Herby Vegan Compound Butter

Herby Vegan Compound Butter - Candy Coated Culinsta

Herby Vegan Compound Butter – Candy Coated Culinsta

I love compound butter; but I don’t necessarily want to partake in all the yummy delicious artery clogging full fat butter. Therefore, here is my version of compound butter that I use on veggies and on proteins.

Prep Time: 10 min.
Difficulty level is: Easy

Ingredients
• 400g vegan margarine
• 1 tbsp fresh rosemary
• 1 tbsp fresh thyme
• Handful fresh dill
• Handful fresh parsley
• 2 tbsp fresh oregano

Assembly
1. Using a food processor chop fresh herbs
2. Place vegan margarine in food processor.
3. Blend herbs and butter together.
4. On a long piece of wax paper place butter in the middle and form butter into a cylinder.
5. Twist the edges and place in freezer for 30 minutes.
6. Take butter out of the freezer and cut butter into discs and roll back up and use as needed on vegetables or meat.

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
I love having a stack of discs in my freezer to use whenever I want. It is handy and an excellent way to use up all those fresh herbs that may be about to turn.

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Green Bean Maple Bacon Baskets

Green Bean Maple Bacon Bundles - Candy Coated Culinista

Green Bean Maple Bacon Bundles – Candy Coated Culinista

I believe maple and bacon go great with anything and I tested that theory with these green beans for Sunday dinner.

Yield/Serving: 5
Prep Time: 5 min.
Cook Time: 20 – 25 min.
Difficulty level is: Easy

Slightly altered from Williams Sonoma

Ingredients
• 3 slices of bacon, cut into half
• 6 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
• ½ tsp garlic powder
• ½ tsp onion powder
• 1 pound green beans, trimmed
• 1 tbsp pure Canadian maple syrup

Assembly
1. Pre-heat oven to 350°F line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. Using a frying pan, fry bacon until it just begins to brown and place on a paper towel to drain.
3. On low heat melt butter and add garlic and onion powder.
4. Once butter had melted add maple syrup and set aside.
5. Made green bean bundles and wrap with bacon and then brush butter mixture on green beans and bake for 20 to 25 minutes.

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
These didn’t look like the picture at all as the green beans were shriveled versus firm in the picture. This is probably because I didn’t blanche the beans first. Either way this was such a great side and so flavorful. I will make this again blanched first or not.

Radish Butter

Radish Butter - Candy Coated Culinista

Radish Butter – Candy Coated Culinista

A vegetable I hardly use, but thought to create something new and exciting from these radishes.

Yield/Serving: 1 ½ – 2 cups
Prep Time: 5 min
Cook Time: 2 min.
Difficulty level is: Easy

Ingredients
• 10 – 12 radishes, halved
• 1 stick (8 tbsp) of unsalted butter, cut into smaller pieces
• Salt, to taste
• Black pepper, to taste

Assembly
1. Trim the radishes and halve.
2. Place into a food processor and pulse until finely chopped.
3. Add butter to the food processor and pulse until smooth.
4. Add salt and pepper.

Tips
• Serve on a toasted baguette.
• Serve as a topping for salmon or any other fish.

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
This was slightly peppery, totally fresh and tasty. It tasted great on the baguette and as I had lots left over I thought radish butter would be a great accompaniment on top of some salmon.

Buttery Balsamic Green Beans

Buttery Balsamic Green Beans - Candy Coated Culinista

Buttery Balsamic Green Beans – Candy Coated Culinista

Sweet, buttery, tart and salty and on a beautiful vegetable… this can’t get any better.

Yield/Serving: 2
Prep Time: 5 min.
Cook Time: 10 min.
Difficulty level is: Easy

Ingredients
• Green beans, 2 handfuls
• 2 tbsp Vegetarian margarine
• 1 tbsp Agave Nectar
• 1 tbsp Raspberry Balsamic Vinegar
• 1/3 cup Dried Cranberries
• Feta Cheese, to taste

Assembly
1. Using a saucepan; bring water to a boil.
2. Add green beans into a steamer basket cover and reduce to medium heat and steam until just cooked.
3. Place steamed green beans in a bowl and add margarine, agave nectar and raspberry balsamic vinegar and coat.
4. Add dried cranberries and mix.
5. Plate and sprinkle feta cheese on top and serve.

