Orange Marmalade and Zucchini Tea Cake

Tartine has got to be one of the best bakeries I’ve ever been to. However, since I no longer live in the lovely city of SF I have to make do with their wonderful cookbooks. (books 3 and 4 are on my wish list!) This recipe is surprisingly very easy to put together, and another bonus I got to finally use that marmalade that has been sitting in my fridge taking up space. This recipe is from Tartine’s first self-titled book. While the recipe may seem to call for too much sweetness with the jam and the sugar, funny enough it wasn’t too sweet. I had some slivered almonds that I threw into the batter. I also added that crunchy sugar to the top for texture. I’m sure I’ll make this one again it was so delicious! Added bonus is it keeps well in the fridge and I almost want to say tasted better the next day.
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Butternut Squash with Coconut Milk and Curry

Let me start this post by saying that there is nothing wrong with this recipe. (Mark Bittman’s How to Cook Everything Vegetarian)But whatever you do, DO NOT BUY FROZEN BUTTERNUT SQUASH FOR THIS!!! This would make it 0-2 in terms of successful use of frozen butternut squash. I figured it would be convenient to have it on hand in the freezer. However, I will have to say it is probably only useful if you are making butternut squash soup. The texture is just too mushy. The recipe was delicious though. I could be happy with just the sauce over rice. It was super easy, and super fast. (Always a good combo don’t you think?) I’m on the fence about this recipe. I don’t know about the mix of the squash flavor, but perhaps it was also too soft. I think it would be better with a little more bite left in the squash. Try it and judge for yourselves.
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Orange-Dijon Chicken Wings

It is rather sad how terrible this photo came out only because the chicken itself is really quite good. I have tried quite a few recipes out of this slow-cooker book, some were a hit and some not so much. However, I am a big fan of Beth Hensperger recipes in general since they always seem easy to try and mostly quite tasty too. I know true wings are grilled, broiled, with crispy skin etc, but let’s keep in mind it is REALLY HOT here and with a busy schedule this is such a breeze to put together. Trust me if there was an easy way to get crispy skin with this flavor sauce I’d be all for that.  While I did this with little drummettes, I am sure it would be great with some chicken thigh as well using the same method. The flavor was a great blend of my favorites, sweet, tangy, and very addictive. The meat was melt off the bone tender. This is definitely a recipe I will keep using again!
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Couscous with Tomato, Lemon, and Scallion

This is a tasty side dish that takes very little time. I never knew toasting the couscous could give it so much more flavor. (Note the brownish color). Adding some cayenne gives it some kick plus extra tang from the lemon. The tomato and scallions add a fresh flavor. I made it alongside some chicken drummettes (will post the recipe next week!) for an easy delicious meal. The couscous recipe is from America’s Test Kitchen~ definitely a resource whose recipes I can rely on as delicious. Give this one a go!
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Ham and Cheese Pinwheels

Need a quick appetizer for a party? Or perhaps some quick bites for lunch? These were so simple and easy that the author had it right to say there is no “recipe” you just sort of put it together. I have been following the blog Lunchbox Blues for the past year or so because the author is great about how to make lunches that aren’t your typical sandwich PB&J (not that there is anything wrong with that, but there are only so many you can eat). I even got his cookbook Beating the Lunchbox Blues  which was more of a picture book showing options you could do for lunch. I have tried several things and these pinwheels were one of them. Just have a sheet of puff pastry, put on some sandwich meat, and cheese. Roll up, bake, consume. How could anything in puff pastry be anything but delicious?

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Homemade Maple Granola

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I love granola. There is only so much bread you can eat every morning before you say ok I need something with a different texture. I used to buy just a box and find I’d go through it in a week. It had been a long time since I’ve made homemade granola, but now I think I will get back into it. It is so much cheaper to make at home and it is so easy. I got this recipe from Jessica Fisher’s Not Your Mother’s Freezer Recipes cookbook and she even mentioned getting the spin off from Ellie Krieger (one of my favorite recipe people!) Literally put all your ingredients together (except dried fruit which you add at the end) mix with maple syrup, then bake. I added some orange zest to the mix as well. The variations are endless, but I was happy with my mix of nuts, sunflower seeds, and cranberries. Add in generous dollops of vanilla yogurt and it is a tasty meal!  A definite must-try for the mornings!

Chicken Enchilada

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Have you ever opened your fridge and seen food there and thought “I have nothing to eat”? Yes this was one of those moments. I thought how convenient it would be to just go get a burger somewhere, or something equally bad for me. Being tired and stressed makes me so lazy in the kitchen and I also develop a set of “cravings” that I have no idea how to get rid of. Well after looking in this cookbook for ideas I realized that I had all the makings for some chicken enchiladas. I just had no desire to make a ton so I made a couple individual servings and have some extra fillings for a few more servings. So I had some cooked chicken, some red onion, cream cheese mixed together with some taco seasoning. Wrap in some tortillas and I had some leftover fantastic spicy queso (no this is not “cheese sauce”!) poured on top. Here was the awesome part~ using the toaster oven! No need to heat up my large oven when I only rolled 2 enchiladas. Baked in there for 17min at 350 and it was perfect. Add some salsa on the side~ voila dinner. Sorry, this photo doesn’t do the dish justice, but when you are hungry this will have to do. 🙂