Chocolate Hazelnut Cupcakes

Chocolate Hazelnut Cupcakes

 

I don’t think I’ve made cupcakes often enough and I’ve never caught the cupcake fever a few years ago.  But I think cupcake is still favored by people; why they’re like little cakes complete with frosting.  I do like cupcakes and this time I’m making this chocolate cupcakes stuffed with Ferrero Rocher in the middle.  The inspiration behind the cupcakes was a post by Bakers Royale’s Nutella Cupcakes.  I’m taking it a lot simpler than that because at the time I was researching for a good, solid chocolate cupcake recipe so I didn’t need to do a complicated frosting to go with it.  This cupcake is decent and delicious although I didn’t add the 2 tablespoons instant coffee to the batter.  I thought it would make the cupcake tasted a little way too much coffee-y to me.

Little did I know that after I made these I had to make many more cupcakes for my son’s school’s function–though they’re with different frosting and no Ferrero Rocher (that chocolate candy is so addictive).  I made some for myself–ehem, my family, and stashed them in the freezer.  I doled out four at a time and was glad that I made extra because I got to have a nice, personal-sized dessert every night :)

Chocolate Hazelnut Cupcakes

Chocolate Hazelnut Cupcakes

Makes 12 cupcakes

 

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar

1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and warm

2 large eggs

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1/2 cup hot coffee

12 Ferrero Rocher

 

Whipped Cream Frosting:

1 1/2 cups heavy cream

2 1/2 tablespoons sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Unsweetened cocoa powder

 

To make cupcakes:

Position a rack in the lower third of the oven.  Heat the oven to 350 degree F.  Line a muffin pan with cupcake liners.

Add flour, cocoa powder, sugar, baking soda, and salt in a bowl and whisk thoroughly with  to combine.

In a mixing bowl, add the butter, eggs, and vanilla; beat with paddle attachment on medium speed for one minute. Add flour to egg mixture and beat for 20 seconds.  Scrape the sides of the bowl and add instant coffee.  Beat again for 20-30 seconds until the batter is smooth.  The batter will be thin enough to pour.

Divide it evenly among the lined cups.  Place a whole Ferrero Rocher in the center of each well.  Bake 18-22 minutes just until a toothpick inserted into a few of the cupcakes comes out clean.  Set the pan on a rack to cool.  Frost the cupcakes when they are completely cool.

To make the frosting:

Place heavy cream, sugar, and vanilla extract in a chilled bowl and beat with an electric mixer on high speed until stiff peak forms.  Transfer the frosting to a large resealable plastic bag.  Snip the end of a corner of the plastic bag and pipe an even amount of frosting onto the cupcakes.  Sprinkle cupcakes with unsweetened cocoa powder before serving.

Red Velvet Cake

Red Velvet Cake

This was the cake I made for my son’s birthday a few weeks ago.  I was actually quite surprised that he wanted this cake but he didn’t regret it because this cake was so good.  The only comment from him was that it was a bit rich :).  But, nevertheless, he helped us finish the cake.

Red Velvet Cake

 

Red Velvet Cake

Makes 16 servings

 

3/4 cup unsalted butter

3 eggs

3 cups all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder

3/4 teaspoon salt

2 1/4 cups sugar

1 1-ounce bottle (2 tablespoons) red food coloring

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 1/2 cups buttermilk or sour milk

1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

1 1/2 teaspoons vinegar

Never-Fail Buttercream Frosting (recipe follows)

 

Allow butter and eggs to stand at room temperature for 30 minutes.  Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 degree F.  Grease and lightly flour three 9×2-inch or 8×2-inch round cake pans.  In a medium bowl, stir together flour, cocoa powder, and salt; set aside.

In an extra-large bowl, beat butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds.  Gradually add sugar, about 1/4 cup at a time, beating on medium speed until combined.  Beat on medium speed for 2 minutes more, scraping side of bowl occasionally.  Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Beat in food coloring and vanilla.  Alternately add flour mixture and buttermilk, beating on low speed after each addition just until combined.  In a small bowl, combine baking soda and vinegar; stir into batter.   Pour batter into the prepared pans, spreading evenly.

Bake in the preheated oven for 20 to 25 minutes for 9-inch pan, 25 to 30 minutes for 8-inch pan, or until a toothpick inserted near centers comes out clean.  Cool cake in the pans on wire rack for 10 minutes.  Remove from pans; cool completely on rack.

