AN ARRAY OF RECIPES AND TIPS

"IN THE STYLE OF" GRAHAM


1.23.2012

RASPBERRY AND WHITE CHOCOLATE WHOLE WHEAT SCONES

I often purchase raspberry and white chocolate scones when I am at the coffee shop so I decided it was time to find a suitable recipe. I love this recipe because it is healthier than the coffee shop's with the addition of whole wheat and oats. And even with these additions it still makes a considerably light scone; however you easily could substitute all purpose flour for the whole wheat flour and oats if you would like an even lighter scone or you could try Strawberry and Rosemary Scones, if you prefer a more dense scone you should try my sister's recipe Oatmeal Scones with Blueberries. I'm not picky; I'll take a scone anyway I can get it!

Raspberry and White Chocolate Whole Wheat Scones
Makes 12 servings

1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup old fashioned rolled oats
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup unsalted butter, in pieces
1 large egg, beaten
1 cup skim milk
4 ounces of white chocolate, chopped
1 cup raspberries ( fresh or thawed if frozen)

Preheat oven to 400F.

In a food processor, add the flours, oats, baking powder,sugar and salt and pulse a few times. Add the butter, pulse a few times. Add egg, pulse a few times more and then add the milk, pulse until a dough has just formed.
Fold in the chocolate and berries.


If you don't have a food processor mix dry ingredients in bowl. Cut butter pieces into dry mixture with pastry blender or fork. Mix in beaten egg and milk until just blended and then fold in chocolate and berries.

Now at this point I made a mistake and I dropped the dough on a floured surface so I could cut the dough into triangles...it don't recommend this process; the dough is really sticky.
The best bet is to use a large cookie scoop and drop the dough a few inches apart on a parchment lined baking sheet.
Bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown (make sure you check the scones during baking, the time completely depends on how big you make them).

Nothing better than the warm humid Butterfly House on a cold winter morning!
She adores her little brother...

The butterflies loved her green shirt!


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1.16.2012

SNICKERDOODLES


I was having massive chocolate cravings which usually a quick Double Chocolate Cherry Espresso Cookie can cure however my cookie supply had dwindled to almost nothing so I decided to bake something rich and decadent, loaded with chocolate. I was paging through my cookbooks trying to narrow down the recipes...double chocolate, triple chocolate and then I saw it staring me in the face...snickerdoodles and my thoughts moved from chocolate to my husband. I happen to know that this is one of his favorites. As a testament of my love for him I forwent my chocolate desires and baked for him. To my surprise I realized I actually LOVE snickerdoodles too.

They are sweet, thin, and chewy with crispy edges; how could you not love them.

Snickerdoodles
Adapted loosely from Magnolia Bakery Cookbook
Makes 36

2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350F.

In a small bowl, combine the flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.

In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar until smooth, about 2 minutes. Add the eggs, milk, and vanilla and beat well. Add the dry ingredients and mix thoroughly. Wrap the dough tightly with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for 2 hours (I skipped this step the dough is sticky but I was still able to scoop it without having to refrigerate it).

Drop by rounded spoonfuls (I used a medium Pampered Chef scoop...I think it is about 2 tablespoons) into the cinnamon sugar mixture and cover completely.

Place on parchment lined baking sheet, leaving several inches between for expansion.

(The most I can fit on on a baking sheet is six as they spread quite a bit. Bake for 12-14 minutes or until tops are cracked (on my oven it was 12 minutes exactly).

Remove to a wire rack to cool completely.

Buddy the Labradoodle begging for a snickerdoodle!


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1.10.2012

ENERGY BITES- CLEAN EATING


I have a couple reasons for posting this recipe: first, I have many friends that are vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free, nut-free, or have all kinds of dietary restrictions and unfortunatly, many of the recipes on my blog are useless for them. The other reason lies in my household: a little boy who is addicted to cookies and who has NO self control whatsoever when it comes to sweets. It's not like I expect more from a 2 year old but really he LOVES cookies and asks for them all the time. So here is my solution for everyone...No Sugar, Flour, Butter or Eggs= Energy Bites

 I love the tartness of the cherries and of course the chocolate doesn't hurt but by no means do you need to use chocolate. Change the ingredients to whatever you like. Raid your pantry; try sunflower seeds, dried figs, raisins, almonds, mixed nuts, etc.

They are super healthy; chewy and filling. The best part is my children believe they are having a real treat and they love them!

If you like this recipe you may be interested in these recipes as well...
BANANA "SORBET / ICE CREAM"
CAULIFLOWER "RICE"

ENERGY BITES- CLEAN EATING
Adapted from Banana Pecan Granola Bars
Makes 24 cookies

1 1/2 cups rolled oats
1 cup coconut flakes
1 cup dried cherries, chopped
1/2 cup pecans, chopped
1 cup chocolate chips (I had to!)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon allspice
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3 ripe bananas, mashed
1/4 cup canola oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Note: I would recommend chopping everything so it is about the same size and binds together nicely.

Preheat oven to 350. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, combine rolled oats, coconut flakes, cherries, pecans and chocolate chips. Stir in allspice and cinnamon and mix evenly.


In another bowl, combine canola oil, mashed banana and vanilla extract. Pour wet ingredients over dry ingredients and stir until combined.

Now take a cookie scoop and press the batter into the scoop and drop on cookie sheet. It should stay together. You can press it into a round cookie cutter if you prefer or even make bars and spread it evenly across the pan. I used a cookie scoop. Remove cookie cutter. Bake for about 20 minutes or until edges are golden brown.

Big sister reading bedtime stories...


