Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Peppermint Cheesecake Brownies

My crazy neighbors are some of my best friends. I met them four years ago in the dorms freshman year. They are some of the best guys I know and they are also pigs. So when I came home the other day and found my Cooking Lite magazine open to the Peppermint Cheesecake Brownies and a note that said "Refill Please" I just burst out laughing. And what did I do? I made these and they were delicious!

Peppermint Cheesecake Brownies


1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
1/4 cup canola oil
1/4 cup buttermilk
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 large egg whites
1 large egg

1 (8-oz) block 1/3 less fat cream cheese
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/4 tsp peppermint extract
1 large egg
1 large egg white
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour

Cooking Spray


1. Preheat oven to 350.
2. To prepare chocolate batter: Combine flour, cocoa, and salt in a medium bowl. In large bowl combine brown sugar, canola oil, buttermilk, vanilla, egg, and egg whites. Beat with a mixer at medium-high speed until well blended. Add flour mixture to brown sugar mixture. Beat at low speed until blended.
3. To prepare cheesecake batter: Place cheese, sugar, and peppermint in a medium bowl. Beat with a mixer until smooth. Add 1 egg and 1 egg white, beat well. Add flour and beat until blended.
4. Reserve 1/2 cup of chocolate batter. Pour remaining batter into a 9-inch square baking pan (I used a 9-inch pie pan) coated with cooking spray. Carefully pour cheesecake batter over top and spread evenly. Dot cheesecake batter with reserved chocolate batter. Swirl top two layers of batters together using the tip of a knife. Bake for 26 minutes.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Narsai David's Assyrian Pomegranate Marinade Giveaway Results

Anya has won David Narsai's marinade! Her suggestion for using the pomegranate marinade is: I'd marinate some chicken breasts and serve with a Greek salad.

Sounds delicious! I actually have some pork marinating it the marinade right now. Can't wait to cook it up!

Anya, you have 48 hours to contact me with a way to get the prize to you. I shot you an email. If I fail to hear back by February 24th I'll have to pick a new winner.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Life, love, YARN - I won!

How exciting is this! I've been entering blog giveaways and I won! I won this beautiful glass pendant and I am so excited to receive it in the mail.

Now speaking of blog giveaways, don't forget to enter the Narsai David's Assyrian Pomegranate Marinade! So few have entered, so there's still such a great chance you might win!

Check out her blog here and yay!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Narsai David's Assyrian Pomegranate Marinade Giveaway

About a month ago I bought Narsai David's Assyrian Pomegranate Marinade. However, I have yet to use it! On Narsai's website the marinade is described as follows:

Created at Narsai's Restaurant for Assyrian Rack of Lamb, this marinade incorporates fruits, red wine, garlic and spices. Not only fabulous with lamb, Narsai's Assyrian Marinade will go equally well with beef and pork.

I think this sounds so delicious and am quite excited to use it. Except, I don't know how! So now the challenge is yours. What would you do with Narsai's Assyrian Pomegranate Marinade? What would you marinate and what would you serve along side the main dish?

If you answer this question as well as leave your email address, you will be entered to win your own bottle of Narsai's Assyrian Pomegranate Marinade. Only people who leave their email address in the post will be considered in the random drawing.

Leave your suggestions by the 22nd to be eligible to win this delicious marinade!

PLEASE LEAVE YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS. I don't know how I'm supposed to contact the winners otherwise. :-/

Also, UPDATING AS OF 2/10. If you want to be entered to win more than just once for this contest blog about it. Leave me a comment to the blog where you mentioned this contest (after you have left your recipe suggestion) for a second chance to win. For a third chance, Twitter about it and leave the link!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Chocolate Rolls

Several weeks ago my mom and I made cinnamon rolls, though I never got a picture of them to put in here. Since I found them so much fun to make I decided to give it a go again. Typically I'm the type of girl that follows recipes to the tee, but I didn't want cinnamon, I wanted my dream food: chocolate. And from this desire became the birth of my new found breakfast food: the chocolate roll.

I also had to make a change to the dough from the cinnamon roll recipe because I was very low on all-purpose flour. Because of this I replaced a cup and a half of what should have been all-purpose flour with wheat flour. It wasn't a bad change though, however next time I want to try it with just the all-purpose.

