Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Refreshing Mango-Lime Popsicles

For original post on Arutz Sheva Click Here!

The thought of making my own popsicles has always enticed me!  I love having the ability to control the sugar content while maximizing the nutritious ingredients that go into this delightful frozen treat.  Adding avocado enhances the creaminess to the popsicle that mimics ice cream and satisfies that creamy craving. 

I am currently pregnant and it’s the middle of the summer, therefore I am always looking for ways to keep cool.  Popsicles are the ultimate way of cooling down on a summer day and cooling my insides from the heartburn that comes with pregnancy. 

These popsicles are a great summertime treat or a refreshing end to a BBQ.  Mango is meant to be in Popsicle form and the lime makes this a zesty and refreshing palate cleanser.  Summertime is the best for get-togethers and these popsicles need to be a part of those events!    

        
Creamy Mango-Lime Popsicles
Makes 2 ½ cups puree / About 5 popsicles

1 Lime, Zest and Juice
1 Ripe Avocado, peeled and pitted
1 Cup Mango, Fresh or Frozen
¼ Cup Maple Syrup
Pinch of Salt
½ Cup Apple Juice

In a food processor or Vitamix, combine the lime juice, lime zest, avocado, mango, maple syrup, salt and apple juice.  Process until smooth and no chunks are visible.  Add more apple juice if needed to reach desired consistency.  Pour into Popsicle molds or Zipzicle (www.zipzicles.com) tubes.  Freeze for at least 3 hours before enjoying.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Grilled Indian Beef Korma Kabobs For The Fourth!

I have been craving all types of Indian food lately! Cumin and curry….they seem to have this power over my taste buds!  Even though I like a good grilled burger or hot dog on the Fourth of July, I decided, this year to bring my love for Indian food to the grill.  I love beef korma and had this crazy idea that I could grill the meat and still produce a similar texture and flavor while keeping the “grilling” tradition on the Fourth of July alive!  My crazy idea worked.

The combination of juicy Grow and Behold kabob meat and the rich flavorful curry sauce will have everyone second guessing their hamburger traditions.  Serve with a bowl of basmati rice and chopped cilantro to complete this fabulous meal.

And just so you remember…Grow and Behold meat is kosher, raised on a pasture and better than any organic meat! They use NO hormones and NO antibiotics and their sausages and hot dogs have NO nitrates or preservatives. They visit all of their farms and work directly with the growers to ensure that Grow and Behold standards for animal welfare and pasture management are met.

Use the code “alibabka15” and get $15.00 off your order of $100 or more! Your taste buds will never be the same! (Coupon EXTENDED and expires 7/31/2015)
 



Grilled Beef Korma Kabobs
Makes 8 Kabobs

2 Lbs. Grow and Behold Beef Cubes for Kabobs
1 – 13.5 oz. Can Full Fat Coconut Milk
1 – 12 oz. Container Tofutti Sour Cream
1 Lemon
3 Tablespoons Sugar
1 Teaspoon Salt
2 Medium Onions
1 ½ Teaspoons Dried Ginger Powder
1 ½ Teaspoons Garlic Powder
1 Teaspoon Cardamom
1 Teaspoon Coriander
1 Teaspoon Turmeric
1 Teaspoon Cumin
2 Teaspoons Curry Powder
Cilantro, chopped, for garnish

Combine the coconut milk, Tofutti sour cream, lemon, sugar and salt in a bowl until fully combine, set aside.  Cut the onion in half lengthwise and cut each half into 4 cubes.  Skewer the kabob: meat, onion, meat, onion, meat.  Repeat until all the meat is skewered.  In a shallow glass bowl pour marinade over the meat and let marinate for 12-24 hours.

Preheat outdoor grill or stove top grill pan on high heat.  When hot place each skewer on the grill or pan for 5 minutes on each side or until the meat reaches desired doneness.  Take leftover marinade and place in a pot on the stove and bring to simmer. Add in the rest of the spices.  Simmer for 15-20 minutes, stirring frequently to prevent sauce from burning.  Pour warm marinade over cooked meat and serve with basmati rice and garnish with cilantro. 
    


