A Little Spice is Always Nice!

Cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, cloves…  It’s time to spice it up! We love these spices in tasty cookies, cakes, and muffins. And there are even more dishes out there ready for that hit of warm spice pizazz!

One of my favorite and somewhat un-sung spices is the cardamom seed. This flavorfully potent spice is native to India, but its flavor and use has spread throughout the world, from Scandinavian to Middle Eastern cuisine.

Cardamom adds a sassy flavor to my Spiced Squash Bisque. The aromatic spices combine well with the flavor of sweet winter squash making this soup a great cold weather dish.

Other favorite spices that I love are allspice and cloves, so great in spiced shortbread cookies, stews – and I especially love them infused in my recipe for Spiced Red Vermouth … perfect in a Manhattan!!


My Spiced Vermouth!
For the recipe and more inspired sipping, check out Kathy Casey’s Liquid Kitchen™.

Rubs are another great way to incorporate new and unique spices into your meal. There are so many great pre-made options available like my Fragrant Star Anise Rub. It’s an excellent way to add an exotic flair to a roasted pork or chicken.

If you like to experiment with creating your own rubs, check out the bulk spice section at your neighborhood grocer, or head on over to Pike Place Market’s World Spice shop to pick out what you want. World Spice has tons of loose spices, and you can buy just what you need, whether it’s a pinch or a squiggle. You can also find spices online from BulkFoods.com to Amazon.

One last hint: a coffee grinder is excellent for grinding your own spices. Just be sure that you keep one for solely that purpose… the star anise “scented” coffee at my house was not a big hit!

So remember, a little bit of spice can go a long ways in bringing out your dish’s flavor!  -Kathy

Spiced Squash Bisque
Organic or homegrown squash is preferable to use for this recipe because it creates a much more pronounced and sweet flavor. I like to use hubbard, Danish, or butternut squash, or a combination. Make the Crispy Seeds while the soup is cooking.

Makes 6 starter servings

3 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup diced onion
4 1/2 cups (about 1 1/2 pounds) peeled, seeded, and cubed winter squash (any type of sweet squash or pumpkin combination may be used; reserve 1/4 cup of seeds for Crispy Seeds)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon coriander seeds, finely crushed
1 teaspoon cardamom seeds, finely crushed
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
1 bay leaf
1 1/2 teaspoons salt (more or less depending upon whether you are using a homemade stock)
3 cups chicken broth
3/4 cup sour cream
Salt to taste

Crispy Seeds
1/4 cup seeds from squash
1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt

In a large heavy saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes. Add squash, garlic, spices, bay leaf, and salt. Sauté for 2 to 3 minutes. Add chicken stock and bring to a boil. Turn down the heat, partially cover the pan, and simmer for approximately 15 to 20 minutes, or until the squash is very tender.

Meanwhile, make the Crispy Seeds: preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Rinse seeds under cold water to remove any squash flesh or strings. Drain well and measure. Place in a bowl and toss with the olive oil. In a small bowl, combine cumin, sugar, and salt and sprinkle over the seeds. Toss well and spread seeds on a nonstick baking sheet. Roast for 8 to 10 minutes, or until crispy and toasted.

Remove bisque from heat. Remove and discard bay leaf. In a blender or food processor, carefully purée the hot soup in small batches with the sour cream. (Be careful not to make your batches too large, since the soup is very hot.) Taste for seasoning and add salt as needed, especially if using homemade broth. Pour the puréed soup back into the pan and keep warm.

Divide the soup among warmed soup bowls. Sprinkle each serving with about 2 teaspoons Crispy Seeds.

For a vegetarian version: substitute vegetable stock for the chicken stock.

Chef’s Tips:
For a fun and impressive presentation, thin out a small portion of sour cream with milk or cream until it is a “squeezable” consistency and put in a squirt bottle. Swirl the top of each serving with the sour cream.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®

Posted by Kathy Casey on January 14th, 2014  |  Comments Off |  Posted in KOMO Radio, Recent Posts, Recipes, sides, Small Screen Network, soups, videos

Pummelo: The Big Brother of the Citrus Family

Have you seen ginormous citrus fruits that look like monster grapefruits? They’re called pummelos – and are the biggest variety of citrus!

If you are a citrus fanatic like me, you will love pummelos. Pick one out that feels heavy for its size and is more green than yellow – in this case, green is good! These big babies pack a wallop of vitamins, and have a wonderful flavor, very similar to a grapefruit, but sweeter and in my opinion a little floral.

