As a child I remember waking up to a mix of savory smells coming from the kitchen at my grandparents’ home. Following my nose I would find my grandmother in her “genie” slippers (they literally looked like Aladdin’s fancy shoes) drinking a cup of coffee with one hand and stirring a concoction in the other. It was magic. I went off to bed leaving a clean, dimly lit kitchen and awoke to a lively, colorful kitchen with steam coming from several pots, rolls growing on the counter, and plates of food across the table.
Everyone has memories of family and happy traditions, especially around the holidays. Just as each member of the Ample team has unique skills and talents, we also have some of our own favorite family recipes. This Easter, we wanted to share our recipe book with you.
The Craveable Carbs
- 2 sheets frozen puff pastry, thawed (I use Pepperidge Farm)
- 2 tbsp honey
- 1/3 cup dried cherries, roughly chopped
- 1/4 cup chopped pecans
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
- 1 (16 oz.) Brie cheese round (about 6 inches in diameter)
- 1 large egg, beaten with 1 tablespoon water
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Slice off the top rind of the brie and discard.
- On a lightly floured work surface, roll each pastry sheet out to a 12-inch square. Trim the corners of each sheet to form two circles. Set the scraps aside; you'll use those later for decorations. Put one of the pastry rounds on the prepared baking sheet. Place the Brie on top of the pastry, rind side down. Drizzle the top of the cheese with the honey, and then top with the dried cherries, pecans, and rosemary.
- Brush the exposed edges of the pastry with the egg mixture. Cover the Brie with the other pastry circle; press against the sides of the cheese and the bottom pastry to form a tight seal. Using a pizza cutter, cut off the excess dough, leaving a generous 1-inch border. Crimp the edges firmly with a fork to seal. Brush the pastry with the egg mixture. Set aside.
- Using a pizza cutter or cookie cutter, cut out nine leaves (about 2 inches long and 1 inch wide) from the scraps. Use a knife to draw the ribs on the leaves, pressing down but not cutting all the way through. Place the leaves on top of the pastry in the shape of a flower, overlapping them slightly and pressing them together in the center. Brush the leaves with the egg mixture. Roll up a 1/2-inch ball of dough and press it in the center; brush the ball with the egg mixture.
- Bake for about 20 minutes, or until the pastry is golden brown. Let stand for 45 minutes, then serve with fruit and crackers.
Note: You can prepare this appetizer ahead of time up until the baking step; refrigerate until ready to cook.
Rachel’s Family Biscuits
- 2+ cups of flour
- 3 tsp of baking powder
- 1 tsp of salt
- 3 heaping tbsp of Crisco shortening
- 7/8 of a cup of milk
- Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
- Sift or mix dry ingredients in a large bowl.
- Rub in shortening (stir with fork, then mix with hands).
- Add milk. Stir together with a fork.
- On a cutting board with flour, roll dough to be ½-inch thick. Fold dough in half. Roll again to be ½-inch thick.
- Cut with biscuit cutters of various sizes.
- Place on a baking sheet. Cook at 450 degrees for 10-12 minutes, or until the biscuits are golden brown.
- 1 1/2 cups milk
- 1 stick unsalted butter, cut into pieces, plus more for brushing
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 package active dry yeast
- 1/2 cup warm water
- 3 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 6 cups all-purpose flour
- Place milk in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer. Remove from the heat, stir in the butter and sugar and let cool. Dissolve yeast in the warm water and let sit until foamy. Combine milk mixture, eggs, yeast, salt, and 1/2 of the flour in a mixer with the dough attachment and mix until smooth. Add the remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, and stir until a smooth ball forms.
- Remove from the bowl and knead by hand on a floured surface for about 5 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, cover, and let rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk, about 60 to 70 minutes. On a floured surface, punch down the dough and shape into desired shapes. Place on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Cover again and let rise until doubled, about 30 to 40 minutes.
- Preheat the oven 350 degrees.
- Bake for about 20 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from the oven and brush with melted butter before serving.
The Main Events
- 3/4 cup soy sauce
- 1/2 cup rice wine vinegar
- 1 tbsp hot chili sauce (recommended: sambal oelek)
- 1 (1-inch) piece ginger, peeled and finely chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, smashed and finely chopped
- 1 scallion, both green and white parts, thinly sliced
- 1 orange, zested
- 4 pork tenderloins
- 2 tablespoons coriander seeds, toasted and ground
- In a medium bowl, combine the soy, rice wine vinegar, chili sauce, ginger, garlic, scallions and orange zest. Place the pork in a large container or bowl and pour the marinade over the pork. Cover with plastic wrap, and let sit for 2 hours at room temperature, or overnight in the refrigerator.
- Remove the pork from the container, put the marinade in a small saucepan and bring it to a boil over medium heat. Remove from the heat and reserve it for drizzling over the pork when serving. *WARNING: This liquid MUST be brought to a boil to kill any bacteria from raw meat juices.
- Preheat the grill to medium-high heat.
- Dust the pork liberally with the ground coriander seed and place on the preheated grill. Brown it on all sides then move it to a cooler part of the grill to cook it to desired doneness, about 10 to 12 minutes.
- Remove the pork from the grill to a cutting board and let rest for 10 minutes before slicing. Slice the pork on the bias and place on a serving platter. Serve drizzled with the reserved boiled soy marinade.
- Pork -- the other white meat!
