Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Chicken Diablo

chicken diablo

Posted by: Maggie

You guys...

I did something really, really, really dumb.

I gave up dessert for Lent.

As I've gotten older, my sweet tooth has significantly lessened, but apparently not to the point where 40 dessert-free days and nights will be easy. As I type this blog post on Monday night, I am majorly jonesing for some ice cream. I know it's supposed to be a sacrifice, but dude...unfulfilled ice cream cravings suck.

Fortunately, I can still cook delicious things like this Chicken Diablo over the upcoming weeks. I know it doesn't look like anything special, but it is probably one of my favorite dinner recipes that I've posted on here. I hate bland food and under-seasoned food, and this is anything but! I'm planning on making it again sometime soon with Greek yogurt instead of sour cream, to make it a bit healthier.

Here's what you'll need:

1/2 cup Frank's hot pepper sauce
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup ketchup
1/4 cup honey
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 large boneless, skinless, chicken breasts, pounded to even thickness
2 tablespoons canola oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
Sliced scallions, to taste
Cooked white rice, for serving

Combine pepper sauce, sour cream, ketchup, honey, paprika, and cumin in a medium bowl, and whisk well to combine.

Place chicken in a shallow dish, and pour half the sauce over the top, turning to coat. Cover, and place in the fridge for 2 hours to marinate. Cover the remaining sauce and store in the fridge.

Heat canola oil in a large skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Add the garlic, and cook for 30 seconds. Remove chicken from marinade, and place in the skillet (discard extra marinade.) Cook until browned and cooked through, turning frequently, for about 15-20 minutes.

While the chicken is cooking, heat the remaining sauce in a small saucepan on low, until warmed.

To serve, scoop rice onto a plate, top with chicken, sauce, and scallions. Eat. Drool. Repeat.

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Source: Adapted from Bev Cooks

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Chicken Tortilla Soup


Posted by: Annie

This is my least favorite part of the year. I feel guilty saying that there are actually months of time that I dislike, but in all honesty, I feel that February and March just drag on and on. On top of my dislike of the long winter months, I have also been struggling with repetitive dinner choices. Since moving in with Scott, I have been struggling with how "Scott-centric" our dinners have become. Clearly, I love chicken wings as much as the next gal, but I have eaten probably close to 100 chicken wings since January and I have been craving some variety in my dinner (sorry Scott!) 

In my effort to make some "Annie-centric" dinners, I have been looking for some meals that I can make ahead of time and simply reheat when I get home. This Chicken Tortilla soup was the perfect antidote to the food rut I felt I was in. Now if only I could fast-forward to April...

What you will need:

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/4 cup white onion, diced
1/4 cup Anaheim pepper, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
4 cups chicken broth
2 tablespoons corn starch
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked, and chopped into bite sized pieces
3 (6-inch) corn tortillas, diced
2 tablespoons lime juice
1/2 cup diced canned tomatoes
8 ounces shredded mild cheddar cheese
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon oregano
1/4 teaspoon salt
Tortilla strips for garnish

In a large pan, heat vegetable oil over medium heat, and add in onion, pepper, and garlic. Cook gradually, for approximately 15 minutes, or until the onions appear translucent. In a separate large bowl, whisk corn starch and chicken broth together. Add the broth mixture, chicken, corn tortillas, lime juice, tomatoes, cheese, and spices into the pan. Increase heat to medium-high and stir constantly until the cheese has melted. When the cheese is melted and the soup begins to bubble, lower the heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Top with tortilla strips, and enjoy!

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Source: Adapted from Brown Eyed Baker

Monday, February 20, 2012

Blueberry Muffins


Posted by: Maggie

How is it possible that Annie & I don't have a blueberry muffin recipe on here yet? 

We have Apple Cinnamon Butterscotch, Applesauce Oatmeal, Banana Chocolate Chip, Regular Chocolate Chip, Pumpkin Cream Cheese, and Spiced Buttermilk, yet somehow managed to never make the most classic and possibly best beloved muffin out there.

(Sidebar: When I was listing muffins I couldn't help but think of this video and laugh. Bits O' Glass muffin!)

Anyway, one of the great things about this recipe is that it uses frozen blueberries. I generally only buy fresh blueberries during the late spring and summer when they're in season, so this will be a great recipe to have on hand during the winter months when fresh blueberries are all mushy and sour.

