KOMO Radio

Recipes and tips as heard on KOMO Radio

Hangover Cures

As 2013 draws to a close, the biggest party of the year is still to come! New Year’s Eve – celebrating the old and ringing in the new!

Of course, this usually involves at least a cocktail or two. Maybe three or more… 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 glass and add a little vodka, Angostura bitters and soda water. You can also top with a few drops of olive oil for extra “coating”. Then down the hatch!

Entertaining on New Year’s Day? A Bloody Mary Bar for brunch will definitely help with that headache – with a little hair of the dog! Set up a DIY station and let your guests mix up their own concoctions. Put out different spirits, my go-to house-made Balsamic Mary mix, hot sauce and lots of garnish goodies from pickled veggies, shrimp, to even beef jerky.

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 Year! – Kathy


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

Hangover Helper
In the course of testing recipes for my Sips & Apps, I of course tried this one, too. And I am pleased to say that it works. Emergen-C gives you a C- and B-vitamin boost and replaces some lost electrolytes, vodka is a little “hair of the dog,” bitters is a digestif, soda supplies bubbles, and the olive oil . . . well, an old bootlegger once told me that a small spoonful was good for coating a morning-after stomach. For a more substantial breakfast, “garnish” the drink with one strip of crispy-cooked bacon.

Makes 1 drink

1 packet Emergen-C
1 ounce vodka
2 dashes Angostura bitters
4 ounces chilled soda water
1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil (optional)

Empty the packet of Emergen-C into an old-fashioned or juice glass. Measure in the vodka. Add the bitters and soda water and stir. Top with olive oil if desired. Drink and feel better!

Recipe from Kathy Casey Sips & Apps, Chronicle Books

Posted by Kathy Casey on December 27th, 2013  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Cocktails, KOMO Radio, Lifestyle, Recent Posts, Recipes, Small Screen Network

Cooking with Candy Canes

I just love this time of year. Everything is sparkly, the lights twinkling in the trees, and of course, candy canes!

Those wonderful, seasonal peppermint treats that hang from trees, peak out of stockings and garnish your holiday latte. The holidays just wouldn’t be complete without them. They are also an ingredient in many of my favorite holiday goodies!

Peppermint and chocolate, what a great pair! Try my recipe for individual little Peppermint Chocolate Fudge Cakes – baked in muffin tins then drizzled with chocolate and sprinkled with crushed candy canes. They make a great little something to “take” or gift.

Need a holiday cupcake idea? Whip crushed candy canes into your favorite frosting recipe and crown with a mini candy cane. D’lish and oh so festive!


Photo by Kathy Casey Liquid Kitchen®.

For a more spirited idea, try making candy cane-infused vodka! Just combine 1 1/2 cup of vodka plus 8 – 10 starlight peppermints or 6 mini candy canes in a jar with a tight fitting lid. Shake a couple of times a day until dissolved. Enjoy it in your cocoa or frozen as a shot.

Here’s to some holiday cheers with candy cane! -Kathy

Peppermint Chocolate Fudge Cakes
These are the perfect little something for after a big holiday dinner or for a party take-along.

Makes 12 cakes

Cupcakes
3 ounces unsweetened baking chocolate
1 1/2 sticks salted butter
3 large eggs
1 1/2 cups sugar
6 tablespoons flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Topping
2 ounces dark chocolate chips
2 ounces white chocolate chips + 1/2 teaspoon vegetable oil
6 peppermint hard candies, crushed

Preheat an oven to 400 degrees F. Pan-spray nonstick standard size cupcake/muffin pan(s) —you will be making 12 cakes. (If any muffin cups are left empty, fill them halfway with water before baking cakes.)

In a bowl over simmering water, melt the unsweetened chocolate and butter together.

Meanwhile, with a whisk or electric mixer, in a large bowl mix the remaining cupcake ingredients together until glossy. Add the melted chocolate-butter mixture and beat again until glossy and smooth.

Divide the batter evenly into the 12 muffin cups. (Liners are not needed.)

Bake cakes for 15 to 16 minutes or until slightly puffy. Remove from the oven and let cool completely. Run a knife around the sides to release cakes.

To decorate: Lay cakes out on a platter. Place each of the chocolate chips in small glass ramekins or very small microwave safe containers; add the vegetable oil to the white chocolate; and individually microwave for 10 second intervals (stirring in between) until just melted. Be careful not to overcook the chocolate. Immediately drizzle/decorate the tops of the cakes with the chocolates and then sprinkle with the crushed hard candies.

Cakes will keep covered at room temperature for up to 3 to 4 days.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®.

