Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Baked Haddock With Lime Butter Recipe

Here is a delicious lime butter haddock, baked to perfection with a little spice.
 A cajun yet tropical flavor sure to delight any fish lovers! One we make often.


1 pound of Haddock filet's
3 tablespoons lime juice
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon Cajun seasoning
Parsley flakes
olive oil
sea salt
pepper
aluminum foil

In a small bowl mix lime juice, Worcestershire sauce, garlic seasoning, salt, pepper to taste.
Place haddock on a oil sprayed piece of foil, pour the mixture over the haddock, drizzle with olive oil then sprinkle with parsley.  Refrigerate at least 1/2 hour.  Bake in the foil, at 400 degree hot oven or place foil on the grill for 15 to 20 minutes or until fish flakes easily.  Serve with lime butter sauce over the top.

Lime Butter Sauce
In a large fry pan:
melt 1 stick of butter
add 2 teaspoons of minced garlic
add a drop of Worcestershire sauce
Whisk all together.
Add 2 tablespoon chopped cilantro or Italian parsley, and the juice of one fresh lime. Cook just a few minutes on low, making sure all the flavors have combine. When fish is cooked, pour over the fish and serve.
+claudia lamascolo  Author

Monday, January 30, 2012

Buffalo Omelet Low Fat

I never knew egg whites could taste this good!
Since the beginning of the new year, I am trying to make foods I love without the fat. Here is one I absolutely was astonished by and with only around 150 calories total.. so if you would like to indulge a little more at breakfast,  add whatever you if your not dieting, however factor in the additional calories if your watching your diet for anything other than vegetables to this one.

4 eggs whites or 1 cup ( I bought the pour your own, out of the carton kind)
1 pepper sliced  in thin shavings ( sliced on a mandolin)
1/4 cup mushrooms
olive oil
buffalo hot sauce

In a medium size fry pan, heat around 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Saute the peppers and mushrooms until soft. I like to also sprinkle a pinch of garlic powder, salt and pepper in there. Pour the egg whites over the top and cook till light brown on both sides, or to your liking. After that second flip, pour your desired amount of hot sauce on top. Fold in half and serve.
Suggestions for other additions to your omelet? bacon bits, chopped chicken, low fat cheese,( add any and all the vegetables you want as those won't add more calories to your omelet.)
Broccoli, spinach, zucchini, red bell peppers with eggwhites and hot sauce!

Not the breakfast your looking for?
Try these others breakfast style eggs and home fries:

Chicken Omelet Marsala
Porterhouse Omelet 
Sausage Omelet
Potato Frittata
Italian Home Fries
Buffalo Home Fries
Crockpot Sausage and Eggs
Saucy Eggs Breakfast
Italian Veggie Frittata
Ham and Egg Breakfast Sandwich
Cloud Souffle



Sunday, January 29, 2012

Microwave Bagged Popcorn Recipe Plus Video




I grew up on Jiffy Pop on the stovetop, shaking it away, pulling open the foil and the great smell through the house, it was so much fun back then in the 70's. Then my brother Luke,  became the guru so to speak on making popcorn on the stove with grandma's old saucepan and boy was it ever the best to eat, fresh popped, butter salt, buttery flavored oil, with age it became the best seasoned pan in the world to make popcorn in. Then somehow we got into the microwave age and the fast and furious was born.
While going out to shop, I noticed Orvilles jar corn  to be quite a bit more expensive today than Jolly Time in the  resealable bag. Orvilles was 4.99 for a one pound nice jar. Jolly Time was 4.49 and for a two pound bag, so who cares about the jar with that much more popcorn and a real money saver?
So, guess what, being the thrifty shopper and lover of my good ole faithful, Jolly Time came home with me. Now I can use my great new masons jars to put that popcorn in with double the popcorn for my money!

