The only way to have a Cupcake is with a Brownie in the middle — It’s the Burger part of the pictured Hamburger Cupcake. To make the rest, simply cut a Yellow Cake Cupcake in half, top with a round-cut Brownie, yellow (for Mustard), red (for Ketchup) and green (for Lettuce) Frosting, and then top with other half of the Cupcake and Sesame Seeds. Dessert of the day.
Do you need a recipe for the pictured dessert? If so, it’s here. I’d use fresh Whipped Cream between the layers, or Lemon Curd and Cream Cheese like its publisher. You can use Pudding or whatever you want. And the rest is visually apparent, right? It’s an impressive Holiday Layer Cake that’s easy to make with a store bought Angel Food Cake. Cherish Memorial Day.
Bagels, Lox, Cream Cheese and the usual accompaniments, Onions, Tomatoes, Capers, Baby Greens and tactically scored Cheese for teeth, could start your day off with a laugh – Der.
Most are familiar Avocado favorites and some ideas came from others linked throughout.
We made them all from top down — Starting with Snow Crab Stuffed Avocados made with Mayo, Lemon Juice and Zest, Red Bell Pepper, Dill and Red Onion. Simple, rich and amazing.
Continuing with a Veggie Croissant Sandwich made with Salad Bar Vegetables, Avocado, and Cream Cheese instead of Mayo. An Egg Baked in an Avocado — Have you seen that one before? It’s different and not bad. And I could eat an Avocado with Good Seasons Italian Dressing (above) everyday. It’s ready in minutes and always satisfies. On to Mango Salsa.
Mango Salsa ingredients, plus Jalapeno are pictured above and combined below.
BLT Sandwich, plus A+, minus the L & T on this day.
Open-faced BLT, plus A, minus L — Avocado was mashed with a little Mayo.
Avocado Pizza (if you will) made with a Flour Tortilla, mashed Avocado drizzled with Olive Oil and Lemon Juice, topped with a Fried Egg, Cumin and Salt & Pepper. I overcooked this Egg.
It could be better next time — The original is much more impressive.
Black Beans, Corn, Red Bell Peppers, Avocado, Red Onions, Jalapeno and Lime w/EVOO.
Cucumber Avocado Salad with Tomatoes, Green Onions, Balsamic Vinegar and Olive Oil.
Avocado on Toast with Sriracha and Olive Oil — An unexpected new favorite.
Avocado with Grapefruit — Many say how well it goes together. It’s okay.
And would you believe Avocado Ice Cream?
Ours was made with Avocados, Coconut Milk, Milk, Lime Juice and Lime Zest.
I didn’t think I’d like the Avocado Ice Cream, but did and would make it again.
Ahhhhhh Avocados, they’re wonderful to eat and moisturize well — Cheers to Avocados!
Dogs apparently love them too — I can’t believe we ate ‘em all and still want more.
Linked here is a video of a Carrabba’s Chef making their Beef Brasato, which is featured in one of Carrabba’s Italian Grill’s commercials. Though I’ve never been there, the dish Beef Brasato looks and sounds pretty good – It’s basically slow braised Short Ribs, Italian style.
Carrabba’s Beef Brasato RECIPE has the makings for a great dish… Wine, Beef, Fresh Herbs, Garlic, Onion, etc. All ingredients are pictured but not listed – If visually indecipherable (Olive Oil, Dried Sweet Marjoram, Crushed Tomatoes, Lemon Zest), the complete list is here.
Cut, dice, chop, crush and press the Garlic, Herbs and Vegetables.
Flour, Salt, Pepper and sear the Beef Short Ribs.
Sauté the Mirepoix.
Add Garlic, Red Wine, and return the seared Beef and add the remaining ingredients.
Apologies for the poorly seared Beef, pan wasn’t hot enough (a common story on The Bad).
Braise all covered together in the oven at 300° – 325° for 4 hours, until Beef will fall apart.
Serve over Rice or Risotto — It was flavorful, though I added too much Crushed Tomato.
I’d make it again or try it at the restaurant someday — The pics don’t validate it well.
Haven’t we met? Hello Chocolate Malt – Shake it for me.
I set out to assess and collect information regarding 2013 Food Trends and thankfully found a compilation of several predictions at Nutrition Unplugged and many are linked (below) for convenience. I’m glad to see that Cauliflower will be taking over for last year’s over-rated Kale trend, since I like to roast it in the oven with Garlic Cloves and Lemon. Happy eating in 2013!
