Monday, September 15, 2008

Whole Wheat Buttermilk Pancakes

As we do every year with our friends John and Peggy, and their children, we are going camping this weekend! Not very far from home...This way, if it rains, we can just pack up and go!! No!! We are not wimps, but we had a bad experience before !!!

We go to Nickerson State Park, on Cape Cod. And this time it will be three families joining efforts around the fire. We go biking, hiking, sightseeing...and we eat! Not just mere camping food - although what that is I do not know - but gourmet! One of my favorite is the butterflied pork tenderloin marinated in mustard and lemon. But that will be in another post!

Breakfast is a big moment...Barely awake you have to earn your coffee...No fire...No breakfast!

My italian coffee percolator is perfect for this first morning cup without which I would be totally useless!! And I also bring our double sided cast iron griddle for pancakes! This recipe is also great for home!!!

Whole Wheat Buttermilk Pancakes

3 cups Whole Wheat Flour
6 tsp Baking Powder
3 large Eggs
2 1/2 cups Buttermilk
6 Tbsp Salted Butter (do not add salt), melted
2 tsp Vanilla Extract

Fresh (or frozen) Blueberries
Maple Syrup

Sift together the flour and baking powder.
Beat the eggs, buttermilk, melted butter and vanilla until blended.
Pour the buttermilk mixture into the dry ingredients and stir only enough to moisten the batter. Do not beat or your pancakes will be tough.

Bake on the griddle: butter the griddle and pour dollops of batter on the hot griddle. Place the Blueberries on top of the pancakes and once the batter bubbles, flip the pancakes over.
Put a small piece of butter on each pancake and serve with warmed Maple Syrup!

Instead of Blueberries you can try Chocolate Chips! The kids favorite!!!

When outdoors camping or on the beach for a BBQ, the easiest dessert is grilled Bananas with Dark Chocolate. Try it!

Grilled Bananas with Dark Chocolate

1 ripe Banana per person
3 Squares of Dark Chocolate per Banana

Place the bananas with their skin on the grill and cover until bottom is brow/black. Turn the bananas over nad cover again until the skin is dark and begins to split open.

With a knife open each banana, one at a time, and push the 3 squares of chocolate inside the hot Banana. The chocolate will start melting the dessert is ready to be served!

Don't stress with the chocolate. Some love it really dark (for this recipe I use at least 85% cocoa, sometimes even 99% cocoa!) but some prefer lighter shade of it! Try to use at least 64% cocoa as it really brings the flavors together better.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Lemon Cheesecake

Who ever said that Labor Day marked the end of Summer??? As Tropical Storm Hannah was passing through New England, the heat and the humidity reminded me of a hot Summer day in Naples, Florida. The rain too, of course, but I actually welcomed it as I had had no time to water the yard.

The storm also brought strong winds that brought down the dead tips of the oak trees, damage caused by the infamous Cicadas. Time for clean up!

For us on Cape Cod, Labor Day means another BBQ on the beach!!! Everyone brings something, wether you get to the said beach by boat or Kayak. I kayaked with Nicole, but was smart enough to send everything on the boat!!!

My collaboration to this dinner was a Lemon Cheesecake. Easy to transport, stays cool on the ice and perfect ending to the weekend!

Lemon Cheesecake

15 Graham Crakers, crushed
1/4 cup sugar
8 Tbsp butter, melted

Lemon Curd:
1 1/2 Tbsp cornstarch
1/2 cup water
2 large egg yolks
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup lemon juice
1 Tbsp lemon zest

Cream cheese filling:
3 8-oz package cream cheese
3/4 cup sugar
3 large eggs, room temperature
1/4 cup sour cream
1 tsp Vanilla extract

Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and mix well. Press to the bottom of a spring-form pie dish. Bake at 350 F for 10-12 minutes.
Take out of the oven and let stand.
Reduce oven heat to 325 F.

Lemon curd:
In a small bowl, disolve the cornstarch in the water.
In a medium saucepan, whisk together the egg yolks, the sugar and the lemon juice. Whisk in the cornstarch mixture and cook over medium heat whisking gently for about 4 minutes, until hot, thick and glossy.
Add the lemon zest and let cool. Set aside.

Cream cheese filling:
In the bowl od an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese with the sugar until smooth.
Beat in the flour, mixing well, until blended.
Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well between each addition.
Add the sour cream, and the vanilla. Mix well until the batter is smooth.
Pour the batter over the crust and smooth the top with a spatula. Dollop the lemon curd on the batter and carefully twirl it into the batter, with a knife. Be careful not to cut the crust.
Bake for about 40 minutes, until golden aroud t he edges and just set.
Refrigerate until thouroughly chilled.
Run the tip of a knife around the edges of the cake to loosen it and place on a serving dish.