Granola Cookie Wedges

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Sometimes you just need chocolate and you need it quick. While cookies are a quick fix, even that can be cumbersome if you don’t have a stash ready in the freeze just waiting to be baked. Then you may feel the guilt because you really want something, but you know you shouldn’t. Enter these granola cookie wedges. They are so tasty and so quick to make. Actually, they can be very dangerous as well to someone with no will power like myself. The first one I made was finished within an hour. The second batch didn’t last too long either. Granted, my family helped me out. But with little effort and the addition of oats and pecans, you get the indulgence you want without suffering the guilt afterwards.

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Granola Cookie Wedges

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup dark brown sugar
  • 2 Tbsp canola oil
  • 1 Tbsp butter, melted
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1 large egg white
  • 2.25 oz all-purpose flour (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1/2 cup quick cooking oats
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans, toasted
  • 2 Tbsp semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • Cooking Spray

Pre-heat oven to 350F.

Combine the first 7 ingredients in a large bowl; stir until well combined. Weigh or lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Add flour, oats, nuts, and chocolate chips to sugar mixture; stir until just combined.

Scrape the dough into a 9-inch glass pie plate coated with cooking spray, and spread to edges using a spatula. Bake at 350° for 13 minutes or until set. Cool slightly on a wire rack. Cut into 8 wedges.

Nutritional Information

Per serving: 168 Calories, 8.6g Fat, 2.5g Protein, 20.9g Carbohydrate, 1.3g Fiber, 4mg Cholesterol, 1mg Iron, 136mg, Sodium, 17mg Calcium

Source: Cooking Light, April 2013

Chipotle Quinoa Chili

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This winter has been relentless. It’s frigid cold and the snow just wont quite. To make matters worse, after being sick free for 2 whole weeks, we are all getting sick. Again. This has not been fun. Add in a newborn and it just plain old stinks! So, we need easy meals that are good for the soul and warm us up. I also want something that is a little healthier. It’s difficult to find easy comfort foods for the winter that are good for you, but after all of this sitting around the house, it’s needed.

This chili is awesome and everyone I know loves it. I adapted it a bit because my husband made a mistake with the grocery shopping and it actually worked out better. The taste was great and it removes one more step from the prep work. So, if you can, try to find the can of diced tomatoes with chipotle chilies in it. If not, use a chipotle chili in adobo sauce as the original recipe suggested. Besides being better for you since it’s meatless, it also means you can make this on short notice since you don’t have to defrost anything and this isn’t a chili that needs to simmer all day. Win! Serve this up with some Super Easy Crusty Bread and you have a great meal in little time!

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Chipotle Quinoa Chili

Ingredients

  • 1 Tbsp oil
  • 1 yellow onion,chopped
  • 4 to 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 Tbsp chili powder
  • 1 Tbsp ground cumin
  • 3 cans (14.5oz each) diced tomatoes with chipotle chilies
  • 1 can (15oz) black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can (15oz ) red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 bell peppers, chopped
  • 1 cup frozen corn
  • 1 cup quinoa, uncooked
  • 4 green onions, sliced

In a dutch oven or large pot, heat oil on medium-high heat. Add onion and saute until translucent, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook for an additional 1 minute. Add chili powder and ground cumin and stir for 1 minute.

Stir in tomatoes, beans, peppers, corn, and quinoa and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 20 to 25 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Remove from heat and stir in green onions. Serve warm.

Adapted from Kraft, seen on Alida’s Kitchen

Colcannon

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You’ve all heard that the Irish love potatoes and serve them with most dishes. What you may not know are some recipes that are actually used. Standard mashed potatoes, baked potatoes, and french fries aren’t what you’ll find. One of the most popular is Colcannon. This dish is a hearty peasant dish that is inexpensive and uses ingredients that most households have. It’s a great way to sneak in some greens, especially if you tell the kids that the Leprechauns turned the mashed potatoes green! Being the good Irish girl that I am, I love these hearty dishes year round, but for those that want to add something to their corned beef or stew this St. Patty’s day, try this dish. I really think you’ll enjoy eating your veggies this way!

The keys to this dish are cooking the cabbage just right and butter. Lots of butter! This is a hearty, rich side dish so don’t skimp! If you really want to up the richness factor, you can substitute cream for milk, but I enjoy the extra butter instead. The well with melted butter is key, besides the “yum” factor it shows at the table, it’s that last bit of warm butter to adorn the top of the potatoes, giving it that extra rich topping.

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Colcannon

Ingredients

  • 5lbs Russet potatoes
  • 1 head of green cabbage, shredded
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 8 Tbsp unsalted butter, divided
  • salt and pepper to taste

In a small saucepan or kettle, boil some water. About 2 cups.

Peel and cube potatoes. Add to a large pot of salted water and boil, cooking until the potatoes are fork tender.

While the potatoes are cooking, add cabbage to a large saute pan. Pour your boiling water over the cabbage until it is just covered. Turn heat on medium-low and stir cabbage for 3 to 4 minutes, until cabbage has turned a darker green and just wilted. Error on the side of under cooking versus over cooking the cabbage. Drain cabbage very well in a colander, return to saute pan and add 2 tablespoons of butter. Set aside while butter melts.

Drain potatoes in a colander and return to pot. Add milk and the remaining 6 tablespoons of butter and mash potatoes, using a potato masher, not a mixer! Stir until a combined. Then, add cabbage and stir until well combined. Salt and Pepper to taste. Spoon into your serving dish and make a well and place a dab of butter inside.

