Almond, Orange & Saffron Cake


I love contrast. Light, dark, bitter, sweet, soft, strong, black, white, whisper, loud, cloudy, bright, cause, effect, beginning, end.  Sometimes it’s not enough to luxuriate in the gray area; you have to stretch your arms wide and reach out to the fringes.  You know, pull the ends together to a point of juxtaposition…until the opposites are uncomfortably close.  Maybe that’s this cake for me.  Bright, dark, nutty, deep, citrus spark, spicy, intense, playful.  But, heck, if you feel the need to luxuriate–by all means, have your slice with an insanely large scoop of freshly whipped cream.

If you like citrus, this is your game.  If you need a gluten-free sweet, try this.  If you’re looking for an under-10-ingredient cake, dig in.  If you’re wanting something different, don’t wait.

The orange will grab your attention, but the saffron and cardamom will pull you in and linger on your tastebuds.  

Sublime upon sublime scarcely presents a contrast, and we need a little rest from everything, even the beautiful.

~ Victor Hugo

Almond, Orange & Saffron Cake
Serves 8
Moist, light, bittersweet orange mixed with spicy notes and subtle almond flavors. This cake is gluten free, delicious, and sure to catch your guest's attention.
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
50 min
Total Time
1 hr 5 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
50 min
Total Time
1 hr 5 min
386 calories
39 g
117 g
22 g
12 g
3 g
135 g
49 g
32 g
0 g
18 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
135g
Servings
8
Amount Per Serving
Calories 386
Calories from Fat 188
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 22g
34%
Saturated Fat 3g
13%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 5g
Monounsaturated Fat 13g
Cholesterol 117mg
39%
Sodium 49mg
2%
Total Carbohydrates 39g
13%
Dietary Fiber 5g
19%
Sugars 32g
Protein 12g
Vitamin A
5%
Vitamin C
29%
Calcium
14%
Iron
11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 2 medium oranges, chopped (including peel)
  2. 5 eggs, separated
  3. Pinch of ground cardamom
  4. Pinch of saffron threads
  5. 1/4 cup milk (or unsweetened original almond milk), for soaking saffron threads
  6. 1 cup superfine sugar
  7. 2 cups ground raw almonds (grind to a flour consistency in a food processor)
  8. 2 tablespoons sliced or finely chopped raw almonds
  9. 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line the base and sides of a 9-inch cake pan with parchment paper.
  2. Warm the milk (or almond milk) for 30 seconds in the microwave in a small bowl. Remove the milk from the microwave and place a small pinch (5-6) of saffron threads in the warm milk. Soak the threads in the milk for 30 minutes.
  3. While the saffron is soaking, heat the chopped oranges in a pan over low heat with 1 tablespoon of water. Cover and cook with a gentle simmer for 30 minutes, until the oranges are soft and the liquid has evaporated. Remove the pan from the heat and let cool. When cool, finely chop the oranges in a food processor.
  4. Whisk the egg whites in a clean, dry bowl until soft peaks form. Gradually stir in the superfine sugar and continue to whisk for 1 minute.
  5. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg yolks together with the remaining superfine sugar for 2-3 minutes. Whisk in the oranges and then fold in the ground almonds, ground cardamom, and saffron (with the soaking milk). With a large metal spoon, fold in spoonfuls of egg whites until everything is well combined.
  6. Pour the mixture into the prepared cake pan, sprinkle with sliced or chopped almonds and bake in the oven for 50-55 minutes (or until golden brown). Check every 20 minutes while baking.
  7. Let the cake cool in the pan before turning out and dusting with powdered sugar.
  8. Store in an airtight container for 3 days.
Adapted from My Indian Cookbook
beta
calories
386
fat
22g
protein
12g
carbs
39g
more
Adapted from My Indian Cookbook
TraveLynn Eats http://www.travelynneats.com/

Chocolate Cherry Breakfast Smoothie

Chocolate & Cherry Smoothie-1

Life offers up some sweet moments.  Many are obvious, but far more interesting are the ones you have to pay attention to…  the not-so-obvious.  The space between.  The silence between the notes.  The pause between the inhale and the exhale.   These are the gems.   This is where I find that place that feels worthy of pause, of wonder, of contemplation, of curiosity.  

So, while I was aimlessly scrolling the internet one evening, I just about breezed by this article: “Jennifer Aniston Shares Her Signature Breakfast Smoothie.”  I paused, though, when I saw the opening line, “What did it take for Jennifer Aniston to squeeze into that glittering Saint Laurent dress…?”   …and I chuckled and the inner monologue started.  Now I was hooked; I kept reading.  What did it take, how did she do it?…  I purposely skipped past the part that said “In addition to exercising 4-5 days a week…” and saw that Jen “starts each day with a healthy homemade shake.”  Oh yes, a shake…  I can do that.  

Chocolate & Cherry Smoothie

Whether you’ve had a chocolate covered cherry or black forest cake, you’re probably well aware that chocolate and cherries are a classic pair.  Oh yes, chocolate and cherries are good for your SOUL…  but the combo in this smoothie is good for your soul wrapper too! 

Chocolate almond milk, frozen banana, cherries, blueberries, organic raw almonds, Maca root powder, vegan chocolate protein powder (I’ve grown attached to Vega Protein & Greens), and just a couple drops of liquid stevia.  

I’m glad I stopped and read further.  I’m glad I got past my drink-this-smoothie-look-like-Jen-Aniston snort laugh (and trust me, I’d drink a helluva lot of smoothies to look like her!).  Because, I found a wonderful, easy, naturally sweet, healthy, smoothie.  It’s my go-to morning shake.

I love finding the sweetness in the not-so-obvious… 

Chocolate & Cherry Smoothie

While I’m reveling in unexpected sweetness, I find that lately –in the midst of seeming chaos– I’m paying more attention to the delicate space between the craziness.  I’m nurturing this perspective.  I’ve been shifting focus from the disaster to the rescuer, from the problem to the volunteer  …to the grass-root solution.   …a donation made.   …the community engaged.  

I didn’t quite expect to find myself at the Women’s March in Washington DC last month.  I don’t do crowds.  Certainly, not 500,000-large crowds.  But, I felt compelled to go.  No sign, no plan.  Just me, feeling like I needed to be a part of our great democracy in action.  I piled into the Metro.  And, what seemed like an eternity later, I was birthed out of L’Enfant Metro stop, moving in a sea of people with pink hats and funny-witty-punchy-serious-naughty-poignant-creative signs.  

Moments later, at Independence and 6th Street, and surrounded by more people than I felt comfortable with, I climbed a tree, nestled between two limbs, and perched there for 5 hours listening to Gloria Steinem, Michael Moore, Alicia Keys, Senator Duckworth, Madonna, and many others.  I didn’t go to see these people; I had no idea they’d be there.  But, I appreciated each speaker.  I heard them:  stand up, take action.  

As far as the march goes…  It took a heckofa long time to actually start moving.  The march route was so packed we were wedged in place for hours; but then a budge, and then a few feet, and then we walked for miles.  It was peaceful.  It was powerful.  It was a day that I pledged: from now on don’t complain, do something.  It was a special day.  There was a sweetness in it I was not expecting.    

