Flashback Friday – Ina’s Buns

Flashback Friday

The following originally appeared on 3/4/09 at Exit 51.

Ina’s Buns

I haven’t gotten around to trying Ina’s Easy Sticky Buns.  But online, I’ve come across folks who have.  And the results are a mixed bag.

First was The Amateur Gourmet.  His post was titled Burnt Sticky Buns.  Pretty much sums it up.

Then Meleyna posted her tale.

I have to say that I’ve lost some of my enthusiasm to try this recipe.  If The Amateur Gourmet can’t bring a Barefoot Contessa recipe to life, then what chance do I stand?  But I suppose I’ll never know until I try.  What about you?  Have you tried it yet?

Over at foodnetwork.com, that recipe has gotten mostly positive reviews.  I just dunno.  Someone, please, help me decide what to do about Ina’s Buns.

Tenderloin Filet a la Advantium

So as I talked about earlier, I am the proud new owner of a GE Advantium oven.  And as part of my collaboration with GE, I’m going to go on an adventure to see how this new technology can help me do more in the kitchen and share what I learn here on BAH.

The first thing I learned is that my kitchen is now smarter than I am.  But I mean that in a good way.  The Advantium comes with over 175 preset cooking programs for everything from bagel bites to tenderloin filets.  With the press of a button and the turn of the knob, you can set it and forget it until the Advantium lets you know that you need to do something…like flip your filet or get to eating.

Through the various cooking modes you can:

  • Microwave
  • Convection Bake
  • Speedcook
  • Warm
  • Proof dough
  • Broil
  • Toast

All that in a single appliance.  I swear, I am not making this up.  It’s as though a bit of Jetson’s technology is living in my kitchen.  And that’s good news for me because the Advantium solves some of my big problems.

First, I’m terrified of my broiler.  I avoid it at all costs which means that I forgo things like sizzling hot steaks.  I think my fear has a lot to do with not being able to keep a close eye on what’s happening under that flame.  With Broil, I can see through the window and monitor what’s happening to my steak.

Second, there is no room on my counter for a toaster.  It lives in the cabinet above the stove which means I have to find the step stool, get it out of the cabinet, and clean up whatever crumbs spill out of it each and every time I want to make some toast.  Then I have to wait for it to cool off, shake out the latest batch of crumbs, and climb back on the step stool to put it away.  As you might imagine, there has been a prolonged toast shortage here at BAH.  Thank you Toast setting for allowing me to reunite with toasted nooks and crannies.

Third, I don’t have a good spot to set bread dough to rise.  The kitchen is drafty and inside the big oven is where the pots and pans live.  Every time I set about making bread or rolls, it’s a crap shoot whether my dough is even going to rise.  I can see myself making good friends with Proof.

And maybe most exciting of all is how Speedcook will make things like roast chicken a viable weeknight meal option.  Monday through Friday, I don’t have 90 minutes for dinner to cook.  But I can carve out the 45 minutes Speedcook needs to roast a 5 pound whole chicken while I do something like speedwatch the episodes of Modern Family that have accumulated on my Tivo.  Speedcook, I see you as my newly acquired super power.

So the Advantium wasn’t even out of the box before I was plotting what to make in it first.  Flipping through the cookbook that came with it, I spied Steak au Poivre.  This is the dish that I had seen demo’d down at GE in the spring.  And I knew that’s how I would christen my Advantium because it’s the kind of recipe that I would be too intimidated to try either on top of the stove or under the broiler.

The filet was prepped and ready and went into the oven using the Speedcook preset for 1 filet cooked to Medium.  And without a single moment of preheating, it was done in 16 minutes.  Hell, it would take my big oven that long just to heat to 500 degrees.  Not only did it cook in less time than the entire process would have taken in my traditional oven, I also didn’t have the wasted energy of the big oven heating to an incredibly high temperature before I could begin to cook.

