Savory Simple http://www.savorysimple.net A Recipe Blog Wed, 17 Sep 2014 00:12:40 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.0 Pine Nut Tahini Cookies http://www.savorysimple.net/pine-nut-tahini-cookies/ http://www.savorysimple.net/pine-nut-tahini-cookies/#respond Tue, 16 Sep 2014 22:53:55 +0000 http://www.savorysimple.net/?p=13828 Have you ever tried halva? It’s a sweet, sesame-based confection that can often be found at local candy shops or Jewish delis. Sometimes I see pre-packaged versions but you really want to find the homemade stuff. It’s rich, dense and wonderful. I love it. And when I first tasted these tahini cookies, halva immediately came to mind. These cookies […]

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These pine nut tahini cookies have a delicate, flaky shortbread texture and a sweet sesame flavor.

Have you ever tried halva? It’s a sweet, sesame-based confection that can often be found at local candy shops or Jewish delis. Sometimes I see pre-packaged versions but you really want to find the homemade stuff. It’s rich, dense and wonderful. I love it. And when I first tasted these tahini cookies, halva immediately came to mind.

These pine nut tahini cookies have a delicate, flaky shortbread texture and a sweet sesame flavor.

These cookies have a tender, flaky texture similar to shortbread. The tahini is prominent and pine nuts add a light crunch and complementary flavor. You can use regular honey in this recipe but I recommend orange blossom honey if it’s available to you. Orange blossom honey is lightly floral and blends perfectly with the other flavors.

These pine nut tahini cookies have a delicate, flaky shortbread texture and a sweet sesame flavor.
I gave one of these cookies to my grandmother to try and her response was “These are so good; these taste like halva!” If Zelda gave these cookies her seal of approval, that means you need to try them.

These pine nut tahini cookies have a delicate, flaky shortbread texture and a sweet sesame flavor.

Pine Nut Tahini Cookies
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 20-30 cookies
Ingredients
  • 1¼ cups (6½ ounces) all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup well-stirred tahini
  • ½ tablespoon honey (I used orange blossom)
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • pine nuts
Instructions
  1. In a small bowl, whisk flour, baking powder, and salt together. Set aside.
  2. In a stand mixer, beat the butter and sugar in a large bowl with on medium-high for several minutes until light and fluffy.
  3. Slowly add the tahini, honey and vanilla.
  4. Reduce the mixer speed to low and slowly add the flour mixture until a dough has just formed.
  5. Transfer dough to a sheet of plastic wrap and flatten. Chill in the refrigerator until the dough has firmed up, at least 45 minutes.
  6. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
  7. Using your hands or a small cookie scoop, roll dough into approximately 1-inch balls. Line them up on the cookie sheet at least 2 inches apart. Top each cookie with 5 pine nuts.
  8. Bake for approximately 12 to 15 minutes. Allow to cool on the baking sheets for at least 10 minutes before serving.
Notes
Adapted from Epicurious

 

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Grilled Fairytale Eggplant with Garlic Yogurt Sauce and Pomegranate http://www.savorysimple.net/grilled-fairytale-eggplant/ http://www.savorysimple.net/grilled-fairytale-eggplant/#comments Thu, 11 Sep 2014 21:50:07 +0000 http://www.savorysimple.net/?p=13811 Fairytale eggplant is one of those ingredients I like introducing to people who say they don’t like eggplant. Not only are they gorgeous but the skins are completely soft when cooked and there are no seeds. They’re like perfect little eggplant jewels. They’re gorgeous. The easiest way to prepare fairytale eggplant is to simply roast it in […]

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This Grilled Fairytale Eggplant with Garlic Yogurt Sauce and Pomegranate is an impressive, flavorful, vegetarian appetizer.

Fairytale eggplant is one of those ingredients I like introducing to people who say they don’t like eggplant. Not only are they gorgeous but the skins are completely soft when cooked and there are no seeds. They’re like perfect little eggplant jewels.

This Grilled Fairytale Eggplant with Garlic Yogurt Sauce and Pomegranate is an impressive, flavorful, vegetarian appetizer.

They’re gorgeous. The easiest way to prepare fairytale eggplant is to simply roast it in the oven (which you can do with this recipe instead of grilling, if you prefer). The only negative to roasting them is that they lose a lot of their vibrant, natural purple tones. Grilling leaves some of that color in place and also yields a tastier dish. The grill adds a smokiness that you just can’t get from roasting.

This Grilled Fairytale Eggplant with Garlic Yogurt Sauce and Pomegranate is an impressive, flavorful, vegetarian appetizer.

With regards to the yogurt sauce, I recommend using a full fat yogurt or at least one with some fat. Also, the longer the garlic and the yogurt sit together, the more noticeable the garlic flavor will be. The sauce can be prepared one or two days in advance.

This Grilled Fairytale Eggplant with Garlic Yogurt Sauce and Pomegranate is an impressive, flavorful, vegetarian appetizer.

