Peanut Butter Pie

For the Crust:
12 double graham crackers (the kind that measure about 5 x 2 1/2-inches)
6 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
pinch of salt

For the Filling:
1 3/4 cups heavy cream, divided
1 cup natural peanut butter
3/4 (6 ounces) cup cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup plus 2 Tablespoons sweetened condensed milk


Crust the graham crackers in a food processor, in a plastic back with a rolling pin or with your hands in a bowl. Make sure they are very well crumbled with no large chunks remaining. Add the melted butter and stir thoroughly, making sure all of the crumbs receive some butter love. Pour the graham cracker and butter mixture into a 9-inch tart shell with a removable bottom. Press the mixture along the sides of the tart pan and along the bottom until evenly coated. Carefully place the tart pan in the freezer while you prepare the filling.

To make the filling combine the peanut butter, softened cream cheese and sweetened condensed milk in the bowl of an electric mixer fit with a paddle attachment. You can also use the food processor if you?d like.

Blend the three ingredients until thoroughly incorporated, but don?t over blend or some liquids will separate.

In a separate bowl, whip 3/4 cup of heavy cream to soft peaks. Add the whipped cream to the peanut butter mixture and fold together until well incorporated.

Remove the tart pan from the freezer and spoon in the peanut butter filling. Spread evenly.

Whip up the remaining cup of heavy cream to stiff peaks and add to the top of the peanut butter filling. Refrigerate for at least two hours, or overnight. Top with salted mixed nuts and serve in giant slices.

makes one 9-inch round tart

Ginataang Mais-Sweet Rice and Corn Pudding with Coconut Milk

13.5 oz. can coconut milk
5 cups water
3/4 cup sweet rice (you may substitute sushi rice or short-grain rice)
3/4 cup sugar
a pinch of salt
1/2 cup shredded coconut (optional)
1 tablespoon salted butter (optional)
1 teaspoon vanilla (optional)
4 to 5 ears fresh corn, shucked and scraped to collect the corn milk


Boil the coconut milk, water, sweet rice, sugar, salt, and shredded coconut (if using) over medium-low heat. Stir occasionally. When rice is fully cooked and every grain is plump and sticky (the mixture will resemble runny rice pudding), add the butter, vanilla, and shucked fresh corn. Continue to cook, still stirring occasionally, until everything has thickened nicely. Take off heat and let cool. It will continue to thicken slightly as it cools.

Serve warm or cold.

Blackberries with Sweet Cream

1 pint Heavy Whipping Cream
3/4 cup Sugar, Divided
10 whole Egg Yolks 2 teaspoons Good Vanilla Extract (or Vanilla Beans)
Fresh Berries


Combine cream with half the sugar in a medium saucepan. Bring to a strong simmer, but don?t boil.

Whisk egg yolks in a bowl with the other half of the sugar. Add vanilla extract. (If using vanilla bean instead, scrape caviar into cream/sugar mixture.)

After whisking on medium for a minute, begin slowly pouring in the hot cream; I use a metal measuring cup to scoop out small portions at a time.

After all cream is added, turn off mixer. Pour mixture into the top of a double boiler (or a glass bowl fitted over a saucepan). Cook in the double boiler over medium heat. Stir gently but constantly as the egg/cream mixture slowly thickens.

Watch the mixture: if it starts to really thicken up, remove it immediately from the heat. You want this to be more of a thick, pourable cream than a thick, heavy pudding texture. As soon as you remove the pan from the heat, set the bottom of it in a bowl of ice to stop the cooking process (but be careful not to let ice or water drip over the edge of the pan.) Stir to cool. If you need to use the cream right away, keep it in the ice bath and stir to cool.

Ideally, you?ll transfer the cream to a container and refrigerate it for several hours.

Serve over fresh berries.

