Thursday, November 28, 2013

Chickpea Salad with Minty Yogurt Dressing

I made this chickpea salad from the Kitchn along with chicken salad to make pita sandwiches. This would also make an easy healthy packed lunch as either a sandwich or salad, but I think it would be best to keep the yogurt dressing separate from the salad until ready to eat.

Adapted from the Kitchn

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp lemon zest
2 tbsp lemon juice
1/4 cup flat-leaf parsley, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp coarse salt
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 cup tomatoes, chopped
1/2 cup red onion, chopped
3 cups drained chickpeas 
1 cup plain yogurt, preferable Greek
2 tbsp mint, chopped

Cookie Dough Truffles

This is basically just cookie dough without raw eggs, so you can gorge yourself without worrying about scary diseases! Perfect. When I was looking up stuff about this recipe, there was also talk about raw flour, but I am willing to ignore that because I don't care - cookie dough truffles!!!

I made little balls and covered one third with melted chocolate chips, one third with melted white chocolate chips and left one third uncovered, but you could easily just eat it with a spoon out of a bowl. The recipe I used is from a cookbook by the bloggers of Love and Olive Oil - I got the recipe as reposted on Bakerella.

Adapted from The Cookie Dough Lover's Cookbook, reposted on Bakerella

1/2 cup butter, 1 stick (room temp)
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar
2 tbsp milk
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 1/4 cup flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup mini-chocolate chips (or normal sized)
sprinkles, optional
toothpicks or small popsicle sticks

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Orange & Cranberry Pound Cake

This is another example of how I can have really good intentions of making something for a particular reason or to give to someone, but then time after time what actually happens is I start eating it right away. I was going to save this for Thanksgiving, but instead we'll probably eat all of it by Thursday.

Adapted from Joy the Baker's Chocolate Orange Cream Cheese Pound Cake

2 cups flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 cup sugar
2 tbsp orange zest (I used the zest from 1 large orange)
8 oz cream cheese (1 package), softened
3/4 cup butter (1 1/2 sticks), room temp
4 large eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup fresh cranberries

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Lemon & Dill Chicken Salad

I originally made chicken salad this way, with lemon and dill, for my friend Angela's baby shower, and I made it again for Halloween to serve in pitas! We wanted to make sure we all had some real dinner in addition to the huge amounts of sweets we scarfed while handing candy out to trick or treaters. (The recipe took a while before making it to the blog since I lost my camera charger for the millionth time.)

You can either make this very lemony or just a little lemony, but either way it's a great lunch and a crowd-pleaser! This is just a slight variation on the chicken salad I usually make, which is a little more traditional, without the lemon and herbs and with walnuts. I think I usually use some white vinegar instead of lemon juice in the sauce when I made it the other way.


5-6 chicken breasts
1 cup green onions (or white onion), diced
1/2 cup raisins (or halved grapes)
1 cup apple, roughly chopped
1/2 cup fresh dill, trimmed and packed (or one very full handful)
1/2 cup mayonaise 
1/2 plain yogurt or sour cream 
juice of 1 lemon
as much zest as you want (1 whole lemon's zest if you want it real lemony)
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tbsp salt

Monday, November 25, 2013

Couscous Winter Salad

This week my grandpa's sister and her two daughters visited from Texas, so we had a big family dinner on Saturday before they headed back south. The last time they had visited was about twenty years ago, so it was good to see them.
Linda took this picture of Great Aunt Margie, Grandpa and Grandma, and, of course, Twilly.
My mom had a lot of food and I brought this salad, which is a winter version of the summer salad I posted a few months ago. Instead of blueberries and basil, this salad's got roasted butternut squash ad dried apricots and cranberries. I used spinach this time because I didn't know how the family would do with a kale salad, but normally I would have made it with "massaged" kale.
My mom bringing the salad to the table.

2 cups couscous (I used whole wheat ones this time)
2 cups water
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp olive oil
1 tsp salt

Bring the water to boil with the turmeric, cinnamon, olive oil and salt. Once it's boiling, turn off the heat and add in the couscous. Cover and let sit for about 10 minutes before fluffing it with a fork.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Cranberry Maple Cornbread

Last winter I learned how amazing fresh cranberries are for baking - I made those crumb bars and Michelle made great blondies. However, I didn't start using them until the very end of their season! 

This is the second time I've made this amazing skillet cornbread this month. I love cornbread, and this recipe, from Cookie + Kate, is my new favorite.

