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Maine Squeeze Ice Cream

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For the 4th of July weekend we decided to make some homemade ice cream.  We have a ton of blueberries and some fresh lemon so we came up with this recipe for the "Maine Squeeze".  Maine because when we vacationed in Maine a few years ago we got completely hooked on blueberries, and squeeze for the hint of fresh lemon.  Really this is a great vanilla ice cream base with a swirl of blueberry compote.  I hope you enjoy this as much as we did!  This vanilla base can be used for a whole lot of flavors.  Get creative and leave a comment with what you have tried.

Maine squeeze ice cream

Ingredients:

For the vanilla ice cream base:

  • 2 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup half and half
  • 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise and seeds scraped
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 6 eggs

For the blueberry swirl:

  • 2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries
  • Zest of 1/2 lemon
  • 1/2 fresh lemon squeezed
  • 2 Tbs honey
  • 1 Tbs sugar
  • 1/8 tsp corn starch dissolved in 1 Tbs cold water
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • Pinch of salt

Instructions:

For the blueberry swirl:

  • Combine the berries, honey, sugar and lemon juice in a medium saucepan.  Cook over medium heat until the blueberries begin to burst.  
  • Add the corn starch, salt and vanilla, cook until mixture begins to thicken.  Add lemon zest just at the end.  
  • Cool mixture and keep in the fridge until the ice cream is ready.

For the vanilla ice cream base:

  • In a medium saucepan combine the cream, half and half, vanilla bean seeds 1/2 cup of the granulated sugar and vanilla extract. Bring to a boil, turn off the heat and let sit for 1 hour.

heavy cream for ginger ice cream

  • In a small bowl, combine the eggs and the remaining 1/2 cup sugar and beat to a homogeneous consistency.

eggs and sugar for ginger ice cream

  • Bring the cream mixture back to a boil and turn the heat off. Immediately strain and whisk a third of the cream mixture into the egg-sugar mixture and then immediately whisk the egg mixture back into the remaining cream mixture.
  • Chill the mixture over an ice water bath.

almost ready to freeze the ginger ice cream

  • Churn the chilled mixture in an ice cream machine according to the manufacturer's directions (30 minutes to 1 hour).

ginger ice cream into the ice cream machine

  • Pour half of the soft ice cream into a container and top with half of the blueberry swirl.  With a rubber spatula gently fold the blueberry swirl into the ice cream.  Top with the remaining ice cream then blueberry swirl and gently fold again.

Notes:

I find that the vanilla base is a little sweet on it's own but with the tart blueberry lemon swirl it balances out nicely.  If you were using this on it's own or with other falvors, you may want to cut the sugar a bit.

 

Scott Pollacek - about me

 

Pad Thai Zoodles

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We are late to the zoodle game.  Honestly, I never heard of it until this past winter.  Once we saw it, we went out and got a spiralizer and started to experiment.  This was the first recipe we tried, and it has been a go-to ever since.  Not exactly Pad Thai, but more Pad Thai inspired.

Ingredients:

  • 1 egg
  • 2 Tbs of olive oil
  • 1 boneless skinless chicken breast, thinly sliced
  • 2 zucchini, spiralized
  • 1 large carrot, julienned
  • 1 red pepper, julienned
  • 1/4 cup of fresh cilantro, diced
  • 1/4 cup of green onions, diced
  • 1/4 cup peanuts, chopped
  • sesame seeds (for garnish optional)
  • fresh lime wedges (for garnish)

Spicy Peanut Sauce:

  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 Tbs of peanut butter
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 3 Tbs of soy sauce
  • 1 tsp dried coriander
  • 1/2 tsp of ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp of red pepper flakes
  • 1 Tbs corn starch (to thicken the sauce)

Instructions:

  • In a small bowl, whisk together garlic, peanut butter, soy sauce, lime juice, ground ginger, coriander, red pepper flakes and corn starch. Set aside.

spicy peanut sauce

  • Spiralize the zucchini, slice the chicken breast into thin slices and prepare the pepper, onion, carrots and peanuts.

spiralized zucchini

chicken

zucchini

  • Heat a large skillet to medium high heat. Add olive oil and scramble the egg in the hot pan.  When the egg is cooked remove the egg and add the sliced chicken. Saute for 3-4 minutes. 
  • Add red peppers, onions and carrots.  Saute for 3-4 minutes.
  • Add zucchini noodles and peanut sauce. Flash stir fry for 2 minutes, stirring constantly until all noodles are coated.
  • Serve and garnish with sesame seeds, a squeeze of fresh lime, the scrambled egg and the chopped peanuts.

pad thai zoodles

Enjoy!

