2012 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 8,900 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 15 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

Lydia Buckingham – Cranberry Apple Pie

Another pie adaptation from the Colonial Cookbook, comes from the recipe of Lydia Buckingham of Old Saybrook, Connecticut. This cranberry apple pie would have been cooked in a cast iron Dutch oven over a fire in a kitchen not unlike the colonial kitchen you can see at the William Floyd Estate in Mastic Beach. There is a good deal of wet ingredients in this pie, so break out the pie birds to vent the steam and lets make some dessert!

Here’s what you’ll need:

Filling:

  • ¾ cup cranberries
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup raisins
  • ¼ cup brandy
  • 8 large Macintosh apples peeled, paired, cored, and sliced
  • 2/3 cup of sugar
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp cornstarch
  • ½ tsp cinnamon

Pie:

  • 1 pie shell
  • 1 piece of piecrust dough for the cover
  • 1 medium egg, 1 tbsp milk, ¼ tsp cinnamon for the wash

Mix the cranberries and brown sugar and let them stand for about an hour. Plump the raisins in the brandy for about an hour. In a large bowl mix the remaining filler ingredients; then add in the cranberry and raisin mixtures. Stir to combine. Place the pie bird in the shell and pour the filling in. cover with an upper crust. In a small bowl whisk the egg, milk, and cinnamon wash. Brush the wash over the crust. Place the pie on a pre-heated 425 degree oven for about 20 minutes. Reduce the oven to 350 degrees and continue baking for about 40 minutes.

This pie is nice to serve warm with a small scoop of vanilla ice cream.

pie-bird

If you get a chance, visit the William Floyd Estate to see a colonial kitchen.

 

Abigail Adam’s Pumpkin Pie

I was going through a book of colonial recipes for the New York / New England region looking for something old / new for me to bring to the table. Well, I came across several dishes that look interesting to me. One of these, Abigail Adam’s pumpkin pie recipe, looks quite good to try. I’m sure its an adaptation, because it calls for a pre-made pie crust, but I think I’m going to like this one because of the quarter cup of dark rum, and I’ll use the Captain Morgans.

Here’s what you’ll need:

Filling:

  • 1 ½ cups of pumpkin
  • ¼ cup of dark brown sugar firmly packed
  • ½ tsp of fresh grated ginger
  • 1 tsp fresh grated nutmeg
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 cup of heavy cream
  • ¼ cup of whole milk
  • ¼ cup of Captain Morgan dark rum
  • 3 medium eggs lightly beaten

Pie:

  • 1 ten inch pie crust
  • Pecans and whipped cream for topping

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Mix the filling ingredients in a large bowl, and then pour it into the pie shell. Give this a minute or two to settle. Then, pop this in the oven and bake at 425 for ten minutes. Reduce the heat to 350 degrees and continue baking for about forty minutes. The pie is done when a knife inserted into the center comes out clean. When done, take it out of the oven, let cool for a moment, and serve it with some real eggnog.

Abigail's pumpkin pie

Abigail’s pumpkin pie

This recipe is adapted from “the Thirteen Colonies Cookbook” – Donovan, Hatrak, Mills, Shull

Gingerbread Pancakes

I enjoy whipping up gingerbread pancakes on Christmas morning, or more often than not, Christmas brunch, but these pancakes are heart and hearth warming on any winter’s days.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/8 tsp. ground cloves
  • 1/4 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 Tbs. light molasses
  • 4 Tbs. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted
  • 3/4 cup water

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger and cloves. In another bowl, whisk together the brown sugar, eggs, molasses, 2 Tbs. of the melted butter and the water. Add the wet mixture to the dry mixture and stir until just blended. There will probably be some small lumps it doesn’t need to be completely smoothed out. Why bother stressing over little things.

Now, on a hot griddle I ladle out the batter and let it cook for about three or four minutes (reducing the heat to just below ‘medium’), until it gets a good layer of bubbles on the surface. Flip the pancake and let it cook another minute or two. You can park these on a platter in a warm (200 degree) oven until you’ve gone through all the batter, the whip out the patter. Bring it to the tale and collect the accolades. Remember guests who do not give accolades get no seconds!

Gingerbread Pancakes

Gingerbread Pancakes

End of the World Mayan Chili

So, it’s the end of the world and what’s for dinner? How about we whip up something in the crock-pot so we can actually every the day and get to all those things on our bucket list. Then, if the end of the world doesn’t kill you, the heat from this chili will make you wish it had.

 

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • One ½ pound package chorizo sausage
  • Two poblano peppers diced
  • Two onions diced
  • One pound kidney beans
  • One 28 ounce can of diced tomatoes
  • Two tsp chili powder

Toss everything into the crock pot and go and enjoy the day! BTW did anyone notice anything interesting in the ingredients list?

mayan-calendar

Tortellini with Crab Sauce

Pasta and sauce, a simple combination that can have so many different variations on the theme. Well, this one is inspired in part by a Sicilian sauce I had at a little Italian place. There are no anchovies in this version however (perhaps next time we’ll add the little salt bombs).