Sunday, June 14, 2015

Tropical Pulled Beef Tacos

It’s officially summer and that means it’s time for fresh summer fruit and bright, bold, refreshing flavors! 

Pulled tacos are one of my favorite ways to utilize a so called “winter roast” and create a beautiful and tasty summer appetizer or main course.  These tropical pulled deckel tacos are sweet, spicy, bright and amazingly delicious.  We served these as an appetizer for Shabbat lunch with all the fixings. They made such a statement and were enjoyed by my family and guests!  With Father’s Day and the 4th of July coming up this is an easy and show stopping recipe to make for a crowd.

Grow and Behold has the most flavorful and tender meat I have ever tasted.  Seriously…have you tried their ground beef?  You have never had a more tender meatball or in this case a softer roast that literally melts in your mouth.

The meat is kosher, raised on a pasture and better than any organic meat! They use NO hormones and NO antibiotics and their sausages and hot dogs have NO nitrates or preservatives. They visit all of their farms and work directly with the growers to ensure that Grow and Behold standards for animal welfare and pasture management are met.

Ready for this amazing deal?! Use the code “alibabka15” and get $15.00 off your order of $100 or more! Your taste buds will never be the same! (Coupon expires 6/30/2015)


 
Tropical Pulled Deckel Tacos
Serves 4 Main Courses or 8 Appetizers

Pulled Deckel:
2 Lbs. Deckel
1 Cup Orange Juice
¼ Teaspoon Nutmeg
1 Teaspoon Cinnamon
1 Tablespoon Sesame Oil
1 Tbs. Honey
1 ½ Tablespoons Soy Sauce
 
Pickled Red Onion:
1 Medium Red Onion, cut in half and sliced thin in half moon pieces
¾ Cup Rice or Apple Cider Vinegar
4 Peppercorns
½ Teaspoon Sugar
½ Teaspoon Salt
1 Clove Garlic, sliced In half

Pineapple Salsa:
2-3 Cups Finely Chopped Pineapple, fresh
3 Tablespoons Cilantro
1 Jalapeno, seeded and finely chopped
1 Lime, zest and juice
 
Avocado Sauce:
1 Avocado
½ Cup Mayonnaise
1 Lime, juiced
Salt and Pepper, to taste

8 Corn Tortillas

Deckel: Preheat oven to 280o Fahrenheit.  Place raw deckel in a baking pan and cover with orange juice.  Cover tightly with foil or a lid and cook for 3 hours until tender.  Let cool.  Remove juice and pull meat apart with two forks or fingers.  Mix the meat with nutmeg, cinnamon, sesame oil, soy sauce and honey until it is completely combined.

Pickled Red Onion: Bring a small pot to a boil.  Place the sliced onions in strainer and pour the boiling water over the sliced onions.  Let drain.  In a glass or plastic container or jar mix together the vinegar, peppercorns, sugar, salt and garlic until the sugar has dissolved.  Place the onion in the container.  Close tightly and keep in the refrigerator for at least ½ hour. The pickled onions will keep in the refrigerator for 1 month.

Pineapple Salsa: Mix all the ingredients together and put to the side. 

Avocado Sauce: In a food processor mix the avocado, mayo and lime juice together until smooth.  Season with salt and pepper.
Warm up tortillas in a 300o Fahrenheit oven for 10 minutes.  Place meat in the tortilla, top with avocado sauce, pineapple salsa and pickled red onions.  Serve immediately.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Say Cheese...Cake!

In my opinion, there is no better combination of flavors for dessert then sweet and sour.  Any dessert with citrus is usually my top order at restaurants or the dessert I am most excited to make (and then of course eat)!   Cheesecake always seems too heavy and plain for me so I decided to jazz it up by adding a citrus component to the mix and lightening up the cheesecake filling.  Four layers make up this fabulous full flavored cheesecake!

Graham Cracker Crust  +  Lime Curd+  Lime Cheesecake + Sour Cream Chocolate Ganache = The most amazing, eye catching and delicious dessert you could put on your table for Shavuot!
 


