Saturday, November 8, 2014

Pumpkin Muffins

Fall has arrived. We turned the clocks back, the sun is low on the horizon, and all the good movies are starting to show up in theaters. Even though the weather in northern California hasn’t turned cooler, it is definitely fall.

Do you know how else I can tell it’s fall? I am craving pumpkin! I want pumpkin pie, pumpkin cake, pumpkin scones, pumpkin cinnamon rolls and pumpkin muffins. Most baked goods taste better with pumpkin in them. Okay that may be a bit of an overstatement, but I’ll blame fall.

I’ve made these pumpkin muffins a couple of times, and as much as I love the pumpkin in them, it’s the streusel topping that make these muffins so good. Muffin tops (you know, the ones actually on top of muffins) are my favorite part of the muffin, and the streusel on the top of these adds an extra cinnamon and sugar crunch to my favorite part of the muffin.

This recipe makes quite a few muffins, but they are great to share so bake away!

Pumpkin Muffins with Streusel Topping
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1 14 ounce can pumpkin puree
1 ½ cup granulated sugar
2 eggs, lightly beaten
2/3 cup butter, melted

2/3 cup packed brown sugar
¼ cup all-purpose flour
¼ cup ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
2 tablespoons butter

Preheat the oven to 375° and lightly grease 20 muffin cups. In a large bowl mix together flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and pumpkin pie spice. In another bowl mix together pumpkin, sugar, eggs and melted butter. Stir the pumpkin mixture into the flour mixture just until moistened. Don’t over mix. Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin cups.

Prepare the topping. In a small bowl, mix together the brown sugar, flour, cinnamon, nutmeg and butter. Cut in butter until the mixture resembles coarse cornmeal. Sprinkle the topping over the muffin batter. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean. Let the muffins cool in the pans for about 5 minutes and then cool on a wire rack or serve warm.

Makes 20 muffins

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Citrus Pull-Apart Bread for Easter 2014

I hope you are having a happy Easter if you celebrate Easter.  We had a delicious brunch after mass this morning.  I served my family's favorite breakfast casserole, Lynn made a fruit salad, and I tried this recipe for Citrus Pull-Apart Bread from Southern Living magazine.

The Citrus Pull-Apart Bread was a big hit.  It reminded me a little bit of monkey bread, but it was very refreshing with all of the citrus zest.  Don't be intimidated by the long detailed instructions.  Read through the recipe first and just go step-by-step, and you will be fine.  I was a little nervous, but once I was doing it, everything made sense.  I know I'm being lazy just giving you a link, but I made the recipe as written, and wanted to share it with you quickly.  Enjoy!

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Super Bowl Snack Countdown Day 5 - Spicy Orange Marmalade Wings

Are you ready for the big game? I’m almost ready. I just need to finish up these wings before I head out to the party I’m attending. I am really excited about Spicy Orange Marmalade Wings. A couple of years ago on our way to drop our daughter off at college in Montana, we stopped to stay the night at Lake Coeur d’Alene in Idaho. The kids were tired and decided to hang out in the room, but Les and I were restless, so we decided to walk to a pub near the hotel.

We ended up at Capones Pub and Grill (of Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives fame). Les and I sat at the bar, chatted with the bartender and asked for recommendations on what to eat and drink. She set us up with a couple of margaritas and suggested the wings. I chose the special wings – Orange Marmalade Wings. I haven’t been able to get these wings out of my head since I had them, and I knew I wanted to try to recreate them. The only problem is I waited too long, and I can’t remember exactly what they tasted like.

So, I ventured out on my own, and created these tasty Spicy Orange Marmalade Wings. The marmalade adds sweetness and my trifecta of spices adds a nice spicy kick. The three different spices each add a different flavor, and together they add a nice complexity to the orange marmalade.

These Spicy Orange Marmalade wings would be great for your next party, just be sure to serve them with a stack of napkins. They are sticky.

Super Bowl Snacks Countdown Day 1 - Reuben Pig in Blankets
Super Bowl Snacks Countdown Day 2 - Mango Salsa
Super Bowl Snacks Countdown Day 3 - Baked Barbeque Wings
Super Bowl Snacks Countdown Day 2 - Mini Chorizo Corn Muffins

Spicy Orange Marmalade Wings
Printable Recipe
2 ½ pounds chicken party wings
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon paprika
½ teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon olive oil
¼ cup chopped red onion
1 serrano pepper, seeded and chopped
¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
¼ teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 cup orange marmalade

In a small bowl mix together the kosher salt, garlic powder, paprika and black pepper. Pat the party wings dry with a paper towel. Sprinkle the dry rub all over the wings, rubbing some under the skin as well. Cover the wings and refrigerate for at least 6 hours and up to 24 hours.