Grilled Fairytale Eggplant with Garlic Yogurt Sauce and Pomegranate
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 4 servings
Ingredients
  • 1 cup plain yogurt
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt (or to taste)
  • 1-2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 pound (give or take) fairytale eggplant
  • 1-2 tablespoons regular olive oil (or as needed)
  • pomegranate seeds
Instructions
  1. In a small bowl, stir together the yogurt, minced garlic, lemon juice and salt. Use milk to thin the sauce to the desired consistency and set aside. The garlic flavor will become more noticeable the longer it sits with the yogurt.
  2. Slice the eggplant in half lengthwise and sprinkle liberally with salt (you can slice the stem off first but I think it looks prettier attached, like poached pears). Place in a colander over the sink.
  3. Preheat a grill to medium-high for 10-15 minutes.
  4. Rinse the salt from the eggplant and lightly pat dry. Place in a large bowl and toss with just enough olive oil to prevent the eggplant from sticking to the grill.
  5. It is easiest to grill the eggplant in batches since they are small and don’t take very long. Place 10-15 eggplant halves on the grill, flat side down. Cook for 2 minutes and then flip them carefully with tongs. Close the lid and cook for another 2 minutes. Remove from the grill, cover with foil to keep warm and repeat with the remaining eggplant.
  6. Just before serving, drizzle the eggplant with the garlic yogurt sauce and sprinkle liberally with pomegranate seeds.
Notes

 

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Plum Butter http://www.savorysimple.net/plum-butter/ http://www.savorysimple.net/plum-butter/#comments Sun, 07 Sep 2014 22:24:27 +0000 http://www.savorysimple.net/?p=13761 I’m a product junkie. It’s a habit I’ve somewhat successfully quelled over the years but it still gets me from time to time. When I try a beauty product or food condiment that I really love, it’s an effort not to stock up by the case for fear that I might not always have this beloved […]

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Homemade small batch plum butter has no refined sugar and is easy to prepare at home!

I’m a product junkie. It’s a habit I’ve somewhat successfully quelled over the years but it still gets me from time to time. When I try a beauty product or food condiment that I really love, it’s an effort not to stock up by the case for fear that I might not always have this beloved product available to me when I want it.

Homemade small batch plum butter has no refined sugar and is easy to prepare at home!

I developed two such product attachments when we were in Europe this summer: a mustard and a honey. I have not yet tried combining these two ingredients to make honey mustard. Oddly enough, the idea didn’t occur to me until I began writing this post. Guess I know what I’ll be making next.

Homemade small batch plum butter has no refined sugar and is easy to prepare at home!

The mustard is pretty cheap on Amazon but I have yet to find the honey for sale at a reasonable price. It’s a creamed honey that’s very smooth and creamy with a delicate flavor. I’m going to start seeking out other German honey brands to see if I can find a good match. Because I am already more than halfway through my precious jar.

Homemade small batch plum butter has no refined sugar and is easy to prepare at home!

I used my German honey in this plum butter and pretty fantastic. The final product has a beautiful color, a sweet and tangy flavor and it smells amazing. I am not ashamed to admit that I ate a lot of this jar with a spoon. I also enjoyed it on fresh crusty bread and mixed with a bit of skim ricotta. Plums will be gone soon, folks. Make this NOW.

Homemade small batch plum butter has no refined sugar and is easy to prepare at home!

Plum Butter
 
Prep time
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Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 3-4 cups
Ingredients
  • 4 - 4½ pounds plums, pitted (see note)
  • 1 orange or 2 clementines
  • ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground allspice
  • ½ cup good quality honey (can be adjusted according to taste)
Instructions
  1. In a blender or food processor, puree the plums. If they are firm, chop them up first.
  2. Push the plum puree through a food mill or fine mesh strainer and discard the skins. Add the puree to a dutch oven or heavy bottom saucepan.
  3. Use a vegetable peeler to peel 4 large strips of zest from the orange or clementines. Juice the fruit and add 3 tablespoons of juice to the pot along with the zest. Stir in the vanilla, cinnamon, allspice and honey.
  4. Bring the mixture to a boil, stirring periodically, and then turn the heat down to a simmer. Cook for 75-80 minutes, uncovered, and use tongs to remove the zest after 20 minutes. Stir frequently, scraping a heat proof spatula against the bottom of the pan to make sure nothing sticks.
  5. Allow to cool and then store in the refrigerator.
Notes
Less ripe plums are often more tart while ripe plums are more sweet. For a nice flavor balance, use a mixture of both ripe and semi-ripe plums. If you use all ripe plums you might want to use less honey (and possibly a tablespoon or two of fresh squeezed lemon juice for tartness). If your plums are very tart to begin with, add more honey to taste.

