Thursday, January 28, 2010

Brace Yourself for Three Bean Vegetarian Chili in the Crockpot

I hardly notice the change, but then she looks up and smiles at me, and I see train tracks. Pink train tracks on a face that is changing. We had to watch that Brady Bunch episode when Marsha gets her braces. Twice. Marsha managed to get several dates to the school dance even with her braces on. Not that I want that for Sailor. But I'm just saying, I think if it's OK for Marsha, it's going to be OK for Sailor too. So far, only one person has called Sailor "BRACE FACE." And it was me. But I said it nicely, as in, "Aw, come here, my little brace face." Her brother, in a rare moment of compassion, said, "Sailor, I think you look even prettier with braces on. I wish I could get braces, too." But then, he felt embarassed by his heartfelt admission, and hid his face in a zorro mask for the rest of the afternoon. I wish I had a zorro mask that I could hide behind whenever I embarass myself. But then, I might not ever come out. I could save a lot of money on mascara.
But I digress. I wanted to make a big pot of comfort for my little Marsha Brady. The January copy of Cooking Light had a stunning display of chilis (not to mention some very tempting carrot cake pancakes), and I fully intend to make them all. I started with Three Bean Vegetarian Chili, and I made the whole durn thing in the crockpot. Fantastic, friends-truly fantastic. And maybe even ultra-fantastic the next day. You know what else is fantastic? All of your kind comments about Sailor's braces. You are just the kind of people that I love to count as my friends. You made Sailor feel like a million bucks, so that's how much I owe you. Have a great weekend, everybody.
Money Saving Tips:
Use dried beans of any variety, soaked over night in this recipe to save a few bucks. You might need more liquid, but you won't need to alter the cooktime. You can swap the butternut squash with canned pumpkin.
Three Bean Vegetarian Chili in the Crockpot
Slightly Adapted from January Cooking Light
Estimated Cost: $6.00 for six servings
2 bottled roasted red peppers, drained and chopped
1 large minced onion
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
2 tablespoons chili powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups organic vegetable broth
1 1/2 cups pureed butternut squash (I used frozen)
1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained and chopped
1 (15-ounce) can pinto beans, rinsed and drained
1 (15-ounce) can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1 (15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained

Add all ingredients to the slow cooker. Cook on high for 3-4 hours, or on low for 6-8 hours. Garnish with sour cream and green onions before serving.
PS Don't forget to vote for my crazy kid in the Jif Peanut Butter Contest. Just follow the link over to cast your lot for West's More Rockin' Moroccan Peanuty Pitas.
Next Up: Carrot Cake Pancakes? Or one last Crockpot Soup?

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Living in the Moment with Chocolate Loaf Cake

This morning, in approximately 89 minutes, this little girl will get braces on her teeth. I don't really understand all these toothy terms yet, but this will be the first of two phases of braces to correct a crossbite, among other dental disgraces. I wonder how I can be old enough to have a child in braces, but then I remember the high school friend I just made contact with that is already a grandmother. I'll just try to deal with the braces for now. It's easy to dread them, because it means, well, that she is not a baby. What baby has braces on their teeth?
Sometimes I wish that we could go back to this. Or this. Or this time. Four years old is the last year that they truly belong completely to you. When they are five, there is School that must claim its portion.
But I know that to be happy, the secret is to live in the moment, and not pine for times goneby, or whittle away the present waiting for the future. (Like the day when she'll get those braces off.) I've got to embrace this moment, the moment when my little girl has traintracks all over her once pearly whites.
And speaking of embracing the moment, what about dessert? My offering this day is a treat from my weekly baking club, Tuesdays with Dorie. We were supposed to make a Chocolate BANANA loaf, but I ask you, can you really live in the moment with black bananas aging on the counter top? Visually, their black and blistered appearance belongs to the distant past, maybe even the Dark Ages. So I tossed them, and stirred in some buttermilk and made it simply Chocolate (No-Banana) Loaf Cake. (Recipe here.)
I planned the pretty treat for a Sunday after dinner dessert. But friends stopped by on Sunday afternoon, just as I pulled it out of the oven. And since I am practicing living in the moment, we ate it right then and there. Before lunch, even. (Ahem, before I could take any decent pictures.) But we enjoyed it. And that is enough for this moment.
Next Up:
Three Bean Vegetarian Chili in the Crockpot

