Artichoke & Garlic Chicken Rissoles

Rissole is an interesting group of dishes with an intriguing history. The original French rissoles were prepared by enclosing the main ingredients in pastry dough and frying them, but over time the original recipe has evolved and changed.

Many nations have created their own version of the rissole. This food is commonly on offer in street stalls as a casual snack food, or in fast-food restaurants. Some fancy restaurants also serve rissole dishes, although they may use fancier ingredients and dress things up with complex sauces to make their rissoles more interesting. Today, rissoles can be found in numerous European countries, but also in Australia, New Zealand, and even Indonesia and Brazil.

Some cooks refrain from using any sort of coating for a rissole, preferring to make a blend of meat, potatoes, eggs, and breadcrumbs which can be molded into a firm patty. Ingredients such as onions may be added to rissoles as well, along with various spices, especially in nations with a culinary tradition of heavily spiced food. They can be made with ground or cut meat, seafood, or vegetables, and the sweet varieties are usually made with fruit. Most of them, including both sweet and savory rissoles, are usually served with a sauce on the side. Primarily, rissoles were deep-fried, but today the name also encompasses the varieties that are baked in an oven or fried in shallow oil.

Today, I’m making artichoke & garlic chicken rissoles. The sauce gives the rissoles a nice punch of flavor and pairs so well with creamy mashed potatoes & roasted green beans.

Print Recipe
Artichoke & Garlic Chicken Rissoles
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Servings
Ingredients
Artichoke & Garlic Sauce
Chicken Rissoles
Servings
Ingredients
Artichoke & Garlic Sauce
Chicken Rissoles
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Instructions
Sauce
  1. Place all ingredients except oil in a food processor. With motor running, add olive oil in a slow stream to make an emulsion. Continue processing while adding the cream to make a fairly smooth consistency. Remove from food processor & set aside.
Chicken Rissoles
  1. Place chicken, panko crumbs, salt, egg, garlic & soup mix in a bowl. Combine well. Divide into 6 portions. Form each portion into a patty shape.
  2. Heat oil in a large saucepan, Cook rissoles for 2-3 minutes. Turn & cook for a further 1-2 minutes or until golden. Transfer to a plate a wipe out saucepan.
  3. Return rissoles back in saucepan & add sauce. Simmer for 10 minutes until rissoles are cooked through. Nice to serve with creamy mashed potatoes & roasted green beans.

Shrimp Pizza w/ Artichoke & Garlic Sauce

It’s hard to get bored of pizza, but sometimes you want to change things up a bit. In addition to trying new toppings and cheeses, consider using an alternative to tomato sauce on pizza.

Pizza night is a cherished tradition in many households, but sometimes, it’s good to break away from the routine and experiment with new flavors. One of the easiest ways to do this is by trying out different alternative pizza sauces.

The other day Brion & I were in a Winners/Homesense store. Of course, my favorite spot is always the area where they have all the cookware and specialty food items. I saw bottled sauce made with artichokes and garlic. Immediately my thoughts were as to how I could use it. It was quite pricey, so I opted to try and make a copycat version at home.

While tomato sauce has long been associated with traditional pizza, there is a whole new world of flavors waiting to be discovered by breaking from tradition. Tradition of course has its place—there’s a reason classic tomato-topped pizza has been a staple for generations. But there is more to pizza sauce than regular tomato. There are exciting flavors, interesting textures, sweet things, spicy things, cheesy things, even exotic things!

Here are some ideas for making pizza without tomato sauce:

  • White pizza – Make a white sauce with olive oil, garlic, parsley, and a dash of salt and pepper. Spread it on the pizza dough instead of tomato sauce. Top with cheeses like mozzarella, ricotta, or feta, and veggies.
  • Pesto pizza – Spread pesto sauce on the dough instead of tomato sauce. Top with veggies and cheeses.
  • BBQ chicken pizza – Use BBQ sauce as the base instead of tomato sauce. Top with chicken, red onion, cheddar cheese, etc.
  • Mediterranean pizza – Make a tahini sauce base. Top with artichoke hearts, kalamata olives, feta, red onion, etc.
  • Breakfast pizza – Scramble eggs with veggies and meats. Spread it on the dough. Sprinkle with cheeses.
  • Buffalo chicken pizza – Spread buffalo wing sauce on the dough. Top with chicken, blue cheese, mozzarella, celery, onion.
  • Thai pizza – Make a spicy peanut sauce base. Top with chicken, carrot, onion, cilantro, mozzarella.
  • Carbonara pizza – Spread an alfredo sauce base. Top with bacon, onion, Parmesan, egg, parsley.