But, you clicked on this link because you were looking for something sweet  …like chocolate cherry sweet.  Keep scrolling…

Women's March Washington DC-16

Chocolate & Cherry Smoothie

 As we become purer channels for God’s light, we develop an appetite for the sweetness that is possible in this world. A miracle worker is not geared toward fighting the world that is, but toward creating the world that could be.

~ Marianne Williamson

Chocolate Cherry Breakfast Smoothie
Serves 1
Chocolate and cherries combine in a naturally sweet and healthy smoothie. This is soon to become your go-to, guilt-free morning shake!
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Prep Time
5 min
Total Time
5 min
Prep Time
5 min
Total Time
5 min
562 calories
99 g
3 g
13 g
20 g
1 g
990 g
77 g
74 g
0 g
8 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
990g
Servings
1
Amount Per Serving
Calories 562
Calories from Fat 92
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 13g
20%
Saturated Fat 1g
5%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 6g
Cholesterol 3mg
1%
Sodium 77mg
3%
Total Carbohydrates 99g
33%
Dietary Fiber 13g
54%
Sugars 74g
Protein 20g
Vitamin A
29%
Vitamin C
37%
Calcium
84%
Iron
29%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 cup unsweetened chocolate almond milk
  2. 1 cup frozen cherries
  3. 1 cup frozen blueberries
  4. 1/2 frozen banana
  5. 1 cup ice
  6. 1 scoop chocolate flavor vegan protein powder
  7. 1/2 tablespoon maca powder
  8. 2-3 drops of liquid sweetener or stevia
  9. 10 raw almonds
Instructions
  1. Place all ingredients in blender with the liquids first. Blend until smooth.
Notes
  1. Initially spotted on the InStyle.com fashion magazine. What a great find!
beta
calories
562
fat
13g
protein
20g
carbs
99g
more
TraveLynn Eats http://www.travelynneats.com/

Chocolate & Kale Detox Smoothie

Smoothie, Vegan, Vegetarian | January 4, 2017 | By

chocolate kale smoothie

I am easing into 2017.  You have to admit, 2016 was a bit of a doozy…  Other than this year blowing by, I didn’t have much to complain about I had much to be grateful for.  The world situation, well, now that’s where things got a bit sticky.  There were some major worldwide crises, and there were some other events that took many of us by surprise.  If you’re like me (a child of the 70s & 80s), the loss of David Bowie, Prince, George Michael and Princess Leia were mighty blows!  (& these were just a few of the many revered popular and significant figures that left us…)  So, not to get dark on you, but… OUCH.  I won’t even get into the political drama that ensued this year.  2016–COME ON!  The online/TV end-of-year recap was unlike any I remember with a middle digit montage on Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, and the final hoorah:  Mariah Carey’s Times Square New Year’s Eve performance.  Just a big ‘ole dose of 2-oh-1-6.  Girl, we feel ya– 2016 was rough…  

☆2017 just seems like something that needs to be gently approached☆ 

Each year, I’ll tell you I don’t make resolutions as I’m drafting my list.  Despite my annual hesitance, I’m pretty good at sticking to them though.  This year, as I started contemplating my list, I took note of a new trend: setting intentions.  Ok, ummm yeah…  I like it.  It’s a bit softer…  It’s very 2017.  Like “hey, things have been rough…we made it though….let’s just slide into this next thing a bit…”  In the spirit of smooth transitions, I have set my intentions for 2017.  High on the list is a much stronger focus on CLEANER EATING.  I say CLEANER instead of CLEAN because there is a good chance on my business trip to California next week, I’m going to end up with an In-N-Out burger (animal style, duh…) in my face.  

I’m starting somewhere, though.  Intentions, right?  I really want give this shift the right attention.  Set myself up for success, you know…  Because this isn’t about a diet, this is about diet.  This is about me knowing there is a direct connection between what we eat and how we move through life.  While I eat fairly healthy, my off button and filters don’t always work so well.  So, last night, an hour after I ate my dinner (a big ‘ole fluffy kale salad), I tossed back a frozen pizza with reckless abandon.  My weakness is frozen pizza (I know…  seriously…  what…).  There are three in the freezer right at this very moment…

So, I’m going to kick things into gear with a 21-day detox program right after my business trip.  More to follow on that.  But, I feel like something NEEDS to BE done NOW!!!  I really feel like I need to do a control-alt-delete on myself, but hey…  easy does it, Lynn.  So, in the spirit of easing out of the craziness of 2016 and into the reset that I know needs to happen in 2017:  I’m starting with this Chocolate & Kale Detox Smoothie.  Oh wait, wait, wait!  Don’t close out of the page after reading the words chocolate and kale in the same sentence (and soon to be in the same glass).  You don’t taste the kale at all.  Meantime, it’s working it’s leafy super green magic on your guts.  The chocolate~~  well, that’s a sneaky little bit as well.  The chocolate in this smoothie comes from two superfood ingredients:  cacao powder and cacao nibs.  And who doesn’t love the words “superfood” and “chocolate” used together…  Toss in some frozen bananas, almond milk, and a couple drops of liquid Stevia (and it doesn’t even really need this tiny boost of sweetness, but hey…  we said ‘easing in’ right), and you have a creamy, chocolatey, decadent smoothie–that you, my dear, do not need to feel the least bit guilty about.  

I want to talk about a few of the ingredients real quick before we get into the blender action, because then things move real quick!

KALE.  I love it.  I didn’t always love it.  But, I’m about two clicks away from being one of those “Oh Kale Yeah” t-shirt-wearing-gals.  It adds texture to salad, it bakes into dishes really well, it sautés beautifully in olive oil with a splash of apple cider vinegar, maple syrup and fresh grated ginger.  And just take a moment to admire the stunning pop of green that shows up in your sauté pan…   And, if we’re not on the same (kale) page yet, this is the recipe for you…   because, like I said, you aren’t going to taste it.  So, let me offer up one more bit on kale.  If you’ve been grabbing the bag of pre-cut kale (with the big chunks of stem cut up in there too), I want to ask you to try something new.  I want you to grab the big, loose leaf (or bundled) organic kale.  I want you to gently slide the leaf off the main stem, grab the leaves up in a bunch, and thinly slice the leaves into little kale ribbons.  Then, while on the cutting board or in a bowl.  I want you to give that kale a nice little massage, maybe just a minute or two.  Tell it you love it, and then say hello to your new favorite Brassica oleracea.  Massaged kale softens up a bit, which makes it easier to digest– and just watch how the color brightens! 

CACAO NIBS.  I grabbed all my grocery list items and thought, “what the heck, lemme see if <mainstream grocery store> carries cacao nibs.” … Me: “Sir {to grocery store manager walking by}, do you y’all carry cacao nibs?” … Store manager guy: “Oh yes, let me grab that for you.” … Me (never-ending conversation with self inside head):  “Score!” … Store manager guy: “Here you go.”  Handing me a bag of chocolate chips.  Me {in my most polite and slightly ridiculous tone}: “No, nibs not chips.” … Store manager guy:  “What’s a nib?”  Touché, Sir.  Touché…  

Cacao nibs are cacao beans that have been roasted, separated from their husks, and crushed into smaller pieces.  It’s basically chocolate in its raw, pure form.  And who doesn’t love things in their raw, pure forms?…  So, think “less sweet, slightly nutty” flavor.  Kinda like me with the grocery store manager.  Look, the short version is:  cacao nibs are chocolate before all the bullshit additives come into the picture.  Yes, I know, I like them too… but when you’re trying to detox a bit you gotta find the opportunities.  Plus, you get antioxidants, fiber, iron and magnesium–  and what’s not to love about that…?