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 1 lb crab meat
  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • ½ cup chopped celery
  • 3 cloves garlic finely chopped
  • 2 rashers of thick cut bacon
  • 1 28 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1 8 oz can tomato sauce
  • ½ tsp paprika
  • Sea salt
  • Dash of pepper

Remove any shell and cartilage from the crab meat. Sauté the onion, celery, garlic, and bacon until the bacon has been fairly well rendered and the veggies are tender. Add the tomatoes, tomato sauce, paprika, and a dash of sea salt and pepper. Simmer this for about a half an hour getting the sauce to meld together. Then, add the crab meat and heat through. Serve this over your favorite pasta but I really like this over cheese tortellini.

tortellini-chunky-tomato-sauce

Clams Au Gratin

This is a noodle casserole with fresh clams and clam juice. It’s a yummy, cheesy, seaside comfort food for chilly winter days. This dish bakes up nicely in a warm oven that helps take the chill out of the air.

 

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • One pint of clam meat
  • 1 ¼ cups of clam juice and milk
  • 2 eggs
  • ¼ cup of butter (bless you Paula Dean)
  • 1 cup of elbow macaroni cooked
  • 1 cup of bread crumbs
  • 1 cup of grated cheddar cheese (use the good stuff or you’ll get tat day-glow faux cheese nastiness)
  • 1 tsp seal salt
  • Dash of pepper

 

Shuck the clams and save the juice. Chop up the clam meat, scald the juice and milk or cream if you prefer.

Add the butter and melt that into the liquid. Take it off the heat and add in the macaroni, bead crumbs, grated cheese, salt, pepper, clams, mix well. Then, blend in the two eggs. Transfer this mixture to a well greased casserole dish.

Bake the casserole in an oven at 350 degrees for about forty five minutes. Let it set for a few minutes before bringing it to the table.

SteamerClams1

Scallops with Captain Morgan Coconut Rum Sauce

Keeping a spirits theme going, this one’s a refugee from the summer grilling menu. But, if you have one of those indoor grillers, this tropical scallop dish can be made anytime (especially when there is a sale on scallops).

Here’s what you’ll need:

Coconut Rum Sauce:

  • ¼ cup Captain Morgan Pirate Bay Coconut rum
  • ½ cup sliced bananas
  • ¼ cup pineapple
  • ¼ cup light coconut milk
  • ¼ cup orange juice
  • 2 tsp fresh lime juice

Scallops:

  • 1 pound large sea scallops
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup fresh grated coconut

Preheat oven to 350°.
In a blender container combine all ingredients for coconut rum sauce and puree until smooth. Set aside.
Lightly coat a baking pan with canola oil. Dredge scallops in flour, then dip into beaten eggs and roll in grated coconut. Place in prepare baking pan and bake for 15 to 18 minutes or until coconut is golden.
Warm up the coconut sauce. Serve 3 coconut-crusted scallops with sauce.

captain-morgan-parrot-bay-coconut-rum.gif

Shrimp with Patron Silver Glaze

It’s a clean, crisp, and smooth nectar from the agave plant crafted into one of the best things to come from Jalisco Mexico. And it makes a nice glaze for shrimp. And being close to the holidays, it’s a nice way of finishing up the tequila left over from summer and make room for a new bottle on the shelf. So, let’s grab that bottle of Patron Silver, free a lime from the fridge, and make some sweet shrimp.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 1 cup Patron Silver tequila
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 1½ tsp. lime juice
  • Half a dozen or so jumbo shrimp

Clean, peal, and de-vein your shrimp.

Combine the tequila, brown sugar, and lime juice in a sauce pan and simmer until its about the same consistence of maple syrup.

In a hot pan sauté the shrimp for a bout one minute, then brush the glaze on them and let them cook another minute or so. These guys do cook up rather quick.

I like to serve these guys up on a bed of roasted corn relish, or over Cajun spiced rice. But you could just plate them up with a shot of Patron Silver and a lime wedge and enjoy them as an appetizer (especially if you prepare this with a larger number of smaller shrimp).

Tequila- Patron-Silver

Jim Beam Bluefish

One thing we have in abundance here on Long Island is fresh local bluefish. Another thing we have plenty of is fresh local liquor stores. And in almost all of those strip-mall shoppes is a bottle of Jim Beam. So, lets combine these two local favorites into a main course of Jim Beam Bluefish.

Here’s what you’ll need:

Marinade:

  • 1 jigger Jim Beam
  • Brown Sugar, 6 tsp unpacked
  • Soy Sauce, 2 tbsp
  • Ginger, ground, 1 tbsp
  • Lime Juice, 1 fl oz
  • Garlic, 3 cloves, minced
  • Pepper, black, 1 dash

Additionally:

  • 1 ½ pounds of bluefish fillets

Combine the marinade ingredients in a large zip lock bag & seal and keep in the fridge for 1 1/2 hours.

Now, heat a large skillet. Give it s coating of vegetable oil. Add bluefish and marinate to skillet and cook for 4 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness.

Then place on plates and drizzle with sauce. I like to serve this up with oven roasted potatoes and a bottle of Sam Adams Cherry Wheat beer.

jim_beam_bluefish