Monday, June 26, 2017

Chocolate Chocolate Chip Mini Muffins #MuffinMonday

These Chocolate Chocolate Chip Mini Muffins are made from rich chocolate batter with lots of extra chocolate chips. But because they are mini sized, they are perfect as a party snack or buffet table dessert.

Food Lust People Love: These Chocolate Chocolate Chip Mini Muffins are made from rich chocolate batter with lots of extra chocolate chips. But because they are mini sized, they are perfect as a party snack or buffet table dessert.

Living overseas as I do and far away from most of my old friends and family, it’s not often that I get a chance to take part in wedding or baby showers. But this past weekend, I was delighted to be invited to a wedding shower for the bride-to-be of my friend Sandra’s son, Matthew. I loved meeting all the young women who attended and getting to know them and our guest of honor.

It was such fun! Sandra outdid herself, planning activities and games and, of course, there was a lot of delicious food to eat. I contributed a couple of dishes to the table, these chocolate chocolate chip mini muffins included. For my money, nothing says party like mini muffins, either sweet or savory. I hope you agree!

Chocolate Chocolate Chip Mini Muffins

Ingredients - for 36 mini muffins
3/4 cup or 180ml milk
1/2 cup or 125g plain, unsweetened yogurt
2 cups or 250g flour
1/2 cup or 50g cocoa powder
3/4 cup or 150g brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
1/3 cup or 80ml canola or other light oil
2 teaspoons vanilla
3/4 cup or 150g semisweet chocolate chips

Method
Preheat the oven to 350°F or 180°C. Prepare three 12-cup mini muffin pans by greasing them or lining them with paper muffin cups.

Add the yogurt to the milk in a measuring cup. Stir and set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt.

Food Lust People Love: These Chocolate Chocolate Chip Mini Muffins are made from rich chocolate batter with lots of extra chocolate chips. But because they are mini sized, they are perfect as a party snack or buffet table dessert.


In a smaller mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, oil and vanilla, along with the milk/yogurt mixture.

Fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, until just combined.

Food Lust People Love: These Chocolate Chocolate Chip Mini Muffins are made from rich chocolate batter with lots of extra chocolate chips. But because they are mini sized, they are perfect as a party snack or buffet table dessert.

There may still be some flour showing and that’s fine. Fold in the chocolate chips.

Food Lust People Love: These Chocolate Chocolate Chip Mini Muffins are made from rich chocolate batter with lots of extra chocolate chips. But because they are mini sized, they are perfect as a party snack or buffet table dessert.


Use a scoop or large spoon to fill the prepared muffin cups. They are going to be pretty full.



Bake for 12-15 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. You do not want to over bake these and dry them out.

Put the muffin pans on a wire rack to cool for about five minutes.

Remove the muffins from the pan and continue to cool on the wire rack. You can eat these warm but be prepared to lick melted chocolate chips off of your fingers.

Food Lust People Love: These Chocolate Chocolate Chip Mini Muffins are made from rich chocolate batter with lots of extra chocolate chips. But because they are mini sized, they are perfect as a party snack or buffet table dessert.


Enjoy!

Food Lust People Love: These Chocolate Chocolate Chip Mini Muffins are made from rich chocolate batter with lots of extra chocolate chips. But because they are mini sized, they are perfect as a party snack or buffet table dessert.


Check out the other lovely muffin recipes my Muffin Monday bakers are sharing today.


#MuffinMonday is a group of muffin loving bakers who get together once a month to bake muffins. You can see all our of lovely muffins by following our Pinterest board.

Updated links for all of our past events and more information about Muffin Monday, can be found on our home page.

Pin it! 

Food Lust People Love: These Chocolate Chocolate Chip Mini Muffins are made from rich chocolate batter with lots of extra chocolate chips. But because they are mini sized, they are perfect as a party snack or buffet table dessert.
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Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Ginger Lemon Sage Cookies #CreativeCookieExchange


These ginger lemon sage cookies combine ground ginger, lemon and sage for bright tart bites that go perfectly with a cup of tea.

Food Lust People Love: These ginger lemon sage cookies combine ground ginger, lemon and sage for bright tart bites that go perfectly with a cup of tea.

Growing up, my mom never used sage. She said it was a Texas thing and she didn’t like the flavor. I have to admit, that for the most part, I agree. I find dried sage overpowering in stuffing and breakfast sausage. The exception for me is fresh sage. To me, the herby flavor of fresh sage is not at all like dried sage.

