Showing posts with label Cast-iron cookware. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Cast-iron cookware. Show all posts

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Plum Upside-Down Cake




Since I've been food blogging for the last two years...I have not been thinking about that I would actually say,
"I have to bake something for my food blog"...hmm! wonder why did I say that to my daughter Lora, yesterday morning?
She told me the other day that her food blog is getting to be expensive...well, the reason for that is: She bakes every single day...really! There isn't a day that goes by when she does not bake...if nothing else, but the 'staple' banana bread, or homemade pancakes!
I was hoping to get this post up by yesterday...Friday, knowing that I did not have anything else worthwhile to post and that I don't do much baking cakes...although I love to put simple and yummy quick and easy desserts together!
We have such an abundance of plums...not the deep purple Italian ones, but the round ones which are so perfect just by themselves to snack on (which I did eat 3 yesterday)...and decide to make something with it. No time to start browsing through my cookbooks, old recipes, or favorite food bloggers' recipes...so what do you do first, if you don't have the basic recipe on hand?...The Internet...yes, that's the fastest way to google a recipe and do some adaptations of your own, which I did a little on my cake. Since I made this for my blog...still smiling to myself
about that one, I only kept one large piece for myself and shared the rest with my family.

Yesterday was such a stormy day on-and-off, with tropical storm Isaac on our heels by Sunday night...hopefully it's not turning into a hurricane!

Good day to be cooking and baking when you're stuck inside. I did go out on my balcony to take some photos of the beach, the clouds, and no less than 30 minutes wind, and a storm, but the worst is yet to come! We'll just have to be prepaired and be safe.

As you see, for my baking, I like to chose a comfy-cozy home type of dessert. For me they are super easy to make, and I do believe it will be easy for you, if you follow my easy and handy little tips. Don't let the layering of this beautiful upside-down all American simple cake intimidate you...and I DO recommend that you make this from 'scratch' and not from a mix, although I do use cake mixes, only to 'doctor' them up!
Here's the link to this awesome and easy cake!

Plum Upside-Down Cake 

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Best Potato Latkes...and end of Holidays

As the holidays are winding down, and we're facing the new year, we can reflect back to last year, at this time, already thinking about the changes we are going to make in our lives, our homes, our friends, our bad habits, and start our diets for the hundredth time!...Yeah, sure! I do this every year, and keep promising to go back to Weight Watchers where I actually successfully lost 35 lbs, and kept it off for about 3 years, but gradually gained it back...and then some! So now, I will try the Weight Watchers online, and don't have to go to those boring meetings!
Well, let me tell you...it's a good thing that the year is ending, because December is the last month we can "pig out" with all the good food, and desserts...never say "never" to latkes, at least once a year, which is at Hanukkah! I promise you that I stand by my "best potato latkes recipe!"...it's not even a recipe it's really from all the failures of trying out different ways, but the best kept secret, is adding equal amount of Matzo Meal to your flour, a small amount of baking powder, and to make sure your grated potatoes do not turn brown, adding a tablespoon of whit distilled vinegar to the water. I will be glad to show you the directions, and promise that your latkes will come out crispy, light, and you don't even have to blot any excess grease if you use parchment paper...honest!

Having a 10 or 12 inch well seasoned cast iron skillet is another helpful utensil, that I feel every kitchen should have. It has so many uses, and will never, ever wear out....the older it gets if it's treated properly, the more use you get out of it. Just look at the fresh clean vegetable oil bubbling away, and the potatoes so light, and crispy. Never overcrowd the pan, or it will slow down the cooking process!

Best Potato Latkes
recipe by; Elisabeth


For single batch:


4-5 medium Russet (baking) potatoes, or your favorite
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup Matzo Meal
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
salt and pepper to taste
2 eggs lightly beaten
1 medium onion chopped
vegetable, or canola oil, for frying
1 Tbsp. white vinegar
In a large bowl add water, and add the peeled potatoes and vinegar.
(you can use double batch by doubling the potatoes, 8 to 10, but it's less work with half the amount)
Cut the potatoes in half lenghtwise and in a food processor feed them right into the water, just like it's show in the photo.
Note: The starchier the water gets, but not dark, the crispier and lighter the latkes will be.





This is how the grated potatoes will look in the water...all starchy, cloudy, and beautiful. That's how you want it.














Now, you're ready to put the potatoes with the liquid, and strain it. Rinse it if you like, but you don't have to. The important thing, is to squeeze out all the liquid.








Add the potatoes back into the cleaned out bowl, and add all the ingredients, (except the oil, and vinegar)

With clean hands, or wear plastic gloves, mix together all the ingredients to combine well.










With a small ice cream scooper, scoop out portions, and add to the preheated heavy skillet, if you don't have cast iron skillet.











You can easily scoop out as much as it can fit, but make sure when you drop the scoop, do not touch it for a couple minutes, fry them over med-high heat, without disturbing them.










You can now flatten them down with a spatula, and turn them over to fry until lightly golden. Have your oven ready, at 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet, or two, with parchment paper. When all the latkes are ready to be taken out of the frying pan, just line them up on the parchment lined baking sheet, and bake for an additional 25 minutes, turning them once.

You should have about 12 small latkes. Serve them with apple sauce, and sour cream!
Yields about 4- 6 servings



When you see the jagged, lacy edges, is how you know it is perfect, lightly golden...no need to blot with paper towel, no grease is left on the parchment paper!
The latkes are also really delicious with brisket, or pot roast, you can serve them with chicken, or just on the side. Every one loves this, especially young children, and adults alike!





Linking to:
Thursday Favorite Things Blog Hop 16 @ Katherines Corner
Full Plate Thursday 12-29-11 @ Miz Helen's Country Cottage