Wednesday, November 27, 2013

apple orange cranberry sauce

My favorite dish at the Thanksgiving table...  Apple Orange Cranberry Sauce.  In the 1960's this dish became popular, and there have been all kinds of variations of it since.  The spices bring this version to life.  It's wonderful alongside any meat, spread on a homemade yeast roll, or just by the spoonful.
Of course, I wouldn't do that. :)

Enjoy your family, friends, and good food.  Be thankful for the hands that prepared it, and know it was made with love. 

Blessings to you and yours,
The Lazy Daisy Kitchen

Apple Orange Cranberry Sauce makes 4 cups
  • 1/2 orange
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tart apple (I used Granny Smith)
  • 3 cups fresh cranberries
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
~ Squeeze the juice from the orange and set the juice aside.  Remove and discard the membrane from the inside of the orange rind and cut the rind into small dice.

~ In a small saucepan over high heat, combine the rind and the water and bring to a boil.  Cook for 10 minutes, then drain and set aside. 

~ Peel, core and quarter the apples.  Cut into 1/2-inch dice and place in saucepan.  Sort the cranberries, discarding any soft ones.

~ Add Cranberries to the apples along with the juice, rind, sugar and spices.  Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce the heat to low and cover the pan partially.  

~ Simmer gently, stirring occasionally, until the sauce thickens and berries begin to burst, 10-15 minutes.

~ Transfer to a heatproof bowl and let cool for 1 hour before serving.

Tips and Tricks:
*There is a stronger orange flavor with the original recipe, so you can reduce the rind amount if you prefer less orange taste.

*If you like a sweeter rather than tart sauce, add 1/8 cup more sugar.  


Tuesday, November 26, 2013

sage sausage and apple dressing

Thanksgiving.  Give me the great conversation, the Macy's Day Parade, and the sides, please.  While so many are concerned with the proper preparation of the bird, I will gladly have my fill of the supporting actors at the table.  I do like a good, well-seasoned and juicy piece of turkey like the next guy, but if there aren't fantastic sides to accompany, I'm at a loss.  And there's no way I'd know what to do with a Thanksgiving plate sans dressing and cranberry sauce.  They are my absolute favorites!

So, to celebrate this week, I'm sharing a couple of my favorite recipes with you.  If you haven't chosen yours yet, these will not disappoint.  

Today's feature is the dressing.  I know I've said before how much I love sweet and salty together.  This dressing is not sweet, mind you, but the apples add a slight sweetness that rounds out the flavor beautifully.  And if you aren't a sage fan, don't worry that this is too strong.  It's just enough to make it... well... Thanksgiving'ish.   

So excited.  In less than 48 hours it will be my favorite holiday.  And to make it more special, Indiana has already had some light snow since we've been in town.  Even more reason to scoot closer to the fire (and the ones I love) and count blessings.  God is good.

Sage Sausage and Apple Dressing
makes 8-10 servings
  • 16-oz bag stuffing cubes (I use Pepperidge Farm)
  • 6 tbsp unsalted butter, plus more for greasing pan and topping
  • 1 lb sage sausage
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 cooking apples (I use Golden Delicious), peeled, cored, and chopped
  • 1-2 ribs celery with leaves, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 3 cups chicken broth, homemade or low-sodium canned
  • 1/4 cup chopped, fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1/2 cup walnut pieces, toasted
  • 2 eggs, beaten
~ Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

~ Put stuffing cubes in large bowl and set aside.  Butter 3 quart baking dish or 9x13 pan.

~ Melt 2 tbsp butter in large skillet and add sausage, breaking apart and cooking until
    pink is just gone but not dried out, about 5 minutes.  Do not overcook.  

~  Add sausage and drippings to bread cubes.

~ Melt the remaining butter in the pan and add the onion, apples, and celery cooking until
    softened, about 5 minutes.  Sprinkle with salt and stir.

~ Add broth to pan and bring to a boil.  Stir in parsley.

~ Pour mixture over bread cubes and toss until evenly moistened.  Mix in the walnuts and

~ Pack loosely into dish and cook, uncovered, for 40 minutes or until top forms a crust.

~ Remove pan from oven and pour 2 tbsp turkey drippings or melted butter over top and 
    return to oven for another 20 minutes, or until top is crisp and golden.

Recipe from Food Network.


Saturday, November 23, 2013

peaches and cream hand pies

Six years ago last month, I knew we had landed at the perfect church home for us.  Why?  Not because of a large number of members.  Not because of beautiful facilities.  Not because it had a ton of programs that would serve me.  I knew it was the right place, because shortly after we began visiting, we walked into their annual October Family Day to a group of long-time members laboring over the counter making homemade hand pies by the dozens.  Sound silly?  Not to me.

