Friday Recipe Exchange: Peaches and Peppers

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JeffreyW’s garden bounty

Another week just flew by and it’s time for the recipe exchange. I came home from NE with a car full of fresh vegetables from my brother’s garden. I’m afraid some of tomatoes did not survive the change in altitude very well. But I made fresh salsa with them and all was well.

I gifted my family with Palisade peaches and with the few that were left, my mom made Peach Cobbler (recipe here). At that link you can also see a photo of the 110 year old house I considered putting a bid on before heading out on my trip.

Dinner menu this week was Fajita Chicken & Vegetable Kabobs and another cobbler. For the full dinner menu, recipes and shopping list, click here.

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JeffreyW turns his garden bounty into spicy Five Pepper Jelly.

Finally, JeffreyW was showing off his Five Pepper Jelly, and I wish I canned because I LOVE pepper jellies. How he transforms peppers into jelly, click here and what he does with it, yum, click here (warning, click and you’ll want biscuits and gravy).

For the pet lovers, Bixby took time out from his daily adventures to write a diary entry here.

Cooler weather has put me in the mood for fall recipes, especially soups. What are you looking forward to making as fall approaches? What is on the menu for the weekend?

Tonight’s featured recipe has to be all about the peaches again, since it’s a short two to three weeks of sweetness. This recipe is sweet and spicy, great for lunch or dinner.

Spicy Peach Dressing

  • 2 large peaches, peeled, pitted and quartered
  • 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 jalapeño or other hot pepper, halved and seeded
  • 1/2 cup olive oil

Purée all of the ingredients, except oil, in a blender or food processor until smooth. Continue to blend, on low, while adding oil slowly. Mix until well blended. Refrigerate.

Spinach Chicken Salad

  • 3 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
  • 1/2 small sweet yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 lb cleaned baby spinach leaves
  • 1 cup chopped, toasted walnuts
  • 1 peach, peeled, pitted and thinly sliced
  • 3 ounces crumbled bleu cheese or chevre

Place the chicken in a plastic zipper bag with ½ cup of dressing. Marinate 2 hours in refrigerator. Remove chicken, discard marinade and grill until cooked through (165 degrees at center).

Toss the spinach, onion, walnuts and cheese with the remaining 3/4 cup dressing. Slice the grilled chicken and arrange on top of the salad.

Serving: 4 to 6

That’s it for this week. Have a good weekend and enjoy the last full week of August, I know I will.  – TaMara

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Do You Know What Happens to Tomatoes at High Altitude (and a Peach Cobbler Recipe)

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Bustling. Things have been bustling. House hunting has heated up. Looked at two last week, one was a 110 years old. I was really drawn to it, but in the end, despite it being a solid, beautifully built home, there were too many check marks in the cons column. So the search continues.

A quick trip to visit family gave Bixby four days of fun and just a bit of overwhelm, which I’ll detail more in a dedicated Bixby post later in the week. Since we’ve been home, he’s been a total…brat. Somehow all our training has gone out the window.

My brother sent me home with a trunk full of fresh vegetables. But do you know what happens to very ripe tomatoes as you climb from sea level to 5280 feet? Yup, they burst. I was able to salvage one for slicing, but the rest I turned into Fresh Salsa tonight. Which was a good thing, since I’m already 3/4 of the way through the jar he sent home with me.

I was a little disappointed because I was hoping to use these beautiful tomatoes to make this:

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Doesn’t that look amazing? Basically a Caprese Sandwich. Mouth watering just looking at it. I may have to get some fresh mozzarella tomorrow and make a caprese salad.

Before I left on my trip, I filled my car with as many fresh Palisade peaches as I could fit around Great Dane stuff and my stuff. Before I left, my mom said she was going to use the few that were left to make a peach cobbler. I missed out on that, but yum. I’m sure it was delicious. Recipe below:

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Peach Cobbler

  • 4 tbsp butter, melted
  • 1 cup flour
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 1 ½ tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ¼ cup milk
  • 1 egg
  • 16 oz fresh peaches, peeled, pitted and sliced
  • 1 tbsp sugar

8X8 baking dish, bowl

In 350° oven, melt butter in baking dish. In bowl, sift together flour, ¼ cup sugar, baking powder & salt. Add milk & egg, whisk to form a smooth batter. Pour into baking dish (don’t stir butter in). Scatter fruit evenly over the top of the batter and sprinkle with 1 tbsp sugar. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes until fruit bubbles and batter is golden brown.

I’m hoping for a quieter week this week, to catch up on a few things and hopefully see a few more houses. Dinner menu and Bixby Diary later in the week. Until then…..



 

Blackberry Cobbler

DSC_7680 (1600x1060)We were sorting through the big freezer and ran across a bag of frozen blackberries that we thought would look good in a cobbler.  Since looking good in a picture is mostly what we are all about we did a Google image search for berry cobblers and clicked on one that looked nice.  That led us to this recipe on the Pioneer Woman’s site.DSC_7668 (1600x1060)The recipe is stupid simple.  We did think about some kind of crusty topping, a rolled oats crumble sort of thing, but decided for a simple drizzle of a powdered sugar/milk glaze.DSC_7681 (1600x1060)Pretty good!

Ingredients:

1 stick Butter
1-1/4 cup Sugar
1 cup Self-Rising Flour
1 cup Milk
2 cups Blackberries (frozen Or Fresh)

Preparation Instructions

Melt butter in a microwavable dish. Pour 1 cup of sugar and flour into a mixing bowl, whisking in milk. Mix well. Then, pour in melted butter and whisk it all well together. Butter a baking dish.
Now rinse and pat dry the blackberries. Pour the batter into the buttered baking dish. Sprinkle blackberries over the top of the batter; distributing evenly. Sprinkle ¼ cup sugar over the top.
Bake in the oven at 350 degrees for 1 hour, or until golden and bubbly. If you desire, sprinkle an additional teaspoon of sugar over the cobbler 10 minutes before it’s done.

 

Cherry Pineapple Dump Cake Crisp..er, cobbler..thing

I just don’t know what to call these things.  I made the full 13×9 pan this time.  I divided most of the leftovers into individual portions, set them out on a silicone mat on a baking tray, and froze them solid.  The cakebergs went into a freezer bag for storage.

I followed the same method as all of the others:  Pour a can of cherry pie filling into the pan followed by a can of pineapple chunks.  Use crushed if you prefer.  Sprinkle old fashioned rolled oats atop that, then empty a box of yellow cake mix onto it.  I like to add chopped hazelnuts-a good cup of those went on top the cake mix.  Finish the assembly by adding 2 sticks of butter, scatter thin slices about or do what I do, freeze the butter then grate it on.  Works great!  Just be sure to get it really cold first!  I also sprinkled some brown sugar as a finishing touch, maybe  a quarter cup.  Bake at 350 for 45 minutes or until the top browns and the juices bubble up.

Mmm… apple crisp crunch cobbler dump cake

With nuts!  I’m running out of ideas as to what these creations should properly be called.  They have certain traits in common with dump cakes but the end results are more crispy cobbler than anything.

I started this one with three Granny Smiths peeled and sliced.  I cooked them just a bit with some apple cider, adding a quarter cup or so of brown sugar and a cup and a quarter of golden raisins, and some grated cinnamon and nutmeg.  The fruit went into my 8×8 cake pan, and was topped by a generous layer of rolled oats and chopped hazelnuts.

I used a butter pecan cake mix this time, just because.  I shook out about half of the box for the next layer, and then added one and a half sticks of butter over that.  I chilled the butter in the freezer again and used a grater on it to add the last layer.  Not counting some fresh grated cinnamon onto the butter, that is.   It took 30 minutes at 350 to get to this point:

This one is my favorite of those we’ve done lately.  It is just awesome, the cake mix and the oats and butter make a lovely, crunchy topping for the apples.

So, what’s a good name for this?

Blackberry Cobbler

I noticed we had a lot of frozen berries in the big freezer and decided to make a cobbler out of some of the blackberries.  I’m used to calling on Mrs J to do my cobbler topping but today I used the awesome power of the Google to query the Pioneer Woman about a good way to go about making one.  She shames me with her wit and photographic skillz.  Go over there and learn how to make it.  I’ll just natter along here until you get back.

You’d think with a nice step by step illustrated guide it would be difficult to mess this pretty simple recipe up but you haven’t seen me gimp around the kitchen in a sudden hurry when confronted with the results of a little arithmetic.  Confused yet?  Note that her recipe is for a round dish, 9 or 10 inches or thereabouts.  I was making it in a 9X13 pan.  Doesn’t take much figurin to see that the amounts for the pan I was using would be greater than the amounts the Pioneer Gal set out to document.  Anyway, I mixed up a batch of the cake batter and poured it into the pan and then it struck me:  I need more of this stuff!

Note that the recipe calls for self rising flour.  I didn’t have any but it’s easy to make up a batch, just add 1-1/2 t of baking powder and 1/2 t of salt to a cup of all purpose flour and you have it.  I did all the adding of powders and sifting together and was feeling all Big Kitchen Daddy Baker Dude up until I realized I needed another batch and promptly forgot all about that little aside with the self rising recipe and all.  The second batch of batter went into the pan right  along side the first.  Not sure how many blackberries I used when I dumped the thawed berries into the batter.  I note that one can use too many berries and that they can overwhelm the batter.  I am right at that edge.  I won’t say I used too many but if I make another batch I’ll not use all that I did today.

The pan I used was bigger, but not quite two times as big so the double amount of berries and batter layered in there a bit thicker than the original recipe and so took longer to bake.  I looked in at 55 minutes and gave the timer an extra 5 minutes at least four and maybe five times before I pulled the cobbler out-call it 80 minutes total at 350.  I will note that I set the pan atop a baking stone and that seems to add a need for extra time all by itself.  It seemed to be just about right, though a tad heavy (maybe!) on the berries.