Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Cinnamon-Bun Ebelskivers

I was originally going to blog tonight's dinner, but it was so not worthy. So instead I'm blogging with these long-overdue, totally amazing Dutch filled pancakes, courtesy of Williams Sonoma. Ordinarily, I'm not one to buy highly specialized kitchen equipment, but the recipes for these sounded so amazing, I couldn't resist. I can't lie, they weren't the easiest thing in the world to make, but they were worth it!!! Don't count a single calorie on these - some things are worth it!

For the pancakes:
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 Tbs. granulated sugar
  • 4 eggs, separated
  • 2 cups milk
  • 4 Tbs. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted
  • Nonstick cooking spray
For the cinnamon filling:
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 Tbs. all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 Tbs. ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 4 Tbs. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes,
    at room temperature
For the cream cheese frosting:
  • 3 oz. cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 4 Tbs. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 3 to 4 Tbs. milk

For cinnamon filling, stir together the granulated sugar, flour, cinnamon and salt. Add the butter and, using the back of a spoon, mash the butter into the flour mixture until all of it is absorbed into the butter, forming a paste. Set filling aside.

To make the pancakes, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt and granulated sugar. In a separate bowl, lightly whisk the egg yolks, then add in the milk and the melted butter. Whisk the egg yolk mixture into the flour mixture until well combined (batter will be lumpy. Using an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites on high speed until stiff but not until dry peaks form, about 2 to 3 minutes. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold the whites into the batter in two additions.

Spray each well of ebelskiver pan with nonstick cooking spray and heat over medium heat. Pour 1 Tbs. batter into each well. Spoon 1/2 tsp. of the cinnamon filling into the center of each pancake and top with 1 Tbs. batter. Cook until the bottoms are golden brown and crispy, about 3 minutes. Using 2 skewers, flip the pancakes over and cook until golden and crispy, about 3 minutes more. Transfer the pancakes to a plate. Repeat with the remaining batter and filling.

To make the cream cheese frosting, in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle, beat together the cream cheese and butter on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add the confectioners' sugar, reduce the speed to low and beat until combined, 1 to 2 minutes, stopping the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add 3 Tbs. of the milk and beat until combined, about 1 minute. The frosting should be thick but still pourable; add more milk if needed to thin.

Drizzle the pancakes with the frosting and serve immediately. Makes 35 to 40.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Langostino Macaroni and Cheese

Wow. This is absolutely amazing. Decadent (definitely not healthy!), rich, and oh-so-satisfying. It would be perfect for a romantic evening, but it was just as perfect for a relaxing Sunday night in our house!
1 box macaroni, cooked and drained
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 onion, chopped
4 small garlic cloves, minced
3 Tbsp. butter
3 Tbsp. flour
1 cup FF milk
1 cup FF half-and-half
1-1/4 cups reduced-fat cheddar cheese
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup mozzarella cheese
1 10 oz. package langostino, defrosted according to package directions
1 tsp. Old Bay seasoning (I didn't have any of this, but it would really be fantastic in this!)
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
Sale and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray a large casserole dish with nonstick cooking spray.

Heat olive oil in large saucepan over medium heat until oil starts to ripple. Add onion and saute until tender, about 3 minutes. Add garlic and saute until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add butter to pan and stir to combine with onions and garlic. When butter is melted, whisk in flour to make a roux. When combined, add milk and half-and-half and whisk until combined. Allow mixture to thicken.

When milk mixture has thickened, add spices and cheeses and stir until the cheese is melted. Add langostino meat and stir to combine. Mix with pasta and pour into casserole. Bake uncovered until top is browned and sauce is bubbling, about 15-20 minutes.

Menu Planning

Every Sunday, like clockwork, my husband and I sit down and plan the week's menu out, then head to the grocery store together. This keeps us from, "Hey, I don't know what to make and I'm missing at least one ingredient for everything I can think of cooking, so let's go out." It also saves money at the grocery store when we head in with a plan. But, until today, I've never blogged about them. I'm hoping that listing what we're having this week will inspire me to blog about it once it's made, because I know I've been a bit of a slacker in that department lately. I blame the summer heat here in PA!

Our plan for this week is:

Langostino Lobster Macaroni and Cheese

Steak Burritos

Chicken Skewers with Peanut Sauce

Shrimp Tacos

Steak Sandwiches with Oven Fries

Open - maybe we'll go out, or we might take the little guy to the pool for family swim night - he loves this!

That's our week! What are you having?