 

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Gluten-Free Four Cheese White Pizza http://www.savorysimple.net/gluten-free-four-cheese-white-pizza/ http://www.savorysimple.net/gluten-free-four-cheese-white-pizza/#comments Thu, 04 Sep 2014 21:45:50 +0000 http://www.savorysimple.net/?p=13742 Earlier this year I created a grain-free paleo pizza crust for the blog and it was surprisingly successful, considering the fact that I’m not known for being a gluten-free/paleo blogger. Even though I don’t follow any specific diet, we make a real effort at home to limit refined sugars and carbohydrates. However, Jeff and I are both completely […]

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This Gluten-Free Four Cheese White Pizza is completely grain free but you'll never know the difference! Easy and delicious.

Earlier this year I created a grain-free paleo pizza crust for the blog and it was surprisingly successful, considering the fact that I’m not known for being a gluten-free/paleo blogger. Even though I don’t follow any specific diet, we make a real effort at home to limit refined sugars and carbohydrates. However, Jeff and I are both completely nuts for pizza. It’s a weakness. This pizza crust is a nice way to indulge periodically without all the guilt.

This Gluten-Free Four Cheese White Pizza is completely grain free but you'll never know the difference! Easy and delicious.

I make pizza variations with this crust all the time and today I’m sharing one of those with you. It’s the same exact crust except that I use tapioca flour instead of arrowroot (both are sold by Bob’s Red Mill and can be found at most grocery stores). These starches can be used interchangeably in the recipe so I just use whichever one I happen to have on hand. The pizza crust has a crunchy texture and a nutty flavor that almost reminds me of cornmeal.

The four cheeses I use are ricotta (either whole or part skim), goat, mozzarella and parmesan. For best results, buy good quality cheese. Nothing shredded, pre-grated or pre-crumbled. You want to maximize and savor each of these unique flavors. I like to mix roasted garlic with the ricotta. It adds a sweet and savory depth that I love, but it can be omitted if you’re not a fan of garlic in general. You might also be able to find pre-roasted garlic to save time.

Finally, I love making single serving pizzas for each of us so that’s what I’ve done with this recipe. I divide the dough and topping ingredients in half to make 2 smaller pizzas. If you prefer, you can make one large pizza following the exact same instructions. Just don’t divide the dough and toppings.

This Gluten-Free Four Cheese White Pizza is completely grain free but you'll never know the difference! Easy and delicious.

Gluten-Free Four Cheese White Pizza
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 2-4
Ingredients
for the crust
  • 2½ teaspoons active dry yeast
  • ¼ cup warm water
  • 2½ tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (plus more as needed)
  • 1 large egg
  • 4 ounces (1 cup) almond meal (I used Bob's Red Mill)
  • 4¼ ounces (1 cup) tapioca flour (I used Bob's Red Mill)
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
for the topping
  • 1 head garlic
  • 1 cup whole or part skim ricotta cheese
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon fresh oregano (or ¼ teaspoon dried)
  • ½ teaspoon fresh basil (or ¼ teaspoon dried)
  • ½ cup goat cheese
  • ½ cup fresh mozzarella cheese
  • fresh grated parmesan cheese
  • fresh ground black pepper
Instructions
prepare the dough
  1. Whisk the yeast and warm water together in the bowl of a stand mixer. Allow the mixture to rest for 3-5 minutes (it should bubble up). Add the olive oil and egg. Using the paddle attachment, mix for 30 seconds on medium speed.
  2. In a medium sized bowl, whisk together the almond meal, tapioca and salt. Add this mixture to the stand mixer and mix on low speed until the ingredients just are just combined. Turn the speed up to medium-high and mix for one minute. The dough will be more thin and sticky than regular dough.
  3. Grease a medium sized bowl with olive oil. Using a spatula, scrape out the dough and move it to the oiled bowl. Cover the bowl with a towel and place it in the microwave (or oven, somewhere it can sit undisturbed). Boil some water and pour it into a bowl. Carefully place the bowl into the microwave to create a warm, steamy environment. Allow the dough to rise for 90-100 minutes.
  4. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F and place a pizza stone in the oven. Once the oven is at temperature, grease a large sheet of parchment paper with olive oil. Divide the dough in half (note: the dough can also be left whole for one large pizza or divided into 4 pieces for mini pizzas). Press the first half into a thin round circle that's approximately 5 inches in diameter. Do not do this step before the oven is preheated or the next step might not work.
  5. Using oven mitts, remove the pizza stone from the oven. Swiftly flip the parchment paper over so that the dough transfers onto the pizza stone. Place the stone back in the oven and bake the crust for 6 minutes, or until it's slightly browning on the edges and firm on top.
  6. Repeat this process with the remaining dough.
prepare the toppings
  1. Turn the oven down to 400 degrees F. Remove most of the outer layers of skin from the garlic. Carefully slice off the top of the head so that the cloves are exposed. Place the head in a ramekin, cut side up, and drizzle with olive oil and a sprinkle of salt. Cover with foil and place in the oven. Roast for 30 minutes. Set aside and allow to cool for several minutes. Once the head is cool enough to be handled, squeeze the roasted cloves out of the skin and mash into a paste.
  2. In a small bowl, combine the roasted garlic paste, ricotta cheese, salt, oregano and basil. Spread half of the mixture onto each pizza crust, leaving space around the end of the crust for handling. For a lighter topping, do not use all of the ricotta mixture (it’s great on salads).
  3. Crumble the goat cheese evenly over both pizzas. Rip the mozzarella into small pieces and distribute evenly on both pizzas. Grate plenty of fresh parmesan cheese on top and then finish with a few twists of fresh ground black pepper.
  4. Place each pizza under the broiler until the cheese has melted and the edges of the crust are golden (4-6 minutes). Do not walk away while the broiler is on!
  5. Serve immediately.
Notes
The roasted garlic can be prepared up to 24 hours in advance. For less garlic flavor, mix only half of the roasted garlic paste with the ricotta. The garlic can also be omitted entirely.

