Archive for the ‘Snacks’ Category

Strawberry-Nutella Crepes w/ Honey-Cardamom Yogurt Sauce

I remember when I used to get excited to see a crepe cafe. There’s something that feel special about eating them, especially along with a big cup of good cappuccino! However the cost is too much for something so simple. So, I had to try to make them at home. They came out great and are super simple!

Crepe Batter:

  • 2 eggs
  • 1c milk (I used vanilla soy milk)
  • 2 Tbs sugar
  • 2/3c flour
  • 2 Tbs melted butter

Yogurt sauce:

  • 1c yogurt
  • 1/4c honey or to taste
  • 1/2 tsp ground cardamom powder

Slice the strawberries and make the yogurt sauce before getting started on the crepes. It will be fast moving from then.

Put all ingredients into blender or mixie and blend till there are no lumps. It will be very thin.

Heat a small nonstick pan over medium heat. Pour a quarter to third cup of batter into one edge of the pan. Quickly tilt the pan in a circular motion so the crepe coats the pan in a very thin layer. Cook for a minute or two until just starting to turn light brown. Flip and cook on the other side for 30 seconds. Flip again and transfer to a place. Spread a small amount of nutella, top with slices strawberries and then fold the crepe over in thirds or fourths for triangle shapes. Top with a little yogurt sauce (or some whipped cream).

Sending to Priya and  Pari’s Veggig/fruit a month- Strawberry and Chaya’s Lets do lunch

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Jalapeno Popper Dip

You all know my love for fried foods and the mildly spicy, cheesey jalapeno poppers are no exception! Honestly, I don’t deep fry often though, because of health reasons and because my whole house smells like a vat of oil afterwards. Well, leave it to Kevin to bring the taste of poppers into a cheesy gooey dip without frying (not that its probably any less calorific!)! If you haven’t been yet, hop over to Kevin’s blog Closet Cooking. I have followed him for years, way before I had a blog, and in my mind he is “The King Of Dips”. 😀 I’m definitely on board with that.

I do not usually put mayonaise in my dips because I never buy it, and don’t use it for anything else either. Here’s another cheapskate frugal tip – Next time you go to subway or other sandwich places where they give you packets of mayo, don’t throw them away… You can use them in things where you just need a little, like this one. FYI, mayo does not contain cream or milk ingredients but it does usually contain eggs.

I also love the taste of buffalo sauce. Basically, hot chili sauce! I wanted to incorporate it into my dip without it taking over.

Here is what I did:

  • 5-7 large fresh jalapenos, seeded and diced very small
  • 3 spring onions sliced thinly
  • salt to taste
  • 6 oz cream cheese at room temperature(soft)
  • 1/4c strained or greek yogurt
  • 1/4c mayonnaise (3 packets hehe)
  • 1/2c +1T cheese, grated – I used kerrygold ivernia which is like a cross between cheddar, gruyere and parmesan- any of those would work and so would blue cheese!
  • 1T grated parmesan
  • Some splashes of hot sauce/chili paste
  • 1 handful of panko breadcrumbs

Preheat oven to 350

In a small amount of olive oil, saute the green onions and jalapeno to soften and bring out the flavors. Add a pinch of salt. Let cool a bit while you grate the cheeses and prepare the other ingredients.

Mix the 2 Tablespoons of cheese with panko breadcrumbs and keep aside. Mix the cream cheese, yogurt, and mayo together till incorporated. Stir in the jalapeno mixture. Then stir in the 1/2 grated cheese. Spread in your baking dish and then sprinkle with the chili paste. Use a fork to smooth it over the top layer of the tip. Top with the bread crumb mixture. Spray with an oil spray (optional) to crisp the bread crumbs. Bake for 20-30 minutes until hot and bubbly!! Serve with tortilla chips. The ones we used are made from blue corn… they are not artificially colored. 🙂

Sending to Hearth and Soul Blog Hop

**I know I’ve been a little inactive lately, but I plan to get back into things soon!! **

Orange Cranberry Chocolate Chip Scones

Whew, thats a mouthful! Today I was craving for something sweet, but not too decadent. Something with orange flavor(I’ve been into oranges lately). And maybe chocolate (when is not a good time for chocolate?). I had some cranberries in the fridge and white chocolate- cranberry is a great combination. So is orange-cranberry. I like dark chocolate better than white… so throw those in as well. And thats how I came up with this recipe. 🙂 It was perfect!