Prepare Never-Fail Buttercream Frosting.  Place one cake layer, bottom side up, on a serving plate.  Spread with one third of the frosting.  Top with second layer, bottom side up; spread with one-third of the frosting.  Top with third layer, top side up.  Spread top with remaining frosting.

 

Never-Fail Buttercream Frosting

Makes about 4 cups

In a medium saucepan, whisk together 1 1/2 cups sugar, 1 1/2 cups milk, 1/3 cup all-purpose flour, and dash salt.  Cook and stir over medium heat until thickened and bubbly.  Reduce heat; cook and stir for 1 minute more.  Remove from heat.  Stir in 2 teaspoons vanilla extract.  Cover surface with plastic wrap to prevent skin and cool completely at room temperature.  Transfer to a large bowl.  On medium speed of an electric mixer, gradually beat in 1 1/2 cups softened unsalted butter until mixture is smooth, scraping side of bowl occasionally.  (Frosting might look curdled until all of the butter is incorporated.)

 

Source:  adapted from Better Homes and Gardens Holiday Baking 2010

Chocolate Hazelnut Cookies

Chocolate Hazelnut Cookies

I’ve been busy.  When life is hectic sometimes I just want to put up my feet and nibble on something sweet.  This cookie fits my bill because it’s portable, sweet, and goes together with a glass of warm tea.  Sipping the tea slowly while nibbling on the crisp edges of the cookie would lift up my mood especially when the weather turned blustery all of a sudden.  Crumbs fell to my lap and I looked at the time wondering how long had I been dreaming.  Time to go on with the everyday chore…

 

Chocolate Hazelnut Cookies

Yield: 22 to 24 large (2 3/4″ to 3″) cookies; or about 4 dozen smaller (2″) cookies.

1/3 cup vegetable shortening
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon espresso powder, optional, for enhanced flavor
1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon hazelnut flavor, optional, for enhanced flavor
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup chocolate-hazelnut spread, such as Nutella or Jif
1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease (or line with parchment) two baking sheets.

Beat together the shortening, sugars, egg, vanilla, espresso powder, hazelnut flavor, cocoa powder, baking soda, salt, and chocolate-hazelnut spread until smooth.

Add the flour, beating gently until everything is well combined; the dough will be quite stiff and a bit crumbly. If it doesn’t hold together well, drizzle in enough water or cold coffee (1 tablespoon or less) to bring it together. Watch out, though; if you add too much liquid, the cookies will flatten and spread out too much as they bake.

Drop the cookie dough by teaspoonfuls or tablepoonfuls onto the prepared baking sheets (a teaspoon or tablespoon cookie scoop works well here), leaving 2″ between them. The larger balls of dough will be about 1 1/2″ in diameter, and weigh a generous 1 ounce each (if you have a scale); the smaller ones will be about 1 1/4″ in diameter, and about 1/2 ounce in weight.

Use a large dinner fork to flatten each cookie to about 3/8″ thick, making a cross-hatch design.

Bake the cookies for 7 to 12 minutes, until they don’t appear super-moist any longer, and seem set. Since they’re dark colored, it’s difficult to tell when they’re done by whether or not they’re browned; it’s a good idea to bake one test cookie first, to figure out the timing. Smaller cookies baked for the shorter amount of time will be softer; larger cookies baked for the longest amount of time will be crunchy.

Remove the cookies from the oven, and cool right on the pan; or on a rack.

 

Source:  adapted from King Arthur Flour

Apple Pie with Oatmeal Crumb Topping

Apple Pie with Oatmeal Crumb ToppingTomorrow is the first day of fall season and I can already see there’s a lot of fall fruit recipes on the Internet for at least a couple of weeks.  I guess we’re ushering the fall with open arms and open mouth? :)   I don’t want to fall behind in enjoying the in-season fruits so I made this apple pie with oatmeal crumb topping which is really a perfect ending in cooler weather trend.

Let’s not forget that I love crusts.  Some people may gravitate more towards crumbles, crisps, cobblers, and the like; but I like to have flaky, tender padding at the bottom of the fruit and kind of the same closure on top as well.  What to do when you want to combine both?  The answer is of course to make the top crust a crumb topping.  This recipe originally uses Golden Delicious apples but all I had was Gala, some Granny Smith and SweeTango apples.  I decided to mix the apples and I found out the combination was pretty good.

