Posts Tagged 'Snack Recipes'



Honey-Raspberry Gelatins

I love, love, love that summer fruits have started showing in full force at the Dallas Farmers Market, even though it seems like spring just started. Raspberries, strawberries, blackberries, watermelon… Mmmm! I think this may be my favorite time of year for food. I scored some gorgeous raspberries at the market the other day, so I decided to make the Honey-Raspberry Gelatins recipe from the May 2008 issue of Everyday Food.

This one isn’t listed online, so here are the ingredients:

2 envelopes (1/4 ounce each) unflavored gelatin
1 package (10 – 12 ounces) frozen raspberries (not in syrup)
1/2 cup sugar
Salt
1/4 cup honey
1 pint fresh raspberries, for serving

First, I put 1/4 cup of cold water in a small bowl and sprinkled it with the gelatin. I set the gelatin aside to soften for about 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, I combined the frozen raspberries, sugar, 2 cups of water, and a pinch of salt in a large saucepan. I brought the mixture to a boil, reduced it to a simmer, and then cooked it until the berries were broken down (about 5 minutes). I removed the mixture from the heat, added the honey and softened gelatin mixture, and stirred until the gelatin and honey were dissolved (about 2 minutes).

I passed the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve into a large (4 cups, at least) measuring cup and stirred in enough water to yield 4 cups of liquid. (I discarded the solids in the sieve.) I divided the liquid between 6 serving glasses, covered the glasses with plastic wrap, and chilled the gelatins until they were firm (at least 4 hours and up to 5 days). I garnished with the fresh market raspberries to serve.

Honey-Raspberry Gelatins

I think gelatins are such a light, refreshing dessert; I really enjoyed this. I was pleasantly surprised by the strength of the honey flavor, and the fresh raspberries offered a sweet-tart “zing.” This one’s a keeper.

TIPS: Make sure you limit the liquids to exactly what the recipe specifies. If you add too much water, your gelatins may not congeal.

Pomegranate Smoothie

Pomegranate Smoothie from the March 2008 issue of Everyday Food is our third installment in the “Week of Breakfast.” This one has a few great things going for it – it’s quick, easy, tasty, *and* portable. Perfection!

This one isn’t posted online, so here’s the ingredient list:

1/3 cup silken tofu (about 3 ounces)
1 cup frozen mixed berries
1/2 cup pomegranate juice
1 – 2 teaspoons honey
1/4 cup of ice cubes

All I had to do was combine the ingredients in a blender and puree until smooth. The recipe says it serves 2, but the portions are a bit small. I sent Dr. O off to work with a full recipe in his commuter mug this morning and made myself a half recipe this afternoon.

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If you like pomegranate juice (and I do), this recipe is for you. If the pomegranate flavor is a bit tart for your taste, you can sweeten the smoothie with extra honey.

Parfaits with Honey, Ricotta, and Raspberries

I found a new parfait recipe that I just *love* – Parfaits with Honey, Ricotta, and Raspberries from the April 2004 issue of Everyday Food. I would never have thought to combine these ingredients (the ricotta, especially), but the results are delish. Follow the recipe as is if you want a light dessert or snack. Portion sizes are on the small side, though, so you may want to double the recipe for something more substantial (like breakfast).

First, I spooned 1 tablespoon of honey into each parfait glass (4 tablespoons total). In a medium bowl, I whisked 1 cup of part-skim ricotta cheese to loosen it slightly and then spooned 1/4 cup into each glass (over the honey). Next, I added 1/4 cup of fresh raspberries to each glass (1 cup total), followed by 1 tablespoon of toasted almonds (4 tablespoons total). That was it!

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As beautiful as the layers were, I thought this tasted best all stirred together. I can’t wait to make this more often as raspberries really come into season.

TIPS: To toast almonds, spread 1/4 cup (or however much) in a single layer on a baking sheet. Toast at 350F for about 7 – 10 minutes. I always take mine out as soon as I can smell them; they’re usually just slightly brown at that point. Keep a close watch because they can burn quickly.

Guinness Bread

Happy St. Patrick’s Day, everyone! I decided to honor my Irish heritage today by making something with an Irish twist. I couldn’t commit the time to make a stew or corned beef, but I did find a terrific and simple recipe for Guinness Bread on Recipezaar.com.

This one has a short, sweet ingredient list:

3 cups self-rising flour
3/4 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 12-ounce can of Guinness stout, room temperature
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

I buttered a standard loaf pan, stirred all the ingredients together in a large bowl, poured the batter into the pan, and baked it for 45 minutes at 350 F. I let the loaf cool for 10 minutes in the pan and then turned it out onto a cooling rack. That’s it!

