County Tres Leche

Yee haw! This is a good way to end a meal, have a snack, or simply enjoy a new cultural twist on a classic treat.

Mahasti presented The Tomato Head’s recipe for “Country Tres Leche” on WBIR this weekend. What makes it country? The recipe is based upon The Tomato Head’s “Best Biscuits” recipe, instead of the traditional lady fingers or sponge cake. Give it a whirl and let us know what you think.

The Tomato Head’s Country Tres Leche

(aka, Biscuits soaked in three milks topped with blackberry compote and cream)

For Milk Soaked Biscuits:

 

1 cup sweetened condensed milk

1 cup evaporated milk

1 cup heavy cream

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1/8 tsp ground clove

6 – 8 day-old biscuits

In a small bowl mix together condensed milk, evaporated milk, heavy cream, cinnamon, and clove.

Place biscuits in an 8 X 11 baking dish.  Pour 1 ½ cups of the milk mixture over the biscuits and allow biscuits to soak for 2 hours or overnight.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Bake milk soaked biscuits for 20 minutes until heated through.

For Blackberry Compote:

 

1 lb fresh or frozen blackberries

1/3 cup sugar

Place blackberries and sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat.  Cook mixture just until sugar has completely dissolved.  Remove from heat and set aside.

To Serve:

 

Place each biscuit on a plate.  Pour ¼ cup of the remaining milk mixture over each biscuit, followed by ¼ cup of heavy cream and 1/3 cup of blackberry compote.  Serve immediately.

The Tomato Head’s Fried Green Tomatoes

The South in the summer? Friend green tomatoes. The two things are synonymous and equally loved. Mahasti’s sharing The Tomato Head’s recipe for fried green tomatoes and both the Maryville and Knoxville restaurants will be serving them today as an appetizer accompanied by a honey mustard dressing.

Tomato Head’s Fried Green Tomatoes

1.5 pounds green tomatoes
2/3 cup cornmeal
1.5 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
2/3 cup buttermilk
2 cups vegetable oil for frying
1 cup all purpose flour for dusting

Cut the ends off the tomatoes and slice into ¼ inch thick slices. Place the tomatoes on a paper towel lined baking sheet, in a single layer. Cover the tomatoes with more paper towels and let sit for 20 minutes.

Place cornmeal in blender with salt and cayenne pepper and process until fine. Fill 3 small bowls one with cornmeal mixture, one with flour and one with buttermilk.

After 20 minutes move tomatoes to dry paper towel, cover with more paper towels and press dry. Heat the oil in a large cast iron skillet over medium heat. Dip the tomatoes in flour, then buttermilk and then in the cornmeal mixture. Fry the tomatoes in the hot oil, 3-4 at a time for 2-3 minutes per side, or until golden brown. Drain on a wire rack.

Serve as a side dish or with honey mustard dressing as an appetizer.

Mahasti on WBIR: The Best Biscuits

Several weeks ago, Mahasti put out a call for biscuit recipes, and ever since she’s been testing and refining batch after batch of biscuits. This morning she’s presenting “The Best Biscuits” on WBIR, around 8:15am, and promises to share more info (in the next few days) about the entire process.

The Best Biscuits

2 cups all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
5 tbsp chilled butter, cut into small pieces
¾ cup chilled buttermilk

Measure flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and sugar into a medium bowl. Add chilled butter and work into flour with fingertips or a pastry cutter until the butter resembles small beads. Add buttermilk and work flour into buttermilk until you have a soft dough. Turn dough no more than 10 times. Gather into a ball. flatten the ball of dough on a lightly floured surface to a thickness of 1 inch. Either trim the edges and use a knife cut the biscuits into squares or use a traditional round biscuit cutter to cut out the biscuits. Gather up any remaining dough into a ball and repeat flattening and cutting the biscuits. Place the cut biscuits on an ungreased cookie sheet (placing the biscuits in the freezer at this point for 30 mintues will yield a fluffier biscuit). Bake in a 425 degree oven for 8 – 12 minutes or until golden brown.
Serve hot.

Makes 6-8 biscuits depending on the size of your cutter.

The Perfect Biscuit

Last week, Mahasti enjoyed breakfast at what folks in these parts call “a country cookin’ place.” The establishment served up a bready and spongy biscuit, which got Mahasti to thinking – how does a biscuit get that texture? Was the biscuit homemade or commercially manufactured? What, really, makes the perfect biscuit?

Always experimenting and looking for new recipes and approaches, Mahasti wonders if you might help her on this quest for the best biscuit. When you think of your favorite biscuit, do you think back to a recipe from your Aunt Libby or your Granny? Is that perfect biscuit recipe one your mother made, or maybe even your uncle’s cousin’s nephew whose name you can’t remember now?

If you have one of those old recipes from a relative or friend that you think makes the perfect biscuit, would you be willing to share? Mahasti would love to give the recipe a test run and see if it gets her any closer on her quest for the perfect biscuit. Willing to help? Send your recipe to: talktous@thetomatohead.com and she’ll be chomping at the bit to get her hands in the flour.

Tomato Head’s Ham, Scrambled Egg and Roasted Asparagus Sandwich with Artichoke Tapenade

It’s the first Saturday of the month, which means Mahasti will be on WBIR sharing some recipes for the new spring season. Tune in around 8:15am to watch as she prepares Tomato Head’s Ham, Scrambled Egg and Roasted Asparagus Sandwich with Artichoke Tapenade.

Both the Maryville and Knoxville locations will be serving this special on Saturday (while it lasts).

And for those who want to serve this special for an Easter brunch, or to take care of ham leftovers after Easter festivities, here are the recipes. Enjoy!

Tomato Head’s Ham, Scrambled Egg and Roasted Asparagus Sandwiches with Artichoke Tapenade

For the Artichoke Tapenade

2 cups artichoke hearts
½ cup green olive
1 cup pitted kalamata olives
1 – 2 cloves garlic
2 anchovies
¼ cup olive oil

If using a food processor, place everything in the bowl of the food processor and process until smooth. If you do not have a food processor, chop everything finely. Place in a bowl and mix well.

To roast asparagus:

Trim the bottom ends off the asparagus, rinse and cut in half. Place the asparagus in a mixing bowl drizzle with enough vegetable oil to lightly coat the asparagus. Sprinkle with some salt and pepper, toss to coat and place on a cookie sheet. Cook the asparagus in a preheated 450 degree oven for 8 – 10 minutes.

To make 4 sandwiches:

Scramble 4 eggs
4 oz of ham
4 slices of swiss cheese
8 – 10 sprigs of roasted asparagus
4 rolls or 8 slices of bread

If using rolls cut the rolls in half. Spread the bottom piece of bread you are using with artichoke tapenade. Divide the scrambled eggs between the sandwiches. Top with approximately 1 oz of ham per sandwich. Place the roasted asparagus and swiss cheese on the top piece of bread. Place the sandwich in the preheated oven and bake just until the cheese has melted. Remove the sandwiches from the oven. Flip the top piece of bread onto the bottom piece. Cut the sandwiches in half and serve.

© 2016 The Tomato Head Site by: Robin Easter Design