woensdag 23 maart 2011

Arrivederci Giada dinner for IHCC!

Well it's time again, to say goodbye to another chef at I Heart Cooking Clubs. The past six months we have been cooking with Giada De Laurentiis!Very well known all over the world, but i didn't know her!(six months ago).
To get to know her i started with a little research on the internet about her. Reading true her own website GiadaDeLaurentiis.com and ofcourse Wikipedia(what would we do without)and the foodnetworksite, i really found out a lot about her.
One of the most important things i found out, is that she is an Italian and that she cooks Italian. So i was eager to start cooking(because i like italian).
Halfway true the six months i lost this sence of cooking Giada's recipes, Stil don't know why exactly. One of the things i do love Giada about is all her great Mascarpone recipes like this one. This is my favorite recipe an i will be making this again.

But for this week i have prepared a little dinner to say Arrivederci!

Sweat pea CrostiniWith
Apple and Thyme Martini

Crunchy parmesan chicken tenders
served with
Penne with sun-dried tomato pesto

Panna Cotta with fresh berries

Posting this to:
- I Heart Cooking Clubs( Arrivederci Giada! last week of cooking with Giada, next week we will start cooking with Jamie Oliver for the next six months)

Panna Cotta with fresh berries

Recipe can be found here
Courtesy of Giada de Laurentiis

Cook time: 7 minutes(waiting 6 hours)
Yield: 6 servings

1 cup whole milk
1 tablespoon unflavored powdered gelatin
3 cups whipping cream
1/3 cup honey
1 tablespoon sugar
Pinch salt
2 cups assorted fresh berries

Place the milk in a small bowl. Sprinkle the gelatin over. Let stand for 3 to 5 minutes to soften the gelatin. Pour milk mixture into a heavy saucepan and stir over medium heat just until the gelatin dissolves but the milk does not boil, about 5 minutes. Add the cream, honey, sugar, and salt. Stir until the sugar dissolves, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from the heat. Pour into 6 wine glasses so that they are 1/2 full. Cool slightly. Refrigerate until set, at least 6 hours.

Spoon the berries atop the panna cotta and serve

My first attempt ever at making Panna cotta. Ofcourse there had te be a first time for failure also, since i started this cooking blog. Everything has been going well untill now.

You can see the two different layers in the glass, so i wanted to find out why it happend. After reading some more panna cotta recipes, i thought it was because of the cooling down. In giada's recipe the cooling is after youve poured it into the wine glasses, but in all the other recipes this happens before. So i put the saucepan in my sink(with a bottom of cold water), kept stirring and after that poured it into the glasses. It worked! the panna cotta came out fine after that and tasted creamy delicious. No fresh berries in season now so used frozen.

Posting this to:
- I Heart Cooking Clubs( Arrivederci Giada! last week of cooking with Giada, next week we will start cooking with Jamie Oliver for the next six months)

The link to my Arrivederci dinner is here!

Crunchy Parmesan Chicken Tenders

Recipe can be found here
courtesy of Giada De Laurentiis

cooking time: 12 minutes
yields: 6 servings

4 tablespoons plus 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup buttermilk
1 1/2 pounds chicken tenders (about 18)
3 large garlic cloves, minced
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
Freshly ground black pepper
1 1/4 cups freshly grated Parmesan
3/4 cup Italian-style seasoned bread crumbs

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F.(260 degrees C.)

Brush 1 tablespoon of oil over each of 2 heavy large lined baking sheets. Place the buttermilk in a large bowl. Add the chicken tenders and stir to coat. Let stand at least 15 minutes and up to 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, mash the garlic with the salt in a medium bowl. Whisk in the vinegar and then the remaining 1/2 cup of oil. Season the vinaigrette, to taste, with pepper. Transfer the vinaigrette to a small serving bowl.

Stir the Parmesan and bread crumbs in a pie dish. Remove the chicken tenders from the buttermilk and dredge them in the bread crumb mixture to coat completely, pressing to adhere. Arrange the coated chicken tenders on the prepared baking sheets, spacing evenly. Drizzle the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil over the chicken tenders and bake until they are cooked through and golden brown, about 12 minutes.

Transfer the chicken tenders to a platter and serve the vinaigrette alongside for dipping.

Posting this to:
- I Heart Cooking Clubs( Arrivederci Giada! last week of cooking with Giada, next week we will start cooking with Jamie Oliver for the next six months)

The link to my Arrivederci dinner is here!