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
I made this recipe with what was in my panty and fridge and this turned out amazing. I love how some of my best recipes come from just what is on hand at the time. I have already made this simple recipe twice already and I will continue to make this time and time again. The dressing is a great way to get that picky eater to at least take a few bites of a not so favorite vegetable. I did however have to take their portion; because I just knew it all wouldn’t be eaten. A valiant effort was made and it was appreciated.

Peanut Butter Cream Pie

Peanut Butter Cream Pie - Candy Coated Culinista

Peanut Butter Cream Pie – Candy Coated Culinista

For Christmas dinner at the in-laws I departed from my usual desserts. Typically I make Christmas desserts, with candy canes, peppermint, pumpkin, chocolate, molasses or cranberries (those common Christmas flavours), but this year the in-law Christmas was on December 27th and I was tired and not feeling making an elaborate dessert. I decided to make only one dessert and hoped it would turn out and taste good. This quick and easy almost no bake dessert (only the pie crusts) is a light, fluffy and complimented a filling Christmas dinner.

Slightly altered From Joy the Baker – Homemade Decadence

Yield/Serving: 1- 9” pie & 2- mini pies
Prep Time: 30 min.
Difficulty level is: Easy

Ingredients
• 2 cups graham cracker crumbs
• ¾ cups chocolate cookie crumbs
• ½ cup unsalted butter, melted
• 1½ cups heavy cream
• 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, at room temperature
• ¼ cup packed light brown sugar
• ¼ teaspoon salt
• 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
• 1 cup smooth all-natural peanut butter
• Caramel drizzle
• Bittersweet chocolate drizzle
• Chopped peanuts
• 1½ cups heavy cream
• 1 tbsp vanilla extract

Assembly
Pie
1. Pre-heat oven to 350°F. Have a 9” pie plate and two mini pie plates at the ready.
2. In a small bowl melt the butter in the microwave.
3. Using a large bowl pour in half of the melted butter in and mix the graham cracker crumbs until moist.
4. Press crumbs into the bottom and up the sides of pie plate.
5. Using a medium bowl pour in half of the melted butter in and mix the chocolate cookie crumbs until moist.
6. Press crumbs into the bottom and up the sides of two pie plates.
7. Bake the pie crusts in center of the oven, covered with aluminum foil, for 10 min and let cool.
8. Using an electric mixer with the whisk attachment, beat the cream until it holds soft peaks, 4 to 5 minutes and then transfer to a medium bowl.
9. In the same bowl of the electric mixer (you don’t have to rinse it out) using the whisk attachment, beat the cream cheese on medium speed until smooth, about 3 minutes.
10. Add the brown sugar, salt, and vanilla extract and beat well.
11. Add in the peanut butter until smooth.
12. Gently fold in a quarter of the whipped cream and then continue to gently fold in another quarter of the whipped cream. Add in the remaining whipped cream until the mixture is well incorporated but still fluffy.
13. Using a spatula spread the filling into the prepared crusts.
14. Refrigerate pie for at least 4 hours.
15. Once pie has chilled, melt caramel and bittersweet chocolate and drizzle over the pie using a fork and sprinkle peanuts over top.
Whipped Topping
16. Just before serving, using an electric mixer with the whisk attachment, beat the cream and vanilla extract until it holds soft peaks, 4 to 5 minutes and top pies and serve.

Tips
• The pie will last, well wrapped in the refrigerator, for up to 4 days.

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
It was enjoyed by all and I was a fan of the light and creaminess of the pie. This was my first time ever having a cream pie, so I don’t have a comparison but I know I enjoyed this.

Food Diaries: The Pie Commission

Food Diaries: The Pie Commission - Candy Coated Culinista

Food Diaries: The Pie Commission – Candy Coated Culinista

“Gourmet-style handheld savoury pies born and baked in Toronto.”

