Thursday, December 21, 2006

Cinnamon Roll Coffee Cake

Recently, my children were introduced to the concept of "dessert for breakfast" in the form of coffee cake. While we were visiting my husband's relatives for Thanksgiving, my Mother-in-Law made us a coffee cake on the morning we left to drive home. My daughter, Hannah, was so excited, she giggled to her sister: "Its like dessert! For breakfast!!" She really thought we were getting away with something! Can you tell that she doesn't like oatmeal for breakfast? As far as she is concerned, this is a dream come true.

So, shortly after our return, the children begged me to make a coffee cake for breakfast. I had been eyeing a recipe in a recent issue of Cuisine at Home. It looked so good but so...high calorie. Oh well, I made it anyway.

Oh my it was wonderful!!! I have to say that it is too rich for every day fare, but Sean has now declared it our official Christmas Morning breakfast, thus displacing our typical Christmas breakfast of Blueberry Muffins. I think it is a good idea to only associate this particular recipe with a once-a-year tradition. That many butter, nuts and eggs on a regular basis could result in the onset of premature death!

"Cinnamon Roll" Coffee Cake

Makes one 9" cake
Total time: About 1 1/2 hours
Only about a million calories!

For the Caramel-
Stir Together:
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup heavy cream
Pinch of salt
1 cup chopped pecans

For The Streusel-

1/2 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, sliced
1 1/2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
1/4 tablespoons salt

For The Cake-
Whisk Together:
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup lowfat vanilla yogurt (I used plain)
2 eggs
Sift Together:
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon table salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees; coat a 9" cake pan with nonstick spray. [It should be a pan with rather high sides; my pan was a bit short and the caramel dripped out the sides a bit. I just used a regular 9 inch round pan.]

together brown sugar, cream, and salt for the caramel. Pour into prepared pan and spread to coat the bottom. Sprinkle pecans over the caramel.

brown sugar, flour, butter, cinnamon, and salt for the streusel in a food processor. Pulse until small clumps form; set aside

Whisk buttermilk, yogurt, and eggs together for the cake in a measuring cup with a pour spout.
Sift flour, baking powder, soda, and salt onto a paper plate.

Cream butter and sugar with a mixer just until combined. Alternately add dry and wet ingredients, starting and ending with the dry. Blend each addition just until incorporated.

Spread half the batter over the caramel, then sprinkle with half the streusel. Carefully spread remaining batter over that and top with remaining steusel. Bake 50-60 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Cool cake for 5 minutes on a rack, then run a paring knife around the sides to loosen. Invert onto a serving platter while hot, then let cool slightly before slicing. Due to the sticky top, an electric knife is best for cutting, but a sharp, thin bladed knife is fine too.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Low Calorie Chickpea Stew

I've just been downright lazy lately. I have things to post, but what I apparently lack at the moment is the motivation. I'm not going to promise to post more often or anything, but I just wanted all 3 of my readers out there to know that I'm alive and posting occasionally...

This was an adaptation of a recipe from a WW cookbook. I really liked it and it filled me up nicely. It has chicken in it, but I think it would be good without the chicken too.

Chickpea Stew

In a large dutch oven or sauce pan, melt and brown (but do not burn):

2 teaspoons butter

Add, saute for several minutes:
1 frozen chicken breast half (mine was huge, so I used only one, feel free to use as much as you want), thawed and cut into chunks
1 med onion, chopped
1 annehiem chili, chopped
1 carrot, peeled and chopped big
1 turnip, peeled and chopped
1 cup diced eggplant
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon tumeric

Add, simmer until vegetables are soft, and liquid has cooked down (about 20 minutes):

1 1/4 cups chicken broth (I opened a can and used the other 1/2 cup in the Harissa sauce)
1 can diced tomatoes

Add, simmer 2 minutes more:
1 zucchini, chopped big
1 cup cooked chickpeas
2 tablespoons raisins

Serve with:

Red Pepper (Harissa) Sauce

1/2 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
2 jarred roasted red peppers, chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1/4-1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro

Blend in a food processor until smooth

Friday, December 01, 2006


So, I made sushi a few weeks ago! Looks beautiful, doesn't it! There are many tutorials online about making sushi. Take a look!

I filled my sushi with cucumbers, radishes, avocado, and tofu. I didn't have any fake crabmeat on hand, but I did have some tofu. So I sliced it into strips and marinated it in some teriyaki sauce for a while. To be on the safe side, bacterially speaking, I cooked the tofu in a fry pan before using it in my sushi. Everyone loved it, so I guess it worked out fine, lol.

If you and your family love sushi, you really need to give this a try. We also bought some wasabi and pickled ginger to go with it, although I think I'll try pickling my own ginger next time.

Lastly, I also made some absolutely wonderful miso soup to go with it. Alas, I have yet to actually get a decent picture of it, so you will have to forgive me for this picture. Here it is:

Miso soup really deserves its own entry, and I'll do just that some day. Until then, read about it at Maki's blog: I Was Really Just Very Hungry.