Prairie Views

~ Dreamy abstraction in Four Square House on the Pairie

Month: December 2008

Peppermint Candy Sprinkled Cinnamon Rolls

I made these for Christmas Morning Breakfast and wanted to do something a little different. The mint flavor adds a very unique flavor for the cinnamon rolls.

These were made with frozen bread dough that was thawed and rolled out, spread with butter and sprinkled with cinnamon and sugar. It’s sliced, baked and drizzled with a powdered sugar icing. Broken up candy canes were sprinkled on top.

1 lb loaf frozen bread dough
1/4 cup butter, softened
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon

1 cup powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla

Thaw bread dough; roll into a 6″x12″ rectangle, spread softened butter over bread; blend together sugar and cinnamon; sprinkle over butter. Roll up width wise, cut into 12 (1/2″) slices. Place in rectangular cookie sheet on parchment paper and let rise till doubled in size. Bake at 350 about 18 minutes or till golden. Stir together powdered sugar and vanilla; add enough milk to make of drizzling consistency; drizzle over rolls after cooling slightly. Sprinkle candy on top.

Thomas Jefferson quotes

When we get piled upon one another in large cities, as in Europe, we shall become as corrupt as Europe .
Thomas Jefferson

The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not.
Thomas Jefferson

It is incumbent on every generation to pay its own debts as it goes. A principle which if acted on would save one-half the wars of the world.
Thomas Jefferson

I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them.
Thomas Jefferson

My reading of history convinces me that most bad government results from too much government. Thomas Jefferson

No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms.
Thomas Jefferson

The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government.
Thomas Jefferson

The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.
Thomas Jefferson

To compel a man to subsidize with his taxes the propagation of ideas which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical.
Thomas Jefferson

Very Interesting Quote

In light of the present financial crisis, it’s interesting to read what Thomas Jefferson said in 1802:

‘I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies. If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around the banks will deprive the people of all property until their children wake-up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered.’

Christmas Bread (Kerststol)

Christmas Bread (Kerststol)
Christmas Bread (Kerststol),
originally uploaded by Lakenvelder.

I normally made a dutch type fruit cake. They are different from the typical fruitcake in that they usually have only currents, raisins, nuts and sometimes dates. I made this cake using frozen bread dough and add the fruit but I think next time I will use a bread mix or prepare a sweet white dough and see if I will get a better rise. This bread still was great and after having one piece I had to have another. This recipe was adapted from Dutch Food by Karin Engelbrecht.

1 1/2 cups raisins
1 cup cranberries
4 tablespoons orange liqueur
1 frozen bread dough, thawed out
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon orange zest
1/3 cup chopped walnuts
1/3 cup chopped hazelnuts
3 oz. almond paste or marzipan
1 tablespoon melted butter
icing sugar , sift on top

Soak the raisins and cranberries in the liqueur overnight. Drain
Knead the cinnamon, vanilla extract, orange zest, fruits and nuts into the dough.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and sprinkle with some flour. Place the dough on the paper and form an oval shape approximately 8 inches by 12 inches, Roll the almond paste or marzipan into a log of around ten inches. Fold the dough over the almond paste lengthwise, and gently pinch to seal. Cover the bread with plastic wrap an allow to rise in a warm place until double.

Preheat the oven to 390 degree f..Brush the top with water and bake for approximate 45 minutes or until brown. Cool on a wire rack and brush with melted butter, Dust with icing sugar before serving the bread in thick slices.

Curried Fruit Compote

Curried Fruit Compote
Curried Fruit Compote,
originally uploaded by Lakenvelder.

I was really intrigued by this recipe I found from the March 2002 Food & Wind Magazine. The recipe from Tony Hill combines the sweetness of fruit with a Madras curry powder. I made a few changes to the recipe by using fresh pears and using less curry powder. This compote could be made ahead and is good served with pork, turkey and angel food cake.

2 cups water
1/4 cup dried cranberries
2 pears-peeled, cored and cut into inch inch dice
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon curry powder, add more to taste
1 granny smith apple- peeled, cored and cut into inch dice

Bring the water to boil in a medium size saucepan. Pour 1/4 cup of the water into a glass measuring cup, add the cranberries and let soak until softened, about 10 minutes; strain.

Add the brown sugar and curry power into the saucepan with the remaining water and simmer until sugar has been dissolved. Add the pears and apple and simmer over moderate heat until tender, about 4 minutes.

In a food processor. puree 1/4 cup of the pears and apples with 1 cup of the cooking liquid. Stir the puree back into the sauce pan, Add the cranberries and serve the compote warm or at room temperature.