So what’s my verdict?  The tenderloin filet came out of the Advantium sizzling hot and was cooked to a perfect medium.  Being that I’m more of a medium rare girl, I’m going to take advantage of the ability to add custom cooking programs and set myself up with a Medium Rare preset.  Which means that next time I’m only going to have to wait about 12 minutes for my sizzling steak needs to be met.

Yes, I think Advantium is going to make me a Super Hero in my kitchen.

Disclaimer:  As part of my partnership with GE, I received an Advantium oven.  All opinions posted about my Advantium experience are my own.

My GE Advantium Experience

I am horrible at keeping secrets.  And yet there has been a happy little nugget of news that I’ve been sitting on for a while.  No, not THAT kind of news.  Geez.  Remember earlier this year when I shared with you the first rate experience I had down in Louisville as a guest of GE at their Experience Center?  Mais non?  Well then clicky here.

I came home from that trip thinking that in our next house, whenever that may happen, it would be nice to incorporate the Advantium technology into the kitchen.  And then life kept rolling along and took my mind off of the serious case of Advantium envy that came home with me from the great state of Kentucky.  Now fast forward a few months.  Out of the blue, the folks at GE reached out to me wanting to know if I would be interested in helping them tell the Advantium story.

Would I want to receive an Advantium of my very own to use and then talk about it here on the blog?  That was like asking me “does butter taste good?”.

I had someone ask if it felt like I was selling out by agreeing to collaborate with GE on this project.  And I thought it was a legitimate question.  My answer was “no”, and here’s why…I already use GE appliances.  I am already one of their consumers.  Heck, if it weren’t for GE and their 18 inch dishwasher, The Mistah and I would still be in handwashing hell in our ridiculously small kitchen.  When I had the choice of what brand appliances I would purchase for our kitchen, I chose GE.

Another reason I didn’t feel like this was a case of selling out is because GE is not dictating the content of my posts.  They are providing me with the product but I am not being told what to say about my experience with it.  If you’ve followed my kitchen adventures for a while, you know that I talk about failures as much as I do successes.  Frankly, the Advantium is going to challenge me as I learn to harness the power of Speed Cooking and Convection.  I expect that there’s going to be bumps in the road…and I won’t gloss over them and pretend that they don’t exist.  But I also expect that this tool is going to help me do more when it comes to cooking.

I’m not sidestepping the fact that companies are in business to promote and sell their products.  That’s what businesses do.  And as customers, it is up to each of us to make the best, most informed decision of how to spend our consumer dollars.  So by hearing me talk about being able to roast a chicken for a Tuesday night meal instead of reheating leftovers from the weekend, you may decide that this product is right for you.  Or you might decide that it’s not.  I’m not here to tell you that your life will magically become picture perfect because you can cook, bake, microwave, and warm in a single appliance.

What I am here to do is share my real experiences of using the Advantium product.  I have an opportunity to be part of the conversation.  Is it flattering to have a company single me out and say “we like what you’re doing, what you represent, and we’d like to have you help tell our story”?  Absolutely.  It is hugely validating.  But it is also a responsibility that I take very seriously.  That’s why I chose to publicly state my reasons for deciding to partner with GE on this project instead of merely including a disclaimer on each Advantium post stating that I have been provided with the product but that the opinions expressed are my own.

Am I beyond excited to have this opportunity? Am I looking forward to the adventure that is about to unfold in my kitchen?  Again, that’s like asking me “does butter taste good?”.

Cooking Light, The Complete Quick Cook

Cooking Light and I are old friends.  You may recall that I’ve mentioned them here from time to time.  Actually, we are old, estranged friends.  It has been years since I’ve picked up an issue of Cooking Light.  But some of the recipes that Cooking Light introduced me to have earned seniority.  In my kitchen, where the turnover rate of recipes is pretty high, miso glazed salmon, cider roasted pork, and cinnamon sugar cookies all have made return appearances.  And they all came from the pages of the magazine.

