German Apple Cake

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I love apple baking season!! My son has also become obsessed with cinnamon-sugar ever since pumpkin doughnut muffins became part of his life. :) Apples and cinnamon-sugar are a match made in heaven- not to mention eating tasty cake a la mode- the whole dessert was heavenly!

I chose this recipe because the presentation was so pretty- so happy it was equally delicious. This cake was AMAZING. The recipe was adapted from Mad Hungry by Lucinda Scala Quinn, via Martha Stewart Living. I used Ginger Gold apples because they were the most tart and best baking apples available at my farmstand at the time. It would also be wonderful with a combination of Granny Smith, Winesap, or Cortland apples. I usually prefer to combine varieties, but I couldn’t wait to make this cake. :)

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  • cooking oil spray
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/3 cups sugar, separated
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 4 large, tart apples, such as Ginger Gold, Granny Smith, Cortland, or Winesap

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  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees (on convection). Butter (or spray with cooking oil) a 9 x 7-inch or an 8-inch square pan, or other equivalent-size baking dish. Line with parchment paper, butter or spray the parchment as well.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
  3. In a medium bowl, cream together the butter and 1 cup of the sugar. Stir in the eggs and vanilla. Add the flour mixture and beat until combined. Spread the mixture evenly in the prepared pan.
  4. In a small bowl, combine the remaining 1/3-cup sugar with the cinnamon.
  5. Squeeze lemon juice into a medium bowl. Peel, core, and slice the apples into the bowl. Add the cinnamon-sugar mixture and toss to thoroughly coat each apple slice.
  6. Arrange the apple slices on top of the batter in overlapping rows, pressing lightly into the batter. Drizzle remaining cinnamon-sugar over the top.
  7. Bake for 45 minutes, or until a cake tester or toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 to 15 minutes before serving.

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One Year Ago:

Two Years Ago:

Quick Crusty Mustard Chicken

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We cannot eat enough mustard chicken in my house. I can’t try too many versions either! This version is less saucy and more of an oven-fried chicken with a delicious crispy mustard-shallot-breadcrumb coating. The coating is not only flavorful; it seals the moisture into the meat.

This recipe was adapted from Martha Stewart Living. I used all chicken thighs (and removed the skin- still very moist!), increased the shallots and the fresh thyme, and substituted panko for some of the breadcrumbs. We ate it with roasted chioggia beets, potatoes, and acorn squash on the side. Yum!

  • 4 pounds (about 8) bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs, skin removed
  • 3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup minced shallots
  • 3 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves
  • coarse salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to season chicken
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red-pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup white breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup panko
  1. Preheat broiler. Remove skin from chicken. Place chicken pieces on a rimmed baking sheet, lightly season with salt and pepper, and place under the broiler. Cook 5 minutes; using tongs, turn chicken pieces, and continue broiling 3 minutes more.
  2. Mince shallot and thyme in a mini-food processor.
  3. In a small bowl, combine mustard, shallots, thyme, black pepper, red-pepper flakes, and salt. Stir in butter and oil until thoroughly combined.
  4. Combine breadcrumbs and panko in a shallow dish. Brush chicken pieces on both sides with the mustard mixture, and then roll in breadcrumb mixture to coat completely.
  5. Place coated chicken pieces on a clean baking sheet, and return to broiler. Cook until well browned all over, about 5 minutes, turning occasionally to brown evenly. Reduce oven heat to 500 degrees; continue roasting until juices run clear when chicken is pierced with the tip of a paring knife, about 10 minutes. Remove from oven, and serve hot.

One Year Ago:

Two Years Ago:

Rick Bayless’ Classic Ensenada Fish Tacos

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My husband loves to go fishing. He doesn’t get the opportunity to go very often, and he doesn’t have a lot of luck catching many fish, but it is a peaceful and relaxing activity for him. My son enjoys it now too! When we heard about a sunset fishing boat excursion near our home, my husband brought my son as a surprise. The boat took them out into the Long Island Sound where they both caught porgy and bass- and had a great time together! :)

I had to make something special with this super-fresh fish. For my son there was no question- I had to make fish tacos. I had been excited to try the “perfect fish tacos” from a recent issue of Bon Appetit. My fishermen rejected the recipe. :( Rick Bayless recipes are always welcome in our home, so I chose this version instead.