  • 2 c flour
  • 1 TBS baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 5 TBS cold butter
  • zest of one orange
  • 1/4c sugar
  • 1/2c dried cranberries
  • 1/4c semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/4c white chocolate chips (trader joes are the best for these!)
  • 3/4- 1 c any of the following or a combination: milk, buttermilk, cream, yogurt(thinned with milk), kefir
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Glaze: (double this if you like to cover them.. this is just enough for a drizzle)

  • 1/4c powdered sugar
  • orange juice to make a thick consistency (less than half an orange)
  • another orange zest

Preheat oven to 400

Zest an orange and mix with the sugar. Keep aside.

Mix flour, baking powder, and salt in a bowl. Cut the 5 tbs of butter into horizontal slices, then cut the slices in half vertically. Turn on their sides and then cut vertically into thirds. You will have small cubes, which is easier to blend with the flour. Cut into the flour with a fork, pastry cutter, food processor, or your hands (be careful not to “melt” the butter with the heat of your hands). There should be small crumbs with no large clumps of butter. Stir in the sugar, cranberries and choc chips. Measure 3/4c of  the liquid(milk) and add the vanilla. Stir into the flour. You may need to add more a TBS at a time. The dough should be slightly sticky. Do not knead the dough, just bring it together in a ball. Using a little extra flour as needed, pat into a 1.5 inch thick round. Cut the round into 8 triangles. Place the triangles slightly apart on a baking sheet (I line it with parchment paper). Bake for 15 mins until the tops are starting to turn slightly golden on the edges.

To make the glaze, just mix the powdered sugar with orange zest and juice. Keep it thick because it will “melt” onto the scones and become thinner. Pour or drizzle the glaze on while still hot.

I’m sending this to Bake Off at Versatile Kitchen.

Spicy Rosemary Parmesan Crackers

I’ve been wanting to try to make crackers at home for a while now.  I don’t eat a lot of crackers, but they seem like fun to try to make and good for the afternoon munchies. I saw a recipe from Barefoot Contessa which looked pretty and very buttery, but as usual I looked around the web for more ideas. I have some rosemary so I knew I wanted to use that, and parmesan in a cracker sounds perfect to me. So I came across these which looks so delightful! I also thought  I would prefer a thin crisp cracker, and it also uses olive oil…. olive oil and rosemary… YUM! I decided to add in spicy chili powder and black pepper. Next time I will try with some cumin seeds too.

They came out unbelievably flaky and airy. With the first bite you get the small punch of woodsy rosemary, which I love! Then there is the buttery parmesan aftertaste and just a hint of the chili. They’re really good!

Here is what I did (adapted from eat make read and the original from Mark Bittman with video)

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour, more as needed (I used 2/3c all purpose and 1/3 whole wheat pastry flour)
  • 1/2 tsp red chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1tsp freshly ground black pepper ( I wanted it peppery, use less if you like)
  • 1/3c  grated fresh Parmesan cheese (I used some grana padano in that)
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh rosemary,very  finely chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 TBS butter
  • 3 TBS cream, more as needed

In a bowl, mix the flour with salt and spices. Cut in the butter with a fork until you can only see small crumbs. Stir in the cheese then add the oil. Stir well to distribute then add in the cream. Form a nice dough which should not be sticky. (You can also do this in food processor) Keep in the fridge to chill for 10 mins while you preheat the oven.

Roll the dough with extra flour until it is 1/8 inch thick. You can then transfer the dough to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or cut the crackers then transfer to the baking sheet(thats what I did). Cut into any shapes you like. I did diamonds. This made more than 50 crackers.

Bake for 10 minutes until lightly browned. I recommend do not let them get too browned or they have a slight “burnt flour” taste.

I am just in time for Global Kadai – Crackers and Straws hosted by  Ria and Cilantro!!!