The linings of microwave-popcorn bags may contain a toxic chemical called perfluorooctanoic acid, or PFOA, which is used to prevent the food from sticking to the paper. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), PFOA is a likely carcinogen. "We don?t know all of the hazardous effects of PFOA yet, but we have some evidence of a link to cancer, as well as to effects on the immune, nervous, and endocrine systems," says David Carpenter, MD, director of the Institute for Health and the Environment at the University at Albany.
As I was scrolling through Pinterest (my favorite new site,)  I saw this pin and article from  The Cherry on Top blog and Squawk Fox was it's originator. When I read how bad microwave popcorn was in those little  store bought bags and how they talked about published results from various studies that have been found, I knew I wanted to write about this. Our microwave popcorn eaters are exposed to toxic vapors, and consuming a lot of popcorn popped in those little white bags has been associated with lung disease (called Popcorn Lung!) really Snopes.com  said it's true!. That alone is enough of a reason to stop buying these so called “healthy” snacks in the supermarket.  I wanted to share that knowledge with my readers as well. I was skeptical that this worked and tasted as good, but it does!  Thank you,  to those two sites for this valuable information.

1  brown paper bag (I bought 50 for  $.99 at my local grocery) Note: in the photo I used the red for presentation and poured the cooked corn into the bag after it was popped as shown in the video... the Hallmark red bags are perfect to send off to school lunches found in the card sections of the supermarket. I wouldn't try using them to pop with because of the dye on the bags.  Again you will see that in the video below.
1/2 cup raw popcorn
microwave on high for 3 minutes (depending on wattage mine is 1000 watts)

Add the popcorn to the bag, fold down the top of the bag twice, do not tape or staple.


Microwave for around 2 1/2 minutes and listen if and when the popcorn slows down considerably popping then just shut off microwave, 3 minutes may be too long and make it burn.


You can add salt or whatever you want. I already have a hot air popper but lazy to get it out since this is fast easy works and considered safer, it's all I need in a hurry.  I spray it with some no calorie butter spray, salt and pepper and good to go.


There are plenty of toppings to try, my favorite is sprinkling Parmesan cheese mixed with a dash of garlic powder and dash of cayenne pepper. Other suggestions with seasonings you can choose are Cajun seasonings, white cheddar, there are refrigerated butter sprays that are calorie free or even sprinkle with a mixture of cinnamon and sugar while it's still warm for a mock kettle corn.

For more popcorn recipes try these Family Stories On Popcorn assorted recipes idea's




Tips:

If using thin cheap bags, double bag it.
Bags are reuseable, just dump old kernels and fill again.
Always make sure you turn over the folds more than two or three times so the edges on face down tightly secured or bag with stand up and pop all over the place.


+claudia lamascolo  Author

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Panzanella Salad Recipe and Video

Oh the taste of freshness with basil,  garlic, tomato, cucumber, over a  soft inside and crunchy outside,  parmesan herb bread. You are surely in for a treat with the taste of summer in this plate...



Panzanella Salad

1 cucumber chopped in small cubes
2 large, beefsteak or vine ripe tomatoes
1 bell pepper chopped in cubes
4 cloves of  finely minced fresh garlic
6 large fresh basil leaves torn in small pieces
 1 1/2 cups Fresh white mozzarella, cubed

Dressing

3 cloves finely minced garlic
1/4  teaspoon Dijon mustard
3 tablespoons good grade balsamic vinegar preferred or use champagne vinegar
1 tablespoon white wine
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
pinch cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon honey

Cut Up The Bread
1 baguette french or Italian bread, about 6-8 cups cubed
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
 1/4 teaspoon each garlic powder, dried, oregano, parsley, basil
1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 400°
Cube and cut up all the vegetables into a medium size bowl, fold in the mozzarella cubes set aside.
 In a small bowl combine the wine, vinegar, mustard, pepper, honey, garlic, salt, cayenne and olive oil. Mix with a wire whisk until it is well mixed and slightly thickened. Pour over vegetable and cheese cubes in the medium bowl and refrigerate for 1 to 3 hours before serving. 

 Cut the bread into  1 inch pieces and toss into a large plastic zip lock bag. Adding  olive oil and salt, garlic powder, basil, parsley, oregano and cheese. Toss  all pieces until they are  well coated.  Place on a foil or parchment paper lined cookie sheet. Place in 430 degree oven for 6-8 minutes or until the edges of the bread are golden and crispy but not hard like croutons.  Let cool.

Add bread to a plate, scoop vegetables over the top and serve.