A few months ago, at the start of our cooler winter weather here in Dubai, I planted some culinary herbs in a long, deep box outside the living room window. It gets lovely afternoon sun and as a bonus is hooked up to a drip hose on the irrigation system. In past years my basil has been eaten by something – I presumed bugs but could never find any, until one friend said she thought the culprits were birds.

So I trimmed and reshaped a mosquito net to cover the herbs and my handy husband knocked together a couple of wooden slats to attach it to. That put paid to the bird theory. The basil was still munched, but somehow from under the net. In prior years, I had cut the basil back and then the invisible bugs or snails, or whatever they were, moved on to the other herbs.

Fresh sage, anyone? 

This year, I was smarter. Let them eat the basil, I decided. At least I’ll still have parsley, chives, sage, tarragon and thyme. And so I did for a good many glorious months. But as the weather got hotter and hotter, the parsley, chives and thyme succumbed to the heat. Now I have what amounts to an enormous bunch of sage, with a smattering of tarragon.

So what else could I use for my Creative Cookie Exchange recipe when the theme of Herbs in Cookies was announced? If you aren’t a fan of dried sage, I urge you to give fresh sage a chance. And even if you think sage in a cookie is weird, do try these. The lemon and ginger are perfect partners for fresh sage with a little sweetness. All three taste marvelous in these ginger lemon sage cookies.

Ginger Lemon Sage Cookies


Ingredients
1 cup or 125g flour
1/4 cup or 35g cornstarch
2 tablespoons, minced, fresh sage leaves
Zest of small lemon
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup or 113g unsalted butter, at room temp
3/4 cup or 150g sugar
1 large egg
1/4 cup or 60ml fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

For decorating:
1/4 cup or 32g icing sugar
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon water
Small fresh sage leaves

Method
In a medium sized mixing bowl, whisk together your flour, cornstarch, sage, lemon zest, baking powder, ginger, baking soda and salt. This takes the place of sifting your flour and helps aerate it just the same.

Food Lust People Love: These ginger lemon sage cookies combine ground ginger, lemon and sage for bright tart bites that go perfectly with a cup of tea.

In the bowl of your stand mixer or in a large mixing bowl, cream your butter and sugar together until light and pale yellow.

Add in the egg, lemon juice and vanilla extract. Beat again until combined. This may start to look like it’s curdling. Do not be alarmed.


Add in the dry ingredients and beat until combined – just a couple of minutes - scraping the bowl down halfway through.

Food Lust People Love: These ginger lemon sage cookies combine ground ginger, lemon and sage for bright tart bites that go perfectly with a cup of tea.

Cover the bowl with cling film and refrigerate at least an hour or until well chilled.

When your chilling time is almost up, preheat the oven to 350°F or 180°C and line two cookie sheets with baking parchment or silicone liners.

Use a spoon or scoop to divide the soft dough into about 21-23 cookies. I suggest making them smaller rather than bigger because they do spread out. Even this far apart, a few of mine baked together at the edges.

Food Lust People Love: These ginger lemon sage cookies combine ground ginger, lemon and sage for bright tart bites that go perfectly with a cup of tea.

Bake for 9-10 minutes in your preheated oven.

Remove from the oven and leave to cool on the cookie sheets for a few minutes. Use a spatula to transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.

To decorate the cookies, mix the icing sugar, lemon juice and water together in a small bowl and pick or snip off the prettiest of your smaller sage leaves.


Brush the cookies, one at a time with the glaze, stick on one fresh sage leaf and brush a little more glaze on top.

Food Lust People Love: These ginger lemon sage cookies combine ground ginger, lemon and sage for bright tart bites that go perfectly with a cup of tea.

Leave to dry before stacking. Store in an airtight container. These ginger lemon sage cookies are soft in the middle, almost cake-like, but chewy around the edges.

Food Lust People Love: These ginger lemon sage cookies combine ground ginger, lemon and sage for bright tart bites that go perfectly with a cup of tea.

Enjoy!

If you love baking sweet treats with herbs, this is Creative Cookie Exchange event is just for you. Many thanks to our host this week, Felice, of All That’s Left Are the Crumbs.

Felice is one of my favorite bloggers, and not just because she’s one of the few who are still awake when I get up in the morning. It’s always a joy to chat with her. She’s originally from Australia but lives in gorgeous Honolulu. As well as checking out her blog for tasty dishes, follow her on Instagram for almost daily doses of tropical flowers and scenery.

Check out all the lovely cookies with herbs we’ve been baking for you.