Crust inspired by Zen Belly Catering

 

Disclaimer: I was paid to develop a recipe for Bob’s Red Mill. As always, all opinions are my own. 

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Cashew and Roasted Red Pepper Kale Chips http://www.savorysimple.net/cashew-roasted-red-pepper-kale-chips/ http://www.savorysimple.net/cashew-roasted-red-pepper-kale-chips/#comments Sun, 31 Aug 2014 21:11:53 +0000 http://www.savorysimple.net/?p=13714 Kale chips are one of those things that people either love or hate. I’m somewhere in the middle because I love them when they’re done right. But I’ve tasted a lot of mediocre to bad kale chips over the years. I promise you- these are some of the best kale chips you’ll ever try. No joke. They’re […]

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These Cashew and Roasted Red Pepper Kale Chips are savory, crunchy and bursting with flavor. People will beg you for the recipe! (vegan & gluten-free)

Kale chips are one of those things that people either love or hate. I’m somewhere in the middle because I love them when they’re done right. But I’ve tasted a lot of mediocre to bad kale chips over the years. I promise you- these are some of the best kale chips you’ll ever try. No joke. They’re thick, savory and crunchy. I’m kind of obsessed with them.

These Cashew and Roasted Red Pepper Kale Chips are savory, crunchy and bursting with flavor. People will beg you for the recipe! (vegan & gluten-free)

These are coated in a mixture of pureed cashews and roasted red pepper. The cashews add a perfect amount of thickness and crunch and the roasted red pepper is sweet with a hint of bitter. Lemon juice offers acidity and nutritional yeast adds a cheesy flavor without any actual cheese (this recipe is completely vegan).

These Cashew and Roasted Red Pepper Kale Chips are savory, crunchy and bursting with flavor. People will beg you for the recipe! (vegan & gluten-free)

I don’t often require specialty equipment for recipes but you do need a dehydrator for these kale chips. I tried dehydrating them in the oven and the cashews never set properly. I found mine on Amazon for $35 and it’s worth every penny (ps- that’s an Amazon affiliate link). I love making kale chips and I also use it for dehydrating various fruits and vegetables.

If you like the sound of this recipe, you should also check out my spicy tahini kale chips. They’re pretty awesome.

These Cashew and Roasted Red Pepper Kale Chips are savory, crunchy and bursting with flavor. People will beg you for the recipe! (vegan & gluten-free)

Cashew and Roasted Red Pepper Kale Chips
 
Author:
Ingredients
  • 1 cup raw cashews
  • 1 small to medium red pepper
  • 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
  • 1½ teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 8-10 ounces baby kale (regular kale may be substituted)
Instructions
  1. Place the cashews in a container and cover by 2-3 inches with fresh water. Allow to soak for at least 6 hours or overnight.
  2. Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F. Place the red pepper on a baking sheet lined with foil. Allow to roast for 30-40 minutes, turning occasionally with tongs so that all sides roast evenly. Remove from the oven and allow to rest until the pepper is cool enough to handle. Peel and discard all of the skin as well as the stem and seeds.
  3. Rinse the cashews, discarding the water, and place in a blender along with the red pepper. Add the nutritional yeast, salt, olive oil, lemon juice and water. Puree until smooth.
  4. Place the kale in a large bowl. If using regular kale, remove the thick stems and rip the leaves into smaller pieces.
  5. Pour the cashew mixture over the kale and massage until the mixture is evenly distributed.
  6. Taste to check for seasoning. If desired, add additional salt.
  7. Place the kale in the dehydrator and dehydrate according to manufacturer instructions.
Notes
The larger the red pepper, the stronger that flavor will be. I used a medium sized red pepper. Nutritional yeast can be found in most grocery stores or purchased online.

Recipe inspired by kale chips at Elizabeth's Gone Raw in DC.