Friday, January 27, 2012

Curt's Roasted Red Skin Potato Recipe


 4 or 5 Red Skin Potatoes washed
Olive oil
1/2 teaspoon each of dried herbs: parsley, basil, oregano, garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon each of cayenne pepper, rosemary, cajun seasoning, chili powder (you can add more if you love spicy hot!)
salt, pepper to taste

After washing potatoes, cut into long slice wedges leaving the skins on. Place in a large bowl or plastic bag.  Place around 3 tablespoons of olive oil in the bag all the herb and spices, salt and pepper to taste, then potatoes stir or shake to coat evenly.
On a large cookie sheet lined with parchment or  oil sprayed foil,  place potatoes on the cookie sheet.  Drizzle a little more olive oil over the top.
Bake on 400 degree hot oven until browned and crispy, around 1 hour or so depending on thickness.

This are great for a large crowd and you can keep them warm in the crockpot after cooked on low.

Always nice to see the next generations of cook coming up with their idea's. A proud mama I am for sure!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Fancy Salad Greens, Goat Cheese, Pecans, Dates and More




I absolutely love fancy greens. I thought I would mix them with a bit of spinach. All organic. Added some
dates, pecans, dried cranberries, goat cheese and pureed some fresh raspberries, added a bit of balsamic vinegar. Add some other fruits and vegetables for sweetness that will wow your salad!  Try this healthy recipe, you will be surprised how delicious this one is.

Not only pretty but pretty tasty too!
A healthy lunch. For a whole meal you can add 4 oz of grilled salmon, blackened mahi mahi or grilled lemon chicken , goes very well with this salad.
Maybe you remember our Buffalo Chicken Salad click here
A real winner of choice here for us as well!

Healthy eating has to start with you. It's a commitment. Hard to stick by unless you have a long term goal in mind, hopefully it's to prolong you life.  Remember to drink lots of water remembering lemon is very healthy for you too.

Raspberries have many health benefits, helps prevent cancer, great source of fiber that helps burn fat and the best part they taste great. Using Organic mixed greens are grown without pesticides. Dates are also high in vitamins, helps prevent abdominal cancers and a great source of fiber as well.
Goat cheese had a tangy flavor and has allot less fat than regular cheese made with cows milk.

2 cups organic mixed salad greens
 1 tablespoon crumbled goat cheese
1 tablespoons chopped pecans
1 tablespoon dried cranberries
1 tablespoon dates
1/2 cup pureed fresh raspberries adding water or pure apple juice to thin down
optional: 2 or 3 teaspoons of lemon juice or balsamic vinegar
freshly cracked ground pepper
salt to taste if you prefer

 Arrange greens on a plate, top with cheese, pecans, dried cranberries, dates. Serve with raspberry sauce on the side, sprinkles with vinegar or lemon juice. (For recipes on fish and chicken click on the links above).

For other suggestion combinations:

Antipasto Salad : Use Romaine lettuce, cappicola, artichoke hearts, roasted peppers, extra sharp block provolone, black crinkles olives, green olives in  crushed red pepper, genoa salami, tomatoes sliced, parmesan long shredds of cheese, buffalo milk chunks of mozzarella. Make an Italian vinegar and oil  Italian salad dressing.

Some other suggestions for salads, substitute low fat ingredients for healthier salads.

BLT Salad:  Preferred lettuce is ice berg, chopped tomatoes, crumbled crisp bacon, top with croutons. Creamy dressing. Combine mayonaise, pinch of garlic powder, pepper,  salt to taste and little milk to thin, beat till combined.

Black Bean Salad:   Start with iceberg lettuce, top with black beans, avocado chopped, tomato, cucumbers, chopped jalapeno's, and thawed mexican or frozen corn Top with crushed tortilla chips,  mexican blend cheeses and salsa.

Traditional Chef Salad:  Chopped lettuce, boiled eggs sliced, ham, american cheese, small chunks of tomato, cucumbers, celery, bacon bits. Top with your favorite dressing and croutons.

French Bread Pizza, Buffalo Chicken Style or Garlic Cheesy Pizza Plus Video



Really the skies the limit folks, these are a 5 minute meal.
Leftovers? Here's a great way to use them.
Whether your having a party, in a hurry or just love pizza this one's for you!




Shown are olive, mushroom, peppers, pepperoni on the left.
Buffalo Chicken French Bread Pizza on the right!





The kid's will love this one!


