Citrus Polenta Cake

This cake is truly delightful! Not too sweet it can be dessert at any time of day ~ brunch, lunch, dinner, tea time!

We topped ours with peaches but any fruit medley would do! Oh, and maybe some whipped cream too!

Peach Polenta Cake

For the cake:

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup stone-ground yellow cornmeal

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 cup butter, at room temp

1/4 cup Hibiscus Citrus Sugar

3/4 cup sugar

2 large eggs, room temp

1/2 cup buttermilk

zest of one lemon

For peach topping:

4-5 peaches, sliced

2 Tablespoons butter

1/4 cup Hibiscus Citrus Sugar

juice of half a lemon

Preheat oven to 350F. Generously coat a 9-inch round baking pan with shortening and lightly flour the pan.

In a medium bowl sift together flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt.

With your stand mixer beat butter until it is light and airy. Add the sugars and continue to cream until fluffy. Beat in eggs one at a time. Add buttermilk and lemon zest, mixing until smooth. Gradually stir in flour mixture until just incorporated, don’t over mix.

Pour the batter into your prepared pan and smooth the top. Bake until golden and cooked through ~ 25 to 30 minutes ~ check it by sticking it with a toothpick, if it comes out clean you’re good to go. Let cool on a rack for 10 minutes. Flip cake out onto the rack then flip it onto your serving plate to let cool completely.

At this point, you can make your topping! We used peaches but anything goes! Maybe some ice cream, or whipped cream.

For the peach topping melt the butter in a saucepan and then add all the other ingredients. Let them hangout together over medium heat until the juices thicken then they are good to go!

Stay sweet, friends!

XO

Charleston Spice Co.

The Tower of TexMex

The Tower of TexMex

I had planned to post about Vanilla Ice Cream today.

But then I fell in love.

With life, and cherry tomatoes, and love, and guacamole, and a darn good poached egg.

*sigh*

And you know, people in love are irrational, so I put the Vanilla Ice Cream post to the side so that you guys could see this beauty.

The Tower of TexMex

The funny thing is, this all started out with an idea to make huevos rancheros. One thing led to another and you know what they say, when you give a mouse a cookie… So our crack team assembled this tempting tower of goodness and delight!

Here’s how you can make this happen:

Corn tortillas cut into squares (you’ll need 4 squares for every tower)

1 large onion, diced

1 lb. ground pork

2 Tablespoons Chimayo Chili Blend

1 pint of cherry tomatoes, cut in half

1/4 cup masa flour (optional)

Some mixed beans (we had some hanging out in our freezer already)

Guacamole

Sriracha sour cream (that’s right, just add some sriracha to that sour cream in your fridge)

Cheese of your choice, grated

Lettuce, shredded (mostly just for garnish)

Tomatillo

Eggs, one or two for every tower you plan to make

Rice

1 cup of corn

1 cup of bell peppers, chopped

Start off by making your rice, saute the corn and bell peppers in the pan you’re going to make your rice in, then add your rice and water and cook as per usual.

While the rice is cooking, brown your onions, add the pork, and chimayo chili blend, brown some more. Add the masa, this helps bind it all together so you don’t lose any of the flavor from the juices! Put in tomatoes and cook until they’re just warmed through. Remove from heat.

If you have a griddle, start getting it warm to toast the tortillas. If you don’t have a griddle you can use a big pan. While you wait for the griddle to heat up, assemble everything else you need: shred the lettuce, grate your cheese, make your guacamole!

Toast your tortilla squares to the perfect toastiness for you, we let ours stay pretty soft, but depending on how high you want to stack your towers, a firmer tortilla platform may be necessary.

Once your tortillas are perfect, get a new pan and fill it with your tomatillo over medium to high heat and poach those eggs!

Once the eggs are poached, let the assembling begin!

Here’s how we layered our towers (from bottom to top):

tortilla, rice, pork mixture, cheese, tortilla, beans, sriracha sour cream, cheese, tortilla, guacamole, tortilla, egg, tomatillo.

