Scrambled Egg with Goat Cheese & Pancetta Spread on Toast

June 4, 2011

I figure by now you may have made the Goat Cheese, Pancetta & Chive Stuffed Mushrooms  from my previous post – if you haven’t…get crackin! Here is one of the lovely creations I made with the left-over goat cheese stuffing. For those of you who haven’t seen that particular recipe, I urge you to take a look. It is really delicious. But for right now, the goat cheese stuffing I am referring to is goat cheese, cream cheese, pancetta, shallots, garlic and chives all whipped together. How could you go wrong! I toasted an english muffin, though I must admit, I think a nice thick toasted crusty slice of french bread would have been better. Alas, there was no such bread in the kitchen and by the time I went out and found it, breakfast would have been long over! I smeared a healthy dollop of that delicious goat cheese, pancetta filling over it and then topped it with freshly scrambled eggs. Boy was my husband surprized!  Give this one a whirl!

Scrambled Egg, Goat Cheese & Pancetta Spread on Toast

Ingredients:

  • Slice of Bread-anything you have in the house – bagel, french bread, english muffin, etc – toasted
  • 2 eggs-scrambled
  • Goat Cheese, Pancetta and Chives spread (left over from my previous recipe – Goat Cheese, Pancetta & Chives Stuffed Mushrooms)

Directions:

Toast your bread of choice.

Spread left-over Goat Cheese Stuffing over one side. For those of you who are not interested in mushrooms, I will include the goat cheese stuffing part of that recipe below. However, it will make quite a lot of this stuffing, you may want to half the ingredients.

Scramble the eggs.

Place eggs over top of Goat Cheese Stuffing topped toast.

Enjoy!

Goat Cheese, Pancetta & Chive Spread

recipe an excerpt originally from Spoon with Me

  • 1 package (8 0z) cream cheese (leave out of the fridge for 30 minutes to soften)
  • 1 log (6 oz) goat cheese (leave out of the fridge for 30 minutes to soften)
  • 3 oz thinly sliced pancetta – chopped
  • 1/3 cup minced shallots
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 small bunch fresh chives, minced (about 1/4 cup)

Directions:

In a medium bowl, mix cream cheese and goat cheese until combined. Set aside.

Heat a medium frying pan over medium-high heat.  Cook the pancetta until golden (about 1 1/2 to 2 minutes per side) until golden (the pancetta will crisp up as it cools).  Remove to paper towels.  When cool, crumble the pancetta and set aside.

In the same pan, saute the shallots in the pancetta drippings until softened (about 3 minutes).  Add garlic and cook for another minute.

In a medium bowl, mix the cream cheese and goat cheese until combined.  Add the crumbled pancetta, shallots and garlic, chives, salt and pepper.  Stir to combine.



Goat Cheese, Pancetta & Chive Stuffed Mushrooms

May 20, 2011

I made this delicious appetizer for a little gathering a while ago now. I kid you not when I say folks haven’t stopped asking for the recipe – sorry I’m just getting around to posting it now. :) It was a huge hit! My husband, who has previously professed his dislike for mushrooms, was even enticed to try them. This was mostly due to his stronger love of goat cheese. He was an instant fan and is now reconsidering his relationship with mushrooms. Really…this recipe is that yummy. The combination of the creamy goat cheese, whipped up with the savory garlic and shallots, crispy, salty pancetta with the satisfying crunch of the panko topping in unforgettable.

Crispy Pancetta & Shallot/Garlic Mix

The recipe actually makes a good amount of this filling (enough for 60 mushrooms!), so you will likely have some left over, no matter how generous you are in stuffing the mushrooms. You will be very happy about these leftovers the morning after you whip these up. You can just reach in the fridge, grab that filling out and spread it over a freshly toasted crust of bread or a bagel. Have mercy! It is also great as a sandwich spread. You can prepare this filling two days prior to making your mushrooms – that is if you can resist gobbling it all up before you need it – and store it in the refrigerator. I found this recipe on one of my absolute favourite blogs, Spoon with Me. As I have mentioned before, make sure you take a look at her site. She has the most amazing photographs! And with this recipe, she explains a great way to wash mushrooms. Mushrooms will absorb a lot of water, so you don’t want to leave them soaking in it for too long. She recommends placing some salt in your hand, wetting the mushroom and then rubbing it in the salt. With this technique you manage to not only clean the mushroom, but also season it as well. So, what are you waiting for? Make this appetizer for your next gathering. Folks won’t stop talking about it!

