Monthly Archives: March 2012

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Bailey’s Irish Cream Truffles

Bailey's Irish Cream Truffles

Long ago on St. Patrick’s Day, I found myself  standing in a Fort Myers’ Bennigan’s (restaurant) parking lot that had been roped off to accommodate a band and large amounts of people. Two boys from I-don’t-remember-where in Europe asked me why we celebrated St. Patrick’s Day. I looked at them dumbfounded – not because they didn’t know, but because I didn’t know. I told them my best guess was it was simply an excuse to imbibe copious amounts of alcohol in the middle of March. I relate this story for two reasons: 1) I still don’t really know why St. Patrick’s Day is so popular in the United States and 2) boys used to talk to me.

To celebrate this St. Patrick’s Day, I started the day by making Bailey’s Irish Cream truffles. Bailey’s Irish Cream reminds me of two things: 1) getting kicked out of a liquor store with my dad this past Christmas Eve and 2) my first not-from-a-keg drink in college.

Bailey's Irish Cream Truffles

As for the most recent event, Mom asked someone to go buy a bottle of Bailey’s so she could serve what she called a chocolate covered strawberry cocktail that evening. So off to the the liquor store Dad and I went. A chocolate covered strawberry cocktail is Bailey’s mixed with strawberry daiquiri mix (though I’m sure you could vary this with other liquors). Try going into a liquor store and asking for a bottle of Bailey’s and strawberry daiquiri mix sometime to see if you don’t get odd looks from the employees. “Um, you know those don’t go together right?” Then, with your ID at home, try standing with your almost-60-years-old dad while he tries to buy a bottle of Bailey’s. If you’re in Ohio, two days away from turning 33 (i.e. I’m starting to look old), without an ID, the  liquor store employees will kick you both out. Whoops, sorry about that one Dad.

As for that other not-from-a-keg drink, it was called an Attitude Adjustment and made with equal parts Bailey’s, rootbeer shcnapps and amaretto. This morning, I enjoyed some Bailey’s in my coffee while I rolled my truffles. All of these drink stories may make it sound as though I have a problem, but I share because I hesitated to buy a bottle of Bailey’s in the first place. I do not drink a lot of mixed drinks, so I was uncertain how to put the rest to use. If you are like me, hopefully these anecdotes give you some ideas; other delicious recipe ideas can be found on Bailey’s website.

Bailey's Irish Cream Truffles

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Bailey's Irish Cream Truffles
 
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Ingredients
  • 1 pound chocolate, chopped
  • ⅔ cup heavy cream
  • ⅓ cup Bailey's Irish Cream
  • cocoa powder or confectioners' sugar for rolling
Instructions
  1. Place the chopped chocolate in a large bowl.
  2. In a saucepan over low heat, bring the cream just to a boil.
  3. Pour the cream over the chocolate, and let stand for one minute.
  4. Starting at the center of the bowl, begin to stir the chocolate and cream.
  5. Stir until smooth, microwaving in 20 second increments to melt the remaining chocolate if needed.
  6. Once the chocolate is fully melted and smooth, stir in the Irish Cream.
  7. Cover and let stand overnight.
  8. Remove the chocolate truffle mixture from the refrigerator and roll into balls. It may be helpful to allow the chocolate to soften slightly before rolling into balls
  9. Roll or toss the truffles in cocoa powder or confectioners sugar to complete.
Notes
Keeps for up to two weeks in the refrigerator.
 

 

Irish Soda Bread with Rosemary Orange Honey Butter

Rosemary Orange Honey Butter

(Love) + flour + baking soda + salt + buttermilk = Irish soda bread. Measuring, mixing, kneading, and forming will take all of five minutes, so you do have time to make homemade bread. This dense bread tastes slightly sweet and paired well with sweet and salty rosemary orange honey butter. A perfect quick snack for St. Patrick’s Day. Enjoy!

In need of other St. Patrick’s Day food ideas? Check out my Kiss Me, I’m Irish Pinterest board. 

