Devils Workshop

has been moved to new address

Sorry for inconvenience...

Megans Cookin: November 2009

Monday, November 30, 2009

Gift Ideas for the Foodie!

These Are A Few Of My Favorite Things!

With the shopping season in full swing, it’s time to have a plan, a list, or something to help you get through the shopping season. So I thought I would share 10 of my favorite things. If you have a foodie on your shopping list, I hope this will give you some inspiration! A few of my favorite things!

Some of these things I have and love, some I want and need, and some are on order. Hehe!

 Merry Christmas! 


Dean and Deluca Salt Box

House special salts and herbs in style. This solid maple box is handcrafted and finished with mineral oil combating drying and cracking. The swivel lid eases quick, last-minute pinches. Stain and odor resistant. $28.00


Herb Cheese and Chocolate

The herbs in thier Lavender Cheddar and our Rosemary Cheddar make both of these cheeses sumptuous on a cheese plate.
They also complement Dagoba’s exquisite Organic Lavender Chocolate. We top off the package with our famous Oregon Blue Cheese and Deux Chats Durum  Wheat  Crackers.  $49.00


Magic Line Sheet Cake Pan 9X13X2

  • Commercial-quality aluminum cake pans
  • •Bakes evenly
  • •Straight sides are easy to ice
  • •Dishwasher safe
  • $17.49


Smokey Blue Cheese Truffles

12 generous truffles made with the perfect combination of the Rogue Creamery's award winning Smokey Blue Cheese,.. $25.00


Wüsthof® Gourmet Wave + Bonus Bread-Cutting Board

Inspired by our desire for a truly versatile knife, we partnered with Wüsthof to create the Wave, a Sur La Table exclusive.
Wider than a santoku with excellent knuckle clearance and broad, rounded scallops for clean slicing and chopping, the innovative Wave effortlessly performs multiple functions with a single blade. Hand wash. 6" blade. Made in Germany.


The Everything Cookies & Brownies Cookbook

300 recipes for every occasion. Written by our own food blogger Marye Audet!


KitchenAid Beater Blade

Beater blade (KA-TH) mixer attachment for KitchenAid 4.5 qt. and 5 qt. Tilt-Head Mixers continuously beats, scrapes and folds ingredients, making Beater Blade one of the most efficient tools in your kitchen. It virtually eliminates hand-scraping and batter build-up on the blade. $24.99


Chef's Salts of the World Sampler

These pristine salts should be used to finish foods at the last minute so the unique flavor and texture of each may be experienced fully. Each salt contained in the collection has a different mineral characteristic.
The Chef's Collection contains six 1 oz vials of salts including Italian Trapani Sea Salt, Pink Himalayan Salt from India, Seoul Bamboo Salt from Korea, briny Dominion Sea Salt from New Zealand, Black Lava Salt from Cyprus, and Kechil Sea Salt crystals from Indonesia.
Each sampler includes detailed descriptions of these wonderful salts and suggestions for their use.
A wonderful gift for any food lover! $27.95


Financier Mold Sheet

Silicone Sheet Molds
These molds are made of non-stick food grade silicone.
They are temperature resistant, with temperatures ranging from -40°F to 500°F.
Easy clean with soft sponge and water Price: $24.95                                                    
2" x 1" x 7/16" each mold
20 molds to a sheet


Pain de Mie Pan with Lid - 9"

At last! A “regulation size” pain de mie pan, perfect for your favorite standard yeast bread recipe. Lidded 9” x 4” x 4”-deep pan is ideal for yeast loaves with fine-grained texture, and perfectly square corners. Think grilled cheese, French toast, cinnamon toast, hors d’oeuvres… $35.95

I hope you enjoyed a few of  my favorite things. Now…can you guess what I have on order?

Labels: ,

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Recipe for Rocky Road Brownies

This Week’s 

“The 12 Weeks of Christmas Cookies” 



Oh my sparkling stars, I can’t believe it’s already cookie #9. That means I only have  3 cookies left in my cookie series, but so many more bookmarked!

Let’s see what we have had, shall we?