Monday, January 25, 2010

Corn and Green Chile Chowder in the Crock Pot

The last week of January! I really can't imagine how it arrived here so swiftly. I'm not ready to bid goodbye to the first month of the year. I haven't really revved it up yet, the way you're supposed to do in January. I used my tread mill less, slept more, and frankly went back for second helpings more often than is prudent. I haven't cast off any bad habits-in fact I rather indulged a few. And I'm certainly not ready to finish my January series on crock pot soups. I still have many more that I want to share, like winter minestrone, red curried cauliflower, french onion, broccoli and cheddar, African peanut, creamy tomato and tortellini, just to name a few. I'll try to squeeze a few more in this week, because once next week hits, it's all about the February holidays.
It's so comforting to have a delicious soup simmering in the crockpot when the weather is foul. The whole house smells savory and cozy. Corn and Green Chile Chowder is one of my favorite rainy day soups because I almost always have everything on hand. It helps me embrace those snug, warm, homey days of January, before they melt away. Get out your crockpot-and your fuzzy slippers, while you're at it.

Money Saving Tips:
When fresh corn is on sale in the summer, you can cut it right off the ear and freeze it in bag. You could use canned, fresh, or frozen in this recipe with great results. The same goes for the green chiles. Swap out bouillion cubes to save even more. This soup is yummy before the half and half goes in, so leave it out if you want to save a few calories and pennies.

Corn and Green Chile Chowder in the Crock Pot
Estimated Cost: $5.00 for four servings
5 cups chicken broth
3 tablespoons flour
1 tablespoon butter
3 cups corn kernels, fresh, frozen, or canned
1 (7 ounce) can green chiles, drained
3 medium potatoes, peeled and chopped
1 large onion, minced
pinch of cumin
salt and pepper to taste
pinch of cayenne
1 large onion, minced
Add later:
1 (14 ounce) can creamed corn
1 cup half and half, whole milk, or evaporated milk
Pour broth and flour into crockpot. Whisk with wire whisk until smooth. Add all ingredients except creamed corn and half and half. Cook on high for 3-4 hours, or on low for 6-8 hours. Add creamed corn and half and half, and cook just until warmed through, about fifteen minutes on high or thirty minutes on low. (It can go faster if the half and half is at room temperature.) Garnish soup with croutons, cilantro, or green onions and lots of freshly ground peppper.
Next Up:
Chocolate Loaf Cake

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Chicken Curry Soup in the Crockpot

It's hard to keep writing everyday and not mention the things that tear your heart out, like the situation in Haiti. A couple of hundred years ago, we probably wouldn't even know that anything at all had happened in Haiti yet, but now we get the minute by minute, blow by blow. It is heart wrenching. Saddest of all are the accounts of the children trapped under rubble, whose cries are still heard. It is inconceivable, but it is also real.
On the other hand, I am proud to be part of a nation that springs into action to help those in need. Sometimes it doesn't work out exactly perfectly, but so many are willing to donate money, time, services, and prayers on behalf of the downtrodden. I want my children to know that they are part of this national legacy; when someone is hurt and suffering-locally or internationally, we can find a way to help. Here's one way to help: If you live in the western states, you can stop by any Smith's grocery store to donate money directly to the Red Cross for the Haitian relief fund. And while you are there, you can pick up some simple ingredients for the following.
And now, a little soup to warm the soul, as part of my January series of soups in the Crockpot. I'm calling it Chicken Curry Soup, although its true name is Mulligatawny. I once read-can't remember where- about a restaurant owner that couldn't sell their "Mulligatawny" soup, until they simply changed the title to "Chicken Curry Soup." By either name, it's the same rich curried broth, laden with chicken, rice, tart apples, potatoes and other yummy vegetables. In my version, you can add the cream at the last minute-or not at all, if you prefer. Either way, it's extraordinarily easy to fix, easy on the pocket book, and easy on the palate. Here's wishing you are all safe, warm, well, and grateful to be so.
Money Saving Tips: Use any cut of chicken to save some cash-just remove skin before boiling and bones before serving. Bouillion cubes work well here. Save a little more and make it vegetarian by using vegetable broth and swapping out the chicken for a can of drained garbanzo beans.
Chicken Curry Soup in the Crockpot:
Estimated Cost:$5.00 for four large servings
5 cups chicken broth
3/4 lb. chicken, cut into 1 inch pieces ( or you can add it uncut and frozen and shred it later)
1 large onion, diced
1 tart apple, peeled and diced
2 medium potatoes, peeled and chopped
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
1 tablespoon curry powder
1/2 cup white or brown long grain rice
1/2 cup cream
For Serving:
Fresh lime or lemon wedges
chopped cilantro
Add chicken broth through rice to the slow cooker and cook on high for 3-4 hours, or on low for 6-8 hours. Stir in cream, if using. Serve soup with fresh lime and chopped cilantro.
Up Next:
Green Chile and Corn Chowder in the CrockPot