Andrew Freeman & Co. – How Hotel & Restaurant Trends Will Shape a New Reality in 2013
Baum + Whiteman – 17 Hottest Food and Dining Trends for 2013
Cooking Light – Our Predictions: 2013 Food Trends
Epicurious – Epicurious Predicts the Top 10 Food Trends of 2013
Food Network – 2013 Predictions from Food Network Kitchens
FohBoh – 2013 Food Trends
Innova Market Insights – Top Trends for 2013
Meat Poultry – Top Food Trends for 2013
National Restaurant Association – What’s Hot 2013 Chef Survey
Orange County Register – Food Trends for 2013
Phil Lempert – The Top 10 Food Trend Predictions for 2013
Produce Marketing Association’s Produce Trends - Produce Trends
Sterling-Rice Group – Cutting-Edge Dining Trends of 2013
Technomic – Technomic’s Take: What’s Ahead in 2013?
The Food Channel – Top Ten Food Trends of 2013
I love this simple, cute appetizer idea. Do you need more instruction? I’d dress the Baby Greens and Tomatoes with Olive Oil and Salt and Pepper or Italian Dressing to thoroughly enjoy it all. And I might add a dollop of Caramel Sauce at the base of the Apple for dessert.
Shelly’s Jellies — I thought they were winners and now I’m glad to have it confirmed.
Made with real Pink Grapefruit, Oranges, Lemons and Limes (Juice and Zest), they burst with natural flavor — Some days I can’t stop eating them. They are fairly easy to make, but time consuming to cut, sugar and rotate (when necessary to dry out extra moist sides). Since Shelly’s Jellies taste and yield is so great, some have asked me about selling ‘em. That’s TBD.
It’s worth repeating and repeating and repeating, because it’s fast and easy to make, and always tastes good with a side of Sour Cream and Tortilla Chips, if on hand — Eggs hard or soft cooked in any fresh, jarred or canned Salsa is a favorite Breakfast for Dinner meal here.
I made a variation of these Baked Green Bean Fries — They question whether or not they can be called “Fries” since they’re not fried. What do you think? Are Fries determined by shape or cooking method? I understand the debate, but can’t take a side. We say both.
We dipped them in Ranch Dressing, just like French Fries, but call ‘em Stix if you insist.
Either way, I likely won’t be making them again, as they’re just okay for the effort.
Heather’s RECIPE is HERE — The Green Beans are basically coated with Egg and seasoned Bread Crumbs, then baked in the oven. I used Panko Bread Crumbs instead and seasoned them with Smoked Paprika and Ground Chipotle, Salt and Pepper. They were of interest to try, but I prefer Green Beans simply made with Butter, Lemon Zest and S & P, or with Bacon.
Apologies for the poor copycat photos — Love to experiment with almost everything.
This Asparagus Potato Soup was inspired by the Carrot Soup we can’t get enough of. With no more Carrots on hand, Asparagus and Potato stepped in with Rosemary, and a shake up of the process — Instead of caramelizing the Onions in a pan, I roasted one with Bacon Grease in the oven. Unlike the Carrot Soup, this one tastes better with a squeeze of Lemon at the end.
Asparagus Potato Soup – General instructions posted. Please see here for related prep.
Roast Asparagus in the oven with Olive Oil and S & P, until they start to char. Cut-off Asparagus tips and set aside. In a Dutch oven, sauté sliced Potato with fresh Rosemary until softened and slightly browned, then add the Roasted Asparagus stalks and Chicken Stock.
I’m presently hooked on Knorr’s Homestyle Stock Concentrate – Just add Water.
Stir, then squeeze Roasted Garlic from the Bulb directly into the mixture – You can see it (below). Also add an Onion that’s been baked in the oven, and Rosemary instead of Thyme.
All is then puréed in a blender, drizzled with Lemon Juice and garnished with Asparagus tips.
TIPS for all Soup variations — There should be just enough Chicken Stock added to cover all vegetables, which should be soft and cooled down (somewhat) before blending. The variations seem endless and none need Cream to be creamy or to taste superb. The Carrot Soup is preferred to this one. Also, the Asparagus Potato Soup purée may need to be strained to remove some of the hard stalk inherent to Asparagus. Or peel the lower ends before roasting. I had to pull a few fibers from my mouth. This Soup is good, not a superstar.
This Carrot Soup is the absolute best, because it’s easy to make and tastes complex.
The 5 ingredients are Carrots (8 – 10), Roasted Garlic (1 Bulb), Caramelized Onions (1 Sweet Onion), Fresh Thyme Leaves (2 Sprigs) and Chicken Stock (3 – 3 1/2 Cups). You basically combine all and cook until the Carrots are soft, then puree and eat — It’s good for you too.
