Autumn Deepens: aki fukashi 秋深し (あきふかし

night and moon: autumn
deepens – frost glitters on leaves
and fades in the sun

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Tempting Tuesday: Noodle Kugel

Warm, creamy, sweet noodle kugel is the stuff of dreams. With all the fuss about macaroni and cheese nowadays, noodles are becoming chic again. I’ll take kugel though, any day, any way, anyhow.  Cinnamon, butter, sugar – what’s not to love?

Usually kugel is baked either in a deep casserole baking dish or a standard 9×13 baking pan. The deeper dish makes the custard in which the noodles are put to bed, makes it creamier. This recipe is the result of a most happy accident. My grandma Ninny, of which I have previously written, was putting together baked dishes for a huge family get-together. She mixed up the kugel and realized…oops. The suitable baking dishes are taken. But, the bundt pan was free and clear. She decided to add the brown sugar and pecans just to give it a little extra bling and by golly, history was made in the kitchen that day.

Hanukah and other holidays need kugel. So does Christmas, Thanksgiving, and the third Sunday in January or February – whenever you want the kitchen to be warm and filled with the aromas of vanilla, cinnamon, and butter. I have sometimes not unmolded this and just served it for people to scoop into with the serving spoon, surprising them with the pecans and praline-y crust. However you decide to serve, enjoy and please, try not to eat too much.

Praline Noodle Kugel
3/4 C (1-1/2 sticks) salted butter, melted and divided
3/4 C packed brown sugar
1 C pecans coarsely chopped
1 pound egg noodles
4 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 c. cream
1 tsp ground cinnamon
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 C white sugar
½ c. golden raisins or craisins
2 tsp salt

Start a large pot of water boiling. Preheat oven to 350.
Pour half the melted butter into a 12 cup mold, tube pan, or bundt pan, and swirl around the bottom and up the sides. Mix brown sugar and pecans and press into the sides of the pan into the butter.
Cook the noodles in boiling water, al dente. Drain. In a large bowl, mix hot noodles with a few pats of butter. Mix the noodles with the eggs, the remaining melted butter, raisons, cinnamon, vanilla, white sugar and salt.
Gently spoon noodles into the prepared mold, taking care not to dislodge brown sugar and pecans. Bake at 350 for 1-1/4 hours or until top is brown. Let stand 15 minutes before unmolding. Top will be slightly hard, like a praline.
Serve warm, cold or at room temperature with a dollop of whipped cream.  NOTE: This can be baked in a regular baking dish or casserole. Butter dish and spoon in noodle mixture. Press brown sugar mixture on top of kugel and adjust baking times, until custard Is set, but still jiggely and creamy.  Makes 12 servings.

free clip art photo

free clip art photo

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Red Blade: haiku

red blade of autumn
leaves cuts through green summer leaves.
It is time, it says.

copyright kanzen sakura

copyright kanzen sakura

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Autumn sky – aki no sora – a haiku

blue autumn sky: clouds
of finger painted white wisps.
I can’t look away.
 

copyright kanzen sakura

copyright kanzen sakura

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Fried Tofu – For Beni

kanzensakura:

Good food for a good day!

Originally posted on kanzen sakura:

I really love fried tofu.  Sometimes, I dust with my special fried chicken seasoning and fry.  Mostly, I fix this simply.  I serve it with several dipping sauces, such as a sweet garlic chili sauce or soy flavored with slivers of ginger, sesame oil, and sliced scallion.  I personally just like it plain – hot and crispy on the outside, hot and almost custardy on the inside.  A member of the 11/16 Society shared this with me years ago.  It was one of our favorite appetizers to serve to visitors to our home.  Some may say this isn’t authentic Japanese, but since he is authentic Japanese, I beg to differ.

This is not the Japanese agedashi dofu, which is usually served with a dashi broth or a soya dipping sauce.  I suppose you could use these cubes in agedashi dofu.  My friend enjoys this but like me, he just liked the fried tofu –…

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Wordless Wednesday

copyright kanzens

copyright kanzens

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Sugar, spice, pumpkin – oh my my!!!!

free public domain image

free public domain image

For my dear friend Huntie, at Chasing Rabbitholes,  here is the pumpkin bread. It is the time of year for everything, and I mean everything flavored pumpkin spice. This is a dark, spicy, moist pumpkin bread I have been making for years. It was given to me years ago while I was at university by a Yankee classmate. Lord bless her down east, Maine heart for her goodness in sharing this. The only things I have changed about this recipe is adding chopped English walnuts, increasing the ginger, and by reducing the oil noted in the original.

If you like Starbucks pumpkin bread, you are going to love this and wonder how in the world you paid all that money for something not as good?

Pumpkin Bread
1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree
4 eggs beaten
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup applesauce
2/3 cup water
2 cups white sugar
1 cup light brown sugar
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1 cup chopped nuts
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour two 9×5 inch loaf pans. If making muffins, add liners to muffin cups. In a large bowl, mix together pumpkin puree, eggs, oil, applesauce, water and sugar until well blended. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and ginger. Stir the dry ingredients into the pumpkin mixture until just blended. Pour into the prepared pans. Bake for about 60 minutes in the preheated oven Use toothpick test to determine doneness). Loaves are done when toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. You can bake as muffins – One loaf and 12 muffins. Adjust cooking times.

You can add a dab of cream cheese icing to bread/muffins. I melt 1/2 stick butter and stir in a couple of tablespoons of brown sugar until well blended. Poke holes in bread with a toothpick and slowly drizzle butter mixture over both loaves. It doesn’t take much!!

 

 

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