Apple Pie with Oatmeal Crumb Topping

When it’s still warm, an apple pie is hard to resist.  As shown on the picture below, evidently I cut the slice when it’s warm; hence the slight breakdown of apple slices and crust.  I just couldn’t help it!

Apple Pie with Oatmeal Crumb Topping

Apple Pie with Oatmeal Crumb Topping

Makes 8 to 10 servings

 

1 recipe for single crust pie crust (recipe below) or 1 crust of refrigerated store-bought pie crusts

Filling:

7 cups peeled, cored, and thinly sliced mixed apples

1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon granulated sugar

Juice and grated zest of 1 lemon

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch

 

Oatmeal Crumb Topping

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup rolled oats (old-fashioned or quick cooking)

2/3 cup firmly packed light brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch pieces

 

If you’re using a homemade crust, let it chill until firm enough to roll for about an hour.

On a lightly floured waxed paper, roll the homemade crust into a 13-inch circle with a floured rolling pin.  Inver the pastry over a 9 1/2-inch deep-dish pie pan, center, and peel off the paper.  Gently tuck the pastry into the pan, without stretching it, and sculpt the edge into an upstanding ridge.  Place in the freezer for 15 minutes.  If using a store-bought crust, simply drape the crust over the pie pan and sculpt the edge into an upstanding ridge; place in the freezer for 15 minutes.

Combine the apples, 1/3 cup of the granulated sugar, and the lemon juice and zest in a large bowl.  Mix well, then set aside for 10 minutes.  Preheat the oven to 400 degree F.  Place a rack at the bottom of oven.

In a small bowl, mix the remaining 1 tablespoon sugar with the nutmeg and cornstarch.  Add the mixture to the apples and stir the fruit well.  Turn the filling into the chilled pie shell and smooth with your hands to even it out.  Bake the pie for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, make the crumb topping.  Put the flour, oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt in a food processor and pulse several times to mix.  Scatter the butter over the top.  Pulse repeatedly until the mixture resembles fine crumbs.  Empty the crumbs into a large bowl, and rub them between your fingers until you have large, buttery crumbs.  Refrigerate until ready to use.

Remove the pie from the oven and reduce the temperature to 375 degree F.  Carefully dump the crumbs in the center of the pie, spreading them over the surface with your hands.  Tamp them down lightly.  Return the pie to the oven, placing it so that the part that faced the back of the oven now faces forward.  Just in case, slide a large aluminum foil-lined baking sheet onto the rack to catch any spills.  Bake until the top is dark golden brown and the juices bubble thickly at the edge, 30 to 35 minutes.  If necessary, cover the pie with loosely tented aluminum foil during the last 15 minutes of baking to keep the top from browning too much.

Transfer the pie to a wire rack and let cool for at least 1 hour before serving.

Note:  the crumb topping recipe yields more than you need.  If you don’t want to use it all, simply keep it in freezer bag and freeze it for another pie or muffin recipe.

 

Basic Flaky Pie Pastry

Makes 1 single crust

 

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup (1/2 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch pieces

1/4 cup cold vegetable shortening, cut into pieces

1/4 cup cold water

 

Put the flour, sugar and salt in the food processor.  Pulse several times to mix.  Scatter the butter over the dry ingredients and pulse for 5 to 6 times to cut in.  Fluff the mixture with a fork, lifting it up from the bottom of the bowl.  Scatter the shortening over the flour and pulse 5 to 6 times.  Fluff the mixture again.  Drizzle half of the water over the flour mixture and pulse 5 to 6 times.  Fluff the mixture and sprinkle on the remaining water.  Pulse 5 to 6 times more, until the dough starts to form clumps.  Overall, it will look like coarse crumbs.  dump the contents of the bowl into a large bowl.  Test the pastry by squeezing some of it between your fingers.  If it seems a little dry and not quite packable, drizzle a teaspoon or so of cold water over the pastry and work it in with your fingertips.

Using your hands, pack the pastry into a ball.  Knead it once or twice, then flatten the ball into 3/4-inch thick disk on a floured work surface.  Wrap the disk in plastic and refrigerate for at least an hour or overnight before rolling.