We started with…

chocolate almond bars 029_thumb[7]

Chocolate Almond Coconut Bar

wine making 068_thumb[6]

Cocoa Coconut Cuties


Buttermilk Cookies with Nutmeg and Sour Cream Frosting


Honey Roasted Peanut Butter Bars with Chocolate Ganache

world peace cookies 023_thumb[2]

World Peace Cookies


Browned Butter and cardamom Cookies


Mint Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

cranberry, pistachio cinamon bread 071_thumb[12]

Pistachio Bites


And # 9 is…

The Rocky Road Brownie!Rocky Road Brownie

Today’s Platter selection is not a cookie at all, but a brownie. A brownie is a must at the holidays, and one I want to include on my cookie platter.

But this one has a secret!

Rocky Road Brownie

It’s made with a boxed mix. You know it’s the holidays and everything is crazy, you have 500 cookies to bake and you need a little break. That’s where this brownie comes in!

But it’s richened up with evaporated milk. Then topped with mini marshmallows , nuts and chocolate chips. Considering this is all that was left when I went to take the picture, I’d say they were a success.

Actually, I know they were a success.  My teen told me so!

Rocky Road Brownie

Rocky Road Brownies

(Printable Recipe)

1 pkg (19.5-21 ounce) fudge brownies mix
large eggs (per package directions)
vegetable oil (per package directions)
1/2 cup evaporated milk
2 cups mini marshmallows
1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts                                                                                 1 cup semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 13×9 inch metal pan with foil and spray with cooking spray.

Mix the brownie mix, eggs, oil, and milk together in a mixing bowl and beat for 50-60 strokes or until mixed. Pour into pan and bake according to package directions, Do not overbake!

Top with marshmallows, walnuts and chocolate chips

Return to oven for 5 minutes so that marshmallows can melt.

Remove from oven. . Let cool at room temperature for about an hour

Lift the brownies from the pan and cut into squares.


Check out my Baking Buddies' Christmas Cookies

They’re Delightfully Delicious!

Labels: , , ,

Friday, November 27, 2009

Daring Bakers Make Cannoli

 DB and mint cc cookie 010 The November 2009 Daring Bakers Challenge was chosen and hosted by Lisa Michele of Parsley, Sage, Desserts and Line Drives. She chose the Italian Pastry, Cannolo (Cannoli is plural), using the cookbooks Lidia’s Italian-American Kitchen by Lidia Matticchio Bastianich and The Sopranos Family Cookbook by Allen Rucker; recipes by Michelle Scicolone, as ingredient/direction guides. She added her own modifications/changes, so the recipe is not 100% verbatim from either book.

For this month’s Daring Baker’s Challenge, we were dared to put away our baking pans and to get out the deep fry thermometer and oil! We are deep frying this month!

DB and mint cc cookie 016

We’re making Cannoli!

Cannoli are known as Italian-American pastries, although the origin of cannoli dates back to Sicily, specifically Palermo, where it was prepared during Carnevale season.

Traditionally, cannoli are deep fried on a tube form to make a crisp hollow shell which you fill with a cream. But not mine!

The day before I made this challenge, I went to our local kitchen shop knowing it would be the only place in town to buy the molds. I walk into a very crowded store and set out to look for the molds. After scoping out the store and searching high and low, only to find an empty peg where I believe the molds to be, I finally find a busy sales person. She escorts me back through the maze of people who are mingling, laughing and sharing, back to the empty peg.

“Oh”, she says. “We must be out. I have more on order. This class has wiped me out!”

“This class?” I ask.

“Yes, were doing a class on Italian treats. Cannoli and pizzelles.”

Go figure.

No forms and they were having a canoli class. I couldn’t believe it. But I figured I saved $50.00 not knowing about that class. If I had known that cannoli would be our November challenge, I might have signed up.  Maybe,… I don’t know. $50 bucks is pretty steep.

Now that I made this challenge, I’m thankful for 2 things.

  1. I didn’t spend $50.00 to take the class
  2. I didn’t invest in the cannoli tubes.

  07 12 08-1  It was a fun learning experience but I don't think I’ll be making these to often. Maybe if I ever host an Italian feast, but I’m not really into deep frying. The family didn’t particularly care for the shells either . I filled them with a Cinnamon Mascarpone Cream and chopped pistachios. Drizzled with a little chocolate I thought they were just OK. But really pretty!

