Carrot Cake Bars with Goat Cheese

These are just lovely, moist bars — perfect for a brunch, tea or dessert. The chèvre makes them taste very creamy, and really sets off the carrots. Enjoy! Thanks to the fabulous Baker Boys at Lake Country Quark in the UK!

  • 1/2 cup organic sugar
  • 1/2 cup sunflower oil
  • 8 ounces goat quark or chevre, thinned with 1/4 cup milk
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup flour
  • 4tsp baking powder
  • 2tsp bicarbonate soda
  • 2tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 6 medium grated carrots
  • 1/2 cup desiccated coconut

The Icing

  • 1 1/3 cup icing sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup chevre
  • 1tbs honey

 

Step 1

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Step 2

Whisk together the sugar and sunflower oil, add to this the eggs then the chèvre thinned with milk

Step 3

Next add all the other dry ingredients followed by the raisins, carrot and coconut

Step 4

Stir well and pour into a greased 9 x 11 rectangular baking pan, or 12-muffin tin

Step 5

Place on the middle shelf of the preheated oven for 30-40 mins until golden and a wooden skewer inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean

Step 6 – The Icing

Once the cake or muffins have cooled, sieve the icing sugar into a mixing bowl then add chèvre, the butter and honey and mix well until smooth

Step 7

Top your cake or muffins with the icing

Chèvre, Grape and Walnut Terrine Appetizer

There are never enough goat cheese appetizers in this world. This one sounds amazing, I cannot wait to try it. Just perfect for summer, to accompany a cool, crisp glass of white wine. Nums.

021elevinecookbook

Servings:8
Ingredients
2 cups walnuts, divided
3/4 cup honey
1 cup sliced red grapes
2 teaspoons herbes de Provence
1 teaspoon ground coriander
2 tablespoons finely grated orange zest
1 tablespoon fresh squeezed orange juice
1 teaspoon fresh squeezed lemon juice
1/8 teaspoon salt
4 ounces high-quality goat cheese, softened
Directions:
Coarsely chop 1 cup walnuts; chop the remaining cup of walnuts finely. Place finely chopped nuts in a large bowl and add the honey, 3/4 cup sliced grapes, herbes de Provence, coriander, orange zest, orange juice, lemon juice and salt. Slowly mix until all ingredients are incorporated.
Line an 8-to-10-ounce soufflé cup with plastic wrap.
Soften goat cheese to a spreadable point. Use a piping bag or spoon, fill the bottom 1/2 inch of the plastic-lined soufflé cup (this will be the top) with the goat cheese.
Add 1/2 cup of the rough-chop walnuts. Sprinkle half the remaining sliced grapes over the goat cheese. Pipe or spoon more goat cheese on top of the grapes, covering them completely. Spoon in about 1/2 inch of the walnut-grape mixture. Repeat with a layer of goat cheese, the remaining grapes, the remaining rough-chop walnuts, and a final layer of goat cheese (this will be the bottom).
Fold the plastic over the contents of the soufflé cup. Refrigerate overnight.
When you are ready to use the spread, open the plastic wrap and invert a plate over the soufflé cup. Turn the soufflé cup over, separating it from the goat cheese spread. Serve with crackers or bread.

Thanks to Small Bites Big Flavor and Food Republic for the recipe and picture!

Chèvre-Stuffed Portabella Mushroom Caps

It might be my imagination, but I think not. More and more goat cheese recipes are cropping up this summer, as people figure out that they can go wild and crazy and still eat healthy meals using goat cheese. Yay, word is getting out!

Case in point: these stuffed portabella mushroom caps. Did you know that “portabella” is just the US food marketeers’ fancy name for Crimini mushrooms? So there. Go get you some of ’em and serve ’em for your next get-together. Scrumptious! Thanks to C and C Marriage Factory for the recipe and the pix, found on Yummly!

