Sangria and Poblano-Jalapeño Jellies

I’m not a huge fan of Sangria or hot peppers but love both of these jellies.  You could spread them on your English muffin but I would call these  hors d’oeuvre jellies.  They are amazing on crackers with a little creamy cheese.  Goat cheese is great with the poblano-jalapeño jelly and Brie is wonderful with the sangria.  Any one of your favorite creamy cheeses will do.  Or just spread a little jelly love on a cracker or a piece of Finn Crisp and enjoy.

I found these two recipes in a Better Homes & Gardens special publication.  I love experimenting and trying new things so I gave these a shot.  Loved them both, as did my taste testers, and ended up making two batches of each.  The sangria is the easiest jelly ever.

Sangria Ingredients:

2-3 oranges – enough for 1/2 cup of juice plus zest

2-3 limes – enough for 1/4 cup of juice plus zest

1 bottle dry red wine

5 cups sugar

1 6-oz pkg (2 foil pouches) of liquid pectin

2 T brandy

Remove 2 tsp of zest from the oranges and 1 tsp of zest from the limes.  Squeeze the juice from the fruit and measure out 1/2 cup of orange juice and 1/4 cup of lime juice.

Combine the wine, zest, juice, and sugar in a heavy nonreactive  kettle.

Bring to a full rolling boil stirring constantly.  Quickly stir in pectin.  Again bring to a full rolling boil stirring constantly.  Boil hard for 1 minute stirring constantly.  Remove from the heat.  Skim off any foam with a metal spoon.  Stir in the brandy.  Ladle the jelly into hot sterilized half-pint jelly jars leaving 1/4 inch headspace.

Process filled jars in a boiling water canner for 5 minutes starting the timer when the water returns to a boil.  Remove jars from the canner and cool on wire racks.

Poblano-Jalapeño Ingredients:

5 1/2 cups of sugar

2 1/2 cups finely chopped and seeded fresh poblano peppers

1/2 cup finely chopped and seeded fresh jalapeño peppers

1 cup cider vinegar

1/2 cup water

1 1/2 tsp salt

1/2 cup lime juice

1 6-oz pkg (2 foil pouches) liquid fruit pectin

Green food coloring

In a heavy kettle combine the sugar, chopped peppers, vinegar, water and salt.

Bring to a boil and cook, uncovered, for 5 minutes stirring frequently.  Remove from heat, cover and let stand for 30 minutes.  Stir lime juice into the pepper mixture and bring to a boil stirring constantly.  Boil one minute stirring constantly.  Quickly stir in the pectin and bring to a full rolling boil.  Boil hard for one minute.  Remove from the heat.  Stir in a little green food coloring.  While the food coloring is optional the jelly is pretty ugly without it.

Ladle the jelly into half pint sterilized jelly jars leaving 1/4 inch of headspace.  Process filled jars in a boiling water canner for 10 minutes, starting the timer when the water returns to boiling.  Remove jars from canner and cool on wire racks.

The results are amazing!  Hope you’ll give these a try.

NOTE:  It’s a lot of pepper chopping but food processors tend to turn peppers into liquid mush.  Just get a good sharp knife out and chop chop.  The pepper jelly is NOT hot.  You get the great flavor from both peppers without the heat.

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Smoked Fish Spread

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For those of you who have visited the Upper Peninsula  of Michigan (the UP) you know that smoked fish is a “thing.”  As soon as you cross the Mackinac Bridge you start to see little shops with signs hocking smoked fish.  Smoked whitefish, Menominee, salmon, and my personal favorite, smoked trout.  You can buy a whole fish or a slab.  It’s great to eat just as is.  Your fingers get a little greasy and they smell a little fishy but we don’t care.    The fish also makes an excellent spread.  Easy to make.  And you won’t smell as fishy!  My Dad used to make us smoked fish from his fresh catches and I will always remember his as being the very best.  My very favorite.  But Dad is nearly 89 and isn’t fishing much anymore.  So when I visit the UP I frequently get fish for our family and for friends from one of the little shops.

Ingredients:

2 cups (approximately) of smoked fish flaked

4 oz cream cheese at room temperature

1/2 cup sour cream

3-4 green onions sliced thin

2 T capers

2 T lime juice

2 tsp smoked paprika

1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (1 tsp if you want more kick)

Cracked pepper

Salt to taste

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Use a hand mixer and beat the cream cheese and sour cream together until it is smooth.

