All content copyright Katrina Hall 2008 through 2025

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

turkey meatballs dijonnaise

How was your Thanksgiving?  I was invited to my daughter and family celebration on Friday - oh my, what a groaning table!

I came early to make the pumpkin roll (which I forgot to take a picture of), while Izzie (above) made a giant apple pie and my daughter tended Mr. Turkey - oh, the aromas in the kitchen were making our stomachs rumble.  And when we sat down, it was all just perfect.  What a great dinner - but I forgot to bring home leftovers!  I picked up some ground turkey yesterday and was mulling over what kind of meatball I would make, and wanted a creamy sauce.  Well, how about a dijonnaise sauce?  I found a recipe in one of the Silver Palate books and it was all that I wanted on this cold, rainy day - creamy, mustardy, not too spicy - just right.

It would be nice with some buttered noodles, if you're making it for a family dinner, and a green salad or roasted brussels sprouts, but a small plate of meatballs was just perfect for me.

Turkey meatballs dijonnaise

1 one pound package ground turkey (I always get Jennie-O)
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1/3 cup prepared dijon mustard (or you can use coarse-ground)
several grindings of black pepper
a few tablespoons dry vermouth or dry white wine
pinch of thyme
1/2 cup (or more) heavy cream
tiny pinch of salt after tasting the cooked meatballs (the mustard has a lot of salt in it)

Roll the ground turkey into medium meatballs.
Melt the butter in a skillet set on medium heat.
Add the mustard, pepper,thyme, and vermouth and heavy cream and whisk, then add the meatballs.  
Cook on medium-low heat, watching the meatballs carefully, and turning them with a spoon as they cook.
Remove meatballs to a serving dish, scraping the sauce over them, or, if the sauce has soaked into the meatballs, just add another 1/3 cup heavy cream to the skillet and heat.
Drizzle the hot sauce over the meatballs and sprinkle with minced parsley.

I pass this enormous tree on the sidewalk everyday - now that the snow has melted, this little bouquet of green leaves nestled in the roots of the tree is a happy sight -   

Monday, November 21, 2016

white bean and vegetable soup (with lots of herbs)

It's been frigid weather in Minnesota !  I met a dear friend in Minneapolis on Sunday from my home town in New Hampshire  - which was a delightful homecoming.  Nothing like hugs and conversation with an old friend, right?

When I came home, I was frozen and in need of something delicious, something herby and chock full of vegetables and herbs - and came up with this comfortable and delicious chowder, of sorts, which didn't need grated cheese, or sour cream, or anything extra, besides the fresh vegetables and a generous hand with herbs.  Heaven!    Though I do think some homemade bread would've been a real treat.

To make enough for 2 people:

1 large white potato, cubed (about a cup +)
1 carrot,peeled and cut into half moons (about 1/2 cup)
1 diced white onion (about 1/2 cup)
3 cups water
2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
a bay leaf
1 clove garlic
1 teaspoon unsalted butter

1 cup packed torn kale
1 can, drained, cannellini beans , 15.5 oz can
1/2 cup diced canned tomatoes

1 T. fresh rosemary, chopped
1 t. dried basil
2 tablespoons olive oil (I like California olive oil)
kosher salt to taste
freshly ground pepper to taste

Bring the stock, water, bay leaf, garlic, and butter to a simmer.  Add the potato, carrot and white onion and simmer until they are tender.

Add the kale, beans and tomatoes to the vegetables and simmer, then add the herbs and olive oil, salt, and pepper. Take off heat and let the soup sit for about 15 minutes.

Serve with cheese, fresh bread, and a green salad, if you wish.

I got festive the other night and decorated one of my windows - sparkly!

Hope your day is wonderful!

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

election caramel and applesauce cake

Deep apologies for my blog silence - you could call it election freeze .  I grew up in a very committed Democratic family, and as the election drew closer, and the voting results came in slowly, I headed to the kitchen.  I became obsessed with making caramel.  I made The Pioneer Woman's brown sugar caramel over and over, and it seemed to come out different every time. It would be creamy in the saucepan, and then slowly turn grainy.  That happened a LOT.  As long as I warmed it again, it was creamy and delicious, but as soon as it cooled, it turned grainy again.

So I tried this recipe, which can't be easier, and it stayed creamy and glossy, though I did add a little butter for a deeper caramel flavor.  Then I realized you can't just post an icing recipe - you something to put it on, right?   So when I found Sarah Leah Chase's applesauce cake I thought I was home free.  Nope, didn't have dates, Calvados, or walnuts, which I'm sure would've been delicious - but I plowed ahead and crossed my fingers.  The cake was good, a nice texture, but rather plain without the Calvados/date additions, and because I was riveted to the election returns and the stores were now closed, I just skipped it.  I didn't use her caramel glaze, because it was almost the same as the Pioneer Woman's, and I had two saucepans full of caramel sitting on my counter.  Apologies again, and hope you will try Sarah's recipe in full  - I used half a recipe.

Here is half the recipe of hers that I used for 2 little 6" layer cakes:

6 T. unsalted butter, room temp
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 large egg
1 cup homemade applesauce
1 1/2 cups (one and a half) flour
1 and 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 tablespoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
(optional:  1/2 cup pitted dates, cut up, 1/2 cup chopped walnuts - I did not use)
1/4 cup Calvados or rum

I baked two small cake layers, baking at 375F for 35 minutes - but check cakes at around 20 minutes to be sure.