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Garden Café’s Apple-Raisin Blinis

Photo by Sandy Wilson

Garden Café owner Mark Wootton has long been a champion of using natural, sustainable, and humanely raised food products, extending even to the honey that he uses at the café.

Makes 4 servings

Apple-Raisin Filling (recipe follows)
Blinis (recipe follows)
3 ounces Texas artisan mascarpone cheese, such as Mozzarella Company’s
Texas Honeybee Guild Honey or other natural local honey
Powdered sugar for garnishing
Fresh sliced seasonal fruit and/or berries

Apple-Raisin Filling

1 tablespoon butter
1 large apple, peeled, cored and cut into small dice
1 cup golden raisins, also called sultanas
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon


1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon sugar
¼ teaspoon baking soda
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
2 large eggs, well beaten
2 cups whole milk
1 tablespoon canola oil
4 tablespoons butter

Begin by making the apple-raisin filling. Melt the butter in a heavybottomed skillet over medium heat. Add the apple and cook until it begins to brown. Add the raisins and cook, stirring, just to heat through. Stir in the cinnamon and set aside to keep warm.

Make the blinis. In a medium-sized bowl, combine the salt, sugar, baking soda, flour and cinnamon, tossing to incorporate well; set aside. Combine the beaten eggs, milk and canola oil in a separate bowl, whisking to blend well. Fold the egg mixture into the flour mixture, blending thoroughly.

Using an 8-inch nonstick skillet, heat ½ teaspoon of the butter and add ¼ cup of the blini batter. Use a high-heat plastic spatula to check the underside of the blini after about 30 seconds. When it starts to brown nicely, flip the blini. Cook for another 30 seconds to brown the other side. Remove from pan. Repeat using the remaining blini batter and another ½ tablespoon of the butter for each blini. Stack and keep warm under a paper towel.

Place the mascarpone cheese in a microwavable bowl and slightly heat the cheese in 10-second bursts. It should be slightly warm to make spreading easier.

To serve, generously spread the mascarpone on one side of each blini. Lightly press a portion of the apple-raisin filling into the mascarpone. Roll the blinis and place two on each small serving plate. Drizzle with some of the honey and sprinkle with powdered sugar. Add seasonal fruit and/or berries to the plate and serve.

From Breakfast in Texas: Recipes for Elegant Brunches, Down-Home Classics, and Local Favorites by Terry Thompson-Anderson, published by the University of Texas Press. Photos by Sandy Wilson.

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