Chocolate-Raspberry Frozen Yogurt Pops

2 cups fresh or frozen raspberries
2 cups plain Greek-style yoghurt
3-5 Tbsp. sugar, to taste
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips

Puree raspberries, yogurt, and sugar in a blender or food processor until smooth. Divide the mixture among freezer-pop molds or paper cups, stopping about 1 inch from the top. Divide chocolate chips among the molds and stir in, removing any air pockets at the same time. Insert sticks and freeze about 6 hours, until firm. Dip molds briefly in warm water to unmold, or tear paper cups from pops.

Adapted from eatingwell.com

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Versión en español: this post is also available in Spanish.
Esperanta traduko: this post is also available in Esperanto, because Dana is a language geek.

Newsletters: 27 Oct., 2010

Excerpt from the Market Newsletter originally published on 27 Oct., 2010. View the full newsletter for all the photos and links.

Cooking, and reading about cooking
As you were probably expecting, here are some fun Halloween recipes. I have always loved Halloween and enjoy seeing all the food art it inspires.

Chocolate mice
1 c (6 oz.) semisweet chocolate chips
1/4 c sour cream
12 chocolate wafer cookies, finely crushed
1/2 c unsweetened cocoa
1/2 c powdered sugar
butter (optional; for greasing your hands)
24 cinnamon imperials, mini chocolate chips, or mini M&Ms, for eyes
24 almond slices, for ears
red and black licorice laces, for tails
Melt the chocolate over hot water (or in the microwave, carefully). Stir in sour cream and cookie crumbs; chill no more than 15-20 min., until firm. Butter your hands, if desired, and roll chocolate mixture into 12 oval mouse bodies; place on waxed paper. Roll half the mice in powdered sugar and half in cocoa. Press candies and almond slices into the pointed end to make faces and poke 3-inch lengths of licorice lace into the rounded end for tails. May be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.

Witches’ knuckles
1 c water
1/2 c butter
1 c flour
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. chili powder
4 eggs
1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
1 c extra sharp cheddar cheese (4 oz.), grated
1 egg yolk lightly beaten with 1 Tbsp. water
dried whole rosemary leaves
9 pieces sliced pepperoni, quartered
Bring water and butter to a boil; remove from heat and stir in flour, salt, cumin, and chili powder. Return to heat and cook 1-2 min., stirring constantly, until the dough stars to pull away from the sides of the pan. Remove from heat and continue stirring 1-2 min., until slightly cooled. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well between each. Stir in mustard and cheese. Put dough in a pastry bag (or make one by cutting a 1/2-inch hole in the corner of a plastic bag). Squeeze 3-inch-long fingers onto 2 baking sheets lined with baking parchment or waxed paper. Brush with egg yolk mixture; add a pepperoni fingernail to one end of each and place a few rosemary leaves in the center of the finger as knuckle lines. Bake at 400F for 15-18 min., until the fingers are golden brown and crisp. Serve warm.

Both from: Ghoulish goodies / Sharon Bowers. Storey Pub., c2009.

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Newsletters: 21 Sept. 2011

Excerpt from the Market Newsletter originally published on 21 Sept. 2011. View the full newsletter for all the photos and links.

In the belly
It’s pickling season, so I thought I’d do a little research on vinegar. I know vinegar as an old thirst-quencher; Roman legionaries added it to their water both to kill whatever might be in there and for its rehydrating properties. You can make your own old-fashioned sports drink by mixing 1 c sugar, 1 Tbsp. ginger, and 6 Tbsp. vinegar into 2 quarts of water, but I’ve heard it’s only drinkable if you really need it. It is also widely used as a mild antiseptic, deodorizer, and cleaner — adding a dollop of white vinegar to your laundry helps eliminate that winter mistiness; a dab on insect bites keeps them from itching. Dilute cider vinegar is said to be good for the skin and is sometimes used as a sunburn remedy. Whatever your health problem, you can probably find someone to tell you vinegar is the cure, and someone else to tell you that’s nonsense. Until a lot more research is done, all that can be said for sure is that, while it doesn’t offer any great nutritional surprises, its acetic acid helps with digestion and the absorption of important minerals.