More INFO, if needed…
• Roast a Garlic Bulb (in foil, with top cut off, drizzled with Olive Oil) in the oven at 400° for 45 minutes. I generally have one or more on-hand, since I roast ‘em often to add to many things.
• Caramelize chopped Onion in a pan with a little Olive Oil, then add the peeled, chopped Carrots towards the end and cook 5 – 10 minutes longer. Add the Chicken Stock, Thyme Leaves and Roasted Garlic (squeezed from the bulb) to the sautéed Carrots and Onions.
• Cook until the Carrots are soft, then purée all in batches in a blender. Transfer to a sauce pan to re-warm and add Salt and Pepper to taste, if needed. Season the Onions and Carrots with S & P along the way, and with a good Chicken Stock it’s generally perfect after blending.
March is time for Corned Beef and Cabbage, and I always cook the Cabbage, Carrots and Potatoes on the side. No Potatoes were used this time, as I generally pick around them.
Why cook the vegetables on the side? Exhibit A (above), all the crap that ends up floating in the Broth, after the Corned Beef cooks in a Crock Pot (or Dutch Oven) for 10 hours.
Instead I strain and boil some of the Crock Pot Broth, and then cook the vegetables in it.
When the Corned Beef is ready to fall apart, I brown the vegetables in a little Olive Oil.
And then add the strained, lightly boiled Broth to the pan, cover it, and cook all until the vegetables are tender – It doesn’t take that long. Why would you cook them for 10 hours?
Finally, there is peace of mind knowing that nothing scary is hiding amongst the Cabbage.
Searching for an adaptable Peach Ice Cream recipe, I came across Sticky Gooey Creamy Chewy’s Roasted Peach Ice Cream and it was over and on – I began roasting Peaches.
I had 5 Peaches, 1% Milk, Cream, Sugar & Vanilla on hand and made the best recipe with all.
Inspired by the linked recipe, I got lucky with the ingredients and measurements used to make the pictured Roasted Peach Ice Cream, and will happily make the same over and over again.
Always wanting to simplify a process, I merely blended the ingredients, and then transferred the mixture to an Ice Cream Maker to churn — And it couldn’t have turned out better.
It’s crazy good – I’ll roast Peaches forever for this Ice Cream.
A new favorite, Roasted Peach Ice Cream is documented below — Try it.
RECIPE: Halve, pit, and toss 5 – 6 Peaches with Brown Sugar (1 - 2 Tbsps.) and roast them cut side down in the oven at 400° for 25 – 30 minutes, and then set Roasted Peaches aside to cool. Add cooled Roasted Peaches (with skins) to a blender with 1/2 Cup of Cream, 2/3 Cup of Sugar and 1 Tsp. of Vanilla. Once well-blended, add 1 Cup of 1% Milk and blend a little longer to combine. Transfer mixture to an Ice Cream Maker and churn for 30 minutes. Viola.
Our Best Recipe for Orange, Grapefruit, Lemon-Lime, and Lemon or Lime Fruit Gems is HERE. Like an Emerald, a discovery was made, then cut and polished for optimum consistency and flavor. The pictured were made with Lemon and Lime Juice and Zest. All flavors are superb.
Homemade Fruit Gem Ingredients: 1 Cup of Corn Syrup, 1 Cup of Sugar, Zest of 1 (Orange, Grapefruit, Lemon and/or Lime), 3/4 Cup of Fresh Squeezed Juice (Orange, Grapefruit, Lemon and/or Lime), 7 Tbsps. of Fruit Pectin, 1/4 Tsp. of Baking Soda, and Food Coloring (optional to improve color). Recipe was fine-tuned after earlier posting and best measurements are noted herein, and amended in this post, for best clarity and color, though the previous variation worked well too. Step-by-Step instructions (and same recipe) are linked here. Irish eyes smiled this day – Should Lemon-Lime become the New March Madness?
I’m beyond thrilled to know it’s easy to create one of my favorite Candies, Fruit Gems, also known as Fruit Jellies aka Orange Slices, when flavored Orange, like the first batch I made.
I found a Raspberry Jelly Candy Recipe that I adapted to make the pictured Orange Gems.
Orange Gem RECIPE In Short: Boil 1 Cup of Corn Syrup with 1 Cup of Sugar and Zest of 1 Orange, and in a separate sauce pan boil 3/4 Cup of fresh Orange Juice with 7 Tbsps. of Fruit Pectin and 1/4 Tsp. of Baking Soda — Marry the two combinations, once boiled, and stir for a minute longer, then pour mixture into easily unmold-able pan (as shown).
