Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Bunny Love - Carrot Cake

Welcome back to my sweet-tooth cafe!

Spring is here, and so are the fruits and veggies of the season! Therefore I've decided to make a cake.....more specifically A CARROT CAKE! YUMMM!

This used to be my mom's most favorite cake. It was like her kryptonite, I remember walking into this store in Manhattan with my mom and sister once, there over on the counter.... she saw her favorite little square cake sitting all wrapped up in plastic and ready to eat. She promptly purchased that and I think some double mint gum. When we stepped outside she gave me and my sister a piece of the sweet carroty goodness......It's been my favorite ever since.

I had been craving this yummy treat for the longest .......here it is, my version....enjoy!

What you need............
  • 3 extra large eggs
  • 3/4 cup melted butter
  • 2/4 cups olive oil
  • 1 cups white sugar
  • 3/4 cups brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 1/2 Cups Soft a Silk or Swan’s Down Cake Flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 3 Cups Raw Shredded Carrot
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/4 cup crushed pineapples (drained)
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 3/4 package or 6 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 4 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 small peach - cut into slices
  • 1 small plum - cut into slices
Cook it up!

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and lightly flour whatever size pan you are using.

In a large container, beat together eggs, oil, sugar and vanilla. Mix in flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Stir in carrots. Fold in walnuts. Pour into pan.Bake in the oven for 30-40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Let cool in pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack and cool completely.

Make your frosting (or buy some...but. I enjoyed making mine today!)

In a medium container, combine butter, cream cheese, confectioners' sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Beat until the mixture is smooth and creamy. Frost the cake once it is completely cool.

*If you tend to burn the edges like I do..Just trim the cake.
*decorate with your plum and peach slices!

ENJOY!! I know I will!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Black-out shrimp scampi

It's scary, it's frightful...... But I'm still cooking up something oh so delightful!

That's right folks I'm one of the lucky 80,000 ConEdison customers that don't have power in their homes due to the crazy storm that blew in Friday night. It's day two of the blackout and I'm beyond angry. My food is spoiling in the fridge, so I have decided to cook whatever I can rather than let it go to waste. Cooking in an almost pitch black house is no easy feat, and eating out was no option due to the high winds and soaking rains. I'm a mommy of two boys and one infant girl so there was no way I was getting in the car and chancing getting into an accident. Sooooooo I gathered up the remaining food worth saving and here is the most note worthy recipe. I was saving this shrimp for more pad Thai, but oh well. Sorry the pictures are bad..... They were taken in a blackout effected kitchen after all.

What you need.....

About 20 large shrimp
1/3 cup butter
1/3 cup olive oil
6-8 cloves of garlic (minced)
2 stalks scalions ( chopped)
1 tbl spoon lemon herb seasoning
4 slices of lemon.
1 or 2 pinches of dried parsley

Cook it up!

Rinse shrimp (peel, and devein if necessary) and set aside. Heat butter and olive oil in large skillet over medium heat. Cook garlic 1 or 2 minutes or until softened but not browned. Add shrimp, green onions, and lemon herb seasoning. cook until shrimp are pink and firm, about 3 to 4 minutes. Do not overcook.

Add chopped parsley and salt and pepper before serving. Garnish with lemon slices and cilantro sprigs.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

My Super Fresh Tomatillo Pow!

How I love thee........

I honestly love this awesome green sauce!! I began making this when I first started making Mexican style tacos at home. Now I think I will make this and keep some in the freezer to put on just about everything. Lately I have been tweaking the recipe, and this is the final result......I think =^_^=.......at least until I think of something else yummy that "just hasssss to be thrown in"! If you decide to give this sauce a go, then don't be affraid to do a little "tweaking of your own.....as I type I just added some sour cream & cotija cheese for a spicy, creamy, fresh tasting treat!

Tomatillo Pow

What you need.......
  • 2 large tomatillos, husks removed, washed, and quartered
  • 1 cloves of garlic
  • 1/2 cup of cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons of vinegar
  • 2 small habanero or scotch bonnet peppers
  • a dash of salt
  • 1/2 of an avocado
  • 1/2 red tomato (you can leave this out if you like)
  • 1/2 large white onion (I like red if I remember to buy them)
  • a few tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
Cook it up.......

Well there is no "cooking" involved...........but the next step is to toss all of these ingredients into a blender (I used my new awesome Wolfgang Puck immersion blender ^_^) and process to a smooth consistency.

All done! enjoy over some homemade tacos or whatever else you think of.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Spicy Chicken & Shrimp Pad Thai!


Another one of my favorite dishes to order when enjoying the occasional nice lunch out in the city! It's not too hard to make and will earn you fantastic reviews from the young and old (it did for me ^_^). If you don't try anything else on my blog.......please make an exception for this gem! I promise you it's worth every second spent searching for the elusive tamarind paste!

"Sweet, sour and salty tastes all blend and balance in this traditional Thai favorite. The fruity-sour taste of tamarind is almost impossible to duplicate, and is worth searching for in Asian or Indian markets".

What you need………..

  • 2 Packages of rice noodles
  • 18 shrimp large, shelled and de-veined
  • 1 ½ chicken breast sliced into thin strips
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • ½ cup bean sprouts
  • ½ cup chopped scallions (I used a green pepper/onion mix...I forgot the scallions at the store :-( oh well)
  • ¼ cup chopped cilantro
  • ¼ cup unsalted peanuts, chopped
  • 1 medium sliced lime
  • 4 tablespoons Huy Fong Chili Sauce*
  • (2 cups prepared pad Thai sauce)* see below...

Make Thai sauce by combining the ingredients below (to taste) in a small sauce pan, bring to a boil then set aside.

½ cup palm (or regular) sugar
½ cup fish sauce
½ cup tamarind paste or concentrate
1 tbs. rice vinegar
2 tbs. vegetable oil
½ tbs. garlic, minced

Cook it up…….

Soak rice noodles in hot water for about 20 – 30 minutes or until soft. Drain and set aside.
In a bow

Heat oil in a wok, sir fry chicken until it turns white and is cooked through. Remove and set aside. Add shrimp to the wok, cook until shrimp is pink, remove and set aside. Clean out wok, reheat, then add 1 tablespoon oil, and scramble the eggs for about 1 minute, then add the noodles, chicken, shrimp, bean sprouts, scallions, cilantro, and sauce.

Stir-fry all ingredients until well cooked and combined. Serve with, peanuts sprinkled over the top, with Huy Fong chill sauce, fresh cilantro and lime wedges as garnishes.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Take-out - of the freezer 2

Ok, here is more of the yummy frozen Ambrose-like treats I got from K-Town. Super good and just as awesome as the gyoza.

It's shumai heaven! anytime I want. I'm going back downtown tomorrow in the early am to grab more. =^_^=
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