Monday, January 26, 2009

TWD- Fresh Ginger and Chocolate Ginerbread Cake

This week's TWD recipe was Chocolate Gingerbread Cake. I made the cake and took it to one of my friends who recently had a baby. I also made one cupcake so Brandon and I could try it. I really liked this recipe. I LOVE ginger, but this was my first time to use fresh ginger.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

CEIMB- Chicken Cacciatore

Peggy of Pantry Revisited chose Chicken Cacciatore for this week's CEIMB recipe. Peggy and I work together and are also fellow TWDers. I have gotten to know her through these clubs and I can tell you that she is really special person. She is a wife, loyal mother, ballroom dancer, pianist, nature lover and Yogie. Also, she loves to entertain, so I knew that she would pick a great recipe.

Brandon and I REALLY loved this recipe. I noticed a couple of comments by other CEIMBers that the sauce needed to be amped up a little, so I doubled the recipe's wine, garlic and red pepper and it was FABULOUS!!!!! This was one of my favorite recipes so far.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

CEIMB- Beef with Rosemary and Chocolate and Late TWD

I chose this week's CEIMB recipe - Beef with Rosemary and chocolate.  I have been in TWD for about 6 months and in CEIMB for a month.  This was by far the biggest disaster I've had in the kitchen.  First, I could not find a 2 lb tenderloin.   I went to three grocery stores close to my house and the smallest tenderloin I found was 5 lbs ($56).  So, I bought two nine oz filets ($16).

Second, I planned to make this Sunday night so I could take my time.  However, I ended up having to work on Sunday until around 7.  We usually eat at 6.  So, I was very rushed.  I have never made beef if the oven and I was not surprised to learn that this is not my favorite way to cook meat.  I way overcooked my steak- it had no pink at all.  Brandon's was medium, but since it ended up taking TWO AND A HALF hours for the sauce to reduce, he ate his steak without the sauce.  So, my pitiful picture is of one bite of my very well done filet with sauce.  The sauce was really really good, but it took an incredibly long amount of time.  

TWD was savory corn muffins.  I really liked them and will definitely make them again.  I'm having trouble with the pictures and will try again later.  

Thursday, January 8, 2009

CEIMB- Fried Rice

This week Jennifer of Running With Food chose Fried Rice.  Brandon and I LOVED this recipe.  It was so fast and easy and I thought it tasted great.  I used chicken instead of tofu, but I may use shrimp next time.  I added broccoli and peas.  Yum!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

TWD- French Pear Tart

DORIE GREENSPAN chose the TWD recipe this week.  DORIE GREENSPAN- the author of the cookbook TWD it currently baking its way through.  I was so pumped about this recipe because Dorie has made all the recipes in the book many times, and I knew she had something special to share with us through this recipe.  I am dying to know whether this would have been her pick out of all the things that have already been chosen, too.    

I was also pumped because I got to use two of my new Christmas presents.  
I asked my in-laws for a food processor.  Instead of buying me a new smaller regular ol' food processor, they bought me the 11 cup Cuisinart Prep 11 Plus.  After I watched the 30 minute instructional DVD, I realized that this thing is AMAZING and I do not know how I've ever cooked or baked anything without it.  Besides processing, it also chops and sliced whole fruits and vegetables.  Amazing.  The feed thing on the top is so huge that three whole potatoes will fit in it and the machine will slice all three in about 10 seconds.  It also has a DOUGH feature and special dough blade, which is the reason my mother-in-law selected this one.  How exciting!!

The second gift I got to use was my shiny new 10 inch tart pan with removable bottom, which my friend, Pam, gave me.  When I started this club back in June, Pam bought me mini tart pans for my birthday.  Since I haven't bought any others, all my tarts so far have been minis.  So, this is my first time to make a full size tart.

I started with the Sweet Tart dough with nuts.  It was super easy with my new food processor.  I can't image that Dorie herself used a better tool to make her dough.  This dough is so tasty and baked beautifully.  

After the tart dough came the almond creme, which was amazing.  I really just wanted to eat the entire batch and make more for the tart.

This tart was really really really fabulous.  I have made several tarts since TWD baked La Paulette's Strawberry tart and I haven't been as proud of any as I was of that very first tart.  However, this pear tart was the tastiest one I've made so far.