Broiled Potatoes with Lemon and Halloumi

2 tablespoons (30ml) extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound (450g) Yukon Gold potatoes, sliced 1/8 inch thick
Kosher or sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup (60ml) fresh lemon juice, from about 1 lemon, plus zest of 1 lemon
8 ounces (225g) halloumi cheese, thinly sliced
2 teaspoons dried oregano

Preheat broiler and set top oven rack about 6 inches from broiler element. Add olive oil to a 12-inch cast iron skillet and spread evenly all over.

Add potatoes, shingling the slices around the pan in a single circular layer. Season with salt and pepper.

Broil until the potatoes have puffed up slightly, mostly cooked through, and browned on top, about 7 minutes.

Pour lemon juice all over potatoes and sprinkle zest on top. Add halloumi cheese in an even layer on top and broil until cheese is golden brown all over and potatoes are fully cooked through, about 4 minutes.

Sprinkle oregano on top and serve.

Flatbread with Apple, Cheddar, and Arugula

Flatbread Dough: (makes four 5×14-inch flatbreads)
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. salt
1 cup lukewarm water
1 Tbsp. dry active or instant yeast
1 Tbsp. honey
1/4 cup olive oil

Toppings: (for one 5×14-inch flatbread – increase as necessary)
1 cup grated or crumbled aged white cheddar
1/4 cup cooked diced pancetta or bacon
1/4 – 1/3 of a large apple cored and very thinly sliced (no need to peel) or pear
Handful of fresh baby arugula

In a large bowl or the bowl of your stand mixer, combine the flour and salt.

In a two-cup glass measure, combine warm water, yeast and honey. Let stand 5-10 minutes.

Add proofed yeast mixture and olive oil to bowl with flour and salt. Stir into a smooth dough, adding a few more tablespoons of flour, if necessary to make a smooth, moist (but not sticky) dough.

Place into a greased bowl and cover with greased plastic wrap. Let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.

Pre-heat oven to 400° F. with racks in upper third and lower third of oven. Prepare two baking sheets with parchment paper.

Remove risen dough to a well-floured surface. Cut dough into 4 equal portions. Roll each portion on a floured surface to 1/4-inch thickness. Your flatbread can be any size or shape. If making oblong ones, just be sure they aren’t longer than the length of your baking sheet, so it doesn’t hang over the edge. Somewhere around 5-inches wide to 14-inches long works well.

Place two flatbreads side-by-side onto each baking sheet. Let stand at room temperature for 10 – 15 minutes to rest.

Bake in pre-heated oven for 5 minutes, then switch baking sheets top to bottom and front to back.

*If you have some large bubbles, poke them several times with the point of a sharp knife. Bake another 5-7 minutes, until firm and starting to turn golden in spots.

*Don’t over-brown if you intend to re-bake flatbreads with toppings later on, to avoid over-browning when you bake the second time with toppings.

Remove flatbreads to a cooling rack to cool. (If making cheddar-apple flatbreads immediately, leave oven on and set to 400° and keep baking sheets with parchment handy to re-use)

Once flatbread have cooled a bit, top with cheddar and cooked pancetta/bacon. A little freshly ground black pepper, is nice here.

Arrange thinly sliced apples overtop.

Return to parchment-lined baking sheet and pop back in to the oven for 7-10 minutes, or until cheese is melted and golden and apples have softened. Allow to cool slightly, then top with fresh arugula. Cut into triangles for serving.

Apple Cheddar Drop Biscuits

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
4 tsp baking powder
1 Tbsp granulated sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup cold butter, cubed
1 cup shredded extra-old Cheddar cheese
1 cup grated cored peeled apple
2 Tbsp chopped fresh green onion or parsley (optional)
3/4 cup milk

Preheat oven to 425° F.

In large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, sugar and salt. Using pastry blender or 2 knives, cut in butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs with a few larger pieces. Stir in Cheddar, apple and green onions. Using a fork, stir in milk to form a ragged dough.

Drop by 1/4 cup mounds, 1 1/2 inches apart, onto parchment paper–lined rimless baking sheet. Bake in 425° oven until lightly browned, 13 to 15 minutes.

