Tuesday, July 30, 2013

♥ Four Layer Red Velvet Cheesecake


My elderly neighbor, Jack Dulaney, stops by from time to time to bring me something from his garden. He turned 90 last Friday and I wanted to make his favorite cake and invite him over to celebrate his special day. Jack is a widower and I have kind of adopted him as the grandfather I never had the chance to meet and it has been a joy calling him my friend. Usually people make this wonderful cake for the holidays because of it's rich red color, but Jack loves it anytime! I decided to add a little twist and make it a cheesecake and he loved it. We enjoyed coffee and cheesecake last Friday afternoon for Jack's 90th birthday.

Four Layer Red Velvet Cheesecake

For the cheesecake:
10 ounces cream cheese , room temperature
3/8 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
1/4 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/8 teaspoon coarse salt
1 large egg
1/4 cup sour cream

For the cake:
2 1/2 cups cake flour
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon cocoa powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1 1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup buttermilk
2 tablespoons red food coloring,
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon white distilled vinegar

For the frosting:
2 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
4 tablespoons butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Using an electric mixer, beat cream cheese on medium until fluffy, scraping down side of bowl. Gradually add sugar, beating until fluffy. Beat in lemon zest and juice, and salt. Beat in eggs, one at a time, scraping down side of bowl after each addition. Beat in sour cream.

Line the bottom of four 8 inch spring form cake pans with parchment paper cut in circles. Then wrap each cake pan bottom and sides with heavy aluminum foil. Pour in filling into the pans then place in a roasting pan. Pour boiling water into the roasting pan until it comes halfway up the side of spring form cake pans. Bake until just set in center, about 45 minutes. Remove pan from water; let cool 20 minutes. Run a paring knife around edge and let cool completely without removing the cheesecake from the pan. Cover the pan and chill for at least 3-4 hours, then wrap in plastic wrap and freeze.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Sift together flour, sugar, baking soda, cocoa, and salt into a medium bowl. In a bowl of an electric mixer, beat eggs, oil, buttermilk, food coloring, vanilla, and vinegar until well combined. Add dry ingredients in three additions and beat at low speed until smooth, about 2 minutes after all the dry ingredients have been added. Divide batter evenly between 4 greased and floured 8-inch round cake pans and bake 25-30 minutes, rotating halfway through, until a toothpick inserted in the center of each cake comes out clean. Let cakes cool 5 minutes, then invert each onto a plate, then invert again onto a cooling rack. Let cakes cool completely.

Frosting

Beat cream cheese, butter, and vanilla together in a large bowl with an electric mixer until combined. Add sugar and beat until frosting is light and fluffy, 5–7 minutes.

Putting it all together

Place one of the 8 inch cakes on a cake stand. Remove one of the cheesecakes from freezer, unwrap, and remove from the pan and peel off parchment paper. Place cheesecake layer on top of the bottom layer of the red velvet cake. Place another 8 inch cake on top of the cheesecake, and continue doing this with all four layers of cake and cheese cake. Then frost entire cake with cheesecake frosting. I topped it with a maraschino cherry but you can decorate how you'd like it. Try some shaved white chocolate or some sprinkles of red cake crumbs.

NOTE: In the photo, I used only two layers and with a serrated knife, I sliced them in half to form the four layers. I did the same thing with the cheese cake after allowing them to thaw a little before slicing them to fit the cake layers. But for a more impressive tall cake, use all four layers of each.

Photography ©Welcome Home

♥ Shrimp Cocktail

My lunch today. I love shrimp cocktail as an appetizer before a meal when I go out to dinner but why not have it as a main course for lunch? Here's how I make mine.
Shrimp Cocktail
 
First I brine the shrimp. I buy them raw but already cleaned at the seafood counter.

For the brine:
1/4 cup kosher salt
1/4 cup sugar
2 cups cold water

For the cocktail sauce:


1 (14 1/2-ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained
1/2 cup prepared chili sauce
4 tablespoons prepared horseradish (more or less to taste)
1 teaspoon sugar
pinch of black pepper
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1 tablespoon olive oil
Sprinkle Old Bay seasoning, optional

Rinse the shrimp in cold water. Then add them to a bowl with the brine mix and refrigerate them for about half hour.

