Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Snap, Crackle, Pop, and Chocolate!

This recipe is a true “pantry raid.” If you bake regularly, it’s likely you have many ingredients in your baker’s pantry that can be used in this recipe. Depending upon the last-minute guests you’re expecting, use semi-sweet for adults or milk chocolate for kids. Nearly any morsels or bits you have on hand can be stirred into these treats – be creative and raid the pantry!

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Chipotle Garlic Cheddar Mini Beer Loaves

Chipotle Garlic Cheddar Mini Beer Loaves
by Lesia

2 teaspoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 cups self-rising flour
2 Tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon chipotle chili powder
12-ounce can of beer
4 Tablespoons plus 2 Tablespoons butter
1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, shredded

Preheat oven to 375ºF.

Using a small skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat and sauté garlic until just fragrant. Set aside. 

Using the Good Cook mixing bowl, mix together flour, sugar, chili powder, beer, and 4 Tablespoons of melted butter until smooth. Using the Good Cook Silicone Spatula, stir in garlic and cheese until combined well. 

Spray the Good Cook 4 Cup Loaf Pan with non-stick cooking spray and evenly distribute batter into pan. Bake for 20 minutes, insert knife in the middle of the thickest loaf. If knife comes out clean, the bread is done. Brush tops of loaves with remaining 2 Tablespoons of melted butter. Return to oven for 5 minutes.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Magic Cake

Pantry cooking may seem simple. There's no need to go to the store, after all, if you cook with whatever you have on hand. This cake recipe, however, is far, far, far from simple. In fact, it's a miniature chemistry experiment, though it's way more fun to think of it as MAGIC than science. Calling it magic makes it way more fun to clean up the mess, because wow, I went through four mixing bowls. (Don't be like me!)

Using the power of butter, eggs and sugar, this slowly baked cake cooks firm on the top and bottom but remains custardy in the center -- meaning it's certain to impress, even if you didn't need to grocery shop.

Friday, July 25, 2014

King Ranch Chicken Casserole

This recipe, adapted from a recipe on the Homesick Texan blog, is one of our favorite casseroles and I usually have the needed ingredients on hand. When the Good Cook Potluck Pantry Panic Challenge was presented, I knew immediately this was my pantry panic go-to recipe. Before discovering this recipe, I made King Ranch Casserole the old way, with the two different kinds of soup. It was good. It’s what I was used to. Once I found this recipe, though, I have never made it any other way. This is a spicy dish. The freshness of the peppers, cilantro and fresh lime juice, make this dish pop with flavor. Save yourself the regrets and double this recipe so you have plenty for leftovers and to freeze.

Bengali Potato & Zucchini Curry

We love Indian food and when the opportunity arose to prepare a dish from Silk Road Vegetarian, I was excited! The delightful fragrance of the spices had my mouth watering while I was cooking this dish, and the final result was delicious. I would suggest preparing the Raita several hours prior to cooking the curry, so it will be nice and chilled. The ingredients are all easily obtainable and the recipe not too complex; however, it all comes together in a wonderful melange of flavors that will please anyone craving a tasty Indian dish!

Bengali Potato & Zucchini Curry 
by Judy
adapted from Silk Road Vegetarian by Dahlia Abraham-Klein

Prep time: 30 minutes, plus 10 minutes for standing
Cook time: 50 minutes
Serves 4

2 zucchini, sliced into 1/4-inch rounds
2 large baking potatoes, peeled and cubed
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
2 Tablespoons oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon fresh ginger, minced
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
3 teaspoons curry powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 tomatoes, peeled and chopped
4 Tablespoons water
1 teaspoon granulated sugar
1 teaspoon salt
Basmati rice for serving
Raita (recipe below)

Combine the zucchini, potatoes, turmeric, and garlic salt in a large bowl and toss gently. Set aside for 10 minutes.

