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A L L  T H E  L O C A L  N E W S,  G O S S I P,  R E C I P E S  &  L O R E  T H A T' S  F I T  T O   P R I N T flower_pot.jpg (1947 bytes) I N D I A N  S U M M E R  2 0 0 5



In Wickwood's Kitchen ...


Perfect as a side dish for supper, even better, we like to serve this corn pudding for breakfast. Just drizzle with Spiced Maple Syrup. My sister-in-law Susie (AKA proud of being “a non-cook”) first brought this to our house. I loved it so – and I thought of trying to make it with polenta and fresh corn – and then thought why? It’s easy and terrific, just this way!

2 sticks unsalted butter melted
2 cups sour cream
4 eggs – slightly beaten
2 cans whole kernel corn (with packed water)
2 cans cream style corn
2 packages corn muffin mix (we like Jiffy)

Pre-heat oven at 350°. Lightly butter a 9x13 baking dish. In a mixing bowl, place melted butter, sour cream, eggs, corn, and corn muffin mix. Mix well by hand until all ingredients are combined. Pour mixture into the pan. Bake at 350 for 1 hour or until a toothpick tests clean. Serve immediately. Cut into squares or using a serving spoon with Spiced maple Syrup.

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A morning wake up call for your taste buds!

2 cups maple syrup
1½ sticks cinnamon
6 Black Peppercorns, whole
2 whole allspice (or ½ teaspoon ground)
Zest of 1 orange (in long strips to be discarded before serving)

Combine all in saucepan – set over medium heat – when syrup starts to roll – reduce heat and simmer 10-15 minutes. Discard all spices and zest prior to serving. Serve warm.

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At various times over forty years – we’ve literally lived on Biscotti during visits to Florence. The reasons too complex, suffice it to say – the perfect Biscotti – a serious quest – and finally we’ve made my favorite!! Dipped into Vin Santo at the end of a meal – well, it’s just a lovely and always festive way to linger through the evening.

¾ cup white sugar
¾ cup brown sugar
2 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
3 tablespoons soft unsalted butter
1½ cups whole almonds (skin on)
1½ cups sliced almonds
2 beaten eggs
3 tablespoons pure vanilla
1 beaten egg mixed with 1 tablespoon water, for egg wash

Preheat the oven to 350°.

Put white sugar, brown sugar, flour, baking powder, butter, and almonds in a large mixing bowl. Using a hand mixer at medium speed, add beaten eggs and vanilla. Mix just until dough holds together.

Put dough on a floured surface. Cut in half. Roll each piece into a log. Place on parchment-lined cookie sheet. Flatten the roll slightly with the palm of your hand. Lightly brush the top of each log with egg wash.

Bake for 25 minutes or until firm to touch. Remove from oven and place logs on a cutting board. Cut rolls diagonally into 1/2” biscotti. Place on their side on baking sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes until crisp but not too dry. Cool completely.

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My theory of late has been “Life’s too short – eat desserts for breakfast” – and so at the Inn we’ve modified our best Carrot Cake and have begun to served it with a Cream Cheese Cream. We get raves!!

3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
3 cups granulated sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 ½ cups corn oil
4 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 ½ cups shelled walnuts, chopped
1 ½ cups shredded coconut
1 1/3 cups puréed cooked carrots
¾ cup drained crushed pineapple
Cream Cheese Frosting (recipe follows)
Confectioner’s sugar for dusting top

1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Butter and flour 10 cup large bundt pan.

2. Sift flour, sugar, salt and cinnamon into a bowl. Add oil, eggs, and vanilla and by hand combine well. Fold in walnuts, coconut, carrots and pineapple, and mix well.

3. Pour batter into the prepared pan (if you’re too full – remove 1-1½ cups of batter). Set on the middle of the rack of the oven and bake for 60 minutes, until edges have pulled away from sides and a cake tester inserted in center comes out clean. Meanwhile make Cream Cheese Cream and chill.

4. Cool on a cake rack 5-10 minutes. Dust top with confectioner’s sugar and serve with Cream Cheese Cream. Serve warm.

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1 eight ounce cream cheese softened
4 tablespoons confectioner’s sugar
1 cup heavy cream

Slowly by hand, using the back of a spoon to smooth the cream cheese – incorporate first the sugar and then the cream.  Carefully smooth out all lumps – serve slightly chilled. 

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If you’ve make batches of Basil Pesto from your Basil Harvest – one of our favorite spontaneous suppers is this pasta dish in a snap.  I’m purposely not giving proportions – just the ingredients and the method.  The quantities are up to you as  I’m sure you know how hungry you are and how much pasta you like to eat at one meal.  Please read the recipe through completely.

You’ll need to have all of your ingredients ready when the pasta is cooked:
Linguini (we prefer Martelli)
Soppressetta or Chorizo, thinly sliced and cut into small pieces
Links of Hot Italian and Sweet Italian Sausage, cut into 1 inch pieces and sautéed until completely cooked through.
Parmesan Reggiano, grated     (only the great stuff will do!)
Homemade Basil Hazelnut      Pesto (or your favorite)
Asparagus cut into 1 inch      pieces and steamed al dente.

1. Place a large pot of water to boil and cook your pasta.  Have at the ready a measuring cup and just before you drain the pasta (and after the pasta has released some of its starch into the water) remove 1 cup of pasta water and set aside.

2. Drain the pasta and              immediately place the pasta back into the pot along with ¼- ½ cup of the pasta water over medium heat.  Add 2 to 4 tablespoons of the pesto – or more depending on taste – the cooked sausages and stir rapidly over the heat. Add the Parmesan and perhaps a little more water so that as the cheese melts and combines with the water, it creates a sauce. Add the asparagus and freshly ground black pepper. Continue stirring so that the pasta doesn’t stick.  Remove from heat just as the water, pesto and parmesan have created a sauce – If cooked too long the sauce will separate.  Serve immediately.

Cooks Notes

Pimentón de la Vera
Spain’s Smoked Paprika Pimentón de la Vera has become one of my best cooking “secret ingredients.”  It’s the ground pepper “Capsicun” originally from Central America and brought to Spain by Columbus. The Extremadaran “La Vera” region of Spain  produces a particularly high quality smoked paprika with a subtle underlying hot kick!  I find I could use Pimentón almost everyday – in stews, sauces, ratatouille, pastas, with beans and sausages, and simply sprinkled onto roasting potatoes.  It’s that addictive!  The flavor is smoky-spicy and most intriguing – giving a new deep dimension to classic recipes.  www.zingermans.com 

“Do we have to have weeds in everything?” my Mom often asked.  And yes, I do put “weeds” or fresh herbs in just about everything – sometimes in small quantities – sometimes in handfuls.  I learned over the years, that for Mom, I’d just mince the herbs smaller.  They add a freshness – a zip, a something special – that makes my cooking taste like it does!

We’ve had our very own “Herb Lady,”
Nancy, for seventeen years, who grows and delivers to our Inn and home – they are my greatest cooking luxury!  Do yourself a favor and find your own local “Nancy.”  I believe they’re everywhere today!







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Wickwood Inn   |    510 Butler Street P.O. Box 1019   |   Saugatuck, MI 49453
Tel (800) 385-1174   |   www.wickwoodinn.com    |    Bill and Julee Rosso Miller, Proprietors