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Archive for May 16th, 2009

This is a Peanut Butter Barbecue challenge hosted by the Peanut Butter boy.  Check out the link to enter your best recipe for a peanut butter barbecue.

pbchallengeI had an idea although I’m a newbie to using the main ingredient in this recipe: Spring Roll Wrappers. This recipe seemed like it would offer a unique twist as well as a great snack dish for a fun afternoon outside in the sun with friends. 

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Peanut Butter Spring Rolls with Dipping Sauce, Makes 8 – 10 rolls

  • 1 pkg. of 12 Spring Roll Wrappers.
  • 1/2 cup All Natural Peanut butter (or your favorite)
  • 1 1/2 TBS Rice Vinegar
  • 1 1/2 tsp honey
  • 1 1/2 TBS chopped pickled ginger slices
  • 3 cups cooked white rice.
  • 1/2 green pepper, match stick sliced
  • 1/2 red pepper, match stick sliced
  • 8 oz carrot sticks, match stick sliced.
  • SAUCE:
  • 1/2 cup Your Favorite Peanut Butter
  • 1/2 cup Stonyfield Farms Plain yogurt
  • 2 1/2 tsp soy sauce
  • 1 1/2 TBS Lime juice
  • 1 1/2 TBS chopped pickled ginger slices
  • 1 1/2 TBS honey
  • 1/3 to 1/2 cup Orange Juice
  • 1/2 tsp Red Pepper or Wasabi *Spice it up to you taste preference.

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Mix your cooked rice with the peanut butter, vinegar, honey, and ginger.  * You may want to heat the peanut butter slightly in the microwave so it mixes easier into the rice.  Slice all your vegetables.  

In a large pan filled with hot water, soak one spring roll wrapper at a time about 15 seconds to soften. Place onto a dampened, clean tea towel. Dab until sticky and place about 4 slices each of the peppers and carrots, 2 TBS rice mix(form in your hand into a log so it is compacted), about 4 slices each peppers and carrots (do this twice so the colorful veg will show through both sides of the spring wrapper.  Take the end farthest from you and fold over mixture then fold in sides and roll up.  *MAKE SURE YOU ROLL IT TIGHT…as tight as possible without ripping the wrapper.  Place onto a serving plate.  

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Mixing the sauce:

Blend all the sauce ingredients together up to the orange juice and and red pepper or wasabi.  Put in enough orange juice to get the desired sauce consistency. Taste the sauce. Do you need spice? If so add it carefully and taste after each addition.

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This recipe is really easy – no cooking required.  It is very portable, simply put the sauce in a dish covered with plastic wrap. Put the spring rolls onto a serving platter – but cover with WAX paper before covering with plastic wrap. The rolls are sticky.

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It is a unique offering of a starch (rice) with a healthy fat (peanut butter), vegetables (peppers, carrots), all wrapped up and dipped into a unique blend of American and Asian flavor.

It can also be served in a more formal manner:

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In the beginning I said I was new at using the spring roll wrappers. What I found out was that they are really easy to use.  My only error was that I did not wrap them tight enough.  Not a huge problem it’s just that they are a bit messier to eat if you don’t compact the rice mix and roll all the filling up tightly.

Hope you enjoy this recipe if you try it.

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Happy Saturday!  It’s the weekend, enjoy.  To begin, we’ll back track to Friday evening at a very old restaurant I last went to the night of my Senior Ball, over 20 years ago.  At the end of the post, a wonderful twist on a Saturday morning pancake.

Friday Night Restaurant Review.

DSCN0949The Horned Dorset.  This is a very elegant, very old establishment. It was a market back in the 1800’s. The roof collapsed in a wind storm and when it was rebuilt in the 1970’s, the restoration made use of wood and other parts from various mansions around Utica and Syracuse. 

The dining is formal, although dress code is not enforced.  A waiter waits patiently while you sit, fiddle with your coat and your purse, find your camera, suddenly you realize he’s glaring at you, you shift to pull your chair in and whoops!..he beats you to it. He pushes your chair in. 

Another waiter approaches with the wine order.  Yet a different waiter approaches to list the menu items, no print menu here.  This is when we asked if there was something we could read about the history of The Horned Dorset. The waiter said no, but he would be pleased to tell all.  After ordering, another waiter (yes, a DIFFERENT waiter) brings the bread.  How many waiters is that?!!!

The room is old and adorned with very old books…

DSCN0950There are two rooms actually, we sat in the second seating area.

There were crackers on the table and in no time a complimentary hot cheese dip was presented. It tasted like french onion soup. Wonderfully rich and smooth. Perfect with the “nothing fancy” crackers.

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A basket of hot bread was brought to the table which we also enjoyed with the cheese dip.

Our appetizers of choice were as follows:

Ted ordered the Sweet Breads.  Now he initially asked if I wanted them because he didn’t know what sweet breads were. He thought it meant “sweet BREAD”.  After the waiter explained, I said, “try them. I never have but they are a delicacy”.  He did try them and said they tasted like chicken…

DSCN0952Unfortunately  I can’t offer anything more because, as I said, I have never tried sweet breads.

As for me, I ordered the black bean, portobella crepe in a delicate white leek sauce. So light with very mild flavors…the perfect app.

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The salads were then presented which were baby spinach leaves, thin onion slices, sliced mushrooms, kalamata olives, 1/4 of an egg, topped with feta cheese in a house vinaigrette.

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The Entrees…

The waiter reeled off the main courses and I heard nothing of fish. There was a scallop dish but I wasn’t in a scallop mood. When asked “you don’t have any fish on the menu?”  The waiter said they would be happy to offer salmon.  I had the salmon with asparagus and glazed carrots.  It was so fresh, so moist, and couldn’t have been a better piece of fish.

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Ted had a veal dish served on a bed of sauteed spinach and topped with a very healthy slab of Camembert cheese.  He was going to remove the cheese but I said that I thought, since it was placed on the top that it must pair perfectly with the main feature. So he tried it and sure enough, the Chef knew what he was doing. Ted said it was delicious.

DSCN0960If you live in the Utica area, you should treat yourself to a visit to the Horned Dorset Inn, Leonardsville, NY.  It is right on Route 8 and offers the elegance, the relaxation, the finest service of any of the best restaurants I’ve been to.

 

Saturday Morning APPLE PANCAKE recipe…

Following my return home from a 6+ mile run with Shane (he is FINALLY willing to run again), Ted was still home and didn’t have to leave to play golf for another hour and a half. I said I was going to make apple pancakes and if he could wait while I hopped in the shower, then breakfast would be served in no time.  Ted was up for it.

Apple Pancakes, makes 6

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  • 1 egg plus 2 egg whites
  • 1 1/2 TBS Heavy Cream
  • 1/2 a peeled and finely chopped apple.
  • 1 1/2 TBS flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream

Combine the egg (not the whites and NOT the 1/4 cup Heavy cream) and the rest of the ingredients.  Stir well.  Beat the egg whites until they form peaks and then fold into apple mixture. NOTE: Gently FOLD the whites in …do NOT beat!

Cook in a lightly oiled pan until golden. 

Whip the 1/4 cup of heavy cream until it forms peaks and serve on top of pancake with a sprinkle of powdered sugar and a drizzle of maple syrup.  Light and delicious!

DSCN0961Enjoy your day!

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