Thursday, July 29, 2010

Cherries in Red Wine Syrup

I was catching up on reading blogs this week and came across an entry by Diane at 2 Stews.  She was discussing vanilla ice cream that she had made as well as a hot fudge sauce and cherries in wine syrup. She adapted a syrup recipe from David  I needed a dessert for the evening but since I was making a somewhat involved entre I didn't think I would have time to make my own ice cream. 

I had just gotten three pounds of cherries and after reading her post...well, I bought ice cream and made the Cherry Wine Syrup.

With one lick of the spoon, I was in epicurean heaven! 
If one lick of the syrup was delightful...
Oh my, I could hardly wait to put it on ice cream.

Guess what I am going to do with the remaining three pounds of cherries?  Yep, I am going to make some more!

Cherries in Red Wine Syrup
(Adapted from David

Makes 2 cups
1 pound fresh cherries, stemmed and pitted
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1 1/4 cups red wine
2 teaspoons corn starch or potato starch
2 tablespoons red wine or 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1/4 teaspoon almond extract

Optional: 1/2 tablespoon kirsch liqueur

Put the cherries and sugar in a large, wide saucepan.

Mix one tablespoon of the red wine with the corn or potato starch in a small bowl until it's dissolved and set aside.

Add the rest of the wine and the vinegar to the saucepan. Bring the heat up to a boil, then reduce the heat so it's at a low boil and cook, stirring frequently, for about 12 minutes, until the cherries are completely wilted and softened through.

During the last moments of cooking, stir in the starch slurry and let the mixture boil the additional minute or so, to thicken the juices.

Turn off the heat and stir in the almond extract and kirsch, if using.

Storage: The cherries will keep up to one week in the refrigerator. They can be frozen for up to six months.


This was a delight on a warm summer evening.  What better way to end the work week than to treat yourself to ice cream with a special syrup!  Thank you Diane and David! 
It is Foodie Friday at Designs by Gollum.  Thank you Michael for hosting us!  Visit Michael soon as well as all of the bloggers who are sharing summer delights!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Central Oregon Coast - Siltcoos Lake

Take a peek at my favorite place to be!

Part of our Oregon vacation was spent at Ada Resort on Siltcoos Lake.  We have stayed at Ada for the last 25 years!  Long time, isn't it?  We started going there when the girls were little.  We love to fish, crab, hike, explore, and discovery nature.  When the girls were little we stayed in one of the cabins.  We now have a trailer, for the two of us, that we leave at the lake all year. 

It is cool at the lake and a great place to escape from the heat.  In the morning the lake is glass, and there may be a bit of fog. 

Just before noon the wind kicks up and the lake can sometimes have a bit of a chop. 

In the afternoon we take the 25 minute trip to town for groceries or to go crabbing.  I like the scenic route.

It is worth staying on the backside of the lake when one can enjoy this kind of scenery.

It is Wednesday, time to share by participating in Outdoor Wednesday hosted by Susan at A Southern Daydreamer.  Take a few minutes and visit her today!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Chicken and Peaches with Chipotle-Peach Dressing Drizzle

I was looking through the July issue of Bon Appetit last week.  There were so many different recipes that appealed to me but I kept coming back to this one.  I have never grilled peaches.  My daughter tells me they are great and I should try, tonight, I did.

I have come to like the sweet, smokey, and sometimes spicy combination that you get when you blend the juice from chipotle chiles with a marmalade, preserves or brown sugar!  Chipotle chiles are smoked jalapeno chiles that are canned in a red sauce of tomato puree, onions, oregano, paprika and a few other ingredients.  The sauce is used when making many kinds of sauces, chipotle mayonaise, or in this instance a light dressing.

The chicken was grilled after a light coating of the dressing had been brushed on.  Just before the chicken was done, peaches that had also been brushed with the dressing were grilled.

Grilled Chicken and Peaches
with Chipotle-Peach Dressing Drizzle
adapted from Bon Appetit, July 2010

1/3 cup peach preserves
1/3 cup peach nectar
4 teaspoons red wine vinegar
2-3 teaspoons adobo sauce from canned chipotle chiles

2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil plus additional for brushing
2 teaspoon chopped fresh cilantro plus sprigs for garnish

3 large peaches, rinsed, fuzz wiped away, each cut into 8 wedges

3 boneless chicken breast halves with skin

Prepare barbecue (medium-high heat). Stir preserves, next 3 ingredients, 2 teaspoons oil, and chopped cilantro in medium bowl; season dressing with salt and pepper. Transfer about 1/3 cup dressing to small bowl.

Brush peaches, then chicken with oil and dressing from small bowl. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Grill chicken until cooked through. About 10 minutes before the chicken is doen, grill the peaches until they are slightly charred, about 2-4 minutes per side.  (Times depend upon how hot the grill is.)

Slice the chicken breast into medallions and place 3-4 slices on each of 4 plates. Place the peaches around the chicken and garnish with cilantro. Drizzle dressing from medium bowl over chicken and peaches.