Penne with Sun-dried Tomato Pesto

Recipe can be found here
Courtesy of Giada de Laurentiis

cooking time: 15 minutes
yields: 4 servings

12 ounces penne pasta
1 (8.5-ounce) jar sun-dried tomatoes packed in olive oil
2 garlic cloves
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 cup (packed) fresh basil leaves
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan
Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until tender but still firm to the bite, stirring occasionally, about 8 minutes. Drain, reserving 1 cup of the cooking liquid.

Meanwhile, blend the sun-dried tomatoes and their oil, garlic, salt and pepper, to taste, and basil in a food processor and blend until the tomatoes are finely chopped. Transfer the tomato mixture to a large bowl. Stir in the Parmesan.

Add the pasta to the pesto and toss to coat, adding enough reserved cooking liquid to moisten. Season the pasta, to taste, with salt and pepper and serve.

Posting this to:
- I Heart Cooking Clubs( Arrivederci Giada! last week of cooking with Giada, next week we will start cooking with Jamie Oliver for the next six months)

The link to my Arrivederci dinner is here!

Sweet Pea Crostini

Recipe can be found here
Courtesy of Giada de Laurentiis
Cook time: 20 minutes
Yields: 6 to 8 servings

Sweet Peas:
2 cups chicken broth or water
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 (16-ounce) bag frozen peas
1/4 cup fresh chopped mint
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup whipping cream
3 ounces finely diced prosciutto

1 baguette, sliced into 1/2-inch thick slices
Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
3 to 4 cloves garlic

For the Sweet Peas: Warm the chicken broth and red pepper flakes in a medium
saucepan over medium-high heat until the broth boils. Add the frozen peas and cook until the peas are tender, about 5 minutes. Drain the peas in a mesh sieve.

Place the peas in a food processor with the mint, salt, and pepper. Puree the pea mixture. Place the pea puree in a medium bowl and refrigerate until cool, about 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, for the crostini: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Place the baguette slices on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet in a single layer. Bake in the oven until toasted and golden around the edges, about 10 minutes. While the crostini are still warm, drizzle the tops with extra-virgin olive oil. Using a whole clove of garlic in your fingertips, rub the top of the crostini a few times to give a hint of garlic.

To finish, whip the cream until stiff peaks form. Fold the whipped cream into the pea puree. Top each of the crostini with about 1 tablespoon of pea puree. Sprinkle with a bit of the diced prosciutto. Serve immediately.

Posting this to:
- I Heart Cooking Clubs( Arrivederci Giada! last week of cooking with Giada, next week we will start cooking with Jamie Oliver for the next six months)

The link to my Arrivederci dinner is here!

vrijdag 18 maart 2011

Roasted baby potatoes with herbs for Spud week! at IHCC

After this week we only have left one more week of cooking with Giada. Also after two weeks of Voting our Next chef is finally announced. We could vote for Rick Bayless, Bobbie Flay or Jamie Oliver. Mr. Flay was the least favorit, and it became clear very soon that Jamie or Rick
Would become our chef for the upcoming six months.
Mr. Oliver did it he won the vote with more then half of the votes.

Recipe can be found here
Courtesy of Giada de Laurentiis

Cooking time: 1 hour
Yields: 6 servings

1/2 pound small red-skinned potatoes (about 1 3/4-inch diameter), scrubbed
1/2 pound small white-skinned potatoes (about 1 3/4-inch diameter), scrubbed
1 tablespoon herbes de Provence, plus extra for garnish
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Put the potatoes into a large bowl. In a small bowl, whisk the herbs, garlic, and oil together until blended, and then pour over the potatoes. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper and toss to coat. Transfer the potatoes to a heavy large baking dish, spacing them evenly apart.

Roast the potatoes until they are tender and golden, turning them occasionally with tongs, about 1 hour. Transfer the roasted potatoes to a decorative platter and drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil and herbes de Provence, if desired. Serve hot or warm.

Admitting this to:

woensdag 16 maart 2011

Apple and Thyme Martini

The exact origin of the Martini is unclear however the most likely explanation is that it was simply a shortening of the main ingredient, Martini branded vermouth. One popular alternative suggests it evolved from a cocktail called the Martinez served at the Occidental Hotel in San Francisco in 1862, which people frequented before taking an evening ferry to the nearby town of Martinez. Another theory links the origin of the Martini to the name of a bartender who concocted the drink at the Knickerbocker Hotel in New York City in 1911.