FROZEN BANANAS.  This will be short.  Go buy a bunch of bananas.  Then, when you’re like, “Oh hey, these bananas look perfectly ripe…oh crap, if I don’t eat all 8 bananas in two days I will have a brown pile of goo on the counter!”  That’s when I want you to peel them, cut them in half, put them in a ziploc bag and toss them in the freezer.  Because always having frozen bananas on hand for smoothies is one of life’s simple pleasures…

Ok, now take a quick glance at the ingredients.  You’re going to toss them in the blender, give them a big, looooong whirl.  Done.  Kick back, take a sip.  Feels kinda indulgent, huh?…  You did it, you made it through some rough bits this year; treat yourself and know that this one is totally GOOD for you!  

☆Cheers to all that is ahead of us, 2017!☆

chocolate-kale-smoothie-1

chocolate kale smoothie

chocolate kale smoothie

chocolate kale smoothie

chocolate kale smoothie

“My friends, love is better than anger. Hope is better than fear. Optimism is better than despair.

So let us be loving, hopeful and optimistic. And we’ll change the world.”

~Jack Layton

chocolate kale smoothie

 

Chocolate & Kale Detox Smoothie
Serves 2
No need to feel guilty about this chocolate shake. Cacao nibs, cacao powder and kale combine in a velvety, rich smoothie.
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Prep Time
10 min
Total Time
10 min
Prep Time
10 min
Total Time
10 min
153 calories
32 g
0 g
3 g
4 g
0 g
469 g
28 g
14 g
0 g
0 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
469g
Servings
2
Amount Per Serving
Calories 153
Calories from Fat 6
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 3g
4%
Saturated Fat 0g
1%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Monounsaturated Fat 0g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 28mg
1%
Total Carbohydrates 32g
11%
Dietary Fiber 4g
18%
Sugars 14g
Protein 4g
Vitamin A
156%
Vitamin C
118%
Calcium
41%
Iron
8%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 1/2 cups chopped, packed organic kale
  2. 3 tablespoons cacao nibs
  3. 2 tablespoons cacao powder
  4. 1 1/2 cups original, unsweetened almond milk
  5. 2 drops Stevia liquid sweetener
  6. 2 frozen bananas
  7. 1 cup ice
Instructions
  1. Add all ingredients to smoothie blender and process until smooth.
  2. Enjoy immediately!
Adapted from Superfood Smoothies by Julie Morris
beta
calories
153
fat
3g
protein
4g
carbs
32g
more
Adapted from Superfood Smoothies by Julie Morris
TraveLynn Eats http://www.travelynneats.com/

Earl Grey Shortbread with Lavender Buttercream

East Coast Eats, Sweets | December 25, 2016 | By

 

Earl Grey Shortbread with Lavender Buttercream

I went full on Christmas this year.  Ok, well, I had some B- gift giving moments, cards that never went out, and I got a tad bit cranky at the fifth office holiday party event.  Overall, though, I gave this year’s Christmas a valiant effort.  I type this as I’m on my fourth back-to-back viewing of the 24-hour A Christmas Story extravaganza that plays on TBS each year.  #familytradition… 

I had a holiday first this year though:  a Christmas Cookie Exchange, courtesy of my dear friend, Josie.  Right, I know, how do you get to 40-something (aka ’29 again’) before attending your first Cookie Exchange?…  I don’t “do” Christmas cookies.  Don’t get me wrong, that wasn’t an uppity “don’t do” … that was a baking hesitance on my part.  In fact, baking is actually quite intimidating to me.  Cooking is an art; baking is a science.  I’m a ‘dash of this, dash of that, throw it in a pan’ kind-of-gal.   You ask me to add a cup of flour and there’s a good chance I’m gonna plunge my hand into the flour bag and scoop out about a cuppa flour…  As much as I want to believe it’s just a ‘dash of this, a splash of that, pop it in the oven and forget about it’ –this doesn’t work in baking.  So, I gave great thought to what I was going to take to my inaugural Cookie Exchange.  

I knew I wanted to combine Earl Grey and Lavender in some combination, and I had been thinking about this for quite some time.  I figured two dozen would be more than enough (well, two dozen minus the few I burned…  it happens…).  I found out later (i.e., reading the “bring 4 dozen” invite right before driving to the event) that the goal of a Cookie Exchange is not to bring your most unique recipe.  The goal is to bring a shit ton of cookies, the Christmas kind.  So, I kinda did this “Ahh, Lynn, epic fail on the Cookie Exchange” when I re-read the invite.  Then, I swirled some Lavender Buttercream on my Earl Grey shortbread, took a bite, and soliloquized: “Ohhhh, Lynn, epic cookie win…epic.cookie.win…”

As I mentioned, I have been wanting to bring Earl Grey and Lavender together.  Two delicate, intriguing flavors.  Both so distinct, yet there is clear harmony between these two flavors.  I opened up my tin of Earl Grey tea, then I twisted off the top of a glass jar full of organic culinary lavender buds, and I took a big whiff of both.  It took me back to sipping a cup of tea while admiring my little garden when I lived in Harrogate, England.  Then, my daydreaming went off in another direction and I embraced a big ‘ole dose of sentimentality over some amazing friendships I’ve made as I’ve moved around over the past 20 years.  One of them: my wonderful gal pal, Josie.  My little baking “lightbulb” went on and I knew Earl Grey and Lavender were going to come together in a non-traditional Christmas cookie for her Cookie Exchange.

earl-grey-shortbread-1

earl-grey-shortbread-4

earl-grey-shortbread-5

…and how could I not get sentimental when, a few weeks ago, Josie sent me a picture album from a trip we took to Disney World & Epcot Center for New Year’s Eve about 8 years ago.  When I met up with Josie in Florida way back on that day, she gave me a huge hug and then immediately provided one condition for our trip:  we were wearing matching outfits and it would include mouse ears.  How could I resist?… I still have my shirt…  

earl-grey-shortbread-14

“The most beautiful discovery true friends make is that they can grow separately without growing apart.”

~Elizabeth Foley

earl-grey-shortbread-7

earl-grey-shortbread-9

You can check out this shortbread recipe at the FeedFeed’s website as featured on the Shortbread Feed.  

FeedFeed is a great resource for recipes and connecting home chefs, food lovers, bloggers!  

