Blue Cheese Shortbread

Well, here I am and I still have WAAAAAY too much cheese in my refrigerator.  I told you I went a little nuts at the cave sale at the Rogue Valley Creamery right?   I also had a large tub of smoked trout spread to use so I made some blue cheese shortbread.   Very simple, just need a little patience since you can’t roll it out immediately and bake it.

Blue Cheese Shortbread

  • 1 Cup All purpose Flour
  • 1/4 pound Cave Man Blue Cheese (or other high quality blue cheese)
  • 4 ounces sweet cream butter – room temperature
  • pinch chipotle powder or cayenne powder
  • 1 egg yolk

Mix the flour with the chipotle powder and place in a non-reactive bowl.  Crumble the cheese and cut the butter into cubes and cut into the flour with your hands.  Add the egg yolk and mix until incorporated.  Don’t over mix or it will get tough.  If you see chunks of cheese in the mixture that is OK  Refrigerate for about an hour.

Roll out on a floured surface until about 1/8 inch thick.  Cut into small pieces that are the same size.  Place on a baking sheet with parchment and bake at 350F for about 12-15 minutes or until light brown in color.

Smear some trout spread or crab dip on these.  Serve with a frosty beer on the porch.

Happy Baking!

Chef Constance Jesser

Olive Oil Wafers a.k.a. Olive Oil Tortas

We have these tortas for sale in our shop, but once in a while you just want to try to make something.  Want to try your hand at making them? Well here is the formula for these addictive crackers.  P.S.  You can substitute Blood Orange Avocado Oil for the Olive Oil for a really good flavor.

 These happily addictive wafers are SO perfect with cheese or just a nice cup of tea or coffee it is scary.   If this seems too much, just come in and buy a package or two.

Olive Oil Wafers
1 1/2 cups and 2 T flour
1/4 cup sesame seeds
3 T sugar
1 T fennel seeds
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup plus 2 T ice water
2 egg whites, beaten until foamy

Extra sugar or finely ground rosemary and additional sesame seeds for savory

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Mix first 6 ingredients in blender. Combine olive oil (or avocado oil) and ice water; add to blender until just combined. Shape into golf-ball size rounds, placing two at a time on a rolling board, 6 inches apart. Place wax paper over top (or use silpats on top and bottom). Roll out into thick (approximately 1/4 inch thick) 8×4 inch ovals. Transfer to cookie sheet with a silpat on it, brush with egg white and sprinkle with some sugar or if making savory ones, use finely ground fresh rosemary and more sesame seeds. Bake 6-8 minutes.  Cool completely; store up to 4 days wrapped in wax paper.

Happy Baking Everyone!

Chef Constance Jesser

Star Anise Kuchen

Hey Fellow Foodies:

This is a recipe I made for our local Oktoberfest as a baking demo.  This bread/cake (Kuchen in German) is very pretty.  When you let it rise, you will have a thick paper ribbon (I used brown paper bags)  around the bread in an “X” pattern.  After baking, you will take off the original paper and replace with a new pretty ribbon.  This makes a fantastic gift for the holidays.  You can freeze this after baking as well which helps if your holidays are as crazy as ours.  Then wrap in a pretty ribbon and give as gifts or hostess gifts.

Star Anise Kuchen

1 package dry yeast (2 ½ teaspoons)

1 ½ cup warm water (105-115F)

1 cup (2 sticks) butter – room temperature

½ cup sugar

grated peel of 1 lemon

grated peel of 1 orange

1 tsp salt

½ tsp mace

½ tsp nutmeg

3 T  Star anise, crushed or ground

3 eggs, room temperature

½ cup instant non-fat dry milk

7 cups AP flour, approximately

1 T oil to brush on bread

2 half sheet pans with Silpat or oiled parchment

4 long heavy brown paper strips approx 1 ½ “ thick, stapler (I use brown paper bags)

1.                  bloom yeast

2.                  cream butter and sugar until fluffy.  Mix in lemon and orange peel and all spices.

3.                  One add a time add eggs.

4.                  Stir in yeast mixture and add dry milk.  It may look runny, that’s ok.

5.                  Add flour 1 cup at a time until dough is soft and not sticky and not absorbing more flour

6.                  rest the dough 10 minutes before kneading

7.                  Knead the dough for approximately 8 minutes until smooth and elastic

8.                  Place dough back into clean bowl that has been oiled.  Place in warm place until doubled in bulk.

9.                  Punch down dough and knead to release air bubbles.

10.              Shape dough into two round loaves

11.              place paper strips into “X”pattern.  Place loaves on top of paper (oil the top and sides of the bread) and staple the paper ribbons over the dough.  Leaving room for the dough to expand.

12.              cover with foil or wax paper using glasses so the cover doesn’t touch the dough.   Let dough double in size.

13.              Preheat oven to 350F.  Bake approximately 45 minutes.  Move breads halfway through the baking process to help bake evenly.

14.              When the loaves are golden brown and tapping the bottom crust yields a hard  hollow sound, they are done.

15.              Remove from the oven.  When the loaves have cooled, remove the paper strips and replace with ribbon.

We love to serve this toasted with butter and Danish Ginger Fruit Spread.

Anyone else have good dessert breads to share?

Chef Constance