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Celebratory spicy chicken with tomatoes

This is a quick dish if company shows up and you feel a need to celebrate…add a green salad with some creamy cheese, and steamed rice—(these are ingredients you can keep in your pantry/freezer!) Ready in less than an hour!

(adapted from a recipe that appears in Food & Wine in 2011)

6 boneless chicken thighs

3 boneless chicken breasts

½ tsp. cumin seeds

1 large onion thinly sliced

1 large yellow pepper sliced thinly

3 minced garlic cloves

2 tbs powdered ginger

1 tsp cinnamon

2 bay leaves

½ tsp red pepper (I use my homemade red pepper made from peppers from my garden) or 1 finely chopped jalapeno

1 cup red wine (pour one for yourself…and one for the dish!)

1-cup low sodium chicken broth

1 28 oz. can chopped tomatoes

 

Generously sprinkle chicken with sea salt and coarsely ground pepper.

In a Dutch over, heat 2 tbsp. of oil and over medium high heat sauté chicken until crispy brown on both sides.

 

Remove chicken and hold on plate

Add remaining oil.

Toast cumin seed on high heat for 10 seconds.  Add onions and peppers  sauté until  onions are light golden, allowing onions to separate into rings.

Add garlic, ginger, cinnamon and crushed red pepper and bay leaves.

Cook and stir at medium heat for one minute being careful not to burn.

Add wine and cook on low heat until reduced by about 1/2

Add tomato and stock and cook on low heat for 10-12 minutes.

Add chicken and cook until chicken is cooked through (15-20 minutes).

Mrs. Fidler’s Chocolate Cake

This is one of the recipes I mentioned in the Tulsa World article. It is one of the best chocolate cakes I’ve ever made, and it freezes really well so you can heat it up when company is coming over.

Makes 12 servings.

1/2 cup shortening

2 cups sugar

2 eggs

1/2 cup cocoa

3/4 cup buttermilk

1 teaspoon baking soda

2 cups flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 cup hot water

INSTRUCTIONS:

Sift together cocoa, salt, baking soda, and flour.  Cream shortening and sugar in a separate bowl; add eggs to shortening mixture.  Add dry ingredients to creamed mixture alternately with milk. Add water and vanilla.  Pour into two 9 inch pans. Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes.

Icing:

1/3 cup of butter

1/4 cup water

1/2 cup of cocoa

2 and 1/2 cups powdered sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

INSTRUCTIONS:

Melt butter with water.  Stir in cocoa and powdered sugar. Add vanilla.  Add additional water (or buttermilk) until icing is desired thickness.  Double this recipe for a two layer cake or cupcakes.

Florentine Pot Roast

This is one of the delicious recipes I mentioned is my favorite in the Tulsa World.

Notes: You can pulse the onions, celery, and carrots to 1/8-inch pebbles in a food processor. Keep the onions separate

In Step 4: Save time by asking your butcher to truss the meat

2 large cloves of garlic, very finely chopped
1 sprig fresh rosemary (leaves only), very finely chopped
2 teaspoons sea salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 1/2 cups very finely chopped celery (about 1/2 pound)
1 cup very finely chopped carrots (about 6 ounces)
2 cups very finely chopped red onions (about 1 pound)
3 pound rump roast
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 14 1/2-ounce can pureed Italian plum tomatoes (if available, by a can of whole plum tomatoes and puree them)
4 thin slices lemon peal (use a potato peeler)
1 1/2 cups Chianti Classico
2 cups water
1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
2. Place garlic and rosemary in a small bowl and stir in 2 teaspoons salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Set aside
3. Pour 1/2 cup olive oil into a large skillet and add celery and carrots. Turn heat to medium-high, and sautée for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon. Add onions, and sautée for another 10 minutes, continuing to stir occasionally. Turn off heat, and set skillet aside.
4. Truss the rump roast tightly with string to keep its shape. With a sharp knife make 4 cross shaped incisions at even intervals along one side of the rump roast, beginning about an inch from either end. Stick a finger into each incision to dig a hole. Fill each hole with a quarter of the rosemary/garlic mixture.
5. Heat 1/4 cup olive oil in Dutch oven. When oil is hot, place rump roast in pot and brown 5 minutes on each side (though it’s round, consider it to have four sides). Do the first side on high heat, then reduce to medium.
6. Remove the roast to a plate. Transfer the sautéed vegetables, pureed tomatoes, lemon peal, Chianti, water, and 1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt to the Dutch oven, and stir well. Return the pot roast to the Dutch oven. Cover. and bake for 1 1/2 hours.
7. Turn roast, uncover, and bake for 1/2 hour

Kathy’s Healthy Tasty Pumpkin Bread

I’ll be on Tulsa’s Fox 23 News this morning at 10:30am cooking this very recipe! I’ll make sure to post photos and video after. Hope you enjoy!

Ingredients
3 cups sugar
½ cup mashed banana
½ cup unsweetened apple sauce
4 eggs lightly beaten
16 oz canned, unsweetened pumpkin
3 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/3 cup water
1/3 cup pumpkin spice syrup

Preparation
1. Grease and flour two loaf pans
2. Stir in sugar, mashed bananas, and applesauce
3. Stir in lightly beaten eggs and pumpkin
4. Sift dry ingredients in separate bowl, adding pecans (salt, flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, walnuts)
5. Add dry ingredients to wet, alternating with water/syrup mixture
6. Divide batter into two standard size pans or makes 12 muffins
8. Bake in oven at 300 degrees for an hour (generally it takes almost an hour and half – recipe says one hour – I just stick a toothpick in it when it comes out clean it is done)

The Original Ole’ Mood Pumpkin Bread

Last week marked the official start to Autumn, but someone needs to tell whoever sets the dates for seasonal transition (congress? The UN? Al Roker?) that Autumn really began way back on September 3. No, it wasn’t the reds and oranges of fall foliage that marked the transition and it wasn’t the cool night breeze or the first football game of the season. It was actually almost 100 degrees in good ole’ Tulsa, OK, but I knew Autumn had arrived when I walked into a work meeting at my neighborhood Starbucks coffee shop only to be greeted by a line that snaked through the shop, out the door and half way down the block.

