Cape Cod Cranberry Scones with a Summery Lemon Glaze

Sunday breakfast is an opportunity to make something a bit more special in the Convent. With the start of summer and still in our quasi “stay at home” status, this Sunday was no different. These scones laced with Cape Cod flavor were the perfect accompaniment to fluffy scrambled eggs and a hot cup of coffee. You can even prepare them the night before and bake them fresh in the morning. We hope you enjoy them as much as we did.

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Cape Cod Cranberry Scones with a Summery Lemon Glaze
SERVINGS
8
CHANGE SERVING SIZE
COOK TIME
15
PREP TIME
20
READY IN
35

Ingredients

Instructions

Scones
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F
  2. Sift the flour, baking powder, sugar and salt into a large bowl, add zest of one orange. Cut in butter using a pastry blender until it resembles small peas. Stir in the craisins.
  3. Mix together 1/2 cup milk and sour cream in a measuring cup. Pour all at once into the dry ingredients, and stir gently until well blended. Do not overwork the dough or they will be tough.
  4. With floured hands, pat the dough into one large disk about 1" tall. Place the disk on a cookie sheet lined with parchment and with a sharp knife or bench knife, score into 8 triangles cutting almost all the way through the dough. (If not baking until the next day, cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate at this point.)
  5. Whisk together the egg and 1 tablespoon of milk or heavy cream. Brush the top of the scone with the egg wash and sprinkle with 1 Tbsp. sugar. Let them rest for about 10 minutes.
  6. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until the tops are golden brown, but not deep brown and the scone is cooked through. Cool for about 10 min. while preparing the glaze.
Glaze
  1. Mix the lemon juice with the powdered sugar until dissolved in a microwave-safe bowl. Whisk in the butter and lemon zest. Microwave for 30 seconds and whisk until the glaze is smooth.
  2. Drizzle the glaze over the top of the scones. Let it set a minute before serving. Enjoy!
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A Burst of Italian Flavor – Old World Eggplant Parmigiana

I never expect to see shiny, plump and beautiful eggplant in the grocery store until mid/late summer, but we’ve gotten lucky this year as a booming crop became readily available in our local market (unlike the empty paper towel and toilet paper shelves!) Since this is one of my favorite summer comfort foods, I thought I’d share and old world recipe with you. (If you want to skip a step and use purchased tomato sauce, that’s a great time saving option.)

You might ask why you need to soak your eggplant in salt water first.  This does two things: it draws out any of the bitter juices that can be found in older eggplant and tightens up the flesh, making the eggplant less likely to soak up too much oil when you are frying them. This recipe will make 2 – 9×13″ pans. Since it can be a bit time consuming to make, it enables you to put one pan away in the freezer for another time.

Andiamo a Mangiare!

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Old World Eggplant Parmigiana
SERVINGS
12
CHANGE SERVING SIZE
COOK TIME
45minutes
PREP TIME
2hours
READY IN
3hours

Ingredients

Instructions

Prepare the Sauce and Eggplant
  1. Wash eggplant. Remove the top and bottom from the eggplant and slice across into 1/2" rounds (no need to peel) Submerge in a large bowl of cold water with 3 Tbsp Salt. Put a plate across the top of the bowl to keep the eggplant submerged. Let soak 30 min to 1 hr.
  2. Prepare the sauce: In a medium pot on top of the stove, heat the oil and add diced onion and a teaspoon of sugar. Cook over low heat until the onions are translucent and soft.
  3. Add the torn basil leaves, oregano and garlic. Continue cooking for another minute, watching that the garlic doesn't burn. Add the the salt and pepper and the tomatoes and the remaining sugar, if desired.
  4. Continue cooking over low heat until the flavors meld. Let simmer 30 min. Adjust seasonings to taste.
  5. Drain eggplant and dry on paper towels
  6. Mix together the Flour, salt and pepper on one plate. In a second large shallow bowl or pie plate, beat the eggs together.
  7. One at a time, dip the eggplant in the seasoned flour and then in the beaten eggs
  8. Heat oil in a large skillet or fry pan
  9. Fry the eggplants until golden on one side and then turn to continue frying on the other side. Remove to a paper lined sheet pan.
  10. When all the eggplant are fried, you are ready to assemble!
Assemble
  1. Spray two 9X13" pan with PAM spray
  2. Put a thin layer of tomato sauce on the bottom of each pan
  3. Lightly sprinkle with the grated pecorino romano cheese
  4. Layer the eggplant slices - touching but not overlapping
  5. Sprinkle grated mozzarella over
  6. Lightly sprinkle with grated pecorino romano cheese
  7. Continue layering in this order: Sauce Eggplant Pecorino Romano Mozzarella Sauce Eggplant Pecorino Romano Sprinkle Chopped Parsley Mozzarella End with Sauc
  8. Cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees F. for 45 min. Let rest 10-15 min.

