Saturday, July 23, 2016

Snickerdoodle Pancakes

Hi there, and happy Saturday!

Do you have a favorite cookie???

I have to admit I have several.  Chocolate chip being one and my other favorite is Snickerdoodles.  I have such great memories of mom making snickerdoodle cookies.  Oh, the smell that filled the house when they were baking had me running for the kitchen to get one hot out of the oven!

There is something about cinnamon that I love.  Maybe it's the deep earthy scent.  Or, it could be the combination with the sugar.  Either way I love it.  I use cinnamon in my baking all the time, it's definitely a go to spice in our home.

So what do cookies have to do with pancakes?  Well I thought I'd combine the flavors of the two and turn our Saturday morning pancake breakfast into Snickerdoodle flavored ones.  Oh yes!  They are good, I mean really, really good!  The scent of cinnamon hits you and everyone comes running and can't wait to sink their teeth in the best tasting pancakes. 

This pancake is a little special though.  Not only is there cinnamon in the batter, but you cook a cinnamon sugar mixture on the top of one side of the pancake, which creates a crunchy caramelized crust.  Pour some hot syrup and a pat of butter on top, take a bite and oh man!  Heaven!!!

Enjoy your weekend!

Other cinnamon recipes:

Snickerdoodle Pancakes

1 cup flour
2 tsp baking powder
2 Tbls brown sugar
¼ tsp of salt
1 tsp cinnamon
3 Tbls canola oil
1 egg
1 cup 2% milk
1 tsp pure vanilla extract

2 Tbls sugar
1 tsp cinnamon

In a medium bowl add dry ingredient (flour through cinnamon).  Stir to combine.  In a small bowl whisk together the oil, egg, milk and vanilla.  Add the liquid mixture to the dry ingredients, stirring until combines.  Allow to stand 5 minutes.

Add butter to a skillet over medium heat.  Pour 1/4 cup scoops of the pancake mix in to the hot skillet and sprinkle 1 tsp of topping on each pancake (the wet side).  Cook until bubbles pop on the surface and the bottom is golden brown.  Flip and cook another minute or so until the pancake is browned and fully cooked inside.  This side will have a crunchy cinnamon sugar side cooked in.  Remove from skillet and keep warm.

Continue cooking until all batter is used.  Serve immediately with maple syrup and butter if desired.

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Thursday, July 21, 2016

Grilled Teriyaki Chicken Salad

Hi there!  Is everyone having a great summer so far?

We certainly are.  The heat is on and we have decided that this is the summer of salads.  We love eating the abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables available to us now and what better way to showcase them than by salads (plus the fact that MGG can't go a day without a salad...#rabbitatheart). 

I've joined on the salad band wagon with him but I like my salads with some sort of protein in them to consider them a main dish.  That usually means some form of chicken for me and being summertime grilling the chicken is my go to method.

On Sunday, MGG and I visited our local farmer's market and found the best salad greens.  This particular vendor grew only greens and they had baskets of loos salad greens to mix and match.  Love it!  So we grabbed a few bags full and went on our way to see what else we could find.  An hour later we came home with fresh tomatoes, cucumbers, berries, melons, and bell peppers, and on and on....

On Monday I was working at home and decided to put the salad greens and bell peppers to good use and make a salad for lunch.  I decided to create a Grilled Teriyaki Chicken Salad.  So I grabbed my favorite marinade, Organicville's Island Original Teriyaki sauce, and some cashews, and pineapple to create this salad that reminded me of a great teriyaki bowl.  Oh it was soooo good.  I tell you, MGG missed out on this one!

The dressing is a combination of the teriyaki sauce mixed with rice vinegar, some pineapple juice (so save the liquid in the can) and some olive oil. Yum!  This dressing is light and tasty and the perfect topping.

So grab all your fresh veggies and make a wonderful salad for your lunch.  No need to share...I won't tell anyone.  But if you do find yourself in a generous mood you can just double, triple etc..this recipe and make enough for the family.


