Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Crunchy Buttermilk Coconut Chicken Fingers

This quick and easy recipe from Cooking Light was a hit especially with my husband. Our one year old liked them, but our 3 year old didn't like the texture of the coconut. They're flavorful and crispy and come together in about 20 minutes! The curry flavor is pronounced, so you can even cut back a little on it to increase the subtlety.
Crunchy Buttermilk Coconut Chicken Fingers
Cooking Light, April 2008
Serves 4
1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breasts
1 1/2 cups fat-free buttermilk
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 large egg
1 large egg white
3/4 cup crushed cornflakes
3/4 cup flaked sweetened coconut, chopped
1 teaspoon garlic powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon curry powder
1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
Cut the chicken into 1/2-in strips. Combine chicken and buttermilk in a shallow dish. Cover and chill 1 hour. Drain chicken, discarding liquid. Combine chicken and flour in a medium bowl, tossing to coat.
Preheat over to 475 degrees F. Place baking sheet in oven.
Combine egg and egg white in a small bowl. Combine crushed cornflakes and next 5 ingredients in a shallow dish.
Working with one chicken strip at a time, dip into egg mixture, dredge in cornflake mixture. Repeat with remaining chicken. Arrange chicken in a single layer on preheated baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Lightly coat chicken with cooking spray. Bake for 6 minutes or until done. Serve immediately.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

TWD- Chipster Topped Brownies

Well, I almost didn't make this because I wasn't in the mood to make TWO batters. Then I read the P&Q and everyone said it was amazing. So I got a burst of energy this afternoon and while child #1 was coloring in her new $1 coloring book from Target and child #2 was sleeping, I whipped these babies up.
The concept is a layer of brownies (sans nuts for me) topped with a layer of chocolate chip cookies (I made butterscotch-toffee).
Everyone in the P&Q said not to overbake, so I was (overly) cautious. Mine ended up being basically cookie dough in the middle, even though the tester didn't come out batter-y. The outside pieces were fabulous- crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside.
The brownie layer and cookie layer separately were SO good, and together.... well, you'll have to make these to truely experience the goodness! Check out Beth's blog for the recipe!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

CS Bakers- Mile-High Devil’s Food Cake

Ok, I was pretty excited to make this month's Cake Slice Bakers cake because I am pretty sure I could live on chocolate cake. And who knows, maybe this could be the cake I would chose to live on? I had my doubts, though, because my all-time, #1 favorite cake pretty much takes the cake.
This cake is a devil's food cake made with brown sugar and cocoa powder. I halved mine and misread the amount of butter (I thought it said 9T instead of 9 oz. whoops). The cake was still great, if a little dry. The frosting is a brown sugar italian meringue buttercream, where the sugar is cooked and added to whipped egg whites. I was underwhelmed by the frosting; I'd much prefer chocolate frosting! :)

Mile-High Devil’s Food Cake

From: Sky High: Irresistible Triple-Layer Cakes By Alisa Huntsman and Peter Wynne

Makes an 8-inch triple layer cake:

· 1 cup of unsweetened cocoa NOT DUTCH PROCESSED

· 1 and ¼ cups of hot water

· 3 cups of light brown sugar; packed

· 2 and 2/3 cups cake flour

· 1 and ½ teaspoons baking soda

· ¾ teaspoon of salt

· 9 ounces of unsalted butter at room temperature [2 sticks plus 2 tablespoons]

· 3 large eggs

· 1 and ½ teaspoons of vanilla extract

· ¾ cup of cold water

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Butter the bottoms and sides of three 8-inch round cake pans. Line the bottoms of the pans with parchment paper and grease the paper as well.

Place the cocoa in a medium bowl and add the hot water. Whisk until smooth and let it cool to room temperature.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the sugar, flour, baking soda, and salt. With the mixer on low blend to combine. Add the butter and the dissolved cocoa. Then raise the mixer to medium speed and beat for 2 minutes until light and fluffy.

In a medium bowl whisk together the eggs, vanilla, and cold water until combined. Add this liquid to the batter in three additions scraping down the sides of the bowl between additions. Divide the batter among the three pans.

Bake for 35-45 minutes or until a cakes tester inserted into the almost comes out clean. There should be a few crumbs attached still. Cool the cakes in the pans for 15 minutes. Then invert and remove parchment paper and cool completely on a wire rack.

Brown Sugar Buttercream

  • 5 egg whites
  • 1 and ¼ cups of packed brown sugar
  • ¼ cup of water
  • 1 pound of unsalted butter (16 ounces) at room temperature

Place all the egg whites in the bowl of an electric mixer; set aside.

In a heavy medium saucepan combine the sugar and water. Cook over medium heat stirring to dissolve the sugar. Then bring to a boil without stirring and cook until the syrup reaches 238 degrees F on a candy thermometer.

Begin beating the egg whites on medium low speed. Slowly pour in the syrup making sure not to hit the beater. Increase the mixer speed to medium high and beat until the meringue has cooled to body temperature.

With the mixer on med-low add 1-2 tablespoons of butter at a time. When all the butter has been added increase the mixer’s speed to medium and beat until the mixture looks curdled or separated. Continue to beat until the icing comes together again looking like soft smooth whipped butter.

Assembling the cake:

Place one layer flat side down and cover it with 2/3 cup of the frosting. Top with second layer and repeat process. Top with third layer and frost the sides of the cake.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

TWD- Fresh Mango Bread

Well, I'll admit that the only reason I made this was because my husband LOVES mangoes. Seriously, LOVES them. I'm not a fan, and since I have pregnancy taste buds, mango tastes like carbon paper to me. This is a quick and easy bread that comes together in minutes- the baking time is quite long. I underbaked mine so it was a little loose on top.
The mango flavor wasn't really all the present in mine. The ginger overpowered everything- if I ever make it again, I will cut the ginger way down or omit it completely. I also made mine without the raisins. It's definitely worth a try- a departure from the regular banana or zucchini bread! My husband and our friends enjoyed the bread- it was moist and flavorful. Check out Kelly's blog for the recipe!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

TWD- Tiramisu Cake

Well, I have to admit, I love tiramisu but I wasn't too excited about making this recipe. Despite all the comments on the P&Q, I knew I was going to be making a lot of subs and/or deletions. First off, the coffee and liqueur- we don't have or drink either and I wasn't going to buy it just for the 1 or 2 tablespoons needed for this recipe. I subbed with cocoa powder and boiling water with a tablespoon of sugar and omitted the liqueur completely. Second, the mascarpone cheese. It's not carried in regular grocery stores and I didn't have time to go searching this week. I found this substitute and decided to try it (please don't hate me). The results were surprisingly good, if not anything like it was supposed to be. I'll admit the espresso would have been fabulous as the cake soaked in the chocolate mixture I made was amazing, and I loved the tiny chocolate chunks in between the layers. The topping/filling was also very good (I omitted the syrup from the topping), but you can't really expect cream cheese to taste as good as mascarpone in tiramisu. It was more tangy than mascarpone, but still really yummy.Head over to Megan's My Baking Adventures for the recipe!