Not Your Grandmother’s Banana Bread with M&Ms, Nuts & a Smidge of Peanut Butter

'Not Your Grandmother's' Banana Bread with M&Ms and Nuts - My Yellow Farmhouse.com

Pretty much everyone loves Banana Bread, especially when its just out of the oven and slathered with butter.  My ‘Not Your Grandmother’s’ Banana Bread’ gives you the extra kick of melted chocolate and nuts, not to mention just a hint of peanut butter flavor.

++  Here’s a great link with all the info. you’d ever need to know about pan sizes!  http://www.joyofbaking.com/PanSizes.html

Ingredients & Directions               Oven at 350F             Bake for 50 – 55 mins.

++ Use a 9 x 5 x 3 loaf pan, if possible !!   If using a smaller pan, you may have to increase cooking time & the banana bread might be a bit crumbly… but still delicious!!

  • 2 medium – VERY RIPE – bananas…. enough to equal 1 cup
  • 1 Tbs. lemon juice   ++ If you don’t have any lemon juice.. that’s fine.
  • 1/4 cup buttered, SOFTENED  ++Put in microwave for a few seconds.
  • 1/4 cup chunk-style peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar    ++ DON’T pack down the brown sugar.  If you don’t have brown sugar, use 1/2 cup regular sugar.
  • 1/4 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 3/4 cup flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking POWDER
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 cup M&Ms
  • 1/4 chopped peanuts OR chopped walnuts

Put bananas in a small bowl and mash with a fork until smooth. Measure out 1 cup and place mashed banana in a large bowl. Add 1 Tbs. lemon juice, 1/4 cup softened butter, 1/4 cup chunk-style peanut butter, 1/4 cup sugar, 1/4 cup brown sugar (NOT packed), 1 large egg, 1/3 cup milk, 1 3/4 cups flour, 1 1/2 tsp. baking POWDER, 1/2 tsp. baking soda, 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. vanilla.

Mix with electric mixer until ‘just combined’.  Stir in 1 cup M&Ms and 1/4 cup chopped peanuts OR walnuts.

Banana-Peanut Butter Bread with M and Ms and Nuts

Pour into greased loaf pan (I suggest a 9 x 5 x 3).   ++ I like to sprinkle the top with 2 tsp. of sugar, which gives the banana bread a nice look.

Banana Peanut Butter Bread with M and Ms and Nuts - My Yellow Farmhouse.com

Bake for 50 – 55 minutes until a knife (or toothpick) comes out clean when stuck into the center of the loaf.  Cool banana bread (still in the pan) on a rack for about 10 minutes, then turn it out onto the rack to cool further.  (I bet the bread won’t last more than two minutes before someone cuts into it.)  Enjoy!

'Not Your Grandmother's' Banana Bread with M&Ms and Nuts - My Yellow Farmhouse.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Livin’ The Life!!

I’m so sorry….I haven’t forgotten you all.  I’m on a Road Trip, kind of like Bob Hope and Bing Crosby in their old ‘Road’ movies, except I actually PAY my restaurant bills!!      Bob Hope Bing Crosby

I’ve been traveling south for two weeks (I started in Massachusetts) along the eastern seaboard. I’ve been having so much fun seeing lots of things and meeting great people.

I absolutely loved Colonial Williamsburg in Virgina! If you ever go, I highly recommend renting either a small home or a room in an old house right in Colonial Williamsburg itself. It’s just like going back in time!!

Colonial Williamsburg  - colonial-house.ashx

I spent two days visiting the fabulous Biltmore Estate in Ashville, North Carolina. The Biltmore is the largest home in the U.S., plus it boasts the most visited winery in the States.

Biltomore Estate house_garden_3_850x563__large

In Macon, Georgia I visited a museum dedicated to one of my all-time favorite bands – the Allman Brothers. My big purchases there – refrigerator magnets for my twin sons who are also fans of the Allman Brothers and one of their CDs. I’ve been blasting that CD as I drive along!!

