Sunday, December 16, 2018

Amaretti Cookies

By: The Food Hunter

Amaretti are a classic Italian cookie from the Lombardy region of Italy. These almond forward treats are shaped into balls and rolled in sugar before baking: giving them a sweet, slightly crunchy exterior while the inside remains soft. Ameretti cookies are easy to make and utterly delicious.

Amaretti Cookies
Makes 3 dozen

2 1/2 cups Almond Flour
3/4 cups sugar (extra for rolling)
1 Tablespoon Almond Extract
2 egg whites

Preheat the oven to 325 and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Beat egg whites until they form stiff peaks. Fold in the rest of the ingredients by hand.

Wet your hands to keep the dough from sticking and roll the dough into small balls. You can re-wet your hands as needed. Roll the balls into the extra sugar. Place on the baking sheet and gently press down the top. Cook for 20-25 mins.

Friday, December 7, 2018

Crispy Brussels Sprout & Kale Chips

By: The Food Hunter

I recently partnered with Microplane to create the delicious recipe for Crispy Brussels Sprout & Kale Chips featuring two of their new tools: 1. Herb Stripper and 2. Brussels Sprout Slicer. The recipe is being used by Microplane this holiday season.

Monday, December 3, 2018

Creamy Whisky Mushroom Steak Sauce

By: The Food Hunter

We don't eat a lot of steak but when we do I like to serve it with mushrooms. I'm sure most people will agree that the rich taste of the meat pairs perfectly with the earthy flavor from the mushrooms. Keeping this in mind, when my husband mentioned grilling some top sirloin steaks for dinner I set out on a mission to find a mushroom recipe to accompany them.

What I found was this amazing Creamy Whisky Mushroom Sauce on the Steamy Kitchen website. Everything about this recipe sounded delicious and it most certainly didn't disappoint. The recipe says it makes enough to top 4 steaks but hubby and I ate it all! Seriously, it was that good!

Creamy Whisky Mushroom Steak Sauce
2 sirloin steaks
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 onion, minced
1 clove garlic, finely minced
2-3 cups sliced fresh mushrooms
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
3 tablespoons bourbon
1 tablespoon good quality balsamic vinegar
1/2 heavy cream
1 tablespoon finely minced fresh parsley

1. Season the steaks with salt and pepper on both sides.

2. Heat a large cast iron pan, with olive oil, over high heat. When very hot, add the steaks. Cook both sides until desired doneness - timing depends on thickness of steak. We enjoy our steaks medium rare. Remove meat to a plate and tent with tin foil while you make the sauce.

3. Return the same pan to the stove, and melt the butter over medium heat. When the butter starts bubbling, add the onions and saute until the onions are soft, translucent and just slightly golden. Take care not to burn the onions by keeping your heat on medium and stirring constantly. This will take about 3 minutes. Add the garlic and saute for an additional minute until the garlic is fragrant.

4. Turn your heat to medium-high and add the mushrooms all at once. Immediately start tossing so that the onion/garlic/butter mixture is evenly distributed. Saute the mushrooms until they are browned and softened, about 3-5 minutes depending on the thickness and size of your mushrooms.

5. Season with salt, pepper and nutmeg. Add the whiskey and the balsamic vinegar and let the mixture bubble a bit to burn off some of the alcohol. Turn the heat down just a bit and add in the heavy cream. Let it bubble for another 30 seconds and then taste to adjust the salt. Stir in the freshly minced parsley and spoon over your grilled steak.

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

2018 Holiday Gift Guide for The Food Lover!

By: The Food Hunter

If there's someone in your life that is adventurous in the kitchen, the holidays are the perfect time to gift them a cool new kitchen tool or food product. To make your shopping easier I've gathered some of my favorite items that I feel every at-home chef and/or food lover will enjoy. While you are browsing the list below don't forget to purchase something for your own kitchen! 

The JK Adams Slate Rectangle Serving Trays are decorated with a beautiful illustrations of food. These slate servers are an elegant way to present your favorite appetizers or cheese course.

Cutting boards are one of those things that pretty much everyone uses. The Walnut Boos Boards are crafted of a single piece of wood, making them both durable and fancy. I use them interchangeably for cutting and serving foods.

Everyone needs a beautiful casserole dish that can go straight from the oven to the table. The Rachael Ray Cityscapes Ceramic 9"x13" Rectangular Baker in Dark Sea Salt Gray is just that. Perfect for baking and serving an array of dishes the baker is dishwasher, microwave, oven and freezer safe.

A good Dutch Oven is essential to the home cook. The Anolon Advanced Graphite 2-in-1 5 Qt. Dutch Oven & 10" Everything Pan, allows busy home cooks to prepare today’s popular one-pot and one-pan recipes with greater ease and convenience. The pan doubles as a lid for the Dutch oven saving space in small kitchens. This pan/pot is extremely versatile and easy to maintain.

