Friday, October 7, 2011

Polls, Thanksgiving Turkeys and Stuffings.

mcguintyYou know that’s pretty good going, by 10:15 p.m. or even a bit earlier, we knew that Ontario had re-elected a liberal government. Our poll closed at 9 p.m. on the dot and they must have got their results in sharply along with all the other polling stations in the province. I tell you, that is one long day, 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Matt and I don’t have to stay and count. We were both pretty tired when we got home and went to bed fairly early. This morning I learnt that voter turn out was a record low of only 49%. I think we had a fairly good turn out, it was steady all day and got very busy after supper.

I made smoked salmon sandwiches for lunch which I haven’t had in a while, they were absolutelyTurkey delicious. I also talked “turkey” to a couple of people, both electors and poll officials, and was reminded about brining a bird before cooking it which I have done, but not recently. It does make a terrific difference to the tenderness and juiciness of the turkey. Not sure if I have time to do that this weekend, its Thanksgiving in Canada by the way, but I will look into it. One woman was telling me that a Mennonite had told her the reason people get sick after eating turkey is because of the stuffing, presumably because it doesn’t get cooked properly. Really much better to cook the stuffing separately. A stuffing we have used and which was very, very popular with some neighbours of ours was one we called Spanish Stuffing.

Spanish Stuffing

1/4 C Chopped onion
3 Tbs. Olive Oil
3 Med Garlic cloves, crushed
1/4 C Country smoked ham, chopped
1/2 C Green pepper, chopped
1/4 C almonds, sliced
2 lbs. ground pork
1/4 C raisins
4 oz. pimientos (jar)
3 tsp. capers
2 med plantain

Instructions: Soften onions and garlic in oil. Add green pepper and ground pork. Stir fry until pork is cooked. Add remaining ingredients except plantain. Cook for approx 5 mins, on med/low heat. Add plantain (use ripe if possible but can be green) and cook for a further 5 mins.

Suggest served separately. Reheat in microwave when ready to eat.

The picture for this recipe looked so good, but it is absolutely loaded with calories. If you are going to try it, I suggest only small pieces.

Pull-apart Honey Pecan Coffeecake

Honey Pecan Coffee CakeServes 8

With the use of the dough hook, the ingredients are quickly put together for an overnight rise. A little assembly in the morning is rewarded with a wonderfully sticky, pull-apart bread.

For the Dough:
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
1 cup whole milk
1/3 cup lukewarm water (105 to 115 degrees F)
One 1/4-ounce package dry yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons)
1/3 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon salt
4 1/4 cups (or more) all-purpose flour
For the Coffeecake:
Nonstick vegetable oil cooking spray
1 cup toasted chopped pecans
1 1/4 cups firmly packed golden brown sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter, melted
5 tablespoons honey

Melt butter in heavy small saucepan over medium-low heat. Remove from heat; add milk. Let mixture stand until cooled to at least 110°F.
Meanwhile, combine water and yeast in large bowl of heavy-duty stand mixer; let stand until yeast dissolves, about 5 minutes. Add milk mixture, sugar, eggs and salt. Using dough hook, mix on high speed until eggs are blended. Gradually mix in 4 1/4 cups flour. Continue kneading on medium speed until dough is smooth and pulls away from sides of bowl, adding more flour if necessary, about 5 minutes. Remove dough from bowl; form into ball. Sprinkle some flour into bottom of mixing bowl; return dough to bowl. Cover and chill overnight.

Spray 10-inch-diameter angel food cake pan with nonstick spray. Sprinkle pecans evenly over bottom of pan. Punch dough down. Roll out dough on lightly floured work surface to 10-inch square. Cut dough into five 2-inch-wide strips. Cut each strip into five 2-inch squares, creating 25 pieces total.

Combine brown sugar and cinnamon in medium bowl. Dip each dough piece into melted butter, then into brown sugar mixture, coating each piece evenly. Transfer each piece to waxed paper-lined baking sheet.
Combine all remaining melted butter (about 2 tablespoons) with all remaining brown sugar mixture (2 to 3 tablespoons). Stir 3 tablespoons honey into brown sugar mixture. Pour honey mixture evenly over pecans in pan. Arrange dough pieces atop pecans, spacing evenly and creating two layers. Drizzle dough with remaining 3 tablespoons honey. Let rise in warm draft-free area until almost doubled, about 1 hour 15 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350°F.

Bake coffeecake until golden brown, about 55 minutes. Cool on rack 10 minutes. Turn coffeecake out onto platter. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Recipe created exclusively for by Jeanne Thiel Kelley.

Have a great day

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