Little tasty Gem!

Goat Cheese, Pancetta & Chive Stuffed Mushrooms

Recipe from Spoon With Me

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 lb to 2 lb crimini or Baby Bella Mushrooms
  • 1 package (8 0z) cream cheese (leave out of the fridge for 30 minutes to soften)
  • 1 log (6 oz) goat cheese (leave out of the fridge for 30 minutes to soften)
  • 3 oz thinly sliced pancetta (I found this already chopped at Harris Teeter. You can substitute in regular bacon)
  • 1/3 cup minced shallots
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 small bunch fresh chives, minced (about 1/4 cup) and extra for garnishing (if desired)
  • 1 cup panko (japanese breadcrumbs)
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400˚F

Wash and season the Mushrooms by taking each wet mushroom, pouring some salt in your hand and rubbing it in the salt. This removes the dirt and also seasons the mushrooms. Rinse and dry the mushrooms, then remove to a large rimmed baking sheet.

In a medium bowl, mix cream cheese and goat cheese until combined. Set aside.

Heat a medium frying pan over medium-high heat.  Cook the pancetta until golden (about 1 1/2 to 2 minutes per side) until golden (the pancetta will crisp up as it cools).  Remove to paper towels.  When cool, crumble the pancetta and set aside.

In the same pan, saute the shallots in the pancetta drippings until softened (about 3 minutes).  Add garlic and cook for another minute.

In a medium bowl, mix the cream cheese and goat cheese until combined.  Add the crumbled pancetta, shallots and garlic, chives, salt and pepper.  Stir to combine.

Place panko in a small dish. Using a spoon, generously  fill each mushroom cap.  Dip the top of each mushroom in the panko, and then put back on the baking sheet.  Lightly spray the mushroom tops with olive or canola oil.

Bake the mushrooms in a 400˚ oven for 12-18 minutes, or until the tops are golden brown.


Rum Raisin Banana Bread

May 14, 2011

Oh Dear! It’s happened again! I’ve let two bananas go past their prime! What to do? I think a nice loaf of Rum Raisin Banana Bread is called for here! This banana bread is wonderfully moist. The rum soaked raisins provide a fantastic complementary flavour to each banana infused bite. One might begin to think I’m not as inattentive to the state of my bananas as I’m making out. Perhaps I’m doing this on purpose…..Hmmm…..I should probably think it over while enjoying a butter slathered slice of that bread!

Rum Raisin Banana Bread

Ingredients:

3/4 Cup Raisins

1/3 Cup Dark Rum

1/2 Cup butter, melted

1 Cup Sugar

2 Eggs

1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract

1 1/2 Cups All-purpose Flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 Cup Sour Cream

1/2 Cup Pecans, chopped

2 Bananas, sliced

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350°F (175° C). Grease a 9×5 bread pan.

Place raisins and rum in a saucepan. Bring to a boil. Remove from heat and let raisins sit and plump in rum mixture for about 1 hour.

Combine the four, baking soda and salt. Set aside. In a large bowl, mix together the melted butter and sugar. Add the eggs and vanilla and stir until mixed well. Slowly add the flour mixture and stir until batter is smooth.

Gently fold in the sour cream, bananas, pecans and rum raisin mixture.

Spread batter into the prepared loaf pan.

Bake at 350°F for 60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the loaf comes out clean. Cool bread in the pan for 10 minutes. Turn out onto wire rack to cool completely.


Rock Cakes

April 29, 2011

I was trying to think of something wonderfully British for us to eat while we watched the highly anticipated Royal Wedding. Since it’s an early morning affair for us (6 a.m.), I was leaning towards a breakfast type food. We’ve eaten a lot of scones in the past and don’t get me wrong, I’m sure we’ll eat a lot more. They’re a definite favourite. But I was looking for something a little different and that’s when I remembered Rock Cakes. Rock Cakes are a traditional British tea time treat.

