Monthly Archives: September 2009

Tres Leches Cake

The Tres Leches Cake is a popular Spanish recipe. The cake is a yellow cake or even a sponge cake that is soaked in three different milks, hence the name. You can eat this cake alone or with an icing of your choice. I find that a basic homemade whip cream icing works wonderfully well. Although you will be tempted to eat it the day you make it you will be greatly satisfied if you choose to wait the next day as the recipe states. This is a pretty easy cake to make as well. Make it one day and finish it the next.

5 eggs
1/3 cup milk
4 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1-1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar

milk sauce:
1/2 can (6 ounce) evaporated milk
1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup heavy cream

1 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon sugar

1. Pre-heat oven to 350 F. In a large mixing bowl add eggs, milk, butter, vanilla, flour, baking powder and cream of tartar. With a hand mixer mix until smooth and frothy. In a 13inch x 9inch baking pan pour batter and cook for 25-35 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean from the center.

2. Meanwhile, in a medium sized mixing bowl add evaporated milk, condensed milk and 1/2 cup cream. Whisk together and place in fridge until needed.

3. When caked has cooked and cooled carefully poke holes all over. Pour milk mixture all over the cake. Place in the refrigerator over night.

4. In a steal bowl add 1 cup heavy cream and sugar. Place in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes. With a hand mixer on high mix until peaks form. You can frost each piece or entire cake.

Yields: 20 servings

Chicken and Dumplings

This is my moms recipe so it is about as Southern as you get. I have seen and tasted the dumplings made in little thin strips, they just do not compare to the real dumplings like we make in Tennessee. Many people do not think a soup or stew is even a main course but there is no way anyone will leave the table filling hungry after a bowl of this. This is also a meal that still taste excellent after it is refrigerated and re-heated not that you will have any left over.

1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can cream of chicken soup
5 chicken breast, boneless and skinless, diced
2 cans water
2 cans chicken broth
3 cups milk
1 bay leaf
salt and pepper to taste

2 cups all-purpose flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons shortening

1. In a 4 quart pan on high heat add cream of mushroom and chicken soup, milk, chicken, water, bay leaf and chicken broth. Allow to come to a full boil then reduce heat to low. Allow to simmer until chicken is done about 45 minutes.

2. In a large mixing bowl add flour, baking powder, salt and shortening. Mix until course. Carefully add enough water to get a dough, about 1/2 cup.

 3. After chicken has cooked raise heat back to high when soup is boiling take 1 tablespoon of the dumpling mix and place into the soup. Repeat this until dough has finished. Reduce heat to medium. DO NOT stir for 10 minutes. Cook covered for 10 minutes. Carefully stir and cook uncovered for 10 minutes. Sprinkle top with salt and pepper.

 Yields: 5 servings

Chicken Quaker Soup

Quaker soup is the most popular Ramadan soup served in Saudi. You can also substitute lamb instead of the chicken in this dish. The hint of cumin leaves a distinct smoky flavor while the cardamom reminds you of its Middle Eastern roots. Mastika is widely used in Arabic cooking as a thickener such as flour in western countries.

4 chicken breast, boneless and skinless, diced
2 tablespoons butter
3 mastika
1 cup quick cooking oats
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 chicken bouillon cubes
6 cups water
1/2 tablespoon cumin, ground
8 green cardamoms
1 small onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, smashed
salt and pepper to taste
parsley for garnish

1. In a 4 quart pan on medium heat add butter, garlic and onions, cook until tender. Add chicken, cumin, cardamom, mastika, salt and pepper allowing chicken to turn white on all sides. Add tomato paste, chicken bouillon and oats and water. Bring to a full boil then reduce heat to low for and allow to cook for 45 minutes covered. Sprinkle fresh parsley on top of each serving.

Yields: 12 servings

Albanian Walnut Cake

This traditional Albanian dessert is everything and more you could ask for in a cake. It is not too sweet at all which can be a big turn off for most people when eating cake. Toast your walnuts in the same pan as you make your cake and do not rinse it. As the walnut toast they extract a beautiful oil that taste amazing mixed in with the batter as your cake cooks. I bet you can not eat just one slice of this cake!

2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon allspice
1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1/3 cup laban
1 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped
3/4 cups water
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice

1. Preheat oven to 350 F. In a large mixing bowl add flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, allspice, 3/4 cup sugar, butter, eggs, yogurt and laban. Mix well with a hand blender. In a 9×13 inch baking pan add walnuts and roast for 5 minutes in pre-heated oven.

2. Place toasted walnuts on chopping board and chop. Add walnuts to batter, mix well. Spray the same baking pan with cooking oil then add batter. Cook for 30 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, in a 2-quart saucepan on high heat add water, lemon juice and 1 cup sugar. Bring to full boil then reduce to low and simmer for 15 minutes occasionally stirring. Set aside and allow to cool. After the syrup has cooled pour all over the top of cake and serve.

Yields: 12 servings