Big House Parlor Painting

Today I start heading north, back to My Yellow Farmhouse. But my trip is far from over – I still have lots of people to visit and things to see on my way north, including Jamestown!

At this moment I’m in Fort Lauderdale, Florida after spending a few days in South Beach, Miami. Some dear friends of mine from Malta happened to be staying in Miami with a friend who lives in South Beach.  I got to spend a few precious days with them, their children and their very gracious host, who allowed me to ‘bunk in’ at his place along with the rest!!

Mojito - South Beach, Miami2  Possibly the Best Mojito EVER, enjoyed at the world-famous Cuban restaurant ,               Versailles, in Miami.

I promise I’ll post the recipe for my ‘Not Your Grandmother’s Banana Bread with  M&Ms and Nuts’ either today or tomorrow.  I have the photos all ready but just haven’t quite found the time to post it. Road Trips make you lazy!!

'Not Your Grandmother's' Banana Bread with M&Ms and Nuts - My Yellow Farmhouse.com

 

‘Grab ‘n Go’ Crustless Quiche Squares

Grab 'n Go - Crustless Quiche Squares - My Yellow Farmhouse.com

Above Photo  Shows Yield from Second (Smaller) Version of Recipe

Grab 'n Go' Crustless Quiche Squares - My Yellow Farmhouse.com

When my twin sons were teenagers I had a repertoire (of sorts) featuring things they could ‘Grab ‘n Eat’  -  and by ‘they’ I mean my sons and their multitudinous friends … all of whom seemed to have bottomless stomachs.

Crustless Quiche Squares are a bit more ‘solid’ than most quiches due to the addition of a bit of flour, which is why they’re so easy to ‘grab and eat’ either for breakfast (as I did today), for a packed lunch or to serve as appetizers.  And they’re equally delicious eaten right from the fridge or at room temperature.

++  Today I made a smaller version of the original recipe, which works well for someone like me who doesn’t need to feed lots of teenagers!  That recipe follows the larger yield recipe below.

       THIS VERSION  MAKES A LOT   ……   USES GREASED 13″ X 9″ PAN   

  (++ See below for recipe which makes fewer squares ++)     

Ingredients        

++ Oven temperature changes  – -    Bake at 400F for 15 minutes, …  then lower to 350F for 30 – 35 minutes.    

  • 10 eggs
  • 1/3 cup butter
  • 2 medium Bermuda onions, sliced
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped mushrooms
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped broccoli
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 tsp. baking POWDER
  • 1/3 tsp. salt
  • 1 lb. (16 oz.)  small-curd cottage cheese
  • 1 lb. (16 oz.)  Monterey Jack Cheese – grated

In a large bowl, beat 10 eggs with an electric mixer for about a minute.  Set aside.

In a large skillet, over medium heat, melt 1/3 cup butter.  Add 2 medium Bermuda onions, sliced; 1 1/2 cups chopped mushrooms and 1 1/2 cups chopped broccoli. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes.  Set aside.

'Grab 'n Go' Crustless Quiche Squares - My Yellow Farmhouse.com

Add 1/2 cup flour, 1 tsp. baking POWDER and 1/3 tsp. salt to the previously beaten eggs until combined.

Add 1 lb. small-curd cottage cheese and 1 lb. grated Monterey Jack Cheese and beat until combined.

Add sauteed onions, mushrooms and broccoli. Again, beat until combined.

'Grab 'n Go' Crustless Quiche Squares - My Yellow Farmhouse.com

Pour into greased 13′ x 9′ pan.    ++ Bake at 400F for 15 minutes………then REDUCE HEAT to 350F for 30 – 35 minutes.

Crustless Quiche Squares should be light brown when fully cooked, and a knife stuck in the middle shouldn’t stick.  Enjoy!

Directions for Making a Smaller Batch of  ‘Grab ‘n Go’ Crustless Quiche Squares

++  Use a greased 9′ x 9′ pan

++ Oven temperature changes  – -    Bake at 400F for 15 minutes, …  then lower to 350F for 23 – 25 minutes.   
   

