Foodie News

Holiday Gift Ideas

The holidays are right around the corner! And I have a few d’lish ideas for your favorite foodie. Try making a local themed basket filled with handcrafted NW goods!

First a Sweet Basket: local chocolate bars, honey, salted caramel and unique preserves, and cute little spoons to serve them up with. Don’t forget to tuck in one of my “Over 21” Real Fruit Cakes made with Maker’s Mark – bourbon-soaked fruits and toasted nuts bound in a spice batter and topped with a brown sugar-bourbon glaze – yowza!

fruit-cake-3
A great basket or stocking stuffer – my “Over 21” Real Fruit Cakes made with Maker’s Mark!
Available for purchase online or bought at the Food Studios (Monday-Friday, 9 AM – 5 PM)

Next a Savory basket: local cheeses, cool pickles from the market, herbed flat bread, and dried fruits, add some fun cheese identification markers and a cool little wooden cutting board and it’ll be a hit!

For a Boozy Basket: package up a bottle of local spirit like one of our Washington herbaceous gins or Glass Honey Vodka (one of my faves), tuck in a couple of cool cocktail glasses, and a bottle of unique local bitters.

For more inspiration, make sure to check out KnackShops.com a local based custom gift side for even more creative basket ideas.

Don’t fret – get creative! -Kathy

Posted by Kathy on December 1st, 2016  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Foodie News, Kathy Casey, KOMO Radio, Lifestyle, Recent Posts

Thanksgiving Leftovers

Turkey day is here ….and gone and you just MAY have a few leftovers in your fridge. Need some tasty ideas? Don’t worry, I’m here to help!

turkey-feast
A d’lish Thanksgiving Day feast!

Thanksgiving for breakfast – why not! Thanksgiving Benedict is a delicious idea a chef friend shared with me. Form leftover stuffing into patties, pan sear, then top with some sliced turkey, a poached egg and a dollop of gravy. YUM!

And you know there is never enough gravy left over- right? Why not make some more? Pick that turkey clean (save the meat for soup and sandwiches.) Now it’s time to make a Simple Turkey Gravy.

 

Get out the stock pot. Add in the bones, some chopped carrots, celery and onion. Cover with water (and sometimes I like to add in a carton of chicken broth to give it a flavor boost) bring to a simmer for 2 hours – then strain and voila!

Take that extra turkey meat and stock then make a soup. Or make gravy and add some veggies and leftover turkey meat and serve over biscuits for a d’lish open face hot turkey sandwich.

Wishing you all a Happy Thanksgiving Weekend! –Kathy

Simple Turkey Gravy
Makes about 5 cups

6 Tbsp. butter
2 Tbsp. minced onion AND/OR 1/4 cup chopped mushrooms
1/2 cup flour
5 cups homemade turkey stock (see above for method using your leftover turkey carcass)
1 tsp. salt
pepper to taste

Melt the butter in a large, heavy saucepan. Add the onions (and mushrooms if using) and sauté over medium-high heat for about 2 minutes. Add the flour and stir vigorously until combined and smooth. Cook for about 1 minute. Add the stock all at once and whisk vigorously so as to eliminate any lumps. Reduce the heat and simmer for about 10 minutes, until the gravy is nicely thickened. Season with salt and white pepper.

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

Posted by Kathy on November 23rd, 2016  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Foodie News, Kathy Casey, KOMO Radio, other, poultry, Recipes

Back for the Holidays: “Over 21” Real Fruit Cakes

fruit-cake-3

It’s been over 10 years now that we have been baking up our signature “Over 21” Real Fruit Cake made with Maker’s Mark! Garnering cult like status these delicious beauties are chock full of Maker’s Mark-soaked dried fruits, including apricots, cranberries, tart cherries and golden raisins as well as lots of tasty toasted nuts from hazelnuts to rich pecans – all bound with our signature spiced batter. Baked until golden then brushed hot out of the oven with a Maker’s Mark brown sugar glaze.

“This is not your grandmother’s fruitcake, and is sure to convert any fruitcake naysayers. With all that delicious bourbon, fruit and nuts in it, this fruit cake certainly won’t end up re-gifted! Some loyal fans have said they ate the whole thing themselves,” commented Kathy Casey, “I personally love to toast a slice for Christmas morning breakfast.”

Quantities are limited and sell out fast. So here’s how to order or pick-up:

  • -Starting November 28th Real Fruit Cakes can be picked up at Kathy Casey Food Studios, located in Ballard – Monday thru Friday, 9:00am – 5:00pm (call 206-784-7840 to check on availability).

