July is here Yeah ! A Breather At Last

Before I get started let me apologize for being gone for so long. I passed all of my finals my brain hurts a bit, I have moved to Copenhagen from the other side of the country and await the start of a new semester in a new school. Let the adventure begin.

Yesterday it was my Birthday I am 45 years old I can not believe it. (Shhhhhhh) don’t tell anyone all of my friends think I have been 29 for the last 15 years. In my family we have a bit of a tradition, birthday boy or girl can have whatever they want to eat. My wife, who herself is a very accomplished cook, is the one who makes my Birthday meals these days.

This year my choices were Baked Cannelloni and Banoffee Pie. I had no recipe for either so I simply did a google search for Cannelloni and Banoffee Pie and, Wa la through the wonders of the internet I at long last had my recipes.

Italian Baked Cannelloni

Original recipe can be food at:  http://allrecipes.com/recipe/italian-baked-cannelloni/

This was a great recipe it was very tasty. If you look at the picture in the recipe you will see a stripe of Bechamel on the top. if you follow the recipe you will not have any Bechamel left when you put the cannelloni together. The recipe tells you to put all the bechamel in the stuffing. If you want some on top you should reserve a cup for the end.

canelonni

1/2 cup olive oil
1 pound lean ground beef
1 onion, thinly sliced
1/4 teaspoon dried sage
1/4 teaspoon dried rosemary
salt to taste
1/2 cup white wine
12 ounces mozzarella cheese, cubed
2 egg yolks

4 tablespoons butter
4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups milk

2 (14.5 ounce) cans stewed tomatoes
1 onion, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup white wine
salt and pepper to taste
12 cannelloni pasta shells

To make the Cannelloni Filling: In a large skillet over medium heat, warm oil and saute ground beef with the onion, sage and rosemary; cook until meat is evenly browned and crumbly. Add salt and 1/2 cup white wine; cook until wine is evaporated

.
To make the Bechamel sauce: Melt 4 tablespoons butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add flour and stir until well incorporated. Stir in milk and bring to a slow boil until mixture thickens. Stir into the meat mixture and mix well. Stir in the mozzarella and egg yolks; set aside.
In a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, melt 2 tablespoons butter and saute onion until soft and translucent. Add 1/2 cup white wine and let it cook down to evaporate; add tomato and salt. Mix well; simmer for 15 minutes.
Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add pasta, a few at a time, and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente; using a slotted spoon, remove immediately to a pot filled with cold water. Lift pasta out with slotted spoon and arrange on a flat surface.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
Spoon a line of filling into each shell, starting from one end and using your finger to push the filling inside of each shell. In a 9×13 inch baking dish, place cannelloni and cover with tomato mixture.
Bake in preheated oven for 15 minutes or until heated through; when finished baking, allow to stand for 5 minutes and serve.

I have to say it was as delicious for lunch today as it was for dinner last night.

Being from America I had never heard of Banoffee Pie before and I have to say if you have never had it you have not lived yet. Banoffee Pie is like Banana cream pie but on steroids. Make it Eat it and I will be your new best friend.

Banoffee Pie

Recipe can be found at: http://www.saveur.com/article/Recipes/Banoffee-Pie-Classic

7-Banoffee-400x600

FOR THE PIE CRUST:
1 stick unsalted butter, melted
1 10-oz. package of digestive biscuits, such as McVities brand ( Graham crackers will do the trick)

FOR THE FILLING:
1 stick of unsalted butter
½ cup (4 oz) packed dark brown sugar
1 14-oz. can condensed milk, such as Carnation brand
4 bananas
1 pint heavy cream
Grated chocolate

Make the crumb crust: Crush the digestive biscuits in a food processor until you get a fine crumb texture.Transfer to a bowl and stir in melted butter. Press into a 9″-diameter tart base with a removable bottom. Press the mixture up the sides of the tart form with the back of a spoon. Chill the crust in refrigerator for at least one hour.

Make the toffee: Melt the butter in a small saucepan. Stir in the brown sugar and melt over low heat. Add the condensed milk and bring the mixture to a boil for a few minutes, stirring continuously. The toffee should darken slightly. Pour the filling into the crust. Cool and chill again for at least one hour until the caramel is firm.

To serve, remove the tart from the pan and carefully transfer to a serving plate. Slice the bananas and place them in a single layer on top of the caramel. Whip the cream and spoon it over the toffee and bananas, sealing the filling in. Sprinkle the top of the pie with grated chocolate.

Well that was my meal for my 29th (Wink Wink) Birthday, give it a try and Enjoy.

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