Debbie Macomber's Table

Sharing the Joy of Cooking with Family and Friends

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One hundred warm and inviting original recipes from the kitchen and the novels of #1 New York Times bestselling author Debbie Macomber—the perfect gift for Mother’s Day!
 
She’s welcomed you to the Rose Harbor Inn in Cedar Cove, and now the beloved author invites you to take a seat at her table in a new cookbook featuring her favorite recipes. For Debbie Macomber, food means family—recipes and holiday traditions are passed down through generations, and meals provide opportunities for everyone to gather and share their love. In this treasure trove you’ll find one hundred delicious dishes that have become Debbie Macomber’s staples, some inspired by her novels and others by family and friends, including
 
• Baked Oatmeal—a comforting start to the day, and something Jo Marie would serve her Rose Harbor Inn guests.
• Grilled Fish Tacos with Cilantro-Lime Sauce—a perfect date night delight for Nichole and Rocco from A Girl’s Guide to Moving On
• Gratitude Bread—a wonderful way to express appreciation for the loved ones in your life, a gift that Shay from Any Dream Will Do would bake for her neighbors
• Honey-Chipotle Oven-Roasted Ribs—a mouthwatering dish created by Debbie’s son-in-law, but Sam Carney from If Not for You would easily whip up a succulent platter for friends
• Eggnog Cookies—a sweet treat that Merry would give to Bright in Debbie’s Christmas classic
• Guinness Pot Pie—a meaty show-stopping sensation that could win the heart of a hero in any of Debbie’s books, or the hero in your life
 
You’ll also discover Macomber go-to favorites—Roasted Sesame Asparagus, Debbie’s Light Clam Chowder, Cookies and Cream Frozen Dessert. And no cookbook would be complete without Debbie’s guilty pleasure: seasoned popcorn.
                 
Loaded with gorgeous full-color photographs and memorable stories about the author’s cherished traditions, Debbie Macomber’s Table embraces the idea that food is more than nourishment. It is a blessing that brings family and friends together.

Under the Cover

An excerpt from Debbie Macomber's Table

Chapter 1

Before You Use This Book

Many ingredients come in different forms: fresh or dried, salted or unsalted, small, medium, or large, coarse or fine, bleached or unbleached.

Unless a recipe says otherwise, all:

Eggs are large.

Flour is all-purpose. Bleached or unbleached is up to you.

Sugar is granulated. If the recipe calls for brown sugar and doesn’t specify light or dark, use whatever you have on hand or whichever you prefer.

Butter is unsalted.

Cream is heavy or whipping cream.

Milk is whole milk. You can probably substitute 2% with good results, but I won’t guarantee what a recipe will taste like if you use skim or nonfat.

Salt is kosher salt. If you use regular table salt, start with half the amount specified in the recipe and adjust the seasoning to your taste.

Pepper is freshly ground black pepper.

Cheese is full fat. You can use white or yellow Cheddar, whichever you prefer.

Scallions or green onions should always have the roots and tops trimmed. Unless otherwise noted, use both white and green parts.

Vegetable oil is any neutral-tasting vegetable oil, like canola or a mild olive oil.

The recipes give volume (cup, teaspoon, and tablespoon) measurements wherever possible. If you don’t like having a half or quarter of an onion lying around, it’s helpful to know that 1 small onion is about 1/2 cup; 1 medium onion is about 1 cup, and 1 large onion is about 2 cups.

If I know a substitution can successfully be made for an ingredient, the recipe or headnote will say so.

You can use butter or cooking spray to grease baking pans or muffin tins, whichever you prefer. I find it easier to use cooking spray on muffin tins, myself.

Several recipes call for toasted nuts or roasted garlic.

To toast nuts in the oven:

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Place the nuts in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet and bake for 5 to 10 minutes, until the nuts are fragrant. Stir or shake the pan once or twice while the nuts are toasting.

Remove the pan from the oven and cool the nuts on a plate.