It is a blessing to watch the grandmothers and great-grandmothers of this life laboring for others, isn't it?  You can just see the joy radiating from them, as they work quickly and efficiently doing for others.  That's what I saw that day.  A group who had made the treat no less than hundreds of times in their life, I'd suspect, chatting happily and working tirelessly as if it were their first.  I want to be like that when I grow up.

A while back, I posted a peach filling recipe and promised a recipe using it to come.  Well, here it is.  Of course, you could use any kind of filling you wish, but this is wonderful.  With just a smear of softened cream cheese, a sprinkle of sugar and cinnamon, topped with a dollop of filling, these pies are heavenly served warm.  Creamy... slightly tart... You'll make these again and again.

Peaches and Cream Hand Pies
makes approx. 6 pies (depending on size preferred)

Pate Brisee

  • 3 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 2 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 sticks unsalted butter, cold and cut into small pieces
  • 1/2 cup ice water, plus more if needed
~ In the bowl of a food processor, combine flour, sugar and salt; pulse to combine.  Add 
    butter and pulse until mixture resembles coarse crumbs with a few larger pieces 
    remaining (if you don't have a processor, mix dry ingredients and cut in butter with 
    pastry blender or two knives).

~ With machine running, add water through feed tube in a slow steady stream, just until
    dough holds together and is not wet or sticky (about 30 seconds).  Do not over-process.  
    Test by squeezing some of the dough together.  If still too crumbly, add a little more 
    water, one tablespoon at a time.

~ Turn out dough onto clean work surface.  Divide in half and place one half on piece of
    plastic wrap.  Shape into flattened rectangles.  Wrap in plastic and refrigerate one hour
    or overnight.

For pies
  • Pie filling of choice
  • Cream cheese, softened and cut into small cubes for easier spreading
  • Sugar Cinnamon mixture
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
~ Heat oven to 375 degrees.

~ On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough to 1/4-inch thickness.  Using desired size
    circle (I used a six-inch round bowl to cut mine), cut out circles, working quickly, and 
    reincorporating scraps and re-rolling/cutting until all dough is used.  Try not to over
    work to keep dough tender.  

~ Working with one circle at a time, spread desired cream cheese on circle, leaving a 
    quarter-inch edge.  Sprinkle liberally with sugar/cinnamon mixture followed by 
    2 tablespoons of filling.  

~ Lightly brush connecting edges with egg, fold over, and use tines of fork to seal.  

~ Using tip of knife, cut slits to allow for steam.  Brush with egg wash and sprinkle with 
    more sugar/cinnamon.

~ Repeat using the rest of the dough.

~ Place pies on parchment-lined baking sheet and bake for 25-30 minutes or until crusts
    are golden brown and filling is bubbling.

Pate Brisee recipe from Martha Stewart.
Filling from The Lazy Daisy Kitchen. 

Saturday, November 9, 2013

SOUPer saturday - daniel's potato soup

I'm fairly sure I've mentioned to you a time or two -  or a hundred - how much I love Fall. Where we are living for the time, we sit on top of a hill.  The sun shines around 6:30 AM just beautifully on a sea of trees that sit atop a similar hill across the way.  With the many colors our Tennessee trees are currently boasting, it's a sight to behold.  A piece of Heaven on Earth, you might say.

We're heading out in just a bit to take a look at a house that would be nothing short of the perfect Fall house.  In fact, Winter, Spring, and Summer would work just fine there too.  I'm trying to be open to the fact that it might not be the one, but the setting... trees of all kinds... a horse farm behind...  a lake within view...  I don't know.  I'm thinking, maybe???  

But, first things first.  I must stand in the middle of the kitchen and decide whether or not it can adequately become the heart of our home.  There has to be room for loaves of bread to rise, ice cream to churn, and soups to simmer.  I have to be able to stand and knead while also being able to talk to those who come and visit.  Sound crazy?  I know it is.  But it's so important.  As we've walked into house after house looking for the one, our prayer, time and time again, has been to find one that will serve God and serve others.  For me, more times than not, that happens in the kitchen.

I would love to think the next time I post, I'm sharing the news that we've found our home; the place God picked just for us.  But in the meantime, I'll share this recipe.  One of Daniel's most requested favorites, and so named in his honor.  

Enjoy your weekend and your family!

Daniel's Potato Soup
makes 6 servings
  • 4 lbs potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 6 slices bacon (plus more for serving), cooked and crumbled
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 3 tbs butter
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 3 tbs all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 1/2 cups cheese (plus more for serving)
  • 1/2 tsp celery seed
  • sour cream
~ Place cubed potatoes in large pot and cover potatoes with cold water.  Bring to boil, turn 
    down heat, and simmer until tender.  Drain, place potatoes in bowl, and set aside.

