Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Chicken Tikka Masala

I was talking to my friend the other day and she was saying how much she loved Chicken Tikka Masala at her favorite Indian restaurant and that she has made it at home. I was intrigued because 1) I have never been to an Indian restaurant and 2) because one of my Weight Watchers friends has a recipe that has been passed around and was supposed to be very good. I figured, what have I got to lose, the pizza place is close if it's a complete FAIL!

It wasn't a complete fail, it was as good as its reputation! Randy liked it and said it was a definite do again but next time maybe just a little less heat. So next time I will cut the cayenne a bit and replace it with more paprika. Other than that it was excellent. I have no idea how authentic it is but with some Jasmine rice I felt very exotic while I was eating it. :D Thanks Hope!! Oh, I did use Fat Free Half and Half in place of the cream and I do think that you could probably leave all the salt out without harming the end result

Hope’s Chicken Tikka Masala
1 cup plain yogurt
1 Tbs lemon juice
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground cinnamon
2 tsp cayenne pepper
2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 Tbs minced fresh ginger
1 tsp salt, or to taste
3 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-size pieces
4 long skewers

1 Tbs butter
1 clove garlic, minced
1 jalapeno pepper, finely chopped
2 tsp ground cumin
2 teaspoons paprika
1 tsp salt, or to taste
1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
1 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

1. In a large bowl, combine yogurt, lemon juice, 2 teaspoons cumin, cinnamon, cayenne, black pepper, ginger, and salt. Stir in chicken, cover, and refrigerate for 1 hour.
2. Preheat a grill for high heat.
3. Lightly oil the grill grate. Thread chicken onto skewers, and discard marinade. Grill until juices run clear, about 5 minutes on each side.
4. Melt butter in a large heavy skillet over medium heat. Saute garlic and jalapeno for 1 minute. Season with 2 teaspoons cumin, paprika, and salt.
5. Stir in tomato sauce and cream. Simmer on low heat until sauce thickens, about 20 minutes.
6. Add grilled chicken, and simmer for 10 minutes. Garnish with fresh cilantro.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Go To Wheat Bread

I had a panic attack earlier this week when I went to make bread and realized that I'd tossed my recipe in a moment of clean up madness. Luckily I was able to recall it and get it written down before my memory goes completely. So in an effort to put it somewhere that is easy to find I'm going to put it here.

This is the recipe that I use most often for bread. It's a bit lighter and fluffier than 100% whole wheat bread and I like that it makes 4 loaves. 3 for the week and 1 to share. I've also made it with all white flour (it was 6:00 a.m. I was still asleep) and it was really good that way as well. Randy liked it better all white, Bri prefers the blend. I just like bread. Any bread. Bread made into sandwiches and toast....yum.

As far as the ratio of white flour to wheat goes I just fiddled with it until I got it where I wanted. I do usually try to use white wheat flour as it's not quite as nutty tasting but either works.

(yes I know the picture is terrible) :/

Go To Wheat Bread

5 1/2 c warm water
1/2 c. sugar
1/2 c. oil
2 T. yeast
2 T salt
2 T Vital Wheat Gluten
2 T nonfat dry milk (reg is fine too)
3 c. white flour
9 c. whole wheat flour

  1. Prepare bread pans and set aside.
  2. Mix the water, sugar oil, yeast, salt gluten and milk.
  3. Add the white flour and mix well.. Continue adding wheat flour until the dough cleans the side of the bowl and is soft but not sticky. You will need more if you are mixing by hand.
  4. Knead for 10 min or until a soft, smooth dough has formed.
  5. Spray your counter with cooking spray and separate dough into 4 balls.
  6. Flatten out into a rectangle and roll up into loaf shape. Tuck ends in and put in pans.
  7. Cover and let raise until top of dough is 1 1/2 in above pans.
  8. Put in COLD oven and set to 350 degrees. Bake for 32-38 min or until golden brown.
  9. Turn out onto wire rack and cool completely

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

7, I mean 6 Layer Dip

Can this be dinner? Surely it can. It's got all the important food groups, fruits and veggies, protein, dairy, whole grains. Let's call it dinner because I'm too tired to do anything more complicated. Besides, if it's just me and the girls who is going to tell?!? Not me for sure!

Everyone has their own version of this dip and they are all good. This is actually 6 layer dip because I've not convinced my family that green onions are actually NOT poisonous so they get left off. Dig in!

7, I mean 6 Layer Dip

1 can refried beans
1/2 pkt taco seasoning (I use about 2 Tbs or 2/3 pkt)
2-3 ripe avocadoes
1/2 tsp salt
juice from 1/2 lemon
sour cream
cheese (we like a Mexican cheese blend)
green onions if you are brave

Mix the beans with the taco seasoning. Spread out onto platter.

Mash the avocadoes well with a fork. Stir in salt and lemon juice. Layer over the beans.

Spread sour cream over the guacamole so that it's almost completely covered. This will help it not go dark and ugly looking.

Sprinkle lots of cheese, tomatoes and olives over the top.

Crack open a bag of chips and enjoy!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Chocolate Chip Toffee Cookies

Can you ever have too many chocolate chip cookies recipes? I think not. It all depends on what kind of cookies you are in the mood for....cakey, extra chocolate, thin and crispy...the possibilities are endless.

These are slightly cakey, they don't bake up thin and crispy like traditional Toll House cookies but with the addition of another kind of chocolate and toffee chips and they definitely can stand on their own merits. The recipe also makes about a zillion cookies so they are good for when you have to take a bunch to a pot luck or to your visiting teaching ladies because it's the last day of the month and you forgot...not that I EVER do anything like that! :)

Chocolate Chip Toffee Cookies

1 3/4 c softened butter
1 3/4 c brown sugar
1 1/4 c granulated sugar
4 eggs
5 1/2 Tbs water
2 tsp vanilla
6 c. flour
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
2 c semi sweet chocolate chips
2 c milk chocolate chips
1 1/2 c toffee chips

In large mixing bowl cream butter and sugars until fluffy. Add eggs, water, and vanilla; mix until creamy. Add flour, salt, and baking soda; mix well. Gently fold in chips mixing just until they are mixed in. Don't over mix and break up your chocolate chips or you will have dirty looking dough.

Drop by spoonfuls onto prepared cookied sheets. Bake at 350 degrees for 8-11 minutes (my oven takes about 11 minutes) or until golden brown. Don't overbake, you want them to look slightly uncooked in the middle when you pull them out.

Makes about 6 doz cookies