January Recipe of the Month: Mixed Mushroom & Kale Quiche

Have you heard? We recently started selling our Flaky Pie Dough at our cafés (order for pick-up two days in advance at ShopMacrinaBakery.com). The dough is perfect for many baked dishes, including double-crusted pie and savory quiche. The dough is frozen in discs and sold in a 2-pack. Each 12 oz disc rolls out to make a 10-inch tart or 9-inch pie shell.

With our Flaky Pie Dough, this savory quiche is an easy showpiece to make for brunch or dinner. The combination of mixed mushrooms, kale and Gruyère with the buttery crust is one of our favorite winter combinations. As the seasons change, you can substitute different combinations of vegetables and cheese. With a good crust and a proper custard, you can’t go wrong. Since they freeze and reheat well, you might consider baking two at once. Serve with a delicious mixed green salad or a cup of soup.

-Leslie Mackie

Ingredients:
Makes one ten-inch tart

1 disk Macrina Flaky Pie Dough (available frozen at our cafés)
3 Tbsp olive oil
2 cups sliced mushrooms (a mix of cremini, chanterelle or other favorites)
2 cups kale leaves, stems removed and sliced into ½-inch strips
3 garlic cloves, finely diced
½ tsp kosher salt, divided
¼ tsp crushed red pepper flakes
1 cup milk
1 cup heavy cream
2 egg yolks
2 eggs
2 cups Gruyère cheese (5 oz), grated

Directions:

Thaw 1 disc of Macrina Flaky Pie Dough for 2 to 3 hours at room temperature. On a floured work surface, roll dough into a 14-inch circle, about ⅛-inch thick.

Fold dough in half and lift onto a 10-inch fluted tart pan. Drop dough into pan and flatten at base of pan and edges. With the remaining overhang, fold into the pan to create an edge that stands a half-inch above the top of the pan. With your hand, smooth the crust edge to a consistent thickness. Chill for 30 minutes in freezer.

Preheat oven to 375°F.

Line the tart shell with parchment paper and fill it with baking weights or dried beans. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until the edges are golden brown and the base appears dry. Remove the beans and let the shell cool.

In a sauté pan over medium high heat, add the olive oil and sauté the mushrooms until golden brown, about 2 minutes. Add the sliced kale.

Once the kale wilts, add the garlic, ¼ tsp salt and crushed red pepper flakes. When the garlic is golden, about 1 to 2 minutes, remove from heat. Let mix cool to room temperature in the pan.

Make the custard: in a medium bowl, combine the milk, heavy cream, egg yolks, eggs and remaining ¼ tsp salt. Whisk to combine thoroughly.

Reduce oven temperature to 325°F.

Place the pre-baked tart shell on a rimmed baking sheet. Scatter the grated Gruyère cheese over the base of the shell. Add the sautéed mushroom and kale mix, then top with the custard.

Place the quiche in the oven and bake for 45 to 50 minutes. When done, the custard will be set and have a slight golden-brown shine.

Let cool for 45 minutes. Remove from the tart pan and serve. Enjoy!

Printable PDF here.

Macrina Gift Sets: Gift Ideas That Won’t Miss the Mark

You know that feeling when someone with the best intentions gives you a gift that you’ll never use? Even as you’re saying thank you, you know where you’ll put it—the shelf in the back of your closet with the other gifts waiting for your next white elephant gift exchange. As amusing as those are, you never want to see one a gift you’ve given be the subject of so much laughter.

With that in mind, we’ve designed two gift sets—one salty, one sweet—that you won’t miss the mark. In fact, we suspect they’ll be devoured before the new year!The Macrina Mug Gift Set features our new flower-design mug, ideal for coffee or tea, a pouch of our house-made Vanilla Sugar, and four of our Brown Sugar Shortbread Star Cookies.

