Archive for June, 2009

The Best Guacamole…seriously

Saturday, June 6th, 2009
 
 
 
 
 

 

Our Favorite Guacamole

Our Favorite Guacamole

I’m nervous – confused – my palms are sweaty.  Ok, maybe my palms aren’t sweaty, but I am still asking myself  ”are you sure you want to do this?”

(time lapse 10 minutes ahead)

Alright fine – I will share (give up) one of my best recipes.  It’s not like I am the only person in the world that makes good guacamole.  It just so happens that I think mine is the best. 

What’s my secret?  Perhaps it’s the red onion, or the mayonnaise or maybe the salt?  People always say that red onion has a mild, sweet flavor – I think it has a strong flavor – which adds something special to this guacamole.   The salt you use is also very important.  I love experimenting with different salts in my guacamole – salt compliments avocados so well.  To add a bit of creaminess to the guacamole I use the mayonnaise.  Sounds odd, but works so well.

This recipe will serve two or three people who really love guacamole.  Adjust accordingly to how much you will need. 

guacamole-ingredients

What You’ll Need:

  • 2 avocados, halved, seeded and peeled
  • ½ of a lime, juiced
  • 1 roma tomato, seeded and diced
  • ¼ cup red onion, diced
  • 1/8 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/8 cilantro, chopped
  • good pinch of your favorite salt – I like fleur de sel in this recipe.
  • dash of Tabasco

Directions:

1.) Prep your ingredients before cutting into your avocado. The avocado can go brown very quickly without the help of the lime.

2.) Once you are prepped – place the avocado, lime juice, tomato, red onion, mayonnaise, salt and Tabasco in a large bowl.

3.) Using the back of a fork, mash all of the ingredients together until you get the consistency that you prefer. Some people like smooth, others a bit chunky. Myself, I prefer a bit chunky.

4.) Finally, fold in the cilantro – trying not to bruise the leaves too much.|

5.) Place plastic wrap over the guacamole – so that is actually touching the surface of the guacamole and let sit at room temperature for 1 hour. After the guacamole has sat for an hour – go ahead and eat!

Marshmallow Fondant & a 21st Birthday Cake

Thursday, June 4th, 2009
Autumn's 21st Birthday Cake with Marshmallow Fondant

Autumn's 21st Birthday Cake with Marshmallow Fondant

My friend violet called me with a quick birthday cake request over the Memorial Day weekend.  As I see it, I was already going to spend the weekend baking what was one more cake?  Her niece Autumn, was turning 21 and needed something girly to commemorate this special birthday.  Autumn wanted a marble cake with white buttercream…simple and to the point.

I dressed the ¼ sheet cake with pink, green and gray accents, and of course a cosmopolitan martini.  Up until recently I have been buying Wilton Fondant to decorate cakes with.  This time around I used a homemade marshmallow fondant and love it!  It’s quick and easy, plus has a much more palatable taste…give it a try!

Marshmallow Fondant

What You’ll Need: 

  • 1 bag of white marshmallows (8 oz)
  • Water (2 tbsp)
  • Icing sugar sifted (1 to 2 pounds)
  • Crisco
  • Heatproof bowl
  • Spoon
  • Sifter
  • Food colors or cocoa powder
  • Flavoring optional

Directions:

1.) Heat marshmallows and water in microwave for 2 minutes.

2.) Remove and stir with Crisco greased spoon.

3.) Add desired color and or flavoring.

4.) Stir in sifted powdered sugar until it looks dough-like.

5.) Turn fondant out onto powder sugared work surface and knead until well mixed and not too sticky.

Note: Use this marshmallow fondant right away or rub with a bit of Crisco and store in air tight container.

Martha Stewart’s Cupcakes

Tuesday, June 2nd, 2009

martha-stewart-cupcakes

We love Martha Stewart – so of course we are super excited that today is the book launch of Martha Stewart’s Cupcakes!  This paperback which sells on Amazon for $14.99, has “175 Inspired Ideas for Everyone’s Favorite Treat”.   Everyone could use some cupcake inspiration! 

This cookbook contains several recipes for cakes, frostings and fillings, not to mention incredible decorating ideas.  As with all Martha Stewart Books, the photography is stunning.  Each cupcake is accompanied by it’s own photograph. 

From the Martha Stewart’s Cupcakes summary:

Martha Stewart’s Cupcakes
  includes templates and clip art for decorative flourishes, an equipment glossary, and step-by-step instructions for basic and advanced decorating techniques, plus ideas for presenting and packaging the cupcakes in Martha’s trademark style.”   Woo hoo!

Want to get your hands on a copy?  Click here to order yours today!

Corn, Avocado and Tomato Salad

Monday, June 1st, 2009
Corn, Avacado & Tomato Salad

Corn, Avocado & Tomato Salad

No food tastes more like summer than fresh sweet corn, straight off the cob.  Small roadside stands selling their fresh harvest – really, there is nothing better especially in Ohio.  You may have heard…but you have never had corn until you’ve tried Ohio sweet corn.   I honestly believe that. 

Although we haven’t entered prime corn season, that doesn’t mean you have to settle for canned corn.  The grocery stores are already selling the season’s first corn on the cob – and it’s pretty good.   Get your corn fix early with this Corn, Avocado and Tomato Salad – it’s got such bright flavor!  Dressed with a cilantro lime dressing – it too, screams “SUMMER”.   

After writing the recipe out, I have decided that a healthy addition to this summer salad would be shelled edamame – wouldn’t you agree?

Corn, Avocado and Tomato Salad
Makes about 4-6 servings. 

Recipe (slightly) adapted from Paula Deen’s Corn, Avocado and Tomato Salad.

What You’ll Need:

  • 3-4 ears of fresh corn
  • 1 ripe avocado, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 cup finely diced red onion

Cilantro Lime Dressing

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated lime zest
  • 1-2 tablespoon fresh lime juice (depending on taste)
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro (reserve a bit for presentation)
  • Good pinch of salt (I use Fleur de sel)
  • Pinch pepper
  • Few dashes of Tabasco

Directions:

1.) Remove the corn from the cob. Place in a microwave safe bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Microwave for 5 minutes on high. Rinse with cold water to stop cooking. Drain on a tea towel thoroughly.

2.) Combine the prepared corn, sliced avocado, halved tomatoes and diced red onion in a large glass bowl.

3.) Mix the dressing ingredients together in another bowl and then pour over the salad. Gently toss to mix. Add some additional cilantro on top prior to serving.   Taste.  If you feel it needs salt, add some.  The corn can take a good amount of salt – it brings out all of the flavors.


google