Oct 28, 2011

Honeycrisp Apple Crisp

honeycrisp apple crisp1

The thing about apples are that there are so many varieties to choose from it makes it hard to pick.  I know for sure that I do not like Red Delicious (why is this always the apple of choice at so many places?!).  But I like to pick a type that I enjoy eating and baking with.  Enter the Honeycrisp – super crunchy and sweet – I love them!   I almost don’t want to buy any other varieties this fall for fear of being disappointed.  But I bought so many Honeycrisp that I knew I had to bake something with them.   I decided on one of my very favorite desserts – apple crisp.  There is nothing more heartwarming on on a cold wet Autumn day than a warm bowl of apple crisp with a side of vanilla ice cream.   Enjoy!

honeycrisp apple crisp3


apple layer:

  • 2 1/2 lbs. Honeycrisp apples, peeled and sliced
  • 1/3 cup vanilla sugar (or 1/3 sugar mixed with seeds from 1/2 of a vanilla bean)
  • 2 Tbsp. flour
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp. salt


  • 1/2 cup vanilla sugar (or 1/2 cup sugar mixed with seeds from 1/2 of a vanilla bean)
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/4 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp. salt
  • 8 Tbsp. unsalted butter, chilled, cut into cubes


1.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Spray an 8x8 in. baking dish with non-stick spray. 

2. In a large bowl, combine the apples, sugar, flour, lemon juice, cinnamon and salt.  Stir to coat the apples evenly.  Then place in baking dish.

3. In a food processor or with a pastry blender combine the ingredients for the topping – sugar, flour, cinnamon, salt and butter.  Pulse (or blend) together until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. 

4. Top apples with the crumble.  Bake uncovered for 45 minutes until apples are soft.   Cool for 30 minutes before serving.

Source: adapted from Butteryum

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Oct 26, 2011

Korean Beef Tacos

korean beef tacos 2

My husband I were big fans of the Great Food Truck Race on Food Network – a fun reality show without too much drama.  Except for the cheating Korilla BBQ team.  Even before they got kicked off the show for cheating I was really intrigued by the Korean BBQ tacos that they were always making – they looked and sounded so good.  I have no idea where I could find something similar in Buffalo – so it was perfect when I came across this recipe.  Although, I’m not really sure if these taste anything like the ones they make – but it doesn’t really matter since they were so good.

The beef is cooked in a slow cooker – and let me just say – the smell was.out.of.this.world – I think it was all of the umami from the soy sauce permeating the kitchen.  I was worried that this would end up making too much for the two of us – but my husband ended up eating all of the leftovers for lunches – so you know that means it was a good recipe.  Enjoy!

korean beef tacos


For the Korean beef:

  • ~2.5 lbs beef short ribs 
  • 2/3 cup low sodium soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 Tbsp. ginger, grated
  • 3 Tbsp. rice vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp. dark sesame oil
  • 1 Tbsp. vegetable or olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp. sriracha
  • 1/3 cup water

For the Cucumber Slaw:

  • 1/2 seedless cucumber
  • Thinly sliced red onion rounds
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 Tbsp rice vinegar
  • crushed red pepper flakes to taste

For the tacos: 

  • 8 small wheat tortillas
  • fresh cilantro
  • bean sprouts
  • Greek yogurt (or sour cream)
  • sriracha


1. To make the Korean beef: Spray your slow cooker crock with non-stick cooking spray and add the ribs.

2. Whisk soy sauce, sugar, and vinegar with the garlic, ginger, sriracha, oils and water.  Pour over the ribs in the crockpot.  Cook on low for 6 to 8 hours.

3. To make the cucumber slaw: Slice the cucumber very thinly and sprinkle with salt.  Place in a colander and let sit for up to an hour over a bowl or in the sink.  Shake additional water from the colander or pat with paper towels.  Transfer to a bowl and toss with red onions, rice vinegar, and red pepper flakes.  Refrigerate until ready to use.

4. When the beef is done cooking remove 3/4 cup of the cooking liquid and skim the fat from the top. Pour the liquid into a small sauce pan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer while separating the meat from the bones. Reduce the liquid by about half and pour over the shredded meat.

5. To assemble, serve the shredded meat on warmed tortillas topped a spoon of cucumber slaw, cilantro, bean sprouts, sriracha and a dollop of yogurt.