So imagine my surprise when I found out that Mark Scarbrough, with whom I exchange pithy Tweets, was half of the dynamic duo of Bruce Weinstein and Mark Scarbrough who are long time collaborators with Cooking Light.  I was having one of those “when worlds collide” moments.  Here I was tweeting with someone whose recipes I had made in my own home.  And through those tweets, Bruce and Mark reunited me with Cooking Light.

See, they were kind enough to offer me the opportunity to receive their newest cookbook, which just so happens to be a collaboration with Cooking Light focused on smart, fast home cooking.  Clearly, they know I am their target audience.  As soon as I got the book in my hands, I started reading.  Because in addition to over 200 recipes, The Complete Quick Cook is full of tips, tricks, and strategies to make cooking less intimidating.  I may have been doing my thing in the kitchen for a few years now but there is always something I can learn to cook smarter.  Because really, when you’re trying to balance all of life’s craziness, it pays to take the smarter approach.

And to top it all off with a pretty bow, I was given the opportunity to interview Bruce and Mark about The Complete Quick Cook.  How could I possibly say no to that?  I tried my best to at least sound like I knew what I was talking about, despite my track record of making a hot mess of whatever it is that I’m working on in the kitchen.  Here’s how our conversation went.

Bruce and Mark, you have written over 20 cookbooks, focusing on things such as Cooking For Two, Pizza, Grilling, Ham, and Goat.  What made you decide to tackle the challenge of smart, fast home cooking?

Every year, there’s a new study about how people have less time, fewer minutes, more things to do. It’s a cliché—but true, nonetheless. So while we’re still all for the seven-hour roasted goat leg or the two-day ham brine, cooking quickly remains the real way most of the people we know want to cook. Indeed, need to cook. To get a healthy dinner on the table in under thirty minutes: that’s the challenge of an average Wednesday night.

You’ve been collaborating with Cooking Light for some time and developing recipes for their magazine.  How has that influenced the cooking that you do in your own home?

Cooking Light’s philosophy fits exactly with ours: “healthy” and “tasty” in balance. And a balance without any big no-no’s. It doesn’t make sense to make some ingredients forbidden. You know you’ll eat them soon enough if you do! Instead, it’s far better to see the sensible ways we can even bring indulgences to our tables.

The book is full of tips and secrets to help make cooking less intimidating.  If you had to choose just one tip that people should remember to be a smarter cook, what would that be?

The one who cooks the meal is not the one who cleans up afterwards! Well, okay, more seriously, there’s a lot in the book for how to “mise” your kitchen: put the wooden spoon and spices near the stove, keep the counters clean, keep a list on a marker board or your smart phone of pantry items you need to restock, etc. Many people know about making a “mise en place” for the meal they’ll cook: getting out the ingredients and prepping them before they start to cook. But it’s just as important to organize and prep your kitchen itself. That’s a real secret to quick cooking.

As someone who constantly uses cookbooks and magazines, all I know is I open them up and the recipes are magically there waiting for me to bring them to life.  Can you describe the process of developing the recipes so that they would fit into a busy cook’s available time and embody the Cooking Light philosophy?

Admittedly, our process is pretty complicated. In truth, developed recipes for Cooking Light are a collaboration among editors, publishers, the Cooking Light test kitchen, the many tasters on staff, and us two food writers, who actually have fairly different tastes between us. That collaboration is a tricky dance, but it also assures that recipes remain accessible and that the basic flavors don’t get lost in a search for newish flare. I’d say that the best thing a quick cook can do is to treat meals at home as collaborations, too: keep your family’s tastes in mind, listen to how they respond to dishes, have your kids or spouse help out in the kitchen. Working together can be a key to working quickly. And if you get your family and loved ones involved in the meal, they’re much less likely to complain!

I bestowed comfort food status to the Farfalle with Creamy Wild Mushroom Sauce the first time I made it.  Is there a story behind this recipe?

