This October, pumpkin puree is the hottest seasonal ingredient to stir into cocktails. After noticing it in a recent recipe, I've seen it in countless other concoctions. One that caught my eye is this Fall-themed orange mojito. The combination of spiced rum, muddled mint, brown sugar, lime juice, and pumpkin puree is wonderfully balanced and quite refreshing. The pumpkin doesn't overpower the drink, instead it enhances the flavor of the rum. It's made like any other mojito, so you will need a muddler. Since rum is the only spirit, select a high-quality one like Cruzan's aged spiced rum. To give this cocktail a try — I promise you won't be disappointed — keep reading.
Posts for October 29th 2010
After weeks spent hunting down that perfect Halloween costume and planning out a pre-Hallows' Eve dinner, the big day has finally arrived. But before you put on your costume and head out the door, be sure you're fully prepared for Halloween.
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From Rachael Ray
Apple and Onion Stuffin' Muffins
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, 2 turns of the pan
1 stick butter, softened
1 fresh bay leaf, available in produce department
4 ribs celery and greens, from the heart, chopped (save time and purchase celery already washed, trimmed and cut into sticks, this makes chopping fast work)
1 medium to large yellow skinned onion, chopped
3 McIntosh apples, quartered and chopped
Salt and pepper
2 tablespoons poultry seasoning
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley leaves
8 cups cubed stuffing mix (recommended: Pepperidge Farm)
2 to 3 cups chicken stock, available in paper containers on the soup aisle
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Preheat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add extra-virgin olive oil to skillet and 4 tablespoons butter. When butter melts, add bay leaf and add the vegetables as you chop them, celery, onions then apples.
- Sprinkle the vegetables and apples with salt, pepper and poultry seasoning. Cook 5 to 6 minutes to begin to soften vegetables and apples then add parsley and stuffing cubes to the pan and combine. Moisten the stuffing with chicken broth until all of the bread is soft but not wet.
- Butter 12 muffin cups, liberally with remaining butter. Use an ice cream scoop to fill and mound up the stuffing in muffin tins. Remove the bay leaf as you scoop the stuffing when you come upon it.
- Bake until set and crisp on top, 10 to 15 minutes. Remove stuffin' muffins to a platter and serve hot or room temperature.
Makes 12 muffins.
From Everyday Food
Asian Steak Salad
1/4 cup fresh lime juice (from 2 limes)
1/4 cup rice vinegar
2 tablespoons vegetable oil, such as safflower
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon red-pepper flakes
1 garlic clove, crushed through a press
1 pound flank steak
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/2 head napa cabbage (1 pound), thinly sliced crosswise
1 English cucumber, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced on the diagonal
1/4 cup coarsely chopped unsalted roasted peanuts
- Heat broiler, with rack set 4 inches from heat. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil; set aside. In a small bowl, whisk together lime juice, vinegar, oils, red-pepper flakes, and garlic.
- Pierce steak all over with a fork; place in a shallow dish or resealable plastic bag. Pour soy sauce and half of lime-juice mixture over steak (reserve remaining half for dressing), and marinate at room temperature, 10 minutes (or up to overnight in the refrigerator).
- Lift steak from marinade (discard marinade), and place on prepared baking sheet. Broil, without turning, until medium-rare, 8 to 10 minutes. Let rest 5 minutes. Slice thinly on the diagonal, across the grain.
- In a large bowl, toss cabbage and cucumber with reserved dressing; divide among four plates. Top salad with steak and peanuts.
It seems like every year, fewer trick-or-treaters stop by my house. Thus, each October, I end up with a large amount of leftover candy. If this happens to you, turn the leftover chocolate candy bars into a scrumptious topping for shortbread. The brown-sugar-based shortbread crust is simple and effortless to prepare. Similar to chocolate bark, these shortbread bars can be covered with whatever chocolate you have on hand. I used an assortment of peanut butter and caramel treats including Reese's peanut butter cups, Heath bar bits, Reese's Pieces, and caramel-filled dark chocolate. Want the recipe? Get it after the jump.
Earlier this month, Condé Nast announced major changes over at Bon Appétit. The media corporation is moving the Los Angeles-based food magazine to New York City without longtime Editor in Chief Barbara Fairchild. Today, Women's Wear Daily reports that Adam Rapoport, the style editor at GQ magazine, is expected to fill Fairchild's shoes. Although Condé Nast has yet to release a formal statement, the announcement should come early next week. Rapoport has been with GQ for 10 years; before his time there, he edited the restaurant section of Time Out New York and wrote for the James Beard Foundation's publication office. Rapoport is sure to bring a stylish edge to the magazine, and I'm excited to see how he remodels the content of Bon Appétit.
Black and Orange Halloween Pasta
2 lbs. butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 3/4-inch chunks
2 orange bell peppers, cut into 1-inch pieces
4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon thyme leaves
1/2 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 lb. black linguine or spaghetti (squid or cuttlefish ink pasta)
1/2 cup pitted Kalamata olives, chopped
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees F with rack in middle.
- Toss squash and bell peppers with garlic, thyme, red pepper flakes, oil, and 1/2 tsp each of salt and pepper in a 17- by 11-inch 4-sided sheet pan. Roast, stirring once, until vegetables are just tender and browned in spots, 25 to 35 minutes.
- While vegetables finish roasting, cook linguine in a pasta pot of well-salted boiling water until al dente. Reserve 1/2 cup cooking water, then drain pasta and return to pot.
- Remove sheet pan from oven and pour reserved water over vegetables, stirring to loosen from pan. Stir in olives, then add vegetable mixture to pasta in pot and toss to combine.
Serves 6 as a main course.
Could the cult of Mexican Coke be nothing more than another case of the emperor's new clothes? That's what some analysts are asserting. The Latin American soda version has a fiercely loyal following due to the fact that it's made with sugar rather than high-fructose corn syrup. But is that really the case? According to a new study in Obesity, the beverage doesn't actually contain sucrose, the sugar compound that makes up cane sugar. Instead, a lab analysis located plenty of glucose and fructose.
So what does this mean? According to nutrition authority Marion Nestle, there are two possible conclusions: either the soda studied was old and the sucrose split into glucose and fructose, or the company used high-fructose corn syrup instead of cane sugar. Which do you want to believe?
Source: Flickr User Mills Baker
11 mint leaves
1 Tbsp brown sugar
1.25 oz rum
1 Tbsp pumpkin
2 oz soda
- Muddle mint leaves and sugar.
- Add rum, pumpkin, and juice from 1/2 lime. Mix well, add ice, top with soda, and garnish with extra mint leaves.
Makes 1 drink.