May 24, 2019

Baked Chocolate Donuts

I decided to make donuts for my birthday weekend, using this baked recipe from a Cozy Kitchen. These are decadent, full of chocolate and so rich they beg for a glass of milk to get the chocolate off the roof of your mouth. They are best eaten with a fork since they tend to crumble.

Pretty much, if it's your birthday and you want cake for breakfast, these fit the bill.

Baked Chocolate Donuts
3/4 cup plus 2 Tbsp. flour
3 Tbsp. cocoa powder
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
3 Tbsp. unsalted butter
3 oz. chocolate chips
1/2 tsp. liquid cocoa extract or instant espresso powder
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 large egg yolk
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup powdered sugar
1/4 cup cocoa
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 Tbsp. milk

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spray a donut pan with cooking spray, and set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients.

In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Then add the chocolate chips, melt and mix until smooth. Turn off the heat, and add cocoa extract or espresso powder, sugar and egg yolk. Lastly, whisk in the buttermilk and vanilla.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry, and stir just until mixed. Fill each donut hole to the top, and bake for 12 to 15 minutes or until firm to the touch. Cool for two minutes, and then carefully transfer to a cooling rack.

To make the glaze, combine all the ingredients, whisking until smooth. Add more milk as needed to get desired consistency. Either dip the donuts or use a spoon to pour on the glaze. Top with sprinkles, grab a fork and get messy! Makes 6 donuts. 

Restaurant-Style Salsa

Do you know how addictive the salsa at Mexican restaurants can be? That flavor combination and texture with no big chunks makes you keep dipping and dipping. We usually can salsa every year, and we make pretty darn good salsas if I say so myself. But after I made this quick salsa from Brown Eyed Baker, my husband said he wasn't sure we ever needed to can salsa again.

This comes together quickly, makes use of canned tomatoes to ensure quality flavor no matter the season and has just a few cheap fresh ingredients that make it pop. Word of warning, though, for those with sensitive (a.k.a. sissy) palates ... you might not want to add any jalapenos to the mix.

Restaurant-Style Salsa
28 oz. can whole tomatoes, drained
2 10-oz. cans Rotel
1/2 onion, roughly chopped
1 garlic clove, roughly chopped
1 jalapeno (thinly sliced and seeds removed)
1/2 cup cilantro
1/2 lime, juiced
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. sugar
1/4 tsp. cumin

Combine all ingredients in a food processor. Pulse until combined and desired consistency. Makes about 6 cups of salsa. Ideally let stand for an hour before serving to allow the flavors to blend, but it's still tasty right away.

March 24, 2019

Sausage Pizza Egg Muffins

Eggs are a staple for me when I do rounds of Whole 30, so I eat them in a variety of ways. These pizza-inspired muffins from Paleo Running Momma are delicious and perfect for making ahead for a breakfast from the freezer.

Sausage Pizza Egg Muffins
3/4 lb. pork sausage
2 cloves garlic, minced
Dash of crushed red pepper
2/3 cup chopped sun-dried tomatoes
2 tsp. Italian seasoning blend
1 tsp. onion powder
9 eggs
1/4 tsp. sea salt

Preheat oven to 400°F. Grease 12 muffin tins.

Cook the sausage with a dash of red pepper. Add the garlic when the sausage is nearly browned. Then add in tomatoes, and stir well. Remove from heat, and set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs with the seasonings. Pour in the sausage mixture, and stir to combine. Divide mixture evenly among 12 muffin cups. Bake about 15 minutes or until the eggs are set, and muffins just begin to brown. Either serve immediately or freeze for future breakfasts. Makes 12 muffins.

Pizza Soup

I've had the Clean Eating with a Dirty Mind cookbook for a while now, but I haven't tried any of the recipes yet because I had too many other delicious, non-Paleo recipes to try. Anyways, I was looking for some inspiration for this round of Whole 30, and I tried this pizza soup.

This is delicious. It's loaded with vegetables and full of flavor. Since I'm doing Whole 30, I omitted the pepperoni and left the cheese off mine, although it looked so delicious on my husband's bowl. I did, however, top my soup with black olives to enhance the pizza toppings. This will be repeated already next week, but I doubt I'll photograph it then either.

Pizza Soup
1 lb. mild Italian sausage
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1/2 white onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 (14-oz.) jars of pizza sauce (no sugar version for Whole 30)
1 (14-oz.) can diced tomatoes
4 mushrooms, sliced
1 bell pepper, diced
3 oz. sliced pepperoni
1 tsp. garlic salt
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1/2 tsp. Italian seasoning
1/4 tsp. pepper
1 cup shredded cheese, optional

In a large skillet, brown the Italian sausage. Remove from skillet, and set aside. Add oil to the skillet, and cook the onion and garlic until fragrant and translucent.Add in sausage and all the ingredients except the cheese. Cover, and simmer 30 minutes or until all the vegetables are tender.

To serve, ladle soup into oven-safe bowls, and top with cheese. Broil a few minutes until the cheese is golden. Top with black olives and chopped green onions, if desired. Serves 4 to 6.

March 16, 2019

Peanut Butter Breakfast Cookies

These cookies from Crazy for Crust are perfect for an afternoon snack or even breakfast. Sweet enough to be called a cookie, yet healthy enough for any time of the day. Next time I'm making a double batch to freeze for crazy days in the future.

Peanut Butter Breakfast Cookies
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 Tbsp. coconut oil
1 large egg
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. baking soda
2 Tbsp. flax seed, ground
3/4 cup quick oats
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a cookie sheet with a silipat. Using a mixer, combine peanut butter, brown sugar and oil until smooth. Stir in egg and vanilla. Mix in baking soda, flax seed, oats and flour. Stir in chocolate chips.

Scoop 2 Tbsp. of dough for each cookie, roll in a ball and flatten with the palm of your hand. They won't spread, so you can have them fairly close together. Bake 9 to 11 minutes. Cool completely on the cookie sheet, or they will crumble apart. Makes 12 cookies.