Mix tomatoes, chili sauce, horseradish, sugar, pepper, and salt in food processor or blender and blend until smooth. Refrigerate cocktail sauce until ready to serve.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Place a baking sheet in hot oven and heat for 5 minutes. Remove shrimp from brine and drain thoroughly. Rinse the shrimp under cold water and dry on paper towels. In a large bowl, toss shrimp with olive oil and sprinkle with Old Bay seasoning, if desired, or a little salt and pepper.

Place shrimp onto a sizzling hot sheet pan and roast at 425 degrees for about 5-7 minutes or until just starting to turn pink. Turn the shrimp when they come out of the oven and let the heat from the pan finish cooking them until they are cool enough to place on your serving platter. Eat warm or you can chill them to serve later.

Photography ©Welcome Home

♥ Garlic Shrimp Over Pasta

 Can you tell I bought too many shrimp this past weekend? It was on sale at my local grocery store, But shrimp is so versatile and you can use it in so many ways. This dish is one of my favorites One of my favorites. It's simple, fresh an...d soooo good! It's one of those dishes that gets better the second day! I think you'll love this one.....click on the photo for drool mode!






Garlic Shrimp Over Pasta

1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 garlic clove, minced
1 small shallot, minced
1/2 lb medium to large shrimp, cleaned and tails removed
¼ cup Parmesan cheese, shredded
2 cups farfalle pasta, uncooked
Salt & pepper
Dried red pepper flakes (optional)

Bring a pot of salted water to a boil and add a few drops of oil to prevent sticking. Cook pasta until al dente and drain well but reserve about 1/4 cup of pasta water and set aside.

Melt the butter and olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Cook the minced garlic and shallots for 2-3 minutes until tender. Add the shrimp to the skillet along with 2 tablespoons of the pasta water. Season with salt and pepper. Saute and stir constantly until shrimp have turned pink. Add the pasta to the skillet and mix until cheese melts and blends in well. Using a vegetable peeler, shave sheets of Parmesan cheese onto pasta and serve immediately.


 



Photography ©Welcome Home

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Giant Ornamental onion plant

 From my garden...these are Alium also known as Giant Ornamental onions. They are definitely a show stopper in the garden with their purple softball-sized flowers and strong stems that reach 3- 4 feet tall.

Ornamental onions perform beautifully, blooming late spring through early summer; they add a different, spectacular architectural dimension to the garden and they are also wonderful for cut and dried flowers.

♥ Fried Cornbread

 
Fried Cornbread (Also Called Hoe Cakes)

1 ½ cups of Yellow Self-Rising Cornmeal
2/3 cups Buttermilk
1 Egg, whisked
½ teaspoon of salt
... Oil for frying
Place the cornmeal in a medium sized mixing bowl. Crack the egg, whisk it with a fork and add it into a well formed in the center of the cornmeal. Add the buttermilk. Add the salt. Stir the mixture just enough to incorporate the ingredients. If the batter is dry, add a little more buttermilk as needed for a smooth consistency.

Test your oil for proper frying temperature. Drop a spoonful of the batter into your skillet. Adjust the amount depending on the size you desire. If necessary, use the back of the spoon to spread the batter out. You want thin hoe cakes. Watch for the edges to brown then, carefully flip the hoe cake over. Fry until the hoe cake is golden brown on both sides. Remove from oil, place on folded paper towels and let drain.

Repeat the process. You need two hoe cakes for each sandwich. Serve warm and enjoy.

http://www.tasteofsouthern.com/collard-sandwich-recipe/

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

If you can't see anything beautiful about yourself....

get a better mirror,
look a little closer,
stare a little longer....
 
Because there's something inside you that made you keep trying, dispite everyone who told you to quit. You build a cast around your broken heart, and signed it yourself. It says.... "They were wrong."