DB and mint cc cookie 015

(Printable Recipe)

2 cups (250 grams/8.82 ounces) all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons(28 grams/1 ounce) sugar
1 teaspoon (5 grams/0.06 ounces) unsweetened baking cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon (1.15 grams/0.04 ounces) ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon (approx. 3 grams/0.11 ounces) salt
3 tablespoons (42 grams/1.5 ounces) vegetable or olive oil
1 teaspoon (5 grams/0.18 ounces) white wine vinegar
Approximately 1/2 cup (approx. 59 grams/approx. 4 fluid ounces/approx. 125 ml) sweet Marsala or any white or red wine you have on hand
1 large egg, separated (you will need the egg white but not the yolk)
Vegetable or any neutral oil for frying – about 2 quarts (8 cups/approx. 2 litres)
1/2 cup (approx. 62 grams/2 ounces) toasted, chopped pistachio nuts, mini chocolate chips/grated chocolate and/or candied or plain zests, fruits etc.. for garnish
Confectioners' sugar

1. In the bowl of an electric stand mixer or food processor, combine the flour, sugar, cocoa, cinnamon, and salt. Stir in the oil, vinegar, and enough of the wine to make a soft dough. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and well blended, about 2 minutes. Shape the dough into a ball. Cover with plastic wrap and let rest in the fridge from 2 hours to overnight.

2 Cut the dough into two pieces. Keep the remaining dough covered while you work. Lightly flour a large cutting or pastry board and roll the dough until super thin, about 1/16 to 1/8” thick (An area of about 13 inches by 18 inches should give you that). Cut out 3 to 5-inch circles (3-inch – small/medium; 4-inch – medium/large; 5-inch;- large. Your choice). Roll the cut out circle into an oval, rolling it larger and thinner if it’s shrunk a little.

3 Oil the outside of the cannoli tubes (You only have to do this once, as the oil from the deep fry will keep them well, uhh, Roll a dough oval from the long side (If square, position like a diamond, and place tube/form on the corner closest to you, then roll) around each tube/form and dab a little egg white on the dough where the edges overlap. (Avoid getting egg white on the tube, or the pastry will stick to it.) Press well to seal. Set aside to let the egg white seal dry a little.

4. In a deep heavy saucepan, pour enough oil to reach a depth of 3 inches, or if using an electric deep-fryer, follow the manufacturer's directions. Heat the oil to 375°F (190 °C) on a deep fry thermometer, or until a small piece of the dough or bread cube placed in the oil sizzles and browns in 1 minute. Have ready a tray or sheet pan lined with paper towels or paper bags.

5. Carefully lower a few of the cannoli tubes into the hot oil. Do not crowd the pan. Fry the shells until golden, about 2 minutes, turning them so that they brown evenly.

8. Lift a cannoli tube with a wire skimmer or large slotted spoon, out of the oil. Using tongs, grasp the cannoli tube at one end. Very carefully remove the cannoli tube with the open sides straight up and down so that the oil flows back into the pan. Place the tube on paper towels or bags to drain. Repeat with the remaining tubes. While they are still hot, grasp the tubes with a potholder and pull the cannoli shells off the tubes with a pair of tongs, or with your hand protected by an oven mitt or towel. Let the shells cool completely on the paper towels. Place shells on cooling rack until ready to fill.

9. Repeat making and frying the shells with the remaining dough. If you are reusing the cannoli tubes, let them cool before wrapping them in the dough.

For stacked cannoli:
1. Heat 2-inches of oil in a saucepan or deep sauté pan, to 350-375°F (176 - 190 °C).

2. Cut out desired shapes with cutters or a sharp knife. Deep fry until golden brown and blistered on each side, about 1 – 2 minutes. Remove from oil with wire skimmer or large slotted spoon, then place on paper towels or bags until dry and grease free. If they balloon up in the hot oil, dock them lightly prior to frying. Place on cooling rack until ready to stack with filling.

1. When ready to serve..fill a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2-inch plain or star tip, or a ziplock bag, with the ricotta cream. If using a ziplock bag, cut about 1/2 inch off one corner. Insert the tip in the cannoli shell and squeeze gently until the shell is half filled. Turn the shell and fill the other side. You can also use a teaspoon to do this, although it’s messier and will take longer.

2. Press or dip cannoli in chopped pistachios, grated chocolate/mini chocolate chips, candied fruit or zest into the cream at each end. Dust with confectioner’s sugar and/or drizzles of melted chocolate if desired.

Cinnamon Cream

1 cup (250 ml) heavy cream
1/2 cup (125 ml) mascarpone*
1-2 Tbs (15-30 ml) sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon

Whisk the ingredients together to form a thick, smooth cream. Refrigerate until ready to use. Makes about 1 1/2 cups (375 ml).