To toast nuts in the microwave:

Spread 1/2 cup nuts in a single layer in a microwave-safe dish. Add 1/2 teaspoon melted butter or oil. Stir to coat the nuts. Microwave for 1 minute. Stir and microwave for another minute. Continue to microwave in 1-minute increments, stirring after each time, until the nuts are lightly browned and fragrant.

To roast garlic:

Preheat the oven to 400°F. Slice off and discard the top third of a head of garlic so that each clove is exposed. Place on a piece of aluminum foil and drizzle the garlic with olive oil. Wrap up tightly in foil, place in the oven, and bake for 45 to 55 minutes, until the center cloves are soft when pierced with a knife. Let cool for 10 minutes.

Breakfast

I’ve always been a big fan of breakfast, because I’m a morning person. (Okay, the truth—­I’m a fan of every meal.) When we were first married, Wayne asked me if I had to shine so brightly in the mornings. As I stated earlier, two kinds of people exist in this world: those who eat to live and those who live to eat. Well, I misspoke. There are also those who wake up and say, “Good morning, God!” and those who grouchily awaken to say, “Good God, it’s morning.” I doubt you’ll have trouble figuring out which category Wayne falls into!

Even now, with an empty nest, I make sure Wayne and I have breakfast together the same way I did when the kids were living at home. When they were toddlers, I read classic children’s books to them each morning during their breakfast. Then the hectic mornings of school began, getting them all ready for their day, but never without a good breakfast before they headed out the door.

My own mornings start early, usually before four or shortly thereafter. I know, I know—­it’s early. Those predawn hours begin with Bible reading and journal writing. I’ve kept a journal my entire life. I have three for each year: a personal journal, a gratitude journal, and a prayer journal. I write in each one every single day. This process usually takes about ninety minutes, and then I change into my swimsuit and head for the local community pool where I swim a half-mile. (Trust me, a half-mile is a lot farther in the water than on land!) Once I’m back home, I stir Wayne into the land of the living with coffee and the promise of breakfast.

Breakfast also played a key role when I developed the premise for the Inn at Rose Harbor series. I needed to find a way to bring the guests of Jo Marie’s inn together so that the plots weren’t random and disjointed. Those luscious breakfasts that Jo Marie created connected the characters in the series. Over juice, fruit, muffins, and coffee, the guests bonded during their morning conversations, the same way it happens in my home.

Gratitude Bread

Makes 1 (8 x 41/2-inch) loaf

Remember the friendship bread craze from a few years back? This is a different take on that idea. Giving a loaf of this delicious bread is a sweet way of expressing appreciation to those who have touched your life. I imagine this recipe is one Shay, from Any Dream Will Do, would use to thank those who guided and helped her after her release from prison.

2 cups flour

2/3 cup sugar

11/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

3/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup buttermilk

1 egg

4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter, melted and cooled

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Your choice of mix-ins (see below)

You can use any combination of fruits and nuts as long as you keep the proportion of 1 cup fruit to 3/4 cup nuts. If you’re only using fresh fruit, use 11/2 cups per loaf.

This will keep, wrapped in plastic wrap or aluminum foil, for 3 days at room temperature or for 3 months frozen.

Preheat the oven to 375°F. Butter an 8 x 4-inch loaf pan. Line the pan with parchment paper cut to fit the length of the pan with 2 inches hanging over the sides.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add the buttermilk, egg, butter, and vanilla and stir with a rubber spatula just until combined.

Gently fold in your choice of mix-ins.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top. Bake for 55 to 65 minutes, until a knife inserted in the center comes out with a few crumbs attached.

Let the loaf cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then turn the loaf out onto a wire rack to cool. Slice and serve warm or at room temperature.

Mix-ins:

Northwest Mixed Berry: Fold in 11/2 cups fresh or frozen mixed berries.