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I wasn’t sure what to expect since the recipe was so simple, but this bread is dense, sweet and delicious. I really liked the slightly chewy crust, too. You can taste the beer ever so slightly in the aftertaste, but I don’t think you’d know it was there if you weren’t conscious of the ingredients. I plan to make this an annual tradition!

TIPS: Make sure you use self-rising flour, not all-purpose flour.

Recipe link: Guinness Bread

Chocolate-Covered Bananas

Dr. O and I made a yummy and super-easy treat last night – Chocolate-Covered Bananas. The recipe is from the March 2006 issue of Everyday Food, but it’s so simple that you hardly need one.

I started out with the intention of making a half recipe. I put about a half-inch of water in a small saucepan and brought it to a simmer. I “created” a double boiler by nesting a small bowl inside the saucepan, making sure the bottom didn’t actually touch the water. (See Chocolate Orange Fondue for more double boiler info.) I put 4 ounces (4 squares) of semisweet Baker’s chocolate in the bowl and then stirred until it was melted. I removed the bowl of chocolate from the saucepan and set it aside.

Next, I put 4 tablespoons of peanuts in my food chopper and coarsely chopped them. (You could use a knife or pound them in a zip-top bag if you don’t have a chopper.) I peeled my banana, cut it into thirds, and stuck a popsicle stick into each piece. I spooned and spread chocolate over each banana piece and then sprinkled the chopped peanuts over the chocolate.

I finished my first 3 banana pieces and it was evident that I had enough chocolate and peanuts left to do 3 more. Good thing I had another banana! When all the pieces were finished, I put the bananas on a plate, covered them, and refrigerated them until the chocolate was firm. (This took 30 minutes, even though the recipe says 20.)

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These were so simple, but so good. The chocolate got firm but not crispy, which was nice because all the topping probably would’ve fallen off with that first bite otherwise. This is definitely one of those recipes where it would be fun to experiment with different kinds of chocolate. Different kinds of nuts (pistachios? walnuts?) could be really good too.

TIPS: When you put these on a plate to cool, be sure to line the plate with parchment or wax paper first. I forgot (oops!) and some of my chocolate stuck to the plate.

Recipe link (and video): Chocolate-Covered Bananas

Tropical Fruit Salad

Anyone have any breakfast-making plans this weekend? Tropical Fruit Salad from the December 2006 issue of Everyday Food is a perfect accompaniment to just about any breakfast dish. It’s super simple and really delicious; I’ve made it for picnics and parties as well.

All you need for this one is a small pineapple, 2 navel oranges, 3 kiwis, and 2 tablespoons of brown sugar. First, I put the brown sugar in a large bowl. Then, I cut the pineapple into bite-size pieces (see How to Cut a Pineapple) and added 3 cups to the bowl.

The oranges were next. I cut both ends of each orange off with a paring knife and then followed the curve of the fruit to cut away the skin and pith. I quartered the oranges lengthwise, sliced them crosswise, and added the pieces to the bowl.

Finally, I sliced the kiwi. I cut each one in half, used a spoon to scoop out the flesh, sliced the fruit, and then cut the slices in half. I added those slices to the bowl and gently tossed the fruit to evenly coat it with the brown sugar.

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This is so, so yummy. There’s just something about this fruit combination, and the brown sugar adds just enough extra sweetness to make this taste like a real treat. It’s a favorite!

TIPS: I’d recommend serving this in its own small bowl. The fruit juices and the brown sugar end up forming a bit of a syrup, which could run together with other items if served on a plate. Then again, if you’re going to use this as a French toast or pancake topping, that could be a good thing. 🙂

Recipe link: Tropical Fruit Salad

Super Bowl Snacks: Annie’s Artichoke Dip

Several years ago during my wedding festivities, my maid of honor (Annie) made this absolutely amazing artichoke dip. It rivals any dip I’ve ever had in a restaurant. She was kind enough to share the recipe with me, and now she’s agreed to let me share it with all of you. You’ll love it!

Ingredients:

1 block (8 ounces) cream cheese (light is fine)
12 ounces shredded mozzarella
1 cup mayonnaise (light is fine)
1 cup grated Parmesan (Annie subs Asiago)
1/4 medium onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped (or more, to taste)
2 jars marinated artichokes

Drain artichokes well and tear them apart with your fingers. Combine all ingredients and mash. Bake uncovered in a casserole dish at 350 F for 30 minutes of until center is bubbling and top is golden brown. Serve with bread, crackers, or veggies.