The biggest hurdle is getting through the peel, but once you know how, it’s really quite simple. First cut off the top and bottom – just enough so you can see the flesh of the fruit peeking through.

Next, score the peel on four sides. Just deep enough to get through the whole peel. Then, with your fingers, pull the pieces of the peel off and break the sections of the fruit apart. Remove the membrane from the segments, and then you’re ready to enjoy the fruit. I know it sounds like a lot of work, but it is SO WORTH IT!


Here’s a video of demo-ing how to peel one!

Great on its own as a snack, or try adding it to a favorite dish. The team and I developed a bunch of new recipes for Sunkist such as Pummelo Tabbouleh! So branch out and try pummelo – its D’Lish!–Kathy

Pummelo_Tabouleh
Photo by Kathy Casey Food Studios®

Pummelo Tabbouleh
Pummelo adds a beautiful color and tangy sweet flavor to this classic dish-up salad. Different brands/varieties of cracked wheat cook differently. More rustic types tend to be slower to absorb the water.

Makes 6 – 8 cups depending upon the style of cracked wheat used

1 3/4 cups boiling water
1 tsp. Kosher salt
1 1/2 cups cracked wheat (bulgur wheat)
——————————–
1 Sunkist® Pummelo
1/4 cup fresh squeezed Sunkist Lemon juice
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp. Kosher salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
2 roma tomatoes, diced 1/2 inch
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
4 green onions, thinly sliced

Place bulgur wheat and the 1 teaspoon of salt in a heat-proof large glass bowl or plastic container. Measure boiling water carefully and pour over the bulgur. Cover quickly with plastic wrap and let sit for 1 hour or until all the water has been absorbed. Uncover and let cool. (See headnote on cooking varieties of bulgur.)

To finish the salad: Peel the pummelo and tear the citrus flesh of each segment into pieces (discarding the white pith), set aside. (See how to open a pummelo.)

In a large bowl mix together the lemon juice, olive oil, remaining teaspoon of salt and pepper. Add the cooked bulgur and stir to combine. Then add the pummelo, tomatoes, parsley, and green onions and stir gently until coated with dressing.

Sunkist Twists:

  • Add in 1 cup chopped fresh kale.
  • For a protein punch add 1 can of drained garbanzo beans.
  • Try adding 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil.
  • Recipe developed for Sunkist by Kathy Casey Food Studios®.

    Posted by Kathy on January 22nd, 2015  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Foodie News, Fruit, KOMO Radio, Recent Posts, Recipes, salads, videos

    KitchenBug – A Great Tool to Help You Eat Healthy

    The web is a great place to find new interesting recipes, but how to keep them all straight? I have a new favorite tool called Kitchenbug that organizes all your favorite recipes, AND figures out which ones are the healthiest!

    You can use Kitchenbug on a computer or device, and save all your favorite recipes from the web in one handy spot.

    Kitchenbug is a virtual recipe box that organizes your favorite online recipes. It lets you trade recipes with your friends, gives you great recommendations, and shows you which ones fit any specific needs.

    You can easily see which recipes are good for your heart, which are good for weight loss, which are high in protein and iron and you can save the ones that are more on the naughty side for special occasions.

    Whether you made a resolution this new year or not, eating healthy is a great idea for everybody. And now it just got so much easier with this fantastic new tool!

    Check out my Recipe Box on Kitchenbug for my Kathy’s Jump-Start Smoothie and Big Protein Red Quinoa Salad recipes! –Kathy

    Posted by Kathy on January 9th, 2015  |  Add Comment |  Posted in breakfast, Foodie News, KOMO Radio, Lifestyle, Recent Posts, Recipes, salads

    Cozy Cocoa

    Can you think of anything cozier than a roaring fire and a nice, warm mug of hot cocoa? From grown up boozy versions and beloved classics to kid-friendly fun flavors, there’s a cocoa for everyone!

    It’s hard to beat My Mom’s “Old School” Cocoa – warm milk whisked until foamy with sugar and good old fashioned dark cocoa powder. A dash of vanilla or a cinnamon stick were all the variation we needed to finish off this heartwarming marshmallow-topped winter treat.

    But if you’re like me (and I think you probably are), you’ll have some fun jazzing up your favorite flavors a bit.

    My Bollywood Spiced Cocoa is a fun take on classic Indian flavors. Dark chocolate is melted into milk that has been infused with fresh ginger, cardamom, and cumin. Then whole thing is finished off with some unsweetened coconut milk. This is a great after-dinner sip for some more adventurous chocolate lovers.