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Chocolate Oatmeal Almost Candy Bars

Welcome to tempting Tuesdays, the day in which I bake an alluring treat with members of my on-line baking club, Tuesdays with Dorie. Hubba, Hubba-This one's a corker. First you lay down an oatmeal cookie crust, then you top it with fudge-you know that same fudge we were all busy eating during December...
Last, comes aother sprinkle of cookie dough, encasing the fudge in a chewy oatmeal package, just like a candy bar.
And here is where the story ends, or rather begins. Because as soon as I pulled it out of the fridge from cooling, my sister and her six kids showed up for their MLK weekend visit. I couldn't slice these bars fast enough. Poof!-gone, just like that. They are mighty, mighty good.
Are you still on a January diet? Then bookmark these babies for February. Recipe here.
Next Up:
Muligatawny (Chicken Curry Soup) in the Crock Pot

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Vitameatavegamin-or Beef and Barley Soup in the Slow Cooker

We've been on an I Love Lucy kick this month. It's not just a title, I really do love that crazy redhead. We all do, young charges included. The only drawback to too much Lucy is trying to get them to settle down at bedtime after they watch her brilliant oddball comedy. It's more of a hyperactivity catalyst then pure liquid sugar. It's making me laugh so hard that I actually get an ab workout. Hey, I wasn't even trying.
One of the best episodes, hands down, is "Vitameatavegamin."
Remember when Lucy gets sloshed practicing a commercial for the miracle supplement? She tells viewers that the alcohol-laden syrup contains "vitamins, meats, vegatables, and minerals." And that got me thinking about this Beef and Barley Soup in the Slow Cooker. It's got vitamins, meats, vegetables, and minerals. The only thing it doesn't have is alcohol, so you are guaranteed to stay warm, satisfied, and 100 percent sober. It's a cinch to make in your slow cooker, so fill 'er up today. "It's so tasty too; just like candy." Well, maybe that's a bit of a stretch, but it's spot-on if you leave out the candy part.
Money Saving Tips:
Use any cut of on sale beef, even a pot roast, cut into 1 inch pieces. Beef bouillion cubes will work well here, just add less than you think you need and taste at the end and adjust. Got any leftover cooked vegetables-just throw them in at the end.

Beef with Barley Soup
Estimated Cost: $6.00 for four large servings
1 lb. stew meat
1 large onion, chopped
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
2 ribs celery, peeled and chopped
1/2 cup chopped mushrooms
1 clove garlic, mined
5 cups beef broth
pinch of crushed red pepper flakes
1 bay leaf
1 tablespoon dried parsley, or 2 tablespoons fresh
Add later:
1/2 cup uncooked pearl barley (quick cooking is fine)
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon brown sugar
fresh parsley, for serving
Add meat through parsey to crock pot. Cook on low for 6-8 hours, or on high for 3-4 hours. Add barley for last hour of cooking. Stir in vinegar and sugar. Taste and adjust seasonings.
Next Up:
Crock Pot Mulligatawny
PS Click here to vote for West's More Rockin' Morrocan Peanutty Pitas everyday through 2/12. Scroll down and register-it takes 10 seconds, promise! See yesterday's post if you have no idea what I'm talking about.
PSS West just got an offer to appear on a morning show to make his recipe. He's decided to enter the witness protection program instead.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

