Raspberry Buttermilk Cake

A very simple easy to make cake from Raspberry Buttermilk Cake If you don’t have raspberries you can use what ever fruit you have on hand. A garnish of some whipped cream or ice cream will make it extra special.

1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 stick unsalted butter, softened
2/3 cup plus 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar, divided
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 large egg
1/2 cup well-shaken buttermilk
1 cup fresh raspberries (about 5 ounces)

Preheat oven to 400°F with rack in middle. Butter and flour a 9-inch round cake pan or a springform pan.

Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

Beat butter and 2/3 cup sugar with an electric mixer at medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 2 minutes, then beat in vanilla. Add egg and beat well.

At low speed, mix in flour mixture in 3 batches, alternating with buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour, and mixing until just combined.

Spoon batter into cake pan, smoothing top. Scatter raspberries evenly over top and sprinkle with remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar.

Bake until cake is golden and a wooden pick inserted into center comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes. Cool in pan 10 minutes, then turn out onto a rack and cool to warm, 10 to 15 minutes more. Invert onto a plate.

White Chocolate Brownies

I am not a white chocolate fan but this recipe comes from my sister Meg who is a fabulous cook and assured me these brownies would be a hit! They were! It is an easy recipe and you can double it and make it in a 9″ by 12″ pan.
White Chocolate Brownies
1/2 cup unsalted butter, (salted is fine too)
8 oz. white chocolate chips
2 large eggs
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 t. vanilla
1/2 t. salt
1 cup flour
8 oz. semi-sweet choc. chips

Melt butter in saucepan. Remove from heat and add 1/2 of white chocolate chips. Do not stir. Using electric mixer, beat eggs with a pinch of salt (omit this pinch if you used salted butter), in large bowl until frothy. Add sugar and beat well. Add butter-white chocolate mixture, vanilla, salt, then flour and mix until just combined. Stir in semi-sweet chips and remaining white chocolate chips. Spray a 8 x 8 pan with Pam or Pam with flour (or you can grease with butter). Pour mixture in pan and bake at 350 for about 30 minutes.


This is from Williams Sonoma’s blog. The blog makes the pesto as a garnish for a roasted summer vegetable soup but I just made it to have on hand to go with summer tomatoes and corn! I also had some naan on hand and made pizzas with burrata, pesto and field grown tomatoes!! A perfect lunch!
1/3 cup (2 oz./60 g) pine nuts
3 garlic cloves (I like 2 cloves better than 3)
2 cups (2 oz./60 g) packed fresh basil leaves
1/2 cup (4 fl. oz./125 ml) extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup (2 oz./60 g) grated Parmesan cheese
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
In a blender or food processor, combine the pine nuts and garlic and process until finely chopped. Add the basil leaves and process until coarsely chopped. With the motor running, add the olive oil in a steady stream and process until a thick green sauce forms. Add the Parmesan, process to combine, and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Indian Spiced Corn Soup with Yogurt

From The New York Times Indian spiced corn soup a very easy corn soup to make! I did strain the soup for a finer texture and loved the flavor. We ate it cold but I think it would be delicious hot, as well. I love the flavors of the Indian spices with the corn.
Indian spiced corn soup
4 tablespoons butter
1 medium onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon grated ginger
½ teaspoon turmeric
½ teaspoon cumin seeds
½ teaspoon black mustard seeds
Large pinch cayenne
3 cups corn kernels, from 4 ears
Salt and pepper
Whole milk plain yogurt, for garnish
1 tablespoon chopped chives, for garnish
A few cilantro sprigs, for garnish
Lime wedges, for garnish, optional

Put butter in a heavy-bottomed soup pot over medium heat. Add onion and cook until softened, about 10 minutes. Add garlic, ginger, turmeric, cumin, mustard seeds and cayenne and sizzle for a minute or so.
Add corn kernels and season generously with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add 4 cups water and bring to a simmer. Simmer gently for 10 minutes. Purée soup in a blender. Check seasoning and adjust salt.
To serve, ladle into small bowls. Garnish each with 2 tablespoons thick yogurt. Sprinkle with chives and cilantro sprigs. Add a squeeze of lime.

Korean style Marinade for Flank Steak

This recipe comes from the wonderful blog, The Yellow Table. You can use it with flank steak or pork tenderloin and I will bet it is delicious on chicken too! I found that I was able to use the recipe for both flank and pork tenderloin and still have some that I reserved aside for a sauce after grilling! By the way, The Yellow Table is also a wonderful cookbook that is full of great menus and recipes.

½ cup reduced-sodium soy sauce
2 tablespoons sesame oil
¼ cup tablespoons rice wine vinegar
2 tablespoons Sriracha sauce
2 tablespoons honey
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons freshly ground ginger (I used fresh ginger as I had it)
¼ cup + 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 ½ pounds flank steak
Salt and pepper
2 scallions, thinly sliced, for serving
For the steak, in a large bowl combine the soy sauce, sesame oil, rice wine vinegar, Sriracha, honey, garlic, ginger and oil in a large bowl. Pour half of the sauce into a smaller bowl and set aside. Add the flank steak into the large bowl of marinade and let sit for 10 minutes. Note-I did marinate the steak overnight and it was delicious!

