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Tag Archive: summer

Fig, Molasses, and Coriander Lamb Kebabs (gluten-free + paleo)

November 8, 2014 Leave your thoughts Print this page

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Have you ever wanted to make something fancy but felt like you haven’t had the time or energy to do so?

This dish is your solution. Pair it with some roasted vegetables and some couscous (cauliflower or regular) and you can pretty much call yourself a restaurant chef.

OK, maybe not. But you’ll come close.

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I came up with this recipe when I wanted to make lamb kebabs marinated in pomegranate molasses…but had no pomegranate molasses. I decided to use regular molasses instead (even though the two are completely different) and paired it with fig jam and coriander to add another layer of more subtle sweetness and a slightly lemony flavor, along with a dash each of cinnamon, cumin, and salt. After briefly grilling and letting rest, I had this slightly-smoky, perfectly-charred masterpiece to present to my hungry family.

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This dish is wonderful both in the summer and the fall and winter, so make it whenever the grill is calling your name (and it isn’t raining or snowing outside). One piece of advice: have your butcher use lamb shoulder instead of leg for the kebab meat–I find the shoulder meat to have more flavor and be more tender.

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Simply marinate for a few hours…

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…and you’re ready to get grilling!

I hope you enjoy this dish as much as we do. 🙂

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Fig, Molasses, and Coriander Lamb Kebabs

Ingredients

Prep Time 4 hours
Cooking Time 10 min
Total Time 4 hr 10 min
Yield 4-6 servings

1/3 cup of fig preserves (no sugar added)

1/4 cup of blackstrap molasses

2 teaspoons of coriander

1 teaspoon of cumin

1 teaspoon of cinnamon

3 tablespoons of olive oil

1 teaspoon of salt

1.5 lb lamb shoulder meat, cut into 2-inch cubes

Directions

Combine all of the ingredients except the lamb shoulder meat in a large bowl, whisking well to make sure there are no big clumps of fig or spices.

Add the lamb shoulder meat and toss with your hands to coat. Cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 to 4 hours.

Heat the grill to high and grease the grates well. Remove the lamb chunks from the marinade and thread them on either soaked wooden skewer or metal skewers, or simply place them on a greased wire rack.

Reduce the heat to medium and place the lamb on the grill. Grill over direct heat until the outside is nicely charred and pale pink in the center (140 to 145 degrees), about 4 to 5 minutes per side.

Let rest for 5-10 minutes before eating.


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By the way, I apologize for not posting more frequently. You know what they say–junior year of high school is the busiest one of all! Don’t worry, though…there’s lots of yummy food to come, so stay tuned. (Perhaps almond joy brownies…?)


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Fig, Molasses, and Coriander Lamb Kebabs

October 25, 2014 Print this page

Sweet and slightly exotic with a little crunch on the outside, this lamb is delicious but in fact super easy to prepare. You don’t even need wooden skewers–a simple grill rack will suffice.

Ingredients

Prep Time 4 hours
Cooking Time 10 min
Total Time 4 hr 10 min
Yield 4-6 servings

1/3 cup of fig preserves (no sugar added)

1/4 cup of blackstrap molasses

2 teaspoons of coriander

1 teaspoon of cumin

1 teaspoon of cinnamon

3 tablespoons of olive oil

1 teaspoon of salt

1.5 lb lamb shoulder meat, cut into 2-inch cubes

Directions

Combine all of the ingredients except the lamb shoulder meat in a large bowl, whisking well to make sure there are no big clumps of fig or spices.

Add the lamb shoulder meat and toss with your hands to coat. Cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 to 4 hours.

Heat the grill to high and grease the grates well. Remove the lamb chunks from the marinade and thread them on either soaked wooden skewer or metal skewers, or simply place them on a greased wire rack.

Reduce the heat to medium and place the lamb on the grill. Grill over direct heat until the outside is nicely charred and pale pink in the center (140 to 145 degrees), about 4 to 5 minutes per side.

Let rest for 5-10 minutes before eating.


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Chocolate Raspberry Truffle Ice Cream (vegan)

August 4, 2014 Print this page

I’ve made a lot of ice cream this spring and summer, but it has occurred to me that I’ve never tried a chocolate base. That had to change. And what doesn’t go better with chocolate than raspberries…and more chocolate?! 