1 loaf french bread sliced lengthwise in half then in half again! You will get four different kinds. Or just split once for two long pizza's. It's easier to arrange on a cookie sheet cut in half. Place on a foil lined cookie sheet for easy cleaning.
olive oil
dried, oregano,basil, garlic powder
tomato sauce store bought or homemade
mozzarella
assorted topping sliced,  cooked sausage, pepperoni, cooked ham, olive, cooked meatballs sliced, peppers, mushrooms, eggplant, meatball, ham, pineapple, cooked chicken
hot sauce
ranch or blue cheese dressing
mexican 4 or 5 kinds of mixed shredded cheese

Slice bread, add sauce, then toppings of choice, top with mozzarella, drizzle with olive oil..sprinkle lighting with dried spices….. Broil on high until the cheese is melted around 3 to 4 minutes watching carefully.  Bake on 430 degrees for a harder crust for 5 minutes until cheese is melted. 


Buffalo Chicken Pizza
Slice in half. Place cooked chicken on the bread. Pour 3 or 4 tablespoons of ranch or blue cheese dressing evenly over the top of the chicken. Add hot sauce on top of the dressing. Generously top with cheese. Broil for 3 minutes on high till cheese is melted.


Garlic Cheesy Bread
Spread top of cut bread loaf with butter or olive oil. Sprinkle with garlic powder lightly. Add dried parsley, oregano, basil  to cover the top lightly on the buttery side. Add a pinch of salt and pepper to taste, cayenne if you like heat. Top the herb bread with lots of whole milk shredded mozzarella. Bake for 10 minutes at 400, or broil on "HI" and toast cheese till it's browned watching closing around 2 to 3 minutes.


Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Mock Brownie Tiramisu Parfait Recipe Video


These are a perfect dessert for any quick craving of a mock style Tiramisu, of course
I had these Italian mason jars that made them taste even better~!!!

Although you can use all premade and store purchased baked goods and cooked ingredients, I have used homemade fillings and homemade scratch brownies.  For these recipes used in this recipe, click at the bottom for  those links.

 1 baked dark fudge brownie recipe or store bought brownies cut up in small chunks
 1 Tiramisu filling, recipe ( cheesecake filling can be also purchased in the dairy case in a premade container by Kraft at your local supermarket, or another suggestion is to make Jello instant cheesecake pudding and pie filling found on the grocery shelf  by other pudding mixes)
 1 jar hot fudge

For the Adult version add:
1 or 2 tablespoons Kahlua or (more if you like)  in 1/4 coffee brewed leftover if you have it  sprinkle this on the brownie layer

For the Kids version:
Sprinkle the brownie layer with a few teaspoons of chocolate syrup, omit the coffee and alcohol.

 Whipped Topping
 Fresh Strawberries dip each one in Hot warmed fudge
 Red colored sugar optional
 Maraschino cherry juice, strawberry syrup or red food coloring to color the cheese cake mixture
 Mason jars for parfait (shown in photo's) or use any parfait glass

First get everything ready. Crumble up the brownies place in a bowl. In another bowl,  mix the cheesecake filling, with your choice of coloring to make it pink or whatever color theme you want. Sprinkle Kahlua mixed with coffee on the brownie(or make the non alcohol version for kids)  In the meantime, microwave some hot fudge topping for 30 seconds. Dip the strawberries in hot fudge and set aside.
Assembly:
In a mason jar or other decorative glass, crumble brownies on the bottom in an even layer. Top with a few tablespoons or more to your liking of Kahlua/coffee mixture. Spread a few tablespoons of cheesecake filling over the top (Tip: for even easier method, put  cheesecake filling in a ziplock bag and snip the corner off to fill, squeeze on top of brownies) then add the whipped cream. Repeat, brownie, Kahlua, cheesecake filling and whipped cream until you get to the top ending with whipped cream.
 Place a  strawberry that has been dipped in warm chocolate hot fudge and add on the mound of whipped cream parfait. Sprinkle the top with any coordinating colored sugar this one is with red colored sugar... you can tint this any color you want for any Holiday or make a big batch using a very large one bowl glass trifle dish!

