Posts Tagged ‘Cranberries’

Homemade Granola!!

Homemade Granola!!

Hi everyone…I am glad to be back blogging, I hope you’ll are doing well, I am doing good too.

Let me start with saying this – Why didn’t I did this earlier?. Seriously this the first thing came in my mind after trying out this homemade granola. It’s delicious and so easy to make that you will never go back to the boxed cereal. It was my first time making granola and I’ll be sure to do it again.  This homemade granola is that good and ADDICTIVE! This homemade granola is a wonderful mixture of grains, nuts, fruits and hint of chocolate.

Don’t feel intimidated by the long list of ingredients, it is all just measure, mix and bake and the delicious results are very well worth. It’s also a fun recipe for kids to help measure and mix. On top of that what I like the most is you can substitute whatever ingredients you like… the kind of flavor you want to add (or not add), and which ingredients you have on hand.

I love this in a bowl of yogurt and some berries on top. On the other hand hubby likes to have this with cold milk or just as a snack. And to my little one he loves to pick all the cranberries and chocolate chips when he sees the jar open…:)

Homemade Granola!!

Homemade Granola!!

Ingredients

  • 2 ½ cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • ½ cup slivered almonds
  • ½ cup coarsely chopped walnuts
  • 2 tbsp unsalted sunflower seeds
  • 2 tbsp unsalted pumpkin seeds
  • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup light olive oil, vegetable oil,or canola oil
  • ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 cup dried fruits (such as cranberries, cherries, chopped apricots, etc.)
  • 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips(I have used both white and dark chocolate)

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.
  •  Combine oats, almonds, walnuts, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, cinnamon and salt in a large bowl and mix.
  •  In a small bowl, whisk honey, oil and vanilla extract together until combined. Pour over dry ingredients and mix well. Spread mixture evenly onto prepared baking sheet and bake for about 20-25 minutes, stirring and re-spreading a few times with a spatula, until entire mixture is medium golden brown. Watch carefully, it burns quickly and will brown first in the corners and on the bottom.
  •  Remove the granola from the oven and allow to cool on wire rack, stirring occasionally.
  • Add the apricots, cranberries, cherries and the chocolate chips.
  • Store the cooled  granola in an airtight container in refrigerator. It will keep for several weeks. Enjoy!!
Homemade Granola!!

Homemade Granola!!

I love baking and I think it’s an exotic art. I still remember the first time I tried baking a cake with store-bought mix that turned out to be a disaster.But I never gave up and tried my hands on this art slowly and progressively. It’s really wonderful to see your gooey-doughey stuff placed in the oven turns into something  incredibly delicious! Once you get hold of this art, it’s an addiction that’s hard to get rid of.There are days when I will bake two to three days in a row. Having a passion for baking can sometimes be tricky when there is only two of us eating my baked goodies.

The other day I was in a mood to bake some cookies. Cookies are very simple and easy to make and there is endless combination you can do with a cookies. I love oatmeal cookies and peanut butter cookies, so I have decided to combine these two with some chocolate chips and cranberries. And I’m glad I did, because these cookies were totally irresistible. And the texture on these cookies are magical! Soft and tender inside and outside, with just a bit of texture from the oats, and packed with peanut butter and chocolate-cranberry flavor. Ahh!! total Bliss!! These cookies are easy to put together and in less than an hour, you’ll have a batch of fresh and irresistible cookies. As you can see these are big monster cookies. I’m saying just one will fill you up. You could push for two, but one was really plenty for me.

Peanut-Butter Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cranberry Cookies

Peanut-Butter Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cranberry Cookies

Peanut-Butter Oatmeal Chocolate chips Cranberry Cookies

Peanut-Butter Oatmeal Chocolate chips Cranberry Cookies

Ingredients:

Recipe Yields : 15-16 cookies

Recipe Adapted from: Browneyedbaker

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
  •  1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  •  1/3 cup light brown sugar
  •  1 teaspoon baking soda
  •  1/4 teaspoon salt
  •  1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  •  1 egg at room temperature
  •  1/2 cup old-fashioned oats
  •  1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries

Method:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • Stir together oats, flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl; set aside.
  • In the bowl of a electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter, peanut butter, sugars and vanilla on medium speed until light and fluffy and pale in color, about 3-4 minutes.
  • Add the egg to the bowl and beat to combine.  With the mixer on low-speed, gradually add the flour mixture, beating just until combined.  Stir in the chocolate chips and cranberries .
  • Using a tablespoon(take approx 2 tablespoon of dough) or an ice cream scoop, drop balls of dough 2 inches apart on baking sheets lined with parchment paper.
  • Bake cookies, rotating sheets halfway through, until golden brown and just set, 13 to 15 minutes. Let cool on sheets on wire racks 5 minutes. Transfer cookies to wire racks to cool completely.
Peanut-Butter Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cranberry Cookies

Peanut-Butter Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cranberry Cookies

Peanut-Butter Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cranberry Cookies

Peanut-Butter Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cranberry Cookies

 Arugula Salad   

Before making anything with this beautiful looking greens I have decided to taste and must say Arugula tastes peppery and has a strong flavour for a leafy green. This salad I have adapted from Barefoot Contessa – Back to Basics by Ina Garten which I got on my birthday as a present. As I am showing lots of interest in cooking these days, so my dear hubby gifted me these two cooking books, the other one is Giada’s Family Dinners. After getting this and browsing through the recipes I cannot decide what to make as everything looks delicious to me.  