The author is Shane Koyczan. The poem is called, " To This Day." It is powerful. Watch it:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ltun92DfnPY

♥ Fried Green Tomatoes

 Fried Green Tomatoes

4 green tomatoes, cut into 1/4-inch rings
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon garlic powder
4 eggs
2 tablespoons milk
1 1/2 cups panko bread crumbs
Pinch cayenne pepper
Pinch paprika
Buttermilk Dipping Sauce, recipe follows

In a deep-fryer, preheat oil to 350 degrees F. Season tomatoes, on both sides, with salt and pepper. Place flour and garlic powder in a shallow dish. In another shallow dish, beat eggs with the milk. In another dish, mix bread crumbs with cayenne and paprika. Dredge tomatoes through the flour, then the eggs, and then through the bread crumbs. Add only a few pieces to the fryer at a time, so they can cook evenly, about 2 to 3 minutes. Drain on paper towels and serve with Buttermilk Dipping Sauce:

Buttermilk Dipping Sauce:

1 cup apple cider
1 tablespoon brown sugar
3/4 cup buttermilk
3/4 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons Neelys BBQ sauce
1 lime, juiced
4 scallions, sliced thin
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper


In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the apple cider and brown sugar. Allow to reduce until thick and syrupy. Remove from heat and allow to cool. In a medium bowl, add buttermilk, mayonnaise, BBQ sauce and lime juice and whisk well. Add in the scallions and the apple cider mixture. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve with Fried Green Tomatoes.

Recipe Source: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/patrick-and-gina-neely/fried-green-tomatoes-recipe/index.html

Photo Source: Dreamgardens.com




♥ Peaches and Cream Bread Pudding

What did I whip up in the kitchen yesterday? I finally got rid of all those peaches...in a good way! Love this recipe from my Mom's collection. Click on photo for full drool mode...you might need a napkin for this one! It's as good as it lo...oks!

 
 
 
 
 
 
Peaches and Cream Bread Pudding

For the pudding:

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
6 cups 1-inch cubes of day-old bread
2 cups heavy cream
2 cups milk
2 pounds fresh peaches, peeled and sliced (you can use canned or frozen)
1 cup sugar
5 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

For the sauce:

1 stick butter
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup sugar
2 egg yolks
1 teaspoon almond extract

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9 x 13 baking dish. In a large bowl, combine the bread cubes, heavy cream and milk and let sit for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. While the bread is soaking, heat 3 tablespoons of softened butter in a large skillet. Add the peaches and 1/4 cup of the sugar. Cook, stirring occasionally, until peaches are golden brown around the edges and softened, 4 to 6 minutes. Set aside.

In a medium bowl, combine the eggs, the remaining 3/4 cup of sugar, vanilla, and nutmeg and whisk well to combine. Stir the egg mixture into the bread mixture and fold to combine. Add the warm peaches and fold gently but thoroughly to combine. Pour into the prepared baking dish. Melt three tablespoons of butter in microwave and drizzle the melted butter on top. Bake until golden brown, puffed, and slightly firm when pressed in the center, 45 minutes to 1 hour. Cool on a wire rack until just warm, about 20 minutes.

Almond Cream Sauce

In a small saucepan, over medium low heat, add a stick of butter and cook until melted. In a small bowl combine the cream, sugar, and egg yolks and whisk to combine. Add the cream mixture to the melted butter and stir well. Cook, stirring constantly, until the sauce thickens and coats the back of a spoon, about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat immediately and add the almond extract. Transfer sauce to a small heatproof bowl and serve hot or warm over warm bread pudding.

Photography ©Welcome Home

♥ Brown Sugar and Apple Glazed Ham slices

Ham and Egg Biscuits

Instead of making a whole ham, I sometimes buy the slices and make my own glaze before baking. This time, I made the ham and some cream biscuits and added a fried egg on top....oh so good!
 