Source: Confessions of a Foodie Bride

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Oct 24, 2011

Turkey Veggie Burgers

turkey veggie burgers 1

Turkey burgers have always been one of my favorite easy meals.  I was intrigued by this version with zucchini and carrot added in the mix – you can’t go wrong with just a few more veggies in the dinner.  And they did not disappoint – super moist and flavorful. 

These were likely the very last item I cooked on our grill for the season – winter is way too cold around here to stand outside cooking.  Luckily I enjoy cooking on a grill pan in the wintertime – so I can still enjoy grilled foods all year long.  Even better since I got 8 burgers out of this recipe and have a bunch in the freezer for a quick dinner.  Enjoy!

turkey veggie burgers 2


  • 1 1/2 lb. ground turkey
  • 1 medium zucchini, grated
  • 1 medium carrot, grated
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp. paprika
  • spash worcestershire sauce
  • 3/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil


1. Shred zucchini and carrots. Mince garlic.

2. Combine zucchini, carrots, garlic, paprika, worcestershire, salt, pepper, egg, bread crumbs, and turkey in a bowl.  Shape mix into 8 patties.

3. Heat oil in large skillet or grill pan (or grill) over medium heat.

4. Cook the patties (about 4-5 minutes per side) until no longer pink. Serve on toasted buns with your favorite condiments.

Source: Beantown Baker

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Oct 21, 2011

Pumpkin Pecan Streusel Muffins

pumpkin streusel muffins 1

It’s pumpkin time!  I still have a few cans of pumpkin I hoarded from last year – so I see lots of pumpkin treats in my future.   Luckily pumpkin not only makes baked goods super moist – its good for you too! 

See the pumpkin in the background – its actually a glass pumpkin that I made while visiting the Corning Museum of Glass recently.  Well, I helped make it – it wouldn’t have turned into a pumpkin had I not blown into it to create the shape.  I highly recommend a visit to this museum if you are in the Upstate New York area – lots of interesting displays and interactive demos.  I can’t believe it took me so long to actually go there considering its not that far away from Buffalo. 

Here’s a close-up of my masterpiece Winking smile  

pumpkin streusel muffins 2

And the insides of the muffins (made with real pumpkin –not a glass one) – the pecans really helped with the texture contrast – the muffins were so soft and moist that the crunch of the nuts are perfect.

Happy Fall!

pumpkin streusel muffins 3



  • 1/2 cup pecan pieces
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil or canola oil
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2/3 cup pure pumpkin puree
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. ground allspice
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp. salt


  • 3 Tbsp. light brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp. unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 3 Tbsp. toasted pecan pieces (taken from pecans above)


1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Place the pecans on a baking sheet, and toast them in the oven for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Chop the pecans coarsely. Set aside 3 Tbsp. of the toasted pecans for the topping.  Keep the oven on the same temperature for the muffins.

2. Grease 12 standard-size muffin cups with butter or nonstick spray.

3. In a large bowl, whisk together the oil and sugar. Add the eggs, pumpkin and water, and whisk until combined.

4. Stir in the flour, baking soda, spices and salt just until combined.  Gently stir in the 5 Tbsp. of pecan pieces.  Divide evenly among the muffin cups (I was able to get 10 muffins)

5. To make the topping: Stir together the sugar, butter, cinnamon and the reserved 3 Tbsp. of pecan pieces in a medium bowl.  Sprinkle the topping evenly over the muffins before baking.

6. Bake the muffins for 30 to 35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Source: Ezra Pound Cake

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Oct 19, 2011

Chicken with Tomato herb pan sauce

chicken with tomato herb pan sauce 1

This is one of those recipes that I flagged to make mostly because my husband loves tomatoes.  So I had it on our weekly menu but it kept getting moved around and delayed – but I finally made it - and I regret every second that I didn’t make it sooner.  It was one of those dinners where I kept saying “mmm,mmm,mmm” while eating it.   I know this will become one of my go-to recipes in the future when I need a quick, easy and very tasty dinner.  Enjoy!

chicken with tomato herb pan sauce 2


For the chicken:

  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, butterflied and halved (4 halves total)
  • Salt and pepper
  • 3/4 cup flour

For the sauce:

  • 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 tsp. fresh oregano, minced
  • 1/2 tsp. sweet paprika
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • 2 cups cherry or grape tomatoes
  • 1/3 cup dry white wine or chicken broth
  • 1 Tbsp. minced fresh parsley


1. Season both sides of the chicken breasts with salt and pepper.  Lightly dredge both sides of the chicken in the flour, shaking off the excess.  Set aside.

