I started with this recipe. But I didn’t have Gingerbread Spice so I made my own blend by doubling the spices from this other Gingerbread Biscotti Recipe.
I was concerned that the recipe didn’t call for any form of fat. My favorite Biscotti recipe has a decent amount of butter in it. It called for a higher oven temp (350 instead of 325) and had instructions to cook for 30 minutes. I set the timer for 15 minutes and then check the two pans rotating them front to back and changing bottom to top racks for even cooking. Set the timer again for 15 minutes. All of a sudden I smelled a burning scent so I looked and my inside oven thermometer said 400 degrees and both logs were overcooked, one burnt on the bottom as you can see below. The Parchment paper even stuck.
I cut off the burned part and hoped to salvage the tops (I like the flecks of oats in the dough).
The pieces I salvaged looked like they might survive.
They were not very sweet and were drier than I had hoped but it just seemed like something was missing.
So I added this lemon glaze (1/2 cup powdered sugar, zest from 1/2 lemon, aprox tsp lemon juice)…it helped but I’m disappointed…biscotti is too much work to not love them. Maybe I’ll try again.
I’m anticipating our family arriving for Christmas weekend but of course I am not just sitting around waiting. There is planning and preparation to be done. Yes there is some work involved but it doesn’t feel like a burden. With joy I clean (or pay someone to help 🙂 , cook, shop, decorate, wrap gifts, and think about what I can do ahead of time so that I can do the most important and my favorite part of the Holidays…..just be together: Eat our favorite foods, play a few games, watch some holiday movies, talk and talk about what’s going on in our lives, what’s coming up next and how we hope it will go. It reminds of me Advent season (minus the fasting). I am waiting but I am not inactive. There is preparation and focused attention. Christ’s first coming brings solid hope of His second coming….the older I get the more I anticipate the day that the worst of this life will seem like light and momentary suffering and the best will be seen as merely an appetizer to the eternal banquet feast. But I’m sure whatever that New Heaven and New Earth will be like the best part will be just being together with our Father God, Savior Jesus and those adopted into His family.
(My mom’s recipe – she found it in the newspaper, my notes are in parenthesis)
1/2 cup shortening (some recipes call for butter, could also do half and half)
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground cloves
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
2 cups all purpose flour
1 cup persimmon pulp
1 cup chopped nuts (walnuts or pecans)
1 cup raisins
Cream shortening and sugar. Add beaten egg. Sift together dry ingredients. Add alternately with persimmon pulp, stirring well between each addition. Stir in nuts and raisins. Drop on greased cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake in preheated 375 degree oven for 15 minutes (or less depending on size of cookies).
(One recipe called for mixing the baking soda into the persimmon pulp instead of with the flour…I use a stick blender to do that, making the pulp and soda lump free. I would also add that you can just mix in dry ingredients in one step, being careful not to overmix as it will develop the gluten and make the cookies tough. I like to make small cookies and slightly undercook them. Parchment paper keeps the bottoms from getting too brown. My other recipe call for 350 oven temp for 10 minutes. You can test by lightly touching to see if they bounce back (cake like). They do get more moist the second or third day but after that you might want to freeze them, especially in a humid climate. They could mold more easily since they are so moist.)
I also recently tried this recipe I found on Pinterest. It was very good but the added allspice made the cloves seem too strong so I would cut that back a bit. Interestingly it added baking powder and vanilla (which my mom’s didn’t have). It would be fun to do a side by side comparison of the two recipes.
It’s time to start planning for our Thanksgiving weekend meals.
I’m starting with my previous post Thanksgiving Menu 2010 and will make adjustments as needed.
I’m thinking maybe adding an Apple Pie and excluding the Pumpkin Pie, although it does seem like a violation of the holiday to do that.