    Want to turn your before-bedtime cocoa into a late night-cap? Try stirring a little honey whiskey or your favorite liqueur – yum!

    So get out your favorite mug and whip up some winter-warming cocoas. -Kathy


    Who can say no to rainbow sprinkles?

    My Mom’s “Old-School” Cocoa
    Makes 2 servings

    1 1/2 cups milk
    2 Tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
    2 Tbsp. sugar
    1/2 tsp. real vanilla extract
    2 big marshmallows

    Place milk in a small heavy-bottom saucepan over medium heat. In a small bowl, whisk together the cocoa powder and sugar, then whisk into the milk to incorporate. Then add the vanilla. Heat until hot but not overheated. Do not boil.
    Serve in mugs and top with marshmallows.

    Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios® – www.KathyCasey.com

    Bollywood Spiced Cocoa
    Made with Theo’s Fair-Trade-certified Ghana Panama Ecuador 75% Cacao dark chocolate bar and uniquely spiced with Indian flavors and unsweetened coconut milk for a very distinctive sweet-and-savory hot chocolate.

    Makes 2 servings

    1 cup milk
    2 cardamom pods, crushed
    2 1/4-inch-thick slices, peeled fresh ginger
    tiny pinch ground cumin
    1/2 cup unsweetened coconut milk
    1/2 bar Theo’s 70%% Cacao bar*, grated, or use 1 1/2 ounces other high-cacao-content chocolate

    In a small heavy-bottom saucepan, heat the milk, cardamom, ginger and cumin till hot but not simmering or boiling. Remove from the heat and let sit for 10 minutes. Then remove the cardamom pods and ginger and discard. Place the pan back on the heat and add the coconut milk and chocolate. Whisk and heat until hot—but do not overheat. Serve immediately.

    *Available at markets like Metropolitan Markets, Whole Foods and PCC.

    Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios® – www.KathyCasey.com

    Posted by Kathy on January 2nd, 2015  |  Add Comment |  Posted in dessert, KOMO Radio, Recent Posts, Recipes

    Holiday Hangover Cures

    The year is coming to a close and the biggest party of the year is still to come – New Year’s Eve! It’s time to celebrate the old and ring in the new. And… let’s just say this usually involves at least a cocktail or two.

    I have some great ways to give you a good start for the New Year, even if you do over-indulge a bit the night before.

    My go-to cure is my Hangover Helper. Just empty a packet of Emergen-C (I like orange or raspberry) into a juice glass and add a little vodka – or gin, a dash of bitters, and soda water then top with a few drops of olive oil. Yep, that’s right – drink up!

    New Year’s Day entertaining? A Bloody Mary Bar for brunch will definitely help with that headache – with a little hair of the dog!

    Blood Scandi
    The Bloody Scandi I created for Sip Northwest Magazine
    made with Aquavit, Demitri’s and Local Pickled Beets

    Set up a DIY station and let your guests mix up their own concoctions.

    Put out a selection of different spirits:

    • -Vodkas
    • -Gin
    • -Aquavit
    • -Tequila
    • -Whiskey

    Bloody Mary Mixers:

    Condiments to Spice & Flavor Things Up:

    • -Tobasco
    • -Sriracha
    • -Green Hot Sauce
    • -Fresh Lemon Wedges
    • -Fresh Lime Wedges
    • -Horseradish

    And Lots of Garnishes for your Guests to Skewer up!:

      -
    • Chunks Cheese
      -
    • Pickled Veggies(pickled beets, asparagus and beans)
      -
    • Cooked Prawns
      -
    • Beef Jerky
      -
    • Sliced Salami
      -
    • Stuffed Cherry Peppers
      -
    • Selection of Olives
      -
    • Hard Smoked Salmon or Pickled Herring (yes that’s right – I’m Scandinavian!)

    And don’t forget to eat! Boosting your metabolism will make you feel better faster than anything. And for some reason, a bacon sandwich sometimes can be THE magic cure. You’ll feel better in no time!

    Happy New Years! – Kathy

    Posted by Kathy on December 24th, 2014  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Cocktails, KOMO Radio, Lifestyle, Recent Posts, Recipes, Small Screen Network, videos

    Toast the Season with Cranberries

    Whether you like them as a side sauce cozied to turkey or made into a holiday garland with popcorn, nothing is as perfect for the holidays than cranberries!

