Thursday, August 21, 2014

Coconut Cream Fudge Bars, An Almost Paleo Attempt #IceCreamWeek

Welcome to Day 4 of Ice Cream Week 2014! This year the event is hosted by Kim of Cravings of a Lunatic and Susan of The Girl in the Little Red Kitchen. We have teamed up with 25 amazing bloggers to make satisfy all your Ice Cream Cravings.

Our sponsors for the event have provided us with some great prizes. A huge thanks to Cake Boss, Anolon, Microplane, WÜSTHOF, Page Street Publishing and Quarry Spoon. Kim of Cravings of a Lunatic and Susan of The Girl in the Little Red Kitchen have tossed in a bonus prize of a Cuisinart Ice Cream Maker because they think everyone should own one!

Here’s what is up for grabs, One Winner Takes All: 

Today's recipe is actually my only non-booze-inspired recipe of the week. I didn't realize I was such an Ice Cream Lush, hah! Reminds me of that line in GrownUps when the little girl says "I WANT TO GET CHOCOLATE WASTED!" I don't want to get chocolate wasted, but maybe just chocolate buzzed? Buzzed sounds good.

Anyway. This was my attempt at a "paleo" recipe, since when I want to attempt to be on a diet that's the one I go to. Since it's a "treat" it doesn't reeeeally count, but at least it's a slightly less guilty treat, right?

Bonus points: IT IS DAIRY FREE.

I was going to dip these in dark chocolate, but I made my batch a bit too soft–as you can see, they got a little floppy pretty quickly. That's just fine by me though, since they turned out like ice cream on a stick. Perfect!

So, before I get to the recipe...

Be sure to stop by all of today's Ice Cream Week Participants:

Coconut Cream Fudge Bars
  • 1 can coconut milk, cream separated (upside down in the fridge over night, cream scooped off)
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 3 heaping tablespoons agave nectar or honey
-In a stand mixer, whip the coconut cream until fluffy. Fold in the cocoa powder and agave. Add about 2 tablespoons of the coconut water (leftover from the can). If you want softer pops, less coconut water. More firm, more water.

-Adjust cocoa and agave until desired taste is reached. Side note: at this point it's a LOVELY chocolate mousse.

-Fill popsicle wells and leave about one finger width headspace. Freeze until firm, preferably overnight.

-Note: the pops will be soft, so remove gently from wells once frozen.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Peach Ice Cream with Bourbon Caramel (Accidentally No Machine) #IceCreamWeek

Welcome to Day 3 of Ice Cream Week 2014! This year the event is hosted by Kim of Cravings of a Lunatic and Susan of The Girl in the Little Red Kitchen. We have teamed up with 25 amazing bloggers to treat you to tons of amazing ice cream recipes. Ice Cream Week is shaping up to be the best week ever!

Our sponsors for the event have provided us with some great prizes. A huge thanks to Cake BossAnolonMicroplaneWÜSTHOFPage Street Publishing and Quarry SpoonKim of Cravings of a Lunatic and Susan of The Girl in the Little Red Kitchen have tossed in a bonus prize of a Cuisinart Ice Cream Maker because they think everyone should own one!

Here’s what is up for grabs, One Winner Takes All:

So... the story of this ice cream. I've been on a peaches and bourbon kick. Either flavored bourbon, or a fresh peach muddled into regular bourbon... either way, delicious. I even made cupcakes with the same flavor combo. It's really a match made in heaven! I decided to try a sweet cream base with chunks of juicy fresh peach, and make homemade caramel to drizzle on the top, which is where I'd hide a sneaky shot of bourbon to tie it all together.

Turns out, sweet cream ice cream is SUPER SIMPLE TO MAKE. No custard base, just super easy: cream, milk, sugar. Bam. Caramel? Also super easy to make. Sugar, salt, water, cream. This would take NO TIME AT ALL!

...guess what. It took a whole evening. Because my freezer decided to randomly be not-so-freezing (the knob must have gotten bumped), and my ice cream bowl was not chilled through. To make matters worse, I had slacked off and needed the ice cream the next day to make it in time for Ice Cream Week!

