Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Pimento Cheese

I have made this recipe from 100 Days of Real Food twice in the last week.  I have used the pimento cheese as a topping on burgers and for a grilled cheese sandwich.

  • 5 ounces organic white sharp cheddar cheese, freshly grated *I used a Cheddar/Gruyere cheese from Trader Joe's
  • 4 ounces organic cream cheese, softened
  • Half of a 4 ounce jar of diced pimentos, with juice
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 – 2 drops of hot sauce
  1. Blend all ingredients (down to the hot sauce) together very well with a spoon or fork.  Eat and Enjoy!

Chicken Chilaquiles

This is a nice and easy weekday meal from Handle the Heat

  • tablespoon olive oil *I used Coconut Oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 to 2 chipotle chiles in adobo, finely chopped, plus 1 tablespoon adobo sauce
  • salt
  • 1 cooked rotisserie chicken, skinned and shredded (about 4 cups) *I used 3 chicken breasts that had been cooked on low in the crockpot for about 4 hours and then shredded
  • 1/2 cup lightly packed cilantro leaves, chopped, plus more for garnish *I left this out since I didn't have fresh cilantro
  • 4 cups (about 3 ounces) tortilla chips *You could also use rice if you didn't have tortilla chips
  • 1/4 cup sour cream  
  • 1/4 cup queso fresco (or feta cheese)

  1.  Combine the oil and garlic in a large saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until garlic is fragrant and sizzling, 1 to 2 minutes. 
  2. Add the tomatoes, chipotle, adobo sauce, and 1/2 cup water. Season with salt and bring to a boil. Reduce to a rapid simmer and cook until mixture is slightly thickened, about 6 to 8 minutes.  
  3. Add the shredded chicken to the pot and cook for 1 minute, or until warmed through and coated. Remove from heat and stir in cilantro.  
  4. Divide tortilla chips between 4 shallow bowls and top with chicken in sauce. Garnish with cilantro, sour cream, and queso fresco. Serve. Chicken in sauce can be stored in an airtight container in refrigerator for up to 2 days.

Blueberry Lemon Cookies

These cookies are SOOO good!  Walter and I hit up a sale on blueberries at Whole Foods last week, and I knew I wanted to make a dessert using our yummy berries.  These cookies are so light and very easy to make.  I ended up adding a couple of ingredients not listed in the original recipe, so I guess you could say this is my blueberry cookie recipe.  This is the first time I've altered a baking recipe, and I'm quite proud of how it turned out.

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour *I used Organic White/Wheat Flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup butter *Use real butter if possible
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup white sugar *I used Organic Cane Sugar.  I did find the cookies to be a little sweet, so I may reduce this to 1/2 cup next time. 
  • 1 cup fresh (or frozen & thawed) blueberries. (Fresh is best if you have them)
  1. In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter, sugar, egg, vanilla and milk. Add the lemon zest. Mix well after the addition of each ingredient. 
  2. Combine the flour, baking powder and salt; blend into the sugar mixture. 
  3. Fold in the blueberries. Cover and chill for 4 hours (I only chilled mine for an hour and they turned out just fine).
  4. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. 
  5. Drop dough by teaspoonfuls (I used a cookie scoop) onto ungreased cookie sheets, about 1 1/2 inches apart.
  6. Bake 12 to 15 minutes in the preheated oven. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheets for a few minutes before transferring to wire racks to cool completely.
Makes about 3 dozen.

Sourdough Muffins

A friend of mine gave me a sourdough starter back in April and I have loved it.  I probably make these muffins at least twice a week.

  • 1 C “discarded” sourdough starter
  • 1 C whole wheat flour (sift flour prior to measuring)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon (optional) and/or other spices
  • 1/4 C melted coconut oil or melted butter 
  • 1/2 C honey 
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ~1/2 C blueberries (or pumpkin puree or whatever add-in you like!)
  1. In a stand mixer, combine sourdough starter and whole wheat flour. Once the two are thoroughly combined, cover the dough with plastic wrap ensuring that none of it is exposed to the air. Let sit at room temperature for at least seven hours.
  2. The dough will rise some while it sits. If any of it has gotten exposed to the air and gotten dry, just remove those bits so you don’t have little dough nuggets in your final product.
  3. When you’re ready to bake, preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Prepare a muffin pan with papers or grease the cups.
  4. In a separate bowl, mix together all other ingredients except for blueberries and baking soda. Add those ingredients to the dough in the mixer’s bowl and mix together. Once all the ingredients are mixed and have come together as a batter, sprinkle the baking soda in the bowl and mix batter again briefly to incorporate. Fold in blueberries and scoop batter into prepared muffin pan.
  5. Bake for 20 min. Makes 8-12 muffins.
You can also make this recipe as pumpkin muffins. Instead of blueberries, mix in 1/2 C pumpkin puree (I add it to the same bowl in which I’m mixing the egg, honey, oil etc.). In addition to the cinnamon, add about 1/4 tsp ground cloves, 1/4 tsp ground coriander and 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg or just add 1tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice.

Pan Fried Chicken with Brown Butter Caper Sauce

I am so behind on posting new recipes.  Several people have fussed at me for this, so today I'm going to try to play catch up.  :)

Now that I'm at home during the day, one show I'm enjoying watching is The Chew.  This is the first and only recipe I've tried from them, but I hope to try more down the road.  This recipe is really easy and very good.