 

Source:  Pie by Ken Haedrich

 

Pop Art Raspberry Icebox Cake

Pop Art Raspberry Icebox Cake

This is an embarrassingly late post about a birthday cake for a birthday which happened in August.  Back when August was warm and sunny–and I love everything that took place in August–my son made (and I helped) this cake for my birthday.  Over the years, and especially since I’ve lived in Oregon, August has become a happy and glorious month to be in, and not just because it’s my birthday month :)  Sun, peak of produce, road trip, lazy days, crickets at nights, roasting marshmallow on the fire; that’s just to name a few things that August has to offer.  So yeah, this cake recipe should’ve been posted sometime last month; but no matter, it is still gloriously good–like the month of August in every slice.

Pop Art Raspberry Icebox Cake

The idea to make this cake is of course the simplicity of an icebox cake; something that my son could make with little help from me.  Tastewise, the texture is smooth with lots of raspberry flavor, a little crunch from the seeds, and enough chocolaty-ness from the cookies.  My family loves this and perhaps yours will do too!

Pop Art Raspberry Icebox Cake

Serves 6

 

27 Nabisco Famous Chocolate Wafer cookies

2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted and slightly cooled

1 envelope unflavored gelatin

3 tablespoons cold water

One 12-ounce bag frozen raspberries

3/4 cup sugar

2 cups heavy cream, chilled

2 tablespoons framboise (raspberry liqueur)–optional

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

 

Line a 9 1/2 x 4 x 3-inch loaf pan with plastic wrap, making sure the wrap is tucked into all the corners and there is at least 1 inch overhanging the top of the pan on all sides.  Working with one cookie at a time, spread the more rounded side of 9 of the wafer cookies with a thin layer of melted chocolate and place 3 of them, chocolate side down, on the bottom of the pan.  Place another 3 cookies against each long side of the pan, chocolate-coated sides facing the pan.  Place the pan in the freezer.

Sprinkle the gelatin over the cold water in a small bowl and let soften for 2 minutes.

Combine the raspberries and sugar in a medium-size heavy saucepan and cook over medium-low heat, stirring a few times, until the sugar dissolves and the mixture is warm to the touch.  Stir in the gelatin mixture.  Let cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally.

Combine the heavy cream, framboise (if using), and vanilla in a large bowl and using an electric mixer, whip until stiff peaks form.  Gently fold in the cooled rapsberry mixture, taking care not to deflate the cream.

Remove the pan from the freezer.  Pour all but one-fourth of the mousse into the pan.  Smooth the top with a rubber spatula.  Insert the remaining 18 wafers into the mousse, arranging them vertically in three rows of six so they are lined up with the chocolate wafers on the sides of the pan.  Spread the remaining mousse over the wafers and smooth with the spatula.  The pan should be full to the top.  Cover with plastic wrap and freeze until completely set, at least overnight and up to 1 week.

To unmold, gently tug the plastic wrap that lines the pan to loosen the cake.  Place a serving platter over the pan and turn over.  Gently tap to release.  Carefully peel the plastic from the cake.  Cut into slices and serve immediately.

 

Source:  Icebox Desserts by Lauren Chattman

Apple-Cinnamon Pull-Apart Bread

Apple-cinnamon pull-apart bread

 

Is it time for apples yet?  You bet!  Even if I’m ready to face fall season I’m confronted to the fact that my son will start school soon and I’m back working as well.  Fall means cooler weather with more rain and the feeling of wanting for comfort food.  Apples fit perfectly because in the season because there will be apple cider, apple pies, crumbles, and many more.  What’s more perfect is the aroma of apple and cinnamon, that just spells fall to me.