Earl Grey Shortbread with Lavender Buttercream
Yields 24
Fragrant, delicate with perfect floral notes. Earl Grey tea and lavender combine in this delightful little cookie.
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Prep Time
45 min
Cook Time
12 min
Total Time
1 hr
Prep Time
45 min
Cook Time
12 min
Total Time
1 hr
241 calories
29 g
36 g
14 g
1 g
9 g
50 g
52 g
21 g
1 g
4 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
50g
Yields
24
Amount Per Serving
Calories 241
Calories from Fat 119
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 14g
21%
Saturated Fat 9g
43%
Trans Fat 1g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 3g
Cholesterol 36mg
12%
Sodium 52mg
2%
Total Carbohydrates 29g
10%
Dietary Fiber 0g
1%
Sugars 21g
Protein 1g
Vitamin A
8%
Vitamin C
0%
Calcium
1%
Iron
1%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Shortbread
  1. 2 cups all-purpose flour
  2. 2 tablespoons loose Earl Grey tea leaves
  3. 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
  4. 3/4 cup powdered sugar
  5. 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  6. 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
Lavender Buttercream
  1. 3/4 cups unsalted butter, room temperature
  2. 3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  3. 1 teaspoon dried culinary lavender, finely chopped
  4. 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  5. 1 tablespoon milk or cream, if needed, to thin buttercream
Shortbread
  1. In a food processor, pulse together the flour, tea, and salt, until the tea is just spotted throughout the flour. Add the powdered sugar, vanilla, and butter. Pulse together just until a dough is formed. Place the dough on a sheet of plastic wrap and roll into a log (about 2 1/2-inches in diameter). Tightly twist each end of the plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
  2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  3. Slice the log into 1/3-inch thick disks. Place on parchment lined baking sheets, 2 inches apart. Bake until the edges are just lightly brown, about 12 minutes. Watch the time carefully, these cookies are thin and will burn quickly. Let the shortbread cool on the cookie sheets for 5 minutes and then transfer to wire racks and cool to room temperature.
Lavender Buttercream
  1. Add butter to the bowl of your electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and beat until creamy. With the mixer on low speed, gradually add the powdered sugar and finely chopped lavender. Increase the speed of the mixer, scrape down the sides, if needed, and beat the frosting until fluffy and combined. Beat in the vanilla extract.
  2. If the frosting seems too thick, beat in a tablespoon of milk at a time. If it seems to runny or too thin, you can beat in more powdered sugar. Frost the shortbread when they are completely cool. Top with a few lavender buds, if you wish.
beta
calories
241
fat
14g
protein
1g
carbs
29g
more
TraveLynn Eats http://www.travelynneats.com/

Baked Eggs with Roasted Acorn Squash & Kale

acorn-squash-egg-bake-3

If you know me, like really know me…  you know I’m an introvert (that was possibly an understatement).  So, even though my California soul longs to be out, flip flops on, frolicking around on the beach with my homies,… this winter thing kinda suits my need to turn inside, go into my gal cave, stay in my jammies all day, sip my coffee slowly, get mesmerized by the twinkling lights on the Christmas tree, savor the sweetness of solitude, and just RECHARGE.  So, while I resist winter with every fiber of my being, December is actually a soothing time of year for me.  Beyond the obvious that is the holiday season, there is a subtle settling into a  transition that transcends the autumnal shift.

Today, I woke up, rolled around in bed for two hours longer than intended, and calmly recognized it was going to be (and needed to be) one of those jammies-all-day kind of days.  I threw on my big ‘ole fluffy robe, shuffled downstairs, peeked into the kitchen and knew that baked eggs in a cast iron skillet had to happen on this lingering, lazy morning.     

acorn-squash-egg-bake-1

When I discovered I had an acorn squash, one onion, kale, a carton of eggs, dried cranberries, pecans, and vegetable broth already on hand…  Well, I had a moment.  That sweet feeling when you delightfully discover something you weren’t expecting.  Seriously, it was special.  Let me mention some other ingredients:  the spices.  I, like you, have a cupboard stuffed full of every imaginable spice (and, oddly, I never seem to have the spices needed for a new recipe… another life mystery).  But, there are two spices I keep right near the stove:  Herbes de Provence and a bottle of ground Spiced Chipotle Smoked Red Jalapeños.  I found it at Whole Foods.  I adore it.  It adds a smoky, spicy, unique flavor. 

Breakfast, brunch..  this dish is a ‘good morning to you’ all day long…

acorn-squash-egg-bake-2

Baked Eggs with Roasted Acorn Squash & Kale
Serves 4
Roasted acorn squash, caramelized onion and kale combine to create a comfort food "cradle" for baked eggs.
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
35 min
Total Time
50 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
35 min
Total Time
50 min
331 calories
23 g
247 g
21 g
14 g
6 g
267 g
961 g
7 g
0 g
14 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
267g
Servings
4
Amount Per Serving
Calories 331
Calories from Fat 187
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 21g
33%
Saturated Fat 6g
29%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 3g
Monounsaturated Fat 11g
Cholesterol 247mg
82%
Sodium 961mg
40%
Total Carbohydrates 23g
8%
Dietary Fiber 3g
13%
Sugars 7g
Protein 14g
Vitamin A
17%
Vitamin C
29%
Calcium
25%
Iron
16%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 large acorn squash (about 4 cups of squash), cut in 1/2 inch slices
  2. 1 teaspoon each of Kosher salt & ground black pepper, and 2 tablespoons olive oil (for the squash)
  3. 2 tablespoons of olive oil (for sautéing the onions)
  4. 1 medium onion, thinly sliced (about 1/4 inch slices)
  5. 4 cloves of fresh garlic, chopped
  6. 1 teaspoon Herbes de Provence
  7. 1/4 teaspoon ground chipotle powder
  8. 1 bunch curly kale cut into thin ribbons (about 5 packed cups); try to remove the big stems...
  9. 1/2 cup low-sodium vegetable broth
  10. 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  11. 1/4 cup pecan pieces
  12. 4 to 6 eggs
  13. 1/2 cup freshly shaved Pecorino Romano and/or Asiago cheese
Instructions
  1. Heat the oven to 410 degrees.
  2. While the oven is pre-heating, thoroughly wash the acorn squash and cut into 1/2 inch slices. I typically start cutting from the end and then when I reach the center with the seeds, I scoop them out. I'll often slice a side off the acorn squash so I can lay it flat and then cut the slices a little easier. You can leave the rind on or cut it away from the "flesh." I opt to leave it on because the roasting makes it tender and it gives a great texture to the dish.
  3. Lay the acorn squash slices flat on a large sheet pan, drizzle with about 2 tablespoons of olive oil and sprinkle with about 1 teaspoon of Kosher salt and 1 teaspoon of ground pepper. Roast the squash slices for 20-25 minutes in the 410 degree oven. Halfway through the roasting, flip the squash slices over on the pan with a spatula.
  4. Meanwhile, while the squash is roasting, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet on medium-high heat (a cast iron skillet works beautifully, since you'll be broiling the eggs at the end--in the oven--in your gorgeous, big skillet). Sauté the onion slices for 20-25 minutes (about the same time the squash is roasting). Season the onions with salt & pepper to taste and 1 teaspoon of Herbes de Provence. Watch the onions so they don't burn; if they start to get too dark, turn the heat down to medium so they can caramelize a bit. After 15 minutes, add the roughly chopped garlic cloves.
  5. After the onions have caramelized, add the thinly sliced kale to the skillet (about 2 cups at a time). After you add the first 2 cups of kale, pour 1/4 cup of the vegetable broth and let the kale cook until it just softens. Stir a bit and then add 2 more cups of kale, 1/4 cup of broth, 1/4 teaspoon of the chipotle powder, and simmer until the kale softens. Add the cranberries and pecan pieces, simmer and stir for 2 minutes. Add the final cup of kale and stir the onions, kale, cranberries and pecans in the skillet and let it simmer for a few minutes on medium heat.
  6. Remove the roasted squash from the oven. Cancel the bake setting and turn on the broiler in the oven. Move the rack in the oven (with an oven mitt!) so it is about 6 inches under the broiler. Take the roasted squash slices and place them in the skillet. You can "cut" the slices into smaller chunks with your spatula in the skillet, but be careful not to stir the mixture too aggressively or the squash will break apart and get mushy.
  7. Take the back of a spoon and press 4 - 6 wells into the squash/kale/onion mixture. Crack an egg into each of the wells and lightly sprinkle with salt and pepper. Sprinkle half the shaved cheese on top of the eggs and squash mixture. Carefully, place the skillet in the oven and broil for 4-5 minutes until the egg whites have set, but the yolks are still runny. Keep an eye on the eggs, they will go from 'just set' to cooked yolks very quickly. When you remove the skillet from the oven, sprinkle the other half of the shaved cheese on top of the dish.
  8. Serve immediately with buttered toast or toasted pita bread.
beta
calories
331
fat
21g
protein
14g
carbs
23g
more
TraveLynn Eats http://www.travelynneats.com/