The best thing about pizza is that there are endless ways to enjoy it. So here you have it … shrimp pizza with artichoke & garlic sauce. Yum!

Print Recipe
Shrimp Pizza w/ Artichoke & Garlic Sauce
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Servings
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Instructions
Sauce
  1. Place all ingredients except oil in food processor. With motor running, Add olive oil in a slow stream to make an emulsion. Place in a dish & set aside.
Pizza Toppings
  1. Fry bacon until done but not crisp. Drain on a paper towel then chop into bite-sized pieces. In the same skillet, sauté shrimp until just cooked & remove it from skillet.
  2. Sauté sliced mushrooms & sliced onions until just cooked.
  3. Slice cherry tomatoes in halves & prepare fresh herbs.
  4. Shred mozzarella cheese.
Assembly
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Spread each naan bread with artichoke & garlic sauce.
  3. Top pizzas with onions, mushrooms, shrimp & bacon. Sprinkle shredded cheese over all then dot with halved cherry tomatoes & herbs.
  4. Bake 10-15 minutes or until cheese is bubbly & tomatoes are roasted. Serve.
Recipe Notes
  • You will no doubt have extra artichoke & garlic sauce. Store it in an air-tight container for up to one week. Enjoy it on toasted bread or swirl into cooked pasta.

Turkey-Bacon Rolls w/ Mushroom Risotto

Bacon is not one of my most favorite foods. I have a very clear ‘taste of a memory’ from the bacon my father would cure on the farm when I was growing up. It was way too salty and fatty for my liking, so I avoided it like the plaque. Brion, on the other hand, loves bacon!  Over the years I have come to find there are many versions of smoked bacon that can really take a recipe to another level. I have used it on, in and around so many things.  I have dipped filets in it, encrusted filets in it, wrapped chicken and salmon filets in it, extra, extra …

Bacon fans are an innovative bunch. Forget the simple slice alongside eggs. Diehards have dipped the meat in chocolate, crumbled it into ice cream, infused it into vodka and the list goes on. You’d have to be living under a rock to miss the signs of our cultural obsession with bacon these days.

In this meal I’m making some sliced turkey-bacon rolls to have with our mushroom risotto. Should be quite flavorful.

Print Recipe
Turkey-Bacon Rolls w/ Mushroom Risotto
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Servings
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Instructions
Turkey/Bacon Rolls
  1. Chop the rosemary & thyme leaves, add a pinch of dried marjoram, parmesan, breadcrumbs & a little lemon zest.
  2. Lay out turkey slices on a work surface, brush them with mustard, distribute the prepared mixture & roll them up to perfectly contain filling. Wrap each roll tightly with a slice of bacon. Secure with a toothpick if necessary.
  3. Sauté garlic in a drizzle of oil for 1-2 minutes over low heat. Add more oil if necessary & brown mini rolls evenly for 3-4 minutes, turning occasionally & adding salt & pepper to taste.
  4. Add wine, lower heat a little & put the lid on & continue cooking for 5-6 minutes, adding very little boiling water if necessary, Remove from heat & keep warm until risotto is cooked.
Mushroom Risotto
  1. In a medium saucepan, bring the broth to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the porcini mushrooms, remove the pan from the heat & set aside for 30 minutes until mushrooms are tender. Then, using a slotted spoon, remove the mushrooms & set aside.
  2. Return the broth to a simmer & keep warm over low heat.
  3. In a large, heavy saucepan, melt 2 Tbsp of the butter over medium-high heat. Add onion & mushrooms & cook for about 3 minutes, until the onions are tender but not brown. Add rice & stir to coat with butter. Add wine & simmer for about 3 minutes, until the wine has almost completely evaporated.
  4. Add a soup ladle full of warm broth & stir for about 2 minutes, until almost completely absorbed.
  5. Continue with remaining broth, adding a ladle full at a time & allowing each addition to be absorbed, until rice is tender to the bite & the mixture is creamy. This should take about 20-25 minutes in total.
  6. Remove the pan from the heat. Stir in the parmesan, gorgonzola, chives, salt & pepper. Transfer to a warm serving bowl & serve immediately.

