Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Currant Scones

Scones baked with fresh red currants

It snows, it warms up, it snows, it warms up. All month long. Rinse and repeat. I know it's just winter's last hurrah before exiting for the year but I'm a little over it. Yesterday was another inclement weather day so I did the only logical thing - I baked.

Scones baked with fresh red currants

It's been a while since I baked a batch of fresh scones but they're so great with a cup of tea on a rainy/snowy afternoon. I scoured my kitchen for flavoring ingredients and decided to use up some fresh red currants. But feel free to use the dried kind because they'll work just as well.

It's a simple recipe that comes together quickly and makes the house smell great. And then, within a short period of time, you have fresh scones. It makes waiting for spring a bit more bearable. Enjoy!

Currant Scones
Scones baked with fresh red currants

by Hungry Couple
Prep Time: 20 Minutes
Cook Time: 20 Minutes
Ingredients (8 Servings)
  • 2 1/4 Cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 Cup sugar
  • 2 Teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 Teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 Teaspoon salt
  • 1 Stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, chilled and cut into 1" pieces
  • 1 Egg
  • 1/2 Cup buttermilk
  • 1 Teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 Cup currants (fresh or dried) tossed with a teaspoon of flour
  • 2 Tablespoons cream for topping
  • 1 Tablespoon sugar for topping
Scones baked with fresh red currants
Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees.

Add the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and butter to a large bowl. Using a pastry cutter or fork, cut the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles course crumbs.

In a separate bowl, beat together the egg, buttermilk and vanilla. Then add it to the flour and butter mixture. Stir to combine and fold in the currants.

Turn the dough out onto a well floured surface. It will be very sticky at first. Pat it down to approximately 1" thick, fold it over onto itself and repeat about 6 times.

Cut the final round into 8 pieces and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Brush each scone with the cream and sprinkle on the tablespoon of sugar.

Bake for 18 - 20 minutes or until the scones are a light golden brown.

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Monday, March 12, 2018

Banana Cream Pie

Banana cream pie made with shortcrust pastry and banana pastry cream

For those people who know me well, the only surprising part about me baking a banana cream pie is that it's the first time I've ever done it. And surprising because it is literally my favorite dessert of all time.

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

French Onion Patty Melts

Grilled beef and Gruyere sandwich melts with caramelized onions

One of my cooking mottos would have to be French onion all the things! Why? Because the combination of beef, Gruyere cheese and caramelized onions is awesome. Sure, it's great in soup but it's just as great minus the soup. Patty melts are already awesome so giving them the French onion twist just makes them even more so.

Monday, March 5, 2018

Cheddar Soda Bread

Soda bread flavored with sharp cheddar cheese

Every year I bake some kind of soda bread around St. Patrick's Day and every year I ask myself why I don't bake it more often. It's easy to make and so completely delicious. And it lends itself to lots of variations.

Thursday, March 1, 2018

Cornmeal Onion Fritters

Battered and fried onion fritters

I usually enjoy adapting recipes to be a little healthier and that often means employing my oven or air fryer instead of the deep fryer. But, sometimes there's just no really good substitute for the original, like a crispy onion fritter. And, let's face it, sometimes we need a good, crispy onion fritter.

Monday, February 26, 2018

Angel Hair with Fava Beans and Gremolata Pangrattato

Pasta with fava beans and lemony garlic breadcrumbs

Despite days of rain and gloom, the temperature is actually warming up quite a bit here. I think the groundhog said 6 more weeks of winter but that's just a rodent with a bad attitude. I'm predicting an early spring. And even if the sun is not quite cooperating now, I'm willing it to with spring-like foods.

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Air Fried Doughnut Puffs


I've been having fun testing recipes in my air fryer so it was only a matter of time before I tried something sweet. Doughnuts are such great deep fried treats so I obviously had to see how they would do without the oil.

Monday, February 19, 2018

Cheesy Meatloaf Sliders with Pickled Red Onion


Meatloaf is one of those recipes that I love as much the next day, as a leftover, as I do freshly made for dinner. It's one of my favorite comfort foods when served fresh with mashed potatoes and gravy (diners do this dish SO well) but it's equally amazing as a sandwich the next day.

