Friday, March 27, 2015

Middle Eastern Inspired Meatless Burger



Middle Eastern Inspired Meatless Burger

Excuse me but how did it get to be nearly 7:00 pm and I'm still at my desk? Oh, yeah, it's all that lovely extra light that happens after DST in early spring. And I'm not complaining for a second because I love it. But I should probably be more mindful of the clock so that I don't finally come up for air, starving and realizing I have not prepped anything for dinner.

Middle Eastern Inspired Meatless Burger
Eggs? Yup, those happen a lot for dinner but it's never as satisfying. A well dressed and protein packed veggie burger sandwich, though, does hit the spot.

Boca Essentials are my favorite vegetable and grain burgers because they're loaded with protein to help me feel like I've eaten something substantial. They're also my choice because they contain "complete protein" which means they have all nine of the amino acids we need but don't produce ourselves. And, of course, they're delicious because otherwise I'd just eat the eggs. Speaking of eggs, they come in three patty flavors including Chile Relleno with green chile peppers, black beans and brown rice and Breakfast Scramble with potatoes, eggs and vegetables which, of course, could be eaten for breakfast or dinner. Brinner totally happens here a lot.

While my burger was cooking, I looked around my fridge and pantry for topping ideas and I spotted my jar of tahini and the bag of my beloved za'atar seasoning. I normally think of Middle Eastern burgers as falafel based but the Roasted Vegetable and Red Quinoa flavor was a perfect substitute. So good nutrition and it felt satisfying and it was quick. A total win. Enjoy!


Middle Eastern Inspired Meatless Burger
by Hungry Couple
Prep Time: 15 Minutes
Cook Time: 12 Minutes
Ingredients (1 Serving)
  • 1 Boca Essentials Roasted Vegetable and Red Quinoa burger, cooked according to package directions
  • 2 Slices of your favorite bread, toasted
  • 1/4 Seedless cucumber, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 Seedless cucumber, diced
  • 1/2 Small tomato, sliced
  • 1/2 Small tomato, diced
  • 1/4 Red onion, diced
  • 1/4 Cup lemon tahini dressing (recipe follows)
  • Pinch of za'atar seasoning

  • Lemon Tahini Dressing:
  • 1/4 Cup sesame paste
  • 6 Tablespoons water
  • 2 Tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 Teaspoon garlic powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Pinch of za'atar seasoning
Instructions
Middle Eastern Inspired Meatless Burger
Make the dressing by combining the sesame paste, water, lemon juice and seasoning in a bowl and whisking until smooth and thoroughly combined.

Make the sandwich by layering the burger along with the sliced cucumbers and tomatoes on the toasted bread and drizzle with a couple of tablespoons of the tahini dressing and a pinch of extra za'atar.

Combine the diced cumbers, tomatoes and onion in a small bowl and dress with another couple of tablespoons of the tahini dressing.

Powered by Recipage

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Peanut Butter Filled Chocolate Lava Cakes

Peanut Butter Filled Chocolate Lava Cakes

Do you know what day it is today? It's Chocolate Peanut Butter Day! Actually, it's the second annual Chocolate Peanut Butter Day. It seems like there are random food holidays every day of the year but somehow the combo of chocolate and PB is not officially recognized. Fortunately, several of my food blogging friends and I are rectifying that mistake because this is certainly a combination that needs celebrating. Carla from Chocolate Moosey and Miriam from Overtime Cook are hosting our little online gathering and you can see all the other delicious creations from my fellow bloggers at the bottom of this post.

Peanut Butter Filled Chocolate Lava Cakes
So, I needed to come up with a recipe worthy of the occasion and I think I've nailed it with this warm, gooey, melty, caramely (yes these are all technical cooking terms) treat.

What's more fun than digging into the center of a warm cake and finding creamy peanut butter flowing out? Well, how about if it's salted caramel peanut butter.

Yup, you read that correctly because I had some homemade salted caramel left over and it made this dessert over-the-top good and a fitting celebration of this auspicious (and made-up) holiday. Enjoy!