Recipes are like your kids—they’ve all got stories. In our world, Mark loves dairy, thinks butter is a beverage; Bruce is rather indifferent to it, all things considered. He’d rather have olive oil any day. So recipes like this come about because Mark, the writer, is just craving something creamy and wonderful. Bruce, the chef, then comes up with a way to keep that creaminess in check, so that supper’s satisfying without being a belt-buster. Now that’s real comfort food!

As stated above, I have fallen in love with Farfalle with Creamy Wild Mushroom Sauce.  Although I must admit that I reversed engineered it to be a little less Cooking Light friendly by thickening the sauce with some kneaded butter.  Do those kneaded buttery calories get voided if I add some roasted chicken breast and baby peas to the pasta?

Um, we hate to tell you this, but a food calorie is a food calorie. It doesn’t get nixed from anything in the pan or skillet. That said, some roast chicken from a rotisseried bird would be a fine addition to this recipe. In fact, you’re doing what we dream every reader does: morph our recipes into something that suits your table. We hope to provide the inspiration—where you take it from there is your own creative journey. And a sure sign of a better meal ahead for you and those you love!

Ok, so maybe Bruce and Mark didn’t absolve my additional kneaded butter calories in the Farfalle, but I love their philosophy and they definitely gave me a new recipe to add to my seniority list.  I can’t wait to see how else The Complete Quick Cook is going to make an impact at our table.

Be sure to come back on Wednesday when I will introduce you to Farfalle with Creamy Wild Mushroom Sauce.  You really don’t want to miss this.  And you can follow along with the adventures of Bruce and Mark at their blog.  Want some of those pithy tweets in your Twitter feed?  Check out @markscarbrough and @bruceweinstein on the Twittah.

Flashback Friday – Table For Two

Flashback Friday

The following originally appeared on 2/23/09 at Exit 51.

Table For Two

From the looks of my blog stats, we all had the same idea about making a special Valentine’s Day dinner.  Those scallops from Jacques Pepin got even more traffic than usual on the 14th.  Luckily, that is a recipe that you can pull together at the last minute. And from the look of Wegman’s Saturday afternoon, there was a lot of last minute happening.  Even I was not immune to lastminuteitis and found myself standing at the seafood counter for scallops.  But I had another, equally easy, recipe in mind for them…no offense to Jacques, of course.

HVD Dinner & Dessert

Valentine’s Day was brought to us courtesy of Gourmet Magazine and Mark Bittman.  And while it would have been way cooler if someone from Gourmet, or Mr. Bittman himself, had shown up on my doorstep and done the cooking for me, I think I did a pretty good job following their instructions.  Because really, the instructions were as easy as 1,2,3.  I know I say that a lot, but it’s only because those are the kinds of recipes I love the best.

Our table for two Valentine’s Dinner featured Paprika Dusted Scallops with Pea Puree topped off with a Chocolate Souffle.  Sounds pretty daunting doesn’t it?  Let me tell you, the key to this meal is working backwards and preparing the souffle to the point where it is ready to go into the oven BEFORE you start the scallops.  Bittman’s recipe is a lifesaver here because it can go from fridge to oven to table.  Executing this menu is nothing more than a dance.  One, two, cha, cha, cha.  And even those of us with two left feet can get the steps right.

So start off by getting the souffle together and have it chill out in the fridge.  Then move onto the pea puree.  Once this is all blitzed together in the food processor, it can stay there till the scallops are done and you’re ready to plate.  Preheat your oven for the souffle and start on the scallops.  In the time it takes the scallops to cook, your oven will be ready and the souffle can go in just as you sit down to eat.  Thirty minutes later, your dinner plate will be empty but your dessert plate will be piled high with warm chocolate love.

Enjoy it while it’s hot.  The dishes can wait till morning.