Savory Corn Cakes

These are so easy to make and can be a snack, breakfast, or main course. You can serve them mint or coconut chutney or salsa and yogurt. But the absolute bestest way is to eat them with these black beans piled high on top…. THEN you must add a spoonful of yogurt, a handful of chopped spring onions and cilantro, and a nice big dollop of guacamole. Now, that might not look the prettiest (and I don’t have a picture of it) but it is soooo delicious!!!  Don’t take my word for it. Try it out! 😉

  • 1c cornmeal
  • 1/2c flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2-1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 red onion diced very small
  • chopped cilantro
  • 2 minced green chilies
  • 1c milk
  • 1 egg (optional)
  • 1tsp cumin powder + 1/2 tsp chili powder (optional)

Feel free to play with the ingredients. You can add  tablespoon or two of yogurt (or pumpkin puree!). If it is too thick, add some water or milk. It should be thick but spreadable, like uthapam batter. If too thin add more flour. You can use any kind of flour, even whole wheat. I also like to add corn kernels when I have it. Its nice to bite into the sweet kernels and gives more texture.

Stir together cornmeal, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt and spices. Beat egg and add it with milk. Then stir in the onion, cilantro, green chillies. Taste for salt and adjust the thickness.

Heat a pan (cast iron is great for this) and add a little oil to coat the bottom of the pan. Make palm sized (4inch?) pancakes in the pan. You can fit 3-4 at a time. When they turn golden on the bottoms, flip them over and cook on the other side. Be sure they are cooked inside. If not, your batter may be too thick or the heat too high.

I am submitting this to Dish Name Starts With C. Don’t they have a rockin’ logo?!

Pumpkin Bread with dried cranberries and nuts

Yes, pumpkin palooza continues with this little goodie. I STILL can’t find my favorite pumpkin bread recipe, which was almost like a pound cake! So I adapted one from this muffin recipe. I can never say no to streusel.

  • 1c all purpose flour
  • 1/2c whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1/2c cake flour (or use any flour to make 2 cups)
  • 1tsp baking soda
  • 1.5 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp each pie spice, cinnamon
  • 1/2tsp each cardamom, allspice
  • 1/4 tsp each nutmeg, salt
  • 3 TBS softened butter
  • 1/2c brown sugar
  • 1/4c granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2c buttermilk (or yogurt thinned with milk or water- I used the pumpkin liquid from making the puree)
  • 1c pumpkin puree
  • 1/3c dried cranberries (I think I would use more next time)
  • 1/3c chopped walnuts (I planned on using green pepitas, but it turns out I was out of them)

Topping:

  • 2TBS cold butter
  • 3TBS brown sugar
  • 3TBS flour

Mix together in a bowl and using a fork cut the butter into the flour mix until it is like crumbs.

Preheat oven to 375

Sift together the dry ingredients.

Beat butter and sugar together until creamy. Blend in the eggs, pumpkin, buttermilk. Stir the flour mixture into the pumpkin mixture until just combined, and then stir in the cranberries and walnuts.

Pour into a greased and floured loaf pan and top with the streusel. Bake for 40 minutes

More pumpkin recipes on my “to-try” list:

  1. No-Bake Layered Pumpkin Cheesecake
  2. Double Chocolate Pumpkin Cupcakes
  3. Spiced Pumpkin Donuts
  4. Pumpkin Aebelskiver
  5. Vegan Swirled Cheesecake Pumpkin Pie
  6. Rum Raisin Pumpkin Bread Pudding

Super Smoothie

Berry Good

 

Smoothie is one of those things which gives a nice payoff for very little effort. A recipe is not needed, just throw in your favorite (blendable) fruits and a little water. Here is one of our favorites… (Since fresh summer fruits are scarce, I have used frozen.)

For 2 big glasses:

1 lg or 2 medium bananas

1/2c frozen blueberries (still frozen, I like the slushy chill that it gives)

1c frozen strawberries (thawed)

Isn't that a gorgeous color?

1c frozen mangoes (thawed) or 1/2c mango puree

2c water

Add the strawberries and mango to the blender first. Then the bananas and blueberries.        Blend a little, then add the water. Continue grinding until its a smooth consistency.                    Add more water if you like. You could also add protein powder or honey,  but  I think its sweet enough just as it is!  Yummy, filling, healthy and quick.   What more can you ask? 🙂

P.S.

If you want to get “really” healthy, toss in a handful of baby spinach leaves. Trust me, you won’t notice its there.

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