Monthly Archives: April 2012

Chicken Parm Meatball Subs

I’m back!  Sorry for the 1.5 week hiatus, but I was traveling in India and overcoming a mild case of food poisoning and severe case of jet lag.  Since I returned home sick and tired (literally), I wasn’t cooking at all, just eating chicken noodle soup and sleeping.  And now that I’m back and feeling much better, I can honestly say that India was a wonderful experience.  While I was there for work and didn’t get a chance to sightsee that much, I did get to eat some delicious Indian fare.  And let it be known that I did not get sick off of Indian food – it was actually pizza at the hotel, which in my defense, tasted delicious.  I think the cheese is what got me and since the hotel food had been so delicious up until that point, the dairy/pasteurization thing had slipped my mind… until I got sick that is!  But now I’m back and fully recovered, so enjoy these Chicken Parm Meatball Subs because they are a delicious twist on the Italian classic.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 pounds ground chicken
  • Sea salt and cracked pepper, for seasoning
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup Italian bread crumbs
  • 1/3 cup chopped parsley leaves
  • 2 tbsp of olive oil, plus 3 tbsp
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 8 to 10 leaves fresh basil, torn or shredded
  • 4 crusty sub rolls
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded provolone cheese
Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Place chicken in a bowl and season liberally with sea salt and pepper.  Add egg, half of the grated cheese, bread crumbs, parsley, and a 2 tbsp of extra-virgin olive oil to the bowl.  Mix the meat and form 12 large meatballs.  Bake the meatballs 15 minutes until golden and firm. Switch the broiler on.
  3. While the meatballs bake, heat a medium skillet over medium heat. Add 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil and minced garlic and cook 5 minutes.  Add red pepper flakes and then tomatoes and stir in the chicken stock.  Season the sauce with salt and pepper and simmer 10 minutes, adjust seasonings and stir in the basil.  Reserve any extra sauce for dipping on dinner table.
  4. Remove the meatballs from oven and place in sauce.  Cut sub rolls and lightly toast under broiler.  Fill the bottoms with meatballs and sauce.  Combine the provolone and remaining Parmesan and sprinkle over the subs.  Return to broiler to melt the cheese until golden.

*Adapted from Food Network

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Filed under Main Course

Coconut Cookies

These Coconut Cookies are only too appropriate to blog about today!  I’ve already mentioned that I’m currently in India for work, so I made these cookies about 2 weeks ago.  But, these cookies are perfect for me to blog about today because much of Indian cuisine, especially from the state of Kerala, has fresh coconut or coconut milk in it.  In fact, I had a veggie curry today for lunch that had coconut milk in it (amazing!).  I had to share these cookies with you because they are soft, chewy, and just amazing.  Def give these babies a try!

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups toasted coconut (flaked or shredded)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spread shredded or flaked coconut on a rimmed baking sheet and bake, stirring once or twice, until golden, about 5 -10 minutes.  Set aside and line another baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Combine the flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon in a medium bowl, set aside.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together the butter and sugars until creamy (about 3-4 minutes on medium-high speed). Beat in the egg and vanilla until combined.
  4. Gradually stir  in the flour mixture (on low or with a big wooden spoon), then mix in the toasted coconut.
  5. With a cookie scoop, drop dough onto parchment-lined baking sheet, about 3 inches apart.  Bake for 8-10 minutes or until just golden and then cool on wire racks.

*Adapted from Anecdotes and Apple Cores

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Filed under Baked Goods, Desserts

Rigatoni w/Roasted Cauliflower & Breadcrumbs

Guess where I’m going tomorrow?  India!  I’m traveling to India for work, so as you can imagine, I did not cook this Rigatoni w/ Roasted Cauliflower & Breadcrumbs tonight for dinner.  I was too busy packing and going on date night with the hubby.  Instead, I made this dish a few days ago for dinner.  I love cauliflower and simple pasta dishes, so this was a win-win.  It’s the perfect dish to make after a busy day at work because it takes little time to prepare and tastes delicious.  I’m hoping to blog a few recipes that I’ve already made while traveling and maybe even post a few pics of India.  Enjoy and stay tuned!

Ingredients:

  • 1 head cauliflower, cored and broken into small florets
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 5 garlic cloves, minced
  • Sea salt and cracker pepper, to taste
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1 box Rigatoni
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan, plus more for serving (optional)
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 475 degrees and bring a large pot of salted water to boil.
  2. On a rimmed baking sheet, toss cauliflower, onion, and garlic with 2 tablespoons oil and season with salt and pepper.  Roast on lower rack until lightly browned and tender, 20 minutes, tossing once.
  3. Cook pasta in boiling water until al dente.  Reserve 1/2 cup pasta water; drain pasta and return to pot.  Add cauliflower mixture, Parmesan, and parsley to pasta and toss.  Add enough pasta water to form a thin sauce that coats pasta.  Serve topped with breadcrumbs and Parmesan.