Posted by Kathy Casey on December 19th, 2013  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Cocktails, Foodie News, KOMO Radio, Lifestyle, Recent Posts, Recipes, dessert

Holiday Gift Ideas

The holidays are right around the corner and I have a few d’lish ideas for your favorite foodie – a local themed basket filled with handcrafted Pacific Northwest goodies!

First off, a Sweet Basket: local chocolate bars (I love Fran’s Chocolate Gold Bars), neighborhood honey like 5130 Honey , salted caramel (Theo’s Chocolates’ caramel collection are wonderful), and unique preserves (we will have lots like Apricot & Rose Geranium and Clementine Ginger Marmalade at our Holiday Extravaganza), and cute little spoons to serve them up with.

Next, a Savory Basket: local cheeses, cool pickles, herbed flat bread and crackers (Essential Baking Company has a great selection!), and dried fruits, with fun cheese identification markers for your fromage.

For a Boozy Basket: package a bottle of local spirit like one of our Washington herbaceous gins or white whiskeys to age yourself (like this one from Woodinville Whiskey Co.), tuck in a couple of cool cocktail glasses, a bottle of unique local bitters and your favorite cocktail book – maybe even my Sips and Apps (75% off special deal on ebook versions!)

sign2

And don’t forget!  This Saturday, December 14th is my Holiday Extravaganza & Open House at my Food Studios in Ballard from 11AM to 7Pm. Stop by and stock up on great holiday gifts and have a sip and nibble of something d’lish! -Kathy

Posted by Kathy Casey on December 12th, 2013  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Cocktails, Foodie News, KOMO Radio, Lifestyle, Recent Posts, events

Kathy Casey Holiday Extravaganza & Open House

Have a favorite foodie or cocktail enthusiast on your holiday shopping list? Well I’ve got you covered! I’m opening the doors to my Food Studios in Ballard for the Holiday Extravaganza & Open House next Saturday, December 14th from 11 AM to 7PM.

There’ll be lots of tasty treats to help you stuff your favorite foodie’s and cocktail enthusiast’s stocking, including Housemade Preserves like Savory Tomato & Basil Jam that are great to serve with sexy cheeses, Liquid Kitchen Honey from our hives, Dish D’lish Seasonings, our Signature Boozy Cheese Balls made with Hennessy, Spiced Hot Buttered Rum Mix and lots of housemade goodies like Poppin’ Peppermint Chocolate Bark, Bacon Brittle and Gingerbread Stars.

The Holiday Extravaganza isn’t complete without our “Over 21” Real Fruit Cake made with Maker’s Mark. These fruitcakes are chock full of Maker’s Mark soaked dried fruits as well as loads of nuts with a little spiced batter to bind it all! Baked then brushed hot out of the oven with a bourbon- brown sugar syrup. So get there early as these fly out the door faster than Santa’s reindeer!

Fruitcake
Watch our YouTube video to see the mayhem in making this d’lish fruitcake!

I’ll also be signing my newest cookbook D’Lish Deviled Eggs, a perfect holiday hostess gift! And of course we’ll be serving up tasty samples for you to try throughout the day.

So mark your calendars and join us:

Holiday Extravaganza & Open House
Saturday, December 14th from 11AM – 7PM
5130 Ballard Ave NW
Seattle, WA 98107

Hope to see you there! –Kathy

Posted by Kathy Casey on December 6th, 2013  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Books to Cook, Cocktails, Foodie News, KOMO Radio, Recent Posts, events

What to do with all your Thanksgiving leftovers

Turkey day has come and gone and you just may have a few leftovers in your fridge. Now there is nothing better in my mind than a Thanksgiving sandwich; turkey, white bread, mayo, salt and pepper, some stuffing and a smear of cranberry sauce! We all have our favorites! Need some more tasty ideas? Don’t worry; I’m here to help!

Turkey Feast
A Turkey Feast!
Photo from Dishing with Kathy Casey.

Ever considered Thanksgiving for breakfast? Yes please – why not! Thanksgiving Benedict is my new favorite idea that Chef friend John Koch shared this with me. Form leftover stuffing into a patty then pan sear it. Top with some sliced turkey, a poached egg and a dollop of gravy – voila … a hearty breakfast that will have you saying YUM!

And there never seems to be enough gravy left over, right? Why not make some more? Pick that turkey clean (save the meat for soup and sandwiches) and make a Rich Turkey Stock with the carcass.

Get out the stock pot! Add in the bones, some chopped carrots, celery, onion, and cover with cold 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. Voilà – now you have a great stock for making more gravy or a tasty soup.