Recipe for  Dark Chocolate Brownies Click here
Recipe for Tiramisu No Egg Filling Click here





Sunday, January 22, 2012

Corkscrew (Fusillioni) Pasta with Sausage and Creamy Tomato Sauce

    Here's a perfect Sunday quick Italian meal... a little fattening, just once in awhile
    you just have to splurge~ I love the sun-dried tomatoes and cream!!
  • 1 - 1/2 cups oil packed sun dried tomatoes, drained  saving the oil and sliced
  • 1/4 cup olive oil from the jar of sun-dried tomatoes
  • 1 bell green pepper chopped
  • 8 oz of fresh mushrooms washed and cleaned
  • 3 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 1- 28 ounce can of Italian style diced plum tomatoes
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • oregano, basil, parsley to taste
  • pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 1 cup heavy cream( goes in last please read to the end)
  • 1 pound of  sliced meat of choice : sausage, chicken, sirloin steak are some suggestions
  • 1 pound box of your favorite pasta of choice boiled in salt water set aside
 extra olive oil

Boil pasta set aside and keep warm. Toss with 2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil to keep from sticking together. Set aside.
In a large skillet over low heat  add sun-dried tomato oil and completely cook meat all the way through, making sure you do not burn or use anything that will stick to the pan. Saute till brown, not too dark.  Remove meat and in the same pan with leftover oil, stir in peppers, mushrooms, add garlic, and saute till softened or your preferred taste.
Stir in diced plum and sun-dried tomatoes along with meat. Season with salt, pepper and rest of spices to taste. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer 10 minutes. Add cream and stir. Pour over cooked pasta. Serve with a glass of Cabernet and cheesy garlic bread pizza.
 

Friday, January 20, 2012

Baked Stuffed Figs with Goat Cheese and Pecans Recipe


I was so skeptical to try these, mom use to make them years ago. Such a simple appetizer and I never tired them. I was missing out these are addicting and much better than I ever dreamed. What ever took me so long is beyond me...  If you love figs and goat cheese, this will be a winner for you too!
I can't wait to try this with fresh figs!



 12 Dried or Fresh Figs
 (Fresh is best Black mission figs or Brown Turkish) Shown are Dried Kalamatta
  from Greece
 8 ounces Soft Goat cheese or Gorgonzola at room temperature
 Chopped pecans
 High quality Balsamic vinegar
 seasalt

Heat oven to 350 degree

Slice the figs in half lengthwise in half exposing the fig seeds, removing the stem and place on some parchment paper on a cookie sheet or use a ceramic style dish, lightly oil sprayed. Press down in the middle of each fig. Drizzle some balsamic vinegar, just a few drops each and a small grind of sea salt on top.

Fill each fig with  soft goat cheese and chopped pecans. Bake for 7 minutes at 350 degree oven or until the cheese is hot and bubbly! Serve with your favorite wine and crackers.



                 

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Amaretto Shot Chocolate Mug Cake



Amaretto Shot Mug Cake not at all like other mug cake, this one actually will surprise you!
Watch video below for more instructions
1 egg
1 tablespoon brown sugar
2 tablespoons peanut butter
1 tablespoon flour
1 tablespoon cocoa
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
2 to 3 tablespoons peanut butter chips or milk chocolate chips
 Amaretto 1 shot  more or less
chocolate syrup or hot fudge ice cream topping
whipped cream for garnishing
optional mini chocolate chips for garnishing

In a small bowl, stir the egg, brown sugar, peanut butter, flour, cocoa and baking powder with a fork. Stir in the chocolate chips and pour batter into a oil sprayed or greased ramekin or mug.


Microwave for about 1 minute depending on wattage up to 1 minute 10 seconds for over 1000 watt microwave.  Cooking may vary.

 Top with Amaretto first then ice cream or whipped topping and a little chocolate fudge sauce. You can also place this immediately onto a plate to serve or eat right from the mug.

