Month: September 2014

Good dinner the other night…


Lest you think that every night is a gourmet celebration, please know that on occasion Taco Cabana has come to the rescue. However, last week I prepared a tasty plate that I want to share with you. Ahi Tuna cooked medium rare with lots of cracked pepper, Basmati rice flavored with fresh dill and orange zest, roasted broccoli and red peppers topped with panko. The panko was flavored with parsley, lemon zest, grated parmesan and olive oil. I spooned a tomato/basil vinaigrette over the tuna. Summer plate, sunny flavors and perfect with a fruity white.

September 5 006

September 5 005

September 5 008 September 5 007

September 5 011

Cous Cous

3 ½ C filtered water

1 t chili powder

1 t cumin

1 t salt

1 T olive oil

September 5 044 September 5 045

 3 C cous cous

September 5 047 September 5 053

In a sauté pan, add water, chili powder, cumin and olive oil. Bring to a boil. Add cous cous and remove from heat. Cover for about 3-4 minutes. Fluff with a fork and remove to a cookie sheet for even cooling. This makes a large amount of cous cous. This holds well in the refrigerator and is good for many uses. Add grilled vegetables and you have an excellent side or salad. The recipe can be cut in half.


Chocolate Chip Muffins

Makes 12 medium-sized muffins and 3 mini-loaves

September 5 026

September 5 027 September 5 028

2/3 C cocoa powder

1 ¾ C flour

1 t baking soda

1 t baking powder

¾ t salt

2 t instant espresso powder

1 C chocolate chips

September 5 029 September 5 030

 1 stick butter, soft

Zest from half an orange

1 ¼ C brown sugar

2 eggs

2 t vanilla

2 t white wine vinegar

September 5 031 September 5 032 September 5 033

 1 C whole milk

September 5 046 September 5 050

In a mixing bowl, combine cocoa, flour, soda, baking powder, salt and espresso powder. Mix well with a whisk. Add chocolate chips and stir to combine.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, add butter and zest. Mix well using paddle attachment. Add brown sugar and mix well. In a pourable container, add eggs, vanilla and vinegar. With mixer running, add eggs , one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Beat on high-speed until well combined and fluffy.

With mixer on slowest speed, add flour mix and milk alternately beginning and ending with the flour. Do not over beat. Finish incorporating with your spatula or spoonula. (Have you bought one yet?) At this point, you can cover the batter with plastic wrap and portion later for baking.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Using an ice cream scoop, portion batter into a muffin tin that has been sprayed with non-stick baking spray. The chocolate chips do have a tendency to stick. Muffin liners are a fix for that. Bake for 12 minutes, rotate pan, and cook for an additional 10 minutes or until just set. These are best eaten the same day.

Serve with fresh raspberries, crème fraiche, zest and a drizzle of orange blossom honey. Great dessert.

Serve with fresh raspberries, crème fraiche, zest and a drizzle of orange blossom honey. Great dessert.

Jalapeno Cheddar Cornbread

Recipe makes one 9” X 13” Pyrex pan

3 C flour

1 C yellow cornmeal

¼ C sugar

2 T baking powder

2 t salt

September 5 035

 3 eggs, lightly beaten

2 C whole milk

September 5 036 September 5 037

 2 sticks butter, melted

September 5 034

1 C grated sharp cheddar cheese

4 green onions, chopped

3-4 jalapenos, seeded and finely chopped

September 5 038 September 5 040

In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, cornmeal, sugar, powder and salt. Mix well with a whisk. In a separate small bowl, add eggs and whisk lightly, just breaking the eggs up. Add milk to egg mix and stir lightly. Add egg mix to flour mix and fold in. Add butter and fold in until well mixed. Use a light touch. No vigorous stirring here. Chill baby. Add cheese, onions and jalapeno and fold in until evenly distributed in the batter. Pour batter into a 9” X 13” Pyrex baking dish that has been sprayed with non-stick baking spray. Place into a preheated 350 degree oven for 30 minutes. Rotate pan and bake for an additional 30 minutes. Allow 30 minutes cooling before cutting into squares.

September 5 058

Thanks to Ina Garten for the recipe. Love this recipe as it is more “cakey”. Muffins can be made too.