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Archive for the 'Cuisine' Category

Book Giveaway: Cooking with Kids

My Favorite Recipes by Annabel Karmel New year’s is a time for resolutions — clean closets, healthy meals, all that good stuff. So, we’re guessing that somewhere on that lengthy to-do list, you’ve got something jotted down about spending more time with your kids, or teaching them to cook, right? Then here’s the book for you. Annabel Karmel’s new “My Favorite Recipes” is a freestanding flip book crammed with kid-friendly recipes for everything from corn chowder to chicken dippers and banana bites. Very, very cute! And it can be yours. All you have to do is click the “comments” button and tell us, what’s on your family’s New Year’s resolution list?

P.S. Congrats are in order for the lovely risapizza, who won the Angelina Ballerina dvd!

Posted on Tuesday, January 4th, 2011
Under: Contest, Cuisine | 6 Comments »

Holiday Countdown #12: Gingerbread People

Holiday Cookies (Photo by Mark DuFrene/Bay Area News Group) Mmmm, cookies! We talked about Toffee Bars the other day, but even gingerbread got a major makeover this fall, thanks to the latest pile of cookie cookbooks. Take a cue from Joanna Farrow’s new “Dress Your Gingerbread” (Octopus Books, 128 pp., $14.99), and you’ll be dressing your cookie people as swashbuckling pirates, adorable mermaids and striped bumblebees, too. Here, to get you started, is Joanna’s recipe for the gingerbread people. The recipe doubles easily and spreads very little on the pan, making it ideal for shaped cookies.

Gingerbread People
3 tablespoons softened, unsalted butter
3 tablespoons light brown sugar
1 egg yolk
2 tablespoons corn syrup
¾ cup all-purpose flour
½-1 teaspoon ground ginger, or to taste Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Wednesday, December 22nd, 2010
Under: Cuisine, holidays | No Comments »

Holiday Countdown #9: Toffee Bars

Holiday Cookies (Photo by Mark DuFrene/Bay Area News Group) From gingerbread elves to crunchy biscotti and toffee bars, there’s no doubt that cookies make holidays merrier. It’s not just the sweet, chocolaty goodness of it all. What makes cookies such an integral part of the holidays, says Berkeley’s doyenne of sweets, Alice Medrich, is the whole process — the sifting, the rolling, the aromas and the sense of warm, familial togetherness.
“It’s something that women and children have always done together in the kitchen,” she says in this week’s food section. “It’s a wonderful tradition.”

Read more about Alice and holiday cookies here. Then dip into her wonderful recipes, including these Toffee Bars from her book “Chewy Gooey Crispy Crunchy Melt-in-Your-Mouth Cookies,” (Workman Publishing, 384 pp., $25.95). Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Tuesday, December 14th, 2010
Under: Christmas, Cuisine, holidays | No Comments »

Holiday Countdown #6: More Challah

Challah (Chicago Tribune/MCT There’s no such thing as too much challah, right? So here are a couple of recipes from Joan Nathan, as we promised the other day.

The first is for an anise-flavored bread -if your kids are licorice lovers, they’ll love this; if that’s not their fave flave, you might want to substitute something else, like sesame seeds. But the great thing about this recipe is that it’s unbelievably speedy. Joan says one hour, start to finish – and as she mentioned before, challah-making is a great activity to do with kids.

The second recipe is a Jewish take on Tarte Flambee, which is kind of a French take on pizza. Tell your kids that, anyway! It’s an Alsatian dish made with thinly rolled bread dough and topped with creme fraiche, onions and lardons. Joan’s reinvention uses challah dough for the base, gruyere cheese and, of course, no bacon. It’s an infinitely forgiving recipe though, so feel free to customize it to your family’s tastes.

Makes 4 challahs

2 tablespoons active dry yeast
2 cups lukewarm water
2 large eggs, plus 2 large egg yolks, divided
½ cup peanut or vegetable oil
7-8 cups flour, plus more for dusting
1 tablespoon salt
1/3 cup sugar
2 heaping teaspoons anise seeds
1 tablespoon water
1½ tablespoons roasted sesame seeds
Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Tuesday, December 7th, 2010
Under: Cuisine, holidays | No Comments »

Holiday Countdown #5: Apricot Butter Cookies

nonna_tell_me_a_story Last week, we tempted you with a book giveaway of Lidia Bastianich’s wonderful “Nonna Tell Me a Story” – and were just dastardly enough to tell you about those awesome little apricot butter cookies, but not provide the recipe. I know, I know, so mean. So here you go… Lidia’s cookies. (And if you still want to get your hands on that book, the giveaway has a few more days on it.)

Makes 4 dozen

2½ cups all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
½ teaspoon vanilla
½ teaspoon almond extract
1/3 cup apricot preserves
1/3 cup slivered almonds, toasted
Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Monday, December 6th, 2010
Under: Cuisine, holidays | No Comments »

The Holiday Countdown: Hey, Challah

Challah (Photo by Mark DuFrene/Bay Area News Group)The holidays have arrived! Hope everyone’s Thanksgiving was grand. Now it’s time for those wintry festivities. Tonight is the first night of Hanukkah.  Christmas baking has begun. And families everywhere are bustling, no matter what their religion. So we’re launching our annual 12 Days of Holidays, a round-up of fun crafts, recipes, activities and survival strategies drawn from our own pages and across the blogosphere. And to honor the start of Hanukkah, we’re leading off with a salute to challah, the braided bread that graces the table at shabbat, Jewish holiday feasts – and non-Jewish dinners too, because that bread is so darn yummy.

