Tuesday, 27 October 2009

Pumpkin Cupcakes

I love you Martha for being such a model turned housemom who makes delicious pumpking cupcakes.

This recipe is flawlesss

Martha's Pumpkin Cupcakes
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 4 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 can (15 ounces) pumpkin puree
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cupcake pans with paper liners; set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and allspice; set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together, brown sugar, granulated sugar, butter, and eggs. Add dry ingredients, and whisk until smooth. Whisk in pumpkin puree.
  3. Divide batter evenly among liners, filling each about halfway. Bake until tops spring back when touched, and a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes, rotating pans once if needed. Transfer to a wire rack; let cool completely.

    I'll be adding pictures as soon as i load them on to my computer.  

Saturday, 10 October 2009

Daddy is 57

Sorting out a meal for my pops who turns 57 today.

Menu options so far-

I haven't really tied a theme together so far.. but i'm looking into these things so far:

+ Apple spiced brussel sprouts w/ candied walnuts or pecans
+ Grilled green onion with fresh squeezed lemons
+ Broiled salmon with pesto and toasted pistachios
+ Roasted potatoes patatas bravas style

Maybe i'll try my own version of a tapas style dinner. Sangria et. al.

For certain though, dessert will be coconut cupcakes topped with a cream cheese frosting + toasted almonds. The recipe for the coconut cupcakes is the one from Barefoot Contessa i've been dying to try!

Monday, 24 August 2009

Chipotle Marinated Steak Kebabs

4 large top sirloin steaks
1 red bell pepper
1 green bell pepper

1/2 cup of olive oil
1/2 cup of minced cilantro (coriander)
5 cloves of garlic
1 chipotle pepper in adobo sauce
1/4 tsp paprika
1 tsp red pepper powder
salt and pepper

Wooden skewers

Soak skewers in water.
  1. Begin by chopping the sirloins into 1 1/2 in cubes. Place the steak inside a large zip lock bag.
  2. Inside a food processor place all ingredients for marinade. Blend until smooth and pour into zip lock bag with meat.
  3. Shake the bag around until all the ingredients are well-incorporated. Place in refridgerator for at least 1 hour.
  4. Cut the bell peppers into small 1 1/2 inch squares. Keep the size relative to how you cut the meat.
  5. Assemble the kebabs - meat, bell pepper, meat, bell pepper, then meat again. You can definitely mix and match different vegetables i just prefer these because the colors contrast so well. 
  6. Grill over med-high heat.
Note: I love my food really garlic-y so if you're not so much into garlic just take out a few cloves.

Spanish Rice

Mexican Spanish Rice

2 cups  long grain rice
2 cups of water
1 tbsp butter
3 tomatoes
1/2 onion
3 garlic cloves
salt & pepper
1/4 cup of frozen peas


  1. Quarter the tomatoes and onion and place inside a food blender along with garlic. Blend until a smooth puree. Set aside.
  2. Heat up a large pot with butter. Cook the rice until it has an almost glassy translucency. Once some of the grains start browning pour in the tomato puree along with the water. Salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Bring the pot to a boil and then reduce heat to a simmer. Cover for 20 mins.
  4. Once the rice is finished turn off heat and fluff with a fork. Mix the peas into the rice. Let the peas cook in the remaining heat.
If you find the tomatoes to be a bit bland i added about a tablespoon of canned tomato paste. This also helps in making that brilliant orange-red color.

This recipe was courtesy of E. Munoz.

Sunday, 23 August 2009

Grandma's 70th Birthday

I've decided to go with a Southwestern inspired menu for my Grandma's 70th birthday dinner party.

On the menu so far -

+ Southwest ranch salad with avocado and grilled corn.
+ Chipotle marinated grilled steak kebabs
+ Spanish rice with peas
+ Fresh guacamole
+ Cornbread from scratch with whipped honey butter

and dessert

completely off kilter but potentially a Green Tea Strawberry Swirl layer cake or a Lemon Tart a la  mode.

We'll see!

Saturday, 22 August 2009

Banana Muffins

So this recipe normally calls for the use of cooking oil... but i simply used olive oil because i didn't have any. Turned out good anyways.

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
pinch of salt
2 egg whites (slightly beaten)
2 mashed bananas (make sure they are really ripe, browning)
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup olive oil

Non-stick spray to coat the muffin tin

+ Preheat oven at 350 degrees
  1. Begin by mixing the dry ingredients, flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt together in a medium bowl.
  2. In another bowl, mix the egg whites, banana, sugar, and oil. Incorporate the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. Stir the batter until moistened.
  3. Spray a 6-muffin tin with non-stick coating and evenly distribute the batter into the pan.
  4. Bake in oven for approx 25 minutes or until a wooden toothpick comes out clean from the center of a muffin.
  5. Cool the muffins for 10 mins in pan and then completely thereafter on a wire rack.
Makes 6 plump muffins.

Pollo de Tinga

Pollo De Tinga

6 Chicken thighs (stripped of fat)
1 large onion (half chopped in slices and other half cut in quarters)
8-9 cloves of garlic
3 tomatoes
1 can of Chipotle in Adobo sauce
Salt and Pepper

1 bag of Tostadas (Guerrero)
Sour Cream
Chopped Cilantro

  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Place one of the quartered onion and 3 cloves of garlic in the water. After chicken is stripped of fat place chicken inside water. Allow chicken to cook for approx 12 - 15mins.
  2. While the chicken is cooking, take the three tomatoes and cook them whole on a frypan with no oil. Allow the skin to slightly brown.
  3. Put 3 garlic cloves, a quarter of onion (not the ones that have been boiling with chicken), 2-3 chipotle peppers, and tomatoes in a food processesor. Blend everything together until a smooth consistency. Put aside.
  4. Take chicken out of the water and allow to cool before stripping. DO NOT THROW AWAY THE BROTH. This is quality chicken broth that will help keep the tinga from getting too dry. Once the chicken has cooled strip the chicken.
  5. Put a tablespoon of olive oil on a frypan and bring up to medium heat. Cook the sliced onion now until soft and translucent. Then add 2 cloves of chopped garlic until fragrant. Immediately pour in the chipotle tomato sauce and bring to a simmer. Add the stripped chicken and simmer until the consistency of the tinga is to your liking.
  6. Salt and pepper to taste.

Serving suggestion:

- Spread some sour cream on top of the large round Tostada Chips (I prefer Guerrero), add the tinga and then garnish with cilantro.

Tips: However spicy you want the tinga to be depends soley on the Chipotle. Also I suggest that you buy the canned Chipotle because the Adobo sauce that is already added has an excellent smokey flavor.


Fluffy White Frosting

1 cup white sugar
1/3 cup water
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
2 egg whites
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • In a saucepan, stir together the sugar, water and cream of tartar. Cook over medium-high heat until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture is bubbly.
  • In a medium mixing bowl, whip the egg whites and vanilla to soft peaks. Gradually add the sugar mixture while whipping constantly until stiff peaks form, about 7 to 10 minutes. Frost the cake of your choice.