In the kitchen
Here we are with corn in season again, but last year when I looked for corn recipes they mostly involved cutting it off the cob, which I think is a waste. I suppose you could go all ’50s and put it (cob and all) into a casserole, pour condensed cream-of-mushroom soup over it, and bake it, but that sounds like a waste as well. I’ll leave you to boil or roast it, and give you some interesting fruit recipes instead.

Fruit pizza
Crust:
1 c. shortening/margarine
1 1/2 c. sugar
2 3/4 c. flour
2 eggs
2 t. cream of tartar
1/4 t. salt (optional)
1 t. baking soda
Cream shortening, sugar, and eggs until fluffy. Add dry ingredients, mix well. Spread dough in 10-inch pizza pan (or larger; it’s pretty thick at 10″ dia.). Bake 10-15 min. at 350. Let cool.

Topping:
16 oz. cream cheese
6 T. sugar
fruit (whatever you like, sliced in most cases, fresh is best but canned is OK too; I tend to use bananas, kiwis, peaches, strawberries (all sliced) and sometimes canned mandarin orange segments)
Cream cream cheese and sugar; spread on cooled crust. Top with fruit (you can make decorative designs if you want. You want to end up with a single layer of fruit, closely spaced but not overlapping).

Glaze:
2-3 c. fruit juice, sweetened if necessary
4 T corn starch
Cook, stirring, until thick (this step is very important; failure to cook the glaze will require sponging down the inside of the fridge). Spoon glaze over fruit, making sure air-sensitive fruit such as bananas and apples are covered entirely. Glaze should set on its own; if it seems reluctant, refrigerate.
From: Dorothy Huffman’s collection

Peach milk shake
3 sm. peaches, skinned, pitted, and roughly chopped
1.25 c milk
1 T superfine sugar
1 T apricot or peach brandy (optional)
grated chocolate for garnish
Place all ingredients except grated chocolate in a blender and process until smooth. Chill, garnish, and serve.
From: Fruit fandango / Moya Clarke. Chartwell Books, c1994.

Peach duff
1/4 c butter
1 c flour
3 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 c sugar
2/3 c milk
1.5 lb peaches (4-6), peeled and thickly sliced
Melt butter in an 8-inch square baking dish. Sift flour, baking powder, salt, sugar together; gradually add milk and stir just until moistened. Spoon batter evenly onto melted butter and arrange peach slices on top. Bake 35 min. at 375F. Serve warm.
From: Cooking with fruit : the complete guide to using fruit throughout the meal, the day, the year / Rolce Redard Payne and Dorrit Speyer Senior. Wings Books, 1995.

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Newsletters: 28 July, 2010

Excerpt from the Market Newsletter originally published on 28 July, 2010. View the full newsletter for all the photos and links.

In keeping with this pause for breath, the raffle prize this week is eight yoga classes. I’m pretty excited about that, because yoga is the only “sport” I’ve ever found enjoyable (I was always the fat kid out in left field; which was fine with me, except they wouldn’t let me sit down). Now, we all know how healthy yoga is, right? Makes you look 25 until you hit 90, and you live to be 150*? But what people don’t always know is that it’s not about doing pretzel imitations. It’s about doing what you can TODAY. If that means you only touch your knees while the student on the next mat touches her toes — with her elbows — you still win, because you walked away without limping. And with time, you find yourself looking at a pretzel imitation and thinking, “wait, that’s not so hard…”. I encourage you to check out OlyYoga’s website (the “Practicing Yoga” section has a lot of good information), contact them with your questions, or just go and see. If you have money issues they’ll work with you — they have senior and low-income rates, summer specials, multi-class and unlimited cards, all kinds of options — so you can’t use that excuse.

Cooking, and reading about cooking
I went looking for something Indian to go with the yoga, but this wasn’t really what I had in mind. Don’t you just love serendipity?

