Saturday, November 7, 2015

Creamsickle Cake

I have friends who have diabetes and am always looking for a good dessert to feed them, but also one that won't put them in a coma or worse.   I came across this recipe online and decided to try it.   Turned out pretty good.   The original recipe called for a standard cake mix, but I switched it for a Pillsbury Sugar Free cake mix.   Instead of plain orange juice I used a orange-pineapple-banana juice mix, instead of plain yogurt I used a sugar free tropical fruit flavored one and a few drops of pineapple extract.   Sure turned out good too!  And since there were no eggs in it, I could lick the batter off the bowl!  That was tasty too.  Hope you enjoy!

1 box (15.25 oz) Pillsbury Sugar Free Yellow Cake Mix
1 container (6 oz) non-fat Greek yogurt, plain or flavored
1 cup orange juice (any other juice would work)
1/2 tsp pineapple extract, no reason you couldn't use other flavoring that suit the juice you are using
powdered sugar, optional

In a large mixing bowl, combine cake mix, Greek yogurt, extract or other flavoring and juice.  Pour batter into a greased 8 x8 inch square pan.  Bake at 350 degrees for 30-33 minutes.  Slice into 9 pieces.  Garnish with a dusting of powdered sugar if desired.

If you want to do it using a regular cake mix, then the skies the limit for flavors!   Chocolate cake mix with cherry juice and cherry yogurt.   Spice cake mix with apple juice and cheesecake yogurt.  Lemon cake mix with lemon yogurt and lemonade.  

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Pineapple Sugar Cookies

I love pineapple and wanted a sugar cookie type cookie with a pineapple flavor.  All the pineapple cookie recipes I have found were more like a cake style cookie and that wasn't what I wanted.  They also tended not to have much of a pineapple flavor.  So I did some experimenting and came up with the perfect recipe.  It uses dried pineapple juice powder, but not sure if it really adds that much to it.  So feel free to leave it out if you can't find it.

1 cup softened butter
2 cups white sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. pure pineapple extract
2 eggs
2 tbsp. milk
4 cups flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1/4 cup died pineapple juice powder (leave out if you can't find it)
1/2 cup or more finely diced dried pineapple

Cream the butter and sugar together until fluffy.   Then beat in the egg, milk and flavorings.  Mix all the dry ingredients together and mix into the butter and egg mixture.    Blend well, then cover and chill for a couple of hours.    When well chilled, form into balls using about 2 tbsp. of dough.  Place a few inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet, bake at 375 degrees for about 10-12 minutes.   The bottoms of the cookies should just barely start to brown.   Allow to cool on the cookie sheet for a few minutes, then remove to a rack to continue cooling.   Makes about 3 1/2 to 4 dozen cookies.  

If you want a crunchy sugar coating, mix some white sugar with some of the pineapple juice powder and a couple drops of the pineapple extract and mix well, before baking roll each of the dough balls in the sugar mixture and bake as usual. 

Enjoy, I know I do!

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Pineapple Sheet Cake

2 cups flour
1 1/2 cup white sugar
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 20-oz can crushed pineapple, with juice
2 eggs
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. pineapple extract

Mix dry ingredients together well, then beat in the remaining ingedients. Spoon into greased pan and bake 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick stuck in the center comes out clean. Cool well before cutting, may frost with cream cheese frosting if desired.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Pineapple Cookies

I have a very good friend who loves anything with pineapple.  I have been trying to find a good recipe for a pineapple cookie that is more chewy than cakey, with a good pineapple flavor.  So far this one is the best I've some across.  There are many variations of it, but this is the basic recipe that hits the high points of all of them.  Not quite as chewy as I'd like and the pineapple flavor isn't quite as strong as I'd like, but for now it is a very good start.   And the cookie is a very good cookie.   I can recommend it even it isn't exactly what I was hoping for.  I will keep looking, but until then I will be using this one. 

1 cup butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup white sugar
2 eggs
20 oz can crushed pineapple, drained and juice reserved
1 tsp. vanilla
4 cups flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. baking powder
For the icing:(if using)
reserved pineapple juice
2 cups powdered sugar
I didn’t have any crushed pineapple, so I ran a can of pineapple chunks through the blender.  It worked, but crushed is better.
Iin a mixer bowl cream the butter with the sugars.  Add the eggs, pineapple and vanilla.  In a large bowl, combine the dry ingredients.  Blend into the wet ingredients.  Drop by teaspoonful onto a greased cookie sheet.  Bake at 400 degrees for 8-10 minutes.
I like them without the icing, although it might give them a hit of pineapple flavor.   
For the icing: Gradually add pineapple juice to the powdered sugar by the tablespoon.  You want the consistency to be a bit thick, but still stream off the spoon.  While the cookies are still warm, spread the icing on the tops.
This recipe makes about 8 dozen soft, delicious cookies.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Healthy Gluten Free "bread"

This makes a delicious breakfast, sliced a bit thickly and spread with some peanut butter.  