We’re leading off with a video on how to do that beautiful braiding , with a little help from our own videographer Mario Sevilla and Market Hall Bakery’s Neucimar “Nel” Dias da Silva, who makes it look easy. In fact, it’s a great activity to do with kids. Jewish food guru Joan Nathan, author of ““Quiches, Kugels and Couscous: My Search for Jewish Cooking in France,” who’s highlighted in the story (yep, that link takes you there too!) , was telling me that when her kids were young, she found that drawing them into the kitchen to knead bread dough and braid challah was the perfect fun, calming, de-stressing activity  during the holidays and even just after a busy day at school. Cool idea. Do give it a try, especially since Nel was sweet enough to share his delicious recipe for challah — it’s right after the jump.

We’ll be sharing some of Joan’s recipes later this week too. This blog post, by the way, is part of the All About Parenting “Holiday Survival” Blog Carnival. Be sure to check it out! Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Wednesday, December 1st, 2010
Under: Cuisine, holidays | No Comments »

Iron Chef Gets Muppet Sous Chefs

Muppets Kitchen (Courtesy DisneyOnline)
Food Network, PBS and Bravo-TV have always had their high-profile chefs. But have you noticed the newest celebrity chef trend? We’re talking, of course, about Dora the Explorer, Disney’s Princess Tiana (of frog-kissing fame), and now the Muppets’ Chef Angelo.

In this week’s food section, Mary Ladd gives us the lowdown on the new Muppets Kitchen, an online cooking show for kids and families, produced by Disney Online,  that stars a high-octane  kitchen pro – Iron Chef Cat Cora. (Aw, c’mon, you know Dora the Explorer never went to culinary school.)

Cora’s sous chefs include Miss Piggy, Kermit and the newest addition to the Muppet world, Chef Angelo. He’s the one wearing the toque and standing next to Cora in the photo. Very cute show. Recipes are delish. And it’s drawing considerable attention in the blogosphere. Michele Spring Fajeau, a blogger for the Mama Manifesto, says simply, “They had me at Muppets.” Yep, but they had me at Cat Cora.

Read Mary’s take on it, then try this tasty pasta recipe from the show.

Farfalle and Herb Salad with Peas
Serves 6

1 pound farfalle or orzo pasta
¾ cup frozen peas, thawed
½ cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
1 teaspoon chopped fresh oregano
1 teaspoon chopped fresh mint
¼ cup fresh lemon juice (from 2 large lemons)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1½ cups cherry tomatoes, halved
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Instructions: Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Thursday, November 4th, 2010
Under: Cuisine | No Comments »

HALLOWEEN: Spooky Sweets

SpookySweets (Courtesy Nestle) Looking for classroom goodies for a Halloween party? These strawberry-tinged meringue cookies add a little sweetness to the Halloween spook scene – and they’re awfully darn cute.

Makes 12
3 large egg whites
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 cup NESTLÉ NESQUIK Strawberry Flavor Powder
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
12 lollipop sticks
24 NESTLÉ® TOLL HOUSE® Semi-Sweet Chocolate Mini Morsels

Instructions: Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Wednesday, October 13th, 2010
Under: Cuisine, Halloween | No Comments »

Family Cuisine: Dining Out with the Pint-Size Set

A kids menu and crayons at Caffe Venezia (Photo by D. Ross Cameron, Bay Area News Group) It’s week 4 of our family cuisine series – and what fun! We’ve talked about a great family cookbook, Weelicious and Yumminess (those are both blogs, not just me being cutesy). Now, we’re turning to the topic of dining out etiquette because we’ve all been there – either as diners, staring askance at someone else’s kid having a meltdown, or as the poor parents, dying a thousand deaths as our kid yanks the tablecloth off. But, says Mary Ladd, in a great article that ran in our papers recently, there’s hope!

“There are manuals on how to dress and diaper your child. But advice on going out to eat with your kid is not generally covered at a typical baby shower,” she writes. “It takes time to figure out the dos and don’ts of eating out with young ones.  So, what can parents do to promote the peaceful coexistence of their pint-size diners and fellow restaurant patrons?”
The answer? Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Tuesday, September 28th, 2010
Under: Cuisine | No Comments »

Family Cuisine: Yumminess

Bee-bim Bop! OK, it’s week three in our family cuisine series. We’ve talked about a fun new cookbook, and the glories of Now it’s time for A Little Yumminess. Yep, that’s what it’s called. San Francisco foodies Simran Singh and Stacie Dong have given a Bay Area focus to this fun cooking-for-kids blog, which includes recipes, birthday party fare, foodie bedtime books and food-related adventures, such as fruit-picking in Brentwood and a Giada de Laurentiis-inspired picnic in the sculpture garden at the DeYoung Museum. Their aim, says Singh, is “making food fun and getting families to eat better.”

We’re smitten by the very concept of foodie children’s lit, so we clicked that tab to see. Now we’re dying to get our hands on Linda Sue Park’s “Bee-Bim Bop!” Bee-bim bop, by the way, means mixed-up rice and it’s a favorite among Korean families.

Here’s a taste… Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Tuesday, September 21st, 2010
Under: Cuisine | No Comments »