West's Surprise Visitor: The Agony and Ecstasy

First the Ecstasy:
I've had a secret and I've just about had to tape my mouth shut to keep from blabbing it to you. I made it without spilling the beans, so now I'm pouring them out fast. My little charge West, the one who just this summer won a cool thousand dollars in the Nestle Push-up contest, is officially a finalist in the JIF MOST CREATIVE PEANUT BUTTER SANDWICH CONTEST. The prize is a chance to compete for a $25,000 scholarship in NYC in March. Can you imagine how happy we would be to have a $25,000 scholarship fund sitting around for the future Dr. West? But for now, there are ten finalists that will be narrowed down to five in a voting process. The voting period runs from noon on January 14th-February 10th. (CLICK HERE.) It takes only a second to register. All they need is your name, email and birthdate to make sure you over the age of 13. That's it. Be sure to vote for West's MORE ROCKIN' MOROCCAN PEANUTTY PITAS. Anyone over can vote daily. Thank you so much for your support for West! Look, he's even managing to smile in a peanut buttery kind of way. Now for the agony in three parts:
First: Jif sent a camera crew to our house after Christmas to casually film West preparing his recipe. West, as my loyal readers know, is iffy about attention. Sometimes he is vivacious, talkative, and playful. Other times he is timid, quiet, and scared. Unfortunately, it was a clam-shell hermit kind of day for West. He got through it barely, but he almost curled up and tucked himself into a kitchen drawer to hide for a few days. If they wanted personality and charisma, they'll have to come back another day...or in another decade.
Second: The summer Nestle Push Up contest that West won included a $2500 donation to a local school. West chose our favorite charter school, and they had an assembly honoring him this week. Although he enjoyed it later, while it was happening he wished he was in Des Moines, Iowa or even Death Valley, California, or in some remote corner of Antartica. The attention, gratitude and cheers were more painful than a root canal. Here he is hiding behind the giant Thank you card the first graders made him.
Third: All of the accolades for West have been particularly trying for his sister. Sailor has entered all of the same contests as West, with no luck as of yet. Is West destined to lead a charmed life? I'm hoping that every dog has his day. In the meantime, Sailor is being schooled in the principle of being happy for others, even siblings. I hope she can at least pass with a C minus. Would this make you jealous?
West's body language says it all.It should make Sailor feel better to know that West would gladly have done without the honors.
Isn't life a comedy? Thanks for laughing and voting along with me.
Up Next:
That Beef and Barley Soup in the Crockpot

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Fried Dough...It's Always Good.

For the 1.389 percent of you out there who are not dieting in January, I present Mrs. Vogel's Sherben, a treat for my Tuesdays with Dorie weekly on-line baking club. These are yummy, but that's really no surprise. Have you ever eaten a bit of fried dough that wasn't? I highly recommend a batch after an afternoon of ice skating with slippery young charges.
Despite being tugged at, yanked on, and otherwise put in precarious situations by little hands, I never fell down once. That merits a bit of deep fried dough, don't you think?
Some January afternoon, when you feel like throwing caution and cholesterol to the wind, give these naughty babies a try. The recipe is here with beautiful pictures, I might add.
I'll be back tomorrow with restraint, penance, and Beef with Barley Soup in the Crockpot.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Creamy Potato Soup in the Slow Cooker