Caramel Apple Pudding Cake

1 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup brown sugar packed
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/2 cup milk
2 Tbsp butter melted
1/2 tsp vanilla
3/4 cup thinly sliced apples

Sauce:
1 cup brown sugar packed
1 Tbsp all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups boiling waterh
1 Tbsp butter softened
2 tsp vanilla
Generous pinch of salt

Preheat oven to 350° F.

Make the pudding batter: In a medium bowl, mix together the the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and cinnamon.

In a small bowl, mix together the milk, melted butter and vanilla.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients. Stir to combine well.

Spread batter in to the bottom of an 8-cup baking dish or divide between 4-6 individual baking dishes. (*If using individual dishes, you may want to place dishes on a baking sheet, for easy transport to the oven, and to catch any splatters.)

Arrange a layer of apple slices on top of batter.

Prepare the sauce: In a medium bowl or a 4 cup measuring cup, mix together the brown sugar and flour. Add the boiling water, the butter,vanilla and salt. Stir to combine and until butter melts. Gently pour over batter, being sure to leave 3/4-1 inch of room at the top of the baking dish.

Bake in pre-heated 350° oven for 35-40 minutes or until toothpick in centre comes out clean when inserted in the top cake part. Pudding will have formed a cake-like top with lots of sauce underneath. Allow to cool for 5 minutes, then enjoy warm. Lovely as is, or top with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Apple Crumble Cake

For the cake:
1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour (200g)
3/4 cup white sugar (150g)
1 tsp baking powder
7 Tbsp unsalted butter, cold and cut into 6-8 pieces (100g)
3 medium apples peeled, cored and cut into thin slices
2 large eggs
1 cup heavy cream, table cream (18%) or half and half cream (10%), 35% (200g)
1/2 cup sour cream or plain yogurt (120g)
1/2 cup brown sugar (100g)
1 tsp vanilla
Pinch salt

For the crumble topping:
1 cup all-purpose flour (120g)
2/3 cup white sugar (140g)
1/4 tsp cinnamon
Pinch salt
5 1/2 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted (80g)

Preheat oven to 355° F. / 180° C. and grease an 8-inch /2 0 cm springform pan. Set on a baking sheet and set aside. *Note: if you are using a dark springform pan, reduce temperature to 340F / 170C.

Make the cake: In a food processor, add the flour, sugar and baking powder. Pulse a couple of times to combine. Add the cold butter and pulse until the butter is combined with the flour. You’ll end up with a very dry mixture, like sand almost.
Sprinkle about 3/4 of this mixture over the bottom of the prepared springform pan. Don’t press it down at all, but move it around a bit so it goes up the sides just a bit. Scatter the prepared apple slices over the crumbs (avoiding the sides), then sprinkle the remaining crumb mixture evenly over the top. Again, do not press down. Leave it as is. Bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, cream, sour cream, brown sugar, vanilla and a pinch of salt. Set aside.

When cake base has baked 20 minutes, remove from oven and carefully pour the egg mixture over the top. Return cake to oven and cook for a further 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare the crumble topping. In a small bowl, combine the flour, sugar, cinnamon and a pinch of salt. Add melted butter to the mixture, just until the dry ingredients are moistened and the mixture comes together in large clumps. Place the bowl into the freezer until needed.

When the cake has baked for 20 minutes, remove from oven. (The egg mixture should have set somewhat so that the crumbs won’t sink into the cake. If it is too liquidy still, return to the oven for a few more minutes.) Evenly sprinkle the crumb mixture over the top. Return to the oven and bake a further 20 – 25 minutes or until the edges are starting to become golden and pull away from the edge and the center is set. As long as it’s not too jiggly and a tester inserted in the centre comes out with just crumbs (not liquid), it’s ready to take out of the oven. It should have bake about 60-65 total, including all 3 steps.

Allow to cool in the pan, on a cooling rack, for 10-15 minutes. Run a knife around the outside and carefully remove the outer ring of the springform pan. Allow to cool more before removing from the base.

Dust with powdered/icing sugar, if desired.

