Wednesday, November 26, 2008

The night before Thanksgiving

All right I like my pies fresh as well as my other desserts so lets make them the night before so they are still fresh but that is one less thing to worry about.  Lets start off with a pumpkin cheesecake:

Pumpkin Cheesecake:

Lets start with the crust:

1/2 cup of biscotti finely ground
1/2 cup pecans finely ground
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 stick melted butter

Combine the above ingredients in a bowl and then press about 1/4 inch thick into the bottom of your pan.


24 oz of room temp cream cheese
3 eggs
1 egg yolk
15 oz pumpkin puree
1/4 cup sour cream
1 1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground cloves 
or substitue 2 tsp of pumpkin pie spice for the three spices above
2 tbsp corn starch or flour
1 tsp vanilla

Whip cream cheese until smooth then add eggs and pumpkin puree.  Slowly add the remaining ingredients and beat until smooth.

Pour into pan and spread out evenly.  Bake for one hour remove and let stand for 15 minutes.  Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 4 hours.

Top this off with an amaretto whip cream.

Start with 1/2 cup of heavy cream beat until soft peaks add 2 tsp powdered sugar and 1 tsp vanilla add in the amaretto about 2 tsp.  Beat until medium peaks and then serve.

I will have more desserts and pre-thanksgiving recipes on here today.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Quick and Easy Apple Cake

Here is something someone asked me for and it is quick and easy so that you can do it with your kids or alone and have plenty of time to still do whatever else you need to. Start by getting the following ingredients prepped:

1 - Cup All Purpose Flour
1 1/2 - tsp Baking Powder
1/2 - tsp salt
1 - tsp cinnamon
1/2 - tsp nutmeg
1/3 - cup sugar
4 - eggs
1/2 - cup chopped pecans or walnuts
1 - stick unsalted butter (melted)
1 - tsp vanilla extract
1 - tbsp orange zest
1 - cup pealed and chopped granny smith apples
1/2 - cup warmed Grand Marnier (Optional)
1/2 - cup Cranberries (Optional)

Start by soaking the cranberries in the warm grand marnier. Then begin melting the butter then add in the sugar stir until combined then add one egg at a time. Combine all dry ingredients and slowly add them to the wet ingredients. Add orange zest and vanilla extract and stir until Incorporated. Last step add the apples, nuts and strained cranberries.

Place in a greased and lightly floured cake pan and bake at 325 degrees for 15 - 20 minutes.

Serve warm with vanilla ice cream.....

Prepping for the Big Day (THANKSGIVING)

So it is really not that scary to take on the duties of hosting Thanksgiving at your house, specially with some of the recipes you will see on my page the next few days. So if you have not planned Thanksgiving out maybe these will help and you will be the talk of the party at least until Christmas.

Lets start off with the turkey since this is usually the star of the show.

Depending on the amount of people you are creating this magnificent meal for is going to determine the size of your turkey. You can do Thanksgiving for one or two, all the way up to 50. If you are doing it for one or two I would suggest buying the Turkey breast. Now that you've decided on a whole turkey or just a part of the turkey the next step is the preparation the day prior.

To make the brine you will need the following:

Apple cider
2 - Oranges (juiced)
zest of 2 oranges
1 - sprig of rosemary
3 - tbsp lemon pepper
6 - tbsp sea salt

In a large bowl place the turkey and all ingredients cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight turning the turkey 3- 4 times throughout the day and night. The amount of apple cider will depend on the size of the turkey used you want it to fill the bowl at least 3/4 of the way with the turkey in the bowl.

Cranberry sauce:

1 - bag of fresh cranberries
the zest of 1 orange
1/2 - cup fresh apple cider
1/2 - cup sugar or honey

Rinse cranberries and then in a medium sauce pan combine the above ingredients. Let the cranberry mixture reduce on medium low heat until it starts to thicken approximately 30 - 45 minutes. Let cool then cover and place in the refrigerator until ready to serve will last about 2 weeks.

I will have more recipes and preparation tips for an easy stress free Thanksgiving. If you want to know how to make something or need any information or tips please leave a comment I will answer it in my next post.

Hey it's time to make cooking and entertaining fun again!!!!!