Kerrygold Beurre Manie

There is a word that strikes fear into the hearts of many home cooks.  Sauce.  Think about it.  What other dish with so few ingredients has the power to cause as much anxiety and tears?   In my kitchen, sauce has always been a seat of my pants adventure.  Sometimes I get them right.  Other times they go horribly, horribly wrong.

I’m usually ok with roux based sauces that start with cooking butter and flour as the base of the sauce before hot liquid is added.  But that process is not always an option.  And that’s when things get dicey.  Have your liquid too hot when you add in the flour and instead of a perfectly thickened sauce you get pasty lumps that refuse to disperse.  Add too much flour and you’re likely to get gummy sauce.  Today’s tip illustrates that it doesn’t have to be like that.

There’s a french term, beurre manie, which literally means kneaded butter.  Despite the fancy pants name, beurre manie is not to be feared; it’s your secret weapon in the war against lumpy sauce.  Beurre manie is simply equal parts butter and flour mixed together until smooth. Nothing intimidating about that, is there?

When you whisk this mixture into your sauce, the butter melts away and allows the flour to evenly disperse into your liquid.  Traditionally, beurre manie is made by smearing the butter and flour together on the counter.  But with Kerrygold Premium Spreadable Reduced Fat Butter, your counter, and your hands, stay butter free.  And your sauces and gravies stay beautifully lump free.

Kerrygold Beurre Manie

BAH Note:  You will want to skim the fat off of the liquid in your pan and then let it cook until reduced by about half before adding the beurre manie to the liquid.

  • 1 tablespoon Kerrygold Premium Spreadable Reduced Fat Butter
  • 1 tablespoon flour

Place the butter and flour in a small bowl.  Use a fork to mash the butter and flour together until they are fully combined and the mixture smooths out, approximately one minute.  Scoop out the mixture with a whisk and stir it into your hot liquid.  Whisk until completely incorporated and then cook your sauce for a few more minutes to thicken.

Official Disclosure: Kerrygold provided me with their Premium Spreadable Butter and Premium Spreadable Reduced Fat Butter to use in developing these tips as part of a contest.  The opinions, and #butterlove, expressed here are my own.

Kerrygold Grilled Cheese

Today’s tip on using Kerrygold’s Premium Spreadable Butter solves a common problem.  It’s been a hectic day.  And at the end of it, your plan for a slow cooked meal has fallen apart and you can only muster enough energy to pull together a quick dinner before running off to the next drop off, recital, or meltdown.  You have to make a choice.  You can reach for dinner out of a box or through a drive through window.  Or.  You can reach into the fridge.  You’ve got bread, sliced turkey from the deli, and cheese…all the makings of a grilled cheese.  Only you didn’t know this morning before you left the house that all hell was going to break loose and you would be making dinner on the fly.

That’s the problem that Kerrygold Premium Spreadable Butter solves.  Straight from the fridge it easily goes onto the slice of bread that will become the foundation of your grilled cheese and the answer to your dinner dilemma.   In about the same amount of time it would have taken you to corral the kids, get them into the car without starting World War 3 about who gets to sit in the front, and hand over a wad of cash for fast food processed burger patties and formed chicken pieces, you can bite into warm, melty grilled cheese goodness.

Kerrygold Grilled Cheese

BAH Note: I personally have the luxury to let my grilled cheese cook low and slow in the frying pan.  But if you need to hurry things up a bit, raise the heat under you pan but be sure to check that it isn’t browning too fast.  You don’t want the outside to char before the inside gets good and melted.

  • Sliced Bread
  • Major Gray Chutney (optional but highly recommended)
  • Sliced Turkey (or ham if that’s your thing)
  • Kerrygold Aged Cheddar
  • Kerrygold Premium Spreadable Butter

Butter one slice of bread and place it butter side down into a cold frying pan.  Spread a thin layer of chutney, if using, on to the top of the bread.  Layer the remaining ingredients in the following order: slices of cheese, turkey (or ham), slices of cheese.  Spread a layer of chutney onto another slice of bread and place it chutney side down on top of the sandwich.  Butter the top side of the bread.