Not to mention a particular favourite of none other than Harry Potter! Apparently, Mrs. Weasley’s cakes are much tastier than Hagrid’s, which resemble an actual rock a little too closely! I’ve wanted to make these for quite a while now, so I got busy. These little treats are very easy to make. They are perfect with a cup of tea or coffee as you prefer.

These tasty gems are crumbly, buttery, sweet and spicy. YUM! Served slathered with butter. You can’t go wrong!

Thankfully mine were closer to Mrs. Weasley’s than Hagrids!

Rock Cakes

Serves 12

Recipe adapted from Mrs. Maged’s Kitchen

Ingredients:
1 cup (225g) all-purpose flour

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

1/2 cup (110g) butter

1/4 cup (55g) granulated sugar

1 cup (115g) sultanas

1/4 cup (55g) chopped crystalized ginger

1/2 teaspoon zest from lemon

2 medium-sized eggs

1-3 tbsp milk

A pinch of salt

Demerara sugar for sprinkling

Directions:

Pre-heat the oven to 400° F (200C/180C fan/Gas 6) and grease or line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

Place sultanas in bowl and cover with hot water. Allow them to sit for 5-10 minutes and then drain and pat dry.

Place flour, baking powder, cinnamon and nutmeg in food processor. Pulse to mix together. Add butter, cut into small 1″ cubes and pulse until mixture resembles coarse meal.

Add sugar and pulse until combined.

Lightly beat one of the eggs. Remove flour mixture from food processor and place in large bowl. Add egg to flour mixture and stir until thoroughly combined.

Add sultanas, crystallized ginger and lemon zest to bowl. Stir gently until just combined.

Add milk one tablespoon at a time until a stiff batter is achieved.

In a small bowl, lightly beat remaining egg with 1 tablespoon of  milk.

Drop the batter 1 heaping tablespoon at a time onto the prepared baking sheets. Create 12 equal-sized portions, evenly spaced out on the sheets. Paint the top of each cake with the egg/milk wash. Rough the top of each cake with the prongs of a fork. Sprinkle with the Demerara sugar.

Place in the oven for 15 minutes until they’re lovely and golden. Remove to wire rack to cool.


Cadbury Bunny-skivers!

April 24, 2011

Happy Easter! What better way to start off this sugar drenched day but with the Easter breakfast of champions – Ebelskivers stuffed with mini Cadbury Creme Eggs and mini Cadbury Caramel Eggs! O.k. So I’m sure everyone knows what the Cadbury candies are, but you may be wondering “what is an Ebelskiver?” If you missed my previous post on Nutella and Banana stuffed Peanut Butter Ebelskivers, they are round pancakes which originated in Denmark and are perfect for breakfast, appetizers or snacks. You will of coarse need one special piece of equipment to make these goodies – namely the Ebelskiver Pan.

Ebelskiver Pan & Turners

My husband received one for his birthday a couple of years ago. The ebelskiver turners, long, carved wooden sticks, are great to have, but you could possibly get by with chopsticks, wooden skewers or even knitting needles in a pinch. For these treats, I made a vanilla ebelskiver batter. Unwrapped all of my Cadbury Candies.

Mmmmm....Cadbury yummies!

Placed a bit of butter in each well of my pan. Once this butter started to bubble, I placed 1 tablespoon of the batter in the pan and then placed my mini Cadbury Egg in the center of the batter.

mini Cadbury Egg filling in place

Then you place 1 more tablespoon of the batter on top to cover the filling.Turning the treats takes a bit of practice, but you’ll get the hang of it pretty quickly. Once it is time to turn them, place your turners on opposite sides of the pancakes and slide them down between the wall of the well and the cooked edges.Gently lift and rotate. Rather than flip mine over all at once, I quickly move around the pan rotating them 1/4 turn at a time until they are completely turned over. Once these Easter-skivers were done cooking, I dusted a bit of confectioners sugar over top and Voila!

I’m not sure whether I prefer the traditional creme filled egg ebelskivers or the caramel filled egg variety.

They were both quite decadent! As you can see, I couldn’t resist dressing one up as a bunny.

I’m afraid we ate the others too quickly before they had a chance to get into their bunny suits! If you have any mini Cadbury Eggs left over from your Easter baskets (I’m not sure how that could possibly happen…) give these a try. You’ll love ‘em!