There are a few things to be aware of if you make this recipe. The batter is insanely thick, and you will fill your muffin cups to the top. They won't overflow; I promise! Also, my oven typically runs hot, yet I still had to bake these for 31 minutes. Start testing these at 25 minutes, but be aware that they might need quite a bit longer.

Lastly, while I added lemon zest and lemon extract to these, I wouldn't call them a blueberry-lemon muffin. Oftentimes, I think that blueberry muffins are kind of bland and flavorless, so I just wanted to brighten the flavor without making a full-fledged lemon-flavored muffin.

Here's what you'll need for 12 moist, delicious muffins:

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg
1 cup granulated sugar
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
1 1/4 cups sour cream (I used full-fat)
1/4 teaspoon lemon extract
Zest of 1 large lemon
1 1/2 cups frozen blueberries

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, and line a muffin tin with paper liners.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.

In a medium mixing bowl, vigorously whisk egg for 20 seconds. Pour in sugar, and whisk for 30 seconds. The mixture will be thick. Add the melted butter in 2 additions, and whisk to thoroughly combine. Whisk in the sour cream in 2 additions until combined. Lastly, whisk in the lemon extract and lemon zest.

Add the frozen blueberries to the dry ingredients, and gently toss to coat. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, and fold together, just until no large patches of flour remain and the berries are evenly distributed. Don't overmix!

Spray a cookie scoop with non-stick spray, and evenly divide batter among the prepared muffin cups.

Bake in preheated oven for 25-32 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through baking time. Start checking muffins at 25 minutes. They're done when a skewer inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean, and the tops are golden brown. Remove from the oven, and immediately turn out onto a wire rack to cool.

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Source: Adapted from Brown Eyed Baker, who adapted from Baking Illustrated

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Chocolate Peanut Butter Lava Cake for One

Chocolate Peanut Butter Lava Cake for One // A Bitchin' Kitchen

Posted by: Maggie

Sometimes, you need hot, decadent, melty chocolate quickly.

Maybe you don't want to wait for butter to soften. Maybe you don't want to drag out your mixer, or dirty a lot of bowls. Maybe you simply don't want leftovers staring you in the face.

This is a recipe for when you're feeling impatient or lazy, but can't quell your chocolate cravings with a handful of chocolate chips, or that random chocolate Snack-Pak that's been hiding in your fridge and never seems to expire.

This takes 5 minutes to mix together, and 10-15 minutes to bake, depending on your oven. You can't tell from this photo, but when you cut into this, thick, fudgy, chocolately "lava" slowly pours out. Make it tonight!

Here's what you'll need:

Non-stick baking spray
Unsweetened cocoa powder, for dusting
1 tablespoon butter
1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 large egg
4 teaspoons sugar
1 tablespoon peanut butter (or 1 tablespoon bourbon if you don't want PB!)
Pinch of salt
1 teaspoon flour
Powdered sugar and berries for garnish, if desired

Place a baking sheet in the oven, and preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray a ramekinwith baking spray, and dust with cocoa powder. Set aside.

Place butter and chocolate chips in a microwave safe dish, and nuke in 15-second increments, stirring in between, until melted. In a medium bowl, whisk together egg, sugar, and peanut butter until thoroughly combined. Whisk in chocolate mixture until incorporated. Lastly, mix in salt and flour.

Pour batter into ramekin, and place on the baking sheet in the oven. Bake for 10-15 minutes. You will know it's done when the top looks dry, but the cake still jiggles. Let cool for 5 minutes, then run a knife around the edge to loosen. Carefully invert onto a plate, and garnish with powdered sugar and berries, if desired. Eat immediately!

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Source: adapted from Joy the Baker Cookbook: 100 Simple and Comforting Recipes

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Monday, February 13, 2012

Shirley Temple Cupcakes


Posted by: Annie

Growing up, my sisters and I were not really allowed to have soda. Soda was reserved for "special occasions," like when we had birthday parties, or the occasional babysitter (poor babysitter.) So, on the occasions we were allowed to have it, it was a a BIG DEAL. 

Typically the no soda rule applied to when we ate out in restaurants, but on the rare occasion we were given the "go," I can remember choosing a Shirley Temple. I think my main motivation behind ordering this classic drink was because I adored the maraschino cherries that came on top. When considering recipes to make for Valentine's Day, Shirley Temples came to mind - specifically, a recipe for Shirley Temple cupcakes that I had discovered on The Curvy Carrot a few months back.

These cupcakes are delicious and festive, and are the perfect addition to your Valentine's Day celebration.