Apple Cider Caramels

East Coast Eats, Sweets | December 7, 2016 | By

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I feel like November just cruised by, top-down-with-the-heater on, leaves floating by, beep-beep, get outta the way…  Now, the tree is up, lights twinkling, foggy mornings, forecast snow, humming baby it’s cold outside, peeking over my shoulder and wondering how Autumn just zipped on by.  It didn’t even ease it’s foot off the accelerator.  

Autumn in Virginia was lovely and it was short-lived.  I gave it my all; I really did.  Pumpkin Spice Lattes (they taste different when you drink them with a big, chunky home-made yarn scarf hugging your neck…they do…); fall leaf peeping; apple picking in the orchards; the Hunt Races at Montpelier; sneaking gorgeous chunks of squash into unsuspecting dishes; getting nostalgic watching It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown; and just, well, you know… soaking in the seasonal slow down.

Somewhere, on a country road, at a stand filled with apples and gourds, at a location I’ll never remember, I picked up some apple cider.  This isn’t the clear jug of apple cider on Aisle 9 that looks curiously like the apple juice snuggled up next to it.  This is the cloudy, thick, spicy, rich, country stand apple cider.  I’ve also found some great, seasonal apple ciders in the refrigerator section at the grocery store.  Both Trader Joe’s and Whole Food’s apple ciders are deelishussss.

So, farewell Autumn.  Just before I get into the Christmas cookie swing of things, I’m saying au revoir to your color-filled days with these: Apple Cider Caramels.  

apple-cider-caramels-1

“Autumn is as joyful and sweet as an untimely end.”
― Rémy de Gourmont

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apple-cider-caramels-4

Apple Cider Caramels
Gorgeous, chewy, spicy, buttery, apple cider caramels. The perfect mix of sweet and salty. So good, so easy, so make right now.
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
50 min
Total Time
1 hr
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
50 min
Total Time
1 hr
2739 calories
423 g
353 g
123 g
4 g
77 g
1508 g
4831 g
402 g
4 g
37 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
1508g
Amount Per Serving
Calories 2739
Calories from Fat 1078
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 123g
189%
Saturated Fat 77g
384%
Trans Fat 4g
Polyunsaturated Fat 5g
Monounsaturated Fat 32g
Cholesterol 353mg
118%
Sodium 4831mg
201%
Total Carbohydrates 423g
141%
Dietary Fiber 3g
11%
Sugars 402g
Protein 4g
Vitamin A
80%
Vitamin C
16%
Calcium
27%
Iron
13%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 4 cups apple cider
  2. 1 cup granulated white sugar
  3. 1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
  4. 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into chunks
  5. 1/3 cup heavy cream
  6. 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  7. 2 teaspoons Fleur de Sel or flaky salt
  8. Grape seed oil for the knife
Instructions
  1. On high heat, boil the apple cider in a saucepan until it is reduced to a thick syrup (about 1/2 cup in volume) and stir occasionally. This takes about 35 - 40 minutes.
  2. While the cider is boiling, get your other ingredients ready because you'll need to move quickly after the cider is reduced to syrup. Measure the sugars and place in a bowl. Cut the butter into small chunks. Measure the heavy cream. Stir together the cinnamon and salt and place in a separate, small bowl.
  3. Line the bottom and sides of an 8-inch straight-sided square metal baking pan with 2 long sheets of parchment paper (in a crisscross layout). Set it aside.
  4. Once you are finished reducing the apple cider, remove it from the heat and immediately stir in the sugars, butter, and heavy cream. Stir until the mixture is smooth and the butter has melted. Return the pot to medium-high heat for about 5 minutes. Have a bowl of very cold water ready, and cook the caramel (for 5 minutes) until a very small spoonful dropped into the water becomes firm, chewy, and able to be formed into a little ball. If you want to be precise, use a candy thermometer and let it boil until the thermometer reads 252 degrees. Either way, watch the caramel closely; you don't want to under or over cook it.
  5. Immediately remove the caramel from the heat, add the cinnamon and salt mixture, and give it several stirs to distribute the cinnamon/salt evenly.
  6. Pour the caramel into the prepared pan. Let it sit until cool and firm—about 2 hours (only about an hour in the refrigerator). Once the caramel is firm, lift the caramel from the pan by the parchment paper and transfer it to a cutting board. Let the caramel sit out for a little bit before you start cutting it. If it is too cold, it will crack when you try to cut it. Use a well-oiled knife to cut the caramel into 1-by-1-inch squares. Lightly sprinkle the caramels with flaky salt.
  7. Wrap each one in a 4-inch square of waxed paper or parchment, twisting the sides to close. Caramels will be somewhat on the soft side at room temperature and hard and chewy if left in the refrigerator. These caramels keep for about 2 weeks in an airtight container if left outside the refrigerator.
  8. Perfect holiday gift. Unless you eat them all first...
Adapted from The Smitten Kitchen
beta
calories
2739
fat
123g
protein
4g
carbs
423g
more
Adapted from The Smitten Kitchen
TraveLynn Eats http://www.travelynneats.com/

  

Virginia Ham Biscuits & The Hunt Races

Dinner, East Coast Eats | November 25, 2016 | By

virginia-ham-biscuits-the-races-31

Two hours southwest of Washington DC, and tucked into the eastern edge of Shenandoah National Park, are the gorgeous, rolling Orange County hills that surround James Madison’s Montpelier.  I first visited the area this summer on a mom & daughter trip to learn about our Founding Fathers.  I am by no means a history buff.  I will begrudgingly read some bit of history now and then as if some civic duty, with frequent stops to scan Instagram, daydream about visiting the Médoc, or just…you know…twirl my hair and stare at the ceiling…  But, put me IN history…let me touch, smell and see it…and I’m there.  So, there I was, via my ever-energetic momma, at a 3-day crash course on Jefferson, Madison & Monroe.  We visited Monticello, Montpelier and Monroe’s Highland.  Their homes were grand and thoughtful and serene.  I was fascinated by the connection between these men; it left an impression on me.  Most impressive to me, though, was how much these men were able to accomplish without the modern day conveniences of travel and communication.  Jefferson, Madison & Monroe:  statesmen, counterparts, mentors and friends.  

