Christmas

A NEW HOLIDAY TRADITION

November 28, 2017

As the holidays approach, all the giant factories are kicking into high gear to provide Americans with monstrous piles of cheaply produced merchandise.
This year will be different.

It is time to think outside the box. Who says a gift needs to fit in a shirt box, wrapped in mass- produced wrapping paper?

Everyone — yes EVERYONE gets his or her hair cut. How about gift certificates from your local hair salon or barber? Gym membership? It’s appropriate for all ages that are thinking about some health improvement.
Who wouldn’t appreciate getting their car detailed? Small detail shops and car washes would love to sell you a gift certificate or a book of gift certificates.

Are you one of those extravagant givers who think nothing of plunking down the Benjamins on a foreign-made flat-screen TV? Perhaps that grateful gift receiver would like their driveway sealed, or lawn mowed for the summer, or driveway plowed all winter, or games at the local golf course.

There are a gazillion owner-run restaurants — all offering gift certificates. And, if your intended isn’t the fancy eatery sort, what about a half dozen breakfasts at the local breakfast joint?
Remember, folks this isn’t about big national chains — this is about supporting your hometown businesses with their financial lives on the line to keep their doors open.

How many people couldn’t use an oil change for their car, truck, or motorcycle, done at a shop run by the American working guy? Thinking about a heartfelt gift for mom? Parents would LOVE the services of a local cleaning person for a day. My computer could use a tune-up, and I KNOW I can find some young person who is struggling to get their repair business up and running.

If you are looking for something more personal then look to local crafts people spin their own wool and knit them into scarves. They make jewelry, and pottery and beautiful wooden boxes.

Plan your holiday outings at local, owner operated restaurants and leave your server a nice tip. And, how about going out to see a play or ballet at your hometown theatre.

Musicians need love too, so find a venue showcasing local bands.

Leave your mail carrier, trash guy or babysitter a nice BIG tip.

This is about caring about your neighbors, encouraging small businesses to keep plugging away to follow their dreams. And, when we care about our neighbors, we care about our communities, and the benefits come back to us in ways we could not imagine.

“Work With What You Got!”

© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2017 All Rights Reserved

Holiday Moderation

November 17, 2017

The holiday season is in full swing and soon you’ll be living on Thanksgiving leftovers. Ever had pumpkin pie for breakfast followed by a full turkey meal for lunch and another for dinner? It’s easy to get in the habit of holiday indulging.

The average American gains more than a pound each holiday season. Over a decade that really adds up. As they say, “It’s easy to put it on and hard to take off.”

There are ways to enjoy the holidays, but keep yourself in check so that you don’t fall into the trap of complete abandon.

High Fat Foods
Pigs In A Blanket: High In Fat, Salt, and Carbs.
Fried Cheese Balls: High In Fat And Small So It’s Easy To Overeat.
Baked Brie: Fatty And Addictive, Plus You Have To Slather It Onto Some Carb Calories.
Chips: They Have No Nutritional

Eat In Moderation
Cheese And Crackers: Calorically Dense And Super Easy To Eat. They’re Not Special So Spend Your Holiday Calories On Something More Festive.

Once-A-Year Favorites: You Only Eat Stuffing, Latkes, And Eggnog Once Or Twice A Year. If You’ve Been Coveting Aunt Martha’s Chiffon Pie Or Cousin Tommy’s Cooked Goose, Enjoy In Moderation.

Be My Guest
Crispy, Crunchy Crudités: Make The Brightly Colored Vegetables Your First Stop For Noshing. Add Hummus To Slow Digestion.
Pork Tenderloin, Ham Or Turkey: Protein Is Going To Suppress Your Appetite Due To The Fact That It Is Slow Digesting And Triggers The Release Of Several Satiety Hormones.
Shrimp Cocktail: Low In Fat, High In Protein And A Perfect First Course For A Low Calorie Tour Of The Buffet.
Swedish Meatballs: Another Protein Packed Option That Stands Out Amid A Carbohydrate Heavy Table.
Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus: A Great Choice To Fuel Your Body While Keeping Your Appetite In Check.

Enjoy the holidays, but enjoy them in moderation.

“Work With What You Got!”

© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2017 All Rights Reserved

Christmas Trees

December 23, 2016

The modern day Christmas tree was developed in early modern Germany, with predecessors that can be traced to the 16th and even possibly the 15th century. Devout Christians brought decorated trees into their homes. During the second half of the 19th century Christmas trees (also known as the Yule-tree) became popular beyond Germany, at first among the upper classes. Trees were traditionally decorated with apples, nuts, and other foods. During the 18th century people began to add illuminated candles, which were ultimately replaced by Christmas lights after the invention of electrification. During the early 19th century the Christmas tree became very common in the United States due to German immigrants settling Eastern and Midwestern towns. News spread of the Christmas tree between 1850 to 1860 by “Godey’s Lady’s Book,” and soon it became a common Christmas tradition.

www.tinynewyorkkitchen.com

“Work With What You Got!”

© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2016 All Rights Reserved

Holiday Menu Ideas

December 20, 2016

Everyone who’s cooking for the holidays wonders what he or she should make for the holidays. I like to keep it simple and typically follow the “don’t experiment on your guests” rule.

Hors D’oeuvres
Mini Crab Cakes With Remoulade Sauce
Cold Seafood Platter (Lobster Tails, Jumbo Shrimp, Jumbo Lump Crab Meat)
Stuffed Mushrooms (Crab, Sausage, Cheese Stuffing)
Chicken Tenders With Honey Mustard Sauce
Chicken & Beef Satay With Asian Dipping Sauces
Jumbo Shrimp Cocktail Platter With Cocktail Sauce
Grilled Shrimp With Aioli
Mini Southwest Chicken Quesadillas With Salsa
Beef Franks In a Blanket With Whole Grain Mustard Sauce
Antipasto Platter With Imported Meats, Cheese, Peppers, And Olives
Assorted Mini Quiche
Bacon Wrapped Sea Scallops
Grilled Citrus Shrimp With Mango Aioli
Tenderloin Of Beef On Crostini With Horseradish Sauce

Salads
Mesclun Salad With Goat Cheese, Maple Candied Walnuts, Dried Cranberries And Balsamic Vinaigrette
Traditional Caesar Salad With Croutons & Shaved Parmesan Cheese
Traditional Caesar Salad With Shrimp Or Chicken

Dinner
Chicken Or Veal Marsala (Sautéed With Fresh Mushrooms & Red Roasted Peppers With Marsala Wine)
Chicken Or Veal Francese (Bathed In Light Egg Batter & Sautéed With White Wine & Lemon Sauce)
Chicken Or Veal Picata (Sautéed With Artichoke Hearts With Lemon Caper & White Wine Sauce)
Chicken Or Veal Parmigiana (Breaded & Sautéed Crispy, Topped With Marinara Sauce, Mozzarella & Parmesan Cheese)
Poached Salmon With Dijon Dill Sauce
Stuffed Filet Of Sole (Stuffed With Crabmeat & Baked With Lemon, Butter & White Wine)
Roasted Tenderloin Of Beef (Serve With Mushroom Sauce Or Creamy Horseradish Sauce & Oven Roasted Potatoes)
Roasted Turkey Breast (Serve With Traditional Stuffing, Gravy & Mashed Potatoes)
Smoked Country Ham (Serve With Roasted Sweet Potatoes & Whole Grain Mustard)
Cheese Ravioli With Marinara Or Bolognese Sauce
Manicotti Stuffed With Ricotta Cheese, Spices & Parmesan Cheese (Topped With Marinara Or Bolognese Sauce)
Stuffed Shells With Ricotta & Parmesan Cheese (Topped With Marinara Or Bolognese Sauce)
Baked Rigatoni With Herb Ricotta & Topped With Mozzarella Cheese
Classic Meat Lasagna
Vegetarian Lasagna
Flour Cheese Lasagna (Ricotta, Parmesan, Romano & Mozzarella)
Eggplant Parmigiana
Eggplant Rollatini
Sausage & Peppers In Tomato Sauce
Sausage & Broccoli Rabe Sautéed In Olive Oil & Garlic
Tuscan Sausage Cook With Broccoli Rabe & Cannelloni Beans In Creamy Tomato Sauce

Desserts
Pies
Cakes
Cookies
Zabaglione

www.tinynewyorkkitchen.com

“Work With What You Got!”

© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen

Pies

December 17, 2016

There are four versions of classic pie dough. 1. All butter dough has excellent flavor, but can be tricky to use. 2. Butter and shortening dough is flakier and more tender. It browns slightly faster than all butter dough, but has less shrinkage and holds its shape better during baking. 3. Lard pie dough creates the flakiest, crispiest, and most tender dough of all, but the flavor is fairly bland. This dough also has the least amount of shrinkage when it bakes and it browns more slowly. 4. Butter and lard dough has superb flavor and texture. The ratio of butter to lard or butter to shortening varies from recipe to recipe, but most call for half butter, half alternative fat.

Starting with cold ingredients are key to a flaky crust. Using ice water and cold fat (butter or shortening) is important. Chill the dough for about an hour before rolling to help prevent sticking. When the pie crust goes in the oven, the cold shortening will stay solid long enough for the crust to set, creating small pockets in between the layers of dough as it melts resulting in a flaky crust.

Minimal handling is very important in helping to achieve a tender crust. Handle the dough just enough to mix it and roll it. Proper rolling is another way to avoid excess handling. Roll the dough from the center out, lifting the rolling pin after each roll.