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Add the capers, lime juice, black and cayenne pepper, and paprika to the cream cheese, sour cream mixture and stir well to combine.

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Slice the green onions and flake the fish.

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Add the fish and onion to the creamed mixture and blend well.

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Taste before you salt.  Some smoked fish is saltier than others.

This spread is excellent on crackers or served with raw vegetable like celery and carrots.  Great with bread and butter pickles.  You’ll also love it served on another UP tradition.  Finn Crisp.  Rye bread is the most traditional bread in Finland and in some areas of Finland it is baked only a few times a year, then dried and enjoyed year round.  It is baked with a hole in the center allowing the loaves to be hung on dowels to dry.  I’m sure that Finn Crisp is modeled  after those loaves.

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Enjoy  the smoked fish spread and enjoy the Finn Crisp if you can find it.

NOTE:  You could add some fresh dill to this recipe or substitute some minced dill pickles for the capers.

 

Vegetable and Bleu Cheese Tart

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A few Christmases ago my daughter gave me a Nordic Bakery Cookbook by Miisa Mink.  It has some excellent recipes for  pastries and for savory dishes.  We all get tired of making the same meals over and over so tonight I got the book out and decided to make the Vegetable tart.  Just yesterday I bought some excellent buttermilk Bleu cheese at a local market that sells cheeses, meats, great olives, wine and craft beers.  The cheese was perfect for this dish.  Simple ingredients.  Nothing exotic.

Ingredients for the crust:

13 T butter at room temperature

3 1/2 T sour cream or crime fraiche

1 cup AP flour

1 tsp baking powder

pinch of salt

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Cream the butter and the sour cream or creme fraiche together in a mixing bowl.

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Mix dry ingredients in a separate bowl.  Stir into the creamed mixture until a dough forms.  Form dough into a ball, flatten into a disc, and wrap in plastic wrap.  Store in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or overnight.

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Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface.

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Transfer the pastry to a tart pan pressing it into the fluted edges of the pan and neatly cut off the excess pastry.  (I love my tart pan and I rarely use it.  You don’t see how pretty it is until it’s empty.)

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Tart Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups broccoli florets

1 1/2 cups cauliflower florets

1 T vegetable oil

1 onion rough diced

1 cup cherry tomatoes halved

2 1/2 oz. Danish Bleu cheese (I used buttermilk Bleu)

3/4 cup grated Cheddar

fresh ground black pepper

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The Bleu cheese is the star!

Preheat oven to 400.

Cut the florets into chunks.  Boil until they are tender crisp.  Drain well and allow to cool.

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Heat the oil in a heavy skillet over medium heat.  Fry the onion until it is soft and golden.  Set aside to cool slightly.

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Once the onion has cooled tip the pan over the pastry and spread the onion evenly.  Top with the broccoli, cauliflower and tomatoes.

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Sprinkle the cheeses evenly over the top and sprinkle with cracked black pepper.

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Bake for 25 minutes or until golden brown.

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It’s beautiful!  And it tastes great!  Serve with a green salad and you have a perfect dinner.

NOTE:  You can substitute other vegetables taking care that they don’t become too watery when cooked.  Served as an appetizer the recipe serves 6; as an entree it serves 4.

 

 

7 Layer Taco Dip

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Several years ago we started hosting or going to house parties with a small group of good friends on New Years Eve rather than going to restaurants or bars or large organized galas.   Maybe it’s the iffy Michigan weather that makes us not want to be on the roads.   Maybe it’s because we are getting older.  Whatever the reason, it’s been a good choice.  We all bring appetizers and beverages and enjoy each other’s company, some singing and picking, and all the good food and drink.  It’s the best way to bring in the New Year.  This year I made a 7 Layer Taco dip as my passing dish.  As always we had lots of amazingly good food.

Layer 1

2 15-ounce cans of navy or pinto beans drained and rinsed

1 large sweet onion rough chopped

2-3 cloves of garlic minced

1 cup chicken broth

jalapeños and cilantro to taste

salt to taste

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Heat a couple tablespoons of canola oil in a heavy saucepan.  Cook the onions over medium heat until they are caramalized.  Add the beans and broth to the skillet and heat through mashing with a potato masher.

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If necessary add additional broth to get a nice creamy consistency.  Stir in jalapeño and cilantro.  Season with salt to taste.  This is the way I prepare beans for any Mexican dish I serve.

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Spread the bean mixture out on a large platter or pizza pan.