Chicken Shwarma

The perfect summer meal from The New York Times recipe collection! I grilled pieces of chicken breast for this menu and they were like velvet!! You can add as many of the condiments mentioned in the article. It would also be good with the little pitas. We lightly oiled our pita and grilled it. I made a condiment with yogurt, tahini and hot sauce that was delicious!I made one half of this recipe for two of us and we had a whole skewer leftover. I cut the breasts into rather large chunks and got about 20 pieces from the two half breasts that weighed a little over 1#.
Chicken skewer
2 lemons, juiced
½ cup plus 1 tablespoon olive oil
6 cloves garlic, peeled, smashed and minced
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons paprika
½ teaspoon turmeric
A pinch ground cinnamon
Red-pepper flakes, to taste
2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs
1 large red onion, peeled and quartered
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

Chicken Shwarma
Prepare a marinade for the chicken. Combine the lemon juice, 1/2 cup olive oil, garlic, salt, pepper, cumin, paprika, turmeric, cinnamon and red-pepper flakes in a large bowl, then whisk to combine. Add the chicken, and toss well to coat. Cover, and store in refrigerator for at least 1 hour and up to 12 hours.
When ready to cook, preheat oven to 425. Use the remaining tablespoon of olive oil to grease a rimmed sheet pan. Add the quartered onion to the chicken and marinade, and toss once to combine. Remove the chicken and onion from the marinade, and place on the pan, spreading everything evenly across it.
Put the chicken in the oven, and roast until it is browned, crisp at the edges and cooked through, about 30 to 40 minutes. Remove from the oven, allow to rest 2 minutes, then slice into bits. (To make the chicken even more crisp, set a large pan over high heat, add a tablespoon of olive oil to the pan, then the sliced chicken, and sauté until everything curls tight in the heat.) Scatter the parsley over the top and serve with tomatoes, cucumbers, pita, white sauce, hot sauce, olives, fried eggplant, feta, rice — really anything you desire.

Ina’s Five Cheese Pasta

As you know I love Ina Garten’s recipes and Five Cheese Pasta is another winner. Very easy to make and you can put it together ahead and cook it when you are ready to eat it. It makes enough for at least 8 people.
Kosher salt
2 cups heavy cream
1 cup crushed tomatoes in thick tomato puree (or tomato sauce)
1/2 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano (1 1/2 ounces)
1/2 cup shredded imported Italian fontina (1 1/2 ounces)
1/4 cup crumbled Italian Gorgonzola (1 1/2 ounces)
2 tablespoons ricotta cheese
1/4 pound fresh mozzarella, sliced
6 fresh basil leaves, chopped
1 pound imported penne rigate pasta
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F.

Bring 5 quarts of salted water to a boil in a stockpot.

Combine all the ingredients except the penne and butter in a large mixing bowl. Mix well.

Drop the penne into the boiling water and parboil for 4 minutes. Drain well in a colander and add to the ingredients in the mixing bowl, tossing to combine.

Divide the pasta mixture among 6 shallow ceramic gratin dishes (1 1/2 to 2-cup capacity). I used a 8’by 11″ pan. Dot with the butter and bake until bubbly and brown on top, 7 to 10 minutes.

English Toffee Shortbread

This recipe is so easy! You make it all in the food processor and dump it into a pan and pat it in and voila! I found this from Williams Sonoma’s blog which is a wealth of great recipes!
1 cup (5 oz./155 g) all-purpose flour
1/3 cup (2 1/2 oz./75 g) firmly packed light brown sugar
2 1/2 Tbs. cornstarch
1/8 tsp. kosher salt
8 Tbs. (1 stick) (4 oz./125 g) cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
3/4 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 cup (2 oz./60 g) pecans
1/3 cup (2 oz./60 g) finely chopped chocolate-covered English toffee
Granulated sugar for sprinkling

Preheat an oven to 350°F (180°C). Butter a 9-inch (23-cm) square or round cake pan.

In a food processor, combine the flour, brown sugar, cornstarch and salt and process briefly until well mixed. Scatter the butter over the flour mixture, add the vanilla and, using rapid pulses, process until the mixture resembles fine meal. Add the pecans and process until finely chopped. Add the toffee and process just to incorporate.

Press the dough into the prepared pan and sprinkle with granulated sugar. Bake until the shortbread just begins to color, about 20 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool for 5 minutes, then cut into 16 bars or wedges. Let cool completely before serving. Makes 16 cookies.

Pasta e Fagioli

This is a very easy soup that my mother found years ago in House Beautiful, I believe. I do not use dried beans but use one can of drained white cannelinni beans. It is nice to blend some of the soup mixture up before adding the pasta to give the soup some body. I only add **1/2 c. pasta-stars, dilatini or orzo all work well. Also if you have any parmesan rinds you are saving, wrap them in cheesecloth and simmer them in the soup-they add so much flavor!