    -Order from our website starting November 28th while supplies last.

    -Priced at $11.95 this holiday season.

Kathy Casey Food Studios is located at 5130 Ballard Ave. NW and is open Monday through Friday
from 9 AM to 5 PM. (We suggest calling ahead to be sure that cakes are available).

For more information, contact: call (206) 784-7840, email dishing@kathycasey.com or check out our website www.kathycasey.com.

Posted by Kathy on November 11th, 2016  |  Add Comment |  Posted in dessert, Foodie News, Fruit, Kathy Casey, Lifestyle, Press, Recent Posts, Snacks

Crab Talk

It’s time for crab talk! This versatile shellfish is d’lish all around, and here in the Northwest, we love our Dungeness Crab! 

Now you’ve probably noticed that some crab eaters are pickers and some are pilers. The former pick and eat as they go – while the latter make a pile of shelled crab, not even tasting a single morsel until they have a good-sized mound. So which one are you: a picker or a piler? 

Fresh, right out of the shell is still my favorite way to eat this prized catch but it is also amazing made into a big crab louie salad, oooooh and don’t forget how amazing crab cakes or the ever popular artichoke and crab dips are too.  

If you’re looking for new ways to cook up this crustacean, look no further than local author and seafood guru ‘ new book Crab: 50 Recipes with the Fresh Taste of the SeaCynthia Nims! It is chock-full of tips like how to buy and store crab, what to drink with crab, and local history and lore. Plus, it has delicious recipes to try like her savory Sourdough Bread Pudding with Crab (recipe below); now that sounds like a perfect holiday brunch dish to me! Want to learn more about crab? Then be sure to check out Cynthia’s website for crab filled events, including book signings and crab cooking classes!

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Photo by Cynthia Nims.

For a d’lish appetizer for any holiday entertaining, try my Warm Crab, Mushroom & Brie Dip with Fresh Thyme & Sea Salt Crostini, rich and d’lish! So get cracking and enjoy some delicious crab this season! -Kathy  

Sourdough Bread Pudding with Crab
Bread pudding shows up in a lot of guises these days, making an appearance here at the breakfast table with tangy sourdough bread holding sweet crabmeat in an herby custard. Feel free to use a non-sourdough bread if you prefer. – Cynthia Nims

Makes 8 Servings

Crab: any cooked crabmeat
Unsalted butter, for buttering
1 small loaf day-old rustic sourdough bread (about 1 pound), cut into 1⁄2-inch cubes, divided
2 cups grated sharp cheddar cheese (about 8 ounces), divided
1⁄2 cup minced onion
8 to 12 ounces crabmeat
8 large eggs
3 cups whole milk
2 Tbsp. minced fresh at-leaf (Italian) parsley
1 Tbsp. minced fresh chives
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Generously butter a 9-by-13-inch baking dish.

Scatter about half of the bread cubes evenly in the baking dish, and sprinkle 1 1/2 cups of the cheese over the bread, followed by the onion. Pick over the crab meat to remove any bits of shell or cartilage. If using king or snow crab leg meat, cut it into small dice. Scatter the crab over the onion, then top the crab with the remaining bread cubes.

In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs to blend, then whisk in the milk, parsley, and chives with a good pinch each of salt and pepper. Pour the egg mixture over the bread and let sit for about 10 minutes, pressing the cubes down so they evenly soak up the custard.

Sprinkle the remaining ½ cup cheese over the top and bake the bread pudding until the top is lightly browned and a knife inserted in the center of the dish comes out clean, about 45 minutes. If the top is well browned before the eggy custard is cooked, loosely cover the dish with a piece of foil. Let the bread pudding sit for a few minutes before cutting it into pieces to serve.

Recipe ©2016 By Cynthia Nims. All rights reserved. Excerpted from Crab: 50 Recipes with the Fresh Taste of the Sea by permission of Sasquatch Books.

Warm Crab, Mushroom & Brie Dip with Fresh Thyme & Sea Salt Crostini
Makes about 6 cups — serves about 12 – 24 people

Dip can be prepared up to 2 days in advance if using very fresh crab and baked when your guests are just starting to arrive. Easy to make Fresh Thyme & Sea Salt Crostini bake at the same oven temperature to make things easy!