Raspberry Cream Icebox Pie

25 whole Oreo Chocolate Sandwich Cookies
4 Tablespoons Butter, Melted
1 cup (generous) Raspberries
3 Tablespoons Sugar
2 containers (6 Ounce Each) Raspberry Yogurt
1 package (3.4 Ounce) Instant Vanilla Pudding Mix
1 cup Heavy Whipping Cream
Extra Raspberries For Garnish


To make the crust, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Crust cookies in a food processor (or smash in a Ziploc bag with a rolling pin). Stir in melted butter until all combined. Pour into a regular pie pan and press crumbs all over the pan and up the sides. Bake for 3 to 4 minutes?just long enough for it to set. Cool crust completely.

Place raspberries on a plate or in an empty pan. Smash them with a fork, then sprinkle on 3 tablespoons of sugar. Stir together and allow to sit for 15 minutes.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine raspberry yogurt with the instant vanilla pudding mix (just the powder itself.) Beat on low until combined, about 1 minute. Pour in heavy cream and whip on low for 30 seconds. Stop the mixer and scrape down the bowl with a rubber spatula. Turn mixer on medium-high speed and beat for two minutes, or until mixture is thick.

Turn off mixer, then fold in raspberries until just combined. Pour into cooled pie pan and spread evenly. Freeze for two hours, or until very firm. Cut into slices and top each slice with cookie crumbs, dollops of whipped cream, and extra raspberries. Keep in freezer, allowing time to thaw before serving.

Raspberry Crisp

2-? cups Raspberries
1 Tablespoon (Heaping) Corn Starch
1/2 cup Sugar
1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
1 cup All-purpose Flour
1/4 cups Sugar
1/4 cups Brown Sugar
1/3 cups Oats
1/4 cups Pecans, Chopped
Dash Of Salt
3/4 sticks butter in small pieces
whipped cream or ice cream, for serving


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a medium bowl, combine (rinsed) raspberries, corn starch, 2/3 cups sugar, and vanilla. Stir and set aside.

In a separate bowl (or food processor) combine flour, 1/4 cup sugar, brown sugar, oats, pecans, dash of salt, and butter pieces. Cut together with a pastry cutter (or pulse in food processor) until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.

Add berry mixture to a small baking dish or pie pan. Sprinkle topping mixture all over the top. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until topping is golden brown.

Allow to sit for ten minutes before serving. Scoop out with a spoon and top with sweetened whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

Chickpea Stew with Chorizo and Peppadews

3 links chorizo, removed from casing
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large red onion, minced
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
1 tablespoon hot paprika
4 cups cooked chickpeas
2 quarts chicken stock
2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
1 quart peppadews with their juice, sliced
salt and pepper to taste
parmesan cheese or feta for serving


Break up chorizo in stock pot. Add olive oil and heat until fat from chorizo and olive oil are hot. Add onion and garlic and heat until chorizo is cooked through and onion is translucent.

Add paprika and stir until onions mixture is colored red. Add chickpeas, stock, and vinegar, and bring to a boil.

Reduce heat to low. Add peppadews and their juice. Add salt and pepper and adjust seasonings to taste. Simmer for a few minutes, then let stand for 20 minutes to let flavors meld.

Rewarm or serve closer to room temperature with parmasan cheese of feta.

Raspberry Gratin

1 pint (2 cups) fresh raspberries (or your choice of berry)
1 pint (2 cups) sour cream (or cr?me fraiche)
1 cup dark brown sugar


Preheat broiler. Gently fold raspberries and sour cream together in a shallow 1-quart dish. Press the brown sugar through a sieve or mesh colander so that it sprinkles evenly over the dish. Run the dish under the broiler until the sugar just starts to caramelize. Eat at once.

Author’s note: There are a lot of ways you can play around with this ? flavoring the sour cream with lemon, vanilla, cinnamon or almond; using a mix of berries, etc. ? but it is flawless the way it is. Want to fancy it up for fancy people? Make it in individual ramekins or tiny gratin dishes.

Sweet Corn Pancakes

2 tablespoons butter, plus additional for brushing pan
3/4 cup kernels cut from one large ear sweet fresh corn
1/8 teaspoon salt plus additional for seasoning corn
1 large egg
1 1/4 cups buttermilk
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon sugar
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup cornmeal, any kind
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda


Melt butter in a large cast iron skillet or griddle pan over medium heat. Add corn and saute for 4 to 5 minutes, until it begins to brown ever-so-slightly. Sprinkle with salt and set aside to cool. Wipe out skillet.

