Tag Archives: new foods

Sriracha Chicken and Roasted Corn & Red Pepper Farro Salad

Vacation is awesome, reality is not.  After two weeks of eating burgers, ice cream, and white wine, it was time for some healthful, vegetable laden eating!  As I was reading through my epic Google Reader list, I stumbled upon a recipe for farro salad.  This recipe sounded healthful, delicious, and used a new food!

Farro is a grain, sort of liked puff wheat.  You boil the farro like pasta and use as you would a couscous or quinoa.  If you want to learn more about farro, go here!  Sriracha is a sauce that is EVERYWHERE and I have been hesitant to use it, I’m not really a spicy girl!  It just looks so cool and I want to be cool!

Using the sriracha as a marinade provided a huge flavor boost for plain chicken.  I still found the chicken a little spicy, but totally manageable and very flavorful.  If I had a cooling, yogurt-based sauce, the chicken would be outstanding!  The farro salad was refreshing and super summery.  The roasted corn and red peppers were sweet and just a bit crunchy.  The onion added more crunch and cilantro is the right herb to accent the other flavors.  I really liked the chewiness of the farro and this salad provides a much needed divergence from typical summer salads.  And, this salad lasted a week in the fridge and it was still tasty!

Print the Recipe!

Sriracha Chicken
Yield – 5 servings

1 tablespoon Sriracha
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 tablespoon Italian herb mix
good pinch of Kosher salt
1 pound boneless, skinless, chicken breasts

  1. Place the first 4 ingredients in a gallon size plastic bag.  Add in the chicken and squeeze to mix and cover the chicken.  Set on the counter for about half an hour.
  2. Preheat your grill pan and liberally spray with cooking spray.
  3. Place the chicken on the grill and cook on one side for about 10 minutes and flip over and cook for another 8 minutes.  Check with a knife to make sure the chicken is cooked all the way through.

Roasted Corn & Red Pepper Farro Salad
Adapted from Alexandra’s Kitchen
Yield – 5-6 large servings

2 ears of corn
2 red bell peppers
Kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper
olive oil
1 cup farro
1 bunch cilantro
1 red onion
2 tablespoons olive oil
juice of one lemon
salt and pepper

  1. Preheat the oven 450 F and set a pot of water on the stove to boil.
  2. Cover a baking pan in foil and spray with cooking spray.
  3. Cut the corn kernels off the ears of corn and chop the red peppers to the size of the kernels of corn.
  4. Toss the corn and peppers on the baking sheet with a liberal dosage of salt, black pepper, and olive oil.
  5. Roast for 15-20 minutes or until the corn is roasted and the peppers are soft.
  6. Add the farro to the boiling water with a big pinch of salt.  Cook for 15 minutes or until the farro is al dente.
  7. Chop the cilantro and red onion and add to a large bowl.
  8. When the farro is cooked, drain and add to the cilantro and red onion.
  9. Squeeze the juice of a lemon over the farro and add the olive oil, salt, and pepper.  Toss to combine.
  10. Add in the roasted corn and peppers.  Taste and add more salt, pepper, or oil as needed.
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Chocolate Malt Cupcakes

There is nothing better than a good chocolate cupcake with just a bit of a twist.  And who doesn’t love a good chocolate malt?  I made these cupcakes for Cinnamon’s birthday!  She was my first friend at work who invited me to hang out for after work functions.  Without her, I probably wouldn’t have a ton of work friends :-(  But now I have a lot of work friends and I keep their friendships alive by bribing them with cupcakes!

I was surprised how easy these cupcakes were to throw together.  Malt has always intimidated me and has been on my new foods list, but really it’s as simple as buying the malt powder that appears next to the hot chocolate mix in the grocery store.  The malt flavor develops over time, so the second day is more flavorful than the first.

The chocolate cake is soft, tender, and moist, everything your want from a chocolate cupcake.  I like how simple the chocolate cake is because it really allows the frosting to shine!  This a fantastic, chocolate frosting!  Very rich and creamy.  I love the extra bite from the malt powder.  Chocolate malt cupcakes are a great way to jazz up an regular chocolate cupcake!

Print the recipe.

Chocolate Malt Cupcakes
Adapted from That Winsome Girl
Yield – 18 cupcakes

1/2 cup whole milk
3/4 cup malted milk, original flavor
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup + 2 tablespoons flour
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 cup sugar
1/4  cup + 2 tablespoons brown sugar
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 egg + 1 yolk
1/2 cup non-fat Greek yogurt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F.
  2. Beat together the milk and the malt powder in the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment.  Mix on low until all combined.  Then mix in the oil.
  3. Sift together the flour, cocoa, sugar, brown sugar, soda and salt onto wax paper.  Slowly add to the milk/oil mix.
  4. Beat in the eggs one at a time and then beat in the yogurt and vanilla.
  5. Use a standard ice cream scoop to place batter in lined cupcake tins.
  6. Bake for 18 minutes or until the cupcakes are set.
  7. Cool completely on a wire rack.