This pull-apart bread is very easy to make and will guarantee to make your kitchen smells good.  I’ve a friend whose apple trees bear enough fruits for me to pick some to be used in this bread.  Since this bake in no time, I’m planning to make it often for afternoon snack for my son when he gets home from school.  Try it, you’ll probably welcome fall more than you like to :)

Apple-cinnamon pull-apart bread

Apple-Cinnamon Pull-Apart Bread

Makes 6 servings

 

Nonstick cooking spray

1 7.5-ounce package (10) refrigerated reduced-fat home-style biscuits

4 teaspoons ground flaxseeds–I didn’t have it so I substituted with wheat germ

2 teaspoons granulated sugar, divided

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 cup thinly sliced apple–I used 1 medium apple and used up all the apple slices to fill the bread

3 tablespoons coarsely chopped walnuts–mine is chopped slightly fine

2 tablespoons packed brown sugar

2 tablespoons orange juice

1 tablespoon unsalted butter

2 tablespoons reduced-fat cream cheese (Neufchatel), softened

2 teaspoons orange juice

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

 

Preheat oven to 350 degree F.  Coat an 8x4x2-inch loaf pan with cooking spray; set aside.  Cut biscuits in half crosswise.  In a small bowl stir together ground flaxseeds, 1 teaspoon of the granulated sugar, and the cinnamon.  Roll biscuit halves in flaxseed mixture to coat.  Alternately arrange biscuit halves and apple slices in the prepared loaf pan.  Sprinkle with any remaining flaxseed mixture and the walnuts.

In a small saucepan combine brown sugar, the 2 tablespoons orange juice, and the butter.  Cook and stir over medium-high heat until boiling.  Pour mixture over biscuits.  Bake about 25 minutes or until edges are golden and biscuits near center are done.  Cool in pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes.  Invert bread onto a small baking sheet; invert again onto a serving platter.

For icing, in a small bowl whisk together cream cheese, the 2 teaspoons orange juice, the vanilla, and the remaining 1 teaspoon granulated sugar.  Drizzle bread with icing.  Serve warm.

 

Source:  adapted from Better and Home Gardens Fall Baking 2013

Peach and Cream Cheese Slab Pie

Peach & Cream Cheese Slab Pie

Peaches are quintessentially summer fruits which means summer without eating peaches is just wrong.  I was late in buying the fruits from my friend who owns an orchard but I managed to pick some on another orchard.  I went with my husband and son to pick 36 (!) pounds of peaches and about slightly less than 10 pounds of nectarines.  We had gone crazy was an understatement.  The problem with going to u-pick is always on how to reign the uncontrollable desire to pick every fruit on the trees.  I didn’t even know if I wanted to deal with so many peaches because I kept changing my mind on how I wanted to process the peaches.   Don’t I sound so gluttonous and indecisive?  And talk about tree-ripened peaches, oh boy…they’re not going to last forever before they start to go mushy and moldy.

Fresh peaches

But all went well at the end.  We ate some fresh ones, drank endless but yummy smoothies; I froze some and also baked this peach and cream cheese slab pie.  The idea was an apple-cheese danish from a magazine and I was pretty sure it could be made with fresh peaches as well.  Now, I always have frozen puff pastry in the freezer–make it homemade if you want it–but it’s much easier and a snap to make with a store-bought one especially if you’re pressed in time.  My suggestion is to make this early on the day because you want to eat it the day it’s made to make sure the pastry stays crispy.  And make sure the peaches are nicely ripe but still slightly firm, that way they’ll keep their structures in the pie.  Other than that, the pie is stupendously delicious!

Peach & Cream Cheese Slab Pie

 

Peach and Cream Cheese Slab Pie

Makes 12 servings

 

1 17.3 ounce package (2 sheets) frozen puff pastry sheets, thawed

2 1/2 pounds fresh peaches, ripe but slightly firm; peeled and thinly sliced (about 7 cups)

1 cup granulated sugar, divided

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, divided

1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Milk

2 tablespoons coarse sugar–I used demerara sugar

 

Preheat oven to 375 degree F.  Lightly grease a 15x10x1-inch baking pan; set aside.  On a lightly floured surface, unfold one pastry sheet and roll into a 15×10-inch rectangle.  Transfer to the prepared baking pan, pressing pastry to edges of pan.  Bake about 12 minutes or until golden (pastry will puff and shrink from sides of pan).  Cool on a wire rack.

Meanwhile, combine peaches with 1/2 cup of the granulated sugar, 1/2 teaspoon of the cinnamon, and the nutmeg.  Toss gently and set aside.

In a medium mixing bowl beat cream cheese and the remaining 1/2 cup granulated sugar with an electric mixer on medium speed until smooth.  Beat in egg and vanilla just until combined.  Carefully spread cream cheese mixture over baked pastry to within 1 inch of the edges.  Spoon peach mixture over cream cheese mixture.

