Tag Archives: flour

Clams and Linguine with White Wine Sauce

I know there hasn’t been a post on this blog in a week!  We have been cooking, but we’ve been having problems with the photography.  Our little space is fairly dark, especially now that summer is coming to an end, so until we have some new camera equipment (on the way!), it’s difficult to show off the appetizing food.  Until then, try out one of Sam’s newest recipes. 

I have to say that I’m super proud of this one.  I thought it up all on my own and it turned out great on the first try!  The subtle sweet flavor of the clams with the rich white wine sauce over pasta is absolutely delicious.  For those of you who might be a little timid about cooking seafood, this is definitely a good one to try; it’s really easy!

Clams and Linguine with White Wine Sauce

5 lbs, littleneck clams (should be about 50 clams)
¼ lbs pork belly, cubed (you can substitute with bacon, just not the maple kind)
½ bulb of fennel, chopped
8 cloves garlic, chopped
1 lbs dried linguine
1 bottle of dry white wine, room temperature (chardonnay would work great)
2 cups grated Parmesan cheese (please don’t use that powdered stuff)
½ cup flat leaf parsley, chopped
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
¼ cup heavy cream
¼ cup flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
¼ tsp crushed red pepper

First, rinse the clams in a colander under cool water.  Check to make sure that they are all firmly closed in their shells.  If you find any that are open or have cracked shells, throw them away.  Once they’re clean, set aside.

In a deep saucepan melt 2 tablespoons each of butter and olive oil over medium heat.  Then add the pork fat and cook until it begins to render a bit.  Now is a good time to start your boiling your pasta.  Next add the fennel and sauté until it becomes translucent.  Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute, you do not want it to burn.

Now add the clams, white wine, 1 teaspoon each of salt and pepper, and a pinch or crushed red pepper.  Cover and simmer for about 5 minutes until all of the clams have opened their shells.  When the clams are done, remove them with a slotted spoon and add them to the strained, cooked pasta in a large pot and cover to keep warm.

Uncover the white wine mixture and cook on high heat until it reduces by half.  Add ½ cup heavy cream and continue to cook until the mixture again reduces by about half.  Add the flour and whisk briskly for 1 minute.  Pour the mixture and the grated Parmesan over the pasta and clams and mix together thoroughly.

Garnish with chopped parsley and serve with a sliced baguette.  Enjoy!

Tart Cherry Pie

This past Thursday, while I was wandering through our Farmer’s Market, I saw these cherries.

There was a sign right next to them, saying that this was their last week at the market…so I bought some!  Once I got home, we gave these a try- and they were sour.  Yikes!  Sam suggested doing a pie with them.  I’m not nuts about cherry pies because they are always so sweet, so at first I was a bit hesitant about the idea.  He promised that when he’d make the pie, it wouldn’t be so sweet.  So we gave it a try.

It turned out delicious- and the nice red color was perfect for the 4th of July weekend!  Hope you all had fantastic BBQ’s, pies and fireworks!

Tart Cherry Pie

1/2 lb tart cherries, pitted
2 cups of flour
1 1/2 sticks of butter, cold & diced
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 pinches of salt
1/4 cup of ice water

Filling:  In a mixing bowl, combine cherries, 1/4 brown sugar, 1/2 tsp cinnamon and 1/2 cup of flour.  Fold together and set aside in the refrigerator to macerate.

Topping: Add the following ingredients into the food processor: 1/2 cup of flour, 1/2 stick of butter, 1/4 cup of brown sugar, 1/2 tsp cinnamon and a pinch of salt.  Pulse the food processor until the mixture becomes crumbly.  Gently place mixture into a bowl, and refrigerate for about 30 minutes.

Crust: In a food processor, add 1 cup of flour, 1 stick of butter, 1/4 cup brown sugar, 1/2 tsp cinnamon and a pinch of salt.  Turn on the food processor, and slowly add the water.  Stop the food processor when the dough becomes a ball.  Remove from food processor, and wrap the ball in saran wrap.  Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

Turn on the oven to 350°F.  When the dough is cold, place the dough on a well-floured board and roll out until approximately 1/8 inch thick.  Gently fold the dough in half, and transfer to a greased pie tin.  Unfold the dough, and cut away the excess from the edges.

Pour the filling into the pie, ensuring that it’s evenly distributed.  Top the filling with the topping (crumbly dough mixture) and place in a preheated oven for 30-40 minutes.  Take out from the oven when the crust is a gold brown color.

Blueberry Tart

Summer has officially arrived to Washington D.C.!  Finally!  It’s been a wonderful day of summer and warmth, just how I like it!

Although it’s been weeks since the Royal Wedding, I had made this tart for some friends that came over that night.  While we were watching this exciting event, we had a lot of little finger foods, a number of desserts, and some British drinks.

This tart was very springy-summery.  It makes a great dessert, or wonderful for a quick breakfast for the rest of the week (when you’re running out the door).  Making it with fresh blueberries would be wonderful, and the lemon zest keeps it refreshing.

