If there’s one thing my Southern Family does well, it’s pound cake. We all have the one we make from memory. We also have ALL have the collections of pound cake recipes that have been passed down. This one is from Aunt Rosie. here she…
When I was growing up there were three kinds of salt. Morton’s Table Salt, Kosher Salt and the disgusting salt substitute, my Mom let my Dad use, after his heart surgery (YUCK!).
Nowadays, there are a zillion kinds of salt. You can have a whole block of it and shave it off. You can have it in an array of colors; black, pink, red, grey and more. You can have it flavored with an essence or you can get it smoked.
It is an amazing time to be experimenting with cooking and flavor with all these options. But how do you use them all? Let’s get into it.
Table Salt– This is the most common form of salt. It comes from underground mines and is ground fine. It probably has most of its trace mineral and impurities removed. Typically, and anti caking agent is added, as is iodine. This was started when people often had iodine deficiencies. This deficiency is still common in other parts of the world and can cause hypothyroidism. It’s not a big problem stateside. This is found on the table in most restaurants, but there are better options for home use.
Kosher Salt– Is a larger grain than table salt and usually doesn’t contain iodine. It is ideal for cooking because it dissolves quickly and infuses a great flavor. It is probably not really kosher, though. It is called this because it is what was commonly used in the koshering process. It is used to draw out liquids from meat.
The two most common kosher salts in the U.S. Are Morton’s and Diamond Crystal. They tend to be divided by what side of the country you are on, but with Amazon and other stores carrying both, it is easier to get both on both coasts. I personally prefer Diamond. It is a little finer and I think it dissolves faster with a less bitter after taste. However, they are both good salts.
Sea Salt– In my house this is what we use for “salt” or table salt. You can get it fine ground or coarse. I use the fine for most of my baking and keep the coarse in a grinder to use for cooking. My family has been trained and now uses the coarse grinder for salting their meals.
Pink Himalayan Salt– Right now this salt is having a moment. It is the purest of all the salts and is harvested by hand in the Himalayan Mountains of Pakistan. Its richness of color is indicative of the 84 natural mineral that are found in the salt and in our bodies. Because of it’s high mineral content it has a bolder flavor. It is often used not only for finishing but also for cooking, on a slab.
It can also be found used in spa treatments. I have a salt cave near me, https://roslynsaltcave.com I have used it for medicinal purpose to help with inflammation caused by my arthritis. It is an amazing experience and I highly recommend it.
Fleur de Sel– This is the most expensive salt in the world because it is rare and has a difficult harvesting process. It’s delicate flavor and small grain make it perfect for finishing. I love it on baked goods.
Red or Black Hawaiian Salt– Both are harvested from Hawaii. The black comes from the sea and gets its color from the addition of activated charcoal. The red comes from iron-rich volcanic clay alaea. Both have distinct flavors that make them ideal for finishing dishes.
Smoked Salt– This is exactly what it sounds like it is typically sea salt that is smoked for 2 weeks or more and over different types of wood. It is great for rubs and finishing meats. I have one that is smoked and infused with bacon flavor. YUM!
Flake Salt– I think this may be my favorite salt. My favorite brand is Maldon. It is basically evaporated salt water which gives it it’s flat irregular shape. It dissolves quickly and gives a quick pop of flavor when it hits the tongue.
I hope you have learned some things and that you will add to your salt collection. Here are some Amazon links to get you started.
