Posted in Breakfast, Muffins, Scones, and other Pastries, tagged baking, Breakfast, cinnamon, donut, maple, pastries, sugar on June 29, 2012 |
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A donut pan is one of those kitchen gadgets that always looked like it would be fun to own, but was probably not something that I would buy for myself. So I was super excited when I won a donut pan that Tracey was giving away on her blog! It arrived in the mail on Friday and I made my first batch of donuts on Sunday morning. They were really easy to make, and while they aren’t health food, they’re not too bad, either, since they’re baked and not fried. Thanks again, Tracey for the fun giveaway!
I made these maple donuts with cinnamon sugar and they turned out really good. I had actually bookmarked the recipe in the middle of the night while feeding William. Lately, I’ve been catching up on some blog reading during nighttime feedings. One night at 2:30 a.m., I saw this recipe and immediately craved one of these donuts. The maple flavor turned out to be really subtle, but I liked how I could taste the vanilla Greek yogurt that’s used in the batter. Since the donuts are baked, they are more like cake donuts, but with a much lighter texture than the cake donuts you buy at the store. I dipped my donuts twice in the cinnamon sugar and they ended up with just the right amount of sweet coating.
Making my own baked donuts at home was a fun way to begin my Sunday morning. I’m looking forward to trying out other recipes soon!
One year ago: Peach and Raspberry Crumble
Baked Maple Cinnamon Sugar Donuts
Makes 6 donuts
- 1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1 cup cake flour
- 3/4 tsp. baking powder
- 3/4 tsp. baking soda
- Pinch of salt
- 1 large egg
- 1 (6 oz.) container nonfat vanilla Greek yogurt
- 1 tbsp. canola oil
- 2 tsp. lemon juice
- 2 1/2 tbsp. pure maple syrup
- 1 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Spray a donut pan with nonstick cooking spray.
- In a wide, shallow bowl stir the cinnamon and sugar together. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In another bowl, whisk together the egg, yogurt, canola oil, lemon juice, and maple syrup. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add the wet ingredients. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold the dry ingredients into the wet until just incorporated. Do not overmix. (The batter will be thick.)
- Transfer the batter to a pastry bag (or resealable plastic bag and then snip off one corner). Pipe the batter evenly into the 6 wells of the pan, filling each about 2/3 to 3/4 full. Bake donuts for 8 to 10 minutes, until they’re golden brown and spring back when lightly pressed. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and allow the donuts to cool for just a minute or two before flipping them out onto the rack.
- When the donuts have cooled enough to handle (just another minute or two after you flip them out), working with one donut at a time, brush the top with melted butter and then dip in the cinnamon sugar mixture. The sooner you eat these donuts, the better they are, but they are still tasty for a day or two after baking.
Source: Tracey’s Culinary Adventures
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One of the best parts about summer is being able to cook dinner on the grill. Summer salads like this one are great for warm days when you don’t want to turn on your stove or oven, or eat a big, hot meal. Spend a few minutes indoors mixing up a quick vinaigrette to season the chicken and vegetables, and then head outside to enjoy some fresh air and relaxing family time while the meat and squash are grilling. Then chop and toss it all together, and it’s time to enjoy dinner, preferably outdoors!
We really, really enjoyed this salad. The summer squash is the star of the meal, and the vinaigrette plus grilling add delicious flavor to both the vegetables and chicken. Peppery arugula works wonderfully here, too, adding yet another flavor dimension. This salad is going to become another staple in my list of easy, healthy, and delicious summer meals.
One year ago: Creamy Strawberry Ice Cream
Grilled Chicken and Summer Squash Salad
Makes 4 servings
For the vinaigrette:
- 1 large clove garlic
- Kosher salt
- 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup fresh lime juice and 2 tsp. finely grated zest (from 1 lime)
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- 1 1/2 tbsp. finely grated or chopped peeled fresh ginger
- 1 tbsp. finely chopped jalapeno (seeded if you like less heat)
- 1 tsp. granulated sugar
For the salad:
- 1 1/2 to 1 3/4 pound mixed summer squash, such as zucchini and yellow squash, sliced 3/4 inch thick on an extreme angle (about 3 medium)
- 1 1/2 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, pounded to an even thickness
- 5 oz. baby arugula
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Prepare a medium-high gas or charcoal grill fire.
- Chop the clove of garlic and then mash it into a paste with 1/2 tsp. Kosher salt, using the side of your knife. Put the garlic paste, olive oil, lime juice, lime zest, cilantro, ginger, jalapeno, sugar, and 1 tsp. salt in a small jar with a lid. Shake to emulsify.
- Drizzle the chicken and squash with 1/2 cup of the vinaigrette, and toss to coat. Grill on both sides until the squash is barely tender and the chicken is cooked through. Transfer to a cutting board and let cool briefly.
- Meanwhile, toss the arugula in a large bowl with 1/4 cup of the vinaigrette and season with salt and pepper. Divide among 4 plates.