Creative Cookie Exchange is hosted by Laura of The Spiced Life. We get together once a month to bake cookies with a common theme or ingredient so Creative Cookie Exchange is a great resource for cookie recipes. Be sure to check out our Pinterest Board and our monthly posts at The Spiced Life. We post the first Tuesday after the 15th of each month!

Pin it! 

Food Lust People Love: These ginger lemon sage cookies combine ground ginger, lemon and sage for bright tart bites that go perfectly with a cup of tea.
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Sunday, June 18, 2017

Chili Cheese Omelet #SundaySupper

A fluffy omelet stuffed with sharp cheddar then topped with hearty spicy beef homemade chili, this chili cheese omelet is my take on my husband’s favorite dish from the House of Pies in Houston, Texas.

Food Lust People Love: Try my hearty spicy beef chili on top of a fluffy cheese omelet, great for breakfast, lunch or dinner!

Omelets make regular appearances for weekend breakfasts at our house, especially if there are leftovers that need using up. If you need inspiration, check out my Omelets with Super Powers post.

But since it’s Father’s Day, today is all about what the fathers want. I chatted with my dad and he said he’d like a beef kidney dish that my grandmother used to make. Sadly, it seems that recipe has been lost. Not that Daddy is with me right now, but I thought I’d ask for future reference. I’ve been researching Cajun kidney recipes and hope to find one similar for sometime when we are together. If anyone has any leads, let me know. Also, I have no idea where to buy beef kidneys. This is going to be a challenge.

Meanwhile, as I mentioned in yesterday’s hearty spicy beef chili post, my husband asked for a chili cheese omelet.


We’ve been frequenting the House of Pies (or House of Guys, as we call it) separately since I was in high school and he was in college, and together since 1986. He always, and I mean, every single time, orders the chili cheese omelet. It comes with a choice of potato – his is always cottage fries - and toast, biscuit or English muffin. Today, tater tots would have to suffice.

Chili Cheese Omelet

Ingredients
1 tablespoon butter
2 whole large eggs
1 large egg white
1/4 cup or 60ml milk
4 oz or 113g sharp cheddar, grated
3/4 - 1 cup of spicy beef chili, warmed – your favorite or use my hearty spice beef chili recipe
fine sea salt
freshly ground black pepper

Optional extras:
Chopped onions
Sliced fresh jalapeños
Chopped cilantro

Method
Whisk the eggs well and then add the milk, whisking again. Add a pinch of salt and a few grinds of black pepper.


Melt the butter in a small non-stick frying pan and cook it until the water evaporates and the butter begins to color.

Pour in the eggs and turn the fire down to medium low.


Occasionally push the cooked eggs back and let the uncooked eggs run under the cooked part.

When the eggs are almost cooked through, add most of the cheese to the top of the omelet.


Use a wide spatula to fold the omelet in half, enclosing the cheese. When the cheese has melted, slide the omelet onto a warmed plate.


Top with warm chili and an extra sprinkling of cheese. At House of Guys, the chili cheese omelet automatically comes topped with chopped onion but Simon always orders his without. And he wants me to tell you that you have to have cottage fries (or tater tots) to dip in the chili.

Food Lust People Love: Try my hearty spicy beef chili on top of a fluffy cheese omelet, great for breakfast, lunch or dinner!


Enjoy!

Food Lust People Love: Try my hearty spicy beef chili on top of a fluffy cheese omelet, great for breakfast, lunch or dinner!
Happy Father's Day to my sweetie! 

This week my Sunday Supper family are sharing their dishes for Father's Day. Many thanks to our event manager, Em, and our host, Christie of A Kitchen Hoor's Adventures for all of their hard work behind the scenes. Check out our Sunday Supper Father’s Day Menu Ideas. 

Sides Dad Will Love

Mains for the Main Man

Dad's Favorite Desserts

The Best Recipes You Need Now for Father’s Day by Sunday Supper Movement Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on Twitter every Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat.

To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board.

Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.


Pin it! 

Food Lust People Love: Try my hearty spicy beef chili on top of a fluffy cheese omelet, great for breakfast, lunch or dinner! #SundaySupper
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Saturday, June 17, 2017

Hearty Spicy Beef Chili

Beef and beans are simmered with onions, beer and peppers to create this rich hearty spicy beef chili. Eat it with cornbread, rice or chips or on top your favorite cheese omelet or hot dog.


Don’t let the long list of ingredients scare you off of trying this wonderful hearty spicy beef chili recipe. It’s rich and satisfying. Once you’ve got everything in the pot, simmer till done!