 The mild flavors of the grilled chicken and the fresh peaches were just perfect on a hot July afternoon!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Chicken Tikka Masala

Having just gotten back from a three week vacation, there was a definite need to go to the grocery store.  Between unpacking, washing, ironing, cleaning, organizing, and reorganizing, I had to squeeze in the trip to the store.  It had to be done....I must admit that I did delay two days.  Nobody starved, there was food in the was just not what everybody wanted; so they thought they were starving!

While shopping my daughter called and asked what the dinner plan was.  The plan was to have Grilled Chicken and Peaches with a Peach Chipotle Sauce.  That announcement was met with silence.  Being ever so flexible I asked what the plan should be.  And, guess what?  She volunteered to cook Chicken Tikka Masala.  She said she had put together a couple of recipes and would make it.  Yum!  I love Indian Cuisine.

Lindsey's Chicken Tikka Masala

Serves 4

3 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite size pieces
4 long skewers

1 cup plain yogurt
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 Tbsp minced ginger
2 tsp cumin
1 1/2 coriander
1/4 tsp cardamom
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp turmeric
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp salt and pepper

1 tbsp butter
1 clove garlic, minced
1 jalapeno, finely chopped
2 tsp cumin
2 tsp paprika
1 tsp ginger
1 1/2 tsp garam masala
1 1/2 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1 cup heavy cream
8 oz. tomato sauce
1/4 cup chopped cilantro


In a large bowl, combine marinade ingredients.  Stir in chicken, cover, and refrigerate for 1 hour.

Preheat the grill on high heat.

Thread chicken onto skewers.  Discard the marinade.  Grill chicken until juices run clear, about 5 minutes on each side.

Melt butter in a large heavy skillet over medium heat.  Saute garlic and jalapeno for 1-2 minutes.  Add the cumin, paprika, ginger, garam masala, chili powder, and cayenne.  Stir in tomato sauce and cream.  Simmer on low heat until the sauce thickens, about 20 minutes.  Add the grilled chicken to the sauce and simmer 10-15 minutes.  Transfer to a serving platter and garnish with fresh cilantro.

Serve over rice.


Delicious!  I love it when Lindsey decides to cook.  She does a great job!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

The Ugly Duckling? No, this is a Goose!

 I was reminded of the fairy tale The Ugly Duckling on our drive from the lake into town for groceries.  For years I have observed the gorgeous Canada Geese that have been in the fields.  Today as we wove our way down the twisty road along the lake, it appeared that the Canada Geese had taken over somebody's dock.  They were quite comfortable there...and among them was one white domestic goose.  He looked like an outsider among the Canada Geese but they didn't seem to mind his being part of the group.  How did he come to be a part of the group?

The sad story:  The Kitchen Gnome told me that last year, somebody had gotten upset about the many ducks on the road and the mess that they were leaving.  He said that somebody had driven through the flock killing all of them except the white domestic goose.  I won't go into how I feel about that person...someday, he/she will have to answer for their cruelty.

Isn't it amazing the way that the goose was accepted?  The Canada Geese have young goslings and still allow the white goose to be part of the gaggle.

Below they are headed for a swim.

Best friends no matter their differences!

Aren't they beautiful?

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Vacation Food

For years we have traveled with friends to our favorite vacation spot, Siltcoos Lake, OR.  We love the many shades of green are there in Oregon?  At the lake there is time to fish, time to go crabbing, time to read the pile of books that accumulated during the last year...and yes, time to count the many shades of green! 

When we arrived at Florence, the nearest town, we were starved.  We tried a new restaurant, ICM (International C-Food Market).  I ordered the grilled fish tacos that came with salsa and Italian coleslaw...interesting combination of cuisines.  I had a vision of fish tacos...firm grilled fish with cabbage...I was starved! 

I hadn't expected the grilled fish to actually be fish stewed in salsa.  I put the Italian coleslaw in the taco shell.  (Italian meaning that it was prepared with a light oil and vinegar dressing.) The taco was saved by the spicy mayo based sauce that
came on the side.  It wasn't a California fish taco but I wasn't in California!

The next day's lunch was absolutely wonderful!  We drove south to Winchester Bay to check out the crabbing and of course to reminisce.  Times do change and when you haven't visited in a long time you learn that favorite places disappear and sometimes only a shell remains.

For lunch we stopped at the Crabby Cafe at Salmon Harbor.  We all ordered salmon.  What a delicious meal.  The salmon was perfect and served with homemade fries and yummy coleslaw.

We all cleaned our plates!  I will have to repeat this lunch.  Our vacation was off to a great start.  Now it is time to count the shades of green.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Scalloped Tomatoes

It is hard to keep up on posting when one is one vacation.  I am late with my Barefoot Blogger postings.  I am  playing catch-up in July!  Since I am on the road, I will be brief.

Barefoot Bloggers were challenged to make two recipes and post them before the end of the month.  Well, I am late....but here is the first one, Scalloped Tomatoes.  The recipe is available here at Food Network.

Wonderful flavors....fresh tomatoes, basil...parmesan.  The only way this could have been improved would have been to have tomatoes fresh from the garden!  The best part for me, was the top with the crunchy crouton and delicious parmesan, followed by the warm and sweet tomato and basil.  Very, very tasty. 

When I make this again, I will seed and drain the tomatoes.  I think the beauty of this is the crunch.  I preferred those "bites" to the stuffing like consistency that was found beneath my favorite part.