Archive - June 2015

Roasted Garlic Hummus

We are both in agreement that this is the best vegetable dip I’ve made recently. Roasting the garlic beforehand instead of just throwing in cloves of garlic gives it a completely different taste and it’s worth it if you have the hour to spare. Roasting the garlic like this is also great for crostini, pasta, and salad dressing recipes as well. I’ve roasted heads of garlic and used them to make garlic bread for holiday parties, it gives it much more depth of flavor than just using garlic powder.

Roasted Garlic Hummus
1 head garlic, top sliced off
Dash of olive oil
Kosher salt and black pepper
2 cans chickpeas
2 Tablespoons tahihi
3 Tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup water
2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon salt

1. Put garlic in tinfoil and put a dash of olive oil on top and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cover entire head in tinfoil and place on a baking sheet, roast at 375 degrees for one hour.



2. Once cool, use your fingers to remove all of the garlic (you will spell like garlic all day, be prepared to be okay with this). Combine all remaining ingredients with garlic into a food processor and pulse until creamy.


Mini Chocolate Pudding Pies

Jason and I have friends from home visiting the Bay Area this weekend. We all met up in Sonoma yesterday for wine tasting and lunch. It was a beautiful sunny day with a light breeze — perfect wine drinking conditions. My original plan was to bring these little desserts for everyone to enjoy, but the 80+ degree heat would have turned these into mushy messes. Either way it was a wonderful Sunday with friends and these pies will just have to be tonight’s dessert!

Mini Chocolate Pudding Pies
9 oz. of shortbread cookies, gluten free
6 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
2 Tablespoons sugar
2/3 cup sugar
3 Tablespoons cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 large egg yolks
3 cups whole milk
6 oz. semi-sweet chocolate, melted
2 oz. unsweetened chocolate, melted
2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
1 Tablespoon vanilla
2 cups heavy cream
2 Tablespoons sugar

1. Pulse cookies in a food processor until completely broken down into sandlike crumbs. Add butter and sugar and pulse again until everything is evenly wet.

2. Put 2 Tablespoons of mixture into seven mini pie dishes. Push up the edges of the pie plates. Bake in a 325 degree oven for 10 minutes. Let cool on wire rack.



3. Combine sugar, salt, cornstarch and yolks in a saucepan over low heat. Turn to medium heat and whisk milk in steady stream. Bring to a boil and occasionally stir. As soon as it begins to boil, it will thicken very quickly. Turn to low heat and whisk for about a minute.




4. Pour mixture through a fine sieve into a large bowl. Mix in chocolate, vanilla and butter. Stir until combined.



5. Place a buttered circular piece of parchment paper and chill in fridge for at least two hours, mine sat overnight.


6. Put heavy cream and sugar in a standup mixer. Mix with whisk attachment for 3 minutes or until stiff peaks form.


7. Evenly fill pie crusts with chocolate pudding and cover with whipped cream, lightly dust with chocolate shavings.





Green Goddess Vegetable Dip

Herbs. So many herbs. This dip has most of the herbs we grow in our garden… plus mint I had to buy because for some reason we’re incapable of growing it. This is the first time in three years that anything has sprouted from mint seeds we’ve planted and it’s still not producing anything that looks harvest-worthy. Time will tell!

Add this to the list of recipes made so unbelievably simple with a food processor. If you don’t have one, I suggest figuring out a way to make this anyway because it’s tastes like Summertime.

Green Goddess Dip
1/2 cup fresh dill
1/2 cup fresh mint
1/2 cup fresh parsley
1/3 cup fresh basil
3 garlic cloves, chopped
2 whole scallions, roughly chopped
2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
Kosher salt
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup feta cheese
1/2 cup Greek yogurt

1. Put all the ingredients in the herbs, garlic, lemon juice and salt in a food processor. Pulse until completely chopped. While it’s running, slowly add in olive oil and run for a few extra seconds. Then add the yogurt and cheese.


2. Eat with every veggie in sight, put it on a salad, or maybe on a sandwich? I don’t know, live a little!



Spicy and Sweet Roasted Nuts

I’m giving you a fair warning. These are addictive. They have everything you want… sweet, savory, spicy, and salty. I highly suggest portioning these out or you’ll go through half the batch before you realize it.

Spicy and Sweet Roasted Nuts
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground chipotle chile pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1 large egg white
1 cup slivered almonds
1 cup unsalted cashews
1 cup unsalted sunflower seeds
1. In a small bowl, combine the sugar, salt, chipotle, cumin, oregano, and chili powder.
2. In a large bowl, whisk the egg white until it begins to get foamy. Pour the nuts into the egg and mix until they’re evenly covered.
3. Mix in the spices. Lay the nuts out on a baking pan lined with parchment. Cook in a 325 degree oven for 15 minutes, tossing in between. Shut the oven off after the timer goes off and leave the nuts in the oven for another 15 minutes.


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Easy Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Jason and I went to an event at a Senegalese restaurant in Oakland this afternoon. We were invited by a friend who is from New Jersey too. I met her through someone back home who introduced us because we moved to the Bay Area around the same time. It’s lovely talking with people who are experiencing similar trials and tribulations of moving across the country. It can sometimes be challenging to get familiar with a new area, build a network, make new friends, etc. There were quite a few people at this event who are NY/NJ transplants so it was lovely reminiscing about the things we miss about the East Coast and relish in the things that are much better out West.

Since I knew that we were going to be there for a few hours today, I wanted to make something in the Crock Pot for dinner so it could cook while we were out of the house. We have a lot of butter lettuce ready in the garden so it seemed like a nice time to try out a chicken wrap recipe. These have the right amount of heat that’s nicely balanced with the blue cheese. The snap of the celery gives enough texture so that there’s some crunch to it too. I created my own seasonings mixture in this recipe, you can always replace the spices with a pre-packaged Ranch dressing mix instead. Either way, this is a simple recipe with lots of leftovers.

Easy Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps
2 Tablespoons dried parsley
1 1/2 teaspoons dill, chopped
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons onion powder
2 teaspoons dried onion flakes
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon dried chives
1 teaspoon salt
6 chicken breasts
1 12-ounce bottle Frank’s buffalo sauce
1/2 cup chicken stock
Carrots, shredded
Celery, sliced thin
Butter lettuce leaves
Blue cheese dressing

1. In a small bowl, combine the first eight ingredients.


2. Place the chicken on the bottom of the slow cooker. Sprinkle spice mixture on top of the chicken. Pour in the buffalo sauce and stock. Mix the chicken together. Cover and cook on LOW for 5-6 hours.


4. Remove the chicken from the Crock Pot and place in a large dish. Shred the chicken using two forks. Add some of the sauce to the chicken until you’ve reached the exact about of spice you’re looking for.


4. Serve with shredded carrots, celery, and blue cheese.