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A Christmas feast from the oven.

LET YOUR OVEN MAKE LIFE easier this Christmas. Use it to prepare the appealing meal shown on page 92. As the meat roasts, you add the vegetables in sequence so they will all be ready at the same time. You can bake and frost the cake a day ahead.

Peppered Beef Rib Roast with Roasted Vegetables and Brandied Juices

2 tablespoons black peppercorns 2 tablespoons fennel seed 3 large cloves garlic 1 center-cut beef standing rib roast, about 10 pounds 12 medium-size (about 2 1/4 lb. total) carrots, peeled 6 small (2 1/2-in.-wide, 2 lb. total) onions, unpeeled 2 dozen small (2-in.-wide, about 3 lb. total) red thin-skinned potatoes, scrubbed 6 small (about 2 lb. total) red bell peppers, cut in half lengthwise, stemmed, and seeded 2/3 cup brandy or regular-strength beef broth 1 3/4 cups regular-strength beef broth Salt

In a blender or food processor, coarsely grind peppercorns and fennel. Add garlic and whirl until finely chopped; rub mixture over beef.

Set roast, fat up, in a V-shaped rack in a deep 12- by 17-inch roasting pan. Place carrots under and around roast. Place onions in a 9- by 13-inch pan. Bake beef on bottom rack and onions above in 325|degrees~ oven (or use 2 ovens); cook 30 minutes.

Add potatoes to meat pan, peppers to onion pan. Bake until a thermometer inserted in center of thickest part of meat reads 130|degrees~ for rare, 2 1/2 hours longer; 140|degrees~ for medium, about 3 hours longer; and 150|degrees~ for well done, about 3 1/2 hours longer.

Put meat on a platter (remove strings if roast is tied). Cut onions in half lengthwise; add vegetables to platter. Keep warm. Tilt roasting pan and skim off and discard fat. Add brandy to pan. Place over high heat and carefully ignite (not beneath a vent or near flammable materials). When flame dies, add broth and bring to a boil, stirring to loosen browned bits; add to pan juices that have drained from roast. Pour into bowl; serve with meat and vegetables. Add salt to taste. Makes 12 servings.

Per serving with fat-trimmed cooked meat: 604 cal. (36 percent from fat); 51 g protein; 24 g fat (9.6 g sat.); 40 g carbo.; 164 mg sodium; 139 mg chol.

Chocolate-Chestnut Star Cake

Look for the sweetened chestnut spread or puree (ingredient list must include sugar) in specialty food stores, European delicatessens, and supermarkets.

1 chocolate cake baked in a 9- by 13-inch pan (use a favorite recipe or a cake mix) Chestnut butter cream (recipe follows) Chocolate icing (recipe follows) Gold color sugar (optional)

Let cake cool, then invert from pan, centering on a platter or board at least 12 by 15 inches. Cut cake in half horizontally. Supporting top layer with 2 wide spatulas, lift off and set aside. Spread chestnut butter cream evenly on cut side of cake base. Set cake top on butter cream; pat gently to adhere cake to filling.

If you want a star-shaped cake, make a 3-inch-long cut into the center of cake from each narrow end. Align knife with cut end and corner of a narrow end of cake; cut wedge free. Repeat to cut free remaining 3 wedges. Butt pan-end edges of each pair of wedges together. Center 1 triangle on each long side of cake.

Swirl icing over top and sides of cake. Decorate with colored sugar. Serve, or let stand until icing is firm, about 4 hours; cover airtight up to a day. Serves 12 to 16.

Nutritional information not available because of variables in cake.

Chestnut butter cream. Beat to smoothly blend 1/2 cup (1/4 lb.) butter or margarine (at room temperature) and about 1 1/2 cups (1 large can, 17 1/2 oz., or 2 small cans, each 8 3/4 oz.) sweetened chestnut spread or puree.

Chocolate icing. In a 1- to 1 1/2-quart pan over low heat, stir 1 1/2 cups whipping cream and 1/2 pound chopped semisweet chocolate until chocolate is melted. Let cool, stirring occasionally, until thick enough to spread, about 1 hour. To speed thickening, set pan in ice water and stir icing until thick enough to spread.
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No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1992 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:recipes
Author:Anusasananan, Linda Lau; Bateson, Betsy Reynolds
Date:Dec 1, 1992
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