My sweetheart surprised me at work a few days before my birthday with a phone call and simultaneous email that said "what do you think??" He had sent me a picture of a desk. He said that he knows from me that writers need a "space" and thought it would be great if I had this desk which he was going to get right there and then if I liked it. I usually post on Sunday evenings from the corner of my sofa with my laptop and a glass of wine. A lucky girl am I.
Since this has been the summer of rain so far, I spent a lot of time in the kitchen this weekend puttering about. For Canada Day, I decided to make butter tarts. Whether its made with raisins, currants or nuts, we Canadians claim this pastry filled with sugary goodness as our own. Who better to consult for an authentic recipe than Canadian Living?
Gooey Butter Tarts
Adapted from The Complete Canadian Living Cookbook
For the pastry:
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup cold butter, cubed
1/4 cup shortening, cubed
1 egg yolk
1 tsp vinegar
For the filling:
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup corn syrup
2 tbsp butter, softened
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp vinegar
pinch of salt
1/4 cup raisins, chopped pecans, or shredded coconut (I used raisins)
Combine flour with salt in large bowl. Using two knives, cut in butter and shortening until dough resembles fine crumbs. Whisk egg and vinegar together in liquid measuring cup. Add ice water to this mixture to equal total of 1/3 cup. Gently pour over flour mixture while stirring with fork until pastry comes together. Gather dough into ball and flatten into disc shape. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least one hour.
While the pastry chills, prepare the filling. In bowl, whisk together brown sugar, corn syrup, egg, butter, vanilla, vinegar and salt until well combined. Set aside.
Lightly flour countertop. Roll out pastry to 1/8" thickness. Using a 4" round cookie cutter (I used a pint glass) cut out 12 circles. Reroll scraps if need be.
full. Do not overfill. (I did and a few were difficult to get out of the pan once baked.)
Bake in oven at 450 degrees for 12 minutes or until filling is bubbly and puffed and pastry is golden. Remove from oven and let stand for one minute. Run a knife around each immediately to loosen and prevent sticking. Slide spatula under each and transfer to rack to cool. Enjoy! They were gone in record time at my house.
quite a feat Dear Reader.
Adapted from marthastewart.com
1 pound small new potatoes (about 8)
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 small onions, diced
salt and pepper
1/2 cup sharp white cheddar, grated
10 large eggs
1/2 cup sour cream
Boil washed and unpeeled potatoes until tender when pierced with knife, approximately 12-15 minutes. Drain and let cool. Once cooled, peel and slice potatoes into 1/4" slices.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Heat oil over medium heat in 10" ovenproof skillet. Cook onions for 2 minutes. Once onions are translucent, add potatoes, stirring gently. Continue to cook until potatoes are golden brown. Season with salt and pepper.
Whisk eggs and cheese together. Season with salt and pepper. Pour mixture over potato mixture in skillet. Dollop with sour cream and swirl through egg mixture with the tip of a knife. Cook until edge has set, approximately 2 minutes. Transfer skillet to oven and bake until eggs are set, about 12-15 minutes. Once cooked, remove from oven and invert frittata onto plate or cutting board. Allow to cool slightly before serving.