This is another recipe J and I learned to make while at the amazing Langlois Culinary Crossroads. It is perfect for a new year’s day breakfast or brunch. While it looks complicated, it’s actually pretty easy. The hardest part os stuffing the brioche!
Langlois Stuffed French toast
Bread and filling ingredients:
Cut the Brioche into about 6 2 by 2 rectangular pieces. Using a skewer precut the hole for the filling. You will have to turn it around to make a hole larger than the skewer. This is where slightly stale bread comes in handy.
In a medium-sized bowl, beat the softened cream cheese, powdered sugar, vanilla and lemon zest and juice together on medium speed until well blended.
Put the filling into a ziptop bag. Cut off the corner. Pipe into the skewer holes.
If this doesn't work, you can make a sandwich by making a pocket (think pita pocket), just make sure to only cut through one side of the bread or it will be more difficult to brown. Set this aside.
In another medium-sized bowl, beat the eggs, milk, sugar, vanilla and salt. Dip each piece of stuffed bread into the custard and turn once to completely coat. Cover and chill for at least 30 minutes (overnight is better!) but no longer than 24 hours.
When you're ready to cook, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
In a large skillet melt the butter over medium to medium-high temperature.
Brown each piece of stuffed bread on all sides. Do not move it around. Do not check and see if it's browning.
Let it sit longer than you think it needs to. About 5 minutes per side.
Place the browned pieces into a casserole dish and cook in the oven for about 10 minutes. Garnish as you please and serve.
Sometimes we cover this in powdered sugar, other times maple syrup. It’s just as good alone though. We’ve served this to friends and family and everyone has raved about it each time.
While the holiday baking season might be over, we’re still eating our left overs. No complaints though! My newest favorite candy is these peppermint balls. I originally tried to make patties, (like this recipe suggests) but they didn’t work out as well and ended up coated in less chocolate. Once we got past that part, the recipe was actually surprisingly easy, I don’t think these will be regulated to just winter holiday food after this year.
2 1/2 cups confectioners sugar (you might need a little more or less depending on how it comes together.)
1 1/2 tablespoons light corn syrup
2 tablespoons water (we had the best luck with warm water)
2 teaspoon peppermint extract (the original recipe called for one, but we like it a little more minty)
1 tablespoon vegetable shortening
1 bag semisweet chocolate chips
Beat 2 1/4 cups of confectioners sugar together with corn syrup, water, peppermint extract and vegetable shortening until combined. The mixture might crumbly (this is good!) If it isn’t, add some more sugar. Dust a work surface with remaining 1/4 cup of confectioners sugar.Empty contents of bowl onto work surface and knead until smooth (this will take a few minutes). This is when we put it back in the bowl and stuck it in the freezer. Where we left it for about an hour.
Before you take the dough out of the freezer, you need to temper your chocolate. Melt the chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl at 30 second intervals, stirring in between. Cool slightly.
Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper. Remove dough from freezer. Using a spoon make a ball and dip into the chocolate and then set on the parchment paper. If the chocolate doesn’t cover the ball all the way, drip chocolate over the top once it is on the wax paper. Once all the dough is used, put the entire baking sheet into the freezer.
Once set, we stored these in the refrigerator between wax paper.
The colder the dough is the easier it will be to work with. We ended up doing these in two batches because the dough thawed too much in between.
I’ve mentioned before, my sister, C, has a knack for perfecting baked goods. She did it again with this super delicious, never dry (even after three days!) recipe. It’s a combination of Joy of Cooking and our Mom’s family recipe.
Ingredients and Directions:
Have all ingredients at room temperature, about 70 degrees f. Pre-heat the over to 375 degrees f. Grease a 13×9 pan. if you don’t have the pan, you can use 2 round pans for an 8×11 pan and a loaf pan (the pan isn’t the most important part).
Whisk together in a large bowl until well blended:
2 cups sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
Combine in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil, stirring constantly:
1 cup strong, black coffee (apparently, this is Mom’s secret ingredient)
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
1/2 unsweetened cocoa powder
Pour the hot mixture over dry ingredients and stir together just until smooth. Let cool slightly (about 3-5 minutes), then work in:
2 large eggs
1/2 buttermilk (regular milk works, too)
1 tsp vanilla
Scrape the batter into the pan and spread evenly. Bake until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 20-25 minutes. Let cool in the pan for about 3-5 minutes (until the cake is just warm) and spread on the icing.