1 small (8 oz wt.) wheel brie cheese
——————————————
2 tsp. olive oil
1 cup thinly sliced onion
2 cups thinly sliced crimini mushrooms
2 tsp. minced fresh garlic
1/2 cup dry sherry
——————————————-
1 1/2 cups mayonnaise (Note: do not use reduced-fat or fat-free, I like to use Best Foods in this recipe)
3 cups (about 10 oz. wt.) shredded, high-quality parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp. Tabasco
1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup thinly sliced green onion
1/4 cup minced sweet red bell pepper (optional)
1/2 cup minced celery
3/4 pound shelled crab meat, (such as Dungeness or try Alaska King) drained well (about 2 1/2 cups drained), see note above

Garnish: Minced fresh parsley
Fresh Thyme & Sea Salt Crostini (recipe follows)

Cut the brie cheese into 1/2” pieces, set aside and then let come to room temperature.

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onions and cook stirring often till half cooked, about 4 minutes. Add the mushrooms and continue cooking until the onions are very soft and the mushrooms are tender, about 4 minutes.

Then add the garlic and sherry and continue cooking until the sherry is completely reduced about 8 minutes. (There should not be any liquid left.) Set aside to cool.

Place the room temperature brie in a mixer with a paddle attachment. Mix on medium-high speed for about 1 minute or until the cheese softened. Scrape down the sides of the bowl then add half of the mayonnaise. Mix for 3 more minutes on medium-high speed. Add the remaining mayonnaise, parmesan, Tabasco and lemon juice. Mix together on medium speed until well mixed, about 1 minute.

Remove bowl from mixer and fold-in the cooled mushroom mixture, green onion, pepper, celery and crab meat – being careful not to break up the crab meat. Do not over mix.

Place dip in a 7-inch x 11-inch baking dish, or 2 quart or ovenproof serving dish. Smooth out but do not compact it. (Dip can be covered and refrigerated up to 1 day at this point.)

When ready to serve dip, place in a 400-degree F. pre-heated oven. Bake for about 15 – 20 minutes or until dip just starts to bubble around the edges, is heated through and the cheese is melted. (Be careful not to overcook) If desired, sprinkle with minced fresh parsley. Serve immediately with Fresh Thyme & Sea Salt Crostini, or rustic flat bread or crackers.

Fresh Thyme & Sea Salt Crostini
Crostini are the must-have party basic. Use as a base for assorted toppers, such as creamy cheeses, tapenade, or spreads.

Makes 24 – 32 pieces

1 baguette
3 Tbsp. olive oil
2 tsp. minced fresh thyme
1 tsp. minced fresh garlic
1/2 tsp. sea salt

Pre-heat an oven to 400 degrees F.

Cut the baguette with a serrated knife into 1/4-inch diagonal slices. Lay out on a baking sheet pan.

In a small bowl, mix together the oil, thyme and garlic. Lightly brush the baguette slices with the herb oil, then sprinkle with salt. Bake for about 10 – 15 minutes, or until just crispy.

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

Posted by Kathy on November 10th, 2016  |  Add Comment |  Posted in appetizers, Books to Cook, breakfast, Foodie News, Kathy Casey, KOMO Radio, Recipes, seafood

1st Annual Holiday Wine Fest

Seattle wine enthusiasts, make sure to mark your calendars! The 1st Annual Holiday Wine Fest invites all wine enthusiasts to sip, sample, and savor a bevy of local and international wines, ciders, beers, and spirits. There will be plenty of nibbles to try as well as products to buy.

The event takes place on this Saturday, November 12th and this Sunday, November 13th at the Seattle Exhibition Hall. Make sure to get your tickets in advanced for this sipping event!

holiday-wine-fest

Posted by Kathy on November 8th, 2016  |  Add Comment |  Posted in events, Foodie News

Falling for Chili

When the days grow shorter and the weather begins to cool off, I start thinking about making some chili. It’s a protein-packed, warm and filling dish – especially good for those weekend game days. The key to a good chili is in the spices and sautéing your chili spices ahead of time really helps bring out the flavors.

simplyrecipes-chili
This Yummy Chili Photo is from SimplyRecipes.

October is also National Chili Month (who knew?) and as you can imagine, there are a ton of chili recipes out there to choose from because it is a great base to add a signature spin or secret ingredient. From white bean and chicken, to a 4 bean bonanza, some with meat, some without, mild spiced or smokin’ hot, the sky is the limit.

I love making batches of my Stadium Apple Chili during this time of year. It starts with chunks of tender pork, lots of spices, onions, a bottle of NW brew, tomatoes and kidney beans. I then add in a chopped apple for a touch of sweetness and let that slowly simmer on the stovetop or in a crockpot until it is ready to serve. I am always sure to make a lot because YOU KNOW it’s always better the next day.