Apple Almond Cake

Dough:
2/3 cup butter
3/4 cup white sugar
1 tsp vanilla
Pinch salt
1 tsp rum optional
3 large eggs
1 tsp baking powder
1 cup ground almonds or almond flour
1 cup + 6 Tbsp all purpose flour

For the topping:
3 medium apples
1/3 cup sliced almonds

For garnish:
Icing/confectioners’ sugar

Grease a 10-inch springform pan and set aside.

Preheat oven to 350F.

Beat the butter until light and fluffy. Gradually add the sugar, vanilla, a pinch of salt and a few drops of rum, if using. Add the eggs one by one, beating well after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary. Add the baking powder, ground almonds and flour and mix until well combined.

Spoon batter into the prepared springform pan and spread level.
Peel apples and cut into quarters. Cut out the core from each quarter and discard. Delete the core. Using a sharp knife, cut 4 deep slices into each quarter, cutting almost, but not all the way through. Press sliced apple quarters into the top of the batter, placing about 8 around the outside and 3 in the middle. Sprinkle sliced almonds evenly over the top.
Bake for about 60 – 70 minutes, or until the center cake tests clean with a cake tester min.

Cool the cake, the sprinkle with icing sugar to serve.

French Pear Cake with Creme Fraiche

For cake batter:
1/2 cup unsalted butter at room temperature
1 cup white granulated sugar
2 large eggs at room temperature
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp fine salt
1/2 cup sour cream

For filling:
3 pears ripe but still firm, peeled or unpeeled, halved and cored

For topping:
1/4 cup white granulated sugar
1/3 cup flaked almonds optional

For serving:
Crème Fraîche, whipped cream, or ice cream

Preheat oven to 350 F. with rack in centre of oven. Prepare a 10-inch springform pan by spraying with baking spray and lining the bottom ring with parchment paper. Place on a baking sheet and set aside.

Prepare the pears: You can peel the pears if you like, or simply leave the peel on. Cut in half down from the stem end to the bottom. Scoop out the core with a spoon and remove the stem spine and bottom blossom end. Place cut side down on a cutting board and cut each half in to 1/4-inch-ish slices. Transfer the sliced halves to the prepared baking pan, cut side down, fanning out the slices slightly. Arrange the sliced halves in a ring around the outside of the pan. The sliced halves should just touch each other in the centre and fan out slightly towards the outside edges. The centre couple of inches should be empty. You may or may not need all your pears. Simply fill until it’s filled around. Set aside.

In a large bowl with an electric beater or in the bowl of a stand mixer, beat together the butter and the 1 cup of sugar until pale and fluffy, about 5 minutes.

Add the eggs, one at a time and beat well after each addition, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Beat in the vanilla.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. Gradually add the flour mixture to the butter mixture alternately with the sour cream, beginning and ending with flour mixture, beating just until combined after each addition.
Spoon the batter in to the centre of the prepared pan. Using a knife, gently spread the batter in to a thin layer out to the outside edges of the pan. It will seem very thin and barely cover the pears. Scatter the flaked almonds over the centre area of the batter. Sprinkle top of batter evenly with the 1/4 cup white sugar.

Bake in preheated oven until a tester inserted in the centre comes out clean, about 35-40 minutes.

Let the cake cool 5-10 minutes in the pan, then run a knife around the outside and remove the outer ring. Allow to cool a bit more, then slice and enjoy warm with a dollop of Crème Fraîche.

Avgolemono (Chicken Soup with Rice)

4 cups homemade chicken stock or low-sodium broth
Salt and freshly ground pepper
2 cups cooked white rice, warmed
2 large egg yolks
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 rotisserie chicken, meat pulled from the bones and coarsely shredded (1 pound)
1/4 cup chopped fresh dill

In a large saucepan, season the stock with salt and pepper and bring to a simmer.

Transfer 1 cup of the hot stock to a blender.

Add 1/2 cup of the rice, the egg yolks and the lemon juice and puree until smooth.

Stir the puree into the simmering stock along with the chicken and the remaining 1 1/2 cups of rice and simmer until thickened slightly, 10 minutes.
Stir in the dill and serve.