Place: The Pie Commission
Location: 935 The Queensway (Entrance at rear – located off Queen Elizabeth Blvd), Toronto, Ontario, M8Z 1P3
Phone: 416-848-7427
Hours: Monday-Thursday: 11am – 7pm, Friday 11am – 8pm, Saturday: 11am – 6pm

5” individual round pies are made from scratch in-house, using natural ingredients – premium cuts of Canadian meat, the freshest produce and homemade beef, chicken and vegetable stock all placed in an all butter crust. Pies can also be purchased hot (to eat now) or frozen (to eat later) at a later time.

When I drove up to the Pie Commission, I was expecting a smaller store footprint as the directions were at the rear, but I was pleasantly surprised. It was also very bust and the 7 or so parking spaces were full and customers were parking across the street in a factory’s side lot. (This is a good sign to me)

Before entering I read the menus outside. The standard menu includes: Braised Beef Rib Pie, Beef ‘n Beer Pie, Butter Chicken Pie, Chicken Cheddar Bacon Mash Pie and Veg-ilicious Pie (Vegetarian). Also visited there was a seasonal menu that consisted of: Hog Squash, Lobster + Shrimp, Caplansky “Reuben” Pie and Marky + Sparky’s Pulled Pork and Jerk Chicken. I believe the Caplansky’s is named after Caplansky’s Delicatessen & Marky + Sparky’s Smokehouse. I’m not sure if they use their meat or the pies are just inspired by them, but I loved the Toronto reference and keeping it local. It gives me the feeling there is a sense of community within the food industry.

I selected the Chicken Cheddar Bacon Mash Pie – Chicken along with cheesy bacon mashed potato in the pie and for Mr. C. I got him the Pulled Pork BBQ from their seasonal menu. We split everything so we could get a good sampling of their offerings. I also served the pies with a side of organic baby romaine, grape tomatoes and green onion with lemon poppy-seed dressing to give us a balanced meal.

The crust for these pies were to die for, they were buttery and so flaky. I found that I couldn’t taste the bacon in the Chicken Cheddar Bacon Mash, but that didn’t make me dislike the pie in any way. It was so so good and the cheese added creaminess to the mashed potatoes. The Marky + Sparky’s Pulled Pork was saucier that I expected and I welcomed that, as I love anything with a sauce. I found this pie was much denser as it was packed with a lot of pulled pork.

For dessert we split a Lemon, Lime Orange Chess Pie. It tasted like pie I have made before, but it was still delicious. A chess pie is a simple pie with a crust and filling made from, eggs, butter, sugar and vanilla and was originally an English pie said the cashier.

Sides on the menu included fresh hand cut fries, gravy, chipotle lime mayo, mixed green salad, coleslaw along with the soup of the day, and desserts like pies, fresh fruit crumbles and cookies and a selection of canned or bottle drinks.

The 3 items came to $25.36 – not the cheapest considering the size of the pie, but quality ingredients go into the pies and it was so filling I couldn’t eat my slice of pie and had to wait until the next day. I would definitely visit them again.

Food Diaries: The Pie Commission - Candy Coated Culinista

Food Diaries: The Pie Commission – Candy Coated Culinista

Bourbon-Pecan Blondies with Maple Butter Glaze

Bourbon-Pecan Blondies with Maple Butter Glaze - Candy Coated Culinista

Bourbon-Pecan Blondies with Maple Butter Glaze – Candy Coated Culinista

I have been taking a break from the cooking club and baking for awhile. I have this policy when it comes to trying others recipes; show me something new or that I have never made before and I will always give it a go. This week there was something that fit the category and it’s blondies. Now I have a recipe for a white chocolate blondies that I use once and awhile, but this recipe caught my attention and I of course put a serious twist on the original recipe. I had the intention of actually sticking to this recipe from beginning to end, but then I got inspired. See my picture here in the Chateliane gallery.

