Broccoli Mango Stir-Fry

WIN_20150517_184936It’s possible that a more vitamin-packed meal exists, but I can’t think of what that might be right now. Broccoli and mango are nutritional powerhouses on their own… combined, they are magnificent! Not big on vegetarian meals? No worries – feel free to top this dish with cooked shrimp or chicken for a protein packed dinner.

Please note that this recipe cooks FAST… have your rice cooked and your table set before the broccoli goes into the pan!

WIN_20150517_175606Ingredients (Serves 4)

2 large mango, cut bite size

2 large heads of broccoli, cut bite size

2 cloves garlic, diced

2 inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and diced

2 tablespoons coconut oil

2 tablespoons fish sauce, such as Thai Kitchen Fish Sauce – 7 oz

1 tablespoon lime juice

1 teaspoon cornstarch

1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil, such as Napa Valley Naturals Organic Toasted Sesame Oil Unrefined — 12.7 fl oz

4 cups cooked rice

2 cups cooked chicken or shrimp (optional)

WIN_20150517_181456Directions

Step 1) Add coconut oil, sesame oil, garlic, ginger, and broccoli to a hot frying pan or wok. Stir-fry over medium-high for three minutes, stirring constantly to avoid scorching. Add one or two tablespoons of water if the ingredients begin to stick to the pan.

Step 2) Add mango to the pan. Reduce heat to low-medium and cook for two minutes, stirring occasionally.

Step 3) Whisk together fish sauce, lime juice, and cornstarch. Drizzle this mixture over the broccoli and mango. Cook everything over medium heat for 2 more minutes, stirring constantly.

Step 4) Serve over cooked rice. Top with chicken or shrimp if desired.

 

 

 

Apple Cinnamon Granola

WIN_20150526_153601Making homemade granola is an all-around good idea. For starters, granola is delicious and versatile as both a breakfast and a snack food. Store-bought granola can be quite expensive, and can also contain questionable ingredients. The do-it-yourself approach can save a LOT of money, while giving you complete control over the quality of each ingredient. Enjoy!

WIN_20150526_143639Ingredients (Makes about 6 cups)

1 cup apple jelly

1 tablespoon real butter

3 cups rolled oats (not quick oats)

1 cup dried apple pieces

1 cup raisins

1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans

1 teaspoon cinnamon

WIN_20150526_144914Directions

Step 1) Grease two baking sheets (the kind with shallow sides) and set aside.

Step 2) Combine apple jelly and butter in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Boil steadily for two minutes, then remove from heat.

Step 3) Combine rolled oats, apple pieces, raisins, nuts, and cinnamon in a large bowl. Drizzle boiled jelly mixture over dry ingredients, stirring with a large spoon to evenly coat the ingredients.

Step 4) Spread granola mixture onto greased baking sheets and bake in a preheated 275 degree oven for 30 minutes. Stir once after 15 minutes.

Step 5) Allow granola to cool completely, and store in an airtight container.

Oggi 5355 4-Piece Locking Acrylic Canister Set with Spoons

 

Easy Bread and Butter Pickles

WIN_20150830_135132Somewhere in between the sweetness of sweet gherkins and the saltiness of dill pickles lives bread and butter pickles. Here at Crowded Earth Kitchen, we think they’re delicious!

Some bread and butter pickle recipes are fussy, requiring cooks to soak cucumbers for long periods of time and/or change brines throughout the process. In our humble opinion, none of that is really necessary. You can prepare these bread and butter pickles in less than half an hour, and be on with your day!

If you don’t want to can these, no worries – just stop after Step 1 below and transfer your pickles and brine into refrigerator containers. Refrigerate for at least one week and up to one month.

WIN_20150830_130254Ingredients (Makes 4 pints)

8 cups small cucumbers, cut into bite size chunks

1 small white onion, sliced thin

2 cups white vinegar

WIN_20150830_1304352 1/2 cups sugar

1 tablespoon salt

1 teaspoon sweet curry powder, such as Organic Sweet Curry Powder (Salt Free)

Directions

WIN_20150830_133949Step 1) Bring vinegar, sugar, salt, and curry powder to a boil. Add cucumber chunks and sliced onion. Return to a boil, then remove from heat.

Step 2) Ladle pickles into sterilized pint size canning jars and top with brine, leaving 1/2 inch headspace. Top with lids and rims, and process in a boiling water canning bath for 10 minutes.

Share your favorite travel photo, WIN a set of French bistro note cards!

The Global Recipe Project charity cookbook is almost complete… but needs a few more photos from all around the world! If you have a favorite photo that you would like to see featured in the Global Recipe Project cookbook, we would be happy to credit your name as a valued contributor to this worthy project. What’s more, one contributor will be selected to receive a free set of French bistro note cards as a “Thank You” gift!

Contest Ends September 30th

Visit Global Recipe Project to enter!

French Bistro 4 French Bistro 3 French Bistro 2 French Bistro 1

Wiener Winks

WIN_20150905_124446Here at Crowded Earth Kitchen, this particular recipe is heavy with nostalgia. I remember Wiener Winks cooling on Grandma’s kitchen counter on countless occasions throughout my childhood. As soon as they were cool enough to handle, children of all ages (including those “children” with children of their own!) would scramble for a hot dog wrapped in homemade white bread and dipped in either ketchup or BBQ sauce. What could be more American than that?