Peanut Butter Filled Chocolate Lava Cakes
by Hungry Couple
Prep Time: 25 Minutes
Cook Time: 14 Minutes
Ingredients (4 Servings)
  • 3/4 Cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 Stick unsalted butter
  • 1/2 Cup sugar
  • 3 Eggs
  • 1/4 Cup all purpose flour
  • Pinch of salt
  • 4 Tablespoons salted caramel peanut butter (recipe follows)
  • 1 Tablespoon cocoa powder for dusting

  • Salted Caramel:
  • 1/2 Cup sugar
  • 1/2 Cup heavy cream
  • 1 Tablespoon unsalted butter
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • Peanut butter as needed (see instructions below)
Instructions
Peanut Butter Filled Chocolate Lava Cakes
To make the caramel sauce, melt the sugar in a pot over a low to medium flame. Do not stir. When the sugar has completely dissolved, remove it from the heat and add the heavy cream. The mixture will bubble up. Return to a low flame and stir until any lumps are gone. Stir in the butter and salt to taste.

Pre-heat the oven to 425 degrees.

Combine the butter and chocolate chips in a bowl over simmering water and stir gently until melted. Set aside to cool slightly.

Add the sugar and eggs to a large bowl and cream together using a stand or hand mixer. Beat in the melted chocolate and salt and fold in the flour.

Butter four 8 oz. ramekins or large muffin tin cups and dust with the cocoa powder. Divide the batter evenly among the four. Add two tablespoons of salted caramel to the peanut butter and stir until fully incorporated. Roll into 4 equal balls and place each ball into the center of each ramekin. Push it down into the batter until it's covered.

Bake for 14 minutes and let cool for a couple of minutes before gently running a knife around the rim of each ramekin and inverting onto a plate. Serve with additional salted caramel sauce.

Powered by Recipage


Check out all the other delectable chocolate peanut butter recipes from our group!

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Bites by Carla from Chocolate Moosey
Peanut Butter Cup Cookies by Miriam from Overtime Cook
Chocolate Peanut Butter Twix Cake by Susan from The Girl In The Little Red Kitchen
{Healthy} Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Oat Bars by Kayle from The Cooking Actress
Chocolate Drizzled Peanut Butter Tiger Paws by Renee from Kudos Kitchen by Renee
Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Dip by Becca from It's Yummi
Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Cake by Erin from The Spiffy Cookie
No-Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie by Lisa from Snappy Gourmet
Chocolate Peanut Butter Tandy Cake by Cindy from Cindy's Recipes and Writings
Chocolate-Glazed Peanut Butter-Stuffed Doughnuts by Coleen from The Redhead Baker
4 Ingredient Chocolate & Peanut Butter Candy by Colleen from Souffle Bombay
Ganache-Stuffed Peanut Butter Bars by Karen from The Food Charlatan
Microwave Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Pancakes by Taylor from Food Faith Fitness
Flourless Chocolate Cake with Peanut Butter Icing by Shashi from Runnin Srilankan
Chocolate Filled Peanut Butter Cookie Cups by Stacy from Food Lust People Love
Peanut Butter Filled Chocolate Lava Cakes by Anita from Hungry Couple
Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Ice Cream by Renee from Magnolia Days
Crispy Chocolate Peanut Butter Energy Bites by Lauren from Healthy Delicious
Tagalong Dip by Liz from That Skinny Chick Can Bake
Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Bundt Cake Nancy from gotta get baked
Small Batch Chocolate Peanut Butter Doughnuts by Sarah from What Smells So Good?
Funky Monkey Banana Chocolate Peanut Butter Energy Balls by Brianne from Cupcakes & Kale Chips
Chocolate Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies by Diane from Created by Diane
Chocolate, Peanut Butter, & Roasted Banana Shake by Jennie from The Messy Baker
Chocolate Peanut Butter Magic Bars by Jen from Jen's Favorite Cookies
Chocolate Doughnuts with Peanut Butter Glaze by Lauren from Lauren Kelly Nutrition


Monday, March 23, 2015

Passover Chocolate Chip Mandel Bread (Jewish Biscotti Cookies)

Passover Chocolate Chip Mandel Bread

Mandel bread or mandlebrot (the word mandel is Yiddish for nut or almond) is a traditional Eastern European Jewish delicacy. Baked as a loaf and then sliced, the texture is slightly softer than Italian biscotti (which I love) but there are certainly similarities. Although my parents are Eastern European, sadly my mother's baking repertoire did not include these cookies. The only ones I'd ever tasted were the packaged ones from the store and I'd just as soon pass on those, thankyouverymuch.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Grape-tini