So, I gave this choice to my hubby to decide what he wants from the book and he said this colorful salad which is so refreshing for this season.   

Arugula Salad

Arugula Salad

 Ingredients:   

  • 5 ounce baby Arugula leaves
  • 2 chicken leg pieces
  • 1 large granny smith apple, peeled and diced
  • 1/4 cup toasted walnuts, coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 dried cranberries

For the dressing:   

  • 1 tablespoon apple sider vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated orange zest
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

 Preparation:  

  • Preheat oven to 400 deg fahrenheit.
  • Coat chicken leg pieces with generous amount of salt, pepper and olive oil and roast in for 40-45 minutes. Cool of completely and take the bones out and cut into small bite sized chunks.
  • In a large mixing bowl, toss together the arugula leaves, chicken pieces,  apple, walnuts and cranberries and keep it aside.
  • Combine everything under dressing except salt and slowly whisk to incorporate well.
  • Toss the salad with just enough dressing to moisten. Sprinkle with pinch of salt and toss well. Serve immediately.

Almond, Pine nuts, Apricots and Cranberries Coffee Cake 

I had made this coffee cake several times and it always a hit at my house, so thought of sharing this here. This is perfect with a cup of coffee or tea. I have adapted this recipe from Giada De Laurentiis and made some minor changes to suit my taste palette. 

Almond, pine nuts, apricots and cranberries coffee cake

Almond, Pine nuts, Apricots and Cranberries coffee Cake

Ingredients: 

  • 1/2 cup whole Almonds, toasted
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted
  • 1/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted for garnishing
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted for garnishing
  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 stick butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup milk, at room temperature
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup dried apricots, chopped
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
Preparation:
  • Heat a pan and slightly toast whole almonds and pine nuts. Be careful while toasting the nuts, do not take your eye off it or else they will get burn.
  • Once toasted, cool of little bit and grind it into a fine powder. Keep it aside.
  • Also, toast sliced almonds and pine nuts for garnishing and keep it aside.
  • Preheat oven to 350 deg fahrenheit and prepare a cake pan by brushing the sides with butter and sprinkling flour.
  • Mix all the dry ingredients together in a bowl  including powder of almonds and pine nuts and keep it aside.
  • In an electric mixer fitted with paddle attachment, beat eggs and sugar until pale yellow.
  • Add butter, milk and almond extract and mix well.
  • Slowly add the dry ingredients and mix until fully incorporated.
  • Now add chopped apricots and dried cranberries to the batter and gently stir to mix altogether.
  • Pour batter in prepared cake pan of 9 inch and sprinkle the top with sliced almonds and pine nuts evenly.
  • Bake until the cake is golden brown on the top and tooth pick inserted in the middle comes out clean about 40-45 minutes.
  • Once done, take the cake out and loosen the side by using a sharp knife and let it cool for sometime.
  • Turn the cake out, slice in individual pieces to serve.
Almond, Pine nuts, Apricots and Cranberries Coffee Cake

Almond, Pine nuts, Apricots and Cranberries Coffee Cake

And Once again thankyou everyone for visiting my blog and for all your kind comments.

Have a wonderful weekend guys!

Scones

Posted: May 28, 2010 by incidentalcooksuman in Indian Food
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Scones

As I am getting interested in baking day by day, I love to try different things every time.  Still there is a lot of things i have to bake in my list. This time i have tried my hands on this beautiful looking scones. I was just watching food network and saw INA Garten preparing scones for breakfast and I got inspired to bake this for myself. Also, this is perfect for breakfast I do not have to worry about making breakfast once i make this. Scones are quick bread of Scottish origin as the name suggests. I love to have my scones with orange marmalade.

