Poultry Brine

Ingredients
– 1 cup kosher salt
– 1/2 cup brown sugar
– 5 bay leaves
– 2 Tbsp black pepper corns
– 1 Tbsp garlic powder
– 1 Tbsp dried rosemary
– 1 Tbsp ground sage
– 1 Tbsp coriander seeds (ground is fine)

Directions
1. Dissolve salt and sugar in 2 quarts boiling water
2. Add 2 more quarts of water (depending on size of bird may need more/less)
3. Place bird in large Ziploc bag (can use storage bag)
4. When brine is cool, pour over bird
5. Let sit for 12-24 hours in the refrigerator
6. Before cooking, rinse and cook normally

Healthy Chicken Fried Rice

Ingredients
Rice

– 1 Cup long grain brown rice
– 2 1/2 Cups water
– 1/4 Tsp salt
Fried Rice
– 1 Tbsp olive oil
– 1/2 Cup chopped onions
– 1 cup diced bell pepper (any color)
– 1 Tbsp finely minced ginger root
– 3 Tbsp water
– 2 Boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut in medium cubes
– 2 Eggs, beaten
– 2 Tsp sesame oil
– 1/4 Cup chopped green onions for garnish, optional

Directions
Rice

1. Add rice, salt, and water to a pot, stir once, and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low and cover. Allow to cook, untouched, for 40 minutes or until tender and liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat and let stand for 5 minutes, covered.
2. Refrigerate rice until cold, preferably overnight.
Fried Rice
1. Add olive oil to a large nonstick skillet or wok. Over medium heat add chicken, onions, bell pepper, and ginger and cook for about 4 to 5 minutes, until onions are translucent and chicken is mostly cooked through.
2. Add cooked rice and water and increase heat to medium-high.
3. Push rice to one side and add beaten eggs to the other side, scramble quickly then toss in with the rice mixture.
4. Stir in the soy sauce and sesame oil.

Remove from the heat and toss in the scallions, if using

Kim’s Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake

Ingredients
Cake

– 1 (18.25 oz) box Devils Food Cake
– 1 1/4 Cups water
– 1/2 Cup vegetable oil
– 4 Large egges
– 1 (3.9 oz) package instant chocolate pudding and pie filling mix
– 6 oz each Reeses Peanut butter and Milk Chocolate chips
– Choppedd Reeses Peanut Butter Cups as garnish (optional)
Frosting
– 1/2 Cup Whipped Supreme Vanilla Frosting
– 1/2 Creaming peanut butter
– 1/4 Tsp almond extract
– 1/2 Cup milk

Directions
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 12-cup Bundt pan with no-stick flour spray
2. Combine cake mix, water, oil, eggs and pudding mix in a large mixing bowl and mix on low speed until moistened.
3. Beat 2 minutes at medium speed. Stir in chocolate chips and pour batter into prepared pan
4. Bake 50-55 minutes or until toothpick inserted comes out clean. Cool in pan for 20 min, remove from pan to completely cool.
4. Beat frosting, peanut butter, almond extract and milk in a medium bowl with electric mixer until well combined. Spoon over cake and garnish

Healthy Roasted Chicken & Vegetables

healthy-roasted-chicken
Ingredients
– 2 Chicken breasts, cubed
– 1 Bell pepper, chopped (choice of color)
– 1/2 Onion, chopped
– 1 Zucchini, chopped
– 1 Cup Broccoli florets
– 1/2 Cup plumb/grape tomatoes
– Olive oil
– Salt & Pepper to taste
– Italian seasoning to taste
– 1/4 Tsp paprika (optional)

Directions
1. Preheat oven to 500 degree F.
2. Place all the chopped veggies and chicken in a medium roasting dish or sheet pan.
3. Add the olive oil, salt and pepper, Italian seasoning, and paprika. Toss to combine.

Bake for 15 minutes or until the veggies are charred and chicken is cooked. Enjoy with rice, pasta, or a salad.

Cinnamon Scone

Ingredients
Scones

– 2 Cups all-purpose flour
– 1/2 Cup brown sugar
– 2.5 Tsp baking powder
– 1.25 Tsp ground cinnamon
– 1/2 Tsp salt
– 8 Tbsp unsalted butter, frozen
– 1/2 Cup heavy cream (plus extra)
– 1 large egg
– 1 Tsp vanilla extract
– 1.25 Cups cinnamon chips
– Optional: course sugar for sprinkling on top

Glaze
– 1 Cup confectioners’ sugar
– 3 Tbsp cream
– 1/4 Tsp vanilla extract

Directions
1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Adjust baking rack to the middle-low position. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Set aside
2. In a large bowl, whisk the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. Grate the frozen butter. Toss the grated butter into the flour mixture and combine it with a pastry cutter, your fingers, or two knives until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Set aside.
3. In a small bowl, whisk the cream, egg, and vanilla together. Drizzle it over the flour mixture and then toss the mixture together with a rubber spatula until everything appears moistened. Slowly and gently fold in the cinnamon chips. Try your best to not overwork the dough at any point. Dough will be a little wet. Work the dough into a ball with floured hands as best you can and transfer to the prepared baking pan.
4. Press into a neat 8″ disc and cut into equal wedges. Using a pastry brush brush lightly with a little bit of cream and then sprinkle with coarse sugar, if using. Separate the scones and line them on the baking sheet with a little space between each one.
5. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until lightly golden and cooked through. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for a few minutes. During this time, make the glaze by whisking all of the glaze ingredients together until completely smooth. Drizzle over scones right before serving.

Notes: Leftover scones keep well at room temperature for 2 extra days. Scones freeze well, up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and heat up to your liking before enjoying.