True confession, I have never made homemade Hamantaschen dough. I have made them using a store bought pie dough and even a frozen puff pastry dough. That is totally fine! If you use the pie dough trick, I like to fold the dough in half…
Back in the 1970’s, when my mom was a member of the Time-Life Recipe Club, she would get a packet of cards each month with a different theme. She would diligently take the recipes out of their package and place them in the avocado green…
Strawberry Margarita Cupcake
- 2 sticks Unsalted Butter, at room temperature
- 2 cups Granulated White Sugar
- 4 large Eggs, separated
- 3 cups Cake Flour
- 1/2 tsp. Salt
- 1/2 tsp. Baking Soda
- 1 Cup Whole Milk
- 4 Tbs. Fresh Lime Juice
- 6 Tbs. Fresh Lime Zest
- 1/2 cup Tequila, for after baking
- 1/2 cup Triple Sec, for after baking
- 4 cups Confectioners Sugar
- 1 cup Unsalted Butter, room temperature
- 2 Tbs. Tequila
- 2 Tbs. Triple Sec
- 2 pinches Salt
- 1-1/2 teaspoons Strawberry Extract
- 1/4 tsp. Red Food Coloring
- Red Sanding Sugar or sprinkles for decoration
- Preheat oven to 350°Butter and flour large muffin tins. You can use muffin liners.
- In the bowl of a stand up mixer, fitted with paddle attachment, cream together butter and sugar, until fluffy, about 2 minutes.Add egg yolks, one at a time.Beat egg whites until stiff, refrigerate until ready to use.
- Whisk together flour, salt and baking soda.Working in thirds, add dry ingredients to butter mixture; alternating with milk. Start and finish with with dry ingredients. Do not overwork.Add zest and juice and mix until just blended.Fold in egg whites.
- Using an ice cream scoop, fill each muffin tin 3/4 full. Bake for 20 minutes until tootpick comes out clean.
- Mix together tequila and triple sec.Immediately upon removing the cupcakes from oven, poke 4-5 holes in each cupcake, with a skewer. Drizzle 1 tbs.of liquor mix over each and let cool on rack.After cooling brush more liquor or simple syrup on sides of cupcake and rool in sanding sugar or sprinkles.Frost.
- In the bowl of a stnad-up mixer, fitted with whisk, whip butter until light and fluffy.On slow speed add tequila and triple sec, until combined. Then add extract.
- Gradually add confectioners sugar. Then add food coloring and salt until full colored.Use a star tip and frost each cupcake.
I was watching an episode of Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives over the summer. In one of the restaurants they said something about Bread & Butter Jalapenos, and never said another thing. It was as if a light bulb went on for me. What a brilliant…
I love this time of year. Give me a Meyer Lemon or a Cara Cara Orange and I am a happy girl. Every year I look for different recipes to use these fabulous gems. This year I came across Odette Williams, Lemony Yogurt Loaf Cake,…
Here is another fantastic recipe from my #stepuptosensational concept. Let me know what you think.
Lemon Garlic Chicken
- 4 ea. Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts, pounded thin
- 1 tsp. Kosher Salt
- 1/2 tsp. Fresh Ground Pepper
- 1 Tbs. Olive Oil
- 3 Tbs. Fresh Lemon Juice
- 3 Tbs. Unsalted Butter
- 1 small Shallot, finely chopped
- 4 cloves Garlic, minced
- 2 Tbs. All-Purpose Flour
- 1 cup Half and Half, you can also use coconut milk.
- 1/2 cup Chicken Broth
- 2 Tbs. Chopped Flat Leaf parsley
- 1 small Lemon, sliced thin
Cook to Impress
- 5-1/2 cups additional Chicken Broth
- 1/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 1/2 Yellow Onion, diced fine
- 1 cup Arborio Rice
- 1/2 cup Dry White Wine
- 1 cup Fresh Grated Parmesan
- 2 Tbs. additional Flat Leaf Parsley
- Kosher salt and Frsh ground pepper to season
- Season Chicken breasts with salt and pepper.Heat Olive oil in a saute pan, until glistening.Place chicken breasts in pan. Drizzle lemon juice over chicken, evenly. Let cook 6 minutes on each side. Remember if the chicken is still sticking to the pan, it is not ready to be turned.Serve with rice and a green vegetable.