Grape-tini

It has stopped snowing in New York, at long last. And it's warmer. Not warm, exactly, but with the hope of warmth in the near future. And with that, the fruit man has returned. Carts filled with all types of fresh fruit can be found every few blocks in Manhattan and I love them. I've missed the fruit man.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Cheesy Potato and Parsnip Kugel

Cheesy Potato and Parsnip Kugel

Growing up in a Jewish household, kugel was a holiday staple. It's basically a casserole style dish that can be made with either noodles (typically sweet) or potatoes (typically savory). Because of the no-flour restriction of Passover, noodle kugel usually appeared at Rosh Hashanah but, to tell the truth, I'd be just as happy if it never appeared at all. Potato kugel, on the other hand, was always welcome.

Monday, March 16, 2015

One Pot Mexican Style Quinoa

One Pot Mexican Style Quinoa

I was spending a rainy weekend at home but with plenty of paperwork and computer work to do. So, a rainy, working weekend at home. No lazing around watching movies and cooking a Sunday roast with all the fixings, sadly enough. So I took a stroll through my fridge and pantry and was thinking along the lines of a rice and beans dish with some extra veggies thrown in.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Honey Grapefruit Bourbon Smash

Honey Grapefruit Bourbon Smash

A few years ago we had dinner at the lovely Water Club on the river. While we were waiting in the bar for our friends to arrive the bartender offered to make us a special cocktail. As a general rule, we never turn down an offer to sample what the bartender thinks is good but sadly, this time we were disappointed. He made us a honey and lemon drink that, frankly, tasted like a cough drop, and it put me off the idea of using honey in drinks. But enough time has passed so that I've gotten over that medicinal taste and decided to see if I can do better.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Spinach Colcannon Bake

Spinach Colcannon Bake

Traditional Irish colcannon is a dish of buttery potatoes mixed with sauteed buttery cabbage. So, Irish buttery comfort food. This? Well, this is not exactly that but it's still buttery and comforting and a tasty twist. I've seen colcannon made with kale or even spinach instead of the cabbage but I took it a step or two further from tradition but no further from delicious.

Monday, March 9, 2015

The Million Dollar Everything Bagel Potato Chip Idea



Everything Bagel Potato Chips

Let's talk about favorite flavors today. Do you love seeing "experimental" flavors from your favorite brands? Do you love trying the new ones and are you sad if you loved it and never saw it again? Or do you sometimes stare at the new flavors and wonder whose weird idea was that? If you answered yes then we so need to talk because I'm giving you a chance to weigh in on all this!

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Blood Orange Mint Gimlet

Blood Orange Mint Gimlet

Oh, look, it's snowing again. For the bazzilionth time this winter. Shocking, I know. I'm trying hard to be positive and see the bright side. I'm cozy and dry at home. I have food in the fridge and a blissfully well stocked liquor cabinet. I have a sweet furry dog to keep me extra warm. But the house-bound, stir-crazy thing is making it hard to see the glass as half full. So I'm going to fill it with a little spring.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Creamy Chicken Stew

Creamy Chicken Stew

Know what makes a food blogger happy? New pots and pans. OK, and kitchen appliances and new dishes and cooking gadgets. But for sheer ooing and aahing, nothing beats a shiny new pan. The only problem comes when we're hesitant to use it because it's too pretty and we don't want to mess it up. This new beauty from OXO sat on my table, being admired, for longer than I care to admit.

Monday, March 2, 2015

The Month in Review - February 2015

The Month in Review - February 2015

Snow...snow...snow...groundhog emerges, says "eek, snow" and runs back into his burrow...snow. Pause for chocolatey love celebrations. Snow...snow...snow...oh, look at all this lovely citrus in the markets now...snow...snow...snow. That was my February. How was yours? I guess the only upside (and I'm struggling to find one, believe me) is that I got to spend a lot of time in my kitchen. So, it was a freezing cold, overly snowy and generally unacceptable February but with lots of delicious food.  Let's take a quick look back at all the recipes before we climb back under the covers and pray for spring. Did I mention it's snowing this morning?

