Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Beefy Chile Relleno Bake

Sometimes after a weekend of nothing but Oysters you just want something beefy and cheesy. Oh, this hit the spot.

I am so over summer and the only reason why is the heat – I hate the heat. I could deal with cold, rainy, snowy and/or cloudy weather every day, but the summer heat is something I could do without. It’s just not for me. However, as I write this I think of one awesome memory in the hot summer nights. It was the first time we decided to take our son for his first ice cream cone. The ice cream shop was full so we ended up sitting outside in the heat, thank goodness the sun was not out. It was so hot outside that the ice cream was literally melting all around our hands, we could not eat it fast enough – and if you know my husband, you know this is pretty amazing. If you don’t know him; he used to play football and is very efficient in his eating. We were laughing so hard and our son’s face was just a mess. It makes me smile just thinking about it. Thank you summer for that wonderful memory… but you can go now and let autumn begin, before my favorite and dear winter is here.

This dish will be perfect for the colder months – or if you just want something beefy and cheesy. The recipe calls for roasted and peeled chiles, I bought canned but doing it yourself at home would give much more flavor. I will be making this one again, it was very easy to put together and tastes great reheated. Enjoy!

Beefy Chile Relleno Bake

  • 1.5 lb ground beef
  • 2 tablespoons taco seasoning
  • ½ cup red onion, chopped
  • 2 cups pancake mix, dry
  • 3 eggs, slightly beaten
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
  • 3-4 green chiles, roasted and peeled

  1. Heat oven to 370F. Grease 8x8- or 9x9-inch glass baking dish
  2. Brown ground beef in skillet over medium-high heat, drain
  3. Return beef to skillet and add onions, cook until onions soft. Add water and taco seasoning, stir until fully mixed and remove from heat
  4. Combine pancake mix, eggs and milk – beat until smooth
  5. Pour half of the batter into baking dish. Sprinkle with 1 cup of the cheese. Spoon beef mixture evenly over cheese.
  6. Cut each other pepper lengthwise and spread on top of beef until covered
  7. Sprinkle with rest of cheese and then rest of batter
  8. Bake uncovered 25 to 30 minutes or until topping is light golden brown
  9. Enjoy with Pico de Gallo and Sour Cream!
Recipe adapted from Betty Crocker

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Foodbuzz 24x24: End-of-Summer Oyster Party

What is Foodbuzz 24x24?
Well, first let me tell you about Foodbuzz. Foodbuzz is an online community of food bloggers that share recipes, pictures, blog posts, reviews, videos and so much more – all related to food. With over 4 million posts and over 4,000 featured publishers, you are destined to find something scrumptious to cook for dinner on their site! Plus, you don’t have to be a food blogger to sign up at Foodbuzz and start sharing your own recipes, following foodie blogs, creating your own recipe box and meeting other foodies. Very, very cool.
Each month Foodbuzz invites their 4000+ Featured Publishers to submit a creative and fun meal they would want to host. Foodbuzz then selects and sponsors 24 of those meals to take place on a single chosen day. So, we have 24 bloggers hosting their meals all within 24 hours of each other. Ta-da! You have the Foodbuzz 24x24.

My meal idea of an End-of-Summer Oyster Party was chosen! Very, very exciting. :) This is going to be a long post, so grab a snack and something to drink – I hope you enjoy!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Simple Spicy Chicken & Birds Eye Chef's Favorites

Simple Spicy Chicken. Simple post. I used ingredients I had on hand for this one – which was basically chicken and hot sauce. :) This chicken ended up getting used in a Buffalo Chicken Salad, which was awesome. (Recipe soon to come)

Simple Spicy Chicken
  • 1 pound chicken thighs
  • ground black pepper
  • garlic powder
  • 1/3 cup hot sauce (I used Tapatio, but any hot sauce should work)

  1. Generously coat chicken with ground black pepper and garlic powder.
  2. Add chicken to a plastic (ziploc type) bag and add hot sauce. Make sure hot sauce gets evenly distributed throughout bag
  3. Marinate for 2 hours
  4. Grill on medium heat for 30-35 minutes, checking on it every ten minutes or so, until done
  5. Enjoy!