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Layer 2

1-2 cup(s) sour cream

Taco seasoning to taste (I used 2 T)

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Combine the sour cream and seasoning mixture well and spread over the beans.

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Layer 3

1 jar of homemade salsa or your favorite store brand

Spread over the sour cream.

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Layer 4

Pico

1 cup diced tomatoes

1/2 cup diced sweet onion

1-2 jalapeños diced (with or without seeds)

1/2 cup cilantro

1/2 lime juiced

salt to taste

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Toss the vegetables together.  Squeeze lime juice over the mixture and season to taste with salt.

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Spread vegetable mixture over salsa.

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Layer 5

2-3 Avocados peeled and diced

1/2 lime juiced

Salt to taste

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Squeeze the lime juice over the avocado and season with salt.  I love avocado but everyone does not feel the same.  So I put my diced avocado around the outer edge of my platter.

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Layer 6

Black olives and/or pickled jalapeño.  I only used the black olives.

Layer 7

Shredded cheese.

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Garnish with additional cilantro.  Serve with your favorite tortilla chips.  Enjoy!

NOTE:  You can add a meat layer if you choose by cooking ground beef or turkey and adding some tomato paste and seasonings to the meat.

 

Marilyn’s Party Mix

Marilyn’s party mix has become a holiday tradition.  About eight years ago I quit smoking and decided to learn to knit to keep my hands and mind busy.  I’m sure this is a story I’ve blogged about previously but regardless…It was a great decision for a number of reasons but one of the best outcomes was the amazing band of women that became a very important part of my life.  We call ourselves the Knit Wits.  We meet almost weekly to knit, take road trips, and share stories and recipes (our pot lucks are fabulous).  Our ages and life paths varied pretty significantly but we all quickly grew to love and respect each other and cherish our time together.  Marilyn was the oldest of the Knit Wits.  She was 80, give or take a year, when we first met and we lost her to the ravages of cancer about three years ago. She was funny and spunky, told wonderful stories, was extremely generous and an excellent cook.  She shared recipes that we all still make and think of her every time we do. One of those recipes is her party mix.  I cannot imagine how much of this she made each year.  She would start shopping in the fall for ingredients.  I’m sure she went through no less than 20 pounds of butter or more each year just for her party mix. She could always tell us which grocery had butter on sale.  She gave party mix to friends and family by the gallons.  I always take some to my daughters for Christmas and her friends look forward to noshing on it.  So much so that I mailed some to a friend of hers in Miami who wasn’t able to make it to Chicago this Christmas.

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Almost everyone has had “Chex Mix.”  Marilyn had her own special version.  She embellished!  Her ingredients included but were not limited to:

Snyder’s pretzel mixes (including jalapeño bits)

Crispex

Cheese-Its (different favors)

Goldfish (different favors)

Bugles

Mixed nuts

Chex (rice, corn and wheat)

Gardellos rye crisps

Pretzels

Marilyn passed away in late August of 2012 and that Christmas we all got together and made Party Mix.  We had large bowls of all the ingredients on an assembly line and added a cup of this, a cup of that until we had filled a large roasting pan.  Then came the buttery, garlicky goodness.

4 sticks of butter

4 T worchestershire sauce

3 1/2 T Lawrey’s seasoning salt

1 T Lawrey’s garlic salt

1 T garlic powder

Peheat your oven to 250.  Melt 3 sticks of butter and add all of the spices.  Stir well.  Pour 5 T of the seasoned butter over the roasting pan full of mix and stir carefully to coat.  Bake for 20 minutes and repeat.  Do this three times until an hour has passed.  Melt and add the fourth stick of butter to the mix and repeat at 20 minute intervals for another hour.  After two hours pour the mix out onto freezer or parchment paper on your counter and allow it to cool completely before packaging it in zip lock bags or other containers.  Marilyn always saved coffe cans and the large containers nuts and other ingredients came in to package her party mix.  Your house will smell like garlic.

It’s addicting.  You will have garlic coming out of your pores and still go back for a little more.  RIP Marilyn.   I will think of you every year when I make this and I know that you are smiling.