The other night my husband and I were catching up – he’d been traveling – and I told him about this week’s Sunday Supper event, meal ideas for Father’s Day. What would he like me to make, I asked. Turns out this is an event he could totally get behind! I wielded my pencil and pad and he started the list. Right near the top was the chili cheese omelet he loves from the House of Pie restaurant in Houston.

So, ahead of tomorrow’s Sunday Supper event, when I will share the recipe for my version of that chili cheese omelet, here’s the hearty spicy beef chili you’ll need to make it.

Hearty Spicy Beef Chili


Ingredients
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 lbs 5 oz or 1050g ground beef
1 large onion, finely chopped
1 medium green bell pepper, finely chopped
1-2 fresh jalapeños, minced
3 tablespoons chili powder
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1-2 teaspoons red pepper flakes (more to taste if you like it very hot!)
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
1 teaspoon ground cayenne
1 bottle (about 330ml) beer – I used an Adnams IPA.
4 tablespoons tomato paste
1 1/2 cups or 360ml beef broth
1 (15-16 oz) can, red kidney beans, drained and rinsed

Optional: 2-3 tablespoons masa harina whisked into some cool water.

Optional to serve:
Extra sharp cheddar cheese, grated
Onion, minced
Fresh jalapeños, sliced
Cilantro, chopped

Method
Fry the ground beef in the olive oil in a large pot until it’s sticky and brown. Add in the onion and peppers and cook till they’ve softened.


Add in the spices and cook for a few more minutes.


Now pour in the beer and use the moisture and steam to deglaze all the good browned sticky bits off of your pot.


Add in the tomato paste, beef broth and then the kidney beans.

Cover the pot and lower the heat to simmer. Cook for one hour or more, checking occasionally and adding some water if the chili is dry.

If you like a thick “gravy” based chili like we do, right at the end of your cooking time, add more water mixed with 2-3 tablespoons masa harina (the flour that is used in making corn tortillas) and bring the chili back to the boil till it thickens.

Serve this hearty spicy beef chili with cornbread, rice or even tortilla chips. (Or over a cheese omelet! Find that recipe here.) A sprinkle of sharp cheddar, minced onions and sliced jalapeños are also tasty.



Enjoy!

Like spicy dishes? Check out my Fish Steamed with Spicy CouscousCheesy Jalapeño Corn CasseroleBlack Eyed Pea Salad or Saladu Ñebbe and, one of my favorites, Spicy Mexican Noodles.

Or try my chili cheese omelet!



Pin this Hearty Spicy Beef Chili!


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Friday, June 16, 2017

Garlic Lemon Fish Greek Salad Sandwiches #FishFridayFoodies


Garlic Lemon Fish Greek Salad Sandwiches are quite a mouthful, both by name and by flavor - pan-fried grouper tossed with a fresh salad of lettuce, cucumber, tomatoes, black olives, onion and feta, all stuffed in halved pita rounds.


This month my Fish Friday Foodie friends are sharing seafood sandwiches and I’m excited to join them. When the hot summer starts to pick up speed in Dubai, heading straight into the triple digits (in Fahrenheit, anyway) we eat a lot of salads along with fish, chicken or beef that’s quickly pan-fried so it doesn’t heat up the kitchen. Never mind dishes that have to be cooked long and slow (unless in the slow cooker) or recipes that require a hot oven.

This Greek salad is tasty completely on its own, but add some garlic lemon fish and a wrap or pita bread, and you’ve got the perfect hot weather meal.

Garlic Lemon Fish Greek Salad Sandwiches


Ingredients for 4-5 sandwiches
For the fish:
10 1/2 oz or 300g boneless grouper or other firm white fish, cut in chunks
fine sea salt
freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
Juice of 1/2 lemon
2-3 tablespoons minced cilantro

For the salad:
3 1/2 oz or 100g feta, cut in cubes
handful black olives, pitted and halved
handful grape tomatoes, cut in half
1 small cucumber, chopped
1/2 small purple onion, sliced
Juice of 1/2 lemon
3-4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
fine sea salt – use cautiously because the feta is salty
freshly ground black pepper
2-3 leaves of romaine lettuce, washed and ripped into small pieces



Method
To cook the fish:
Season the fish with salt and pepper. Pan-fry it in the olive oil till almost cooked through. This takes mere minutes. Add in the garlic and give the hot pan a stir and then quickly add the lemon juice so the garlic doesn’t scorch.

Toss the fish with the cilantro and set aside to cool, off the stove.