 

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Clementine Ice Cream http://www.savorysimple.net/clementine-ice-cream/ http://www.savorysimple.net/clementine-ice-cream/#comments Thu, 28 Aug 2014 18:39:15 +0000 http://www.savorysimple.net/?p=13666 Oh my darling, oh my darling, oh my darling summertime. Almost lost and gone for this year, Dreadful sorry, summertime.   Clementines are not technically considered a summer fruit, which is why I think this is a decent summer/fall crossover recipe. Ice cream might not be the most desired treat during chillier months, but if you’re lucky […]

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Clementine Ice Cream is tangy, sweet and citrusy summer treat.

Oh my darling, oh my darling, oh my darling summertime.
Almost lost and gone for this year,
Dreadful sorry, summertime.
  Clementine Ice Cream is tangy, sweet and citrusy summer treat.

Clementines are not technically considered a summer fruit, which is why I think this is a decent summer/fall crossover recipe. Ice cream might not be the most desired treat during chillier months, but if you’re lucky enough to have clementines available right now, enjoy this while it’s still hot outside. If you can’t locate clementines, oranges or tangerines will work quite well.

Clementine Ice Cream is tangy, sweet and citrusy summer treat.

Everyone’s already rambling on about pumpkin spiced lattes and what not. Not me. I’m not done with summer produce yet. I was overjoyed to learn that I’ll be receiving white peaches, castleton plums, cherry tomatoes and sweet corn tomorrow in my CSA basket. And I know I’m making a big deal out of nothing. Labor day might be just around the corner but I’ll probably have this produce for awhile longer. I’m just… making a big deal out of nothing.

Clementine Ice Cream is tangy, sweet and citrusy summer treat.

As someone told me a few days ago with an eye roll, “summer isn’t over yet, sweetheart.”

Clementine Ice Cream is tangy, sweet and citrusy summer treat.

Clementine Ice Cream
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 1 quart
Ingredients
  • 2 cups half and half (or 1 cup heavy cream + 1 cup whole milk)
  • zest from 1 clementine
  • 8 egg yolks
  • 5 ounces (3/4 cup) granulated sugar
  • ¾ cup fresh squeezed clementine juice
  • 1 tablespoon Grand Marnier liqueur (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh squeezed lemon juice
Instructions
  1. Place the half and half and clementine zest in a medium sized saucepan over medium heat. While that’s warming up, whisk together the egg yolks, sugar and clementine juice in a large bowl.
  2. When the half and half has just started to simmer, turn the heat down to low add several ladles of it to the egg mixture while whisking. Pour the contents of the bowl back into the saucepan, using a spatula to scrape out all of the mixture.
  3. Stir the liquid continuously over low heat until it has thickened slightly, about 5 minutes.
  4. Remove from the heat and allow to cool for several minutes (continue stirring periodically).
  5. Strain the ice cream base into a bowl or quart-sized measuring cup (discard the zest), and stir in the Grand Marnier and lemon juice. Cover with plastic wrap. Place the plastic wrap directly against the liquid to prevent a skin from forming. Chill until very cold, preferably overnight.
  6. Use an ice cream machine and prepare according to manufacturer instructions.
Notes
Note: Tangerines or regular oranges my be substituted. The Grand Marnier is technically optional but adding it will result in softer ice cream that's easier to scoop straight from the freezer.

 

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Nectarine Pie http://www.savorysimple.net/nectarine-pie/ http://www.savorysimple.net/nectarine-pie/#comments Mon, 25 Aug 2014 21:19:42 +0000 http://www.savorysimple.net/?p=13675 I’m feeling a bit depressed today. I’m just not ready for summer to be over. These past few months in particular have been really amazing and I’m not ready to move forward yet. Temperatures have been mild and the produce has been plentiful. Freelance work opportunities have been off the charts. I got to the beach three […]

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Nectarine pie is a sweet, tangy summer treat with seasonal fruit and a flaky, tender crust.

I’m feeling a bit depressed today. I’m just not ready for summer to be over. These past few months in particular have been really amazing and I’m not ready to move forward yet. Temperatures have been mild and the produce has been plentiful. Freelance work opportunities have been off the charts. I got to the beach three times. I got the European vacation I’d been anticipating for years. I’ve been so incredibly spoiled. I don’t want it to end. I’m being selfish.

Nectarine pie is a sweet, tangy summer treat with seasonal fruit and a flaky, tender crust.

Usually I get excited for fall. I know when it gets here I’ll be all about boots and apples and cool weather. I just wish it would wait a little bit longer. I can’t help dreading the shorter days; I thrive on sunlight. I don’t want to lose it.

Nectarine pie is a sweet, tangy summer treat with seasonal fruit and a flaky, tender crust.

I don’t want to lose the stone fruit. The sweet, juicy peaches, plums and nectarines I’ve been obsessed with for months. I already miss them. I already miss the beach.

Nectarine pie is a sweet, tangy summer treat with seasonal fruit and a flaky, tender crust.

