Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Sticky Coconut Chicken

This has become a family favorite since I saw it a few months ago. The coconut milk tenderizes the chicken so it's nice and tender as well as flavorful. The sauce is delicious drizzled over the chicken and a little rice and veggies.

Sticky Coconut Chicken 
slightly adapted from Your Homebased Mom

6-8 boneless chicken thighs or 11/2 lb boneless chicken breasts
1 can coconut milk
1 Tbsp. minced ginger
1 tsp. fresh ground pepper
1 tsp. red pepper flakes

Marinade chicken in coconut milk, ginger, pepper and red pepper flakes at least one hour (I do mine 24 hrs or that morning). Grill on barbecue, about 4 minutes a side on medium heat. Discard marinade.

Chili Glaze:
3/4 cup rice vinegar
1/2 cup sugar
3 Tbsp. soy sauce (or GF Tamari)
1 tsp. red pepper flakes

Bring above ingredients to a boil over high heat and cook until mixture is reduced and thickened. 8-10 minutes depending on the size of your pan. Watch it, do not let it burn. Glaze chicken and serve.

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Monday, January 28, 2013

Frozen Whipped Cream with Stove Top Hot Cocoa

I know this is from Christmas, but I am still trying to play catch up from not having my computer for over a month. It is still cold out there so I think this will still fit in. I made this for Christmas morning, and having the frozen whipped cream ready for use was great, the kids loved that. This is a nice warm creamy treat to have while you sit and relax on a cold chilly weekend. 

Stove Top Hot Cocoa

6 cups milk 
1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk 
1 1/2 cups bittersweet chocolate chips
1 1/2 cups heavy cream 
1 teaspoon vanilla extract 
1/8 teaspoon salt

In a large pot combine all of the ingredients over low heat. Keep mixture over low heat for 30-40 minutes whisking occasionally until chocolate is fully melted and incorporated with the other ingredients. You can add milk here to adjust to your chocolate preference. Give it a good whisking before serving to get it nice and frothy. If you have an immersion blender, that works great here. 
Serve immediately or pour into a slow cooker and keep warm until ready to serve. 
Top with whipped cream, crushed candy canes, marshmallows or sprinkles.

Frozen Whipped Cream Dollops

2 cups heavy whipping cream
2-3 tablespoons powdered sugar
1-2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Pour cold whipping cream into bowl of mixer. Using whisk attachment whisk, on medium speed, whip until it begins to thicken and you see soft peaks form. Add in powdered sugar and vanilla, continue mixing until well incorporated.
Take your whipped cream and spoon individual servings onto plastic wrapped lined baking sheet (I used my frosting tip/bag). Sprinkle with coarse decorative sugars/sprinkles if desired. Place in freezer for 2-3 hours or until completely frozen. Move to airtight container and store in freezer.

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Thursday, January 24, 2013

National Peanut Butter Day: Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies

Ha! The other day on Facebook I saw someone mention it was National Peanut Butter Day, so I ran off to make Mr. some sweets that he had been craving earlier in the week. But before posting anything about it, I thought I'd better check to be sure it was PB Day. It was not. I read the post wrong. So we got to eat these the other day. A few months ago I decided I'd try that easy recipe for PB cookies, but for me it was a fail. Then I decided to try again with another recipe and it was a winner! I have made these a few times since, we love them! They are soft, easy to make and you can add chocolate chips or not. Now with this recipe just grab a big bowl and a sturdy spoon, mix it by hand! The first recipe I made, I used my mixer and I don't know if that's what made them fail but they were hard and awful. So happy I found this recipe, it's a keeper.

Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies
adapted from Divine Baking
makes about two dozen cookies

1 cup chunky or smooth peanut butter
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips, if desired
Turbinado sugar or granulated sugar, for sprinkling if desired

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Line cookie sheet with silpat. In a medium size bowl mix up all ingredients by hand. Roll into balls (I use my small scooper), line on baking sheet, press with fork and sprinkle with additional sugar. Bake 10 minutes. Allow to cool on rack.

the first time I made them, without chocolate chips

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Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Gluten Free Sugar Cookies

During Christmas time, I made these gluten free sugar cookies for part of an ingredient review. These came out so good that I wanted to share them on my recipe blog as well, in case some don't follow along with my giveaway blog and may have missed them there. But let me say that they were so good my whole family enjoyed them. So here you go, enjoy.

