Category Archives: Entertaining

biscotti recipe

Chocolate Dipped Walnut Biscotti Recipe

biscotti recipe

A great, foolproof Biscotti recipe is something that every baker (even the weekend-warrior type) should have in his or her arsenal. Like a little black dress, crunchy biscotti is an ideal treat that carries from day to night, as perfect with your latte during your morning commute as with your after-dinner herbal tea.

Biscotti are a quintessential Italian cookie that’s also known as cantuccini - coffee bread – aptly called since it’s usually presented alongside a steaming cup of coffee. The traditional shape is a thin and long, with rounded ends. The actually meaning of the word biscotti comes from the Latin word biscoctus, which means, “twice baked”, and which pretty much describes how this treat is made. The double baking renders the biscuit dry and crumbly, giving it a longer shelf life than other baked goods, and making it ideal to carry on long trips, for mailing as holiday gifts, or for storing.

biscotti recipe

The basic recipe for Italian biscotti is simple and straightforward – flour, eggs, salt and sugar – but the American version also adds butter and baking powder, for a moister and more airy texture. It’s the perfect canvas for culinary creativity – you can use your imagination (and your favorite ingredients) and make savory biscotti with cheese and herbs, or sweet with chocolate or sour with cranberries or cherries…there are no limitations…but there are some rules.

The trick to a great biscotti is making sure that you get the texture just right, crunchy but not tooth-breaking hard, and crumbly enough to be enjoyable without disintegrating in your hands. And that means paying attention during the baking process to make sure you don’t overcook the dough – which will turn the biscotti rock-hard. The biscotti dough itself is pretty wet – thanks to the butter and eggs – and that great moisture will turn your biscuits light, so you don’t want to dry them out completely.

biscotti recipe

We like our biscotti like we like our latte – grande! Our walnut biscotti recipe is simple and easy, and turns out some deliciously crunchy biscotti with just enough sweetness. To amp up the wow factor, we dipped them in tempered chocolate for a “corner bakery look” and incredible flavor. Plain biscotti can be stored in an airtight container for several weeks (note that they will turn harder as days pass). If you choose to dip them in chocolate like we did, they will last a 3-4 days.

Need some ingredients? Go shopping! Check out our great selection of biscotti ingredients in our Baking and Pastry section.

Chocolate Dipped Walnut Biscotti

Rating: 51

Yield: About 2 dozen

Chocolate Dipped Walnut Biscotti

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F.
  2. Sift the flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl.
  3. In a different bowl, cream the butter with the sugar using a wooden spoon or an electric mixer. Add the eggs one by one, beating to incorporate one before you add the next. Add the vanilla extract and slowly incorporate the sifted flour mix until the dough is stiff. Stir in the walnuts.
  4. With floured hands, divide the dough into two equal pieces, and shape each into loaves of about 10 x 4 inches, and about ¾-1 inch tall.
  5. Transfer both dough pieces onto a baking sheet lines with parchment paper, spaced apart (as they will grow).
  6. Bake until just golden, no more than 30 minutes and remove from the oven. Cool until just warm. Using a serrated knife, cut crosswise with into ½-inch strips.
  7. Transfer to a freshly lined baking sheet, and continue to bake for another 12 minutes until crisp, turning the biscotti over halfway through.
  8. Let cool completely on a wire rack.
  9. Dip the cool biscotti into the melted tempered chocolate, about halfway through, letting excess drip off. Let cool on a rack.

salmon skewers recipe

Grill: Salmon Skewers With Mango Salsa Recipe

Grilled Salmon Skewers With Mango Salsa

salmon skewers recipe

We love to make the most of grilling season! These delicious salmon skewers are an easy, healthy and super flavorful addition to any summer menu. Served with our sweet and zesty mango salsa, they can work as a great appetizer. Add some couscous and you’ve got a light and fresh summer lunch.

grilled salmon skewers recipe

We used plump mushrooms and tasty zucchinis for our skewers, but you can use any vegetables you have laying around,  or you favorite ones from the farmers’ market.

salmonskewers_grill

 

Whichever you pick, the trick to making perfect skewers lies in getting the different pieces as close to the same size as possible. You’ll want your salmon and vegetables cut into even cubes or pieces, so they’ll cook evenly. To create harmonious presentation – and ensure everyone gets their fair share! – start and end your skewers with salmon.