Ingredients

  • 5 eggs
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1 medium Bermuda onions, sliced
  • 3/4 cup chopped mushrooms
  • 3/4 cup chopped broccoli
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking POWDER
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 lb. (8 oz.) small-curd cottage cheese
  • 1/2 lb. (8 oz.) Monterey Jack Cheese – grated

In a large bowl, beat 5 eggs with an electric mixer for about 30 – 40 seconds.  Set aside.

In a large skillet, over medium heat, melt 1/4 cup butter.  Add 1 medium Bermuda onions, sliced; 1/2 cup chopped mushrooms and 1/2 cup chopped broccoli. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes.  Set aside. 'Grab 'n Go' Crustless Quiche Squares - My Yellow Farmhouse.com

Add 1/4 cup flour, 1/2 tsp. baking POWDER and 1/4 tsp. salt to the previously beaten eggs until combined.

Add 8 oz. (1/2 lb.) small-curd cottage cheese and 8 oz. (1/2 lb.) grated Monterey Jack Cheese and beat until combined.

Add sauteed onions, mushrooms and broccoli. Again, beat until combined.

'Grab 'n Go' Crustless Quiche Squares - My Yellow Farmhouse.com

Pour into greased 9” x 9′ pan.    ++ Bake at 400F for 15 minutes………then LOWER HEAT to 350F for 22 to 25 minutes.

Crustless Quiche Squares should be light brown when fully cooked, and a knife stuck in the middle shouldn’t stick.  Enjoy!

++ Recipe adapted from ‘The Frugal Gourmet’

Grab 'n Go - Crustless Quiche Squares - My Yellow Farmhouse.com

   

 

Moroccan Chicken & Couscous with Raisins and Slivered Almonds

Moroccan Chicken and Couscous - My Yellow Farmhouse.com

When my husband & I lived in Malta we had a dear Libyan friend who had a Moroccan housekeeper who was a fabulous cook.  This recipe for Moroccan Chicken & Couscous with Raisins and Slivered Almonds tastes very, very much like the chicken and couscous my friend’s housekeeper used to prepare, although she used to add some turnip and, at times, green beans.  (She also used a couscousiere -  which I’ll talk about another time….)

This dish is easy and quick to prepare, and the flavors are subtle and delicious.  You may be surprised by how tender the chicken thighs become in 30 minutes!  The chicken and veggies can be made a day ahead and gently warmed while you prepare the couscous with raisins and slivered almonds right before serving.

Feel free add whatever type of vegetables you wish – just make sure the pieces are small enough to cook in about 30 minutes.  (Next time I make this, I’m going to add some – fully cooked – chickpeas.)

++  I love reading your comments/suggestions etc.  To comment,  scroll down past the recipe.

Ingredients              Serves between 4 – 5           Cooks on top of the stove

  • 8 chicken THIGHS – skin removed – seasoned with salt & pepper
  • olive oil
  • 1 large onion, cut into chunks
  • 4 – 6 large carrots, cut into 1/2′ slices -  OR – 1/2 lb. baby carrots, cut lengthwise   (If you decide to add other vegetables, reduce the amount of carrots.)
  • 2 tsp. paprika
  • 1 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp. turmeric
  • 1/8 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 cup chicken broth – OR – 1 cup water and 1 Knorr bouillon cube.   (If using another type of bouillon cube, use two cubes !!)
  • juice of 1 lemon -  or – 3 Tbs. bottled lemon juice    (You can also cut the lemon into wedges and add it like that.   I have NOT…. I’m afraid of the bitterness of the lemon peel….)

