Thursday, December 31, 2009

Best Recipes of 2009

My favorite recipes from 2009, just 12 of the best recipes of the year, recipes that especially express 'fresh' and 'easy' and 'memorable' and 'flavor-forward' and 'seasonal,' all hallmarks of Kitchen Parade recipes.

Ditto. Ditto. It happens every year, Thanksgiving tumbling into Advent, Christmas careening toward New Year's. The lists are long and never once completed. This year, it was especially easy to welcome off-list activities: a 2080-mile trek to visit my mother's Canadian family to sample Christmas cookies; a 'bring-a-salad-ingredient' party; a surprise breakfast just hours Christmas house guests arrived; a feast cooked by a husband-wife-daughter team who make Iron Chef look like Amateur Night; a lesson in shortbread from my sister. Though good food figured in all these good times, food was hardly their point.

So while selecting 2009's best recipes, I ignored the temptation to share another story, some words about the people who share my table, who inspire my best. 'My' stories are hardly the point, not now. What matters, now, is the occasions that readers -- that's you -- build around your own collection of recipes, suppers at home, potlucks at church, parties with friends. When you choose a Kitchen Parade recipe, I'll be honored, even knowing as I do, that the food is hardly the point.

Thank you for reading, for encouragement, for making this work feel worthwhile.

Happy New Year's to all!

My Favorite Recipes from 2009

(hover for a description, click a photo for a recipe)
Winter Stew February - My Mom's Pancakes March - Spinach Soup with Perfect Hard-Cooked Eggs
April - Walnut Chocolate Cake May - Easy-Easy Grilled Mushroom Appetizer June - My Perfect Sangria
July - Easy-Easy Marinated Flank Steak August - Shrimp with Tomatoes, Spinach & Feta September - Homemade Apple Butter
October - Lamb with Lemon & Oregano November - Light 'n' Fluffy Homemade Whole-Grain Bread December - Finnish Meatballs

More 'Best of the Year' Favorite Recipes from Kitchen Parade




Kitchen Parade is written by second-generation food columnist Alanna Kellogg and features fresh, seasonal dishes for every-day healthful eating and occasional indulgences. In 2009, Kitchen Parade celebrated its 50th anniversary with a special collection of my mother's recipes. Do you have a favorite recipe that other Kitchen Parade readers might like? Just send a quick e-mail via recipes@kitchen-parade.com. If you like Kitchen Parade, you're sure to like my food blog about vegetable recipes, too, A Veggie Venture. Become a Kitchen Parade fan on Facebook!

About the Photo Collage

In 2009, I worked to improve Kitchen Parade's food photography. These are some of my favorite photos this year. Clockwise from the upper left, the recipes are Roasted Pear Salad, Bodacious Brussels Sprouts, Winter Tomato Soup, Extra-Crispy Apple Crisp, Broccoli Rigatoni with Chickpeas & Lemon, Poblano Steaks, Roasted Butternut Squash & Apple, Chocolate Ginger Crinkle Cookies, Finnish Meatballs, Armenian Easter Bread, Old-Fashioned Homemade Lemonade, Homemade Finnish Mustard and in the center, the oh-so-grand but easy-to-make Banana Nut Cake with Caramel Frosting.

Best Food Photographs 2009

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Glöggi: Recipe for Scandinavian-Style
Hot Red Wine 'Mulled' with Winter Spices

To warm your winter world, try a glass of hot red wine 'mulled' with spices, fruit and for good luck, an almond. In Finland and Sweden, mulled wine is called 'glöggi' and 'vinglögg', because, I dare to say, for the easy way it glug-glugs down our throats.

Glöggi - Mulled Wine

Twas a magical end to a year of hard work and four-continent travel. On Christmas Day, I booked a ticket to Finland to spend New Year’s with the Finnish ‘family’ who so warmly welcomed a young exchange student into their home two decades earlier.

Hurry was important: my Finnish mother was afflicted with the scourge of Alzheimers. Already, my Finnish sister warned, “Äiti (mother) may not recognize you.”

But Äiti did recognize me, not at first, only when I attempted much-rusty Finnish conversation. The first words to emerge were the Finnish names for foods, the subject of many patient after-school kitchen lessons all those years ago. In the present, she listened closely for some minutes, then laughed out loud, incredulous. “Alu?” she said. “You’ve come back!”

Later that afternoon, my Finnish sister and I sat in the soft light of a coffee shop. We wrapped bone-cold hands around glass cups of gloggi, hot red wine fortified with spices, fruit, a touch of sugar and, for good luck, an almond. Outside in the darkness that falls early so far north, new snow muffled an already holiday-quiet city. All was well, for auld lange syne, indeed. Happy New Year’s to one, to all.

Kitchen Parade is written by second-generation food columnist Alanna Kellogg and features fresh, seasonal dishes for every-day healthful eating and occasional indulgences. In 2009, Kitchen Parade celebrates its 50th anniversary with a special collection of my mother's recipes. Do you have a favorite hot drink recipe that other Kitchen Parade readers might like? Just send me a quick e-mail via recipes@kitchen-parade.com. How to print a Kitchen Parade recipe. If you like Kitchen Parade, you're sure to like my food blog about vegetable recipes, too, A Veggie Venture. Become a Kitchen Parade fan on Facebook!

RECIPE for GLÖGGI
(Hot Red Mulled Wine)

Hands-on time: 20 minutes
Time to table: 45 minutes
Makes about 4-1/2 cups
  • 1 bottle red wine
  • 1-1/2 cups tawny port
  • 3 – 4 thin slices of fresh ginger
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 6 cardamom seeds
  • 1 orange, zest and juice
  • 1 lemon, zest and juice
  • 1/4 cup sugar
    TO SERVE
  • Currants
  • Whole almonds

In a saucepan, bring all ingredients except sugar just to a boil but do not allow to boil. Stir in the sugar and stir until dissolved.