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

Don’t forget about cocktails while things are cooking! Check out this post in the Chicagoist for my easy to make holiday party cocktails like my Snow Drift (flash blended Martin Miller’s Gin, fresh lemon juice, homemade cranberry ginger syrup, egg whites, and ice) and Holiday Manhattan with DIY Spiced Vermouth. And for more great cocktail ideas and recipes, check out www.LiquidKitchen.com.

Need a great gravy recipe for a crowd? Here’s my favorite – it incorporates homemade do ahead stock (recipe below) or you can make the stock from the tip above.  – Gobble Gobble!!

Old-Fashioned Turkey Mushroom Gravy – THAT MAKES A LOT!
Makes 10 cups, or about 20 generous 1/2-cup servings

(Feel free to cut this recipe in half for a smaller crowd!)

You can make this a few days ahead and then re-heat in your turkey roasting pan for extra turkey flavor goodness! Read through the entire recipe before starting.

12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) butter
1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary – or 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed
8 ounces (4 cups) thinly sliced mushrooms
1 cup flour
10 cups Rich Turkey Stock (recipe follows or make from tip above with leftover turkey carcuss)
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon white pepper

Melt the butter in a large, heavy saucepan. Add the rosemary and mushrooms 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 pepper.

Now you can serve it as is OR if you are pre making this and want to deglaze your turkey pan for the ultimate gravy use the following method to add your gravy to the pan method…

Then right before serving and while your turkey is set aside to rest – ready your turkey roasting pan full of turkey goodness: remove excess fat from your turkey roasting pan. Place the pan over a burner – add a big splash of white wine, champagne, potato cooking water, chicken broth or water. Using a metal spatula – scrape up all the goodies in the bottom of the pan… this is the turkey goodness. Then add your prepared Turkey Mushroom gravy – whisk well and heat till hot. Serve up and enjoy – you’ll have lots of gravy for all!

Rich Turkey Stock
Makes about 10 cups

2 large turkey legs or thighs, about 2 pounds total
1 yellow onion, unpeeled, coarsely chopped
1 large or 2 medium carrots, cut into large chunks
Up to 2 cups mushroom stems, optional
4 stalks celery, cut into chunks
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 bay leaf
1/2 cup white wine
12 cups water

Preheat an oven to 400°F.

Roast the turkey pieces in a baking pan for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until the skin is golden brown. Place them in an 8-quart pot and add the vegetables and seasonings. Deglaze the roasting pan with the wine, scraping the pan well to loosen browned bits, and add to the pot. Add the water.

Place the pot over medium-high heat and bring to a rapid simmer. Reduce the heat to low and lightly simmer for 45 minutes to 1 hour. Strain the stock and skim off any fat. Discard the vegetables. (Most of the flavor will have cooked out of the turkey; however, the meat can be removed from the bones and saved for another use.)

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®.

For more great leftover ideas check out this fun post:
19 Reasons Leftovers Are The Best Part Of Thanksgiving

Posted by Kathy Casey on November 28th, 2013  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Books to Cook, Foodie News, KOMO Radio, Lifestyle, Recent Posts, Recipes, other

Festive Eggnog

When you start to see eggnog everywhere, you know the holidays are here! This velvety, smooth and rich drink… warm with spices, is a festive drink for sure!

es20100917-329
Hot Buttered Eggnog with Rum
(Photo from Kathy Casey’s Liquid Kitchen®).

And variations abound from traditional to pumpkin and low-fat. Serve it cold, “straight up”, over ice, or with a splash of spirit…like rum, whisky or brandy. That will always adds some holiday cheer to any gathering!

But there are lots of other ways to enjoy eggnog other than drinking it. How about a light and fluffy Eggnog Chiffon Pie – a festive sweet ending to a holiday feast.

If bread pudding sounds more your style, then try Eggnog Bread Pudding with Rum Caramel. This dish is great made the day before. Just reheat and serve with a spirited rum caramel sauce. Super easy and delicious!

And of course, I just can’t blog about eggnog without giving you a good sippin’ recipe! My Hot Buttered Eggnog is a great winter warmer and a combo of two beloved sipping favorites. The base is made with rich vanilla ice cream and easily freezes so you can have it on hand for unexpected guests!

Watch how to make it on my Liquid Kitchen cocktail show and for more great holiday cocktail ideas, check out www.liquidkitchen.com.

Cheers to some great holiday sipping! – Kathy

Eggnog Chiffon Pie
Makes 1 9-inch pie

1 9-inch, baked, Spiced Graham Crust (recipe follows)

Eggnog Filling
1 envelope (1 tablespoon) Knox unflavored gelatin
1/4 cup water
4 eggs, separated *
1 cup sugar
1 cup half & half
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon rum extract

Rum Nutmeg Cream
1 cup whipping cream
1/4 cup sugar
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 tablespoon dark rum
1/4 teaspoon rum extract

Pre-bake the Spiced Crust and cool.

