Archive for July, 2012

Peppernuts aka Pfeffernüsse

Posted in Uncategorized on July 31, 2012 by hoagiefest 2020

This is a recipe for a cookie I’ve always called “peppernuts,” but apparently is called “Pfeffernüsse” in some nonsense language. They are traditionally Christmas cookies in my family (I’ve never formally blogged about my mother’s Christmas cookie spread, but it’s something to behold). However, I have a family member visiting town and they requested peppernuts, so here they are.


They’re very good. The secret ingredient is something called rosewater, which is – obviously – floral water. I’ve never seen this in stores. Any time I want to make these cookies, I have to borrow my mom’s shady-looking 1990s pharmacy bottle of rosewater. Don’t skip it – it makes all the difference.

When I went online to look for a recipe to link to, I found that there are a thousand different kinds of Pfeffernüsse, and fifty different shades of grey. Since I couldn’t find it with Google, here is the recipe my family uses. The recipe, as printed, just lists ingredients and a very brief description: ”
Sprinkle with sugar and put a raisin on top. Bake at 350 for 10 minutes.” I made these in the same way I make most cookies. Mix dry ingredients and put aside. Mix softened butter and sugar. Add eggs. Switch mixer to low and add dry ingredients and liquid ingredients (alternating) only until the last of the dry ingredients disappear. However, do it how you want. I’m not the cookie pope.


2 C. sugar
5 C. flour
1 C. sour milk (put 1 T. vinegar in a cup measure and then fill with milk)
1 t. baking soda
3 eggs
2 t. baking powder
½ lb. butter or margarine
¼ t. salt
1 T. rosewater

Sprinkle with sugar and put a raisin on top. Bake at 350 for 10 minutes.

And the award for the Ugliest Food goes to…Pizza Fondue

Posted in Uncategorized on July 24, 2012 by hoagiefest 2020


Embrace it. This is a bowl of meat and cheese and onions for you to dip bread in. It is terrible for you in every way. It is also hideous. But we have a fondue pot, my wife suggested this, and I cheered at the word “pizza.” I don’t know. It’s all right. It doesn’t taste an awful lot like pizza (onions…ground beef…cheddar…). It looks hideous. It’s pizza fondue.

S’mores Cookies For Summer Campin’

Posted in Uncategorized on July 18, 2012 by hoagiefest 2020


These are s’mores cookies, from a Martha Stewart recipe (selected by my spouse). We’re headed off to camp with my family, and it was decided that this would be a good treat. How the chocolate will hold up in the 90-100+ degree heat of the week is an excellent question. Here, in my air conditioned home, these cookies taste great. The base cookie is the perfect mix between graham cracker and chocolate chip cookie, and the scorched marshmallows make the things look pretty nice. I used the broiler, as Perfect Domestic Goddess Inmate Robot Martha Stewart recommended, although I bet a blowtorch would help even things out a bit, as I had a few that barely browned and a few that charred.

As far as asthetics go, I had a bit of a problem. I cheaped out and used chocolate chips rather than a “square of chocolate” as indicated by the Marthatron 2000. I now see why she indicated a square was useful. When the cookies spread, the chocolate spreads out too – and you realize that there is far less chocolate on there than originally expected. Oh well, they taste good, and while I’m not the biggest chocolate advocate, I think there is enough here.

Thanksgiving Empanadas, Shrimp Tortilla Soup, and yet another Dorie berry tart

Posted in Uncategorized on July 10, 2012 by hoagiefest 2020

Well, let’s take a look at the things I want to feature this week. I’ve been collecting recipes I’d like to try from various cookbooks I own, magazines that I received (or had been given to me), and sites online. This week’s featured dishes (IT’S TUESDAY):


Shrimp tortilla soup: The recipe is from some Martha Stewart digest that a coworker had lent to me a few years ago, a few days before being laid off. He was a nice guy. I miss him. Here’s the recipe. It’s called “10 Minute Shrimp and Tortilla Soup,” but Martha doesn’t seem to include the part of the prep-work that is the most time-consuming anyway – chopping onions, mincing garlic, chopping peppers, etc. I really liked this. The recipe serves one, so I doubled it for the two of us – but you probably don’t have to, because it made a bunch of soup. My wife did not like it because she hates spicy things. I told her to look at the ingredients more closely when picking a recipe from the stack! I thought it was good. It is fairly quick (due to using chicken broth rather than homemade stock). I’d eat it again.