    Seasonal foods just naturally go together. The apple, for example, is the perfect foil for its seasonal cousin the cranberry. They’re great together in my Apple Cranberry Tart with Walnut Crust and Cranberry Semifreddo. How about a salad of winter greens with slices of crisp galas and spicy toasted walnuts tossed with my favorite holiday dressing, Cranberry Citrus Vinaigrette.

    But hey you can get crafty with them, too! For an impressive DIY holiday gift, try whipping up a batch of Crimson Cranberry Sage Vinegar to give out this year. Thread cranberries on a skewer and slip into a decorative clear bottle. Poke in a few sprigs of fresh sage, then add a pinch of sugar and salt to champagne vinegar – whisk together then pour into the bottles, covering the cranberries and sage. Cap and let sit at least one week before using. This vinegar makes a splendid and  colorful gift.

    So grab a few extra bags of fresh cranberries while they are in season and freeze a few bags for enjoying later. -Kathy

    Cranberries 2
    (Photo from Kathy Casey’s Northwest Table)

    Washington Apple-Cranberry Tart with Walnut Crust & Cranberry Semifreddo
    Makes 10 servings

    Filling
    1 tablespoon butter
    4 pounds Gala apples, peeled, cored, and cut into 1/4-inch-thick wedges (6 cups)
    1/2 cup fresh or frozen cranberries
    2 tablespoons brandy
    2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
    1/2 cup sugar
    2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

    Crust
    8 ounces (2 sticks) unsalted butter at room temperature
    3/4 cup granulated sugar
    1/4 cup packed brown sugar
    2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    1 egg, separated
    3 egg yolks
    2 1/2 cups flour
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1/2 cup very finely chopped walnuts
    2 tablespoons sanding or coarse sugar

    Cranberry Semifreddo (recipe follows)
    10 fresh or frozen cranberries for garnishing

    To make the filling, heat the butter in a large saucepan over medium-high heat and add the apples and cranberries. Stir in the brandy and lemon juice, then add the sugar and cinnamon. Cook until the apples are just wilted but still firm, and the juices have evaporated and cooked out; the mixture should be almost dry, not wet. Transfer to a shallow pan and cool in the refrigerator while making the crust.

    Preheat an oven to 350°F. Line the bottom of a 9- or 10-inch springform pan with a parchment round. Lightly butter the sides of the pan and the parchment, or spray with vegetable-oil cooking spray. Set aside.

    To make the crust, in a mixing bowl, beat the butter with the sugars on medium-high speed with an electric mixer until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, then add the vanilla and the 4 egg yolks, one at a time, beating a few seconds after each. Beat until smooth and light, about 1 minute. (Reserve the egg white.)

    In a medium bowl, mix the flour, salt, and walnuts, then add the flour mixture to the egg mixture in 2 parts, mixing on low until just combined.

    Divide the dough into 2 equal pieces. Put a piece of the dough into the prepared pan and press it out evenly on the bottom and up 1 1/2 inches on the sides. (If the dough is too soft to work with, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 10 to 20 minutes to slightly firm up.) Pile the cooled filling into the dough-lined pan.

    On a lightly floured surface such as a cardboard disk or big piece of plastic wrap, press the remaining piece of dough into a round 9 or 10 inches in diameter, depending on the size of your springform pan. Slide the dough onto the filling and press it into place. This top crust should fit just inside the dough that extends up the sides of the pan and come all the way to its edges. Carefully seal the seam where the top joins the side dough, making sure the edges are straight and even.

    Whip the reserved egg white in a small bowl until slightly frothy. Brush the top crust lightly with the egg white and poke the top with a fork in 5 places. Sprinkle with the sanding sugar.

    Bake for 50 to 60 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown and the filling is bubbling out a bit. Cool to just slightly warm or room temperature before removing the pan sides. You might want to run a knife along the sides before unmolding. (When serving, be sure that the parchment paper is not stuck to the tart.)

    To serve, slice the tart into 10 wedges. Place each wedge on a dessert plate. Top with a nice scoop of the semifreddo and garnish with a cranberry.

    Cranberry Semifreddo
    Makes about 10 servings

    2 eggs, separated
    1/2 cup fresh or frozen cranberries
    2 tablespoons cranberry juice cocktail
    1/2 cup granulated sugar
    3 tablespoons mascarpone cheese
    2 tablespoons superfine sugar
    1/2 cup heavy whipping cream

    Let the eggs come to room temperature while you proceed with the recipe.