I think what I’m really dreading isn’t actually the loss of summer, though it feels that way. I’m panicking about a major project I’m about to embark on, one I’ll be sharing with you all soon. It’s going to be a lot of work. A LOT of work. I feel like if I can just hang on to summer a little bit longer, I can put off the project for a little bit longer. My desperate clinging to summer is really just a desperate desire to procrastinate. I’ll get it all done. I just have to get past this mental block.

Nectarine pie is a sweet, tangy summer treat with seasonal fruit and a flaky, tender crust.

This nectarine pie might be my last chance to celebrate stone fruit for awhile. I don’t know, maybe I’ll squeeze something else in. But you should really make this before nectarines have vanished for the year. Each bite of this sweet, decadent pie tastes like summer. A beautiful, mild, adventurous summer that I’ll never forget.

Nectarine Pie
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 8
Ingredients
Dough:
  • 12 ounces (2½ cups) all purpose flour
  • 2 ounces (1/4 cup) granulated sugar
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 8 ounces cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • ⅓ cup cold water
Filling:
  • 3½ pounds ripe nectarines (approximately 6-7)
  • 1½ tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup light brown sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • a few gratings of fresh nutmeg
  • ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
Topping:
  • 1 tablespoon milk or cream
  • 1 tablespoon raw turbinado sugar (granulated sugar may be substituted)
Instructions
prepare the dough
  1. To prepare the dough, place the flour, sugar and salt in a food processor. Pulse the dry ingredients several times to mix.
  2. Add the butter and pulse the machine until the mixture looks like coarse cornmeal (a few larger pieces of butter are fine).
  3. With the machine running, add the water and mix until the dough just begins to come together. It will still be very crumbly but should form dough when pressed together.
  4. Divide the dough into ⅓ and ⅔ portions, wrap in plastic wrap and flatten into round discs. Place in the refrigerator for a minimum of 1 hour (up to 48 hours).
prepare the filling
  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Fill a separate large bowl with ice water. On the bottom of each nectarine, slice a 1-inch X shape (the goal is to cut the skin, not the fruit). Using a slotted spoon, carefully add a few of the nectarines to the boiling water. After 30 seconds to 1 minute you should see the skin separating slightly from the fruit. Use the slotted spoon to move the nectarines into the ice water bath. Repeat with the remaining nectarines.
  2. Peel the skin from the nectarines (discard the skins). If any of the skins are stubborn, use a small paring knife to assist in the peeling. Slice the fruit in half and remove the pits. Place the nectarines flat side down and cut into thin slices. Place the sliced nectarines in a large bowl and toss with the lemon juice.
  3. In a small bowl, stir together the sugars, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and cornstarch. Add to the nectarines, stirring to combine. Set aside.
assemble the pie
  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. On a generously floured surface, roll out the larger portion of dough to about 12-13 inches in diameter (flour the top of the dough as well). Carefully place in a 9½ inch pie pan. There should be a slight overhang.
  3. Re-flour the surface and roll out the smaller portion of dough to approximately 10 inches in diameter. Use a pizza slicer to cut 8 even strips. Layer the strips in a decorative lattice pattern. Cut off any excess overhang from the strips and then fold the bottom overhang over the strips. Use a fork to gently crimp the edge of the crust all around.
  4. Brush the milk or cream evenly over the dough and sprinkle with the turbinado sugar (this will add a nice crunch).
  5. Place the pie pan on a baking sheet and place in the oven. Cook for 20 minutes and then lower the oven temperature to 375 degrees F. Bake for an additional 35-40 minutes, or until the crust is brown and the filling is bubbly.
  6. Allow to cool completely to room temperature before slicing (the filling will thicken as it cools).
Notes
filling & topping adapted from Smitten Kitchen’s peach pie

 

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I Left My Heart in Prague http://www.savorysimple.net/i-left-my-heart-in-prague/ http://www.savorysimple.net/i-left-my-heart-in-prague/#comments Fri, 22 Aug 2014 00:41:29 +0000 http://www.savorysimple.net/?p=13622 There’s only one thing I love as much as getting my hands dirty in the kitchen and that’s traveling around the world. If I won the lottery today I would probably start creating a travel itinerary before even telling my family the good news. Nothing fills me with a sense of excitement and wonder like seeing a foreign country. […]

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I left my heart in Prague

There’s only one thing I love as much as getting my hands dirty in the kitchen and that’s traveling around the world. If I won the lottery today I would probably start creating a travel itinerary before even telling my family the good news. Nothing fills me with a sense of excitement and wonder like seeing a foreign country. This year Jeff and I were able to take our first serious overseas trip in 5 years. We visited Germany and the Czech Republic, with a brief but lovely layover in London at the end.

