Yellow Cake with Chocolate Frosting
101 Cookbooks
by Heidi Swanson
4d ago
My birthday cake of choice is yellow cake with chocolate frosting. Generous with the frosting please, but not completely over the top. You’re looking at my go to. It checks all the boxes – classic, nostalgic, and tender cake layers covered with substantial, deep, thick, chocolate frosting. The frosting is mixed with enough salt to balance out the sweetness, and a good percentage of cream cheese. I resisted the urge to add sprinkles here, but it’s a cake that certainly welcomes them. Yellow Cake: Technique There are a number of ways to approach yellow cake, but I’m stuck on the following metho ..read more
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Baked Ziti
101 Cookbooks
by Heidi Swanson
1w ago
I discovered a truly fantastic version of baked ziti in 2017 when I started cooking from Colu Henry’s Back Pocket Pasta. Big, hearty, family-style pastas are a great love of mine, but my baked ziti attempts were always just so-so. I struggled with overall cohesiveness, and the ricotta mixture always tended to bake up a little drier than I hoped. Colu’s technique was a game-changer. She recommends a 50/50 blend of ricotta and creme fraîche in her recipe – it keeps everything silky and rich, and I’ve never looked back. And yep, sour cream will also work in a pinch. What Makes Great Baked Ziti? I ..read more
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Roasted Cauliflower with Tahini
101 Cookbooks
by Heidi Swanson
2w ago
I’ve roasted cauliflower a thousand different ways, but this version, from Around Our Table by Sara Forte, quickly became a weeknight staple after the first time I tried it. A big head of cauliflower is cut into florets that are tossed with a spiced oil and roasted in a hot oven. Red onions and bits of dates are introduced along the way and the whole situation is tossed with lots of herbs, arugula, pine nuts, sesame seeds, and a creamy tahini dressing. It’s wildly delicious. Many of you know Sara from her o.g. food blog Sprouted Kitchen. Or maybe you’re a member of the SK Cooking Club? She’s b ..read more
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Homemade Blackberry Syrup
101 Cookbooks
by Heidi Swanson
1M ago
The next time you have blackberries on hand, please make this recipe. It doesn’t lake long, and you are left with enough sweet & spicy, chile-infused blackberry syrup to keep your taste buds tingling for a good stretch. I clipped the recipe out of an issue of Gourmet Magazine years ago, September 2007, and enjoy it  every year when berries are in season. Blackberry Syrup: The Recipe Over the years I’ve made this syrup experimenting with a range of chiles. Play around! Broadly speaking, it’s easy to adjust the spiciness to your liking. My advice is to make notes so you know your ..read more
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Health Nut Vegan Chili
101 Cookbooks
by Heidi Swanson
1M ago
There are a number of cookbooks this spring I’m wildly excited about and this exceptional vegan chili is from one of them. It is from Jess Damuck’s Health Nut: A Feel-Good Cookbook and I’ve been making it regularly ever since I saw an early version of the book last year. I’ll talk a bit more about the cookbook down below, but we’ll jump into the chili details first. Jess calls it her Very Good Vegan Chili. I double the recipe and cook it in the absolute largest pot I own – freezing the extra portions for later. It freezes brilliantly. The chili is bold, thick flavor-packed, and primed for lots ..read more
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Skillet Cornbread
101 Cookbooks
by Heidi Swanson
1M ago
One of my favorite cornmeal recipes is Marion Cunningham’s Custard-Filled Cornbread from The Breakfast Book. My neighbor in San Francisco brought it to a Halloween potluck (to much fanfare), and it occurred to me it was the same cornbread Molly writes about in A Homemade Life. Everyone in my family now loves this cornbread, and it has shown up at many family gatherings over the years. It is one of those recipes, so spot-on, I thought I’d never change it, tweak it, or make it any other way. There was no need. Keep it simple, leave it alone. Skillet Cornbread: The Inspiration Narrator ..read more
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Strawberry Scones
101 Cookbooks
by Heidi Swanson
2M ago
There are some things to know before you jump into making these strawberry scones. First, the foundation of a great scone is a good recipe and cold ingredients. The cold ingredients will make the dough much easier to work with. Second, let your scones bake long enough, really keep an eye on things. For the scone style you see here, you don’t want pale. Much of the flavor happens as the sugars, and butter, and edges of each scone brown. Lastly, scones made with fresh fruit are best warm from the oven. Bake just before you want to enjoy them whenever possible. Or do a quick reheat. Strawberry S ..read more
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Itsy Bitsy Chocolate Chip Cookies
101 Cookbooks
by Heidi Swanson
2M ago
I recognize the lead photo for this post makes these chocolate chip cookies look enormous. They are not. In fact, one of these cookies is about the size of a half-dollar, you might be able to fit a dozen of them in the palm of your hand. And while the photo might be a bit misleading, the trade-off is that you can see all the flecks of shaved chocolate, oats, and walnuts that are packed into every tiny cookie. The grains of sugar on top? They give the cookies just the right amount of crunch. These are the perfect bite-sized cookie, and each batch makes nearly twelve dozen of them. Itsy Bitsy C ..read more
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Easter Brunch Ideas
101 Cookbooks
by Heidi Swanson
2M ago
I know many of you are on the hunt for good Easter brunch recipes right now. Here are a few favorites. I’m highlighting them here for Easter, but they’re all a part of my year-round repertoire. For brunch I love family-style dishes like breakfast casseroles and frittatas equally as much as a waffle or omelette bar. I mean, who doesn’t love a DIY toppings situation? You’ll see a mix of all this down below along with favorite drinks and a handful of menu ideas. Have fun planning! Easter Brunch Ideas I limited this recipe list to long-time favorites. Real go-to options, the brunch all-stars. Be s ..read more
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Tortelli with Brown Butter
101 Cookbooks
by Heidi Swanson
2M ago
The first time I cooked this simple tortelli pasta was years ago, 2010. We rented an apartment in Rome’s Testaccio neighborhood for a month, and would spend our days exploring the city on foot. One of the charms of Rome is the neighborhood bakeries, pasta shops, and produce markets. I particularly love the pasta shops and this is one of the impromptu lunches I threw together after scoring a dozen beautiful fat-bellied ricotta tortelli. For good reason it has remained a staple in our pasta repertoire. This pasta couldn’t be simpler. Toss cooked tortelli in butter that has browned in a skillet ..read more
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