Blueberry Tart
Adapted from: Sparkling Ink

3 cups of flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 cup sugar
1/4 tsp salt
juice of 1 lemon
zest of 1 lemon
1 stick of butter, cold & cut into small pieces
1 egg
3 cups of blueberries, frozen (or fresh)
1/2 cup sugar
4 tbsp corn starch

In a mixing bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, sugar and salt.  Grate the lemon, and add the zest into the mixture.  Add in cold butter.  Mix until combined, and the mixture is crumbly.  Then add the egg, and mix some more.

Mix the blueberries, sugar and lemon juice.  Add in the corn starch and toss well.

Line the baking dish (9 x 13 inches) with parchment paper.  Take half of the dough and press it into the baking dish.  Then, sprinkle the blueberry mixture on top.  Lastly, crumble the rest of the dough over the blueberries.

Bake at 375°F for 50 minutes, or until the top is golden brown.  Cool completely and cut into bars.  This was still delicious 5 days later, so it can sit out for a while!

Yeast Dinner Rolls

A couple of weeks ago, I was trying to make bread…but it never rose (I think it might have been a bad packet of yeast)!  It was frustrating, but I decided to keep trying.  When I had some friends over for dinner, I decided to give it another try, and made these beautiful dinner rolls.  And the dough rose!  Success!

These are fluffy and light, a perfect companion with some fresh butter and your dinner.  And they look very rustic when you put them in the rounded pan, and they rise squished together.

Yeast Dinner Rolls
Adapted from: Annie’s Eats

1 packet of instant yeast (2 1/4 tsp)
1 cup warm water
2 tbsp honey
1/8 cup agave nectar
1 1/4 tsp salt
1 egg, lightly beaten
4 cups all-purpose flour
Non-stick cooking spray

In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the yeast and warm water.  With a fork, froth and mix the water, until all of the yeast is mixed in.  While the paddle attachment is on low, add the honey, agave nectar, salt and egg.  Then add 3 cups of flour, and mix until the dough is a sticky mass.  Switch to a dough hook, and with the mixer still on low, add the final 1 cup of flour.  Continue kneading for 5-10 minutes, until the dough is smooth.

Pick up the dough, and spray the bowl with the non-stick cooking spray.  Then place the dough back into the bowl, and cover with a towel.  Let it rise in a warm spot until it has doubled, about 2 hours.

Take out the dough from the bowl, and place it on a floured surface.  Knead it for about 1 minute.  Then, cover it with a towel, and let it rest for another 10 minutes.  Finally, divide the dough into 10-12 equal pieces.  Shape each of the pieces into smooth balls.

Spray a round baking dish with the non-stick cooking spray.  Then place each of the balls into the baking dish, spacing them evenly.  Cover and let them rise for 20 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 400°F.  Bake the rolls for 20 minutes, until the tops are golden brown, and the rolls are baked through.  Let them cool before serving.  Enjoy each of the rolls with some fresh butter.

Double-rise Wheat Bread

This bread satisfied two things for me.  For one, it’s been getting cooler out here, and a slices of warm, fresh bread satisfies my cravings.  And I’ve always wanted to make bread from scratch, so I wanted to try a recipe.  It was delicious!  Warm, and crispy on the outside.  Savory and soft…and a little bit of salty butter completed each slice.

Double-rise Wheat Bread
Adapted from A Chow Life blog

4 cups (20 oz) all-purpose wheat flour
1 tsp granulated sugar
2 tbsp table salt
1/4 tsp instant, fast-rising yeast
2 cups ice water
oil spray

First Rise: In a large bowl, stir together: flour, sugar, salt and yeast.  Vigorously stir in the water into the bowl, and mixing until all of the ingredients are blended thoroughly.  If the mixture is too dry, stir in more water, small amounts at a   time.  Brush or spray the top with oil.  Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a towel.  Refrigerate the dough for 3-10 hours, then let it cool at room temperature for 18-24 hours.

Second Rise: Using an oiled rubber spatula, gently lift and fold the dough toward the center, until most of it is deflated.  Brush or spray the surface with oil once again.  Re-cover the bowl.  Let rise for 1 1/2- 2 1/2 hours at room temperature.  Wait until the dough doubles from the deflated size.

Baking: Turn the oven on to 450 degrees.  Heat a 3 1/4-4 quart (or larger) heavy metal pot (or Dutch oven) in the oven until it is sizzling hot.  Not deflating the dough, roll it into the warm pot.  Spritz or brush the top of the dough with water.  Top with the lid, and shake the pot back and forth to center the dough.  Bake the dough in the lower third of the oven for 55 minutes.  Then remove the lid, reduce the heat for 425 degrees.  Bake for 15-20 or until the top is well browned.  When it seems done, bake for a couple of minutes longer until the center is baked through.  Remove the loaf to the rack and cool thoroughly.

Serve/Store: Cool completely before storing.  The bread will keep at room temperature for 3 days, or may be frozen (airtight) for up to 2 months.

Enjoy!