Thursday, December 8, 2016

If you bake nothing else this season, bake these: Apple Pie Bars

As you may imagine, Andrew goes all out every Holiday season with baked goods that are not only extraordinarily good, they cover all kinds of desserts. For Thanksgiving just past, he made Apple Pie Bars, two pies, Blueberry and Chocolate Cream, and a Ginger Spice Cake. (He also whipped up about 48 gougères on Thanksgiving morning.) But it was the Apple Pie Bars that got everyone’s attention.  Here is something as American as...Apple Pie.  There’s a walnut studded oatmeal streusel-like topping that covers a Granny Smith filling atop a crisp buttery shortbread crust.  It’s an American Classic made into individual squares of apple goodness that just beg for a scoop of ice cream…although I caught our children and grandchild unable to resist this treat long enough to get out the ice cream scoop.

Monday, December 5, 2016

The Ultimate Inexpensive Dinner Party Dish: Sheet Pan Lemon Chicken with Roasted Fingerling Potatoes

Martha Stewart: Sheet Pan Expert
For some time I’ve been intrigued by the concept of the Sheet Pan dinner. Basically all the ingredients—protein, vegetables, herbs and spices--are cooked on one large sheet pan.  Martha Stewart seems to be an expert in this regard.  She frequently posts all kinds of options. There seems to be no end to what ingredients she’s managed to load onto one of these workhorse’s of the kitchen.  From Fish to Pork to Rib Eye, there’s no stopping Martha.   So I decided to cook one myself.  I adapted a recipe of mine for Lemon Chicken.  I added fingerling potatoes to the mix so in the end all I had to add to dinner were some sautéed green beans.   What I discovered was one of the best and most economical ways to entertain ever.  I honestly don’t think this dinner cost more $30.  And we fed 14 people with it and there were leftovers!  This is ideal for people on a budget, for recent grads who are neophytes in the kitchen and for people who just want to have a lot or people over without breaking the bank this holiday season. It all comes together in an hour and fifteen minutes.