Thanksgiving empanadas. This was based on a recipe from Bon Appetit. I had started receiving issues of Bon Appetit a few years ago, and I had no idea where they came from. I never subscribe to magazines! I accused a number of people of subscribing me to the mag, and eventually I found out that it was my pal Webber. Hi Webber! Thank you! Here is the recipe. The recipe originally came from the magazine’s Thanksgiving issue as an idea to make a meal out of leftovers. Problem: I didn’t have any Thanksgiving leftovers. So I made a batch of mashed potatoes, rehydrated some Stove Top (blarf), and replaced “chopped leftover turkey” with ground turkey, which we had in abundance at the time. My wife was much more agreeable to this, although not bowled over. I felt a little more positively towards it, although I think the whole thing would have greatly improved with the recommended cranberry sauce, which I couldn’t find at my local grocery store.


And here’s Dorie’s classic berry tart – probably about the fifth time I’ve made this recipe. It’s quick; it travels well; it’s delicious. You make a tart shell, you make some pastry cream, and you buy some berries. You put it all together when it’s time to serve, in like two minutes. Tastes delicious! This one was for a July 4 picnic with my family, and it’ll most likely be the last time I make this one for a while.

The END of Retro Tuesdays With Dorie KABLAMMO Starring Mike – Apple Cheddar Scones and Tarte Tatin

Posted in Uncategorized on July 3, 2012 by hoagiefest 2020

I’ve already said good bye to Tuesdays With Dorie when the rest of you stopped, but now I finally lay this group to rest in a style I’m very familiar with: very, very lazy, and very, very late. I’ve done a lot of things with this group: I’ve baked at least one recipe for every week, without fail (including vacations and my honeymoon, folks); I made things I can’t even pronounce; I’ve purchased spirits from liquor stores for baked goods and felt like an outlaw even being in those awful places; I worked towards overcoming a somewhat crippling eating disorder; I married a wonderful person; I saw a new Muppet movie (this is unrelated to baking, but that was pretty great, right?). It’s been a tremendous four years since I joined the group in July of 2008. I’ve spent a lot of money on kitchen appliances that will likely gather dust in a closet, and on specialized pans that I’ll only use once. I’ve lost a lot of motivation to write interesting things next to my baking pictures, if you haven’t been able to tell. But I haven’t lost my love for baking, I haven’t lost my admiration for a woman like Dorie who could come up with this amount of delicious wacky stuff, and I surprisingly haven’t lost any teeth either.

And now it’s over, with apple cheddar scones. This is a recipe that I had wanted to choose for my first pick, because it’s probably the weirdest concept in the book. Unfortunately, it had been chosen the week before I started the group, so I had to pick something else. In hindsight, I would have made these ugly little guys with a much, much sharper cheddar cheese, and probably a tarter apple than golden delicious. Neither the cheese nor apple flavors really stood out for me. They didn’t burn though and that’s a big thing for me. So look – apple cheddar scones. Voila!


And then there was the recipe that got away: Tarte Tatin, one of many apple tarts in Dorie’s book. It was part of the first week of “double recipes,” and apparently I never got around to making it. SO HERE WE GO, SNITCHES.


This turned out perfectly, AND it was amazing – a great way to end my tenure with the old school Tuesdays With Dorie.

I also did a bit of a redux on the Devil’s Food White Out cake for a birthday at work. Here’s da snap.


What’s in the future? I’m still going to blog about one recipe a week – however, there may be a little more variety. Maybe it’ll be a baked good. Maybe it’ll be a meal, or an entree, or a side dish. Maybe it’ll be something I made before. Maybe I’ll panic at the last minute on Tuesday night and blog about the chicken macnuggets I’m eating. I also hope, maybe, to do some less formal/regular blogging here – maybe about food, maybe just about me. I have a Twitter and a Tumblr and a Facebook and a MySpace and a Best Buy Reward Zone Card, but in today’s workaday world we should all spend just a little more time talking about ourselves, yes?

