Thursday, April 02, 2015

Lobster Risotto

Lobster risotto
A couple of weeks ago we went to the Maine Fishermen's Forum in Rockland. This year's special presentation was a panel of four chefs using local Maine seafood to prepare yummy meals. The meals were then raffled off (we each won one of these!) and it was so good we decided to make it at home.

This recipe was presented by Lynn Archer from Archer's in Rockland.

Ingredients: serves 4-6 (possibly only 2 if you really like it)

2 lbs fresh Maine lobster (cooked and shelled)
1/2 stick butter
4 c cooked risotto (use whatever recipe you like but leave out the onions)
1 c shaved Parmesan
3 c half n half
2 c fresh spinach
1/2 c parsley
salt & pepper

Method:

Prepare the risotto the day before if you can. Melt 1/2 stick of butter (or olive oil, if you prefer) in a large, flat bottomed skillet. Add the already cooked risotto and stir over medium heat. Add half n half and parmesan, stirring continuously. When cheese is melted and risotto is warm, add lobster, parsley and salt & pepper to taste. Stir to warm lobster, then remove from heat.

Plate on bed of spinach.

It's easier for me to get lobster here than it may be for you where you are. This recipe also works well with scallops or shrimp.

Just stepping up on a little soapbox for a minute. Most (85+%) of our seafood in the US comes from other countries. Some of those countries do not follow best practices for harvesting and shipping their products or caring for the waters from which they are harvested. Please ask for seafood as locally harvested as is possible. Don't be shy about asking where the seafood in the display case was obtained (country of origin). And don't be shy about asking for your grocery store to buy local when they can.

White Cedar Inn Bed and Breakfast 178 Main St Freeport, Maine 04032

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Chocolate Pudding

chocolate pudding puff pastry hearts
Chocolate pudding with puff pastry hearts

It doesn't have to be Valentine's Day to have chocolate pudding or puff pastry hearts! This is a simple recipe that takes a little longer than instant pudding, but not much. It does require a little patience as you have to watch and stir so the pudding doesn't burn.

Ingredients:

Puff pastry (one sheet makes about 12 -16 hearts, depending on the size you cut them)
beaten egg for pastry wash
1 pint heavy cream (or 2 cups of any % of milk you like)
3 tbsp cornstarch
5 tbsp sugar
pinch salt
4 oz semi- or bittersweet chocolate chips
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
 

If you're organized you can start with the puff pastry hearts and then do the pudding while they're baking. If you're easily distracted, don't do them simultaneously. ;-)

Puff pastry hearts:

Take puff pastry out of freezer about an hour before you need it. Unwrap and let sit on counter to thaw out a bit. Preheat oven to 425. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Roll the thawed pastry out and cut the hearts (or any shape) with a cookie cutter or knife. Place on parchment paper, brush with beaten egg and put in freezer for 5 minutes. Bake 10 -12 minutes until puffed and golden. Let cool. (Once cooled I popped them in a freezer bag to store until morning. They don't last long so don't make them days in advance.)

Pudding:

In a medium, flat-bottomed saucepan, combine cornstarch, sugar and salt. Slowly whisk in the milk/cream. Once the lumps are worked out you can pour faster. Over medium heat cook milk, stirring with a whisk to keep milk from burning on bottom. In 10 minutes or so the milk will be thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Add chocolate, keep stirring until pudding *suddenly* thickens up. (Seriously, it goes from liquid to pudding pretty quickly.) Remove from heat, stir in vanilla.

Pour quickly into a single bowl (if you can eat it all before anyone else gets home) or 4-6 pudding bowls (if you're planning to share). 

If you don't like the pudding 'skin' that may form when you don't eat it right away (standing in front of the stove), press plastic wrap right down on the surface of the pudding. Put in fridge to cool.

We added a bit of whipped cream (gilding the lily) and some raspberries for color.

White Cedar Inn Bed and Breakfast 178 Main St Freeport, Maine 04032




Tuesday, February 03, 2015

February snow

Some quick pix from snow cleanup today...

White Cedar Inn snow
Snowy rooster tail.


White Cedar Inn snow
The snowman cometh.


White Cedar Inn snow
After the snow.





White Cedar Inn snow
Sunspot.
White Cedar Inn Bed and Breakfast 178 Main St Freeport, Maine 04032

Monday, February 02, 2015

Crêpes


White Cedar Inn crepes
crêpe with salsa

We're trying to master the art of the crêpe. They have to be thin enough to fold but not so thin they fall apart.

We have a crêpe machine now as the pan wasn't working out quite right. Couldn't get the wrist twist down.

White Cedar Inn crepes
crêpe machine


Ingredients: Makes 8 sweet crêpes

2 eggs
1/2 c water
3 tbsp melted unsalted butter
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp sugar
1 c flour
3/4 c milk

Mix together first 6 ingredients. Then alternate adding flour and milk, mixing well. The batter will be thin. It should pour easily, not as thick as pancake batter.

If you are using a crêpe machine, follow their directions for temperature settings and cooking times.

Filling:

For this recipe we are filling the crêpes with chunky cooked apples. 

Ingredients:

2 c diced tart apples
1 c water
1/2 c sugar
5 tsp cornstarch
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
2 tsp lemon juice

Cook apples and water over med heat for 10 minutes. Combine sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon and nutmeg together and add to cooking apples. Boil for 2 minutes. Remove from heat, add lemon juice. Keep warm until crêpes are made.