The Macrina Artisan Appetizer Gift Set is an impromptu appetizer party in a box. It contains our Thin-cut Rye Crostini, a Mole Salami stick made by Coro, Apricot Conserves by Project Barnstorm, and Ritrovo’s Squashed Green Olives with Truffle. One of the crostini with a thin slice of salami and a dollop of the conserves is a salty-sweet combination that will send you to the moon. The tender green olives from Abruzzo, packed in olive oil with flecks of aromatic truffle, make the perfect salty chaser. All that’s missing is your favorite cocktail or glass of wine.The Macrina Mug Gift Set

• Macrina’s new flower-design coffee mug

• House-made Vanilla Sugar

• Four-Pack of Brown Sugar Shortbread Star Cookies

The Macrina Artisan Appetizer Gift Set

• Thin-cut Rye Crostini

• Coro Mole Salami Stick

• Project Barnstorm Apricot Conserves

• Squashed Green Olives with Truffle

Savory Bread Pudding with Cranberries, Sausage & Chèvre

Looking for a festive dish to serve at your holiday brunch? One of our favorites is this savory bread pudding. Its playful balance of sweet, tart and salty flavors make it a fun main dish. The bread soaks up the sweetened custard giving it a creamy texture. The tart cranberries, rich sausage, and salty goat cheese provide distinct flavor bursts. A blend of light and dark bread cubes provides a pleasant contrast of texture and taste—we’re partial to a mixture of our Organic Whole Wheat and Sour White or Casera loaves. Serve the bread pudding warm with a salad, some fruit, and maybe a selection of pastries for a memorable, fulfilling brunch.Ingredients:
Serves 5-6

2 cups whole milk
2 cups half and half
½ cup brown sugar
½ tsp cinnamon
2 Tbsp orange zest, freshly grated
1 Tbsp fresh sage, coarsely chopped
3 egg yolks
2 eggs
4 cups oven-dried white bread cubes (about ¾ loaf) cut into 1-inch cubes
4 cups oven-dried dark bread cubes (about ¾ loaf) cut into 1-inch cubes
2 cups fresh or frozen cranberries
6 oz pork sausage (about 4 links), fully cooked and cut into ¼-inch pieces
6 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
6 oz chèvre (goat cheese)Directions:

Preheat the oven to 325°F. Oil a 9-inch square baking pan.

To prepare the custard, combine the milk, half and half, brown sugar, cinnamon, orange zest, sage, egg yolks and eggs in a medium bowl. Whisk until thoroughly blended and set aside.

Place the bread cubes in a large bowl and add the cranberries, cooked sausage and melted butter. Pour the custard mixture over the top and toss until evenly distributed, then let sit for 30 minutes to allow the bread to absorb the custard. Transfer mixture to the prepared baking pan. Pour any excess custard mixture over the top, not quite filling the pan.

Crumble the chèvre over the bread cubes then wrap the baking pan tightly with aluminum foil. Poke 2 small vent holes in opposite corners of the foil. Place the pan in the center of a large roasting pan, at least 2 inches deep, and place the roasting pan on the center rack of the oven. Pour hot water into the pan to reach halfway up the sides of the baking pan. This water bath will help the bread pudding cook evenly. Bake for 1¼ hours, then carefully remove the foil and bake for another 15 minutes to brown the top and set the custard. Lift the pudding from the water bath and cool for 20 minutes on a wire rack before serving.

Wrapped in plastic wrap, the bread pudding will last for up to 2 days in the refrigerator. (Wait for the pudding to cool completely before wrapping it.) To refresh the pudding, wrap it in foil and warm it in a 350°F oven for 10 minutes.

December Recipe of the Month: Babka French Toast

We make our Chocolate Babka just a few times a year: Rosh Hashanah, Christmas and New Year’s. The loaf is rich like brioche bread, with an added swirl of chocolate glaze and roasted pecans. It’s delicious simply toasted with butter, but for a special brunch, use it as a base for French toast and serve it with your favorite breakfast sausage, raspberries and sweetened whipped cream!

