Maple Pecan Pie Squares

This makes a fantastic dessert to share in potlucks and gatherings.

Ingredients
For the crust
1 cup unsalted butter, to room temperature (2 sticks)
2/3 cup sugar
2 2/3 cup flour
1/4 tea spoon salt

For the filling
1/2 cup salted butter (1 stick)
1 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup maple syrup
2 table spoon milk (or cream)
2 cups halved pecans

ingredients

***

1. Pre-heat the oven to 350F. Line a 9 x 13 baking dish with aluminum foil and spray with non-stick cooking spray. Use a paper towel to spread on any missed spots and remove the excess.
foil

2. In a mixer or food processor, cream together the sugar and butter.
crust1

3. Add the flour and salt. Mix on low speed.
crust2

4. You want to have pea-sized chunks of butter. crust3

5. Transfer to the prepared baking dish and press down into an even layer. Bake for 20 minutes.
crust4

6. While the crust is baking, combine the butter, maple syrup, brown sugar and milk into a sauce pot. Allow to simmer for 1 minute.
filling1

7. Stir in the pecans.
filling2

8. Remove the crust from the oven. it should barely be starting to get golden.
crust-cooked

9. Pour the hot filling unto the hot crust and spread the pecan as evenly as possible. Return to the oven for 12-18 minutes. It’s best not to overcook, the filling will thicken and set as it cools.
pour

10. Allow to cool fully.
cook

11. remove from the dish using the aluminum foil sling. Discard the foil.
remove

12. Cut into small squares and eat.
cut

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Chai Masala

The weather took a turn for the chilly side, so I’m craving warm drinks. This usually his the spot.

Ingredients
2 cups water
2 table spoon Chai Masala
1 table spoon Garam Masala
2 table spoon turbinado sugar
2 cups milk
ingredients

***

1. Bring the water to a boil. Add the tea and whole spices. Bring down to a simmer and brew for 10 minutes, uncovered.
simmer1

2. Add the milk and stir in the sugar. Simmer for another 10 minutes, covered or partially covered.
simmer2

3. Serve warm. My teapot has a built-in strainer so I don’t bother straining it beforehand. Depending on your equipment you might need that extra step.
serve

Baked cider doughnuts

Tiny bites, perfect with tea or coffee or just to eat by the handful. Slightly modified from the recipe found here.

Next time I make them I might add a shredded Granny Smith apple to the dough.

Ingredients:
1 1/2 cup apple cider
2 cups flour
1 1/4 cup sugar
1 tea spoon baking soda
1 tea spoon baking powder
1 tea spoon ground cinnamon
1/2 tea spoon salt
1 egg
3/4 cup milk
2 table spoon melted butter
1 tea spoon vanilla extract

For the glaze:
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tea spoon cinnamon (or more, to taste)
4 table spoon melted butter
ingredients

***

1. Pre-heat the oven to 350F
Pour the apple cider in a pot and boil for 15-20 minutes until reduced and syrupy.
reduced

2. Meanwhile, combine all of the dry ingredients.
dry

3. Whisk the wet ingredients in with the reduced apple cider.
wet

4. Combine the wet into the dry ingredients and stir until just combined. If you over-reduced the apple cider, add some more until the batter is loose enough that no more dry flour remains.
combine

5. Spoon into a non-stick mini-muffin pan (or spray the thing with something like Pam). Or use a doughnut pan if you own one.

Put in the oven for 15 minutes.
spoon

6. In the meantime, melt the butter for the glaze. In a large shallow plate (pie dish, here) combine the sugar and cinnamon.
dusting

7. Remove the warm little doughnuts from the pan (they should just fall out).
baked

8. Using a pastry brush, brush some melted butter on each doughnut. Dust with the cinnamon sugar (or roll it in the sugar for a thicker glaze) then allow to cool fully.

Yields 48 mini doughnuts. Enjoy!
dust

Celeriac and Parsnip purée

A delicious side dish to go with flavorful meats. I like serving it with duck or lamb.