I was particularly intrigued with Madison’s Montpelier.  After James Madison passed and Dolley moved to Washington DC, the home changed hands several times until William duPont, the famed American businessman, banker and horse racing connoisseur, bought it in 1901.  When William passed on to the great beyond, his daughter, Marion, inherited the home.  While her father massively renovated the home, Marion’s major renovation would be to the landscape, including the addition of a steeplechase  track.  In 1934, Marion duPont started The Montpelier Hunt Races on the front lawn of James Madison’s old digs.  Today, it is the only live brush hurdle course in the Commonwealth of Virginia.  Each November, horse-racing-big-frilly-hatted-tailgate-loving Virginians (and their friends) gather on the fields of James Madison’s Montpelier for The Hunt Races.  It is a stunning sight to behold, and it just feels so Virginia…      

virginia-ham-biscuits-the-races-9

…and what would a horse race be without those stunning hats?  Ladies, dig in to your inner Southern Belle.  Gorgeous, colorful, elegant, eccentric, fun. 

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Just as seriously as the ladies take their hats, Virginians pour every bit the amount of passion into their race day tailgates.  From college football style tailgates to sophisticated spreads, it’s quite clear: the fans are committed.  Although, it was hard to tell what the main attraction was at times– the culinary creations or the beautiful animals powering across the steeplechase track, glistening with sweat, faithfully committed to the competitive push of the jockey.  I lovingly admired both.

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Virginia hams, mounds of fried chicken, shrimp cocktail, biscuits piled high, pies and cookies, sweet tea.  It was overflowing.  I stared and surveyed and ogled my way past the tailgates, making note of what I saw in the displays.  I tucked the Virginia Ham Biscuit away into my mental recipe book.  It’s a southern staple.  Flaky biscuits, piled high with thinly sliced Virginia ham, accentuated by sweet and tangy mustard.  It’s a race day classic.  P.S….  I left the races with a new cookbook.  I’m not sure how that happened, but it did.  The Southerner’s Cookbook, from the editors of Garden & Gun, added to the collection…

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Buttermilk biscuits you can melt into.  My secret ingredient, oh…  it’s the duck fat…  and why stop there with the artistic “license”…?  While I dressed some of the biscuits with a homemade honey mustard (recipe follows), I heaped caramelized onion jam on top of the shaved ham of the next little sandwich I devoured.  It was lovely.   

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virginia-ham-biscuits-the-races-30

Virginia Ham Biscuits
Yields 8
Virginia ham biscuits. A southern staple. Brunch, lunch, dinner, tailgate party, reception...whatever the occasion, you'll find these simple, tasty sandwiches on the menu.
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
12 min
Total Time
30 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
12 min
Total Time
30 min
317 calories
35 g
54 g
11 g
20 g
5 g
142 g
933 g
5 g
0 g
6 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
142g
Yields
8
Amount Per Serving
Calories 317
Calories from Fat 99
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 11g
17%
Saturated Fat 5g
23%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 4g
Cholesterol 54mg
18%
Sodium 933mg
39%
Total Carbohydrates 35g
12%
Dietary Fiber 1g
5%
Sugars 5g
Protein 20g
Vitamin A
3%
Vitamin C
0%
Calcium
18%
Iron
11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. Classic Buttermilk Biscuits
  2. 2 cups all-purpose flour
  3. 4 teaspoons baking powder
  4. 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  5. 1 teaspoon salt
  6. 1 teaspoon sugar
  7. 2 tablespoons, cold, unsalted butter (cut in small pieces)
  8. 2 tablespoons duck fat (or lard)
  9. 3/4 to 1 cup cold, whole buttermilk
  10. 1 pound Virginia Ham, thinly sliced
Condiment of your choice
  1. Honey mustard (1/4 cup whole-grain mustard, 1 tablespoon honey, 1 teaspoon dijon)
  2. Plain mustard (whole-grain or dijon recommended)
  3. or...get creative...
  4. Caramelized onion jam
  5. Your favorite chutney (fruit chutneys pair nicely)
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
  2. Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and sugar together into a large bowl. Blend the butter pieces and duck fat (or lard) into the dry mixture with a pastry blender (or two knives) until you achieve a course meal with flakes of butter/fat throughout.
  3. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture, then slowly pour the buttermilk in the center while stirring the flour into the "pool" of buttermilk. Depending on the humidity levels, it may only take 3/4 cup buttermilk (rainy or very humid day) to 1 cup buttermilk (clear, dry day). Stir in the buttermilk until a dough forms and no dry pieces are left, but it should not be overly wet either.
  4. Turn the dough out onto a floured work surface. Roll out the dough until it is 1/2 inch thick. Use a biscuit cutter (between 2-3 inches...I use a 3 inch cutter for bigger biscuits) to cut out rounds and place on a cookie sheet. Gather dough, form, rollout, and cut out biscuits until you're out of dough. Don't over handle the dough as the butter starts to melt. You can dust a little flour over the dough if it gets too sticky.
  5. Place the biscuit rounds on the cookie sheet so they are lightly touching one another. They'll help each other "climb" as they bake. Friendly biscuits...
  6. Bake for 10-12 minutes until the biscuits have risen and the tops have started to brown. Remove from the oven, brush with melted butter (if desired).
  7. When slightly cooled from the oven, slice the biscuits open, pile high with thinly sliced Virginia ham, spread honey mustard (or condiment of your choice) on the top biscuit half, and enjoy! Serve warm or at room temperature.
Adapted from The Southerner's Cookbook
beta
calories
317
fat
11g
protein
20g
carbs
35g
more
Adapted from The Southerner's Cookbook
TraveLynn Eats http://www.travelynneats.com/
virginia-ham-biscuits-the-races-23

Horse Race Style

Virginia Apple Pie

East Coast Eats, Sweets | October 27, 2016 | By

I’m a full-fledged fall fan.  It took me a while, but watch out… I’m so in it now…  I’m loving your fallen leaves, your crisp mornings and scarf-worthy breezes, your sweat pant hugs, your apple picking.  

The apple picking.  Virginia, do you ever have some apple picking.  

Branches heavy hanging.  Children laughing, running through rows, sitting under trees, sneaking little nibbles.  Carefree, family outing, dogs curiously sniffing, bags overflowing, enthusiastic fruits, ground covered, harvest tables, so inviting.  So lovely, apple pie.  

APPLE PIE.

Because there’s comfort food, and then there’s apple pie.

Virginia Apple Picking

Apple Pie

…And I just felt like there was one thing that needed to happen after picking:  APPLE PIE.

I have played around with this recipe for years, and I think I’ve finally reached my version of apple pie perfection.  The cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and dash of cayenne combine into an earthy richness that add a subtle warmth to the sweetness and a balance to the tartness.  