 

 

Homemade Potato Chips with Chilpotle Lime Dip

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Homemade chips anyone?  Remember when we all owned a “Fry Baby” or “Fry Daddy” and apparently fried lots of things??  Those must-have appliances came with a plastic lid so you could just store and reuse the oil. I rarely deep fry anymore but a couple weeks ago I made chili Rellenos which are deep fried in a pretty fair amount of oil. So as not to be wasteful, once the oil had completely cooled I strained it using a fine mesh colander lined with a coffee filter. After doing that the oil can be stored in the refrigerator and used one or two more times…unless you’ve fried fish in it and then no, do not reuse. I decided to make fish and chips for dinner.  My excuse for a dinner of all fried things was not wanting to waste that oil.  I know that will make perfect sense to anyone reading this.  Back in the Fry Daddy days I guess we didn’t need an excuse.

To prepare the potatoes for chip making wash them and, using a mandolin on a fine setting, slice away. I used redskin potatoes and I do not peel them. Rinse the potatoes well after slicing and dry them as thoroughly as possible with paper towel or clean cotton dish towels.

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Heat your oil in a heavy Dutch oven until it reaches 375-380 degrees. Carefully begin dropping the potatoes in the hot oil and let them fry until they are lightly browned. Don’t crowd the potatoes in the pan.

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You may have to turn them once. When they are done to your liking remove the chips from the hot oil using a skimmer and put them on a pizza pan or jelly roll pan lined with paper towel. Salt them immediately with coarse salt and put them in a warm oven.

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Begin your next batch until you’ve made the desired amount of chips. I think putting the chips in a warm oven after frying also helps to crisp them up and any excess oil dissipates or is absorbed by the paper towel.

Dip Ingredients:

1 cup sour cream

1/2 cup mayonnaise

3 T chilpotle peppers in adobo (chopped well)

juice and zest of one lime

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Thoroughly combine all ingredients.

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Keep refrigerated until you’re ready to serve.

NOTE:  If you have any chips left store them in a zip lock bag and, before serving the left overs, warm them up a bit in the oven.   The dip is also excellent on fish tacos and would add a little zip to a vegetable tray.  You can also make really yummy chips with sweet potatoes.

Smoked Trout Pate on Old Country Trenary Rye

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I just returned from a week in the Upper Peninsula spending time with family and friends. It’s absolutely beautiful but it’s also the land that time and the internets forgot. So no blog posts while I was away.

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One of the highlights of this trip was the annual Outhouse Classic held in the wee town of Trenary. Where they race outhouses built on skis on a rough, snow covered track. The festivities also include beer tents, coolers full of turkey legs for your gnawing pleasure, and, of course, pasties.

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Trenary also has a somewhat famous bakery whose specialties are Trenary Toast (a dry cinnamon sugared sweet bread perfect for dunking or making milk toast) and an old country rye bread that’s very hearty. The bakery also had an outhouse entry.

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On to my pate.

The UP is known for all kinds of freshwater fish from inland lakes as well as the Great Lakes. My dad used to make the best smoked fish I’ve ever eaten. He no longer makes it but it’s available at several small specialty groceries on the sweet side of the Mackinac Bridge. For my return home I bought smoked trout and whitefish, old country rye bread, ternary toast and lots of pasties. For lunch today I decided to make a real simple pate served on the rye.

Ingredients:

8 oz smoked trout, skin and bones removed

4 oz cream cheese

1 tsp prepared horseradish

1 tsp dill

2 T fresh lemon juice

1 T grated onion

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Because I haven’t been home for awhile I had no fresh lemons but I always keep extra lemon juice in mini zip locks in my freezer. Fresh dill would also be preferable but improvise, improvise.

Combine the cream cheese and trout in a food processor. Make sure you’ve gotten all the bones out. Getting a bone in the pate might even be worse than egg shells in your deviled egg.

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Grate the onion and add the onion, dill, horseradish and lemon juice to the fish/cream cheese.

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Pulse until its a nice, creamy consistency. It’s as easy as that!

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I served up our smoked trout pate with rye bread, beets my daughter did in her pressure cooker, and home canned dilly beans.  I added some balsamic reduction to the beets to brighten up their flavor. It would also be good with sliced, hard boiled eggs, tomato slices, green onions, or crisp apple slices.

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Enjoy.

NOTE:  If you’d like to order bread or toast from the Trenary Bakery you can email trenarytoast@tds.net Or call them at 1-800-TOAST-01. That was unsolicited but I do like promoting the UP.

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Juustoa (Finnish Squeaky Cheese)

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I have always loved juustoa. It’s a very mild, fresh cheese that “squeaks” when you bite into a piece, especially when it is still warm. It’s a cheese that you rarely see in a deli or cheese counter unless you live in the UP (of Michigan). I can’t buy it where I currently live so I decided I would make my own. I got on line and found some recipes and video instructions. The recipes varied slightly but overall were very similar. I have absolutely no cheese making experience but I always say, if you can read and follow instructions you can make anything. Well I’m not sure I still believe that. If you’re at all familiar with juustoa you will recognize the picture at the beginning of this post as bearing some resemblance.