  • 4 Chicken Cutlets (pounded thin) *I just buy the thin chicken breast cutlets and skip the pounding part
  • 2 cups Flour *I use Organic White/Wheat Flour or Brown Rice Flour
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 2 Eggs
  • 2 cups Breadcrumbs
  • 5 tablespoons Olive Oil (separated) *I often use Coconut Oil
  • 4 tablespoons Butter *Try to use real butter if at all possible
  • 4 teaspoons Capers (drained)
  • 1/4 cup Flat-Leaf Parsley (chopped) *I leave this out since I never have fresh parsley on hand
  • 2 Blood Oranges (peeled) *If you can't find blood oranges, regular oranges work just as well
  • 1 tablespoon Shallot (minced)
  1. Juice one of the blood oranges and set juice aside. Peel the white pith off the other blood orange, and then cut between the membranes to release the segments, and set aside.
  2. Arrange three shallow dishes: in one - flour, seasoned with salt and pepper. In the second dish, lightly beat the eggs. In the third, add the breadcrumbs.
  3. Dredge the chicken cutlets lightly on each side in the flour, then eggs, then the breadcrumbs.  
  4. Heat four tablespoons olive oil over medium-high heat. Add each of the chicken cutlets, cooking for 4 minutes per side, until golden brown and juices run clear. Remove to paper towel lined, plate. Drain the pan and wipe clean. 
  5. Add the butter, and once it has foamed and subsided, add the capers, shallot and blood orange juice, stir and remove from heat.  
  6. In a bowl, combine the parsley, one tablespoon of olive oil and blood orange segments. Toss and season. 
  7. Spoon the sauce over the chicken cutlets, and top with the orange-parsley salad to serve. 

Friday, January 20, 2012

Pulled Pork with Vinegar BBQ Sauce

Oh. My. Word! This recipe is SO good. If you like traditional Carolina BBQ, then you will love it too.

Courtesy of: girlichef


  • ~2 lbs. boneless pork butt, cut into large chunks
  • ¼ c. cider vinegar
  • 1 Tbs. brown sugar
  • ½ Tbs. sea salt
  • couple big pinches crushed red chile flakes

Vinegar BBQ Sauce

  • 1½ c. cider vinegar
  • ⅓ c. brown sugar
  • ¼ c. ketchup
  • 1 Tbs. hot sauce
  • ½ tsp. sea salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • ½ tsp. worcestershire sauce


  1. Combine all of the pork ingredients in a slow-cooker. Cook on high for ~5 hours or low for ~10 hours. Drain off most of liquid and pull the meat apart with two forks.
  2. While pork is cooking, make sauce. Combine all of the sauce ingredients in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Let cool and refrigerate until ready to use.
  3. Add sauce to pulled meat in slow cooker and continue to cook for another hour or two. Good enough to eat with or without a bun.

Spicy Honey-Brushed Chicken Thighs

Love this recipe! Simple, but very flavorful.

Courtesy of: Handle the Heat

  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 8 skinless, boneless chicken thighs
  • Cooking spray
  • 6 tablespoons honey
  • 2 teaspoons cider vinegar


1. Preheat broiler. Combine first 6 spice ingredients in a large bowl. Add chicken to bowl; toss to coat. Place chicken on a broiler pan coated with cooking spray. Broil chicken 5 minutes on each side.
2. Combine honey and vinegar in a small bowl, stirring well. Remove chicken from oven; brush 1/4 cup honey mixture on chicken. Broil 1 minute. Remove chicken from oven and turn over. Brush other side with remaining honey mixture. Broil 1 additional minute or until chicken is done.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Maple Cinnamon Cream Cheese Spread

This is such an easy recipe that can be used on everything from pumpkin bread to bagels to cinnamon rolls. This stuff is addicting.

  • 8 ounces of cream cheese; softened to room temperature
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • a couple drops of vanilla
  • 3 Tablespoons real maple syrup (or more to your liking)
  1. Whip cream cheese with mixer until smooth.
  2. Mix in cinnamon, vanilla, and maple syrup.
  3. Refrigerate until set and the best part is it’s always spreadable even straight from the fridge.

Whole Wheat Pumpkin Bread

This recipe is SO good! It's moist, not too sweet and absolutely wonderful when topped with maple cinnamon cream cheese spread.

  • 3 1/2 cups whole wheat flour (I used 365 brand from Whole Foods)
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar (I used raw can sugar which makes this recipe much healthier)
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 can pumpkin (15 oz) (Walter and I pureed a pumpkin we bought at the Farmer's Market about a month ago, so we have a freezer full of pumpkin puree to be used)
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup coconut oil; melted (coconut oil is a very healthy fat that is a great substitution for canola, vegetable or other not so great oils)
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  1. In a large bowl, mix dry ingredients well. Set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix wet ingredients.
  3. Pour wet ingredients in the center of dry and mix together until well incorporated.
  4. Pour into 3 bread pans that have been greased & floured.
  5. Bake at 350 degrees for 45min-1 hr, until a knife comes out clean.
*You can freeze the other two loaves until you're ready to eat them.