Summer finally arrived in the Deep South. With a vengeance. So…it’s too hot to bake. And too hot to cook anything complicated. What about something cold?

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Like chocolate sorbet?

    2 3/4 cups water
    1 cup sugar {I used 1/2 cup sugar and 1/2 cup Stevia}
    1 cup cocoa powder

Bring the water and sugar to a simmer over low heat until the sugar has dissolved.
Add the cocoa powder, return to a simmer and let it simmer for 15 minutes
Remove from the heat and cool.
Pour the mixture into an ice cream maker and process until the sorbet is frozen and scoopable.

Sorbets tend to be more refreshing than Ice Cream since they do not contain milk or cream.

If you want INTENSE chocolate flavor this is something you HAVE to make! Incredibly easy!

This is potluck week for I Heart Cooking Clubs so I bet there are lots of goodies there to drool over. So go check them out.

What do you get when you mix together bell peppers, onions, spices and tomatoes? A rich savory sauce. What do you get when you crack an egg in the middle and let it cook to a nice runny yolk> SHAKSHUKA! Ellie says it’s the Middle Eastern version of ‘eggs in purgatory’. David Lebovitz says it has North African origins. It is spicy and can be quite hot if you use enough crushed red pepper. It will definitely wake you up if you eat if for breakfast. Which is what I did.

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The spices include cumin, coriander, crushed red pepper and paprika whichcombine to provide a rich, flavorful dish. And as if that wasn’t enough – goat cheese {I used an herb-y one} is sprinkled on top.

This week’s pick was from Chaya and it was definitely a breakfast I could get used to.

What did the other’s think? Check out the Eating with Ellie Webpage and see.

The recipe is on page 277 of Ellie’s Weeknight Wonders. And if you would like to join us just cook, blog, and leave your link. We’d love to have you.

It’s summer. Officially. Although, here in the deep south our summer started about 2 weeks ago when the rains FINALLY stopped and the sun came out. Talk about HUMIDITY!!

Summer means lots of cold drinks, cool salads, BBQ-ing, and Strawberries. And if you have strawberries then you absolutely HAVE to make Strawberry Shortcakes. I mean, its like a law or something…..

In the US this means using those little round sponge cakes that soak up all the juices. Or using a sweet biscuit. But the star of the show is always the berries. Sweet. Red. Juicy – if you are lucky enough to find them. It doesn’t matter what you serve them on. This weekthe Doristas are using Lady Finger cookie disks. It’s different.

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But different can be good. As these French style sweet treats were. Dorie says we should call the Ladyfinger Disks Indies: Celebrate Independence Day in the US and Bastille Day in France. I’m just gonna call them DELISH!!

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Layers of Indies with sweet berries and sweet cream. Cannot beat that on a hot day in the Deep South.

Check out the other Shortcakes on the Tuesdays with Dorie website where we leave our links for this week’s “assignment”.

The recipe is on page 338 of Dorie’s Baking Chez Moi.

When I think of strudel I think fruit, sweet, crunchy, dessert.
When Ellie thinks of strudel she thinks basil, spinach, cheese, tomatoes.
Guess we don’t think alike.
But I like her thoughts.

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I think it was darn delicious.

Simple whole wheat pizza dough {she listed frozen but I made my own using Bittman’s no-knead WW dough} wrapped around lots of good stuff including ricotta cheese, mozzarella cheese, tomatoes, basil, spinach, and sundried tomatoes. SO GOOD! Definitely a repeat.

I have to say, though, I would use less ricotta but then it’s not my fave. And now that i’ve made it I can see it with black olives or green olives or mushrooms.

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Yes, indeed!

The recipe is on page 222 of Ellie’s Weeknight Wonders and it was my pick for this week. I hope the other Eaters liked it as well. Check on our website and see.

And if you would like to join in with our healthy eating the upcoming recipes are listed there. Just cook, blog, and leave comment. Love to have you.

Today was a fun day in the kitchen. My son is in town and he likes to cook so we made this week’s ‘assignment’ together.

