Apple Streusel Muffins with Maple Drizzle ~ Flavor packed, healthy and everything you expect in the perfect muffin ~ The Way to His Heart

Move over muffins laded with berries and sugar. I’ve found a new favorite. Don’t move over too much though, I still love you, just not as much. These muffins have been in my queue for a while now. They appeared during the fall for apple picking season and then again for maple syrup season. Then I finally made them, fell in love with them. Besides the overall package, they appealed to me because everyone in my family loved at least one of the key ingredients. I figured if they didn’t go over swimmingly since they were healthier that I could bring these ingredients up as I coerced them to eat them. There was no need. These are gobbled up immediately.

Apple Streusel Muffins with Maple Drizzle ~ Flavor packed, healthy and everything you expect in the perfect muffin ~ The Way to His Heart

Before you’ve noticed, you’ve eaten one and are going back for another. That second one you appreciate all of the flavors and complexity of the muffin. Even eaten at room temperature you have a warmth from the cooked apples and cinnamon. Oh that cinnamon is delicious too, let me tell you. Then you have that lovely brown sugar and oatmeal crunch on top. Yum! All of this is topped off with a lovely maple syrup glaze that isn’t overly sweet and just gives that perfect finishing flavor to everything. These are really the best little muffins. They can totally be considered a dessert since they have that great apple pie taste. When these are in the kitchen, the chant for “muffiiiiiins” is louder and ever more present from the kids, and my belly!

Apple Streusel Muffins with Maple Drizzle ~ Flavor packed, healthy and everything you expect in the perfect muffin ~ The Way to His Heart

Apple Streusel Muffins with Maple Drizzle

Ingredients

For the streusel:

  • 2 Tbsp old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 2 Tbsp spelt flour
  • 1 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 Tbsp butter, melted
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

For the muffins:

  • 5 oz spelt flour (about 1 cup)
  • 2.5 oz whole-wheat pastry flour (about 1/2 cup)
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 3/4 cup low-fat buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 Tbsp canola oil
  • 1 Tbsp butter, melted
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 Granny Smith apple, diced (about 1 1/4 cups)
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp water

Pre-heat oven to 400 F.

To prepare streusel, combine the first 5 ingredients in a bowl, set aside.

To prepare the muffins, combine flours, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl.

Combine buttermilk, brown sugar, oil, butter, and egg in a bowl. Add buttermilk mixture to flour mixture, stirring until just combined.Fold in apple. Divide batter among 12 paper-lined muffin cups and top evenly with streusel.

Bake for 16 minutes to until a wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out with moist crumbs clinging. Cool in a pan for 5 minutes. Remove from pan and cool completely.

Combine the powdered sugar, syrup, and water in a bowl, stir until smooth. Drizzle evenly over muffins.

Serves 12

Source: Cooking Light, Sept 2014

Soft M&M Chocolate Chip Pudding Cookies

Soft M&M Chocolate Chip Pudding Cookies ~ Ever so soft and delicious, these are going to be your new favorite soft chocolate chip cookie recipe! ~ The Way to His Heart #cookies # holidaytreats

I know what you’re thinking. Why is she posting Valentine’s Day cookies in March? Well, I’m posting them now because I don’t want you to miss out. See past the Valentine’s Day themed M&M’s and think of any holiday themed M&M candies. Or, simply forget about the M&M’s completely and know that these are deliciously soft chocolate chip cookies. See past the fact that I made these on short notice for my daughter’s school party and thankfully had everything on had but had no time to post them before leaving for vacation. Just see the delicious cookies for what they are :)

When I had to make a last minute snack for Caroline’s school party I immediately grabbed the dessert off the potluck sheet because I knew I had something on hand. When I went into my pantry and saw that I had M&M’s, I always have candy because I’m always eating all of the candy, I knew I’d make these cookies. They are so festive and kids love them. They are also super soft and nice and thick so it really ups the wow factor for the kids. It also helps that there aren’t a ton of crumbs to clean up off of the classroom floor as well.

The trick to these cookies is adding instant pudding mix. You heard me. That gives the cookie plenty of thickness, while still keeping it soft and moist, and a lovely buttery and slightly cakey taste. Just trust me on this. If you like those “soft” batched cookies, you’ll love these. So, go ahead and make a batch for that Easter party or because it’s Tuesday. I’m not judging.

 

Soft M&M Chocolate Chip Pudding Cookies ~ Ever so soft and delicious, these are going to be your new favorite soft chocolate chip cookie recipe! ~ The Way to His Heart #cookies # holidaytreats

Since George also had to lend his time to help make these class cookies I told him we rightfully earned one each as well. He couldn’t wait to get his hands on these!

Soft M&M Chocolate Chip Pudding Cookies ~ Ever so soft and delicious, these are going to be your new favorite soft chocolate chip cookie recipe! ~ The Way to His Heart #cookies # holidaytreats

 

Soft M&M Chocolate Chip Pudding Cookies

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup instant vanilla pudding mix (not sugar-free or “cook & serve”) or use 2 tsp cornstarch in place of pudding mix
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • pinch of salt, optional and to taste
  • 3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 3/4 cup milk chocolate M&M’s for the dough and 1/2 cup for placing on top of cookie dough mounds

In a large bowl, combine butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar, egg, and vanilla on medium-high speed until creamed, about 4 minutes.

Add flour, pudding mix, baking soda, and salt and beat on low speed until just combined, about 1 minute.

Stir in chocolate chips and the 3/4 cup M&M’s.

Using a 2 tablespoon cookie scoop, scoop out 20 cookies and place on a large plate. Flatten slightly and then add remaining M&M’s to the top of each dough ball . Cover the plate with plastic wrap and refrigerate for a few hours or up to 5 days.

