Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Forget the cheese board—serve up a fry board for your Super Bowl party




Cheese boards are so 2019. This year, we’re all about the “Fry Board.” That’s right—the new trend trades in fancy cheeses and thinly sliced meats for all different kinds of French Fries. I’m talking crinkle cut fries, waffle fries, curly fries, sweet potato fries, and even tater tots. No form of fried potato is off limits. 

Serve the fries with whatever dips you fancy—store bought or homemade. My only recommendation is that you make sure the dips aren’t too thick. Otherwise your fry will break.

The only unfortunate part about the fry board is that fries tend to get cold quickly. That being said, I recommend reserving this glorious board for when you have a large number of people who can quickly consume fries.

There’s no right or wrong way to display them on your board. In fact, if you don’t have a large cheeseboard, a cookie sheet works just as well. That’s one of my favorite parts about the fry board—it looks just as delicious on a cookie sheet as it does on a fancy charcuterie board. I can’t say the same thing about a cheese board!

As far as dipping sauces go, the sky is the limit. I light to include a sweet sauce, a savory sauce, a spicy sauce, and a zesty sauce. Also, you should probably include normal ketchup just in case you have guests who don’t want to venture out of their comfort zone.

I used all frozen fries, except the sweet potato fries—I made those myself. The sauces, though, are homemade. I'm including the recipes in case you're interested in making your own sauces as well!

I got the idea for this fry board from The Delicious Life blog.

Peanut Sauce
Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 3 Tablespoons soy sauce
  • 3 Tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 Tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon ginger powder
  • 1 teaspoon chili flakes
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
Directions
  1. Whisk all ingredients together
Recipe adapted from Fox and Briar

Sriracha Ketchup
Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 2 Tablespoons Srirach
  • 2 Tablespoons honey
  • 1 Tablespoon rice vinegar
Directions
  1. Whisk all ingredients together
Recipe adapated from Serious Eats

Honey Mustard Dip
Ingredients
  • 1/3 cup dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup mayonaise
  • 3 Tablespoons honey
  • 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayene powder
Directions
  1. Whisk mustard and mayonise together, then whisk in remaining ingredients
Recipe adapted from The Novice Chef

Cool Ranch Dip
Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/3 cup mayonaise
  • 3 Tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 ranch seasoning packet
Directions
  1. Whisk all ingredients together
Recipe adapted from MyRecipes.com



Thursday, January 23, 2020

Cutie Pie



The best part about winter is the fact that it's citrus season, and one of my favorite snacks is Cuties. Cuties are delicious, sweet, easy to peel mandarin oranges.

As you can probably tell by the name of this recipe, Cuties were the inspiration behind this pie! There are a lot of different directions you can take an orange pie, but ultimately I decided to pair the filling with winter spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger. If you leave out the spices, it tastes more like a creamsicle—perfect for summer. Or you could make it with a chocolate cookie crust. I'm sure that would be delicious as well.

Some notes about the pie...

I only used egg yolks because I want the fat from the eggs to help the pie congeal, but egg whites are primarily water and would make the pie too runny.

I used orange juice concentrate as opposed to regular orange juice because it's seven times more concentrated than regular juice. This means you can get more orange flavor using less liquid.

Do not try to substitute sweetened condensed milk with evaporated milk. The consistencies are different, and the pie won't set.

An excellent addition to the pie is roasted Cutie segments. Citrus fruits take on an incredible flavor when they're roasted, and it makes a great addition to the top of the pie.

Cutie pie
Ingredients
  • For the crust
  • 2 cups (200 grams) gingersnap crumbs
  • 1/4 cup (50 grams) brown sugar
  • 6 Tablespoons Challenge butter, melted
For the filling
  • 14 ounces sweetened condensed milk
  • 3/4 cup orange juice concentrate
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 2 Tablespoons zest from Cutie mandarin oranges
  • 2 teaspoons orange extract (optional)
  • 1 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger
Directions
For the crust
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Combine gingersnap crumbs, brown sugar, and melted butter, and press into bottom of 9-inch pie pan, making sure it is tight and compact.
  3. Bake for 5 minutes.
For the filling
  1. Whisk together sweetened condensed milk with orange juice concentrate, egg yolks, orange zest, orange extract, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger.
  2. Pour filling into pie crust and bake 15 to 18 minutes until center of pie is firm but still jiggles slightly.
  3. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours before serving.





Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Chicken and apricot tagine, slow cooker and pressure cooker versions


I love using unique spices in my cooking, so naturally tagines are one of my favorite dishes. A tagine is a Moroccan dish that is best described as a very flavorful stew. The word “tagine” is also the name of the clay pot that was traditionally used to cook the dish.

Moroccan tagines have layers and layers of flavors. The dish pairs savory elements with sweet dried fruits. In this particular recipe that I’m sharing today, a heaping portion of dried apricots is balanced with savory chicken thighs and tangy preserved lemon.

Preserved lemons are an integral part in Moroccan cooking. The flavor is what will give your dish that “wow” factor. I purchase my preserved lemons on Amazon, but I’ve also seen them at Cost Plus World Market. If you don’t have any on hand, you can substitute 1/4 cup lemon juice, but just know that the flavor doesn’t even begin to compare to that of a preserved lemon.

I have a few tips to share when making this dish. The first is that you can buy bags of chopped up butternut squash in the freezer section. I didn’t realize that until recently. I find butternut squash to be a pain to prepare, so this is a HUGE time-saver. Also, I loathe chipping onions, so I use this trick with onions as well.

Second, I realize if you don’t already own these spices, it can be expensive to purchase everything. I recommend buying the spices in bulk at either Whole Foods or a local spice shop. It’s incredible how much money you can save that way.

I prepared this tagine two different ways: using an Instant Pot and a slow cooker.

The recipes are nearly identical, but there is one big difference. If you are preparing this in a pressure cooker, you should add one 28-ounce can of died tomatoes with the juices. The reason is because pressure cookers require more liquid to cook than slow cookers. The slow cooker will produce a lot of moisture on its own without the added liquid.

And one last thing, please don’t skimp out on using fresh herbs. I used cilantro, but if you prefer, use parsley. It’s another big contributor to the “wow” factor.

I served this dish with pearl couscous and Greek yogurt. Pita is tagines’ friend as well because who doesn’t love bread in every way, shape, and form?

Chicken and apricot tagine, slow cooker version
Ingredients
  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 1 white onion, diced
  • 2 Tablespoons minced ginger 
  • 1 Tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 small cinnamon stick
2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
2 teaspoons turmeric
2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoons ground black pepper
  • Pinch of saffron
  • 1 preserved lemon
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 2 pounds butternut squash, cubed
  • 1 cup dried apricots, halved
  • 1/2 bunch cilantro, chopped
  • 6 green onions, chopped
  • Cooked couscous, pita for serving
  • Plain yogurt, toasted almonds for topping 
Directions
  1. Warm a skillet on stovetop to medium heat. Place chicken thighs in skillet and cook without moving the chicken until side is browned, or about 6 to 8 minutes. Remove chicken from skillet, place on plate, and set aside.
  2. Add the onion to the skillet and saute until soft, or about 3 minutes. 
  3. Add minced ginger and garlic and saute for 1 minute. 
  4. Add spices to skillet and cook until fragrant, or about 30 seconds.
  5. Add preserved lemon and lemon juice, stirring well and using the lemon juice to deglaze the pan and scrape off any brown bits that formed on the bottom of the pan. Remove from heat.
  6. Dump the butternut squash and dried apricots into the bottom of the slow cooker. Add half of the onion and spice mixture on top. 
  7. Layer the browned chicken thighs on top and the other half of the onion and spice mixture over the chicken.
  8. Cook on low for 4 to 6 hours or until the squash is soft and the chicken shreds easily.
  9. Once dish is cooked, stir in cilantro and green onions.
  10. Serve with cooked couscous, pita, and or yogurt. Sprinkle almonds on top.

