Having a party or need a take along to a party. Try my Sausage, Peppers, Onions w/Potatoes recipe. A party dish of sausage and peppers feeds a crowd and there is never any left overs so that’s proof it’s tasty!!
Italians consider food family! We serve it to please and gather. It’s a sense of pride born within us. Serving the best we can and putting our hearts into the meal. That’s the warmth people feel when they eat in our homes. It’s unique and special..
I’ve had a lot of company lately, baking sweets for them. Cannoli cream, peach cobbler, sour cream pound cake… A few leftover sweets from each.
I made a Sunday brunch dessert. Cubed the pound cake, topped it with cannolii cream and the peaches from the cobbler. Looks good and I didn’t have to waste the leftovers….
Setting your table for a special dinner can be ALMOST as enticing as the food. Pictured is an Italian dinner table setting I did recently and a Spring/Easter flower arrangement. Setting colorful napkins on a solid table cloth, adding flowers or candles. Use a printed or contrasting table runner to create the style you want.
So many people like the European style butters. However, for baking I’ve never been able to taste a difference. European and American style butters both have about 80-82% butter fat. Some American butter has annatto or carotene for a pale yellow color but both are natural ingredients. Personally I’d save the extra money and buy better flavoring for baking then spend it on a more expensive butter.
My friend Tammy gave me this idea. Cut the pumpkin in half. Take out the seeds and stringy part. Rub a little olive oil over the skin and place cut side down on a lipped baking pan. Bake at 350 for about 30-45 minutes. Using an oven mitt gently pinch and pull the skin and it will come right off leaving the pumpkin pulp. Use the pumpkin for a soup or to make a pie or as a side dish with butter, brown sugar and cinnamon!! So tasty and no peeling and cutting the hard pumpkin shell.
Here’s a tip to help and make the cake lower fat too. Choose a boxed cake mix. Leave out the oil/butter and water it calls for (not the eggs) and add a can of pie filling to your boxed cake mix instead. Try yellow cake mixed with a can of peach pie filling or a chocolate cake mix with a can of cherry pie filling. You can mix together any flavors you like.
Here’s a great tip. Choose a foil pie pan large enough to fit over your pie. Cut the bottom off and place it upside down over the pie. It will leave the top uncovered but cover the crust edges. Remove when the pie is about half way done.
Does your corn syrup and honey stick in the measuring cup?? Well a little trick to have it just pour out. Spray the measuring cup with vegetable oil and then add your sticky ingredient. It will pour out like it’s just water !!
You can have fresh herbs on hand all the time by freezing them. Whether you grow them or buy them in your supermarket. Just place them in plastic wrap and then into a freezer bag. Some herbs will discolor but the taste will still be there. As long as you are not using them for a garnish the discoloration has no effect.
Yes, it’s great stuff. You can bake in it, serve in it, nothing sticks to it and you don’t have to retrieve a pan when you bring it to an event. Welcome Home Brands oven safe bake-ware is a bargain. You can buy it on line at Target or Amazon. 40 piece set cost about $15. See my Sour Cream Coffee Cake or the Fruit Filled Cobbler-Cake recipes for pictures of two of the sizes included in the set.
Intensify your recipes with chocolate: Any recipe that is chocolate flavored can be made much more intense by adding a TSP of good vanilla & a TSP of instant powdered Espresso to the recipe. The three flavors combined make the taste explode on your pallet
Gadgets: The best peelers & whisks I have ever used are from Pampered Chef. They have a variety of peelers for different uses and the stainless steel whisks are strong and unbending. Check them out on Amazon – pampered chef kitchen tools
What to do with cheese rinds:A cheese rind can give great flavor to a soup or a sauce that would compliment each others taste. Just wrap the rind in plastic wrap and place it in a freezer bag for later use.
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Vanilla Is not just Vanilla: Did you know not all vanillas are the same and some are better used in hot or cold items. Check out the largest vanilla producer, “NielsenMassey.com”. They have a full explanation of what types of vanilla are best used in certain recipes. Also you can get Nielsen Massey on Amazon
My Favorite Vinegars
Some of the best balsamic vinegars I’ve had come from Isabella’s. They are aged and not sweetened with sugars. They have a variety of flavors and sizes. Great for salads, marinades and sauces. They also offer olive oils too. Two locations in NC; Huntersville and Mooresville, but you can order online too.
Check them out at : http://www.isabellasoliveoil.com
Baking or griddle items with Buttermilk:
Buttermilk tastes awful but is incredible for baking, pancakes or waffles. Substitute buttermilk for reg milk, ratio 1:1, When using the buttermilk substitution you should add a bit of baking soda. Recipes having baking soda won’t need any change. Otherwise add 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda for every 2 cups of FLOUR used.