Monday, November 21, 2011

Orange Cranberry Bread

I love Orange Cranberry Bread and Muffins. Tangy, tart and fresh. A perfect start to the day!

I found this on


Orange Cranberry Bread (slightly adapted)
4 cups all-purpose flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoon grated orange zest
12 oz fresh cranberries
1 cup pecans, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup butter, softened
2 cup white sugar
2 egg
1 1/2 cup orange juice

Preheat oven to 350F.

Grease & flour two 9x5 loaf pans or line them with parchment paper.

Cream together butter and sugar. Add eggs and mix well. Add orange zest and orange juice. Mix well.

In separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir flour mixture into orange juice mixture, until just combined. Fold in cranberries and nuts.

Pour batter into prepared loaf pans.

Bake at 350F for 50 - 60 minutes.


Cream together butter & sugar & eggs.

Add orange juice.

And orange zest.


Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.

Stir into orange mixture until just combined.

(it did get a little more stirred before I added the cranberries & nuts)

Fold in cranberries & nuts.


Pour batter into prepared loaf pans and bake at 350F for 50 - 60 minutes; or until pick comes out dry.

That's it!


This was wicked good! A nice bright, tart, tangy flavor and very moist. I've been dying for Orange/Cranberry baked goodies and this totally satisfied that craving!

I like that it makes two loaves. One to eat and one to share (or to throw in the the freezer for later!) I brought the extra loaf to work and it got very favorable reviews! I also like that it uses the whole bag of fresh cranberries.

This is definitely a keeper!!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Lamb Meatball Curry

I found this recipe while browsing TasteSpotting. It's from the Cookin' Canuck blog.

Lamb is something I'm not very experienced with and I'm not entirely sure I like it. Well, sometimes I LOVE it!! But other times it's a little too, umm... I don't know... lamby...

I love lamb kebobs from Baba D's, and gyros... but other than that... I've never really eaten it. And even when eating the kebobs that I really do love, there's a touch of an under-flavor that I'm not wild about.

Anyway. I saw this recipe and decided that I wanted to make it.

This is also my first from scratch curry. I've made plenty of curry recipes before, but they all have included an ingredient with 'curry' in the name. This recipe has no such ingredient! Yay me!


Lamb Meatball Curry
for the meatballs
1 1/2 lbs ground lamb
1 tbsp minced green chili
1 tbsp ginger garlic paste (I just grated ginger & garlic)
1 cup boiled and mashed potatoes
2 tbsp chopped cilantro
for curry sauce
1 cup chopped onion paste
1 1/2 tbsp ginger garlic paste
1 1/2 cups tomato puree
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp turmeric
1 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tbsp garam masala
1 1/2 tbsp coriander powder
1 1/2 tbsp kasuri methi (fenugreek leaves)
1/3 cup cashews (blanched and turned into a paste*)
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 1/2 tbsp. cooking oil
1 tbsp ghee (clarified butter)

Mix all meatball ingredients. Form into meatballs. Mine were about 1.5 inches. Place meatballs on baking sheet, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes to a day.

Preheat oven to 400F. Bake meatballs for 20 minutes.

For the sauce... heat ghee & oil in a thick bottom pot. Add onion, ginger and garlic paste and cook them until all the liquid in the paste evaporates. Stir frequently, cook slowly on medium heat.

When the paste turns golden brown add cumin powder, salt, turmeric, cayenne pepper and coriander powder. When you add the dry ingredients it starts to burn quickly so stir it all together to mix well and add tomato puree.

Cook the puree until the sauce begins to thicken.

Then add cashew paste and cream, and cook some more. You will see oil on the edges then add garam masala and kasuri methi (fenugreek).

Mix it together and throw in all the meatballs (also the drippings in the baking dish).

Turn the heat to low, cover the pan with a lid and let it cook for a nice 6-8 minutes.


Ok... so make mashed potatoes for the meatballs. This would be a really good use for leftover mashies. I've never used mashed potatoes as a binder before and I have to say, I'm a fan.


Mix up all of the meatball ingredients

Roll into meatballs.

Cover with plastic wrap and into the fridge!

Preheat the oven to 400F.

Bake the meatballs for 20 minutes.

Now to make the sauce.

I ground my cashews, but they didn't really turn to a paste. It was kind of powdered, but it could pinch it back together. It seemed to work out fine.

So, heat ghee & oil, add onion, ginger & garlic paste.

Cook slowly, stirring frequently.

I was afraid of burning it and stopped short of golden... but I did get the excess moisture evaporated.

Fragrant bowl of spices.

Into the pot!


Plus tomato sauce.

Cook until it starts to thicken.

Add cashews & cream.

Cook some more and add fenugreek & garam masala and stir.

Now add your beautiful cooked meatballs plus any drippings to the sauce.


Gently stir them in, until everything is well coated and simmer for 6 - 8 minutes.

Now they're ready to enjoy!!

I served them over couscous.

They were really tasty. I loved the sauce. There was that lambyness... that I'm still not sure that I love. Jon enjoyed these too.

Would I make them again? I think if I used half beef/half lamb I would have enjoyed them more.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Pumpkin Streusel Muffins

The weather is finally cool... really cool... we might get snow tonight!! I know that makes lots of you groan... but I'm wicked psyched!! I LOVE snow!!

Mostly cloudy. A chance of snow after midnight. Snow accumulation around an inch possible. Lows around 30. East winds around 5 mph. Chance of snow 50 percent.

I love seeing that little snow icon in my weather window! This is my favorite time of year!

It gets dark early... I can't wait to go back to standard time... it's cold and the chance for snow! What makes those nights even more perfect?

Baking something delicious of course!!

Ok... well... enough with the weather report!

I know I've mentioned before how much I love Penzey's. This recipe is from the Thanksgiving 2011 catalog, page 37.


Pumpkin Streusel Muffins
1/2 C butter, softened
1 C brown sugar, packed
1 egg
1 C plain pumpkin puree, (I used fresh)
1/4 C evaporated milk
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp powdered ginger
1/8 tsp ground cloves
1 2/3 flour

Streusel topping:
2 TBLS flour
2 1/2 TBLS white sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1 TBLS butter

Preheat oven to 375F.
Cream together butter and brown sugar. Beat in egg. Mix pumpkin with evaporated milk and mix in with butter/sugar mixture. In a separate bowl whisk together, flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger, and cloves. Stir flour mixture into pumpkin batter, until just combined. Don't over stir.

Spoon into 12 standard sized, greased or lined muffin cups.

In a small bowl combine streusel topping ingredients with a fork until the topping is about the size of small peas. Sprinkle evenly over muffins and bake for 18 - 22 minutes at 375F.



Cream together butter and brown sugar.

Beat in egg.

Mix pumpkin with evaporated milk and add to butter/sugar mixture.

Whisk together flour, baking powder, salt & spices.

Stir flour mixture into pumpkin mixture, until just combined.

Fill prepared muffin cups.

Mix up streusel topping.

Sprinkle evenly over muffins.

Bake at 375F for 18 - 22 minutes.

These came out wicked good!!!

Moist, tender muffins... with the sweet, buttery, cinnamony streusel topping...

The streusel topping really puts these muffins over the top!



I made these for a staff meeting at work. Everyone said they really liked them! I also gave one to my morning bus driver and a lady who gets off at the same stop as me every day. They both also told me how much they loved them!


This recipe is definitely a keeper! If you try no other pumpkin recipe this fall, try this one!! You definitely won't be disappointed!