Chicken and apricot tagine, pressure cooker version
Ingredients
  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 1 white onion, diced
  • 2 Tablespoons minced ginger 
  • 1 Tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 small cinnamon stick
2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
2 teaspoons turmeric
2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoons ground black pepper
  • Pinch of saffron
  • 1 preserved lemon
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1 (28 ounce) can diced tomatoes, juices included
  • 2 pounds butternut squash, cubed
  • 1 cup dried apricots, halved
  • 1/2 bunch cilantro, chopped
  • 6 green onions, chopped
  • Cooked couscous, pita for serving
  • Plain yogurt, toasted almonds for topping 
Directions
  1. Warm Instant Pot to saute setting. Place chicken thighs in skillet and cook without moving the chicken until side is browned, or about 6 to 8 minutes. Remove chicken from Instant Pot, place on plate, and set aside.
  2. Add the onion to the Instant Pot and saute until soft, or about 3 minutes. 
  3. Add minced ginger and garlic and saute for 1 minute. 
  4. Add spices to skillet and cook until fragrant, or about 30 seconds.
  5. Add preserved lemon and lemon juice, stirring well and using the lemon juice to deglaze the Instant Pot and scrape off any brown bits that formed on the bottom. Turn off saute setting.
  6. Return chicken to Instant Pot and stir with onion and spice mixture.
  7. Dump in the can of diced tomatoes and stir to combine with the rest of the ingredients.
  8. Add butternut squash and dried apricots to the Instant Pot.
  9. Close the lid and cook on high pressure for 12 minutes.
  10. Let the pressure release naturally. Open the lid and stir in cilantro and green onions.
  11. Serve with cooked couscous, pita, and or yogurt. Sprinkle almonds on top.
Recipes adapted from this recipe by the New York Times


Friday, December 6, 2019

3 easy holiday snacks you can make in the microwave







This is a sponsored post by Challenge butter, but the text and opinions are all mine. Thank you for supporting brands that make Kylee's Kitchen possible!

Cookie plates are everywhere this time of year, but I've always preferred holiday snacks. Obviously, there are many things I love about snacks, but one of my favorite things is that it's harder to measure how much I've eaten so I feel less guilty about myself. Is that nuts? (lame snack joke)

The following three snack recipes are incredibly easy. I made them in the microwave for heaven's sake!

When I first made the nut mixture, I didn't brown the butter, and it was definitely tasty. But it was INCREDIBLE when I tried it with brown butter, and I knew there was no going back. I can't believe how much brown butter can elevate a recipe.

I want to point out one very important thing: It is imperative that you use a large microwave-safe bowl and a cover when browning the butter. The butter will explode everywhere in your microwave if you try to use a tupperware container. Yes, I know from personal experience.

Toasted Brown Butter Rosemary Nuts
Ingredients
  • 3 cups unsalted raw mixed nuts
  • 3 Tablespoons Challenge unsalted butter
  • 3 Tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 3 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoons cayenne pepper (add 1/4 teaspoon more if you like spice)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Directions
  1. Place mixed nuts in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave for 2 minutes to toast the nuts.
  2. Put butter in large microwave-safe bowl and cover bowl. Microwave for 2 minutes. Remove from bowl and stir. Continue to microwave in 30-second intervals until the butter is amber in color and there are brown flakes of butter at the bottom of the bowl.
  3. Remove butter from microwave. Stir in brown sugar, rosemary,  salt, cayenne pepper, cumin, and black pepper.
  4. Add nuts to bowl and mix to combine.
  5. Microwave in 30-second increments for 4 minutes, stirring each time.
  6. Spread out nuts in single layer on parchment paper and let cool before serving.
Recipe adapted from No Spoon Necessary


White Chocolate Peppermint Popcorn
Ingredients
  • 24 cups (about 2 microwave bags) popped plain popcorn (sea salt is fine, but not buttered popcorn)
  • 12 ounces white chocolate or white candy coating
  • 1/2 cup peppermint candies (about 8 candy canes)
  • Red sprinkles (optional)
Directions
  1. Spread out popcorn in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper
  2. Crush candy canes by placing them in bag and smashing them with rolling pin
  3. Melt white chocolate in microwave in 30-second intervals until smooth, stirring each time. It should take about 2 minutes.
  4. Drizzle white chocolate over popcorn and sprinkle with crushed peppermint candies and sprinkles.
  5. Allow white chocolate to harden before breaking into pieces and serving.
Recipe adapted from Taste of Home


