It was so nice to get home to see my family and close friends. I had been dying to get to the south, feel the humid weather, and order a sweet tea. While in Raleigh, my sister and I headed to this amazing farm about 20-25 minutes east of my dads house. We had a blast! We picked strawberries, took a tour of the rest of the crops, and had a big homemade ice cream cone from their organic cows milk. Needless to say, I want to move there. Or maybe just a farm in general.
Have you seen that show called Bizarre bites? I would be a pro at hosting one of those shows. Now don't get me wrong, Dragon Fruit isn't that risky. It's basically a less exciting melon, with a hint of floral tastes to it. I had one at the house, and after I used half in my yogurt, I thought to myself, what else would this be good with? Chocolate is of course good with EVERYTHING, so I ended up pulling out my cupcake pan and getting started.
2 cups flour
3/4 cup cocoa powder
2 cups sugar
2 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup butter
1 1/2 cup milk
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line cupcake pan, this recipe makes 12 cupcakes. In a large bowl, combine all dry ingredients. Set to side while in another bowl cream together butter, extract and eggs. Add butter mixture to dry and combine. Pour in milk, and combine thoroughly. Add mixture to the cupcake lining. Bake for 15-17 minutes, or until the toothpick trick works. Set aside and let cool
1 dragon fruit (peeled and chopped)
1 stick butter
2 cups powdered sugar
With half the dragon fruit that you've cut, add it to a blender, and get it down really fine. Add to butter, and sugar, and combine thoroughly. Frost the cupcakes after they've cooled, and top with the rest of the dragon fruit.
I love pears, so when I found some that were surprisingly ripe, I grabbed a few. This is a really simple dessert, and can be made in about 7 minutes, so when I have a hankering for something sweet, I tend to go towards something I can eat RIGHT NOW.
INGREDIENTS: (two servings)
1 tbsp butter
1/2 tbsp brown sugar
Pinch of cinnamon
1 ripe pear
2 tbsp favorite yogurt
Roasted walnuts for garnish
In a skillet over medium heat, simmer the butter until bubbly and liquified. Sprinkle in the brown sugar, and pinch of cinnamon, and let crackle for just a few seconds. Slice the pear in half, and take the seeds out. Lay the pear half's face down in the butter mixture, and push around to get the mixture 'all up in' the pears. Let simmer, pushing around for another 4-6 minutes. Serve with a dollop of yogurt, and sprinkle of walnuts!
Two words: micro greens. I've been obsessed lately, and put them on everything. Seriously. In peering into my fridge, I realized that although I THOUGHT I had nothing to eat there was a HUGE piece of salmon in my fridge. As I'm trying to figure out what to do with this big hunk of salmon, because of course there are really just SO many times that you can bake it with sliced lemon, I spot my red curry paste. Then I grabbed some tortillas and ran with it.
1 lb salmon
1 tsp red curry paste
1/2 cup coconut milk
6 corn tortillas
1 tbsp butter
3 handfuls of micro greens
Salt + Pepper
In a large pan, fry up the tortillas in the butter and set aside. Next, place the salmon in the pan, add some salt and pepper, and fry up until cooked through. Cut the salmon into 6 pieces, and place in the center of each tortilla. In a small bowl, combine curry paste and coconut milk. Pour sauce over salmon, then slice and add the avocado. Top with micro greens, and a spritz of lime juice!
First of all, HAPPY EASTER. This was one of my favorites growing up. We used to drive over to my Granny's house in Chattanooga where they had THE BEST Easter Egg Hunt. I have so many fond memories of it, and the holiday always cheers me up because of it.
For an Easter dessert, I made one of my Dad's favorites, Carrot Cake. This is your classic carrot cake with way too many yummy spices, the gooiest of cream cheese frostings, and a fun garnish to celebrate the Holiday.
2 cups flour
2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp ground ginger
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup brown sugar (I like the dark)
1 cup vegetable oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
4 eggs (at room temp)
2 cups shredded carrots
2 - 8oz packages of cream cheese (softened at room temp.)
1 stick of butter (i like salted, but a typical recipe calls for unsalted)
2 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. First the cake, In a large bowl, mix together all dry ingredients. Set aside. In a medium mixing bowl, mix together eggs, oil, extract and carrots. Now incorporate your wet with your dry slowly, and combine well. Butter two 8" non-stick pans, and evenly distribute them to each pan. Bake for about 45 minutes, or until you can do the toothpick trick with the product of a clean toothpick at the end.
While that bakes, combine all frosting ingredients in a mixer, and combine until all is well incorporated, and fluffy. Let the cakes cool thoroughly, this could take up to 30 minutes, and then frost those suckers!
Gabriel is from Mexico, and we just bought tickets to go an see his family later this year. I'm so excited! I love the color, the culture, and more than anything, the food, of course. A favorite of mine has always been a Mexican hot chocolate. Sweet, rich, with a spicy kick to it. It had truly the best of both worlds.
1 can sweet condensed milk
1 carton heavy whipping cream
1 tbsp cocoa powder
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
Combine milk, powder and pepper to a medium bowl, and combine thoroughly. Set to the side. Next, grab a large mixing bowl, and whip the cream until it forms STIFF peaks. Combine chocolate mixture and whip cream, folding them together, and then place in a thin, but deep pan. (I used my loaf pan.) Place in the freezer, and let sit for about three (or more) hours.
This is one of the easiest dishes ever. I love Carrot and Ginger, in the winter, I make these and then puree them into a soup. It's pretty incredible. For spring, though, I serve them with other yummy vegetables that I find at the farmers market.