Lightly beat egg in the bottom of a large bowl, then whisk in buttermilk, corn, vanilla and sugar. In a smaller bowl, whisk flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda and 1/8 teaspoon salt. Stir dry ingredients into wet, mixing until just combined but still lumpy in appearance.

Reheat your skillet or saute pan to medium. Brush the pan with butter and ladle 1/4 cup batter at a time, 2 inches apart. When the pancakes have bubbles on top and are slightly dry around the edges, flip them over and cook them until golden brown underneath. If they seem to be cooking too quickly (dark on the outside, raw centers) turn your heat down to low for the next batch and inch it up as needed. Repeat with remaining batter, and serve immediately with a pat of salted butter and a healthy dose of maple syrup.

Parmesan Potato Cake

2 pounds peeled potatoes, boiled (or left over mashed potatoes)
1/3 cup milk
1/3 cup butter
salt and pepper to taste
pinch of nutmeg
3 eggs plus one egg yolk
14 ounces sliced mozzarella de buffala
6 ounces shredded parmesan
3 ounces (6 slices) prosciutto
3 ounces mortadella or salami
butter for pan
buttered bread crumbs


Mash potatoes with milk, butter, salt, pepper, nutmeg, and eggs.

Butter an 8 inch springform pan. Layer in buttered breadcrumbs.

Add a layer of about 1/2 the potatoes. Layer in mozzerella and meat. Add another layer of potatoes.

Bake at 400 for 30 minutes. Let stand for 10 minutes before turning and releasing from pan.

Frogmore Stew

2 tablespoons crab boil seasoning per gallon water (or more to taste)
several lemons, halved (optional)
redskin potatoes (depending on size, 3 or more per person)
spicy smoked sausage, cut into 1-inch slices (1/4 pound per person)
fresh corn, broken into halves or thirds (1 1/2 ears per person)
shrimp (1/2 pound per person)
butter, melted
cocktail sauce
sour cream
ketchup


Fill a large steamer pot halfway with water. Add crab-boil seasoning (or more to taste). Several halved lemons may be added as well.

When the seasoned water comes to a boil, add redskin potatoes and boil for 20 minutes; then add one-inch slices of spicy smoked sausage and boil for 5-10 minutes. Add the corn) and boil another 5 minutes. (Begin timing immediately. Do not wait for it to boil again). Then add the shrimp. Cook for 3 minutes, drain, and pile on a table.

Serve with lots of paper towels and icy beverages, plus melted butter for the corn, cocktail sauce for the shrimp, and sour cream or ketchup for the potatoes.

Grilled Corn with Aleppo Pepper Aioli

1 gallon water
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup salt
6 ears shucked corn
1 large egg yolk
1 teaspoon white wine vinegar
1 teaspoon Aleppo pepper flakes
1 minced garlic clove
1 teaspoon minced shallot
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon honey
6 tablespoons crumbled Cotija or feta cheese


Light a grill. In a large saucepan, bring 1 gallon water to a boil with 1/4 cup sugar and 1/4 cup salt. Add 6 ears shucked corn; blanch for 1 minute. Drain the corn.

In a small bowl, whisk 1 large egg yolk with 1 teaspoon white wine vinegar, 1 teaspoon Aleppo pepper flakes, 1 minced garlic clove and 1 teaspoon minced shallot. Gradually whisk in cup vegetable oil until thick. Whisk in 1 teaspoon honey and season with salt.
Grill the corn over high heat, turning a few times, until nicely charred all over, about 5 minutes. Transfer the corn to a platter and spread it with the aioli. Sprinkle with 6 tablespoons crumbled Cotija or feta cheese and serve hot.

Eastern Carolina Barbecue Sauce

1 cup reserved roasting juices (from Carolina Pulled Pork)
1 cup white wine vinegar
1 cup cider vinegar
1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
1 tablespoon sweet smoked paprika


In a medium bowl, combine roasting juices with white wine vinegar and cider vinegar. Add dark brown sugar and sweet smoked paprika, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Season with salt, pepper and hot sauce and serve.
Variations

South Carolina Sauce: Make the Eastern Carolina Sauce. Stir in 1 cup yellow mustard. Simmer over moderate heat for 30 minutes, until thickened slightly. Season with salt and pepper.