For multiple servings at a time, hot hold prepared crêpes in oven at 170 degrees, separated and stacked with baking paper between each set of crêpes. When ready to serve, place warm crêpe on plate, adding hot apple mixture quickly. Fold and continue until all crêpes are prepared. 

Top with whipped cream, powdered sugar, cinnamon sugar, etc. Whatever you like.

Apple mixture and crêpes can be made in advance and warmed in the morning.

White Cedar Inn Bed and Breakfast 178 Main St Freeport, Maine 04032





Wednesday, January 07, 2015

Corn Bread Pudding Cake

OK, strange name for what is essentially a very moist corn bread. It's not pudding. It's not cake. It is good! We first had this at Azure Cafe. This is not their recipe. 

Ingredients:

2 eggs
1 c sour cream or yogurt (use the full fat version)
1 can (15 or so oz) whole kernel corn, drained
1 can (14 or so oz) creamed corn
1/2 cup melted butter
1 tsp chili powder (optional)
1 8 oz pkg of corn muffin mix (this is the shortcut version, you can also start from scratch)
1/4 tsp paprika


Directions:

Combine first 6 ingredients in a large bowl. Stir in corn bread mix until wet, don't overmix. Pour into a greased 3 qt baking dish. Sprinkle with paprika.

Bake at 350 for 45 minutes, or until knife inserted in center comes out dry.

Serves 12. We served it with the Tuscan Scrambled Eggs. Goes well with almost any egg dish, bbq, etc.

Sorry, no photos, Rock ate all the leftovers before I had a chance to get the camera!

White Cedar Inn Bed and Breakfast 178 Main St Freeport, Maine 04032

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

Shopping Maine




Lots of our guests ask where to get 'real' Maine souvenirs or real Maine products. They don't want to go home with things made in China that someone slapped a 'Maine' sticker on.

So, where in Freeport can you get real Maine souvenirs, products and crafts?

Georgetown Potters
Edgecomb Potters
Abacus
Wishful Moon
Maine Woolens
Brahms Mount
Shermans Books
LL Bean
RD Allen
Brown Goldsmiths
Earrings and Company
Lovell Designs
Namaste Alpaca Farms (Durham)
Tripping Gnome Alpaca Farm
Bessie's Farm Goods
Wealdon Farm
Laughing Stock Farm
Wolfe Neck Farm
Frosty's Donuts
Wicked Whoopies
Wilburs Chocolates
Bow Street Market
Isabellas
The Craftin' Scot
Casco Bay Soaps
Maine Beer
Grittys
Cold River Vodka
Day's Lobster & Seafood
Harraseeket Lunch & Lobster
Local lobster and seafood as well as locally grown veggies are available at almost every restaurant! 

And what everyday, nationally available products are actually made in Maine? The Bean boot. New Balance sneakers.

In the summer there is a farmers market every Friday on the Bean campus. There are also yearly farmers markets in Brunswick and Yarmouth.

(Did I miss someone? Let me know.)

We have real Maine maple syrup available for sale. Just ask.

White Cedar Inn Bed and Breakfast 178 Main St Freeport, Maine 04032

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Day Trip - Bustins Island



Right off the coast of South Freeport lie several small, imaginatively named islands like Pound of Tea and Sow and Pigs. The largest inhabited island, Bustins, is completely seasonal. Residents and guests arrive during May and depart again in October. That's not to say the island isn't a happening place during those brief months! With its own Post Office (zip code 04013), store, library, community hall, golf course and sailing farmers market Bustins is a thriving summer community. (FMI and to find summer rentals or houses for sale, see the Bustins Island Community website.)

I hopped aboard the Lilly B, the island's ferry, with my friend Sue and we headed out to meet up with another friend for our weekly writing group. Always fun to combine work and pleasure!

The best time to head to the island is on the weekend when the Nature Center is open. As you can see in the map above, there is a road that goes around the island. It's an easy 2 miles walk along a dirt road. Stop along the way to take in the stunning views. It's best to bring along your own water bottles and snacks. Although this is not the wilderness, it's courteous to haul your trash away with you.

Enjoy the day in pictures...

Bustin's Island ferry Lilly B
Lilly B
Lilly B's Captain and Crew
Sailing class on the Harraseeket
Casco Castle on the Harraseeket River
Casco Castle
Bustin's Island cottages
Cottages along the west shore
Bustin's Island octagon house
Octagon House near dock

Bustins Island dock
Bustins Island dock
Bustins Island
Pumping water

Bustins Island
Red canoe

Bustins Island
Gardening with a sense of humor

Bustins Island
Relax, enjoy the view

Bustins Island
Maine scenery




Bustins Island
Lots of evidence the folks on Bustins are a relaxed crowd

Bustins Island
Love this use of old globes in a garden!

Bustins Island
Golf Course




Bustins Island
A perfect day
 The fee for the ferry is $24 round trip. (2014) Reservations are not required but you might want to check on weekends that there is room. Lilly B Ferry schedule. The ferry departs from the Town Dock in South Freeport, near the Harraseeket Lunch and Lobster. Be prepared to tell everyone on the ferry who you are, they're a really friendly bunch!


White Cedar Inn bed and Breakfast 178 Main St Freeport, Maine 04032