Monday, December 26, 2011

The Perfect Combination of Spicy and Sweet

It took nearly a month to get my hands on Chipotle Peppers in Adobo Sauce, and another month to find the time to bake. But finally, I have produced the most delicious Chipotle Pumpkin Muffins that are the perfect combination of spicy and sweet! I doubled the recipe to use the whole can of pumpkin, and I after baking up a dozen muffins, I poured the rest of the batter into a loaf pan. I also sprinkled some of the muffins with pumpkin seeds and crystallized ginger, just for fun. 

3/4 cup all purpose flour
3/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour
2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp baking powder
2/3 cup oil
1/3 cup milk
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 cup light brown sugar
2 eggs, slightly beaten
1 cup pureed pumpkin
1 chipotle pepper, chopped into a paste
2 Tbsp adobo sauce from the peppers

Preheat oven to 350. Grease muffin pan or line with cupcake papers.
In a large mixing bowl, wisk flour, spices, salt, soda and baking powder together. Stir in wet ingredients until just combined.
Spoon batter into muffin pan. Bake for 22-25 minutes or until they are golden brown and spring back with touched.

Allergens: Wheat, gluten, milk, eggs
Nutrition: 250 calories, 13 g fat, 1 g saturated fat 31 mg cholesterol, 246 mg sodium, 35 mg potassium, 31 g carbohydrates, 3 g fiber, 18 g sugar, 3 g protein, 89% vitamin A, 1% vitamin C, 5% iron, 3% calcium, 13% vitamin E

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

A Lesson in MyPlate

At the Diabetes Center, we teach our patients to use the "Plate Method" to get them started on a diabetic diet. We tell them to make half their plate vegetables, one quarter of their plate protein and one quarter of their plate starch. This a great way for everyone to control their portions and increase the amount of vegetables in your diet. So to further my continual mission to eat healthy and exercise. I want to cook more meals that follow this "Plate Method". 

What's on the Plate?
Penzey's Tandoori Chicken
Start preparation the night before. 
Mix 1-2 TB. tandoori seasoning with 1 Cup plain yogurt and the juice of ½ lemon. Pour over a cut-up skinless chicken, cover and place in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight. Remove from marinade, bake 45 minutes uncovered at 325°, turning and basting every 15 minutes.  Hand-mixed from: coriander, cumin, sweet paprika, garlic, ginger, cardamom and saffron.

Trader Joe's Rice Orzo Pilaf Mix
Just twenty minutes of simmering on the back burner. Because I'm cooking for one, I always have leftovers for days!

Steamfresh Steamed Green Beans
Throw it in the microwave when the chicken is close to done! You can also add some slivered almonds.

Homemade Holiday Treats

Peppermint Bark reminds me of Christmas. Well,  I could say that about a lot of sweets really.... but it seems as though one of the other dietitians at my internship agrees and brought in an identical-looking batch of dark and white chocolate peppermint bark just last week. Happy coincidence, since my stash had just about run out! 

8 ounces Nestle dark chocolate morsels
2 teaspoons canola oil, divided
8 ounces Nestle premier white morsels
25 peppermint candies, crushed

Lightly grease a 9x9 inch pan and line with waxed paper, smoothing out wrinkles; set aside.
Place the semisweet chocolate and 1 teaspoon of the canola oil in the top of a double boiler over just barely simmering water, stirring frequently and scraping down the sides with a rubber spatula to avoid scorching. When the chocolate is melted, stir in 1/4 teaspoon of the peppermint extract. Pour the melted chocolate into the prepared pan, and spread evenly over the bottom of the pan. Sprinkle half of the crushed peppermints over the chocolate layer. Refrigerate until completely hardened, about 1 hour.
Place the white chocolate and the remaining 1 teaspoon canola oil in the top of a double boiler over just barely simmering water, stirring frequently and scraping down the sides with a rubber spatula to avoid scorching. When the chocolate is melted, stir in the remaining 1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract. Pour the white chocolate directly over the semisweet chocolate layer; spread evenly. Sprinkle the remaining crushed candy over the top and gently press in. Refrigerate until completely hardened. Remove from pan; break into small pieces to serve.

Allergens: Milk, Peanuts

I literally can't wait for the Holidays!

It's a little early for Hanukkah, but I always think it's good to work for your food. My fingers hurt after shredding and peeling four cups of potatoes, but it was worth it! These labor intensive latkas took about an hour to make, so we fried them up tonight while we had the patience. For dinner tomorrow, we will heat them back up in the oven, serve them with applesauce, and enjoy!

2 cups peeled and shredded potatoes
1 tablespoon grated onion
3 eggs, beaten
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 cup canola oil for frying

1) Place the potatoes in a cheesecloth and wring, extracting as much moisture as possible. (Or use a strainer to get some of the potato juice out, like I did )
2) In a medium bowl stir the potatoes, onion, eggs, flour and salt together.
3) In a large heavy-bottomed skillet over medium-high heat, heat the oil until hot. Place large spoonfuls of the potato mixture into the hot oil, pressing down on them to form 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick patties. Brown on one side, turn and brown on the other. Let drain on paper towels. Serve hot!

Allergens: Egg, wheat, gluten
Nutrition (1/17 mixture = 1 latka): 98 calories, 5 g fat, 1 g saturated fat, 65 mg cholesterol, 440 mg sodium, 246 mg potassium, 10 g carbohydrates, 1 g fiber, .5 g sugar, 3 g protein, 2% vitamin A, 7% vitamin C, 1% calcium, 4% iron