Ethiopian Honey Bread

While they were eating, Jesus took a loaf of bread, and after blessing it he broke it, gave it to the disciples, and said, “Take, eat; this is my body.” Matthew 26:26

As we come to the end of Holy Week, many symbols and traditions come to mind: foot washing on Maundy Thursday, the meaningful services which mark Good Friday, the vigil of Holy Saturday and finally the joy of Easter Sunday. Tucked among these landmarks of Holy Week is the Last Supper that Jesus shared with his disciples–the breaking of bread.

Throughout the Bible, bread serves as a vehicle for miracles, teaching illustrations and as symbol of Jesus’ sacrifice. It is also in the act of breaking bread that revealed his identity as the risen Christ. In this spirit, I am sharing one of my most favorite bread recipes.

Join with us this Holy Week as we break bread, united as the Body of Christ around our tables and throughout the world. With prayers for a healthy and joyful Eastertide!

 

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Ethiopian Honey Bread
SERVINGS
1loaf
CHANGE SERVING SIZE
loaf
COOK TIME
1hour
PREP TIME
15minutes
READY IN
3 hrs25 minutes

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Mix yeast with warm water and allow the yeast to activate, about 10 minutes. It will be ready when bubbles form at the top.
  2. In a saucepan, heat milk and butter while yeast is activating.
  3. Whisk the egg, honey, spices and salt together in a small bowl. When ready, add yeast, and milk and butter mixture.
  4. Gently stir 2 c of the flour into the liquid mixture. Add flour 1/2 c at a time while mixing, and keep adding 1/2 cups of flour until the dough is smooth.
  5. Knead the dough on a lightly floured counter until it is smooth and elastic.
  6. Place in a lightly oiled metal or glass bowl and cover with a clean towel and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
  7. Punch the dough down and form into a round loaf. Place it on the baking sheet, covered with a towel in a warm place for another 45 minutes.
  8. While dough is rising a second time, preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  9. Bake for 1 hour, rotating the baking sheet halfway through.
  10. lnsert a thermometer into the middle of the bread. If it registers between 180-190 the bread is finished.
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Easy and Delicious – Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies

There is no better time than the present to spread some JOY! Thanks to our friends at King Arthur Flour, I did some baking this weekend. In our Convent, Sr. Elizabeth loves to bake chocolate chip cookies, and if you’re lucky enough to be walking through the kitchen when she’s baking, she’ll always stop and give you the one “that didn’t come out quite perfect.”

With children home from school and spouses trying to work remotely, why not take some time to make a batch of these yummy cookies and enjoy the smiles they’ll bring. Another side benefit are the wonderful smells that come into your kitchen. In these uncertain times, warm cookies fresh from the oven warm hearts as well!

(Note: If you use a digital scale to measure the ingredients, they will come out perfectly!)

