Healthier Rice Crispy Treats

21 03 2009

peanut-puff-chewsVariation of classic rice crispy treat recipe, with roasted whole peanuts and Kashi’s puffed whole grains instead of rice crispies. This version is chewier, less crispy.

Butter OR line with parchment 9″ x 13″ pan.

Melt in a saucepan over medium heat until stirred smooth:

1 10 ounce bag of marshmellows (smaller ones melt faster but you can use either large or small)

4 tablespoons butter

Variations: once you take off heat, you can also add one of these

For peanut butter treats: 1/2 cup peanut butter 

For Mexican treats: 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1 teaspoon vanilla, 1 cup broken pecan pieces, 3 tablespoons of cocoa powder

For German chocolate: 1/2 cup coconut flakes, 1 cup chopped pecan pieces, 4 tablespoons of cocoa powder


Add melted stuff to bowl with pre-measured:

6 cups of Kashi 7 Whole Grain Puffs

1 cup whole peanuts (you can add whatever your tastebuds fancy in addition or instead of this: chocolate chips, white chocolate chips, dried cranberries, etc…)

Mix until dry stuff is coated, press into pan (I flatten with a spatula, pressing down lightly). Cool, cut, serve and enjoy!

For stove-top picture sequence check out:


Chipotle Cheddar Corn Muffins

18 03 2009

chipotle-corn-muffinsBeen experimenting to see how spicy I can get the corn muffin without it being too spicy, so this is the latest iteration – spicier and think it could be just a bit more so will have to keep trying!

1 1/2 cup flour

1 cup stone-ground cornmeal

6 tablespoons of butter (cut into pea-sized pieces)

Use pastry cutter, fork or hands to mix butter into flour until it resembles coarse meal.

Add to mix:

1 tablespoon chipotle powder

1 tablespoon chopped canned chipotle peppers (optional if you like spicier, more if you want more spice – you can also top the muffins with chopped chipotle peppers)

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1 tablespoon baking powder

1 teaspoon cream of tartar

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup ground flaxseed

3 diced fresh jalapenos peppers

1 drained can of small whole kernel sweet corn (15.25 oz/ 432 g)

10 ounces coarsely grated extra sharp cheddar cheese

In a separate bowl, mix together:

1 1/4 cup buttermilk (I’ve also swapped out for plain unflavored yogurt drink from the farmer’s market and it also works fine)

2 eggs

Add wet to dry until just mixed, if you overmix – you’ll get a tougher muffin with big air pockets (still yummy, just not as attractive).

Grease a muffin pan or use paper cups, whichever you prefer – ladle in and bake for 20 mins at 400F. These can be served warm, room temp and can keep in airtight container in fridge for 4 days.

Hello Dolly Bars

16 03 2009

Ok, there’s a bit of flaxseed in here but otherwise it’s all sweet and gooey – so not the snack of choice for a light weekend. 

2 cups toasted (unsweetened if you can find it) dried, shredded coconut

2 cups of finely ground graham cracker crumbs (this took about 20 crackers)

1 1/2 stick of butter, melted

1/2 ground flaxseed

Combine these in a bowl, mix and press into a butter-greased 9″ x 13″ pan – pack down with bottom of meauring cup to get flat. Put in fridge for 15 mins. Then bake at 300F for 10 mins or until brown. Take out and cool.

Then get ready:

1 1/2 cup toasted nuts (mixed, walnuts, pecans, whatever you like best)

1 1/2 cup of semisweet chocolate chips

3/4 cup butterscotch chips

2 small cans (26 ounces) of sweetened condensed milk

Once crust has been removed from oven and cooled. Speard out nuts, then choc chips, then butterscotch. Pour milk oer all of it. Put back into the oven for 40 mins at 325F, rotate every 10 mins or at least twice if you can’t be bothered with 4 times… crust will be browned and bubbly. Cool, cut and serve. These will keep well wrapped tightly in fridge for a week.

gooey scrumptiousness

gooey scrumptiousness

Create Your Own 10-Grain Muffins

28 01 2009

Mix into a bowl: 1 cup Bob’s Red Mill 10-Grain Hot Cereal plus 1 1/4 cup buttermil (I use the reduced fat version and its fine). Let sit in one bowl while you assemble other ingredients in another bowl, namely:

1 egg

1 cup whole dates blended/ chopped finely (this substitutes for sugar)

1 cup of whole ground flaxseed (substitutes for oil)

1/4 cup of canola oil (optional – this prevents the paper from sticking on the muffins and gives a richer mouthfeel – and you can omit, just expect a bit of sticking with the paper)

1 cup flour

1 tsp each of salt, baking powder, baking soda

At this point, you can get creative – in a couple of the last batches I’ve added:

1 cup of dried cranberries

chopped peel from one navel orange

2 mashed bananas

chocolate chips

whole or chopped mixed nuts/ chopped pecans/ chopped almonds

You can also make them chocolate by adding 4-6 oz of melted dark/ baking chocolate PLUS 1/2 cup of cocoa powder – either one by itself leaves it looking chocolate but not tasting chocolate. 

