Thursday, March 7, 2019

Bakery Style Butter Cookies

From SmittenKitchen

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2/3 cup granulated sugar
2 large egg yolks

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
2 cups flour

1 cup semisweet chocolate chips

  • Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • Combine the butter and sugar until well blended and light. 
  • Add the egg yolks, vanilla, and salt, and beat to combine. Scrape down the bowl and beaters. 
  • Add the flour, and mix just until the flour disappears. 
  • Fit a piping bag with a large French star tip - use a cloth or other thick type of piping bag since cookie dough will be thick (ziplock bag will break)
  • Pipe the dough into about 1/2-inch-wide, 1 3/4-to-2-inch-long segments, spaced about 1 inch apart, on your baking sheets. 
  • Bake the cookies for 11 to 13 minutes, or until they are golden at the edges.
  • Cool completely on the baking trays, or for at least 2 minutes, to make them easier to lift to a cooling rack. 
  • Melt chocolate chips in microwave in tall glass (makes it easier for dipping) on 50% power for a minute, stir, only put back in microwave for a short bit more (don't overheat them)
  • Dip cookie into chocolate, or use knife to spread it on cookies
  • Put sprinkles in shallow bowl and dip cookie into it
Do ahead: These keep at room temperature in an airtight container for a week.

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Chocolate Lava Cakes

Makes: 4 lava cakes (each one in a ~5oz ramekin)

  • 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, 70 to 74 percent cacao (not chips), chopped (about 1/2 cup)
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into cubes, plus more for the ramekin
  • 6 tablespoons granulated sugar, plus more for the ramekin
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 tablespoons (1/4 cup) all-purpose flour
  •  Confectioners’ sugar, to serve 
  1. Heat oven to 425 degrees and butter the ramekins. Dust the buttered ramekins with granulated sugar.
  2. Combine the chocolate and butter in a heat-safe bowl, microwave in 30-second blasts, stirring in between, until melted and smooth, about 1 minute. Remove from the heat and set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, combine the sugar, eggs, egg yolks, vanilla and salt. Whisk vigorously until the mixture is thick, foamy and pale, about 2 minutes. Whisk in the flour until smooth.
  4. Using a spatula, add the chocolate to the egg mixture and stir gently until combined.
  5. Pour the mixture into the ramekin. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes* or until the edges are set and puffed, but the center is still soft when lightly pressed. (You can also cover and refrigerate the batter up to a day in advance. Add an additional minute or 2 to baking time if you are baking the cake directly from the refrigerator.)
  6. Use an offset spatula or small knife to loosen the edges of the cake from the ramekin. Place a plate over the ramekin and carefully invert the warm cake. Use an oven mitt or clean kitchen towel to remove the ramekin, dust the cake with confectioners’ sugar and serve with ice cream or whipped cream.
*err on the side of 10-12 minutes - first batch overcooked


Makes: 8 lava cakes (each one in a ~5oz ramekin)

  • 12 ounces bittersweet chocolate, 70 to 74 percent cacao (not chips), chopped (about 1/2 cup)
  • 12 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into cubes, plus more for the ramekin
  • 3/4c granulated sugar, plus more for the ramekin
  • 4 large eggs
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup flour
  •  Confectioners’ sugar, to serve 

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Chocolate Chip Shortbread Cookies

1 cup (2 sticks) butter, room temperature
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all purpose flour, sifted
2/3 cup mini chocolate chips

  • In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment mix the butter, sugar, salt and vanilla together for 2 minutes. Turn the mixer to low and slowly add in the flour, mixing until just combined.
  • Stir in the chocolate chips evenly.
  • Transfer the dough to a zip-top bag and chill for at least 2 hours. Alternately, you can roll your dough out now and cut into shapes, and then chill the dough. Both methods are effective.
  • Preheat oven to 325°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  • Roll dough out into a large square, 1/3-inch thick. Cut the dough into squares using a knife, or you could use cookie cutters.
  • Place on baking sheet and bake for 18-20 minutes.
  • Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Creamy Avocado Dressing

  • 1 Avocado
  • 1 clove Garlic peeled
  • 1/4 cup roughly chopped cilantro
  • 1/4 cup low-fat sour-cream or greek yogurt, optional additional spoonful of mayo
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime or lemon juice or white vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon Kosher Salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon Ground Black Pepper
  • Water
  1. Place all the ingredients In a food processor or blender.
  2. Process until smooth, stopping to scrape down the sides a few times. Thin the salad dressing out with about 1/3 cup water (give or take) until it reaches a desired consistency.
  3. Keep in an airtight container for 1-2 weeks.