Turn your burner to medium or medium low and cook until you begin to hear the butter sizzle and see it bubble at the edge of the bread.  Use a spatula to carefully peek at the bottom piece of bread and adjust your heat down if necessary to keep the bread from scorching.  When the bottom is nicely browned, carefully flip the sandwich over and cook until the other piece is bread is browned and the cheese has melted.

Enjoy as is or dip into a bit of chutney spooned onto your plate.

Official Disclosure: Kerrygold provided me with their Premium Spreadable Butter and Premium Spreadable Reduced Fat Butter to use in developing these tips as part of a contest.  The opinions, and #butterlove, expressed here are my own.

Kerrygold Quick Bread Frosting

Since jumping into the world of the food blog, I have made wonderful discoveries.  Lentils.  Beets.  A virtual community of gifted storytellers.  These are all good things.  But maybe the one closest to my heart is Kerrygold and their line of products.

If you search through the blog, and scroll through my Twitter stream, you’ll find examples of my public adoration of all things Kerrygold.  The cheese.  The butter.  The customer service.  Not only do they make quality products but they treat their customers right.  I have conducted my own personal #butterlove campaign to share my love of Kerrygold with the world.  And now I have a chance to be a part of Kerrygold’s campaign to introduce two of their new products to you.

Turns out the folks at Kerrygold have worked their #butterlove magic and produced new premium spreadable butters.  Let those words sink in for a moment.  Kerrygold.  Premium. Spreadable.  Butter.  That means straight from the fridge, you can have Kerrygold goodness gliding onto your slice of bread or melting into the craters of your waffle.  How do I know this?  Because I’ve tried these new butters.  I’ve used them in sauces and spreads.  I’ve taken it out of the fridge one moment and licked it straight off of my fingers the next.

Butter has always had a special place in my world.  Growing up, there was always a dish of butter out on the table.  And because we put it on everything, the butter could sit out and not risk going rancid.  We simply never let it stay around long enough to turn bad.  But when I started cooking for myself, and later The Mistah, I couldn’t sustain that level of butter consumption.  So my sticks lingered in the fridge where they stayed cold but got rock solid.  There was no quickly buttering an untoasted slice of bread for a spaghetti sauce sandwich.  And making any recipe that required my butter to be pliable and yielding required me to remember to take it out of the fridge well ahead of time so that it could soften.  I can’t tell you how many sticks of butter I melted in the microwave because I forgot to set out the butter or how many I’ve mangled trying to get the thinnest slice off as possible.  And that’s just wrong.

Now, thanks to the folks at Kerrygold, I have more options.  And so do you.  The premium spreadable butters are available in regular and reduced fat varieties.  I know what you might be thinking…that reduced fat means reduced flavor.  While I’m not a certified butter expert, I’ve had plenty of buttery experience over the years to  hone my taste buds.  When I tasted them both side by side straight from the container, I couldn’t tell the difference between them.

So how exactly am I involved with spreading the word of Kerrygold Premium Spreadable #butterlove?  By taking their two new products and highlighting ways that you can use them in your own kitchen.  Not only do I get to discover new ways to love Kerrygold, and share them with you, but I am also competing against other bloggers to come up with the best usage ideas for the products.  Even if none of my ideas win a prize, I’m honored that the folks at Kerrygold chose me to participate in this competition.

Today’s tip is Kerrygold Quick Bread Frosting.  Imagine that you’ve just made a double batch of your favorite quick bread….say pumpkin.  Of the twelve mini loaves that came out of your oven, ten of them are to be given away.  So you slice off a piece of one of your loaves, for quality control purposes.  It’s moist with a nice mix of spice.  But you want to fancy it up a bit.  With nothing more than some Kerrygold Premium Spreadable Reduced Fat Butter, whipped cream cheese, and powdered sugar you’ve got a quick and easy frosting that takes your quick bread over the top without toppling the scale the next time you step on it.

