- Food and Cooking
Porky Eats the Easter Bunny Recipes
Easter Bunny Buns
A few recipes for you to try HAPPY EASTER.
Hot Cross Buns Recipe
Prep Time: 2 hours, 30 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
3-3/4 to 4-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 package active dry yeast
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 cup milk
1/2 cup cooking oil
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup currants or raisins
1/2 cup chopped hazelnuts (filberts) (optional)
1 slightly beaten egg white
1 cup sifted powdered sugar
1 tablespoon hazelnut liqueur or milk
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
In a large mixing bowl combine 1-1/2 cups of the flour, the yeast, and cinnamon. In a small saucepan heat and stir 3/4 cup milk, the oil, granulated sugar, and salt until warm (120 degrees F to 130 degrees F). Add to flour mixture along with whole eggs. Beat with an electric mixer on low speed for 30 seconds, scraping bowl. Beat on high speed for 3 minutes.
Using a spoon, stir in currants or raisins, hazelnuts (if desired), and as much of the remaining flour as you can mix in with a wooden spoon. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead in enough remaining flour to make a moderately soft dough (3 to 5 minutes total). Shape into a ball. Place dough in a greased bowl; turn once to grease surface. Cover and let rise until nearly double (about 1-1/2 hours).
Punch dough down. Turn out onto a floured surface. Cover and let rest 10 minutes. Divide dough into 20 portions; shape each portion into a smooth ball. Place balls 1-1/2 inches apart on a greased baking sheet. Cover and let rise until nearly double (30 to 45 minutes). With a sharp knife, make a shallow crisscross slash across each bun. Brush with egg white. Bake in a 375-degree F oven for 12 to 15 minutes or until golden brown. Cool slightly.
In a mixing bowl combine sifted powdered sugar, hazelnuts liqueur or milk, and vanilla. Stir in milk, 1 teaspoon at a time, until it reaches drizzling consistency. Drizzle buns with icing. Serve warm with butter.
Yield: 20 buns
Bunny in a Stew
1 three pound rabbit
6 small onions, chopped
1 bay leaf
½ cup chopped celery
2 tsp. salt
2 cups diced carrots
3 raw potatoes, cut up
3 tbs. flour
1 tbs. chopped parsley
Clean rabbit and soak in salted water. Drain, disjoint it in pieces for serving and place in a large kettle with onions, bay leaf, celery and salt. Cover with cold water and cook slowly until tender, about two hours. Add chopped carrots and potatoes and continue cooking until these vegetables are done. Smooth flour with a little cold water and add slowly. When thickened, add chopped parsley and serve.
Rabbit Coq Au Vin
8 rabbit thighs
Freshly ground black pepper
2 cups plus 2 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons milk
12 ounces bacon chopped
1 pint pearl onions, peeled
¼ cup chopped shallots
2 tbs. chopped garlic
1 tbs. chopped fresh thyme
2 bay leaves
3 cups fruity Wine
2 cups brown chicken stock
2 tbs. butter
1 tbs. finely chopped parsley
Season the rabbit with salt and pepper.
In a shallow pan, add 2 cups of the flour.
Season with salt and pepper.
In another shallow bowl, whisk the egg and milk together. Season with salt and pepper. Dredge the rabbit in the seasoned flour.
Dip the rabbit in the egg wash, letting the excess drip off. Dredge the rabbit back in the seasoned flour, coating completely.
In a large hot oven proof skillet with a lid, render the bacon until crispy about 6 to 8 minutes. Remove the crispy bacon from the pan and reserve.
Lay the rabbit skin side down in the hot bacon fat and brown the rabbit for 3 to 4 minutes on each side. Remove the rabbit from the pan and set aside.
Add the onions to the bacon fat and sauté for 2 minutes.
Add the mushrooms, shallots, and garlic, sauté for 2 minutes.
Season with salt and pepper. Add the thyme and bay leaves.
Add the rabbit to the vegetable mixture. Add the wine and chicken stock.
