I wish everyone a safe, healthy, happy, 2008!!
God Bless you all!
Tonight, Anthony and I were talking about concerts. How much he enjoys them... how he was able to meet his favorite band, "The Unseen". He even made an incredible clock for the band in his ceramics class, which showcases their logo. They even used that picture with him on their MySpace page! While he and I were talking, I pulled out a box from the closet and showed Anthony all these old concert tickets (he took the pics for me). OH MY..!! I don't think I've recovered from realizing that very first one was- GULP- dare I say... 29 years ago!! Not sure when I'll recover...
If you have the opportunity this holiday season to go see the Rockettes, DO! Larry and I had a fun night a the Dodge Theatre last Friday evening. It brought back some wonderful memories... the last time I saw them was at Radio City Music Hall while living in New York as a little girl. These gals are AMAZING! I sat on the edge of my seat like a little kid! Truly an incredible performance.
It's almost that time again... making sure you have a well stocked pantry for those last minute gifts from the heart. I think anyone can buy and give a gift. The things I love the most though are handmade and homemade. Try making this biscotti... it's easy and absolutely delicious. Last year I made them and packed them in baskets with different flavor's of coffee, mugs, and magazines filled with recipes. One of those gifts you can curl up with and relax...
Cranberry Pistachio Biscotti- makes about 4 dozen
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup boiling water
3 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
4 large eggs
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup shelled pistachios, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup sanding sugar- or super fine
Preheat oven to 375° . Place cranberries in a small bowl, and add 1/2 cup boiling water, or enough to cover. Let stand until cranberries are plump, about 10-15 minutes. Drain and set aside. In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside. Line a baking sheet with a Silpat or parchment paper, and set aside.
In the bowl of an electric mixer (using the paddle attachment), cream butter and granulated sugar on medium until light and fluffy. Add only 3 eggs, one at a time, beating after each. Beat in vanilla. Add the dry ingredients, beating on low, until fully combined. Stir in the drained cranberries and pistachios.
Place dough on a lightly floured surface. Divide in two. Roll each piece into about a 2-inch-by-18-inch log, and place on prepared baking sheet, leaving about 3 inches between logs. Flatten logs slightly with palm of hand. In a small bowl, lightly beat remaining egg. Brush logs with beaten egg, and sprinkle with sanding sugar.
Bake for 25 minutes. Remove from oven, and cool on a rack until warm to the touch, about 20 minutes. Place logs on a cutting board, and cut crosswise on the diagonal into 3/4-inch pieces. Return biscotti to baking sheet, cut side down. Bake until biscotti are beginning to brown around the edges, about 12 minutes more. Transfer to wire racks to cool.
If you want, you can also dip the ends of the biscotti in melted white or dark chocolate for a little extra sweetness. I love them as they are though, perfect with coffee.
Fall is coming~ Eat like an Italian!!
Fried Pumpkin Ravioli (need vegetable oil for frying, and powdered sugar for dusting)
1 c. Flour
2 egg yolks
2 Tbs butter, softened
2 Tbs milk
1 Tbs sugar
zest of 1/4 lemon
1/2 c. canned pumpkin
1/2 c. ricotta cheese
1/4 c. sugar
2 Amaretti cookies, finely crushed
1/2 tsp vanilla
Dough: Combine all ingredients in food processor until soft dough forms. Put dough in small bowl and cover. Let sit and rest about an hour.
Filling: Mix all ingredients at once.
Puttin' it togetha: Roll out dough in two long sheets, about 4" wide and 1/4 " thick. Put big 'ol teaspoons full of filling all the way down the middle of the sheet, at least one inch from each end and 2" apart. Cover the pasta & filling with the other sheet of pasta. Make sure you push around each mound of pumpkin into the dough, so that it sticks together. You can use a pretty pasta cutter to roll & cut each square of ravioli, or you can use a knife to make your ravioli squares. Just make sure you seal all sides of the squares with a fork. Deep fry the ravioli's in hot oil until very light brown. Drain on paper towels and sprinkle with powdered sugar. Hot or cold, they are Yum~O!!
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