 
 
 
 
 
Brown Sugar and Apple Glazed Ham slices

2 fully cooked thick ham slices
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons apple juice
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
dash of cinnamon

Combine all ingredients in saucepan and bring to a boil and boil for about 2 minutes Place ham on rack in a foil-lined roasting pan. Brush with hot glaze. Bake at 325° for about 10 minutes. With tongs, flip ham slices over and brush glaze on other side. Bake for an additional 10 minutes. Serve any leftover glaze on the side.
_____________________________

Cream Biscuits

3 tablespoons melted butter
2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting the surface
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon sugar (optional)
1 1/2 cups heavy cream

Preheat the oven to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Melt butter in a microwave dish, and set aside. Sift two cups flour, the baking powder, salt and sugar into a large bowl. Fold in 1 1/4 cups cream. If the dough is not soft or easily handled, fold in the remaining 1/4 cup cream, little by little.

Turn dough onto a floured surface, mound it into a ball and, using your hands, press it to a thickness of about 3/4 inch. Cut into 2 1/2 inch rounds. Dip the top of each dough round into the melted butter and arrange on the baking sheet. Bake until golden, 12 to 15 minutes and serve hot.

Photography ©Welcome Home

♥ Sunny Side Up Eggs and Homemade Biscuits
























This was Sunday morning breakfast yesterday. We had eggs, brown sugar ham, homefries and buttermilk biscuits. I like eggs anyway you choose to cook them. I usually fry mine over medium, or scramble them, but yesterday I decided to make them... Sunny Side up. Here's how you make the perfect sunny side up eggs.



 Sunny Side Up Eggs and Homemade Biscuits

Add butter to a heated skillet set to medium high. When the butter starts to sizzle, crack your eggs on a flat surface and add them to the pan. Slip the egg into a saucer first if you have trouble keeping the yolks from breaking. Salt and pepper the eggs and cover the skillet. Turn down heat to medium. Leave covered until egg white around yolks is opaque, usually 3-5 minutes. Uncover and carefully run spatula under egg, and serve on plate.

___________________________

Butter Milk Biscuits

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons butter, very cold
1 cup buttermilk

Preheat your oven to 450. Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl, or in the bowl of a food processor. Cut the butter into chunks and cut into the flour until it resembles course meal. Add the buttermilk and mix just until combined. At this point if it appears on the dry side, add a bit more buttermilk. It should be very wet.

Turn the dough out onto a floured board. Gently, gently PAT (do NOT roll with a rolling pin) the dough out until it's about 1/2" thick. Fold the dough about 5 times, gently press the dough down to a 1 inch thick. Use a round cutter to cut into rounds.

Place the biscuits on a cookie sheet touching each other. Bake for about 10-12 minutes or until they are a beautiful light golden brown on top and bottom. Do not over bake.

Hints: Your dough must be handled as little as possible or you will have tough biscuits. So work quickly. If you use a food processor the ingredients stay colder and there's less chance of over mixing. You also must pat the dough out with your hands, lightly. Don't roll these with a rolling pin or you will have tough biscuits.

You can also make them up and freeze them on a cookie sheet. Once they are frozen, drop them into a ziploc bag or container for up to one month. Then just bake frozen biscuits as you need them in the oven at 450 degrees for 20 minutes.

Photography ©Welcome Home

Thursday, July 18, 2013


Every Woman Should Know
 

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE
A set of screwdrivers,
A cordless drill, and
A black lace bra...

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE...
One friend who
Always makes her
Laugh...
And one
Who lets her cry...

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE...
A good piece of furniture
Not previously owned by
Anyone else in her family...

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE...
Eight matching plates,
Wine glasses with stems,
And a recipe for a meal that will
Make her guests feel honored.

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE...
A feeling of control over Her destiny...

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
How to fall in love Without losing herself...

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
How to quite a job
break up with a lover
and confront a friend without ruining the friendship.

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
When to try harder
and when to walk away

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
That she can't change
The length of her calves,
The width of her hips, or
The nature of her parents...

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
That her childhood
May not have been Perfect
But; It's over.

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
What she would and Wouldn't
Do for love or money...

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
How to live alone...
Even if She doesn't like it...

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
Whom she can trust, Whom she can't,
And why she shouldn't Take it personally...

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
Where to go...
Be it to her best friend's kitchen table...
Or a charming inn in the woods...
When her soul needs soothing...

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
What she can and what she can't accomplish
In a day...
A month...
And a year...
 