Ingredients:

2 gallons skim or raw milk (the recipe I chose to follow stressed that whole pasteurized milk would not work)

1 pint heavy cream

3 T sugar

1 tsp salt

2 T cornstarch

1/2 vegetable rennet tablet or 1/2 tsp liquid rennet

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I found rennet at my local food coop and organic skim milk from a local dairy. There is animal rennet and vegetable rennet. Rennet causes the proteins in milk to form a curd. You might not want to know what either type of rennet is derived from so I won’t go into that. It’s just important to know that it’s an ingredient essential in the cheese making process. I got out my big stainless kettle and heated the milk and cream over medium heat to exactly 90 degrees.

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I removed the kettle from the heat and added the sugar, salt, cornstarch and rennet. The recipe said the milk should gel in 20-40 minutes.  The readiness test is to insert the handle of a wooden spoon in the center and it should leave a hole. Its at this point the process failed. No “hole” after 20 minutes, 40 minutes or even 90 minutes.

I googled, “what if the rennet doesn’t set up”.  It suggested I add half again the amount of rennet the recipe called for so I added another 1/4 tsp of rennet and waited some more. Now it’s been a few hours. I’ve rearranged the furniture in my house, done a couple loads of laundry. Still my milky concoction has not gelled.

I’ve invested too much money and time and I’m determined to make something of this mess. I got out a large mesh strainer and poured the pot of clotted milk into the strainer. I’m reminded of little miss muffet sitting on a tuffet eating her curds and whey. I cannot fathom eating the curds and whey. This was a real challenge to my weak stomach. I got rid of as much of the whey as possible and poured the curds into a round 9″ glass pan. I preheated the oven to 400 and put the pan in the oven and set the timer for 15 minutes. After about 10 minutes I checked and removed my cheese from the oven and siphoned whey with my turkey baster. A whole cup. I put it back in the oven, reset the timer for another 10 minutes. I removed another half cup of whey. But I’m finally getting a solid mass that is holding together pretty well.

Now I turned the broiler on and put the cheese under the broiler until it was browned. I took it out and waited until it had cooled down enough to flip and put side two under the broiler to brown. As soon as it had cooled enough I cut a piece off.

It tastes just like I remember. And it squeaked!!!

I’m going to do a little more research and try again. Even though my recipe said to use skim or raw milk other recipes did not specify skim milk. Organic vegetable rennet apparently has a 4 month shelf life.  Since there was no date on my bottle perhaps my rennet was outdated and losing its potency. It was a little disappointing to have things go awry but I’m glad I was able to salvage enough to make a little juustoa.  Sorry there aren’t more pictures but most of the process was not at all photogenic.

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Juustoa. Perfect sprinkled with a little salt and enjoyed with a strong cup of coffee.

Ring Bologna Bake – Käyrämakkarahe

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Yup. That’s a ring bologna. It’s not my personal ring bologna and I’m not actually going to cook it but I’m going to tell you about ring bologna. It’s the crowning glory of one of my Dad’s favorite dinners. He calls it Finnish tube steak. You take a ring bologna, just like the one in the picture. Make a slit in the top all the way around. You put it in the oven at 350 for about 15-20 minutes and watch for it to begin to split open. Fill the opening with brown sugar and catsup and bake for another 15-20 minutes. Serve with mashed potatoes and a can of green beans or corn. I grew up in a family of 5 kids; me and 4 brothers. We had this quite frequently for dinner along with the potatoes and canned vegetables. I don’t know if my mother made two of them at a time or if all 7 of us shared the one Finnish tube steak.   When my dad visited last summer I bought the best quality ring bologna I could find and made this for him. He was a happy man!

Since I’m not actually cooking one right now I had to get on line to find pictures and I discovered that ring bologna actually has it’s own Facebook page!

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I’m not sure what the relationship is between the Green Bay Packers and ring bologna but this is ring bologna’s Facebook picture.  I apologize to all the Lion fans in my family for this picture.

