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Lemon Chiffon Gingersnap Pie

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Lemon chiffon pie is a timeless dessert, filled with rich, tangy pudding lightened by whipped cream. Give this classic a wintry twist with a spicy gingersnap crust. A sealable plastic bag and a rolling pin make short work of crushing the cookies into crumbs.

Lemon Chiffon Gingersnap Pie

1 1/4 cups (4 oz./125 g.) gingersnap cookie crumbs

5 Tbs. (2 1/2 oz./75 g.) unsalted butter, melted

3/4 cup (6 oz./185 g.) plus 3 Tbs. granulated sugar

2 1/4 tsp. (1 package) unflavored powdered gelatin

1/8 tsp. kosher salt

3/4 cup (6 fl. oz./180 ml.) fresh lemon juice, strained

1 Tbs. finely grated orange zest

4 large egg yolks, lightly beaten

1 1/4 cups (10 fl. oz./310 ml.) heavy cream

1/4 cup (1 oz./30 g.) confectioners’ sugar

Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). In a bowl, stir together the crumbs, butter and 3 tablespoons granulated sugar until the crumbs are evenly moistened. Pat the crumb mixture firmly and evenly into the bottom and all the way up the sides of a 9-inch (23-cm.) pie pan or dish. Bake until the crust is firm, 5-7 minutes.

Pour 1/4 cup (2 fl. oz./60 ml.) cold water into a saucepan and sprinkle with the gelatin. Let stand until the gelatin softens and swells, 5-10 minutes. Stir in the 3/4 cup granulated sugar, salt, lemon juice, orange zest and egg yolks; the mixture will be lumpy. Cook over medium heat, stirring continuously, until the gelatin melts and the mixture thickens, 6-8 minutes. Do not allow the mixture to boil. Set the saucepan in an ice bath until the mixture is cool to the touch.

In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, whip the cream and confectioners’ sugar on medium-high speed until thick, soft peaks form. Spoon the whipped cream into the gelatin mixture and fold together with a rubber spatula until smooth. Pour into the prepared crust, smoothing the top.

Refrigerate the pie until chilled and firm, 3-4 hours. Let stand at room temperature for 20 minutes before serving. Serves 6-8.

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Itsy-Bitsy Lemon Meringue Pies

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Let’s face it: making a lemon meringue pie isn’t easy. But the rewards are great, especially if (like us!) you’re a major lemon fan. These little pies take some effort, but they are adorable, perfect for a party, and will impress your guests.

Itsy-Bitsy Lemon Meringue Pies

1 batch Flaky Pie Dough for single crust (recipe below)

For the filling:
3/4 cup (6 oz./185 g.) sugar
3 Tbs. cornstarch
Pinch of kosher salt
Finely grated zest of 2 lemons
4 large egg yolks, beaten
1/3 cup (3 fl. oz./80 ml.) fresh lemon juice, strained
2 Tbs. unsalted butter

For the meringue:
4 large egg whites
Pinch of cream of tartar
Pinch of kosher salt
1/2 cup (4 oz./125 g.) sugar

Prepare the flaky pie dough and chill as directed.

Lightly butter two 24-cup mini muffin pans. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out the dough quite thin, to 1/16-1/8 inch (2-3 mm.) thick. Using a 2 1/2-inch (6-mm.) round cutter, cut out as many disks as you can. Gather the scraps, press together, reroll, and cut more disks. You should have around 40 disks total. Gently press each disk into a muffin cup to line it evenly. Chill in the refrigerator for at least 20 minutes.

Position a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 375°F (190°C). Fill any empty muffin cups with a little water. Prick the bottoms of the shells with a fork. Bake the shells until golden brown, about 13 minutes. Let cool for about 5 minutes, then remove the shells from the pans and place on a rimmed baking sheet.

Have ready all the ingredients for the filling and meringue before you get started. In a saucepan, whisk together the sugar, cornstarch and salt. Whisk in 1 cup (8 fl. oz./250 ml.) water and the lemon zest and bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly until the mixture starts to thicken. Place the yolks in a bowl, pour in a bit of the hot sugar mixture, and whisk together. Pour the yolks into the saucepan and whisk to combine. Bring to a simmer over medium-low heat, whisking constantly. Whisk in the lemon juice, then the butter. The mixture should be quite thick. Using a small spoon, fill the baked shells with the lemon filling. Place in the oven to stay warm while you make the meringue (you don’t want to leave the shells in the oven longer than 5 minutes, so you will need to work quickly!).

To make the meringue, in the bowl of a mixer fitted with the whip attachment, beat the egg whites, cream of tartar and salt on medium-high speed until frothy. Beating constantly, slowly sprinkle in the sugar. Beat until the meringue is thick and glossy (when you stop the beaters, the peaks should just barely curl at the ends).

Dollop the meringue on the pies, doing your best to spread it to the edges of the filling to seal the filling in the shells. You can also use a pastry bag and a medium tip to pipe the meringue onto the pies. Bake until the meringue is golden brown, 5-8 minutes. Let the pies cool completely before serving. Makes about 3 dozen mini pies.