-Leslie Mackie

Ingredients:
Serves 4

1 loaf Macrina Chocolate Pecan Babka
1 cup whipping cream
2 Tbsp granulated sugar
2 tsp pure vanilla extract, divided
3 eggs
2½ cups whole milk
1 Tbsp brown sugar
¼ cup canola oil
1 pint fresh raspberries
2 Tbsp powdered sugar
Maple syrup (optional)

Directions:

Remove the Chocolate Pecan Babka from its paper mold. Cut into 8 even slices. Set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, add the whipping cream, granulated sugar and 1 tsp vanilla extract. Whip for 2 to 3 minutes to form medium peaks and cool in the refrigerator until needed.

Make the custard: In a medium bowl, add the eggs, milk, brown sugar and remaining vanilla extract. Whisk to combine.

Submerge the sliced bread into the custard and soak for 1 minute, flipping them half way through so both sides are evenly coated. Place soaked slices on a plate and set aside.

Place a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add just enough canola oil to coat the base of the pan. When the pan is hot (but not smoking), carefully transfer the soaked bread to the pan, fitting as many in as you can without crowding. Sauté for 2 minutes or until golden brown. Flip to cook evenly on both sides. Repeat this process until all 8 slices are cooked.

Place 2 slices on each plate. Cut each slice on the bias and fan the four pieces across the plate. Garnish with sweetened whipped cream, fresh raspberries and a dusting of sifted powdered sugar. If you choose, serve with warm maple syrup (it’s divine). Enjoy!

Printable PDF here.

Flaky Pie Dough Four Ways

Our Flaky Pie Dough is the most frequently prepared recipe in our pastry department—and has been since the day we opened our doors in Belltown in 1993! The dough is perfect for so many kinds of baking, from savory quiche to double-crusted pies to classic tarts.Now, for the first time, we are selling our Flaky Pie Dough in our cafés. The dough is frozen in discs and sold in a two-pack. Each 12 oz. disc rolls out to make a ten-inch tart or a nine-inch pie shell. Or you can use the two discs together to create a double-crusted pie.

Your imagination is the limit for what you can make with our Flaky Pie Dough. To get you started, we’ve included three inspiring suggestions and one of our favorite new recipes with an accompanying video of Leslie showing you how to make it.

Stop by one of our cafés and grab a few of these. When inspiration strikes, you’ll appreciate the time-saving benefits of having these at the ready.Banana Nutella Hand Pies: With our pie dough, simple hand-pies are as easy to make as the filling inside. Start with the mouthwatering combination of bananas and Nutella (what could be easier?) and work your way up through your favorite sweet and savory combinations. Simply roll the dough out and cut 5-inch circles. Add your filling, fold the dough over, and crimp the edges. Bake at 400°F for 20–25 minutes until the crust is golden brown.

Savory Galette with Butternut squash, Roasted Pear and Gorgonzola: Shortly after opening, Leslie introduced savory free-form folded tarts or galettes, and they quickly became customer favorites. This galette is a seasonal adaptation of the one on page 203 of our first cookbook. With the pie dough already made, it’s easy to turn out an elegant lunch. Or cut the galette into small slices and serve it as an appetizer.Harvest Pie: This winter pie is one Leslie serves at her home alongside pumpkin pie at Thanksgiving. It’s also one of our most requested recipes. Our Flaky Pie Crust forms the bottom crust and the top is an almond streusel. You’ll find the recipe in our first cookbook on page 249.

Macrinas Holiday Tart: With our frozen pie dough, this festive tart is a breeze to make. It’s both beautiful to look at and makes a refreshingly delicious end to a holiday meal. The tart cranberries find balance in the sweet filling and pecans add texture and flavor. Orange zest and a dash of brandy give it some zing. Find the video tutorial below!

Ingredients:
Makes one 10” tart

One 12 oz. disc of Macrina Pie Dough

1 cup chopped pecans, roasted

3 eggs

⅔ cups light brown sugar

⅔ cups corn syrup

4 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted and cooled to room temperature

2 tsp orange zest

½ tsp salt

1 Tbsp brandy

1½ cups fresh cranberries

1 Tbsp powdered sugar

Directions:

Thaw 1 disc of Macrina pie dough for 2 to 3 hours at room temperature. On a floured work surface, roll dough into a 14-inch circle that’s about an eighth-inch thick.