- Cut the squash and chicken into bite-size pieces. Put them in the bowl and toss with the remaining vinaigrette and salt and pepper to taste. Use a slotted spoon to divide the mixture among the plates.
Source: Slightly adapted from Fine Cooking.
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This is the perfect summer pie. Fresh, ripe strawberries are so good on their own, but making them into a pie is a wonderful way to highlight those strawberries. For this pie, you really need to use perfectly ripe strawberries to get the best flavor. I used organic strawberries that I bought at the farmer’s market, and I recommend you do the same if at all possible.
While most fruit pies call for baking the fruit in the pie shell, strawberries don’t bake up all that well so we keep them fresh and unbaked in this pie. Instead, a few strawberries are pureed and cooked on the stove with some sugar and gelatin to make a sweet glaze. The glaze is gently tossed with the rest of the fresh strawberries to create a sweet, fresh strawberry filling. I put the filling into my favorite homemade pie crust (which I blind baked first), and served generous slices of pie with some freshly whipped cream.
This fresh strawberry pie is a dessert that is on the lighter side, but so completely satisfying. I just know it’s going to make many more appearances on my table this summer, and in the summers to come.
One year ago: Pasta Shells with Sausage and Roasted Peppers
Fresh Strawberry Pie
Makes about 8 servings
For the filling:
- 4 pints (about 3 lbs.) fresh strawberries, gently rinsed and dried, hulled*
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 2 tbsp. cornstarch
- 1 1/2 tsp. Sure-Jell for low-sugar recipes**
- Generous pinch of table salt
- 1 tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 baked 9-inch pie shell***
For the whipped cream:
- 1 cup cold heavy cream
- 1 tbsp. confectioners’ sugar
- To make the filling, select 6 oz. of the most unattractive berries, halving those that are large; you should have about 1 1/2 cups. In a food processor, puree the berries until smooth. You should have about 3/4 cup puree. In a medium saucepan, combine the sugar, cornstarch, Sure-Jell, and salt; whisk to combine. Stir in the berry puree. Cook the mixture over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, and bring to a full boil. Boil for 2 minutes, scraping the bottom and sides of the pan constantly. Transfer to a large bowl and stir in the lemon juice. Let cool to room temperature.
- Meanwhile, pick over the remaining berries and measure out 2 pounds of the most attractive ones; halve only extra-large berries. Add the strawberries to the bowl with the glaze and fold gently with a spatula until the berries are evenly coated. Scoop the berries into the baked pie shell, piling into a mound. If any cut sides face up on the top, turn them face down. Refrigerate the pie until chilled, about 2 hours. Serve within 5 hours of chilling.
- Make the whipped cream just before serving. Whip the cream on medium speed until it begins to thicken, about 30 seconds. Increase the speed and continue beating until medium peaks form; mix in the sugar until combined. Cut the pie into wedges and serve with whipped cream.
*This is more berries than you will actually need for the pie, to account for any imperfect strawberries.
**Be sure to use Sure-Jell for low- or no-sugar recipes (pink box) and not regular Sure-Jell (yellow box), or the glaze will not set properly. Look for Sure-Jell either in the baking section, canning section, or Jello section of your grocery store.
***To pre-bake the pie crust, roll the pie dough into a 12-inch circle. Line a 9-inch pie plate with the dough. Crimp the edges. Cover with plastic wrap and freeze for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and adjust an oven rack to low-middle position. Line the chilled pie shell with foil so that it lays over the edges of the dough. Fill with pie weights and bake until the surface of the dough no longer looks wet, 20-25 minutes. Remove the pie weights and foil and return the crust to the oven. Bake until the crust is golden brown, 10-12 minutes more. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool.
Source: Cook’s Illustrated via Annie’s Eats.
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It had been a while since I’d made homemade pita bread, so when my sister, Karen, told me about this recipe for a Mediterranean spice rubbed chicken, and mentioned how she served the chicken in pitas, I knew I wanted to try it for myself soon. We enjoyed the meal so much, I put it on the menu for Father’s Day the next weekend.
We had a relaxing Father’s Day get together with family at our house yesterday. I made whole wheat pitas and Brad grilled this Mediterranean chicken. We set up a make-your-own pita station on our kitchen island, so that everyone could choose how to fill their own pita. The options included the chicken, cucumber, tomatoes, kalamata olives, avocado, and Greek yogurt. I filled half of my pita with everything, and the other half with just vegetables and yogurt. The vegetarian pita was just as delicious as the one with the chicken. I’ll have to remember that for an easy meatless meal in the future.
For dessert, I made a fresh strawberry pie that was just amazing. Think perfectly ripe organic strawberries from the farmer’s market in a flaky homemade pie crust, topped with a dollop of whipped cream. Yum oh yum. I’ll be sharing the recipe soon!
