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a balanced plate with room for dessert


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Pistachio and Dried Cherry Biscotti

I can’t really remember how (or why) I started making biscotti. But for as long as I can recall, my mom has always requested biscotti as her gift for just about everything – birthday, Mother’s Day, Christmas… Thanksgiving?

Pistachio & Dried Cherry Biscotti | doughseedough.net

I usually make some sort of chocolate biscotti, but this time I opted for something new – pistachios + dried cherries. How did it turn out? Amazing. Better than any of the chocolate-based biscotti I’ve ever made or tasted. Better than any biscotti I’ve ever had, period. I’m dreaming of the day that I can make these again – I’m hoping to get my hands on some delicious Door County cherries!

Pistachio & Dried Cherry Biscotti | doughseedough.net

Pistachio and Dried Cherry Biscotti

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup old-fashioned oats
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2 large eggs
3 tablespoons canola oil
1 tablespoon orange zest
2 teaspoons lemon zest
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1 cup dried cherries, roughly chopped
1 cup unsalted, shelled pistachios

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer or in a large mixing bowl, combine flour, sugar, oats, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Mix for 30 seconds to combine.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs, oil, orange zest, lemon zest, vanilla extract and almond extract. Add egg mixture to flour mixture and beat on low speed until dough is crumbly and just combined, about 1 minute. Knead dough with your hands for another minute until dough comes together. Fold in cherries and pistachios.
  4. Transfer dough to a lightly floured surface and divide in half. Dust hands with flour and shape each piece of dough into a 16-inch long log. Transfer logs to prepared baking sheet and use your palm to flatten into a 2-inch wide strip.
  5. Bake until biscotti is lightly browned and set, about 30 minutes, rotating pans halfway through. Allow cookies to cool slightly on the baking sheet for 15 minutes.
  6. Turn oven down to 250°F. Line a second baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  7. Transfer biscotti logs to a cutting board and slice diagonally into 2/3-inch thick slices*. Arrange pieces, cut side down, on prepared baking sheets.
  8. Bake biscotti for 20 minutes. Flip biscotti and bake for an additional 20 minutes or until cookies are crisp. Carefully transfer cookies cooling rack and let cool completely. Store in an air-tight container until ready to serve.

 

*Most recipes call for cutting biscotti with a serrated knife, but I’ve had better luck with my super-sharp Santoku. Do as you wish!

 

recipe very slightly adapted from Bon Appetit

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Caramel Apple Cinnamon Rolls with Bourbon Glaze

Long ago, in my college years, I loved drinking gin (and got the nickname Ginni). Now, I’m loving whiskey. Whiskey sours, whiskey Cokes and most recently I’ve been diggin’ it with some root beer. You know the saying “don’t cook with alcohol you won’t drink?” Well, I prefer Kessler in my drinks (flame away, people), but I used Bulleit in these cinnamon rolls.

Caramel Apple Cinnamon Rolls with Bourbon Glaze | doughseedough.net

I used my cinnamon roll dough (but used dairy ingredients compared to non-dairy) as the starting point and made three batches of caramel before I finally got it right.

These bourbon-glazed cinnamon rolls are a decadent morning pick-me-up. Some people like coffee in the morning. Some people like tea. Everybody likes boozy cinnamon rolls. So, go into your kitchen, whip up a batch of these bad boys, and present them to someone who has a case of the morning grumpies.

Caramel Apple Cinnamon Rolls with Bourbon Glaze | doughseedough.net

Caramel Apple Cinnamon Rolls with Bourbon Glaze
makes 12 cinnamon rolls

for the dough:

3/4 cup 1% milk
1/4 cup unsalted butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 1/4 teaspoon active dry yeast
1/4 cup warm water (110°F)
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, divided
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 large egg

for the filling:

4 cups diced crisp, tart apples (3 – 4 apples) – I used a combination of gala and granny smith
1 cup granulated sugar
1 1/4 cup 1% milk, warmed
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons butter, melted
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

for the glaze:

1 cup powdered sugar
1 tablespoon bourbon (I used Bulleit)
2 teaspoons 1% milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

 

to make the dough:

  1. Heat milk in a small saucepan over low heat. Add in butter and vanilla and stir until melted. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
  2. Meanwhile, combine yeast with warm water in a small bowl. Let sit for 10 minutes or until mixture is foamy.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook or in a large mixing bowl, combine 2 1/4 cups of the flour, sugar, and salt.
  4. Whisk egg into the milk mixture until well combined. Pour milk and yeast mixture into the dry ingredients and mix until dough forms a sticky ball. Add in remaining flour 1/4 cup at a time, kneading well after each addition, until dough turns smooth and soft but still slightly sticky. The amount of flour you use will vary, but I usually use about 3 1/4 cups.
  5. Lightly oil a large bowl. Form dough into a ball and place in bowl, turning to coat in oil. Cover and let rise in a warm place for 45 minutes.


to make the filling:

  1. Place apples in a pan over medium heat and cook until softened, about 3 – 5 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
  2. Next, prepare the caramel. Place granulated sugar in an even layer in a large pot over medium heat. Let cook, undisturbed, until sugar just starts to melt. Then, start stirring occasionally until sugar turns golden brown. Remove pot from heat and slowly (and carefully!) stir in warmed milk. Stir until well combined. If sugar hardens, don’t fret! Return the pot to the burner and cook slowly over medium-low heat. Stir constantly until the hardened sugar melts. This could take 15 minutes or longer. Continue to cook until caramel reaches desired consistency. Stir in salt and remove from heat to let cool.
  3. Stir 1/3 cup of the caramel sauce in with the cooked apples and set aside. Reserve the remainder of the caramel to drizzle over the cooked cinnamon rolls.
  4. Combine brown sugar with the cinnamon and set aside.


to assemble the cinnamon rolls:

  1. Lightly flour your work surface. Turn dough out onto floured surface and cover with plastic wrap. Let rest for 10 minutes.
  2. Roll dough out into a 20×13-inch rectangle. Spread butter onto the surface. Sprinkle with brown sugar and spread apple mixture evenly onto the surface, making sure to get it all the way to the edges.
  3. Starting at the long end closest to you, tightly roll the cinnamon roll up. Gently pinch the end to seal and turn the roll seam-side down. Cut into 12 even pieces. Place rolls cut-side down into a lightly greased 9×12-inch baking pan. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit for 45 minutes.
  4. Preheat oven to 350F.. Remove plastic wrap from the cinnamon rolls and bake in preheated oven for 25 – 30 minutes, or until golden brown. Allow the cinnamon rolls to cool slightly before icing so they have a chance to soak up the caramel and cinnamon sugar.
  5. While the rolls are cooling, prepare the glaze. In a medium bowl, combine powdered sugar, bourbon, milk, and vanilla and whisk until smooth.
  6. Drizzle glaze and caramel over the cinnamon rolls and serve.


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Spring Veggie Quinoa Power Bowls

Spring is here. With spring, comes spring cleaning. Most people clean out their closets and rid the house of dust bunnies. Why don’t ya take it one step further and clean up your lunchtime routine? Stop running to the closest fast food joint and prep this at home the night before instead. Your body will thank you.

I love quinoa for its amazing health benefits. It has protein, fiber, and iron, plus lots of vitamins and minerals to keep your body healthy and help it repair itself. It’s naturally gluten free and it is one of the few plant foods that is considered a complete protein. As an added bonus, the texture is really, really cool. It can be a bit on the pricier side when you compare it to other grains like pasta, bread, and rice, but it’s worth the cost. (Hint: I like getting it from Costco. They come in huge bags for a good price and it lasts forever.) Asparagus is also packed with fiber, vitamins, and antioxidants. How could you not love a veggie that is a cancer-fightin’, health-improvin’ machine?

spring veggie quinoa power bowls | doughseedough.net

This quinoa bowl is packed with goodness and is so easy to throw together. It’s ready in under 30 minutes and it’s good warm, cold or at room temp. What more could you ask for?

Spring Veggie Quinoa Power Bowls | doughseedough.net

Quinoa Power Bowls
serves 4

1 cup quinoa
2 cups low sodium chicken broth
olive oil spray
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 onion, thinly sliced
1 1/2 pounds asparagus, trimmed and chopped into 1 ½ – 2 inch pieces
1 bell pepper, thinly sliced
1 – 15 ounce can garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
1 large lemon, juiced
8 cups spring mix (lettuce or other salad base of choice works, too)
4 ounces feta cheese
1/2 cup almonds
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

  1. Bring chicken broth to a boil. Add quinoa and reduce heat to a simmer. Cover and cook until all liquid is absorbed, about 15 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, prepare the rest of the dish. Spray a large pan with olive oil. Add garlic and onion and saute for 1 – 2 minutes, or until onion softens. Add asparagus, bell pepper, and garbanzo beans and cook until vegetables are tender-crisp, about 3 – 4 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove from heat and squeeze lemon juice over the vegetables. Toss to combine.
  3. To serve, divide the spring mix between four bowls. Fluff quinoa with a fork and place on top of greens. Top with vegetables, feta, and almonds.

 

adapted from Clean Eating Magazine


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Recipe Remake: Crunchy Caramel Corn

 

Crunchy Caramel Corn | doughseedough.net

I’ve been making this caramel corn for years now, and it still hasn’t let me down. The results are consistently good and it couldn’t be easier. My step-dad loves this popcorn so much that I started making it for him for Christmas. This past holiday, I stuffed a 3-foot tall stocking full of caramel corn… and included some gift certificates for more batches of it throughout the year. He cashed in one of the gift certificates recently and here are the results. It was so irresistible that I ended up making two batches – one for him, and one for Mike and me. We may or may not have eaten the entire batch in just a few short days.