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Banana Bread Doughnuts with Banana Glaze

Banana Bread Doughnuts with Banana Glaze

One sad, lonely, over-ripe banana. One baked doughnut pan. And a sweet tooth. That's how this all started. Normally, if I have sad bananas, I think about banana bread but this time I had just one. Not enough for a well flavored bread. But, it was just right for a small batch of baked doughnuts.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Vegetable Frittata with Pasta Chip Crust

Vegetable Frittata with Pasta Chip Crust

Today I have the pleasure of introducing you to my newest snack obsession, Pasta Chips. I'll admit that I couldn't wait to taste every flavor and then I mostly just wanted to munch away while watching a great movie. But what makes these special is that each variety is its own little flavor bomb and really deserves to be used in some way other than just shoved into my mouth in record speed. So, I think the only practical solution is that, from now on, I just buy two bags of each!

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Marinated Greek Yogurt Cheese Balls (Labneh)

Marinated Greek Yogurt Cheese Balls (Labneh)

I'll be the first to admit that I'm completely obsessed with Greek yogurt. If I don't have my daily serving, I get a little cranky. If my supermarket runs out of my favorite brand, I will go to another market to find it. I need my fix! But apart from my daily treat, I love using it as an ingredient in dips, dressings and even cakes and quick breads. But my number one passion these days is turning it into cheese.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Pasta with Cauliflower Ragu

Pasta with Cauliflower Ragu

A few years ago I was attending a business dinner at a fine Italian restaurant and saw cauliflower ragu on the menu. I'd never heard of it before and, I admit, it sounded a bit odd. But, given my lifelong fondness for cauliflower, it was a sure bet I'd order it. And I promptly fell in love.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Cherry Cheesecake Skillet Brownies

Cherry Cheesecake Skillet Brownies

Let's say that you're in the mood for an ooey gooey chocolatey dessert. OK, that would be pretty much every day. But let's say that you also wanted to make something pretty simple and no fuss. And a little special, but still no fuss. And maybe even a little romantic? These skillet brownies are so what you're looking for!

Monday, February 9, 2015

Chocolate Peanut Butter Pretzel Tarts for Two

Chocolate Peanut Butter Pretzel Tarts for Two

It's getting to be that time, isn't it? Heart shaped boxes of chocolates for sale everywhere. Cards and bouquets of flowers and restaurant reservations to be gotten. Hmm. I'm all for the chocolates and cards and flowers but being packed into crowded restaurants on Valentine's Day is actually not big on my list. I much prefer a romantic dinner at home. And this is definitely the time to splurge on a good dessert.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Tamale Pie

Tamale Pie

After a long busy day, when I get hungry and realize it's already dinner time but I'm still at my desk, want to know what makes me happy? Remembering that I have dinner all ready in the fridge and it just needs a quick re-heating. Really happy.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Greek Yogurt and Grapefruit Panna Cotta



Greek Yogurt and Grapefruit Panna Cotta

In case I haven't mentioned it in the last ten minutes, I don't like winter. I bring this up again this morning as I look out the window at a snow and sleet covered mess outside. It's also Groundhog Day but I doubt he can see his shadow or even dig his way out of his burrow. Sigh. Still, all this inclement weather means more time in my kitchen. And it's all a bit more bearable when I can get some of Florida's sunshine, at least in citrus form.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Winter Root Vegetable Gratin (and a Le Creuset Giveaway!)

Winter Root Vegetable Gratin

I don't recall ever eating gratins at home but my first restaurant taste of one fixed my obsession forever. Rich, creamy, gooey, often cheesy, they were right up there with the best in comfort foods. And so I learned to make them. But seeing first hand how rich they really were, made me rethink them. Oh, not to top eating them...don't be crazy! Just to remake them a bit.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Greek Yogurt Coeur La Creme

Greek Yogurt Coeur La Creme

If you're not familiar with this French classic, it's typically a luscious blend of cream cheese and heavy cream, sweetened and topped with a fruit sauce. The French word coeur means heart and this dish (literally "heart of cream") is usually molded in a heart shaped pan, hence the name. And that certainly makes it popular for romantic occasions. Sure, I'm all about chocolate on Valentine's Day but this makes a nice dessert alternative, especially if there's also a box of chocolate candy involved for late evening snacking.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Un-Stuffed (Deconstructed) Cabbage Rolls

