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Brown Butter Apple Tart with An Emphasis on BUTTER

Wednesday, 30. January 2013 5:25

The apples are a supporting player in this tart. It's the butter that's the star.

Pretty rounds of apples arrayed all over the top of this tart catch your eye first.

So much so, you’d think they’d be the star of this dessert.

But that’s not the case.

The real hero of this tart is butter.

Browned until it’s nutty and oh-so fragrant.

I’m almost afraid to tell you how much butter there is. I know my family members almost fell over when I told them as I served them slices.

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Category:Fruit, General, Recipes (Sweet) | Comments (8) | Author:

Get Your Mixing Bowls Ready: Apple Pumpkin Walnut Muffins

Wednesday, 23. January 2013 5:25

Moist apple pumpkin muffins crowned with a walnut half.

There are muffins these days that could double as dessert.

You know the ones I mean — the ones we all fall for because they’re covered in irresistible streusel or sugary glaze that we con ourselves into thinking are still perfect breakfast food.

These are not those kinds of muffins.

“Apple Pumpkin Walnut Muffins” are not overly sweet, especially because I was forced to cut the light brown sugar amount in half when I realized my box was nearly depleted and I was too lazy to run to the store. (Hey, what can I say?) But you can use the full 1/2 cup measure of brown sugar plus 1/2 cup granulated and they’d still be far from sugar bombs.

Pinata apples from Washington State.

The recipe is from “The Apple Lover’s Cookbook” (W.W. Norton & Company) by Amy Traverso. The book, of which I received a review copy, has become my go-to source for apple recipes, what with its range from savory apple uses (“Duck Panzanella with Apples and Thyme” to sweet ones (“Rustic Apple Brown Betty”).

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Category:Fruit, General, Recipes (Sweet) | Comments (11) | Author:

A Load of Lemons, Part II: Northern Greek Braised Pork and Leeks

Tuesday, 15. January 2013 5:25

A velvety sauce enriched with egg and lemon juice makes this pork stew irresistible.

Although I’ve traveled through parts of Europe, I’ve yet to make it to Greece.

(Cue melancholy violin music now.)

Yes, the white-washed buildings and mesmerizing blue sea there have yet to be explored.

Until I finally do journey there, I have to content myself with getting my fill of Greek food at Bay Area restaurants. Or by making it, myself.

Thankfully, Diane Kochilas’ new cookbook, “The Country Cooking of Greece” (Chronicle Books), makes that part easy. The cookbook, of which I received a review copy, is the latest by Kochilas, who has written 18 other books specializing in Greek cuisine.

The 200 recipes spotlight Greek country cooking, full of nutritious greens, whole grains and the bounty of the Mediterranean Sea.

“Northern Greek Braised Pork and Leeks” is a classic dish made all over northern Greece that’s a favorite Sunday repast.

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Category:Fruit, General, Recipes (Savory) | Comments (10) | Author:

A Load of Lemons, Part I: Meyer Lemon Cake

Monday, 14. January 2013 5:25

More than a pound of lemons goes into this cake, along with almonds and candied ginger.

That’s what my backyard tree gifted me this winter: a load of Meyer lemons.

After last season’s dismal crop that netted me barely enough lemons to make a couple quarts of lemonade, I was overjoyed to see the bumper harvest this year from my one little dwarf tree.

When life gives you a load of lemons, you just have to use them, of course. In everything you can think of — and then some.

So, I couldn’t have been happier to spy this recipe for “Meyer Lemon Cake” in the new “The Sunset Essential Western Cookbook” (Oxmoor House), of which I received a review copy. The cookbook, by the editors of Sunset magazine, features more than 150 recipes that are so very Californian in spirit — everything from “Hangtown Fry” to “Char Siu-Glazed Pork and Pineapple Buns” to “Tagliatelle with Nettle and Pine Nut Sauce” to homemade fortune cookies.

This quite citrusy cake uses more than a pound of lemons. Most of them are pulverized — rind, pulp and all — to go into the cake batter, which contains no butter. Instead, ground almonds give it richness, along with five large eggs.

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Category:Fruit, General, Ginger, Recipes (Sweet) | Comments (20) | Author:

Classy Non-Alcoholic Beverages to Ring In the New Year

Friday, 28. December 2012 5:25

12NtM's Blanc, a sparkling, non-alcoholic beverage.

If you’re the designated driver on New Year’s Eve or just prefer to imbibe something that won’t leave you tipsy, you’ll enjoy two new non-alcoholic beverages.

First up, 12NtM sparkling beverages, created by New York Chef David Burke.

Not surprisingly with that pedigree, they are a most elegant alternative to wines. The fizzy beverages come in a white, Blanc, and a red, Rouge. The Blanc is made with citrus, ginger, cardamom, herbs, spices, fruit juices and a blend of three teas. The Rouge features pomegranate, black currant, bergamot, juniper berry, herbs, spices, fruit juices and three different teas.

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Category:Chefs, Fruit, General, New Products | Comments (9) | Author: