Wednesday, February 2, 2011

I receive the Cooking Channels Newsletter and when it arrived a short time ago, I was so excited! In big letters it said BIG GAME! Wow, I thought….Deer, Bear, Elk! Yeah! I want to cook big game! Needless to say, I was very disappointed to find out the Big Game they were referring to was the Super Bowl! Sometimes my mind doesn’t work like a normal person’s! Okay, most of the time……..
Maybe it is the weather, I’m bored….therefore I think about cooking! I would much rather cook an elk than make a bowl of ho-hum dip!

I did bake a pound cake this morning. I have been meaning to test the recipe for some time, finally got around to it. I am thinking this will be the perfect cake to serve with fresh peaches and Somerset Ridge Tawny Port Dessert Sauce. So now, I have the cake, the wonderful sauce….I just need to wait for fresh peach season….months from now….damn, poor planning. I’m thinking I might use candied pecans or hazelnuts with some sea salt and use them in place of the peaches. It will work!

Here is the recipe for the sauce…enjoy!

Somerset Ridge Tawny Port Dessert Sauce
1 cup evaporated milk
1 cup whole milk
1 cup packed brown sugar
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 to 3 tablespoons Somerset Ridge Tawny Port
In a large saucepan, combine the 2 milks, brown sugar, and butter. Cook while stirring over medium heat until the sugar is dissolved and the sauce is warm.
In a small dish, combine the cornstarch and Port. Stir to remove any lumps. Add to sauce in saucepan, stirring until it begins to boil. Boil for 1 minute, stirring constantly, remove from heat. Serve hot.

Kay’s Salty,Spicy Candied Pecans
2 1/2 cups raw pecans
1 large egg white, lightly beaten
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp salt
1 Pinch cayenne pepper
Sea Salt
Preheat oven to 300F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, stir the pecans with the egg white.
In a small bowl, stir together the sugar, cinnamon, allspice and salt. Pour over the nuts and stir until evenly coated.
Spread in a single layer on the baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes.
Slide parchment paper (with nuts still on it) off of the baking sheet and onto a wire rack (or the counter) to cool. Sprinkle liberally with sea salt before they cool.
Break nuts up into a bowl to serve or store at room temperature in an airtight container.

Now to be completely honest, I just sat down with a piece of the pound cake, completely unadorned and a cup of hot tea….my oh my, I am a happy girl! So, you want the cake recipe, right? Okay, here it is

Somerset Ridge Vineyard Pound Cake

cake baking in the oven
 1 pound butter (4 sticks)
1 pound sugar (2 cups)
9 large eggs
1 pound all-purpose flour (4 cups)
dash salt
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 large lemon, juice only

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Grease and flour a 10" tube or Bundt pan.
In a large bowl, cream the butter with electric mixer, and then gradually add the sugar, continuing to beat until well creamed and smooth. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Gradually add the flour and salt, beating constantly. Add the extract and lemon juice and continue beating until well blended.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan, gently tapping bottom of pan to distribute batter evenly in pan.,
Bake about 1 hour and 15 minutes, until toothpick inserted into center, comes out clean. Wait 10 minutes before removing the cake from the pan, place it on a serving plate.
Hint….instead of serving with the sauce, you can poke holes in the still slightly warm cake and drizzle part of the Tawny Port Dessert Sauce into the cake. Pretty darned good!
Confession: I cut cake recipe by half and baked in a 9”x5” loaf pan. I figure no one needs to eat an entire cake by themselves. I baked it for 60 minutes, until toothpick comes out clean.

Now what can I cook….wish I had that elk….

Ponte Vecchio, Florence, Italy

Ponte Vecchio, Florence, Italy
oil painting by Kay Tucker

Somerset Autumn on Wea Creek

Somerset Autumn on Wea Creek
Oil Painting by Kay Tucker, Private Collection


oil painting by Kay Tucker

Kansas Storm

Kansas Storm
oil painting by Kay Tucker, Private Collection

Watercolor Collage

Watercolor Collage

Tempo al Tempo....All in Good Time

Tempo al Tempo....All in Good Time
48"x36" sculptural painting by Kay Tucker