~Pamela Redmond Satran

♥ Fried Green Tomatoes

Fried Green Tomatoes

4 green tomatoes, cut into 1/4-inch rings
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon garlic powder
4 eggs
2 tablespoons milk
1 1/2 cups panko bread crumbs
Pinch cayenne pepper
Pinch paprika
Buttermilk Dipping Sauce, recipe follows

In a deep-fryer, preheat oil to 350 degrees F. Season tomatoes, on both sides, with salt and pepper. Place flour and garlic powder in a shallow dish. In another shallow dish, beat eggs with the milk. In another dish, mix bread crumbs with cayenne and paprika. Dredge tomatoes through the flour, then the eggs, and then through the bread crumbs. Add only a few pieces to the fryer at a time, so they can cook evenly, about 2 to 3 minutes. Drain on paper towels and serve with Buttermilk Dipping Sauce:

Buttermilk Dipping Sauce:

1 cup apple cider
1 tablespoon brown sugar
3/4 cup buttermilk
3/4 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons Neelys BBQ sauce
1 lime, juiced
4 scallions, sliced thin
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the apple cider and brown sugar. Allow to reduce until thick and syrupy. Remove from heat and allow to cool. In a medium bowl, add buttermilk, mayonnaise, BBQ sauce and lime juice and whisk well. Add in the scallions and the apple cider mixture. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve with Fried Green Tomatoes.

Recipe Source: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/patrick-and-gina-neely/fried-green-tomatoes-recipe/index.html

Photo Source: Dreamgardens.com

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

♥ Brussel Sprouts in Butter

Brussel Sprouts in Butter

Who out there loves Brussel sprouts? I snapped this photo and then ate this entire bowl of them tonight. I didn't leave room for the steak and other vegetables I
put up in the last post
.

These were boiled in water with a teaspoon of sug...ar added. i did a slow boil until they were tender then I drained them...added butter and salt and a little pepper. Yum!
I also grill them, roast them, steam them. Sometimes I add bacon and onions and garllic...sometimes I just like them with butter! My Mom used to tell me I called them baby cabbage balls when I was really little. LOVE my brussel sprouts! Do you?
Photography Copyright Welcome Home

♥ Roast Chicken

Moist and Tender Roast Chicken

5-7 pound roasting chicken
Kosher salt
black pepper
1 tablespoon thyme
1 teaspoon rosemary
1 whole head garlic, cut in half crosswise
2 tablespoons butter, melted for outside rub
1/2 stick of butter for cavity
1 large yellow onion, cut in half
2 cups chicken broth or use water

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Rinse the chicken inside and out and pat dry. Generously add salt and pepper to inside of cavity. Then add thyme, rosemary garlic, onion. Brush the outside of the chicken with the butter and sprinkle again with salt and pepper. I use my hands to make sure every part of the outside of the chicken is covered in butter. Tie the two legs together with kitchen string Place chicken on rack in large roasting pan. Pour chicken broth or water under rack but not touching any part of chicken. This way the chicken steams and stays moist, yet the skin gets crisp.

Roast the chicken for 90 minutes to 2 hours, or until the juices run clear when you cut between a leg and thigh.... Or when the chicken registers 165 degrees on a meat thermometer. Remove to platter and cover with aluminum foil for about 20 minutes. Slice the chicken onto a platter and serve.







Photography ©Welcome Home

Sunday, July 14, 2013

♥ Apple Swirl Streusel Bread

I used Gala apples for this one however, you can use Braeburn, Pink lady or Honey Crisp apples. Don't forget to click on photo for drool mode!

Apple Swirl Streusel Bread
  

1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 cups apple, peeled and diced
2 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt

Topping:

2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 tablespoon butter
1 teaspoon cinnamon

With a mixer, beat sugar, and eggs until creamy. Mix in lemon juice and the vanilla. In a separate bowl, mix flour, baking soda, and salt and then gradually stir it into the flour mixture until it is just moistened. Next fold in apples with a rubber spatula and scrape down sides of bowl.