“Did the iphone 5 change its release date and open a pop up shop at Startbucks?” I wondered to myself—and since I’m typically oblivious to any pop culture or technological happening in my vicinity (I literally sat next to Bono IN HIS TRADEMARK SUNGLASSES last time I was in New York and didn’t know it was him until someone told me)—I decided I’d just have to endure the look of shame and disappointment from the Gen-Y hipster in front of me and ask why it was going to take so long to get my Americano. As I anticipated, Gen-Y Hipster looked appalled that I failed to recognize the importance of this day (well, I am appalled you aren’t living up to your beanie wearing stereotype and buying coffee locally so take that) but not visibly shaken like the college girl in the shortest jean shorts I’d ever seen and Ugg boots (did I mention it was almost 100 degrees) in front of him. She jumped in before Gen-Y hipster could answer me:

Sorority Girl (in glass shattering shriek): “WHAT??? YOU DIDN’T KNOW IT WAS PSL DAY AT STARBS?”
Me (silently): Huh?
Sorority Girl: “PSL DAY IS LIKE MY FAVORITE DAY OF THE YEAR AND IT’S LIKE THE 10 YEAR ANNIVERSARY!”
Me (looking to my former nemesis and now maybe friend Gen-Y Hipster for reassurance that this girl is bat shit crazy): “I have a meeting. I was just trying to get a coffee. Is this the line for Starbucks?”

Apparently Gen-Y Hipster decided he was going to save me from this shriek fest before he put his giant headphones back on his head so he said, “Today is the day Starbucks officially releases the Pumpkin Spice Latte. Everyone gets really excited about it.”

Let me give you some advice, friends, if you’re ever in this Starbucks line on PSL release day. Do NOT say “Why are they releasing it so early? It’s 100 degrees outside and fall is at least a month away” unless you want to risk being overtaken by a mob of Starbucks lovers hopped up on espresso, whipped cream and pumpkin syrup.

Luckily I escaped in time, but I had to endure my early morning meeting without coffee. I thought I might be afraid of all things pumpkin for life, but now that the weather is a little cooler and Halloween (and Thanksgiving!?) decorations are popping up in Target and beyond I find myself mysteriously craving that spunky orange veggie that inspired the latte that has become more of a harbringer of fall than the first signs of foliage.

Our friends “The Ole’ Moods” brought us an amazing loaf of pumpkin bread that my family demolished in about 2 hours and I begged for the recipe immediately after (partly to make sure it didn’t have some kind of crack in it because it was so addictive…just kidding). The Ole’ Moods make extra loaves of this bread and freeze it in case of pumpkin bread emergencies and I almost had to break into their house to get some because the Ole’ Moods were out of town when I asked for the recipe and we needed more bread badly.

I make this bread every fall, but this year I decided to try to make it healthier. The original recipe calls for 1 cup of oil and since I give it to Foodie Baby for breakfast (I put it in a muffin tin and call it a cupcake) I wanted to see if I could add some whole grains and fruit to it. Yes, I realize the recipe still has a full 3 cups of sugar, but it makes two full loaves so it’s not too bad!

I substituted ½ cup of banana and ½ cup of unsweetened apple sauce for the oil and I added flax seed to the top of the loaf instead of “pecan nut dust”. I also subbed walnuts for pecans…mostly because I didn’t have any pecans. Both recipes are below. Enjoy!

The Original Ole’ Mood Pumpkin Bread
Ingredients
3 cups sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs lightly beaten
16 oz canned, unsweetened pumpkin
3 1/2 cups flour
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/3 cup water
1/3 cup pumpkin spice syrup

Preparation

Grease and flour two loaf pans
Stir in sugar and oil
Stir in eggs and pumpkin
Sift dry ingredients in separate bowl, adding pecans
Add dry ingredients to wet, alternating with water/syrup mixture
Divide batter into two pans
Top with raw sugar and pecan nut dust

Bake in oven at 300 degrees for an hour (generally it takes almost an hour and half – recipe said one hour – I just stick a toothpick in it when it comes out clean it is done)

Lightened Up Pumpkin Bread
Ingredients
3 cups sugar
½ cup mashed banana
½ cup unsweetened apple sauce
4 eggs lightly beaten
16 oz canned, unsweetened pumpkin
3 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/3 cup water
1/3 cup pumpkin spice syrup

Preparation
1. Grease and flour one loaf pan and one muffin tin (or use muffin liners)
2. Stir in sugar and oil
3. Stir in eggs and pumpkin
4. Sift dry ingredients in separate bowl, adding pecans
5. Add dry ingredients to wet, alternating with water/syrup mixture
6. Divide batter into two pans
7. Top with raw sugar and ground flax seed
8. Bake in oven at 300 degrees for an hour (generally it takes almost an hour and half – recipe says one hour – I just stick a toothpick in it when it comes out clean it is done)