Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Ancho Pork and Hominy Stew

We had this stew for dinner last night with some warmed corn tortillas and steamed broccoli sauteed with garlic and red pepper.

Adapted from Cooking Light. Original recipe here.


  • 1 tablespoons ancho chile powder
  • 1 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 3/4 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 pound boneless pork chops, trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 can fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 (20-ounce) can hominy, drained
  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can fire-roasted diced tomatoes, undrained


1. Combine first 5 ingredients in a large bowl; set 3/4 teaspoon spice mixture aside. Add pork to remaining spice mixture in bowl, tossing well to coat.

2. Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add pork mixture to pan; cook 5 minutes or until browned, stirring occasionally. Remove pork from pan; set aside. Add remaining 1 teaspoon oil to pan. Add onion and bell pepper; sauté 3 minutes or until tender, stirring occasionally. Add garlic and continue to saute for 2 more minutes or until you smell the garlic. Return pork to pan. Add reserved 1 1/2 teaspoons spice mixture, broth, hominy, and tomatoes; bring to a boil. Partially cover, reduce heat, and simmer 25 minutes.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Whole Grain Waffles

I like to add as much healthy as I can to breakfast. When DS decided he didn't want to eat oatmeal for breakfast anymore, we started doing waffles instead. These have whole wheat flour, wheat germ and milled flax seed. They may not be as light as regular waffles but I think they're pretty good and Logan has consistently eaten them for breakfast for about 3 months now! Adapted from The Good Housekeeping Illustrated Cookbook (1980 edition)


1 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cup all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
3 tablespoons milled flax seed
2 tablespoons wheat germ
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup yogurt ( in a 2 cup or bigger Pyrex)
enough milk to make 2 cups in the Pyrex mention above (your making buttermilk so you could also used buttermilk)
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
4 tablespoons vegetable oil

Whisk together dry ingredients. Whisk together wet ingredients. Whisk wet ingredients into dry ingredients. Follow your waffle iron's instructions.

Loubieh Bi Zeit (Lebanese Green Beans)

MTH and I had take out from The Phoenician a few weeks ago. There were some leftover Loubieh Bi Zeit. I thought that DS may like them. He LOVED them! Given that he previously was not as enamoured of green beans, I decided I needed to figure out how to make them. Here's a recipe that I adapted from http://homemade-recipes.blogspot.com. Here is the link to the original recipe.


olive oil
onions, chopped
garlic, chopped
1 can of green beans (I used half sodium)
1/2 can of tomato sauce
1/2 half lemon, juiced
2 cups of chicken broth or you can use chicken bouillon

  1. Heat the oil in a saucepan.
  2. Add onions and saute until translucent.
  3. Add garlic and cook until fragrant (no more than 2 minutes).
  4. Add green beans, tomato sauce, lemon juice, chicken broth and pepper.
  5. Cover and cook on low heat for 45 minutes. You can probably cook less and it will be fine.

My Son's Top 9 Favorite Foods

My son will officially be 15 months old on 12/7. It's hard to believe that he was only 3 months old almost a year ago. So far, he has proven to be a good eater.

1. Cheese, cheese and more cheese - definitely his favorite food. The sharper the cheddar, the better. He also loves goat cheese and sheeps milk cheese. He likes to eat it as is or in grilled cheese.
2. Sweet potato fries
3. Bread
4. Waffles - he has these every morning for breakfast almost without fail. We've tried to introduce other things but he doesn't care to branch out. I make these over the weekend and then freeze them for his eating pleasure throughout the week.
5. Baked beans
6. Lebanese green beans (loubieh bi zeit)
7. Roasted carrots
8. Roasted chicken and mustard sandwich - yep, he loves mustard.
9. Fried bananas

Things he currently doesn't like
chicken nuggets
French fries
birthday cake (he liked feeding it to his Mom)

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Apple Upside Down Cake

Found on kitchenmusings.com - Adapted from Rose Levy Berenbaum's recipe in Rose's Heavenly Cakes

Apple and Walnut Filling

3 1/4 c sliced apples (about 2 large)
1 t lemon juice, freshly squeezed
1/3 c light brown sugar, firmly packed, divided
4 T unsalted butter, divided
2/3 c pecan halves

One 9×2-inch round cake pan bottom coated with shortening, topped with a parchment round
baking stone optional

Preheat the oven, twenty minutes or more before baking, set an oven rack in the lower third of the oven, set a baking stone, if using, on the rack and preheat the oven to 350F.

Make the apple topping:
In a medium bowl, toss together the apples, lemon juice, and 2 tablespoons of the brown sugar. Allow the mixture to sit for at least 30 minutes or up to 1 1/2 hours. Drain the apples, reserving their liquid.

In a small heavy saucepan, preferably nonstick, melt the butter. Use about 1 tablespoon to coat the parchment-lined bottom and the sides of the cake pan.

Add the remaining brown sugar and the reserved liquid that has drained from the apples to the butter remaining in the saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly with a light-colored silicone spatula, then stop stirring, but leave the spatula in place to judge the color, and simmer for about 3 minutes, until bubbling thickly and deep amber in color.