Frosting
Yield – enough to generously decorate 18 cupcakes plus a lot extra!

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup vegetable shortening
1/2 cup malted milk powder, original flavor
4 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
4 cups powdered sugar
2 ounces bittersweet chocolate
18 Whoppers

  1. Melt the chocolate in the microwave in 20 second intervals, set aside to cool.
  2. Beat togeher the butter and shortening until well combined and light and fluffy.  Beat in the malt powder and the cocoa.
  3. Add the powdered sugar 1 cup at a time and beat on low speed and gradually increase the speed until well combined and light and fluffy.
  4. Mix in the melted chocolate.
  5. Place in a pipping bag and pipe a generous topping.  Garnish with Whoppers.

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Chocolate Beet Cupcakes

Ages ago I bookmarked a chocolate beet cake from Joy the Baker.  I had never worked with beets before and they were on my New Food list.  I had forgotten about the recipe until I was strolling around Brooklyn one sunny Sunday morning and walked pasted a farmers market with these beautiful beets.  I was completely inspired!

There was no real reason to make these cupcakes besides pure fun and intrigue.  How was a beet cupcake going to taste?  I posted a picture on Facebook and asked my friends to guess the secret ingredient with a cupcake as a reward for the correct answer.  After about 45 incorrect guesses, I had to give a little hint!  The wrong guesses included everything from Jolly Ranchers to raspberries.

These cupcakes did not taste beety at all!  I’m not the biggest fan of beets, so that pleased me!  What the beets bring to the party is the spectacular jeweled pink color and lots of moisture!  I wish Essie made a nail polish color called beet frosting.  I would be all over that!

Also, I think these would be awesome for a little girl’s birthday party.  They are so brightly pink and have zero artificial color.  The kids wouldn’t even know they are eating vegetables and the parents would have the piece of mind of not giving their child a chemical laden dessert.

The chocolate cake is moist and tender with a gentle chocolate flavor.  My friend who does not like chocolate, enjoyed this cupcake.  It’s similar to a red velvet.  The frosting is light, delicious, and incredibly creamy.  I thought you would be able to the beet here, but not at all!  You are left with the awesome pink color and little jewels of beet strands throughout.  Trick your friends, make some beet cupcakes!!!

Print the recipe.

Chocolate Beet Cupcakes
Adapted from Joy the Baker
Yield – 24 cupcakes

3 beets, trimmed & cut into quarters
splash of oil
3/4 cup unsalted butter (12 tablespoons or 1 1/2 sticks) room temperature
1 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups flour
2/3 cup cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
scant 1 1/4 cup whole milk + juice of 1/2 a lemon (enough to make an even 1 1/4 cup)

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 F.
  2. Wash the outside of the beets and trim the green stalks.  Cut into quarters and place in a large sheet of foil. Toss in some oil, wrap the beets in the foil, and roast for 40 minutes or until fork tender.
  3. Try to let the beets cool before pealing and then grate on a fine grater.
  4. This is messy and everything will be a beautiful bright pink color!  Take 3/4 cup of grated beets and set aside for the cupcakes, leave 2 tablespoons aside for the frosting.
  5. Reduce the oven to 350 F.
  6. Beat together the butter and sugar until pale yellow for 4 minutes.  Add in the eggs one at a time and then beat in the vanilla and 3/4 cup of beets.  Scrap the bowl as needed.
  7. Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, soda, powder and salt.
  8. Turn the mixer on low and add in the flour mix, beat until just combined.
  9. Pour in the milk and mix until just combined.
  10. Using a standard size ice cream scoop, place the batter in lined cupake pans.
  11. Bake for 18 minutes and let cool completely.

Whipped Vanilla Frosting with Beets
Adapted from Tie Dye Cupcakes

1 cup whole milk
5 tablespoons flour
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1-2 tablespoons roasted beet puree
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar

  1. In a small saucepan over medium heat, whisk together the milk and flour.  Keep whisking until the mixture becomes smooth and thick resembling pancake batter.
  2. Remove from the heat, stir in the vanilla and beets, and allow to cool completely.
  3. Beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy – just keep beating until it is no longer grainy.
  4. Add in the cooled flour/milk mixture and beat until the entire frosting is light and fluffy.  It looks very liquidy, but keep beating and it will whip up properly.
  5. Pipe onto cupcakes.