Rhubarb Curd Shortbread Cookies

Rhubarb is an easy-care plant that lasts for decades in the same spot. Hardy rhubarb thrives in our cool northern climate and is the base for many truly delicious desserts. It’s the plant you’ll see still thriving amidst the tall grasses beside long-deserted old prairie homesteads, along with a lilac bush and a peony plant.

Curds are in a category all to themselves when it comes to the world of preserving fruits. Yes you can make jams, jellies, and butters ~ but when you really want to treat yourself to something special, make curd. Fruit curds are a centuries old treat that goes back to traditional tea time in Britain. Usually made with lemon or other citrus fruits, curds can be made with any almost any fruit, even rhubarb!

Rhubarb varies a lot in color, from beautiful garnet to stalks some that are more yellowy-green than red. When the eggs are blended with the fruit the color sometimes goes a bit beige due to basic color mixing principles. A drop or two of food coloring brightens it back up. You can use regular or gel food coloring, or if you want to go more natural, use some dehydrated strawberry or raspberry powder.

Tart rhubarb makes a great substitute for citrus in curd but rhubarb also has a beautiful fruity and floral taste to complement its tartness. Use curd to dress up toast and shortbread swirl it into ice cream, fill crêpes and layer cakes, or just eat it by the spoonful.

Print Recipe
Rhubarb Curd Shortbread Cookies
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Servings
Ingredients
Shortbread Cookies
Candied Rhubarb for topping
Servings
Ingredients
Shortbread Cookies
Candied Rhubarb for topping
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Instructions
Shortbread Cookies
  1. Sift cornstarch, powdered sugar & flour together. Blend in butter with a fork, mixing until a soft dough forms. Wrap in plastic wrap & chill for at least an hour. When ready to bake, roll out dough on a lightly floured surface to about 1/8-inch thickness. Using a 2-inch round cookie cutter, cut out 80 circles. In 40 of them, cut out a small circle in the center.
  2. Preheat oven to 300 F. Bake for about 15-20 minutes or until edges are lightly browned. Cool on a wire rack until ready to fill with curd.
Candied Rhubarb
  1. Prepare rhubarb & place in a small saucepan along with sugar & water. Bring to a simmer & cook until rhubarb is soft but still holds its shape. Strain rhubarb & reserve for topping on cookies.
Rhubarb Curd
  1. Prepare rhubarb & place in saucepan with the 'syrup' that was stained from the candied rhubarb. Cook until rhubarb falls apart & there are no whole pieces left. If rhubarb starts to stick to bottom before it is finished cooking, add a Tbsp or 2 of water. Once cooked, use an immersion blender to puree the mixture.
  2. Using a double boiler pot, add some water to the bottom & set over medium heat. In the top pot, add egg yolks, butter, sugar, lemon zest & lemon juice & whisk to combine. When sugar has dissolved completely, add the rhubarb puree by the spoonful, to temper the eggs. When all rhubarb has been added, set pot over bottom pot, the water should be simmering. Continue stirring the rhubarb mixture; after about 5 minutes the mixture will be warm & slightly thickened. Remove from heat & blend with blender to achieve a pudding-like texture. Set aside to completely cool until ready to use.
Assembly
  1. Fill a piping bag with cold rhubarb curd. Lay out 40 of the 'solid' cookies. Top each with a dollop of rhubarb curd. Top each cookie with the remaining cookies. Divide candied rhubarb between the filled cookies giving them a nice garnished look. The idea of making the holes in the top cookie helps to give the candied rhubarb something to stick to with that bit of curd pushing out.

Lemon Gel ‘Crumble’ Wedges

Nothing says spring more than the zesty, fresh flavor of lemons. I think this lemon dessert is the perfect way to celebrate spring.

Crumbles are a true British dessert, which can be made any time of the year. They are believed to have originated around the time of World War II which brought the world to a standstill; shops were closed, people were left unemployed. As the war progressed, food scarcity became a major scare and due to inflation and rationing, the accessibility to basic food ingredients became a problem. In these hostile times, British housewives came up with many recipes; some of these recipes were lost in time, but some stayed and even gained cult status with time. One such British recipe is that of ‘apple crumble’.

Typically, crumbles use soft fruit like apples, pears, rhubarb or plums, but berries or even a lemon filling can be used. The crumb topping can be made with flour, nuts, breadcrumbs, cookie or graham cracker crumbs, or even breakfast cereal.  

