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Archive for the ‘Tidbits’ Category

postheadericon Battered French Toast

My family was never fond of French toast. We liked the flavor, but took issue with the mushy interior. One evening many moons ago at my Girl Scout meeting working on a cooking badge, the recipe used to teach us basics in the kitchen was for French toast — but this French toast was dipped in a flour based batter, not just eggs and milk.  We cut each piece of bread in half to make a triangle, dipped the slices in the batter, and fried them in a mix of butter and a little oil until browned and crispy on the edges. OMG, I was in love. The next day, I was anxious to share my new found love affair with this version of French toast with Mom and Dad and it was an immediate hit. I could not fry pieces quickly enough to keep up with the demand. To this day, THIS is the only French toast I will eat. Serving options are endless and your choice. My Dad was particularly fond of a good quality grape jam smeared on top. They are great with maple syrup, fruit syrup, caramel or chocolate syrup, fresh fruit, or any flavor jam or jelly. Use your imagination when it comes to bread choices, the only requirement is to use a bread that will stand up to dipping in the batter. Try raisin bread, brioche, panettone, French bread, Italian bread, even Texas toast. If you slice your own bread, make sure to slice to about 3/4 inch thickness.

Battered French Toast

Battered French Toast

Battered French Toast

Ingredients

  • Ingredients
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp white sugar or brown sugar
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon butter, melted plus additional solid butter for pan frying
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 10 to 12 slices of thick sliced hearty bread (about 3/4 inch thick)
  • Vegetable shortening or vegetable oil for frying

Instructions

  1. In a mixing bowl place the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and sugar together and mix well.
  2. In a square baking dish or wide bowl, whisk together the milk, eggs, butter and vanilla extract.
  3. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and whisk well. .Batter will have some lumps.
  4. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high. Add 1 T butter and 1 T oil (or use all vegetable shortening) to pan and allow to heat through.
  5. Dip one side of a bread slice in batter, flip it over and dip the other. Allow excess batter to drip off.
  6. Place in heated pan. Repeat with enough slices to fill pan.
  7. Brown one side, flip, brown the other, adjusting heat to prevent burning.
  8. Repeat with remaining batter/bread. Add butter/oil/shortening as needed to fry.
  9. Serve immediately or hold in warm oven for serving.
  10. Sprinkle with powdered sugar if desired, serve with toppings of your choice.
http://www.acoalcrackerinthekitchen.com/2019/01/17/battered-french-toast/

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postheadericon Crab Spread Appetizer

When it comes to “quick and easy”, I am all for it! This appetizer is a family and crowd pleaser, simple to put together, and great to use as a last minute snack or to take to a pot-luck. For decades, during the hectic holiday season, I always kept the ingredients for this luscious spread in my fridge and pantry.  More than once it as been a sanity saver when unexpected visitors arrive. The original recipe in my files calls for using some commercially prepared chili sauce, but I much prefer using my own made cocktail sauce or a good quality commercially prepared cocktail sauce of your choice. I have also used commercially prepared chili sauce and added a dab of grated horseradish to it before spreading.  I just happen to like the added kick of horseradish in this spread. The choice is yours! I serve this with a buttery cracker like Keebler Club crackers or Ritz.

Layered Crab Spread

Layered Crab Spread

Layered Crab Spread

Ingredients

  • 12 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 Tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1 small onion, grated
  • dash of garlic salt
  • 1- 12 ounce bottle commercially prepared Cocktail or Chili sauce
  • 6 ounce can crab meat
  • parsley

Instructions

  1. In a medium bowl, blend by hand softened cream cheese, Worcestershire sauce, mayonnaise, lemon juice, grated onion, and garlic salt until well mixed and smooth.
  2. Spread this mixture on a shallow decorative/serving plate (about 9 or 10 inches in diameter).
  3. Pour the bottle of cocktail or chili sauce evenly over the top of the cream cheese mixture.
  4. Drain the crab meat, then sprinkle it evenly over the top of the cocktail/chili sauce layer.
  5. Sprinkle the crab layer lightly with dried or chopped fresh parsley.
  6. Chill well before serving.
  7. Serve with crackers.
http://www.acoalcrackerinthekitchen.com/2018/12/19/crab-spread-appetizer/

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postheadericon Polish Crepes (Nalesniki)

Eastern European and European roots run deep in the Anthracite region and these treats found their way into many Coal Region kitchens.  Polish naleśniki are crepe-like pancakes. Many know these as blintzes and eat them filled with jam, fruit, cheese or savory fillings. But no matter what you know them as, in Polish they are Nalesniki  (in Hungarian palacsinta, Lithuanians call them naliesnikai, Ukrainians call them nalysnyky, and Romanians, clatita).  They can be made “thick” or “thin”. I have chosen the thick recipe for this post in order for them to be more beginner friendly to those unfamiliar, or inexperienced, with making and cooking traditional thin crepes. This thicker version of Nalesniki is hearty and you can use them as a main dish if desired. Filled nalesniki are often pan fried in butter or baked in a buttered casserole dish until the filling is set. Another option is to dip the rolled nalesniki in beaten egg and then fine, dry bread crumbs, and then fry in butter or a small amount of hot oil until golden all around. You can roll them around their filling like an egg roll or burrito or spread with filling and fold in half, then half again. I have included some filling recipes and ideas for you in the instructions section.

Polish Nalesniki

 

Nalesniki folded

Polish Crepes (Nalesniki)

Ingredients

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1 large egg, beaten well
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Instructions

  1. In blender or food processor with metal blade, combine all ingredients and process until smooth. Transfer to a a large measuring cup or container. cover with plastic wrap and let rest for 30 minutes (do not skip this step!)
  2. Using 1/8th cup measuring cup or 2 ounce ladle, portion batter into a nonstick crepe pan or small non-stick skillet that has been lightly brushed with butter. Rotate pan and swirl batter until it covers the entire bottom of pan. Cook until lightly brown or spotted brown on one side, then carefully turn and cook the other side until light brown. You may need to do a few to get the hang of the pour, swirl, cook and turn routine.
  3. Remove cooked crepe from pan and place on waxed paper or parchment. Repeat with remaining batter buttering the pan lightly for each crepe.
  4. Serve immediately or wrap tightly and freeze up to 1 month.
  5. To Fill:
  6. Place 2 heaping tablespoons of the filling of your choice on each nalesniki and either roll like a jellyroll, OR fold the sides in first and then bottom, rolling away from you, as for an eggroll or burrito, OR fold in half, then half again.
  7. Finish either by frying in some butter or small amount of oil, serve as is, bake in a buttered casserole to set cheese filling for example, or dip in egg wash then fine bread crumbs and fry lightly to brown all sides.
  8. Fillings:
  9. Cheese Filling
  10. 2 cups dry curd (or farmers cheese or ricotta)
  11. 3 ounces cream cheese (softened)
  12. 1 large egg yolk
  13. 2 tablespoons butter (melted)
  14. 1/2 teaspoon salt
  15. 3 tablespoons sugar
  16. 1 teaspoon vanilla
  17. To Make:
  18. Place cheese in the bowl of a food processor and puree until smooth. Add remaining ingredients and process until fluffy. Divide filling among 12 crepes and roll. Fry or bake to set filling.
  19. Jam or fresh fruit, Nutella, or pie filling of your choice -- use your imagination!
http://www.acoalcrackerinthekitchen.com/2018/10/11/polish-crepes-nalesniki/

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