The batter smelled AMAZING. (I don’t think I’ve ever said that about a batter!) After cooking all of the fish, I realized that I forgot to add the garlic to the amazing-smelling batter… gasp! This may have been a first for me…. I added garlic to the creamy sauce instead, which was wonderful. Next time, I would add the garlic to the batter and the sauce! I modified the recipe below. This recipe was adapted from Mexico-One Plate at a Time by Rick Bayless, via rickbayless.com.

These were the best fish tacos I have ever made- and possibly the best I’ve ever eaten. Special fish! :) I’m sharing this dish with my friends at Fiesta Friday #38 this week at The Novice Gardener. Enjoy!

Servings: about 12 tacos, 4 to 6 servings

  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled, separated
  • coarse salt, to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon oregano or Mexican oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon yellow mustard
  • 1 teaspoon concentrated chicken base
  • 1 cup beer (I used Brooklyn Brewery’s Octoberfest)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • Vegetable oil to a depth of 1/2-inch for frying (I used Canola)
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless fish filets (preferably larger-flake, lighter-flavored fish—like halibut, sea bass, grouper, etc)
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/3 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup milk (I used 1 percent)
  • 12 warm corn tortillas
  • 1 cup (or more) thinly sliced cabbage (preferably Napa cabbage)
  • About 1 cup salsa (such as toasted arbol chile salsa, roasted green chile salsa, roasted tomatillo salsa or even one of the Mexican hot sauces like Tamazula or Valentina) (I used Frontera Chipotle Salsa)
  • 2 or 3 limes, cut into wedges
  1. Make the batter: Finely chop the garlic, sprinkle generously with salt, then mash back and forth with the side of your knife across your cutting board until crushed to a puree. Scrape into a medium bowl and add the oregano, black pepper, mustard, chicken base, beer, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Add the flour and baking powder to the wet ingredients and whisk just until combined.
  2. Heat the oil in a heavy skillet to 370 degrees. (I used a candy thermometer.) While the oil is heating, cut the fish into pieces about 3 inches long by 1/2 inch square. Use a pair of tongs to pick up a piece of fish, dip it completely into the batter, and lay it into the oil. Continue with a few more pieces of fish, filling the hot oil with an uncrowded layer. Fry, turning the pieces regularly, until deep golden and crisp, about 2-3 minutes. Drain on paper towels and keep warm in a low oven on a wire rack set over a sheet pan while you fry the rest of the fish.
  3. Make the sauce: Push the 2 remaining garlic cloves through a garlic press. Mix together the mayonnaise, sour cream and milk. Add the garlic and stir to combine.
  4. Serve the sauce along with the cabbage, salsa, warm corn tortillas, limes and the crispy fish for everyone to make tacos.

One Year Ago:

Two Years Ago:

Pumpkin Doughnut Muffins

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If you call these muffins, it’s okay to eat them for breakfast, right? :) These moist and cakey muffins are transformed into doughnut-like treats when coated with cinnamon-sugar. They are perfect for a cool, autumn morning or for a special Halloween or Thanksgiving breakfast.

This recipe was adapted from Everyday Food. I made them in a muffin pan this time, but next time may try a mini-bundt pan. I adapted the recipe to make them slightly healthier by incorporating white whole wheat flour and by serving them with sliced fresh pears. :) They were worth every bit of indulgence!

Yield: Makes 12 standard muffins

For the Batter:

  • 10 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pan
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, spooned and leveled, plus more for pan
  • 1 1/2 cups white whole wheat flour, spooned and leveled
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/3 cup buttermilk
  • 1 1/4 cups pure pumpkin puree (from a 15-ounce can)
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs

For the Cinnamon-Sugar Coating:

  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted

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  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees (convection). Butter and flour 12 standard muffin cups.
  2. Make batter: In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, nutmeg, and allspice.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together buttermilk and pumpkin puree.
  4. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, one at a time, scraping down bowl as needed.
  5. With mixer on low, add flour mixture in three additions, alternating with two additions pumpkin mixture, and beat to combine.
  6. Spoon 1/3 cup batter into each muffin cup and bake until a toothpick inserted in center of a muffin comes out clean, 20 minutes (on convection) or up to 30 minutes in a standard oven.
  7. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine granulated sugar and cinnamon. Let muffins cool 10 minutes in pan on a wire rack. Working with one at a time, remove muffins from pan, brush all over with butter, then toss to coat in sugar mixture. Let muffins cool completely on a wire rack.