- Prepare as above, omitting the lemon, in this step. Transfer chicken to platter and cover with foil, to hold.Reduce the heat and add the butter to pan and melt. Add the shallot, garlic, 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. pepper. Cook for 1 minute. Stir in flour and coat the shallot and garlic. Cook for one additional minute.Stir in the half & half and broth, stirring until smooth. Make sure you get all the browned bits from the pan, too.Bring to a boil then reduce heat, return chicken to pan and simmer until sauce thickens. Make sure you get any juices that the chicken may have let off. This should take 3-4 minutes.Stir in Lemon juice. Garnish with chopped parsley and lemon slices.
Cook to Impress
- Prepare chicken as in simple preparation.Make your risotto:Bring the chicken stock to a boil then reduce to a low simmer. You want to to keep it medium hot.In a separate large saute pan, heat the olive oil and saute onion with a pinch of salt. Cook until onion is soft, about 8 minutes.Add in arborio rice and stir to warm the rice and coat with onions and oil. Add the wine and cook until it has mostly evaporated, about 3 minutes.Start adding the stock. You want to add 1 cup at a time and stir constantly until it is all absorbed between additions. This should take you about 20 minutes. You are looking for the rice to be al dente and creamy. If you reach that point before you have used all the stock. Thats okay. Refrigerate the stock for next time.Remove from heat and stir in cheese and lemon juice. Portion out in shallow bowls or dishes and place chicken over the top.Garnish each portion with parsley, a drizzle of good olive oil and fresh lemon zest.
I am so fortunate to have all these wonderful family recipes to turn to for inspiration. Some times I come across one like this. They are labeled Pound Cake Cookies and they are so delicious. I think they closely resemble a Pecan Sandie. I hope…
Trying out this new concept of one recipe three ways. This was the first one I ever did. I had the “fancy” version at a Country Club and thought this is really good and I can recite this. I also thought what if I want…
A few years back, I was on a couples trip to celebrate a friends birthday. We went to San Francisco. The gals went a day early to shop and we had a grand time. It started raining, as it does in San Francisco, and we tried to find a place to eat lunch. Obviously it was a tall order. We decided to cab it over to a restaurant I had heard of and see if we could get in. Kokkari. We got so lucky because it was late enough that the lunch rush had slowed down, so they took us right away.
They sat us at the comfiest of couch booths, in front of the fire place. We ordered drinks and then took to the menu. We let our waiter guide us and waited for the food to arrive.
Everything we ate was delicious! One dish really stood out and I have spent the last several years trying to recreate. I finally feel like I got it right. The lamb chops were out of this world! They were simply grilled and then the dressing was poured over then while they were still hot, rather than a marinade. Incredible!
I hope you will try these and then let me know what you think. I love getting the already drenched lamb chops at Trader Joes, but you can get them everywhere.
Please follow me on instagram https://www.instagram.com/whiskinthesouthern/ Don’t forget to send pictures.
Kokkari Lamb Chops and Dressing
- 6 Tbs. Extra VIrgin Olive Oil extra for chops
- 2 Tbs. Fresh Lemon Juice
- 2 tsp. Capers, rinsed and minced
- 2 tsp. Shallots, minced
- 1 tsp. Garlic, minced
- 1 tsp. Flat Leaf Parsley, minced
- 1/2 tsp. Dried Greek Oregano
- Sea Salt & Fresh Ground Pepper extra for chops
- 2 Pounds Frenched Lamb Chops
- Whisk all ingredients together and set aside. You are letting the flavors meld.
- Meanwhile, Preheat Broiler to high.Season lamb chops with salt and pepper and a small drizzle of olive oil. Place chops on a foil lined baking sheet and place under broiler for 5 minutes. Remove and turn. Place back under broiler for an additional 5 minutes. Check internal temperature. It should read 145° to 150°. Remember it will still cook a little out of the oven.
- IMMEDIATELY, when the chops come out ove oven, pour dressing over chops.Serve immediately with extra lemon and fresh oregano.