Preheat the oven to 425°F. Place the chicken skin side up on a wire rack over a baking sheet. Roast chicken wings until the chicken is completely cooked and the skin is crispy, about 35 to 45 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large skillet. Add the red onion and Serrano pepper to the skillet, and cook until the onion and pepper are softened. Mix in the red pepper flakes, salt and cayenne to the onion mixture, and add the orange marmalade. Heat until the marmalade has softened and all the ingredients are combined.

Add the cooked wings to the marmalade mixture and toss to completely coat the wings in the mixture. Place the wings on a platter and pour any remaining marmalade into a small dipping bowl. Serve warm. 

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Super Bowl Snack Countdown Day 4 – Mini Chorizo Corn Muffins

Today I’m sharing Mini Chorizo Corn Muffins for day 4 of my Super Bowl Snack Countdown.  I loved corndogs as a kid, and these corn muffins are an updated version of those corndogs. The chorizo tastes great with the corn muffin mixture.  They are easy to make too.  Serve them with spicy brown mustard for dipping.

Mini Chorizo Corn Muffins
Adapted from Food Network Magazine
3 fully cooked chorizo sausages, Sliced into 24 ½ inch slices
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
½ cup yellow cornmeal
¼ cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons sugar
Kosher salt
½ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
1 large egg
¾ cup buttermilk
3 scallions, thinly sliced

Preheat the oven to 375°F and coat a 24-cup mini muffin pan with cooking spray. 

Heat the vegetable oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.  Add the chorizo and cook, stirring occasionally until lightly browned, about 3 minutes.  Cool on a plate lined with a paper towel.

Meanwhile, combine the cornmeal, flour, sugar ½ teaspoon salt, baking powder, baking soda and cayenne pepper in a large bowl.  In a small bowl, whisk together the egg and buttermilk. Mix the egg mixture into the cornmeal mixture.  Stir in the scallions and mix until smooth.  It should have the consistency of pancake batter.

Pour the batter into the prepared muffin pan filling each cup about halfway.  Place a piece of chorizo in the center of each cup.  Bake until golden and cooked through, about 12 minutes.  Let cool for 5 minutes, then remove from the pan.  Serve warm.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Super Bowl Snack Countdown Day 3 - Baked Barbeque Wings

I’m sharing with you one of my favorite chicken recipes. I make this chicken for parties all the time. For 4th of July, I rub chicken thighs and drumsticks with this spice rub and Les barbeques them, and it is very popular and easy.

Last summer, I tried this rub with chicken wings, and took them to the beach for a cookout with our friends who were visiting from Tennessee. The wings were hit. They tasted like barbeque chicken wings, but without the sticky barbeque sauce and without the mess.

Leaving the rub on for at least 6 hours give the salt and spices a chance to flavor the chicken all the way to the bone, so don’t skip this step.  

Super Bowl Snacks Countdown Day 2 - Mango Salsa
Super Bowl Snacks Countdown Day 1 - Reuben Pig in Blankets

Baked Barbeque Wings
Adapted from America’s Test Kitchen Cookbook  
Printable Recipe
5 pounds chicken party wings
3 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 tablespoons sweet paprika
1 tablespoons kosher salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
½ teaspoon ground chipotle chili powder
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper

Combine brown sugar, chili powder, paprika, salt, pepper, chipotle chili, cayenne pepper in a small bowl. Coat the chicken wings with the dry rub and refrigerate for at least 6 hours or up to 24 hours.

Preheat the oven to 425°F. Place the chicken skin side up on a wire rack over a baking sheet. Roast chicken wings until the chicken is completely cooked and the skin is crispy, about 35 to 45 minutes.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Super Bowl Snack Countdown Day 2 – Mango Salsa

I debated posting this Mango Salsa recipe in the middle of winter. Especially this winter with most of the country suffering through bitterly cold weather. But, truth be told, California has been having a warm, summer-like winter, and I saw some beautiful mangos at the market yesterday, so I decided to post this recipe in my Super Bowl Snack Countdown.

This was my go-to snack this summer. My whole family enjoys this spicy sweet salsa with crispy tortilla chips, and I served this to guests all summer long.

If you can find mangoes in a store near you this winter, give Mango Salsa a try. It will be great addition to your Super Bowl snacks.

