About Me

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Just a simple gal living on the outskirts of Portland making ends meet. I have lived in Portland for over 20 years and I am happy to call it home. On this blog you will find everything from cooking to my crazy life. I hope you enjoy.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Blueberry Crostata

The other day I made a Blueberry Crostata with some frozen blueberries that we picked last summer. It was amazing to say the least and the crust was a thing of beauty.
For the pastry 1 1/2 cups plain flour, 1/4 cup white sugar, 1/2 cup + 1 tbsp cold butter, cubed, pinch of salt, 1 egg yolk, save the egg white in a little bowl, 2 tbsp cold water, To make the dough, put the flour, sugar, butter and salt in a food processor. Pulse enough times for the mixture to resemble course crumbs.
Add the egg yolk and cold water. Continue to mix on low until a dough forms. Scrape the dough together and form it into a disc. Wrap it in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
For the blueberry filling 16 oz of frozen blueberries (make sure the berries have been thawed and rinsed and drained well), 3 tbsp white sugar, 3 tbsp corn starch
To make the filling, put the blueberries in a medium bowl and mix in the flour and sugar and set aside.
Roll the dough out into a roughly shaped disc on parchment paper. If you haven't discovered parchment paper you should...you can thank me later.
Slide the whole thing onto a baking sheet ( I used a pizza pan).
Pile the berries into the center.
Fold the crust up over the fruit overlapping the crust along the way to shape the rustic inside edge. Brush the dough with that saved egg white and sprinkle on some raw sugar.
Pop it in to a 350 degree preheated oven and bake for 30-35 minutes. This dessert is easy and goes well with fresh whipped cream.
My much loved Aunt Martha passed away early this morning. She was seventy nine years old, had spent the last 64 years being married to my rough around the edges Uncle Junior. She had been sick on and off for sometime. I remember one of the last things my uncle said to me...she was here in town at the hospital...He said to me "What the hell am I going to do!? She's been cutting my hair for the last 60 odd years!"...That's love. They weren't the perfect couple, but they knew what it took to make things work. Aunt Marth we are all going to miss you so damn much.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Peanut Butter Cookies w/ Blue Agave

My son has dietary issues due to stage 2 diabetes, so he asked me if I could make him some cookies without using Sugar. I gave it a shot. The cookies came out really tasty and baked perfectly just not very crunchy, so I am working on that next. I took a standard peanut butter cookie recipe and tweaked it to suit my needs.
Ingredients 1/2 cup butter, softened, 1/2 cup natural (no sugar added) peanut butter, 1/2 cup blue agave, 1/2 teaspoon baking soda, 1/2 teaspoon baking powder, 1 egg, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, 1/2 cup chopped unsalted roasted peanuts
Directions In a large mixing bowl beat butter and peanut butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add the agave, baking soda, and baking powder. Beat until combined, scraping sides of bowl occasionally. Beat in the egg and vanilla until combined. Beat in as much of the flour as you can with the mixer. Cover and chill dough 30 minutes to 1 hour or until easy to handle. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Shape dough into 1-inch balls (I used my cookie scoop). Roll balls in chopped up peanuts. Place balls 2 inches apart on an parchment lined cookie sheet. Using the tines of a fork, flatten balls by making crisscross marks on top. Bake for 7 to 9 minutes or until bottoms are light brown. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool. Makes about 36 cookies.
I have some other posts to work on. I have been busy with being back to work and trying to get Spring cleaning and gardening done. I hope everyone enjoys the rest of their weekends.

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Things that I have been up to.

The other day my daughter asked me for some help with a recipe she got off the internet for breakfast sandwiches that you can freeze for up to a couple of weeks and simply reheat in the microwave. She was looking to budget her paycheck a little better but still have something to eat every morning at work. She is not an oatmeal kind of kid and rarely eats breakfast cereal. She also doesn't have time in the morning before work to sit down and eat, so these were a great idea she just tosses one in her bag and heads to the office.
The list of items you will need is relatively short: One 12 pack of English muffins split in half, one package of lunchmeat (we used ham), Cheddar cheese 1 lb brick will do it (you will have leftovers), and a dozen eggs.
We followed the directions/recipe sorta...we cooked the eggs individually by scrambling one egg at a time with 1/2 tsp of half n half, pouring it into a lightly greased (spray works great) ramekin and putting them on a cookie sheet then placing them in a 375 preheated oven for roughly 15 min. I had 4 ramekins so we did this twice. Then when the eggs are done slide them out of the ramekins and let them cool on a plate. While the eggs are cooling take your English muffin halves and place a slice of cheese to cover the bottom of the muffin, followed by a layer of ham depending on the thickness of your ham. Just a slice or two should work fine. Then top with your cooled egg and the muffin top. The recipe called for just wrapping with plastic wrap, but we wrapped with foil and then slid into sandwich bag, and into your freezer To reheat just pop into a microwave oven for a min or two and shazam! breakfast sandwich.
We plan on making these again for her but maybe stepping things up a bit. For example maybe adding a small amount of diced fresh spinach to the egg, toasting the muffins first, using Swiss cheese instead of Cheddar or switching out the meat to something a little more breakfast like...maybe bacon or black forest ham. It was really fun to work in the kitchen with her we don't do it often and I hope we get to do it again before she moves out this summer.
Have a great weekend everyone and for those who observe it Have a Happy Easter.