Gluten Free Sugar Cookies 
 from Serious Eats 
Yields 2 dozen cookies

2 cups white rice flour
1/3 cup cornstarch
1/3 cup sweet rice flour (aka mochiko)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) butter (I used I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter! all purpose sticks in my review)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 large eggs
Coarse sanding sugar, about 1/2 cup (I used red & green crystals)
peppermint candy kisses or other small chocolate pieces, if desired

 1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
 2. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together all the dry ingredients. Set aside.
 3. In a large mixing bowl, cream together sugar, butter and vanilla, about 1 minute.
 4. Add eggs, one at a time, and mix until well combined.
 5. Reduce speed to low and add the dry ingredients. Mix for 45 seconds. Chill dough for 15-20 minutes.
 6. Roll dough, about 2 tablespoons each, into a ball. Roll dough ball into the sanding sugar.
 7. Place coated dough ball onto prepared baking sheet. Be sure to space cookies about 2 inches apart. Flatten cookies very slightly with the palm of your hand.
 8. Bake cookies, about 12-15 minutes, or until lightly golden brown.
Remove cookies from the oven and press a kiss into each cookie, allow to cool for 3 minutes on the baking sheet. After 3 minutes, transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool. Store cookies in an airtight container.

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Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Apple and Pear Stuffed Pork Tenderloin

Apple and Pear Stuffed Pork Tenderloin

I am always looking for new ways to fix pork. Here is one recipe I saw on Pinterest and changed up a little. I thought a pear would be nice with the apple and pork too. I had two pork loins so I just doubled up the recipe. This smelled so wonderful roasting away on our chilly day, it was delicious as well.

Apple and Pear Stuffed Pork Tenderloin
adapted from My Cross Fit Paleo Journey

1 Pork Loin, 2.5-3 lbs.
3 Red Delicious Apples, sliced thin
1 Pear, sliced thin
4 Tbl Honey
2 TBL Cinnamon
salt and pepper to taste

Lay about half of the apple slices on a lined baking sheet.
Sprinkle with cinnamon.
Cut slits in the pork loin (approx 1/2″-3/4″), lay onto apple slices.
Drizzle some honey into the slits.Then place apple and pear slices into the slits, drizzle with a little honey, sprinkle with a little more cinnamon, salt and pepper. Lay any leftover apple slices on top.
Roast in oven at 400' for about 45 mins.

I also added some sliced sweet potatoes to my tray.

Apple and Pear Stuffed Pork Tenderloin

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Saturday, January 5, 2013

Cinnamon Sugared Pretzels

Sugared Pretzels

Oooh these are addicting! Sugary cinnamon coated pretzels. Use your favorite shape and size, I used gluten free pretzels for mine.

Cinnamon Sugared Pretzels
from Lifes Too Short To Skip Dessert

1 (16 oz) bag pretzel twists
⅔ cup oil (veg. or canola)
½ cup sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
White chocolate drizzle, if desired

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
In a medium sized bowl mix together oil, cinnamon and sugar. Add pretzels and stir to coat. Place on a lined baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes, removing twice to stir. May drizzle with melted white chocolate when cooled.

sugared pretzels

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Friday, January 4, 2013

Almond Roca Bark

almond roca bark

Another treat I made during Christmas was this Almond Roca Bark. If you like those Heath bars, you'll LOVE this recipe. I promise it tastes just like it, but with almonds. I went to add a white chocolate drizzle on top by my bag busted open spilling all over so I turned it into a marbled bark.This stuff is SO good, it probably won't wait until Christmas time to be made again.

Almond Roca Bark
from Barefoot and Baking

3/4 cup toasted, chopped almonds*
1 cup light brown sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
6 oz (about 1 cup) milk chocolate chips

Butter a 7x11 inch pan. Sprinkle half of the almonds on the bottom of the pan.

In a heavy sauce pan, over medium high heat, melt the butter and then add the brown sugar. Stir gently until boiling. Reduce heat to medium and continue boiling until the temperature reaches 300 degrees (hard crack stage). The best is to use a candy thermometer, doing it with timing can be tricky, especially if this is your first time making this. If it gets higher than 320 it will NOT remain solid.

Pour the hot mixture over the almonds in the buttered pan. Pour the chocolate chips over the top and let them sit for a minute or two to melt. Once they are melty, use a spatula to spread them evenly over the top. Sprinkle the remaining chopped almonds over the melted chocolate. Let the whole thing cool until the chocolate has set. Use a sharp knife to break the almond roca into pieces. Store in an air tight container.

*to toast almonds spread them in a dry skillet and cook them over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until they begin to lightly brown and you can smell them. Let them cool completely. Toasting nuts gives them a much crunchier texture and a richer flavor.

almond roca bark
waiting and waiting for the candy mixture to come to temp.(I lost the clip so I have to hold it!)

almond roca bark

oops, my white chocolate drizzle bag busted, turned it into marble bark

christmas goodies
christmas treats ready for gift giving

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Thursday, January 3, 2013

Candied Nuts

candied nuts 

This year I made various candies/treats to send out as gifts. These candied nuts were included. These were soo good and almost didn't make it into the goodie bags, that I decided I needed to make ourselves a batch! Well I sort of forgot with all the Christmas rush, that I made them for New Year's. I especially liked how light and crunchy the pecans came out. These will be a keeper all year round, try them I bet you'll enjoy them as well.