    Combine the cranberries, juice, and 1/4 cup of the granulated sugar in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook until the cranberries pop, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat, let cool, then purée until smooth.

    In a medium stainless-steel bowl, whisk the egg yolks, remaining 1/4 cup granulated sugar, and cranberry purée. Set the bowl over a pan of simmering water, taking care that the bowl does not touch the water. Whisk until the mixture is thickened and hot—but be careful not to overcook (scramble) the egg mixture; this takes about 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and whisk in the mascarpone. Keep whisking until the mixture cools down, then refrigerate until thoroughly chilled.

    Meanwhile, in a thoroughly clean and grease-free mediuim mixer bowl, whip the egg whites on high speed with an electric mixer until they just start to get frothy. Start sprinkling in the superfine sugar and whip until the whites are peaking. Gently fold the whipped egg whites into the chilled cranberry mixture.

    Whip the cream until stiff, then gently fold it into the cranberry mixture, taking care not to lose volume.

    Spoon the mixture into a 4-cup plastic container with a lid. Tap the container on a counter to release any bubbles, then smooth the top. Close the container, then place in a freezer for at least 8 hours, or until frozen.

    Recipe from Kathy Casey’s Northwest Table Cookbook

    Cranberry Citrus Vinaigrette
    Makes 1 1/2 cups

    2/3 cup fresh or frozen cranberries
    1/4 cup sugar
    1/2 cup white wine vinegar or distilled white vinegar
    1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
    1/4 cup orange juice
    3/4 cup vegetable oil or light olive oil
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1/4 teaspoon black pepper

    Combine the cranberries, sugar, and vinegar in a small nonreactive saucepan and cook over medium heat until the cranberries pop, about 4 to 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool.

    Purée the mixture in a blender, then blend in the mustard and orange juice. With the machine running, gradually drizzle in the oil. The dressing should become smooth and emulsified. Blend in the salt and pepper. Refrigerate up to 3 weeks.

    Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®

    Cranberries 1

    Crimson Cranberry Sage Vinegar
    Makes 6 cups

    1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries
    Fresh Sage
    1 large shallot, peeled and quartered
    6 cups white wine vinegar or distilled white vinegar
    2 teaspoons sugar
    1/2 teaspoon salt

    Arrange the cranberries and shallot attractively in 2 clear glass wine bottles (you can skewer the cranberries, if you like, on long wooden skewers).

    In a non-aluminum pan, bring the vinegar, sugar and salt to a boil. Immediately pour the liquid into the bottles, filling them 1 1/2 inches from the top. Let cool to room temperature, then cork. Let sit a minimum of 2 days before using. Store in a cool, dark place for up to 2 – 3 months, or refrigerate for up to 6 months.

    Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®

    Posted by Kathy Casey on December 18th, 2014  |  Comments (1) |  Posted in dessert, Fruit, KOMO Radio, other, Recent Posts, Recipes

    The Modern Crock Pot

    It’s time for some hearty cooking so dig deep into your pantry and dust off your trusty crock pot!

    The wonderful thing about a crock pot is you can do all the prep early in the day, and be ready to serve dinner right when you walk in the door from work! The “Set It and Forget It” aspect is great for a busy schedule.

    Today’s crock pot recipes have gotten more modern with delicious twists like in my recipe for Crock Pot Fragrant Soy & Ginger Beef, cooked until succulent with green onions, shitake mushrooms, and cabbage. Marinate the beef overnight with a garlicy, spicy soy marinade, then layer into the slow cooker with onions, mushrooms, and wedges of cabbage. Pour the marinade over the whole thing and set to cook. After 8 or 9 hours, you’ll have a rich, super-flavorful sauce with delicious meat and tender veggies. Perfect to serve with steamed rice. PS – you may want to put the cooker under your stove hood (turned on) as it can be quite “fragrant” with the cabbage.

    Another fork tender recipe is my Orange Chili Slow-Cooked Pork made with chili spice rubbed pork butt, fresh squeezed Sunkist Orange juice, coriander seed, tomato paste and garlic. Super flavorful!! Great to serve in DIY soft tacos.

    And there are a ton of great crock pot cookbooks out there from everything from soups and chilis to even cakes!

