Santa… is comming to town..

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Pineapple Upside Down CakeCake batter:

Ingredients:
2 1/4 cups cake flour

1 1/2 cups sugar

1/4 cup shortening

1/2 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into thin slices

3/4 cup milk

3 eggs

2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Topping:

1/2 cup unsalted butter, divided

2 cups packed brown sugar, divided

1 15-oz can pineapple chunks

maraschino cherries

(These instructions are for 2 cakes made in cast iron skillets. For instructions using standard cake pans, please see notes at the end.)

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and center rack in the oven. I used only one skillet to make both cakes by doing one at a time. Simply wipe out your skillet after removing the cake and start over. If you have 2 skillets, even better, make them both at the same time by staggering the pans in the oven.

Prepare the topping first by placing 1/4 cup butter in cast iron skillet. Place skillet in the oven until the butter has melted, this only takes a few minutes.

Remove skillet from the oven and sprinkle 1 cup of brown sugar over the butter. Drain pineapple chunks, reserving the juice to store any leftovers. 

Gently place pineapple chunks onto the brown sugar in the center of the skillet, forming a flower. Place a cherry in the middle of the pineapple flower. Decorate the outer edge of the cake using more of the pineapple and cherries.

Prepare the cake batter by combining all batter ingredients in a mixer bowl. Mix at low speed for 30 seconds or so to incorporate, then increase speed to medium and mix for 5 minutes, occasionally scraping bowl if needed. 

Separate the batter evenly between two bowls. Do not be concerned if there are some small butter bits still in the batter, it will still bake up beautifully! 

Carefully, but fairly quickly, pour the batter over the pineapples. You want to pour the batter on top, moving around as you go, so that you don’t move any of the pieces of fruit around. 

Bake 30 minutes. The sides should be bubbly and the top will be browned. Cool for 10 minutes on a wire rack.

Place flat cake plate over the skillet, then using oven mitts, invert the pan onto the plate. If necessary, use an icing spatula to scoop up any topping left in the pie to patch any bare spots on top of the cake.

REGULAR CAKE PAN INSTRUCTIONS:

The instructions are basically the same using standard 9″ round cake pans or a 13″ x 9″ baking pan. For a 13″ x 9″ baking pan, form pineapple flowers all over the cake, you should be able to fit about 8 or more flowers. Bake the 13″ x 9″ pan for 35-40 minutes. You may need to loosen the cake from the sides of the pan before inverting. For round cake pans, follow baking times for skillet above.

Here’s a luxurious recipe of rich dark chocolate on a stick. 

Makes 18
1 cup full cream milk 

1 cup heavy cream

180 grams dark chocolate buttons

1 tablespoon cocoa powder 

1 tablespoon honey

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon 

1 Pour milk and heavy cream into a pot and cook over very low heat until warmed. Add dark chocolate and stir until completely melted. Whisk in cocoa powder and honey. Add cinnamon for a Mexican chocolate flavor. 

2 Pour into popsicle molds and freeze. 

Berry Protein Overnight French Toast

Ingredients:

6 cups cubed 100% whole grain bread

4 eggs

1 1/2 cups milk of choice 

1/4 cup syrup

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 tsp cinnamon

1 scoop Gnarly whey protein 

1/2 cup blackberries- frozen or fresh

3/4 cup blueberries-fresh or frozen

1/2 cup frozen cranberries

Directions:
1. Whisk together the eggs, milk, syrup, cinnamon, protein and vanilla in a large bowl.

2. Grease a baking dish and fill with the bread cubes.

3. Pour the liquid mixture over the bread, add in all berries and mix well and let sit overnight in the fridge (or for least 30 minutes).

4. Take out of fridge when ready to bake and bake at 350 degrees for about 30-40 minutes or until egg mixture is fully cooked.

Top with your choice of toppings: Nut butter, syrup, more fruit, etc.!

CHOCOLATE-PEANUT BUTTER GRANOLA APPLE BITES

| Makes: 16-20 wedges |
Ingredients:

2 apples, sliced into wedges

1/4 cup peanut butter

1/4 cup granola, your favorite

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon, for sprinkling

Semisweet chocolate chips, optional*

Directions:

Coat tops of apple wedges in peanut butter and sprinkle with granola and cinnamon.

Melt chocolate chips in the microwave, stirring in 30 second increments until melted. Be careful not to overheat.

Drizzle wedges with melted chocolate, set on a large platter and serve.

 

Homemade Mocha Nutella (Vegan, Refined-Sugar Free)

Prep Time: 5 mins
Cook Time: roast: 13-14 mins, process: 15

Keywords: food processor roast breakfast dessert holiday snack spread/sauces dairy free gluten-free low sugar low-carb soy-free vegan vegetarian hazelnut Christmas 

A knock-off of my favourite Nutella spread called “Rawtella”.
Ingredients (1 & 1/4 cup)

2 cups raw hazelnuts

1.5 tbsp coconut oil

1-2 tsp pure vanilla extract (I used 2 tsp)

1/2 cup coconut sugar

1.5 tbsp cocoa powder

1/4-1/2 tsp espresso powder (I used 1/2 tsp)

1/4 tsp fine grain sea salt, or to taste

Instructions

1. Preheat oven to 300F and roast the hazelnuts for 13-14 minutes, watching closely, especially if you aren’t sure of your actual oven temperature. When ready, the skins will have darkened and some will have come loose.