Fold dough in half and lift on to a 10-inch fluted tart pan. Drop dough into pan and flatten at base of pan and edges. With the remaining overhang, fold into the pan to create an edge that stands a half-inch above the top of the pan. With your hand, smooth the crust edge to a consistent thickness. Chill for 30 minutes in freezer.

Preheat oven to 375°F.

Line the tart shell with parchment paper and fill it with baking weights or beans. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until the edges are golden brown and the base appears dry. Remove the beans and let the shell cool.

Reduce oven temperature to 325°F.

Place the baked shell on a rimmed baking sheet. Add the pecans and cranberries to the tart shell and spread them so they’re evenly distributed.

In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs, brown sugar, corn syrup, melted butter, orange zest, salt and brandy together until well combined. Pour the mixture over the pecans and cranberries. Place the tart in the oven and bake for 35 to 40 minutes. When done, the center of the tart will be set and golden brown.

Let cool for 30 minutes. Serve with sweetened whipped cream.

Macrina’s New Take & Bake Lasagna and Garlic Bread

Dating back to Roman times, lasagna is the best-known baked Italian pasta. A great many variations exist, from the heavy cheese bomb of the college cafeteria to versions with béchamel in place of mozzarella.

We developed a Neapolitan-style lasagna with a distinctive Macrina flair. With the fall and winter nights in mind, we focused on the classic comfort casserole of thin lasagna noodles, an Italian sausage ragù, mozzarella, fontina, and parmesan and fresh herbs. Macrina bread crumbs thicken the sauce. Our secret ingredient is time: a long-simmered sauce so the meat tenderizes and the flavors meld, and the laborious process of carefully layering all the elements.

Because we’ve done the work, your job is simple: Pop it in the oven for an hour and eat.

And since a classic lasagna isn’t the same without a savory loaf of garlic bread with which to mop up the sauce, we’ve got that too. We spread our batard loaf liberally with our made-in-house garlic butter and topped with parmesan and herbs. All you need to do is bake it with the lasagna for the last ten to fifteen minutes until the cheese is golden at the edges, and they’ll both emerge ready to eat at the same time. (Or get a second to enjoy as an appetizer.)

Throw a salad together, open a full-bodied red wine, and mangia!

A Granola Worth Celebrating

Granola, according to Wikipedia, was invented in 1863 by Dr. James Caleb Jackson as a food to serve at a health spa in New York. A century later, granola became a staple of the hippy culture in the 1960s and then went mainstream in the 1970s when the Quaker Oats Company, General Mills, and Kellogg’s got involved.

For most of us today, granola is a commodity—a cereal, sometimes dessert-like sweet, modestly healthy, to be eaten for breakfast or while hiking. Most commercial granola is highly flavored and fatty and often overly sweet, a far cry from Dr. Jackson’s original health food.

At Macrina, we sought to create a granola that matched our desires: healthy, energy-rich, flavorful, tasty enough to eat by the handful, and crunchy. Of course, rolled oats would be part of it, but there were so many other whole grains, nuts, seeds and dried fruits to consider. And so many oils to choose from! At our test kitchen, we assembled a grand array of quality choices and started experimenting. We kept at it: adding, then subtracting, then adding again. Baking longer at lower temperatures, then baking hotter and quicker.

Finally, we settled on a recipe we’re proud to call our own. It’s loaded with thick-cut golden oats, sunflower and pumpkin seeds, quinoa, pecans and dried tart and sweet cherries. Brown sugar and maple syrup add a subtle sweetness. Extra virgin olive oil and cinnamon and just enough salt add depth of flavor. It’s perfectly crunchy and addictive enough that you have to be careful when you start to eat it by the handful, but it’s not overly sweet. We even think Dr. Jackson would be as proud to serve it at his health spa as we are at the café. We recommend it on yogurt or with milk and topped with whatever fresh fruit is in season. You’ll find it in our cafés, both ready to eat and packaged in a 12 oz. heat-sealed pouch.