Napa Cabbage with Hot Bacon Dressing

1 Napa cabbage, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced (you’ll need 6 to 8 cups)
8 thick slices bacon, cut into 1/ 4-inch lardons
1 tablespoon flour
2 tablespoons red wine or cider vinegar
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons water
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 egg, lightly beaten

Place the cabbage in a large mixing bowl.

Add the bacon to a medium sauté pan and set over medium heat. Render the bacon fat and brown the bacon, adjusting the heat as needed. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon to a plate lined with paper towel, then pour off all but 2 tablespoons bacon fat (approximate, don’t measure) from the pan.

Set the pan over medium low heat. Add the flour and stir until smooth. Cook for 1 minute.

Stir in the vinegar and water and bring to a boil. Season with the salt.

Gradually – and slowly! – whisk this mixture into the egg. Sprinkle the bacon on the cabbage, then pour 3/4 of the dressing over the cabbage and toss to mix.

Add more dressing as desired. Serve with grilled pork chops, roasted potatoes and beer.

Basic Crepes

2 large eggs
1 1/4 cups whole milk (10 fluid ounces; 280ml)
1 cup flour (5 ounces; 140g)
1 tablespoon melted unsalted butter or vegetable oil (1/2 ounce; 15ml), plus more for cooking
Pinch kosher salt
1 tablespoon (8g) sugar, if making sweet crepes
1 tablespoon minced fresh herbs, such as parsley, tarragon, chervil, or chives (optional; for savory crepes)

For the Batter: Combine eggs, milk, flour, melted butter or oil, salt, and sugar (if using) in a blender. Start blender on low speed and increase to high. Blend until smooth, about 10 seconds. Add herbs (if using) and pulse to combine. (Alternatively, you can combine the ingredients in a mixing bowl and whisk vigorously until smooth.)

To Cook: Heat a 10-inch nonstick or well-seasoned cast iron or carbon steel skillet over medium heat for 2 minutes. Lightly grease with oil or butter, using a paper towel to wipe out the excess.

Hold the pan’s handle in one hand and pour in 3 to 4 tablespoons (45 to 60ml) batter, swirling and tilting pan immediately to spread batter in a thin, even layer over bottom of pan.

Let cook until top looks dry, about 20 seconds. Using a thin metal or nylon spatula, lift one edge of crepe. Grab that edge with the fingers of both hands and flip crepe. Cook on second side for 10 seconds, then transfer to a plate. Repeat with remaining batter. Fill crepes as desired (such as with butter, sugar, and lemon juice; with butter and jam; with ham, cheese, and eggs; or with spinach and feta) and serve. Crepes can also be made ahead and stored, unfilled and wrapped in plastic, in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat in a nonstick pan to serve.

Roasted Acorn Squash with Brown Butter, Hazelnuts, and Rosemary

1/4 cup [30 g] roughly chopped hazelnuts
4 Tbsp [55 g] unsalted butter
1 acorn squash, halved and seeded
1/4 cup [60 ml] water
1 Tbsp dark brown sugar
Kosher salt
1 tsp chopped fresh rosemary leaves
1/2 cup [120 ml] Vegetable Stock (page 222)
1/2 tsp fresh lemon juice
Freshly ground black pepper

In a small, dry frying pan over medium heat, toast the hazelnuts until fragrant, about 3 minutes. Set aside and let cool.

Preheat the oven to 425°F [220°C].

In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt and cook the butter, skimming the solids from the surface until the butter is clear. Turn the heat to low, and cook until the butter develops a nutty aroma and turns from yellow to a deep brown. Remove from the heat and let cool. (Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks.)

Put the squash halves in a large roasting pan, cut-side down. Add the water to the pan, cover with aluminum foil, and roast for 25 minutes. Remove the foil, and continue roasting until the squash is lightly browned, about 10 minutes longer. Cut the squash halves into bite-size pieces and transfer to a serving platter.

