Paganini's Pantry (163)

Friday, 08 April 2016 05:39

Rey's Portion Bread

1/2 teaspoon vegetable oil
4 tablespoons cake flour
1-1/2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon matcha powder
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
pinch of salt
2 tablespoons whole milk
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

1. Place the oil in a mug and swirl around to grease the inside.
2. Add the cake flour, sugar, matcha powder, baking powder and salt into the mug, stirring together.
3. Pour in the milk and vanilla, then cook in the microwave on high for 45 seconds.
4. Let cool slightly and serve.

*images, courtesy of Disney, LucasFilm

Friday, 01 April 2016 05:22

Lemon Chiffon Pie

Makes 2 Pies

Graham Cracker Crust:
2 1/2 cups Graham Cracker crumbs
1 pkg. vanilla sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
Pinch of salt


1 can (14 oz.) sweetened condensed milk
1 pkg. vanilla sugar
Pinch of salt
1 (6 oz.) can frozen lemonade concentrate, room temperature
2 (8 oz.) packages cream cheese, room temperature
1 cup heavy cream, whipped with 1/4 cup powdered sugar
Zest and juice of 1 lemon
1 additional lemon for garnish
1 envelope unflavored gelatin
1/4 cup cold water to soften

Chantilly Cream:
2 cups heavy cream, chilled
1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
1 pkg. vanilla sugar

In a large bowl, combine crust ingredients, mix well. Press into 2 pie dishes.

In a mixing bowl, beat cream cheese until smooth and fluffy. Beat in condensed milk until blended. On low speed, add lemonade, vanilla sugar, salt, zest and juice of lemon.

Increase speed and beat until blended. Heat gelatin with water in the microwave for 10 seconds to melt. Stir into lemon filling. Fold in whipped cream. Pour into crust, refrigerate 2-3 hours or overnight.

In a large mixing bowl, whip all Chantilly cream ingredients to stiff peaks. Fill a pastry bag fitted with a large star tip and pipe rosettes on top of each pie.  Place lemon slices on top of rosettes and serve.

Friday, 25 March 2016 05:35

Vegetable Casserole Soup


Makes 12-14 servings

3 Tbsp. olive oil                                                       

4 cloves garlic, minced

2 carrots, peeled and cut into 1/4 inch dice

2 lg. zucchini, rinsed and cut into 1/4 inch dice

1 cup broccoli florets

2 potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch chunks (optional)

1 cup dry white wine

3 cups canned tomato chunks

4 qt. vegetable stock

½ lb. lasagna noodles

1 lb. fresh spinach, stems trimmed, leaves cut into thin strips

1 lg. can (1 lb. 3 oz.) cannellini beans, rinsed and drained

1 cup grated parmesan cheese

1/4 teaspoon red chili flakes (more or less to taste)

Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

1 ½ cup sour cream

1/2 cup fresh basil, chopped


Heat the oil in a large stockpot over medium-high heat. Stir in the carrots, zucchini, potatoes, broccoli and cook, stirring frequently for 10 minutes, add the wine and garlic. Stir in the tomatoes and cook 5 minutes longer. Pour in the stock and then add the spinach, and beans and uncooked lasagna noodles broken into pieces. Simmer the soup uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 45 minutes.


Season to taste with chili flakes, salt and pepper. Add parmesan cheese.  Serve with dollop of  sour cream and sprinkle of basil.

Thursday, 17 March 2016 11:19

Chocolate Mocha Cheesecake


Cheesecake Crust: 
1 1/3 cups oreo cookie crumbs

6 Tbsp. (3/4 stick) unsalted butter 


Cheesecake filling: 
2 1/2 cups cream cheese, room temperature 
3/4 cup sugar

1/4 cup heavy cream

1 Tablespoon espresso powder
1 1/2 Tbsp. cornstarch 
3 large eggs 
3 large egg yolks 


Chocolate Sauce:

8 oz. semisweet chocolate, melted
2 oz. heavy cream

1 Tablespoon vanilla extract


Preheat the oven to 350° F. Melt butter and pour over crumbs in a large mixing bowl. Mix ingredients together until crumbs are well saturated by butter.  Press crumb mixture into pan and up sides of a 9 inch spring form pan. Bake in oven for 8-12 minutes until crust feels dry and firm.


Mix cornstarch and espresso powder into heavy cream until thoroughly mixed together. Set aside.


In a kitchen mixer, beat the cream cheese to a smooth consistency.  Mix in sugar.   Beat in eggs and yolks a little at a time. Add the espresso mixture and mix to a smooth batter. 


Wrap the outside of the cooled spring form pan with cling wrap and then aluminum foil. This is to prevent water from seeping into the cake.  Sit the spring form in a baking dish and pour the cheesecake filling into the spring form. Fill the baking dish with boiling water to come about half way up the spring form pan.


Bake in the water bath for approximately 35-45 minutes until the top of the cheesecake is firm but underneath is still slightly giggly. Remove spring form from pan in oven and immediately remove foil and wrap.  Allow the cheesecake to cool. Then refrigerate overnight to set.


Over a double boiler, melt chocolate.  Once melted, stir in heavy cream and vanilla extract.  Set chocolate mixture aside to cool slightly. Over a very cold cheesecake pour ganache and allow it to drip a little over the sides.  Chill to solidify the chocolate ganache.

