Recipes


Posted on August 26, 2018 - by

Mojito Cake #recipe #booklaunch @lucyburdette

LUCY BURDETTE: In the eighth Key West mystery, Hayley and her mother Janet are catering a Key West/Havana conference at the Truman Little White House. This is the dessert they serve for the final dinner. And it is the perfect recipe to celebrate the arrival of DEATH ON THE MENU!

The basis of this recipe came from a cookbook called Cuba! – Recipes and Stories from the Cuban Kitchen. I love lime cake and yellow cake and whipped cream, so you can imagine that this recipe was irresistible. I know Mojitos require rum, and yet I am not a big fan of alcohol-flavored desserts. So I chose to leave the rum extract out of the cake, and instead add a teaspoon of rum. This gives it a little soupçon of flavor without overwhelming the cake. I also reduced the salt in the batter and the rum in the frosting. You can adjust the rum upward to a tablespoon if you choose.

 

Ingredients for the cake

3 cups all-purpose flour
3 teaspoons baking powder (low-sodium works fine)
1/2 teaspoon salt
Two sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
2 cups sugar
Four eggs, room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 teaspoons lime zest
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
Half cup whole milk
1 teaspoon rum

For the lime mint syrup

1/4 cup water
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup fresh mint leaves, tightly packed
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice

2 cups heavy whipping cream
2 tablespoons powdered sugar
1 teaspoon dark rum

Thin slices of lime, or lime zest, or mint leaves, for decoration

Prepare two 9 inch cake pans by buttering them and lining with parchment paper. Butter the paper too. Preheat the oven to 350. Mix the dry ingredients for the cake together and set this aside. In your KitchenAid, food processor, or with an electric beater, beat the butter well with the sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time. Mix in the vanilla extract, the lime zest, and the rum. Fold in the dry ingredients, don’t overmix. Stir in the milk.

Divide the batter into the two prepared pans and bake about 30 minutes until the cakes spring back when touched. Cool for 10 minutes in the pan, and then remove them from the pans and cool completely.

For the lime mint syrup, heat the sugar and water in a small pan until the sugar is dissolved. Turn off the heat and stir in the mint leaves. Let them steep for 10 minutes, then strain them out and stir in the lime juice. Paint this glaze onto each layer of cake with a pastry brush.

Whip the cream and sugar until stiff, and stir in the rum. Drop half of the whipped cream onto the first layer. Place the second layer on top and spread the remainder of the cream over that. Decorate with thin slices of lime or mint leaves as desired.

Death on the Menu, the 8th Key West food critic mystery, hit bookstores on August 7 from Crooked Lane Books. You can buy it in hardcover, e-book or audio book, wherever books are sold.


Posted on June 10, 2018 - by

Easy Yellow Cake for a Working Day

LUCY BURDETTE: I wanted to make a cake for a small dinner party, but I didn’t have a lot of time. (Big deadline looming for food critic mystery number nine.) I Googled “easy yellow cake” and came across the recipe on which this cake is based. It was simple, because everything gets added into the food processor in turn– No sifting, no separating of eggs, no alternating liquids with dry. And it was very good, light but dense. Maybe not my favorite yellow cake for all time, but very good!

Ingredients

1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened

1 1/2 cups sugar

3 large eggs, room temp

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

3 1/2 teaspoons low sodium baking powder

1 1/4 cups whole milk

1 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat the oven to 350. Prepare two 9-inch cake pans by buttering well and then flouring lightly.

Combine the butter and sugar in the food processor and beat until pale yellow. Beat in the eggs. Add the flour, salt, and baking powder and mixed that minimally. Beat in the milk and vanilla, again don’t overbeat.

 

Bake in a preheated oven at 350 for about 25 minutes, until the cake springs back when touched lightly.

Then cool for 10 to 15 minutes and then remove from the pans to cool completely.

Frost as desired– My desire was whipped cream and sliced strawberries, but chocolate or mocha butter cream would be wonderful as well.