In a small bowl add Streusel topping ingredients. I usually cut them in with two knives until blended and crumbly. Pour half the batter into a standard greased 8 x 5 loaf pan. Sprinkle half of streusel topping over batter. Repeat layers for 2nd half of batter and ending with rest of topping. Bake at 350 degrees for 55-60 minutes. Let cool completely.

Icing

1 1/4 cups confectioners sugar(powdered sugar)
1-2 tablespoons milk

Mix powdered sugar with a little milk at a time to get the consistency you like best. Drizzle over cooled bread.







  Photography ©Welcome Home

♥ Glazed Lemon Bundt Cake

Glazed Lemon Bundt Cake

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon table salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 lemons, zested
3 tablespoons lemon juice
3/4 cup buttermilk
3 large eggs, at room temperature, lightly beaten
1 large egg yolk, at room temperature
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons butter, room temp (2 1/4 sticks)
2 cups sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Generously spray 12-cup Bundt pan with nonstick baking spray or brush the pan with butter and sprinkle with flour.

Zest lemons until you have 2 tablespoons. Squeeze lemons to get 3 tablespoons. Combine lemon juice and zest in a small bowl and set aside.

Next, whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in large bowl. In a separate medium bowl, mix together your lemon/zest mixture, vanilla, and buttermilk. In small bowl, gently whisk eggs and yolk to combine.

With electric mixer, cream butter and sugar at medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes; scrape down sides of bowl with rubber spatula. Then at medium speed add the eggs, mixing until incorporated. Reduce to mixer to low speed and alternate adding flour and then buttermilk, mixing until just incorporated. Then mix at medium-low speed until batter is thoroughly combined, . Pour batter into prepared bundt pan.  

Bake on center rack until top is golden brown and wooden skewer or toothpick inserted into center comes out with no crumbs attached, 45 to 50 minutes. Cool cake in pan on a wire rack set over baking sheet for 10 minutes, then invert cake directly onto rack.

GLAZE

2 - 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
2 cups confectioners' sugar (8 ounces)
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest

Whisk 2 tablespoons lemon juice, melted butter, and confectioners' sugar until smooth, adding more lemon juice gradually as needed until glaze is thick but still pourable. Once cake has cooled, pour half of glaze over warm cake and let cool for 1 hour. Come back after an hour and pour the remaining glaze evenly over top of cake and continue to cool to room temperature. Cut cake into slices and enjoy!

©Welcome Home

 

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Welcome Home Cooking....Recipes From My Mother's Collection

 
It is an exciting day for me as I have just released my first cookbook. It's called....
 
"Welcome Home Cooking....Recipes From My Mother's Collection."
 
 It's a beautiful 196 page full color high quality cookbook with a complete recipe to match each photo.

"There's nothing like a home cooked meal made with love that can spark old memories of our childhood. Welcome Home Cooking is a collection of recipes left to me by my Mom, who now lives in Heaven. It is filled with down-home country recipes that a Southern Mom would teach her daughter. Recipes that have created memories that will never fade. Like her wonderful chicken and dumplings and her delicious homemade cornbread she used to make in her old cast iron skillet. Or, her Sunday after church suppers of Buttermilk Fried Chicken and her incredible Peach Cobbler, fresh out of the oven. I've put together a cookbook for those who yearn for those memories of good old fashioned, uncomplicated home-cooked southern food. The kind of food that memories are made of; and it comes to you straight from my Mother's recipe box. I hope you enjoy some of my Mom's favorite recipes and that you'll make some memories of your own."

It's available today in ebook format for your desktop or laptop (Windows and Mac) and for your iPad, iPod Touch and iPhones for only $24.99. You simply click on the link below to find it. Then you purchase it with a credit card or PayPal and you will receive an immediate email with a link that you can use to download the book to any or ALL of these devices. If you have an Apple Device, you will need to download the free ibooks app first. If you want to also download it to your computer, I suggest you download the free app for Calibre or any other ebook application.