Bring the liquid up to a simmer and cover. Cook the rabbit until very tender about 30 to 35 minutes skimming off the fat. Remove the rabbit pieces from the pan and set aside. Blend the remaining flour and butter together into a smooth paste. Whisk the paste into hot liquid. Bring the liquid to a simmer and cook for 3 to 4 minutes.
Add the rabbit back to the pan and continue to cook for 5 minutes. Stir in the parsley. Season with salt and pepper if needed. Serve the Coq Au Vin in individual bowls with crusty bread. Garnish with the reserved crispy bacon. Yield: 4 servings
Porky's Easter Fare
Porky's Easter Bake
Fresh ham can be stored in the refrigerator up to five days before cooking.
Cured ham should be refrigerated in the original packaging for up to a week.
Check labels on country-style hams. Some can be stored in a cool place for one to two months, but keep in mind that over time, evaporation shrinks and toughens country ham.
Some canned hams require refrigeration even before opening. Be sure to check the label. All ham should be refrigerated after cooking or opening of the can, and used within five days.
Whole hams can be frozen for up to three months, but if they are country-style, this rather defeats the purpose. Country-style hams can be stored in a cool, dark place at 72 degrees F. for up to two months. Once cut, the country ham is highly perishable.
Leftovers can be frozen for up to a month. If frozen too long, ham will lose its rosy color and turn greyish-brown, as well as lose texture.
Unopened canned hams can be kept in the refrigerator up to one year. Freezing unopened canned ham is pointless, since it will not extend the storage life.
Once opened, canned ham can be tightly wrapped and frozen for up to one month.
Raw, dry-cured ham such as prosciutto should be tightly wrapped and stored in the refrigerator up to five days.
Selecting ham for cooking
Fresh ham should have a well-marbled lean section, with a firm white layer of fat. Young pork will have a grayish-pink color while older pork will be rosy.
Cured hams should be firm and plump, rosy pink with a fine grain to the meat. You will mostly likely have to depend upon dating codes on the ham and the reputation of the producer to judge the quality of uncut hams.
Read labels carefully on canned hams. Some require refrigeration, even before opening. Those that do generally have a better flavor and texture than canned hams which can be stored at room temperature. Shelf-stable processing requires very high heat affecting not only flavor, but also aroma, texture and nutritional value. Also keep in mind that higher quality meat is reserved for more expensive products. Basically, you get what you pay for.
Hams can range from 6 to 24 pounds depending on the cut and whether boneless or not, giving rise to the old adage,
"Eternity is a ham and two people."
Easter Ham Bake
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours, 10 minutes
7 to 8 pounds fully cooked bone-in smoked ham
15 to 20 whole cloves
1/2 cup bourbon whiskey,
1-1/2 cups water
1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 cup apple cider, divided use
1/4 cup Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
3/4 teaspoon ground allspice
ham, place on a rack in a deep roasting pan, and let stand for 1 hour to bring to room temperature.
Preheat oven to 325 F /170 C /Gas 3
Trim fat from the ham leaving 1/4-inch-thick layer of fat. Score the fat in a diamond pattern and stud with whole cloves. Stir half of the bourbon whiskey into the water, then pour the bourbon water into the bottom of the roasting pan. Tent the top of the ham with foil and bake for 30 minutes.
While the ham is baking, whisk together remaining 1/4 cup bourbon, brown sugar, and half of the apple cider in a small saucepan over medium heat. Cook, while stirring, until brown sugar is completely dissolved. Remove from heat. Stir in Dijon mustard, pepper, and allspice
After 30 minutes of baking time, remove ham and baste with 1/4 of the bourbon apple sauce. Return to the oven and continue baking an additional 1-1/2 hours, basting 3 more times as the ham cooks. Add water as needed to the bottom of the roasting pan if it boils out.
Place ham on a platter and tent with foil. Let stand 15 minutes.
Pour pan drippings into a large glass measuring cup. Skim off any fat and discard (or mix it into your dog's food). Place roasting pan over two stove-top plates/burners over medium-high heat. Add remaining 1/2 cup apple cider to the roasting pan and scrape up any browned bits. Add reserved drippings, along with any accumulated juices from the platter, to the roasting pan. Simmer 5 minutes. Serve pan juices with the ham.