2. In a small bowl, combine the butter, garlic, oregano, and paprika.  Season with salt and pepper. 

3. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, melt 1 tablespoon of the oregano butter with the olive oil.  Place the chicken breast halves in the skillet and cook until golden brown on each side and cooked through, about 3-4 minutes per side.  Transfer to a plate, cover loosely with foil, and set aside.

4. Add the tomatoes to the skillet.  Cook, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes begin to char and burst, about 5 minutes.  Add the remaining butter to the pan.  Crush the tomatoes slightly to release their juices and continue stirring until the butter is melted.  Add the wine or broth to the pan, scraping the bottom to loosen the browned bits and cook for about a minute more.

5. Slice the chicken, transfer to serving plates, and top with the pan sauce.  Sprinkle with parsley and serve.

Source: Annie’s Eats, originally from Bon Appetit, July 2011

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Oct 17, 2011

Turkey and Stuffing bake

turkey and stuffing bake 1

We’re still over a month away from Thanksgiving – but this recipe is the perfect solution if you are craving Thanksgiving dinner early and don’t want to put the full effort in.   I served it with some mashed potatoes and broccoli – warm, comforting and delicious.  I really enjoyed the leftovers for lunch as well – I love Thanksgiving dinner and flavors – now if only I could take a nap afterwards at work.  Enjoy!

turkey and stuffing bake 2


  • 1 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 lb. boneless, skinless turkey breasts, chopped into 1-inch chunks
  • 1/2 tsp. dried sage
  • 1/2 tsp. poultry seasoning
  • 2 Tbsp. flour
  • 1 3/4 cup chicken broth
  • coarse salt and pepper
  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced
  • 2 stalks celery, diced
  • 4 cups of cubed bread (I used a mix of white and whole wheat)
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 Tbsp. unsalted butter, cut into small pieces


1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

2. In a large skillet, heat 1/2 Tbsp. oil over medium-high heat.  Add turkey and cook until lightly browned – about 8 minutes.  Add sage, poultry seasoning and flour and stir to coat.  Add in 3/4 cup of broth and cook, stirring and scraping up any brown bits until liquid is thickened – 2 minutes.

3. Season turkey with salt and pepper and transfer to an 8-inch square baking dish, set aside.

4. Wipe out skillet and add remaining oil over medium heat.  Add onion and celery and cook until softened – about 8 minutes.  

5. Remove from heat and add in bread, cranberries and remaining 1 cup broth, stir to combine.  Add in egg and mix thoroughly.  

6. Spoon bread mixture over turkey mixture and dot the top with the butter. 

7. Bake in oven until juices are bubbling and the bread is golden brown – about 20 minutes. 

Source: adapted from Everyday Food October 2011

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Oct 14, 2011

Crispy Southwest Chicken Wraps

crispy soutwest chicken wraps 3

I was so excited when I found this recipe – the title is immediately mouthwatering.  I knew this is something we both would enjoy.  Next time I need to plan ahead better and use leftover rice and chicken instead of making them just for this recipe – but other than that – this recipe is easy, delicious, and healthy.  Yum - enjoy!

crispy southwest chicken wraps 2


  • 1 cup cooked rice, warm or at room temperature
  • 1 cup cooked, shredded chicken
  • 1 (15 oz.) can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 green onion, finely sliced (white and green parts)
  • 1/2 red pepper, seeded and diced
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 1/2 Tbsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic salt
  • 2 cups shredded monterey jack cheese
  • 6-8 burrito-sized flour tortillas


1. Mix rice together with chili powder, cumin and garlic salt then add in the chicken, beans, green onion, pepper, cilantro and lime juice.

2. Sprinkle cheese over tortillas, leaving 1/2-inch border around edges, then arrange chicken and rice mixture down the center of each tortilla.  Fold and roll stuffed tortillas into a burrito. Spray the tortillas all over with cooking spray.

3. Heat a large non-stick skillet (or griddle) over medium heat for 1 minute. Arrange 2 wraps, seam-side down, in pan and cook until golden brown and crisp, about 2-3 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate and repeat with remaining wraps. Serve immediately.

Source: Mel’s Kitchen CafĂ©

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