November Recipe of the Month – Ricotta Gnocchi with Kale & Walnuts

Ricotta gnocchi are just as Italian as their potato cousins, but they’re easier to make, lighter and melt in your mouth. Making perfect gnocchi takes a little practice, but even imperfectly shaped, they boil into delicate, fluffy pillows. The kale and garlic sauce with Parmesan, cream and roasted walnuts is full of flavor and textures that contrast nicely with the almost ethereal ricotta gnocchi. We use corn in this recipe, but it’s endlessly adaptable to the season. Try fresh tomato in the summer or roasted delicata squash in the winter. We designed the recipe as a first course, but it’s wonderful as an entrée.

– Leslie Mackie

Ingredients:
Serves 5 as an appetizer, 2 as an entrée

1 cup ricotta, part-skim, drained overnight in cheesecloth
1 tsp fresh lemon zest
¾ tsp kosher salt
1 egg
2 Tbsp semolina flour
½ cup + 2 Tbsp all-purpose flour
1¼ cups walnuts, divided
20 leaves of kale (approx. 10 cups when chopped)
2½ cups corn, or seasonal vegetable (cut into ½-inch cubes)
3 Tbsp garlic, finely chopped, divided
¼ cup + 1 Tbsp olive oil, divided
¼ cup shallots, finely chopped
1 cup dry white wine
3 cups heavy cream
¾ cup grated Parmesan cheese
½ tsp fresh thyme
Salt and pepper, to taste

Directions:

Place ricotta, lemon zest, salt and egg in a medium bowl. Whisk until blended. In a separate bowl, combine semolina and all-purpose flours. Sprinkle a quarter of the flour blend over the ricotta mix and use a spoon to incorporate. Add the remaining flour in 3 increments. As the mixture begins to resemble a dough, transfer it to a clean cutting board and gently knead into a ball. When the dough ball holds its shape, let it rest for 3 minutes.

Place ricotta, lemon zest, salt and egg in a medium bowl. Whisk until blended. In a separate bowl, combine semolina and all-purpose flours. Sprinkle a quarter of the flour blend over the ricotta mix and use a spoon to incorporate. Add the remaining flour in 3 increments. As the mixture begins to resemble a dough, transfer it to a clean cutting board and gently knead into a ball. When the dough ball holds its shape, let it rest for 3 minutes.
Set the ball on a floured surface and cut it in half. Roll each half into a 1-inch by 18-inch log. Dust the surface with additional flour if the dough is sticking. Cut each log into ½-inch pieces. Dust your knife with flour if it sticks when you cut.

Using a fork, slightly flatten the gnocchi, leaving little ridges. For a rustic look, gently fold the top over onto itself. Don’t stress about making your gnocchi look perfect. They will puff when boiled. The most important thing is a uniform size. Place the formed gnocchi on a rimmed baking sheet, spaced so they’re not touching. (If preparing gnocchi in advance, freeze gnocchi on the baking sheet, then store them frozen in a zip lock bag. You can boil them straight from the freezer.)

Preheat oven to 325°F. Place walnuts on a rimmed baking sheet and roast for 5 to 8 minutes until golden brown. Coarsely chop and set aside.

Clean kale and trim excess stems. Stack the leaves into a pile, fold in half and cut into ½-inch segments. Set aside.

Place a large sauté pan over medium heat and add ¼ cup olive oil. Add the kale and sauté for 1 to 2 minutes. When wilted, add the corn and cook for another 2 minutes. Add 5 tsp of garlic and sauté until fragrant. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Divide the warm vegetables between 5 plates.

Bring a large saucepan of salted water to a boil. Add gnocchi to boiling water and reduce heat slightly to a slow boil. Once the gnocchi rise to the surface (2 to 3 minutes), turn off the heat and allow them to cook for another 2 minutes. Don’t overcook.