You can definitely serve it with lots of tasty toppings too. My top choices are always sour cream, grated Northwest cheeses like Tillamook Cheddar, crisp white onions, and spicy jalapeños. I also like to crush up corn chips to add some crunch too!

So don’t let the chilly weather get you down – warm up with some chili! –Kathy

Stadium Apple Chili

Fuji apples are incredible. Not only do they have a wonderfully clean, sweet flavor, but their cooked texture is amazingly firm. A great shape-holder! You’ll be a true Fuji fan when you try this recipe!

Makes 7 cups.

2 Fuji apples or other firm cooking apple
1 Tbsp. vegetable oil
8 oz wt. (1/2 lb) coarse ground beef (chili grind)
4 oz wt. (1/4 lb) hot pork sausage
12 oz wt. boneless pork butt, cut in 3/4″ – 1″ cubes
1 cup diced onion
1/2 cup diced green pepper
1 Tbsp. minced fresh garlic
1/4 cup chili powder
1 Tbsp. dry whole oregano
1 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
1/8 – 1/4 tsp. red chili flakes, (optional)
1 cup beef broth
1 cup beer
1 can (14 1/2 oz) diced tomatoes in puree
2 cans (15 oz ea.) pinto beans, drained
1 cans (15 oz) kidney beans, drained
1/2 – 1 tsp. salt, more or less to taste

Chili Toppers
grated apple
grated cheddar cheese
sour cream
thinly sliced green onion

Peel, core and dice the apples into 1/2″ cubes. Set aside.

Meanwhile, heat oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high to high heat. Add the meats, stir occasionally and cook till meats are browned and no juice remains.

Add onions, peppers, garlic, chili powder and spices. Stir in well, and cook stirring constantly for 1-2 minutes, being careful not to scorch chili powder.

Add beef broth, beer and tomatoes. Combine well and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat and simmer uncovered for about 15 minutes.

Add apples and beans and return to a simmer, cover and cook for about 20 minutes or until meat and apples are tender. Season with salt to taste.

(Note: If chili gets too thick, add water as needed during cooking.)

Serve with Chili Toppers of your choice.

Vegetarian option: Substitute 1 pound peeled, 1″ cubed winter squash (such as Hubbard or pumpkin) for meats and an apple juice and vegetable broth mixture for beef broth.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®

Posted by Kathy on October 21st, 2016  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Foodie News, Kathy Casey, KOMO Radio, Lifestyle, meats, pork, Recent Posts, Recipes, soups

Spaghetti Squash Is More Than Just A Pasta Plant

Most people have had hand at cooking spaghetti squash, and there are a lot of ways to prepare this tasty vegetable.

This winter squash starts getting popular at the farmers market and grocery store in early fall. The cooked stringy flesh is delicious, but there are a few cooking tricks to know.

(Photo from Elizabeth Norris’ blog)

Cut the squash in half length-wise. Make sure to use a good knife and a little muscle – this is a sturdy squash! Once you have the squash in half, scrape out the seeds and pulp the same way you would with any other winter squash.

Turn the halves cut-side down in a baking dish. Add a little water and roast in a 350 degree oven for about an hour. You’ll know it’s done when a fork slides in and out of the flesh easily. If you’re in a hurry you can quick cook it the same way in the microwave in a glass dish – just blast on high until fork tender.

Now to get those noodle-like strands out of the shell. Turn the squash up and gently scrape the flesh with a fork along the grain and loosen it up. Then scoop the squash into a bowl and finish how you like.

It’s a great low-calorie and gluten-free option to traditional pasta for topping with marinara. Or toss it with maple syrup or honey, a little butter or olive oil, some minced fresh herbs and some sea salt for a great side dish to any entrée. –Kathy

Posted by Kathy Casey on September 29th, 2016  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Foodie News, KOMO Radio, Lifestyle, Recent Posts

Huckleberries – A taste of Late Summer

It’s time to talk about huckleberries. This native Pacific Northwest berry is delicious in drinks, desserts, incorporated into dinners, or straight off the bush!

huckleberries
Photo from The Daily Apple

There are lots of places you can pick huckleberries and often you can get some great hiking in, too. Find a trail in the mountains that takes you roughly above 2,000 feet; huckleberries grow fine at sea-level, but really go wild in higher elevations. Look for bushes in meadows or along lakes. The Washington Trails Association has a great list of “huckleberry hikes.”

Just remember these 2 key pointers:

  1. Lots of berries grow in our neck of the woods, and not all of them are edible. Make sure to take a guidebook along to make sure you’re picking the right ones.
  2. Keep your eyes open for roaming animals. Our wildlife loves huckleberries as much as we do; you might even spot a bear so be careful!