 Ingredients for the Couscous

  • Use any brand of couscous you wish – just prepare enough for about 5 servings.  (I used one box of Near East – Original Plain, which makes 5 servings,  and just followed the directions.)
  • Instead of water, use the same amount of chicken broth.  (I used College Inn Chicken Broth.)
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 1/4 cup slivered almonds
  • 1 Tbs. butter

Directions for Preparing the Chicken Thighs

Add about 2 Tbs. olive oil to a large saucepan which has a lid – or Dutch Oven.  Lightly brown 4 chicken thighs over medium heat. Repeat with the last 4 chicken thighs, adding a bit more olive oil if necessary.  Set chicken thighs aside.  ++ Don’t brown the chicken too much – you don’t want to toughen it.    ++ Don’t worry if some bits of chicken stick to the bottom – those ‘bit’s will just add flavor to the dish.

Add 1 onion, cut in to chunks, and cook for 3 minutes.

Add carrots – cook for 2 more minutes.

Add 2 tsp. paprika, 1 tsp. ground ginger, 1/4 tsp. turmeric and 1/8 tsp. cinnamon.  Cook, stirring, for 1 minute.

Pour in chicken broth – OR – hot water and bouillon cube.

Add the lemon juice – OR – 1 lemon cut into wedges.

Place the 8 chicken thighs into the pot.

Moroccan Chicken and Couscous - My Yellow Farmhouse.com

Bring to a boil.  Lower heat to a simmer.

Cover pan and simmer for about 30 minutes, turning chicken at intervals.

++ About 10 minutes before chicken is finished – prepare the couscous.  (See ingredients list above.)  

Moroccan Chicken and Couscous - My Yellow Farmhouse.com

That’s it !  Your family and friends…. and maybe even your kids…. will be impressed — Enjoy!

Moroccan Chicken and Couscous - My Yellow Farmhouse.com

One, Two, Three Fruit Crisp

One, Two, Three - Fruit Crisp -- My Yellow Farmhouse.com

Here’s another dessert recipe which can be put together quickly using a few items you probably already have in your cupboard; 1. a can of crushed pineapple, 2. a can of cherry pie filling and 3. a yellow cake mix.  You’ll also need some butter and nuts – that’s it!!

The original recipe, which I found long ago, was called Dump Cake because you ‘dump’ in the pineapple and the cherry pie filling, then you ‘dump’ the yellow cake mix on top of the fruit, scatter on some butter and ‘dump’ on some walnuts or pecans.  Fifty minutes later, you’re enjoying a delicious and easy dessert.  I served this last night topped with Maine Wild Blueberry Gelato – yummy!!

Ingredients and Method      Grease a large casserole or baking pan        Oven at 350

  • 1 can (21 oz.) cherry pie filling
  • 1 can (20 oz.) crushed pineapple, including the juice
  • 1 yellow cake mix
  • 1/3 cup butter
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans

Grease a large casserole or baking pan. Mix the cherry pie filling with the crushed pineapple (including the juice).  Sprinkle the dry cake mix evenly on top.  Using a potato peeler, drop slivers of butter equally over the cake mix.  Now sprinkle on 1 cup of chopped nuts.   Bake at 350 for about 50 minutes, until nuts are lightly browned and filling is bubbling.  I honestly can’t think of anything that tastes so good and is so easy – enjoy !!

One, Two, Three - Fruit Crisp - - My Yellow Farmhouse.comOne, Two, Three - Fruit Crisp (2)

One, Two, Three - Fruit Crisp - My Yellow Farmhouse.comOne, two, three - Fruit Crisp (4)

One, Two, Three - Fruit Crisp -- My Yellow Farmhouse.com

“Just a Chat” – - I’m Ready to Say Bye Bye to Winter…..

House - Valentine's Day 2014 - My Yellow Farmhouse

In January I was so happy to see fluffy white snow sparkling in the sunshine that I ran outside to take some photos.  But by this time …. the thrill is gone, gone, gone.   I’m craving warm sunshine like a drunk craves his ‘bottle in a bag’.  And I have absolutely no voom. Luckily I’ll be heading down south in just a few weeks!

Due my No Voom syndrome I haven’t posted a recipe for awhile.  However, yesterday, for the second time, I prepared and photographed Toad in the Hole, along with a creamy onion sauce I ‘invented’.  And, for the second time, I didn’t like the results enough to post the recipe.  (Looks yummy, doesn’t it?)