While the gnocchi cook, add the remaining 1 Tbsp of olive oil to the sauté pan. Increase heat to medium and add shallots. Sauté for 1 minute, then toss in remaining garlic and cook for another minute. Deglaze with white wine and reduce by three-fourths, then add the cream and 1 cup of walnuts. Let simmer for 2 minutes, then add Parmesan cheese and stir until it melts into the cream.

Using a slotted spoon, add the cooked gnocchi and swirl to coat in the sauce. (If the sauce is too thick, add a touch of the salted gnocchi water to thin). Add salt and pepper if needed. Dish gnocchi over the vegetables. Garnish with the remaining chopped walnuts and fresh thyme.

Enjoy!

New Flavor Alert: The Everything Bagel 

In May, after years of development, we introduced Macrina’s Organic MadRy Sourdough Bagels to great acclaim. Now, to the four original flavors—Plain, Sesame, Poppy, Sea Salt—we’re adding the Everything Bagel. We coat our Everything Bagel, top and bottom, with a mix of white and black sesame seeds, blue poppy seeds, salt, fresh garlic and onion. Most producers use dehydrated onion and garlic flakes, but we were determined to use fresh ingredients.

 “We had a tough time initially with the chopped garlic burning, but after much trial and error came up with a great result,” says Leslie Mackie, Macrina’s founder.

“The well-balanced taste of garlic and onion melds nicely and doesn’t overpower the flavor from the seeds and sourdough,” says Blake Gehringer, Macrina’s Production Manager.

Our MadRy Organic Sourdough Bagels are hand-rolled, given a slow, cool 24-hour ferment, and have just a hint of rye, which adds to their depth of flavor. The caramelized crust has a glossy sheen and the airy interior has a tight, springy crumb that balances the mild tang of sourdough with just enough malty sweetness.

All of our ingredients come from the PNW:

•      The organic high-protein flour comes from just north of the border.

•      The organic barley malt powder comes from Skagit Valley Malting.

•      The organic rye flour comes from Fairhaven Mill in nearby Burlington.

We start with a significant percentage of organic sourdough starter and a smidge of yeast. After an initial rise, we handroll the bagels and give them a full day’s cool ferment. The depth of flavor you’ll taste in these bagels comes from the natural leavening and that hint of rye.  The whiff of sourdough you get when you tear one open comes from the starter. We were careful not to let the flavor dominate but wanted it to be distinctive. “It should make sense when you taste the bagel that the name has sourdough in it,” says Scott France, Macrina’s President and Co-owner, and the driving force behind these bagels. “But if you tasted the bagel without knowing the name, someone intimately familiar with sourdoughs would recognize it, but if you didn’t, you might wonder just what that mild tang was.”

The bagels are available individually or as four-packs.

New To-Go Soup

With sweater weather fast upon us, it’s time to cozy up with a bowl of soup. Not only have we resumed selling it at our cafés, but we’re also introducing a line of favorite Macrina soups packaged for you to take home to heat and serve.

 

“I love a bowl of soup on a crisp fall evening,” says Leslie Mackie, Macrina’s founder. “The simplicity of soup on those early, dark nights, and the aroma that fills the house as it’s heating, is soul-satisfying. And there’s nothing better than dipping a buttered slice of crusty bread in soup.”

Our first two are Tomato Bisque and Chicken & Vegetable. They come in 32 oz. containers, which is enough to serve four. Add a salad and a loaf of crusty bread and you’ve got dinner.

The Tomato Bisque is silky smooth and gets its deep, rich flavor from ripe tomatoes, roasted red peppers, fennel, rosemary, and thyme. The soup is thickened with rice and gets its velvety texture from being pureed with olive oil and cream. Perfectly paired with our grilled cheese sandwich.

The Chicken & Vegetable is our version of the classic hearty soup. It’s loaded with chicken and chopped vegetables in a fragrant vegetable stock seasoned with rosemary, thyme, and garlic.

Stop in one of our cafés to grab a healthy soup and a loaf of your favorite bread. Also available for delivery through DoorDash.