What you will need:

For the Cupcakes:

1 1/2 cup flour, plus 1 tablespoon
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature
1/2 cup cherry 7-Up
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1 tablespoon maraschino cherry juice
Red food coloring

For the buttercream frosting:

1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
Pinch salt
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon maraschino cherry juice

For garnish:

12 maraschino cherries

Preheat oven to 350 degrees, and line a cupcake pan with paper liners.

In a large bowl, combine 1 1/2 cup flour, baking powder, and salt and whisk. Set aside.

Using a stand mixer and paddle attachment, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy, approximately 2-3 minutes. Add eggs one at a time, and combine well.

Lower the speed of the mixer and add half the flour mixture. Next, add half of the 7-Up and continue to alternate adding flour and 7-Up until completely added. Next add vanilla and almond extracts, and mix well.

Remove 3/4 cup of the batter and place in a small bowl. Add flour, cherry juice, and food coloring (to desired red color.) Distribute red batter to the bottom of each cupcake liner (approximately 2-3 teaspoons per liner.)

Top with remaining cupcake batter, being careful not to mix the two. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Be careful not to over-bake.

For the frosting, using a stand mixer, cream butter for 2-3 minutes until light and fluffy. Reduce the speed to low and add salt, powdered sugar, extracts, lemon juice, and maraschino juice. Frost cupcakes, and top with a maraschino cherry.

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Source: The Curvy Carrot

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Brie and Bacon Quiche


Posted by: Maggie

Sooo, Valentine's Day is next Tuesday, as I'm sure you're all aware. 

I totally neglected coming up with a Valentine's themed dessert to share with you, and definitely won't have time to do so in the next 5 days.

May I offer you a quiche instead? Eggs, cream, bacon, and copious amounts of cheese are romantic, right?

If you disagree, may I suggest making these red velvet cupcakes instead? Perhaps some mini-raspberry swirl cheesecakes? Maybe some chocolate cherry cookies? All thoroughly delicious options.

If you're not here for a Valentine's Day treat, let's move along and talk about this quiche. I bookmarked this recipe last spring, and finally got around to making it last week. Hellooooo, best quiche ever. I know quiche has a reputation as chick food for some reason, but Jeff loved this. He mumbled something through bites about calling it meat and egg pie instead, so if you're serving this to anti-quiche men, feel free to change the name.

Here's what you'll need:

1 frozen deep-dish pie crust, pre-baked if instructed (I didn't pre-bake mine)
4 ounces Brie, rind removed if desired, cubed
4 ounces Swiss cheese, diced
10 slices bacon, cooked crisp and crumbled
6 large eggs
1/2 cup whipping cream
1/2 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 dash each nutmeg, salt, and pepper

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Place the pie crust on a small baking sheet. Evenly place cheeses in the bottom of the pie crust. Layer crumbled bacon on the top. Beat the remaining ingredients in a large bowl, and pour into the pie crust. Bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes, or until a pick comes out clean. Cool for 20 minutes before serving.

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Source: Tasty Kitchen

Monday, February 6, 2012

Spiced Buttermilk Muffins


Posted by: Maggie

I don't know about you guys, but I waste a metric crap-ton of buttermilk. I buy it constantly for baking muffins, quick breads, cupcakes, etcetera, but never manage to use up a full container before its expiration. I had a nearly full carton of it left in my fridge after making these pancakes for Jeff and I last weekend. I assumed it would go to waste like it always does, but as luck would have it, Kristina posted an amazing looking recipe for Spiced Buttermilk Muffins and rescued my buttermilk from its garbage can fate. 

There's just one problem...I made these in an attempt to use leftover buttermilk, but now I'm going to buy MORE buttermilk, specifically to make these moist, flavorful, and delicious muffins again and again. Sigh. It's a vicious cycle.


Here's what you'll need for 16-18 muffins:

For the muffins:

1 cup + 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
3 eggs
2 1/2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons ground allspice
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3/4 cup + 1 tablespoon buttermilk

For the streusel topping:

1 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 heaping teaspoon cinnamon
1 heaping teaspoon ground allspice

Combine the ingredients for the streusel topping in a bowl, and set aside.

Line muffin tins with paper liners, and preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar. Add in eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, allspice, and cinnamon. Alternate adding dry ingredients and buttermilk to the creamed butter mixture, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients, beating slowly until just combined.