The other day I was reading through a Finnish cookbook by Beatrice Ojakangas and came across a couple paragraphs about ring bologna. She says, “Ring bologna is as popular in Finland as wienies are in the United States. The Finns have many ways to cook it. They cut it into pieces and cook it over a campfire as we cook wienies. A crowning touch to a sauna party in Finland is to roast ring bologna pieces over the hot sauna stove and eat the pieces with hot mustard. With these, one drinks kalja or olut (beer).  Finns do not put the meat into bread as we do with weenies.”

Apparently the brown sugar and catsup bake is the Americanization of Finnish ring bologna.

In July of 1969 I traveled to Finland with my mummu (grandmother) and aunt and uncle. It was my grandmothers first visit back to her homeland in nearly 40 years. We spent a couple of weeks traveling the country and visiting family and friends. I had a vague recollection of the sauna/ring bologna experience so I got my “Air Travel Diary” out and read through the “places and events visited”.

July 13, 1969 we were in Kauhajoki visiting my grandfather’s relatives where I wrote, “He has a real nice home where we went to the sauna. The sauna had four rooms. First room was for undressing. Then you walked through the shower room and then into the hot sauna room. You suds up good and then back to the shower room to rinse off. Then you go into the sitting room before you dress and cook sauna bologna over a fire place.”  There was no mention in my journal about beer but the adults may have imbibed. For non-Finnish readers unfamiliar with Finnish sauna practices I’ll elaborate on that another day.

I’ve been having long morning conversations with my dad and we get on these off the wall topics like ring bologna. While looking for suitable pictures I came across a Ring Bologna in the Crockpot recipe. Dad asked me to write it down and send it to him. He wants me to write it twice so he can mail a copy to a fellow Finn who loves ring bologna as much as my Dad does. If I ever make it I promise to blog about it. In the meantime get on line and check it out…there is a whole ring bologna culture out there!

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Kaalipiirakka (Cabbage Pasty)

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If you’re Spanish you might have empanadas, if you’re Polish pierogis, Italian raviolis, and if you’re Finnish kaalipiirakka (cabbage pasty). I was reading a Finnish cookbook today and came across this recipe. I didn’t grow up eating these but I might have. These would be served as an accompaniment to soup or as a bread side with a meal. I think they would be great with tomato soup!  Bread is a mainstay of the Finnish diet…and true to his heritage my grandfather could not eat a meal without bread. I remember both of my grandparents eating bread slathered with butter and sprinkled with salt.

These little cabbage pasties are fairly easy to make. The slightly sweet pastry dough and the savory cabbage are a nice combination. They might be tasty with a dip of some kind…I’ll have to work on that. Suggestions??

Yeast Pastry ingredients:

2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast

1/4 cup warm water

1 cup whole milk, scalded and cooled to lukewarm

1 tsp salt

1 egg, well beaten

1/2 cup sugar

4-4 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1/2 cup melted butter

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Dissolve the yeast in the water. Beat the egg well with a whisk.

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Combine the milk, salt, egg, and sugar in a large bowl.

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Add the yeast and 2 cups of flour and stir with a wooden spoon until smooth and elastic.

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Stir in the butter until blended. Add the remaining flour and mix until you have a stiff dough. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth. About 5 minutes.

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Place dough in a lightly buttered bowl, cover with a towel and allow to rise in a draft free place until doubled in size. Punch down and let rise again for about 30 minutes. While dough is rising make your filling.

Filling Ingredients:

4 T butter

2 cups sauerkraut drained

2 medium onions sliced thin

2 T brown sugar

1 tsp caraway seeds

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In a heavy skillet melt the butter. Add the onion and cook over medium heat until the onion is tender and beginning to caramelize.

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Add the sauerkraut, sugar, and caraway seed. Stir until well blended and cook for 2-3 minutes. Remove from the heat. Our filling is ready.

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Preheat your oven to 375.

Now you’re ready to roll your dough and fill your kaalipiirakka. Divide the dough into thirds and roll the dough about 1/3 inch thick on a lightly floured surface. Use a glass or cookie/biscuit cutter on the dough. I used a scalloped cutter but round would work just fine.

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Brush each circle with half and half to moisten the edges for sealing. Put a tsp of filling in the center of a disc, put a second disc on top and crimp the edges with a fork.

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(The amount of filling in each will actually depend on the size of your discs). Brush each filled and crimped kaalipiirakka with half n half and cut a little steam vent in the center. Put on a baking sheet with parchment paper.

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Bake for 15 or 20 minutes until golden brown.

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You’ll have extra filling. Just get out a fork and finish it off. Tastes great!!