This week, I taught my little ones how to make Wiener Winks, beginning with homemade white bread dough. I sure had a lump in my throat when a little one exclaimed, “I like making Wiener Winks… it makes me remember [great] Grandma.” I sure do miss her.

Ingredients (Makes 24 Wiener Winks – they freeze well!)

24 precooked hot dogs

2 cups lukewarm (not boiling) water

1/2 cup white sugar

1 1/2 tablespoons yeast

1/4 cup dry milk

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

1/4 cup canola oil

6 cups white flour

picture330Directions

Step 1)  Combine sugar and lukewarm water in a large mixing bowl.  Stir in yeast, and allow to sit for a minute or two until the surface of the water appears a bit creamy.

Step 2) Add dry milk, salt, and oil to the picture331yeast mixture.  Stir in flour, one cup at a time, and transfer dough to a floured tabletop.

Step 3) Knead dough for a few minutes until a smooth ball forms.  Add a bit more flour as needed, to prevent sticking.  Transfer dough to a large bowl which has been greased with canola oil.

picture334Step 4) Cover bowl with a damp cloth and allow dough to rise until it doubles in size.  This will take about an hour in a warm location, such as an oven that has been warmed to 100 degrees and then turned off.

Step 5) Punch the bowl of risen dough a few times to release air bubbles (this is fun!).   Knead on a floured tabletop for a few minutes.  Divide dough in half.

WIN_20150905_114157Step 6) Roll each half of the dough into a long rectangle on an oiled countertop. Cut each rectangle into 12 strips.

Step 7) Wrap each strip of dough around a hot dog, tucking the ends underneath. Place wiener winks on greased baking sheets. Leave about 2 inches of space between them, as the dough will rise and spread a bit.

KitchenAid KB6NSO15JR Classic Nonstick 10″x15″x1″ Jelly Roll Pan Bakeware

WIN_20150905_114936Step 8) Bake wiener winks in a preheated 375 degree oven for 15 – 20 minutes until the dough turns golden brown. Watch carefully so they don’t burn! Cool on a wire rack. Serve with ketchup or BBQ sauce.

Plum Tart

WIN_20150915_201813Plum season makes me nostalgic for France. During my travels to Lichtenberg, plum trees were everywhere, heavy with fruit. Not surprisingly, local cafes and bistros featured plums prominently on their menus. This tart reminds me of that visit and makes me smile.

Ingredients (Serves 8 – 10)

For the crust:

1 cup flour

1/2 cup ground pecans

1/4 cup sugar

1/4 cup cold butter

2 tablespoons brandy

1 egg

For the filling:

9 small plums, halved and pits removed

8 ounces Neufchâtel cheese, softened (or substitute cream cheese)

2 eggs

1/3 cup sugar

1 tablespoon brandy

1/2 teaspoon grated lemon zest

Directions

WIN_20150915_181058Step 1) Combine flour, pecans, and sugar.  Cut in butter with a pastry cutter or two forks, until mixture resembles little peas.  Add egg and brandy.  Mix – use your hands! – until well combined.

Step 2) Press dough into a tart pan (a pie dish would work fine, too).  Place a piece of aluminum foil over the dough and sprinkle with dried beans.  This will keep air bubbles from forming and “puffing up” your dough.

Step 3) Bake dough (foil, beans, and all) in a preheated 400 degree oven for 20 minutes.  Reduce heat to 375 degrees and bake an additional 10 minutes.  Remove from oven, remove beans and foil, and let cool for 10 minutes.

Step 4) While crust cools, use an electric mixer to combine softened Neufchâtel cheese, eggs, sugar, brandy, and lemon zest.

Step 5) Spread cheese filling over crust. Gently press plum halves, cut side down, into cheese filling.

Step 6) Bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees. Serve warm or cold. I prefer this dish cold.

WIN_20150915_193056

Tom Yum Vegetables

WIN_20150828_205931I enjoy garden fresh vegetables perhaps more than most people, but really folks, a gal can only eat so much zucchini before she starts to frown at the prolific plants in the garden! Luckily, I snapped out of my frown quickly, and mustered up a bit of kitchen creativity.

WIN_20150828_193953I keep a jar of Tom Yum paste, which is a Thai hot and sour seasoning base, in my freezer at all times. The flavor combination of lemongrass, tamarind, chili peppers, garlic, and lime (among other things) is exquisite, and really has no equivalent in American or Western cooking. In other words, it’s perfect for when you are feeling the Zucchini Blues!

WIN_20150828_194711Ingredients (Fills a 9″ pie dish, about 6 side dish servings)

1 medium zucchini, sliced into 1/2 inch thick rings

1 large yellow potato, sliced into 1/4 inch thick rings

1 large tomato, sliced into 1/4 inch thick rings

WIN_20150828_1952422 tablespoons Tom Yum paste – any variety, such as Spicy Tom Yum Paste / Instant Sour Paste

1 cup coconut milk

Directions

Step 1) Grease a 9″ pie dish with olive oil. Arrange zucchini, potato, and tomato slices as shown (zucchini, potato, zucchini, tomato, repeat).

Step 2) Whisk together the Tom Yum paste and coconut milk. Pour over vegetables. Use a pastry brush to spreading coconut milk mixture, evenly coating vegetables.

Step 3) Cover the pie dish with foil. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 45 minutes, or until potatoes are fork tender.