- 2 pounds sweet potatoes (about 3-4 medium potatoes)
- 8 slices bacon, cooked and chopped
- 2 1/2 cups grated Gruyere cheese (about 8 oz)
- 1 tbsp butter, cut into 8 cubes
- 3 cups heavy cream
- 1 large onion, thinly sliced
- 3 bay leaves
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped or 1 tsp. dried)
- 1 tbsp chopped fresh chives (or 1 tsp. dried)
- 1 1/2 tsp fresh thyme (or ½ tsp. dried)
- 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
- 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Add the "Herb Cream" ingredients to a medium saucepan and bring to a gentle simmer. Simmer for 5-10 minutes while you grease a 9x13-in. casserole dish and peel and slice potatoes into ⅛-in. slices. Transfer potatoes to a large bowl. Discard bay leaves from the cream sauce.
- Spoon just enough of the herb cream that has been simmering to cover the bottom of the casserole dish. Pour the remaining cream over the potatoes and gently toss to coat.
- Using a slotted spoon, layer the bottom of the casserole dish with ⅓ of the potato/onion slices (the slotted spoon will allow you to leave most of the cream in the bowl). Layer 1 cup of the cheese, ⅓ of the bacon then top with ⅓ of remaining cream. Repeat layers.
- Top the casserole with remaining potato/onion slices and pour over remaining cream. Dot the potatoes with cubed butter (reserving remaining cheese and bacon for the end).
- Cover the casserole with aluminum foil and bake for 30-40 minutes or until fork tender (will depend on how thin your potato slices are). Remove from the oven, sprinkle with remaining cheese then broil until cheese is golden. Remove and sprinkle with remaining bacon. Let potatoes rest for 10 minutes before serving.
- 2 cups brown rice
- 1 bay leaf (optional)
- 2 15-oz. cans black-eyed peas with liquid garlic
- salt and pepper
- 1 28-oz.can diced tomatoes
- 2 tbsp dried basil
- 1 tbsp dried marjoram
- 1/4 cup red wine
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 tbsp molasses Salt and pepper, to taste
- White cheddar cheese, grated
- 1 green pepper, diced
- 1 white onion, diced
- Prepare rice according to package directions, but add bay leaf with water for flavor (if desired). Generally, the rice will cook in 1/2 hour.
- Combine black-eyed peas, garlic, salt, and pepper in a saucepan over medium-low heat until warm, about 20 minutes.
- Combine the following six sauce ingredients (through molasses) ingredients in a medium saucepan, cover and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer, uncovered, until tomatoes break down and the sauce is thickened to your taste, 20 to 45 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- To assemble: On each plate, layer rice, then black-eyed peas, then sauce.
- Top with cheese, peppers, and onions.
- 1 lb pancit bihon rice noodles
- 1/2 lb. pork, cut into small, thin slices
- 1/2 lb. chicken cooked, deboned, and cut into thin slices
- 1/8 lb. pea pods or snow peas
- 1 cup carrot
- 1/2 small cabbage chopped
- 1 cup celery leaves chopped finely
- 1 medium sized onion, chopped
- 1/2 tbsp garlic, minced
- 1 pc chicken stock cube
- 5 tbsp soy sauce
- 3 to 4 cups water
- In a large pot, saute the garlic and onion.
- Add the pork and chicken then let cook for 2 minutes.
- Add the chicken cube and water then simmer for 15 minutes.
- Put in the carrots, pea pods, cabbage, and celery leaves, and simmer for a few minutes.
- Remove all the ingredients in the pot except for the liquid and set them aside.
- In the pot with the liquid in, add the soy sauce and mix well.
- Add the pancit bihon (makes sure to first soak it in water for about 10 minutes) and mix well. Cook until liquid evaporates completely.
- Put-in the vegetables and meat that were previously cooked and simmer for a minute or two.
- Serve hot. Share and enjoy!
The Sweet Stuff
Nic’s Peanut Butter Whipped Pie
- 1 cup peanut butter
- 1 cup sugar
- 8 oz frozen, whipped topping (such as Cool Whip)
- 8 oz cream cheese
- 1 Oreo or graham cracker pie crust
Optional chocolate shell on top
- ¼ cup semi sweet chocolate chips
- ½ tbsp coconut oil
- In a mixer cream peanut butter, cream cheese, and sugar together.
- Add Cool Whip and mix until smooth. Pour the mixture into the pie crust, smooth with a spatula into an even layer, and freeze for 3-4 hours.
- Add a chocolate shell by melting chocolate chips with coconut oil. Melt in the microwave in increments of 20 seconds, stir, and repeat until all chips have melted. Pour over the top of the pie and freeze.
- 2 cups butter, softened
- 1 cup white sugar
- 4 cups sifted all-purpose flour
- 1 cup raspberry preserves
- 24 maraschino cherries
- 8 cups confectioners' sugar
- ½ cup milk
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees..
- In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until smooth. Gradually stir in the flour until well blended.
- On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough out to 1/4-in. thickness. Cut into rounds using a cookie cutter. Place on baking sheets.
- Bake for 8 to 10 minutes in the oven. Allow cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Sandwich one teaspoon of jam between two cookies. Repeat with remaining cookies.
- In a medium bowl, gradually stir the milk into the confectioners' sugar until the icing is of a spreadable consistency. Spread on top of the sandwiched cookies.
- Top each cookie with half of a cherry while the icing is still wet.
Nic’s 5-Minute Homemade Whip Cream
- Heavy whipping cream
- White sugar
- Dash of cinnamon (optional)
- Easiest with a standing mixer but you can use a hand mixer. Pour heavy cream in the bowl with sugar. Start with a 16-oz container of cream (usually ½ - 1 cup sugar, depending on how sweet you prefer it).
- Mix on medium high for a few minutes and watch the magic happen!
In case you didn’t notice, we’re all a bit food-obsessed here at Ample, and proud of it. For more food ideas (and maybe even some content marketing, design and web development ideas) check out our blog, and drop us a note today.