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Easy and Delicious - Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies
SERVINGS
50cookies
CHANGE SERVING SIZE
cookies
COOK TIME
12-13minutes
PREP TIME
12minutes
READY IN
45minutes

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line 4 cookie sheets lined with parchment paper.
  2. Beat together the butter and sugars until smooth.
  3. Beat in the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla.
  4. Whisk together the flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda and salt, and add to the butter mixture in the bowl.
  5. Mix until everything is incorporated (no need to over mix), scraping the bottom of the bowl.
  6. Stir in the chocolate chips
  7. Using a 1" cookie scoop or ice cream scoop, drop a dozen cookies on each sheet pan in rows of 3 - spreading evenly apart.
  8. Bake at 325° for 12 to 13 minutes or until golden brown on the edges. Remove from the oven, cool on the sheet pan for another couple of minutes (they will continue baking slightly)and then carefully slide the parchment with cookies to the counter to cool. This recipe will make 50 cookies.

Lasagne al Carciofo – Tuscan White Artichoke Lasagna

Serving our mission in Italy has allowed me to learn about local dishes, and today’s blog features a favorite! Thanks to the generosity of Laura, co-owner of a local ristorante kitchen located in the historical center of Barga, I have been learning about traditional regional dishes during my time in Italy.

This white lasagna is different than anything I had ever made, as it showcases artichokes as the main flavor in this Italian classic. Rather than eat the outer leaves as we do in the States, the more tender inner leaves and heart are selected. Tasty and oh-so delizioso, this has become a surprise favorite on our table!

Ingredients and directions for the béchamel sauce are listed below, but you may also refer to our Baked Cauliflower Pie blog. That recipe is doubled below for this lasagna.

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Lasagne al Carciofo - Tuscan White Artichoke Lasagna
SERVINGS
6
CHANGE SERVING SIZE
COOK TIME
45
PREP TIME
30
READY IN
1hours, 20 minutes

Ingredients

Instructions

Béchamel sauce
  1. Melt butter in a small, heavy saucepan over medium heat until foaming. Add shallots (if using) and sauté 2 minutes. Do not let brown.
  2. Reduce heat to low, add flour, and whisk until smooth and raw taste is cooked off, about 1 minute. Gradually whisk in milk. Add bay leaf and cook until just thickened, stirring often, about 10 minutes.
  3. Stir in nutmeg and salt. Season with ground white pepper. Cool sauce slightly. Discard bay leaf before using.
Lasagna
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Prepare the artichokes by cutting off the tops, about 2 inches. Chop the stem, leaving the leaves attached and cut the whole artichoke in half.
  3. Thinly slice the artichoke in half vertically and set aside.
  4. Drizzle the bottom of a pan with olive oil and add the slices of artichoke. Season with salt and pepper and cook until tender. Remove from heat.
  5. Gently combine the cooked artichoke with béchamel sauce and set aside
  6. Thinly coat the bottom of a casserole dish with the béchamel sauce and begin layering the lasagna, beginning with the noodles, béchamel, and mozzarella. Continue layering for 3 layers, ending with a topping of mozzarella cheese.
  7. Bake in the oven approximately 45 minutes or until the noodles are fully cooked, and the lasagna is bubbling around the edges.
  8. Serve warm and enjoy!

OATMEAL CARMELITAS

HANDS-DOWN, ONE OF OUR SISTERHOOD’S MOST FAVORITE TREATS!

This is a dessert / snack that I think is fair to say, always brings a smile and sparkle to the eye.  Whether served as a plated reception option, a surprise snack for a hard-working crew, a dessert tucked into a bag lunch, it always hits the mark—and is never refused!  And as a living testimony to this—today, I left the batch of fresh baked Carmelitas on the counter, only to find when I returned to do my blog “photo shoot”, that the Sister on duty saw them and couldn’t resist offering a few to some Brothers doing a spackling job; I’m still hearing how much they loved them!

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OATMEAL CARMELITAS!
SERVINGS
9-12
CHANGE SERVING SIZE
COOK TIME
20
PREP TIME
30
READY IN
50

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients for crust; blend well to form a crumbly, moist crust.
  2. Press half of the crumbs into bottom of 9” pan and bake at 350 degrees, for 10 minutes.
  3. Remove from oven and sprinkle with chocolate chips and nuts. After blending flour with caramel topping, spread over chocolate and nut mixture.
  4. Sprinkle with remaining crumbs, and bake 15-20” until golden brown