Peach Almond: Reduce the vanilla extract to 1/2 teaspoon and add 3/4 teaspoon almond extract. Fold in 1 cup chopped peeled fresh peaches and 3/4 cup chopped almonds.

Pear Walnut: Fold in 1 cup chopped fresh pears and 3/4 cup chopped walnuts.

Cranberry Pecan: Fold in 1 cup dried cranberries and 3/4 cup chopped pecans.

Chocolate Cherry Quick Bread

Makes 1 (9 x 5-inch) loaf

This moist loaf packed with cherries isn’t overly sweet. And it’s one way to have chocolate for breakfast! It’s not a bad afternoon pick-me-up, either. Try it with a glass of ice-cold milk or a cup of strong coffee.

13/4 cups flour

1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 (10-ounce) bags frozen pitted cherries, unthawed, 1 bag coarsely chopped

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup sour cream

3 eggs

6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) butter, melted and cooled

You can use either Dutch process or natural cocoa here. Using frozen cherries means you can enjoy this all year round.

This will keep, wrapped in plastic wrap or aluminum foil, for 3 days at room temperature or for up to 3 months frozen.

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

Empty the bag of whole cherries into a medium saucepan. Heat over medium heat for 3 to 4 minutes, until warmed. Add the sugar and use a potato masher to crush the cherries. Cook for 15 minutes, or until the mixture has reduced and thickened and is syrupy but chunky. Transfer the cherries to a large bowl and let cool for 10 minutes.

Whisk the sour cream and eggs into the mashed cherries, then stir in the melted butter. Stir in the flour mixture just until combined. Fold in the chopped cherries.

Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Bake for about 1 hour, until a knife or toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Let the bread cool in the pan for 15 minutes, then turn it out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Cinnamon Streusel Coffee Coffee Cake

Serves 8

This coffee-scented cake can be on the table in an hour and makes breakfast or snack time something special. It’s not a bad midnight snack, either. And besides, coffee cake made with actual coffee only makes sense.

Cake:

2 cups flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup milk

1 tablespoon instant coffee granules

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, at room temperature

3/4 cup sugar

1 egg

Streusel:

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, at room temperature

1 cup flour

1 cup brown sugar

1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon salt

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease an 8 x 8-inch baking pan.

Make the cake:

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.

In a small bowl, whisk together the milk, instant coffee, and vanilla.

In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar with an electric hand mixer on high until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the egg and mix well. Add half of the flour mixture and mix just until combined. Add all of the milk mixture and mix just until combined. Add the rest of the flour and mix just until combined.

Make the streusel:

In a medium bowl, combine the butter, flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt. Blend with a fork until combined and crumbly.

Pour half of the batter into the prepared pan and spread it out evenly with an offset spatula. Sprinkle half of the streusel mixture evenly over the batter. Spread the remaining batter in the pan and sprinkle the remaining streusel over the top.

Bake for 45 to 55 minutes, until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Place the pan on a wire rack to cool for 10 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Blueberry Crumb Cake

Serves 8 to 10

Bursting with juicy fruit and topped with buttery cinnamon-scented crumbs, this simple cake is a summertime treat. This is our oldest grandson, Cameron’s, favorite cake. He loves blueberries and so do I.

Cake:

2 cups flour

1 cup sugar

2 teaspoons baking powder

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted and cooled

2 eggs

11/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/2 cup milk

2 cups fresh blueberries

Crumb topping:

6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) butter, at room temperature

3/4 cup flour

3/4 cup sugar

3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon salt

Preheat the oven to 375°F. Grease a 9-inch round cake pan.

Make the cake:

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Make a well in the center.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the butter, eggs, vanilla, and milk. Add all at once to the dry ingredients and stir just until combined. Gently fold in the blueberries. Spread the batter evenly in the prepared pan.

Make the crumb topping:

In a small bowl, use a fork to combine all the crumb topping ingredients until clumps form. Sprinkle evenly over the batter.

