COCONUT MACAROONS

Coconut-Macaroons copyIngredients

  • 2 (14-oz) bags shredded, sweetened coconut
  • 3 large egg whites
  • 1 (14-oz) can sweetened, condensed milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Spread coconut evenly across 2 parchment-lined baking sheets. Toast until golden brown, 20 to 25 minutes, stirring 2 or 3 times to prevent burning. Let cool.
  3. Meanwhile, beat egg whites with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until stiff peaks form.
  4. Combine toasted coconut, condensed milk, and vanilla in a bowl. Stir in ingredients for 1 flavor option (see choices in Cook’s Note below). Note: If making Lemon-Strawberry, add lemon zest only and reserve jam.
  5. Fold egg whites into coconut mixture. Wet hands (to help keep mixture from sticking) and form into about 30 mounds, golf-ball size or slightly larger. Place on 2 parchment-lined baking sheets. If using jam, make an indentation in middle of each mound with your finger and spoon about 1 tsp jam into centers.
  6. Bake until browned and crisp-edged, about 20 minutes. Let cool on a rack.

Variations

1. Orange-Cardamom
•2½ tsp ground cardamom
•1 heaping Tbsp finely grated orange zest

2. Lemon-Strawberry
•1½ Tbsp finely grated lemon zest
•Strawberry jam

3. Triple Ginger
•2 tsp ground ginger
•1 Tbsp grated fresh ginger
•¼ cup minced crystallized ginger

Makes 30 macaroons.

CHOCOLATE CHIPOTLE BROWNIES

Ingredients

  • 1 teaspoon plus 1 cup butter (2 sticks)
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 4 ounces unsweetened chocolate, roughly chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground chipotle chile pepper
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup chopped Mexican chocolate or semisweet chocolate morsels

Directions

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.

Grease and flour an 11 by 7-inch baking pan or dish with 1 teaspoon of the butter and 1 tablespoon of the flour. Heat the remaining butter and the unsweetened chocolate in a saucepan over low heat, stirring constantly, until melted. In a medium bowl, stir together remaining flour, sugar, cinnamon, and ground chipotle. Add sugar mixture to melted chocolate mixture, stirring to combine. Add eggs, mixing until smooth. Stir in chopped chocolate or chocolate morsels.

Pour mixture into the prepared baking pan or dish. Bake until the center is set, 35 to 40 minutes. Cool completely and then cut into small squares.

CINNAMON SUGAR PECANS

  • 1 egg white
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 pound pecan halves
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  1. Preheat oven to 250º F. Grease one baking sheet.
  2. In a mixing bowl, whip together the egg white and water until frothy. In a separate bowl, mix together sugar, salt, and cinnamon.
  3. Add pecans to egg whites, stir to coat the nuts evenly. Remove the nuts, and toss them in the sugar mixture until coated. Spread the nuts out on the prepared baking sheet.
  4. Bake at 250º F for 1 hour. Stir every 15 minutes.

Screen shot 2013-01-30 at 7.06.18 PM

CLASSIC CARAMEL APPLES

2 bags (50 pieces) of Werther’s Original Chewy CaramelsScreen shot 2013-01-30 at 5.34.45 PM

2 tablespoons evaporated milk

4 medium-sized apples

4 sticks

Wash and dry apples. Insert one stick in the core of each apple. Place caramels and evaporated milk in 1-quart microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high, stirring frequently until sooth, about 3 minutes.

Dip apples in melted caramel mixture, using a spoon to cover. Place on waxed paper until caramel sets or refrigerate. 15 minutes for quicker results.

For extra indulgence: Press the bottom of your caramel-dipped apple into chopped peanuts, crushed cookies, or your favorite topping. To finish drizzle melted chocolate over apples.

AGAVE POPCORN BALLS

Ingredientsagave popcorn

6 cups popped corn (about 1/4 cup unpopped)
2/3 cup chopped almonds
1/4 cup grain-sweetened chocolate chips (optional)
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons agave nectar
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon almond butter or tahini
1/2 teaspoon salt

Instructions

1. Mix popcorn, almonds, and chocolate chips (if using) in a large mixing bowl. Heat agave nectar, almond butter or tahini, and salt in a small saucepan over medium heat. Once syrup starts to get light, frothy, and bubbly, cook and stir constantly for another 30 seconds. Pour syrup over popcorn and mix with a wooden spoon until incorporated. Let cool completely.
2. When cooled, press small handfuls into balls with your fingers. These will keep for 2–3 days, covered, at room temperature.