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One Year Ago:

Roasted Red Pepper, Corn, & Tomato Soup

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I had a BOUNTY of red peppers this year in my CSA share. I found this recipe on an extensive search for a creative use for them… last year I made Roasted Red Pepper Pasta Sauce (link below) more than once, and, although delicious, I wanted something new! :) (One can only eat so many red peppers in salad too…)

I was completely floored by this delicious soup. The color was incredible too. What a wonderful surprise! The roasted vegetables – especially the corn- gave it a fabulous depth of flavor. It was chili-esque. In fact, it was the BEST vegetarian “faux” chili I have ever tasted- and the BEST use for my bounty of CSA red peppers! (not to mention late-summer corn!) We ate it with green salad and popovers- but it would also be wonderful with cornbread. This recipe was adapted from Knead to Cook.com.

I’m bringing it to this week’s party over at The Novice Gardener. Happy Fiesta Friday #36!!

  • 4 ears of fresh corn
  • 3 cups of cherry or grape tomatoes
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 1 small red onion, diced
  • 6 large garlic cloves, sliced
  • 6 red bell peppers or red long peppers
  • olive oil
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • ricotta salata, for serving, optional
  • cilantro, for serving, optional
  1. Preheat your oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Roast red peppers on a baking sheet 5-7 minutes a side, until charred. Turn over and repeat to char the other side. Cover with foil to steam. When cool enough to touch, remove skin, seeds, and stems. Roughly chop.
  3. On a cookie sheet drizzle a bit of olive oil. Remove the corn kernels from the cob; place on the cookie sheet. Add the tomatoes. Toss to coat with the olive oil, adding extra if necessary. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and place in the oven for 10-15 minutes.
  4. Heat a Dutch oven over medium heat, then add a drizzle of olive oil. Add the onions and cook until translucent, about 4 minutes. Add garlic and chopped red peppers and stir.
  5. Add the stock and spices to the red pepper mixture. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.
  6. Add the roasted corn and tomatoes. Reserve some corn for a garnish, if desired. With an immersion blender, or working in batches with a food processor, puree until smooth. Continue to cook simmer for an additional 20 minutes or longer over a low flame.
  7. Serve garnished with reserved corn, a sprinkling of cheese, and/or cilantro, if desired.

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One Year Ago:

Pork Tenderloin with Greens & Polenta

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After preparing a meal with pork tenderloin such as this one, I ask myself why I don’t always utilize the oven probe thermometer; it makes cooking to perfection completely FOOLPROOF!! This dish had wonderful components… the soft and cheesy polenta, the flavorful and bountiful greens, and the perfectly cooked meat. :) Amazing! This recipe was loosely adapted from Everyday Food.

Yield: Serves 6 to 8

For the Polenta:

  • 2 cups skim milk
  • 2 1/2 cups chicken stock
  • 3/4 cup polenta
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper

To Finish the Dish:

  • 2 pork tenderloins (approximately 1 pound each)
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for dish
  • 3/4 cup chicken stock
  • 1 medium yellow onion, halved and thinly sliced crosswise
  • 1 medium red onion, halved and thinly sliced crosswise
  • 4 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1 large bunch Swiss chard (3/4 pound), stems cut into 1/2-inch pieces, leaves sliced into 1-2 inch ribbons
  • 6-8 cups collard greens, large ribs removed, thinly sliced into 1/4-inch ribbons
  • 3 teaspoons sherry vinegar
  • coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
  2. In a 4-quart enameled cast iron pot, bring milk and stock to a boil over medium-high. Gradually whisk in polenta. Continue to whisk until polenta thickens. Reduce heat to low, season with salt and pepper, and simmer gently, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking, until cooked, about 15 to 20 minutes. Add Parmesan; stir.
  3. Meanwhile, season pork with salt and pepper. Heat a 12-inch ovenproof sauté pan over medium-high heat; add 1-2 teaspoons of oil. Sear pork until browned on all sides, about 4 to 5 minutes on each side. Remove from heat. Transfer pan to oven.
  4. Roast pork until an instant-read thermometer inserted into thickest part of meat registers 145 degrees, about 10 to 15 minutes (on convection roast). (Use an oven probe thermometer if available!) Transfer to a plate and loosely cover with foil. Let pork rest for 10 minutes before slicing.
  5. While the pork is resting, return skillet to heat and add 1-2 teaspoons oil along with the onions and chard stems. Cook, scraping up browned bits, until vegetables begin to soften, 3 to 5 minutes (add additional stock and/or reduce heat to prevent burning, as needed). Add garlic along with the chard and collard leaves and cook until the greens are wilted, about 2 minutes. Add sherry vinegar, stock, and accumulated juices from the pork; cook until liquid has almost evaporated, about 4 minutes.
  6. Season the greens with salt and pepper and serve over polenta topped with the sliced pork.