Broccoli with Hazelnuts and Garlic

This is a easy recipe I adapted from the Food & Wine Magazine January 1999 issue. It is special for a holiday meal but is also healthy. Instead of using hazelnut oil I used olive oil. It is easier to find and used regularly in many kitchens. I used hazelnuts that were already chopped and toasted them in a toaster oven.

1/4 cup Hazelnuts, chopped
1 large bunch broccoli, cut into 1 1/2 inch florets
2 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
2 garlic cloves, sliced thinly
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper

Toast the hazel huts in a pie pan in an oven set at 350F until toasted. Remove and let cool.

Steam the broccoli until just tender, about 5 minutes.

In a large skillet, add the garlic and cook over high heat stirring until the garlic is pale golden, about 2 minutes. Add the broccoli and red pepper and toss. Season with the salt and cook until tender, 1 -2 minutes. Sprinkle nuts on top. Serve hot or room temperature.

Mexican Rice (arroz a la Mexicana)

This is one of those that has as many recipes as their are cooks.You can use a mixed chili power but I used Caldo de Pollo con Picante (Spicy Chicken Bouillon) I started this in a pan and after it was ready to cook I put it into a rice cooker to complete the cooking process. Finely diced potato, carrot and peas can be added if desired.

1 tablespoon olive oil
1/3 cup shopped onion
1 clove minced garlic
1 cup long=grain white rice or converted rice
1/2 cup peeled and chopped fresh tomato
1 3/4 cups water (2 cups for converted rice)
2 teaspoons pure ground chile or chili powder or Caldo de Pollo Picante (Spicy Chicken Bouillon)
1/2 teaspoon salt

Place the oil in a pan, add onion and garlic when hot. Cook until softened, about 2 minutes. Add the rice and cook, stirring a few times, until it turns slightly golden, about 10 minutes. Add the tomato and saute a little longer. Add the water, chile and salt. Sir to combine. Put into a rice cooker and cook on the regular cycle. When done let the rice steam for around ten minutes, Fluff the rice with a rice paddle or spoon.

Cinnamon Swirl Cookies

Cinnamon Swirl Cookies

Add 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon to a roll out sugar cookie mix . Shape 1 tablespoon cinnamon into a line 5 inches long. Shape one tablespoon dough into a 5 inch long rope. Press one side of the rope dough into the cinnamon. On an ungreased cookie sheet coil tighly with cinnamon side facing center into cinnamon-roll shape. Press end of rope into roll to seal. Repeat with the remaining dough placing cookies 2 inches apart on cookie sheets.

Bake 7 to 10 minutes or until edges are light golden brown. Cool 1 minute and remove to cool completely .

Mix glaze until smooth:

1 cup powdered sugar
2 tablspoons milk
1/4 teaspoon vanilla

Drizzle over the cookies.

Milk Gravy

This a gravy that can be made to go over dishes such as Chicken Fried Steak and Biscuit and Gravy. I do not use the recipe but just add the ingredients as I go. It is easy to prepare after you cook dishes such as fried chicken or bacon. Set aside the grease and prepare the gravy in the same pan adding back 2 tablespoons of the drippings. Another variation is to cook the sausage and then prepare to gravy with the cooked sausage. I sometimes use butter or margarine instead of the oil if I do not have drippings. You can make it as thin or thick as desired by adding or reducing the amount of milk.

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Milk Gravy


3 tbsp. flour
1 1/2 c. milk
1/8 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. pepper
2 tbsp. oil (or drippings)

Blend in flour; brown, stirring constantly in hot oil. Add milk. Bring to a
boil; reduce heat. Add salt & pepper. Simmer 2 minutes.

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Roasted Vegetables

Roasted Vegetables
Roasted Vegetables,
originally uploaded by Lakenvelder.

This is a wonderful dish of fall type vegetables, If desired you can also add some potatoes, about 3.

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Roasted Vegetables

1 small butternut or lakoka squash, cubed
1 sweet potato, peeled and cubed
1 onion, quartered
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme or 1/4 teaspoon; dried
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

1. Preheat oven to 475 degrees F (245 degrees C).

2. In a large bowl, combine the squash, and sweet potato.
Separate the red onion quarters into pieces, and
add them to the mixture.

3. In a small bowl, stir together thyme, rosemary, olive oil, vinegar,
salt, and pepper. Toss with vegetables until they are coated. Spread evenly on a large roasting pan.

4. Roast for 35 to 40 minutes in the preheated oven, stirring every 10
minutes, or until vegetables are cooked through and browned.

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