Scott Pollacek - about me

 

Creme Brulee

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This is always a crowd pleasing dessert.  It's been a while since we have made it, but I saw a post from a while back that reminded me how much we love this.  I think we will have to make it again this weekend.

makes: 4 Servings

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp good vanilla extract
  • 8 tsp fine raw sugar or granulated sugar for caramelizing

creme brulee

Instructions:

  • Preheat oven to 300°. Keep a pot of hot water nearby.
  • In a saucepan over medium heat, combine cream and sugar and cook, stirring frequently until steam rises, approx. 4-5 minutes.
  • In a bowl, beat egg yolks and vanilla until blended. Gradually pour hot cream into yolks, stirring constantly.
  • Strain mixture through a fine-mesh sieve set over a bowl, divide among four 7-ounce ramekins.
  • Line a 3" deep baking pan with a clean kitchen towel, place ramekins in pan, and add hot water to fill pan halfway up the side of the ramekins. Cover loosely with foil.
  • Bake until set, 30-35 minutes, until the centers of the custards shake gently when the pan is shifted.
  • Remove the pan from the oven and allow the ramekins to cool slightly.
  • Remove the ramekins from the pan, cool to room temperature, then chill thoroughly 3 hours or overnight.
  • Just before serving, sprinkle the custards with 2 tsp. Sugar and caramelize the topping with a kitchen torch, or place the ramekins under a broiler, 2-3 inches from the heat source for 3-4 minutes.

Scott Pollacek - about me

 

Bourbon Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

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We love cookies!  We love chocolate chip cookies!  I don't even know how many different cookie recipes we have, and we use them all.  This is a new one for us.  Chocolate chip cookies with bourbon (and taragon) in them.  Tried it out for th efirst time and surprise, surprise... we love them.  The sea salt is optioal, but we have found with many of our cookie recipes that a little sprinkle of salt on top really brings out the flavors and makes a great cookie.

bourbon chocolate chip cookies

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup butter (2 sticks)
  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1/4 cup bourbon
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup bittersweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 Tbs finely chopped tarragon leaves
  • Course sea salt to sprinkle tops (optional)

bourbon chocolate chip cookies

Instructions:

  • Melt butter in a small saucepan.  Continually stirring, heat until it browns to make brown butter. Remove from heat once butter turns nutty brown. Set aside to cool
  • In a bowl stir together the flour, baking soda & salt
  • In a stand mixer, beat together cooled butter and sugars until smooth. Add egg, egg yolk, bourbon & vanilla extract, beat until well combined
  • Add in flour mixture, mix until evenly incorporated. Fold in chocolate chips and tarragon by hand. Chill dough for 30 minutes
  • Using a cookie scoop, scoop cookies dough onto parchment lined cookie sheet
  • Top with a sprinkle of course sea salt (optional)
  • Bake in preheated 350 degree oven for 12-14 minutes

Adapted from kitchenbowl.com

Scott Pollacek - about me

 

Steak Kebab Marinade

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The other day we decided to make kebabs for dinner.  We had a london broil that we cut up into chunks, but we needed a good marinade.  Brenda whipped this together quick and we let the meat soak all day while I worked on some projects around the house.  I added some cut red and yellow bell peppers and onions to the marinade an hour before putting everything together on wooden skewers and grilling.  They turned out great.  The marinade really gave everything great flavor, and the meat turned out pretty tender as well.  We will definitely use this recipe again!

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cupwWorcestershire sauce
  • 3 Tbs soy sauce
  • 1 Tbs freshly squeezed lemon juice from 1 lemon
  • 1 Tbs Dijon mustard
  • 1 Tbs minced garlic
  • 2 tsp dark brown sugar
  • 2 tsps freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

steak-kebabs

  • Combine all ingredients and marinade beef chunks for 4 to 6 hours.
  • Add cubed vegetables and allow to marinade for 1 hour additional (bell peppers, onions, potatoes and zucchini are great with this)
  • Skewer meat and vegetables on wooden skewers (soak skewers in water ahead to prevent burning on the grill).  Reserve some of the marinade for basting while grilling
  • Grill over medium high heat 3 to 5 minutes per side or until beef is medium rare

Scott Pollacek - about me

 
 
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