    Have a favorite oven-braising recipe? These can be easily adapted for crock pot cooking. Just remember to add your vegetables on top of the meat or poultry – this way they won’t get overcooked. –Kathy

    Crock Pot Fragrant Soy & Ginger Beef with Green Onions & Cabbage
    Makes about 6 servings

    1 Tbsp. vegetable oil
    2 1/2 pounds beef brisket roast
    2 slices fresh ginger root
    3 cloves of garlic
    1 star anise pod
    1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
    1/4 cup brown sugar
    1/2 cup soy sauce
    1 Tbsp. rice wine vinegar
    1/4 tsp. red chili flakes
    1 yellow onion, peeled and cut in 6 wedges
    1 very small head green cabbage, cut in 6 wedges
    1 bunch green onions, ends trimmed off, cut in 2-inch pieces
    2 Tbsp. cornstarch

    Heat oil in a large sauté pan over high heat. Place beef into pan, fat side down, and brown the first side. Turn over and brown the other side. Transfer beef to a non-corrosive bowl or baking dish.

    In a medium bowl, whisk together the ginger root, garlic, star anise, cinnamon, brown sugar, soy, vinegar, and chili flakes and pour over the meat, turning the meat to coat. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

    Then next day, remove the meat from the dish and place in the bottom of the slow cooker (reserve marinade). Next, layer in the onion wedges, then the cabbage and green onions. You may need to push down the cabbage a bit to make it fit.

    Whisk the cornstarch into the reserved marinade until blended, then pour over the top. Cover tightly with the lid and set to cook on high. Cook undisturbed for about 8 – 9 hours.

    To serve, remove the cabbage and onions to a platter and the meat to a cutting board. Slice the meat against the grain and place on the platter. Spoon the sauce over the meat and vegetables.

    Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®

    Orange Chili Slow-Cooked Pork
    Orange Chili Slow-Cooked Pork Tacos – Yum!
    Photo by Kathy Casey Food Studios®.

    Orange Chili Slow-Cooked Pork
    This full flavored pork is great to get cooking before heading off to work. Serve over rice, as a pulled pork sandwich or in tacos.

    Makes 6 hearty servings

    1/4 cup chili powder
    1 Tbsp. coriander seed, crushed
    1 Tbsp. salt
    1 boneless pork butt (shoulder), about 3 pounds, cut into 2 pieces
    1/4 cup tomato paste
    1/2 cup fresh squeezed Sunkist Orange juice
    2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
    2 Tbsp. minced fresh garlic
    1 large onion, sliced

    To prepare the pork, mix the chili powder, coriander seed, and salt in a large, shallow bowl. Roll the pork in the mixture.

    Put the pork in a slow-cooker. (Add in any extra seasoning that did not stick to the pork.) In a small bowl whisk together the tomato paste, orange juice, vinegar and garlic. Pour over the pork and then scatter with the onion. Cover set the cooker on high. Let cook for 8 hours or until very tender. Serve as desired.

    Chef Notes:

  • The broth is super flavorful so be sure to save and mix in to pork after pulling it, you can also thicken the cooking juice with a little cornstarch.
  • If making tacos top with a little shredded cabbage, your favorite salsa or chopped tomato, sprigs of cilantro and a dollop of sour cream.
  • Add any leftovers into a chili or soup.
  • Recipe created by Kathy Casey Food Studios® for Sunkist®.

    Posted by Kathy on December 12th, 2014  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Books to Cook, KOMO Radio, meats, Recent Posts, Recipes

    It’s Time for Fruit Cakes!

    Fruit Cake (or fruitcake) sometimes gets a bad rap. Those doorstopper hard as rocks cakes with bright, florescent cherries that gets re-gifted every year passed around at every while elephant party…

    Fruit Cake Monster
    A Fruitcake monster!

    But there is great fruit cake, too! Like my holiday favorite “Over 21” Real Fruit Cakes made with Maker’s Mark! I love a slice in the morning with a great cup of coffee.

    Fruit-Cake-3

    These REAL fruit cakes are fully loaded with Maker’s Mark-soaked dried fruits, including apricots, cranberries, tart cherries, and golden raisins, as well as loads of nuts from toasted hazelnuts to rich pecans – all bound with a signature spiced batter recipe. Baked till golden then brushed over and over with a bourbon-brown sugar glaze. Now this is fruitcake – a REAL FRUIT cake.

    So if you have a fruit cake fan on your Holiday Gift List or want to be a fruit cake convert, I have you covered. You can order them online for delivery or pick them up at the Food Studios in Ballard.

    Fruit-Cake-4

    Quantities are limited so be sure to place your orders soon because they sell out FAST!