Note: If you don't like peanut butter or have allergies, add half the cake batter then some caramel ice cream topping, end with more cake batter. Proceed to cook no longer than minute.
I hope you smile at these video's I am trying to make.  I find them fun to be able to show how the recipe is done, it's seems a little easier to understand, even though I leave in all the bloopers!  Hope you enjoy making this quick delicious and easy recipe! I needed a little more Amaretto after this movie (smile)

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Roasted Spicy Shrimp with Broccoli Florets Recipe

Roasted Broccoli with Shrimp over Brown Rice. I have made roasted vegetables before maybe you remember that one. We were sitting here thinking what to make with all these wonderful spices I won from Drick's Rambling Cafe' Blog and his great Giveaway Contest.
 One of the many prizes I won, there was one spice name that really stood out in the bunch called  Slap Ya Mama Cajun Spice,  I had to try it out, boy is it a great blend! 
 It was a toss up between using either salmon or shrimp, both would go great with roasted vegetables and the shrimp won, I assure you this was a terrific combination and we will make it again soon. If you don't care for too much spice, go easier on them, but this cajun spice was the
 perfect addition to make this dish a hit!

 2 pounds of broccoli cut up into florets washed, cleaned if fresh I cut the stems way down
 1 teaspoon sesame seeds toasted
 1 teaspoon soy sauce
 1 teaspoon minced garlic
 1 teaspoon sea salt,
 1/2 teaspoon pepper
 1/8 teaspoon chili powder
 1/2 teaspoon cajun spice
 dash of cayenne pepper
 1/4 teaspoon paprika
 1 lemon zested
 1/4 cup of seasoned Italian bread crumbs(optional)
 1 pound of shrimp fresh or frozen cleaned and deveined (tails on for presentation)

On a large  cookie sheet lined with parchment paper and sprayed with oil, spread  a single layer of broccoli drizzle lightly with olive oil, sprinkle with sesame seed.  Place in the oven for 15 minutes at 350 degree hot oven.


Meanwhile, in a bowl  mix together one pound large shrimp adding  2 tablespoons of olive oil, zest from one lemon, 1/2 teaspoon sea salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper, chili powder, smoked paprika, garlic and soy sauce.

 After the 15 minutes cooking the broccoli ( see note below),  add the shrimp and mix gently together. Sprinkle all over with bread crumbs if using.  Continue baking  raising temperature to 400 degrees and bake for another 10 minutes or until the shrimps are a nice pink in color and broccoli is roasted and browned on the edges a little. That's it.

Note:
We like our broccoli cooked a little more than most folks, so you decide. Test it, if you like crispier than you may want to add the shrimps earlier than waiting for the 15 minutes while roasting your broccoli. Sometimes I cook it even longer if it's really thick stemmed.

 This is great served over brown rice or plain.

+claudia lamascolo  author

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Baked Cabbage Recipe



Not a very pretty dish to look at but a creamy cabbage with great taste a great side dish.
This one goes very well with kielbasa, pork or ham.  We like this on cooler days!

Someone in the house was thinking he was slick hiding from me tonight while I was cooking.
 I was checking all over the house and then little Fonzo was peeping out at me,
he was so cute I had to share him! He was inside my new laptop computer box!
 Trying to help me post this one (smile) and yes he inspired me! More handsome than the cabbage for sure!
                                           Fonzo you can run but you can also hide pretty well too!

Baked Cabbage:

1 head green cabbage, finely shredded
1 teaspoon salt
1 inch water in large pan
2 tablespoons butter
1 clove minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar
1 cup sour cream
Salt and white pepper to taste
Hungarian sweet paprika
1/2 cup crushed buttery cracker crumbs
Boil shredded cabbage in salted water, covered, for 5 to 10 minute. Drain all the water out.  Add butter to cabbage and mix together.  Add vinegar, sugar, sour cream, white pepper and salt, oregano and garlic,  toss again. Place in a 1-1/2 quart buttered casserole, top with cracker crumbs and garnish with paprika.

Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes, or until hot.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Chickpea and Sweet Potato Dip Recipe




This is one addicting appetizer... just love the sweetness then the hot bite it has ~

1 medium sweet potatoes or yam cleaned and peeled
1 15 ounce can of chickpeas drained
2 cloves of fresh garlic cleaned
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
dash of cayenne
parsley for garnish
Optional: hot sauce
Microwave potato till soft around 6 minutes. Cool. Scoop out the potatoes and place in the food processor.
Rinse chickpeas, add garlic, salt, and the chickpeas along with oil to food processor to make a smooth consistency. Place in a bowl, drizzle with more olive oil and hot sauce if using.
Delicious served with toasted pita bread, crackers, or fresh cut vegetables.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Baked Upsidedown Blueberry Crumb Doughnuts with Cinnamon Ganache Glaze






Upside down is right! Oh yes,  but yet another donut, this is now the third kind of my baked donut frenzy, we just love them!  I really wasn't thinking when I decided to do these crumb topped donuts!  I forgot that the tops were the bottoms when flipping the donut pan, so now I have the best of both worlds here!  Crumb bottoms and glazed tops!  A wonderful mistake!