The original Martinez cocktail consisted of two ounces of Italian Martini & Rossi sweet vermouth, one ounce Old Tom sweet gin, two dashes maraschino liquor, one dash bitters, shaken, and served with a twist of lemon.By the end of the 19th century, the martini had morphed into a simpler form: two dashes of Orange bitters, mixed with half a jigger of dry French vermouth and half a jigger of dry English gin, stirred and served with an olive.

But it was Prohibition and the relative ease of illegal gin manufacture that led to the martini's rise as the predominant cocktail of the mid 20th century. With the repeal of Prohibition, and the ready availability of quality gin, the drink became progressively dryer. In the 1970s and 80s, the martini came to be seen as old-fashioned and was replaced by more intricate cocktails and wine spritzers, but the mid-1990s saw a resurgence in the drink and an explosion of new versions.

Some of the newer versions (e.g., appletini, peach martini, chocolate martini), take their name not from the ingredients, but from the cocktail glass they share with the martini.

If you have read al that information you will see in giada's recipe there is only vodka. So it's a very modern take on Martini with even a pinch of thyme, this is where the homemade thyme syrup that i posted earlier this week comes in.
After taking my first sip of it , i almost spit it out because the vodka was to strong for me. I had to ad some more apple juice to make it drinkable. Then the taste was fine i liked the Thyme in it but my boyfriend(from now i will reference to him with Mr. R)totaly didn't. I would chance the amount of vodka and applejuice to use in this recipe with each other the next time.

Recipe can be found here
Courtesy of Giada de Laurentiis

serves: 4
10 ounces vodka
6 ounces apple juice
1/4 cup thyme syrup, recipe posted earlier on my site
1 large apple, peeled
4 fresh thyme sprigs

Special equipment: melon baller

Chill the martini glasses.

Fill the shaker with ice. Combine the vodka, apple juice, and thyme syrup in a martini shaker. Shake for about 10 seconds. Divide between the 4 chilled martini glasses.

Use the melon baller to scoop out small balls of apple. Place 3 balls of apple and 1 sprig of thyme in each glass for garnish. Serve immediately.


maandag 14 maart 2011

Dutch apple pie for my blogs 1st anniversery!

The dutch don't let any (Birthday)anniversery go by without a piece of there homemade apple pie. So here is my version of this classic, for my blogs first anniversery!

Dutch apple pie (appeltaart or appelgebak) recipes are distinct in that they typically call for flavourings such as cinnamon and lemon juice to be added. Dutch apple pies are usually decorated in a lattice style. Dutch apple pies may include ingredients such as raisins and icing, in addition to ingredients such as apples and sugar, which they have in common with other recipes.

Recipes for Dutch apple pie go back centuries. There exists a painting from the Dutch Golden Age, dated 1626, featuring such a pie.

The basis of Dutch apple pie is a crust on the bottom and around the edges. This is then filled with pieces or slices of apple, usually a crisp and mildly tart variety such as Goudreinet or Elstar. Cinnamon and sugar are generally mixed in with the apple filling. The filling can be sprinkled with liqueur for taste although this is very uncommon. Atop the filling, strands of dough cover the pie in a lattice, holding the filling in place but keeping it visible. Though it can be eaten cold, warmed is more common, with a dash of whipped cream or vanilla ice cream. In the Netherlands it is usually eaten cold, sometimes with whipped cream on top.

Servings: 8-12

for the dough:
2 1/8 cups self-rising flour (300g)
3/4 cup butter (180g) or 3/4 cup margarine (180g)
1/2 cup brown sugar (150g)
1 teaspoon vanilla essence or 1 (8 g) packet vanilla sugar
1 pinch salt
1 egg

for the filling:
2 1/4 lbs apples(1kg)(i used Goudreinet but you can use any firm and a little sour apple you like)
3/4 cup raisins (washed and dried, 100g)
1/4 cup granulated sugar (40g)
3 teaspoons cinnamon (or more to taste)
2 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice (or more to taste)
3 tablespoon semolina(to absorb the juices)(or 2 tablespoons of corn starch)

Prep Time: 2 hrs and 70 minutes baking time

For the dough:
Sieve the flour, brown sugar, vanilla and the salt into a bowl.
Cut the butter or margarine into small cubes and add these to the flour mixture.
Beat the egg and add 3/4 of it to the flour mixture (you will need the rest for the top).
Using two knives, mix the butter/margarine and the flour mixture or use your kitchen machine(i don't have one so did it by hand).
Using one hand, kneed it to form the dough - you should be able to form it into a ball (this may take a while).
Put the ball of dough in the fridge for about an hour, in the meantime, make the

For the filling:
Peel the apples and cut them in cubes.
In a (large) bowl, combine apple, raisins, sugar, cinnamon, the lemon juice and half of the semolina(or all the corn starch)
Mix well and allow the flavors to blend, stirring occasionally.