To mix the salad:
Add the onion to a large salad bowl along with the lemon juice. Leave to marinate for about five minutes. Add in the oil and stir.


Once the fish has cooled somewhat, add all the other salad ingredients - except the lettuce - into the salad bowl and toss to coat with the dressing and onions. Add in the fish and toss again gently. This can now be refrigerated until you are ready to serve.

Take the salad out of the refrigerator about 15 minutes before serving. Add the lettuce and toss again gently.

Cut your pita bread in half and carefully separate the sides. Fill each half with the salad. Or you can add the salad to the pita bread and fold it up like a taco.



Enjoy!

Check out all the other great seafood sandwiches we've got for you today! Many thanks to our host Colleen of Faith, Hope, Love & Luck Survive Despite a Whiskered Accomplice.






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Thursday, June 15, 2017

Lemon Filled Lemon Bundt #BundtBakers


For lemon lovers everywhere, this lemon filled lemon Bundt will fulfill all of your sweet and sour lemon dreams, with sharp fresh lemon curd, zesty lemon cake and lemon drizzle.

Food Lust People Love: For lemon lovers everywhere, this lemon filled lemon Bundt will fulfill all of your sweet and sour lemon dreams, with sharp fresh lemon curd, zesty lemon cake and lemon drizzle.

This month our host for Bundt Bakers is Cristina from Bizcocheando and she has challenged us all to make filled Bundts. I’ve baked quite a few with fillings between layers of batter, like my dark chocolate mint truffle mini Bundts, glazed chocolate macaroon Bundt, cinnamon crown Bundt, Sock It to Me Cake and, a Texas favorite, sticky pecan pie Bundt. So I decided to do something different and add a filling after baking.

Growing up my favorite doughnut was always the lemon-filled. I find them a bit too sweet now, but as a child, they seemed the perfect amount of tart and sweet. Since I discovered a few years ago how easy it was to make homemade lemon curd, it’s made an appearance in several dishes. The prettiest lemon curd requires lovely yellow or orange yolks, just like the ones we get here in the UAE. I have no idea what those hens are eating but the color of their yolks is gorgeous.

The lemon curd recipe makes more than will comfortably fill this Bundt, but that’s not a problem. I promise you’ll want to eat the rest with a spoon.

Ingredients
For the cake:
3 cups or 375g all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups or 300g granulated sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons finely grated lemon zest (from 1 to 2 medium lemons)
3 large eggs
1/2 cup or 120ml canola oil
3 oz or 85g cream cheese, cut in pieces, softened
3/4 cup or180ml whole milk
1/4 cup or 60ml freshly squeezed lemon juice (from 1 to 2 medium lemons)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the lemon curd filling:
2 small lemons
2 large eggs
Heaping 1/3 cup or 80g sugar
1/4 cup or 50g cold, unsalted butter
2 teaspoons cornflour or cornstarch

For the lemon glaze:
3/4 cup or 95g confectioners' sugar or as needed to get the consistency you’d like.
2 tablespoons lemon juice

Method
Start by making the lemon curd so that you can pop it in the refrigerator to chill before baking the cake. Follow these instructions.

To make the cake, preheat the oven to 350°F or 180°C and grease and flour a 10-cup Bundt pan.

In a large mixing bowl, or the bowl of your stand mixer, use a whisk to combine and aerate the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and lemon zest.

Food Lust People Love: For lemon lovers everywhere, this lemon filled lemon Bundt will fulfill all of your sweet and sour lemon dreams, with sharp fresh lemon curd, zesty lemon cake and lemon drizzle.

Add in the eggs, oil, cream cheese, milk, lemon juice and vanilla. Beat on medium for 3 minutes, scraping the bowl down once halfway through.

Food Lust People Love: For lemon lovers everywhere, this lemon filled lemon Bundt will fulfill all of your sweet and sour lemon dreams, with sharp fresh lemon curd, zesty lemon cake and lemon drizzle.

Pour in your prepared pan and bake in the preheated oven for 45-50 minutes or until golden brown. Test with a wooden skewer to make sure the cake is cooked through.

Food Lust People Love: For lemon lovers everywhere, this lemon filled lemon Bundt will fulfill all of your sweet and sour lemon dreams, with sharp fresh lemon curd, zesty lemon cake and lemon drizzle.


Leave to cool for 10-15 minutes then turn the cake out of the Bundt pan onto a wire rack. Cool completely before attempting to cut.