In a small sauté pan over medium-high heat, warm the brown butter. Add the toasted hazelnuts and brown sugar and season with salt. Stir in the rosemary and cook until the rosemary becomes fragrant and the sugar has dissolved into the butter, about 3 minutes. Add the stock, a little bit at a time, and continue to cook until you have an emulsified, slightly thickened pan sauce. Remove from the heat and stir in the lemon juice.

Pour the brown butter sauce over the squash and season with pepper. Serve warm.

Roasted Kabocha Squash with Mint-Pomegranate Pesto

1 kabocha or red kuri squash, halved across the equator and seeded
1/4 cup [60 ml] water
2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup [120 ml] Mint-Pomegranate Pesto (see related)
Flaky sea salt

Preheat the oven to 425°F [220°C].

Put the squash halves, cut-side down, in a large roasting pan. Add the water, cover with aluminum foil, and roast until the squash has softened, about 35 minutes. Remove from the oven and transfer the squash to a platter or cutting board to cool. Cut the cooled halves into thirds. (Store in the refrigerator for up to 1 day.)

Heat a large grill pan over high heat.

Drizzle the squash pieces with the olive oil, turning to coat, and season with kosher salt and pepper. Cook the squash pieces until well charred, about 5 minutes. Resist the urge to meddle. The pieces will release easily from the pan once they begin to blacken. Turn the pieces over and cook the other side until charred, 3 to 4 minutes longer.

Transfer to a serving platter, spoon the pesto on top, and season with sea salt. Serve warm.

Sweet Potatoes with Honey, Esplette, and Lime Yogurt

1/2 cup [120 ml] Greek-style yogurt
Juice of 2 limes
3 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
Sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
2 medium to large yams
2 Tbsp honey
1 Tbsp espelette pepper or crushed red pepper flakes
Flaky sea salt
2 green onions (white and green parts), sliced thinly on the bias

Preheat the oven to 425°F [220°C].

In a small bowl, combine the yogurt with the lime juice and 1 Tbsp of the olive oil. Season with sea salt and pepper. Set aside.

Cut the yams lengthwise into eight wedges (about 1 in [2.5 cm] in diameter). In a medium bowl, toss the yams with the honey, 1/2 Tbsp of the espelette pepper, and the remaining olive oil. Season with sea salt and pepper. Marinate for 10 minutes, tossing once or twice to coat.

Transfer the yams to a rimmed baking sheet and roast until they are nicely caramelized around the edges and soft when pierced with a knife at the thickest part, 25 to 35 minutes.

Transfer to a serving platter, drizzle yogurt over all, and garnish with the green onions and remaining espelette pepper. Season with flaky salt. Serve warm

Sheet Pan Pork Chops with Apples and Brussels Sprouts

1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3 tablespoons light brown sugar, divided
2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh rosemary, divided
1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
4 (1-inch-thick) bone-in, center-cut pork chops
3 tablespoons plus 2 tsp. olive oil, divided
3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 Gala apple (8 to 9 oz.), cut into 1/2-inch wedges
1 pound fresh Brussels sprouts, trimmed and cut in half
Vegetable cooking spray

Preheat oven to 425°. Stir together first 5 ingredients, 1 Tbsp. brown sugar, 1 tsp. rosemary, 1/2 tsp. salt, and 1/4 tsp. black pepper in a small bowl. Rub each pork chop with 1/2 tsp. olive oil; rub both sides of each pork chop with brown sugar mixture (about 2 tsp. on each chop).

Whisk together apple cider vinegar and remaining 2 Tbsp. brown sugar, 1 tsp. rosemary, 1/2 tsp. salt, and 1/4 tsp. black pepper in a small bowl; slowly whisk in remaining 3 Tbsp. olive oil until blended. Place apples, Brussels sprouts, and 1/4 cup vinegar mixture in a large bowl, and toss to coat.

Place pork chops in center of a lightly greased (with cooking spray) heavy-duty aluminum foil-lined sheet pan; place apple mixture around pork chops.

Bake at 425° for 12 minutes; turn pork chops over, and bake 10 to 14 minutes more or until a meat thermometer inserted in thickest portion registers 140°. Transfer pork chops to a serving platter, and cover with foil to keep warm. Stir apple mixture in sheet pan, and spread into an even layer.