Ingredients
1 celeriac
3-4 parsnips
Milk
Butter
Salt and Pepper
ingredients

***

1. Remove the wiggly parts of the celeriac and the tough outer skin.
celeriac

2. Cube and put in a pot. Peel the parsnips and cut in chunks about the same size as the cubes. Aim for equal levels of celeriac and parsnip.
parsnip

3. Add milk until just barely covering the vegetables.
milk

4. Simmer for 30-40 minutes until fork tender. Keep an eye on the pot, milk tends to boil over.
cooked

5. Ladle into a blender, leaving behind the excess water in the pot.
blend1

6. Add a few knobs of butter and season to taste. Purée until smooth. Serve warm.
blend2

Pana Cotta

I totally stole this super simple recipe from Ros. It’s is very simple but absolutely fantastic at the same time. The spices are the absolute star of this. Really really recommend giving this blend a try. The rose petal and warmer spices are just right for the very light fresh milk.

Ingredients:
4 cups milk (5% milk if you can get it OR a mix of 10% cream and whole milk)
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 tea spoon Silk Road spices.
1 1/2 table spoon gelatin
1/4 cup boiling water
ingredients

***

1. In a large pot, combine the milk and sugar. Put the spices in a spice bag or tea infuser and turn the heat on medium-low. Stir to dissolve the sugar and allow the spices to infuse into the milk for a few minutes.
combine1

2. Once the milk is simmering, measure out the gelatin into a bowl.
gelatin1

3. Add the boiling water and stir to dissolve.
gelatin2

4. Remove the spices from the milk and discard. Whisk in the gelatin.
milk2

5. Ladle in to ramekins. Put in the refrigerator for a few hours or until fully cold.
split

6. Serve with the berries of your choice.
eat

Molasses Cookies

I’m an awesome big sister (or so I keep telling myself) and made the molasses cookies my little brother had been craving for a month or so. Rustic, sweet, soft molasses cookies. Perfect for dunking in milk or tea or coffee.

Ingredients
2 1/2 cup flour
1 tea spoon baking soda
1 tea spoon baking powder
1/2 tea spoon cinnamon
1/2 tea spoon ginger
scant pinch ground cloves
pinch of salt
1/2 cup non salted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup molasses
1 egg
2 table spoon milk
ingredients

***

1. Pre-heat the oven for 350F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
In a bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, spices and salt.
dry

2. Combine the butter, brown sugar and molasses in the bowl of a mixer.
sugar1

3. Beat until smooth then add the egg. Beat until combined.
sugar2

4. Add half the flour, mix to combine. Add the milk, mix in and add the rest of the flour until just combined.
combine

5. Portion out (about 1/8 of a cup per cookie) and flatten with the back of a fork.
portion

6. Bake for 15-18 minutes and enjoy.
cookies

Pâté Chinois

I believe this is the equivalent of Cottage pie outside of Québec? In any cases, tasty dish that I think most of people in Québec grew up on, iconic to the point of being featured in many humors sketches.

Ingredients
2 lbs extra lean ground beef
2 12oz cans of kernel corn
1 19oz can of creamed corn
6-10 potatoes
1 table spoon olive oil
1 onion
milk, butter, salt, pepper, onion powder, steak spices – to taste
ingredients

***

1. Pre-heat the oven to 350F

2. Make some mashed potatoes. Set aside.

3. Roughly dice the onion. Heat the oil in a skillet and cook the onion until soft.
onions

4. Add the ground beef and cook until browned. Season with the steak spices.
meat

5. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the meat to a large casserole dish. Leave behind as much of the liquid as possible.
steak

6. Layer with the corn (both kernels and creamed corn).
bledinde

7. Layer the mashed potatoes on top. I like to smooth is with a spatula, or you can leave it a bit messy, as you prefer.
patates

8. Bake for 30 minutes. Finish with the oven at broil for a few minutes until the potatoes are  browned.
baked

9. Allow to rest for a few minutes before slicing.
plate