Fig And Almond Mini Upside-Down Cakes

Fig And Almond Mini Upside-Down Cakes

Seasonal fall fruit makes the best desserts! Yummy fresh baby figs and almonds are combined in these upside-down mini-cakes that are topped with a delicious orange caramel sauce. It’s a delicious way to start fall. For accuracy, this recipe is in grams and requires a kitchen scale.

For the topping
113g unsalted butter; more for the pan
2 small oranges, juiced and zested
264g granulated sugar
Pinch salt
12 very small fresh figs, sliced in half
43g sliced almonds, toasted

For the cakes
57 g sliced almonds, toasted
180 g. unbleached all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. kosher salt
113 g. unsalted butter, softened
132 g. granulated sugar
1 tsp. almond extract
2 large eggs, at room temperature
227 g. sour cream, at room temperature

Make the topping
Butter 6 mini round springform pans. Line the bottoms with parchment and butter the parchment.
Using a rasp grater, finely grate 1 tablespoon zest from 2 oranges, set aside. Halve the oranges and squeeze to yield 1/3 cup juice.
To make a caramel sauce, combine 113g butter, sugar and salt in a medium saucepan and whisk over medium heat, until the sugar melts and the mixture darkens. Carefully add the orange juice, it will bubble and splatter. Whisk until combined and no lumps remain. Remove from the heat. Let the caramel sit to cool slightly.
Decoratively arrange, cut side down, four of the mini fig halves on the bottom parchment for each cake. Crush the almonds and sprinkle between the figs. Using half of the caramel sauce, evenly pour over the figs and almonds in the six cakes. Set the other half of the caramel aside.

Make the cake
Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 325°F.
Add the toasted almonds to a food processor. Pulse until finely ground. Add to a medium bowl and combine with the flour, baking powder, and salt.
In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the orange zest and the almond extract, and mix until combined. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
With the mixer on low speed, alternately add the flour in 3 additions and the sour cream in 2 additions, beginning and ending with the flour. Beat until just combined after each addition.
Evenly scoop the batter into the prepared cake pans without disturbing the topping. Smooth the surface. Tap the pans firmly against the counter once or twice to remove any air bubbles.
Bake 25 minutes or until a tester inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
Cool the cakes on a rack for 10 minutes then run a knife around the edge of each cake torelease them from side of the pan. Remove the springform ring on each cake. Invert the cake onto rack. Remove the bottom and parchment, and rearrange any fig or nuts that have stuck to the parchment. Cool completely.
When serving, reheat the remaining caramel sauce. Brush lightly over the top of the cakes and serve with any extra caramel sauce on the side.

Apple Oat Crumble with Ice Cream

Apple Oat Crumble with Ice Cream

The combination of apples and cinnamon baking together is one of Fall’s greatest fragrance. Perfect to get you in the mood for fall or as a way to stay warm on a crisp fall day. We think it’s best served with a side of vanilla ice cream or gelato.

For the Apples
3 fuji apples – peeled, cored, and sliced
3 granny smith green apples – peeled, cored, and sliced
2 tablespoons sugar
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

Toss apples, sugar, and cinnamon in a medium bowl until coated. Pour into a 9-inch square baking dish.

For the Crumble
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup old-fashioned oats
½ cup flour
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
½ cup cold butter cut into tablespoons
Vanilla Ice Cream or Gelato

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Mix brown sugar, oats, flour, and 1 teaspoon cinnamon in a separate bowl. Use a pastry cutter, cut the cold butter into the oat mixture until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs; spread evenly over the apples to the edges of the baking dish.
Place in the preheated oven and bake until golden brown and sides are bubbling, about 40 minutes. Let cool slightly and serve in bowls with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or gelato.

Grilled Eggplant with Basil Pesto and Pasta

Grilled Eggplant with Basil Pesto and Pasta

Getting the most we can out of the remaining vegetable season with our abundance of basil and eggplant. Sliced thin and grilled, we added our eggplant to this delicious blender-made basil pesto sauce and pasta.

Basil Pesto
4 cups fresh basil leaves (no stems)
1/2 tablespoons toasted pine nuts
2 large cloves garlic
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese

Add the pine nuts and garlic to a high-speed blender. Top with the basil leaves and process until very finely minced. With the machine running slowly add the oil and process until the mixture is smooth. Add the cheese and process just long enough to combine. Set aside.

Grilled Eggplant
2 medium eggplants
Kosher salt for sprinkling
1/3 cup olive oil

Heat a charcoal or gas grill to medium-high heat. Cut the eggplant into 3/4-inch thick slices on the diagonal.
Lay the slices on a large baking sheet. Brush one side with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Place on the grill. Carefully brush the top sides of the slices with oil and sprinkle them with salt. Close the grill and cook for 5 minutes or until grill marks strongly appear.
Open the grill and turn the slices over, close the lid of the grill again, and cook until grill marks appear on the other side and the eggplant is very tender; about 5 more minutes.
Remove, cover and keep warm.

Assemble the dish
One pound Pasta
Grated Fresh Parmesan Cheese

Following the package directions, cook the pasta. Strain and add back to the pot. Stir in the basil pesto to coat the pasta. Serve warm in bowls topped with the grilled eggplant and topped with grated fresh parmesan cheese.

Sous Vide Salmon, Baked Corn & Cheese Grits with Caper Sauce

Sous Vide Salmon, Baked Corn & Cheese Grits with Caper Sauce

A sweet summer corn cheese grit casserole goes perfect with buttery sous vide salmon with crispy-seared skin. We topped the dish off with a tangy caper, baby cherry tomato and fresh corn sauce.

Cheese Grits & Fresh Corn
2 cups Half and Half
2 cups water
1 cup quick-cooking grits
2 cups fresh corn slice off the cob
1 ¼ cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
1 large egg
½ teaspoon salt

Heat oven to 375ºF. Lightly coat a shallow 2-quart baking dish with nonstick spray.
Add the water and Half and Half to a 3-qt saucepan and bring to a gentle boil. Slowly whisk in the grits. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring often, 5 to 7 minutes until thickened. Remove from heat, then stir in corn, 1 cup cheese, egg, and salt. Pour into prepared dish. Bake, uncovered, 15
minutes. Sprinkle with remaining 1⁄4 cup cheese and bake 15 minutes more until set. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

Caper Sauce
¼ cup fresh chives cut in ½” pieces
Lemon zest from one lemon
1 tablespoon Lemon Juice
2 tablespoons capers
¼ cup baby cherry tomatoes, cut in half
¼ cup olive oil
¼ cup fresh corn, cut from the cob

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Set aside.

Sous vide Salmon
4 pieces of salmon
Olive oil

Heat the immersion circulator in the water bath to 130˚F. Add a salmon piece with a light coating of olive oil to sous vide bags. Top with a light sprinkle of salt and vacuum to seal. Place in the water bath and cook for 1 hour. Remove from the bag and dry the salmon.
To sear, heat up a thin layer of oil in a skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add salmon skin side down, gently pressing on it with a fish spatula so it makes good contact with the pan. Sear until the skin is browned and crisp, about a 1 1/2 minutes.

To Serve
Place a scoop of the grits to a plate. Lay the salmon over the grits and top with the Caper Sauce.