Birds Eye Chef's Favorites
Through the Foodbuzz Tastemaker program I was selected to review Birds Eye Chef’s Favorites. I have always loved getting packages in the mail, but let me tell you, when I get one that says “Dry Ice Inside” – I am super excited and can’t open the box fast enough. True Story – I was not sure what was in the package and my hubby makes a joke that it is probably a Vegetable Bomb, so be careful opening it. I laugh, open the box, and then laugh harder since the box was full of veggies! He just cracks me up sometimes. :) OK, back to Birds Eye Chef Favorites… 

Roasted Red Potatoes & Green Beans w/ Parmesan Olive Oil Sauce

I was lucky enough to receive 4 different flavors; Roasted Red Potatoes & Green Beans w/ Parmesan Olive Oil Sauce, Lightly Sauced Creamed Spinach, Lightly Sauced Primavera Vegetable Risotto, and Lightly Sauced Mushroom & Green Bean Risotto. What a great variety!

I have used Birds Eye products for years, but I have never tried their microwaveable bags before. One thing about me, I hate using the microwave. Well, I don’t hate it too much or I wouldn’t have one, but I really don’t use it often – I am a stovetop girl. Usually all that sees the microwave is leftovers, a mug with water in it for tea, popcorn and sometimes to defrost on the fly (aw man, I really hate doing that). With all that said, I cooked my first bag of Birds Eye Chef's Favorites on the stovetop… mostly because I am stubborn as an old mule on how to cook food in my kitchen, haha. The second bag was cooked in the microwave. The third in the microwave. The fourth in the microwave. See a pattern? My stove was glaring at me. :) These ROCK in the microwave! Very saucy, not watery at all – which is the one thing I worry about with microwaveable bags. I found something that tastes better cooked in the microwave than cooked on the stove! Seriously, this is a big deal. 

Lightly Sauced Primavera Vegetable Risotto

They all taste so good, but my favorites were Lightly Sauced Primavera Vegetable Risotto and Roasted Red Potatoes & Green Beans w/Parmesan Olive Oil Sauce. So good, and the best part – so easy. Just put in the microwave for a few minutes and it’s done. Totally simple and totally tasty. My husband’s least favorite vegetable is green beans. In fact the only foods he has a strong aversion to are green beans and parmesan cheese – but he was a good sport and still tried the Roasted Red Potatoes & Green Beans w/Parmesan Olive Oil Sauce. Verdict? He said he would eat it regularly. I was floored. Serious folks, Birds Eye Chef’s Favorites are awesome… and I am not just saying that because I got free samples. This is a completely honest review.

Check out all of Birds Eye’s current products at their website and keep an eye out for these new items in September.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Cornbread Pudding

Bloggers Block. Is that what it is called when you try to write a blog post and can’t muster up one thing to write about? I definitely have it right now, and after 3 days of trying to post this recipe I have decided to just give in and post whatever my fingers type.

My mind has just been a flurry lately, however, I do have a few exciting things to share.

First off, I bought my ticket and booked a hotel room to attend the 2011 Foodbuzz Bloggers Festival. The festival is the first weekend in November and in San Francisco. I am so lucky to be going, and I am so lucky that my wonderful hubby will be joining me! He won’t be going to the festival with me, so we will be spending time together before, in between and after the events. I am beyond excited – for both the festival and to get away for the weekend with my hubby.

Second, I was chosen by Foodbuzz to host a 24x24 meal. It is going to take place this Saturday, August 27th and will be posted by midnight on August 28th. Again, totally excited!! Hungry Harps will be hosting an End of Summer Party – Oyster Meal. That’s all the details for now. ;)

Third, I was nominated for the Sacramento CBS Local, Most Valuable Blogger Award a few weeks ago by my hubby. He told me he had done it at work, but to be honest, I totally forgot about it. The best part? I didn’t even know I was chosen as a finalist until I saw on my blog visitor stats that I had a visitor from CBS Local, so I clicked on the link and what do you know? I am a finalist and in the running to win Most Valuable Blogger in the Lifestyle category for CBS in Sacramento. Way, way cool. Here is the link if you want to vote – don’t feel obligated. I really wanted to share the news with you more than campaign for your vote. :)


I think that should do it. For someone who didn’t have much to say I sure did type a lot…

Enjoy this recipe, it was so good. I imagine it would be awesome as a side dish or a snack on a cold day. On the nights that my husband works late he does not get home until 10:30, so we enjoyed this as a late night snack, it rocked!