Ginger Cardamom Oeufs à la Niege
3 large eggs, 2 separated
1/2 cup plus 3 tablespoons sugar, divided
2 cups whole milk
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 cup roasted shelled pistachios, chopped
Line bottom of a small 4-sided sheet pan with parchment paper. Separate 2 eggs; add whole egg to yolks. Beat whites with a pinch of salt until they hold soft peaks. Add 1/2 cup sugar in a slow stream, beating at medium-high speed until whites hold stiff, glossy peaks. Meanwhile, bring milk, ginger, and cardamom to a bare simmer in a wide 4-quart heavy pot over medium heat. Drop 4 large dollops of beaten whites into milk and poach at a bare simmer, turning once, 4 minutes. Transfer meringues with a slotted spoon to lined pan (reserve milk). Whisk remaining 3 tablespoons sugar, cornstarch, and salt into yolk mixture. Add hot milk in a slow stream, whisking until incorporated, then return to pot. Cook, stirring often, until thickened and an instant-read thermometer registers 170°F. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a clean bowl. Stir in vanilla. Quick-chill custard by setting bowl in an ice bath and stirring occasionally, about 20 minutes. Ladle into 4 bowls and put a meringue in each. Sprinkle with nuts.

Here’s one for apricot season. I’ve always been of the opinion that ice cream is not junk food, it’s full of calcium and happiness. Vante has the quick-and-easy kind, but here’s something for when you want to get fancy.

Apricot chocolate chip ice cream
3 eggs, separated
3/4 cup caster sugar, divided into two equal parts
1 1/2 cups whipping cream
6 apricots
3/4 cup choc chips
Split apricots and remove stones. Simmer gently until tender in just enough water to cover. Drain and sieve. Set aside to cool. Beat the egg yolks with half the sugar until thick and very pale in colour. Set aside. Beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form. Add the other half of the sugar and beat to form a meringue. Gently fold into egg yolk mixture. Whip cream until very stiff (be careful not to overbeat). Gently fold cream into egg mixture. Add apricot puree and choc chips and fold through until thoroughly mixed. Pour into a suitable freezing container and freeze until solid (overnight is best). Makes ca. 2 quarts.
Unfortunately I copied this several years ago without noting the source.

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*Results not typical.

Fruit pizza

Crust:
1 cup shortening/margarine/butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 3/4 cups flour
2 eggs
2 tsp. cream of tartar
1/4 tsp. salt (optional)
1 tsp. baking soda

Cream shortening, sugar, and eggs until fluffy. Add dry ingredients, mix well. Spread dough in 10-inch pizza pan (or larger, in a 10-inch pan it comes out pretty thick). Bake 10-15 min. at 350F. Let cool.

Topping:
16 oz. cream cheese
6 Tbsp. sugar
fruit (whatever you like, sliced in most cases, fresh is best but canned is OK too; I tend to use bananas, kiwis, peaches, strawberries (all sliced) and sometimes mandarin orange segments)

Cream cream cheese and sugar; spread on cooled crust. Top with fruit (you can make decorative designs if you want. You want to end up with a single layer of fruit, closely spaced but not overlapping).

Glaze:
2-3 cups fruit juice, sweetened if necessary
4 Tbsp. corn starch

Cook, stirring, until thick (this step is very important, as its omission will require sponging down the inside of the fridge…). Spoon glaze over fruit, making sure air-sensitive fruit such as bananas and apples are covered entirely. Glaze should set on its own as long as pizza is not stored in a hot place; if it seems reluctant, refrigerate (providing you have cooked the glaze).

From Dorothy Huffman, who may have gotten it from a Spokane or Spokane Valley newspaper in the mid-1970s.

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Versión en español: this post is also available in Spanish.
Esperanta traduko: this post is also available in Esperanto, because Dana is a language geek.

Butterboos

Just in time to help you break your new resolutions, here is my grandmother’s best chocolate recipe. It’s not difficult, but it is fiddly and can’t be rushed. If you haven’t worked with chocolate before, you may want to read up on it a little before you start.