 Cadbury Bunny-skivers

Makes batter for 20 Ebelskivers

Ingredients

1 Cup (5 oz/155g) all-purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons sugar

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 large eggs, separated

1 Cup (8 fl oz/250 ml) milk

2 tablespoons + 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled

1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

20 mini Cadbury Creme Eggs or mini Caramel Eggs – your choice, or a mix of both as I did

Confectioners’ Sugar for dusting

Directions

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. In a small bowl, lightly whisk the egg yolks, then whisk in the milk, 2 tablespoons of the melted butter and the vanilla extract until smooth. Add the yolk mixture to the flour mixture and, using a wooden spoon, stir until well blended. Don’t worry-the batter will be lumpy.

In a clean bowl, beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form. Fold one-third of the egg whites into the batter to lighten it, then fold in the rest just until no white streaks remain.

Add butter to the wells of the ebelskiver pan. This can be done with a pastry brush, or I often just put about 1/8 tsp. in each well. Place the pan over medium heat. When the butter starts to bubble, add 1 tablespoon of the batter to each well. Working quickly, carefully place one Cadbury mini egg into the center of each pancake. Top each with another 1 tablespoon of the batter.

Cook until the bottoms of the pancakes are lightly browned and crisp, about 3-5 minutes. Use your ebelskiver turners or whatever you have, turn all of the pancakes and cook until browned on the second side-about 3 minutes longer.

Remove the pancakes from the pan. Dust them with confectioners’ sugar.  Serve immeadiatly.

Recipe for Vanilla Ebelskiver Batter from Ebelskivers by Kevin Crafts


Hot Cross Buns

April 22, 2011
“Hot Cross Buns, Hot Cross Buns, One a penny, Two a penny, Hot Cross Buns!”

It’s Good Friday today and that means you are sure to find some of these yeasty cinnamon, fruit buns around. The cross on top of the bun is said to be a symbol of the Crucifixion. It is also said that these buns may pre-date Christianity as buns adorned with a cross, which symbolized the four quarters of the moon, were made in honour of the Saxon Goddess Eostre. Indeed, there are quite a few legends surrounding this Easter treat. For instance, it is said – probably by those old wives – you know how they love to tell tales – that Hot Cross Buns baked on Good Friday will never get moldy. If you keep one hanging in your kitchen to dry out, not only will it protect your household from fire and aid all of further bread baking endeavours, but once thoroughly dry it has the medicinal uses. You take the powder from the dry bun and mix it into a glass of water, ale or milk and give it to the person who is sickly and it is a curative. This amazing powder can also be applied directly to a wound. Caution now! This will only work with buns actually baked on Good Friday, so if you’re not baking these yourself today,  you’ll have to check with you bakery on the date their buns were made to see if their magic curative charm is intact.
There is a pub in England named the Widow’s Son which has an interesting Good Friday Hot Cross Bun tradition. It seems that long ago their was a widow who lived in a cottage where the current pub now sits. She had one son who was a sailor. He was due home from sea in time for Easter. On Good Friday, she baked him a batch of Hot Cross Buns for him, as they were one of his favourite treats.Sadly he never returned home. However, she continued to set one bun aside for him every year for as long as she lived. She passed away in 1848 and her cottage was turned into a pub. The new owners christened it “The Widow’s Son” in memory of her grief and continued to set aside a bun for her long lost son every Good Friday. To this day, this pub upholds this tradition. On Good Friday, a sailor from the Royal Navy is invited to the Widow’s Son Pub. He brings along a fresh Hot Cross Bun to add to their collection-over 200- which hangs from the ceiling. Many of these buns are well over 100 years old!
Well I did actually make mine today on Good Friday so they are sure to be powerful. I’m going to try to set one aside. I make no promises though. These buns are really tasty….
Hot Cross Buns
recipe adapted from Epicurious
makes 24 buns
Ingredients:
  • 1 cup warm milk (105°–115°F.)
  • two 1/4-ounce packages (5 teaspoons) active dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup plus 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 sticks (1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons) cold unsalted butter
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1/2 cup dried currants
  • 1/3 cup golden raisins
  • 2 teaspoons finely grated fresh orange zest
  • 2 teaspoons finely grated fresh lemon zest
  • 3 tablespoons superfine granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 teaspoons milk
Directions:

In a small bowl stir together milk, yeast, and 1 teaspoon granulated sugar. Let mixture stand 5 minutes, or until foamy.