Un-Stuffed (Deconstructed) Cabbage Rolls

Stuffed cabbage rolls were on my mother's regular meal rotation when I was a kid. And I loved them. Even the cabbage part. As a very young woman on my own, I kept a crazy schedule with a full time job and grad school at night. No time to cook much and mostly what was in my fridge was yogurt. Except on those lovely evenings when I'd get home late, open the fridge and find that my mother had dropped by during the day and left me a pot of her homemade cabbage rolls. She was such a good mommy.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Dried Plum and Honey Scones



Dried Plum and Honey Scones

When I was growing up, my father used to eat prunes and tell me they were healthy. But all I saw, when he offered me one, was a wrinkled, shriveled mess. I couldn't image what kind of tree had grown it and I certainly wanted nothing to do with it. And he would chuckle and continue eating his prunes. At some point in my adult life, somebody clued me in that prunes were dried plums. Plums? Really? I like plums. I eat plums. They're really plums, huh? Hmm.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Nutty Whole Wheat Couscous Pilaf

Nutty Whole Wheat Couscous Pilaf

I have a very well stocked pantry with an enviable variety of grains from which to choose when making interesting recipes. The only thing that could possibly be more interesting is if I actually looked in there once in a while instead of just reaching for potatoes. But, it's a new year, a whole new me, a healthy me...OK, I was out of potatoes. But that gave me a chance to reacquaint myself with one of my favorite quick cook grains.

Monday, January 12, 2015

Cauliflower "Rice" and Butternut Squash Bake

Cauliflower Rice and Butternut Squash Bake

Over the weekend I found myself doing the thousand yard stare into my pantry, trying to decide what to make for dinner. I had some salad ready and some chicken but I needed a side dish. Potatoes, polenta, rice...hmm...I kept coming back to the rice. I guess I like rice with chicken. Except that I'm trying to cut back on the starches for a while and add a few more vegetables. And then it hit me that I could make my favorite non-rice rice!

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Crunchy Pickled Beets

Crispy Pickled Beets

Let's talk about beets this morning. Come back here! I'm not talking about that mess you got at some school cafeteria somewhere. And when people tell me they think beets taste like dirt, I have to assume a cafeteria is the only place they've tried them. Beets are sweet. Unless they're pickled. Then they're sweet and sour. And good.

Monday, January 5, 2015

Curried Potato and Chickpea Soup

Curried Potato and Chickpea Soup

OK, I'm officially cold. Somehow the holidays make the weather seem bearable and being outside, among the lights and decorations is festive enough to overcome the chill.  But my annual post-holiday intolerance of all things cold, snowy and wintery has set in.

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Thirsty Thursdays: Sparkling Apple and Cranberry Champagne Cocktail

Sparkling Apple and Cranberry Champagne Cocktail
Sparkling Apple and Cranberry Champagne Cocktail

Check out today's post on A Cocktail Life for this celebratory drink!

The Year in Review - 2014

The Year in Review - 2014

At last we've come to the end of 2014 and not a moment too soon. I'm not gonna lie, this was not my favorite year and I'm looking forward to waking up tomorrow morning with a fresh new attitude and endless possibilities.

Monday, December 29, 2014

Glazed Orange Cranberry Crumb Loaf

Glazed Orange Cranberry Crumb Loaf

OK, so Christmas is over and the long Christmas weekend is over and you've eaten all the cookies in the house. You might have even made some public statements about being sick of sweets and ready for a healthy new year. But... the new year isn't here quite yet and you're getting hungry again and you do sort of still want something sweet. Or maybe that's just me.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Of Travels and Lighthouses and Christmases Long, Long Ago

Of Travels and Lighthouses and Christmases Long, Long Ago
OK, not long, long ago. Just two years ago. But I'm a little obsessed with Christmas music these days and the song It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year with the line "And tales of the glories of Christmases long, long ago" was running through my head. Just like the line from The Carpenter's Home For the Holidays that reads "I met a man who lives in Tennessee and he was headin' for Pennsylvania and some homemade pumpkin pie" was looping in my brain the other day when I made pumpkin pie. I'll be over this soon, I promise.

Monday, December 22, 2014

Double Chocolate Pumpkin Pie

Double Chocolate Pumpkin Pie

I have Christmas music playing pretty much non-stop these days. When I'm at my desk, when I'm at the gym...it's my annual binge. And, come the new year, it will be banished again until after next Thanksgiving. One of my favorites has always been Home for the Holidays by The Carpenters and it's made me associate Christmas with pumpkin pie.