* Mascarpone is an unfermented cheese from Italy, similar to cream cheese, that is available in the deli section of most supermarkets.

Labels: ,

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Cinnamon Swirl Quick Bread Recipe


cranberry, pistachio cinamon bread 006

A coworker of mine wanted a recipe for a cinnamon quick bread. So I told her I would find her one and make it for our Thanksgiving breakfast party. Our little parties really only last about 20 minutes but it’s fun to eat, laugh and share!

We really don't need a reason to celebrate, everyday is a celebration with these girls. We have so much fun together. I can say I love my job because of these girls and the others too! But we do take every opportunity we can get to throw a little party..cranberry, pistachio cinamon bread 086

So I brought this cinnamon quick bread and a pitcher of Vietnamese Coffee.

cranberry, pistachio cinamon bread 084 It sure had cinnamon all right. I really liked this bread but maybe just a little to much cinnamon for me.  Next time I will cut back and use 2 teaspoons! But that was just me. You decide!

 Cinnamon Swirl Quick Bread

Recipe found at Recipezar

(Printable Recipe)

1 hour | 10 min prep

1 loaf

  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1 1/3 cups sugar divided
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350°F.

  1. In a large mixing bowl, beat together butter, 1 cup sugar, and egg.
  2. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  3. Add the flour mixture to the egg mixture alternately with the buttermilk.
  4. In a small bowl, combine the cinnamon and remaining 1/3 cup sugar.
  5. Pour a third of the batter into a greased 9X5-inch loaf pan.
  6. Sprinkle a third of the cinnamon sugar on top of batter.
  7. Repeat layers twice.
  8. Cut through batter with a butter knife making a swirl design.
  9. Bake for 45-50 minutes, until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.
  10. Cool in pan for 10 minutes.
  11. Remove from pan to a wire rack to cool completely

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Cranberry Salsa Recipe

cranberry, pistachio cinamon bread 004

My co-worker had this recipe in her Taste of Home magazine and I, intrigued, quickly copied it down. It sounded like a easy to make, delicious alternative to summer’s salsas and a great way to use the seasonal fruits (cranberries) that are available now.

This is whipped up in the food processor so it couldn't be any easier. It was sweet and tangy while the flavor of the lime really brightened it up. It also has that cinnamon-cumin flavor combo that I love!

cranberry, pistachio cinamon bread 001

It was delicious with chips, but it would also be excellent with some cream cheese on a butter cracker like Ritz. Then you would have that sweet, sour, creamy, salty thing going on. And I bet it would make a wonderful and unique filling in a Butterflied Pork Loin.

I made this last Friday for a potluck and it was a huge hit. Everyone wanted the recipe. I’ll be making it again this week for us at home.

cranberry, pistachio cinamon bread 005

If your looking for something a little unique, but ultimately delicious, then you found it right here. Fresh Cranberry Salsa!



Cranberry Salsa

Recipe found in Taste of Home Magazine


  • 1 bag (12 oz)  fresh cranberries
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 can (4 oz) diced green chilies
  • 3 Tablespoons fresh minced cilantro
  • 2 green onions (I used 1 slice of a red onion)
  • 2 teaspoons lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon grated lime peel
  • 1/4 teaspoon each cinnamon, allspice, and cumin.

Tortilla chips

Place all ingredients in a food processor and pulse till blended. Transfer to a serving bowl and refrigerate until serving time. Serve with chips.


Check out these other Cranberry Salsa recipes!

My Own Sweet Thyme

Rah Cha Chow

The Schell Cafe

In Jennie’s Kitchen

Love & Olive Oil

Labels: , , ,

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Recipe for Pistachio Bite Cookies

It’s beginning to look a lot Like Christmas!

Pistachio Bite Cookies

Black Friday is just days away and if that’s not the official kick off of the season, then I don’t know what is. I’ve already attended 2 potlucks celebrating the holidays already, so for me…

It’s full steam ahead.

Pistachio Bite Cookies

Today’s cookie for the 12 Weeks of Christmas Cookies  is a festive little fellow!

Christmas Pistachio Bites!

A tender little butter cookie flavored with almond and a chockfull of pistachios are thrown in. I loved them!