Toad in the Hole - My Yellow Farmhouse

Here’s the big problem – I can’t find a ‘proper sausage’, as the Brits would say.  For this attempt I used chicken sausage with apples but the taste was too strong and the sausages are too big.  I did find real, honest-to-goodness English ‘bangers’ online but the minimum order is far too large.

As Snidely Whiplash used to say, “Curses – foiled again”. Luckily, I have a good friend who’s from Yorkshire, England. She’s found a good ‘banger’ substitute – so, I’ll find out what she uses and post the recipe very soon!!  In the meantime, I may consider buying a sunlamp to help me get my voom back!!

‘Not Your Grandmother’s’ Bread Pudding

Not Your Mother's Bread Pudding - myyellowfarmhouse.com

++ PLEASE NOTE — Although I used Panettone to make my bread pudding, any type of dense bread can be used.

Panetonni -cortinasitalianfood.comLast night I remembered I had some chocolate chip Panettone (bread) leftover from Christmas. Before you become alarmed, Panettone remains fresh for quite a while, especially when refrigerated.  ++ Photo courtesy of Cortina’s Italian Food.com

Lately I’ve been in the mood for some good, old-fashioned bread pudding and I thought, “Hmm, how about making a totally new version using Panettone, with the addition of cream cheese for extra richness?”  Happily, my idea resulted in a creamy, rich dessert that’s easy to make.  (My ‘taste testers’ gave this recipe a big thumbs up!)

++ Recipe can be easily doubled – use a 1 1/2 quart baking dish or casserole and up baking time to 55 – 60+ minutes.      See tip below for testing if bread pudding is fully cooked.

           Ingredients          Oven at 350F         Makes 10 pieces 

  • 3 cups dense bread – such as Panettone – cut into 2′ squares      ++ cups should be a bit over-full
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup condensed milk
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 pinches nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/2 package cream cheese
  • Optional —- IF NOT USING PANETONNE —- 1/8 cup chocolate chips…… a few gratings of orange peel

Not Your Grandmother's Bread Pudding - myellowfarmhouse.com

Cut bread into thick slices – cut slices into 2′ squares.   ++ You don’t have to be fussy about how you cut up the bread.   Place cubed bread into a greased loaf pan.  (No need to grease loaf pan if you have a coated pan.)

In a medium bowl, whisk together 2 eggs, 1/2 cup condensed milk, 1/2 cup water, 2 pinches nutmeg & 1/4 tsp. vanilla.  Pour over bread squares.

Cut – or pull off – small pieces of cream cheese and drop on top of the bread/milk mixture.  Mix everything together and allow to sit for a few minutes so bread can absorb liquid.   Place loaf pan in large pan or large casserole containing 1′ of hot water.

USE -Not Your Grandmother's Bread Pudding - myyellowfarmhouse.com

Bake at 350F  for 45 minutes – or until a knife inserted 1/2′ into pudding comes out clean.  Bread pudding should be puffed and dry-looking on the top.

Not Your Grandmother's Bread Pudding - myyellowfarmhouse.com

‘Not Your Grandmother’s’ Bread Pudding is delicious eaten warm or cold.  And it’s so rich there’s actually no need for special toppings but it sure is good with fudge sauce!!

Not Your Mother's Bread Pudding - myyellowfarmhouse.com

Second Version – ‘Old-Fashioned Pineapple Upside-Down Cake’, Made with Pineapple Chunks, Cherries & Pecans

Old-Fashoned Pineapple Upside-Down Cake - New Version - myyellowfarmhouse.com

Not long ago I posted my recipe for Old Fashioned Pineapple Upside-Down Cake.  Soon after, I started thinking, “I bet this cake would be delicious if  I added chopped pecans to the buttery brown sugar/maraschino goodness”. So, last night that’s exactly what I did – and my neighbor Frank – The Dessertaholic – was the lucky recipient of my ‘experiment’.