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One Year Ago:

Whole Wheat & Oat Zucchini Bread

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More zucchini bread you say? Yes! We haven’t tired of it- it’s so moist and delicious. This Bon Appetit version was unique because of the addition of old-fashioned oats. I modified the recipe to use whole wheat flour and to incorporate chocolate chips. Fabulous for a special breakfast or snack.

Yield: 2 standard loaves

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  • Non-stick vegetable oil spray
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips or walnuts (optional)
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1¼ cups granulated sugar
  • ½ cup (packed) light brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups white whole wheat flour or whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1½ teaspoons coarse salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 3½ cups coarsely grated zucchini (from about 1 lb. zucchini)
  • 1¼ cups old-fashioned rolled oats, divided
  • 3 tablespoons turbinado sugar
  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Spray two 8 1/2×4 1/2″ loaf pans with nonstick spray and line with parchment paper, leaving a generous overhang on long sides. (I didn’t use the parchment paper and had no problems with sticking.)
  2. If using, spread walnuts on a rimmed baking sheet and toast until slightly darkened and fragrant, 8–10 minutes; let cool, then coarsely chop.
  3. Whisk eggs, oil, granulated sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla in a large bowl until smooth.
  4. Whisk flours, salt, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, and nutmeg in another large bowl just to combine. Make a well in the center of dry ingredients, add egg mixture, and slowly incorporate dry ingredients with a fork (batter will look dry).
  5. Fold in zucchini, walnuts or chocolate chips (if using), and 1 cup oats. Scrape batter into prepared pans.
  6. Toss raw sugar and remaining 1/4 cup oats in a small bowl. Sprinkle over batter and bake until a tester inserted into the center comes out clean, about 50 minutes in a convection oven or up to 70–80 minutes in a standard oven. Transfer pans to a wire rack and let bread cool in pans 30 minutes; turn out bread onto rack and let cool completely.

 

Note: Bread can be baked 4 days ahead. Store tightly wrapped at room temperature.

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One Year Ago:

Two Years Ago:

If you like this you may also like:

Roasted Poblano Corn Chowder

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Corn chowder made with fresh corn is heavenly. I make a Barefoot Contessa version in the late-summer/early-fall EVERY year. This chowder recipe is from one of my favorite blogs- I have a LONG long LONG list of her recipes bookmarked to try- this one was wonderful and I am sure it’s no exception. I adapted the recipe slightly by increasing the corn, potatoes, and garlic, using half & half in lieu of heavy cream, and by adding optional sour cream and cheese to offset the spiciness. So spicy!! So delicious!! This recipe was adapted from The Novice Gardener.

Servings: 6-8

  • 4 poblano chiles
  • 2 T extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 celery rib, chopped
  • 2 large Yukon-gold potatoes, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 2 cooked chicken breasts, cubed into bite-size pieces
  • kernels from 4 ears of fresh corn
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 1 cup half and half
  • Fresh herbs (thyme, cilantro, and/or chives), chopped (I used a generous 1/2 cup of cilantro)
  • coarse salt & freshly ground black pepper
  • ricotta salata, for sprinkling, optional
  • sour cream, for serving, optional
  1. Roast poblanos either under the broiler or over direct flame on gas stove, until charred and blistered, about 5 minutes per side. Immediately place in a bag and seal or place in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap for 10 minutes, or until cool enough to handle. Peel the skins and remove seeds and membranes. Rinse chiles and then roughly chop.
  2. Season the chicken breasts with salt and pepper. Broil until cooked through, about 5-7 minutes per side. Cube into bite-sized pieces.
  3. In a large soup pot, heat oil; add onion, garlic, and celery. Sauté until vegetables are cooked. Add cumin, salt, and pepper.
  4. Add stock, potatoes, roasted poblanos, corn, and chicken. Bring to a boil and cook until potatoes are tender.
  5. Add half & half. Lower heat to a simmer.
  6. Add fresh herbs. Serve with cheese and sour cream, if desired.