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I had to scoop out a bit for the photo so you could see the creamy goodness under the crusty top. My mom and I have made this for numerous family functions and people just go crazy for it. Thanks, Annie! 🙂

Super Bowl Snacks: Stuffed Strawberry Cheesecakes

While I LOVE the more traditional game day snacks like pizza, chili, and yesterday’s Pigs in Blankets, I think it’s a good idea to balance things out a bit with a few healthier options. I found a great recipe in the August 2006 issue of Shape that presents a fun twist on fruit and dip – Stuffed Strawberry Cheesecakes.

I started by washing and patting dry 24 large strawberries. I sliced off each stem end and made a small hole in each berry using a 1/4 teaspoon measuring spoon. (The recipe says to use a knife, but I thought it was easier to “scoop” using the measuring spoon.) I set the berries aside.

Next, I made the filling. In a small bowl, I combined 4 ounces of light cream cheese, 2 tablespoons of powdered sugar, and 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract. I mashed and stirred everything together with a fork until it was smooth and well combined. I used the same 1/4 teaspoon measuring spoon to spoon the filling into the strawberries. Scrumptious!

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TIPS: There are a couple of things you can do to prevent your strawberries from getting soggy. One, make sure you rinse and dry them *before* you remove the tops. Two, when you set them aside after the scooping step, I’d set them upside down over paper towels. That way, any extra moisture will drain out while you’re making the filling.

Recipe link: Stuffed Strawberry Cheesecakes

Super Bowl Snacks: Pigs in Blankets

Since the Super Bowl is rapidly approaching and many of us will be attending or hosting parties, I thought it would be fun to dedicate the rest of the week to great game day snacks. There are tons of tasty little snacks in the freezer section of the grocery store – taquitos and mini quiche, anyone? – but I just can’t bring myself to serve processed convenience food to guests. I’m making it harder than it needs to be, I know. I just really enjoy the thrill of creating something delicious.

I decided to start with a popular game day snack – Pigs in Blankets – using a recipe from the September 2007 issue of Everyday Food. I will admit to taking advantage of a convenience ingredient here: frozen puff pastry. Since it takes about 3 days to make puff pastry from scratch, though, I think this one is OK. 🙂

Frozen puff pastry needs about 40 minutes to thaw before it can be used; thawing one sheet (1/2 package) was step one. Once the pastry had thawed, I unrolled the sheet, cut it lengthwise into 10 equal strips, and then cut each strip into equal thirds to yield 30 1-by-3-inch pieces. (This was actually pretty easy because my puff pastry had been rolled into thirds and then frozen; there were creases right at the 1/3 and 2/3 marks.)

I took 30 cocktail franks, patted them dry, and the rolled each one in a strip of pastry. I placed them seam-side down on rimmed baking sheet. Next, I brushed the top of each pastry with some lightly beaten egg and the sprinkled the batch with poppy seeds.

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The recipe said to bake the pigs at 400F for 25 – 30 minutes. Good thing I was watching… Mine were puffed, golden and heated through at 17 minutes.

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These were really yummy little snacks! I served them with ketchup. They’re best consumed in one bite, though… Puff pastry’s delicate, flaky layers can produce some major crumbs.

TIPS: If you wanted to add cheese to the mix, you could probably put a strip of cheese on top of the pastry strip before rolling the franks (or just use cheese franks, if you can find them).

Recipe link: Pigs in Blankets (it’s the first recipe listed in the article)

Chocolate Peanut Butter Chex Bars

My little brother is quite handy in the kitchen, and he brought these delicious treats for our family on Christmas morning. I’ve been meaning to give them a whirl since that first taste – they’re addictive!

There’s not much to the recipe; it’s basically just making Rice Krispie treats without the Rice Krispies. Here are the ingredients:

6 cups of Chocolate Peanut Butter Chex Mix
1 bag (10.5 ounces) of mini marshmallows (or 4 cups, if you have a larger bag)
3 tablespoons of butter

I melted the butter in a large saucepan over low heat. Once the butter had melted, I added the marshmallows and stirred until the mixture was completely smooth. I removed the saucepan from the heat and added the Chex Mix, stirring gently until it was well coated.

My brother formed his mix into balls; I pressed mine into a 9 x 13-inch pan sprayed with cooking spray. Unless you want hands covered in sticky goo, it’s wise to let them sit and cool for 1 – 2 hours before cutting or eating them. I had a hard time waiting, so I put mine in the fridge for a bit to speed up the process. 🙂

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These are so, so good. I had never tried Chocolate Peanut Butter Chex mix before but I LOVE peanut butter, so this is a great combination. Next time, though, I’m taking them somewhere we can share them or I’m only making a half recipe… They “talked” to me all week, hehe.

TIPS: If you decide to put your mixture in a 9 x 13-inch pan, I always use an offset spatula sprayed with cooking spray to press down the mixture. That way, the bars are nice and dense. Waxed paper or even your hands sprayed with cooking spray would probably work well too.




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