If there’s time, turn off the heat and let the flavors meld for a couple of hours before serving. Gloggi may be made 24 or 48 hours before serving, just cover and refrigerate. Before serving, return just to a boil but do not allow to boil. Remove the ginger and cinnamon. If you like (I don’t bother), strain out the spices and citrus zests.

To serve, drop a few currants and an almond into each glass and serve hot.

ALANNA’s TIPS Consider a double or triple batch, mulled wine is nice to have on hand for the holidays. My Dutch oven easily handles a triple batch.

NUTRITION ESTIMATE ESTIMATE (How many calories in Mulled Wine? How many Weight Watchers points in Mulled Wine?) Per Half Cup: 123 Calories; 1g Tot Fat; 0g Sat Fat; 0mg Cholesterol; 3mg Sodium; 12g Carb; 1g Fiber; 10g Sugar; 1g Protein; Weight Watchers 2 points
Adapted from The Best of Swedish Cooking, published in 1983 and a real gem for those with Swedish heritage.

A Menu for the Winter Solstice, New Year's Eve
or a Cold Winter Night


More Recipes for Warming a Body from the Inside Out

(hover for a description, click a photo for a recipe)
Sugar-Free Chai Tea Winter Tomato Soup My Sister's Crockpot Chili
~ more soup recipes ~
~ more winter recipes ~





© Copyright 2009 Kitchen Parade



Sunday, December 27, 2009

Beef Stew with Cranberries

This is such a quick and easy winter stew recipe, just chunks of beef slow-cooked with onions and cranberry, creating melt-in-your-mouth tender bites of meat, simple enough for a weeknight supper but special enough for company too. Winter Stew with Cranberries is based on an old-fashioned recipe for Swedish Kalops, no wonder it's perfect for cold winter nights!

Beef Stew with Cranberries ♥ KitchenParade.com, an easy weeknight stew based on old Swedish recipe, just chunks of beef slow-cooked with onion and cranberry.

As the holiday season winds down, it's time to turn to simple foods that can be prepared in a few minutes and then forgotten until hunger strikes at serving time. Whether cooked ahead for a weeknight supper or simmered stovetop for Sunday dinner, Beef Stew with Cranberries fits the bill for easy, filling winter fare.

Swedish cookbooks offer dozens of traditional recipes for Kalops, sometimes anglicized to Callops. Centuries ago, the meat and gravy mixture was served on sailing ships so most recipes call for a generous quantity of allspice or cloves to mask the taste of (ewwww ....) spoiled meat on long voyages.

My delicious variation creates morsels of tender meat in a fruit-sweetened gravy that to my taste is decidedly addictive.

For a traditional Swedish or Finnish meal, serve the stew with boiled potatoes (skins on, of course, either plain or tossed with a little butter and fresh dill), pickled beets and a green salad.

Kitchen Parade is written by second-generation food columnist Alanna Kellogg and features fresh, seasonal dishes for every-day healthful eating and occasional indulgences. Quick Suppers are Kitchen Parade favorites and feature recipes easy on the budget, the clock, the waistline and the dishwasher. Do you have a favorite recipe that other Kitchen Parade readers might like? Just send me a quick e-mail via recipes@kitchen-parade.com. How to print a Kitchen Parade recipe. Never miss a recipe! If you like this recipe, sign up for a free e-mail subscription. If you like Kitchen Parade, you're sure to like my food blog about vegetable recipes, too, A Veggie Venture. Follow Kitchen Parade on Facebook!

QUICK SUPPER RECIPE:
BEEF STEW with CRANBERRIES
(SWEDISH KALOPS)

Hands-on time: 15 minutes
Time to table: 2 hours
Makes 6 cups
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon table salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 pounds beef stew meat, cut into bite-size pieces
  • 2 medium onions, chopped (about 2 cups)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 16 ounces canned whole-cranberry sauce
  • 1/2 - 1 cup water, depending on how much gravy is wanted

Heat the oil in a large, heavy Dutch oven until shimmery. Meanwhile, mix the flour, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Add the meat pieces and dredge with the flour mixture until lightly coated. Add the meat to the hot oil and cook the meat until it is brown on all sides. Top with remaining ingredients and stir.

STOVETOP Cover and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for at least 90 minutes until meat becomes tender.

OVEN Cover and cook at 200F/100C for 2 hours or until meat becomes tender.

Remove bay leaves before serving.

ALANNA's TIPS Beef Stew with Cranberries easily converts to gluten-free. Instead of using flour to thicken the gravy, use yellow cornmeal. Works like a charm! Not into canned cranberry? Use Homemade Whole Cranberry Sauce for the Slow Cooker.

NUTRITION INFORMATION Per Cup: 429 Calories; 14g Tot Fat; 5g Sat Fat; 98mg Cholesterol; 490mg Sodium; 39g Carb; 2g Fiber; 31g Sugar; 33g Protein. WEIGHT WATCHERS POINTS Old Points 9 & PointsPlus 11 & SmartPoints 15

Beef Stews from Around the World

(hover for a description, click a photo for a recipe)
Winter Stew Spanish Stew with Roasted Pepper (Chilindron) Old-Fashioned Brunswick Stew
~ more beef recipes ~

More Scandinavian Recipes

(hover for a description, click a photo for a recipe)
Scandinavian Split-Pea Soup Finnish Meatballs Finnish Fruit Tart

Easy Appetizers for New Year's Eve Parties

(hover for a description, click a photo for a recipe)
Smoked Salmon Spread Potato Bites with Smoked Salmon Estonian Deviled Eggs


Shop Your Pantry First

(helping home cooks save money on groceries)





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