I made this recipe since it called for Green Tomato Relish, which I had just received in the mail from Foodzie. Here is a link to Wayne's Green Tomato Relish, it is awesome and I totally recommend it. If you want to make your own, try this recipe for Green Tomato Relish. And here is the link to The Non-Dairy Queen, which the recipe came from. I LOVE FOODZIE!!

Corn Griddle Cakes
  • 3 cups corn flour (Masa Harina)
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 3 cups water

  1. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Add egg and water. Mix well.
  2. Heat skillet to medium-high. Using a ¼ cup measurement, form patties with your hands and cook until golden brown on both sides. You only need about six cornbread cakes for the pudding, but this recipe will make upwards of 15.

Cornbread Pudding
  • 6 corn griddle cakes, diced (about 2 cups)
  • 1/3 cup green tomato relish
  • 1 cup cheese, shredded
  • 1 cup frozen corn
  • ¼ cup cooked bacon, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • ¼ cup green onions, chopped
  1. Preheat oven to 350
  2. Add corn cakes, green tomato relish, ¾ cup shredded cheese, corn, bacon, salt, milk and egg to large bowl. Mix until well combined.
  3. Grease ramekins or 8x8 casserole, add mixture and top with remaining cheese and green onions
  4. Bake for 40 minutes and tops are golden brown
  5. Let cool for 15 minutes and enjoy!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Buffalo Chicken Meatballs

I thought the Fontina-Stuffed Veal Meatballs were the best meatballs ever, but now I don’t know. These Buffalo Chicken Meatballs are pretty amazing. It is like having a boneless hot wing with double, or maybe triple the flavor! Not to mention that when paired with bleu cheese dip, it’s a perfect match. These were cooked in my trusty meatball basket on the barbecue – however, the recipe below is to bake these in the oven. If you are able to cook these on the BBQ; cook for 20 minutes, flipping every 5 minutes, over medium-high heat.

Buffalo Chicken Meatballs
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ¼ cup red onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ cup parsley, chopped
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 pound ground white meat chicken
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • ½ cup hot sauce (such as Frank’s RedHot Sauce)
  • ¼ tsp ground black pepper
  • chopped scallions for garnish

1. Heat olive oil on medium-high heat in skillet. Add onion, garlic, parsley, black pepper and salt. Sauté until onions are tender.
2. Place onion mixture in bowl to cool. (I used this time to cut the celery and carrot sticks)
3. Mix ground chicken with onion mixture. Use your hands; it will get mixed the best this way.
4. Place in refrigerator for 15 minutes
5. Preheat oven to 350
6. Make 1.5 inch meatballs and place on greased cookie sheet. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until meatballs are golden brown
7. While meatballs are baking; heat butter, hot sauce and black pepper in saucepan over medium heat until bubbling then remove from heat. Stir frequently
8. Toss baked meatballs with hot sauce in bowl, garnish with scallions. Serve with bleu cheese dressing/dip, carrot and celery sticks
9. Enjoy!
Recipe adapted from Rachael Ray

Monday, August 15, 2011

Mac & Cheesy Chipotle Chicken and Frito Lay Giveaway

I have recently been invited to enter Frito Lay’s Taste of Home recipe contest. The rules are real simple; submit a recipe that reminds you of home or a recipe that was inspired by one of the new Frito Lay Regional Flavors. I decided to take my favorite dish that reminds me of home and give it a makeover with the inspiration from a flavor of Regional Flavors chips. This blog post is my entry for the contest, I hope you enjoy!

My favorite dish that reminds me of home is my Grandma’s Macaroni & Cheese. So ooey and gooey and warm and bubbly. Pretty much perfect. The Frito Lay Regional Flavor that stood out the most to me was Chipotle Ranch. Oh, I was inspired alright – and excited about what was coming together in my head. :)

The final result; Mac & Cheesy Chipotle Chicken. Flavors from the Southwest meet Grandma’s Macaroni & Cheese! The recipe calls for Chipotle Chicken, if you don't have a recipe I found a great one at Epicurious.com. If you love cheese and chicken, you should love this – but of course, I make no promises… you will just have to be the judge. ;)

Mac & Cheesy Chipotle Chicken
  • 1.5 cups dry Ditalini pasta

  • 1 cup bell pepper, chopped

  • 1/2 cup red onion, chopped

  • 3 garlic cloves, minced

  • 3 tablespoons cooked bacon, chopped

  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped

  • ½ teaspoon paprika

  • 1 teaspoon chili powder

  • 1/2 tablespoon ground cumin

  • 1/2 cup frozen corn

  • 2 cups chipotle chicken, shredded (recipe)