Serves 10 as a first course or 6 as a main course
3 tablespoons pure olive oil

3 to 4 ounces pancetta, chopped

1 yellow onion, chopped

2 carrots, peeled and chopped

2 celery stalks, chopped

3 large cloves garlic, minced

2 cups (about 14 ounces) dried cranberry, borlotti, cannellini, or other small white beans, soaked overnight in water to cover, drained and rinsed

1 1/2 cups diced canned plum tomatoes, with juices

8 cups water or chicken broth, or as needed

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1/2 pound small shells, ditalini, or other small pasta shape
Extra virgin olive oil for finishing

Grated Parmesan for finishing

In a large soup kettle, warm the pure olive oil over medium heat. Add the pancetta and cook, stirring occasionally, until it renders its fat and is golden, about 5 minutes. Add the onion, carrots, celery, and garlic and cook, stirring often, until the vegetables have softened, about 5 minutes. Add the soaked beans, the tomatoes and their juices, the 8 cups water, and 2 teaspoons salt and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer until the beans are tender, about 1 hour.
To give the soup more body, remove 2 or 3 large spoonfuls of beans and vegetables, place in a food processor or blender, and purée until smooth. Return the purée to the pot. Taste and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper.
Although you can cook the pasta directly in the soup, there is a danger of the soup scorching if the beans have been puréed. To avoid this, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, add the pasta, stir well, and cook until al dente, according to the package directions. Drain the pasta, add to the soup, and simmer for 5 minutes to blend the flavors.
Ladle the soup into warmed bowls, and top each serving with a generous swirl of extra virgin olive oil, a sprinkle of Parmesan, and a liberal dusting of black pepper. Serve at once.

Prosciutto wrapped Herbed Pork Tenderloin with Apple Chutney and Goat Cheese Mashed Potatoes

Ina Garten has a newish book called Make It Ahead and this recipe and menu comes from this book. I love to cook in the morning for dinner. As much as I can do ahead is always a plus as I lose energy in the late afternoon. This is a perfect menu for a party or you can make one half of the recipes and just enjoy them for yourselves.
Pork menu
2 pork tenderloins (2½ to 3 pounds total)
1 tablespoon minced fresh rosemary leaves
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Good olive oil
10 to 12 slices prosciutto
Apple Chutney (recipe follows)
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
Roast for 20 to 25 minutes, until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the middle of the end of the tenderloin reads 140 degrees for medium rare and 145 degrees for medium. Cover the tenderloins tightly with aluminum foil and allow to rest at room temperature for 15 minutes. Slice diagonally in thick slices and serve warm with the Apple Chutney.
Note: Pork can be cooked medium rare because there is no longer a concern about trichinosis. Overcooked pork will be dry and flavorless.

MAKE IT AHEAD: Assemble the pork completely, wrap tightly, and refrigerate for up to 24 hours. Roast before serving.
Pork Tender menu

Apple chutney
Makes 5 cups
Of course, you can serve Herbed Pork Tenderloins with store-bought chutney but homemade apple chutney with fresh ginger and raisins is easy to make and delicious!

1 cup chopped yellow onion
2 tablespoons minced or grated fresh ginger (see note)
1 cup freshly squeezed orange juice (4 oranges)
3/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
1 teaspoon whole mustard seeds
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
11/2 teaspoons kosher salt
6 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and ½-inch-diced
3/4 cup raisins
Combine the onion, ginger, orange juice, vinegar, brown sugar, mustard seeds, red pepper flakes, and salt in a medium-size saucepan. Add the apples, adding them as you chop to keep them from turning brown. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally. Reduce the heat and simmer for 50 minutes to 1 hour, stirring occasionally, until most of the liquid has evaporated. Stir in the raisins and serve warm, at room temperature, or cold.

Note: To mince ginger, I peel it, dice it, and process it in a mini food processor.

MAKE IT AHEAD: Store covered in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

Goat Cheese Mashed Potatoes
3 pounds large Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut in 3/4-inch chunks
5 large garlic cloves
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
7 to 8 ounces garlic and herb goat cheese, at room temperature, such as Montrachet
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
11/2 cups sour cream
1/2 cup half-and-half or milk
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Place the potatoes, garlic, and 1 tablespoon of salt in a large pot with enough water to cover the potatoes. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce to a simmer, and cook for 20 to 25 minutes, until very tender.

Drain the potatoes and garlic and process them together through a food mill fitted with the coarsest blade set over a bowl. While the potatoes are still hot, stir in the goat cheese, butter, sour cream, half-and-half, 4 teaspoons salt, and 2 teaspoons pepper, until smooth.

Pour the mixture into a 9 × 12 × 2-inch oval baking dish, smoothing the top. Sprinkle the Parmesan on top and bake for 30 to 40 minutes, until lightly browned. Serve hot.
MAKE IT AHEAD: Assemble the dish, including the Parmesan, and refrigerate for up to 3 days. Bake before serving.