I used white chocolate to dip these in instead of the almond bark.  For me, they were a little to sweet with the dipping. Maybe that would be different if I used the almond bark instead. But the truth be known, I liked them best naked. Yep… I could have eaten half of each one of those little jewels, but I held myself back. I couldn’t take a tray of half eaten cookies to a potluck now could I,... Could I?

Pistachio Bite Cookies

These would also make a perfect cookie for St. Patrick's Day. Dip them, or in my case, drizzle some green tinted chocolate on them. Now that would make a St. Patty Statement!

Pistachio Bite Cookies

Stop by and check out what my other cookie baking buddies are making. I have them listed below for your linking pleasure!

I hope you have a great day!

Pistachio Bites

(Printable Recipe)

  • 1 Cup Butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 cup pistachios, coarsely  chopped-divided
  • 6 oz vanilla  flavored candy coating (almond bark)
  • 1 teaspoon shortening

Heat oven to 325°F.

Combine butter and sugar in large mixer bowl. Beat at medium speed, scraping bowl often, until creamy (1 to 2 minutes). Reduce speed to low; add flour, almond extract, and vanilla.  Beat,until well mixed and a dough forms. Stir in 1/2 cup of the pistachios by hand.
Shape dough into a log. Wrap well in plastic wrap and refrigerate 3 hours or overnight. (I made my dough a few days in advance and kept it in the fridge)

Pistachio Bite Cookies 

Slice log into 1/4 inch slices. Place on ungreased cookie sheet.
Bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until edges are lightly browned.. Cool on cookie sheet for 1 minute and then transfer to wire cooing rack. Cool completely

Place candy coating and shortening in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave on high (100% power) for 1 minute. Stir, continue microwaving ,stirring every 15 seconds until candy coating is melted and smooth.

Pistachio Bite Cookies

Place waxed paper on flat surface. Dip each cookie halfway into warm coating, shaking off excess. Place onto wax paper, immediately decorate with remaining pistachios.


More Christmas Cookies!

Mini Linzer Torte Cups

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Bull’s Eye Cookies

Tyler’s Big Fat Chocolate Chip Cookies

Cherie’s Snickers Peanut Butter Cookies


I’m linking this to Designs by Gollum for Foodie Friday. Please stop by and see what everyone is cookin’!

Labels: , ,

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

How To Butterfly A Pork Loin

It’s time to get gear up for the holidays and start planning some festive meals. Here’s an economical cut of meat dressed up for the holiday platter. A Pork Loin Roast. You could have your butcher do this for you but it’s so much more fun and impressive to do it yourself and it’s really easy. Trust me, if I can do it, you can do it! Now get out your sharpest knife.

butterfly pork 003

Place the roast on a cutting board so that one end is directly in front of you. Take a very sharp knife and begin cutting on the side, parallel to the cutting board about 1/3 of the way down.

butterfly pork 005

Pull the meat back as your slicing through it.

butterfly pork 006

Just slice a little at a time, no more then an inch at a time.

butterfly pork 008

Don't slice all the way through. Stop about 3/4 of an inch  (give or take,depending on your meat) before you slice through.

butterfly pork 012

Open  it up like a book!

butterfly pork 014

Bring your knife back to the crease and start cutting back, parallel to the cutting board about 1/2 way through the meat.

butterfly pork 015

Keep pulling the meat back as you go but again dont cut through.

butterfly pork 016

Slice through but stop about 3/4 of an inch before the end, pulling the meat until you can lay it flat.

 butterfly pork 020

Now your ready to fill it with your choice of stuffing.

butterfly pork 023

I just winged it. I used up the rest of my Fig Jam that I made to go with the Fruit Stuffed Pork Tenderloin I made last month.

butterfly pork 025

I also used up the rest of my dried apricots,some fresh diced apples and rosemary.Wish I would have added some fresh garlic, but I didn’t.

I rolled it back up and tied it with kitchen string.

butterfly pork 026

I tucked in some rosemary sprigs after I rubbed it with some olive oil, rosemary, and S&P.

butterfly pork 030

I baked it till the internal temperature was 150 degrees,  then I let it rest for 15 minutes.

butterfly pork 035

Slice and enjoy.

I guess I could have got it a little rounder but it was delicious just the same. I hope you try to butterfly and stuff a roast.You can use almost  any kind of meat, beef, chicken, lamb, and of course, pork!

It’s easier then it looks!

Labels: , ,