i've made a dangerous discovery. with two ingredients and about five minutes of prep time, i can have incredibly rich peanut butter cups whenever the craving strikes. there are many recipes out there for homemade peanut butter cups that involve adding powdered sugar or honey, but i really don't feel it's necessary to mess with the simplicity of the two ingredients. i mean, it's chocolate and peanut butter—you just can't go wrong with that combination!
salted dark chocolate peanut butter cups (makes 6 large cups)
about 7 oz dark chocolate 1/2 cup peanut butter (i used the kind you grind yourself at the store) pink himalayan sea salt, for topping
line a muffin tin with cupcake liners and set aside. pour the chocolate chips in a bowl and microwave on high in increments of thirty seconds, stirring in between. after about two or three thirty-second sessions, the chocolate should be nicely tempered (smooth and shiny.) pour a little bit of the melted chocolate into the liners and use the back of the spoon to coat the bottom and sides of the liner evenly. next, drop in a little bit of peanut butter and spread it to fill up the center. then pour more chocolate over the peanut butter to cover it completely and sprinkle salt on top of the cups. place muffin tin in the fridge for thirty minutes, or until the cups are set.
this is by no means a fancy recipe (or a groundbreaking discovery, for that matter), but lately i can't get enough of this meal—it works for breakfast, lunch and dinner. so simple, yet it feels special every time i make it!
to make: heat a frying pan over medium-high heat and add in a tiny bit of butter. once the butter is warm, place a corn tortilla in the pan and top it with white cheddar, baby spinach and a sprinkle of salt. top with another corn tortilla to make a quesadilla of sorts and flip when the first side is starting to brown. let the other side brown, then remove from heat. add a little more butter (if needed) and fry an egg to your liking. place the egg on top of the quesadilla, then add sliced avocado and cilantro. if i'm feeling extra hungry, i'll fry another egg, or serve this with black beans and sliced tomatoes.
happy friday! i've probably mentioned this a few (hundred) times, but i love having visitors here in portland. some friends from college are in town this weekend—can't wait to see them and put my portland favorites list to use!
whether you love it or hate it, valentine's day is tomorrow. personally, i'll take any excuse to gorge on sugar and send handmade notes to loved ones all over the country. drew and i are honoring our valentine's day tradition of skipping the pricey and overcrowded restaurants in favor of dinner and wine at home. then, after dinner, we go all out at pix—macarons, truffles, chocolate mousse. when it comes to dessert, we don't mess around!
in an effort to put off being a responsible adult, i made homemade granola for the first time yesterday. i may not have my taxes filed, but at least i have something delicious to top plain greek yogurt with for breakfast this week! and the best part of making granola from scratch? being able to control what does or doesn't go into it (rejoice! no raisins!)—this particular recipe has cardamom and cinnamon, which made my entire apartment smell heavenly.
cardamom pistachio granola adapted from the new york times 3 cups old-fashioned rolled oats 1 1/2 cups raw pistachios (with their shells on) 1/4 cup organic sugar (or honey or maple syrup) 1/4 tsp salt 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon 1/2 tsp ground cardamom 1/4 cup + 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
preheat oven to 300 degrees f. line a baking sheet with tin foil and set aside. remove the shells from the pistachios and give them a rough chop.
in a large bowl, combine oats, pistachios, sugar, salt, cinnamon and cardamom. next, add the olive oil and stir until all ingredients are incorporated. pour mixture onto the lined baking sheet and bake for about 50 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes. remove from pan and allow to cool completely before storing in an airtight container.
happy friday! my two favorite guys are playing tonight and i can barely contain my excitement. we've seen the wood brothers every february since we've been here—hard to believe it's been a whole year since the last show!
until recently, i'd put off making chana masala from scratch (anything with a long list of ingredients automatically intimidates me). i'm so grateful to have it in my recipe arsenal now, as drew came down with a wicked cold this past weekend and i've been doing my best not to catch it. i whipped up a batch the other day, and i'm hoping the lemon, garlic, ginger, turmeric and cayenne that help make this dish so delicious will also help keep this impending cold at bay!
1 tbsp butter (or coconut oil) 1 yellow onion, minced 1 clove garlic, minced 2 teaspoons fresh grated ginger 1 tbsp ground coriander 1/4 tsp ground cayenne 2 tsp ground turmeric 2 tsp smoked paprika 2 tsp garam masala 2 cups fresh tomatoes, finely chopped 1/3 cup water 1 (or 2, depending on how thick you want it) 15-oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed 1/2 tsp salt juice of 1 lemon
in a large skillet, heat butter over medium heat, then add onion, garlic and ginger. stir occasionally for about five minutes, or until the mixture has started to brown. turn heat down to medium-low and add coriander, cayenne, turmeric, paprika and garam masala. stir the spices constantly for about a minute or two, then add tomatoes and their juices to the mixture, scraping up any bits that have stuck to the bottom of the pan. next, add water and chickpeas. simmer uncovered for about ten minutes, then stir in lemon juice and salt. serve over brown rice with fresh cilantro for garnish.
happy friday! february in portland is kind of magical, as we usually get a sprinkling of gorgeous days throughout the month. i don't want to jinx anything, but it's looking like we may get enough sun to go for a hike this weekend!
ps — if you (unlike me) have money burning a hole in your wallet, check out my roundup of this week's shopping events.