To end the year on a high note, I suggest chocolate dulce de leche cups. Surprisingly simple to make, you’ll feel like a character in Chocolat as you infuse the chocolate with cinnamon and chipotle chili powder before spooning it into mini baking cups. Quickly rotating each cup creates an even layer of chocolate; once the chocolate sets, pipe in silky dulce de leche and top with additional chocolate. Et voilà, a tray of gourmet chocolates!
This sausage and two bean stew is delicious. I used small dried red beans that are sold in bulk or in a bag, and 1 can of organic red kidney beans. The small red beans are creamy and amazing when they cook down, and the kidney beans have a nice meaty bite. This is delicious and cheap and tastes even better the next day. This recipe makes a lot of stew so you can share it with your friends. We used smokey andouille sausage to build the flavor. If you don’t eat meat, use veggie sausage or just omit it. It’s easy to build flavor with paprika, chili powder, celery salt and fresh veggie stock. From the garden we used parsley, fennel, celery, and our first poblano pepper in this dish. Fresh garden vegetables have the best flavor.
Wash and sort dried red beans, cover with water and soak overnight. Soaking overnight helps them cook faster. Make veggie stock by simmering onions, celery, carrots, fresh fennel and garlic for 40 minutes or so. Strain stock and set aside. Or use a carton of purchased veggie or chicken stock. Or use both.
Sear sausage in a heavy bottomed stew pot and set aside. In the same pot sauté chopped veggies: 1 small sweet onion, 1 bell or poblano pepper, 2 celery stalks and 5 cloves of garlic in 2 tblsp olive oil. Rinse the soaked beans and add them to the pot with about 3 or 4 cups stock, 1 can of rinsed, drained kidney beans and the sausage. Season with 1 tsp smoked paprika, a little chipotle chili powder, 1 tsp ground coriander, ¼ tsp cumin, and fresh ground black pepper. Turn heat to low and cover to simmer.
I don’t salt at the beginning of the bean cooking process because I’ve read that it makes the beans take longer to cook. Once the beans soften a bit, after about ½ hour or 45 minutes, add celery salt to taste. Continue to cook, covered, stirring occasionally, until the beans are creamy and the gravy is thickened. Serve with parsley rice.
I cook rice in an unconventional way and it comes out almost perfect almost every time. I cook it sort of the way you cook pasta, in lots of water, then quickly strain and cover to steam. Rinse 1 cup Basmati rice in a sauce pan a few times until the water runs clear. Add 4 or more cups cold water and ½ tsp salt. Bring to a boil. Turn the heat to medium low and keep an eye on it. After simmering for 6-8 minutes or so, taste a few grains for texture. Once the rice is al dente, drain in a mesh strainer, add it quickly back to the pot with 2 tblsp chopped parsley and a little butter or olive oil and cover to steam. To make the fancy rice & beans presentation, ladle the bean stew into a soup dish, press the rice into a small bowl sprayed with olive oil spray, then turn it over on top of the bean and sausage stew. Yum!
Looking for the perfect on-the-go, sweat and salty treat? This recipe from Domesticate-Me won’t disappoint! It’s super easy to make and will be sure to satisfy all your taste buds. Take this snack with you to work or impress your friends during your next TV binge watching sesh. Try pairing this with a fresh juice spritzer or home-brewed sun tea!
2-3 tablespoons grape-seed oil (you can also use vegetable, canola, olive or coconut oil) ½ cup popping corn 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil 2 teaspoons chipotle chili powder ¾-1 teaspoon kosher salt 1 pinch cayenne pepper (optional) 3 ounces dark chocolate
Pour the grape-seed oil (or oil of your choice) into a large deep, pot. (You want just enough oil to coat the bottom of the pot.) Place the pot over medium heat, add 3 corn kernels, and cover with a lid.
When the kernels pop, remove the lid and add the rest of the popping corn. Cover the pot and give it a few shakes. Make sure you hold the lid down while you shake, friends. I don’t want you to injure yourselves. Cook the popcorn, shaking the pot occasionally, until the popping sound stops, about 4-5 minutes.
While the corn is popping, warm 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a small pot.
When the corn has popped, immediately pour it out into a large bowl. Drizzle the popcorn with the warm olive oil, and sprinkle with the chipotle powder, kosher salt, cayenne pepper. Toss well to coat your popcorn with seasoning.
Pour the seasoned popcorn onto a foil lined baking sheet in an even layer.
Melt chocolate in a double-boiler or in the microwave. If you’re microwaving the chocolate, do it in 30-second intervals, stirring each after each one. It should take about 90 seconds.
Use a fork to drizzle the melted chocolate over the popcorn. Allow the chocolate to cool and set before serving, about 20 minutes. If you’re feeling particularly antsy, feel free to pop the baking sheet into the oven for 10 minutes to speed up the process.
Roasted Pumpkin Soup w. Sage Pesto & Pumpkin Seeds
1 large sugar or pie pumpkin, cut in half and seeds removed and reserved (plus 4 small ones if you are making the pumpkin bowls)
1 tablespoon olive oil
salt and pepper
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 small shallots, chopped
1 teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped
4 cups chicken broth
1 cup coconut milk + 1 cup water (or 2 cups water)
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or more or less to your liking)
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
pinch of crushed red pepper flakes
1 head garlic (or you may sub 1 clove raw garlic)
1 cup fresh parsley
½ cup fresh sage
¼ cup shelled pistachios
¼ cup olive oil
¼ cup crumbled blue cheese/ parmesan/feta
¼ teaspoon pepper
Fried Pumpkin Seeds
1 tablespoon coconut milk
1 tablespoon flour
reserved pumpkin seeds from above
1 teaspoon chipotle chili powder
¼ teaspoon brown sugar
½ teaspoon pepper
lots of salt to your tasting