Pineapple Upside-Down Cake - My Yellow Farmhouse.jpg (3)

Photo of my first version of ‘Old Fashioned Pineapple Upside-Down Cake’.  http://myyellowfarmhouse.com/2014/01/25/old-fashioned-pineapple-upside-down-cake/

+

Old-Fashioned Pineapple Upside-Down Cake is easy to make, especially now that grocery stores sell small packages of cake mix.   (Betty Crocker ‘Yellow Cupcake Mix’).

Of course, you can always use a regular-size cake mix – and a 10″ X 13″ pan. It’s a bit harder to flip the larger cake but it’s certainly doable.   ++ If you prepare an ordinary-size caked mix, double the butter, brown sugar, pineapple, cherries & pecans.

Ingredients            Oven at 350F       9′ x 9′ square or round cake pan

  • 1 package Betty Crocker ‘Yellow Cupcake Mix’ – prepared according to directions.
  • 1 (14 oz.) can pineapple CHUNKS  – drain juice & reserve  ++ I cut the chunks in half …. but that’s not necessary.
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 8 Maraschino cherries, chopped
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans

  Method

Preheat oven to 350 (F).   ++ Preheat right away – the butter is placed in the pan, then melted in the oven.

Prepare cake according to package directions BUT use the reserved pineapple juice instead of water.  ++ Add water, if necessary, to the pineapple juice to equal the amount of water called for in the recipe.

Place 1/4 cup butter in an 9′ x 9′ square pan or 9′ x 9′ round pan.  Place baking pan in oven for a short time to melt the butter.   ++ Keep an eye on the butter – you don’t want to burn it!

Remove pan from oven.  Stir in 1/2 cup packed brown sugar and spread the butter/brown sugar mixture in the bottom of the pan.

Updated Pineapple Upside-Down Cake - myyellowfarmhous.com

Sprinkle on chopped Maraschino cherries, then pecans and then pineapple chunks.

Old-Fahsioned Pineapple Upside-Down Cake - New Version - myyellowfarmhouse.com

Pour prepared batter over cherries/pecans/pineapple chunks.

Old-Fahsioned Pineapple Upside-Down Cake - Updated Version - myyellowfarmhouse.com

++Bake for 30 – 35+  minutes.    ++  If you’re not sure cake is fully cooked, stick a sharp knife in the center to check for doneness.  If any cake batter sticks to the knife, bake cake for a few minutes longer.

IMMEDIATELY invert pan onto a serving platter. If you wait to invert the pan, you may have a problem because, as the sugar/butter mixture begins to cool, it can stick to the pan.

I’m a firm believer that everything is better with whipped cream or ice cream, but it’s far from necessary since there’s so much flavor in Old-Fashioned Pineapple Upside-Down Cake.    Enjoy!

Old-Fahsioned Pineapple Upside-Down Cake - finished cake

Sharing Recipes from Some of My Favorite Bloggers – DESSERTS

Coconut Pound Cake - The Southern Lady Cooks

About a year and a half ago I posted several yummy-looking appetizer recipes from some of my favorite bloggers.  I decided to do something similar today with dessert recipes because, sometimes, things are just too good NOT to share!

For a few weeks I was on a cleaning binge…. of sorts.  My cleaning binge is sooo over right now.  I think I’m going to go on a serious baking binge – starting tomorrow.   Enjoy !

                 Sharing Recipes from Some of My Favorite Bloggers – DESSERTS

This recipe for Heath Bar (or Chocolate Chip) Blondies, from Bits and Breadcrumbs, was my inspiration for sharing dessert recipes today.  Blondies are a lot like brownies in texture but the batter isn’t made with chocolate.  Usually made with chocolate chips and walnuts, this recipe gives you a choice to add either chocolate chips or Heath Bar chips. My suggestion – consider making these, at least once, with half Heath Toffee Bits and half chocolate chips!