Western Carolina Sauce: Make the Eastern Carolina Sauce. Stir in 1 cup ketchup. Simmer over moderate heat for 30 minutes, until thickened. Season with salt and pepper.

Carolina Pulled Pork

1 cup Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons kosher salt
2 tablespoons freshly ground pepper
1 tablespoon sweet paprika
1 tablespoon onion powder
One 12- to 14-pound bone-in pork shoulder, with skin
About 50 hardwood charcoal briquettes
8 cups small hardwood smoking chips, soaked in water for 30 minutes and drained
Eastern Carolina Sauce for serving


Preheat the oven to 275. In a medium bowl, whisk the mustard with the brown sugar, salt, pepper, paprika and onion powder.

Set the pork shoulder, fat side up, in doubled 14-by-18-inch disposable aluminum roasting pans. Brush the pork with the mustard mixture. Roast, uncovered, for 12 hours, until the meat is very tender and is pulling away from the shoulder bone.

Tilt the pan and pour the roasting juices into a medium bowl; you should have about 1 1/4 cups. Refrigerate the juices for 30 minutes. Skim off the fat before using.

Meanwhile, light 10 of the charcoal briquettes. When the coals are hot, cover them with the remaining 40 briquettes. When all the coals are hot, arrange 6 cups of the soaked wood chips around the coals. Set the roasting pan on the grill grate over the coals and wood chips. Cover the grill, partially open the air vents and smoke the pork shoulder for 30 minutes.

Carefully remove the pork and the grill grate and stir the coals a few times. Scatter the remaining 2 cups of soaked wood chips over the coals. Replace the grill grate and return the pork to the grill. Cover and smoke for 30 minutes longer.

Transfer the pork to a work surface and let rest for 30 minutes. Pull the meat off of the bones; discard the bones, gristle, skin and fat. Using tongs and a fork, or your fingers, finely shred the meat and transfer it to a large bowl. Toss the shredded meat with 1/4 cup of the reserved roasting juices and serve with Eastern Carolina barbecue sauce.

Spicy Caramel Popcorn

20 cups freshly popped corn (from 3/4 cup popping corn)
4 cups sweetened puffed-corn cereal, such as Corn Pops
1 1/2 cups salted roasted peanuts
3 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups light corn syrup
1 stick unsalted butter
1/2 cup water
1 vanilla bean, split and seeds scraped
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon chipotle chile powder


In a very large, lightly oiled bowl, toss the popped corn with the corn cereal and peanuts.

In a large saucepan, combine the sugar with the corn syrup, butter, water, vanilla bean and seeds. Cook over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until the syrup registers 295? (hard-crack stage) on a candy thermometer, about 18 minutes. Stir in the salt and chipotle powder.

Immediately pour the hot syrup over the popcorn mix. Using a lightly oiled wooden spoon, stir to coat. Working quickly, scrape the popcorn onto a large sheet of lightly oiled parchment paper. Discard the vanilla bean. Wearing lightly oiled sturdy rubber gloves and using a very large, lightly oiled ice cream scoop (1/4 cup), form thirty-six 2-inch-wide balls, pressing lightly without compacting. Transfer the balls to a lightly oiled baking sheet. Let cool completely before serving.

Squash Blossoms with Pimento Ricotta

15 ounces fresh ricotta (1 1/2 cups)
3 ounces cream cheese
2/3 cup well-chopped drained pimentos (from one 8-ounce jar)
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
Kosher salt
24 squash blossoms


In a food processor, puree the ricotta and cream cheese. Add the pimentos and crushed red pepper and pulse until the pimentos are minced. Season with salt.

Remove the pistils from the squash blossoms. Spoon the pimento ricotta into a sturdy resealable plastic bag and snip the corner.

Pipe about 1 tablespoon of the ricotta into each blossom and transfer to a platter. Serve with toasted baguette slices.