One year ago: How to Roast Bell Peppers
Mediterranean Chicken in Pitas
Makes 8 servings
- 1 1/2 tbsp. dried rosemary
- 1 tbsp. ground cumin
- 1 tbsp. ground coriander
- 1/2 tbsp. dried oregano
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- Pinch of nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
- 8 whole wheat pitas
- Greek yogurt
- 2 tomatoes, chopped
- 1 cucumber, peeled, seeded, and chopped
- avocado slices
- kalamata olives (optional)
- Combine rosemary, cumin, coriander, oregano, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt in a small bowl. Place chicken in a baking dish and rub spice mixture onto chicken. Refrigerate for 20 minutes. Grill chicken until cooked through, then set aside to rest for 10 minutes before chopping into bite-sized pieces.
- Slice each pita in half and then carefully slice to form a pocket. Spread some Greek yogurt inside each pita and then fill with the chopped chicken, tomatoes, cucumber, and avocado. Serve immediately.
Source: Kristine’s Kitchen; inspired by an idea from my sister, Karen; spice rub slightly adapted from Food.com.
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Mac and cheese is classic comfort food, and there are so many ways to prepare it. Although I already have a number of mac and cheese recipes that I love, I still enjoy trying new recipes. I was watching Barefoot Contessa on the Food Network a few weeks ago, and Ina Garten prepared this recipe. The mac and cheese looked rich and creamy, and I immediately looked up the recipe online and put it on our menu.
This recipe turned out as good as it looked on television. It is in fact incredibly rich and creamy, and is also easy to prepare. I took some advice from Ina and grated the cheeses in my food processor. This saved my arms from a lot of work (although grating by hand would be a great way to squeeze in a little workout!). The macaroni is topped with fresh sliced tomatoes before baking, which adds a little something extra special to the presentation.
Mac and Cheese
Makes 8 servings
- Kosher salt
- 1 pound elbow macaroni or cavatappi
- 4 cups milk
- 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, divided
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 12 ounces Gruyere, grated
- 8 ounces extra-sharp cheddar, grated
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- generous 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 2-3 small fresh tomatoes
- 1 1/2 cups panko bread crumbs
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook until just shy of al dente, according to package directions. Drain well.
- Meanwhile, heat the milk in a small saucepan, but don’t let it come to a boil. Melt 6 tablespoons of the butter in a large pot or Dutch oven and add the flour. Cook over low heat for 2 minutes, whisking constantly. While whisking, add the warm milk and cook for a few minutes more, until thickened and smooth. Off the heat, stir in 1 teaspoon salt, the pepper, and nutmeg. Add the Gruyere and cheddar and stir until melted. Add the cooked pasta and stir well. Pour into a 3-quart baking dish.
- Slice the tomatoes and arrange on top. Melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter and stir it into the panko. Sprinkle on top of pasta and tomatoes. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the sauce is bubbly and the breadcrumbs are browned.
Source: Slightly adapted from Barefoot Contessa, Food Network
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You just have to try this lasagna. I know at first the concept of Mexican lasagna might sound a bit strange, but trust me this meal really works. Seasoned black beans, corn, green onions, cheese, and tomatoes are layered between sheets of lasagna noodles. Using no boil noodles means that no cooking is required in prepping the lasagna, other than baking the assembled dish. Add to that very minimal chopping, and you have a meal that is so easy to put together.
We like to have meatless meals at least a few times each week and this lasagna is a perfect option. I recommend serving the lasagna with a big green salad, for a healthy and satisfying dinner.
One year ago: Chicken stuffed with sun-dried tomatoes, olives, and mozzarella
Makes 5 servings
- 9 ounces no boil lasagna noodles
- 15 ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 1/2 cups frozen corn
- 4-5 green onions, sliced thin
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- 1 tsp. dried oregano
- 1 tsp. garlic powder
- 1 tsp. cumin
- 1 1/2 tsp. chili powder
- 1/2 tsp. Kosher salt
- 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
- 8 ounces shredded Mexican blend cheese
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Place the black beans, corn, green onions, cilantro (reserve a little for garnish), oregano, garlic powder, cumin, chili powder, and salt in a large bowl. Stir gently to combine.
- Spread a thin layer of tomatoes on the bottom of a 9 x 9 square baking dish. Place one layer of noodles on top of the tomatoes. (Don’t worry if a little bit of space remains between the noodles and the edge of the pan, this will make it easier to serve the lasagna.)
- On top of the noodles, spread half of the bean and corn mixture, then a layer of tomatoes, and then 1/3 of the cheese.
- Repeat the layers with the remaining noodles, filling, tomatoes, and cheese. On the top layer of noodles, spread the rest of the tomatoes and sprinkle with cheese.
- Cover with aluminum foil that you’ve sprayed with a little cooking spray to prevent the cheese from sticking. Bake for about 45 minutes, then uncover and bake 5-10 minutes more until the cheese is browned. Let stand for 10 minutes before slicing and serving. Sprinkle with the reserved cilantro and serve.
Source: Adapted from A Couple Cooks.
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