 

Grilled Salmon & Vegetable Skewers With Mango Salsa

Rating: 51

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 12 Skewers

Serving Size: 2 Skewers

Grilled Salmon & Vegetable Skewers With Mango Salsa

Ingredients

  • 3 skinless salmon filets (about 1 lb. each), cut into 1.5-inch cubes
  • 8 oz. button mushrooms
  • 2 zucchinis
  • Juice of 1 large lemon
  • 5 tbsps. olive oil
  • Kosher salt (for the salmon)
  • 2 medium tomatoes, unseeded, cubed
  • 2 small red onions, chopped
  • 1 medium mango, cut into small cubes
  • 2 tbsps. champagne vinegar
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

Instructions

  1. Start your grill and get the fire to medium. Make sure the coals are spread evenly, so you get even heat to all skewers. Brush the grill with oil.
  2. Cube zucchinis and mushrooms into similar size pieces. Get the veggies as close as possible to the salmon cubes in size, so everything will cook evenly.
  3. Starting with a piece of salmon, thread salmon, zucchini and mushrooms, until the skewers are filled (but not overflowing).
  4. Brush each skewer with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
  5. Grill, turning occasionally, about 3-5 minutes on each side (fish should turn an opaque pink all around and inside). Spray some lemon juice.
  6. To get your salsa ready, mix the tomatoes, onions, mango, 3 tablespoons of olive oil, vinegar and salt and pepper in a bowl. Refrigerate until use.
  7. Serve two skewers per person, topped with the salsa, plus some salsa on the side.

Notes

Make sure to soak the bamboo skewers in water for 30 minutes to prevent burning on the grill.

fourth of july menu

Fourth of July Recipe Roundup: 8 Delicious Dishes Featuring Seasonal Fruit

fourth of july menu

 

 

Fresh berries, sweet strawberries, juicy peaches…summer is finally here!

Make the most of this short and incredibly sweet season by incorporating fresh fruit to your Fourth of July dishes! From savory to sweet, we give you 8 amazing recipes by incredible bloggers and foodies, all featuring the best of the season – festive, party-ready dishes, from appetizers and mains, to drinks and desserts. So, read on, get to  themarket and start prepping for the Fourth! Freedom never tasted this sweet!

 

Baby Back Ribs with Balsamic Peach BBQ Sauce by Damn Delicious

Baby Back Ribs Recipe

These ribs are just peachy! Recipe & Photo credit: Damn Delicious

 

Grilled Blackberry, Strawberry, Basil and Brie Pizza Crisps by Half Baked Harvest

Berry Pizza Crisps

Berry delicious
Recipe & Photo Credit: Half Baked Harvest

 

Blueberry & Basil Quinoa Stuffed Endive by Greens & Chocolate

Healthy and sophisticated
Recipe & Photo Credit: Greens & Chocolate

 

Blueberry Vanilla Ice Cream by Heather’s Dish

Blueberry Vanilla Ice Cream

Scoop it out!
Recipe & Photo credit: Heather’s Dish

 

Roasted Cherry Tomato Tart by Baker’s Royale

Roasted Cherry Tomato Tart Fourth of July Recipe

Cherries, tomatoes? Fruit, vegetable? Who cares when it’s so delicious!
Recipe & Photo Credit: Baker’s Royale

 

Strawberry Basil Infused Vodka by Foodie With Family

Strawberry Basil Infused Vodka

Vodka + Strawberries + Basil = A good start to any party!
Recipe & Photo Credit: Foodie With Family

 

Watermelon Ice by Taste & Tell

Fourth of July Recipe Drink

Chill out your melon
Recipe & Photo Credit: Taste and Tell

 

Red, White and Blueberry Yogurt Popsicles by The View From Great Island

fourth of july recipe dessert

Patriotic popsicles!
Recipe & Photo Credit: The View From Great Island

 

Passion Fruit Mousse Tart Recipe

Passion Fruit Mousse Tart Recipe + Make The Perfect Italian Meringue

Passion Fruit Mousse Tart Recipe

Light, sweet yet tart, with a melt-in-your-mouth buttery crust, this Passion Fruit Mousse Tart has it all! The perfect dessert for summer, the airy mousse won’t weight you down when you head for the pool after lunch.

You can make this as one big tart, but another great way to present this would be in individual mini-tarts. Just use smaller tart molds and cut the dough accordingly. Not passionate on Passion Fruit? No problem? Use any of the other flavors of frozen fruit purees by Ravifruit, and adapt the recipe to your (or you guests’) taste.

The trick to this dessert is the recipe for Italian Meringue. This somewhat little-used meringue recipe uses a sugar syrup, rather than caster sugar, for stiff, super glossy peaks that are unwaveringly stable and firm. This makes for perfectly firm mousses (and also allows torching, if so needed), making Italian meringue sturdier and much more forgiving than French meringue. To make sure you get the right consistency, take care to add the sugar syrup slowly, in a slow, thin stream.

Running short on time? Skip making the tart shell and use pre-made tart shells (you can find our great selection here – including round and square shells in an assortment of sizes).