I left my heart in Prague

Germany was as beautiful and picturesque as I had imagined. Sometimes we joked that it looked like Epcot Germany but there was nothing Disney about the towns and ancient castles we saw. I’ll never forget the sweeping landscapes, the green mountainous vineyards…

I left my heart in Prague

My pictures don’t do it justice at all. My breath was constantly taken away by the beauty of Germany. It made me realize how flat my surroundings at home are. We would drive through these incredibly hilly towns with winding cobblestone roads. In some neighborhoods there were red and pink flowers in almost every window.

I left my heart in Prague

Sometimes we would pass fields of wild sunflowers on the side of the road that were the size of my head. There were bees everywhere. No one could give me a clear explanation of why but I got really good at dodging them.

I left my heart in Prague

And there were castles. So. Many. Castles!  This castle, Burg Eltz, was my favorite. To get to it we had to take a 15 minute walk on a small winding dirt path on the side of a mountain. It was like something out of a fairytale.

I left my heart in Prague

Germany often gave me delicate opportunities to work on my fear of heights. It would seem that many castles and fortresses reside on the top of very large hills. I suppose at one point it was helpful for seeing enemies attempting to storm the castle?

I left my heart in Prague

Berlin was an especially memorable part of the trip for me. While I no longer consider myself a practicing Jew, there’s so much recent, intense history and I really did feel a connection with my ancestors while seeing some of the sights. The above photo was taken inside the Holocaust Memorial (also know as the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe). It was both moving and haunting. We saw the remains of the Berlin Wall and Checkpoint Charlie. We stood in a park over what was once Hitler’s bunker. We visited Schaffhausen, a concentration camp. These weren’t exactly fun experiences but I’m glad I did it.

I left my heart in Prague

I was sad to say goodbye to Germany but that was quickly forgotten once I got my first good look at Prague. Hello amazing.

I left my heart in Prague

Prague was overwhelming and I could not put my camera down. At first I was distracted by how many tourists were everywhere. Like… elbow to elbow tourists who were all trying to walk in different directions. It was kind of fascinating to have a drink and people watch but when we first arrived I felt like I WAS in fact at Disney World.

I left my heart in Prague

But then we got off the tourist track and I fell in love. I fell in love with the architecture, the people, the history, the beer, the food, the prices (hello $30 for an amazing dinner with drinks).

I left my heart in Prague

There were little glimmers of beauty everywhere I turned. We might have even discussed retiring in Prague someday.

I left my heart in Prague

I’ve never been so sad to leave a foreign city in my life. We thought we had scheduled plenty of time. I felt like we barely scratched the surface. I want to go back. I hope.

I left my heart in Prague

See the cute camera strap I’m wearing in this photo? Right before vacation I was sent a free, handmade camera strap from Nena & Co to review. This trip seemed like a perfect opportunity to put it to the test and that I did. I wore this strap around my neck every single day for two and a half weeks. Did it show a bit of wear and tear by the end? Absolutely, you can see a little string dangling in the photo above. But honestly, that’s what I expected after lugging it around nonstop, sweating on it, flinging it about, and bumping into walls (which I do more than I’d like to admit). A couple of loose strings aside, this strap was incredibly durable. I never felt like my camera was in danger of going anywhere. The threads and strap itself are incredibly soft and never once caused any irritation to my neck. And I tend to wear mostly neutrals so the color of the strap was always just the right amount of flair for my outfit.

Would you like to own one of these straps? Nena & Co is giving one away! Each handmade strap is unique and no two look exactly alike. I know you’re going to love it as much as I do regardless of whether you’re taking your camera on the road or just using it at family gatherings. To enter, use the widget below. Please note that you must be 18 years old to enter and have a US address where the prize can be shipped. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclaimer: I was sent a free camera strap by Nena & Co. As always, all opinions are my own.

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Summer Corn Soup http://www.savorysimple.net/summer-corn-soup/ http://www.savorysimple.net/summer-corn-soup/#comments Mon, 18 Aug 2014 23:31:40 +0000 http://www.savorysimple.net/?p=13641 I’m back, bitches! I’ve been home from our amazing Europe trip for over a week but I’ve been having a very difficult time getting back into the swing of things. I was sure I’d have a recipe post up before now but apparently my creativity is still on vacation. I’m still sorting through all of […]

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This healthy summer corn soup is incredibly rich without using any butter or cream! It's the best corn soup you'll ever make at home.

I’m back, bitches! I’ve been home from our amazing Europe trip for over a week but I’ve been having a very difficult time getting back into the swing of things. I was sure I’d have a recipe post up before now but apparently my creativity is still on vacation. I’m still sorting through all of our Germany and Prague photos and plan to share some of them in my next post so keep an eye out.

This healthy summer corn soup is incredibly rich without using any butter or cream! It's the best corn soup you'll ever make at home.

In the meantime, I have an amazing summer corn soup recipe to share with you. If it’s hot and humid where you are, soup might not be what you’re craving but this isn’t a recipe that can be enjoyed properly in the colder months. The secret is fresh, sweet, summer corn as well as the cobs themselves, which I use to make a stock.