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Fudge Stripe Cookies

I love fudge stripe cookies!  They are so addicting and wonderful when dipped in milk.  For the past month I have been planning on making these cookies, but there has always been something else that needed to be baked first!  The last weekend of mid-winter break seemed a perfect time to whip up a batch of homemade fudge stripe cookies.  Also, since I added clarified butter to my New Foods list, these cookies are the perfect excuse to try my hand at clarifying butter!

These cookies were not difficult to make and they have the familiar crunch and chocolaty-ness of the store bought brand.  However, the freshness of these cookies and the deliciousness of dark chocolate is awesome!  These were relatively easy with only a few ingredients and are quite tasty.  The yield on the original recipe was 25, I made 9, weird.  You could easily double the recipe to make more, that’s what I’ll do next time.

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Fudge Stripe Cookies
Yield – 9 cookies
Adapted from Brave Tart

3 3/4 ounces flour, sifted + more for dusting
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
2 ounces corn syrup, by weight
1 1/2 ounces clarified butter*, by weight (1 stick unsalted butter)
1/2 ounce vanilla
7 ounces chocolate, I used 60% bittersweet

  • Preheat the oven to 350 F.
  • Add the flour, soda, corn syrup, clarified butter, and vanilla to the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment.
  • Beat on medium speed until well combine, about 30 seconds.  Place dough in plastic wrap and allow to rest a few minutes.
  • Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface to a 1/4″ thickness. Cut into circles with a 2 1/2″ round cutter.  Cut out the middle with your smallest round cutter.
  • Dock each cookie with a fork several times to make indents.
  • Use an offset spatula to transfer to a parchment lined baking sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes or until they just begin to brown.
  • Cool the cookies completely on a wire rack.
  • Melt the chocolate in a double boiler.  Drop one cookie at a time into the melted chocolate.  Lift out carefully (I used my fingers) and blow into the middle to remove the chocolate film.  Place on a clean piece of parchment.
  • When all the cookies have had their bottoms dipped, pour the remaining chocolate into a plastic bag and clip the end.  Pipe 5 stripes on each cookie.
  • Let the chocolate harden before stacking.

*Clarified Butter
Directions from David Lebovitz

1 stick unsalted butter, cut into cubes

  • Place the butter in a small, heavy bottomed sauce pan and heat until melted.
  • Skim off the foamy bits.
  • When you remove most of the foamy bits, strain through a sieve with a cheese cloth or paper towel lining it.

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Coffee Marshmallows

I don’t know if you ever watch Chuck’s Day Off, but you definitely should!  It’s a great hour of food porn starting with Jamie Oliver and ending with Chuck Hughes.  There is something so satisfying about watching two men cook with such passion and love for the ingredients.  When my roommates and I saw Chuck make these marshmallows with hot chocolate, we were smitten!  The hot chocolate is a little too calorie laden, but the marshmallows are fantastic on their own or in your own version of hot chocolate.

Homemade marshmallows have been on my mental to-do list for awhile and I added them to the New Foods list because of the gelatin.  I have never worked with straight up, powdered gelatin before.  These are pretty easy, they just take a bit of time to whip up in the mixer.  The coffee flavor really comes through creating a mocha like flavor in hot cocoa.  I’m sure you could substitute any flavoring you like for the coffee. These marshmallows are soft and tasty.  As an added bonus you feel pretty bad-a$$ making your own marshmallows!  Hello, that’s some hard core baking!*  I cut the marshmallows in squares and circle to have variety and see what each would look like.  I like the circles better, even though there is more waste.

*There is not actual baking in marshmallow making, just a little stove top action!

Print the recipe!

Coffee Marshmallows
Yield – 30 1” marshmallows
Adapted from Chuck’s Day Off

1 tablespoon canola oil
4 teaspoons powdered gelatin (each packet has about 2 1/2 teaspoons)
2/3 cup cold water
1/2 cup strong coffee
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla
3 tablespoons powdered sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch

  • Soak the gelatin in the cold water, set aside to bloom.
  • In medium saucepan, heat the coffee, sugar, and vanilla.  Add in the bloomed gelatin and water.  Stir and cook until all the sugar is dissolved.
  • Add the mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment.  Beat on slow speed to start and then on high speed until soft peaks.  This took me about 15 minutes.
  • Prepare a 9”x13” pan by covering with several sheets of plastic wrap.  Pour in the oil and spread around.
  • Pour the marshmallow mixture into the prepared pan and let sit at room temperature for an hour.
  • Sift together the corn starch and powdered sugar.
  • Dust the marshmallows with the corn starch and powdered sugar mixture and turn out on a large cutting board.  Dust the knife/round cookie cutter (1 1/2 inch) and slice the marshmallows.
  • Dip all of the cut marshmallows into the dusting mixture to make the marshmallows not sticky.  Store in an airtight container