Increase oven temperature to broil, and broil apple mixture 3 to 4 minutes or until browned and slightly charred. Transfer apple mixture to a medium bowl. Toss together apple mixture and remaining vinegar mixture. Season with kosher salt, and serve with pork chops.

Almond Florentines

8 ounces (2 sticks) unsalted butter
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup honey
1/3 cup heavy cream
4 1/2 cups skinless sliced blanched almonds

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the sugar and honey; stir until dissolved and smooth. Stir in the heavy cream for a few minutes, forming a light caramel. Turn off the heat. Stir in the almonds until they are all well coated.

Use about a third of the mixture to fill the bottoms of the muffin wells, compacting each portion into a disk. Bake (middle rack) for 8 to 9 minutes, until bubbling and just golden brown at the edges.

Let cool in the muffin pan for 7 to 10 minutes, then use a small offset spatula or table knife to release each florentine; some may still be a little flexible. Transfer to a sheet of parchment or wax paper to cool and set completely.

Repeat with the remaining almond mixture. If you are using foil liners, replace with new ones for subsequent batches.

Gingerbread Ornaments

5 cups all-purpose flour (spoon flour into dry-measure cup and level off)
4 teaspoons ground ginger
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
16 tablespoons (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2/3 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
2 large eggs
2/3 cup molasses
2 cookie sheets or jelly roll pans lined with parchment or foil

In a large bowl, combine the flour, spices, salt and baking soda. Stir well to mix.

Place the butter and brown sugar in the bowl of a standing electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and beat on medium speed until well mixed, about 1 minute. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, beating smooth after each addition. Scrape down bowl and beater.

Lower speed and beat in about half the flour mixture. Beat in all the molasses then scrape bowl and beater. Add the remaining flour mixture, about 1 cup at a time, and beat after each addition until it has all been absorbed.

Remove the bowl from the mixer and give the dough a final mixing with a large rubber spatula. Scrape half the dough onto a large piece of plastic wrap and press it to about a 1/2-inch thickness. Wrap the dough securely and repeat with the remaining dough. Chill the dough for at least 2 hours or for up to 3 days.

When you are ready to bake the cookies, set racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees.

Unwrap one of the pieces of dough and cut it in half. Rewrap one of the halves and return it to the refrigerator.

On a floured surface, roll the dough until it is about 1/4-inch thick. Use a floured cookie cutter to cut the cookies. As they are cut, place the cut cookies on the prepared pans with about 1 inch between them on all sides. Repeat with remaining dough. Save, press together, and reroll scraps (they don’t need to be chilled before rerolling).

Bake the cookies until they become dull and dry looking and feel slightly firm when pressed with a fingertip, about 12 to 15 minutes. Be careful not to over-bake the cookies or they will be very dry. Slide papers from pans onto racks to cool.

Store the cooled cookies between sheets of parchment or wax paper in a tin or plastic container with a tight-fitting cover.

Martha Stewart’s Royal Icing
(Source)

1 pound of confectioners’ sugar
2 large egg whites

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the sugar and egg whites.

Mixing on low speed, add up to 1/2 cup water depending on the desired consistency. Mix until icing holds a ribbon-like trail on the surface of the mixture for 5 seconds when you raise the paddle.

Place the icing in different piping bags with a small tip for tracing the contours and a larger one for filling each shape.

Chocolate Pizzelles

3 large eggs
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon espresso powder
3/8 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup Double-Dutch Dark Cocoa or Dutch-process cocoa
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 2/3 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1/2 cup melted butter

Beat together the eggs, sugar, vanilla, espresso powder, and salt till smooth.
Add the cocoa and baking powder, again beating till smooth.

Add the flour, mixing till well combined. Add the melted butter, again mixing till well combined.

Bake pizzelle according to your pizzelle iron instructions. A tablespoon cookie scoop works well for scooping batter onto the iron; a level scoopful of batter is the right size for most standard pizzelle makers.