Candied Nuts

 from My Baking Addiction

1 egg white
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon water
1 pound unsalted almonds or pecans (I do 1/2 pd of each)
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 ½ teaspoons fine grain sea salt

Preheat oven to 250 degrees F and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a silpat.
In a large bowl, combine egg white, vanilla extract and water. Beat mixture until frothy. Stir in nuts and mix to coat.
Gently combine sugar, cinnamon, and sea salt and stir into almond mixture, thoroughly coating all nuts.
Evenly spread nuts onto prepared baking sheet and place into oven.
Bake in preheated oven for 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes.
When cool, enjoy!

candied nuts
ready to bake

candied nuts  
our new year's treats 

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Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Gluten Free Cinnamon Rolls

gluten free cinnamon rolls

I made this recipe last year but I totally goofed it up. I forgot to add the yeast. I meant to make them again this year for Christmas because I didn't want to miss out on having cinnamon rolls but time got away from me so I decided I'd wait to make them when I wasn't rushed. I really wanted this recipe to turn out, since their glutened cinnamon rolls came out a little flat I wanted mine to turn out, haha.I am happy to say these came out WONDERFUL! I think they came out more moist that my regular rolls do. I thought I'd whip them out before the New Year because I plan to make this a better year eating wise, I do love my treats but I think I'm good for a while now that I had a couple of these (yes I shared with my family so I wouldn't eat the whole pan!). I topped these with a little (leftover) cream cheese frosting. With The Baking Beauties' recipe these are supposed to be sticky buns, with the gooey caramel glaze, but I skipped that part to have regular rolls.

If you've ever made gluten free baked goods, you know how sticky the dough can be, so keep your hands a little wet and I found using the silpat and dough scraper to roll these helped wonderfully.

Gluten Free Cinnamon Rolls
recipe adapted from The Baking Beauties, updated 12/2013

2 1/2 cups all-purpose gluten-free flour, I use my fave GF pie crust blend
1 TBL rapid rise yeast
3 TBL white sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 TBL xanthan gum
1/4 cup instant vanilla pudding mix (dry) OR dry milk powder
1 tsp baking powder
4 TBL butter
1/2 cup water
3/4 cup milk
1 egg, room temperature
1 tsp cider vinegar
2 TBL oil (I used Canola)
1 tsp vanilla

Sticky Topping:  
Over low heat, in a small saucepan, heat 4 Tbsp. butter (or margarine), 1/2 cup brown sugar, 2 Tbsp. corn syrup, stirring until sugar dissolves. Add 1 tsp. vanilla extract, 2 Tbsp. whipping cream and a pinch of salt. Stir to incorporate. Remove from heat and pour into the bottom of a greased pan with high sides (I used an 8" round cake pan).

2 Tbsp. butter or margarine, very soft
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1-2 Tbsp. cinnamon

In the bowl of your stand mixer, mix all dry dough ingredients until combined. Set aside.

Put water and margarine in a glass measuring cup and microwave just until the margarine has melted. Remove from microwave and stir. Add milk, stir. Add other wet ingredients and whisk to combine.

With the stand mixer running (using the paddle attachment), pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Scrap down the bowl if you have to. Allow to mix on medium speed for 3 minutes.

Take a piece of plastic wrap and lay it out on a slightly damp counter top, so it covers an area bigger than 8″ x 16″. Sprinkle 2 Tbsp of sugar on the wrap. Lay ball of dough on top of that. Gently lay another piece of plastic wrap over the top of the dough. Pat the dough down into a roughly squarish shape. Lift and reposition the top plastic wrap whenever you need to. Roll the dough out (with the plastic wrap on top) to a square approximately 8″ x 16″. (I rolled mine onto a sugared silpat, covered in plastic wrap)

Remove plastic wrap. Spread filling mixture evenly across dough’s surface. Leave 1 1/2″ along one long end without any filling, this is where your cinnamon rolls will be sealed.

Starting along the long end, use the bottom sheet of plastic wrap to lift the edge of the dough and roll it up, forming a long cylinder. Start with the edge that has filling on it, that will be the center of your finished rolls.

Cut the long “cinnamon bun log” into 8 pieces, about 1 1/2″ wide. Place rolls in prepared pan, with cut side up.

Allow the cinnamon rolls/buns to rise in a warm, draft free place for about 30 minutes, or until nearly double in size (I let mine rise, covered with a clean dish towel, in a slightly warm oven for about 1 hr).

Bake in preheated 350 degree F oven for 25-30 minutes, or until the tops are a nice golden brown. Cool.

For sticky buns, allow to cool for about 5 minutes before inverting on a serving tray, and let the sticky topping syrup run down over the roll.

Cream Cheese Frosting:
4 ounce cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
1/2 tablespoon milk

gluten free cinnamon rolls

tricky gluten free dough is easier to work with, with wet hands, a silpat and dough scraper oh, and patience

so happy they kept their height!

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