(Sorry about the photo–we were quite a ways into the cake when I remembered!)

Death on the Menu, the 8th Key West food critic mystery, will hit bookstores on August 7 from Crooked Lane Books.

Here’s a pre-order the book link from Amazon–and here’s a link to preorder a hard copy from RJ Julia in CT, where you’ll be able to get a signed copy.

Or you can order it from Books and Books in Key West, or call Suzanne Orchard at Key West Island Bookstore ((305) 294-2904)–she’ll be delighted to order you a copy!

Or really, wherever books are sold…

 


Posted on May 27, 2018 - by

CT Authors Trail at the Craigin Library

Lucy will appear at the Craigin Library in Colchester CT as part of the CT Authors Trail: August 22 at 6:30 pm


Posted on May 16, 2018 - by

Mango Lassi Recipe

LUCY BURDETTE: While in India for two weeks, we ate lots and lots of wonderful Indian food, most of it very spicy. Not necessarily hot–unless you asked for that, but definitely spicy. A man we met explained it this way: Indians don’t like plain food. That was certainly our experience! (We did not eat street food or uncooked vegetables–did not want to risk the dreaded Delhi belly.)

One day I noticed that two of the other travelers in our group – both originally from England – were sipping tall white drinks at both lunch and dinner. They explained that this was a yogurt drink called a lassi, good for calming stomachs that might be a little bit distressed by traveling and unfamiliar flavors.

So I tried one and was instantly hooked. Apparently there are salty lassies as well as sweet, which can contain fruit, especially mango. I only tried the plain one as we were being very cautious about eating fruit too. But I determined I would make one and share it when I got home. So here is the simple recipe for a mango lassi.

Ingredients

One ripe mango
About 3/4 cup plain whole milk yogurt
Sprinkle of cardamom
Ice cubes

Peel and pit the mango and whirl it in your blender or food processor until puréed. Then add the yogurt and whirl that in too. If it’s too thick to drink, add a couple of ice cubes and grind them up with the yogurt/mango mixture. Or you can just add the ice cubes to the glass. Sprinkle with a little cardamom and enjoy!

Are you a fan of Indian food? Or an adventurous eater?

 


Posted on September 27, 2016 - by

Grilled Shrimp and Peaches for a Crowd

LUCY BURDETTE: I know I’ve mentioned my supper club on this blog here in the past–we are six couples who try to get together 3 to 5 times a year for dinner and chatter. The hostess (and host) are responsible for the main course and the table setting, and each of the other couples brings a dish. The hostess can assign certain recipes or leave it open-ended. For various reasons, this year got away from us so we wanted to throw together an easy summer supper. We ended up with a mixed grill, potato salad, salad, grilled vegetables, and a lemon and orange-glazed angel food cake from 4 and 20 Blackbirds bakery in Guilford CT for dessert. Everyone loved our shrimp and the peaches so I’ll share those recipes with you!

Ingredients for the the shrimp

Three large shrimp per person (33 for my event), shelled and deveined

1/2 cup good olive oil
One large lemon
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 to 2 large cloves of garlic, choppedMix the ingredients, olive oil to brown sugar, and taste to see if you need more lemon. Stir in the chopped garlic. Let the shrimp sit in the marinade in a glass dish for 2 to 4 hours, stirring from time to time. Meanwhile, soak bamboo skewers in water. I had the 8 inch kind, which fits three large shrimp.

Thread three shrimp crossways onto each skewer so they will lie flat on the grill. Grill on medium high heat for three minutes each side. The brown sugar should result in a nice glaze.

For the peaches: Pit six peaches and slice them lengthwise. (We all agreed there was no need to peel them!) Brush the peach flesh with lemon juice and then a bit of olive oil. Sprinkle with fresh rosemary. Grill for 6-8 minutes in a grill pan, flipping once.