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Chicken breasts are poached in a brown sugar, soy sauce, cinnamon, star anise, and rice wine mixture. Then fried to crispyness. Thus the name, “twice-cooked”. This was good. I served it as Donna suggested with some steamed greens and jasmine rice. Donna listed chicken breasts with skin but I never buy them so went with the skinless. It was still nice and crispy because of the sugar in the poaching sauce. The sauce thickened quite a bit so I thinned it with a little extra soy sauce and drizzled some over the chicken and steamed bok choy.

The recipe is on page 120 of Donna’s off the shelf.

If you would like to join us just check the recipes on Wednesdays with Donna Hay and leave a comment there. We would love to have you. No commitment. Just fun.

And to see how the other members liked the chicken – WWDH.

In case you hadn’t noticed, this week’s theme for I Heart Cooking Clubs is CHEESE!! Any kind of cheese in any kind of dish just as long as it is from Jacques Pepin’scollection of recipes. And believe me, there are plenty to choose from.

Fulfilling this week’s theme…

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    Gruyère Cheese Soufflé

I made just 1/2 of the recipe because I wasn’t sure if The Man would like it. What I ended up with was three ramekins of deliciousness.

    1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for greasing
    1 tablespoons freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
    1 3/4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
    1/2 cup cold whole milk
    3 large eggs, separated
    1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
    1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
    1 1/2 ounces Gruyère cheese, shredded (1/2 cup) {I used a smoked Gruyère.}
    1 tablespoons chopped chives
    1 slices of yellow American cheese, each cut into 6 strips

Preheat the oven to 400°. Grease 3 4″ ramekins with butter and dust with the Parmigiano. Put in the fridge until ready to fill.
Melt the butter over moderate heat then whisk in the flour and cook, whisking, for 1 minute. Add in the milk, bring to a boil and cook, whisking, until thickened, 1 minute.
Remove the béchamel from the heat, then whisk in 2 egg yolks along with the salt and pepper.
Beat the whites until firm peaks form. Whisk one-third of the whites into the béchamel. Gently fold in the rest of the whites. <font color="green"}I have found that if you just need a small amount of whipped whites my small electric chopper works very well and so much easier than pulling out a mixer.}</font}
Fold in the Gruyère and chives; scrape into the prepared dishes.
Top each ramekin with a small piece of American Cheese.
Bake for 23 – 25 minutes, until puffed and golden. Serve. Original Recipe from Food and Wine

Had to photograph this one quickly because Soufflés collapse very quickly. But the collapse doesn’t affect the taste. Creamy. Cheesy. So much flavor. Now I wish I had the whole recipe. Even The Man liked it, kinda…..

For the rest of the cheesy dishes visit IHCC.

There are some facts you need to know.

    1. One of the ingredients on my ‘wanna try’ list is truffles. But they are expensive little devils especially in the US and difficult to find in Podunk. They have been on my list for a long time.
    2. Back in August 2008 I was visiting a good friends’s blog and noticed she and another soon to be friend were cooking from Guiliano Hazan’s 30 Minute Pasta. All I needed was the book and I could join the fun, too. Well, Kayte gifted me the book and I was on my way. We didn’t make the same thing each week, we just cooked from the book and posted on Thursdays.
    3. One of the recipes I marked was a pasta with a truffle/garlic sauce. (See where I’m going with this?} It was a recipe I was sure I would never make {see Item #!}. We haven’t done 30 Minute Thursdays since September 2012. I guess life just got in the way.
    4. Another good friend from Holland, Marthe, periodically sends me treats from Europe. I reply with treats from the US. In one of the recent boxes was…

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    The circle is complete. NOW I can make that Truffle Pasta!!

These are the ingredients:

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And THIS is what you end up with.

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A rich, earthy, garlicky plate of aromatic pasta.

Hazn called for fresh truffles, but {see #1} so the jarred would have to do.

Someday, maybe, Kayte, Glennis, and I will be back with 30 Minute Thursdays. But for now we are cooking together again with the Eating with Ellie and Wednesdays with Donna Hay groups. It’s nice to have friends to cook with.

If you want to see the other pastas from Hazan…30 Minute Thursdays

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