Pre-heat oven to 350 F. Line cookie sheet with a silpat or parchment paper.

Place cookies on sheet, about 2 inches apart, and bake for about 9 minutes or until the cookies have just set and are pale, but flossy. You do not want the typical “golden brown” on these cookies. Allow cookies to cool on the cookie sheet placed on a wire rack for about 10 minutes.

Cookies will stay fresh in an airtight container for a week.

Freezing recommendations: If baked or unbaked, it will last in freezer for 6 months.

Yields 20 cookies

Source: Averie Cooks

Buffalo Wild Wings Asian Zing Boneless Tenders Copycat ~ Sweet meets heat with this Buffallo Wild Wings Copycat Sauce ~ The Way to His Heart #copycat #chickenwings #bufallowildwings #appetizer

You guys, I’ve been waiting to share these tenders with you for a while now. They’ve become my favorite food addiction lately!

Backstory:

My husband and his coworkers were on a kick of heading to Buffalo Wild Wings for lunch a while back and I always wanted to try it. A few months ago we had a rare date night. We stopped in and grabbed a few different varieties of boneless chicken tenders and sauces. Then, we headed to an even rare movie outing and saw The Martian. I’m not a huge Matt Damon fan, but that was a really good movie, right? Anyways, back to the wings. One of my favorites, which isn’t surprising since I love Asian flavors, was their Asian Zing sauce. It was very flavor and had just enough heat for me. It didn’t cause palpitations, but I still needed to dip it into ranch or grab a celery stick afterwards.

I decided for the Super Bowl I was going to make a few different sauce for chicken tenders and these popped back into my mind. I checked my copy of Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 3 that was given to me by the publisher and sure enough, Todd Wilbur had a copycat Asian Zing sauce recipe! I thought these were spot on, but my husband said they were slightly different. A little sweeter with more heat. He preferred these much better than the restaurant’s. I found the sauce addictive and saved the extra for a dip. It works great for eggrolls, wontons, spring rolls, etc.! I added the sesame seeds as a visual cue that these were the Asian Zing tenders and loved the addition.

If you prefer wings, or don’t want to fry, go ahead and simply make up a batch of the sauce. I love this double battering and fry method for tenders with sauces because it soaks up the sauce without becoming soggy. It gives the perfect crunch!

Buffalo Wild Wings Asian Zing Boneless Tenders Copycat ~ Sweet meets heat with this Buffallo Wild Wings Copycat Sauce ~ The Way to His Heart #copycat #chickenwings #bufallowildwings #appetizer

 

Buffalo Wild Wings Asian Zing Boneless Tenders

Ingredients

For the chicken batter:

  • 3 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1″ chunks
  • Oil for frying
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup milk

For the sauce:

  • 2 tsp cornstarch
  • 4 tsp rice wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup chili garlic sauce
  • 1 Tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp minced garlic
  • Toasted sesame seeds, for optional garnish

In a large bowl, combine flour, salt, and black pepper. In a small bowl whisk together the egg and milk. Dip each piece of chicken first in the egg mixture, and then roll in the flour mixture. Repeat so that each piece of chicken is double coated. Refrigerate the breaded chicken for 20 minutes or longer for a crispier coating.

To prepare the sauce: Dissolve the cornstarch in rice wine vinegar in a small bowl. Combine the vinegar solution with the remaining ingredients in a small saucepan over medium/low heat. Heat mixture, stirring often, until the sauce reaches a boil, the remove it from the heat. Set aside.

Heat oil in a large, deep skillet to 375 F. Fry the chicken in the hot oil in batches until the outside is nicely browned and fully cooked, 165 F., about 5 minutes per batch. Drain on paper towels.

Toss the chicken pieces with the sauce and serve immediately.

Serves 6

Adapted from Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 3 by Todd Wilbur

Salt & Pepper Shrimp

Salt & Pepper Shrimp ~ The Way to His Heart

I’ve been really doing well this winter with keeping my snacking to a minimum and eating better. My biggest hurdle has always been lunches. Between feeding the kids and getting the little guy down for a nap, there just isn’t time. So I used to skip it or simply eat the random bits of food that they didn’t eat. Make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, take a spoonful for myself. Cut half an apple for them and I’d eat the other half. These weren’t poor food choices, but it often left me hungry later and then the snacking would begin. Enter shrimp, which has always been my little life savor. So quick to cook up and always tasty, I make time for lunch if I know I’m going to eat something super yummy.

I love this recipe for it’s flavor and ease, but I also love tossing cilantro into anything I can since it always seems we have an abundance of it! This stir fry method lightens the calories while still keeping the flavors of the original method with deep frying. A flavor lunch, or dinner, ready in minutes and extra tasty to boot! I will note, I’m not a huge fan of cooking shrimp with the peels on because it makes eating a giant pain in the rear, but I’ve made this a few times both ways and the flavors really just seem to incorporate into the shrimp better with the peels on. So, if you want cook with peels on and before plating if you want to be nice, you can quick remove them!

Salt & Pepper Shrimp

Ingredients

  • 1/2 tsp each black, green, red, and white peppercorns
  • 2 lbs shrimp, shells on
  • 2 tsp salt, divided
  • 2 Tbsp vegetable or peanut oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 cup cilantro, roughly chopped

Crush peppercorns. Put shrimp, half of crushed peppercorns, and 1 teaspoon of salt into a large bowl and toss to coat. Set aside.

Heat a large pot over high heat. Add oil, garlic, remaining crushed peppercorns, and remaining 1 teaspoon salt and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 1 minutes. Add shrimp and cook, stirring constantly, until pink and cooked through, about 3 to 4 minutes. Add cilantro, turn off heat, and toss to combine. Serve immediately.

Makes 4 to 6 servings.

Source: Sunset magazine