This dessert is very different from the usual crumble. You start with a crumble crust/ topping but the filling is uncooked. It is so nice with fresh lemon juice and zest in it. As it bakes, it becomes almost gel-like and the top crumbles soak slightly into the filling. The flavor of lemon always seems to give such a refreshing taste to everything its used in.

Print Recipe
Lemon Gel 'Crumble' Wedges
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Course dessert
Cuisine American, European
Keyword lemon crumble
Servings
Ingredients
Crust & Crumble Topping
Lemon Filling
Course dessert
Cuisine American, European
Keyword lemon crumble
Servings
Ingredients
Crust & Crumble Topping
Lemon Filling
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Instructions
Crust/Crumble Topping
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. In a large bowl, combine all topping ingredients. Mix well with a pastry blender until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Reserve 1 cup of topping; set aside. Place remaining topping in a 14 x 4-inch baking pan pressing it up the sides as well as on the bottom. Set aside.
Filling
  1. Mix all filling ingredients well, then pour into crust.
  2. Place baking pan in oven & bake for 30- 35 minutes or until filling is set & crust is golden.
  3. Remove from oven & cool completely. This dessert is best refrigerated overnight or at least 6 hours. Cut into wedges or bars & serve with WHIPPED TOPPING.

Lemon Roasted Chicken Thighs & Potatoes

Lemon and chicken are natural companions. Lemon is acidic and helps balance the stronger flavor of the dark meat in thighs and legs, and the fat from the chicken skin. I venture to say lemon mixed with chicken is largely Mediterranean in origin. Versions of lemon chicken usually with the additions of olive oil, butter, garlic, and sometimes white wine are found in Italian, Greek, Levantine, and Persian cooking.

Roast chicken thighs are a simple and satisfying meal anytime. Roasting the potatoes in the same pan with the meat gives the potatoes that extra boost from the lemony chicken juices. In little more than an hour you have a great meal on the table.

Print Recipe
Lemon Roasted Chicken Thighs & Potatoes
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Servings
Servings
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 425 F.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together oil, lemon zest & juice, oregano, paprika, Dijon mustard & garlic. Add chicken & potatoes to oil mixture & toss to coat.
  3. On a large parchment lined baking sheet, arrange chicken & potatoes. Season with sea salt & pepper. Cover with foil & roast for 45 minutes.
  4. Remove foil & toss potatoes making sure to spoon excess liquid over chicken & potatoes. Arrange lemon slices over chicken thighs & continue to cook, uncovered for another 20 minutes or until potatoes & chicken are cooked.
  5. Remove from oven, tent with foil & let rest for 5 minutes before serving.

Roasted Pork Tenderloin w/ Cranberry Lemon Couscous

Couscous can be used as a side dish, as part of a salad, added to a soup, or as a component of an entrée when combined with other hearty ingredients. Because of its ‘blank slate’ flavor profile, it is the ideal base for a wide range of seasonings, from sweet to spicy, as well as ingredients, pairing well with anything from cranberries to lemon.

Israeli or pearl couscous, is larger than traditional couscous and shaped like little pearls of pasta. As the name suggests, its origins are from Israel. When the country’s first prime minister requested a wheat-based substitute to rice, this Israeli couscous was created. It’s a very versatile ingredient that can be either boiled like pasta or toasted in a skillet pan, and it works well in both savory and sweet applications. Israeli couscous is different from the North African version, which has a more fine-grained, fluffy texture.

Over the years, Brion & I have really grown to like Israel couscous. I have tried it in numerous ways both sweet & savory. Today I’m pairing it with some roasted tenderloin which should be real good.

Print Recipe
Roasted Pork Tenderloin w/ Cranberry Lemon Couscous
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Servings
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375 F.
  2. Brush tenderloin with olive oil & seasoning. Place tenderloin in a 9 x 13 pan lined with foil. Roast for about 35 - 40 minutes or until just a FAINT pink color in center remains.
  3. Bring water to a boil in a small saucepan. Add couscous & simmer on low for 8 minutes. (Your couscous should be firm, not mushy). Remove pan from heat & add remaining ingredients, mixing well.
  4. Place couscous in a serving dish, cover to keep warm. Allow tenderloin to rest 10 minutes then slice & place on serving dish.

