‘The Mystery Writers of America Cookbook’ Is A Must Buy for Foodies and Bibliophiles [REVIEW]

James Patterson's Grandma's Killer Chocolate Cake

Serve up one of your favorite mystery writer’s yummiest recipes, like Grandma’s Killer Chocolate Cake from James Patterson. (Photo courtesy Quirk Books)

Jathan and I love to cook nearly as much as we love to read. Or maybe it’s the other way around! Either way, when I received a copy of The Mystery Writers of America Cookbook: Wickedly Good Meals and Desserts to Die For, written by a host of my favorite authors and edited by Kate White, I was in awe. Read more of this post

Glazed Carrots [RECIPE]

Glazed carrots are an easy way to add this wholesome root vegetable to your diet.
(Photo by Jathan Fink, Jadeworks Entertainment)

I’m always looking for new ways to add vegetables to my diet, particularly carrots since they have such great health benefits. This powerful orange root veggie is chock full of beta carotene, fiber, antioxidants, not to mention vitamins A, C, K, B8, and other powerful nutrients. As a result, they not only improve our eyesight but also helps lower the risk of cancer and cardiovascular disease. This simple, delicious recipe is one of my favorites and pairs well with practically any meal. Read more of this post

Braised Cabbage with Apple and Onion [RECIPE]

Braised Cabbage with Apples and Onions

Fresh cabbage is sweetened with sliced apples and a touch of sugar. (Photo by Jathan Fink, Jadeworks Entertainment)

I’m not someone who usually craves cabbage on his plate, but this dish is so delicious, even I went back for seconds. The apples and cider vinegar give this side a slightly sweet flavor and make this one vegetable you’ll want to make time and again. It especially pairs well with pork dishes like my Apricot-Glazed Pork Tenderloin or a plate of Hoppin’ JohnRead more of this post

Sweet Potato Spoon Bread

Sweet Potato Spoon Bread

The perfect blend of sweet and savory, our Sweet Potato Spoon Bread is a decadent side dish perfect for any gathering.

From the first time we tasted this decadent recipe, we knew we’d found a keeper. Delicious enough to be desert, this rich and creamy spoon bread is a sweet and savory blend of vegetables and spices. Sweet potatoes are baked until their natural flavors literally ooze through their skins, then they are combined with a medley of spices, pureed and baked into a rich custard. Whether served with roasted poultry or glazed pork, this is a luscious taste of home-baked goodness your family will ask for time and again.

PREP: 20 minutes
COOK: 100 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 2 hours

INGREDIENTS

  • 4 large sweet potatoes, about 4 pounds
  • 1/4 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup heavy cream

DIRECTIONS

  1. Heat oven to 400°F. Bake sweet potatoes until soft when pierced with a knife, 40 to 45 minutes. Let cool. Peel, and discard skins.
  2. Reduce heat to 350°F. In a medium saucepan over medium heat combine cornmeal, milk, butter, brown sugar, spices, salt and 1 cup water. Cook, stirring, until slightly thickened, about 10 minutes. Let cool.
  3. Butter a 2-quart baking dish. Working in batches if necessary, place cornmeal mixture, sweet potatoes, flour, honey, eggs, and cream in a food processor. Process until smooth; pour into dish. Bake until golden brown, about 45 minutes. Serve.

TIPS: When baking the potatoes, be sure to poke them all over with a fork so they don’t explode in the oven. Also, place a baking sheet beneath them to collect any juices that may drip down to ensure easy cleanup.

YIELDS: 10 servings

© 2011 Jadeworks Entertainment. All rights reserved.

Simple Sauerkraut

Simple Sauerkraut

A staple in German cuisine, our Simple Sauerkraut puts a quick and delicious spin on a cultural classic.

When I lived in Dallas, I used to frequent a little German restaurant called Henk’s European Deli and Black Forest Bakery, because I loved their sauerkraut and sausages. When I moved to Ohio, I quickly discovered that the buckeye state’s culture and geography resemble certain places in Germany. Communities like MainStrasse Village in Covington and German Village in Columbus are steeped in a rich Germanic heritage and still hold many ties to the Rhineland. Here in Porkopolis, aka Cincinnati, German cuisine is easily accessible, and numerous festivals celebrate Germanic culture, like Oktoberfest downtown, the GoettaFest in Newport, Kentucky and the Sauerkraut Festival in Waynesville, Ohio. But you don’t have to wait for a festival or even go out to eat at one of our German restaurants to satisfy your sauerkraut cravings. It is quite simple to prepare at home, and it delivers health benefits like vitamins A and C, is high in phytonutrient antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties, which some studies indicate may help combat some cancers.

PREP: 15 minutes
COOK: 40 minutes

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 small yellow onion, halved and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 head red cabbage, cored and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/3 cup apple cider or apple juice

DIRECTIONS

  1. Heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. When oil shimmers, add onions and salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until onions are soft and translucent, 5 minutes.
  2. Add cabbage, apple cider vinegar, apple cider, and 1/2 cup water to a saucepan and stir to combine. Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat, and simmer until cabbage is tender, 30 – 35 minutes.

TIPS: Serve over hot dogs, on Reuben sandwiches, or with bratwurst and mashed potatoes for a German-inspired meal.

YIELDS: About 4 cups

© 2011 Jadeworks Entertainment. All rights reserved.