~ In pot, cook bacon until crisp, leaving grease in pan.  Remove bacon and drain on paper 

~ Cook chopped onion in grease until softened.  Scrape out onion into bowl and wipe out 

~ Melt butter on medium heat.  When foaming, add minced garlic and cook about 30 
    seconds, or until fragrant.

~ Quickly stir flour into butter until combined, and gradually whisk in milk.  Continue
    stirring and cooking on medium heat until thickened and mixture coats the whisk or 

~ Slowly add in stock, continuing to stir until combined.  Add in potatoes.

~ With potato masher or back of large spoon, smash potatoes until desired consistency is

~ Stir in bacon and celery seed.  Add cheese and stir until melted.

~ Serve bowls of soup topped with additional bacon, cheese, and a dollop of sour cream.

Recipe from The Lazy Daisy Kitchen.

Monday, November 4, 2013

black bottom pumpkin pie

Trivia question of the day:  What do you get when you cross a blogger with a downed server?

Answer:  Nothing.

I had two posts ready for you that I was so excited to share last week, but I couldn't because of multiple days of internet difficulties.  I will make up for it this week.  Promise.

Now that it is officially past Halloween, my mind is on all things Thanksgiving.  It's my favorite holiday.  The colors are warm.  Everyone is eagerly planning get-togethers and readying for the Christmas season.  And food is at the center of it all.  

I am usually not a big fan of messing with really wonderful holiday food traditions.  And I definitely think the stars of the Thanksgiving table have remained that way for a reason.  The stuffing, creamed corn, mashed potatoes...  They don't need a lot of adjusting.  And it's not like I went out looking to alter the pumpkin pie either.  But - oh, my.  I am glad I messed with this one. 

Requiring a bit of a process, indeed, the Black Bottom Pumpkin Pie - to me - is worth every single step.  I do believe I could have sat with a spoon and eaten just the maple whipped cream and been totally satisfied.  Let's not even talk about the fabulous crust made of cinnamon graham crackers and gingersnaps (genius), the bottom chocolate layer, the caramel toffee layer, and - of course - the many-spice goodness so many of us dearly love in pumpkin pie.  

For your upcoming holiday spread, this recipe is stunning (my picture does NOT do it justice), and completely over-the-top.  Just what the guests, soon to be around your table, have ordered!

my favorite way to make pumpkin pie
one year ago: butternut squash soup

Black Bottom Pumpkin Pie
makes one 10-inch pie
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 cup cinnamon graham crackers
  • 1 cup crushed gingersnaps
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate morsels
  • 2 cups whipping cream, divided
  • 2 (1.4 oz) chocolate-covered toffee candy bars, finely chopped
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tbsp. vanilla
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
~ Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Bake pecans in a single layer in a shallow pan 8-10 
    minutes or until toasted and fragrant, stirring halfway through.  Cool 10 minutes.

~ Stir together graham cracker crumbs, next 2 ingredients, and toasted pecans until
    blended.  Press crumb mixture on bottom, up sides, and onto lip of a lightly greased
    10-inch pie plate (being in temp housing, I did not bring this pan with me, so I had to 
    opt for a tin one to get me by).

~ Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes or until lightly browned.  Transfer to a wire rack,
    and cool completely (about 30 minutes)

~ Microwave 1 cup semisweet chocolate morsels and 1/2 cup whipping cream in a small
    microwavable bowl at HIGH 1 minute or until melted, stirring at 30-second intervals.
~ Spoon chocolate mixture over bottom of pie crust; sprinkle candy bars over chocolate
    mixture.  Cover and chill 1 hour or until chocolate mixture is set.

~ Meanwhile, whisk together sugar and flour in a heavy 3-qt. saucepan; add eggs, egg
    yolks, and milk, and whisk until blended.  Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly,
    8-10 minutes or until a pudding-like thickness (this is very important to follow
    exactly!).  Mixture will begin to bubble and will hold soft peaks when whisk is lifted.

~ Remove from heat, and whisk in pumpkin, salt, spices, and vanilla.  Transfer to a bowl.

~ Place heavy-duty plastic wrap directly on warm filling to prevent a film from forming; 
    chill 30 minutes.

~ Spoon pumpkin mixture over chocolate; cover and chill 8 to 24 hours or until filling is

~ Beat remaining 1 1/2 cups cream at high sped with an electric mixer until foamy; 
    gradually add syrup, beating until soft peaks form.  Spread over pie.

Recipe from Southern Living.