Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Back-log of Recipies

This is a wonderful recipe that I made for an Italian-themed "party" one night. They are Ricotta cookies. Named so because they have...can ya guess it? Yup, Ricotta cheese! They were really good, although the texture is not much like a "cookies" more like a little cake/cookie hybrid. I think they should be called "bites"...to me that makes a little more sense. I did adapt the recipe a pinch, just a sub of flavoring, and a little thicker on the glaze!

~Sweet Ricotta Bites~
(adapted from 2italianrecipes.com)
15 oz. ricotta cheese (I used part-skim)
2 tbsp. almond extract
4 c. flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 lb. butter
1 3/4 c. sugar
2 eggs
5 tbsp. milk
1 1/2 c. powdered sugar*
1 tsp. almond extract
colored candy sprinkles

Preheat the over to 350 F. Mix/beat together butter, sugar, eggs, ricotta cheese, and 2 tbsp. almond extract in a bowl. Mix the flour, baking powder and baking soda. Add to the ricotta mixture and mix thorougly to form a creamed mixture. Add some flour to keep it form becoming too sticky. (I think I added another 1/4 c.) Shape the dough to form balls the size of a teaspoon. Place the balls on a cookie sheet and bake for 10-12 min. or until light brown. 
Remove from pan and put on a cooking rack set over another cookie sheet. Mix the milk, powdered sugar, and almond extract in a bowl until smooth and a little thick.* Pour the mixture over the warm cookies with a spoon and sprinkle with colored candy sprinkles**

*Note: I added about another 1/2 c. or so of powdered sugar. What I got with the original recipe was way to thin...but make it to your liking! I wanted it thick because the cookies were warm and the glaze would fall down the sides due to gravity. 

**Note: I learned, the hard way, that you should glaze about 3 cookies, then pause and come back to those 3 cookies and sprinkle them. The glaze hardens quickly!

These were a very different variety of cookie, but they were yummy! A little cake-like in texture, but not overly sweet! Even the Hubby liked these little guys. And when I told him what was in them he was a little shocked! Tehehe...

Well, when hearing about this "party" I set out to make a savory dish as well! (I also wanted/needed an excuse to bake something special!) ;-)

Here is the recipe I used for guidance:

~Olive Stuffed Mushrooms~
(Adapted from grouprecipes.com)
24 Whole mushrooms (white or crimini)
8 tbsp. olive oil
2 small onions, finely chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 c. Spanish olives, or Kalamata olives, chopped*
1/2 c. Parmesan cheese, grated
2/3 c. dry breadcrumbs
3-4 tbsp. dried parsley
1-2 tbsp. dried rosemary
Salt & Pepper

Preheat oven to 400 F. In a small bowl, mix the olives, Parmesan, breadcrumbs, parsley and rosemary. Set aside. Wipe mushrooms clean with a kitchen towel or brush. (Do NOT run under water!) Trim mushroom stems and remove from the cap. You will be left with a "hole" begging to be filled. 
Warm 6 tbsp. olive oil in a lg. skillet over med. heat. Add the onion and garlic and sauté until soft, about 2-4 min. Add olive, cheese, herb breadcrumb mixture. Stir to combine and season with salt and pepper to taste. 
Arrange the mushroom caps on a parchment lined baking sheet. Fill each cap with the mixture. Drizzle with the remaining oil. Over lightly with foul and bake for 15 min. Remove foil and bake another 5-7 min. or until golden brown. Serve immediately.

*Note: I used Spanish green olives that were marinating in a spicy olive oil-crushed red pepper blend that I found at the local grocery store. Feel free to use whatever you wish. 

One comment that I did get, from an 8 year-old, was that these mushrooms were "....yummy, but I don't like mushrooms so I am only eating the filling!" Oh well, they were liked because they were gone by the time we left! 


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