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Archive for April 11, 2017

TIP OF THE DAY: One-Pan Main & Side

Our pots and pans don’t go into the dishwasher: They need to be hand-washed.

While hot sudsy water and a Scrub Daddy do the job, we wouldn’t overlook the opportunity to save our manicure.

So we were all ears when Good Eggs sent us this recipe to cook the main and the side in one dish. Home cooks have been doing this for years—but not the cooks in our family.

With great enthusiasm we made this recipe, and then ordered a couple of books on one-pan cooking to see how we could make kitchen life easier (recommendations below).

RECIPE: LAMB & ZUCCHINI WITH GREEK ACCENTS

We love lamb and Greek cuisine with its accents of lemon and mint, so we didn’t wait to try it. In 30 minutes, we were ready to dig in.

Ingredients For 2 Servings

  • 2 lamb chops (we used two per person)
  • Salt and pepper
  • Olive oil
  • 1 pound zucchini, cut into 1-inch chunks
  • ½ cup plain yogurt
  • 1 garlic clove, ground to a paste
  • ½ lemon, juiced
  • 1 handful mint, roughly chopped (substitute basil)
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • Flaky salt
  •  
    Preparation

    1. SALT and pepper both sides of each lamb chop and set aside. Add about ½ cup olive oil to a cast iron pan and heat over high. When the oil is hot (almost to the point of smoking), carefully add the zucchini in one layer and cook on high heat until browned, flipping so both sides are crispy and deeply golden-brown.

    2. USE a slotted spoon to remove the zucchini from the pan; place on a plate and set aside.

    3. COMBINE the yogurt, garlic, lemon and a tablespoon of the mint in a clean bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

    4. POUR off some of the oil from the zucchini pan, leaving a thin layer on the bottom. Turn the burner to high. When the oil is hot, add the chops and cook for about 4 to 5 minutes on each side. Check for doneness—you want it still a bit pink in the middle.

    If the chops sear before the meat cooks through, pop the pan into a 400°F oven until they are cooked to your liking. For medium-rare, the temperature should be 145°F on a meat thermometer.

    5. FINISH the zucchini: Sprinkle with the red wine vinegar, add the rest of the mint, and a few pinches of flaky salt to taste. Arrange the chops and the zucchini on a platter and serve with the yogurt sauce.

     

    One Pan Cooking

    One Pan & Done Cookbook

    One Pan Wonders Cookbook

    [1] Lamb chops and zucchini, a one-pan dinner (photo courtesy Good Eggs). [2] One Pan & Done, an oven-to-table cookbook. [3] One-Pan Wonders for casserole, Dutch oven, pan, skillet and slow cooker.

    ONE-PAN COOKBOOKS

  • One Pan & Done: Hassle-Free Meals from the Oven to Your Table
  • One Pan, Two Plates: More Than 70 Complete Weeknight Meals for Two
  • One-Pan Wonders: Fuss-Free Meals for Your Sheet Pan, Dutch Oven, Skillet, Roasting Pan, Casserole, and Slow Cooker
  • Sheet Pan Suppers: 120 Recipes for Simple, Surprising, Hands-Off Meals Straight from the Oven
  •   

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    RECIPE: Carrot Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

    Mini Carrot Cupcakes

    Mini Carrot Cupcakes Recipe

    Carrots

    Lactose Free Cream Cheese

    [1] and [2] Mini carrot cupcakes are a lighter version of dense carrot cake (photos courtesy Kraft). [3] Shred extra carrots and add them to a salad (photo courtesy Stylepresso. [4] Lactose intolerant? Use Green Valley Organics’ lactose-free cream cheese. You can also substitute ghee for butter, at a 1:1 ratio.

     

    Yesterday we made carrot cupcakes. Mini ones. With a recipe from Kraft.

    While we usually dig into a slice of dense loaf cake instead of airy cupcakes, we deemed these just right for Easter week.

    We don’t add pineapple to our carrot cake, but the fruitiness was just perfect in these cupcakes.

    Bring them to work, bring them to neighbors, or enjoy the entire batch at home.

    A BRIEF HISTORY OF CARROT CAKE

    According to the Carrot Museum in the U.K., food historians believe that modern carrot cake most likely descended from medieval carrot puddings.

    During the Middle Ages, sugar and other sweeteners were expensive and difficult to come by, and carrots had long been used for their sweetness.

    Printed recipes for carrot pudding have been found as far back as 1591, but no reference to carrot cake appears until the 19th century. Thus, we don’t know how cake got to here from there.

    In the New York Cookbook (1992), Molly O’Neill says that in 1783, George Washington was served a carrot tea cake at Fraunces Tavern in lower Manhattan.

    She notes that an adaptation of that early recipe, which was printed in The Thirteen Colonies Cookbook (1975), is quite close to the carrot cakes of today.

     
    RECIPE: MINI CARROT CUPCAKES

    Ingredients

    For The Cake

  • 3 eggs plus 1 egg white
  • 1-1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 cup vegetable or canola oil
  • 1/2 cup applesauce
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups grated carrots
  • 1/2 cup crushed pineapple, including juice
  • Optional: 2/3 cup crushed pecans, plus more for optional garnish
  •  
    For The Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons whole milk
  •  
    Preparation

    1. PREHEAT the oven to 350°F. Combine and mix the eggs, egg white, sugar, oil and applesauce in a mixing bowl.

    2. COMBINE all the dry ingredients in a separate bowl. Add the egg mixture to the dry ingredients and beat together. Add the carrots, pineapple, and pecans and mix again. Spoon into 24 lined muffin cups, filling about 2/3 full.

    3. PLACE the pan on the middle oven rack and bake for 20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. Remove from the oven and let cool for 5 minutes; then remove from the pan. Allow the cupcakes to cool completely on wire racks before frosting.

    4. MAKE the frosting. In a large mixing bowl cream together the butter, cream cheese and vanilla extract. Gradually beat in the powdered sugar. Add milk to the desired consistency. (Don’t make it too thin or the frosting will slide off the cupcakes.)

    5. FROST the cupcakes with a small spatula, or use a pastry and tip for a fancier presentation (you can use a plastic bag with no top, as shown in photo #2). Garnish with crushed pecans, if desired.
     
      

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