Thursday, April 30, 2009

Happy Caramel Corn Day!

Today is National Caramel Corn Day!

wamozart12 will celebrate by adding caramel corn to her yogurt, cheese, strawberries, bread, eggs shopping list tonight.

In completely unrelated news, I have some recipes to share. These include some "secrets"- which aren't exactly secrets, but rather, super easy recipes I hardly consider a recipe, yet get rave reviews time and time again. Enjoy!

Tomato Tart
Ingredients:
2 medium tomatoes, sliced into thin rounds
1 sheet of puff pastry, thawed
3-4T mustard
2/3-3/4 cup grated cheese (gruyere works well)

Roll out puff pastry to thin it out a bit, and to fit on a large sheet pan. Spread mustard over pastry, arrange tomatoes, and cover evenly with grated cheese. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until edges are beginning to brown, in a preheated 400oF oven. Slice and serve warm or at room temperature.

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Pear and Blue Cheese tart
Ingredients:
2 pears, sliced in to very thin wedges
3t crumbled blue cheese
1/4cup pecans or candied pecans, crushed
1 sheet of puff pastry, thawed

Roll out puff pastry to thin it out a bit. Cut into 2 long rectangles, score edges 1/2inch in from the edge, and using a fork, pierce 2 columns down the middle. Bake for 10 minutes at 400oF, removing pastry before it begins to brown.

On each rectangle, arrange pear slices decoratively (fans, or overlap the slices in a long row down the length of the pastry, for example). Sprinkle with blue cheese to taste, and then with pecans. Bake for 5-10 minutes more at 400oF, until pastry begins to brown. Serve warm or at room temperature.

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Mango dip
Good as an appetizer with crackers or baguette, or for breakfast on an english muffin
1 8oz package of cream cheese (regular or low-fat), room temperature
1/3cup mango chutney

Combine ingredients, beat until well-combined. Store in the fridge.

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Catherine’s Cosmopolitans
makes 1 serving or 1 pitcher
2 parts vodka
1 part triple sec
1 part lime juice
4 parts cranberry juice

Combine all with ice, serve with a lime wedge as garnish.

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Catherine’s non-alcoholic tropical cosmos

4 parts cranberry juice
2 parts pineapple juice
1 part lime juice
2 parts ginger ale, club soda or sprite

Combine all with ice, garnish with a lime wedge to serve.

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Tomato mozzarella skewers with fig-balsamic reduction

Cherry tomatoes
Small mozzarella balls (about the time of a cherry tomato)
Fresh basil leaves
Fig balsamic reduction (recipe below)
Bamboo skewers

Arrange ingredients on a skewer: a good combination is tomato-mozzarella-basil-tomato. Arrange all skewers on a serving plate, drizzle with fig-balsamic reduction.

Fig-balsamic reduction

8 dried black mission figs, chopped finely
1 cup balsamic vinegar

Combine ingredients in a small saucepan, cook over very low heat until reduced by 1/3, 20-40 minutes (depending on individual stoves). Be sure not to let vinegar burn.

Store in refrigerator, stays good for quite a long time. Also delicious as a salad dressing (and fat free!)

1 comment:

Curly Sue said...

the problem with reading and re-reading your blog, dear Catherine, is that it simply makes me hungry. particularly for your macaroons, for which, of course, i have again misplaced your recipe. oh the travesty of being 2000 miles away from your kitchen, especially around the holidays!