice Salad with Pear and Edamame

July 4th parties generally involves grilled meats, watermelons, alcohol and pool parties. We were asked to bring a side to this year’s party and I thought I would bring something that was light and somewhat on the healthier side, however, I have to confess: I really wanted to make this so that our vegetarian friend could eat something other than salad and watermelon! To make this a vegetarian main course, add 2 medium carrots that have been peeled and small diced; for those that want some protein, add 2 cups shredded cooked chicken in addition to the carrots.

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 Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup blanched slivered almonds
  • 2 tablespoons white sesame seeds
  • 2- 6 oz packages of wild rice (such as Gourmet House)
  • 3 medium scallions, thinly sliced (white and light green parts only)
  • 2 cups shelled cooked edamame, thawed if frozen
  • 1 medium to large Bartlett pear, peeled, cored and small diced
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
  • Juice from 1/2 a medium lemon
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 3 teaspoons honey
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Preparation

  1. Cook rice according to package instructions.
    Toast the slivered almonds, spread the almonds in a single layer on a dry, shallow baking dish or cookie sheet. Place in a preheated 350° oven. After five minutes, remove the pan, shake to rearrange the almonds, and return to the oven. After another five minutes, check the almonds again. If they are dark enough, remove them from the oven. If they need a little more browning, shake again and return to the oven. Check every couple of minutes to avoid overcooking/burning. Overall, the almonds should roast for 10-15 minutes. The almonds will be just barely darker than they were raw; they should not be too dark. Transfer to a large heatproof bowl.
  2. Place the sesame seeds in a medium frying pan over medium heat and toast, stirring often, until golden brown (do not let the seeds burn), about 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer to the bowl with the almonds.
  3. Add the rice, scallions, edamame, and cranberries to the bowl with the almonds and sesame seeds and toss to combine.
  4. Whisk the olive oil, sesame oil, lemon juice, lemon zest, rice vinegar, honey, and a pinch each of salt and pepper in a medium bowl until combined. Drizzle over the rice mixture and toss to combine. Taste and season as needed with more salt, pepper, and additional lemon juice or honey if needed. Cover and chill for at least one hour before serving

Pulled Pork with Root Beer Sauce

Bring meat to a Super Bowl party and everyone will love you for it.  Bring good pulled pork and you won’t have to worry about brining leftovers home because it will gone before the 3rd quarter!  This dish served as a nice break from all the chips, dip, bad interceptions, turnovers and snack foods.

Side note:  I love this recipe because it allowed me time to recover from a party I attended the previous day while the meat cooked in the crock pot.

I wish I have a good picture for this recipe but it was blurry and not good enough to include!

This is a modified version of a recipe by Better Homes and Garden.

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Ingredients

  • 2 1/2-3 lbs pork sirloin roast
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • tablespoon cooking oil
  • medium onions, cut in thin wedges
  • cup root beer (DO NOT USE DIET)
  • tablespoons minced garlic (about 6 large cloves)

Sauce

  • cups root beer (four 12-ounce bottles or cans)
  • 2  (12oz) bottled chili sauce
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper (optional)
  • 8 -10 hamburger buns, split (toasted, if desired)
  1. Trim fat from meat. If necessary, cut roast to fit into a 3-1/2- to 5-quart crockery cooker.  Sprinkle meat with the salt and pepper and let sit for 10 minutes. In a large skillet sear meat to a nice brown on all sides in hot oil. Drain off fat. Transfer meat to cooker. Add onions, the 1 cup root beer, and garlic.IMG_6061_2
  2. Cover and cook on low-heat setting for 8 to 10 hours or on high-heat setting for 4 to 5 hours.  Most modern slow-cookers run hotter and will actually take only 6-7 hours on low.
  3. Meanwhile, for sauce, in a large saucepan combine the 6 cups of root beer and the chili sauce and ground red pepper (if desired). Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Boil gently, uncovered, stirring occasionally, about 1hour or until mixture is reduced to 4 cups.
  4. Transfer roast to a cutting board or serving platter. Using 2 forks, pull meat apart into shreds.  Using a sieve, remove onions and garlic from cooking juices and discard.  Mix the juices and set aside 1/4 C of juice, discard the rest. Wipe the edges of the crockery.
  5. Using 2 forks, pull meat apart into shreds and place the meat back in the crockpot. Add 2 cups of root beer sauce and the 1/4 C of juice.  Mix the meat, juice and sauce with a pair of tongs, cover and leave the crockpot on warm or low to keep the meat hot.
  6. Place the left over 2 cups of sauce on a small bowl.  Serve pulled pork on the buns and drizzle with extra sauce if desired.Makes 8- 10 servings.

Note:

  • You can make half of the sauce recipe, mix it in with the meat, and omit the extra sauce altogether, but who doesn’t love extra sauce?
  • You can make the sauce quicker by dividing it in two and placing the sauce in two  12 inch skillets with decent sized walls.  If you do this, you can divide the time in half to 30 minutes).

Potato Gratin with Goat Cheese and Garlic

This recipe was made as a side for the 2014 annual family Christmas dinner with a bit of deception: we didn’t tell people that there was goat cheese in dish.  We didn’t want people to dismiss the dish before giving it a chance…and it went over really well!  The addition of goat cheese and nutmeg gives this dish a great nuance that I have not experienced  before in a potato gratin.
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This dish also gave Kevin and I an excuse to use our mandolin slicer which made prepping this dish so much quicker! We took the extra step of rinsing the slices to wash off the extra starch and then blotting the slices dry between two towels to avoid having a watery gratin.  Most food processors have slicer attachments that could work or you could slice the potatoes by hand.
Nod to Cooking Light for this truly delicious and simple dish!
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Ingredients

IMG_5660_21 cup half-and-haf, divided
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 cup (4 ounces) crumbled goat cheese
1 cup 1% low-fat milk
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 garlic clove, minced
5 cups thinly sliced peeled Yukon gold potato (about 2 1/2 pounds)
Cooking spray

Preparation

Preheat oven to 400°.

Combine 2 tablespoons half-and-half with flour in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk. Add the remaining half-and-half, cheese, and next 5 ingredients (cheese through garlic), stirring with a whisk. Arrange half of the potato slices in a single layer in an 11 x 7-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray.

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Pour half of the milk mixture over potato slices, stirring the milk mixture immediately before adding. Repeat procedure with remaining potato slices and milk mixture. Bake at 400° for 1 hour and 10 minutes or until potatoes are tender and golden brown.

Note:  We ended up cooking this dish about 15 minutes longer to get that gorgeous golden brown color.