Moroccan Couscous Spring Salad
With the sunny weather and cool breeze, I was craving something light and fresh today. I love the pearl-like shapes of Moroccan couscous, and so whipped up a quick and easy salad today. It’s pretty simple and easy to modify. Just for a thrill, I threw in a handful of shredded coconut, along with some crushed red pepper, when I tossed everything together, and it came out divine.
3/4 Moroccan couscous
2 vine tomatoes
1 1/2 spinach
juice from one lemon
4 tbsp of Extra Virgin Olive Oil
(crushed red pepper and/or shredded coconut)
Boil the couscous until it’s cooked, then drain and place in a huge salad bowl.
Dice tomatoes and cucumber —and go ahead and either tear or cut up the spinach—and add to the mix. Squeeze the lemon juice over it, drizzle the olive oil, add some salt and pepper to taste (and add any other spice that suits your fancy) and toss it all up.
This would go wonderful with a glass of Pinto Grigio and some nicely grilled white fish.
11:30 am • 10 April 2012 • 2 notes • View comments
Raspberry Chocolate Coffee Cake
This is the densest, moistest coffee cake you’ll ever eat, made of alternating layers of rich sour-cream cake and a filling consisting of raspberries mixed with cocoa sugar. Perfect to serve for breakfast or on Sunday brunch.
- 3 cups all purpose flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 6 ounces (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
- 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
- 3 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 2 cups sour cream or yogurt
- melted chocolate for top of the cake
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
- 1 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 1/2cup raspberries (frozen or fresh), plus extra for decoration
Tip: If you don’t have sour cream you may substitute some Greek style yogurt.
Preheat oven to 350F. Butter and flour or spray a 9- to 10- inch Bundt pan.
Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside dry ingredients.
In the bowl of stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy about 5 minutes. Add eggs one at a time and scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Add vanilla.
On low speed, in 3 additions of each, mix in the dry ingredients and sour cream, alternating the dry and wet ingredients until ingredients are just blended. Be careful not to over mix batter.
Make the filling by mixing the sugars and cocoa powder in a medium bowl.
Scoop in 1 ½ cups cake batter into your prepared Bundt pan and spread evenly to cover the bottom. Sprinkle one-third of the filling and scatter one-third of the raspberries over the filling. Scoop in 2 cups cake batter and spread evenly. Sprinkle one-third of the filling and scatter one-third of the raspberries over the filling. Scoop in 2 cups of cake batter and spread evenly. Sprinkle the rest of the filling and raspberries. Add the rest of the cake batter and spread evenly over the raspberries.
Bake for 50-60 minutes at 350F until a cake test inserted in the middle comes out clean. Allow cake to cool in pan for 30 minutes, then invert onto a cooling rack, remove pan and let cool completely before serving. Put melted chocolate on the top of the cake and raspberries.
11:28 am • 9 April 2012 • 1 note • View comments
Huevos con Chorizo Breakfast Tacos
So, I love Mexican chorizo. I had the wonderful advantage of growing up on my grandfather Chucho’s original recipe, and now my mom makes it. I have loads of it in the freezer, and I take myself as one of the luckiest men alive because of it.
There are lots of different kinds of Mexican chorizo out there, so I recommend scouting around and finding your favorite. I like mind spicy and strong with a lot of cumin.
Here’s a quick recipe for breakfast tacos that would work great with either fruit juice, coffee, or, even better, a Bloody Mary!
2-3 inches worth of chorizo
1/2 tbsp of olive oil
2 corn tortillas
some cilantro ( because it goes well with anything Mexican)
Heat both pans you want to use on medium heat, one for the scrambled eggs and chorizo and the other for heating the tortillas.
As the tortillas are cooking in one pan, on the other heat the olive oil and chorizo together, breaking it up and making sure it’s getting cooked through. This takes very little time, about 2-4 minutes. Crack in your two eggs, then scramble.
Once the tortillas are to your liking (my dad loves them toasty, but cook them to your tastes), put a bed of cilantro in the center, then half of the huevos con chorizo, then add a little salsa on top. Do the same with the other tortilla.
Now enjoy. And make more if it doesn’t fill you. I sometimes do.
12:28 pm • 19 March 2012 • 1 note • View comments
Chocolate Bundt Cake
I’m following Heidi Swanson’s blog 101 Cookbooks, and just the other day she posted a recipe for Chocolate Bundt Cake. With Chocholate Stout and Maple Syrup!!
So I had to try.
Chocolate Bundt Cake:
2 cups / 475 ml chocolate porter or stout beer
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for the pan
3/4 cup / 75g natural cocoa powder (non-dutched)
1 cup / 5 oz / 140 g whole wheat flour
1 cup / 4.5 oz / 125 g all-purpose flour
1 cup / 4.25 oz / 120 g muscovado or dark brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
3 large eggs
1 1/2 cups / 355 ml plain whole yogurt
3/4 cup / 180 ml pure maple syrup
Chocolate Buttermilk Icing:
3/4 cup / 2.75 oz / 75 g powdered sugar
1/4 cup / 25g natural cocoa powder (non-dutched)
2 tablespoons buttermilk
flaky sea salt, to serve
Preheat oven to 350F / 180C, with a rack in the center.
Butter and flour (generously) a 11 or 12-cup capacity bundt pan (or equivalent). As I mention up above, you can bake this in other cake pans, just be mindful to avoid filling the pan(s) more than 2/3 - 3/4 full. Adjust the baking time as well - baking until the cake begins to pull away from the sides of the pan, and the center tests clean when you insert a knife.
In a saucepan simmer the beer down to 1 cup / 240 ml. Remove from heat, add the butter and stir until melted. Stir in the cocoa powder, mixing until smooth, then set aside to cool, stirring occasionally to let off heat.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flours, sugar, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the eggs, yogurt, and maple syrup. Whisk well, until nicely blended and uniform in appearance. Gradually add the (cooled) stout mixture, stirring all the while. Stir until well blended. Add the flour mixture, folding until just blended, using as few strokes as possible.
Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and bake for 35 - 45 minutes if using the bundt pan, or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. You really don’t want to over bake this cake - err on the slightly moist side if anything. Remove from the oven, and turn out onto a cooling rack after seven minutes.
In the meantime, make the icing by whisking together the powdered sugar, cocoa, and buttermilk. Really go at it for at least a minute. The icing should end up smooth and creamy looking, adjust with a touch of powdered sugar or a few extra drops of buttermilk if you want to tweak the consistency at all. When the cake is completely cool, run the icing around the top with an offset spatula and let it set.
Serve sprinkled with a bit of flaky sea salt. But don’t sprinkle with flakes of salt until ready to serve, or you’ll end up with little divots (see photos :)…
Makes one chocolate bundt cake.
Prep time: 25 min - Cook time: 45 min
12:58 am • 19 March 2012 • 4 notes • View comments