So I did this the sort-of-old-fashioned way. Metal bowl, freezer, stir every half hour until it's done. However, in the end it was 100% worth it. Look at that gorgeous bowl of peachy, bourbon-y goodness! Heaven.

And before I get to the recipe! Be sure to swing by all of today's Ice Cream Week Participants:
Now, onto the recipe!

Peach Sweet Cream Ice Cream with Bourbon Caramel
For the Ice Cream
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 3/4 cups sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 ripe white peaches, cubed (or puréed if you prefer a smoother ice cream)
For the Bourbon Caramel
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup whipping cream
  • 1 tsp butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 tbs bourbon (more or less, to taste)
  • pinch of salt
-For the Ice Cream: stir together all ingredients and chill until completely cold (2 hours or more). Process in ice cream machine until done, pour into container and freeze until completely firm.

OR. Pour into a metal bowl and place in freezer. Every 30 minutes, pull out of freezer and whisk vigorously. Do this for 3 hours, stirring every half hour, until thick (think, milkshake-you-can't-sip-through-a-straw). Pour into container and freeze until firm.

For the sauce: over medium heat, mix together water and sugar. Stir regularly until deep amber in color. Remove from heat.

Quickly add the cream and step away as it bubbles up violently. When subsided, add butter and whisk until thick. Add bourbon, vanilla, and salt. Pour into jar and let cool to room temperature.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Dirty Girl Scout Ice Cream #IceCreamWeek

Welcome to Ice Cream Week 2014! This year the event is hosted by Kim of Cravings of a Lunatic and Susan of The Girl in the Little Red Kitchen. We have teamed up with 25 amazing bloggers to bring you ice cream treats all week long. I hope you have as much fun as we do. Break out those stretchy pants and celebrate Ice Cream Week with us!

Last year Ice Cream Week was a TON of fun, and a bunch of us bloggers have been chomping at the bit to do it again. Thankfully, Kim and Susan are wonderwomen and pulled it all together for us this year. I'm so excited to see what everyone else has done this year!

Our sponsors for the event have provided us with some great prizes. A huge thanks to Cake Boss, Anolon, Microplane, WÜSTHOF, Page Street Publishing and Quarry Spoon. Kim of Cravings of a Lunatic and Susan of The Girl in the Little Red Kitchen have tossed in a bonus prize of a Cuisinart Ice Cream Maker because they think everyone should own one!

Here's what is up for grabs, One Winner Takes All:
One Cuisinart Ice Cream Machine in White
One Cake Boss Mechanical Ice Cream Scoop with Red Silicone grips
One Cake Boss 4Pc Ice Cream Bowl Set, Icing Pattern
One Anolon Advanced Bronze 2 Qt Covered Straining Saucepan with Pour Spout
One Microplane Herb and Salad Chopper
One Microplane Premium Classic Grater in White
One WUSTHOF CLASSIC 9-inch Double Serrated Bread Knife
One Copy of the Cookbook Making Artisan Gelato by Torrance Kopfer
One Copy of the Cookbook Everything Goes with Ice Cream by Koralee Teichroeb
One Copy of the Cookbook Vegan Scoop by Wheeler del Torro
One Copy of the Cookbook The Great Vegan Bean Book by Kathy Hester
One Copy of the Cookbook Eat More Dessert by Jenny Kellar
One Copy of the Cookbook The Perfect Scoop by David Lebovitz
One Copy of the Cookbook Scoop Adventures by Lindsay Clendaniel

