Congratulations to, Alison Sherman of Glendale California , our Name That Santa Winner 2009! will be the first “Jewels” reader to sample my Jewels Cocoa Magic Grill Rub. Now here are the answers:
Santa 1: Julie Anne Rhodes
Santa 2: Nick Rhodes
Santa 3: Nick Rhodes
Santa 4: Roger Bates
Santa 5: Sr. Zilli Santa
Santa 6: Hunky Santa

I originally developed the spice rub for seasoning grilled steaks, but my vegetarian clients love it on grilled Portobello mushrooms too! Warning: this rub has proven to be highly addictive. My clients ask for it repeatedly (one of my secrets to keep them coming back for more).

As a special Christmas treat I will be sending Jewels Cocoa Magic Grill Rub to all who sent in their addresses, but Alison gets hers first! Thank you to everyone who entered… I was surprised by how many of you actually got it right… or almost!
Red Velvet Pancakes
The Waldorf Astoria’s Red Velvet cake has been my absolute favorite since I was a very young girl. You can imagine my delight when I saw red velvet pancakes on the menu at the Larchmont Bungalow, and they certainly did NOT disappoint! This is my rendition.

Servings: 4


For the Whipped Cream Cheese Topping
  • 1/4 pound cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream

For the pancakes or waffle

  • 1 1/4 cup flour
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 scant teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 egg
  • 4 tablespoons canola oil plus 1-2 tablespoons extra for making pancakes
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 ounce red food color
  • 1 teaspoon cocoa
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon white vinegar
Additional toppings
  • melted butter, optional
  • warm maple syrup, optional
  • pecans or walnuts, optional

1). Use an electric mixer on medium-high speed to whip the cream cheese until smooth. Reduce the speed and stir in the sugar, salt, and vanilla extract, and beat until the mixture is smooth and well blended. With the mixer on low speed, add half of the cream. Use a rubber spatula to remove any unmixed cream cheese from the bottom of the bowl. When the mixture is smooth, gradually add the rest of the whipping cream. Increase the speed to high and whip until soft peaks form. Should be the consistency of a dense whipped cream topping. Set aside.

2). Stir flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder together in a large mixing bowl. Mix in egg, oil, and buttermilk. Mix until smooth.

3). Mix red food color and cocoa in a small bowl, then stir into batter. Add vanilla, baking soda, and vinegar (in that order), and beat until everything is well incorporated, about 2 minutes.

4). Heat 1-2 tablespoons of oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Once oil starts to form ridges, drop a large spoonful of batter into the hot oil. Repeat 3 more times, keeping ample space between pancakes to keep them from running together. When the batter begins to bubble, carefully flip the pancake to brown on the other side, about 2 minutes per side.

5). Serve hot with whipped cream cheese topping, and any additional topping you desire.

Servings suggestion: Crispy bacon and sausages.

… and as for the red velvet pancakes… definitely a keeper! Even Santa left no crumbs.

Merry Christmas!

UPDATE: There is a short delay in sending the spice rub samples while we wait for the packaging to arrive.

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