To avoid soggy bottom crust in your fruit pie, get the filling into the piecrust and into the oven quickly. Drain off any excess juice in the bowl before pouring it into the piecrust.

For double crust fruit pies, cut slits in the top crust to allow steam to get out. The escaping moisture will help prevent soggy crusts.

Bake your pie in the lower third of the oven since this will allow the bottom crust to become crisp while the top shouldn’t get overly browned.

To cut down on the sugar in fruit pies, mix in a teaspoon or two of baking soda to the fruit before adding any sweetener. Then start out with adding 1/4 to 1/2 the amount of sugar that you normally would. The baking soda neutralizes the acid in the fruit, which means that it needs much less sweetening.

Allow the pie to cool 2 to 4 hours on a rack to room temperature or until barely warm, before slicing to ensure that the filling is set and will not run.

Slice apples thinly for apple pie. Thick slices promote air space and create a gap between the fruit and the crust and this may lead to a soggy crust.

Cornstarch is a good thickener to use with fruit to make a filling because it does not impart its own flavor and yields the smoothest texture. It also does not thin when reheating a slice of pie.

To enjoy fresh apple pie during the winter, freeze your prepared pie filling. Just cut up and slice your apples and toss them with whatever seasonings and thickener you normally put in your pie filling. Then freeze in a greased pie pan and when the apples are hard, lift them out and wrap for long-term freezing. When you want to enjoy an apple pie, all you have to do is place the ready-frozen pie filling in a crust and bake according to the recipe.

Baking a pie with a raw fruit filling will take a little longer than one with pre-cooked filling, about an hour longer. When using a pre-cooked filling, pies bake at a higher temperature for a shorter period of time, just enough to thoroughly bake the crust and heat the filling.

“Work With What You Got!”

© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2016 All Rights Reserve

Bake Better Cookies

December 1, 2016

December is here and is cookie-baking heaven. Here are some basic tips to make a better cookie.

Split the dough. Work with half of the cookie dough at a time when rolling and cutting cookies. Too much handling of the dough makes cookies tough.
Keep the other half refrigerated since chilled dough is easier to handle.

Bake cookies on flat, shiny, heavy aluminum, baking sheets. These baking sheets with no sides are designed for easily sliding cookies onto a cooling rack. Dark sheets may absorb heat, causing cookies to brown too much on the bottom.

Grease baking sheets with cooking spray or solid shortening instead of butter or margarine.

Don’t overload the oven. Bake one sheet of cookies at a time on the middle oven rack.

Make sure to cool baking sheets between batches before reusing. Wipe the surface of each with a paper towel before reusing.

Cool cookies completely, on wire racks, before storing them in airtight containers.

“Work With What You Got!”

© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2016 All Rights Reserved

Brussels Sprouts

November 23, 2016

Brussels sprouts have a pronounced and sweet nutty flavor, quite unlike cabbage, although the two are closely related. They are traditionally served at Thanksgiving and Christmas and have an affinity with certain nuts, such as almonds, pistachios, and chestnuts. Brussels sprouts taste great with onions, and ginger, or with nuts.

Brussels sprouts should be small and hard with tightly wrapped leaves. Avoid any that are turning yellow or have loose leaves. They will keep in a cool place or in the salad drawer of a refrigerator for several days.

When preparing and cooking Brussels sprouts trim away the base of the stalk and remove the outer leaves. If the sprouts are large, cut them in half or quarters, or slice thinly for stir-frying. Cook very briefly in small amounts of fast-boiling water. Alternatively, stir-fry with onions and ginger, in a little oil and butter.

“Work With What You Got!”

© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2016 All Rights Reserved

Family & Thanksgiving

November 16, 2016

Family & Thanksgiving

More than any other holiday, Thanksgiving has evolved as a time to gather together. On Christmas most Americans stay at home, but on Thanksgiving, many pack up and leave home to spend the holiday with relatives and friends. This is nearly as old a custom of the day as having turkey and pumpkin pie.

The reunion tradition arose in the early eighteenth century as families began dispersing across New England to settle on the frontiers of New England (western Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine). Gradually, before and after the Revolutionary War, New Englanders pressed into New York State, Ohio, and even parts of the southern colonies and territories. In the nineteenth century, hundreds of New Englanders went west during the Gold Rush and subsequent westward migrations. And as Boston, New York, and other towns grew into cities, young people left farms to join businesses or to work in industries in urban centers. Thanksgiving was the time people chose for family reunion, to go back to the old homestead for a visit. It still is.

“Work With What You Got!”

© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2016 All Rights Reserved

Merry Christmas 2015

December 25, 2015

Tiny New York Kitchen Wishes You & Your Family A Very Merry Christmas!

Happy Sunday

December 20, 2015

Happy Sunday! The Fourth Candle On The Advent Wreath Is Lit. Christmas Is Nearly Here.

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