To make the Eggnog Filling: In a small bowl soften gelatin in the water for 5 minutes.

In a medium bowl whisk together the 4 egg yolks and 1/2 cup of the sugar (reserve the egg whites and remaining 1/2 cup sugar), and set aside.

Place half & half in a heavy-bottomed large bowl set over a pan of simmering water (a bain marie), and whisk in softened gelatin, filling spices and the 1/2 teaspoon rum extract. Heat until hot but not simmering.

Whisk half of the hot half & half mixture into the egg mixture to temper the eggs. Add the tempered egg mixture into the remaining hot half & half mixture, whisking constantly. Cook slowly until the mixture becomes thickened, stirring all the while. This should take about 3 minutes.

When mixture is thickened, remove from heat and cool to room temperature, stirring often to release the heat.

When mixture is cooled, place the egg whites in a mixer bowl and whip on high until soft peaks form, then gradually add the reserved 1/2 cup of sugar and whip until stiff peaks form. Fold 1/4 of the whipped egg whites into the cooled mixture to lighten it. Then gently fold in the remaining whipped egg whites until combined. Mound evenly into the cooled, baked pie crust and refrigerate until set, about 1 – 2 hours.

To make the Rum Nutmeg Cream: In a large bowl whip the cream, sugars and nutmeg until soft-peaked, then whisk in the rum and rum extract. Top chilled pie with the cream.

* Note: This pie contains uncooked egg whites. Raw eggs are not recommended for pregnant women, children, the elderly or anyone with immune deficiencies.

Spiced Graham Crust
Makes a single 9-inch crust

1 cup flour
1 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup graham cracker crumbs
6 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons ice water

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

In a medium bowl mix together the flour, sugar, salt, nutmeg, cinnamon, graham cracker crumbs and butter with a pastry blender until mixture looks like peas. Gradually sprinkle in the ice water and mix gently with a fork until dough comes together in a ball. Do not overhandle dough. If dough is too soft to handle, press gently into a disk and refrigerate for about 20 minutes.

On a lightly floured surface, roll dough out to a bit bigger than your pan. Brush excess flour off crust, then gently roll up crust onto rolling pin. Unroll into pie pan and press/fit crust into pan. Roll crust over at edges, trimming off any excess dough, then crimp with fingers to make a pretty crust edge. With a fork poke the pie crust all over so crust doesn’t bubble up when baking. Bake for about 8 to 10 minutes or until pastry is golden and cooked through.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®.

Eggnog Bread Pudding with Rum Caramel
If you won’t be serving it immediately, the pudding can be cooled, covered, and refrigerated for up to 2 days. Remove 2 hours before reheating. Preheat an oven to 300°F. Heat the bread pudding, uncovered, for 10 to 15 minutes, or until just warm.

Makes 6 to 8 servings

8 cups packed 1/2-inch to 1-inch cubed, rustic baguette or French bread
4 tablespoons butter, melted
1/4 cup currants
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1 cup sugar
2 egg yolks
4 large eggs
2 3/4 cups high-quality eggnog (not fat-free)
3/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 cup dark rum

Rum Caramel
1 cup high-quality caramel sauce
2 tablespoons dark rum

Whipped cream for garnish

Place the bread cubes in a large bowl and drizzle with melted butter. Toss in the currants and dried cranberries.

In another bowl, whisk together the sugar, egg yolks, whole eggs, eggnog, nutmeg, and rum until well combined. Pour the egg mixture over the bread cubes and stir gently. Let the mixture sit at least 30 minutes, poking the bread down into the egg mixture often and stirring it up every 10 minutes or so.

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Place the bread pudding mixture in a 7- x 11-inch or 9-inch square glass baking pan. Bake for 40 minutes, or until the center is just barely set and a knife comes out clean.

To make the Rum Caramel: In a small bowl, whisk together the caramel sauce and rum.

Serve the pudding warm, drizzled with some of the Rum Caramel. Garnish with a pouf of whipped cream. Serve additional Rum Caramel on the side.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®.

Hot Buttered Egg Nog with Rum
Combining two holiday favorites! Add more or less to taste; rum and Spiced Eggnog Mix. For a demo on how to make this drink, check out my cocktail video on Liquid Kitchen.