GLUTEN-FREE PUMPKIN OATMEAL BARS

What you need:

1 1/4 cups brown rice flourScreen shot 2013-01-04 at 5.22.47 PM
3/4 cup oat bran cereal
1/8 tsp. ground cloves
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. sea salt
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
2 Tbsp. molasses
1/2 cup brown flaxseed meal (golden)
1/2 cup canola oil
3/4 cup canned mashed pumpkin
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
3 cups oats, rolled, quick cooking
1 cup raisins (unsulfured)

How to do it:

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Set aside an ungreased baking sheet with sides.

2. Mix the first 7 ingredients together (brown rice flour through sea salt).

3. In another bowl mix together the sugar, brown sugar, molasses, flaxseed meal, canola oil, pumpkin and vanilla extract; blend well. Gradually add flour mixture to sugar/molasses mixture. Blend well; stir in oats and raisins, incorporate well.

4. Press dough into the baking sheet and spread out to the sides of pan. Bake for approximately 20-22 minutes (do not over-bake).

5. Remove from oven and cut bars with heatproof spatula. Leave in pan to cool. When cooled remove to zip-lock bag for fresh-keeping. Can be stored 3-4 days, or refrigerate for up to 1 week.

 

FREEZER JAMS

The freezer jams require no cooking, are ideal for the summer fruits, and do not require sterilized glass jars. Freezer jams require fruit or juice, sugar and pectin, which is the stuff that makes them jell.

Blueberry Pom Jam

1 (0.6-ounce) sachet Ball Instant Pectin

2/3 cup sugar or granulated Splenda

1 1/3 cups crushed blueberries

1 1/3 cup Pom juice

1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

Stir together the pectin powder and sugar or sweetener in a bowl. Add the fruit and the juice and stir 3 minutes. Ladle into 2 clean jars. Lets stand 30 minutes, the refrigerate or freeze. This jam took 12 hours to set.

Mango Lime Jam

1 1/2 cups mashed mango from about 3 to 4 small mangoes, peeled, pitted, and mashed

3 cups granulated sugar

2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

1 pouch  Sure- Jell Certo pectin

Place mashed mangoes in a bowl and add the sugar. Stir the mixture well and let stand for 10 minutes. Stir mixture every 3 minutes. Measure the 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice into a cup and pour in the pouch of Certo liquid. Stir together until blended. Add to the fruit-sugar mixture, stirring constantly for 5 minutes until sugar is completely dissolved. Ladle into clean containers; leave some room at the top as it will expand when frozen. Let stand at room temperature for up to 24 hours, then refrigerate for 3 days or freeze for a year.
Of course, you will need to thaw the frozen jams before enjoying, and then store in the refrigerator.

Note: The small yellow Ataulfo mangoes make excellent jam.

Hot-Pepper Jelly

2/3 cup whole pickled jalapeño peppers, drained, seeded and finely chopped (from a 10-ounce jar)

1 1/3 cups bottled apple juice

1 drop green food coloring

4 cups sugar

2 tablespoons cider vinegar

1 pouch Sure-Jell Certo liquid pectin

Place peppers and apple juice in a large bowl. Stir in the green coloring and sugar. Let stand 10 minutes, stirring occasionally . Combine cider vinegar and Certo, stirring to combine. Stir pectin mixture into pepper mixture, stirring constantly until mixture no longer feels grainy, about 3 minutes. Pour into clean containers, leaving 1/2 inch at top for freezer expansion. Let stand at room temperature for 24 hours. May take up to 1 week to set. Makes 4 cups.

Rasperry Jam

1 (0.6-ounce) Sachet Ball instant Pectin

2/3 cup sugar or granulated Splenda No Calorie Sweetener

1 2/3 cup crushed raspberries, fresh or thawed from frozen

1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

Stir together the pectin powder and sugar or Splenda. Stir in the crushed fruit and lemon juice and continue stirring for 3 minutes. Ladle into clean jars. Let stand for 30 minutes to an hour to set. Refrigerate, or freeze for longer storage.