Makes my mouth water.
Yield: 8 servings
Leg of Lamb Stuffed with Roasted Garlic, Feta, and Basil Leaves Recipe
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
1 leg of lamb, boned and butterflied (3-1/2 pounds)
1-1/2 cups good-quality full-bodied red wine, such as a syrah, petite sirah, or cabernet sauvignon
2 Tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tablespoon chopped fresh oregano leaves
1 Tablespoon chopped fresh basil leaves
Salt and Freshly ground pepper
1 whole head garlic
4 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
1 Tablespoon milk
1 red bell pepper, roasted, skinned, and cut lengthwise into 1/4-inch strips
12 to 15 whole basil leaves
1-1/2 pounds small creamer potatoes (about 18), cut in half (or use larger red potatoes and cut into quarters)
1 Tablespoon all-purpose flour
1/2 cup unsalted lamb, chicken, or beef stock
lamb in a large nonreactive roasting pan or baking dish. In a small bowl, mix together 1 cup of the wine, the olive oil, garlic, oregano, and chopped basil, and salt and pepper to taste. Pour this over the lamb, cover with foil, and let sit at room temperature for up to 2 hours or in the refrigerator for as long as 24 hours.
Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Slice about 1/4 inch off the top of the garlic bulb. Brush the exposed top with a little olive oil. Wrap the garlic in a piece of foil and bake for 1 hour. Let cool to room temperature. (You can do this step up to 6 hours in advance. Keep at room temperature.)
Holding the root end of the garlic head, squeeze the now-soft garlic into a bowl. Add the feta, milk, and a little freshly ground pepper. Mix until creamy. (This can be done up to 2 hours in advance and refrigerated. Bring to room temperature before proceeding.) Bring the lamb to room temperature if it has been refrigerated. This should take 45 minutes to 1 hour.
Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F/ .
Discard all but 1/4 cup of the marinade. Lay the lamb out on a work surface. Score, or make several shallow cuts, in the meat to help it roll more easily. Place the red pepper strips side by side down the middle of the lamb, leaving a 1-inch border around the edges. Place the whole basil leaves on top of the pepper strips. Gently spread the feta-garlic mixture on top of the basil leaves. Beginning with one long side, roll the lamb up jelly-roll fashion. It might be a little difficult to roll, but kitchen string will ultimately hold it together. (You can also try a diagonal roll. To do this, hold the left bottom corner of the lamb with one hand and the top right corner with the other hand. Gently twist the lamb, as if wringing out a towel, until the filling is encased. Proceed as follows.)
Secure the lamb by tying string around both ends as well as one or two places in the middle. Place the lamb in a roasting pan or baking dish. Distribute the potatoes around the sides of the pan, and pour the reserved 1/4 cup marinade over the lamb and potatoes. Stir the potatoes around to make sure they're well coated with the marinade. Lightly salt and pepper the surface of the lamb and the potatoes
. Roast in the oven for 10 minutes. Turn the oven temperature down to 425 degrees F. and roast until a meat thermometer registers 160 degrees F. at the thickest part for medium rare, 35 to 40 minutes. (Roast 5 to 10 minutes longer for more well-done meat.)
Remove the pan from the oven, place the lamb and potatoes on a serving platter or carving board, and cover loosely with foil. Let sit for 15 minutes to allow the juices to flow through the meat.
To make the sauce, remove all but about 2 tablespoons of the fat from the roasting pan. Place the pan on the stove over one or two burners, and turn the heat to medium-high. Add the flour and stir quickly so it won't burn. Add the remaining 1/2 cup red wine and bring to a boil. Let it reduce by half, about 5 minutes. Add the stock and bring to a boil. Reduce again by half, about 5 minutes, and add salt and pepper to taste.
Cut the kitchen string from the lamb. Slice the meat crosswise. Place a few potatoes on each plate, and drizzle with sauce.
Yield: 6 servings