Flaky Pie Dough

1 1/4 cups (6 1/2 oz./200 g.) all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 tsp. sugar
7 Tbs. (3 1/2 oz./105 g.) very cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes
5 Tbs. (3 fl. oz./80 ml.) ice water, plus more if needed

In the bowl of a food processor, stir together the flour, salt, and sugar, if using. Sprinkle the butter over the top and pulse for a few seconds, or just until the butter is slightly broken into the flour but still in visible pieces. Evenly sprinkle the water over the flour mixture, then process just until the mixture starts to come together. Dump the dough into a large lock-top plastic bag, and press into a flat disk. Refrigerate the dough for 30 minutes or up to 1 day, or freeze for up to 1 month. Makes enough for one 9-inch (23-cm.) pie or tart.

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Artichoke-Spinach Burgers with Tomato-Feta Topping

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The topping of roasted tomatoes and feta adds both sweetness and depth of flavor to these vegetarian burgers. They’re ready in almost no time, but in a pinch, you can just top the burgers with raw tomatoes, or use a few sun-dried tomatoes if fresh tomatoes aren’t in season. For the best results, use artichoke
bottoms instead of hearts, as they do a better job of binding the burgers together.

Artichoke-Spinach Burgers with Tomato-Feta Topping

For the burgers:

3 cups (3 oz./90 g) loosely packed baby spinach

1 can (14 oz./440 g) artichoke bottoms, rinsed and drained

1/2 cup (3 1⁄2 oz./105 g) canned butter beans

1 garlic clove

1 Tbs. plus 2 tsp. olive oil

1 tsp. ground cumin

1 tsp. grated lemon zest

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

Lemon juice for tossing

4 poppy seed or sesame buns, split

For the tomato-feta topping:

2 cups (12 oz./375 g) cherry tomatoes, halved

1 Tbs. olive oil

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

1/2 cup (2 1/2 oz./75 g) crumbled feta cheese

Bring a saucepan of water to a boil over high heat. Add 2 cups (2 oz./60 g) of the spinach and let cook just until wilted, about 30 seconds. Drain the spinach and lay flat on paper towels to cool completely. Set aside.

Combine half of the artichoke bottoms, the butter beans and garlic in a food processor or blender. Process to a smooth puree and transfer to a bowl. Finely dice the remaining artichoke bottoms and add to the bowl. When the cooked spinach is cool, wrap it in a few dry paper towels and wring out the excess moisture, then chop it and add it to the bowl along with 1 Tbs. of the olive oil, the cumin and lemon zest. Season with salt and pepper and stir to combine. Form into 4 patties and transfer to the refrigerator to chill for at least 30 minutes and up to overnight.

To make the topping, position a rack in the upper third of an oven and preheat to 450°F (230°C).

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and pile the tomatoes on top. Drizzle with the olive oil, season well with salt and pepper, and toss to coat. Spread the tomatoes in a single layer and roast until they just start to release their juice, about 8 minutes. Remove from the oven and set the broiler to high. Top the tomatoes with the feta and broil until the feta begins to melt and turns slightly golden brown, about 3 minutes.

In a nonstick frying pan over medium-high heat, warm the remaining 2 tsp. olive oil. Add the burgers and cook, turning once with a spatula, until golden brown and warmed through, 5 to 6 minutes per side.

Toss the remaining spinach with some lemon juice and divide among the bottom buns. Set the burgers on the buns and top generously with the tomato-feta topping. Cover with the tops of the buns and serve
immediately. Serves 4.

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Modern Recipes to Ring in Bastille Day

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Happy Bastille Day! From a beef tartare on a salt plank to a kale-studded Niçoise salad, we’ve gathered our favorite French recipes with a modern twist. Make one or all of these recipes and toast to La Fête Nationale.

Blackberry Kir
Kir, the classic French aperitif, is made by adding a splash of cassis to a glass of chilled dry white wine. Here, blackberry liqueur lends a fresh twist.
Beef Tartare
There’s arguably no first course that the French love more than steak tartare. In this recipe, a Himalayan salt plank naturally seasons finely-diced strip steak.
Warm Black Olives
In our opinion, olives aren’t served warm nearly enough. Heat fleshy black olives with pieces of air-cured ham, sage, bay leaves, and bird’s eye chilies for a satisfying take on the classic appetizer.
Socca with Burrata, Greens, and Olive Dressing
Socca, a naturally gluten-free flatbread native to the South of France, is made with chickpea flour and traditionally eaten plain. Here, it’s reinterpreted with creamy bur rata, a Kalamata olive dressing, and arugula.
Grilled Artichokes with Meyer Lemon Aioli
Baby artichokes are so tender, they can be trimmed, grilled, and eaten whole with dipping sauce. Here, Meyer lemons add a sweet, bergamot-like tang to traditional lemon aioli.
Warm Kale and Tuna Niçoise
Take the traditional Niçoise up a notch by replacing oil-packed tuna with seared sushi-grade ahi tuna, and tossing lightly wilted kale into the mix.
Bacon-Wrapped Chicken Breasts with Warm Lentil Salad
Duck legs that have been confited, or sautéed in their own fat, are a classic French pairing with braised lentils, but bacon-wrapped chicken breasts come together faster without sacrificing any flavor.
Grilled Ratatouille
France’s most famous ragout is traditionally long-simmered on the stove, but grilling these summer vegetables gives them a pleasantly smoky finish.