Blonde Brownies = Bits and Breadcrumbs

http://bitsandbreadcrumbs.com/2014/01/31/snow-day-sweet-tooth/  

I love pound cake! This Coconut Pound Cake, from The Southern Lady Cooks, seems to be super easy to make: you use a a yellow cake mix, some vanilla pudding, coconut and evaporated milk, plus a few other things.  A rich coconut sauce is poured on top. YUMMY!  If you’re looking for some great southern recipes, be sure to visit The Southern Lady Cooks. You’ll see why she’s one of my favorite bloggers!

Coconut Pound Cake - The Southern Lady Cookshttp://thesouthernladycooks.com/2011/04/22/coconut-pound-cake/

I’ve never made New York Style Crumb Cake from scratch but I sure will now. From Uni Homemaker, this crumb cake has lots and lots of topping.  Doesn’t it look delicious?

from Uni-Homemaker - New York Style Crumb Cake

http://unihomemaker.com/2013/12/29/new-york-style-crumb-cake/

I’d planned to include only recipes from other bloggers – then I came across my own recipe for Apple Pie, which I’ve been ‘playing with’ for decades.  Everyone seems to really like my apple pie a lot, so I’m including it as well.

My Yellow Farmhouse - Apple Piehttp://myyellowfarmhouse.com/2012/11/18/my-yellow-farmhouse-apple-pie/

I haven’t eaten Oatmeal Scotchies in years. In truth, I’d forgotten all about them – until tonight when I found this recipe from Averie Cooks.  It seems that, like me, Averie hadn’t made these in years – she posted, “These cookies are a tasty trip down memory lane. My grandma used to make them and I hadn’t had them in ages. So I changed that.”  Averie, I intend to change that too !

oatmealscotchies-Averie Cookshttp://www.averiecooks.com/2013/04/soft-and-chewy-oatmeal-scotchies-cookies.html

ENJOY !!

Chicken Tikka Masala with Basmati Rice

Chicken Tikka Masala - My Yellow Farmhouse.com

++ Adapted from     http://www.bonappetit.com/recipe/chicken-tikka-masala

++ UPDATE   A few friends asked if this recipe is difficult. (A very good question,,,)  Actually, Chicken Tikka Masala does take a bit of f time, but each step along the way is easy-peasy.   I’ve included photos for each step, which makes the recipe easy to follow.  I really enjoyed preparing Chicken Tikka Masala for the very first time ever!

++ UPDATE  This recipe can be prepared the day before, then, at serving time, all you have to do is reheat it gently and prepare some Basmati rice.   

Finally – after promising a while ago that I’d post a recipe for Chicken Tikka Masala, here it is!  My new fellow-blogger friend, Liz, of  http://www.myfavouritepastime.comhas been waiting for me to post this recipe because she plans to make homemade Naan (bread) this weekend and wanted to make Chicken Tikka Masala to serve with it.

Chicken Tikka Masala is full of exotic flavors, and features tender chicken pieces in a mildly-spicy creamy sauce.  In India, meals are often served on large platters, and (depending upon the household) people use pieces of Naan to pick up small portions.  How do I know this?  Because I was lucky enough to have visited India, where I saw Naan being made. And where I enjoyed some wonderful meals!

Ingredients                                  Serves 4 – 5

  • 6 cloves garlic, minced -  OR -  use a garlic press
  • 4 tsp. finely minced – or grated – fresh peeled ginger
  • 4 tsp. ground turmeric
  • 2 tsp. garam masala  (Most stores now sell it in the spice area.)
  • 2 tsp. ground coriander
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 2 tsp. ground cumin
  •   ++  This makes 1/2 cup total.  Use 1/4 cup to marinate chicken.  Cover & refrigerate the other 1/4 cup for later.
  • 1 1/2 cups whole-milk plain yogurt.  (NOT Greek.  And – if you can only find ‘low fat’ plain yogurt, that’s OK.)
  • 1 Tbs. Kosher salt – or – use 1 Tbs. regular salt    (I thought 1 Tbs. salt was a mistake – but it was absolutely fine!)
  • 2 lbs. skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into thirds lengthwise
  • 3 Tbs. Ghee (clarified butter)  OR   3 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1/2 cup minced onion
  • 1/4 cup + 1 Tbs. tomato paste   (Freeze the rest in 1 Tbs. size portions in a small freezer bag.)
  • 6 cardamon pods – crushed   (I wrapped the cardamon pods in some plastic wrap and hit them with a hammer a few times.)
  • 3/4 tsp. red pepper flakes  OR  1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 2 cans (14 oz. each) Hunt’s Fire Roasted DICED Tomatoes with Garlic
  • 1 pint  (2 cups)  heavy/whipping cream
  • 3/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro   (I used my mini food processor.)   ++ Plus a few sprigs for garnish.
  • 1/2 cup yogurt     ++ If you plan to make this a day ahead – use  3/4  cup yogurt for this step !!
  • Basmati Rice & Naan (bread)   -  for serving

