Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Holiday Recipes with BA, Julia and Sean

We thought we'd share some recipes that we're going to be enjoying over the Thanksgiving holidays.

Julia's contribution:

Biscochitos are a traditional Christmas food in New Mexico, and the stores have them with hot apple cider from Thanksgiving to Christmas.

These spicy, anise-flavored cookies from New Mexico are rich, crisp, and very easy to make. Biscochitos are the holiday cookie staple in New Mexico. The Biscochito is New Mexico’s Official State Cookie as declared by the New Mexico Legislature in 1989. Biscochitos were first introduced to Mexico by Spanish settlers who brought the recipe from Spain.

Stored in a tightly sealed container, they can be frozen up to six months.


1 ½ cups lard, chilled*
1 cup plus 3 tablespoons sugar, divided
2 eggs
2 teaspoons anise seeds
4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
About 3 tablespoons brandy, apple juice, or milk*
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon


Preheat oven to 350°F.

Beat lard and 1 cup sugar in a bowl until fluffy.

Add eggs and anise seeds, and beat until very light and fluffy.

Sift together flour, baking powder and salt. Add to creamed mixture along with the brandy. Mix thoroughly to make a stiff dough.

Place dough on a long piece, about three feet of waxed paper at one end. Bring the long end over the top and press to about one inch or slightly less in thickness and refrigerate until chilled.)

Roll out dough between waxed paper to just under ½ inch thickness.

Cut with flour dusted cutters into the traditional fleur de lis shape or into 3-inch rounds.

Combine the 3 remaining tablespoons sugar and the cinnamon in a shallow bowl; dip unbaked cookies into the sugar-cinnamon mixture on one side.

Place cookies on ungreased baking sheets.

Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until tops of cookies are just firm. Cool cookies on wire racks.

*Notes: Butter or margarine can be substituted for the lard, however the cookies will not be as crisp and moist. Apple juice or milk can be substituted for the brandy, however they are not quite as good.

Makes 4 dozen cookies

Recipe courtesy of Jane Butel’s Southwestern Kitchen, www.janebutelcooking.com

BA's contribution:

Butternut Squash Soup with Chili-Spiced Nummies

1 large sweet onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 large butternut squash (roughly 3 pounds)
5 1/2 cups chicken stock
1 cup fat free half and half
2 T. olive oil
Salt and white pepper to taste

In a large soup pot, cook the onions and garlic in olive oil until the onions gets soft and tasty. Add salt and pepper (I like lots of pepper), then add in the squash and cook for one minute, then add in the chicken stock and cook, covered until the squash is tender.

Puree the soup with a stick blender and add milk and warm. Garnish with chili-spiced pecans and pumpkin seeds.

Chili Spiced Nummies

    1 1/2 cups pecans
    3/4 cup pine nuts
    3/4 cup  pumpkin seeds
    1/3 cup shelled pistachios

    3 tablespoons olive oil
    3 tablespoons sugar
    1 1/4 teaspoons ground dried chipotle
    1 teaspoon salt

In a large bowl, mix pecans, pine nuts, pumpkin seeds, pistachios, and oil. Add sugar, chilies, and salt; mix to coat nuts evenly.

Coat a baking pan with cooking oil spray. Spread nuts in pan. Bake at 325°, stirring occasionally, until nuts are browned, 15 to 20 minutes. Cool. Serve or store airtight at room temperature up to 1 week.

Sean's contribution:

I had this for the first time at Thanksgiving in October (aka Canadian Thanksgiving) and I liked it so much I'm going to make it for BA and Julia.

Goat Cheese-Edamame Dip with Spiced Pepitas


    1 1/2 pounds shelled edamame
    1 cup sour cream
    5 ounces fresh goat cheese, crumbled
    3 chipotles in adobo, chopped, plus 2 tablespoons of adobo sauce from the can
    1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
    1 small garlic clove, chopped
    2 teaspoons kosher salt
    1 tablespoon chopped oregano

    1/2 cup raw pumpkin seeds
    1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
    1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
    1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
    1 teaspoon chopped oregano


In a medium pot of boiling salted water, simmer the edamame until tender, about 8 minutes. Drain well and transfer to a food processor. Add the sour cream, goat cheese, chipotles, adobo sauce, lemon juice, garlic and salt and puree until smooth, scraping down the side of the bowl. Stir in the oregano and transfer the dip to a serving bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or overnight.

Preheat the oven to 375°. On a rimmed baking sheet, toss the pumpkin seeds with the olive oil, salt, coriander and crushed red pepper. Bake for 7 minutes, until the seeds begin to brown. Transfer the pepitas to a bowl and toss with the lemon zest and oregano.

Serve the dip at room temperature, topped with the spiced pepitas.

Make Ahead
The goat cheese–edamame dip can be refrigerated overnight; bring to room temperature before serving. The spiced pepitas can be kept in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

Serve With
Pita crisps.

Recipe originally found on http://www.foodandwine.com/

You can find us on Twitter at @seanmichael09, @juliatalbot and @batortuga.

Sean’s website is http://www.seanmichaelwrites.com
Julia’s is http://www.juliatalbot.com
BA’s is http://www.batortuga.com

Sean -- https://www.facebook.com/SeanMichaelWrites
Julia -- https://www.facebook.com/juliatalbotauthor
BA -- https://www.facebook.com/batortuga

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