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One Year Ago:

If you like this you may also like:

Baked Greek Shrimp with Tomatoes & Feta

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This dish is supposed to transport you to the Greek Isles- we needed an (quick & inexpensive!) escape- maybe that’s why my husband loved it so much! It has a different flavor profile from the dishes I am usually drawn to which made it unique and extra-delicious. It was also a wonderful late-summer dish to make with my beautiful, fresh CSA tomatoes. This recipe was adapted from the New York Times, contributed by David Tanis. We ate it over rice with green salad on the side. Sensational! :)

This is the perfect dish to share at Fiesta Friday #35 this week at The Novice Gardener. I am also flattered and honored to share that my contribution to Fiesta Friday #34- Almond-Crusted Pork Scallopini with Apples & Arugula- is featured this week as well!! Wow! Enjoy!! :)

Total Time: 45 minutes

Yield: 4 to 6 servings

  • extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 large shallots, diced, about 1 generous cup
  • 6 large garlic cloves, minced
  • coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 pounds large ripe tomatoes, about 4 large
  • ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 ½ pounds large shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 4 ounces Greek feta cheese, crumbled
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1-2 tablespoons chopped mint
  1. Put 4 tablespoons of olive oil in a wide skillet over medium heat. Add shallots and garlic, season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring, until softened, about 5 to 8 minutes. Lower heat as necessary to keep mixture from browning. Remove from heat while preparing tomatoes.
  2. Fill a saucepan with water and bring to a boil. Add whole tomatoes and cook for about 2 minutes, until skins loosen. Immediately plunge tomatoes in a bowl of cold water to cool, then drain. With a paring knife, core tomatoes and slip off skins. Cut tomatoes into thick wedges.
  3. Heat oven to 400 degrees. Return skillet to stove over medium-high heat. Add tomato wedges and season with salt, pepper and red pepper flakes. Cook, stirring, until mixture is juicy and tomatoes have softened, about 10 minutes. Transfer mixture to a shallow, 13 x 9 baking dish.
  4. Put shrimp in a mixing bowl. Add 1 tablespoon olive oil, season shrimp with salt and pepper, and stir to coat. Arrange shrimp over tomato mixture in one layer. Crumble cheese over surface and sprinkle with oregano.
  5. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, until tomatoes are bubbling and cheese has browned slightly.
  6. While the dish is baking, prepare the rice according to package directions.
  7. Remove the shrimp and tomatoes from the oven and let the dish rest for 5 minutes. Sprinkle with mint and serve over rice.

One Year Ago:

Two Years Ago:

Thai Green Curry with Chicken

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I love Thai curries. My go-to Thai takeout dish is ALWAYS red curry- so this was a nice change of pace. :) This dish is a super-quick cook made with store-bought curry paste.

I adapted this Everyday Food recipe by using a combination of chicken meat, adding shallots, green peppers, and coconut oil, and by serving it over brown rice. It was a wonderful end-of-summer dish as it made use of my grill, garden basil, and CSA green beans and bell pepper, while also being the warm and filling meal perfect for a cool evening. Healthy, flavorful, and delicious!

Yield: Serves 4

  • 1 cup brown Basmati rice
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 12 ounces (about 3 1/2 cups) green beans, stem ends removed, halved crosswise
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced large
  • 1 medium onion, halved and sliced
  • 1 medium to large shallot, halved and sliced
  • 2 tablespoons Thai green curry paste
  • 1 skinless, boneless chicken breast and 5 skinless, boneless chicken thighs
  • 1 can (14.5 ounces) coconut milk (I used light coconut milk)
  • 1 cup torn fresh basil leaves
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice (from 1 lime)
  • coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
  1. Season the chicken meat with salt and pepper. Grill or broil the meat to cook. Cut into 1-inch pieces, set aside.
  2. Cook rice according to package instructions. (I cook 1 cup of rice in 2 cups of chicken stock for 30-40 minutes.)
  3. Meanwhile, place cornstarch in a small bowl; whisk in 2 to 3 tablespoons chicken stock until smooth (reserve remaining stock). Set aside.
  4. Heat coconut oil in a large skillet over medium. Add onion and shallot; cook, tossing frequently, until they begin to soften, then add the green beans and bell pepper. Continue to cook until vegetables begin to soften as well, about 5 to 7 minutes.
  5. Add curry paste to green beans and onion in skillet. Cook, stirring and scraping bottom of skillet, until paste is slightly darkened, 3 to 4 minutes.
  6. Add chicken, coconut milk, cornstarch mixture, and reserved chicken broth. Simmer until vegetables are tender and sauce is slightly thickened, 5 to 8 minutes.
  7. Add basil and lime juice. Season with salt, and stir to combine; serve over rice.

