Month: November 2014

Holiday Pull-Apart Dressing

So, I know Thanksgiving is over, but this Pull-Apart Dressing turned out too good for me not to post it. I think it would be delicious and complementary with Christmas dinner as well—whether turkey or ham—so if you consider it that way, I’m posting three weeks early! A couple weeks ago, I was inspired by a Fig & Anise Pull-Apart Bread over on Happyolks. It was the first time I had seen layered pull-apart bread, rather than rolls or knots. So I put that in my file of things to try. Then, last week, Two Red Bowls posted Thanksgiving Stuffing Dinner Rolls, inspired by J. Kenji López-Alt over at Serious Eats. And I thought, that’s what I want to do with the layered method! So I whipped up my own tried-and-true sauté of celery, red pepper, mushrooms, and shallots, along with a huge gob of butter and some Herbes de Provence and made a Holiday Pull-Apart Dressing loaf! Though I’ve lived both north and south of the Mason-Dixon line, I decided to give a nod …

Cheesecake Pumpkin Pie with a Gingersnap Crust

I’ve always loved a good pumpkin pie. It never occurred to me that it could be considered weird until I had several Scandinavians and Europeans look at me funny when I mentioned pumpkin as a dessert. But, then they’re doubly impressed after tasting it. I even sent home a can of pumpkin and some pumpkin pie spice with one of our Swedish friends one year, who in turn made one for her friends! Tor loves cheesecake: any time, anywhere, any kind. So, I thought, why not combine the two? A layer of creamy vanilla cheesecake sandwiched between a top layer of spicy pumpkin and a gingersnap crust. Yum. Ingredients Directions Preheat oven to 180C/355F. Combine crumbs and ground nuts. Add melted butter and stir until the mixture is evenly moistened. Press into the bottom and up the sides of a 9-inch pie plate or spring form. Bake for about 8 minutes, then remove from oven to cool. Tip: After removing the crust from the oven, if it has melted down the sides, use some baking …

Cranberry Crackle Tart

I’ve just joined Tuesday’s with Dorie, a group that bakes their way through Dorie Greenspan’s new book, Baking Chez Moi. Every once in a while on a Tuesday, I’ll be posting the results of a recipe the group votes on baking. This week it’s a Cranberry Crackle Tart! The group is asked not to post the full recipe online, so you will just see pictures of the final result plus any recommendation I have. The Cranberry Crackle Tart has a thin layer of jam topped with cranberry studded meringue. Mine didn’t puff up as much as I would have hoped, but it was still delicious. A much lighter alternative to the traditional rich Thanksgiving pies, or a fresh dessert for any time of year! Follow Tasty Joy with Bloglovin

Minty Tuna Persimmon Salad

This is a follow-up post to my Pink Peppercorn Crusted Tuna with Lemony Mixed Greens and Avocado Aioli. It’s a great way to use up that extra aioli and the tuna that was leftover after cutting nice, neat, presentable strips! This is perfect for a light lunch. In case you want to make this first—not with leftovers—I’ve written full instructions for every step. As with the previous salad, I’ve separated the garlic and oil instead of using prepared aioli as an ingredient. The aioli dressing for this salad is more like a vinaigrette. Ingredients Tip: Double the amount of tuna and use the leftovers for Pink Peppercorn Crusted Tuna with Lemony Mixed Greens and Avocado Aioli. Directions Combine all dressing ingredients in a small bowl and whisk, or in a small jar and shake. Coarsely crush peppercorns with a mortar and pestle and press them into all sides of the tuna. Add a bit of freshly ground salt too, if desired. Heat a heavy iron skillet on med-high heat until very hot. Add the oil …

Pink Peppercorn Crusted Tuna with Lemony Mixed Greens and Avocado Aioli

Usually I try to plan my cooking projects ahead of time; in fact, I’m often planning several—way too many, actually—projects at the same time. Sometimes the elements collide fortuitously, however, and an idea is formulated and brought to fruition in just a few hours. I turned into the fish market on a whim, peeked into the little fridge that contains the discounts of the day, and spotted huge fresh tuna steaks. Immediately a delicious salad I had a few weeks ago came to mind: medium rare tuna, crisp salad, and avocado aioli. I snatched up the tuna and headed home. Aioli. Thick. Heavy. Artery-hardening. Generally, whether good or bad, these are the adjectives that usually come to mind when I try aioli. But when it’s good, it also addictive. Until I did a bit a research, I was under the impression that mayonnaise was intended to be the main component in aioli. And raw egg yolks. While egg yolks do show up in traditional aioli from Provence, traditional Catalan aioli, or allioli, has only salt, …

Anytime Chocolate Muffins

In my Granny’s Southern household, huge chocolate sheet cakes were a staple. And the coveted corner pieces, with three sides covered in frosting, were the first to go. Unless you were quick, usually it was Granny herself who pilfered each corner piece, eschewing cake-cutting decorum and leaving the impression to anyone arriving unexpectedly that gremlins had been sneaking bites in the kitchen. Living in a household of two, where the other only eats tiny bits of chocolate from time to time, if I made a large sheet cake it would fall to me to eat the whole thing. And I probably would. So I came up with a healthier, longer-lasting, single-serving option for when I need to top up my chocolate reserves without adding the extra calories and sugar overload. It’s not the same, but I think gremlins would still come after it when I’m not looking. These little gems are gluten, grain, and sugar free, provide antioxidants from the raw cacao, sustenance from the eggs and almonds, and have minimal blood sugar impact. Perfect …

Golden Beet Potato Quiche

As I’ve said before, I have a special relationship with autumn. And winter in Scandinavia can be quite spectacular when the snow arrives and it feels like you’re in a wonderland. But the weeks in between, when the brightness of autumn has faded, and it’s still not cold enough for snow, carry with them a pervading and damp cold that reaches the bones and leaves you longing for a bit of color and warmth. The sky during these days is often an eerie white, which brings about a sort of timeless quietude. Yes, I’m looking forward to the bitter cold of winter here in Sweden, because it brings with it an often clear sky, snow-laden trees, and Christmas lights brightening the city. In the meantime, I’ll add some color to my day and some warmth to my belly with this Golden Beet Potato Quiche. Ingredients Directions Roast beets ahead of time. Wash, wrap in foil, and bake at 205C/400F for 1-1.5 hours, depending on size, until tender when squeezed. Let cool. For crust, combine flour …

Norwegian Cardamom Buns

The scene outside the passenger window takes my breath away. The fjord sparkles under the midnight sun, and mountains rise up in rocky walls, with glacier melt cascading down in shiny rivulets. I lean in to the curve as the car sweeps around yet another peninsula, heading back towards the mainland. A cluster of houses populate the shore here, and I wonder what it’s like to live here, to have to plan for groceries. Yes, this is what comes to mind: if I lived here I would need a huge trailer to haul groceries once a month! Would the magical location make it worth it? Perhaps. Time for a snack. Sometimes the simplest things in life are some of the best. Road trips are one of our favorite pastimes when we visit Norway. There’s this cardamom raisin bun that you can find in grocery stores and gas stations; it’s pretty common. And in most places, it’s just a regular bun, but for some reason, the ones from the gas station are so delicious. Ingredients Directions …