  • 2 tablespoon butter

  • 2 tablespoon flour

  • 2 cups milk

  • 2 cups grated colby cheese

  • 1/4 cup grated fresh parmesan cheese

  • 1/4 cup breadcrumbs

  1. Cook noodles according to package, rinse with cold water

  2. Sauté bell pepper, onion, garlic, bacon, cilantro, paprika, chili powder, ground cumin and frozen corn until bell peppers are soft, about 5 minutes. Add noodles and chicken. Mix thoroughly.

  3. On med-high heat melt butter in saucepan, add flour while constantly whisking stir to make a roux. Slowly stir in milk, heat for 2 minutes. Add your cheeses, cooking on med-low until cheese is melted and cheese sauce is formed. Stir occasionally to avoid cheese from sticking to bottom of pan.

  4. Stir cheese sauce into pasta mixture, blend thoroughly.

  5. Put your Chipotle Chicken Mac & Cheese into oven safe bowls, sprinkle with breadcrumbs and bake for 30 minutes, or until bread crumbs are golden.

  6. Enjoy!

Ok, back to the chips! In case you have not heard about Frito Lay Regional Flavors, let me tell you a little something about them. :) They were not only inspired by the region each flavor represents, but they are only available in that area! Here are the flavors and where they are available:
Northeastern U.S. – Lay’s Honey Mustard
Midwestern U.S. – Lay’s Creamy Garden Ranch
Northwestern U.S. – Lay’s Balsamic Sweet Onion
Southwestern U.S. – Lay’s Chipotle Ranch
Southeastern U.S. – Lay’s Cajun Herb & Spice

  • All of the Lay's Regional Flavored potato chips are made with all natural ingredients and cooked in healthier oils, like corn and sunflower oils, which contain 80% or more of polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fat - the "good fats." They also contain 0 grams of trans fats per serving!

  • There’s also less sodium in them than you might think – a 1-oz serving of our Lay’s Regional Flavored potato chips contains less salt than a plain bagel!

Ok, so there are the facts – now the giveaway! Frito Lay is offering one of Hungry Harps readers a Frito Lay Regional Flavors Variety Pack. Sounds good huh? Sounds good to me too. :)

All you need to do is comment which Frito Lay Regional Flavor you want to try. Hands down, I want to try Chipotle Ranch and Cajun Herb & Spice – they both sound awesome!

Additional & Optional Entries: (Make sure to leave a separate comment for each additional entry)

Giveaway ends on Thursday, August 20th at 11:59 p.m. PST
Open to those in the US only. Winner will be chosen using Random.org. Winner will have 48 hours to respond to email before another winner is chosen.

The winner is Lynda! Congratulations and thanks for entering!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Chocolate Chip Cookies with Peanuts and Cinnamon & Kodak Gallery Photo Book

This cookie rocks! The combination of chocolate, cinnamon and peanuts seemed odd to me at first, but it works so well. The dough gets a bit thick near the end so I would suggest using an electric mixer or a strong husband to do the mixing. ;) I prefer the latter… anything to get a muscular man into the kitchen. Haha

The original recipe called for ½ cup smooth peanut butter, but due to a miscommunication between me and the mixer – it did not make it in. No worries, the cookie rocks and I am not sure if I would want any more peanut flavor in it since everything seems to jive so well as is. We took these to a party and they vanished like hot cakes. (Not sure if hot cakes would really go that fast, but you get what I am saying.) :)

Chocolate Chip Cookies with Peanuts and Cinnamon
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
  • 2/3 cup roasted, salted peanuts, coarsely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Whisk together flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon in a medium bowl.
  3. Put butter in bowl and mix on medium speed for 2 minutes, until smooth. Add sugars; mix 2 minutes. Mix in eggs. Slowly add flour mixture; mix until just combined. Fold in chocolate chips, peanuts, and vanilla until well blended.
  4. Refrigerate dough until it is slightly firm, 15 minutes
  5. Grease cookie sheets
  6. Roll dough into 1-inch balls. Space balls 2 to 3 inches apart on baking sheets
  7. Bake until just golden, about 10 minutes
  8. Transfer cookies to wire racks to cool
  9. Enjoy!
Recipe adapted from Martha Stewart