Chocolate Roll Recipe
1 (.25 oz) package active-dry yeast
3/4 cup warm water
1/4 cup white sugar
3/4 tsp salt
1 egg
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
4 oz semi-sweet chocolate
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp milk
1 cup pecans
1. In a small bowl dissolve yeast and water. Let sit for 10 minutes.
2. In a large bowl combine yeast, sugar, salt, egg, and all-purpose flour. Stir well to combine.
3. Mix in the whole wheat flour 1/2 cup at a time. When the dough has pulled together put it on a lightly floured surface and knead for 8 minutes or until smooth and elastic. Cover with a damp cloth and let rest for 10 minutes.
4. Put chocolate, milk, and butter in the microwave for 1 1/2 minutes, stirring halfway through.
5. Lightly grease a 8x8 inch square pan. Roll dough out on lightly floured surface to a 1/4 inch thick rectangle. Smear the dough with the melted chocolate and then sprinkle evenly with pecans. Roll the dough up from the edge until it forms a roll. Slice the roll into 16 even sized pieces and place them in a pan with cut side up.
6. Cover pan with plastic wrap and let sit for 45 minutes.
7. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Bake rolls until golden brown, about 20 minutes.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Vermicelli with Sauce alla Sofia

First, I must credit this recipe to Gourmet.Com. I found out my cholesterol is higher than it should be, so I've been trying to find dishes that are lower in cholesterol and bad fats than things I typically eat (oh goodbye for now red meats). So I'm trying to cut out things out of my diet that could potentially put me at risk for heart diseases. I'm too young to have to worry about shit like this, but such is life. Granted, I haven't made the decision to completely opt out of red meat, but it is severely getting cut back into things I can and cannot eat. Anyway - I decided pasta would do me some good and since I got a food processor for Christmas and hadn't used it yet, it was the best way to go!

So I found this recipe and while it looks like pesto, it isn't. However, unfortunately when I was processing the sauce, I couldn't find the damned capers. I was sad, because I think they would have given this sauce the extra kick it could have used (because I felt a little too much olive in each bite). I did add a little more salt to make up for the lack of capers. Now where they went is the question.

Vermicelli with Sauce alla Sofia Recipe
2 garlic cloves
1 1/2 cups loosely packed fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
1 small onion, sliced (1 1/2 cups)
4 anchovy fillets, rinsed, patted dry, and chopped
1/3 cup brine-cured green olives, pitted
2 teaspoons drained bottled capers
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 cup plus 1 teaspoon olive oil
1 lb vermicelli (thin spaghetti) or linguine
1. With a food processor running drop in garlic until finely chopped. Stop the motor and add parsley, onion, anchovies, olives, capers, salt, and pepper. Process until finely chopped.
2. With motor still running add 1/2 cup of oil, blending until incorporated.
3. Cook pasta in boiling salted water. Drain well and toss with extra 1 tsp of olive oil. Pour sauce over pasta and serve immediately.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Mango Lassi

I got a crock-pot for Christmas and I made curry in it last night, using it for the first time. Unfortunately the curry got devoured by the pigs in my family before I could capture it as well as the homemade naan I made (though I have made that before and posted a picture in here before). So I was on this whole Indian food thing. I traveled to India two summers ago for one of the best experiences of my life and have continued by fascination in the culture through my taste buds. And because I just recently watched the movie Slumdog Millionare, I was intriqued once again to experience a part of the culture.

I bought a Cooking Lite magazine yesterday and one of the recipes was for a mango lassi. YUM! I added more mango than the recipe called for because it was tasting more yogurty than mangoey. And I would also be inclined to Americanize this recipe completely and add other fruits to the mix. It's basically a delicious smoothie.

Mango Lassi
3 ripe mangoes, chopped up
3 cups Greek-style yogurt
1 cup 1% milk
3 tbsp sugar
1. Combine the mangoes, yogurt, and milk. Blend together.
2. Blend in the sugar.
3. Pour into glasses and top with several pistachios and a pinch of cardamom.
*makes 6 servings*