Lingonberry Cardamom Tart

Cranberry Almond Lingonberry Torte with creme fraiche

From a technique perspective, this Lingonberry Cardamom Tart is closely based on a Martha Stewart recipe. But I have a confession to make, I’ve never actually made it according to the original instructions. The second I saw it, I knew it was destined for Swedish Thanksgiving greatness. In so many ways, the original recipe waltzes around so many Scandinavian ingredients and flavors and that was enough to pique my interest right away. In my Lingonberry Cardamom Tart I swap in lingonberries wherever possible. I add in cardamom in enough quantity to make sure it doesn’t get lost. And I keep up the rich buttery, almond paste that really makes this dessert feel Swedish to me. I have to admit, anything that requires blind baking, like this Lingonberry Cardamom Tart, I consider to be somewhat of a pain and it better be worth the extra steps. This Lingonberry Cardamom Tart definitely is worth any extra effort. It’s as beautiful as it is rich, tart, sweet, spicy, savory and delicious. The cranberries make this Lingonberry Cardamom Tart wonderful as a Thanksgiving, Christmas, or even Valentine’s Day dessert and everything else about it will soon make it a family favorite. … Continue reading

Rye Crust Apple Custard Pie

Rye Crust Apple Custard Pie dallop of creme fraiche

I love everything about this Rye Crust Apple Custard Pie, except perhaps the fact that it requires a deep-dish pan and it’s a bit of a pain to make. The dense, savory, buttery crust goes so well with the cool creamy custard. Then the tart but caramelized apples bring bushels of fall flavor and provide texture and balance to the vanilla custard. It is playful and unexpected all the while fulfilling my love for old-fashioned dessert flavors. This Rye Crust Apple Custard Pie is oh-so-worth the extra effort this recipe may require, and I have broken it into a two or three day process to make it feel less arduous when I make it. Simply make the pastry one day, roll it out and bake it another, make the apples a day or two ahead and refrigerate them. When you’re ready to bake it, it will be a matter of throwing all of the ingredients together, rather than the make and wait all-day process this looks like. That said, if you’re having a busy, multi-tasking full-meal sort of cooking day, you won’t notice the challenge at all because the steps are straightforward and you can use the downtime for other … Continue reading

Vasterbottenpaj Swedish Quiche

Vasterbottenpaj Swedish Quiche sliced

It feels a little ominous to post my Vasterbottenpaj (Swedish Quiche) the day before the US v. Sweden Women’s World Cup game. While I love celebrating my Swedish heritage, I have to admit that when it comes to sports, I’m USA all the way. That said, it’s time to start gearing up for my Midsommar Menu, and first up is this Vasterbottenpaj (Swedish Quiche). I based my Vasterbottenpaj (Swedish Quiche) on a couple of Swedish recipes (One and Two), so I left in the metric amounts so you can see the conversions, because I think it’s fun. That said, I also provided the standard amounts as well. You’ll notice they’re not quite your typical amounts. The good news is, this Vasterbottenpaj (Swedish Quiche) isn’t the type of recipe that requires extreme precision. Also, don’t let the foreign cheese intimidate you. It’s very hard to find these days, so check out the note at the bottom on how to get a good substitute for the flavor and texture. I think one of the best lessons to be learned from these recipes is the addition of crème fraîche into the filling. It provides a richness and tang that I absolutely love and … Continue reading

Pumpkin Butterscotch Pie with Gluten Free Cashew Crust

Pumpkin Butterscotch Pie

My Pumpkin Butterscotch Pie with Gluten Free Cashew Crust was a knock it out of the park sort of recipe. It was also a perfect fit for my Caribbean influenced 2013 menu with the funky curry fennel crust. I can’t say enough about how good this pie is. Loads and loads of complementary flavors and textures with enough pumpkin to satisfy the traditionalists in the crowd, and gluten free if you like, with rich cashew flavor. One of my favorite Thanksgiving guests has celiac disease, so I try to make as many gluten free dishes as possible so as to ensure he gets in on the fun. It always pushes me to try out new techniques and this was no exception. I often work with almond flour generally, even when I’m not so worries about gluten because I love it. And the recipe this pie is adapted from was garnished with cashews. That definitely got my mind thinking about cashew flour, and then while I was out shopping I was thrilled to discover that Trader Joe’s carries cashew meal. Things came together quickly from there and adding pumpkin to the butterscotch pudding filling was a Thanksgiving no brainer. You won’t … Continue reading

