Saturday, December 04, 2004

Ice Cream Cake
Its Shane's birthday today and, as I usually do, I asked him what his favorite cake would be....of course he says "mmm Ice Cream cake with the oreo crunchies on the inside" So, I got out my largest spring form pan, lined it with parchment paper and then spread out softened moose tracks icecream on the bottom...then a layer of crushed oreo cookies with the chocolate cream center, then a layer of vanilla. The whole thing went back into the freezer to harden again. Then I whipped up some cream for the frosting and covered the whole thing, transferring it to a plate after taking it out of the spring form. Much to my dismay, the darn thing didn't fit in the freezer! Its outside in the snow right now...I do hope it hardens up a bit out there.
I'll add decorative icing and thats about it...easy as that. I was going to do a caramel layer in the middle, but I didn't have any corn syrup handy.
For the rest of the meal we are having grilled chicken breasts with bar-b-que sauce and melted American cheese, French Fries and peas.......thats what you get when you ask what an 18 year old wants for his birthday dinner!

Monday, November 29, 2004

Today is the first day of my swearing off butter, sugar, and flour....whats a food addicted boy supposed to do????? Greg and I have a deal together. He gives up cigarettes and alcohol and I give up the above mentioned stuff AND go to the gym four times a week for a period of three months. After that, we can extend it or go forward.

Sorry fans...that is if anyone really reads this....Maine Foodie's site might be a bit boring for a while.....who cares about recipes for skinless grilled chicken and peas????



Sunday, November 28, 2004

Pumpkin Cheesecake
A friend asked me to send her my pumpkin cheesecake recipe from Thanksgiving, so I thought I'd just write it down here and take it from there. I combined a traditional pumpkin cheesecake with my tried and true New York Cheesecake recipe, which made for a very light, almost whipped cheesecake.
Here goes:
butter a 9" springform pan and cover the bottom with a mixture of graham cracker crumbs and butter with a good sprinkle of ground ginger. Set in fridge to chill
In a large bowl with a mixer cream:
1 lb each softened cream cheese and ricotta cheese until light and fluffy. Add 1 cup sugar and beat in 5 room temperature eggs, one at a time until completely incorporated. Add 1/3 cup flour, 2 teaspoons cinnamon, 1 teaspoon each of fresh ground nutmeg and ground cloves. 1/4 teaspoon of allspice and a dash of salt. Also add some ginger for a spicier cheesecake.
Fold in one cup of sour cream and then one can of pumpkin puree, making sure the pumpkin is incorporated fully.
Place in a preheated slow oven at 325 degrees for 1.5 hours. (the top will be cracked when done) turn off oven but do not open door and let the cheesecake dry for another 1.5 hours. Best the next day.
Cover completed cheesecake in sugared pecans:
in a medium saucepan combine 2 cups sugar and 1 cup water and cook to 280 degrees on a candy thermometer. Turn off heat and pour in chopped pecans, stirring to coat. Turn out onto greased cookie sheet and let cool. break up with kitchen mallet and sprinkle on cheesecake.
Our 18 year old nephew lives with us now. Never seen the outside of Palm Beach County before, so there are loads of new things for him to experience. I turned him onto Chai last night as an alternative to coffee, which he can't stand but drinks to stay warm up here in the hinterlands.

I've been showing him how to cook a few things. His boss, a chef at a great restaurant near here, *see the review for Atlantica from last summer* has convinced him to apply for a spot at CIA, the Culinary Institute of America. He's all excited about it and really wants to go. Trouble is, its a bit expensive. When the packet arrived from the school, there was a list of creative ways to finance the tuition. Here is the best part of that...and here is where I need your help.

Shane has a chance to win a $4000 scholarship to CIA by submitting the best apple pie recipe from the northeast. He's been practicing, but needs a kick-ass pastry recipe to really stand out.
So, I call on anyone who reads this who might have great-grandmother's ancient recipe for the best apple pie from the old country, or a modified version of the recipe from the back of the Ritz cracker box to give me a shout and use the comment space to tell me about the recipe. PLEASE! I'm serious here.