Making the actual pie:
Butter a 9-inch round springform cake pan, or spray it with a non-stick spray.
Line the pan (bottom and sides) with about 3/4 of the dough - as long as the pan is covered, the layer need not be very thick.
Cover the bottom with the remaining semolina.
Add the filling, but try to leave the juices out.
On a lightly floured surface, roll out the remaining dough until it's less than 1/4 inch (1/2 cm) thick.
Cut the dough into strips and layer them over the apple pie to form a raster, covering no more than one third of the surface--you should be able to see quite a bit of the apple pieces (see picture).
If necessary, use (some of) the remaining dough to make the edges a bit higher.
Use the remaining egg to coat the dough strips.
Bake the pie at 175°C (340°F), just below the middle of your oven, for about 65-75 minutes.
If you have any dough left, roll it out, sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon (or left-over apple mixture) and bake it on baking paper for a few minutes.
Remove the springform only *after* the pie has cooled.
Serve warm (reheat in oven or microwave) or cold, with whipped or ice cream

- I don't bother to roll the dough out and cut it as it is pretty sticky and causes a mess. I simply wet my hands and shape it by hand, pressing the dough into the pie dish in a uniform thickness. As for the lattice-work, I shape them by hand into longish sausage shapes, which I press flat onto the pie. The pie will rise and hide a multitude of sins.
- Use any kind of nuts(about 80g) you like in the filling.
- Instead of 3 teaspoons of cinnamon use dutch speculaaskruiden or pumpkin spice mix in the same amount.
- Make a layer of almond paste on the pie bottom before you put the apple filling in.
- Soak the raisins in Rum or another liquer you like.


zondag 13 maart 2011

Thyme Simple Syrup and some facts about thyme

Thyme Simple Syrup:
Recipe can be found here
Courtesy of Giada de Laurentiis

Did you know this about thyme:

-That there are over 350 different species of Thyme.
-We mostly use Thymus vulgaris for cooking.
-Thyme has a long history of use in natural medicine in connection with chest and respiratory problems including coughs, bronchitis, and chest congestion.
-Thyme has been used since ancient times for its culinary, aromatic and medicinal properties. The ancient Egyptians used it as an embalming agent to preserve their deceased pharaohs.
-The essential oil of common thyme (Thymus vulgaris) is made up of 20-54% thymol.[6] Thymol, an antiseptic, is the main active ingredient in Listerine mouthwash.
-Fresh thyme can be stored best in the refrigerator, wrapped in a slightly damp paper towel.
-Thyme is an excellent source of iron, manganese, and vitamin K. It is also a very good source of calcium and a good source of dietary fiber.
-Thyme is native to areas such as Asia, southern Europe and the Mediterranean region and is also cultivated in North America.
-Most Euro­pean languages have related names all deriving from Latin thymus. Examples are German Thymian, Italian timo, Finnish timjami, Estonian tüümian, Dutch tijm, Russian timyan [тимьян], Greek thimari [θυμάρι] and Hebrew timin [תימין].
-The name thyme is borrowed from Latin thymus, which goes back to Greek thymon [θύμον] “thyme”. The Greek plant name is usually put in relation with thymos [θυμός] “spirit”, originally meaning “smoke” (related to Latin fumus “smoke”; cf. “perfume”) and the verb thyein [θύειν] “smoke, cure; offer an incense sacrifice”. The reference is probably the strong, smoky odour of thyme. Yet there is also another, unrelated explanation that the Greek name actually comes from Old Egyptian tham, which denoted a plant used in the mummification process

1 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
5 large sprigs fresh thyme

In a saucepan combine sugar, water, and thyme over medium heat. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until the sugar has dissolved, about 5 minutes. Take the pan off the heat and cool the syrup. Any extra cooled syrup can be saved in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

You can use this syrup in beverages, drizzle over pancakes, or anything you like. Let me know where you are using it with? I am curious...
I made an Apple Thyme martini with it posting later this week.