Pour this mixture (do not scrape) into the prepared cake pan, tilting to coat the entire bottom. Don’t worry if the mixture hardens; it will melt during baking. Place the apple slices, overlapping slightly, on the bottom and around the sides of the pan. Set aside.

Toast the pecans:
Spread the pecans evenly on a baking sheet and bake for about 7 minutes to enhance their flavor. Stir once or twice to ensure even toasting and avoid over-browning. Cool completely. Chop coarsely and set aside.


3 large egg yolks, at room temperature
1/2 c Greek yogurt, divided
1 1/4 t pure vanilla extract
1 1/3 c all purpose flour, sifted into the cup and leveled off
3/4 c superfine sugar
3/4 t baking powder
1/4 t baking soda
1/4 t salt
9 T unsalted butter

Mix the liquid ingredients. In a medium bowl, whisk the yolks, 2 tbs. of the yogurt, and the vanilla just until combined.

Make the batter:
In a bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the flat beater, mix the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt on low speed for 30 seconds. Add the butter and the remaining yogurt. Mix on low speed until the dry ingredients are moistened. Raise the speed to medium and beat for 1 1/2 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.

Starting on medium-low speed, gradually add the egg mixture to the batter in two parts, beating on medium speed for 30 seconds after each addition to incorporate the ingredients and strengthen the structure. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Using a silicone spatula, drop the batter in big blobs on top of the apples. then smooth the surface evenly with a small offset spatula while keeping the apples in an attractive pattern.

Bake the cake:
Place the pan in the oven on the stone, if using it. Bake for 35 to 45 minutes, or until golden brown, a wire cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean, and the cake springs back when pressed lightly in the center.

Unmold and cool the cake:
Run a small metal spatula between the sides of the pan and the cake, pressing firmly against the pan, and invert the cake at once onto a serving plate. Leave the pan in place for 1 to 2 minutes before lifting it off. If any apple slices have stuck to the pan, use a small metal spatula to place them back on the cake. Scatter the toasted pecans on top. Serve warm or room temperature.

Apple Crisp

Recipe adapted from My Recipes website (http://find.myrecipes.com/recipes/recipefinder.dyn?action=displayRecipe&recipe_id=226369)
This dessert was a hit at work!

1/2 cup whole-wheat flour
3/4 cup quick-cooking oats
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup chilled butter, cut into small pieces
3 cups chopped peeled Granny Smith apple (about 2 1/2 pounds)
Cooking spray

Preheat oven to 375°.

Lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Combine flour, oats and 1/2 cup sugar in a medium bowl; cut in butter with a pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse meal.

Combine 1/4 cup sugar, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon and apples in a 9 x 9-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle with oat mixture. Bake at 375° for 30 minutes or until apples are tender.

Sunday, October 04, 2009

Sauteed Apples (No sugar added)

I have a jar of coconut oil from making a carrot cake from the 101
Cookbooks website. I've started using it to saute several of my son's
fruit dishes. For this one, I just sauteed the apples in the oil until
soft. Then at the end I added cinnamon and nutmeg. No sugar added! You
can do this with bananas, sweet potatoes, plantains, the list goes on.

The Apple Chronicles Begin

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Corn Pancakes

I had some corn cakes (or so they called them) at Cafe Gutenberg. When I googled corncakes, I got recipes that didn't match what I had eaten. So, I googled corn pancakes instead. Then, it seemed to match more closely to what I thought I had eaten. The first time I made them, I just used a recipe I found online. But, they weren't corny enough. The next time, I modified my normal pancake recipe by substituting 3/4 cup of flour with 3/4 cup of corn meal (and didn't add the milled flax seed or wheat germ). These still weren't corny enough. I had been told that I should probably try adding pureed corn. I really didn't want to go to that trouble. So, for my third try, I used masa. It worked! They're very corny. Here's the recipe. It's very similar to my normal pancake recipe but since I expect to make this one again, I want to write it down fully.

3/4 cup plain flour
3/4 cup masa
2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons sugar
1 3/4 cup milk
1 egg
3 tablespoons oil
1 teaspoon vanilla

Stir dry ingredients together. Stir wet ingredients together. Add liquid to dry ingredients. Cook and enjoy with maple syrup or as a savory side dish at dinner.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Banana Nut Whole Wheat Pancakes

I love banana nut bread so I decided to make banana nut pancakes. Really, it's just my normal pancake recipe with additions. I've also added blueberries.

1/2 cup plain flour
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
2 T wheat germ (optional)
2 t baking powder
3/4 t salt
1 1/4 cup milk (you may want to use more to make a thinner batter)
1 egg
2 t vanilla
2 T oil
mashed banana
chopped pecans

Mix the dry ingredients. Mix the wet ingredients. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix well but do not overstir. When making the pancakes, add the mashed banana and chopped pecans. Then, when you turn the pancake, you'll have nice caramelization of the banana and toasting of the pecans.