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Chicken Tenders

1 ½ cups full-fat Greek yogurt, labneh or sour cream
¼ cup finely chopped chives
¼ cup finely chopped parsley
2 tablespoons finely chopped dill
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 small garlic clove, finely grated or chopped
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper 

1 ½ pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
2 large eggs, beaten to blend
2 cups bread crumbs (preferably panko or other coarse bread crumbs)
3 tablespoons olive oil

  • Make the dip: Mix yogurt, chives, parsley, dill, lemon juice and garlic in a small bowl; season with salt and plenty of pepper. Set aside.
  • Prepare the chicken: Heat oven to 450 degrees. Cut chicken breasts lengthwise into about 1 1/4-inch-wide strips. Season with salt and pepper, and set aside.
  • Mix together flour and paprika in a medium bowl, and season with salt and pepper. Place eggs in a large bowl and whisk with 1 teaspoon water. Season with salt and pepper. Put bread crumbs in a large bowl or shallow baking dish, and season with salt and pepper.
  • Working with few pieces at a time, toss the chicken in the flour mixture, making sure it’s evenly coated. Shake off excess flour, and dip into egg wash. Shake off any excess.
  • Dip chicken into bread crumb mixture a few pieces at a time, pressing to adhere as many bread crumbs as possible. Shake off any excess, and set chicken aside on a large plate.
  • Place breaded chicken strips on a foil- or parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil, and bake until one side is beginning to brown, 6 to 8 minutes. Using tongs or a spatula, flip chicken and continue to cook until the other side is golden brown and crisp, another 6 to 8 minutes. Serve with herbed yogurt dip.

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Red Lentil Soup


· 3 tablespoons olive oil, more for drizzling
· 1 large onion, chopped
· 2 garlic cloves, minced
· 1 tablespoon tomato paste
· 1 teaspoon ground cumin
· ¼ teaspoon kosher salt, more to taste
· ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
· Pinch of ground chile powder or cayenne, more to taste
· 1 quart chicken or vegetable broth
· 2 cups water
· 1 cup red lentils
· 1 large carrot, peeled and diced
· Juice of 1/2 lemon, more to taste
· 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro


1. Chop onion

2. Peel carrot, chop

3. Crush 2 cloves of garlic in garlic press

4. In a large pot, heat 3 tablespoons oil over high heat until hot and shimmering. Add onion and garlic, and sauté until golden, about 4 minutes.

5. Stir in tomato paste, cumin, salt, black pepper and chili powder or cayenne, and sauté for 2 minutes longer.

6. Add broth, 2 cups water, lentils and carrot. Bring to a simmer, then partially cover pot and turn heat to medium-low. Simmer until lentils are soft, about 30 minutes. Taste and add salt if necessary.

7. Using an immersion or regular blender or a food processor, purée half the soup then add it back to pot. Soup should be somewhat chunky.

8. Stir in lemon juice and cilantro. Serve soup drizzled with good olive oil and dusted lightly with chili powder if desired.

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Spiced Chickpea Stew With Coconut and Turmeric

only serves 4-6 so double for leftovers!

¼ cup olive oil, plus more for serving
4 garlic cloves, chopped
1 large yellow onion, chopped
1 (2-inch) piece ginger, finely chopped
Kosher salt and black pepper
1 ½ teaspoons ground turmeric, plus more for serving
1 teaspoon red-pepper flakes, plus more for serving
3 (15-ounce) cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
2 (15-ounce) cans coconut milk: 1 full fat, 1 light
2 cups vegetable or chicken stock
1 bunch Swiss chard, kale or collard greens, stems removed, torn into bite-size pieces
1 cup mint leaves, for serving
Yogurt, for serving (optional)
Cucumber, coriander, cumin for raita
Toasted pita, lavash or other flatbread, for serving (optional)

Double shopping list:
8 garlic cloves
2 large yellow onions
1 piece ginger
6 cans chickpeas
4 cans coconut milk *make 2 of these light coconut milk
1 box chicken stock
2 bunches chard
2 cups mint leaves
Big yogurt
Whole wheat pita

  • Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add garlic, onion and ginger. Season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally until onion is translucent and starts to brown a little around the edges, 3 to 5 minutes.
  • Add turmeric, red-pepper flakes and chickpeas, and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, so the chickpeas sizzle and fry a bit in the spices and oil, until they’ve started to break down and get a little browned and crisp, 8 to 10 minutes. 
  • Using a wooden spoon or spatula, further crush the chickpeas slightly to release their starchy insides (this will help thicken the stew). Add coconut milk and stock to the pot, and season with salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer, scraping up any bits that have formed on the bottom of the pot. Cook, stirring occasionally, until stew has thickened and flavors have started to come together, 30 to 35 minutes. (Taste a chickpea or two, not just the liquid, to make sure they have simmered long enough to taste as delicious as possible.) If after 30 to 35 minutes you want the stew a bit thicker, keep simmering until you've reached your desired consistency. Determining perfect stew thickness is a personal journey! 
  • Add greens and stir, making sure they’re submerged in the liquid. Cook a few minutes so they wilt and soften, 3 to 7 minutes, depending on what you’re using. (Swiss chard and spinach will wilt and soften much faster than kale or collard greens.) Season again with salt and pepper.
  • Divide among bowls and top with mint, a sprinkle of red-pepper flakes and a good drizzle of olive oil. Serve alongside yogurt and toasted pita if using; dust the yogurt with turmeric if you'd like.