Friday, 04 March 2016 06:38

Stonington Chowder

Serves 6

5lbs littleneck clams (steamed, cleaned, and chopped...reserve the liquid)
1 cup water
1/4 cup dry white wine
2 bay leaves
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 cups fish or chicken stock
2 Tbsp butter
1 onion, small, diced
2 celery stalks, small, diced
3 carrots, small, diced
2-3 sprigs fresh thyme
2 fresh bay leaves
1 1/2 lbs fingerling potatoes, small, diced
1/2 cup heavy cream

In a large stock pot, steam the clams with the water, white wine and 2 bay leaves until they open. Discard any clams that have not opened. Do not consume. Remove the meat from the shell and strain the clam juice through a double layer of cheese cloth. Reserve the juice. Clean the clams and chop fine. Reserve the meat

In a 6 qt heavy bottom stock pot, heat oil and saute the onions, celery, and carrots until tender. Add the fresh thyme and bay leaves. Cook for 1 minute. Add the potatoes and cook until they just become tender. Add the reserved clam juice and clam meat. Bring to a simmer, cook until the potatoes are cooked through. Finish with the heavy cream.

Friday, 26 February 2016 07:18

Lobster Bruschetta

2 cups cooked lobster meat
8 oz cream cheese
6 oz cheddar cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup lemon juice
1Tbsp lemon zest
1/4 cup scallions (washed and diced)

In a double boiler, melt cream cheese and cheddar cheese, stirring together. Add lemon zest, Parmesan cheese and lemon juice. Fold in lobster. Stir to combine. Spread on toasted French bread, sprinkle with scallions.

To make Bruschetta:
16 French baguette slices (1/2" thick)
3Tbsp olive oil

Heat grill, or pre-heat oven to 375.

Arrange the bread slices on a large baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil, then place on hot grill and mark on one side. Alternatively, bake until golden and crisp (6-8 minutes)

Thursday, 11 February 2016 10:32

White Chocolate Raspberry Crème Brûlée

Serves 8

1 cup heavy whipping cream
3 oz. good-quality white chocolate, finely chopped
5 lg. egg yolks
1/4 cup raspberry puree

1/2 tsp. vanilla extract



2 Tbsp. granulated sugar
Fresh raspberries


Preheat oven to 325° F.


In a non-reactive saucepan, heat cream to just under boiling. Remove from heat, add white chocolate and stir with a silicone spatula until melted.


In a separate bowl, whisk yolks and vanilla in medium bowl. Slowly whisk cream mixture into yolks until incorporated. Divide custard between 8 (4 ounce) ramekins cups. Spoon small amount of puree into each cup and lightly swirl in to marble.


Place custard cups into a baking dish with sides. Pour enough hot water into the pan to come halfway up the sides of the ramekins. Do not get any water into cups. Bake just until the crème brûlée is set, but still trembling in the center, approximately 40 to 45 minutes. Remove the ramekins from the roasting pan and refrigerate overnight.


Remove the crème brûlée from the refrigerator 10 minutes prior to browning the sugar on top. Divide the sugar equally among the 4 dishes and spread evenly on top. Using a torch, melt the sugar and form a crispy top. Allow the crème brûlée to sit for at least 2 minutes before serving. Garnish with fresh raspberries and serve.

Friday, 05 February 2016 08:11

Chocolate Pralines

Makes 12-20

1 cup brown sugar

1 cup granulated sugar

½ cup heavy cream

¼ cup whole milk

1/8 teaspoon salt

2 Tablespoons unsalted butter

1 ounce finely chopped dark chocolate

1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract

3/4  cup pecan pieces


In a heavy bottomed non-reactive saucepan over low heat, combine sugars, cream, milk and salt.  Stir until sugars have melted.  Once sugars have melted make sure the sides of the pan are free from “radical” sugars and stop stirring. 


Add a candy thermometer to the pan and cook the mixture until it reaches 235 degrees F.


Remove pan from heat and add the butter, chocolate, and vanilla.  Be careful as mixture may bubble.  Stop stirring and allow mixture to rest until it have cooled slightly and is no longer shiny. 


Pipe out silver dollar shaped pralines and top with pecan pieces.  Allow to cool to set.


Sore in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.

Thursday, 28 January 2016 13:36

Carrot Ginger Soup

Serves 8

2 Tbsp. olive oil

1 Vidalia onion, diced

2 celery stalks, diced

2 Yukon potatoes, peeled and diced

4 lbs carrots, peeled and chopped

1 Tbsp. fresh ginger, minced

2 quarts chicken stock

1/2 cup heavy cream

2 tsp. fresh nutmeg, grated

Salt and pepper to taste


Heat oil in a large sauce pot.   Sauté onions, carrots, celery, and potatoes until tender.  Add stock and allow to boil.  Cook soup for 20-30 minutes to marry the flavors. 


In small batches, puree soup in a food processor or blender.  Please be careful not to fill the processor bowl as hot liquid expands quickly when blending.  Place pureed soup back into soup pot to reheat.   Add cream, nutmeg and ginger.  Salt and pepper to taste.

Serves 8

6 cups mixed greens, chopped bite sized

1 cup mandarin orange slices

1/4 cup toasted almonds slivers

3/4 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, pounded thin

*For Dressing:*

1/4 orange juice

Zest of one orange

2 Tbsp. raw honey

3 Tbsp. rice wine vinegar

3 Tbsp. vegetable oil

1 Tbsp. fresh grated ginger

2 tsp. sesame oil

In a large bowl, whisk together orange juice, honey, orange zest, fresh
grated ginger and rice wine vinegar. While whisking slowly add in a
constant drizzle the oil to create an emulsion.

Remove 1/2 cup of dressing. Marinate chicken in 1/2 cup of dressing for
2 hours. Discard dressing used for marinade.

Grilled chicken on an outdoor grill or indoor grill pan. Cook chicken
until it reaches an internal temperature of 165° and juices in the
chicken run clear. Set aside.

Add sesame oil to remaining dressing and whisk together.

In a large bowl toss together mixed greens and oranges. Add dressing and

Slice chicken on a diagonal into strips. Plate salad onto individual
dishes top with chicken breast and garnish with toasted almonds.

Page 3 of 12