Sunday, September 30, 2012

Sweet Potato Cakies!

So it is Sunday and that means it is time for my Sundays with Joy post! This weeks recipe was Sweet Potato Cookies!

This week was a rough one with a friend/coworker passing away and work was busy also. I have did not do any cooking or baking this week until Saturday, which is unusual for me. I was glad when I had the time to get back in there. My cousin Blair came over on Saturday morning to visit with her daughter Madilyn. I did not judge my timing well and was still baking when she arrived, not that this has ever stopped me before. The smell from the oven was amazing!  Blair had 4 or 5 while over and I sent her home with a bag of them for later. When eating them she called them "Cakies" Cake + Cookies. So that is what I am calling them. My kids also really enjoyed them. I had to put some away so I could have some later.

So as mentioned in last weeks post, I am trying to alter recipes to make them healthier, as I work towards a healthy lifestyle and losing weight. This is my adaption of Joy the Baker's Sweet Potato Cookies. You can find the original recipe is her cookbook Joy the Baker Cookbook.

Sweet Potato Cakies (makes 46 cookies)
Nutrition information: 1 cakie:  58 calories, 1.3g fat, 10.6g carbs, .8g fiber, 4.4g sugar, 1.7g protein.

1 cup all purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp cloves
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
2 eggs
1 cup mashed sweet potato
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup unsweetened apple sauce
1/2 cup plain greek yogurt ( I used Oikos 2%)
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup chocolate chips

Pre Heat oven to 350 degrees and line 2 baking sheets with parchment.

In a large bowl, whisk together Flours, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, baking power and baking soda.

In medium bowl, whisk together eggs, sweet potato, sugar, apple sauce, yogurt and vanilla until combined.

Dump wet ingredients into the dry and stir until just combined.

Fold in Chocolate chips.

Scoop dough onto baking sheets, I use 1 tbsp ice cream scoop.

Bake for 10-12 minutes. Let cool 10 minutes before transferring to wire rack to cool completely.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Roasted Cashews

Good Evening Folks! This week has been a roller coaster, had a visit to my doctor's office to get my blood pressure checked by the nurse... which turned into an appointment with the doctor and having to wear a blood pressure monitor for 24 hours... my arm is still sore. So needless to say... need to change my lifestyle and eating habits. So I have been counting calories and exercising every day and hope to make these regular things. So I will be posting nutrition information with most of my recipes as it can be time consuming, so if I share it will save other time.

Getting on to what today's post is all about! Sundays with Joy! As you may recall from other Sunday posts a group of us are cooking our way through Joy the Baker Cookbook! This weeks recipe is Honey Mustard 
Roasted Cashews. I made 2 batches; the ones on the left are Honey Mustard and the ones on the right are Vanilla Chai

Honey Mustard Roasted Cashews

2.5 cups roasted and salted cashews
1/4 cup honey
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
2 tsp dried mustard

Vanilla Chai Roasted Cashews

2.5 cups roasted unsalted cashews
1/4 cup honey
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp cardamom
1/4 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp cloves
1/4 tsp nutmeg

Preheat oven to 375 and line a baking sheet with parchment.

In a medium bowl combine; honey and seasonings, stir to combine. Toss in cashews and stir to coat. 
Spread cashews onto baking sheet making sure they are in a single layer. 
Bake for 10-15 minutes, stirring once or twice. Keep a close eye on them as they can burn quickly.
Remove and let cool! Then Enjoy!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Cranberry Rhubarb Apple Crisp

I have to start off by saying it has been one crazy week and I wasn't even sure I would get to this weeks Sundays with Joy recipe this week. But I managed to squeeze it in and boy am I ever glad a did.
This week is Joy's recipe for Man Bait Apple Crisp. Apple Crisp is my most favourite dessert! Ask my man! Whenever we go out for dinner I always have a hard time resisting Apple Crisp on a dessert menu to try something else.

A while ago I went through my freezers and made a list of everything in them, so I can start using it up.  I have a lot of fruit in them. So I decided to add some Cranberries and Rhubarb to my Apple Crisp! Only one word needed: Delicious.

Cranberry Rhubarb Apple Crisp

6 apples, peeled, cored and sliced
2 cups rhubarb, chopped
2 cups fresh or frozen cranberries
1/2 cup sugar (or more if desired)
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp cloves

2 cups flour
2 cups brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 cups oats
3/4 cup butter, softened

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9x13 baking dish and set aside.