Ingredients:

20 oz portabella (aka crimini) mushrooms, cleaned and stems removed

Olive oil cooking spray

3 slices white sandwich bread
1 small garlic clove, coarsley chopped
5 oz. soft crumbled goat cheese
1/2 cup fresh parsley
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
Coarse salt, to taste
Directions:
Preheat oven to 400. Lightly spray a rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray.
In a food processor, pulse bread and garlic until fine crumbs form; set 1/2 cup aside. To food processor, add goat cheese, parsley, and red pepper flakes. Season with salt and pulse filling until combined.
Spoon filling into each mushroom top and roll filled side in reserved breadcrumbs. Place on prepared baking sheet and bake until mushrooms are tender and lightly browned, 15 to 20 minutes.

Okra Cornmeal Cakes with Chèvre and Roasted Tomatoes

I wonder if I somehow have southern blood running through my veins. I love okra, sweet potatoes, collard greens, southern green beans, cornbread and lots of other southern specialties. This recipe is a lovely combination of several of those specialties, and doesn’t it just look spectacular?? Thanks to Annie’s Eats for the fabulous recipe!

Yield: about 14 cakes

Ingredients

For the roasted tomatoes:
1 pint grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
Generous drizzle of olive oil
Pinch of kosher salt
Generous pinch of sugar

For the corn cakes:
2 cups fine yellow cornmeal
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. sea salt or kosher salt
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1½ cups water, plus more as needed
8 oz. okra, stems trimmed and sliced ¼-inch thick
1 jalapeño, cored, seeded and finely chopped
1 clove garlic, finely minced
¼ cup canola oil, for frying

To serve:
About 3 oz. herbed goat cheese
Fresh herbs, for garnish (optional)

Directions

  • To make the roasted tomatoes, preheat the oven to 350˚ F.  Combine the tomatoes, olive oil, salt, and sugar on a rimmed baking sheet and toss well to coat.  Bake for about 40 minutes, tossing once or twice during cooking.  Remove from the oven and let cool.  If not using immediately, refrigerate until needed.
  • To make the corn cakes, combine the cornmeal, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl; whisk to blend and set aside.  Combine the egg and water in a liquid measuring cup and whisk lightly.  Add the liquid mixture to the bowl with the cornmeal mixture, and stir just until combined.  Fold in the okra, jalapeño, and garlic until incorporated.  The mixture may seem a bit watery at first, but give it a minute for the cornmeal to soak up the liquid.  If the mixture is too dry, add more water a tablespoon at a time.
  • To cook the corn cakes, heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat until very warm.  Drop in scoops of the dough mixture, about a scant ¼ cup each, spaced an inch or two apart.  Cook, flipping once during cooking, until both sides are lightly browned, about 3-4 minutes per side.  Transfer the finished cakes to a paper towel-lined rack and repeat with the remaining dough mixture.
  • To serve, place a small dollop of the herbed chèvre on top of each warmed corn cake.  Let it sit for a minute or two to melt slightly, then spread gently over the top of the corn cake.  Top each cake with a few of the roasted tomatoes and garnish with fresh herbs as desired.  Serve immediately.

Spatchcocked Chèvre Chicken

If you are stumped by the title of this recipe, you are not alone! Apparently spatchcocking is a well-known term among butchers, and it just means to remove the backbone and breastbone of a chicken to make it cook faster (and result in a great presentation!) So read on, dear visitor, and discover the joys of stuffing your spatchcocked chicken with lemon-garlic chèvre under the skin! Yums! And thanks again to The Kitchn for a great recipe!

Spatchcocked Chèvre Chicken
serves 6

1 whole chicken, at least 3 1/2 pounds
1 1/2 cups fresh chèvre
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 large egg, beaten
1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
1/2 cup finely chopped basil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Olive oil

Preheat the oven to 400°F.

Remove the innards from the chicken and reserve them for another use. Wash and pat dry the chicken.

Spatchcock (aka butterfly) the chicken using poultry shears or a sharp chef’s knife: first remove the backbone, slicing or cutting it along each side all the way down to the tail end. Splay the chicken open with the skin side up on a flat surface. Place the heel of your hands, one on top of the other, over the middle of the chicken. Press down to flatten the chicken. You may hear the breast-bone crack.