I served the shrimp with grilled sausages and grilled peach halves–A very very mixed grill!

Lucy Burdette writes the Key West food critic mysteries. Are you all caught up? This easy dinner will leave you plenty of time to read… and then for all the latest news, follow Lucy on:

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Posted on September 21, 2016 - by

Blueberry Zucchini Bread #recipe

 

John has batting practice

We’ve had a zucchini extravaganza in our garden this summer. As my friend Gina says, tis the season where people lock their garage doors and car doors to prevent gardeners from leaving baseball bat-sized zukes on the premises…

But in case this happens to you, here’s a yummy recipe for zucchini/blueberry bread.

Ingredients

3 large eggs
½ cup unsweetened applesauce
½ cup butter
1 Tbsp vanilla extract
½ cups granulated white sugar
1 cup brown sugar
2 cups shredded zucchini, squeezed with a paper towel
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp no sodium baking powder
1/2 tsp  no sodium baking soda
2 cups fresh blueberries

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Oil two 8×4 inch loaf pans.
In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, applesauce, vanilla, sugar and zucchini.

In a food processor, whisk together the flour, sugar, cinnamon, baking powder, and baking soda. Cut in the butter.

Mix a tablespoon of the flour mixture into the blueberries.
Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir gently. Carefully stir in the floured blueberries.

Divide the batter between the two prepared pans. Bake for 55 to 60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool for at least 20 minutes, then turn out bread onto wire racks until it has cooled completely.

Lucy Burdette writes the Key West food critic mysteries. Are you all caught up? Hope you have plenty of time to read this fall… and then for all the latest news, follow Lucy on:

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Posted on August 21, 2016 - by

Fresh Cherry Cobbler with whipped cream #recipe

LUCY BURDETTE: My hub and I are mad for cherries when they are in season, and trust me we’ve eaten pounds and pounds of them this summer. But we’ve never done anything except eat them from the bowl. I couldn’t imagine pitting all those little guys. But then I got the image of a cherry cobbler in my head, and it would not be denied. (Sadly, I went to the grocery store yesterday and the cherries were GONE FOR THE SEASON! I’m quite certain you can use this same recipe for blueberries or peaches. Back to the story…)

So I went in search of a cherry pitter and found this one on Amazon, which handles 6 pieces at a time. So it still takes a while (maybe half an hour) to pit enough for the cobbler, but this time it’s worth it. Be careful because one diner did find a pit in her portion. You don’t want your guests cracking their molars on your dessert! (Recipe has been adapted for low-sodium diets.)

For the cherry filling:

Six cups pitted cherries
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/2 cup sugar
Half a lemon, squeezed

Place the cherries in an 8 by 8 Pyrex pan, ungreased. Mix in the cornstarch and sugar, and squeeze the lemon over the top.

For the crust:

6 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon no sodium baking powder
1 cup flour
1/2 cup cream or milk
1/2 cup sugar

Combine the dry ingredients and then cut in the chilled butter, using a pastry cutter. When the lumps are pea-sized, stir in the cream or milk. Do not over mix. With a large spoon place blobs of the crust over the prepared cherries. Do not worry about smoothing the crust or covering every square inch.

Bake at 350 for about 40 minutes. The cherries should be bubbling and the crust a light brown. Let the cobbler cool a bit and serve with almond-scented whipped cream.

For the cream:
1 cup organic whipping cream
1/2 teaspoon almond flavoring
1 tablespoon sugar

Whip the cream with the almond flavoring until thick. And the sugar and stir that in. Serve with the cobbler and swoon. (This is very rich–serves 6-8.)

It’s perfect for celebrations, like the publication of a new book! Or simply reading a great book.


Posted on May 3, 2016 - by

Salad with Mango, Cherries, and Toasted Walnuts #recipe

LUCY BURDETTE: This year for Christmas my wonderful uncle sent me a big box of dried Michigan cherries. They are so sweet and delicious! I’ve used them in granola and cookies, but I wanted to find a salad to showcase them as well. This combination does just that.