One thing that irks me about some slow cooker recipes is when you are asked to first brown all ingredients in a pot on the stove. For Pete's sake, if I'm going to dirty a pot, I'm going to cook the whole meal in it, start to finish. I know they have slow cookers now that can also brown meats, but I don't have one and I'll have to wait till my circa 1995 crockpot bites the dust before I will lay out more cash for the latest model. For now, if a recipe asks me to cook everything in a pot on the stove, then transfer it to my slow cooker, it doesn't make it into my mealtime repertoire. I categorically refuse to wash two pots for what ought to be a one pot meal.
I have extra justification for my refusal this week. My sink developed a nasty case of slow drip this week. Drip....drip....drip. At first, if I turned the faucet just right, it was an even slower drip. Drip............drip......................drip. But then, it surrendered to dripdripdrip and it had to be addressed. The Quiet Man put on a manly plaid shirt and curled up under the sink for all of Friday night. I was standing close at hand, worried about my sink full of dishes that I desperately wanted to wash so that I could feel that Friday night/peace with the world kind of feeling. At nine thirty plaid-clad Quiet Man informed me that he needed a special part to be able to fix the sink, so would I kindly check Home Depot on-line to see if it was open. Open till ten, I reported. Meanwhile, West found an old flyswatter in the junk that his Dad emptied from under the sink, so he naturally began to chase his sister around the house, who tripped over her Dad who was laying with his face inside the cupboard, fixing the sink. Sailor should seriously consider a career in voice-overs for radio murder mysteries; she can scream, shriek and wail like no body's business. Except I think people would change the radio station, at least I would have if I could have. WAAAAAAAAA!!!!!! MOOOOOMMMMMMMY!!!! HE'S CHAAAAASING ME WITH A FLYYYYYYY SWAAAAAAATER!!!!! We piled all of the ear-shattering chaos into the minivan and raced towards Home Depot, which was naturally dark, quiet, and closed since 9 o'clock. I know we're not supposed to believe everything we read on the Internet, but I thought the Home Depot website would have a little integrity. Didn't they know that a sink full of dirty dishes and my sanity were hanging in the balance?
Just a little peek into my platform for a minimum of dirty dishes. And with that, I'll share my Creamy Potato Soup in the slow cooker. This soup is satisfying, velvety and creamy. The rich flavor comes from a roux that would require dirtying another pan, but I've created a shortcut using a kneaded flour and butter mixture. I've tinkered and reduced cream and butter to the maximum I could get away with and still create a luxurious texture and mouth feel. You'll love the ease of preparing it, the taste of the soup, and the one (crock) pot clean up when you're done. And incidentally, my sink is working again. I think I'll give it the day off, to celebrate.
Money Saving Tips:
Use any potato that is on sale at your grocer's. Idaho russets are delicious, but Yukon gold and red potatoes make a very creamy soup, too. You can use baby carrots to save yourself peeling time. Swap out bouillon cubes for the broth. You can use low fat milk, but you might want to increase the butter a bit if you do.
Creamy Potato Soup in the SlowCooker
Estimated Cost: $ 5.00 for four large servings
Notes: Roughly chop your vegetables, since you'll mash them down later.
1 onion, chopped
4 carrots, peeled and chopped
6 medium potatoes, peeled and chopped (I used Yukon gold)
5 cups chicken or vegetable broth
2 tablespoons fresh chopped parsley, or 1 tablespoon dried
2 tablespoons softened butter
3 tablespoons flour
1/2 -3/4 cream, half and half, whole milk, evaporated milk, or evaporated fat free milk
salt and pepper to taste
In a slow cooker, place the onion, carrots, potatoes, broth and parsley. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours, or on high for 3-4 hours. Use a potato mashed to crush the potatoes and vegetables to an almost smooth consistency. In a small bowl, combine butter and flour until smooth. Using a wire whisk, combine butter mixture with soup, whisking until smooth. Pour in cream and heat through. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve immediately. IMPORTANT: If you are using milk in place of the cream, do not let the soup boil after adding.
Up Next:
Beef and Barley Soup in the Slow Cooker

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Classic Chicken Noodle Soup in the Slow Cooker

Whatever mysterious virus has graced my existence for the last week, has finally found a new patron: The Quiet Man. I made myself an absolute wah-wah baby when I was sick, staying in bed and wailing for frequent cups of cold water and buttered toast. I watched Pride and Prejudice, the BBC version, but on VHS, which means someone has to come and switch the tapes for you every couple of hours, and they'd better be quick about it because I can't bear to be apart from Elizabeth and Darcy. It's amazing how much lung power I still have, even when indisposed.
In contrast, the Quiet Man doesn't ask me for anything at all when he is sick. He heads off to work and holes up in his office to do paperwork, as a sort of self-imposed quarantine. I can't do much for him, except telephone and ask if he is OK. Long pause. "Yes." Are you still sick? Long pause. "Yes." Oh. Darn. Can I do anything for you? Long pause. "No."
But YES, I can do something for him. I can make him old-fashioned chicken noodle soup, a bonafide miracle food for the indisposed. It's good and comforting and it will cure whatever ails you faster than anything you can buy at the pharmacy. And if you make it in the slow cooker, it requires such a minimal amount of attention that you could easily make a steaming serving for anyone in your life who becomes ill this winter season. Ladle a bit into a jar and take it to an ailing neighbor or co-worker. Or stay home and eat it all by yourself. And stay well, while you're at it.
Money Saving Tips: Use bouillion cubes for the broth. You can use bone in skin on chicken; just remove bones and skin after cooking.
Classic Chicken Noodle Soup in the Slow Cooker
Estimated Cost: $ 3.00 for 4-6 servings
3 cups water
3 cups chicken broth
1/2 pound boneless, skinless chicken (toss it in frozen, if you like)
3 carrots,peeled and diced
2 ribs celery, peeled and diced
1 large onion, minced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley, or 1 heaping teaspon dried
pinch of dried rosemary
pinch of dried thyme
2 ounces egg noodles, or broad pasta noodles
salt and freshly ground black pepper
Add all ingredients to the slow cooker EXCEPT the noodles. Cook on high for 3-4 hours, or on low for 6-8 hours. Remove chicken from pot and shred; return to pot. Add noodles for last 30 minutes of cooking. Taste soup and add salt and pepper to taste.
Next Up:
Creamy Potato Soup in the Slow Cooker

