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Archive for November, 2006

Coconut Tempters

2 c. sugar
½ c. cocoa
½ c. milk
½ c. butter
½ c. peanut butter
1 t. vanilla
3 c. quick cooking oatmeal
½ c. coconut (optional, but yummy)

Place sugar, cocoa, milk and butter in a medium saucepan and cook to boiling, stirring constantly. Boil 1 minute. Add peanut butter and vanilla, stir until dissolved. Pour over oatmeal and coconut and mix thoroughly, then beat until mixture begins to thicken. Drop by teaspoonful onto parchment paper or silpat and let cool.
A decadent and delicious recipe for Three Layer Bars (also called Nainamo Bars in other parts of the country/world) can be found here on my site . My mother made these bars every Christmas and they are a wonderful treat. I make them at Christmas time for the family still. We all just love them. Another treat from my childhood is Coffee Toffee Bars. I am not sure why they have ‘Toffee’ in the title, as there is nothing even remotely like toffee in them. They are a delightful chocolate/almond/mocha flavored shortbread with a thin and delicate almond glaze over the top. My mom had a specific jelly roll pan that she made them in, and we never referred to it any other way than “the Coffee Toffee bar pan”. It was a heavy steel pan, worn and well used with ornate curved handles. I wish with everything that I am that I still had that pan.

Coffee Toffee Bars

2 ¼ c. sifted flour
½ t. baking powder
¼ t. salt
1 c. butter
1 c. firmly packed brown sugar
1 t. almond extract
1 T. instant coffee
1 pkg. chocolate chips

Mix flour, baking soda and salt. Cream butter. Add brown sugar and cream well. Blend in almond extract and instant coffee. Add dry ingredients, then chocolate chips. Press into cake pan and bake 20 minutes at 350 degree.

Almond Glaze (double all ingredients)

Combine 1 T soft butter, ¾ c. powdered sugar, 1/8 t. almond extract. Add 1 T. milk until frosting is of spreading consistency. Frost bars while still warm.

Here’s a refrigerator dough cookie, delicately flavored and just fabulous. They would be delicious using real lemon juice instead of extract, and possibly a little lemon zest as well.

Lemon Crisps

½ c. butter
½ c. shortening
1 ½ c. sugar
2 eggs
1 ½ t. lemon extract
3 c. sifted flour
3 t. baking powder
½ t. salt

Cream butter, shortening and sugar until light and fluffy, beat in each egg, then flavoring. Stir in sifted dry ingredients. Form dough into rolls, 2 “ in diameter, wrap in wax paper then chill overnight. Using a sharp knife, slice dough into thin wafers and bake approximately 8 minutes at 375 degrees. Keep dough chilled between baking.
Some call them Molasses Cookies, others call them Gingersnaps. We used the latter, and this recipe is wonderful. It was one of my Mom’s favorites. We always made a double batch. Gingersnaps: Combine 3/4 c. shortening, 1 c. brown sugar, firmly packed and 1 egg until fluffy. Add ¼ c molasses and beat well. Mix together 2 c. sifted flour, ¼ t. salt, 2 t. baking soda, 1 t. each ginger and cinnamon and ½ t. cloves. Add to wet ingredients and mix well. Chill dough for several hours or overnight. Shape dough into 1” balls and roll in granulated sugar. Place on greased cookie sheets and bake 12-15 minutes at 350° F.

One more…..another of our favorites growing up. I could eat a whole pan of these.

Peanut Butter Fingers (double all ingredients for a 9×13 pan): Cream together: ½ c butter, ½ c sugar, ½ c brown sugar, firmly packed. Blend in: 1 unbeaten egg, 1/3 c. peanut butter, ½ t. baking soda , ¼ t. salt. Stir in: 1 c. flour, 1 c. quick cooking oatmeal. Spread mix in 8″ cake pan and bake 20-25 minutes at 350° F. Sprinkle with chocolate chips when hot and spread evenly when melted.

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Chicken Peanut Curry

3 lbs boneless, skinless chicken pieces (or you can use bone-in for added flavor), cut into 1 1/2 inch wide chunks or strips
1/2 cup flour
4 Tbsp curry powder
2 teaspoons Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground peppercorns
1/2 cup olive oil
2 Tbsp fresh ginger, minced
2 Tbsp garlic, minced
2 serrano chili peppers, seeded, de-veined, minced
4 cups chicken broth
1/2 cup peanut butter (if using freshly ground peanuts, add 2 teaspoons of sugar)
1 teaspoon ground coriander seeds
8 green onions, chopped, greens included
1/3 cup each finely chopped mint and cilantro
2 limes cut into wedges

Rinse chicken and pat dry. In a small sturdy paper bag, combine the flour, curry powder, salt and pepper. Shake well. Add the chicken pieces and shake to coat well.

Heat oil in a large saucepan on medium high heat. Add chicken pieces. Cook 5-10 minutes (depending on size of chicken pieces) tossing occasionally to cook chicken evenly. Add the ginger, garlic, chili pepper and 1/2 cup of the chicken broth to the saucepan. Cook for 3 minutes, scraping the pan with a spatula and stirring to combine everything well.

Add the peanut butter, stirring quickly to incorporate it with the chicken. Add the remaining 3 1/2 cups of broth slowly, stirring continuously to maintain an even texture. Let simmer for 10 minutes. Right before serving, add the coriander and green onions. Salt to taste.

Serve with rice. Top each serving with fresh cilantro and mint. Squeeze a little lime juice over it as well.

I followed the recipe rather closely, and did use fresh ground peanuts because I love the texture, but after combining everything in the pan the broth seemed a bit thin so I stirred in about 3 or 4 T. creamy peanut butter and it was just the right amount to bring the texture to the right consistency I like; thick but not too gloppy. I used peanut oil instead of olive because I like the flavor and it has a higher smoke point for a quicker sear. The additions of coriander and the toppings of mint, cilantro and fresh lime juice really sparked this dish over the top. I was in heaven eating it. Although I thought I had a good chicken curry recipe, this one blew that out of the water with one bite.

recipe from Elise at Simply Recipes

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