Rosemary Orange Honey Butter

Irish Soda Bread with Rosemary Orange Butter
 
Author:
Ingredients
  • For the Bread
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1¾ cups buttermilk
  • For the Butter
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon rosemary leaves, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • ½ teaspoon orange extract
  • ½ teaspoon orange zest
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, and baking soda.
  2. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the buttermilk.
  3. Stir with a wooden spoon until mixed. The dough should be soft and damp.
  4. Knead the dough on a lightly floured counter and shape into two, equally-sized rounds. The dough balls will not be entirely smooth.
  5. Place the loaves on a cookie sheet brushed with oil and cut a cross in each of the tops with a sharp knife.
  6. Bake at 425 F for 25-30 minutes until golden brown. The loaf should sound hollow when tapped on the bottom.
  7. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
  8. To make the butter, simply mix all ingredients until well blended.
 

Peppy Parmesan Rounds

Parmesan Pepper

The ingredient list called for cake flour, rye flour, and confectioner’s sugar in the same cookie-cracker. My first thought was, “How on earth is that going to taste good?” After baking and tasting Parmesan Pepper Rounds, I am happy to report it was the right combination. I could not quit eating these cookie-crackers!

As you can tell, I don’t know whether to classify these Parmesan Pepper Rounds as cookies or crackers. They were subtly sweet like a cookie, yet the pepper lent a bite of heat like a cracker.

 Parmesan Pepper Rounds

I was so pleased to have a reason to dig into the 5-pound bag of rye flour I bought for some other recipe I never saw to fruition, that I didn’t realize my spice rack had a notable absence in the form of white pepper. Allowing impatience to get the best of me, I made the Parmesan Pepper Rounds with black pepper instead. I was glad I increased the quantity of pepper from 1/8 to 1/2 teaspoon as the flavor of the pepper was just barely perceptible.

The next time I make these coookie-crackers (there will definitely be a next time-these were so good!), I’ll likely increase the quantity of black pepper to 3/4 or 1 teaspoon. Or I might use the white pepper, or a combination of both white and black peppers. If I decide to go wild, I might even try a little cayenne pepper in the recipe.

Parmesan Pepper Rounds

The cookie-crackers were tasty with slices of leftover Parmesan cheese, and they paired well with fruit. If you are ever charged with bringing a fruit or cheese tray to a party, homemade Parmesan Pepper Rounds might be a nice addition to store-bought crackers. I imagine they would be a nice accompaniment to  a cheese ball as well.

As the recipe noted, the better the cheese, the better the cookie. Said another way, it is in your best interest to spend a little extra money on a nice piece of Parmesan cheese than to use the powdered cheese in the plastic cylinders. It’s an extra plus to eat freshly sliced Parmesan cheese with the cookie-crackers.

Cookie or a cracker? I’ll leave it up to you to decide. Enjoy!

 Parmesan Pepper Rounds

Parmesan Pepper Rounds
 
Author:
Ingredients
  • 1 cup cake flour
  • ¼ cup rye flour
  • ¼ cup Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • ¼ cup confectioners' sugar
  • ¼ cup sour cream
Instructions
  1. Whisk together the cake flour, rye flour, Parmesan cheese, black pepper, salt, and baking soda in a medium bowl.
  2. Cream the butter and the confectioners' sugar together in a separate bowl.
  3. Add the sour cream to the butter and confectioners' sugar mixture and mix until just combined.
  4. Stir the flour and Parmesan cheese mixture created in step one into the butter, confectioners' sugar, and sour cream mixture until well incorporated.
  5. Place the dough (it will be very soft) on a lightly floured surface and roll out to a ¼ inch thickness.
  6. Use cookie cutters to cut the dough into desired shapes and place on ungreased baking sheets.
  7. Prick the top of each cookie with a fork.
  8. Bake at 350 degrees F for 12-14 minutes or until lightly browned.
Notes
The original recipe called for ⅛ teaspoon white pepper rather than ½ teaspoon black pepper.