Turkey, Dressing (or Stuffing)
Mashed Potatoes & Giblet Gravy
Yam & Cranberry Casserole
Roasted Brussel Sprouts with Bacon
Pies: Mixed Berry, Texas Pecan, Apple or Pumpkin
Here is my beginning grocery list:
- Fresh Veggies – celery, carrots, onions, flat leaf parsley, curly leaf parsley, russet potatoes (& maybe yukon golds – 2 lbs), fresh cranberries, fresh mixed berries (or frozen), 2 – 10oz bags brussel sprouts, walnuts,
- Canned and boxed goods – quick cooking tapioca, canned evaporated milk, canned pumpkin, canned cranberry sauce, shortening, dry yeast, canned sliced or chopped mushrooms, canned sliced black olives, chicken stock, corn meal or cornbread mix, stuffing mix, kitchen bouquet, 2 – 17oz canned yams, miniature marshmallows,
- Refrigerated and Frozen products – butter, margarine, whole turkey, turkey breast, turkey bone parts for broth, eggs, heavy cream, fresh berries, bacon, vanilla ice-cream, milk,
2 cups crumbled cornbread
1 10 oz can mild enchilada sauce
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 lbs. lean ground beef
1 8 oz can tomato sauce
1/2 cup shredded jack cheese (or try cheddar)
Combine cornbread crumbs, 1/2 cup enchilada sauce, and salt, mix gently. Add ground beef and mix well. Shape into 1 inch balls. Place in a shallow baking pan. Bake, uncovered, in a 350 degree F. oven for 18-20 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, heat together the tomato sauce and the remaining enchilada sauce. Served cooked meatballs in sauce topped with cheese. Makes aprox. 90 meatballs.
3/4 cup sugar (+ 1 T. sugar)
3/4 cup water
1 vanilla bean (scrape seeds and set aside) or 1 T. vanilla extract
4 peaches, pitted, peeled and cut in half (I leave peel on)
8 oz raspberries
1 T. lemon juice
Preheat grill to medium/high heat.
Place 3/4 cup sugar and 3/4 cup water, 1 T. lemon juice and the seeds scraped from one vanilla bean (or 1 T. vanilla extract) into a small saucepan and cook over high heat. Bring to a boil and cook for 1-2 minutes. Removed from heat and add peaches, set aside.
Place raspberries and 1 T. lemon juice and 1 T. of sugar into a food processor or blender and puree until smooth. Use a mesh sieve to remove seeds. Cover and set in the refrigerator.
Grill peaches for 3-4 minutes on each side. Remove from gill and place back into the syrup and cover with foil for 5 minutes. Remove peaches from syrup and serve with ice-cream and drizzle with raspberry sauce.
2 bundles of fresh broccoli – cut into bite size pieces (flowerettes)
1 can sliced water chestnuts
1/2 cup pecans, diced
1/2 lb bacon, browned and crumbled
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup yellow or red onion, diced
1 cup mayonnaise
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup vinegar
The day before you plan to serve this dish, wash broccoli and place in a large bowl. Add chestnuts, pecans, bacon, raisins and onion. In a small bowl, mix mayonnaise, sugar and vinegar well, the pour over all other ingredients and stir to coat well. Cover and refrigerate at one for one night, maybe two. Stir and serve.
2 small summer squash, sliced
1 med. zucchini, sliced
1 small white onion, sliced
1 tomato, sliced
2 T. grated parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp. seasoned salt
1/2 tsp. basil
1/2 tsp. thyme
Place all the sliced vegetables on a large cookie sheet or roasting pan. Mix the rest of the ingredients and pour over and lightly toss with vegetables.
Cover and and cook in a 350 degree F. oven on a middle rack for 20-25 minutes. Or place in a microwave safe dish and microwave on high for 8-10 minutes.
3 cups pitted fresh apricots, cut into bite size pieces
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup flour
1/4 tsp. cinnamon (+ dash of nutmeg optional)
pat of butter
Mix all together and place in uncooked pie shell. Cover with another layer of pie crust and bake in a 425 degree F. oven on a middle rack, for 35-45 minutes or until crust is brown and center is bubbling. Let cool.
This filling can be made ahead of time and placed in a large plastic bag then kept in the freezer until ready to bake. Allow to thaw at room temperature until it will pour out easily (but not all the way thawed) or can even be microwaved in a bowl to thaw and warm it up before placing in pie shell to bake.
For each pound of dry beans, add 6-8 cups of water in a large pan and bring to a boil; cook for 2 minutes and then remove from heat. Let stand for an hour or so. This produces softening equivalent to soaking beans overnight. After an hour has passed, drain beans and discard the water (helps reduce gas discomfort).
Add fresh water to cover, 2 tsp. salk, 1 T. fat (oil, shortening, bacon fat, butter, etc), cover and cook about an hour or more until beans are tender.
1 lb of dry beans + 2 cups cooked beans (approximately).