Healthy Gluten Free Bread
Makes 1 loaf
1 cup sunflower seeds
½ cup flax seeds
½ cup hazelnuts or almonds
1 ½ cups rolled oats
2 Tbsp. chia seeds
4 Tbsp. psyllium seed husks (3 Tbsp. if using psyllium husk powder)
1 tsp. fine grain sea salt
1 Tbsp. maple syrup
or honey(for sugar-free diets, use a pinch of stevia)
3 Tbsp. coconut oil or
butter, melted
1 ½ cups water
In a loaf pan, combine all dry ingredients. Whisk maple syrup, oil and water together in a separate bowl. Add mixture to the dry ingredients and combine until everything is completely soaked and dough becomes very thick, adding 1-2 teaspoons water if dough is too thick to stir. Smooth top and let sit at room temperature for at least 2 hours or overnight. 
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Bake bread for 20 minutes, then remove bread from loaf pan, place it upside down, directly on a rack, and bake for another 30-40 minutes (it should sound hollow when tapped). Let cool completely before slicing.
Store in an airtight container for up to 5 days. 
If you wish, you can also add about ½-3/4 cups diced dried fruit to the bread and about ½ tsp of cinnamon as well. I also tend to double the amount of honey when I use that.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Mario's Mexican Breakfast AKA Migas con Huevos

I have a very good friend in Wichita, by the name of Mario.  He is originallMy from Monterey, NL Mexico.  When I visit him, he sometimes makes this very simple and utterly delicious breakfast dish. I have made it many times and anyone who is a fan of Mexican food loves it too.  It is easy to fix for a crowd and a good way to use up stale corn tortillas.  This recipe is for one serving, just double, triple, etc for more people.

2 tbsp oil or lard
2-4 corn tortillas, torn into medium sized pieces
About ¼ cup chopped onion 
1-2 green chiles, seeded and chopped (optional for those who want some heat)
¼ cup cooked salsa, green or red
3-4 eggs, lightly beaten

In a medium sized skillet, nonstick if possible, heat the oil and then fry the tortilla pieces until the start to crisp a bit, stirring often.  Remove from pan and drain on a paper towel.  Add the onion and green chile if using and cook until tender, add the tortilla pieces, the eggs and salsa, cooking until eggs are done, stirring as needed.  Dish up and eat!

You may add some chorizo or diced ham when frying the onion and chiles.  You can top with grated cheese if you like, but I really think that isn't needed.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Huevos motuleƱos

I first had this breakfast dish at a lovely restaurant in Santa Fe, NM called Cafe Pascuals.  It is lovely little place and at breakfast time packed from wall to wall, but well worth the trouble to get into.   The friends I went with recommended that I try this and I was so very happy that I did.  It is an incredible dish and so very easy to make.  It is also very flexible and quick to make as well.

It is originally from the southern part of Mexico, as you can see from the ingredients and is named from the town where it originated, Motul.  Here is my take on it.  Enjoy!

For each serving:

1 ripe, but firm banana, peeled halved lengthways, then each half halved again crossways.
1/2 cup cooked, drained and reheated beans, black are traditional but pintos work well too
1 cup green sauce, heated or a heated cooked smooth red sauce
2-3 eggs cooked as desired, fried is traditional
1/2 cup diced ham or cooked pork (optional)
3 heated corn tortillas
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese or crumbled cotija cheese or some grated monterey jack cheese
1/2 cup cooked green peas (optional, I usually leave out but it is traditional)
1/2 cup pico de gallo
1 tbsp. butter

Heat the tortillas in a dry skillet until warm, but still flexible.  Place on serving plate and set aside in a warm place.   Heat the butter in the skillet and gently fry the banana slices until lightly browned on each side, a nonstick skillet is best for this as the sugar in the bananas can make them stick very easily in a regular skillet.   When the bananas are browned assemble your plate:  tortillas, then the heated salsa, scatter the cooked drained beans over the top, then the ham or pork if using, then the eggs, the peas, the pico de gallo, and finally the crumbled cheese, place the fried banana slices around the edges.   I usually don't use the peas, and in place of the pico de gallo, often just smother the whole thing with more green sauce, mainly because I love green sauce!   This is a delicious breakfast dish and easily made as you can have everything except the eggs and bananas prepared ahead of time, just heat, cook the eggs and bananas, assemble and eat.   I like it for lunch and a light supper too.  Pretty healthy as well!