And they’re not just for pie although I love them studded into an apple pie like in my Apple Huckleberry Pie with Spiced Crust.

One of my favorites is a savory Pan Seared Chicken Breast with Huckleberries, Blue Cheese & Port Sauce. Or how about roasted with slices of sweet potato – yum!

These wild fall berries are delicious in almost anything! –Kathy

Apple Huckleberry Pie with Spiced Crust
Makes 1 9-inch pie

Crust
2 cups flour
2 tsp sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp round nutmeg
1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs
12 Tbsps (1 1/2 sticks) cold butter, cut into small pieces
6 Tbsps ice water

Filling
1 cup sugar
3/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
3 Tbsps flour
2 Tbsps cornstarch
7 cups 1/8- to 1/4-inch-sliced, peeled and cored apples (about 2 to 2 1/2 pounds)
1 cup fresh wild huckleberries
milk and sugar for topping (optional)

To make the crust:In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, salt, nutmeg and graham cracker crumbs and mix evenly. Cut in butter until particles are pea-sized. Sprinkle in cold water, 1 tablespoon at a time, and mix with a fork just until dough comes together in a ball. Do not overmix dough. (If dough is too soft to handle, press gently into 2 disks and refrigerate for about 20 minutes.)

Divide dough into 2 pieces and press gently into disks. Refrigerate for about 10 – 15 minutes while you make the filling.

To make the filling: In a large bowl, toss together the sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, flour, cornstarch, apples and huckleberries. Set aside.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Remove dough from the fridge and, on a lightly floured surface, roll dough out into 2 rounds, each about 12 inches in diameter. Brush excess flour from one crust, then gently roll up crust onto rolling pin. Unroll into pie pan and press/fit bottom crust into pan. Trim dough overhang to 1/2″.

Mound the fruit mixture evenly into pastry-lined pie pan. Brush edges of bottom crust lightly with water and then cover pie with top crust. Trim top crust overhang to 1 inch, then fold overhanging top-crust dough under edge of bottom crust overhang and tuck excess dough under, even with edge of pan. Seal and flute edges with fingertips to make a pretty crimp. Make several slits on the top to allow steam to escape. For a shiny, sugary top, brush top crust lightly with milk then sprinkle with granulated sugar.

Bake for 10 minutes at 425, then reduce the heat to 375 degrees and bake for about 50 minutes more, or until crust is nicely browned and apples are cooked through.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®.

Pan-Seared Chicken Breast with Huckleberries, Blue Cheese & Port Sauce
Makes 4 servings

4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper
1 Tbsp clarified butter or olive oil plus more if needed
1 shallot, minced
2 large fresh sage leaves
3/4 cup port
1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup crumbled Oregon blue cheese or other full-flavored blue cheese (about 2 ounces)
1/4 cup fresh wild huckleberries

Garnishes:
fresh sage leaves
crumbled blue cheese
fresh wild huckleberries

Read through the entire recipe before beginning, and have all ingredients ready within reach of the range.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Season chicken liberally on each side with salt and pepper. (If chicken breasts are really large, then lightly pound out a bit between sheets of plastic wrap.)

In a large, heavy, ovenproof nonstick skillet or sauté pan, heat the clarified butter over high heat until hot. Sear the chicken breasts for about 4 minutes on each side, or until golden brown.

Transfer the skillet to the oven and cook the chicken for about 10 to 12 minutes, or until juices run clear. Remove the pan from the oven, transfer chicken to a plate and keep warm.

Place the chicken-cooking pan over high heat and add the shallot and sage leaves to the pan. Cook for about 30 seconds, then stir in the port and mustard and scrape up the browned bits in the bottom of the pan to get all that good flavor into the sauce. Continuing cooking on high heat to reduce the port to 1/4 cup, about 1 1/2 minutes. Whisk in the chicken broth and cream, and reduce until saucy and almost glossy, about 4 minutes. Add the cheese and whisk in for about 30 seconds to 1 minute, then remove the sauce from heat and stir in the huckleberries.

Discard the sage leaves. Whisk in any accumulated juices from the resting chicken breasts, taste the sauce, and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper if needed.

To serve, plate the chicken breasts on dinner plates and drizzle with the sauce, dividing evenly. Garnish with fresh sage leaves and a sprinkling of cheese and huckleberries.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®.

Posted by Kathy Casey on September 21st, 2016  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Restaurants, Cocktails, dessert, Foodie News, Fruit, KOMO Radio, Lifestyle, poultry, Recent Posts, Recipes
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