This healthy summer corn soup is incredibly rich without using any butter or cream! It's the best corn soup you'll ever make at home.

Corn stock takes this soup to the next level. It’s rich and creamy without the use of butter or heavy cream. I used chicken stock for some added savoriness but for a vegetarian soup simply use vegetable stock. As always, I highly recommend using homemade stock. If that’s not possible, use a low sodium store-bought stock.

This healthy summer corn soup is incredibly rich without using any butter or cream! It's the best corn soup you'll ever make at home.

Summer Corn Soup
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 8-10 servings
Ingredients
  • 8 ears fresh corn
  • 2 quarts water
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups yellow onion, diced (approximately 1 medium onion)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 cups chicken or vegetable stock, preferably homemade
  • optional garnish: creme fraiche and chives
Instructions
  1. Slice the kernels from each corn cob and place in a bowl. Set aside.
  2. Break each corn cob in half and place in a large dutch oven or stock pot. Cover the cobs with 2 quarts of cold water. Bring the water to a boil and turn the heat to low. Simmer, uncovered, for 40 minutes.
  3. While the corn cobs are simmering, heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium low heat. Add the onions and cook until translucent, approximately 2 minutes, then add the garlic, salt and reserved corn. Cook for several minutes until the corn is soft, stirring frequently, and then remove from the heat and cover.
  4. Once the corn cobs have finished simmering, strain the liquid and add 2 cups of it to the corn mixture along with 2 cups of stock. If the corn stock has reduced to less than 2 cups, simply add more stock or plain water. Simmer the ingredients together over medium heat for an additional 15 minutes, covered.
  5. Ladle the soup into a blender and puree in batches. Press the soup through a food mill or fine mesh strainer. Season with salt and pepper to taste. If a thinner consistency is desired, add additional stock (use the corn stock if there’s any leftover).
  6. If using, garnish with creme fraiche and chives before serving.

 

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Goat Cheese Mousse with Roasted Blueberries http://www.savorysimple.net/goat-cheese-mousse-roasted-blueberries/ http://www.savorysimple.net/goat-cheese-mousse-roasted-blueberries/#comments Tue, 29 Jul 2014 07:48:18 +0000 http://www.savorysimple.net/?p=13607 Hello from Germany! I prepared and photographed this easy summer dessert just before leaving the United States for our summer vacation. We’ve been having an amazing time abroad. Germany is absolutely gorgeous and I feel so lucky to be visiting (and staying with very generous friends).   I assumed I would use this post to share photos […]

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This Goat Cheese Mousse with Roasted Blueberries is a simple, light and elegant dessert that's perfect for summer. Only 4 ingredients!

Hello from Germany! I prepared and photographed this easy summer dessert just before leaving the United States for our summer vacation. We’ve been having an amazing time abroad. Germany is absolutely gorgeous and I feel so lucky to be visiting (and staying with very generous friends).  

This Goat Cheese Mousse with Roasted Blueberries is a simple, light and elegant dessert that's perfect for summer. Only 4 ingredients!

I assumed I would use this post to share photos and stories from abroad, but honestly I’m kind of exhausted. It has been non-stop adventure since we arrived and today is our first chance to rest. We’ve been leaving at 8am and often not returning to the flat until 10-11pm. But I wouldn’t have it any other way. I am enamored with the historic villages, cobblestone streets and old castles. More castles than I could have ever imagined. Each town is more beautiful than the next. Tomorrow we’re hopping on a train to Berlin. After that we’ll be headed to Prague.

This Goat Cheese Mousse with Roasted Blueberries is a simple, light and elegant dessert that's perfect for summer. Only 4 ingredients!

I will return home in a couple weeks but for now I leave you with a simple summer dessert. With only 4 ingredients, this goat cheese mousse is surprisingly light and delicate. Feel free to swap out the blueberries with your favorite summer fruit.

This Goat Cheese Mousse with Roasted Blueberries is a simple, light and elegant dessert that's perfect for summer. Only 4 ingredients!

Goat Cheese Mousse with Roasted Blueberries
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 6-8 servings
Ingredients
  • 1½ cups heavy cream, cold
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 5 ounces goat cheese, room temperature
  • 2-3 cups blueberries
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Place the goat cheese in a large bowl and set aside.
  2. In a large stand mixer with the whisk attachment, beat the heavy cream and sugar to a stiff peak (this can also be done by hand.)
  3. Spoon half of the whipped cream into the bowl with the goat cheese and vigorously whisk until smooth. Add the remaining whipped cream and gently fold to combine. Cover and chill in the refrigerator.
  4. Place the blueberries on the prepared baking sheet and roast in 4 minute intervals, shaking the pan at each interval to ensure that the berries roast evenly. They should be nice and roasted after 12-16 minutes.
  5. Spoon the mousse into small bowls and top with the roasted blueberries.
Notes
For best results, serve the mousse within 2-3 hours.

 

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