If presentation is half the battle this gorgeous tart dish from Emile Henry is a guaranteed winner. The rectangular shape and high sides will give a new dimension to  tarts, quiches, and clafoutis. 

The high quality and uniqueness of the Circulon Elementum 15" Open Oval Grill Pan makes it a wonderful addition to everyone's kitchen. The pan is crafted of fast and even-heating hard-anodized aluminum and features a nonstick interior and exterior surface for added convenience and durability.

The baker in all of us will love this Sheet Pan with Nonstick Baking Mat from Ayesha Bakeware. Constructed of uncoated aluminized steel for efficient heat distribution and even baking the durable sheet pan is also nonstick with the addition of a flexible silicone baking sheet. The pan's rolled edges provide a confident hand hold even when wearing bulky oven mitts.

Some of the best Italian olive oil comes from Poggio Cappiano estate, run by Fabrizzio Mazzantini.T his family owned and operated olive groove produces 3 varietals of some of the most amazing olive oil I've ever tasted. Best drizzled over vegetables, meats or fresh bread.

Avissi Prosecco is a brilliant sparkling wine from the Veneto region of Italy. The bouquet reveals fragrant aromas of honeysuckle with refreshing flavors of green apple and ripe pear, and a delicate finish. A superb aperitif, ideal with any meal.

ZOS is the only wine saver that eliminates 100% of the oxygen that can spoil wine. Simply insert it into an open bottle of wine and the cartridge immediately begins to absorb the oxygen preserving the remaining contents within minutes. ZOS fits into most 750ml bottles of wine and cartridges last for up to 10 bottles depending on oxygen exposure. 

Basil Hayden's Bourbon uses a one-of-a-kind recipe with twice as much rye as traditional bourbons to create its trademark spicy finish.Artfully aged and bottled at 80 proof, Basil Hayden's Bourbon is a light-bodied, smooth, super-premium whiskey. Sip it neat or on the rocks to appreciate its slight honey and pepper tasting notes, or mix it up in a classic or contemporary cocktail.

Sunday, November 25, 2018

Braised Pork Shanks With Prosciutto and Porcini Mushrooms

By: The Food Hunter

When the cold weather finally sets in here in Arizona I will be ready with this hearty braised pork shank recipe I found on The reconstituted porcini mushrooms and chopped prosciutto add a touch of intense flavor and sophistication to this otherwise bowl of pure comfort food.

Braised Pork Shanks With Prosciutto and Porcini Mushrooms

1 ounce dried porcini mushrooms
1 cup boiling water
4 whole fresh pork shanks with rind (each 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 pounds)
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 large onion, chopped
1 cup chopped carrots
1 cup chopped leek (white and pale green parts only)
1/2 cup chopped celery
2 ounces prosciutto, chopped
6 garlic cloves, chopped
1 cup dry white wine
1 cup low-salt chicken broth
3 teaspoons chopped fresh sage, divided
2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary, divided
Chopped fresh Italian parsley

Place porcini mushrooms in small bowl. Pour 1 cup boiling water over and let stand until mushrooms soften, at least 30 minutes. Drain and chop mushrooms; reserve soaking liquid.

Preheat oven to 325F. Sprinkle pork with salt and pepper. Heat 3 tablespoons oil in heavy large wide pot over medium-high heat. Add pork, in batches if necessary, and saut until brown on all sides, about 15 minutes. Transfer pork to rimmed baking sheet.

Spoon off and discard all but 2 tablespoons fat from pot. Reduce heat to medium. Add onion, carrots, leek, celery, and prosciutto. Cover and cook until vegetables are soft and beginning to color, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes. Mix in garlic and chopped porcini. Add wine and bring to boil, scraping up any browned bits. Add broth and reserved mushroom soaking liquid, leaving any sediment in bowl. Mix in 1 teaspoon sage and 1 teaspoon rosemary. Return pork and any accumulated juices to pot, arranging in single layer.

Bring pork mixture to boil, cover pot, and place in oven. Braise pork until very tender, turning over every 30 minutes, about 1 hour 30 minutes. Cool slightly. Refrigerate uncovered until cold, then cover and keep refrigerated. Simmer until just warm before continuing.

Preheat oven to 425F. Transfer pork to rimmed baking sheet. Brush with remaining 1 tablespoon oil; sprinkle with remaining 2 teaspoons sage, 1 teaspoon rosemary, and black pepper. Roast pork until browned, about 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, tilt pan and spoon any fat from surface of sauce. Boil until sauce coats spoon lightly, about 7 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Spoon sauce onto large shallow platter or divide among 4 shallow bowls. Top sauce with pork, sprinkle with parsley, and serve.