 

Passion Fruit Mousse Tart

Yield: 6 servings

Passion Fruit Mousse Tart

Ingredients

  • PASTRY SHELL:
  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 4 tbsp. confectioner’s sugar
  • ½ or 1 stick cup cold butter, cubed
  • Grated peel of 1 orange
  • 1 egg yolk
  • Cold water, as needed
  • PASSIONFRUIT MOUSSE:
  • 2 eggs (separated into 2 yolks and 2 egg whites)
  • 11 tbsps. Granulated sugar (separated into 2 tbsp. and 9 tbsp.)
  • Juice of 1 orange
  • 1 ½ tsp. of plain gelatin
  • 6 tsp. cold water
  • ¼ cup water (for syrup)
  • ¾ cup Passion Fruit Frozen Puree, defrosted
  • ¾ cup heavy cream, whipped
  • GARNISH:
  • Whipped cream, fresh mint, Passion Fruit Frozen Puree

Instructions

  1. In a medium bowl, place the flour, sugar and butter. With a fork, mix and blend pressing down on the butter until the mix takes the consistency of breadcrumbs.
  2. Incorporate the orange grating and the egg yolk and start forming the dough with a spatula first to gather everything together, then with your hands to unify, adding in 2 or 3 tablespoons of water until a dough ball forms.
  3. On a flat working surface, place a sheet of plastic wrap and place the dough over it, covering it with a second sheet of wrap. Using a heavy rolling pin, and without kneading, roll out the dough in between the film. Once it’s flat, remove the film and press the dough into a tart mold. Pinch the base of the tart with a fork (this will prevent it from rising), and leave in the freezer for about 20 minutes.
  4. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F, and bake the tart shell until golden, about 15-20 minutes, depending on your oven. Set aside to cool.
  5. Create a sugar syrup by bringing ¼ cup of water to a boil and add in ½ cup sugar, stirring until it thickens into syrup. In an electric mixer, whip egg whites into stiff peaks. Without stopping the mixer, very slowly begin to incorporate the sugar syrup in a thin, steady stream. Keep whipping until you get an evenly thick, shiny meringue. Set aside to cool down.
  6. In a simmering double boiler bath or bain marie, whisk 2 yolks with 2 tbsp. sugar and the orange juice, whisking constantly until you get a thick cream. Mix the plain gelatin with ¼ cup water and add into the cream, blending.Set aside at room temperature.
  7. Once cooled, incorporate the Passion Fruit Frozen Puree, and add the whipped cream and meringue - the preparation should be even and smooth.
  8. Pour into the tart shell, and take to the fridge to cool down and set.
  9. To serve, garnish with a few dollops of whipped cream, Passion Fruit frozen puree and some mint leaves.

Herbed Crusted Roast

Herb Crusted Top Sirloin Roast With Ratatouille

Herbed Top Sirloin Father's Day Recipe

 

Want to whip up something delicious for Dad this Father’s Day? This crusty roast with colorful (and healthy!) veggie Ratatouille is guaranteed to make you Dad’s favorite. 

INGREDIENTS

    • 2 lbs. Top sirloin or Strip
    • 5 slices of regular white bread
    • ½ stick butter (room temperature)
    • ¼ tsp. Allspice
    • ¼ tsp. cumin
    • ¼ tsp. nutmeg
    • 1 tsp. dried oregano
    • ½ tsp. dry basil
    • ¼ tsp. porcini powder
    • 2 tsp. fresh parsley
    • Sea salt and fresh black pepper to taste
    • 3 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
    • 2 cups cherry tomatoes
    • ½ lb. pearl onions
    • 3 zucchinis (seedless, cubed)
    • 2 eggplants (seedless, cubed)

DIRECTIONS

Trim the meat of any excess fat.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

In a food processor, combine the bread with butter, herbs and spices, salt and pepper.

Cover the meat with the bread mix and put in the fridge, uncovered, for about 15 minutes.

On a roasting pan, bake the meat for about 10 minutes, and then lower the temperature to 350 degrees F. Continue baking for about 15 to 20 minutes (depending on how well-cooked you want the meat).

While meat is cooking, start the ratatouille.

Heat a medium saucepan with 1 tbsp. olive oil, and sauté the cherry tomatoes, whole, until they’re slightly charred. Remove and reserve. Don’t rinse the pan.

Add 1 tbsp. olive oil to the same pan and sauté the onions until golden, adding 3 to 4 tbsp. of water while cooking, about 4 minutes. Remove and reserve.

To the same pan, add 1 tbsp. olive oil and stir-fry the zucchinis and eggplants until they just change color – about 2 minutes.

Add in the previously sautéed tomatoes and onions, and cook together – about 3 minutes.

Drizzle with olive oil and season with sea salt and pepper.

When the meat is done, remove from the oven and let rest in a warm place before cutting, so the juices get a chance to settle.

Slice the meat against the grain (cross-wise) into 1 to 1.5 inch slices, and serve with a side of the ratatouille.

 

 

Recipe: Marcela Sorondo for Gourmet Food World
Photo: Monica Sempertegui for Gourmet Food World