Pumpkin Gingerbread with Orange Glaze

Cake

  • 3/4 cup (12 tablespoons) butter or vegetable shortening
  • 1 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 3/4 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/3 cup mini diced ginger
  • 1/2 cup diced pecans or 1/2 cup chocolate chips, optional
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons molasses
  • 2 cups (or one 15-ounce can) pumpkin purée

Glaze

  • 1 1/4 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon orange oil OR 1 tablespoon orange zest (grated orange rind)
  • 2 tablespoons water or milk

Directions

  1. Preheat your oven to 350°F. Grease two 8 1/2″ x 4 1/2″ loaf pans for loaves; if you’re making muffins, grease 24 muffin cups, or line them with muffin papers.
  2. In a large bowl mix together the butter (or shortening) and brown sugar until well blended.
  3. Add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, spices, ginger, and nuts or chips, if you’re using them. Mix well — the batter will look crumbly.
  4. Add the eggs one at a time, scraping the bottom and sides of the bowl after each addition.
  5. Stir in the molasses and pumpkin, combining well.
  6. Scoop the batter into the greased loaf pans or the muffin cups, filling the cups about 2/3 full.
  7. Bake the muffins for 18 to 20 minutes, or until they’re lightly browned on the edges and the middle springs back when touched. Bake the loaves for 50 to 55 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean.
  8. Remove the bread from the oven and let it cool for 15 minutes before taking it out of the pan(s). Let it cool a bit, then glaze if desired.
  9. To make the glaze: Whisk together all the ingredients, adding extra liquid until the glaze is smooth and the consistency of molasses.
  10. For a shiny finish, brush the glaze over the bread or muffins while they’re still warm; for a thick white finish, cool the bread completely before glazing.
  11. Store well wrapped on the counter for 3 to 4 days; or freeze for up to 3 months.
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Easy Pizza Sauce

Adapted from Cat Cora

Ingredients

  • One 4-ounce can tomato paste
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1/2 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano leaves
  • 1/2 tablespoon chopped fresh basil leaves
  • 1/2 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary leaves
  • Pinch of crushed red pepper

Directions

Mix together the tomato paste, water, and olive oil. Mix well. Add garlic, salt and pepper, to taste, oregano, basil, and rosemary. Mix well and let stand several hours to let flavors blend. No cooking necessary, just spread on dough.

Braised Italian Chicken Thighs

Adapted from GOOP

  • 6 large bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 sprigs of rosemary
  • 1 cup red wine
  • 1 16-ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

 

1. Preheat the oven to 325°F.

2. Season the chicken thighs with salt.

3. Heat the olive oil in a dutch oven over medium high heat.

4. Sear the chicken thighs, skin side down, turning after about four minutes. Cook for another few minutes until evenly browned on both sides (you don’t have to worry about cooking them through at this point). Once browned, remove the chicken from the pan and set aside.

5. Reduce the heat to medium and sauté the onion and garlic in the rendered chicken fat. Once the onion is caramelized, add the tomato paste, rosemary, and red wine. Stir to combine and let simmer for a few minutes (just enough to cook off some of the alcohol).

6. Add the crushed tomatoes and chicken stock, and return the browned chicken thighs. Cover the dutch oven with its lid and place in the oven. Let it cook for two hours.

7. After two hours, remove the pot from the oven. Place it on a burner, and remove the chicken to a plate.

8. Over low heat, add the balsamic vinegar to the tomato sauce, and cook for a few minutes to reduce.

9. Top the chicken with the reduced sauce or return the chicken to the pot to serve.

Lemon-Glazed Pound Cake

Adapted from King Arthur Flour

Cake

Glaze

Directions

  1. To make the cake: Preheat your oven to 350°F. Grease two 8 1/2″ x 4 1/2″ loaf pans or one tube or bundt-style pan.
  2. In a medium-sized mixing bowl, beat together the butter and cream cheese until soft and fluffy. Add the salt, sugar, flour, and baking powder, and beat for 5 minutes; the batter will be stiff.
  3. Add the vanilla and lemon oil, and 1 egg. Beat well. Continue to add the eggs, one at a time, beating well and scraping the sides and bottom of the bowl after each addition. When done, the batter will be very fluffy. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan(s).
  4. Bake the cake for 55 to 60 minutes (for the tube or bundt-style pans) or 35 to 40 minutes (for the two loaf pans), or until a cake tester or toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  5. To make the glaze: Just before the cake is done, combine the lemon juice and sugar and heat over low heat (or in the microwave) until the sugar is dissolved; don’t let the mixture boil.
  6. Remove the cake from the oven; allow it to cool for 10 minutes in the pan. Turn it out onto a rack or serving platter.
  7. Poke the top of the cake all over with a cake tester or toothpick, and gradually drizzle the glaze over it, pausing occasionally to let 

Healthy Waffles

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup  almond flour
  • 1.5 cups whole wheat flour
  • 4 tablespoons  coconut flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 5 teaspoon cinnamon
  • Shaved nutmeg
  • 2 medium sweet potato
  • 4 eggs
  • 5 teaspoons vanilla
  • 4 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 2/3 cup almond milk

Instructions

  1. Combine all ingredients in bowl of mixer and mix.
  2. Scoop into waffle maker according to machine’s directions.

Green Smoothie

One would think that a smoothie stuffed with spinach would taste like… well, spinach.  One would be wrong.  No matter how much spinach I shove in the blender, the smoothie still tastes like almond butter, strawberries, bananas and yumminess.
I don’t really have a recipe for this delicious drink meal, but here are the general guidelines that I follow.
Green Smoothie
Ingredients
1-2 handfuls of baby spinach
– 1 banana
– 2 tbsp almond butter
– 10 frozen strawberries, or 10 frozen strawberries and a few ice cubes
– a sprinkle of cinnamon
– 1-2 cups almond milk
Directions
1. Combine ingredients, through cinnamon, in blender and crush.
2. Slowly add almond milk until smoothie has reached desired consistency.

*This recipe is easily altered and adapted to taste.  Just keep spinach (or kale if you’re courageous) as your base and build from there.