Lime Cheesecake with Sour Cream Chocolate Ganache
Makes 2-14"x4"Tart Pan or 1-8" Round Springform Pan
 
Lime Curd:
6 Egg Yolks
3/4 C. Sugar
8 Tbs. Fresh Lime Juice
1 Tsp. Lime Peel, grated

Crust:
1 3/4 C. Graham Crackers, finely ground (about 12 whole graham crackers)
1/4 C. Sugar
1/2 C. Butter, melted

Filling:
2 (8-ounce) Packages Cream Cheese, room temperature
2/3 C. Sugar
2 Eggs
4 Tbs. Lime Juice
1 Tbs. Lime Peel, grated
1 16 Oz. Container Sour Cream

Sour Cream Chocolate Ganache:
2 ½ C. Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
1 C. Sour Cream
3 Tbs. Oil

Lime Curd:
Whisk all ingredients together in a small saucepan over medium heat.  While whisking constantly, bring to a boil and let boil for 30 seconds.  The ingredients should thicken.  Put the side.

Crust:
Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray two 14x4 inch tart/quiche pan with non-stick cooking spray.  In a bowl, mix together the graham crackers, sugar and butter until thoroughly combined.  Press half the crumb mixture evenly onto bottom and on the sides of each pan. Bake 5 minutes. Cool completely.

Filling:
With an electric hand mixer, mix the cream cheese, sugar, eggs, lime juice, lime peel and sour cream until completely blended.

Preheat oven to 350°F.  Pour half of the curd on each graham cracker crust.  Spread carefully with the back of a spoon or side of a knife until the bottom of each crust is covered.  Pour the cheesecake filling on top of the curd and spread evenly.  Bake for 40-45 minutes until the cheesecake is set.  When cheesecake is done, set on a cooling rack and make the ganache.

Ganache:
In a medium saucepan melt the chocolate chips, oil and sour cream over medium-low heat until thoroughly combined and smooth.  Stir constantly so the chocolate does not burn.  Spread evenly over each tart and smooth with the back of a spoon or knife.  Sprinkle with lime zest and/or sea salt if desired.  Refrigerate until ready to eat.  May be refrigerated for 2 days or frozen up to 1 month.
 
 

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Marvelous Morning Muffins

I am very hungry in the morning but have the hardest time trying to figure out something to eat. I always crave sweet when I wake up, but anything too sugary leaves me feeling just as hungry and tired an hour later.  Mornings are also unpredictable, I love grab and go breakfasts because I never know what the day will bring.  
Muffins were the perfect solution to all of my problems, but they needed to be healthy and keep me full and feeling good...at least until lunch (that's another problem I have yet to fix completely).
Morning Fruit and Chia Muffins fix all of those morning breakfast issues! Loaded with protein, good carbs and good fats, this hits my sweet tooth craving in the morning and leaves me feeling great! 
*I store these in the freezer and pull one or two out to eat in the morning with my morning coffee.  Microwave for about 30 seconds to defrost.

 

Morning Fruit and Chia Muffins
Makes 12 Muffins
 
2 cups spelt flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup oil (any type)
1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 egg
3 tablespoons chia seeds
1/2 cup peaches, chopped
1/2 cup raspberries
slivered almonds (garnish)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Line a muffin pan with baking cups and spray with no stick cooking spray.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.  Once combined, stir in the milk, oil, brown sugar, egg and chia seeds.  Mix under completely incorporated.  Fold in the peaches and raspberries.
Fill the muffin cups 3/4 of the way up with batter.  Sprinkle 1 teaspoon of slivered almonds on top of the muffins.  Bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown.  Let cool for 10 minutes before eating.
 


Monday, March 30, 2015

Charo"Set" For Dessert

What’s better than a dainty and delicious macaron? A macaron tart!  Much less time consuming, this dessert feeds a full table of guests and is the perfect sweet ending to beautiful seder.  Keeping with the Passover theme, I thought it would be so much fun to create a macaron inspired with the flavors of the seder.  Horseradish, parsley, egg and potato were all out…but charoset caught my attention.  Apples, walnuts and cinnamon…now that is something I can work with!
A cinnamon macaron crust, apple buttercream frosting, all accompanied by a ground walnut and apple butter compote…the result is amazing!
Enjoy and have a very happy Pesach!