Food Lust People Love: For lemon lovers everywhere, this lemon filled lemon Bundt will fulfill all of your sweet and sour lemon dreams, with sharp fresh lemon curd, zesty lemon cake and lemon drizzle.


Use a long serrated knife to cut the cake in half. Gently remove the top.

Food Lust People Love: For lemon lovers everywhere, this lemon filled lemon Bundt will fulfill all of your sweet and sour lemon dreams, with sharp fresh lemon curd, zesty lemon cake and lemon drizzle.

Use a melon scoop to cut a small channel into the bottom of the cake.

Food Lust People Love: For lemon lovers everywhere, this lemon filled lemon Bundt will fulfill all of your sweet and sour lemon dreams, with sharp fresh lemon curd, zesty lemon cake and lemon drizzle.

Spoon in your chilled lemon curd.

Food Lust People Love: For lemon lovers everywhere, this lemon filled lemon Bundt will fulfill all of your sweet and sour lemon dreams, with sharp fresh lemon curd, zesty lemon cake and lemon drizzle.

Replace the top of the cake. Mix the icing sugar and lemon juice together for your lemon drizzle. Use a plastic bag with a small hole cut in the corner to drizzle the glaze over the cake.

Food Lust People Love: For lemon lovers everywhere, this lemon filled lemon Bundt will fulfill all of your sweet and sour lemon dreams, with sharp fresh lemon curd, zesty lemon cake and lemon drizzle.

Once the drizzle has dried and hardened, cover the cake with cling film and refrigerate until ready to serve.

Enjoy!

Check out all the lovely filled Bundts we've baked for you today! Many thanks to our host, Cristina from Bizcocheando for all of her hard work behind the scenes and for this great theme!

BundtBakers  

#BundtBakers is a group of Bundt loving bakers who get together once a month to bake Bundts with a common ingredient or theme. Follow our Pinterest board right here. Links are also updated each month on the BundtBakers home page.

Pin my Lemon Filled Lemon Bundt!

Food Lust People Love: For lemon lovers everywhere, this lemon filled lemon Bundt will fulfill all of your sweet and sour lemon dreams, with sharp fresh lemon curd, zesty lemon cake and lemon drizzle.
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Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Almond Blueberry Banana Bread #BreadBakers

Almond flour is the secret ingredient that adds richness and extra flavor to this almond blueberry banana bread, making it buttery, without any butter. As a bonus to many, it's also gluten free!


I’ve been thinking a lot lately about friendship and what it is that creates those bonds. Sometimes it’s a hobby or interest in common that brings us together. Other times it’s weathering a storm or difficult circumstances or even living in a challenging place at the same time. As expats in far-flung locations, we come to depend on each other, become like family, because we have no one else who understands us, who gets what we are going through.

The blogging world is like that too. I can’t compare starting my food blog with moving to places like Balikpapan, Indonesia or Macaé, Brazil, but back in 2011, typing up words and sending out a recipe for possibly no one to read and comment on felt equally as solitary at the beginning. (Six years ago this very month!)

Like moving to a new city and country, finding friends in the food blogging corner of cyberspace takes time. My first blog, started in 2007, was set to private. I didn’t see it as a way to connect with anyone but family. I told stories of our holidays and posted photos of our girls. But with the public food blog, all that changed. I was a nervous wreck the first time I actually shared a post link on Facebook with friends. What would they think? Would anyone read it? Worse, would they laugh?

My confidence grew as I made blogger friends, joined the Food Bloggers Network group on Facebook, exchanged tips and comments on cooking and recipe writing and photography and social media. I learned the meaning of foreign terms like SEO and white balance and bounce rates, including the mysterious ways of Google analytics. I began participating in themed group events, like Sunday Supper and Bundt-a-Month and Muffin Mondays.

I might never have believed it before, but my online friends, my fellow bloggers, became real friends. We chat privately, in twos and in groups. We commiserate with each other. We support each other. We laugh and we vent. We are a community drawn together by our like interests, our love of cooking, our frustration with changing social media algorithms and learning new technology, and the profound knowledge that we are understood.

________

This month my Bread Bakers group is using nut flours to bake our breads at the instigation of our host Cindy of Cindy’s Recipes and Writings. I’ve been enamored of using almond flour in baked goods since I first read Nigella Lawson’s languorous description in her How To Eat of the clementine cake she makes every Christmastime.

While the gluten free flour mix in this recipe can be easily substituted with all-purpose flour, I chose to make a gluten free recipe today to honor my friend and fellow blogger, T.R. Crumbley of Gluten Free Crumbley, one of our community who left us too soon, not even 30 years old.