One Year Ago:

Morning Glory Muffins

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I love to treat my family (& myself!) to muffins for a special weekday breakfast. My kids have also become thrilled to have mini-muffins in their snack at school!

These muffins are loaded with healthy sweetness from carrots, apples, coconut, and raisins. The cookbook made them sound even more healthy and appealing because it stated that the bakery has to make a fresh batch on weekend afternoons for the cycling club that stops in for their muffin break! :) This recipe was adapted from The Model Bakery Cookbook: 75 Favorite Recipes from the Beloved Napa Valley Bakery by Karen Mitchell and Sarah Mitchell Hansen with Rick Rodgers. I adapted the recipe to incorporate whole wheat flour, and adjusted the baking time for mini-muffins and a convection oven.

Yield: 16-20 standard muffins, or 12 standard muffins & 24 mini-muffins

  • 1 1/4 cups (365 g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 cups white whole wheat flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp fine sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 cups (210 g) shredded carrots, about 3 large
  • 1 Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored, & shredded
  • 1 cup (240 ml) vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 cups (300 g) granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup (80 g) sweetened shredded coconut, plus 1/4 cup (30 g)
  • 1/2 cup (85 g) dark raisins

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  1. Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 400 degrees (on convection). Line muffin cups with paper liners or coat with cooking spray, as desired. (I used cooking spray for the standard muffins and paper liners for the mini-muffins.)
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon to combine.
  3. Combine the shredded carrots and apple in a small bowl.
  4. Beat the vegetable oil and sugar together in a stand-mixer set on medium-high speed until light in color, about 2 minutes.
  5. One at a time, add the eggs, beating well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla.
  6. Reduce the mixer speed to low. Add the flour mixture in thirds, alternating them with two equal additions of the carrot mixture and mixing just until combined after each addition.
  7. Mix in the 2/3 cup coconut and all of the raisins.
  8. Using a cookie or ice cream scoop, transfer the batter to the muffin cups.
  9. Sprinkle the remaining 1/4 cup of coconut over the tops.
  10. Bake until the muffins are golden brown and a wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 15 minutes for standard muffins (on convection), and about 10 minutes for mini-muffins (on convection).
  11. Let cool in the pan for 5 minutes. Remove from the pan, transfer to a wire cooling rack, and let cool. The muffins can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 day.

One Year Ago:

Two Years Ago:

If you like this you may also like:

Almond-Crusted Pork Scallopini with Apples & Arugula

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I rarely get a chance to watch “The Chew”- thankfully for everyone I caught this episode while obsessively cleaning my house before my in-laws came to visit! :) Mario Batali made this delicious dish before my very eyes and I knew it would be perfect to serve to our guests. It had a wonderful combination of flavors: the spicy wild arugula, almond-crusted pork, and bourbon-flambed tart apples. I adapted the recipe by adding extra garlic and arugula (tons!) and by substituting bourbon for brandy. Perfect for a special dinner. Delicious!!

I know that I’m super late… but I am going to share this special dish with my blog friends at The Novice Gardener this week for Fiesta Friday #34- Happy Fiesta Friday-Saturday!?!? Enjoy!

  • 1 1/2 to 2 pounds pork tenderloin, 2 tenderloins, cut into medallions and pounded thin
  • 1 1/2 cups almond flour
  • coarse salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 3 tart apples, peeled & thinly sliced (I used 2 Granny Smith’s and 1 Pink Lady)
  • freshly grated nutmeg
  • 2 ounces brandy or bourbon
  • 4-8 cups arugula, chopped if leaves are large (I used wild baby arugula)
  1. Season the pork with salt. Place the almond flour in a shallow dish and season with salt and pepper.
  2. Dredge the pork in the almond flour, allowing excess to fall off.
  3. Heat a large pan with 1/4 inch of Olive Oil over medium-low. Place a few coated pieces of pork into the hot oil and cook until golden, then flip and cook until golden on both sides, about 2-3 minutes per side.
  4. Meanwhile, heat a second skillet over medium-high with a few tablespoons of oil. Add the garlic and cook until light golden, and then add the apples. Season with a pinch of salt and freshly grated nutmeg.
  5. Once the apples take on a bit of color, pour in the brandy or bourbon and carefully ignite with a match or long-stick lighter. Cook until the flames subside.
  6. Serve the scallopini over the arugula topped with the apples, with a drizzle of olive oil, if desired.

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