Grilled Teriyaki Chicken Salad

serves 1

1 boneless skinless chicken breast
1/2 cup teriyaki marinade (such as Organicville's Island Original Teriyaki sauce)
2 cups of mixed baby greens
1/3 cup of sliced red and orange bell pepper
1/4 whole cashews
1 8 oz can of pineapple chunks, juice saved for dressing   

Salad Dressing:
1/4 cup teriyaki sauce
2 Tbls rice vinegar
2 Tbls olive oil
2-3 Tbls pineapple juice (from the can of pineapple rings)

To prepare chicken marinate the chicken breast in the marinade for 30 minutes.  Meanwhile prepare the salad ingredients by placing them on a platter or in a medium bowl.

Prepare the dressing.  In a small bowl or mason jar add the teriyaki sauce, vinegar, olive oil, and pineapple juice.  Shake until combined.  Set aside.

Heat a gas grill to medium high.  Add chicken, discarding remaining marinade.  Cook covered about 5 minutes per side or until it reaches 160 degrees internal temperature.  Remove from grill and all to rest 10 minutes.  Slice chicken into slices and add to the salad.

Drizzle salad with dressing, toss to coat.  Serve.

Another recipe using Organicville's Island Original Teriyaki sauce:  Teriyaki London Broil

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Summer of Grilling: Grilled Citrus Pork Tenderloin

2016 is going down as the summer of grilling for us.

This is the year that we are going to perfect our grilling skills and it all starts with a Master Grilling Class that we took.  What an excellent class!  It was a small group of 10 people with hands on grilling for about 2 hours.  We prepped, studied, grilled, studied some more, and then ate a delicious dinner.  We got to learn various grilling techniques on different types of food.  The menu was simple:  How to grill vegetables, How to make the perfect steak, direct vs. indirect heat, searing, and grill to oven with chicken.  As an added bonus we made several different sauces such as a chimichurri, a teriyaki for grilled shrimp and a lemon herb for the chicken.

The best part was all the Q&A sessions where we learned so many tips.  It really helps when you get to pick the brain of a chef.  "It's all about technique" chef Mike says.   You can take the same recipe and have 5 chefs make it and each one will be unique because their style and techniques may be slightly different.  Makes sense right?  Otherwise we wouldn't have so many restaurants with overlapping dishes.

To put our Master Grilling class to good use we promptly went and bought a wonderful pork tenderloin (you know, the other white meat...) to try out all the tips we learned on the grill.  We don't eat pork that often although we love it, and I usually roast my tenderloins, so this was going to be fun!  Pork, like chicken is a neutral bases that lends itself to so many different flavors.  Since summer gives us an abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables I wanted to theme our dinner around light summery flavors.  I whipped up a wonderful Citrus Glaze to go on the pork, and we served it with my Sautéed Zucchini with Mint, Basil, & Pine Nuts as a side dish.   

Wow, the class was a hit, the grilling came off like a breeze, and the dinner was a fabulous success!  The pork turned out tender and juicy and the glaze was the perfect amount of light citrus, sweet and heat all rolled into one.  Could not have been any better.

We have so many things we want to grill this summer so be on the look out for more delicious food coming your way!

Enjoy some grilling this summer!

Grilled Citrus Pork Tenderloin

serves 2

1 pork tenderloin (about 1 - 1 1/4 pounds)
Kosher salt and ground black pepper
¾ cup orange marmalade (I used one with pieces of fruit in it)
Zest and juice from 1 orange
Zest and juice from 1 lemon
Pinch of red pepper flakes
Garnish:  lemon slices

Remove the silver skin from the pork tenderloin.  Season both sides with salt and pepper.  Allow the meat to come to room temperature (about 15 minutes) while you heat the grill to medium-high heat. 

Meanwhile in a small saucepan add the orange marmalade, zest from the orange and the lemon, and orange juice and lemon juice.  Stir to combine.  Add the red pepper flakes and heat over low heat until the sauce starts to melt a little and combines well.  Remove several spoonfuls to a bowl to use for serving and the remaining glaze will be used during grilling.

Place the tenderloin on the grill and cook 8 minutes on the first side.  Turn the tenderloin over and baste with the glaze.  Cook another 8 minutes.  Turn over again and baste with the glaze.  Cook turning frequently so the glaze does not burn until the meat reaches 155 degrees.  Remove from the grill and allow to rest 5-10 minutes before slicing into 1/2" pieces.

Serve with additional glaze drizzled on top and lemon slice on the side if desired.


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