As a member of the Sunday Supper, Movement, I got to know T.R. through our group events. He was a sweetheart, quick to volunteer his help, the first to crack a joke and at our annual Food Wine Conference, the life of the party. I’m so sorry that he was too sick to join us in person this year where he was honored as Bloggers' Choice Blogger of the Year. He’d have been in his element at the Strawberry Bash on Saturday night. He accepted his award by Skype so he did get to hear the cheers and applause of the crowd.

As managing editor of Sunday Supper, I corresponded from time to time with T.R. over the last year. He graciously gave me permission to expand the Weekday Supper posts that he had contributed over the years, to include the full recipe. His only request was that I let him know when I was going to republish one, so that he could be sure to share it again on social media. That was T.R. all over.

If you or someone you know eats gluten free, please check out Gluten Free Crumbley. T.R.’s family plans to keep his blog going both as a tribute and because it would be a shame to let all of his hard work go to waste. He loved to cook for family and friends. He especially loved sharing his recipes. I like to think he'd enjoy this almond blueberry banana bread. I hope he knows how much we miss him.

Ingredients
3 medium ripe bananas
1 large egg
3/4 cup (180 ml) milk
3 tablespoons or 45ml canola or other light oil, plus extra for pan if not lining with parchment
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/4 cup or 120g almond flour (also called finely ground almonds or almond meal on some packaging)
1 1/4 cup or 200g gluten free bread flour blend (I used Dove Farms.)
1 1/4 cup or 120g quick cooking oats
1/2 cup or 100g dark brown sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup or 140g fresh or frozen blueberries (do not thaw first, if using frozen)

Method
Preheat your oven to 350°F or 180°C and grease a 9x5in or 23 x 13cm pan or line it with baking parchment.

Use a whisk to mash your bananas in a bowl and then add in the egg, oil vanilla and milk. Whisk to combine.


In another large bowl, add all of your dry ingredients and stir to combine. Add in the blueberries and stir to coat.


Pour your wet ingredients into your dry and use a wooden spoon to mix well until the dry ingredients are thoroughly combined with the dry. Unlike in quick breads made with all-purpose flour, gluten free flour batters need to be completely wet before baking.


Pour the thick batter into your prepared pan.


Bake for 55-65 minutes, or until the internal temperature of your Almond Blueberry Banana Bread reaches 210°F or 99°C on an instant read thermometer. Cover the loaf with foil if it is getting too browned before it is cooked inside.

Remove from the oven and cool completely on a wire rack before slicing.


Enjoy!


Do you love baking with nut flours too? You might enjoy making my White Chocolate Cranberry Blondies, Staffordshire Yeomanry PuddingAlmond Raspberry Cake or Passover Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars as well.

And check out this creative nut flour recipe list from my fellow Bread Bakers. Many thanks to our host Cindy of Cindy’s Recipes and Writings for all of her hard work behind the scenes.
#BreadBakers is a group of bread loving bakers who get together once a month to bake bread with a common ingredient or theme. You can see all our of lovely bread by following our Pinterest board right here. Links are also updated after each event on the #BreadBakers home page.
We take turns hosting each month and choosing the theme/ingredient.
BreadBakers
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Sunday, June 11, 2017

Cauliflower Mac and Cheese #SundaySupper

Cauliflower Mac and Cheese is a delicious twist on a family favorite, adding extra nutrients to our comfort food. No one can resist the cheesy goodness!

Food Lust People Love: Cauliflower Mac and Cheese is a delicious twist on a family favorite, adding extra nutrients to our comfort food. No one can resist this cheesy goodness!

We talk about eating the rainbow for optimum health, which seems to imply that only the most colorful vegetables are high in nutrients. But despite its bland appearance, cauliflower is actually one of the most nutritious vegetables, with one serving supplying more than 70 percent of our daily recommended intake of vitamin C, along other vitamins and nutrients. It makes the top 30 list compiled by the Center of Disease Control.

For this cauliflower mac and cheese, I like to choose macaroni that is a bit bigger than your average elbow variety. Then I chop the cauliflower florets into pieces about the same size as the macaroni will be when it is cooked. This gives the dish a more homogeneous look and texture, so if you are feeding picky eaters who would normally try to separate the veggies from the pasta, they likely won't even notice the cauliflower. The sharp cheddar sauce makes it all taste like deliciously normal mac and cheese.

Love cauliflower? You might enjoy my Cauliflower Cheese Pie with Potato Crust, Cauliflower Cheese Waffles and Cauliflower Leek Roquefort Tart. All three are seriously good. 