Thanks, Dorie, for four years of great recipes, and one excuse to eat hundreds of pounds of butter/sugar/flour.

Here’s a list with links to all of my posts, in the order TWD originally baked them. I love you all. I’ll be back next week and every week, baking something new – something possibly wacky, but definitely ugly.

January 1, 2008 – Brown Sugar Pecan Shortbread Cookies
January 8, 2008 – Quintuple Chocolate Brownies
January 15, 2008 – Hidden Berry Cream Cheese Torte
January 22, 2008 – Perfection Pound Cake
January 29, 2008 – Orange Berry Muffins
February 5, 2008 – Black and White Chocolate Cake
February 12, 2008– Brown Sugar-Apple Cheesecake
February 19, 2008– Almost-Fudge Gateau
February 26, 2008– Pecan Sour Cream Biscuits
March 4, 2008– Snickery Squares
March 11, 2008– Russian Grandmothers’ Apple Pie-Cake
March 18, 2008– Brioche Raisin Snails
March 25, 2008– Caramel-Topped Flan
April 1, 2008– Gooey Chocolate Cakes
April 8, 2008– The Most Extraordinary French Lemon Cream Tart
April 8, 2008– Fresh Orange Cream Tart
April 15, 2008– Marshmallows
April 22, 2008– Bill’s Big Carrot Cake
April 29, 2008– Fluted Polenta and Ricotta Cake
May 6, 2008 – Peanut Butter Torte
May 13, 2008– Florida Pie
May 20, 2008– Traditional Madeleines
May 27, 2008– Pecan Honey Sticky Buns
June 3, 2008– French Chocolate Brownies
June 10, 2008– La Palette’s Strawberry Tart
June 17, 2008– Peppermint Creme Puff Ring
June 24, 2008– Mixed Berry Cobbler
July 1, 2008– Apple Cheddar Scone – YOU’RE LOOKING AT IT, BOZO
July 8, 2008 – Double Crusted Blueberry Pie
July 15, 2008– Chocolate Pudding
July 22, 2008– Cherry Rhubarb Cobbler
July 29, 2008 – Summer Fruit Galette
August 5, 2008 – Black and White Banana Loaf
August 12, 2008 – Blueberry Sour Cream Ice Cream
August 19, 2008 – Granola Grabbers
August 26, 2008 – Chocolate Banded Ice Cream Torte
September 2, 2008 – Peanut Butter and Oatmeal Chocolate Chipsters
September 9, 2008 – Chocolate Malted Whopper Drops
September 16, 2008 – Chocolate Chunkers
September 23, 3008 – Dimply Plum Cake
September 30, 2008 – Creme Brulee
October 7, 2008 – Caramel Peanut Topped Brownie Cake
October 14, 2008 – Lenox Almond Biscotti
October 21, 2008 – Pumpkin Muffins
October 28, 2008 – Chocolate-Chocolate Cupcakes
November 4, 2008 – Rugelach
November 11, 2008 – Kugelhopf
November 18, 2008 – Arborio Rice Pudding
November 25, 2008 – Thanksgiving Twofer Pie
December 2, 2008 – Linzer Sables
December 9, 2008 – Grandma’s All-Occasion Sugar Cookies
December 16, 2008 – Buttery Jam Cookies
December 23, 2008 – Real Butterscotch Pudding
December 30, 2008 – Tall and Creamy Cheesecake
January 6, 2009 – French Pear Tart
January 13, 2009 – Savory Corn and Pepper Muffins
January 20, 2009 – Berry Surprise Cake
January 27, 2009 – Fresh Ginger and Chocolate Gingerbread
February 3, 2009 – World Peace Cookies
February 10, 2009 – Floating Islands
February 17, 2009 – Devils Food White Out Cake
February 24, 2009 – Caramel Crunch Bars
March 3, 2009 – Chocolate Armagnac Cake
March 10, 2009 – Lemon Cup Custard
March 17, 2009 – French Yogurt Cake
March 24, 2009 – Blueberry Crumb Cake
March 31, 2009 – Coconut Butter Thins
April 7, 2009 – Banana Creme Pie
April 14, 2009 – 15 Minute Magic: Chocolate Amaretti Torte
April 21, 2009 – Four Star Chocolate Bread Pudding
April 28, 2009 – Chocolate Cream Tart
May 5, 2009 – Tiramisu Cake
May 12, 2009 – Tartest Lemon Tart
May 19, 2009 – Fresh Mango Bread
May 26, 2009 – Chipster-Topped Brownies
June 2, 2009 – Cinnamon Squares
June 9, 2009 – Parisian Apple Tartlet
June 16, 2009 – Honey-Peach Ice Cream