Honey Sriracha Chicken

honey-sriracha-chicken
Ingredients
– 3-4 chicken breasts, cubed
– 1/3 cup cornstarch

Sauce
– 1 cup water
– 2-3 Tbsp sriracha (3)
– 5 Tbsp soy sauce
– 1 Tbsp minced garlic
– 1/4 cup sugar
– 2-3 Tbsp honey (2)
– 2 Tbsp cornstarch + 2 Tbsp cold water

Directions
1. In a medium sauce pan, combine the water, sriracha, soy sauce, garlic, sugar, and honey and stir.
2. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Whisk the 2 Tbsp cornstarch and 2 Tbsp water until dissolved and add to sauce pan. Stir until thickened and reduce heat to low or off
3. Add cubed chicken and cornstarch to a ziplock bag. Seal the bag and shake to coat.
4. Drizzle olive oil to a large skillet and heat on medium-high heat
5. Add chicken and saute until cooked through.
6. Add the sauce and stir to coat

Serve over warm rice

Source: Le Creme de la Crumb

Brown Butter Pumpkin Bunt Cake

Ingredients
– 11 Tbsp unsalted butter
– 1 box yellow cake mix
– 15 oz can pumpkin puree
– 4 eggs
– 1/3 cup granulated sugar
– 2 tsp ground cinnamon
– 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
– 1/4 tsp ground ginger
– 1/4 tsp ground allspice
– 2 cups powdered sugar
– 1 tsp vanilla
– 1/4 tsp salt
– 3-5 Tbsp heavy whipping cream (or milk)

Directions
1. Preheat oven to 350F. Spray 12-cup bunt pan with nonstick cooking spray (with flour is best)
2. Place butter in small sauce pan over medium-low heat. Melt, then stir often, cooking until the butter browns (~5-7 minutes). Stir often. The butter will foam, then reduce. Once it starts to turn brown it can burn quickly. Remove from heat
3. Remove 1/3 cup of browned butter and add to the cake mix, pumpkin puree, eggs, granulated sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and allspice in a large bowl. Mix with mixer until smooth.
4. Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake for 35-38 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool completely before glazing.

Glaze
1. Place reserved brown butter in a bowl (if it solidified, heat in microwave until liquid again). Whisk in powered sugar, vanilla and salt. Add heavy whipping cream 1 Tbsp at a time until desired consistency.
2. Drizzle over cake

Source: Crazy for Crust

Pumpkin Hot Fudge Pudding Cake

Ingredients
– 1 box yellow cake mix
– 1 cup pumpkin puree
– 1/2 cup water
– 1/3 cup oil
– 4 large eggs
– 2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
– 1 1/2 cups boiling water
– 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
– 1 tsp vanilla
– 2/3 cup granulated sugar

Directions
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare 9×13″ pan with nonstick cooking spray
2. Put cake mix, pumpkin puree, 1/2 cup water, oil, eggs, pumpkin pie spice in a large mixing bowl and mix until smooth
3. Pour into prepared pan
4. Add cocoa, vanilla, granulated sugar to the boiling water and whisk until dissolved. Pour carefully over cake in pan (don’t mix)
5. Bake for 25-32 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean from the center. Cool before serving

Note: hot fudge will sink to the bottom.

Source: Crazy for Crust

Bobby Flay’s Meatballs

Ingredients
Meatballs
– 1/2 lb ground beef
– 1/2 lb ground pork (can substitute turkey or more beef)
– 1/2 lb ground veal (can substitute turkey or more beef)
– 2 eggs lightly beaten
– 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
– 4 gloves garlic finely chopped and sauteed (I used minced)
– 1/4 cup dry bread crumbs
– 1/4 cup finely chopped parsley
– Salt & Pepper to taste
– 1 cup olive oil

Sauce
– 2 Tbsp olive oil
– 1 Yellow onion, finely chopped
– 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped (I used minced)
– 2 (28oz) cans plumb tomatoes and juice pureed
– 1 bay leaf
– 1 small bunch parsley
– Pinch red pepper flakes
– Salt and pepper
– 6 basil leaves, chiffonade

Directions
Meatballs
1. Combine all ingredients except oil in a large bowl make into meatballs of desired size
2. Heat the oil in a large sautee pan over medium-high heat and add the meatballs. Let cook on each side until lightly browned, but not cooked all the way through (10-15 min.)
3. While meatballs cook, prep the sauce
4. Remove meatballs and set aside until sauce is ready

Sauce
1. Puree the tomatoes in a blender then add all ingredients except garlic, chopped onion and basil
2. After removing the meatballs from the pan, save 2 Tbsp of the oil and discard remainder and cook the garlic and onion util softened (~15 min)
3. Add the puree mixture and the meatballs to the pan and bring to a boil
4. Lower the the heat and let simmer for 40 minutes
5. Remove the bay leaf and mix in basil

Slow Cooker Mongolian Beef

Ingredients
– 1-2 lbs Flank steak cut into 1/4 inch width strips
– 1/4 cup cornstarch
– 2 Tbsp olive oil
– 1/2 Tsp minced garlic
– 3/4 cups Soy Sauce (low sodium)
– 3/4 cups water
– 3/4 + 2 Tbsp cups brown sugar
– 1/2 cup grated carrots
– green onions, chopped, for garnish

Directions
1. Add steak and cornstarch to a ziplock back and shake to coat
2. Add olive oil, minced garlic, soy sauce, water, brown sugar and carrots to slow cooker. Stir ingredients, add steak and stir again until coated
3. Cook on high for 2-3 hours or low for 4.5 hours

Serve over rice and garnish with green onions