Bake for 45 to 55 minutes, until light golden brown and a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Place the pan on a wire rack to cool. Slice and serve warm or at room temperature.

Overnight Caramel Pecan Rolls

Serves 6

Make these gooey treats the night before for a weekend breakfast or brunch. They make a lovely welcome gift for new neighbors or for a new mother.

1 cup pecan halves or pieces

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter

3/4 cup brown sugar

3 tablespoons light corn syrup

1/4 teaspoon salt

12 frozen yeast rolls, such as Rhodes Yeast Dinner Rolls

A nonstick pan makes turning out the rolls easier, but if you don’t have one, just grease or spray the pan very well.

Spread the pecans in an even layer over a 9-inch round nonstick baking pan with sides at least 11/2 inches high. Spray the pan with cooking spray.

In a medium saucepan, combine the butter, brown sugar, corn syrup, and salt and heat over medium heat until the brown sugar is dissolved but not boiling. Pour the mixture over the pecans and let cool for 10 minutes.

Place the frozen yeast rolls on top of the pecans and syrup. Spray a piece of plastic wrap large enough to cover the pan completely with cooking spray. Cover the pan loosely and let the rolls rise at room temperature for at least 8 hours but no more than 12 hours.

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Remove the plastic wrap and bake the rolls for 30 minutes, or until puffed and golden brown. Remove the pan from the oven. Place your serving plate upside down on top of the rolls and invert the rolls onto the serving plate. Serve warm.

Muffin Tin Donut Holes

Makes 48

These sweet morsels are quicker to make than donuts, and healthier, as they’re baked instead of fried. They are rolled in melted butter and cinnamon sugar after they’re baked, giving them the classic taste of a cake donut. They’re yummy too.

Donut holes:

23/4 cups flour

1/2 cup sugar

1/4 cup cornstarch

1 tablespoon baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1 cup buttermilk

3 eggs

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted and cooled

Coating:

1 cup sugar

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted

These are best served on the day that they are made. You can freeze the uncoated donut holes for up to 1 month. Defrost them at room temperature, then dip in the butter and cinnamon-sugar mixture.

Do not use paper liners for these donuts. You can bake them in a regular-size muffin tin if you prefer. Just increase the baking time by a few minutes.

Preheat the oven to 400°F. Grease or spray with cooking spray two 24-hole mini muffin tins.

Make the donut holes:

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, cornstarch, baking powder, salt, and nutmeg. In a separate bowl, whisk together the buttermilk and eggs. Add the buttermilk and eggs to the flour mixture and lightly mix together. Add the melted butter and mix just until combined.

Scoop a heaping tablespoon of batter into each well of the muffin tins. Bake for 10 to 13 minutes, until the donuts are still pale but a toothpick inserted in the center of a donut comes out clean.

Make the coating:

While the donuts are baking, in a medium bowl, whisk together the sugar and cinnamon.

Remove the donuts from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool for 5 minutes before removing from the tins.

Brush each donut all over with the melted butter, then roll in the cinnamon-sugar mixture. Transfer to a serving platter as you finish each donut. Serve warm or at room temperature.

- About the author -

Debbie Macomber, the author of Cottage by the Sea, Any Dream Will Do, If Not for You, and the Rose Harbor Inn series, is a leading voice in women’s fiction. Thirteen of her novels have reached #1 on the New York Times bestseller list, and five of her beloved Christmas novels have been hit movies on the Hallmark Channel, including Mrs. Miracle and Mr. Miracle. Hallmark Channel also produced the original series Debbie Macomber’s Cedar Cove, based on Macomber’s Cedar Cove books. She is, as well, the author of the cookbook Debbie Macomber’s Table. There are more than 200 million copies of her books in print worldwide.

More from Debbie Macomber

Debbie Macomber's Table

Sharing the Joy of Cooking with Family and Friends

Buy

Debbie Macomber's Table

— Published by Ballantine Books —