Source: The Way to His Heart

 

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When Mohawk Valley Trading Co. offered to send a sample of their maple syrup in return for a review I quickly accepted. We go through a lot of maple syrup in our house. Most goes to drizzling over waffles and pancakes, but a lot goes to baked goods and making vegetables taste even better. What I wasn’t expecting was that their maple syrup tastes so much better than anything I’ve tasted before. I’ve participated in Sugar House tours and we go to our Maine Maple Syrup Sunday events here, but this maple syrup was different. It was sweet and robust and I found myself sticking my finger in the measuring cup to get those last few drips that didn’t make it into the mixing bowl. I think we’ll be making extra pancakes the next few weeks just so we can eat more maple syrup!

I asked my husband what he would like to see me make with the maple syrup, pulling out a bunch of different vegetable ideas, and he suggested doughnuts. Mmmm doughnuts. The vegetable recipes were quickly shoved back into the drawer! I wanted to find something that was similar to what he remembers growing up and this recipe was the closet thing to it. The original recipe calls for filling the doughnuts and while we did that as well, my husband preferred the frosted doughnuts since that was what his memories were. You can’t fool those taste bud memories!

These doughnuts were the perfect thing to highlight Mohawk Valley Trading Co.’s maple syrup. The doughnut is light and fluffy and once bitten into it, you’ll notice a hollow inside that is just right for filling. The frosting is rich, while not heavy with flavor. It has a light, sweetness to it that really showcases the maple syrup. While making doughnuts is a bit of a labor of love, homemade are so worth it! To make sure you get them prepared in time for the morning, go through the first two proofs and then let sit overnight.

Now, on to the great part! What is better than maple frost doughnuts? Well, Mohawk Valley Trading Co. is generously giving away one 32oz glass jar of their Grade A Robust, Dark, Pure Maple Syrup! That’s a total value of $45 including shipping and handling. Use the Rafflecopter below to have several chances to win. Now, on to those doughnuts…

 

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a Rafflecopter giveaway


Mohawk Valley Trading Co. provided me with their Grade A Maple Syrup to sample and are sponsoring this giveaway, but as always the opinions expressed here are solely my own. This giveaway is for residents of the contingent United States and will end on March 13th, 12:00 am EST. Physical address required for shipping; no PO boxes. The Mohawk Valley Trading Company will ship the prize to the winner within 30 days of contest end. You must be 18 years or older to enter.

Maple Meringue Frosted Doughnuts

Ingredients

For the Doughnuts:

  • 2 tsp active dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup whole milk, heated to 110F
  • 1 to 1 1/4 cup bread flour, divided
  • 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 Tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • canola oil

For the Maple Meringue Frosting:

  • 1 cup maple syrup, Grade A or B
  • 2 large egg whites
  • 1/4 tsp cream of tartar
  • pinch of kosher salt

For the Doughnuts: In a medium bowl, dissolve 1 teaspoon of the yeast into 1/4 cup of the milk. Add 1/4 cup of the flour and stir to create a smooth paste. Cover with plastic wrap and let rest in a warm spot for 30 minutes.

Then, combine the remaining milk and yeast in the bowl of your stand mixer. Add the rested flour mixture, vanilla extract, and egg and stir until smooth. Add the whole wheat flour plus 1/4 cup of the bread flour, sugar, and salt and stir on medium-high until the dough starts to come together. Add the butter and continue to stir, adding flour about 1/8 cup at a time, until the dough starts to form into a ball. Attach your dough hook and knead in the remaining flour a little at a time until the dough is somewhat smooth and only slightly sticky. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let rest in a warm place for 30 minutes. Push down the dough and let recover and then refrigerate for 1 hour or up to 12 hours.

Line a baking sheet with a towel and dust with flour. Roll out the dough on a flour dusted surface until you have a thickness of 1/2-inch. Use a 2-inch biscuit cutter and cut out the dough and place on the dusted towel, about 1-inch apart. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise for 30 to 45 minutes or until doubled in size. If you let them chill for longer, they may need longer to rise. Keep an eye on them to avoid over-proofing and check every 5 minutes. To test, use your fingertip and gently press down on the center of the doughnut. If it rises quickly, it needs more time. If it doesn’t rise, it has over-proofed and you can re-roll the dough and try again. If it rises slowly, it’s just right and ready for frying!

Just before the doughnuts have finished proofing, fill a heavy pot with oil about 2-inches high. Heat until the oil reaches 365F. Carefully, place the doughnuts into the put and fry for about 1 to 2 minutes on each side or until golden brown. Be careful not to overcrowd the pot as this will drop the temperature down. Remove with a slotted spoon and place on a wire rack with paper towels underneath. Allow the doughnuts to cool before frosting.

For the Maple Meringue Frosting: In a small pot, add maple syrup and heat to 235F, using a candy thermometer. Be careful not to overheat! When the syrup reaches 220F, add the egg whites, cream of tartar, and salt to your stand mixer bowl. Stir until frothy and then turn increase the speed to medium until stiff peaks are achieved.When the syrup has come to temperature, slowly pour into the egg whites, with the mixer still at medium speed.  Allow to mix until the meringue is thick and shiny, about 2 minutes. Frost donuts as desired.

Source: Food52, Lara Ferroni