Then add whatever you choose from the list above to the cereal/ buttermilk mix – put in baking cups/ cupcake tray and bake at 350F for 20 mins. In my oven, I need to broil for an additional 2 or 3 minutes – I’ve experimented to get to this as each oven is slightly different.

That’s it!

Flowers from the Farmer’s Market

4 05 2008

The lilacs smell wonderful, and pP=ink peonies arrived this week!

Rhubarb Pie

4 05 2008


with latticeSo exciting, rhubarb just arrived at the farmer’s market. I was so excited the guy selling me the rhubarb was a bit taken aback. Poor thing. And if you’re not into pie, here’s a great recipe for rhubarb and strawberries that’s super easy.

This uses the same crust recipe as the Tarte Tatin (pate brisee which you can do in a food processor, for that recipe, click here) in an earlier post, and you can bake in anything you’ve got – springform cake pan, pie pan, etc… Pictured here is in a tarte pan.

Put in a medium bowl:butter and flour 2 1/2 c flour (about 11 ounces if you’re weighing)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
2 sticks of very cold unsalted butter cut up into pretty thin slices (as many as you have patience for)

It helps if you’re in a room that’s cool to cold (ie. NOT hot) and your hands are also not hot… what you do is mix up the flour with the butter, and start pinching the butter between your thumb and forefinger and middle finger. The idea is to be quick about it, so you’re only mixing the butter, not melting it. You do this until the mixture is crumbly and further pinching just starts to stick together big clumps of already mixed butter and flour (like this).

I added chopped pecans to this dough which is a nice addition to any fruit filling… about half a cup unchopped… add this after you finish pinching, and before you add water so you can mix more easily throughout the dough.

Then have 5 tablespoons of iced water handy… sprinkle that on this mixture. Dump it out onto a long (2 ft) sheet of plastic wrap – and mold quickly into a ball or as close as you can get to one.

before you put it back in the fridge
with cling filmabout half way thereMash it down with a rolling pin until it starts to resemble a thick pancake. Put in the fridge for at least 1 hour, more if you have a bar fridge like me. This gives the dough a chance to rest, otherwise it will shrink a lot during baking – and no one dies but your tarte is not as pretty. 


Meanwhile, chop rhubarb into 1/2 inch thick or 3/4 inch slices until you have 4 cups worth. Add to a bowl with 3T flour, 1 cup raw sugar, 1 egg and a pinch of salt. Mix until the rhubarb is coated. 

between cling film or wax paperNow that your crust dough has had time to shrink/ rest in the fridge. Take it back out and start rolling out. If you either turn your dough or the rolling pin slightly to the left after each time, you’ll get a more even crust. Once your dough is rolled out, I put the pan on top just to make sure I have enough dough for the edges.

Pictured here on the left is nearly done, I rolled a bit more just to be sure. Then take away the cling film from one side and carefully flip the dough into the pan.

You want to position the dough so it’s evenly on top of the pan, with enough for the sides, before you start pushing down the dough into the corners of the pan (where the bottom meets the sides). At this point, you can put back in the fridge to let it settle for another 20-30 mins. 


Once back out, you can push back the edges so they hang over the edge of the pan. Then, run the rolling pin across the top of the pan – which gives you a nice even edge. Pre-heat the oven at this point to 350F.

If you collect the excess dough, you generally will have enough to make thin lattices across the top of the pie – just ball up, put between two sheets of cling film and roll out again (if you have time, refrigerate for 20 mins, it’ll make the dough easier to handle). Cut the small piece of flat dough you have, peel off each strip, and lay on top of the pie. That’s your lattice.

If you don’t feel like making a lattice or don’t like how it looks/ tastes, you can also make a crumble topping with oatmeal: melt 1/3 cup of butter. Then mix with: 1/2 cup of flour, pinch of salt, 1/2 cup of oatmeal and 1/2 cup of raw or brown sugar. Sprinkle this on top of the pie.

Dot the pie with 2 Tablespoons of butter (cut up into little pieces). I forgot to dot before the lattice, so rather than taking it off and making a mess, I just dotted in the open spaces.with dots of butter

Bake for 40 mins… if the lattice or crumble is not brown enough, you can broil for 2 or 2 1/2 minutes until you get the desired browness. Serve warm or cold… with ice cream or as is. 


Union Square Farmer’s Market

26 04 2008

Pic of Ramp bunchOak Grove Plantation and Oak Grove Mills are a great supplier of locally grown and ground flours (oat, buckwheat, rye, whole wheat, unbleached white plus oat bran and wheat bran). To order by mail 908-782-9618 – they’re in Pittstown NJ which I don’t actually know where that is… easier to go to the Union Square market :).

Ramps season has officially begun (saw one vendor last week and multiple ones this week – $2.50 per bunch was the best price I noticed). They’re only grown in this region and make a nice addition to omelettes, soup, anything stir-fried… kind of a cross between onion and garlic and leek, pretty mild cooked.