Stone Fruit Crostada with Rye Crust

Stone Fruit Crostada with Rye Almond Crust lemon verbena ice cream

This Stone Fruit Crostada with Rye Crust is born of many different influences. I love stone fruit season and have been waiting all Summer to do a Peach and Plum dessert. Initially, I thought you might be getting a crisp of some sort, but then I read a really lovely recipe that called for a crust with rye flour in the mix. I loved the dark color and the idea of a more savory and substantially flavored crust. Color me intrigued, right? And as a seasoned lover of rye breads (hello, Swedish Limpa anyone?) I figured I ought to add some almond flour in the mix just to up the Scandinavian ante. The dough was very forgiving and easy to work with and this endeavor definitely turned me on to working with rye flour again in the future with desserts. I’m already scheming on all sorts of citrusy combinations for winter. But I digress. Back to the stone fruits. I have been making tons of refrigerator jam this Summer, and I had some plums at the perfect stage of going bad. Sweetening fruits with jams has long been a favorite sweetening strategy of mine and you get that double whammy … Continue reading

Fresh Strawberry Pie with Rhubarb Curd

Fresh Strawberry Pie with Rhubarb Curd whip cream garnish

My Fresh Strawberry Pie with Rhubarb Curd all started with two quarts of gorgeous little local fresh strawberries. You know the ones. They’re really small. And sometimes oddly shaped. And deep dark red. They were at the market, and it was time for a fresh strawberry pie. But I didn’t have the heart to make a Jello-ed, jellied pie with those perfect berries. Even the homemade strawberry puree plus cornstarch versions you see this time of year didn’t seem worthy of those berries. So I started thinking about what else has a consistency that would help fresh strawberries bind together in a pie-like way. Which got me on to lemon curd. Which made me think of the tart neighbor, passion fruit curd, which we had all over our breakfast, all over Australia. Which got me thinking about other fruits that would be a welcome addition to curd. I could reinforce the strawberry, kind of like the original complete with strawberry Jell-o, but after thinking of lemon, tart sounded right to me. And of course, rhubarb and strawberry are such friendly ingredients, and I still had a bag frozen that was calling to me like a siren. So next thing you … Continue reading

Spicy Polenta Tarts with Okra and Sweet Corn

Spicy Polenta Tarts with Okra and Sweet Corn

These Spicy Polenta Tarts with Okra and Sweet Corn were inspired by a recipe I saw online. It’s funny how some of these pinterest recipes work (p.s. Are you following me on pinterest? You should be), you keep tracing them back and tracing them back to their original incarnation, only to find that they were inspired by another earlier recipe, and now mine is part of the chain. Often, (for me anyway) pinterest recipes are filed away, never to be thought of again. But these Spicy Polenta Tarts with Okra and Sweet Corn were so appealing, and I’d been looking for something unexpected, but Southern inspired, so they made it to the top of my “try it out” list (I’m so glad they did). Not only were they beautiful, but they featured a new okra application that was a fun surprise for guests and as a side the tarts were a welcome departure from the traditional mashed potatoes and biscuits. Since I served my fried chicken on the good linens with the new French wine glasses, fresh peonies, and a gorgeous Summery rosé wine, a more elegant side was in order. My Updated Southern Supper proved the perfect occasion for … Continue reading

Key Lime Pie, two ways

Key Lime Pie, two ways four crusts

I blame my friend Erica, for this post: Key Lime Pie, two ways. Or I’m grateful to her, but I hold her personally responsible for the many hours that went into it? It’s been years in the making. It started in Key West with a quest for the best pie key lime pie. See, Erica and I don’t just relax and enjoy the rum drinks on vacation. No, we’re on a mission to suss out the best of the local cuisine. And of course, in Florida, one of your goals is the best Key Lime Pie. We went to all the bakeries and restaurants, we asked the locals, and we ate pie more times per day than is socially acceptable as we tried as many pies a possible. All we were able to conclude at the end of the trip? We really like key lime pie, we really hate disposable aluminum pans, and we both preferred whipped cream to meringue topping. We did technically pick out a favorite, but then the real test began. What Key Lime Pie to make at home? I tested MANY crusts and fillings and was finally able to recommend not a best pie, but two. … Continue reading