Charoset Macaron Tart
Serves 6-8

Cinnamon Macaron Crust
4 Egg Whites
1 2/3 Cup Powdered Sugar
1 1/3 Cup Almond Flour
Pinch of Salt
¼ Cup Granulated Sugar
1 tsp. Cinnamon

Apple Butter Buttercream
½ Cup Butter or margarine, softened
1 ¼ Cup Powdered Sugar
¼ Cup Apple Butter

Walnut and Apple Butter Compote
½ Cup Ground Walnuts
½ Cup Apple Butter
 
Preheat oven to 280 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.  With an electric mixer, beat egg whites until foamy, slowly add in granulated sugar 1 tablespoon at a time and beat until the egg whites reach stiff peaks, about 5 minutes.

In a separate bowl, whisk the powdered sugar, almond flour, salt and cinnamon together.  Fold the flour mixture into the egg whites until thoroughly combined. 

On one cookie sheet, scoop out ½ the batter, about 1 ¼ cups.  Scoop the other half on the other sheet. With a spatula, carefully spread each of the mixtures into an 8 inch circle.  With the back of a spoon, try to even out the top.  Let sit for 15 minutes to dry and develop a crust.  Place in the oven and bake for 15 minutes.  Remove from oven and let cool.

In a bowl add the butter, powdered sugar and apple butter.  With an electric mixer, beat until the mixture is combined and it becomes soft and spreadable.

Carefully turn one of the macarons over and peel the parchment paper of the bottom.  This will be the bottom of your tart.  Evenly spread the buttercream over the macaron.  Carefully flip the other macaron over and peel off the parchment paper.  Place the side facing the pan on top of the buttercream.  Sprinkle with powdered sugar

Combine the walnuts and apple butter in a separate bowl and serve a few tablespoons with each serving of the macaron tart.

 

 

 

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Bloody Good Hamantashen!

Purim is all about drinking and hamantashen, and another Purim means another cocktail hamantashen!  Check out the other cookies I have developed over the past few years by clicking HERE.  The development of these cookies definitely taps into my creative side when trying to construct a liquid cocktail in a solid cookie.   Add more or less Tabasco sauce to the filling depending on how spicy you would like your cookie. 




Bloody Mary Hamantashen
Makes 2 Dozen

Sundried Tomato Cookie Dough:
1 Cup Earth Balance or Butter
½ Cup Sugar
2 Egg Yolks
2 Tbs.  Sundried Tomatoes
1 tsp. Tabasco Sauce
½ tsp. Salt
2 Cups Flour
¼ Cup Cornmeal
2 Pieces of Celery

Place the Earth Balance or butter, sugar, egg yolks, sundried tomatoes, Tabasco sauce and salt in the food processor.  Pulse until it all of the ingredients are thoroughly combined.  Place the flour and cornmeal in the food processor and pulse until the mixture forms a ball.  Remove dough from food processor and roll into a 3 to 4 inch wide cylinder.  Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least one hour.

As the dough chills, make the filling
 

Tomato Filling:
1 – 14.5 Oz. Can Diced Tomatoes
3 Tbs. Tomato Paste
1 tsp. Lemon Juice
1 ½ tsp. Horseradish
1 tsp. Tabasco Sauce, or more to taste
½ tsp. Worchester
2 Tbs. Vodka

Put all of the ingredients in a sauce pan.  Turn the stove to medium high heat.  When the mixture comes to a boil, turn it down to a simmer and stir every few minutes until the filling becomes thickened, about 10 minutes.  Be careful to watch it so it does not burn.  Let cool.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and line a baking pan with parchment paper.   Take dough out of the refrigerator and cut into 24 pieces, about ½ inch thick.  Place on parchment paper and flatten with your fingertips or palm of your hand till the dough is 3 ½ inches in wide.   Place about a teaspoon of filling in each circle and pinch the cookie into three corners to form a hamantashen.   Place in the oven for 15 minutes or until the dough begins to turn golden brown.  Remove from oven and let cool.

Cut the celery into tiny pieces, about 1 ½ inches long and 1 cm wide.  Place a piece of celery on each cookie and serve.

The recipe yields extra filling which may be frozen and used for more cookies at a later time or used as a sauce for pasta or chicken.

 
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