Fill prepared muffin cups three-quarters of the way full with batter. Top with streusel, and bake immediately (so the topping doesn't sink.) Bake for 18-21 minutes, or until golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes in the muffin tins, and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

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Source: My Life as a Mrs., who adapted these from Mimi's Cafe

Friday, February 3, 2012

Super Bowl Recipe Roundup!


Posted by: Maggie

Hurray! The Super Bowl is this Sunday, which means it's the end of football 'til the fall, which also means that I get the undivided attention of my boyfriend again. I have lots of fun activities planned to fill our now empty Sundays, such as, hand holding, meaningful talks about our feelings, and long walks on short piers.

Errr, not that we really spent Sundays during football season together anyway. He usually hauls ass out of here at noon on Sundays to watch football on his comically oversized television back at his place. And we probably won't be spending Sundays together even now that football is over, because there's surely some other sport that he'll be watching, like hockey, or synchronized swimming, or badminton.

Oh well. I can't hate on football too much since like I said before, the Super Bowl is a day to watch funny commercials and eat good food. Therefore, I wanted to give you a list of some snacks, dips, and football friendly food we've posted in the past that would be perfect for game day!

Baba Ghanoush  (<--Reminds me of a random reference in one of my fave movies, see 2:49)
Beef and Bean Chili 
Chipotle Chicken Drumsticks
Fried Mozzarella Sticks
Hummus
Onion Dip
Pepperoni Pizza Dip
Spicy Roasted Chicken Wings
Spinach Dip (Cold)
Spinach Dip (Hot) (<--My version of heaven involves a spinach dip pond, and a canoe made from a baguette)
Sweet and Sour Meatballs 
Sweet Potato Chips
Taco Dip
Warm Blue Cheese and Bacon Dip (<--Worst food photo EVER, but deeeeelicious)

What are you planning on making for the Super Bowl? Share in the comments; I always need new appetizer/dip/snack ideas!

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Peanut Butter Cheesecake Swirl Brownies


Posted by: Maggie

While I never post a recipe on here that I don't absolutely love, most of the baked goods I share aren't made with my own personal tastes in mind. Jeff doesn't like my favorite dessert combination of peanut butter and chocolate, and since I typically pawn off my desserts on him so I'm not tempted to eat them all, lots of the baked goods that I post are things I know he'll love. 

If this blog was strictly about Maggie-friendly desserts, it wouldn't be an actual blog - it would just be a live streaming webcast of me face-planting into a bowl of peanut butter frosting and violently exploding all over my apartment a la Mr. Creosote. (<--Don't click there if you're about to eat, or just finished eating. You've been warned. If you know who Mr. Creosote is without clicking, consider yourself my new best friend.) 

This is the first dessert recipe in awhile that I made specifically for me. I love and adore peanut butter, want to have a civil union with cheesecake, and would happily make brownies my prison bitch. A recipe combining my three twisted desires clearly needed to be made.

These do not disappoint. In fact, I don't ever want another dessert again. I'll stick a candle in this as my birthday cake in a few months. When I get married? I want my husband to feed me a big 'ole slab of this during the reception. Next time I make them, I might add peanut butter chips to the brownie portion. If it's possible to improve these, that would be the way.

Please go make these now. Thanks.

Here's what you'll need:

For the brownies:

14 tablespoons unsalted butter
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 cups sugar
6 ounces cream cheese, softened
6 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup all-purpose flour

For the peanut butter cheesecake swirl:

8 ounces cream cheese, softened
2/3 cup creamy peanut butter
6 tablespoons sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9x13 metal baking pan with foil, and spray with cooking spray. Set aside.

Combine the butter and chocolate in a heatproof bowl, and microwave on 50 percent power, stirring every 30 seconds, until melted. This takes about 3 minutes in my microwave.

In a large mixer bowl, whisk together cocoa powder and sugar. With a mixer on medium speed, beat in melted chocolate mixture. Beat in cream cheese until fully incorporated. Add in eggs, one at a time, making sure to beat thoroughly after each addition. Beat in vanilla and salt. Lower the mixer speed and add flour until just combined.

Pour the brownie batter into the prepared pan, and smooth the top with a rubber spatula.

Now, make the peanut butter cheesecake swirl. In a medium mixing bowl, beat together cream cheese, peanut butter, and sugar for 3 minutes. Beat in the egg and vanilla until fully incorporated.

Drop the peanut butter mixture over the brownie mixture in blobs, and gently swirl with a knife or a skewer. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until center is just set. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

I tested these at both room temperature and chilled, and preferred the cold ones!

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Source: Annie's Eats, who adapted them from Kitchenist 
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