The Tower of TexMex

Here’s to dreaming big and falling in love,

XO

Charleston Spice Co.

 

 

 

Grilled Corn

Grilled Corn

If I could write a love song about corn I would.

Cream it, grill it, pan fry it, throw it in a stew.

No matter what you do, I’ll love it. And I might even love you.

It’s an epic sort of love, I posted about grilled corn last year and I’ll probably post about it next year too.

I mean, look at this beauty:

Grilled Corn

Talk about tasty. YUM.

We pulled back the husk, stripped out those little white hairs, rubbed on some olive oil, and then lovingly sprinkled Grill Seasoning on all the cobs. Then we wrapped them back into their husks and tied them with string to keep all that goodness inside:

Grilled Corn

 

Then we threw those puppies on the grill and let the magic happen.

Grilled Corn

*sigh* Isn’t summer marvelous?

Let’s stay this way forever,

XO

Charleston Spice Co.

Grilled Corn

Firecracker Shrimp

Firecracker shrimp

I used to hate shrimp.

Absolutely hate it, unless it was popcorn shrimp, but let’s be honest, after dunking those lil deep fried bites into ketchup they were more like chicken nuggets than seafood.

Now I love shrimp.

Absolutely love it, especially when it isn’t deep fried and dunked in sauce.

And these firecracker shrimp are no exception!!! You can serve them as an appetizer or the main dish, it’s your choice, no matter what there’s sure to be none left at the end of the meal!

Firecracker shrimp

Here’s what ya need:

1/3 cup Harissa paste

1 pound peeled shrimp

We used our own Harissa blend and followed the guidelines on the back to make a paste. Mix your paste and shrimp and let them sit up to thirty minutes. Skewer and throw them on your grill!!

It was hard not to eat these shrimp right away but we managed to hold back long enough to throw them on a bed of slaw in a hot dog bun:

Firecracker shrimp

We served these delightful sandwiches with a side of tomato cucumber salad seasoned with our spiced sea salt and grilled corn seasoned with our grill seasoning.

Firecracker shrimp

Happy grilling!

XO

Charleston Spice Co.

Hot Browns

Derby Day 2015

This is also a belated Derby Day inspired post! Once you’ve had a Mint Julep or two there’s nothing better to soak up all that alcohol than this combination of classic ingredients. Of course Mint Juleps are not necessary to enjoy this warm gooey comfort food:

Derby Day 2015

Here are the guidelines:

A couple slices of white bread (no crust)

A couple slices of turkey

A couple slices of tomato

A couple slices of bacon, cooked

A little of your favorite Mornay Sauce

In your dish layer bread, turkey, and tomato. Smother with your Mornay and place bacon on top. Place dishes under the broiler until hot and bubbling. Remove and serve!!! If you don’t have cute little individual baking dishes you should probably get some. Hahaha just kidding!!! You can layer your hot browns in a large baking dish and then scoop them out individually, it’ll just be a little messier.

Cheers,

Charleston Spice Co.

Derby Day 2015

Creamy Dill Spread

Creamy Dill Spread

This spread is perfect for bagels, crackers, and bread. It’s also divine when spread on top of a steak or a burger!!

Here’s what you need:

8 oz. cream cheese, at room temp

1 heaping Tablespoon Dill Dip

1 Tablespoon cream style horseradish (if using pure horseradish, use 1/2 amount)

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix them all together. Let sit overnight or use right away!

This is one way we’ve used it, creamy dill spread and lox toast with deviled eggs and avocado on the side:

Creamy Dill Spread

Hope you have a great weekend!

xoxo

Charleston Spice Co.

Smoked Sausage Soup

Smoked Sausage Soup

We have lovely weather here in Charleston, it can be hot in the summer but the winter is usually pretty mild.

But then it gets cold for a day or two and we all wonder what in the world is going on.