Make sure you swing by for a scoop from each of today's Ice Cream Week Participants:
  Pink Lemonade Ice Cream Pie by Cravings of a Lunatic
  Chocolate Peanut Butter Caramel Ice Cream Pie by The Girl in the Little Red Kitchen
  Surprise Ice Cream Treat by Scoop Adventures
  Raspberry Lemonade Ice Cream Pie by The Redhead Baker
  Coffee Ice Cream by Cookistry
  Salted Caramel Ice Cream by Life Tastes Good
  Salted Caramel Peanut Butter Buster Bars by The Life and Loves on Grumpy's Honeybunch
  Cherry Cheesecake Ice Cream by Hezzi-d's Books and Cooks
  "Fried" Ice Cream Pie by Renee's Kitchen Adventures
  Mint Chip Ice Cream by Crumb
  S'mores Ice Cream Pie by Love and Confections
  How to Make an Ice Cream Pie at Home by Farm Fresh Feasts
  Gluten Free Sandwich Cookie Ice Cream Pie by Gluten Free Crumbley
  Fudge Topped Chocolate Ice Cream Pie by That Skinny Chick Can Bake
  Salted Caramel Ice Cream Pie by The Spiffy Cookie
  Caramel Coffee Milkshake by Wishes and Dishes
  Strawberry Shortcake Ice Cream Pie by The Messy Baker
  Majarete (Dominican Corn Pudding) Ice Cream by Mind Over Batter
  Peanut Butter Crunch Ice Cream Cake by The Gunny Sack
  Dirty Girl Scout Ice Cream by Quarter Life (Crisis) Cuisine
  No Churn Low Carb Blueberry Cheesecake Ice Cream by Yours and Mine are Ours

  Other Blogs participating later this week:
  My Catholic Kitchen
  Noshing with the Nolands
  Cupcakes & Kale Chips Mother Would Know

Special Guest for the Week is Lindsay Clendaniel of the blog, Scoop Adventures. We're very excited to have her join us. Lindsay is the author of Scoop Adventures which is chock full of ice cream goodness.
Okay, SO. Now that the loooong explanation is over, let's get to my recipe, shall we? If you've been around here a while you may have noticed I love booze (I'm still in my 20's, gimme a break ok?) and I also love putting booze into baked goods.

I had my first sip of a Dirty Girl Scout at my first "High School Party with Alcohol" as a senior in high school. A classmate's older brother had made her this drink and given it to her in a Nalgene bottle to bring to the party. I was baffled that alcohol, which always tasted so awful, could taste so absolutely delicious. I then proceeded to barf a ton from too much Peachtree--when the older kid asked what I wanted at the store this was the only liquor I knew of--and I didn't have a Dirty Girl Scout again until years later, as a legal adult, and while I don't think I could have more than one in a sitting, it's a great dessert with a bit of a kick!

This recipe is truly a cocktail-turned-ice-cream. No. Really. It's not just FLAVORED like the delicious Dirty Girl Scout ice cream, it actually IS one, in ice cream form. The liquor has NOT been cooked off, it's all in there. Using this method, you can make delicious boozy ice cream! The secret is gelatin--who knew, right?

Dirty Girl Scout Ice Cream
(Adapted from Ice Cream Happy Hour's base recipe)

  • 2 oz vodka
  • 2 oz coffee liqueur
  • 2 oz Irish cream liqueur
  • 2 oz creme de menthe (white is preferred for aesthetic purposes)
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1 packet (1 tablespoon) gelatin
  • 1/4 cup cold water
  • 1 cup crushed chocolate mint cookies (like the ones the Girl Scouts deliver)
  • shaker of ice

-In a saucepan over medium heat, heat the milk and cream until mixture is steaming. Do NOT over-heat.

-While milk is heating, stir together the egg yolks, sugar, and cocoa powder.

-Slowly pour bits of milk mixture into egg yolks, whisking constantly, until eggs are as hot as the rest of the milk (in other words, temper it). pour egg-milk mixture into the rest of the milk, and whisk over medium heat until thick. It should coat the back of a wooden spoon when done.

-Strain into a bowl, and chill for 2 hours or, ideally, overnight.

-Mix together the alcohol and place in fridge until fully chilled, or shake over ice and strain.

-Pour cold water into a small saucepan and sprinkle gelatin over top. Wait 5 minutes, until gelatin has absorbed water and bloomed.

-Heat the gelatin over medium heat until dissolved into water. Pour gelatin into a bowl and whisk in the cold liquor mixture.

-Whisking constantly, add gelatin/alcohol mixture into the cold custard until completely combined.