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Bacon Wrapped Dates Stuffed with Blue Cheese

I made this recipe almost a month ago for our Super Bowl party, but I forgot to take pictures due to the Blood Orange Margaritas.  This was a recipe was also chosen for the New Foods list.  These little dates are so good, it was not difficult to want to make them again!  A lazy Saturday is the perfect time to enjoy some delicious dates!  They are so good!!!!  Like really, really good!  If you are having a cocktail party or you want to make a fancy appetizer, please make these, you will not be disappointed!

One note about dates – all by themselves, these little guys are so delicious!  I didn’t even know if I would like them, but I do!  They are sweet and chewy, almost like candy, but they are not candy, dates are a fruit!

Print the Recipe!

Bacon Wrapped Dates Stuffed with Blue Cheese with balsamic-honey sauce
Yield – 24 pieces
Adapted from Simply Scratch

8 slices of bacon
24 dates, pitted and split open
4 ounces blue cheese, I used gorganzola
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons honey
pinch of Kosher salt
2 grinds of black pepper

  • Preheat the oven to 350 F.
  • Split open all the dates, I used kitchen scissors to cut open one side.
  • Stuff each date with some blue cheese crumbles.
  • Cut each strip of bacon into thirds so you have 24 pieces.
  • Wrap each date stuffed with cheese in a piece of bacon and secure with a toothpick.
  • Place the dates on a wire rack (I used the rack from the toaster oven) over a foil lined baking sheet.  This is all for easy clean up.
  • Bake for 23-25 minutes or until the bacon is crispy.
  • Drizzle with the balsamic-honey sauce

Balsamic-Honey Sauce

  • Combine the vinegar, honey, salt, and pepper into a small saucepan on medium heat.
  • Cook for 10-15 minutes or until the sauce reduces by two-thirds, stir frequently.

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Blood Orange Margaritas

These are wonderful!  I have never made fresh fruit margaritas, but now I may not be able to stop!! The margaritas were so fresh and light, and not to mention strong!  The blood orange was not too sweet or sour and the lemon balanced out the flavor really well.  Blood oranges were an excellent addition to the new foods list!  These are a bit of work, I’m not going to lie, my arm was a little sore the next day from juicing all the fruit.  I would definitely recommend an electric citrus juicer of some kind.  The blood orange margaritas were an excellent addition to our Super Bowl Party!  Sorry for the lack of photos, once I started drinking, photos became unimportant…

Blood Orange Margaritas

Inspired by How Sweet it is

Recipe from Food & Wine

  • 4 cups blood orange juice
  • 1 1/2 cups lime juice
  • 1 1/2 cups triple sec
  • 3 1/2 cups silver tequila
  • 1 orange + 1 lime in slices for garnish
  • Ice for serving

Juice the oranges and limes and pour into a pitcher, it gets a little messy.

Add in the the triple sec and and tequila, stir, cover the pitcher with plastic, and refrigerate until chilled.

Pour into glasses with ice, garnish with fruit slices.  If you like salt on the rim, do that, I don’t like the saltiness.

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Brussel Sprouts

I do not like brussel sprouts.  There, I’ve said it.

My roommates said my face looked like a three olds eating something they didn’t like.  I had never tried brussels sprouts before and with my new food project, I thought they would be a a great addition.  I roasted the brussel sprouts as suggested by my friend Irene.  Even though I did not like the brussel sprouts, my roommates enjoyed them and said they were delicious!  Clearly, it’s me, not the brussel sprouts!

Preheat the oven to 400 °F.  Place brussel sprouts on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with kosher salt and fresh ground pepper.  Use your hands to toss everything around.  Roast for 15-20 minutes until the outer leaves are crispy and the brussel sprouts are soft.