Super Bowl Snack Countdown – Day 1 Reuben Pigs in Blankets 

Mango Salsa  
Printable Recipe
2 ripe mangos, peeled and cut into ¼ inch chunks
½ small red onion, chopped
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 or 2 jalapenos, seeded and chopped
½ teaspoon salt

Combine mango, onion, cilantro, jalapeno and salt in a small bowl. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour and serve with tortilla chips.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Reuben Pigs in Blankets

I am excited about the Super Bowl on Sunday. Or, to be more truthful, I’m excited about the Super Bowl party I’m attending, since my team lost in an exciting game against the Seahawks.

I’m always excited about Super Bowl food, whether it’s a big bowl of chili, cookies or fun appetizers. I’ve been busy testing out Super Bowl party recipes, and I’m planning on posting them this week leading up to the big game.

First up are these Reuben Pigs in Blankets. My boys loved these. And, me? I’m a sucker for pigs in a blanket and I have warm and fuzzy feelings for Reuben sandwiches, so this combination really works for me. Reuben Pigs in Blankets are fun and tasty, and a perfect nibble for Super Bowl.

Reuben Pigs in Blankets 
Adapted from Food Network Magazine  
Printable Recipe 
½ cup sauerkraut, drained and roughly chopped
3 tablespoons pickle relish
1 8-ounce tube of crescent roll dough
2 slices Swiss cheese, each slice cut into 12 pieces
24 beef little smokies
1 large egg, lightly beaten
Thousand Island dressing for dipping

Preheat the oven to 350°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Combine the sauerkraut and relish in a small bowl, set aside.

Unroll the crescent dough and pinch the diagonal seams together with your fingers. Cut the dough in half lengthwise, and then slice each half crosswise into 12 strips. Place a piece of cheese on one end of strip of dough leaving a ½ inch boarder on the short end. Spread about 1 teaspoon of the sauerkraut mixture on top of the cheese. Place one little smokie on top of each strip of dough, and pinch the dough to seal.

Place pigs in a blanket seam side down on the prepared baking sheet, and brush with the beaten egg. Bake until the dough is golden brown, about 15 minutes. Serve warm with thousand island dressing.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Brown Rice with Tofu

Have you seen The Wolf of Wall Street? My daughter and I saw it last Friday night. It was a movie centered on overindulgence and downright debauchery. It was wickedly funny, but it did hit a nerve with me. I definitely overindulged this holiday season, not quite to the Wolf of Wall Street’s excesses, but I overindulged nonetheless.

I’m ready to get back into my healthy eating habits, and this Brown Rice with Tofu is a good start. What is healthier than tofu and brown rice? And, as a bonus, it tastes great! The garlic and ginger add a punch of flavor to the rice and the browned tofu adds a good protein source. If you are ready to get back to healthy eating, go ahead and try Brown Rice with Tofu.  

Brown Rice with Tofu
Adapted from Power Foods, by Whole Living Magazine 
Printable Recipe 
14 ounces tofu
1 ½ cups medium-grain brown rice
2 ¾ cups water
½ ounce dried shitake mushrooms (broken if large)
1 tablespoon finely chopped peeled fresh ginger
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 dried red chili, stemmed, seeded and crumbled
Coarse salt
1 ½ teaspoon toasted sesame oil, separated
5 tablespoons plus one teaspoon low-sodium tamari soy sauce, separated
3 ounces baby spinach
6 scallions, white and pale green parts only, finely chopped
¼ cup finely chopped cilantro
1 ½ tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar

Place tofu on a plate lined with a paper towel, cover with another paper towel and place a weighted plate on top of the tofu to press the tofu and remove excess water. Press the tofu for about 30 minutes.

In a large saucepan, stir together rice, water, mushrooms, ginger, garlic, chile and salt. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to a simmer. Cover and cook until the rice is tender and has absorbed all liquid, 45 to 50 minutes. Remove from heat.

In the mean time, mix together 3 tablespoons tamari soy sauce and ½ teaspoon sesame oil. Remove pressed tofu from plate and cut tofu crosswise into ½ inch slices. Dip tofu slices into the tamari mixture and brown in a skillet over medium high heat. Cut browned tofu into cubes, set aside.

Gently stir tofu cubes, spinach, scallions, cilantro, 2 tablespoons tamari soy sauce, vinegar and 1 teaspoon of sesame oil into the rice mixture, let stand for 2 or 3 minutes and serve.


Related Posts with Thumbnails