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Buttered Bourbon Pop-Tail


Do you and your friends love seeing all the Oscar nominated movies before the awards are handed out? It's definitely movie watching time around here and the planning of a festive group Oscar watching party. It's so much more fun to watch with other people.

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Individual Red Lentil Pot Pies


There are just some culinary terms that make me extra happy and pot pie is one of them. The image of creamy filling encased in pastry is enough to make me hungry. It's also an incredibly versatile dish since both the crust and the filling can be varied so much.

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Apple Puff Tart with Tahini Caramel


Not all Valentine's Day desserts have to contain chocolate. Especially if you suspect a box of your favorite chocolate truffles is being purchased for you because somebody knows how much you love them. So, on the assumption that somebody knows what's good for them and is purchasing said truffles, I think it's safe to move away from the chocolate. There should still be caramel, though.

Monday, February 5, 2018

Ground Beef Stroganoff


Sunday was cold and rainy and I was feeling run down from a long week. Normally I make a big pot of soup when I feel like that but I was more in the mood for something rich and hearty. Or, at least, rich tasting.

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Sparkling Red Currant Cosmopolitan


I am obsessed with fresh currants and probably mores so because of how hard they are to find. In New York I typically find them in the winter at specialty gourmet stores but sometimes larger farmer's markets will have them. One thing is sure and that's that, if I see them, I'm buying them.

Monday, January 29, 2018

Chocolate Raspberry Layer Cake


Most of the time, I am not a fancy dessert maker. I like to create recipes that are easy, quick and delicious. But sometimes you have to make an effort and Valentine's Day is the perfect occasion for an extra fancy chocolate cake.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Triple Chocolate Shortbread Cookies


It's almost time for the sweetest holiday of the year. And yes, it's wonderful if you have a romantic partner but I believe in spreading the love to friends and family. Thanks to Parks and Recreation, so many of my friends now host "galentines" celebrations and I'm happy to share the friend love with sweet treats.

Monday, January 22, 2018

Cheesy Beef and Potato Casserole


Every time I make a casserole I ask myself why I don't make them more often. They can be prepped ahead of time, come together using just one or two pans and they usually make enough for lots of leftovers. Those are all words that interest me when I'm busy and can realize, with relief, that dinner is already in the fridge, just waiting for me to reheat it.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Burger Au Poivre


One of my favorite restaurant splurges is steak au poivre which is typically a filet mignon served with a creamy peppercorn sauce. The steak is great, of course, but it's the sauce that makes me crave that dish. So, why not just make the sauce?

Monday, January 15, 2018

Chocolate Chip Tahini Cake

This weekend I was going through my pantry and thinking about doing some cold weather, stay-at-home-day baking. There's something so comforting about winter baking not to mention, I really wanted something sweet.

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Baked Cauliflower Rice and Bacon Arancini


Where should I begin? The arancini part, the cauliflower rice part or the fact that this recipe serves four but I ate most of it by myself for dinner last night?

Monday, January 8, 2018

Winter Squash Soup with Sage


I hope you all are not getting sick of soup recipes because the temperatures and wind chill around here are below zero and that means I'm eating soup. My big soup pot pretty much lives on top of the stove lately because it's a stay inside, eat all the soup and watch Netflix kind of month.

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Braised Short Ribs


So...brrrr. Those of us in the north east are enjoying (no, not really) single digit temperatures and the pleasures of potential frostbite whenever we take the dog for a walk. Mind you, I'm not really complaining that much because my apartment is heated and cozy. Just maybe getting a little claustrophobic in here.

Monday, January 1, 2018

Black Bean Soup


Happy New Year, friends! I hope you had an opportunity to take some time off around the holidays. I took most of last week off which, for me, meant catching up on sleep, catching up on some personal stuff that I wanted crossed off my list and playing around in the kitchen.

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

End of Year Round-Up 2017

End-of- Year-Round-Up-2017-1

Happy holidays friends! I'm taking a little break this week, by which I mean I'll be working on finishing loose ends, catching up on paperwork and doing lots of planning for 2018. Yeah, I know, but I have a hard time letting go completely. Regardless, it's a peaceful week around here and I'm getting some much needed rest.

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Raspberry Champagne Cocktail (and Apartment Tour)


Happy holidays, friends! I'll have an end of the year recap for you next week but this cocktail is my last recipe for 2017. Clearly it needed to be a festive one. Drink it at Christmas, on New Year's Eve or every night in between so that we can properly close out this year and get a fresh, if slightly hung over, start on the new one.