    Wishing you all a real fruit cake filled holiday season! -Kathy

    “Over 21” Bourbon Fruit Cake
    Makes 6 mini-loaves

    1 cup chopped dried pineapple
    1 cup chopped dried apricots
    1 1/2 cups tart dried cherries
    1 cup golden raisins
    1/3 cup currants
    1 1/4 cups chopped dried mango
    3/4 cup boiling water
    1/2 pound (2 sticks) butter, softened (very important!)
    1/2 cup sugar
    1/2 cup brown sugar
    1/4 cup molasses
    1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
    2 tsp. orange zest
    2 tsp. lemon zest
    6 eggs
    1/4 cup bourbon
    1 3/4 cups flour
    1 1/2 tsp. ground allspice
    1/2 tsp. ground ginger
    1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
    1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
    1 cup chopped hazelnuts
    1 cup chopped walnuts
    1 cup chopped pecans
    1 cup whole almonds

    Bourbon Glaze
    1/4 cup water
    1/2 cup brown sugar
    1/2 cup bourbon

    In a large bowl toss together the dried fruits then pour the boiling water over the fruit and toss again. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit for 24 hours at room temperature, stirring occasionally.

    Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.

    In a mixing bowl whip the butter (be sure it’s super-softened!) on medium-high speed with the white and brown sugars for about 4 minutes or until fluffy. Add the molasses and then the vanilla and zests. On medium speed add 1 egg at a time, beating 1 minute between each addition. Mix in bourbon. Mixture should be whipped until it is smooth and silky.

    In a sifter combine flour and spices. Remove bowl from mixer and sift in dry ingredients, folding into egg mixture until well incorporated.

    Separately, in a very large bowl mix together plumped fruits and nuts. Add cake batter and fold into the fruit and nuts until well coated.

    Divide mixture (about 1 1/2 cups each) among 6 buttered, nonstick mini-loaf pans (6-inch x 3-inch x 2-inch) or disposable aluminum mini-loaf pans. Smooth out batter, then bang each pan on the counter to release any air bubbles.

    Place pans on a baking sheet and bake for about 45 – 55 minutes or until set and cooked through.

    Meanwhile make the Bourbon Glaze: In a very small saucepan combine the water and brown sugar and bring to a boil over high heat. Boil for 1 minute, remove from the heat, and cool to room temperature. Then whisk in the bourbon.

    When cakes come out of the oven, remove from pan and place bottom up on a cooling rack set over a baking sheet. With a pastry brush, brush the Bourbon Glaze liberally on the bottom and sides of cakes while still warm. Do this quite a few times. Then turn cakes top side up and brush with more of the glaze. Keep brushing with glaze on all surfaces every 20 minutes or so until all of the glaze is used up. Cover cakes with plastic wrap and let sit overnight.

    To wrap cakes: Wrap each cake individually with plastic wrap, then wrap in parchment paper. Seal with Christmas stickers and ribbon or raffia and baubles. If desired, write recipe name, baker and date on outside wrapper with a fine permanent marker or metallic pen.

    Store cake at room temperature until ready to give.

    Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios® – www.KathyCasey.com

    Posted by Kathy on December 5th, 2014  |  Add Comment |  Posted in dessert, Foodie News, Fruit, KOMO Radio, Recent Posts, Recipes

    Autumn Pears

    We are so lucky here in the Pacific Northwest to have such a delicious variety of sumptuous pears! Bartlett, Bosc, Seckel, Concorde – each one different, yet they’re all oh-so-delicious!

    The months of October through December are the prime time for pears.

    One of my favorite preparations for pears is roasting them: just cut them into thick wedges and toss with a little olive oil, balsamic, and seasoning. Roast them on a sheet pan in a hot oven until they are just tender.

    They’re great tossed in a fall salad, served with roast chicken or on a crostini with some gorgonzola for an easy appetizer like in my Roasted Pear Crostini with Gorgonzola! Or maybe even serve them with your Thanksgiving roast turkey as a tasty accompaniment!

    Another idea is to make a pear wasabi puree: sauté diced pears till tender, then puree them mixed with a little wasabi for a tasty sauce for grilled fish of scallops.

    And don’t forget about the drinks! Try infusing a bottle of vodka with a sliced pear. Let sit for 2 – 3 days then strain! Delicious in cocktails like my Pear Thyme Fizz or put it in bottles and give it as a great fall hostess gift! –Kathy

    Roasted Pear Crostini (2)
    Photo from Kathy Casey’s Sips & Apps, Chronicle Books – Angie Norwood Browne

    Roasted Pear Crostini with Gorgonzola
    These are extra-delicious topped with chopped toasted nuts, such as hazelnuts or walnuts. Balsamic glaze can be purchased at gourmet and well-stocked grocery stores.