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1.06.2012

JAM THUMBPRINT COOKIES


Ok, I may be a little late on posting this classic Christmas cookie recipe...or maybe I am early. :)

Every year my bookclub has a cookie exchange; this year and I made 6 dozen Christmas sugar cookies, my favorite. I spent all day baking and frosting; had them all lined up on the counter still drying, when I came back into the room and realized I had about 4 dozen left which means two possibilities...my dog or my husband. Once I saw a mason jar and a half gallon of milk left on the counter I realized who the guilty party was. I love my husband dearly and I absolutely LOVE when he eats my cooking/baking so I didn't have the heart to tell him they were actually for my book club. I put the rest in the freezer for him at a later date and decided I needed to find a quick cookie replacement for my book club.

I judge my cookie's deliciousness based on the level of chocolate in it so for me these are good but not my top choice; however, majority of people seem to love theses cookies and an Ina recipe is usually never bad so I think you will like them.

Thankfully, I managed to hide a few of my sugar cookies in the back of the freezer for Santa on Christmas Eve...


Jam Thumbprint Cookies
Adapted from Ina Garten, Barefoot Contessa Family Style
Makes 32 cookies

3/4 pound (3 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water, for egg wash
7 ounces sweetened flaked coconut
Raspberry and/or apricot jam

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

In an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar until they are just combined and then add the vanilla. Separately, sift together the flour and salt. With the mixer on low speed, add the flour mixture to the creamed butter and sugar. Mix until the dough starts to come together. Dump on a floured board and roll together into a flat disk. Wrap in plastic and chill for 30 minutes.

Roll the dough into 1 1/4-inch balls. (If you have a scale they should each weigh 1 ounce.) Dip each ball into the egg wash and then roll it in coconut. Place the balls on an ungreased cookie sheet and press a light indentation into the top of each with your finger (I use the back side of my measuring spoon). Drop 1/4 teaspoon of jam into each indentation. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the coconut is a golden brown. Cool and serve.


Hope you had a Merry Christmas!


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1.05.2012

HAM AND POTATO HASH


This is our first week of going to school 5 days per week. I am trying hard to get used to it but I have found myself more unorganized and running late for everything. The last couple nights I have been so behind I find myself making cold lunches at 11:30pm. I checked the hot lunch menu in hopes of something healthy but to no avail; a "jumbo corndog" will not do. So I whipped up some whole wheat pancakes with berries knowing that she would be super excited to have this in her lunch. She is just like me, loves breakfast for any meal of the day. This evening we had scrambled eggs and this ham and potato hash. I love it; super easy and delicious!

Ham and Potato Hash

3 tablespoons butter
1 small onion, finely chopped
7 small red new potatoes, cleaned
1 cup finely diced cooked ham
1/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme

Pierce the potatoes with a fork and microwave for 1 minute. Carefully set potatoes on cutting board and dice to 1/2-inch thick pieces. Set aside.

Melt butter in a large cast-iron skillet over medium low to medium heat. Add onion, cook until softened, about 5 minutes.

Add diced potatoes and ham. Season with salt, pepper and thyme. Cook for 5 minutes undisturbed then flip for another 5 minutes or until well browned.

Perfect with scrambled eggs...


Isn't this beautiful...the fog rolling in just after the hail. This is at my sister's house, absolutely serene.

Fawn and her mom in our front yard...

learning to shoot the new BB gun...


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1.02.2012

POTATO, ONION AND PARMESAN GRATIN


Love this recipe; it's delicious and heavy...pure comfort food on a cold winter's night. If you wanted to cut some calories and fat, I am sure that it would be just as wonderful with milk instead of the cream.

Potato, Onion and Parmesan Gratin
Adapted Loosely from Williams-Sonoma New Flavors for Vegetables Cookbook: Mushroom and Potato Gratin recipe
Serves 4-6

1 Tbs. unsalted butter, plus more for greasing
1 cup heavy cream
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 fresh thyme sprigs, plus 1 1/2 tsp. minced
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
2 lb. Yukon Gold potatoes
1 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
1 large yellow onion, chopped
4 Tbs. grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

Preheat an oven to 375°F. Butter an 8-inch square baking dish.

In a saucepan, combine the cream, garlic, thyme sprigs, and a pinch each of salt and pepper. Bring to a low boil over medium heat, then remove from the heat and set aside.

Peel the potatoes (optional) and using a mandoline or a very sharp knife, cut them into slices about 1/8 inch thick. Gently stir the potato slices into the cream mixture, cover and let stand while you cook the onion.

In a fry pan over medium heat, warm the olive oil and melt the 1 Tbs. butter. Add the onion and a pinch of salt, and sauté until translucent and slightly brown on edges. Add the minced thyme with a pinch of pepper and cook for 1 minute.

Arrange one-third of the potato slices, slightly overlapping, on the bottom of the prepared dish. Sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper and 1 Tbs. of the cheese. Spread half of the onions over the potatoes and sprinkle with 1 Tbs. of the cheese. Repeat these layers, using half of the remaining potatoes and all of the remaining onions, and sprinkling with salt, pepper and 1 Tbs. cheese between the layers of vegetables. Top with the remaining potatoes and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Using a large, flat spatula, gently press on the vegetables to compact them. Pour the cream mixture through a strainer or simply remove the thyme sprigs and add the cream mixture into the dish and sprinkle with the remaining cheese.

Cover the dish with aluminum foil and bake until the potatoes are tender when pierced with a sharp knife, about 45 minutes. Remove the foil and bake until the mixture is golden brown and bubbly, about 20 minutes more.

Let the gratin rest for about 10 minutes, then use a sharp-bladed spatula to cut it into squares and serve immediately. Serves 4 to 6.


PRINTABLE RECIPE

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