Ingredients

Prep Time 2 hr
Cooking Time 15 min
Total Time 2 hr 15 min
Yield 6-8 servings

FOR THE ICE CREAM:

2 cups of raspberries (fresh or frozen)

2 14-ounce cans of full-fat coconut milk

5 ounces of dark chocolate, melted

1/4 cup of unrefined cane sugar (or coconut sugar)

1/3 cup of honey (or coconut nectar)

1/2 teaspoon of salt

1 tablespoon of arrowroot powder

1 tablespoon of vodka

1 tablespoon of vanilla extract

FOR THE TRUFFLES:

1/3 cup of full-fat coconut milk

3.5 ounces of dark chocolate

Directions

FOR THE ICE CREAM:

The first step is to make the raspberry portion of this ice cream. Take the raspberries and put them in a small saucepan. Heat over medium, using a spoon to smush the berries and help them release water, and bring to a boil. Once bubbling, reduce the heat to low and cook until slightly thickened, about 10 minutes. 

Remove from the heat and transfer to a high-speed blender. Blend completely, then add the 14-ounce cans of full-fat coconut milk, 5 ounces of melted dark chocolate, unrefined cane sugar (or coconut sugar), honey (or coconut nectar), and salt. Blend again, then transfer to a medium saucepan–I recommend you reuse the one you cooked the raspberries in.

Heat over medium and, once warm, remove 1/4 cup of the base. Whisk in the arrowroot powder, then return to the saucepan. Bring to a boil, then remove from the heat and add the vodka and vanilla extract. Stir to combine.

Push through a fine-mesh strainer into a heat-proof dish. Cover and refrigerate until cool to the touch, at least 4 hours and preferably overnight.

FOR THE TRUFFLES:

In a small saucepan, heat 1/3 cup of full-fat coconut milk until bubbles begin to form on the surface. Once hot, turn off the heat and pour over 3.5 ounces of dark chocolate. Let sit undisturbed for 5 minutes, then use a spatula to incorporate the newly melted chocolate and coconut milk. Transfer to the fridge until it solidifies, about 3 to 4 hours.

Using a small spoon or ice cream scoop, scoop out a rounded half tablespoon of the chocolate/coconut milk mixture and roll into a ball. Once formed, roll in some cocoa powder and repeat with the remaining chocolate (you should make about 10-12 truffles), then refrigerate to firm up again, about 1 hour.

TO ASSEMBLE:

Cut the each of the newly-formed truffles into 8 pieces and put back in the fridge to chill while you churn the ice cream.

Speaking of which, take out the cooled ice cream base and put it in your ice cream machine. Churn according to your manufacturer’s instructions until the ice cream is the texture of rich soft-serve, about 20 to 25 minutes. During the last 5 minutes, add the chopped up truffle pieces and put them in the ice cream machine while it churns.

Transfer the ice cream to an airtight container and freeze until hard, at least 6 hours and preferably overnight. The next day, let sit out for a minute, then scoop and serve!

 


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Chocolate Raspberry Truffle Ice Cream (dairy-free + vegan option)

August 4, 2014 Leave your thoughts Print this page

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I know what you’re thinking: “Abby, do you have to post another ice cream recipe?!”

And the answer is yes, yes I do. Because ice cream is amazing. And I love it. Especially when it tastes as amazing as this ice cream does.

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I’ve made a lot of ice cream this spring and summer, but it has occurred to me that I’ve never tried a chocolate base. That had to change. And what doesn’t go better with chocolate than raspberries…and more chocolate?!

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One amazing thing about adding chocolate to ice cream bases is that it makes the finished product especially velvety and creamy. I love this quality: every bite melts on your tongue in the most pleasant way possible. The raspberries add a little tartness, which nicely counteracts the chocolate’s richness, making for an absolutely delicious frozen treat.

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I made this ice cream on a Saturday afternoon, and by Monday night, all of it was gone. It was just THAT. GOOD. I hope you’ll make it and think the same. 🙂

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Ready to get ice-creaming? I am! Let’s go.

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The first step is to make the raspberry portion of this ice cream. Take 2 cups of raspberries–fresh or frozen, it doesn’t matter–and put them in a small saucepan. Heat over medium, using a spoon to smush the berries and help them release water, and bring to a boil. Once bubbling, reduce the heat to low and cook until slightly thickened, about 10 minutes.