On a lightly floured surface, unfold the remaining pastry sheet and roll into a 13×10-inch rectangle (make sure pastry is large enough to completely cover peach mixture).  Place on top of peach mixture.  Lightly press edges of top pastry to edges of bottom pastry.  Lightly brush top pastry with milk.  Using a sharp knife, cut a few slits in pastry to allow steam to escape.  In a small bowl combine coarse sugar and the remaining 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon; sprinkle over pastry.

Bake for 35 to 40 minutes or until pastry is slightly puffed and golden.  Cool on wire rack about 45 minutes.  Serve slightly warm.

 

Source:  adapted from Better Homes and Gardens Fall Baking 2013

Tomato and Cheddar Pie

Tomato and cheddar pie

This pie should be called summertime in a pie because eating one would be like savoring what are the essence of summer and labor of love in the mouth.  My parents grow several tomato plants among other vegetables in their backyard.  My dad would religiously water the garden a few times in the day and my mom would pick the weeds whenever possible, these plants are like their babies.  It makes sense to cultivate sun-loving plants in their plot because my two planter boxes in the backyard receive paltry sun rays, that growing anything is next to impossible.

Homegrown tomatoes

Tomato and cheddar pie

My mom said to me when we picked tomatoes together that she really loved the smell of tomato plants and I couldn’t disagree more!  To see these little orbs getting bigger and redder isn’t unlike getting a prize–each oozes juicy and sweet liquid; it reminds us that the peak of summer is here even if it also means that it is winding down from here on.

This pie has a biscuity crust filled with layers of tomato slices and shredded cheese.  I used white cheddar whereas the original recipe uses the regular cheddar, hence my pie has a slight pale color.  There are other ways to eat summer tomatoes but for me, I like this pie–layer upon layer of cheese and tomatoes with a spread of mayonnaise mixture in between–my idea of comfort food in the heat of summer :)

Tomato and cheddar pie

 

Tomato and Cheddar Pie

Serves 8

Crust:

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

6 Tablespoons (3/4 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/2″ cubes

1 cup buttermilk

 

Filling:

2 lb. large ripe tomatoes, cored and cut into 1/4″ slices

2 1/2 cups coarsely grated extra-sharp cheddar (8-9 oz.)

1/4 cup finely grated Parmesan (1/2 oz.)

1 scallion, trimmed, chopped

1/2 cup mayonnaise

2 Tablespoons chopped fresh dill

1 Tablespoon apple cider vinegar

2 teaspoons sugar

3/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

1 1/2 Tablespoons cornmeal

 

Note:  Use a 9″-diameter glass or ceramic pie dish for this recipe

 

Make the crust:  Whisk first 4 ingredients in a medium bowl.  Using your fingertips, rub in butter until coarse meal forms and some small lumps remain.  Stir in buttermilk and knead gently with your hands until dough forms.  Wrap dough in plastic and chill for 1 hour.

Make the filling:  Lay tomatoes in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with 2 layer of paper towels.  Place another 2 layers of paper towels on top of tomatoes.  Let stand for 30 minutes to drain.

Preheat oven to 425 degree F.  Roll out dough between 2 sheets of plastic wrap to an 11″ round.  Remove top layer of plastic wrap.  Invert dough onto pie dish.  Carefully peel off plastic wrap.

Toss both cheeses in a medium bowl until evenly incorporated.  Reserve 1/4 cup of cheese mixture.  Whisk scallion, mayonnaise, dill, vinegar, sugar, salt, and pepper in a small bowl.

Sprinkle cornmeal evenly over bottom of crust, then top with 1/2 cup cheese mixture.  Arrange 1/3 of tomatoes over cheese, overlapping as needed.  Spread half of mayonnaise mixture (about 1/3 cup) over.  Repeat layering with 1 cup of cheese mixture, 1/2 of remaining tomato slices, and remaining mayonnaise mixture.  Sprinkle remaining 1 cup cheese mixture over, then remaining tomato slices.  Sprinkle with reserved 1/4 cup cheese mixture.  Fold overhanging crust up and over edges of tomato slices.

Bake pie until crust is golden and cheese is golden brown, 35-40 minutes (check crust halfway and tent with foil if it’s getting too dark).  Let pie cool at least 1 hour and up to 3 hours before slicing and serving.

 

Source:  Bon Appetit, August 2011

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