That's all there is to it. You will have your new book in just a matter of minutes. Why an ebook? First it is the most economical way to purchase a book. It's convenient in that you can carry your book wherever you go. My ebook is on all my devices....it's on my phone when I go to the grocery store and need the ingredients to make something for dinner. It's on my iPad for when I know I have a long wait in the doctor's office or when I go to the beach and I want to read a book. And it's on my computer when I want to print something off to take to the kitchen to make a recipe instead of getting my beautiful hardback all dirty and smudgy. Ebooks are the way to go today.

The print book is also available today, however as I projected earlier this year before it was published, it is very pricey and you might find it outside your budget. Unfortunately I have no control over the Publisher's set price but I know that usually when I give much of the proceeds to a charity, they usually charge more. With this book, as well as all my books, I support No Kill Shelters across America in their effort to save the lives of healthy dogs and cats who are killed unnecessarily while waiting for their forever homes.

"Welcome Home Cooking" is also being released today in a soft cover, hardback with a dust jacket, and a hardback image wrap book without a jacket. This book is bookstore quality and meant for those who are sticklers for top notch binding, gorgeous paper, and professional printing. This is not just an average cookbook. It is a limited first edition book and the production team at this publishing house produces each high quality book as they are
ordered, which doesn't always lend itself to affordability.

But you be the judge. If you'd like to preview a few pages of the book before deciding to purchase, go to this link and click on the book and it will show you about 29 random pages. Then if you like what you see, feel free to order it and they will start production of YOUR book right away and ship it to you before the end of the month. The publisher is offering Welcome Home fans a coupon that will give you 25% off the purchase of any print book. That's on Print books only. See below

To purchase Welcome Home Cooking in ebook format for $24.99 today go to: http://store.blurb.com/ebooks/412757-welcome-home-cooking

To Preview Welcome Home Cooking and purchase it in softcover or hardback go to: http://www.blurb.com/b/4446916-welcome-home-cooking

For Print Books: Enter the code in all caps SAVE25BLURB and receive 25% off your purchase if used before July 31st.

Hope you like it!




Sunday, July 7, 2013

♥ Roasted Sockeye Salmon












Roasted Sockeye Salmon

1 2-3 lb Sockeye Salmon Fillet (or any size you choose)
tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 clove minced garlic
Salt and pepper to taste
lemons for garnish

Cover a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Pat salmon dry with a paper towel. your hands rub the fillet with olive oil and season with salt and pepper and fresh minced garlic. Turn down oven heat to 400 and roast for about 15 minutes (depending on thickness of fillet) or until salmon flakes easily in the middle or thickest part. If you want to use a thermometer, it should register 125 degrees in the center of the fillet. Remove from oven and transfer to platter or cutting. Garnish with lemons.

♥ Boston Cream Pie
















Boston Cream Pie

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups sugar
3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
4 eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla
1 cup milk

Heat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour 2 (9-inch) round baking pans. Set aside. Stir together flour, baking powder and salt in large bowl. Set aside.

Beat sugar and butter in large mixer bowl at medium speed, scraping bowl occasionally, until creamy. Add 1 egg at a time; beat well after each addition. Add vanilla. Reduce speed to low. Add flour mixture alternately with milk, beating well after each addition just until mixed.

Divide batter evenly between prepared pans. Bake for 29 to 34 minutes or until toothpick inserted near center comes out clean. Cool on wire racks 10 minutes. Loosen edge of cake by running knife around inside edge. Carefully remove cake from pan; cool completely.

Pastry Cream Filling:


1 1/4 cups whole milk or light cream
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
3 large egg yolks
1/4 cup sugar
1/8 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

In a medium-sized stainless steel bowl, mix the sugar and egg yolks together. Sift the flour and cornstarch together and then add to the egg mixture, mixing until you get a smooth paste. Set aside.

Meanwhile in a saucepan combine the milk and split vanilla bean on medium heat until boiling. Remove from heat and add slowly to egg mixture, whisking constantly to prevent curdling. (If you get a few pieces of egg (curdling) in the mixture, pour through a strainer.) Remove vanilla bean, scrape out seeds, and add the seeds to the egg mixture.