Monday, December 18, 2017

Smoky Beer Battered Cauliflower


In between batches of holiday cookies, I thought I would take a quick veggie break and indulge my love of cauliflower. I'll eat it pretty much every way there is but I have to admit that my mother's crispy breaded and fried cauliflower was and still is my favorite. So, so good but maybe not so good for me if I'm trying to minimize the cookie damage.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Gingerbread Shortbread Cookies


Wait, is it gingerbread or shortbread? What did you make us here, Anita? Well, the answer is a combination of both. Since it's mid-December, I'm definitely feeling the gingerbread vibe. But I have a soft spot in my heart for shortbread. I found a bunch of recipes for ginger shortbread and even some packaged versions from cookie companies I really like. But they taste like ginger, not gingerbread. I needed a better marriage of the two.

Monday, December 11, 2017

How to Build a Dessert Treat Board


One of my favorite things about the holiday season is the visits and get-togethers with friends. There's just something about that whole time between Thanksgiving and New Year that's perfect for gathering. And it's the time of year when I find myself creating a lot of cheese boards and various fun appetizers but somehow I get stuck thinking dessert has to be more formal. Why? I love eating lots of little tid-bits so why should the end of the meal not be as fun as the start?

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Cheesy White and Sweet Potato Latkes


Hannukah is about a week away so my mind has been drifting to classic holiday favorites like latkes and doughnuts. It's a celebration of oil, after all. But you don't have to be Jewish to appreciate fried potato pancakes anymore than you need to be Christian to eat Christmas cookies.

Monday, December 4, 2017

Honey Apple Gingerbread Cake


I'm normally a fan of easy desserts and I stay away from anything that looks too fussy or elaborate. I want you all to actually try making my recipes so I keep it simple. But the holidays deserve at least a little bit of a fuss. And it's hard not to want to wow your guests. Best of all is when I can create a wow looking dish that's actually not hard to make.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Chocolate Fluffernutter Martini


Did you grow up with fluffernutter sandwiches? Do you still sometimes make one for yourself? Come on, tell the truth. It's overly sweet, way too sticky and...we still love them.

Monday, November 27, 2017

Loaded Breakfast Pot Pie

Loaded-Breakfast-Pot- Pie-1

The holidays are probably the only time I even remotely consider entertaining guests for breakfast. I don't mean that I invite them over for a breakfast party, a la Barefoot Contessa. Ina Garten is my hero but I really can't get it together before, at least, brunch. But if family and friends are visiting, possibly staying with me, it's nice to give them something a little more special than a bowl of cereal. Just to keep it real, I'm usually so uncoordinated in the morning that even adding milk to my cereal sometimes seems like too many steps.

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Thanksgiving Pie Round-Up


So, it's Wednesday. The day before Thanksgiving. And you've done your shopping and set your table and prepped all the various bits and parts of the epic feast. But you haven't made the pies. Not sure what flavor to make? Nervous about becoming involved with pie dough? Hoping dearly that all your guests will declare they've given up sugar? Nah, you've got this.

Monday, November 20, 2017

Roasted Honeynut Squash Salad with Candied Pecans


I feel like the only food I eat lately is tastings of cake and cookie batter. OK, that's possibly a slight exaggeration but I was feeling like the fresh greens took a back seat once the temperature started dipping.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Maple Glazed Autumn Spice Treat Cakes


OK, I confess that I have very little ability to resist baking pans with adorable autumn themed shapes. My problem extends to cookie and pie cutters, too. Fortunately, this recipe can be made just as well in large muffin cups or even mini bundt molds. So you don't have to buy this particular baking dish although, clearly I couldn't resist it.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Cheesy Spaetzle and Mushroom Bake


It's been such an unusually warm autumn in New York that I almost didn't notice that somebody pulled the winter switch somewhere. I stepped out the other day to walk my dog, wearing the light jacket that's been my staple this past month, and suddenly had to run back upstairs to grab a winter coat, gloves and scarf. Going from 70 degrees down to 20 is just not right, Mother Nature.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

White Bean Stew with Bacon


Confession. When the weather is chilly and I don't have to feed anyone but myself, I pretty much live on soup for dinner. Just give me a slice of crusty bread and a big bowl of hot, preferably creamy, soup and I'm good till breakfast. Is that weird?