Grated Shortbread Bars w/ Saskatoon Berry Filling

Ever thought of grating your shortbread dough? Perhaps frilly doesn’t quite capture these bars. Airy doesn’t quite fit either, but compared to other shortbread I’ve made, that’s exactly what they are. You see, instead of the dense texture associated with many recipes for shortbread bars, these are light (but no less buttery) because you shred the frozen dough on the coarse holes of a grater before baking. The final product is almost chewy, with an open-crumb texture, something that you wouldn’t get if you just rolled the dough. By avoiding the use of pressure, the dough bakes with all the air pockets between the grated pieces, melding into an almost fluffy result which crumbles and melts in your mouth. The glue for the two layers is the saskatoon berry filling.

Here on the Canadian prairies we have a native berry called a ‘Saskatoon’. These berries are very special …. the kind of special that only comes once a year. Saskatoon berries look much like blueberries, but in fact are part of the rose family which includes apples, cherries, plums and of course roses. Trying to explain their flavor to anyone who has never tasted them is difficult and elusive. They’re sweet, dense, rich, seedy, slightly blueberryish, more almondish, a bit apple-y, dusky and deep. Like I said …. difficult to explain!

At this time of the year when these little gems are available, I always like to make numerous things with them as they work well in either sweet or savory applications. They certainly make a nice filling for these shortbread bars.

Print Recipe
Grated Shortbread Bars w/ Saskatoon Berry filling
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Servings
BARS
Ingredients
Saskatoon Berry Filling
Shortbread Crust
Servings
BARS
Ingredients
Saskatoon Berry Filling
Shortbread Crust
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Instructions
Filling
  1. In a saucepan, combine berries & water & simmer for 10 minutes over low heat. In a separate bowl, mix sugar & cornstarch; add to berries & combine. Stir in lemon juice & vanilla; simmer until mixture slightly thickens. Set aside to cool.
Shortbread Crust
  1. In a bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, sugar, cardamom & salt. Using a pastry blender or a fork, cut in butter & lemon zest. Mix ONLY until combined, divide in half & wrap each piece in plastic wrap. Place in freezer until slightly frozen.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  3. Remove one ball of dough from the freezer. Using the large hole side of a 4 sided grater, grate dough into a 4 1/2" x 14" baking pan. Pat the dough but don't press it, so it gets evenly spread in the pan.
  4. Carefully place the saskatoon filling evenly over the crust. Grate remaining ball of dough & carefully spread on top.
  5. Bake for 40 minutes or until shortbread is golden. Cool to room temperature on rack. Cut into 14 bars. Dust with powdered sugar if desired.
Recipe Notes
  • I found that if I placed the pan of bars in the freezer for about an hour, I was able to cut cleaner slices.

Pineapple Meringue Tarts

There’s just something incredibly refreshing about pineapple tarts with their tangy, bright, acidic flavor nestled in shortbread crusts. Adding meringue puts a tropical twist on the classic meringue pie making them a perfect summer treat.

When it comes to making meringue, simple ingredients and instructions can lull you into thinking preparation is quick and easy. Make it once under the wrong conditions, however, and you may quickly change your mind.

Meringue is temperamental. Getting it right can be a tricky process. Weeping meringues aren’t very pretty. The meringue pulls back from the crust, moisture beads on the topping, and a clear liquid forms below the crust. It doesn’t hurt the pie but it’s not presentable.

Years ago, when I worked in the commercial food industry, I started using the idea of adding cornstarch to meringue to help stabilize it. Cornstarch is especially helpful in hot, humid weather when a meringue is most likely to absorb extra moisture.

The science behind this ‘secret ingredient‘ is that cornstarch is composed of long molecules that it is believed insert themselves between egg white proteins to prevent them from clotting too much while meringue is baking. Corn starch molecules also provide more hold for meringue. It will be easier to cut and is less likely to weep.

Brion & I are not crazy about meringue but do enjoy it for a treat once in a while.