Makes 1 drink

3 – 4 Tbsp. Buttered Eggnog Mix (recipe follows)
1 – 1 1/2 oz rum (or substitute brandy or bourbon)
4 – 5 oz boiling water
Garnish: fresh grated nutmeg, long piece of orange zest

Place Buttered Eggnog Mix and rum in coffee glass or mug. Stir in boiling water until batter is dissolved. Grate fresh nutmeg over the top. Garnish with orange zest.

Buttered Eggnog Mix
Makes about 7 cups (about 30 – 36 servings)

1/2 pound salted butter (2 sticks), softened
1 Tbsp. finely minced or grated orange zest
1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
1 3/4 cups powdered sugar
1 pint very high-quality vanilla ice cream
1 cup high-quality eggnog
1 Tbsp. real vanilla extract
1 Tbsp. ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon rum extract

Be sure butter is softened. With an electric mixer; cream butter, orange zest and sugars together in a mixing bowl until totally smooth. Add remaining ingredients and mix until thoroughly combined. Store refrigerated for up to 1 week, or frozen for up to 1 month.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Liquid Kitchen®.

Posted by Kathy Casey on November 21st, 2013  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Cocktails, KOMO Radio, Recent Posts, Recipes, Small Screen Network, dessert, videos

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 14th, 2013  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Books to Cook, Cocktails, Fruit, KOMO Radio, Recent Posts, Recipes, appetizers

Cheesy,Goodness: Mac and Cheese

When I think of comfort foods, one of the first things that come to mind is mac & cheese. Gooey, warm, and of course, cheesy – this d’lish dish is always a winner!

One of my favorite recipes is a 4 Cheese Penne Bake – penne pasta, garlic and parmesan white sauce – tossed with loads of shredded cheese: cheddar, mozzarella, jack and parmesan. Cover the whole thing with some fresh, herby bread crumbs for a nice crunch.

4 Cheese Penne Bake
Gooey, melted cheese bake – yum!
Photo from Dishing with Kathy Casey.

Mac & Cheese is perfect to customize, you can add your favorite ingredients like bacon for a cheddar bacon mac. Or try adding in things like chopped roasted red peppers, green onions, artichokes, smoked chicken, sautéed mushrooms, sausage, green chilies….. the list is endless!

Or how about changing up the sauce by mixing in some salsa or chipotle for a kick of heat? Nothing is off limits!

So get creative and bake up some cheesy goodness! -Kathy

4 Cheese Penne Bake With Herb Bread Crumbs
Generously serves 6 – 8.

Herb Bread Crumbs (recipe follows)
4 Tbsp butter or margarine
1 Tbsp minced garlic
4 1/2 Tbsp flour
4 cups milk*
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 cup sour cream
1/4 cup grated high-quality Parmesan cheese
1 pound dry penne pasta
2 cups (8 oz. wt.) grated four-cheese blend**
2 cups (8 oz. wt.) grated Cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Make the Herb Bread Crumbs and set aside.

In a large heavy-bottom sauce pan melt the butter over medium heat. Add the garlic and stir around for about 20 seconds — do not let garlic brown. Stir in the flour and cook for about 1 minute, stirring constantly.

While stirring vigorously with a whisk, add the milk. Whisk well. Bring to a simmer and whisk occasionally until sauce is thickened, about 3 – 4 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in salt, pepper, sour cream and Parmesan cheese, and set aside.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil and cook penne pasta per package directions until done. Drain well.

In a very large bowl mix together the pasta and sauce, then fold in the grated cheeses until well combined. Place mixture into a lightly buttered, 13-inch x 9-inch baking pan.

Sprinkle with Herb Bread Crumbs and bake in a 375-degree oven for about 30 minutes or until pasta is heated through, sides are slightly bubbling and top is golden brown.

Chef’s Notes:
*For an even richer macaroni and cheese substitute half & half for the milk.

**Four-, five- and six-cheese blends are available in most grocers’ dairy sections. If you wish to make your own grated cheese blend, try using a mixture of any of the following: Jack, mozzarella, Gouda, Swiss, Havarti.

Herb Bread Crumbs
Makes about 1 1/2 cups.

3 cups packed, 1-inch French bread chunks
4 Tbsp butter
pinch salt and pepper
2 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley
1/2 tsp dry basil leaves
1/2 tsp dry thyme leaves

Place bread crumb ingredients in a food processor, and pulse processor on and off until the bread becomes chopped into a fine crumb and is well mixed with the other ingredients.

Bread crumbs should be refrigerated until used and can be kept frozen for up to 1 month.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®.

Posted by Kathy Casey on November 7th, 2013  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Books to Cook, KOMO Radio, Recent Posts, Recipes, sides
Untitled