Crunchy Caramel Corn | doughseedough.net

Feel free to use more or less popcorn. I’ve started to use closer to 8 quarts of popcorn so that the caramel is a bit lighter and you get the occasional piece that isn’t 100% coated in caramel. Use just 6 quarts for a very in-your-face sweet, sweet caramel corn.

Crunchy Caramel Corn | doughseedough.net

Crunchy Caramel Popcorn
makes 6 – 8 quarts

3/4 cup butter
2 cups brown sugar
1/2 cup corn syrup
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
6 – 8 quarts air-popped popcorn

  1. Preheat oven to 250°F. Line three baking pans with foil or spray with cooking spray.
  2. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. Stir in brown sugar, corn syrup and salt. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Allow to boil, unstirred, for 4 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in soda and vanilla.
  3. Pour popcorn onto baking pans, dividing evenly between three pans.
  4. Pour caramel in a thin stream over popcorn, stirring to coat.
  5. Bake in preheated oven for one hour, stirring every 15 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool completely. Stir gently, breaking up large pieces. Serve immediately or store in air-tight container.

 

Tips for clean up – soak the pot and utensils in hot water. The sticky caramel will melt right off and there will be minimal scrubbing required. The foil in the pans will give you a quick, easy clean up. Just crumple up and toss!

 


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Fresh Pineapple Salsa

I’ve been loving the spring weather this week. All the snow is gone and the temps have been warm enough for me to run in a tee. Mike and I are hoping to take advantage of this weather by going on a nice, long hike and with the pups this weekend and then grilling out after. Fingers crossed that the forecast is wrong and that it doesn’t rain!

This pineapple salsa is sweet with the perfect amount of heat. It’s super versatile, too. I ate it with chicken, with pretzel thins, and even just straight-up with a spoon.

Fresh Pineapple Salsa | doughseedough.net

Fresh Pineapple Salsa

1/2 pineapple peeled, cored and cut into 1/4-inch dice (about 3 cups)
1/2 cup diced red onion
1 1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
1 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
salt and pepper, to taste

  1. In a large nonreactive bowl, stir together pineapple, onion, bell pepper, jalapeno, lime juice and cilantro. Season with salt and pepper.
  2. Refrigerate until ready to serve.


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Chocolate Chip Chickpea Blondies

Still here? You didn’t run away at the mention of chickpea + chocolate + blondie? Good. Trust me – these are delicious. They don’t taste anything like beans. All you get is a chewy, delicious peanut buttery blondie studded with chocolate chips.

Chocolate Chip Chickpea Blondies | doughseedough.net

The weird thing is, I actually found the unbaked batter to be tastier than the baked product. So you choose – bake it or just eat the batter by the spoonful. I won’t judge.

Chocolate Chip Chickpea Blondies | doughseedough.net

Chocolate Chip Chickpea Blondies

15 ounce can low-sodium chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 cup old fashioned oats
1/4 cup natural creamy peanut butter
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips, divided

  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Grease an 8×8 square pan and set aside.
  2. Drain and rinse the chickpeas well. Remove and discard the skins from the chickpeas. Place the skinned chickpeas into the bowl of a food processor and blend until smooth. Add in baking powder, baking soda, salt, sugar, vanilla, oats, and peanut butter. Blend until very smooth.
  3. Mix in 1/4 cup of the mini chocolate chips and spread into prepared pan. Sprinkle remaining 1/4 cup chocolate chips on top. Bake for 30 – 35 minutes, or until golden brown on top, being careful not to overcook. The blondies will appear to be undercooked, but they will firm as they cool.
  4. Allow to cool completely before cutting into 16 pieces and serving.

 

recipe slightly adapted from Chocolate Covered Katie


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Vegan Peanut Butter Cookies

I’ve been on a peanut butter kick lately. The rate at which I’m whipping through jars of peanut butter is kind of alarming. Peanut butter on toast with bananas or with some orange marmalade is a daily occurrence. Sometimes, I just eat a spoonful of peanut butter. I made these cookies because I needed another way to get peanut butter into my mouth. These peanut butter cookies are amazing. Soft and chewy and oh-so-addictive. They also happen to be the perfect Wisco to St. Louis road trip snack. Portable peanut buttery goodness.

Vegan Peanut Butter Cookies | doughseedough.net

 

 

I kind of regret not making more. Because the drive back home from STL is going to be very, very sad 😉  Do yourself a favor and make a double batch right away.

 

Vegan Peanut Butter Cookies | doughseedough.net

 

 

Vegan Peanut Butter Cookies

3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 cup natural creamy peanut butter
2 tablespoons unsweetened applesauce
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
pinch of salt

  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together baking flour, baking soda, sugar, and brown sugar. Stir in peanut butter, applesauce, and vanilla extract and mix until well combined. Sprinkle with salt to taste.
  3. Roll dough into balls about one inch in diameter and place two inches apart on a baking sheet. Bake for 8 minutes or until cookies are golden brown and cracked on top. Let cool completely on baking sheet.

 

recipe adapted from Chocolate Covered Katie