To make two-tone pizzelle: Prepare plain pizzelle batter, flavoring it with 1/2 teaspoon hazelnut flavor, if desired. Using a teaspoon scoop (which holds 2 level measuring teaspoons), drop a chestnut-sized ball of vanilla batter just below center in the cooking area of the pizzelle iron. Drop a slightly smaller ball of chocolate batter just above the center line, nestling it right next to the vanilla batter. Close the iron, and bake according to the manufacturer’s directions.

Meyer Lemon Pizzelles

Makes 40-50 depending on iron size

1 3/4 cups Granulated Sugar
6 Large Eggs, room temp
2 Sticks of Butter, melted and cooled
3 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
1 teaspoon Pure Orange Extract
Zest of 3 Meyer Lemons
4 teaspoons Baking Powder
4 cups All-Purpose Flour, spooned into measuring cup

Combine the sugar and eggs in the bowl of a stand mixer. Beat on medium speed for 1 to 2 minutes until well incorporated. The eggs must be at least room temperature. Cold eggs will result in an unworkable batter.

Slowly drizzle the melted butter into the mixture, while mixing on medium speed.

Add the extracts then the zest.

On low speed, add the flour 1/2 cup at a time. Alternate between medium and low speed while beating in the flour. (turn it to low while pouring in the flour; medium to incorporate the flour before adding more). The batter should have a satin sheen to it, but should be light and stiff. If your batter is too liquid, add more flour, a tablespoon at a time until the batter is stiff.

Using a tablespoon scoop, place dollops of batter into the iron. Repeat 20-25 more times depending on iron size. The cookies take about 25-30 seconds in the iron. Fresh, hot cookies can be rolled or shaped into cups.

Classic Pizzelles

3 large eggs
3/4 cup sugar
3/8 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 3/4 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 cup (8 tablespoons) melted butter

Beat the eggs, sugar, salt, and vanilla until well combined.

Stir in the flour and baking powder, mixing until smooth.

Add the melted butter, again mixing until smooth; the batter will be thick and soft.

Heat your pizzelle iron. Grease it as directed in the manufacturer’s instructions. As the iron heats, the batter will stiffen.

Cook the pizzelle according to the instructions that came with your iron. In general, they’ll take between 45 seconds and 2 1/2 minutes to brown.

Remove the pizzelle from the iron, and cool on a rack. If desired, use a pair of scissors to trim any ragged edges.

Dust cooled pizzelle with confectioners’ sugar, if desired.

Roasted Beets with Avocado, Citrus, and Hazelnuts

11/2 lb [680 g] red baby beets,
1 to 2 in [2.5 to 5 cm] in diameter
4 Tbsp [60 ml] extra-virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp water
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 Tbsp plus 1 tsp sherry vinegar
1 Tbsp fresh orange juice, plus 2 oranges
2 Tbsp hazelnuts
1 ripe avocado, cut in 1/4-in- [6-mm-] thick slices
Flaky sea salt
Best-quality olive oil for drizzling

Preheat the oven to 400°F [200°C].

In a roasting pan, toss the beets with 2 Tbsp of the extra-virgin olive oil and the water and season with kosher salt and pepper. Roast until the beets look caramelized and feel tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 25 minutes. When cool enough to handle, slip the skins off the beets and cut into quarters.

In a medium bowl, toss the beets with the remaining 2 Tbsp olive oil, the sherry vinegar, and orange juice. Season with kosher salt and pepper and let stand until the beets have absorbed the flavors of the dressing, about 30 minutes.

In a small, dry frying pan over medium heat, toast the hazelnuts until fragrant, 3 to 5 minutes. Lay out on a work surface and let cool. With the bottom of a heavy pan, crush the nuts.

Section one of the oranges by cutting off both ends. Set it on one end, and use a paring knife to cut away the peel and pith in strips, starting at the top and following the curves to the bottom. Then, holding the orange in one hand, carefully insert the blade of the knife between the flesh and the membrane to cut out the sections without any membrane attached. The sections should come out easily. Repeat with the remaining orange, and set aside.

Arrange the beets on a serving platter with the avocado slices, and sprinkle them with sea salt and pepper. Distribute the orange sections throughout the salad and sprinkle with the crushed toasted hazelnuts. Finish with a drizzle of best-quality olive oil. Serve immediately