-Pour custard into ice cream maker and process for 20 minutes or until desired consistency is reached. Add cookie crumbles at the very end, and place in freezer until firm.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclaimer: I did not receive any product for participating in this event. The #IceCreamWeek Giveaway is open to U.S. and Canada residents only. ONE winner will receive ALL the prizes listed. Giveaway ends at midnight on August 31st.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Miso(ish) Glazed Salmon

 Are you wondering what was on my plate when I posted the recipe for the Pineapple Cilantro Margarita? Of course you were. Despite the sun making this picture color-crazy, it looked pretty damn delicious.

I've been on a hunt for miso for the past month or so, since it's an ingredient in a few recipes I want to try. I haven't made it to any Asian grocery stores, where I'd be MOST likely to find it, but I've scoured every gourmet food section of my favorite discount stores, the local Whole Foods I walk to for lunch tacos, and the HEB shelves multiple times. Nothing.

Then, one glorious day, I THOUGHT I found it. Miso Easy is miso, right?? $5, on the HEB shelf, into my cart. I was so excited.

No. It's concentrated miso soup. And no online source told me it was interchangeable with miso paste. So I took a chance and decided to try it. I took a bigger chance and subbed it 1-for-1. And, guess what.

It worked.

Not only did it work, our neighbor was over to play video games with my fiancé and I offered him some and he kept going on about how awesome it was. He said he'd never had salmon before but absolutely loved this. Cory even took a bite, despite hating most fish, and said he'd eat it next time I made it.

I think that's a win, don't you?

Miso(ish) Glazed Salmon
(Adapted from Simply Recipes)

  • 2 tbs Miso Easy
  • 2 tbs mirin (can sub for sake or white wine)
  • 1 tsp rice wine vinegar
  • 2 tbs brown sugar
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 1 heaping teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp chili paste
  • 1 lb salmon
  • 1 tbs green onion, sliced

-Mix together all ingredients except salmon and onion. Pour evenly over salmon, and let marinade in the fridge for an hour or more.

-Heat up your oven to broiling. Place salmon on a greased baking sheet (use tin foil for easy cleanup) and pop in broiling oven for 7 minutes, or until salmon is cooked through. Top with green onion slices.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Sleepy Sunday Cocktail - Pineapple Cilantro Margarita

Do you follow me on Instagram? If not, you should. My phone takes craaaaappy pictures (it took a swim last summer and has never been quite the same) but I'm good at following back, I promise! If you don't follow me, this is what you missed this week:

 I discovered that Lily cannot find a treat when you put it in this particular part of her snout.

I tried Jack Allen's Kitchen for the first time and it most certainly won't be the last time... amazing food, farm-to-table, and close to my apartment. SCORE on all accounts.

Got a TON of new blog props from a blogger who needed to get rid of them, so I'm super excited to start using them!

We FINALLY explored Peter Pan Mini Golf and had a blast. Tinkerbell here has a suspicious jawline and was super fabulous. Also this was about the point where the Peter Pan related sculptures stopped and it just descended into utter madness. Considering it's a BYOB mini golf I guess that makes sense.

And I had my first taste of Plucker's. Pretty good!

Plus, if you follow my instagram you may have gotten a glimpse of this.

That, my friends, is a pineapple cilantro margarita. It's lovely, refreshing, and perfect to sip on your porch to try and cool off a little in this crazy Texas heat. It also went well with this meal: miso glazed salmon and brussels sprouts with spicy peanut sauce. Recipe forthcoming!

Pineapple Cilantro Margarita
  • 1 1/2 ounces tequila
  • 1/2 ounce triple sec 
  • 2 ounces pineapple juice
  • 1 ounce fresh lime juice
  • 1 tbs cilantro, chopped
  • 1 tsp chile powder
  • 1 tbs sugar

-On a small plate, stir together chile powder and sugar. Use a lime wedge or pineapple slice to moisten the rim of a chilled margarita glass and dip into mixture to rim the glass.

-In a shaker filled with ice, pour in tequila, triple sec, pineapple juice, and lime juice. Shake vigorously and pour into prepared glass. Stir in cilantro. Serve with a lime wedge or pineapple slice.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Pozole Pork Pot Pie - HEB #PromoPicks #Sponsored

Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by H-E-B. I received promotional products to facilitate this post. All opinions are my own.

Have I told you all how much I love H-E-B? I do. It's my very favorite grocery store chain, and every time I go there I end up with everything on my list and THEN some without my bill ever going over $100 for two weeks or so of groceries.