Kerrygold Quick Bread Frosting

BAH Note:  I worked on a very small scale to make only enough frosting for my immediate consumption but you could easily scale this up to make a larger batch.  I used a ratio of 6:1 (6 teaspoons cream cheese [or 2 tablespoons] to 1 teaspoon butter) but you use what tastes best to you.  Want a firmer frosting?  Add more powdered sugar.  Want something thinner that you can drizzle?  Stir in some half and half a teaspoon at a time.  This frosting is your friend, it wants you to be happy.

  • 1 teaspoon Kerrygold Premium Spreadable Reduced Fat Butter
  • 2 tablespoons whipped cream cheese
  • 2 tablespoons powdered sugar

Combine the butter and cream cheese in a small bowl (think cereal bowl here, not ramekin).  Use a fork to cream them together until smooth (this should take all of about 30 seconds).  Add the powdered sugar to the creamed mixture and mix with your fork until fully combined.

Official Disclosure: Kerrygold provided me with their Premium Spreadable Butter and Premium Spreadable Reduced Fat Butter to use in developing these tips as part of a contest.  The opinions, and #butterlove, expressed here are my own.

Gingered Peach Marmalade

To say that I’ve taken a shine to small batch canning would be an understatement.  I plan my weekends around what jam I might whip up next.  I scour the stores for canning related items – jars, lids, pectin.  You might say I’ve been stimulating the economy one small batch at a time.

While this may not lead to an actual economic recovery, I think these jars are worth their weight in gold.

Gingered Peach Marmalade

Adapted from The Complete Book of Small Batch Preserving

BAH Note:  The recipe in the book calls for this to be cooked up in the microwave.  Me, I prefer to have large containers of molten hot sugar on the stove top where I can easily monitor the jamming progress and where I’m not reaching up over my head to take hot bowl of said molten sugar out for a stir.  So that’s how I’m presenting it.  You want to make it in the microwave, go order the book.

  • 1 orange
  • 1 lemon
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 cups chopped peaches, fresh or frozen
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 tablespoons crystallized ginger, chopped

Zest the orange and lemon and place the zest in a dutch oven with the water.  Place the lemon and orange pulp in a food processor and pulse until it is well chopped.  Transfer the lemon and orange pulp to the dutch oven and cook over medium heat for five minutes.

Add the peaches, sugar, and ginger to the dutch oven.  Bring to a boil and continue to cook, stirring, occasionally, until it gels.

Ladle the jam into heated jars, leaving 1/4 inch head space, and process for 10 minutes.

Let the jars cool for 24 hours before checking the seal and storing the jars. Any jars that have not sealed should be refrigerated or immediately reprocessed using new lids.

{printable recipe}

Flashback Friday – Sugar And Spice Part Deux

Flashback Friday

The following originally appeared on 1/12/09 at Exit 51.

Sugar And Spice Part Deux

The holiday season finds many of us making the same things.  And I’m always interested to see a different approach to a recipe that I’ve coaxed out of my kitchen.  Like those Spiced Nuts I made before Christmas.

They had all been packaged and shipped and I’d already moved on to the next recipe on my list when I saw Deb at Smitten Kitchen had blogged about them as well.  Her take on Candied Nuts employs egg whites and the oven while mine are constructed entirely on top of the stove.

But you know what?  Her’s looked more like I wanted mine to look.  All sandy and nubby with the spices.  Not shiny.

And I like that hers is straightforward in the sweet/salty/spicy mix and only uses three flavors.  The more complicated the flavor palette, the more chance for things to go wrong.

So although it’s absurdly early to say this is definitely what I’m going to make next holiday go round, it is at the top of my list.  Hope it finds a spot on yours as well.  I’m not going to post her recipe here because reading her post and drooling over her photos is half the fun!