Yield: 1 cup

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 5 minutes


dinsdag 8 maart 2011

Chicken tetrazzini for IHCC

Since it still potluck this week, and our time with Giada de Laurentiis over at I heart Cooking clubs is almost up... I decided to make another one of her recipes, for this weeks potluck. The Foodnetwork.com has been my recipe source over the last few months, and i decided to make number 1 from the Giada top 100 recipes, Chicken Tetrazzini.

The preparation took about one hour, but it was word it. Would propably never chosen this recipe myself, but i really had to make something from the top 10 at the very least. Suprised i was that it came out this well, it taste's lovely two. It was definatly worth the try.

recipe from the foodnetwerk
courtesy of Giada de Laurentiis

cooking time: 1 hour
9 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
2 1/4 teaspoons salt
1 1/4 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
1 pound white mushrooms, sliced
1 large onion, finely chopped
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
4 cups whole milk, room temperature
1 cup heavy whipping cream, room temperature
1 cup chicken broth
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
12 ounces linguine
3/4 cup frozen peas
1/4 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves
1 cup grated Parmesan
1/4 cup dried Italian-style breadcrumbs


Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.(230 degrees C.)

Spread 1 tablespoon of butter over a 13 by 9 by 2-inch baking dish. Melt 1 tablespoon each of butter and oil in a deep large nonstick frying pan over medium-high heat. Sprinkle the chicken with 1/2 teaspoon each of salt and pepper. Add the chicken to the hot pan and cook until pale golden and just cooked through, about 4 minutes per side. Transfer the chicken to a plate to cool slightly. Coarsely shred the chicken into bite-size pieces and into a large bowl.

Meanwhile, add 1 tablespoon each of butter and oil to the same pan. Add the mushrooms and saute over medium-high heat until the liquid from the mushrooms evaporates and the mushrooms become pale golden, about 12 minutes. Add the onion, garlic, and thyme, and saute until the onion is translucent, about 8 minutes. Add the wine and simmer until it evaporates, about 2 minutes. Transfer the mushroom mixture to the bowl with the chicken.

Melt 3 more tablespoons butter in the same pan over medium-low heat. Add the flour and whisk for 2 minutes. Whisk in the milk, cream, broth, nutmeg, remaining 1 3/4 teaspoons salt, and remaining 3/4 teaspoon pepper. Increase the heat to high. Cover and bring to a boil. Simmer, uncovered, until the sauce thickens slightly, whisking often, about 10 minutes.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the linguine and cook until it is tender but still firm to the bite, stirring occasionally, about 9 minutes. Drain. Add the linguine, sauce, peas, and parsley to the chicken mixture. Toss until the sauce coats the pasta and the mixture is well blended.

Transfer the pasta mixture to the prepared baking dish. Stir the cheese and breadcrumbs in a small bowl to blend. Sprinkle the cheese mixture over the pasta. Dot with the remaining 3 tablespoons of butter. Bake, uncovered, until golden brown on top and the sauce bubbles, about 25 minutes.

maandag 7 maart 2011

Croissant Panini for IHCC

It's our last month cooking with Giada de Laurentiis at I Heart Cooking clubs, though i've been missing out on the fun the last couple of months. I am back again this week. Can't waith to hear who whe will be cooking up the next six months, because it's voting time. I hope it will be Jamie...

recipe from the foodnetwork
courtesy of Giada de Laurentiis

4 croissants, sliced in 1/2 lengthwise
4 ounces smoked Gouda, grated (about 1 1/3 cups)
8 teaspoons grated Parmesan
4 ounces Genoa salami (about 24 slices)
5 ounces arugula

Heat a panini grill. Divide 1-ounce (1/3 cup) smoked Gouda between 1 top and 1 bottom of a croissant. Sprinkle each half with 1 teaspoon Parmesan. Top each side with about 3 slices of Genoa salami (about 1 ounce of salami per sandwich, total.) Top 1 half of the sandwich with a small handful of arugula. Close the sandwich and continue with the remaining sandwiches. Grill the panini until the cheese melts, about 3 to 4 minutes.

Cut each sandwich into thirds. Place the remaining arugula on a serving platter. Place the warm sandwich slices on the arugula. Serve hot.