Saturday, September 10, 2011

[Low-Fat] Blueberry Muffins

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup low-fat milk
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup packed fresh or frozen blueberries
  • Preheat the oven to 400 degree F.
  • In a medium bowl, combine flour, salt, baking soda and baking powder. In another large bowl, whisk together, egg, sugar, milk and oil until smooth and creamy (about 5 minutes). Add flour mixture into the batter, continue whisking until well combined. Using rubber spatula, fold in the blueberries gently.
  • Fill about 1 and 1/2 tablespoon of the batter into each cup, or until it fills 2/3 of the cups. Bake in the oven for 18-20 minutes, or until the toothpick inserted comes out clean.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Coxinha (Brazilian Chicken Filled Pastry)

  • 3 boneless chicken breasts
  • 1/2 chopped onion
  • 2 minced garlic cloves
  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 2 cubes beef bouillon
  • 3 cups water
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 stalks green onion, chopped
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 8 ounces cream cheese
  • 2 eggs
  • bread crumbs for coating
  • cooking oil for frying
  • Cut chicken breasts into 2 inch cubes. Combine chicken, onion, garlic, beef bouillon, salt, pepper, butter and water in a large saucepan. Cook over medium heat for about 30 minutes or until done. Remove chicken breasts.
  • When the chicken breasts are cool enough, shred using hands or coarsely chop. Add chopped green onions and mix well.
  • Bring the remaining broth to boil. Add flour to the boiling broth and stir vigorously with a wooden spoon for about 1 minute until it becomes dough. Remove dough from pan, knead until smooth.
  • Flatten dough with rolling pin to about 1/4-inch thick and cut medium size circles with a biscuit cutter. Place dough in your palm, add a small cube of cream cheese and a teaspoon of the chicken filling. Make sure you can close the dough with the filling inside. Repeat the process until all the dough is used.
  • Fold and close the dough in a shape of a drum stick. Baste the filled dough with egg wash and roll them over the bread crumbs. Deep fry the pastries at 350 F for about 8 minutes or until golden brown. 

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Zucchini Blossoms Stuffed with Tomatoes and Parmesan

  • 8 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 1 cup plain dry breadcrumbs
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh thyme
  • 8 ounces ripe plum tomatoes, seeded, finely chopped
  • 1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
  • 16 Zucchini blossoms
  • Preheat oven to 350 degree F. Coat an oval baking dish with 1 tablespoon oil. Heat 5 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and saute until translucent, about 5 minutes.
  • Add breadcrumbs and thyme and stir until breadcrumbs are lightly toasted, about 3 minutes. Transfer to large bowl. Mix in tomatoes, cheese, eggs, garlic, salt and pepper.
  • Fill Zucchini blossoms with breadcrumb mixture, using about 2 teaspoons for small blossoms and 1 tablespoon for large blossoms. Sprinkle any remaining breadcrumb mixture over baking dish. Place blossoms atop breadcrumbs in dish. Drizzle remaining 2 tablespoons oil over.
  • Bake for about 20-30 minutes. Serve with lemon wedges.

Recipe is taken from Epicurious website.

Allergen Free (and Vegan) Lemon Sugar Cookies

Sugar cookies that can make everybody happy. I mean EVERYBODY! It's gluten free, dairy free, nut free and even egg free. As a bonus, these cookies also taste amazing.

  • 3 to 3 1/2 cups gluten-free all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup tapioca starch
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 2/3 cup unrefined sugar
  • 1 cup non-dairy (vegan) margarine, pre-softened
  • 1/4 cup lemon zest, grated
  • 1/4 cup silken tofu
  • 3 tbsp lemon juice
  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Mix together flour, tapioca starch, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl. In a separate large bowl, beat together sugar, margarine and lemon zest until smooth and fluffy. Add tofu and lemon juice, mix well then add the flour mixture.
  • Continue mixing with hand until the dough forms. Wrap in plastic sheet and refrigerate for about 30 minutes. 
  • On the floured surface, flatten the dough into 1/4 inch thick using rolling pin. Cut into shapes with cookie cutter and transfer onto a lined cookie sheet. Bake in the oven for about 8-10 minutes, until they turn lightly golden brown.
  • Cool down on the rack completely before decorating.
Royal icing ingredients:
  • 1 cup powdered unrefined sugar
  • 2 tbsp vanilla milk (or almond, or rice milk)
  • 1 tsp light corn syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • Assorted food coloring
In a medium bowl, mix together milk and powdered sugar. Add corn syrup and vanilla extract, continue whipping until the icing is smooth and creamy. If it's too thick, add a little bit more milk. Divide them up into separate bowls, add food coloring into each bowl and mix well.

Note: If you don't want to bother decorating the cookies with royal icing, you can form the cookie dough into 1 inch balls, roll them into a 1/4 cup of sugar until well coated, flatten slightly with your hands, and bake the cookies in the oven for 8-10 minutes.