Heat the oil in a large skillet set over medium heat, saute the zucchini and potato mixture for about 7 minutes or until slightly golden.

Remove the zucchini and potato mixture with a slotted spoon, keeping as much oil in the pan as possible. Set mixture aside on a platter.

Return the same skillet to the stove and reduce heat to medium. Saute the garlic, ginger, ground ginger, curry powder and cumin, stirring for 2 to 3 minutes, or until fragrant.

Add the tomatoes, water, sugar, and salt. Increase heat to medium-high and cook until boiling. Add the zucchini and potato mixture, reduce heat and simmer covered for 25 to 30 minutes, or until potatoes are tender. Serve over rice and with Raita.

by Judy
adapted from Silk Road Vegetarian by Dahlia Abraham-Klein

1 teaspoon cumin seeds

2 cucumbers, peeled, seeded and finely chopped
2 cups plain whole-milk yogurt
2 green onions, chopped
1 Tablespoon lemon juice
Salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Fresh mint, for garnish

Dry roast the cumin seeds in a skillet for about 5 minutes, stirring constantly, until fragrant. Combine cucumber, yogurt, onions, lemon juice, salt and pepper in a medium-sized bowl. Crush cumin seeds with a mallet or the back of a large spoon and add to cucumber-yogurt mixture. Serve chilled, garnished with mint.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Saffron and Cardamom Rice Pudding

If you are looking to experiment with Indian flavors, this is your book. The author, Rinku Bhattacharya, provides the general population with delicious and easy to prepare dishes packed with flavor and sustainable ingredients. In Spices & Seasons, each recipe is carefully labeled as vegan/vegetarian and/or gluten-free. The index in the back of the book is also separated as such; gluten-free index, vegan/vegetarian index, vegetarian index, and recipe index! I found this to be extremely helpful when trying to pick which dish to make.

It was very difficult to pick a dish due to the large selection of recipes included in the book and how many of them were gluten-free. I finally decided on the Saffron Pistachio Rice Pudding on page 333, with a few minor changes/substitutions. I am in the process of packing up my life and putting most of my belongings in storage for a year as I start my next adventure in NYC, so I wanted to use what I had on hand instead of going out to buy things. Rice pudding can be a fairly simple recipe, but this one was packed with flavor! Oh my is delicious and I promise you, you will want to make this. Here are my substitutions: Instead of half and half, I used unsweetened coconut milk, for the white rice I used short grain brown rice, and I did not have pistachios around (trust me those do not last long around me), so instead I diced up some granny smith apple (it added such a delicious, fresh crispness to it). And yes...I do have saffron lying around. :)

I've seen rice pudding be super creamy and I've also seen it where there is some creamy liquid remaining, which is how I prefer to enjoy it (as you can see by the picture below.) If you like more of the liquid, then just cook it for a bit less time, or simply add additional liquid.

Saffron and Cardamom Rice Pudding
by Jenny

Adapted from Spices & Seasons Simple Sustainable Indian Flavors by Rinku Bhattacharya, page 333

4 cups unsweetened coconut milk
whole cardamom pods
1/4 cinnamon stick
1/3 cup organic short grain brown rice
1/2 cup organic sugar
1 teaspoon saffron threads
1/2 cup diced Granny Smith apple

In a medium pot, add coconut milk, whole cardamom pods, cinnamon stick, rice, and sugar and bring to a boil.

Reduce heat to a simmer, uncovered, and stir frequently until it begins to thicken, about 35 minutes.

Remove and discard the whole cardamom pods and cinnamon stick.

Stir in the saffron threads and granny smith apples, cook for an additional 5 minutes.

Serve with sliced of granny smith apple on top - enjoy!

This is a great cookbook to have in your collection, especially if you or someone you know is either gluten-free, vegetarian, and/or vegan! So many delicious recipes and flavors to experiment with.  

Note: The cookbook was provided to me from the publisher for this review. All comments and opinions are 100% my own.