In Wickwood's Kitchen ...
WICKWOOD'S BANANA CAKE!!
Most mornings when we serve this cake, we’re
asked numerous times for the recipe. So, finally we’ve taken the time to
write it down. It’s a deliciously moist cake with banana flavor that
comes through loud and clear. You’ll soon understand why. It’s what we
expect. Serves 18-20.
1 cup golden raisins
2½ cups flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
8 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup canola oil
1½ cups sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
2/3 cup sour cream
4 bananas, mashed
1 cup walnuts
1. Soak raisins in warm water
for 2 - 4 hours
2. Pre-heat oven to 350° F. Butter and flour a 10 cup bundt pan.
3. Measure flour, baking soda and salt and set aside.
4. With a hand mixer, cream butter and oil together. Add sugar and
continue to cream. Add eggs, one at a time, and vanilla. Beat
5. In a large bowl, mix sour cream, bananas and nuts and fold together
6. Add creamed butter/ sugar mixture to banana mixture. Then fold in dry
ingredients until blended. Drain raisins and fold into cake batter.
7. Place batter in bundt pan, bake 35-40 minutes until golden and until
a toothpick comes out clean. Let cake rest ten minutes and invert onto a
plate. Sprinkle with confectioners' sugar and serve warm. Wonderful
topped with a dollop of softly whipped cream.
CHOCOLATE HAZELNUT CLOUDS
These chewy, gooey chocolate cookies were with us from day one at The
Silver Palate, and then I forgot about them for about twenty five years.
How could I??? They’re so scrumptious and best of all so easy!
Long ago, they were made with walnuts, but we much prefer the
combination of chocolate with hazelnuts (filberts to some). And, we
prefer them the size of a quarter, but find the size you like best.
They’re best devoured within a couple of days, if they last that long.
3 cups confectioners’ sugar
½ cup plus 3 tablespoons
unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
¼ teaspoon salt
2¾ cups toasted hazelnuts,
4 large egg whites, at room
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1. Preheat oven to 350° F.
Position two racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven. Line two
large rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper.
2. In a large bowl whisk the confectioners’ sugar with the cocoa powder
and salt, followed by the chopped hazelnuts.
3. Add the egg whites and vanilla and beat until the batter is moistened
(do not over beat or it will stiffen).
4. Spoon the batter (½ teaspoon at a time for the tiny cookies) into
evenly spaced mounds, and bake 12 - 15 minutes until the tops are glossy
and slightly cracked. Rotate the pans to ensure even baking. Slide the
parchment paper onto cooling racks to cool completely before removing
them to an airtight container or directly to a cookie plate for serving.
POACHED PEARS DIPPED IN DARK
You don’t ever have to admit that these stunners are so
simple. Just strut as you serve them! Serves 6
1½ cups sugar
1 cinnamon stick
6 whole cloves
1 vanilla bean
Zest of 1 lemon, cut into fine
6 large pears, peeled leaving
1 pound of best quality dark
2 cups sliced almonds, toasted
"The pear is the grandfather of the apple, ... a fallen
Francois Pierre de la Varenne
1. Combine the sugar, cinnamon
stick, cloves, vanilla bean, and lemon zest in 1 quart of water in a
medium sized stock pot fitted with a cover. Simmer for 10 minutes.
2. Poach the pears in the syrup, standing them upright until tender but
not mushy, about 15 - 20 minutes. Baste them periodically. Let the pears
cool in the poaching syrup. Place pears on paper towels to drain.
3. In the top of a double boiler over simmering water, melt two-thirds
of the chocolate. Once the chocolate is melted remove it form the heat
and add the remaining chocolate, incorporating it well, to temper it.
Let it cool for 10 - 15 minutes. Meanwhile, using a paper towel, dry the
bottom 1/3 of the pears, so that the chocolate will adhere to the pear’s
surface. Leave the rest of the pear coated.
4. Place a large serving spoon under each pear and dip the entire pear
into the chocolate up to the level you’ve dried. Place the pear on a
plate or wax paper to let the chocolate set for 45 minutes. As it
becomes tacky, but not hard, roll them gently in the toasted almonds, or
affix them by hand. Serve with pride.
SALMON TWO WAYS
We’re eating more and more wild salmon
each week. We love it and it’s abundance of Omega 3 is so
beneficial. These recipes are just three ways we try to keep the
“variety is the spice of life” advice alive.
So simple. Serves 2-4
2 salmon fillets (1½ to ¾
pounds), skinned and boned
4 garlic cloves, smashed
4 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons soy sauce
¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper
1. Prepare a charcoal grill and
place a rack 4 inches above the coals. Or, preheat the broiler.
2. Rinse the salmon fillets and pat dry. Rub with garlic on all sides,
Place in a large glass dish.
3. Whisk the honey, soy sauce, and pepper flakes together. Pour over the
fish and turn to coat evenly on each side. Let marinate for 15 minutes
at room temperature; most of the marinade should be absorbed by the
4. Remove the fish from the marinade and place in a fish basket or on
foil on the broiler rack. Cook for 3- 4 minutes per side, depending on
it’s thickness. Do not overcook. It should flake when pierced with a
fork. Serve immediately garnished with lemon wedges.
This is very interesting combination of flavors It’s a much simplified
adaptation of an old Fredy Giardet (before retirement, considered the
world’s best chef) recipe. Always festive .Serves 4
½ cup currants
4 tablespoons brandy
1 teaspoon olive oil
2 pounds Spanish onions
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
salt and freshly ground pepper
1 vanilla bean
4 skinned salmon fillets (about
6-8 ounces each) rinsed, and patted dry
½ cup chicken broth
½ cup finely minced fresh Italian
1. Soak the currants in the
brandy for about 30 minutes.
2. Preheat the oven to 500° F.
3. In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onion and
sauté until translucent and soft, 15 - 20 minutes.
4. Transfer the onion to a 9 x 13-inch baking dish. Bury the vanilla in
the onion. Pour the chicken broth over the fish and bake for 5 - 7
minutes, or until just done; be careful not to overcook.
5. To served, divide the onion mixture among four heated plates, and top
with the salmon fillets. Discard the vanilla bean. Garnish the plates
with chopped parsley and serve immediately.