Friday, December 31, 2010

Apple and Persimmon Crisp


Developed December 30, 2010. These luscious fruits with their vivid color and jammy sweet flesh have a short season, in Autumn in Northern Hemisphere.

1 ripe Japanese persimmon (also called, Sharon fruit or fuyu), trimmed and thinly sliced
2 medium eating apples (Pink Lady, Braeburn, or similar), peeled, cored, thinly sliced
1 T all-purpose flour
1 T vegetable oil
3 T brown sugar
pinch of salt
pinch of freshly-ground pepper
1 to 2 T lemon juice, depending on sweetness of fruit
1/4 t ground cinnamon
1/8 t ground nutmeg
1/8 t ground clove
1/3 c all-purpose flour
1/4 c brown sugar
1/3 c rolled oats
3 T cold butter, cut into small dice
1/4 t ground cinnamon
Preheat oven to 350 ºF.  Mix the filling ingredients thoroughly, let stand 15 minutes, and spread in a six-inch glass baking dish. As shown in the photo above, the recipe when doubled will fill a nine-inch pie pan. Mix the dry ingredients for the topping. With your fingers or a pastry cutter, work in the butter until no lumps of butter are visible. Cover the fruit with topping and firm into place. Place on baking sheet to catch any spill over, and bake 35 to 40 minutes, until topping is browned and the fruit is bubbling. Let cool uncovered until just warm. Pair each serving with ice cream for an extra treat.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Quick Avgolemono Soup

Created April 1, 2007; revised December 28, 2010.
1-1/2 c cooked rice
3-1/2 c chicken stock
1 rib celery, diced
2 green onions, finely cross cut
1 T butter
3 eggs, at room temperature
juice of 1 lemon
1 t grated lemon zest
1 T minced parsley
Soften vegetables in butter in a deep pot over medium heat. To hasten cooking, microwave the diced celery for one minute in the microwave. Add stock and rice, and heat through. In a large bowl, beat eggs well and stir in lemon juice. Add hot broth to egg mixture in spoonfuls with stirring until quite hot. The egg mixture must be quite hot and dilute to prevent curdling. Stir hot egg mixture into soup. Add parsley and zest, and stir over medium heat until it thickens. Serves four.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Red Pears in Red Wine

First prepared December 22, 2010. Makes a refreshing starter at breakfast, or a healthy mid-day snack, or a light, natural dessert at supper.
1 large ripe red Bartlett pear
1/2 t sugar
1/8 t ground cinnamon
pinch salt
pinch freshly ground pepper
1 oz mellow red table wine
Mix the wine and seasonings together in a small bowl. Peel, core, and cut the pear into bite-size pieces, and add them to the bowl. Marinate for 30 to 60 minutes, stirring occasionally. Serves 2.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Beef Ravioli in Broth with Spinach

First prepared January 17, 2007. Modified from a Rachel Ray recipe on
2 c (1 large) white onion, sliced thinly through the poles
2 t minced garlic
2 T vegetable oil
25 oz package of frozen beef ravioli, prepared according to package directions
1 qt beef broth
8 oz fresh spinach, rinsed
pinch of grated nutmeg
In a large sauce pan, heat the oil, add the onions and a pinch of salt, and sauté until lightly browned. Add the garlic, and when fragrant, add the broth and nutmeg and heat for a few minutes. Add the drained and cooled ravioli and reheat thoroughly. Stir in the spinach, and cook for two minutes until wilted and cooked through. Do not overcook. Serves 3 or 4 for dinner. 
Variation 1: Substitute cheese, spinach, or seafood ravioli and use chicken, vegetable, or seafood stock.
Variation 2: Substitute bok choy or other tender greens and adjust cooking time as appropriate.