Monday, November 6, 2017

Roasted Cauliflower Gratin with Crispy Shallots


Let's talk vegetable side dishes. Whether you're planning the meal for Thanksgiving, Christmas or any entertaining in between, I'm upping my roasted cauliflower game big time.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Chocolate and Peanut Butter Crumb Babka

Chocolate-and-Peanut Butter-Crumb-Babka-1

Growing up in New York, babkas were a part of my life. They're sweet, yeast risen cakes common in Eastern Europe (and, obviously, New York) where they were typically filled with dried fruit. The Jewish version is more common now and filled with chocolate and cinnamon, twisted into a loaf shape. If you're a fan of the old Seinfeld show, you know that Jerry considered the chocolate version superior and it's hard to argue with that.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Baked Polenta with Bacon and Gruyere


Let's get the basics out of the way before we dive, face first, into this pan of deliciousness. Is it cornmeal or polenta? What's the difference? What should I buy? Why does one bag say cornmeal and the other bag say polenta? So, polenta is the name of the dish and cornmeal is the stuff it's made out of. Easy, right? You can use regular, medium or course ground cornmeal to make polenta but very fine ground will make it gummy. So, if the bag is labeled polenta, all it means is that the grind of the cornmeal is OK to make that dish. I buy cornmeal, in a regular/medium grind because it's the most versatile.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Caramel Pear Bourbon Cocktail


The weather is finally chilly in New York and that makes me want to drink things like bourbon while wrapped in a cozy throw blanket by the fire. Um, except that I don't have a fireplace and the dog is currently using the throw blanket as her own. But bourbon I have plenty of!

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Crumb Cake


Crumb cakes never last long in my family. Or, rather, I should say that the crumb topping itself has a shorter life span than the actual cake. The cake will eventually get eaten as well but it will likely be missing a lot of it's crumb by then. It's so bad sometimes that, a crumb cake left on the counter almost needs a guard posted to protect it. Assuming, of course, that the guard can be trusted not to eat the crumb topping. The struggle is real here, folks.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Autumn Squash and Smoked Gouda Mac


October, aka my favorite month, is here - check. Cooler weather is here - check. Market full of pumpkins and squash - check. Bring on the comfort food! Creamy, extra cheesy homemade mac and cheese clearly qualifies as comfort food. And even if you're a purist who doesn't like extra vegetables snuck into the mac, I would argue that squash is an exception. It adds a creamy sweetness that's just another layer of comfort.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Sweet Pumpkin Fritters


You want these, don't you? Admit it. You know you want them. Hot, fried balls of sweet pumpkin flavored dough. Just a touch of spice, without overwhelming you, and tossed with glorious powdered sugar. It's everything we love about summer street fair food but at home, autumn style.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Vegetarian Tortilla Pie


In case you all were wondering what the most popular dish on my blog is (I'm 100% sure that none of you were wondering this), it is my Mexican Tortilla Pie. It's crazy good, has been featured in a magazine and is served for dinner on repeat in my house. It uses ground beef but I decided to make a vegetarian version of it for non-beef eaters and for any meatless Monday dinner makers. Also, I was out of beef.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Loaded Turkey Sandwich with Sweet and Spicy Mango Honey Sauce


Is it back to school time where you are? Or do you just have a need for a good desk lunch, day in and day out because that's definitely the case for me. Either way, you've probably got sandwiches on repeat.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Roasted Pear and Arugula Salad with Toasted Walnuts


I was in the park the other day, chatting with a few of my neighbors while our dogs played, and we all said how we felt this was a long summer. Maybe due to life events, maybe because it was such a hot one but either way, we were trying to decide if we were happy to see it end. We're not looking forward to snow and early sunsets but we're still a few months away from that. For now, we're kind of looking forward to the slight cool down of September and the energy the city gets after Labor Day.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Thick and Gooey Chocolate Chip Cookies


I still remember the first time I was told about Costco's gourmet chocolate chunk cookies. They were raved about with so much passion but, never having tasted them, I wasn't that excited. How good could they be from a package? Of course, I changed my tune the first time I actually tasted them Hello new addiction.