June 23, 2009 – Coconut-Roasted Pineapple Dacquoise
June 30, 2009 – Perfect Party Cake
July 7, 2009 – Tribute to Katherine Hepburn Brownies
July 14, 2009 – Brioche Plum Tart
July 21, 2009 – Raspberry Blanc-Manger
July 28, 2009 – Vanilla Ice Cream
August 4, 2009 – Classic Banana Bundt Cake
August 11, 2009 – Brownie Buttons
August 18, 2009 – Applesauce Spice Bars
August 25, 2009 – Creamiest Lime Cream Meringue Pie
September 1, 2009 – Espresso Cheesecake Brownies
September 8, 2009 – Chocolate Souffle
September 15, 2009 – Flaky Apple Turnovers
September 22, 2009 – Cottage Cheese Pufflets
September 29, 2009 – Chocolate-Crunched Caramel Tart
October 6, 2009 – Split Level Pudding
October 13, 2009 – Allspice Crumb Muffins
October 20, 2009 – Sweet Potato Biscuits
October 27, 2009 – Cherry-Fudge Brownie Torte
November 3, 2009 – Chocolate Caramel Chestnut Cake
November 10, 2009 – Cran-Apple Crisps
November 17, 2009 – Sugar-Topped Molasses Spice Cookies
November 24, 2009 – All in One Holiday Bundt Cake
December 1, 2009 – Rosy Poached Pear and Pistachio Tart
December 8, 2009 – Sables
December 15, 2009 – Cafe Volcano Cookies
December 22, 2009 – My Favorite Pecan Pie
December 29, 2009 – Low and Luscious Chocolate Cheesecake
January 5, 2010 – Tarte Tatin – RIGHT HERE, DUMMY – AND, Cocoa-Buttermilk Birthday Cake
January 12, 2010 – Mrs. Vogel’s Scherben
January 19, 2010 – Chocolate Oatmeal Almost-Candy Bars
January 26, 2010 – Cocoa-Nana Bread
February 2, 2010 – Milk Chocolate Mini Bundt Cakes
February 9, 2010 – Rick Katz’s Brownies for Julia
February 16, 2010 – My Best Chocolate Chip Cookies
February 23, 2010 – Honey-Wheat Cookies
March 2, 2010 – Toasted-Coconut Custard Tart
March 9, 2010 – Thumbprints For Us Big Guys
March 16, 2010 – Soft Chocolate and Raspberry Tart
March 23, 2010 – Dulce de Leche Duos
March 30, 2010 – Coconut Tea Cake
April 6, 2010 – Mocha-Walnut Marbled Bundt Cake
April 13, 2010 – Swedish Visiting Cake
April 20, 2010 – Sweet Cream Biscuits
April 27, 2010 – Chockablock Cookies
May 4, 2010 – Burnt Sugar Ice Cream
May 11, 2010 – Quick Classic Berry Tart
May 18, 2010 – Apple-Apple Bread Pudding
May 25, 2010 – Banana Coconut Ice Cream Pie
June 1, 2010 – White Chocolate Brownies
June 8, 2010 – Tender Shortcakes
June 15, 2010 – Raisin Swirl Bread
June 22, 2010 – Dressy Chocolate Loaf Cake
June 29, 2010 – Rum Drenched Vanilla Cakes
July 6, 2010 – Tarte Noire
July 13, 2010 – Brrrrr-ownies
July 20, 2010 – Lots of Ways Banana Cake
July 27, 2010 – Chewy, Chunky Blondies
August 3, 2010 – Gingered Carrot Cookies
August 10, 2010 – Chocolate Ganache Ice Cream
August 17, 2010 – Oatmeal Breakfast Bread
August 24, 2010 – Crunchy and Custardy Peach Tart
August 31, 2010 – Espresso Chocolate Shortbread Cookies
September 7, 2010 – Peanut Butter Crisscrosses
September 14, 2010 – Cranberry Upside-Downer
September 21, 2010 – Coffee Break Muffins
September 28, 2010 – Tarte Fine
October 5, 2010 – Double Apple Bundt Cake
October 12, 2010 – Fold-Over Pear Torte
October 19, 2010 – Caramel Pumpkin Pie
October 26, 2010 – All-American, All-Delicious Apple Pie
November 2, 2010 – Peanuttiest Blondies
November 9, 2010 – Not-Just-for Thanksgiving Cranberry Shortbread Cake
November 16, 2010 – Cranberry Lime Galette
November 30, 2010 – Devilish Shortcakes
December 7, 2010 – Translucent Maple Tuiles
December 14, 2010 – Apple-Coconut Family Cake
December 21, 2010 – Cardamom Crumb Cake
January 4, 2011 – Midnight Crackles
January 11, 2011 – Chocolate Fluff Filled Madeleines
January 18, 2011 – Lemon Poppyseed Muffins