Which is why I was THRILLED when they reached out to me to try some products they're featuring this August! There was a definite theme to their featured products: Hatch chile peppers. Being a Northerner, this is my first experience with hatch and so far it's been incredible. Don't forget to check out H-E-B's Great Pepper Pachanga going August 6–19 this month! Stores will have specials, recipes, and tons of pepper products.

For my first recipe, I decided to focus on the Central Market Hatch Pozole Soup. Pozole is a hominy based soup that’s popular in Mexico and the American Southwest. HEB/Central Market put a spin on the traditional recipe by adding a kick with hatch peppers. The soup heats up and is ready to go in just three minutes. Look for it in your local H-E-B Cooking Connection.

The label said it went well with pulled pork... and what do you know, I happened to have a box of HEB pulled pork! I decided it would go wonderfully baked in a flaky HEB pie crust, so Pozole Pork Pot Pie was born! (try to say that five times fast...)

Note: my fiancé, who supposedly hates leftovers, brought this to work every day the week I made it.

Pozole Pork Pot Pie
  • 1 jar Central Market Hatch Pozole Soup
  • 1 package HEB refrigerated pie crust
  • 1 cup cooked and shredded pork
  • 2 tbs corn starch + 2 tbs cold water
  • 1 egg, whisked
  • optional: 1 tsp chile pepper powder

-Preheat oven to 350 degrees F, or the suggested pie crust temperature.

-Press one circle of pie crust into the pie pan, trim off any excess that hangs off the sides. Put in oven while you prepare the rest*.

-Pour the pozole into a saucepan and warm through on medium heat. Add the pork and continue to cook until the pork has warmed through. Add chile powder, if desired.

-Add the cornstarch slurry and stir until thickened. You can add a bit more to thicken further, if desired.

-Take pie crust out of oven. Pour soup mixture into pie crust and top with second pie crust. Cut three holes in top of crust to vent. 

-Brush egg over top of pie and bake until crust is golden brown, about 15-20 minutes.

*I cook the bottom pie crust a bit to keep it firm, I've noticed with certain pies, the bottom layer gets gummy or doesn't cook well. This ensures a firm lower crust.

For more information on the Great Pepper Pachanga, hatch green chiles, and everything HEB, click this link!

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Gluten-Free Mini Cheesecakes with Toasted Coconut Crust



No, but really. I think one of the first things I learned to bake all by myself without adult supervision were my mom's mini cheesecakes. I think I still have the original magazine cutout, wrinkled with age and spotted with bits of cheesecake past, for our family's favorite recipe.

Usually I topped them with cherry pie filling with a single Nilla wafer playing the role of the crust. They were perfectly balanced: sweet Nilla wafers, tangy cheesecake, a refreshing fruit topping... These little cheesecakes taste like childhood, and my first attempts at creating things in the kitchen.

These mini cheesecakes are an homage to the cheesecakes of days past, but where the Nilla wafers were, now there is toasted coconut. It'd be the perfect base for a tropical twist (coconut creme in the cheesecake? topped with pineapple?) or simply as a sub for those of us who are unsure about gluten.

Why the cheesecake post? A bunch of us food bloggers just decided today was Cheesecake Day and decided to share our favorite recipes with you all. Be sure to check out the blogger pages below for more amazing cheesecakes!

Mini Cheesecakes with a Gluten-Free Crust

  • 1 1/2 cup shredded coconut
  • 1/4 cup coconut flour
  • 1/2 stick butter
  • 2 packages cream cheese, softened
  • 3/4 cup sugar + 1 tbs sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

-Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a cupcake tray with liners (there will be about 12).

-Over low heat, melt butter. Once melted, toss in coconut and coconut flour and the tablespoon of sugar. It should be sticky, but not liquidy.

-Press a heaping tablespoon of the coconut mixture into each liner. Place in oven to toast while you make the cheesecake (~10 minutes).

-In a stand mixer, cream together the cream cheese and sugar. Add egg and vanilla extract.

-Pour into prepared liners, and bake for 20 minutes or until set. Top with fruit topping of choice, or eat plain!