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Better for You Chocolate-Buttermilk Muffins

All of your virtual well-wishing has brought about a shaky, cheerful recovery. I wish I could return the favor when you are feeling ill. I'd tuck you in and spoon feed you some homemade chicken noodle soup, the equivalent of what your kind comments have done for me. I feel physically better, but mostly overwhelmingly grateful for your readership. I can only promise to endeavor to deserve it in the coming year.
It's a brand new year. It comes shiny and packaged, like a Christmas present, leaving me wondering what kind of surprises lay ahead. I know that I want what I had last year, only more so. I want family dinners, with casual conversation and funny anecdotes. I want lazy Sunday breakfasts in pajamas. I want late night snacks and movies, moshed together on the couch, under a comfy quilt. I'd like Birthday cakes and everyday cakes, both with candles and wishes. I want comfort food when my family needs band aids and respites from the inevitable bumps in the road. And celebratory meals with friends crowded around makeshift tables and big laughs from little children. I want contentment, with a scoop of ice cream on the side and a cherry on top.
So here's what I resolve to do this year:
Stay healthy. No diets, just healthful foods (and treats, too) and lots of running (half-marathon or full?) and fun family exercising like tennis, ice skating, swimming, bike-riding, and hide and go seek. Maybe I should sign up for fencing with West.
Stay happy. Take a good long look at my charges when they are sleeping, every night. Listen to their stories, even if its the 179th time that West wants to tell me about a scene from Star Wars. Never skip dessert, unless it is Fruitcake. Play Trivial Pusuit with my parents, who incidentally clean my clock everytime. Take the charges to New York to see their Oma and Opa, on their turf. Tell my nieces and nephews why I love them. And I really do adore each and every one of them. Write secret notes to the Quiet Man, especially during church, since it reminds me of when we were dating and why I knew I'd be no good without him. Keep blogging and strive to be worth of my readers.
Stay sane. I need a little help with this one, since I'm starting with a deficit. Ask for help when I can't do everything. Refuse late papers from students, unless they have a really, really, really good excuse. Telephone my sisters, since they are my free psychologists. Go through the drive thru at Del Taco when dinner seems impossible. They actually have pretty good cheese quesadillas, don't they? Don't let myself get so busy that I don't have time to be spontaneously kind. Laugh in the face at perfection, and embrace imperfection.
And now, to share with my dear readers, the first recipe of 2010. Here's a scrumptious, yet better for you Chocolate Buttermilk Muffin, partially in celebration of the second year anniversary of my online Baking Club "Tuesdays with Dorie," and partly in celebration of a new year. May it bring you much peace, happiness, sanity, and chocolate. Hopefully all together.
Better for You Chocolate Buttermilk Muffins
Notes: These are fantastic warm and fresh from the oven. They are every bit as yummy as a full fat cupcake.
Estimated Cost:$1.50 for six
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 tablespoons butter
1/3 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup sugar
1 egg white
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/3 cup all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup additional chocolate chips, optional
powdered sugar, optional
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a medium microwaveable bowl, melt chips and butter. Stir until smooth. Add buttermilk and stir well. Add sugar, egg white, and vanilla. In a separate bowl, combine flours, soda, and salt. Add to chocolate mixture and stir VERY GENTLY, until just combined. Fold in additional chips, if using. Line a muffin pan with six muffin liners and divide batter between cups. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until puffed and firm to the touch. Sprinkle with powdered sugar, if desired and serve warm.
Up All Week:
My Favorite Soups in the Crock Pot

Monday, January 4, 2010

The Bad News and the Good News

Bad News:
It's day three of being sick in bed. It's lonely. Boring, too. (Cue the violins.)
Good News:
I've had lots of time to think: New Year's Resolutions, Recipes, Dreams, Wishes, Projects.
Feeling better already.
Fingers crossed that I'll be up and around tomorrow. (Cue the banjoes and cazoos.) Achoo!