Monday, July 31, 2017 0 comments

Butter Cake

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
  • ½ cup vegetable shortening
  • 3 cups granulated sugar
  • 5 eggs, room temperature
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup whole milk, room temperature
  • ½ cup buttermilk, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  1. Preheat oven to 350º F. Prepare three 9-inch round cake pans with nonstick baking spray or coated well with shortening or butter and floured, taking care to remove all excess flour.
  2. Cream together butter and shortening until light and fluffy with an electric mixer. Slowly add sugar one cup at a time, making sure to fully incorporate each cup before adding another. Beat on a high speed for up to 4 minutes to make sure the sugar cream is very fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, making sure to fully incorporate each egg before adding another. Do not overbeat after adding the eggs or the cake will become tough.
  3. Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt. Pour milks and vanilla into measuring cup and whisk together with a fork. Add to butter and shortening mixture alternately with milk mixture, beginning and ending with dry ingredients.
  4. Gently stir all ingredients until well combined. Stop mixer and scrape down sides and bottom of bowl, making sure to have all ingredients mixed well.
  5. Evenly distribute cake batter between cake pans and place pans into oven. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick or cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove and allow to cool slightly in cake pans for about 5 minutes, then cool completely on a wire rack.
  6. Frost cake as desired.
Saturday, July 8, 2017 0 comments

Instant Pot Braised Beef & Tortellini

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil 
  • 1 -2 lb boneless beef short rib (or similar tough cut of beef) 
  • 1 garlic clove, minced 
  • 1 tomato, diced 
  • 6 ounces fresh mushrooms, sliced 
  • 8 ounces Marsala wine 1/4 cup flour 
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning 
  • 1 -2 lb asiago-filled tortellini, boiled 
  • Salt and pepper


For Instant Pot follow these directions, (total time ~45 minutes):
  1. Heat oil in pot on saute mode. 
  2. Toss short ribs in flour, add to pot, and sear on all sides. 
  3. Add garlic, mushrooms and seasoning and cook for 2-3 minutes. 
  4. Add Marsala wine. 
  5. Put lid on instant pot and turn to manual mode. 
  6. Cook on high pressure for 35 minutes. 
  7. Let pressure release naturally for another 10 minutes, then turn pressure release valve. 
  8. Remove meat and shred/cut into small pieces. 
  9. Turn heat to saute mode and cook until the sauce is reduced. 
  10. Add a touch of heavy cream to the sauce at the end. 
  11. Serve meat and sauce over tortellini. 

Flaky Buttery Biscuits

  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 3/4 cup milk

  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Butter or line a baking sheet.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Using a fork or 2 table knives, combine the butter and flour mixture until it resembles a coarse meal. Slowly add the milk, stirring with a fork, to the desired consistency.
  3. For softer biscuits, drop 2 tablespoons of the dough onto the lined baking sheet. For firmer biscuits, turn the dough out onto a clean, lightly floured surface and gently knead just to bring the dough together. Carefully roll out the dough about 3/4 inch thick. Using a biscuit cutter or sturdy glass, cut about 12 biscuits, rerolling any scraps. Place on the lined baking sheet. (The biscuits can be frozen at this point. Freeze on the baking sheet, then remove to a resealable container or plastic bag for easier storage.) Bake the biscuits for 13 to 15 minutes (add 3 to 4 additional minutes for frozen ones), until golden brown. Cool slightly and serve warm.