    Makes 24

    Pears
    2 firm red Bartlett or other red-skinned pears
    1 tablespoon olive oil
    1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
    1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
    1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme

    24 pieces Herbed Crostini (recipe follows)
    1 cup (4 ounces) crumbled gorgonzola cheese or thinly sliced Cambozola
    2 tablespoons balsamic glaze

    For garnishing
    Tiny sprigs of fresh thyme

    Preheat an oven to 450 degrees F.

    To roast the pears: Quarter the pears lengthwise, then core. Cut each quarter lengthwise into 6 slices (you should have 24 slices, total). In a medium bowl, whisk together the oil, vinegar, salt, and thyme. Add the pears and toss to coat.

    Spray a rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray. Lay out the pears, not touching, on the baking sheet. Roast for 12 to 15 minutes, or until golden and starting to caramelize on the edges. Pears can be cooled, covered, and refrigerated for up to 3 days before serving.

    When ready to serve, lay out the crostini on a baking sheet and top each piece with about 1 heaping teaspoon of gorgonzola or a slice of Cambozola, then a slice of pear. Bake until just warmed, about 4 minutes.

    Drizzle each piece with about 1/4 teaspoon balsamic glaze, then garnish with thyme.

    Herbed Crostini
    Crostini are the must-have party basic. Use as a base for assorted toppers, such as creamy cheeses, tapenade, or spreads.

    Makes 32 to 40 pieces

    1/3 cup olive oil
    1/2 teaspoon dried basil leaves
    1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
    Pinch of cayenne pepper
    1 teaspoon minced fresh garlic
    1 long, skinny French baguette, cut into 1/4-inch diagonal slices
    Kosher salt for sprinkling

    Preheat an oven to 400 degrees F.

    In a small bowl, mix the oil, dried herbs, cayenne, and garlic. Lightly brush the baguette slices with the herb oil or, in a large bowl, drizzle the bread with the oil and toss well. Lay out the bread in a single layer on baking sheets, sprinkle with salt, and bake for about 8 to 10 minutes, until just crispy.

    Crostini can be made in advance, cooled thoroughly, and stored in airtight containers for up to 3 days. If necessary, recrisp them in a hot oven for a couple of minutes.

    Recipe from Kathy Casey Sips & Apps, Chronicle Books – www.liquidkitchen.com

    Pear Thyme Fizz
    Fresh thyme’s savoriness is wonderful against the crisp dryness of pear.

    Makes 1 drink

    1 large sprig fresh thyme
    1 1/2 oz Pear Infused Vodka (recipe follows)
    1/2 ounce fresh lemon juice
    3/4 ounce Simple Syrup (recipe follows)
    Splash of chilled brut Champagne, dry sparkling wine, or soda water

    For garnishing
    Thin slice of fresh pear
    Small sprig of fresh thyme

    Bend the large thyme sprig and drop into a cocktail shaker. Fill the shaker with ice. Measure in the vodka, lemon juice, and simple syrup. Cap and shake vigorously. Strain into a martini glass. Top with a splash of Champagne. Float a pear slice and thyme sprig in the drink for garnish.

    Pear Infused Vodka
    Makes 1 1/2 cups

    1 large ripe pear
    1 1/2 cups vodka

    Core pear and cut into thin slices (leave skin on) and place in a mason jar with vodka. Cap and shake. Leave to infuse for at least 2 days (up to 5 days) and then strain. (Discard pears.) Refrigerate until ready to use.

    Simple Syrup
    This is a bar staple and the most commonly used sweetener. Though you can purchase simple syrup, it is ordinarily sweeter than I prefer, so I highly recommend making your own. Proportions vary but it is easy.

    Makes 3 cups

    2 cups water
    2 cups sugar

    Mix the water and sugar together in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Let boil 1 minute then immediately remove from the heat. Let cool to room temperature before using. Store in a clean glass bottle or container, at room temperature, for up to 2 weeks or, refrigerated, for up to 3 months.

    Recipe from Kathy Casey Sips & Apps, Chronicle Books – www.liquidkitchen.com

    Posted by Kathy Casey on November 26th, 2014  |  Add Comment |  Posted in appetizers, Books to Cook, Cocktails, Fruit, KOMO Radio, Recent Posts, Recipes
    Untitled