Run your fingers under the skin at the neck opening to loosen the skin around the breasts, reaching as far down as the legs if possible.

In a small bowl, combine the chèvre, parmesan, egg, bread crumbs, basil, garlic, lemon zest. Season with salt and pepper.

Using a spoon, carefully stuff the cheese mixture into the chicken between the skin and the meat, starting at the breasts. Coax the mixture into an even layer by pressing and pushing it from the outside, above the skin. Place the chicken on a rack, or several 1/2-inch-thick slices of onion, in a roasting pan, skin side up. Rub it with about a tablespoon olive oil and season generously with salt and pepper.

Roast for an hour or until the juices run clear from the thigh. To test for doneness with a thermometer, check the breast meat for an internal temperature of 165°F. Transfer the chicken to a cutting surface and let stand for 5-10 minutes.

To serve, divide the chicken into quarters, splitting the two breasts into four pieces if desired.

Cannoli Cream/Chevre Calzone With Honey and Orange

Last weekend we made an apple strudel, with frozen puff pastry and frozen apples. It was ok, but I am swearing off frozen puff pastry because it tastes of vegetable oil instead of butter. Entirely unsatisfactory. Anyway, that less-than-successful endeavor set me up to be really curious about Mark Bittman’s intriguing dessert calzone, detailed below. And the picture. OMG, so seductive. So it’s back to dairy ingredients and real dough for this gal. Laced with honey and orange, such a dreamy confection! Thanks, Mark:)

Time: About 30 minutes

Ingredients 

Extra virgin olive oil, as needed

1 1/4 cups fresh ricotta or mix of ricotta and chèvre

1 1/2 tablespoons honey, more as needed Finely grated zest of 1 orange

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 8-ounce ball pizza dough, divided into 2 pieces

All-purpose flour, as needed

1/2 teaspoon flaky sea salt

Confectioners’ sugar.

 Instructions

1. Heat the oven to 500 degrees. Lightly oil a baking sheet.

2. In a small bowl, stir together the ricotta, honey, orange zest and cinnamon.

3. Lightly flour a work surface, and stretch or roll each piece of dough into a 6-inch round. Spread half the ricotta mixture on one side of each round, leaving a half-inch border. Brush the edges of one dough round with water, and fold dough in half, over filling; pinch the edges of the dough together to seal. Repeat with second dough round.

4. Transfer calzones to baking sheet. Brush the tops with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt. Bake until crusts are golden brown and firm, 15 to 20 minutes. Let cool 5 minutes. Sprinkle with confectioners’ sugar and drizzle with additional honey before serving.

Yield: 4 servings.

Variation: Sprinkle 2 tablespoons semisweet chocolate chips over the ricotta in each calzone before sealing.

For those of you who really need to see something demo’d to get the hang of putting it together, here’s the NYT Food Editor Melissa Clark assembling a savory calzone:

Spend some time with this tasty app!

Even though it is not the Christmas holidays, I was tantalized by this gorgeous red and green chevre appetizer today. It fits in any time of the year, and is soooo simple, you hardly need any time at all to make it for guests who suddenly drop in and need something impressive and yummy. There’s an app for that, and this is it! Thanks to sing for your supper!

 

Goat Cheese Log with Pistachios and Cranberries/Cherries

1 8-ounce log goat cheese
1/2 cup pistachios, shelled
1/2 cup dried cranberries or dried cherries, roughly chopped

sliced baguette or crackers for serving

In a small pan over medium-high heat, toast the pistachios until fragrant; about 3-5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Let cool.

Combine the pistachios and cranberries or dried cherries in a plate and roll the goat cheese log in the mixture until completely coated. Place on a serving dish and sprinkle the remaining pistachio/cranberry or cherry mixture around the log. Allow to sit out at room temperature for at least 15 minutes before serving so the cheese will soften nicely and become more spreadable. Serves approximately 6-8.