Then we remember, January and February are actually supposed to be cold months. It’s times like these that call for a hearty soup like this Smoked Sausage Soup:

Smoked Sausage Soup

Here’s what you’ll need:

2 cups corn

2 cups edamame

6 oz mushrooms, chopped

1/2 a ridiculously large onion, chopped

1 1/2 lb. smoked sausage of your choice, cut however you please

3 Tablespoons Smoky Cajun blend

15 oz can tomato sauce

2 cups water

In a medium-large pot over medium heat cook corn, edamame, mushrooms, onion, sausage, and spices until browned and tender. Add tomato sauce and water and let simmer for at least an hour. Depending on how long you let your soup simmer you may need to add more water. And it’s that simple. Serve hot with cornbread or biscuits!

Cornbread&Soup

And because you’ll have an hour of simmer time, here’s a great cornbread recipe adapted from The Settlement Cook Book to keep you busy:

1 cup flour

1 cup corn meal

4 tablespoons sugar

3 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 cups buttermilk

1 egg, beaten

3 tablespoons butter, melted

Preheat oven to 400F. Sift dry ingredients. Add buttermilk, egg, and butter. Beat well and pour into a greased 8 inch pan. bake for 30 to 40 mins.

Cornbread

Stay warm!!

XO

Charleston Spice Co.

The Honeysuckle

honeysuckle

We’d like to make a toast to sunny days and childhood memories. That’s what this drink tastes like to us.

It tastes like running around with no shoes in the slanting afternoon light searching for the honeysuckles with the sweetest nectar and pretending not to hear when your parents call you in for the night.

And all of this wild child taste is hidden by an elegant and sophisticated exterior that makes it perfect for any occasion.

honeysuckle

 

Here’s what you’ll need:

1.25 ounces Asian pear juice

1.25 ounces elderflower liqueur

Brut or champagne to fill flute

honey and ginger sugar to rim glass

Start by rimming your flute with honey and ginger sugar. Don’t be alarmed when the honey starts to drip down the glass, it will add a hauntingly gorgeous look to your cocktails and give your guests an excuse to lick their fingers.

Pour pear juice and the elderflower liqueur into flute, top off with bubbly and enjoy!

honeysuckle

 

Pimento Cheese

pretty darn good

Yup, this pimento cheese recipe is pretty darn good. We kept “testing” it after we mixed it up just to make sure it really was as good as we thought. And it was, every time.

Here’s how you can become an addict, uh, we mean, a great pimento cheese maker:

3 pounds cheddar cheese

3 ounces pimentos

1/4 cup mayonnaise

1 teaspoon adobo

pimento cheese

Combine all the ingredients on a plate and mash together with a fork until combined to your liking. And it’s as simple as that! Eat right away or put in the refrigerator for future use.

pimento cheese

Waffles with Asian pears and prosciutto

Can you feel it?

Fall is in the air!

At least for now, who knows what it’ll feel like tomorrow, but yesterday we were craving warmth and deliciousness. So we made waffles and soup, and the waffles, woah. They were a blissful combination of sweet and savory and happiness:

Prosciutto Waffles

What you’ll need:

2 cups flour

2 teaspoons baking flour

2 tablespoons sugar (we used vanilla bean sugar)

1 heaping teaspoon of poudre douce

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 eggs, separated

2 cups milk

4 to 6 tablespoons melted butter

1 1/2 – 2 cups Asian pears, cut into little cubes

At least 6 strips of prosciutto cut into smaller pieces

Combine all dry ingredients. Beat egg whites until they are stiff but not dry, set aside. Beat egg yolks, add milk and mix with dry ingredients only enough to blend them. Add melted butter. Fold in egg whites and asian pears, mixing only enough to incorporate. Pour batter into your waffle iron according to the iron’s instructions and layer with a strip or two of prosciutto, close iron and let cook.

Serve with fruit, roasted veggies, or a nice warm soup and enjoy!

Prosciutto Waffles