     Foodbuzz Tastemakers - Kodak Gallery Photo Book
    Through the Foodbuzz Tastemaker program I was recently chosen to receive a free Kodak Photo Book. Awesome huh? It was up to me what I wanted to put in my photo book and all I had to do was blog about it. Yeah, it’s pretty awesome. ;)

    I pondered what I could do my photobook; pictures of the kids, a 4th of July book, maybe a Summer 2011 book – when my husband says, “You should do a cookbook.” Pretty obvious huh? Turned out to be a great idea and I love the end product. I picked my favorite recipes thus far on Hungry Harps and created, The First Cookbook. Very, very cool. :)

    It is super easy to use Kodak’s templates to create your own photobook, their site is set up so the process is step-by-step. You pick your cover, background templates, upload your pictures, place your pictures and add your text – voila! your book is done! Each step is customable, so it truly is one of a kind. The quality is top notch and the pictures look stunning, I would recommend anyone looking to do a photo book to try Kodak Gallery. Here are a few screenshots of my book, and a link so you can see what I created. :)

    If you are wanting to create your own photo book, Kodak is extending an offer to my readers of 40% off between now and August 31, 2011. Follow this link www.kodakgallery.com/creativity, and start making your book today!

    Kodak Gallery

    Monday, August 8, 2011

    Fontina-Stuffed Veal Meatballs

    My new love affair, Meatballs. A few months ago I made Homemade Meatballs for the first time, sad huh? While searching for a basic meatball recipe I found tons of recipes from around the world. Little did I know that meatballs are consumed globally, all different meats and ingredients. I just thought it was too good to be true… but then it got better. I found this Nonstick Meatball Basket that allows you to cook meatballs on the bbq! It has been a dream come true. I want to make meatballs every night – I even made a special trip to the butchers just for ground meat. Super yum! I need to get a meat grinder because I have a feeling this is going to get out of control!

    Fontina-Stuffed Veal Meatballs
    • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
    • ¼ cup onion, cut into 1/4-inch dice
    • 2 garlic cloves, minced
    • 1 teaspoon thyme leaves
    • 1/4 teaspoon minced rosemary
    • Salt & Black Pepper
    • 2 slices of white sandwich bread, crusts removed and bread torn into 1-inch pieces
    • whole milk
    • 1 pound ground veal
    • 1 egg, lightly beaten
    • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
    • 3 ounces Italian Fontina cheese, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

    1. Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in skillet. Add the onion and garlic, cook over medium-high heat until softened. Add the thyme and rosemary, season with salt & pepper. Let cool, about 10 minutes
    2. Soak the bread pieces in the milk until absorbed. Squeeze the milk from the bread and transfer to medium bowl, add onion mixture, veal, egg, Parmigiano-Reggiano and 1 ½ teaspoons of kosher salt and 1 teaspoon of black pepper. Mix with hands until well blended
    3. Scoop 1 1/2 tablespoon-size balls from the veal mixture. Stuff a cube of Fontina into the center of each meatball and roll to enclose the cheese. Transfer the meatballs to a plate or baking sheet and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
    4. Preheat oven to 350
    5. Bake 25-30 minutes or until are golden brown. Some of the cheese may ooze, but don’t worry, there will still be cheese inside. :) I bbq’d my meatballs for about 8 minutes on each side then returned them to the skillet that I cooked the onion mixture in and let heat on WARM until we were ready to eat.
    6. Enjoy with Marinara!
    These are the best meatballs I have ever made, it may have been the fact they were veal – but nonetheless, they were the best! Recipe adapted from Food & Wine.

    Sunday, August 7, 2011

    Baby Teething Biscotti Recipe and Infant Formula Giveaway

    Teething is not fun :( Our infant, Smiley, is in his teething days and the little guy is just miserable. He will use teethers, fingers - his or yours, wet washclothes, teething biscuits and the occasional baby orajel. If you know anybody in this situation, make these biscottis for them. The baby and parent will love you.

