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Ukranian Pasta Bake | Baked Lokshyna

Wouldn’t it be amazing if bacon could cure every ailment. In the Ukraine, I bet it does. Broken heart? Bacon. Spilled beet juice on your favorite sundress? Bacon. Thursday afternoon existential crisis? Bacon. I’m thinking it’s worth a try. That’s where this pasta bake comes in. “Lokshyna” are Ukrainian noodles, and today we’ve dressed them up with plenty of sizzling bacon, creamy cottage cheese, and a couple of cracked eggs to bind the casserole together. The finishing touch is a happy sprinkling of buttered breadcrumbs (as few or as many as you’d like). One note on authenticity: traditional versions of this recipe are made with fresh egg noodles. On a particularly harried shopping trip, I was unable to locate any… so my version is made with dried noodles. Keep in mind: if you do decide to use fresh noodles, you may need to alter the recipe. This is because fresh noodles can be baked uncooked, but will require more liquid to do so. But, either way, the Ukranian pasta casserole is… awesomely comforting (and perfect …

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Saag Paneer

Serves 4 It’s creamy. It’s earthy. It’s one of my favorite dishes from India. Ladle saag panner over basmati rice and it’s also a surefire way to get a picky man to eat his spinach. Ingredients: vegetable oil 1 tsp fresh grated ginger 1 tsp fresh grated turmeric 2-3 tsp homemade garam masala 1 onion, chopped 3 cloves garlic Serrano chili, sliced thinly (to taste) 1 lb frozen spinach, thawed, juices retained homemade paneer, to taste salt pepper finishing touch 2 Tbsp butter 1/4 cup half and half (or more to taste) Method: There’s only one way to get a picky man to love spinach. Load it up with good flavor. Blend it so it’s no longer slimy. And add some delicious cheese to distract him from all the green. First step: gather the ingredients. Whole Foods had fresh turmeric this week (see bottom right), so I did my happy dance. Next, toast the ginger, turmeric, and garam masala in vegetable oil over medium heat until fragrant. Add the onion, garlic, and Serrano chili. Cook until softened, …

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Caribbean Coconut Ice Cream

Makes 5 cups I like to float around in easy, breezy sundresses all summer long. I also like to wear my hair short and laugh really loud at silly jokes. Finally, I like to eat ice cream by the gallon while squeezing my eyes really tight and imagining I’m on a Caribbean island. This is best done while nibbling on a cold spoonful of creamy coconut ice cream, made even sweeter by the fact that I didn’t have to turn on the stove – not even for one second – to make it. Call me a glutton for punishment, but I think this ice cream should be served with warm Baked Brown Sugar Bananas, another wonderful Caribbean treat. Ingredients: 2 1/2 cups half and half 1 1/4 cups sweetened condensed milk 1 1/4 cups coconut milk Garnish: Toasted, shredded coconut Method: Before we get started, let’s give a nod to how coconut ice cream is traditionally made in the Caribbean. First, a beautiful coconut would be hacked open and shredded for deeply rich coconut ice …

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German Tree Cake | Baumtorte / Baumkuchen

This is my favorite cake. All 21 layers of it. It has been since my mitten-wearing years. My mom used this intricately layered almond and chocolate cake as an activity for us kids – something to keep us busy on rainy mornings, when crayons had lost their interest. It is single-handedly responsible for my obsession with almond paste (and it’s sweeter counterpart, marzipan). The original recipe might as well be called “the dance of dirty bowls.” I took a hacksaw to the method, removing five extra bowls. Your baby soft hands will thank you. The best part? No cake goodness was harmed in the streamlining of this recipe. NOTE: You need two days to make this cake because the cake needs to chill in the fridge overnight. Serves 12 Ingredients: All ingredients should be room temperature 1 1/2 cups almond paste, tightly packed (12 oz) 6 Tbsp half & half 1 1/2 sticks butter (12 tbsp), softened 1 cup sugar 10 eggs, separated (put the whites in a bowl big enough to whip them up to …

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Ali’s Mother | Umm Ali

Serves 6 Egyptians have been eating Um Ali for hundreds of years. Clifford A. Wright tells the story well: One day while hunting in the Nile delta, the sultan developed a ravenous appetite and stopped in a small village. The peasants wished to please the sultan, so the best cook of the village, Umm Ali, pulled out a special pan and filled it with the only ingredients she had around: some dried wheat flakes, sultanas [raisins], nuts, and coconut. She covered it with sugar and milk and put it in the village’s oven. Excerpt from A Mediterranean Feast As simple as can be, this sweet, milky blend of pastry, nuts, raisins, and coconut flakes will be a distinct addition to your Egyptian Global Table. Ingredients: 1 sheet of puff pastry, baked 1/4 cup almonds 1/4 cup raisins 1/4 cup coconut chips (or 1/8 cup shredded coconut) 1/8 cup sugar 1 cup whole milk 1 cup half and half Method: Bake the puff pastry according to package directions. It will turn into a giant, greasy pillow. Try not …

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