Print Recipe
Pineapple Meringue Tarts
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Course dessert
Cuisine American
Servings
Ingredients
Shortbread Crust
Pineapple Filling
Course dessert
Cuisine American
Servings
Ingredients
Shortbread Crust
Pineapple Filling
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Instructions
Shortbread Crust
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. In a bowl combine butter & sugar; beat until light & fluffy. In another bowl whisk together flour & baking powder; add to butter/sugar mixture. Blend together. Divide pastry between 6 individual tart pans. Using your fingertips, evenly press the dough into pans. Place on a baking sheet & blind bake for 10 minutes or until golden. Remove from oven & allow to cool.
Pineapple Filling
  1. In a saucepan, combine cornstarch & sugar. Gradually add water, stirring until mixture is smooth. Add lemon zest & undrained pineapple. Stir constantly over medium heat until mixture starts to boil. Reduce heat, boil 2 minutes while continuing to stir. Remove from heat, quickly stir in butter & egg yolks blending well. Allow mixture to cool to room temperature.
Meringue
  1. In a small saucepan, combine water & cornstarch. Heat & stir until it boils & thickens. Cool thoroughly.
  2. Beat egg whites & salt until a stiff froth. Add sugar gradually, beating until stiff & sugar is dissolved. Add vanilla & cornstarch mixture. Beat until blended & stiff.
Assembly
  1. Divide pineapple filling between tart shells. Pipe meringue over tarts sealing to edges. If not sealed well, meringue will shrink when cool. Bake in 350 F. oven about 10 minutes until golden. Cool away from drafts.

Hot Cross Cream Cheese Braid

Hot Cross Buns, the sweet roll with a mythical history, are an Easter classic. This simple piece of spiced bread decorated with a cross, while not an extravagant treat, is a global food tradition. Given their long running history, it is no wonder there are so many fables surrounding their origin. From warding off evil spirits to cementing friendships, the stories of hot cross buns can be documented back to 6th century Greece.

While hot cross buns are now sold and enjoyed throughout the year, they were once reserved for Good Friday alone. Brion & I are extremely fond of these little gems, so every year I enjoy to come up with a new version but still not straying away from the original iconic bun (or bread) taste.

Print Recipe
Hot Cross Cream Cheese Braid
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Servings
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Instructions
Marinate Fruit
  1. In a bowl with a lid, marinate prepared dried fruit in your choice of alcohol or orange juice overnight or at least 30 minutes.
Sweet Dough
  1. In a bowl, combine yeast, lukewarm milk & 1 Tbsp sugar; allow to sit until frothy.
  2. In a bowl, combine flour, salt, cinnamon, cardamom & ginger.
  3. In a larger bowl, melt butter slightly; add remaining sugar, beaten egg, vanilla, a portion of the marinated fruit & frothy yeast mixture. Combine then add flour mixture & continue mixing to combine all ingredients.
  4. On a lightly floured surface, knead dough for about 15 minutes. If necessary, add a bit more flour. Shape into a ball; place in a greased bowl, turn over once or twice to coat the dough with oil. Cover, let rise until doubled, about 1-1 1/2 hours.
Cream Cheese Filling
  1. In a bowl, beat cream cheese, sugar, vanilla & any excess rum drained off fruit until smooth.
Assembly & Baking
  1. On a lightly floured work surface or parchment paper, roll the dough into a 12 x 14-inch rectangle, ensure an even thickness of 1/4 inch.
  2. Along one long side of the dough make parallel, 4-inch long cuts that are 1-inch apart (like piano keys), with a pizza cutter or sharp knife. Repeat on opposite side, making sure to line up these cuts with those you have already made on the other side.
  3. Spoon all but 1/4 cup cream cheese filling down the center of the rectangle. (Reserve the 1/4 cup of the cream cheese for making crosses on baked braid). Leaving 1-inch on the top & bottom unfilled. Smooth cream cheese mixture then top with remaining marinated fruit.
  4. Begin folding the cut side strips of dough in pairs over the filling at an angle, alternating left, then right, as if you were braiding, until you reach the other end. Tuck the ends underneath the braid.
  5. Transfer to a baking sheet; cover with a loose plastic wrap & a towel. Allow to rise in a draft-free place until doubled in size, about 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 350 F. Just before placing braid in the oven, make the egg wash & lightly brush over the top of the braid.
  6. Bake 20 minutes until golden brown. Check after 15 minutes; if the braid is starting to brown to fast, float a piece of foil, shiny side down, over it. Remove from oven & allow to cool slightly.
Decorating
  1. Place 1/4 cup cream cheese mixture in a small piping bag that has been fitted with a small round tip. Make crosses on braid.
Recipe Notes
  • If you would prefer, mix all the marinated fruit right into the dough instead of putting some in the filling.
  • If you would rather not decorate with some crosses on top, use all cream cheese in the filling, your choice.