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Remove from the heat and transfer to a high-speed blender. Blend completely, then add 2 14-ounce cans of full-fat coconut milk, 5 ounces of dark chocolate, melted, 1/4 cup of unrefined cane sugar (or coconut sugar), 1/3 cup of honey (or coconut nectar to keep it vegan), and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Blend again, then transfer to a medium saucepan–I recommend you reuse the one you cooked the raspberries in.

Heat over medium and, once warm, remove 1/4 cup of the base. Whisk in 1 tablespoon of arrowroot powder into it, then return to the saucepan. Bring to a boil, then remove from the heat and add 1 tablespoon of vodka and 1 tablespoon of vanilla extract. Stir to combine.

Push through a fine-mesh strainer into a heat-proof dish. Cover and refrigerate until cool to the touch, at least 4 hours and preferably overnight.

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Meanwhile, make the truffles to fold in later.

In a small saucepan, heat 1/3 cup of full-fat coconut milk until bubbles begin to form on the surface. Once hot, turn off the heat and pour over 3.5 ounces of dark chocolate. Let sit undisturbed for 5 minutes, then use a spatula to incorporate the newly melted chocolate and coconut milk. Transfer to the fridge until it solidifies, about 3 to 4 hours.

Using a small spoon or ice cream scoop, scoop out a rounded half tablespoon of the chocolate/coconut milk mixture and roll into a ball. Once formed, roll in some cocoa powder and repeat with the remaining chocolate (you should make about 10-12 truffles), then refrigerate to firm up again, about 1 hour.

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Cut the each of the newly-formed truffles into 8 pieces and put back in the fridge to chill while you churn the ice cream.

Speaking of which, take out the cooled ice cream base and put it in your ice cream machine. Churn according to your manufacturer’s instructions until the ice cream is the texture of rich soft-serve, about 20 to 25 minutes. During the last 5 minutes, add the chopped up truffle pieces and put them in the ice cream machine while it churns.

Transfer the ice cream to an airtight container and freeze until hard, at least 6 hours and preferably overnight. The next day, let sit out for a minute, then scoop and serve!

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YES!!! ICE CREAM!!!

What is your favorite fruit to pair with chocolate? Leave me a comment here or on Facebook and let me know!


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Fried Calamari

July 19, 2014 Print this page

There is something so incredibly delicious about fried calamari. It was my choice appetizer at an Italian restaurant when I was younger–I loved the crispiness and the slightly acidic, sometimes spicy punch of tomato sauce on the side. I also have fond memories of snacking on some in a fancy dress atop a high building in Boston and in a dive on a lake in the summertime…it’s just an all-around amazing food. 

Ingredients

Prep Time 10 min
Cooking Time 2 min per batch
Total Time 25 min
Yield 4 servings

2 cups of cooking oil (I recommend avocado oil, coconut oil, or some kind of animal fat)

1 lb of calamari (bodies, tentacles, or a combination of both)

3/4 cup of arrowroot powder

1/4 cup of coconut flour

1 teaspoon of paprika

1 teaspoon of salt

1 teaspoon of thyme

1 teaspoon of garlic powder

A crack of black pepper

Basic Tomato Sauce, for dipping

Directions

First, pour two cups of your fat of choice into a medium saucepan–one with high sides and a fairly narrow bottom. I used leftover drippings from when I sear duck breasts because it has a high smoke point and doesn’t sputter like mad–you can also use avocado oil, coconut oil, or even lard, if you’d like. Whatever you do, don’t use olive oil–it has a low smoke point, which means lots of sputtering and possible smoke in your kitchen. Better to be safe than sorry. 

While the oil heats up, chop up the calamari. Make sure you pat them dry with a paper towel and give the bodies a rinse with some water to get out any grime.

In a small bowl, combine the arrowroot powder with the coconut flour, paprika, salt, thyme, garlic powder, and black pepper. Stir together with a fork and drop in 1/4 of the squid pieces. Toss to coat, taking care to remove any excess flour mixture. Transfer to a plate.

When the oil reaches 350 degrees, drop in the coated squid. Let it fry for 2 minutes, using a slotted spoon to move the pieces around every 30 seconds or so. Make sure the pot isn’t overcrowded, or the squid won’t brown!

Once light brown and crispy, transfer the fried squid pieces to a plate lined with paper towels. Eat immediately, or keep warm in the oven.

Repeat the same process with the remaining squid until all of it has been cooked. Make sure the oil doesn’t get too cold between batches–you can always pause for a minute and let it heat it up again.

Serve hot and fresh with some Basic Tomato Sauce for dipping.


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