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Archive | November 18th, 2012

Make Your Own Almond Paste

Make Your Own Almond Paste

Make your own almond paste.

The holiday baking has begun, and a great many recipes are featuring almond paste as an added flavor.

Instead of spending a lot of money on a processed version at the grocery, why not make your own? It’s easy. Really.

Better still, you can make as much as you need. If there’s any left over, just refrigerate it. The ingredients will never go bad, so you don’t have to use it up in a hurry.

It does help to have a kitchen scale. This recipe works when you have equally weighted amounts of almonds and powdered sugar. Do not measure in a cup.

One suggestion for using almond paste is this galette, which I made recently using apples and pears instead of the peaches and cherries this recipe calls for. I increased the amount of almond paste in the recipe significantly — and I was glad I did.

Almond Paste

8 ounces almonds (see note)
8 ounces powdered sugar
Pinch of salt
Small amount of your choice of lemon zest, amaretto or almond extract

Place the almonds, powdered sugar and salt in the bowl of a food processor. Add your choice of flavoring and process until smooth. Use the spout to drizzle in a tiny amount of water at a time and let it thicken to desired texture, not too firm and not too watery. You want to be able to spread it. I used about 1/8 cup total, but you may need less or more.

Note: You can use any kind of unseasoned almond you like. If you want your paste to be whiter, use blanched, peeled almonds. If you don’t care what the color is, you can leave the skin on.

From John Griffin

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Kale and Grapefruit Salad

Kale and Grapefruit Salad

Kale and Grapefruit Salad

Kale is good cooked, baked into chips and raw, sliced into salads. As we all know, it’s one of the most nutritional greens, and the more ways you can find to get it into your diet, the better. We had a taste of this salad at the H-E-B demo stand at the Pearl Farmers Market – and plan to have it again at home.

As you can see from the photos, the recipe has been varied by adding fruits such as blackberries, strawberries and blueberries to the mix.

Kale and Grapefruit Salad

1 Texas Ruby Red or Rio Star Grapefruit
2 tablespoons lemon-infused olive oil
Salt, to taste
Pepper, to taste
8 cups thinly sliced kale (center ribs and stems removed)
1 avocado, sliced into 1/2-inch wedges
1 package H-E-B Goat Cheese
1/4 cup walnuts

Add the fruit you like to this Kale and Grapefruit Salad recipe.

Using a sharp knife, cut peel and white pith from grapefruit. Discard.

Working over a small bowl, cut between membranes to release segments into the bowl. Squeeze juice from membranes into another small bowl; add any accumulated juices from bowl with segments (there should be about 1/4 cup juice total). Whisk oil into juice and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Place kale in a large bowl and drizzle 3 tablespoons dressing over. Toss to combine and let stand for 10 minutes while kale wilts slightly. Toss once more, then arrange grapefruit segments and avocado over kale. Drizzle with goat cheese, walnuts and remaining dressing, and serve.

Makes 4 servings.

Approximate nutritional value per serving: 230 calories, 15 g fat, 180 mg sodium; 22 g carbohydrate; 6 g protein.

From H-E-B Primo Picks.

 

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