Mary Todd Lincoln’s White Cake

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INGREDIENTS:
1 cup butter
1 cup finely chopped blanched almonds
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla (or any other preferred flavoring)
2 cups sugar
3 cups flour (sifted before measuring)
3 teaspoons baking powder
White of 6 eggs

DIRECTIONS:
Cream butter and sugar; sift flour and baking powder together 3 times, and add to butter and sugar, alternating with milk. Stir in nutmeats, and beat well. Then fold in the stiffly beaten whites and flavoring.

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Pour into a well-greased and floured pan. The old-fashioned, fluted copper pan with a center funnel was probably used originally.

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Bake 1 hour in a moderate (350 degree) oven, or cook until the cake tests done.

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Turn out on a wire rack and cool.

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This makes a large cake. The batter can be cut in half and baked in 2 (9-inch) layers if desired. For a good basic white cake, omit almonds. Frost cake with the old-fashioned boiled white icing, noted here.

You may serve Crème Anglaise Sauce with this cake.  A great way to use up all the leftover egg yolks.

NOTES:

President Lincoln is said to have remarked that Mary Todd’s White Cake was the best he had ever eaten. This confection was originated by Monsieur Giron, a Lexington caterer, on the occasion of Lafayette’s visit to that city in 1825. The Todds got the recipe from him and treasured it ever after.

 

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Crème Anglaise Sauce

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Ingredients
1 1/2 cups whole milk, cream, or half-and-half
4 large egg yolks
1/3 cup sugar
pinch salt
1 teaspoon vanilla

Instructions
1. Warm the milk or cream in the saucepan and remove from heat. Make sure it’s cool enough to touch before adding it to the eggs. (You can skip this step, but warming the milk separately helps cut down on cooking time)

2. In a medium, heat-proof bowl, whisk the yolks together and then whisk in the sugar and pinch of salt. Continue whisking until the mixture turns pale yellow and forms ribbons on the surface.

3. Whisking steadily, pour the milk into the egg-sugar mixture in a steady stream.

4. Pour the mixture back into the saucepan and set over medium heat. Stir constantly in an “S” shape to make sure the bottom doesn’t scald or the eggs curdle.

5. Continue stirring until the mixture thickens enough to fully coat the back of your spoon and is as smooth as silk.

6. You can also check the temperature with an instant-read or candy thermometer — it should be at least 156°F and not exceed 180&deg. (The higher the temperature, the thicker the final cooled custard will be.)

7. Strain the custard to remove any bits of eggs that may have curdled and stir in the vanilla. Doing this over an ice bath helps stop the cooking process so the custard doesn’t over-cook.

Additional Notes:

• Crème anglaise will keep refrigerated for about one week.

• If you’d like to flavor your custard, you can infuse herbs, spices, or other flavors into the milk in Step 1, or add flavoring extracts along with the vanilla in Step 6.

FLOURLESS APPLESAUCE SPICE CAKE

Healthy + Flourless Applesauce Spice Cake
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 1 8 x 8 baking pan
Author Chelsea
Ingredients
1 cup applesauce
1/4 cup coconut oil*
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1 cup oat flour just blend up regular oats
1/2 cup lightly packed brown sugar
1/4 cup chopped pecans or walnuts optional
1/3 cup raisins optional
Optional Cream Cheese Frosting
2 ounces reduced-fat cream cheese at room temperature
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
1 and 1/4 – 1 and 3/4 cups powdered sugar
Optional: additional chopped pecans to top
Instructions
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line an 8 x 8 baking pan with parchment paper — otherwise your cake will likely not come out clean. (Trust me, I had one cake completely stick to the bottom even with spraying and lightly flouring it!)
In a large bowl, stir together the applesauce, coconut oil (measured when completely melted), large egg, and vanilla extract. Stir until completely combined.
Add in the baking soda, cinnamon, baking powder, salt, allspice, and nutmeg. Stir until completely combined. (Here’s where you can increase or decrease spices to personal preference — if you are wary of too much spice add a little less and if you LOVE spice increase them.)
Stir in the brown sugar and oat flour (blend regular old fashioned oats or quick oats in a blender or food processor until they resemble flour — blend well so you don’t have any weird oat chunks! Measure AFTER blending and not before).
If desired add in the chopped pecans or walnuts and raisins. In my testing, I personally liked the cake best with just chopped pecans. But if you love raisins in your cake definitely add them in!
Bake for 30-35 mins at 350 degrees or until a fork when inserted comes out clean. Be careful to not over bake as it will make this cake less tender and less flavorful. Allow to cool.
Optional Cream Cheese Frosting:
Quickly wash and dry the bowl from the cake and place in the *room temperature* cream cheese (Make sure it isn’t melted or softened by the microwave). Beat with the vanilla until smooth. Add in the salt and slowly add in the powdered sugar (beating in between additions) until smooth and creamy and your desired consistency has been met. If it is too thick add in a little bit of milk or heavy cream.
Frost the completely cooled cake evenly with the frosting. If desired top the frosting with the chopped pecans.
Recipe Notes
*Not all coconut oils are equal — some tend to give baked goods a slightly off or bitter taste. I use Pure Coconut Oil by LouAna and have never had a problem with it. I highly recommend this brand for baked goods.