6 oz. milk chocolate (Hershey’s quality) + about 3-4 oz. for coating
1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk
2 tsp. butter
1/2 tsp. vanilla
finely chopped nuts (walnuts are traditional, but almonds or filberts are also good)

Melt chocolate and butter over hot water. Blend in milk and vanilla (it will go a little grainy, but will smooth out again). Pour into a shallow pan lined with foil and chill for at least 2 hours (if chilling overnight, cover it closely to prevent the top drying out). Roll into balls and rechill briefly while melting chocolate for dipping. Dip balls into melted chocolate (for best results, keep half the batch in the fridge while dipping the other half) and roll in chopped nuts. Place on waxed paper to cool. If your kitchen is warm, they may flatten a little while cooling; to prevent this, return them to fridge to cool.

Yield: not nearly enough. I recommend making a double batch.

Notes:
If you find some dry, crunchy edges when you roll the centers, you can melt the hard bits between your fingers a little to soften them (or, of course, you can pick them out and eat them, but you may actually not want any chocolate for a few hours after making these).

Avoid subjecting the finished butterboos to sudden temperature changes, especially if you have omitted the nuts; the chocolate may bloom. If you need to ship them, you’ll want to use special coating chocolate (which mostly isn’t really chocolate anymore) or temper the chocolate before dipping (which is better but makes the process even more fiddly).

———
This recipe has a history:
My father’s parents lived in the little town of Davenport, WA. My grandfather had a gas station and car dealership and for many years they gave out boxes of my grandmother’s handmade candy to their regular customers at Christmas — they finally stopped in the late 1960s, I think because of a new law. By that time she was making something like 100 lbs. of the stuff: peanut brittle, peppermint bark, fudge, divinity, turtles…. She would start right after Thanksgiving and by mid-December her pantry was full of it all. The whole family would help to pack the gift boxes, thousands of little paper cups all over.

By the time Grandma died, my mother had many of her recipes, but not this one. For several years we thought butterboos were out of our lives forever. When I came across it at last, I started giving it to anyone who would take it, to ensure that I would be able to get it back if I ever misplaced my copy.

Yes, there’s a moral to this story:
This slow time of the year is perfect for making sure your children and grandchildren have all those recipes you’re so famous for, and for making sure you have all your favorites from your grandparents and parents while they’re still around to find them for you. In fact, why not get a recorder out and do a whole oral history project while you’re at it?

Versión en español: this post is also available in Spanish
Esperanta traduko: this post is also available in Esperanto, because Dana is a language geek.

Beyond cranberry sauce

Tradition dictates that this is when I should post a recipe for cranberry sauce, but since the internet already has approximately two cranberry sauce recipes per sauce-eating adult on the entire planet, I’ll just say that there’s no reason to eat the canned stuff if you’ve got a source of good cranberries since it’s about as difficult to make as chocolate milk, but start with no more than half the sugar or other sweetener in the recipe and work up.

Instead, here are a couple of intriguing recipes from Olympia’s Bloom Creek Cranberries, who plan to be at the Olympia Farmer’s Market at least through the next couple of weeks.
———

Kathy’s cranberry fudge

1 1/4 cup fresh or frozen cranberries (1 bag Bloom Creek cranberries)
1/2 cup light corn syrup
2 cups chocolate chips
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/4 cup evaporated milk
1 tsp. vanilla
1/3 cup chopped walnuts or pecans

Boil cranberries and corn syrup on high 5-7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until reduced to 3 Tbsp. Remove from heat and stir in chocolate until melted. Add remaining ingredients and stir vigorously until thick and glossy. Pour into a plastic-lined 8×8-inch pan, cover, and chill until firm.
——–

Felix’s cranberry pork chops

Mix equal parts cranberry sauce and barbecue sauce. Spoon over pork chops and bake at 350F until done.

Versión en español: this post is also available in Spanish
Esperanta traduko: this post is also available in Esperanto, because Dana is a language geek.