A few little tips:  1) Cook the apples in advance.  The apples cook down so you can really create a jam-packed apple experience.  I’ve made plenty of apple pies without cooking the apples first, and the results don’t even come close.  2) Use an apple wedger (buy one, just do it).  3) Use a great quality pie plate.  I use a stoneware pie dish that browns the crust perfectly.   And, it just looks cute…  I used a mix of Idared and York apples because, well, that’s what was on the trees.  Result:  fantastic.  I’m also a fan of Braeburn apples for pie.   Ultimately, though, you’re the artist and it’s your (pie) palette.   

“If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first create the Universe.”  

Carl Sagan gave a tall order, but I think you’ll find this recipe within the realm of the earthly possible.  At the very least, you’ll end up with a little slice of heaven…

Virginia Apple Pie

Virginia Apple Pie
Serves 8
The absolute perfect apple pie. Packed to the brim with spiced apples and nestled in a flaky crust. Go ahead, have a slice for breakfast too, no one's watching...
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Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
50 min
Total Time
1 hr 20 min
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
50 min
Total Time
1 hr 20 min
711 calories
122 g
88 g
26 g
6 g
16 g
612 g
313 g
78 g
1 g
8 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
612g
Servings
8
Amount Per Serving
Calories 711
Calories from Fat 231
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 26g
41%
Saturated Fat 16g
80%
Trans Fat 1g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 7g
Cholesterol 88mg
29%
Sodium 313mg
13%
Total Carbohydrates 122g
41%
Dietary Fiber 13g
53%
Sugars 78g
Protein 6g
Vitamin A
25%
Vitamin C
44%
Calcium
5%
Iron
7%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
PIE CRUST
  1. 2 cups all purpose flour
  2. 1/2 cup + 6 tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces
  3. 2 teaspoons sugar
  4. 1 teaspoon salt
  5. 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
  6. 1 egg
  7. 1/4 cup cold water
PIE FILLING
  1. 10 - 12 apples
  2. 1/2 fresh lemon (to squeeze over apples after slicing)
  3. 1 cup sugar
  4. 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  5. 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  6. 1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
  7. 2 dashes of cayenne pepper
  8. 1/8 cup all purpose flour
  9. 3 tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces
PIE CRUST
  1. In a medium mixing bowl, mix the flour, sugar, and salt with a fork. Cut the butter into the flour mixture with a pastry knife. Alternately, you can cut the butter into the flour mixture with a food processor. With either method, mix the butter into the flour until you have a crumb-like mixture.
  2. Mix the vinegar, egg and water with a fork and combine the liquid mixture into the dry mixture until all ingredients are moist. With your hands, mold the dough into a ball and tightly cover with plastic wrap. Chill in the refrigerator for at least 15 minutes and up to 2 days. Don't you just love a pie crust that will let you wait until the last minute or plan ahead...
PIE FILLING
  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Peel, core and slice 10 - 12 apples. Don't be intimidated. You're going to cook the apples, so they will cook down a bit and allow you to really pack your pie full of apples. If you have an apple wedger--perfect! If not, slice apples into 1 inch wedges after peeling, cut out the core, and then cut the wedges into half pieces (the apples will pack into the pie crust easier). Place the apples in a large glass mixing bowl. Squeeze lemon over the cut apples to keep them from turning brown. Mix the sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, ground ginger, cayenne pepper, and flour in a bowl; then sprinkle the mixture over the apples and thoroughly toss the apples in the sugar and spice mixture.
  3. Remove the dough from the refrigerator right before you cook the apples.
  4. In a very large skillet (I actually use a wok), cook the apples for about 10 minutes until they are fork tender, but not mushy. Much of the water from the apples will fill the skillet--you want this to happen. Remove the apples from the skillet and place back in the large mixing bowl. Continue to cook the remaining liquid over medium heat until it reduces and thickens (another 5 - 7 minutes). Remove the reduced liquid from heat.
ASSEMBLING
  1. Cut the dough in half. Take one half and roll out thinly so that it will hang over the edge of your pie dish by 1/2 inch. With a large spoon, place the cooked apples into the pie shell in the pie dish. Drizzle the reduced apple and spice liquid over the apples. Dot the apples with 3 tablespoons of butter cut into small pieces. Roll out the other half of the pie dough and place over the apples in the dish. Fold the overlapping crusts together and crimp the edges all around the pie dish edge (a fork works well for this).
  2. Place the pie on a cookie sheet and bake at 375 degrees for 50 minutes. Check the pie at the halfway point, if the crust starts to brown too quickly, you can loosely cover the top or edges with aluminum foil to control the browning.
beta
calories
711
fat
26g
protein
6g
carbs
122g
more
TraveLynn Eats http://www.travelynneats.com/

Butternut Squash, Quinoa & Kale Bake

Dinner, Vegan, Vegetarian | October 15, 2016 | By

I have embraced it:  summer is over.  I love this time of year.  Windows open, crisp mornings, leaves unraveling their colors, pumpkin patches, wrapped up in a blanket couch cuddling.  But, I wasn’t ready for it this year.  Life has been busy…good busy…but BUSY.  The summer raced by and I found myself on the other end of it, greeting autumn with full on denial slight hesitation.  I’ve tried a half dozen PSLs (I know, but admit it– you long for them each year too…).  I tossed a scarf around my neck.  Nothing.  I just wasn’t feeling it.  But, if there is one thing I look forward to this time of year… it is certainly an autumn menu.  I knew transition would find me there.  Soups, chilis, roasted roots, squashes and pumpkins, apple pies and homemade breads, a house full of fresh-baked scents, spices and cinnamon.  This is the time of year when menus get cozy.  This is when comfort food is less a guilty pleasure and more just something you sink into with complete abandon.  Because.You.Can… 

I am adoring Dana Shultz’, aka the Minimalist Baker’s, Everyday Cooking.  What’s not to adore about simple, healthy, creative cooking?…  She brings butternut squash, kale and quinoa together in a gorgeous combination.  But, there’s an earthy richness with the onions, mushrooms and walnuts that really weave all the ingredients together.  Bright pops of color and a texture you can sink your teeth into.  This dish did it for me.  It’s fall and I’m embracing it.

If you’re looking to serve up a side of autumn, this recipe is for you. 