Homemade Salami

 

salami

Ready in 1 day and 2 hours
Serves 8
195 calories

Ingredients:
2 pounds ground beef
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon mustard
2 tablespoons sugar-based curing mixture (such as Morton(R) Tender Quick(R))
1 tablespoon coarsely ground black pepper
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

Directions
In a large bowl, mix together the ground beef, garlic powder, onion powder, mustard seed, curing salt, black pepper and liquid smoke. Mix in the red pepper flakes if desired. Roll the mixture into a 2 inch diameter log, and wrap tightly in aluminum foil. Refrigerate for 24 hours.
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). Make a few slits in the bottom of the roll to allow the fat to drain when cooking. Place roll onto a broiler pan, and fill the bottom part of the pan with about 1 inch of water to keep the salami moist.
Bake for 90 minutes in the preheated oven. Remove from pan and cool completely before unwrapping the salami. Slice and eat as lunch meat, or serve on a tray with crackers and cheese.

Raspberry Clafoutis

clafoutisINGREDIENTS
½ c. all-purpose flour
¼ c. sugar
2 tbsp. sugar
salt
3 large eggs
3 tbsp. unsalted butter
Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
¼ c. milk
2 tbsp. milk
1½ pt. raspberries
confectioners’ sugar

DIRECTIONS
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9-inch gratin dish. In a bowl, whisk the flour, sugar, and a pinch of salt. Whisk in the eggs, butter, and lemon zest until smooth. Add the milk and whisk until light and very smooth, about 3 minutes. Pour the batter into the gratin dish and top with the raspberries.
Bake for about 30 minutes, until the clafoutis is set and golden. Let cool slightly. Dust with confectioners’ sugar, cut into wedges, and serve.

Carrot Halwa

Carrot Halwa from Michelle Peters-Jones

1 pound carrots, peeled
2 tablespoons ghee or neutral cooking oil
8 green cardamom pods, seeds only, crushed
3 cups whole milk
1 1/4 cups sugar
1/4 cup raisins
Pinch saffron threads
1/4 cup unsalted pistachio nuts, chopped
Grate the carrots coarsely using a cheese grater. Heat the ghee or oil in a heavy, high-sided skillet or saucepan. Add the crushed cardamom seeds and stir for about 30 seconds, until they are fragrant. Add the grated carrots to the pan and fry for about 3 minutes.

Add the milk and bring it up to the boil. Boil, stirring constantly, for 5 minutes. Then turn the heat down to a low and simmer the halwa, uncovered, for about 1 hour. Stir every so often to stop the milk forming a film or scorching on the bottom. The milk should have reduced by over a third by the end of the hour.

Add the sugar, raisins, and saffron to the pan and stir. Turn the heat up to medium and cook, stirring frequently, for until the halwa is thick and glossy, 15 to 20 minutes.

You can serve the halwa warm or cold. If serving warm, scoop into bowl, sprinkle pistachios over top and serve. If serving cold, press the halwa mixture into small ramekins. When ready to serve, overturn on to plates, sprinkle over the pistachios and serve.

Banana Bread in a Mug Recipe

Follow this formula when you need homemade moist banana bread RIGHT NOW: mug microwave 1 ripe banana 5 minutes = your banana bread quick fix. Banana Bread in a Mug Makes 1 Serving Prep Time: 5 minutes Total Time: 8 minutes Ingredients 1 ripe banana, mashed 1 egg 1 Tablespoon buttermilk ¼ […]

via Banana Bread in a Mug Recipe

A reminder of last months theme

Chocolate Carres Moelleux au Riz

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Ingredients

Servings 8-10  Prep Time 30 minutes Total Time up to 3 hours

1/2 cups water
1 cup Arborio rice (or any other short-grained white rice)
2 large eggs, room temperature
1 cup milk
1 cup half n half
2/3 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
Boiling water

Directions

Preheat oven to 325ºF. Lightly spray an 8×8 or 9×9-inch square baking pan with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.

Place the rice and water in a medium-sized saucepan and bring to a boil. Cover and reduce the heat to low. Let cook for about 20 minutes, until the rice is tender and the water is entirely absorbed. Set the pot aside to allow the rice to cool a bit.

In a large mixing bowl, beat the eggs well until they are light and airy. Add in the evaporated milk, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon and salt.  Mix everything together well. Add the cooked rice and the cooled butter and stir thoroughly.

Scrape the mixture into the pan. Place the pan into a larger oven-safe pan and pour enough boiling water into the larger pan so that the water comes up halfway up the sides of the smaller pan.

Bake for 35 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and give the pudding a good stir. Return the whole thing to the oven and bake for another 1 1/2 hours, until the rice has set and the top is golden brown. Check once or twice during the baking process. If the water seems too low, add more boiling water to the larger pan to keep the pudding from drying out. When done, remove the baking dish from the larger pan and place on a wire rack for about 20-30 minutes. Carefully remove the larger pan and pour out the hot water into the sink.

Cut the pudding into squares and serve as is or with fruit or even whipped cream on top. This is great warm or at room temperature. You can cover them with chocolate as well. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 2-3 days. It’s great cold too!

Enjoy!

Ed Ruscha’s Cactus Omelette

Ed Ruscha’s Cactus Omelette

2 EGGS
2 TBSP. SMALL CURD COTTAGE CHEESE
2 TBSP. DICED CELERY
3 TBSP. DICED CACTUS (NOPALITOS, COMMONLY FOUND IN A GROCER’S INTERNATIONAL SECTION)
1 TBSP. SWEET BUTTER
SALT
PEPPER

For Ruscha’s cactus omelette, whisk eggs in a bowl, heat a pan with butter, and prepare an omelette as you normally would, lifting the edges when they harden and tilting the pan to let the runny layers slide underneath. While the top is still moist, add salt, pepper, and cottage cheese in the center, followed by celery and the nopalitos. Fold in half and let the omelette set for one minute over low heat. “For people who like shaggy dog stories, add little bits of the green cactus on the top of the omelette to make sad or funny faces,” Ruscha says.