Combine apples, cranberries and rhubarb in a medium bowl, sprinkle with sugar, cinnamon and cloves and mix well. Place in the baking dish.

In the same bowl, combine Flour, brown sugar, oats and cinnamon and mix well. Add butter and mix with hands until incorporated.

Set aside 1 cup of topping. spread the rest over the fruit and toss to combine. Sprinkle the reserved topping over the top.

Bake for 55-60 minutes until golden and bubbly.

If you would like to purchase Joy's book Joy the Baker: 100 Simple and Comforting Recipes.
You can join us here if you would like to bake along with us.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Lemon Lime Poppy Seed Pancakes with Lemon Maple Syrup

I got up early one morning last week and decided to make the bf some pancakes. Unfortunately my kids don't eat breakfast despite my rantings about how important it is to eat in the morning so their brains are ready to learn... Anyways... The bf loves lemon poppy seed cake and I happened to see a post about it on Pinterest, so I thought I would experiment. They turned out great! The have a nice tang and just a hint of sweet. We ate these a few mornings in a row as I made a large batch. These also got eaten as a snack, cold (also very delicious)

Lemon Lime Poppy Seed Pancakes
2 cups of flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup sugar (or applesauce)
pinch salt
2 tbsp poppy seeds
zest of one lemon
zest of one lime
2 tbsp lemon/lime juice
2 cups buttermilk
2 eggs
2 tbsp melted butter, cooled

In a large bowl combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, salt, poppy seeds and zest. Whisk to combine.

In a small bowl or large measuring cup combine lemon.lime juice, buttermilk, eggs and butter. Stir until well mixed.

Add wet mix to dry and stir until just combined.

Cook in a non stick pan over medium heat, until tops bubble. Flip and cook 1 min more.

Serve with Lemon Maple Syrup

Lemon Maple Syrup
4 tbsp maple syrup
1 tbsp lemon juice (or more to suit your taste)

Combine together and mix well.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Sundays with Joy - Chili Cheese Fries

So we have another Sundays with Joy post for you today! This week's recipe was Chili Cheese Fries. When I think of Chili Cheese Fries, I think of crispy fries topped with hearty chili and melted cheese on top. This is not that type of Chili Cheese Fries. This recipe looked really good and I was really intrigued by the addition of Worchestershire sauce! So I stuck with the original recipe. You can find it in Joy the Baker Cookbook

I enjoyed these fries, but I think next time I make them I would change the spices up a bit but definitely keep the Worchestershire sauce and probably add a little more. I doubled the recipe but wish I had made even more :)

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Chicken, Black Bean and Corn Chili

I enjoy a good hearty bowl of stew or chili! Everything is in one bowl, no worrying about getting enough veggies or what to serve on the side. I either serve rice or garlic bread with it. I use ground beef a lot but I also often use ground turkey or chicken. I have been using shredded chicken a lot lately and thought I would try it. Well... what can I say I gave some chili to my friends and had some at home. My one friend has been bugging asking me all week for the recipe, so Amber this is for you! The other friend well she left her's at Amber's so she doesn't know what she is missing. And my kids... well there was none left. So I guess that means it was a hit. 

Chicken, Black Bean and Corn Chili

4-5 chicken breasts
3 cans of tomato sauce ( I like one with garlic and cheese)
2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed
3 cups frozen corn
2 onions diced
6 celery stalks diced
2 peppers (red, orange or yellow) diced
4 cloves garlic minced
Chili Seasoning (recipe below) or 2 packets of chili seasoning

Boil chicken with vegetable seasoning until cooked. Let cool slightly and shred (I put my in my stand mixer for 30-60 seconds).
In a large pot saute onions, celery and peppers over medium low heat until soft 6-7 minutes. Add garlic and cook 1 minute. Add corn, black beans, tomato sauce and chili seasoning. Simmer low for 1 hour, Stirring often.