Combine 6 cloves garlic, minced, 4 tsp. finely minced – or grated – fresh peeled ginger, 4 tsp. ground turmeric, 2 tsp. garam masala, 2 tsp. ground coriander, 1 tsp. paprika and 2 tsp. ground cumin in a small bowl.

Chicken Tikka Masala - My Yellow Farmhouse1

Using a metal soup spoon, ‘smosh down’ the spices, garlic and ginger a bit.  (The ginger might seems a bit fibrous – that’s OK.)  Chicken Tikka Masala - My Yellow Farmhouse2

Whisk 1 1/2 cups yogurt, 1 Tbs. salt and HALF the spice mix (1/4 cup) together in a large bowl.  Cut chicken breasts into thirds lengthwise.

Chicken Tikka Masala4 - My Yellow Farmhouse

Add cut up chicken to bowl and turn to coat with yogurt mixture.  Cover and chill between 4 – 6 hours.     ++ Cover and chill remaining 1/4 cup spice/garlic mix.

Chicken Tikka Masala5 - My Yellow Farmhouse

Do This Part After Chicken Has Marinated

In a large, heavy pot heat 3 Tbs. olive oil -  OR Ghee – over medium heat.  Add 1/2 cup minced onion, 1/4 cup + 1 Tbs. tomato paste, , 6 cardamon pods, crushed, 3/4 tsp. red pepper flakes (OR 1/2 tsp.  cayenne pepper). Cook, stirring often, until tomato paste is darkened and onion is softened, about 5 minutes.

Add the remaining 1/4 cup spice/garlic mixture and cook, stirring often, until bottom of pan starts to brown – about 4 minutes.

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Add 2 cans (14 oz. each) Hunt’s Fire Roasted DICED Tomatoes with Garlic. Mash diced tomatoes down a bit with a potato masher.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer, stirring often and scraping browned bits from bottom of pan, until sauce thickens, about 8 – 10 minutes.

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Now add 2 cups heavy/whipping cream and 3/4 cup chopped cilantro. Continue to simmer (uncovered) for between 30 – 40 minutes, stirring occasionally.

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While sauce is simmering, remove chicken from refrigerator and take out of marinade. Give chicken pieces each a little shake to remove some of the marinade.

Preheat broiler to HIGH.  Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and set a wire rack inside. Arrange chicken strips on rack in a single layer.

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Set oven rack at highest position.  Broil chicken pieces until they start to blacken in spots – between 5 – 7 minutes.    ++ Chicken will NOT be thoroughly cooked – it will finish cooking in the sauce.

Chicken Tikka Masala - My Yellow Farmhouse

++ You do NOT have to turn chicken over to broil the other side, although I did.  If you choose to broil the other side, broil for less time – approximately 4 – 5 minutes.   ++ The second side WILL NOT begin to char in places like the first side.  Once chicken gets a bit golden brown on the second side – it’s done!!

Place chicken on cutting board and cut into bite-sized pieces.

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Add chicken to sauce and simmer, stirring occasionally, until chicken is cooked through, between 8 – 10 minutes.  Serve atop Basmati rice and Enjoy !!

Chicken Tikka Masala  - My Yellow Farmhouse.com