1/2 cup butter, softened
2 tbs unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 cup milk
3 1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla
Mix together and spread over warm sheet cake.
I might like this better than regular chocolate cake. Hard to believe, I know, but it is so good. I can’t wait for the next time C has a reason to make it!
Before the current big hullabaloo over this restaurant, J and I decided to figure out how to recreate our favorite chicken sandwich at home. Mostly because the nearest restaurant to us is more than an hour and a half away. This recipe is so close! With a bag of Oreda waffle fries, it’s almost like you’re there.
2 boneless and skinless chicken breasts
1/4 cup Dill Pickle Juice (we bought the hamburger slices and just used the juice)
1 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
1/4 cup Milk
1/2 cup Flour
1 tablespoon Powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon Paprika
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1/4 teaspoon Black pepper
1/4 teaspoon Garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon Celery salt
1/4 teaspoon Dried basil
Wrap the chicken loosely between plastic wrap and pound gently with the flat side of a meat tenderizer until about 1/2 inch thick all around. Cut into four pieces, as even as possible. Marinate in the pickle juice and Tabasco Sauce for 30 minutes. Beat the egg with the milk in a bowl. Combine the flour, sugar, and spices in a zip lock bag. Dip the chicken pieces each into the egg on both sides, then place in the bag and shake. Heat the oil in a skillet (1/2 inch deep) to about 345-350, or use a deep fryer (that’s what we did). Remove the chicken from the flour mixture and tap off the excess. Place in the oil. Fry each cutlet for 2 minutes on each side, or until golden and cooked through. If using a fryer, it takes about 5 minutes total. Be sure to check the first couple to make sure they are cooked all the way through. Blot on paper and serve on toasted buns with pickle slices.
So good. It’s very, very close to the original. It just needed to be a touch sweeter, so next time we’ll use a bit more powdered sugar and a touch less pickle juice.
I’m sort of from Ohio, so while other people call these peanut butter balls, I call them Buckeyes. (Note: Just because I’m sort of from Ohio does not mean I love Ohio State. In fact, I don’t. I much prefer the Mizzou Tigers.) This recipe is from Fitness Magazine.
1 16-ounce jar low-fat, low sodium smooth peanut butter (about 1 3/4 cups, I did this by weight)
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
6 cups confectioners’ sugar (powdered sugar)
1 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
4 1/2 teaspoons shortening
Toothpicks and waxed paper
Place peanut butter and butter in the large bowl of a sturdy stand mixer. Beat on medium speed until very smooth, scraping sides of bowl as needed. Gradually beat in confectioners’ sugar until smooth.
Roll mixture into 1-inch balls. Arrange balls on waxed paper-lined trays or baking sheets. Cover and chill for 3 hours or overnight.
In a small, heavy saucepan, melt chocolate chips and shortening over medium-low heat, stirring frequently. Keep warm over very low heat. Remove about one-fourth of the peanut butter balls from the refrigerator. Use a toothpick to hold a peanut butter ball and lower it into the chocolate, leaving the top exposed so that it looks like a buckeye. Allow excess chocolate to drip off.
Place ball, undipped portion up, on waxed paper-lined tray or baking sheet. Repeat with remaining peanut butter balls until all are dipped. Chill for 30 minutes, or until firm. Store in the refrigerator.
I used the entire jar of Smuckers Natural peanut butter. To get it re-emulsified, I used the bread hook on my mixer. Luckily, I didn’t toss it in the dishwasher because I needed it to help incorporate the powdered sugar into the peanut butter. Even then, I only managed to get four cups of powdered sugar into the peanut butter. So don’t fret if you can’t get all six cups in. As for the chocolate dipping, FORGET IT. I just spooned the chocolate over the peanut butter balls. Dipping them just made a huge mess and caused more frustration than good. They didn’t look perfect, but tasted just as good.