January 25, 2011 – Nutty Swirly Chocolatey Sour Cream Bundt Cake
February 1, 2011 – Great Grains Muffins
February 8, 2011 – Bourbon Bread Pudding
February 15, 2011 –Chocolate Oatmeal Drops
February 22, 2011 – Toasted Almond Scones
March 1, 2011 – Chocolate Pots de Creme
March 8, 2011 – Corniest Corn Muffins
March 15, 2011 – Citrus Currant Sunshine Muffins
March 22, 2011 – Honey Nut Brownies
March 29, 2011 – Pecan Powder Puffs
April 5, 2011 – Coffee Ice Cream Tart
April 12, 2011 – Strawberry Rhubarb Double Crisp
April 19, 2011 – A Tourtely Apple Tart
April 26, 2011 – Cornmeal Shortbread Cookies
May 3, 2011 – Black and White Chocolate Marbled Loaf Cake
May 10, 2011 – Pecan Brown Sugar Bundt Cake
May 17, 2011 – Maple Cornmeal Biscuits
May 24, 2011 – Oatmeal Nutmeg Scones
May 31, 2011 – Caramel Pots de Creme
June 7, 2011 – Blueberry-Brown Sugar Plain Cake
June 14 , 2011 – Chocolate Biscotti
June 21, 2011 – Date-Nut Loaf

June 28, 2011 – Sour Cream Chocolate Cake Cookies
July 5, 2011 – Chocolate Chunk Muffins
July 12, 2011 – Cream Scones
July 19, 2011 – Chestnut Scones
July 26, 2011 – Creamy Dark Chocolate Sorbet
August 2, 2011 – Cocoa Almond Meringues
August 9, 2011 – Carrot Spice Muffins
August 16, 2011 – Tropical Crumble
August 23, 2011 – Golden Brioche Loaves
August 30, 2011 – Cornmeal and Fruit Loaf
September 6 – Chocolate Spice Quickies
September 13 – Classic Brownies
September 20 – Salt and Pepper Shortbread
September 27 – Flip-Over Plum Cake
October 4, 2011 – Apple Nut Muffin Cake
October 11, 2011 – Basic Biscuits
October 18, 2011 – Ginger Jazzed Brownies
October 25, 2011 – A Fig Cake for Fall
November 1, 2011 – Far Breton AND Honey Nut Scones
November 8, 2011 – Fall Butternut Squash Pie AND Mini Madeleines
November 15, 2011 – Bittersweet Brownies AND Alsatian Apple Tart
November 29, 2011 – Sour Cream Pumpkin Pie/Tart AND Normandy Apple Tart
December 6, 2011 – Honey Almond Fig Tart AND Earl Grey Madeleines
December 13, 2011 – Unbelievably Good Chocolate Blueberry Ice Cream AND Double Plum Tart
December 27, 2001 Kids’ Thumbprints