    Baby Teething Biscotti
    • 1 cup all-purpose flour
    • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
    • ½ teaspoon baking powder
    • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
    • 1 egg yolk
    • 1 tablespoon oil
    • 1/3 cup water

    1. Mix together flour, brown sugar, baking powder and baking soda
    2. Add egg yolk, oil and water
    3. Stir until the mixture forms a firm dough, adding additional flour if necessary
    4. Shape the dough into a log about 6 inches long, place on greased cookie sheet and press until about 3 inches wide
    5. Bake for 20 minutes, remove and cut into ½” slices. Spread out onto baking sheet and bake for an additional 15 minutes or until they are hard and dry. This is what will avoid them from breaking apart easily in baby's mouth
    6. Cool on wire racks
    7. Let your baby enjoy these, supervised :)

    Ok, the little ones have to eat too – so this giveaway is for them. :)
    Up for grabs is the following:
    • A 12.9 oz. can of Parent´s Choice Premium Infant Formula
    • A 12.4 oz. can of Parent´s Choice Advantage Infant Formula
    • Two $3.00 off coupons for Parent´s Choice Infant Formula (redeemable at all Wal-Mart stores)
    • Parent´s Choice Starter Set - which includes a variety of bottles, nipples, liners, leak proof caps and retainer rings
    I have used Parent’s Choice formula for both of my kids and it works great. I used to buy a leading name in infant formula, simply because I did not want to feed my son the “cheap stuff”. However, one day I could not help but notice the difference in prices and I had to see what the actual product difference was. The nutritional facts were darn near identical, so I requested a sample of Parent’s Choice, which you can do here. The formula works great and I actually have less spit ups than I did on the previous brand.

    A few things I did not know about infant formula:
    • In the US, all infant formulas are subject to the same regulations for manufacture and ingredients required for the growth of healthy babies under the Infant Formula Act.
    • Store brand formulas sold at major retailers are a premium national substitute at a value price and meet the same FDA nutritional requirements as all of the major brands.
    • The quality and safety of the manufacturing of infant formulas are also inspected by the FDA in the same way.

    Mandatory Entry: Use the Parent's Choice $avings Calculator and comment how much the savings would be for you. Easy as Pie!

    Additional Entries: (Make sure to leave a separate comment for each additional entry)

    Giveaway ends on Thursday, August 11th at 11:59 p.m. PST
    Open to those in the US only. Winner will be chosen using Random.org. Winner will have 48 hours to respond to email before another winner is chosen.
    Disclosure: The Parent’s Choice Infant Formula product sample, information, and giveaway have been provided by Parent’s Choice through MyBlogSpark. 

    Winner is Paula Sue! Congratulations and thanks for entering!

    Monday, August 1, 2011

    Crisp Chocolate Chip Cookies with Dried Cherries & Pistachios

    I received some Benjamin Twiggs dried cherries in my July Foodzie box, my initial reaction was to rip the package open and devour them – but something told me to hold on. So they went into my Special Ingredient Stash, and I started a recipe mission. I looked through a few recipe searches using dried cherries and nothing grabbed me until I saw: Crisp Chocolate Chip Cookies with Dried Cherries and Pistachios. A whole lot of awesomeness in one little cookie. Yay!
    These were a hit, even with the toddler – who wouldn’t eat a plain dried cherry if I begged and/or bribed him.

    Crisp Chocolate Chip Cookies with Dried Cherries and Pistachios
    • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
    • 3/4 teaspoon salt
    • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
    • 12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
    • 1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
    • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
    • 3 tablespoons light corn syrup
    • 2 tablespoons whole milk
    • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    • 1 cup bittersweet or semisweet chocolate chips
    • 3/4 cup unsalted toasted shelled natural pistachios, chopped
    • 3/4 cup dried tart cherries, chopped

    1. Preheat oven to 375
    2. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, salt and baking soda.
    3. With an electric mixer, beat the butter on medium-high speed until light and fluffy. Add the brown and granulated sugars and beat until light and fluffy. Add the corn syrup and beat until well blended, then beat in the milk and vanilla. Reduce the speed to low, add the flour mixture and beat just until smooth.
    4. Stir in the chocolate chips, pistachios and cherries.
    5. Shape the dough into 1-inch balls and place them about 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets. With the palm of your hand or your fingers, flatten each ball into a disk about 3/8 inch thick.
    6. Bake for 7 minutes
    7. Let cool completely (I used racks). As the cookies cool, they will crisp. Store in an airtight container.
    8. Enjoy!
    Recipe adapted from Crisp Chocolate Chip Cookies with Dried Cherries and Pistachios at Williams-Sonoma