2. Place nuts into the centre of an old damp tea towel. Cover it up like a purse and rub the nuts for a couple minutes to loosen the skins. Pick out the “naked” nuts and place into processor. Repeat towel rubbing for the rest. It’s ok if all of the skins don’t come off. Add the rest to processor.

3. Process the nuts, stopping to scrape down the bowl every minute or so. After 9-10 minutes of processing, add in the coconut oil and process until smooth. This will help thin it out a lot and I don’t recommend skipping the oil.

4. Now add in the rest of the ingredients slowly and keep processing and scraping down the bowl for another 5-10 minutes, or until silky smooth. It took me 15-20 minutes total processing. Add more oil if needed. The sugar will thicken up the spread significantly, but keep processing and the heat will smooth it out once again.

5. Store in an air-tight container in the fridge. It will harden slightly when chilled. Simply bring it to room temp or heat it to soften.

Nutritional info: (per tablespoon): 110 cals, 9 grams fat (2 sat fat), 29 mg sodium, 7 grams carbs, 1 gram fibre, 5 grams sugar, 2 grams protein.

NOTES:

– Coconut sugar, coconut oil, vanilla, hazelnuts, and cocoa powder were all purchased at Costco. Espresso powder was purchased at my regular grocery store in the coffee section.

– I assume you can sub another sugar in place of the coconut sugar, but I havent tried it myself. Add it to taste. I don’t recommend using a liquid sweetener like maple syrup because I find it can produce a strange thick texture in nut butters.

– You can probably sub the coconut oil for another light tasting oil like grapeseed oil. You can also use hazelnut oil for obvious reasons. I am leery about using extra virgin olive oil since it has quite a powerful flavour. Use at your own risk…

– Like all homemade nut butters, I don’t recommend making them without a heavy-duty food processor. I use a 12-cup Cuisinart and it works great for nut butters.

Recipe by Oh She Glows at http://www.ohsheglows.com

Chips? 

Zucchini Chips 

Prep time

10 mins

Cook time

2 hours

Total time

2 hours 10 mins

 

Author: Julie Wampler

Recipe type: Appetizer, Snacks

Serves: 50+ zucchini chips

Ingredients:

1 large zucchini

2 tbsp. olive oil

Kosher salt

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 225 degrees Fahrenheit. Line two large baking sheets (I used two 17″ baking sheets) with silicon baking mats or parchment paper.

Slice your zucchini on a mandolin. Mine had 1, 2, or 3 for thickness and I used 2.

After you slice your zucchini, place the slices on a sheet of paper towels and take another paper towel and sandwich the zucchini slices and press on them. This helps draw out the liquid so it’ll cook a bit faster.

Line up the zucchini slices on the prepared baking sheet tightly next to each other in a straight line, making sure not to overlap them.

In a small bowl, pour your olive oil in and take a pastry brush to brush the olive oil on each zucchini slice.

Sprinkle salt throughout the baking sheet. Do NOT over-season, in fact, it’s better to use less salt initially because the slices will shrink; so if you over-season, it’ll be way too salty! You can always add more later.

Bake for 2+ hours until they start to brown and aren’t soggy and are crisp.

Let cool before removing and serving.

Keep in an airtight container for no more than 3 days.

Recipe by Table for Two at http://www.tablefortwoblog.com/zucchini-chips/

Bread Loaf

Ingredients:

1/3 cup light brown sugar

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

2/3 cup white sugar

1/2 cup butter, softened

2 eggs

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 3/4 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 cup milk or almond milk

2 apples, peeled and chopped (any kind), mixed with 2 tablespoons granulated sugar and 1 teaspoon cinnamon

Old-Fashioned Creme Glaze

1/2 cup of powdered sugar

1-3 tablespoons of milk or cream- (depending on thickness of glaze wanted)

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Use a 9×5-inch loaf pan and spray with non-stick spray or line with foil and spray with non-stick spray to get out easily for slicing.

Mix brown sugar and cinnamon together in a bowl. Set aside.

In another medium-sized bowl, beat white sugar and butter together using an electric mixer until smooth and creamy.

Beat in eggs, 1 at a time, until blended in; add in vanilla extract.

Combine & whisk flour and baking powder together in another bowl and add into creamed butter mixture and stir until blended.

Mix milk into batter until smooth.

Pour half the batter into the prepared loaf pan; add half the apple mixture, then half the brown sugar/cinnamon mixture.

Lightly pat apple mixture into batter.

Pour the remaining batter over apple layer and top with remaining apple mixture, then the remaining brown sugar/cinnamon mixture.

Lightly pat apples into batter; swirl brown sugar mixture through apples using knife or spoon.

Bake in the preheated oven until a toothpick inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean, approximately 50-60 minutes.

To make glaze, mix powdered sugar and milk or cream together until well mixed.

Let cool for about 15 minutes before drizzling with glaze.

Optional

Next time I think I would add in walnuts. You can always use other fruit, or you could add in chocolate chips too! (Of course!)

Substitutions: I’ve also substituted this with 1/2 cup Greek Yogurt, 1/3 cup milk and add 1/4 teaspoon baking soda instead of 1/2 cup milk as called out in the bread loaf ingredients.

Baking options: Bake 30-40 min. for 2 loaf recipe, 15-20 minutes for muffins or 50 -60 minutes for one full loaf recipe or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean1.

By Kim Lange Adapted from Lui in Cucina