8-10 carrots (If you use the mini, which you can, do about 16-20)
1 tsp finely chopped fresh ginger
1 tbsp melted butter
salt + pepper
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lay out parchment paper on a baking sheet, and lay out carrots on to it making sure that they're evenly placed. In a small bowl, combine ginger and butter. Evenly drizzle butter mixture over carrots, and top with salt and pepper. Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until carrots are soft. Serve, and enjoy.
(If it parts of a vegetable plate, slice a tomato, cook up some corn, and throw on some green beans. YUM.)
These donuts take me to a good place. I think one of the things that I love about food is that there's always something else you can do, another flavor you can gather, or if you're missing a particular season, then you can create that in food. This is definitely a spring and summer donut. With a lot of coconut flour, and lime juice, you get kicked to the beach and back.
1/2 cup coconut flour
1/2 cup almond flour
3 tbsp GF all purpose baking flour
3 tbsp coconut oil (melted)
2 limes, zested and juiced (leave an extra tsp of zest to the side for the garnish)
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 cup almond milk
Pinch of salt
Preheat your oven to 350 degreed F. In a medium bowl mix together flour's, baking powder, and salt. In another small bowl, whisk the eggs, milk and oil. Combine with the dry ingredients, and fold in the zest and juice from the limes. Use a piping bag (or a ziplock with the edge cut) to fill in donut pan. Bake for 14-16 minutes, let cool in pan, and then turn them out onto a cooling rack.
3/4 cup powdered sugar
2 tbsp almond milk
Whisk together the milk and sugar incorporating the milk slowly to ensure the glaze doesn't become too runny. Set up a space where you can let the donuts drip a bit, maybe onto a paper towel. Dunk the top of the donuts in the glaze, and sprinkle on the zest and coconut. Let dry and serve!
I never bake breads, but I thought today it would be fitting to do an Irish Soda Bread. I read this article online about the fact that America gets WAY more excited about holidays than their respective locations do. Cinco De Mayo in Mexico is nothing like the crazy, 'let's get drunk off of tequila and run around in sombreros.' And apparently, St. Patrick's real color was blue. True? I have no idea, but it sort of makes me laugh.
Anyways, I love the combination of orange and cranberry, so I decided to incorporate it into this amazing bread.
2 cups flour + extra for kneading
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 stick butter (I use salted, but it traditional comes with unsalted)
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup dried cranberries (chopped)
Zest from 1 orange
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F. In a large bowl combine all dry ingredients. Cut butter into squares and then incorporate it in your mixture with your hands or a pastry blender. In a separate bowl, combine egg, buttermilk and orange zest. Stir into butter mixture and mix well with a wooden spoon.
Flour your surface, and lay out the dough. Sprinkle flour over the bread and knead, adding more and more flour as you go. Do this until it's easy, and not sticky anymore. Make into a round loaf and cut an X onto the top of it. Bake for 40-50 minutes, slice, add butter and enjoy!
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup almond milk
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/3 cup brown sugar
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 large egg
1 teaspoon pure almond extract
Preheat oven to 350 degree F. In a medium sized bowl mix all dry ingredients. Set aside to prepare the wet ingredients. In a small bowl, whisk together egg, milk and extract. Set aside and make the butter brown.
To brown the butter, add it to a sauce pan, and melt over medium heat. Once melted, continue to cook over a low heat until it crackles and then browns. This will happen pretty quickly, so keep a close watch on it. When it's finished, whisk in the butter mixture. When fully combined, add the wet and dry ingredients together. Mix well. Use a piping bag to fill the donut pan with dough, making sure not to over fill as they will rise. Bake for 10 minutes, or until golden brown and set aside to let cool.
With all of this crazy gossip going around about Bill Cosby, it got me sad. I loved Cosby growing up just like everyone else! I even did a project on him in elementary school and brought it jello for all the class. Here's a spruce up of a favorite childhood classic.
2 1/2 cups blackberries (will make about 2 cups juice)
1/2 cup sugar
1 packet of gelatin
Coconut flakes for dusting around the cubes
Combine Juice, sugar and gelatin into a medium mixed bowl, and stir until gelatin is completely dissolved. Add squirt of lemon juice, and refrigerate for 1 hour. If you aren't adding the coconut flakes, you can refrigerate for less time, as it will be softer, but we want the cubes firm so we can roll them around in coconut! Cut the into 1" x 1" cubes. Sprinkle coconut onto a plate or other surface, and get each side lathered in coconut!
(I use this pie crust recipe. Follow the instructions until you roll out the dough, and then come on back here.)
1 granny smith apple - thinly sliced
1 tbsp honey
1 tsp sugar (I use stevia)
1/2 tsp cinnamon
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Once you follow the instructions for the dough, cut into a rectangular shape 6" wide by 10" tall. Smooth the honey onto the uncooked dough, making sure that the center is well honey'd. Lay on the apples in the pattern that you like. Combine the sugar and cinnamon, and then sprinkle the mixture over the top of the apples. Fold the dough over the apples. While baking, scramble the egg to make an egg wash, and slather on the dough. Bake for 20-23 minutes. Sprinkle on the pomegranate seeds. (I put a little bit of whip cream on it, and it was amazing!)
INGREDIENTS: (Serves 4)
1 green apple
4 sprigs of rosemary
1 cup cranberries
2 cups white grape juice (or apple juice)
1 liter sparkling water
In a large jar, add chopped apple, cranberries, and juice. Let sit in the fridge for about two hours. Separate the mixture into four glasses, add a sprig of rosemary, and top with sparkling water. Easy as that!! To add alcohol? Substitute the juice with your favorite white sangria wine. (I would use Pinot Grigio for a sangria.)