Batter for Donuts:

1/ 3/4 cup all-purpose flour + 1/4 cup cornstarch
3/4 cup  brown sugar
2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup milk
2 eggs, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup  fresh blueberries or drained canned blueberries (save some extra for garnishing)
pinch of cinnamon

Crumb topping:

1/2 cup white sugar
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup butter, cubed (half a stick) cold
 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
I put through a food processor for even blending of crumbs or use a fork to cut into this mixtures till fine crumbs.

Cinnamon Ganache Glaze

1/4 cup butter
3 ounces white chocolate
melt chocolate and butter in the microwave for one minute
1 3/4 cup powdered sugar
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
4-5 tablespoons milk or more till free flowing


Directions:
Blend together the flour, cornstarch,  sugar, baking powder and salt into a large bowl. Pour in the milk, eggs, butter and vanilla extract and cinnamon. Batter is similar to a muffin, so do not over mix. Fold in the  blueberries till evenly blended. Lightly grease a doughnut pan with non-stick cooking spray.

 Fill a ziplock bag with batter, snip the end slightly not too big! Pipe into the doughnut pan, filling each one halfway. Bake the doughnuts at 400 degrees for 8-9 minutes. The donuts are done when they spring back, or come out clean with a toothpick. Turn immediately onto parchment paper.
While they cool, make glaze.

These don't keep well with leftovers.  I suggest you eat them all in one day. The moisture content will make them soggy. The recipe makes 12.

Glaze:
In a large bowl add powdered sugar. Mix in the  melted butter and white chocolate mixture , cinnamon, milk and vanilla extract. Beat until smooth to combine. If the glaze is too thick, add additional  milk, 1/2 teaspoon at a time until it flows freely.  Cool and drizzle glaze over the top.  Allow the glaze on the doughnuts to dry.

Not quite the one you were looking for ?

Try these other recipes for now and more to come!!!!  Stay tuned!

Baked Vanilla Donuts with White Chocolate Ganache Glaze

Dark Chocolate Baked Donuts with Dark Chocolate Ganache Glaze

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Grandma's Conchiglie and Piselli Italian Zuppa Recipe

x
This is Italian Style Peas and Baby Shell Pasta, growing up this was another meal that was referred to as "depression day food". Economical, fed allot of us and today it's to me a rare find on any menu.  This meal continues to adorn our tables no matter what time period were in as long as I am alive. I will always remember the aroma of that garlic sauteed in oil coming home from school. Grandma lived with us, she made everything taste like it was a banquet feast.. this one takes no back seat. Now a must make during the cool chilly months, we will long live in her memory with these great recipe.
Thanks Grandma Victoria we love this one and miss your special love that went into every pot!
She was 92 here, my nieces Alicia, Pamela and Mary there to help celebrate in 1978.
This here was her last birthday photo R.I.P.
Thank goodness for modern day cooking! I know she wished to have a food processor in hand!
Happy cooking!

Peas and Pasta:

Place in food processor
3 cloves of cleaned garlic
1/2 cup fresh celery leaves
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
Puree till a fine mixture.

In a large deep sauce pan, add the oil mixture on low heat, saute for 1 minutes,  next add:
2 (14 to 15 oz size) cans of pea's, saute pea's till starting to brown.

Add:
1/2 teaspoon each, parsley, basil, garlic powder, oregano
1 small can of tomato paste + fill can with white wine to stir out the leftover paste
1 can of chicken broth
1 cup water
2 cups of  fresh chopped whole tomatoes or  fresh plum tomatoes pureed in food processor
Cook until sauce thickens around 1 1/2 hours on  a simmerlow.

 Baby shell pasta:
Add  a 1 lb box of baby shell pasta to a pot of salted  boiling water. Boil till desired doneness.

Add the pasta to the sauce mix, serve with grated cheese.


That's me, Grandma and Aunt Mary, grandma's daughter...
 R.I.P. grandma and auntie,  I still miss you everyday!