Chai-spiced granola
Ingredients
  • 4 cups rolled oats
  • 1 1/2 cups mixed nuts
  • 1/2 cups unsweetened coconut
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted, or olive oil
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
Directions
  1. Microwave just the granola in microwave safe bowl for 2 minutes, stirring at the 1-minute mark.
  2. Combine all other ingredients with the oats and microwave on high for 4 minutes, stirring after every minute. The oats should start to brown.
  3. Cool granola on parchment paper before serving. 

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Purple Sweet Potato Pie with Ginger Snap Crust



This is a sponsored post by Challenge butter, but the text and opinions are all mine. Thank you for supporting brands that make Kylee's Kitchen possible!

I want to preface this post by saying I am a certified sweet potato enthusiast. Sweet potatoes are one of my favorite parts of Thanksgiving dinner, and I’ve prepared them most every way imaginable.

I was in Whole Foods last week, and I spotted Stokes purple sweet potatoes. I had never tasted purple sweet potatoes, but I immediately envisioned making a beautiful pie out of them! When is the last time you’ve see a purple pie?!

Their taste differs slightly from orange sweet potatoes. It's bit winey with hints of rose.

One thing I want to point out is I made the filling for this pie in a food processor. The reason being is because sweet potatoes can be stringy, so you definitely want something that can break that all up. There's nothing worse than a stringy or lumpy sweet potato pie!

One of my favorite parts about this pie is the ginger snap cookie crust. It really elevates the flavor and complements the sweet potatoes well. Also, I love any reason not to make a traditional crust that needs to be rolled out.

Purple Sweet Potato Pie with Ginger Snap Crust and Brown Sugar Meringue
Yield: Serves 8 people
Ingredients
For the Crust
  • 1 1/2 cups (140 grams) ginger snap cookies
  • 6 Tablespoons Challenge butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar (50 grams)
For the filling
  • 400 grams purple sweet potatoes (should yield about 2 cups cooked)
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup Challenge butter, melted
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
For the meringue
  • 4 large egg whites
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1 cup brown sugar (213 grams)
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Directions
For the crust
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
  2. Crush ginger snap cookies in food processor. Combine with melted butter and brown sugar.
  3. Press mixture into pie pan, starting at the bottom and working your way up the sides
  4. Bake crust for 5 minutes. Set aside.
For the filling
  1. Boil sweet potatoes for about 50 minutes. Remove potatoes from pot and peel skin off. It should come off easily, but if not, boil a little longer.
  2. Put peeled sweet potatoes in food processor and blend until smooth.
  3. Add brown sugar, heavy cream, melted butter, eggs, vanilla extract, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt to food processor and blend until smooth. The filling should be the consistency of a thick pudding.
  4. Dump filling into crust and smooth top.
  5. Put foil around pie crust edges! I know when you bake pies you normally don't do this right away, but the ginger snap crust will burn if you don't do this!
  6. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for about 45 to 50 minutes. A toothpick inserted into the center of the pie should come out clean.

For the meringue
  1. In large mixing bowl, beat egg whites and salt on low speed until they’re frothy, about 1 minute.
  2. Add cream of tartar and increase mixer speed to medium, continuing to beat until egg whites are forming soft peaks.
  3. Meanwhile, combine brown sugar and water in small saucepan and bring to boil. Do not stir.
  4. Continue boiling until the temperature reaches 238 degrees, or about 5 minutes.
  5. Slowly pour brown sugar mixture into egg whites, all while still mixing the egg whites. Continue beating until the peaks are firm and glossy.
  6. Add the vanilla.
  7. Spoon the meringue onto the pie filling or pipe it on.
  8. Use a kitchen torch or a broiler to toast the meringue.

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