*Adapted from Martha Stewart

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Filed under Pasta

Black Bean Dip

Everyone loves Mexican food, right?  I made this Black Bean Dip last weekend to share with some of my girlfriends.  I was so preoccupied with catching up with my friends that I didn’t even realize I’d eaten about 1/3 of the dip on my own.  Ok, maybe I knew exactly what I was doing, but it was just so good!  This dip was also great because I made it in the slow cooker which was convenient since I was going over to my friend’s place on a Friday night after work.  Serve this dip to a group of girls in need of some catch-up time and it will be gone in no time!  Enjoy!

Ingredients:
  • 2 cans (14 to 19 oz/398 to 540 mL) black beans, drained, rinsed and mashed
  • 2 cups salsa
  • 4 green onions, finely chopped
  • 2 roasted peppers (poblanos or sweet), peeled and diced
  • 1 can green chillies
  • 2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese
  • Tortilla chips

Directions:

  1. In slow cooker stoneware, combine beans, salsa, green onions, peppers, and cheese.  Stir well.  Cover and cook on High for 1 1/2 hours, until mixture is hot and bubbly. Serve with tortilla chips.

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Filed under Appetizers

Lemon Coconut Pound Cake

This  Lemon Coconut Pound Cake is light and springy and perfect for Easter breakfast or Easter dessert.  Lemon is fresh and always reminds me of spring, and toasted coconut has that tropical feel, so paired together, these two flavors taste amazing!  I really liked this pound cake recipe because it didn’t have as much butter and was light and airy.  It’s easy to make and the perfect little treat to share with family or friends at Easter or just to celebrate the spring.  Enjoy and have a wonderful Easter!!!

Ingredients:
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 1/3 cups granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 tbsp lemon zest
  • 1 cup sweetened flaked coconut, toasted (see note)
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 to 3 tbsp milk
  • 2 tsp fresh lemon juice
Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 325° and coat a 9 x 5″ loaf pan with cooking spray.
  2. Beat butter at medium speed with a heavy-duty electric stand mixer until creamy. Gradually add sugar, beating until light and fluffy. Add vanilla and eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until blended after each addition.
  3. Stir together flour, salt, baking soda, and lemon zest. Add to butter mixture alternately with sour cream, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Beat at low speed just until blended after each addition. Stir in 1/2 cup coconut. Pour batter into pan.
  4. Bake at 325° for 1 hour and 5 minutes to 1 hour and 10 minutes or until a long wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan on a wire rack 10 to 15 minutes; remove from pan to wire rack, and cool completely (about 1 hour).
  5. To make the glaze, whisk together powdered sugar, 2 tbsp milk, and fresh lemon juice, adding an additional 1 tbsp milk, 1 tsp at a time, for desired consistency.  Spoon glaze over cake and sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup coconut.
Note:  To toast coconut, preheat oven to 350ºF.  Spread coconut coconut on a rimmed baking sheet and bake, stirring once or twice, until golden, about 5 -10 minutes.

*Adapted from Southern Living

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Filed under Baked Goods, Desserts

Robin Egg Candy Bark

Since spring is officially here that means Easter is always right around the corner.  And right around the corner it is – can you believe Easter is this Sunday?  It seems really early this year, but even though Easter seems early, I’ve been buying Easter candy for weeks now.  Starburst jelly beans and Whopper Robin Eggs have to be my all-time favorite Easter treats.  Since I had an extra bag of Robin Eggs at home, I decided to make some Robin Egg Candy Bark.  I used semi-sweet chocolate on the bottom, white chocolate on the top, and then sprinkled chopped up Robin Eggs all over.  This is such an easy and delicious treat to make and looks really pretty with all the pastel colors.  Enjoy!

Ingredients:

  • 8 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 8 ounces white chocolate chips
  • 2 tsp vegetable oil, divided
  • 1 cup malted Whopper Easter eggs, roughly chopped

Directions:

  1. In a microwave-safe bowl, place semi-sweet chocolate chips and 1 tsp of vegetable oil.  Microwave for about 2 minutes, checking and stirring chocolate after 1 minute, being sure not to over-heat.  Once chocolate is thoroughly melted, spread with a spatula on parchment paper.  Place in refrigerate to allow to set.
  2. Meanwhile, place white chocolate chips in a microwave-safe bowl with 1 tsp vegetable oil.  Microwave for about 2 minutes, checking and stirring chocolate after 1 minute.  With a spatula, spread white chocolate on top of semi-sweet chocolate trying to keep both layers even (don’t worry if white chocolate melts semi-sweet chocolate a little).  Immediately, sprinkle malted Easter eggs over the top, pressing lightly into chocolate.  Allow to set.
  3. Once chocolate bark is completely set, break into pieces.  Enjoy immediately or store in refrigerator.

8 Comments

Filed under Desserts