Chili Seasoning

4 tbsp chili powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
1/2 -1 tsp of cayenne pepper
1 tsp oregano
2 tsp paprika
1 1/2 tbsp cumin
3 tsp seasoning salt
4 tsp pepper
1 tsp basil
2 tbsp brown sugar

Combine everything in a bowl and mix well.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Passion Tea Limeade

Let's start today off by saying; I kind of have a tea obsession, ask my bf Nick. I have a huge cupboard full of tea, which I have to mention was specifically bought to house my tea. Whenever I am out and about and I see a new tea I don't have I get kinda excited. I especially love little tea shops like David's Tea and Teaopia. Which I am sad to say Teaopia is my favourite and they were bought out. However, in saying that, it means that everything is on sale!!! I got a really pretty tea pot for super cheap and lots and lots of tea at 75% off.

One of the things I like the most of Iced Teas. Nick and I like to experiment with different tea and juice mixes. One of my favourite tea drinks in the Passion Tea Lemonade from Starbucks. It is just so good. I always get a Venti and it lasts all of 5 minutes :(. Oh and I also should mention I love limes so much more than lemons. So i decided to try to make it at home and this is what we came up with.

Passion Tea Limeade
2 bags Tazo Passion Tea
2 cups boiling water
2 tbsp sugar
1 can frozen limeade
3 cups cold water

Place tea bags and sugar in boiling water and let steep for 10 minutes. In the meantime mix limeade and water in a big pitcher. Once tea is steeped squeeze out bag and discard. Pour tea into pitcher and mix well.
Refrigerate until cold. If you just cannot wait for that then grab a big glass full of ice and pour over.


Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Chili Cheese Dog Casserole

The kids start school tomorrow! Woo hoo! I cannot wait to have some quiet time during the day to do whatever I want; sit on my NEW couch and read, or do some creating in the kitchen without interruptions among other things, but those are my top two.

See since the kids have been home all summer, even though they have their own rec room in the basement they have monopolized the tv room on the main floor, all day every day, someone is in there. And they get upset when Nick or I want to watch something or play a video game or even better yet just sit and read.

I also know with the start of school, also brings swimming lessons, football, music lessons and lots of running around. So I share this quick and easy meal with you for those crazy on the run days.

Chili Cheese Dog Casserole
10 Jumbo hot dogs
10 Large Tortillas
4-6 cups of chili (I use my Homemade N&A Hearty Chili)
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Grease a large baking dish.

Place 1 hot dog with some cheddar cheese on the bottom third each tortilla and roll up. Place in the casserole dish. Cover with chili. Bake 20-35 minutes until hot.

**I like alot of chili with mine so I use a lot. Use more or less depending on how you like it.
***You can also make this with regular hot dogs and small tortillas.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Apple Pie Crostata!

I joined an online group last week called Sundays with Joy. The group is baking their way through Joy the Baker Cookbook: 100 Simple and Comforting Recipes. Each week we bake a new recipe and post about our adventures. We can make changes the recipes or make them exactly as it says and post our results on Sundays. I will not be posting the recipes unless I have made significant changes. If you want the recipes you can buy her book at the link above. If you want to know more about this group or to join click here.

So this weeks recipe was Apple Pie Crostatas. I made the recipe exactly as it read except for the addition of cinnamon in my pie crust and caramel on top.

They were fun to make and delicious! Especially with vanilla ice cream!

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Buffalo Ranch Chicken

I crave medium buffalo wings all the time. I rarely indulge in them as I know they are not very healthy. However I found this recipe a while back on Pinterest and have been making it for months. The kids love it and ask for it almost every week.The nice thing about this recipe is that is makes enough for 3 meals for my family of 5 big eaters. All 3 of my kids are teenagers. So I usually make a batch and freeze it so we always have some on hand.

The other things I like about this recipe is that the chicken is a base for other recipes that I like to make, like my Buffalo chicken taquitos. But we often serve it simply on some nice toasted hamburgers buns.

Buffalo Ranch Chicken

3 lbs boneless skinless chicken breasts 
1 bottle buffalo wing sauce (I use president's choice)
1 packet of dry Ranch Mix (found near the salad dressings) 

Place all ingredients into the slow cooker and give a good stir. Cook on high for 5-6 hours until chicken is tender and shreds easily.

Let cool. 

To shred I place the chicken in my Kitchen Aid Stand mixer with the paddle attachment and turn on for 30-60 seconds. Voila! all shredded. or you could do it the slow way and use 2 forks. Totally up to you.!

Enjoy! This recipe is not very spicy once cooked. I often add more buffalo sauce when I serve it to those who like things with a kick.