Butternut Squash, Quinoa, Kale

Butternut Squash, Quinoa, Kale

Butternut Squash, Quinoa, Kale

Butternut Squash, Quinoa, Kale

Butternut Squash, Quinoa & Kale Bake
Serves 6
Butternut Squash, Quinoa & Kale Bake. The perfect autumn veggie dish.
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271 calories
30 g
6 g
14 g
10 g
3 g
253 g
395 g
3 g
0 g
10 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
253g
Servings
6
Amount Per Serving
Calories 271
Calories from Fat 120
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 14g
21%
Saturated Fat 3g
13%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 8g
Monounsaturated Fat 2g
Cholesterol 6mg
2%
Sodium 395mg
16%
Total Carbohydrates 30g
10%
Dietary Fiber 5g
18%
Sugars 3g
Protein 10g
Vitamin A
253%
Vitamin C
100%
Calcium
21%
Iron
15%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 3 cups butternut squash, cut into bite-size pieces
  2. 2 tablespoons grape seed oil, divided
  3. 3/4 cup quinoa
  4. 1 1/2 cups vegetable broth
  5. 1/2 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
  6. 2 cloves garlic, minced
  7. 8 ounces crimini, button or baby bella mushrooms, quartered
  8. 1/2 cup walnuts, roughly chopped
  9. 3 cups loosely packed kale, chopped
  10. 1/3 cup parmesan cheese (or vegan parm), divided
  11. Sea salt and black pepper, to taste
Instructions
  1. Lightly grease an 8×8-inch (or comparable size) baking dish and preheat oven to 400°.
Butternut Squash
  1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Add cubed butternut squash and toss with 1 tablespoon oil. Season with a healthy pinch of salt and pepper. Bake for 15-20 minutes until fork-tender. Remove from oven and set aside.
Quinoa
  1. While the squash is baking, rinse quinoa in a mesh strainer. Add to small saucepan with vegetable broth and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low, cover and cook until liquid is fully absorbed and quinoa is fork-tender (15-20 minutes). Once quinoa is finished cooking, season with a healthy pinch of salt and pepper and half of the vegan Parmesan cheese. Stir, sample and adjust seasonings to taste. Remove from heat and leave covered.
Onions, Mushrooms & Kale
  1. Heat large skillet over medium heat. Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil, onion and garlic. Season with a pinch each of salt and pepper. Cook until onion is translucent (about 4 - 5 minutes) stirring frequently. Add mushrooms and walnuts and season once more with salt and pepper. Continue cooking for 5 minutes or until mushrooms are lightly browned.
  2. Make room in the pan and add kale. Season once more with a good pinch of salt and pepper, and stir to coat. Cook until kale is just tender (about 3 - 5 minutes). Remove from heat and set aside.
Assemble and Bake
  1. Reduce oven temperature to 375 and add cooked quinoa to prepared baking dish. Top with vegetable-walnut mixture and roasted butternut squash. Lightly stir to combine. Top with remaining vegan Parmesan cheese and bake uncovered for 10 minutes to warm through. Serve immediately. Leftovers will keep covered for up to 3 days.
Adapted from Minimalist Baker
beta
calories
271
fat
14g
protein
10g
carbs
30g
more
Adapted from Minimalist Baker
TraveLynn Eats http://www.travelynneats.com/

Tomato Galette with Goat Cheese, Honey & Thyme

 

Sometimes it’s hard to decide what’s more perfect:  a weekend morning strolling the farmer’s market or the post-market creations…  Life is full of hard choices.  But, making this tomato galette should not be one of them… Galette’s are so easy, so versatile, so lunch, brunch, dinner with a side salad, served hot, cold…so midnight snack.

This galette recipe caught my eye on Bloglovin.  Tomatoes, goat cheese, thyme …and honey.  Oh honey, does this ever magically come together with the honey.  I had no idea why the author of Wry Toast  spent so much time talking about the honey in this recipe. Until.I.Tried.It…  Savory, sweet, the richness of the goat cheese, tangy tomatoes, and the honey unifies the flavors in a unique and delightful way.  Do you have those dishes you just want to bury your face in?  This is it. 

This galette was lovingly filled with yellow, orange and red tomatoes I picked up from the Dupont Circle Farmer’s Market this weekend.  Ahhh, a tomato rainbow.  I felt like their beauty deserved to be framed, wrapped in love.  What better than a galette.  Summer’s gift in a light and crispy pastry.  Now, that’s a gift worth giving.    

Tomato Galette with Goat Cheese, Honey & Thyme

Tomato Galette with Goat Cheese, Honey & Thyme

Tomato Galette with Goat Cheese, Honey & Thyme

Tomato Galette with Goat Cheese, Honey & Thyme

Tomato Galette with Goat Cheese, Honey & Thyme

Tomato Galette with Goat Cheese, Honey & Thyme

Tomato Galette with Goat Cheese, Honey & Thyme

Tomato Galette with Goat Cheese, Honey & Thyme

Tomato Galette with Goat Cheese, Honey & Thyme

Tomato Galette with Goat Cheese, Honey & Thyme

Bon appetit mon amour….

Tomato Galette with Goat Cheese, Honey & Thyme
Serves 6
Light, crispy, fresh and easy to make. This tomato galette with goat cheese, honey, shallots and thyme is soon to become one of your go-to summer recipes.
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Prep Time
45 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 45 min
Prep Time
45 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 45 min
435 calories
39 g
89 g
26 g
13 g
16 g
267 g
383 g
13 g
1 g
8 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
267g
Servings
6
Amount Per Serving
Calories 435
Calories from Fat 230
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 26g
40%
Saturated Fat 16g
79%
Trans Fat 1g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 7g
Cholesterol 89mg
30%
Sodium 383mg
16%
Total Carbohydrates 39g
13%
Dietary Fiber 3g
11%
Sugars 13g
Protein 13g
Vitamin A
43%
Vitamin C
35%
Calcium
9%
Iron
10%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
DOUGH
  1. 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
  2. 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour, sifted
  3. pinch of salt
  4. pinch of sugar
  5. 1/3 cup cold water
FILLING
  1. 4 shallots, diced (approximately 1 cup)
  2. 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil + more for drizzling
  3. 8 ounces goat cheese
  4. 3 tablespoons honey
  5. 3 – 4 heirloom or variety of tomatoes, sliced
  6. 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  7. 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  8. 2 tablespoons fresh thyme
  9. 1 large egg, beaten
DOUGH
  1. Start first by preparing the dough. Using a cheese grater, grate the butter into a small bowl and freeze for 10 minutes. While butter freezes, combine the flour, salt, and sugar in a large mixing bowl. Whisk the cold grated butter into the flour mixture until a mealy texture forms, then slowly add water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until dough takes shape. Form the dough in a ball, transfer to a lightly floured surface, and shape into a flattened round. Tightly wrap in plastic and refrigerate for 45 minutes until the dough is firm and cold.
FILLING
  1. While the dough chills, heat olive oil over medium-high heat and sauté the diced shallots until lightly caramelized (approximately 10 minutes). Remove from heat and allow to cool.
  2. Preheat oven to 375F.
  3. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and lightly sprinkle with flour. With a floured rolling-pin, roll out the chilled dough into a 1/8″ thick round and transfer to the parchment-lined baking sheet. It's easiest to transfer the dough by rolling it onto the pin and then lifting it onto the baking sheet.
  4. Crumble the goat cheese over the rolled-out dough, leaving a 2-inch border along the edges. Drizzle a heavy serving of honey over goat cheese (don't be shy), then evenly top with caramelized shallots.
  5. Next, season the sliced tomatoes with salt & pepper and layer over the goat cheese and shallots. Drizzle the olive oil over the tomatoes and, finally, sprinkle with fresh thyme.
  6. Fold the 2-inch border of the dough over the edges of the tomatoes, then brush the crust with beaten egg.
  7. Bake the galette for 45-60 minutes until the crust is golden and the tomatoes have begun to char.
  8. Cool for a few minutes before serving.
Adapted from WRY Toast
beta
calories
435
fat
26g
protein
13g
carbs
39g
more
Adapted from WRY Toast
TraveLynn Eats http://www.travelynneats.com/