Zucchini in a Thyme Batter with Yogurt Sauce

Ingredients

2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
3 eggs
1-3/4 cups beer
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 zucchini
4 fresh thyme sprigs
1 cup plain yogurt
juice of 1 lemon
salt and pepper, to taste
peanut oil for deep frying

Method

  1. Put the flour and the baking powder into a bowl and mix. Separate the eggs, then add the egg yolks to the flour. Slowly pour in the beer and mix with a wire whisk until a smooth batter forms.
  2. Stir in the vegetable oil. Beat the egg whites with the salt until holding soft peaks, then fold into the batter.
  3. Cut the zucchini into 1/2-inch-thick slices.
  4. Pluck the thyme leaves from the stems and place them and the zucchini slices into the batter.
  5. Put the yogurt into a bowl, add the lemon juice, and season with salt and pepper. Stir the mixture until smooth.
  6. Heat the peanut oil to 325°F in a wide saucepan, then add the zucchini slices and fry until golden on both sides. Drain on paper towels and lightly sprinkle with salt.
  7. Serve the zucchini slices on a platter with the yogurt dip and a wedge of lemon.

Makes 4 servings.

Source: Vegetables

German Plum Pastry (Zwetschgenkuchen)

Ingredients

2 (17-oz) cans plums
1 lb home-made or store-bought puff pastry
grated rind of 1/2 lemon
1/4 cup (packed) brown sugar
3/4 tsp cinnamon
1 egg white, beaten
sugar

Method

  1. Drain the plums. Cut into halves and remove pits.
  2. Roll out half the pastry to an 8 x 12-inch rectangle, working on marble or a floured board. Place on lightly floured baking sheet.
  3. Roll out remaining pastry on lightly floured board. Fold in half lengthwise. Cut through the folded edge in 3/4-inch strips to within 1 inch of the edge.
  4. Overlap plum halves on base rectangle to within 1/2 inch of the edges.
  5. Combine lemon rind, brown sugar and cinnamon. Sprinkle over the plums.
  6. Brush pastry edges with cold water. Place cut pastry over half the rectangle; unfold and fit over remaining rectangle. Pinch edges together securely. Brush top liberally with egg white and sprinkle generously with sugar.
  7. Bake in preheated 425ºF oven for 10 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350ºF and bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until golden brown. Serve hot or cold.

Makes 6 to 8 servings.

Source: The Creative Cooking Course

Apple Brown Betty

Ingredients

3 Granny Smith apples, peeled,cored and sliced 1/4 inch thick
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
4-1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
4 teaspoons granulated sugar
2 cups fresh bread crumbs
1/4 cup firmly packed light-brown sugar
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon ground mace
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon cognac

Method

  1. Heat oven to 375ºF.
  2. In a large bowl, toss the apples with lemon juice.
  3. Brush 4 six-ounce ramekins with 1/2 tablespoon melted butter and sprinkle with the granulated sugar to coat.
  4. In a small bowl, combine the bread crumbs with 4 tablespoons melted butter. Add remaining ingredients to the apples and toss. Divide a third of the bread crumbs among the ramekins. Arrange half the apples over bread crumbs and add another third of the crumbs. Repeat with the rest of the apples and bread crumbs. Press into ramekins.
  5. Bake for 20 minutes. Raise oven temperature to 450ºF, continue baking until tops are golden brown and apples are tender, about 15 minutes.
  6. Remove from oven and cool for 5 minutes. Run a knife around sides of ramekins and turn apple betty out onto dessert plates.

Makes 4 servings.

Source: What to have for dinner

Vanilla Souffle

Ingredients

2 cups milk
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 vanilla pod or 1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup butter
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
6 egg whites, stiffly beaten

Method

  1. Combine milk, sugar and the vanilla pod in a small heavy saucepan and bring to a boil.
  2. Remove from heat and let stand for 30 minutes.
  3. Remove the vanilla pod. Dry and store for future use. If using vanilla extract, add after scalding milk.
  4. Return the milk to a boil, then remove from heat.
  5. Melt the butter in a double boiler over medium heat. Stir in the flour to make a smooth paste, using a wooden spoon.
  6. Add the milk gradually, stirring constantly. Cook until thickened.
  7. Pour the thickened mixture into a large mixing bowl. Cool slightly.
  8. Fold in 1/4 of the egg whites thoroughly, using a wire whisk.
  9. Add the remaining egg whites. Fold in thoroughly.
  10. Pour into a well-buttered 6 or 7-inch souffle dish. Smooth the top, then dome the mixture slightly in the center.
  11. Bake in a preheated 425ºF oven on 1 shelf above center for about 25 minutes or a little longer for a drier souffle. Serve immediately

Makes 4 servings.

Source: The Creative Cooking Course

Apricot Amaretto Torte

Ingredients

1 tablespoon lemon juice
5 medium-size apricots (about 1 lb total)
1/4 cup slivered almonds
2 large eggs
1 cup sugar, divided
4 to 5 tablespoons almond-flavored liqueur, divided
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup butter or margarine, melted and cooled slightly
4 teaspoons cornstarch
1 cup apricot nectar
1/2 cup fresh orange juice
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Method

  1. Pour lemon juice into a medium-size bowl. Quarter and pit apricots. Add to bowl and turn to coat with juice. Set aside.
  2. In a food processor, whirl almonds until finely ground. (Or finely chop almonds with a knife, then place in a large bowl.)
  3. To almonds, add eggs, 1/2 cup of the sugar, 1 tablespoon of the liqueur, and almond extract. Whirl or beat with an electric mixer until thick and well blended.
  4. Add flour, baking powder, salt, and butter. Whirl or beat until well blended.
  5. Spread batter in a greased, floured 9-inch cake pan with a removable rim. Decoratively arrange apricots in batter, overlapping as needed. Press fruit lightly into batter.
  6. Bake in a 375°F (190°C) oven until cake just begins to pull away from side of pan and a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean (about 25 minutes; pierce cake, not fruit). Let cool slightly on a rack.
  7. While cake is cooling, stir together cornstarch and 6 tablespoons of the sugar in a small pan. Whisk in apricot nectar and orange juice. Cook over medium-high heat, whisking constantly, until mixture boils and thickens slightly (about 2 minutes). Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and remaining 3 to 4 tablespoons liqueur. Keep warm.
  8. Sprinkle cake with remaining 2 tablespoons sugar. Remove pan rim and cut cake into wedges. Serve with apricot-orange sauce.

Makes 8 servings.

Source: Low-fat Italian Cookbook