Place raisins and currants in bowl. Cover with hot water and let sit for 10 minutes. Drain fruit and pat dry.

Into a large bowl sift together flour, allspice, cinnamon, salt, and remaining 1/2 cup granulated sugar. Cut butter into bits and with your fingertips or a pastry blender blend into flour mixture until mixture resembles a coarse meal. Lightly beat 1 whole egg with egg yolk. Make a well in center of flour mixture and pour in yeast and egg mixtures, currants, raisins, and zests. Stir mixture until a dough is formed. Transfer dough to a floured surface and with floured hands knead until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. Transfer dough to an oiled large bowl and turn to coat. Let dough rise, covered with plastic wrap, in a warm place until doubled in bulk, about 1 1/2 hours.

Butter 2 large baking sheets, or line with parchment paper.

On a floured surface with floured hands knead dough briefly and form into two 12-inch-long logs. Cut each log crosswise into 12 equal pieces. Form each piece into a ball and arrange about 1 1/2 inches apart on baking sheets. Let buns rise, covered, in a warm place until doubled in bulk, about 45 minutes.

Preheat oven to 400°F.

While buns are rising, lightly beat remaining egg with superfine sugar to make an egg glaze.

Brush buns with egg glaze.

Bake buns in upper and lower thirds of oven, switching position of sheets halfway through baking, until golden, about 12 minutes. Transfer buns to a rack to cool slightly.

Combine water, powdered sugar, vanilla and milk and mix until smooth. If it seems too thin, add more powdered sugar until it reached piping consistency. Place icing mixture in icing bag and pipe crosses onto the top of each bun.

Buns may be made 1 week ahead and frozen, wrapped in foil and put in a sealable plastic bag. Thaw buns and reheat before serving. Serve buns warm or at room temperature.


Mini Carrot Cake Whoopie Pies

April 21, 2011

What a fantastic treat for Easter! I’m sure they must be a favourite of the Easter Bunny and are definitely one of my favourites now too! These cookies are incredibly moist, and enticingly spicy.

Sweet, but not overwhelmingly so, which works great with the sweet cream cheese frosting sandwiched between. Believe me the cookies are delicious on their own, but oh, with the addition of that creamy filling…just heavenly!

These little bite-sized morsels are completely addictive. And how fun! You get your own personal little carrot cake! Maine is definitely on to something…Who wouldn’t love a whoopie pie?!

Mini Carrot Whoopie Pies

Slightly Adapted from Craving Chronicles (If you haven’t been to this blog you are missing out! Gorgeous photos!)

Makes 12 Mini Whoopie Pies (filled cookies)

Ingredients

3/4 cup golden raisins (2 1/2 ounces)
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened
1/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/3 + 3 tablespoons cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup finely grated carrots (2 medium or 4 small)
1 cup walnuts (3 ounces), chopped

8 ounces cream cheese
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla

Directions

Place raisins in a small bowl and add enough hot water to cover. Set aside for 5-10 minutes, then drain thoroughly and pat dry.

In a small bowl, whisk together flour, spices, baking soda and salt.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat butter, sugars, egg and vanilla until smooth and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Mix in carrots, walnuts and raisins on low speed. Add flour mixture and beat just until combined. Set dough in refrigerator to chill for 15-30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375°F. Line two baking sheets with Silpats or parchment paper.

Working with one baking sheet at a time, drop 1Tablespoons of dough per cookie onto baking sheet about 2 inches apart. Bake each sheet separately, 13-15 minutes or until centers spring back to the touch. Cool on pan for 2 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

To make the frosting, beat cream cheese and butter in a stand mixer, scraping down sides with a spatula as needed, until smooth. Add powdered sugar slowly, only a couple of tablespoons at a time and vanilla. Mix until a thick frosting consistency is reached, adding more powdered  sugar as necessary.

If making ahead, store cookies at room temperature and frosting in refrigerator. Frost cookies before serving.


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