Sunday, August 29, 2010

Ruth Brinker's Pecan Pie

For the Pie Crust
4 Cups flour
1 Tablespoon sugar
2 Teaspoons salt
1 3/4 Cups vegetable shortening
1/2 Cups water
1 Tablespoon cider vinegar
1 Egg

Mix flour, sugar, and salt. Cut in shortening, combine and beat water, vinegar and egg. Stir into flour mixture. Wrap in plastic; chill. May be frozen or kept two weeks in refrigerator.

Bee Kohles's Pecan Pie

1 Cup white corn syrup
1 Cup brown sugar
1/3 Teaspoon salt
1 Teaspoon vanilla
3 Eggs
1 Heaping cup pecans
1 - 9" Pie shell
Combine sugar, syrup, salt, butter, vanilla and mix well. Add slightly beaten eggs. Pour in 9" shell. Sprinkle with pecans. Bake at 350° for approximately 45 minutes. Serves 6.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Ratatouille Clafoutis

For the Ratatouille

8 Tablespoons olive oil
1 Large red onion, finely chopped
4 Cloves garlic, finely chopped
3 Sprigs fresh thyme
4 Italian eggplant, cut into 1/2-inch dice
6 Medium zucchini, cut into 1/2-inch dice
3 Bell peppers (1 red, 1 yellow, 1 orange), cored and cut into strips
7 Medium (about 2 pounds) tomatoes, cored and diced
1 Bay leaf
1 Tablespoon chopped fresh oregano
2 Tablespoons sherry vinegar
2 Tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
Salt and pepper, to taste
In a large flameproof casserole over medium heat, heat 3 tablespoons olive oil. Add the onion and cook, stirring often, for 5 minutes, or until softened. Add the garlic and thyme and continue cooking for 2 minutes. Add the eggplant and cook, stirring often, for 5 minutes (it will not be cooked through). Transfer to a bowl. In the same pan, heat 3 more tablespoons olive oil. Add the zucchini and cook, stirring often, for 5 minutes. Transfer to the bowl of eggplant. Heat 2 more tablespoons olive oil. Add the bell peppers and cook, stirring often, for 5 minutes. Return the eggplant and zucchini mixture to the pan. Add the tomatoes, bay leaf, salt, and pepper. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, and add the oregano. Simmer uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 1 1/2 hours or until all the vegetables are very tender. Add the sherry vinegar 10 minutes before the end of cooking. Discard the sprigs of thyme. Stir in the parsley. Taste for seasoning and add more salt and pepper, if you like. (Set aside 4 cups ratatouille for the clafoutis.)

For the Clafoutis

6 Eggs
1 Cup flour or 2/3 cup cornstarch
2/3 Cup creme fraiche
1/2 Cup whole milk
2/3 Cup grated Comte or Gruyere cheese
4 Cups cooked ratatouille
1/3 Cup crumbled goat cheese
Set the oven at 400 degrees. Oil a 9-by-13-inch baking pan. In a large bowl, beat the eggs and flour or cornstarch. Stir in the creme fraiche, milk, Comte or Gruyere, salt, pepper, and ratatouille. Transfer to the baking dish. Sprinkle with goat cheese. Bake the clafoutis for 40 to 45 minutes, or until the top is golden and the egg mixture is set. Serve warm with salad.
Beatrice Peltre for the Boston Globe