Place the egg mixture back into a medium saucepan and cook over medium heat until boiling, whisking constantly. When it boils, whisk mixture constantly for another 30 – 60 seconds until it becomes very thick and it is hard to stir. Stir in the vanilla extract.

Pour into a clean bowl and immediately cover the surface with plastic wrap to prevent a crust from forming. Refrigerate for at least an hour or until cold.

Once filling is cold, Remove plastic wrap and with spatula spread half on on bottom cake layer. Top with second layer. Using a long angled spatula smooth filling around edges so that it is flush with the cake. Your cake is now ready for frosting.

Thick Chocolate Ganche:


12 ounces chocolate, chopped into small pieces
1 cup heavy cream

Place chocolate pieces in a large bowl. Heat heavy cream on medium high until it comes to a boil. Remove from heat and immediately pour cream over chocolate and stir until completely mixed and glossy. Allow ganache to completely cool and set up. The longer you allow the ganache to cool, the thicker it will set. When you are able to spoon the ganache and it can hold its texture, it is ready for piping.

Pipe ganache around the top of the cake in a circular motion to resemble a rose as shown in the photo or be creative and make your own design.


Photographs are the property of and copyrighted to ©Welcome Home

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

♥ Purple Cone Flower

I shot this with my little Samsung MB250 as I do most of my close ups of food and flowers. It is one single flower in my spread of Purple Cone Flowers also know as Echinacea. Who doesn't love the gracefulness of this flower. I love them at each stage of blooming from the time they bud to the point where all the petals start to point downward. Mine are about 3 feet tall and blend well in the back of my garden.

♥ Balloon Flower

love this little flower....I know I say that about all the flowers in my garden, but I love this one for different reasons. It's called the Balloon Flower because the buds like little inflated balloons before they pop... open to reveal a beautiful bell shaped flower. Click on the photo for full effect.

It is a popular perennial that comes in shades of blue, white, purple, and pink and while the one shown is the dwarf variety, the common Balloon Flower can reach up to 3 feet in height. Flowers appear in mid-summer and last for at least a month before fading, although proper dead-heading can prolong the blooming season somewhat.

Photograpy ©Welcome Home

Monday, July 1, 2013

♥ Sweet Corn

Who doesn't like fresh sweet corn on the cob? I add sugar to my boiling water to make it even sweeter. Maryland is known for it's Silver Queen corn in the summer time and it is soooo good!
 
Sweet Corn

 6 ears of Corn
1 tablespoon sugar
 
Prepare corn for boiling. Drop the corn into a large pot of boiling water that has been seasoned with sugar. Boil three minutes and remove corn right away. Spread melted butter all over corn and salt and pepper if desired. Sprinkle with Old Bay seasoning for a real treat! But that's coming from a Maryland girl! LOL!

Photography ©Welcome Home

♥ OLD FASHIONED BUTTERMILK BISCUITS



















Biscuits just like your Mom or Grand mom used to make! Some recipes should never change!

Butter Milk Biscuits

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons butter, very cold
1 cup buttermilk

Preheat your oven to 450. Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl, or in the bowl of a food processor. Cut the butter into chunks and cut into the flour until it resembles course meal. Add the buttermilk and mix just until combined. At this point if it appears on the dry side, add a bit more buttermilk. It should be very wet.

Turn the dough out onto a floured board. Gently, gently PAT (do NOT roll with a rolling pin) the dough out until it's about 1/2" thick. Fold the dough about 5 times, gently press the dough down to a 1 inch thick. Use a round cutter to cut into rounds.

Place the biscuits on a cookie sheet touching each other. Bake for about 10-12 minutes or until they are a beautiful light golden brown on top and bottom. Do not over bake.

Hints: Your dough must be handled as little as possible or you will have tough biscuits. So work quickly. If you use a food processor the ingredients stay colder and there's less chance of over mixing. You also must pat the dough out with your hands, lightly. Don't roll these with a rolling pin or you will have tough biscuits.

You can also make them up and freeze them on a cookie sheet. Once they are frozen, drop them into a ziploc bag or container for up to one month. Then just bake frozen biscuits as you need them in the oven at 450 degrees for 20 minutes.

Photography ©Welcome Home