Snow Day Chicken Pot Pie

Chicken Pot Pie individual size

Today, it’s the day for Snow Day Chicken Pot Pie. You know the kind. The wind chill is below freezing, there are logs on the fire; I could curl up and read all day, but fortunately, Chloe T. Dog makes me bundle up to go out for a walk and play in the snow. It’s the kind of day where mittens hang by the fire to dry out. Showers are long and luxurious. Flannel PJ’s are a must. Marshmallows float on rich Hot Chocolate. Cooking is slow and frequent and the extra heat from the oven is welcome. A day such as this demands the right kind of lunch baking in the oven while I’m outside. And as you can imagine, I have the perfect lunch for a day such as this: Snow Day Chicken Pot Pie. My take on the classic chicken pot pie pumps up the vegetables and lowers the fat without sacrificing taste. With the healthier cooking choices I make for this traditionally rich dish, there will be room left in the caloric budget for that hot chocolate I was talking about. And don’t worry, you don’t have to wait for snow or even cold to make … Continue reading

Happy New Year Party

plum sparkler New Year's Eve cocktail

Happy New Year! Dirty Laundry Kitchen is now about a year old. I want to take a moment to thank you all so much for reading the blog and sharing 2013 with me. There’s no place I’d rather be than in my home, cooking and sharing my passion for life with friends and family. This blog is all about that passion. You’ve all made that possible. So thanks. A new year calls for reflection and celebration. And lots and lots of sparkles. You can see how I decorated for New Year’s Eve below, and check out my Happy New Year Party. Here’s a closeup of the glittered pom poms and holly leaves next to the gold candles with silver candlesticks. I think they came out great. Here you can see that I put glue all over some of the leaves, but others I painted just the edges. This way there was lots of contrast on the leaves.  The glittered holly leaves looked amazing.Using skewers and styrofoam balls, I made the glittery pom poms. I just dipped them in glue and rolled them in glitter. It was really fun, but I totally forgot how messy glitter is! I wrapped some of … Continue reading

Stilton Tart with Blueberry Sage Compote

stilton tart with blueberry sage compote aerial

This Stilton Tart with Blueberry Sage Compote is a lovely thing to make for a New Year’s Eve cocktail party. One of the best parts about it is that since it’s made with a special stilton, it’s perfect as an hors d’oeuvres or as a savory dessert. It’s amazing with a special port or glass of champagne or wine. I’ve based my Stilton Tart with Blueberry Sage Compote on a Gourmet recipe, but it has a lot of updates. I have a 12-inch round fluted tart pan with a removable bottom, so I have it calibrated for that size. I add walnuts to the crust, and I serve it with a blueberry sage compote and my refrigerator jam. Cranberry chutney is also, lovely at Christmas, and I’ve also served it with leftover Thanksgiving cranberry relish. But there’s something about the blueberries with this Stilton Tart with Blueberry Sage Compote. Crust: ¾ cups all-purpose flour 1 cup walnuts 6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter; diced ¼ teaspoon salt 1-2 tablespoons ice water In a food processor, pulse the nuts into a flour-like texture. Add the flour and salt. Add in the butter and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal with pea-size clumps. Drizzle … Continue reading

Cranberry Caramel Tarts

cranberry caramel tart

I absolutely adore these Cranberry Caramel Tarts. This was one of those desserts that I knew would be a favorite of mine, even before I tried it. And I was oh, so right, even with my ridiculously high expectations. The thing is, I REALLY love caramel. And cranberries. And almonds. These Cranberry Caramel Tarts may as well be named, Barrett’s Favorite Things Tarts. The tart cranberries balances out the sweet, rich caramel. Speaking of caramel, it’s one of those things that cooks can really fear, and to be fair it can be tricky for a variety of reasons, but the caramel in these Cranberry Caramel Tarts is a good beginner caramel recipe. After the caramel is made, it is baked in the tart, so the caramel filling will heat up, smooth out, and tends to come out well in the end even if it’s not perfectly smooth going into the oven. As if the wonderful filling weren’t enough to make this dessert stand out, a crust made with almond flour adds richness, tenderness and crunch. Finally, using slivered almonds, well, that’s my modus operandi; it ensures plenty of texture and almond taste. I serve these Cranberry Caramel Tarts with a little … Continue reading