Variations on Cauliflower Mac and Cheese


Sometimes I make this cauliflower mac and cheese with bacon, as outlined below; sometimes I make it without. Either way, it’s delicious and filling enough to be a main course. It’s also very tasty with some chopped frozen spinach thawed then added to the cheese sauce. Serve it alongside a fresh green salad, or with some sun-ripe summer tomatoes simply seasoned with a sprinkle of salt and a squeeze of lemon juice.

Ingredients
8 oz or 227g pasta
1 small head cauliflower (about 11 1/2 oz or 325g florets), divided into florets and chopped
6 1/3 oz or 180g smoked streaky bacon, chopped – about 5 thick-cut slices (or 3 tablespoons of butter or olive oil)
4 tablespoons flour
1 small onion, minced
2 large cloves garlic, minced
2 cups or 480ml cold milk
12 oz or 340g extra sharp cheddar or cheese of your choice
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt, or to taste
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or to taste
1/4-1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne - optional
1/2 cup or 35g fresh bread crumbs

Method
Boil the pasta according to the package instructions, setting the timer for half of the recommended al dente cooking time. Add in the chopped cauliflower when your timer goes off. Cook pasta till al dente.


Drain and set aside, still in the colander, while you make the cheese sauce.

Fry the bacon until crispy. Remove the bacon and all but three tablespoons bacon fat. If you don’t have enough fat, make up the difference with butter, canola or olive oil.

If you don’t want to add bacon, start with three tablespoons of butter, canola or olive oil.

Sprinkle in the flour and mix well to make a roux.  Cook the roux for a few minutes to get rid of the floury taste.

Add the minced onion and garlic into the roux. Cook over a low fire until they are softened.

All at once, whisk in the milk, whisking quickly so that the flour and milk don’t form lumps.

Cook until the sauce thickens and reduces in volume, about 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, preheat your oven to 350° or 180°C and butter or grease a baking pan or casserole dish.

Add in three quarters of the grated cheese and stir until melted. Add in the dried mustard and stir.  Season with salt, black pepper and a little cayenne, if desired.


Pour the cauliflower and pasta back into the pot with the bacon, saving a little of the bacon to sprinkle on top.


Pour on the sauce and fold to combine. In case you are wondering why it isn't orange, my favorite extra sharp cheddar is an Australian brand. They don't tend to put the coloring in it that many American cheesemakers do.


Spoon the mixture into your prepared baking pan or read note below.

Note: If the pan you cooked everything in is ovenproof, you could skip transferring the mixture to a baking dish, and move on to the next step - the topping- but for me, the best cauliflower mac and cheese is all about the crunchy, chewy top covered with extra cheese and bread crumbs, baked till golden. So I like to spread mine out in a wide dish to maximize the square footage of that top.

Combine the reserved cheese and bacon with the breadcrumbs. Sprinkle over the cauliflower mac and cheese.

Food Lust People Love: Cauliflower Mac and Cheese is a delicious twist on a family favorite, adding extra nutrients to our comfort food. No one can resist this cheesy goodness!

Bake in the preheated oven for about 20-30 minutes or until golden brown and crunchy on top.

Enjoy!

Food Lust People Love: Cauliflower Mac and Cheese is a delicious twist on a family favorite, adding extra nutrients to our comfort food. No one can resist this cheesy goodness!

In the spirit of full disclosure, I must tell you that while my husband and I will fight over the crispiest bits, our younger daughter would have you skip the last step altogether. She likes her mac and cheese straight from the pot, unbaked and sans crunchy pieces. If your kids feel the same, the last step can indeed be skipped.

After all, today’s Sunday Supper event is all about getting kids and other picky eaters to eat their veggies. If you are looking for delicious recipes that will add more healthy vegetables to your family menu, check out this week's kid friendly vegetable recipes for picky eaters. Many thanks to our event manager, Cricket of Cricket's Confections and our host for this event, Anne from Simple and Savory for all of their work behind the scenes.

Kid Friendly Vegetable Recipes for Picky Eaters


Breakfast

Dinners

Sides

Snacks

For even more kid friendly vegetables check out these Vegetable Recipes for Picky Eaters by The Sunday Supper Movement Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on Twitter every Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7 p.m. ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat.

 To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board. Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

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Food Lust People Love: Cauliflower Mac and Cheese is a delicious twist on a family favorite, adding extra nutrients to our comfort food. No one can resist this cheesy goodness! #SundaySupper

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