Scones

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour plus 1/2 cup additional for handling and dusting
  • 1/4 cup granulated white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 extra-large eggs
  • 8 tablespoon cold unsalted butter,  diced
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon grated orange zest
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten for egg wash on top of scones

Preparation:

  • Pre heat oven to 400 degree farenheit.
  • In a large bowl, mix together flour, baking powder, salt , baking soda, baking powder and transfer to the mixer bowl.
  • Add diced butter to the bowl and blend the flour mixture and butter until it the texture of mixture is rough to touch or have large  particles.
  • Now mix together sour cream, vanilla extract , eggs, grated orange zest and slowly add it to flour mixture and mix until the dough just combine together.
  • Fold in dried cranberries.
  • Place dough on clean kitchen counter and knead with some of flour left if required to handle the dough easily to make a large ball.
  • Roll the ball-shaped dough with rolling-pin into 1 inch thick  round just like you would in case of pizza.
  • Use a cookie cutter of 2 1/2 inch thick to cut dough into circles. you may need to flour the cookie cutter.
  • Transfer the scones on baking sheet lined with parchment paper and brush the top with egg wash.
  • Bake scones for 20-25 minutes until golden brown and inserted  tooth pick comes out clean.
  • Cool on wire rack for 15 minutes and enjoy freshly baked scones for breakfast.

 

Recipe adapted from: Ina Garten

 

Have a nice long weekend everyone…enjoy!!

 

Poha

Posted: May 11, 2010 by incidentalcooksuman in Indian Food
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Poha

When we get bored having cereals and bread for breakfast every week days, i make this simple and easy breakfast called Poha which is a flattened rice or dried rice flakes. My mom use to make this for breakfast or for evening snack to go with a hot cup of tea/chai.  Flattened rice is also called Chiura/Chiwda and we use to eat chiura  in different ways, by  immersing the rice flakes in cold water, drying them and eat with freshly prepared home made yogurt and sugar or fry the chiura’s in couple of tablespoons of  oil until golden brown and mix it with fried peanuts, chopped red onions, chillies, lemons and some indian mixtures. Flattened rice/Chiura is the ingredient from which we can put or prepare a fast snack.

Poha

Poha

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 cups Flattened rice/Chiura
  • 1/2 cup peanuts and cashews
  • 1  medium sized onion, cut in slices
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 small potato, cut into small cubes
  • 1 green chilli, de-vined and chopped
  • 1  teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon red chilli powder
  • 8-9 curry leaves
  • 1/2 cup chopped coriander leaves
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries to granish
  • 2 tablespoon oil
  • salt to taste

 

PREPARATION:

  • Soak Flattened rice/Chiura in water, wash and drain the water completely and dry for 5-7 minutes.
  • Roast peanuts and cashews with little bit of oil over medium heat and keep it aside.
  • In the same skillet heat oil over medium heat, add mustard seeds and let it gets splutter. Add onions and green chillies and cook until the onions are golden brown.
  • Add potatoes, turmeric powder, salt and curry leaves and cook until the potatoes are done.
  • Mix in the soaked poha/flattened rice/chiura and stir well.  Pour lemon juice over the poha and mix well.
  • Garnish with cranberries, roasted peanuts, cashews and corainder leaves to serve.

Biscotti with Cranberries and Pistachio

Posted: May 10, 2010 by incidentalcooksuman in Baking
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When I first moved to US, my husband introduced me to Starbucks Chai and Biscotti. I liked it so much that I would end up buying biscotti when ever we stopped by any Starbucks. I never thought it could be made at home. When I started getting inspired to do baking this was the target to reach. I planned to make this at christmas but never got around to doing it.   

The word “biscotti” (pronunciation: [bisˈkɔtti]), meaning “twice-baked“. It is often enhanced with nuts or spices. Almonds, hazelnuts, pistachios, and pine nuts are popular choices.   

It goes really well with chai. After I made this biscotti using the recipe below, it turned out to be so nice, even better than the Starbucks one. I just cannot stop eating it now.   

Biscotti with Cranberries n Pistachios

Biscotti with Cranberries n Pistachios

Biscotti with Cranberries n Pistachios

Biscotti with Cranberries n Pistachios

 
INGREDIENTS: 
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 6 fluid ounces or 12 Tablespoons sugar
  • 8 Tablespoons or one stick unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 2 Extra large eggs at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  • 3/4 cups roughly chopped pistachios
  • 2/3 cups dried cranberries
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
 
PREPARATION:
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.  Also, using a pencil approximately  mark a area of 12 inch long and 3 inch wide. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • Mix together flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl and set aside. In a bowl of electric mixer fitted with paddle attachments, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.  Add eggs one at a time and beat until combined, beat in vanilla. Add flour mixture and mix on low speed till just combined. Stir in the dried cranberries and roughly chopped pistachios to the flour mixture using your hand.
  • Transfer the dough to the baking sheet lined with parchment paper, dough will be sticky, use wet hands to handle the dough easily. Turn out the dough into a log  of 12 inch long and  3 inch wide.
  • Bake until the log is almost firm to touch or lightly golden brown, about 35-40 minutes.  Remove from oven, transfer to a wire rack and cool for 30 minutes.
  • Place the log on the cutting board and cut ino slices 3/4 inch thick on the diagonal. Arrange the biscotti, cut side down on the parchment paper and bake for 12-13 minutes or until crisp and dry. Transfer the biscotti to a rack and cool completely. Store the biscotti’s in air tight container and enjoy.

Recipe adapted from Giada De Laurentils.