Bendable, disposable aluminum pans work well for unmolding Candy.
Before dropping into Sugar, let Candy sit and set, loosely covered on the counter overnight.
Cut into strips, then squared gems and coat all sides in Sugar — Voila, they’re awesome!
They taste better than any I’ve purchased — If you love Fruit Gems, you have to make these.
All raved about them too – I made a second batch with Pink Grapefruit (below).
And a third batch with Blueberry Juice and Lemon Zest.
The Grapefruit Gems were superb, like the Orange ones, but the Blueberry Gems were comparably bland, and the Lemon Zest took over — Straight-up Lemon Gems would be good, or Lime Zest with Coconut Extract, the possibilities are endless. All natural first.
Mustard Braised Brussels Sprouts with Dijon and Shallots sounded good to me too.
I thought the cooking process was interesting, especially the beginning. I like how the Brussels Sprouts are placed cut side down in Olive Oil undisturbed for 5 minutes — Most were golden brown. Shallots and Broth are then added and all is cooked covered for 20 minutes.
The exact RECIPE is here.
Remove Brussels Sprouts, stir in Dijon Mustard until well blended, and cook 2 minutes more.
Pour the Mustard Sauce over the reserved Brussels Sprouts (add optional Parsley) and serve.
BLT+A-L on Toasted White Bread with the perfect amount of Mayo — It’s how my Mom always made it and how I do now. It’s just right. We rarely add the Lettuce and mostly opt for Avocado with the Bacon and Tomato. It’s technically a BAT or BTA, a tasty Sandwich.
Bacon, Tomato and Avocado — Layer in that order on Toasted White Bread with Mayo.
The amount of Mayo is key, not too much, nor too little – Mayo oozing out the sides is gross and not enough is dry. I didn’t want any Mayonnaise on it as a kid and my Mom would add it when I wasn’t looking. She knew, and I now know its compliment, when properly applied.
It’s a simple, flavorful Sandwich that consistently hits the spot with a cold glass of Milk.
A comfort food for years — With leftover or microwavable Bacon, it can be made in a flash.
Umbrella optional, unless it’s raining.
Have you tried Chipotle’s Barbacoa Beef? I love it and created a copycat recipe. It may be the most viewed post on Nibbles of Tidbits — It’s a darn good recipe too. If you know the flavors, you’ll see. Our preparation starts by searing the Beef, then on to slow cooking to easily shred.
Though the above photo doessn’t look that appetizing, it’s tasty as all get out topped with Goat Cheese. It’s another copycat recipe that works — Houston’s Braised Red Cabbage.
Have you ever gone through the hassle of preparing Amish Friendhship Bread? When I did, I thought it was quite burdensome, but after tasting the finished product, I’d do it over and over again. It’s one of the best Breads I’ve had — Complex, flavorful, moist and magical.
One of the most searched recipes on Nibbles of Tidbits is a copycat of Houston’s Chicago-Style Spinach Dip — To me (and confirmed by others), it captures the flavor and texture of Houston’s tasty Dip. It’s a respectable recipe (linked above) that holds up well to this simplified variation.
The pictured Spinach Artichoke Dip was prepared using the same recipe, without the Heavy Cream and alternatively increasing the Sour Cream from 1/2 to 3/4 Cup – This may be the better recipe (below), if too much Water is in the Spinach. Mix and bake pictured ingredients.
Bake in one to four dishes for an appetizer or individual side, depending on the crowd.
Spinach Artichoke Dip Recipe (a variation of this copycat)
Mix all ingredients together well, then transfer mixture to an oven proof dish and bake at 350° for 30 – 35 minutes. Let cool slightly and serve with Tortilla Chips, Bread or Vegetables.
1 (16 oz.) Bag of Frozen Chopped Spinach, thawed and squeezed, drained of water
1 (12 oz.) Jar of Marinated Artichoke Hearts, drained and chopped (Unmarinated is fine)
1 Large Garlic Clove, minced or pressed
1 Cup of Mozzarella Cheese, grated (Jack Cheese may be substituted)
2/3 Cup of Parmesan Cheese, grated or shaved
3/4 Cup Sour Cream
One dish to freeze for another time is good too.
Note: The spotlight should also be cast on the following for being amongst the Top Five Most Searched Recipes in 2011: Houston’s Braised Red Cabbage with Goat Cheese, Chipotle Barbacoa Beef, Amish Friendship Bread and Oven Baked Ribs. Enjoy — Happy 2012!