1 head red leaf or butter lettuce
2 small cucumbers
2 sticks celery
One ripe avocado
One half ripe mango
1/2 cup dried Michigan cherries
1/2 cup walnuts, broken into pieces and toasted

Wash and dry the lettuce, tear into bite-sized pieces and layer at the bottom of the salad bowl. Slice the cucumber and the celery and mix this in.

Toast the walnuts until slightly brown and crunchy.

Peel and dice the avocado. Slice the ripe sections of the mango off the pit, and dice. Layer the avocado and the mango onto the salad. Sprinkle with cherries. Top with cooled walnuts.

Dress with a mustard vinaigrette and toss, once your guests have admired the presentation:). (You of course should feel free to make your own tweaks, onions if you like them, or some kind of soft cheese, for example.) In this case, we ate the salad with pan-fried yellowtail snapper and roasted rosemary potatoes–yum!


The seventh Key West mystery, KILLER TAKEOUT, is on bookshelves everywhere. What about yours?

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Posted on January 28, 2016 - by

Cornmeal Blueberry Pancakes, #lowsodium

LUCY BURDETTE: In Key West in the winter, we get lots of houseguests (no surprise!) Suppose you’re looking for something special to serve your visitors for breakfast? Over a year ago, I made some blue cornmeal pancakes that were to die for (she said modestly.) But when I went back to look at the recipe, I was shocked about how much sodium was involved. In pancakes! Who knew? So this is a revised version, equally delicious, probably under 100 mg of sodium for the whole batch. Next time we’d double the amount and freeze any extras for quick lunches or snacks.

Ingredients:

2/3 cups  cornmeal (I used Bob’s organic)
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons Featherweight no-sodium baking powder
1 teaspoon Ener-G sodium-free baking soda
1 teaspoon sugar
3/4 cup milk with 1 Tbsp vinegar added (less than 150 mg sodium vs 257 in one cup buttermilk)
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/2 tsp vanilla
2 tablespoons melted butter, plus more for greasing griddle
1 cup blueberries (frozen works fine)

Stir together cornmeal, all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda, and sugar in a large mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together buttermilk, egg, vanilla, and 2 tablespoons melted butter. Add the blueberries. Mix the wet ingredients into the dry and stir until mostly combined.

Heat the pan or griddle and melt some butter to cover the bottom. Add the wet batter to the pan. Cook over medium heat until bubbles pop, then flip the pancakes over and cook the other side, 1 to 2 minutes.

Serve with real maple syrup. Next time I would also top with a dollop of plain yogurt.

KILLER TAKEOUT is coming next April, but available for pre-order today!

And you can follow Lucy on Facebook,

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and Instagram!

 


Posted on January 5, 2016 - by

Scottish Brown Sugar Shortbread Cookies

The Brady Brothers
LUCY BURDETTE: In October, my husband went on a dream trip —playing golf in Scotland with his three brothers and four other childhood friends. (Aren’t they so cute?) They had an amazing time, and he came home with small packages of Walker’s shortbread cookies, which they found at every hotel and B and B…

.
Naturally I became addicted to these cookies and decided I should try making some myself. Neither the brown sugar nor the almond extract are traditional, but they sounded like good additions to me.

Ingredients
•    1 cup unsalted butter, softened
•    1/2 cup packed brown sugar
•    2 to 2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
•    almond extract, 1 tsp

Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Mix in the extract. Mix in the flour on low speed until it’s just combined. (If you work the dough too hard, the cookies will be tough.)

Roll the dough out on a piece of floured parchment into a rough rectangle (no more than 1/2 inch deep), then move the whole thing to your baking pan. Score the dough into the size cookies you want. Bake at 325 until lightly browned.

Once removed from the oven, prick the warm cookies with a fork and cut through the scored lines.

You might want to whip up a batch for National Shortbread Day on January 6!



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