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New England Clam Chowder…’tis the season for soup!

Fall leaves are changing colors… red, orange, yellow… crisp cool nights, dry sunny days…aaahhh, ’tis the season for soups! This is my favorite time of year – Fall in New England. Of course, I’ve never lived anywhere else so I don’t really know the seasons that happen all over the world. But, here in New England, this is a beautiful time of year. My drive to work makes me smile – mountain sides and lake shores dotted with colorful trees. Plus, the Fall nights are cool and crisp, so I can snuggle into my comforter for a good night’s sleep.

Because the weather has turned cooler, it’s okay to cook warm foods again. Letting a pot of soup, stew or chowder simmer on the stove is perfect at this time of year. The aroma fills the kitchen and gives me a cozy feeling. This recipe for New England Clam Chowder is somewhat non-traditional because I add carrots, corn and chicken stock. Most traditional recipes add bacon to the chowder to add a subtle smoky flavor and use clam juice as the stock. The nice thing about soups and chowders is they can be so easily adapted to whatever you have in the refrigerator. I have occasionally added sweet potatoes instead of white potatoes which adds a slightly different flavor. Be creative – use ingredients you like and enjoy!

 

New England Clam Chowder (Gluten-free)

5 small new red potatoes, unpeeled
3 celery stalks + celery leaves
2 medium carrots
½ small onion, chopped
¼ cup frozen corn
2½ cups chicken stock
½ teaspoon dried dill
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
2 (6.5 oz) cans chopped clams or small baby clams, drained
1 pint heavy cream
Sprinkle of dried parsley flakes

Rinse the potatoes, celery and carrots, dice them into bite-sized pieces and put them in a large pot. Add the onion and corn. Pour in the liquid stock, add the spices and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and let simmer until potatoes and vegetables become soft. Add the clams and continue to simmer another 10 minutes. About 5 minutes before serving, add the heavy cream and heat gently. Serve with gluten-free crackers (ex. Glutino) or gluten-free warm bread. Makes about 4 servings.

 

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Posted by on September 29, 2012 in Soups

 

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Italian Tiramisu…Schär Ladyfingers work great!

Tiramisu is one of my favorite desserts! With a hot, frothy cappuccino alongside, it is the perfect ending to any meal. We recently went to some friends’ home for dinner and this is what we brought for dessert. My husband is usually the one who makes it, because it started out being my “birthday cake” a few years ago. Now, the tradition has stuck – it’s his culinary “baby”! And he does an excellent job, too – so creamy, luscious and light. Even though it has cream cheese and heavy cream, it still tastes light. The ladyfinger cookies soak up the coffee and become soft, the coffee liqueur adds a wonderful full flavor and the chocolate powder on top is just right.

Once our kitchen became gluten-free, though, this dessert could no longer make an appearance. I think the ladyfinger cookies would be hard to duplicate from scratch, although I never really tried…

But, then I found the Schär company (see my earlier post about their sandwich rolls)! These ladyfinger cookies can be bought online through Amazon.com or directly from Schär’s website. They worked great! I challenge anyone to tell me this tastes different than a regular wheat recipe! We adapted this from the Family Circle magazine recipe – “Coffee-Scented Tiramisu”.

Buon Appetito!!

Italian Tiramisu

8 oz. cream cheese, at room temperature

1/3 cup sugar

1/3 cup coffee liqueur

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

2 cups heavy cream

2 pkgs.(5 oz. each) Schär Gluten-Free Ladyfinger cookies

1 cup strong brewed coffee

2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder

Beat cream cheese, sugar, coffee liqueur and vanilla in a medium bowl until light and creamy. Whip heavy cream to firm peaks. Fold whipped cream into cream cheese mixture until well blended. Arrange one package of ladyfingers in an 8 x 8 inch dish, one layer only. Drizzle the ladyfingers with half the brewed coffee. Top with half the cream cheese mixture, spreading smoothly. Sprinkle with half the cocoa powder. Arrange the remaining ladyfinger cookies over the cocoa, one layer of cookies only. Drizzle with the remaining coffee. Top with the remaining cream cheese mixture, spread evenly. Sprinkle the remaining cocoa powder on top. Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours, preferably overnight. Makes about 8 servings.

 
 

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