Today I've been watching Frontier House, one of those PBS series where families "go back in time" and live as authentically as possible in a certain time period. They use cast iron skillets! You can make this cornbread in a normal baking dish as well, though. My directions are written for baking it in a skillet, but you could easily adapt it for a baking dish. Speaking of adapting, this is the cornbread recipe I'll be using for future adaptations!

Frontier House!!
Slightly adapted from Cookie + Kate

1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
1 1/2 cup cornmeal
1 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1 tbsp coarse salt
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
3 eggs
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 1/2 cups fresh cranberries
2 tbsp sugar (normal or turbinado) to top, optional

Friday, November 15, 2013

Pumpkin Cheesecake

I just roasted my first pumpkin of the season, so it's time for endless pumpkin recipes!!! I made this for a perfectly fall dinner with our friends, Chris and Angela. We made some beef pho for them and Laura made an amazing ricotta, pear, and roasted garlic pizza. This recipe is from an old roommate (Colleen). This pie looks swirly since I forgot to add the cinnamon into the mix before pouring it into the crust. Instead, I sprinkled the cinnamon on top and used a spatula to swirl it into the batter.

The crust:
2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/4 cup sugar
pinch salt
1/2 cup coconut oil or butter, melted

1 1/2 sticks cream cheese (2 if you want a creamier cheesecake)
1 cup pumpkin puree
2 eggs
1/2 tsp salt
2/3 cup brown sugar
2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp vanilla

Monday, November 11, 2013

Pumpkin Chai Smoothie

Can you tell I've been roasting pumpkins by all the pumpkin recipes lately? Well here's another one.

1 large, ripe banana
1/3 cup pumpkin puree
1/3 cup almond milk
1/3 cup pumpkin chai tea mix (I picked up some Tazo chai)
3 ice cubes
1 tsp bee pollen

Place all ingredients in a blender and puree. Pour into glass and top with additional bee pollen.

Pumpkin Chili

This dish was made for a Halloween feast. I am so glad I made it for dinner since I spent the day at the pharmacy gorging on lots of sugar. The chili was the perfect end to the night along with the chicken and chickpea salads that Laura contributed. It was a rainy night for trick or treating but some cute neighborhood kids did make it out to our house. This recipe is from The Kitchn, and I chose it because it included some cornmeal in the recipe which I found intriguing. Turns out, it is delicious.

1 medium pie pumpkin (3 pounds!)
3 parsnips  
1/2 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup cornmeal
2 red bell peppers, chopped
1 large yellow onion, chopped
1 head garlic, minced
3-5 hot peppers, sliced
2 tablespoons tomato paste
3 cups vegetarian broth
1-28 ounce can diced tomatoes 
1 can garbanzo beans
1 can black beans
2 cups frozen corn
2 tsp pumpkin pie spice 
1 tbsp chili powder
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tbsp cumin
Several dashes Worcestershire sauce
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste 

Friday, November 8, 2013

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls

It was freezing this last week, so naturally homemade cinnamon rolls had to be made. Specifically PUMPKIN CINNAMON ROLLS! The recipe I used was from Smitten Kitchen and I didn't change it much. Laura and I ate these watching a marathon of Pretty Little Liars all day. We only took minor breaks to make whatever food we were craving.

5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1/2 cup warm milk (or almond milk)
2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for rolling out
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 tbsp pumpkin pie spice
2/3 cups pumpkin puree
1 large egg

Sugar Filling
3 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
1/3 cup pumpkin butter
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/8 teaspoon table salt
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

Monday, November 4, 2013

Cheesy Delicata Squash Pizza

This pizza was made for Laura's friend's goodbye party. She moved all the way to Russia for a couple of years. We made lots of kinds of squash and had dirt cake for dessert. Pretty much the perfect dinner party.

1 pizza dough
goat's milk yogurt or ricotta
roasted delicata squash
shredded mozzarella
blue cheese
fresh sage

Start by roasting the delicata squash. You can slice it into cubes and then season them with salt and pepper and roast at 375 degrees until tender. I sliced the squash in half, scooped out the seeds, and roasted the halves until soft. If your squash is smaller, you can eat the peel. I then scooped out the squash to put on the pizza.
To make the pizza: Roll out the dough. Spread a layer of goat milk yogurt onto the dough. Sprinkly mozzarella all over the pizza. Then add the squash cubes, some blue cheese sparingly, and some sage leaves. Bake until golden brown and bubbly at 400 degrees.


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