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Fig Newtons

I really like Fig Newtons. I know they are sort of a strange cookie, but the chewiness and the mild sweet flavor are an awesome combination. Figs are food I have never worked with before, so when I saw this recipe, I knew I would be adding figs to my New Food project. There are so many recipes out there for making your own versions of mass produced cookies. Even though the homemade versions taste fresher and many times better, there is something about the flavor of all the preservatives in the originals that is hard to duplicate!
These Fig Newtons are pretty tasty! I love the orange scent and flavor that lingers in your mouth after each bite. One of my favorite things about eating Fig Newtons (and this may seem odd) are the little fig seeds that burst in your mouth hours after eating the cookies. The homemade version has the same affect! The dough for this recipe was fantastic, very bread-like, but still just crumbly enough to be a cookie.
I will admit that these were not the easiest of cookies to make. I do not like refrigerating dough overnight, but that was definitely not a step I would skip! Also, the dough is very moist and worked best with lots of flour and some kneading. The filling was difficult to get smooth, I may have burnt out the motor of the hand blender… But, just when I was about to give up, I figured out how the cookies were going to be put together, and I was excited! The fig mixture looks a little gross when you are making it, use your imagination.
I doubted the recipe about the width of the dough, I didn’t understand how a piece of dough 3 1/4″ was going to make the cookie, so the first strip I cut in half and sandwiched the pieces together. But then I understood the recipe and it was meant to roll together. The pictures explain it better.
Right way

Wrong Way

Is a homemade Fig Newton delicious enough to be worth the effort? Surprisingly, yes! Once I figured out the system, these went quite fast and the freshness and flavor nuisances are wonderful! Do it, make your own Fig Newtons!
Homemade Fig Newtons
Adapted from Serious Eats via BraveTart
Yields – 2 dozen

Dough
8 ounces flour
4 ounces unsalted butter (1 stick), room temperature
3 1/2 ounces sugar
1 ounce honey
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons vanilla
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon orange zest
3 egg yolks
1 ounce orange juice

Weigh the flour, sift, and set aside. In a mixer with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter, sugar, honey, baking soda, vanilla, cinnamon, and orange zest until everything is light and fluffy. Scrap down the bowl and add the egg yolks one at a time. On the lowest speed add in all the flour while mixing, drizzle in the orange juice and mix until everything is well combined. Scrap the dough onto plastic wrap, flatten, wrap, and refrigerate overnight or at least 4 hours.

To make the cookies, preheat the oven to 325 F and heavily dust your area with flour. This is a very moist dough, it needs a LOT of flour. Roll the dough into a thickness of 1/4” and cut into strips 3 1/4” by 6”. Re-roll the left over dough, you should get about 5 strips.

Filling
12 ounces dried black Mission Figs
2 ounces unsweetened applesauce
1 1/2 ounces honey
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

In a food processor, mix everything together until smooth and well blended. My figs did not break down very small in the food processor so I used an hand blender to get the mixture smooth enough. You want the figs very fine and paste like. Place the the figs in a piping bag and pip a strip down each stripe of dough. Roll the dough around the strip of fig so that the seem is on the bottom.

Carefully place each strip on a parchment lined cookie sheet and bake for about 15-18 minutes. Mine took a bit longer. Immediately cut into bite sized pieces and then place the pieces in large plastic container. Place sheets of parchment between each layer of cookies. Let cool (steam) in the container.

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Roasted Chestnuts

I have never eaten a chestnut before but I have always been curious about them.  They are sort of my inspiration for my 52 New Foods New Year’s Resolution.  My very good friend and college roommate Lynn was visiting over New Year’s and one day we were enjoying our lunch in Chelsea Market talking about new foods and the little market across from where we sat eating our soup.  I thought the market would be super expensive, but it turns out the Manhattan Fruit Exchange is not too bad.  We saw a big barrel of chestnuts at a reasonable price so we bought half a pound for less than $2 and we’re excited about the prospect of freshly roasted chestnuts.

The jury is still out about chestnuts.  I don’t dislike them, and they are not bad tasting, but they weren’t over the top amazing.  Maybe I did not roast them properly, I don’t know.  I am no longer afraid of the chestnut and I am more than willing to try them again, especially if someone else makes them!  Not a bad attempt for my first try at a brand new food!  The experiment will continue.

Lynn enjoying a chestnut!

I looked up a lot of different recipes on-line and they all said basically same thing.  Here is how Lynn and I roasted the chestnuts.

1. Preheat the oven to 400 °F.

2. Make a deep X in each chestnut with a paring knife.  The deeper the better.  It makes it easier after roasting to peel.

3. Place in a single layer on a cookie sheet and roast for 20 minutes until they smell roasted and/or look a deeper shade of brown.

4. Right after removing from oven start to peel the hard shells and skins off.  Be careful, they are hot!  We used towels to hold them and a paring knife to get them open.  Some chestnuts came out whole and others in pieces.

5. Sprinkle with a little kosher salt and enjoy!

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