Altered from Chatelaine

Yield/Serving: 12 squares
Prep Time: 30 min.
Cook Time: 30-35 min.
Difficulty level is: Medium

Ingredients
• ½ cup golden raisins
• ¼ cup bourbon
• ½ cup unsalted butter, melted
• 1 cup chopped toasted pecans
• 1 cup all-purpose flour
• ¼ tsp baking powder
• 1/8 tsp salt
• ¼ cup granulated sugar
• ½ cup turbinado sugar
• 2 eggs
• 1 tbsp corn syrup
• ¾ cup shredded coconut
Maple Glaze
• ¼ cup unsalted butter
• ¼ cup pure maple syrup
• ¼ cup confectioner’s sugar

Assembly
1. Pre-heat oven to 350°F.
2. Spray an 8” x 8” baking dish with cooking spray.
3. Line the dish with parchment paper and let excess overhang the sides.
4. In a small microwave safe bowl place raisins in and pour bourbon over top and stir.
5. Microwave for 3 – 4 minutes, stirring every minute until all the bourbon is absorbed into the raisins.
6. In another small microwave safe bowl melt butter and set aside.
7. Using a frying pan on medium-high heat toast the pecans. Ensure you watch the pecans as they will toast up fast and move from toasted to burnt in a flash.
8. Using a medium sized bowl, whisk flour, baking powder and salt.
9. In a large bowl, whisk the sugars, eggs and corn syrup together and then slowly pour melted butter over the mixture and continue to whisk.
10. Fold flour into the egg mixture until no streaks remain using a spatula.
11. Stir in the raisins, coconut flakes and a half cup of pecans.
12. Pour the mixture into prepared pan evenly and sprinkle the top with the remaining pecans.
13. Pressed down the pecans on top with the spatula.
14. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until a cake tester inserted comes out clean; and start preparing the maple glaze and set aside once boiled.
15. Move pan and let cool on a wire rack.
Maple Glaze
1. In a small saucepan melt butter and stir in maple syrup & brown sugar.
2. Bring to a boil over medium heat for two minutes and let cool slightly.
3. Drizzle the warm glaze over the blondies.
4. Remove from pan and cut into squares and serve, preferably with vanilla ice cream.

Tips
• Kid Friendly – Replace bourbon with a ¼ cup water and 1 tsp vanilla.
• If you have leftover glaze, it can be kept in the fridge for up to a week and can be also drizzled on ice cream if desired.

Please Enjoy

Review
Mr. C. said the moment a blondie hit his mouth. “Ooooo, Mmmmmm, Oh this is great hun”

The reviews at Mr. C’s office were glowing and everyone loved them, no leftovers.

“I just finished eating some cookies, so it brought my mind back to Wednesday. What lingers in my memory is the pecans, – the taste and the texture. they were toasted perfectly. They added a nice flavour to the blondie mixture which was already good.”

My thoughts
I haven’t really been in the mood to bake or cook for my blog recently; but I prepare for my blog in such a way that I always have a steady stream of recipes ready to post even when life gets in the way or I’m feeling unmotivated or in a rut. That being said this recipe rejuvenated me and I already have to make this recipe again for my co-workers. They asked how my baking turned out and saw the pictures and said, “Excuse me, but where’s our treats” and this makes me really happy and energized to start back again. I am gushing a little with this recipe to be honest. I loved how this recipe looked raw and if it looks appetizing raw it’s going to be a hit baked and drizzled with some glaze. This had the perfect amount sweetness and the shredded coconut added an extra note along with the drunken raisins. The raisins to me didn’t really taste to bourbon infused, but they tasted great just the same. I thought of adding a glaze of some sort to make sure this recipe had that extra something going on and it did. It was flavourful, sweet and not too heavy to feel like a typical dessert. My best recipes always come when I feel inspired and rejuvenated, and sometimes taking a step back is what’s needed to come back firing on all four cylinders.

Bourbon-Pecan Blondies with Maple Butter Glaze - Candy Coated Culinista

Bourbon-Pecan Blondies with Maple Butter Glaze – Candy Coated Culinista

Garlic Dill Butter

Garlic Dill Butter - Candy Coated Culinista

Garlic Dill Butter – Candy Coated Culinista

After my Mediterranean Inspired Dinner I had a lot of dill left over and as I am not one to waste, I immediately said “dill butter”.

Yield/Serving: 400g
Prep Time: 10 min
Cook Time: 5 min
Difficulty level is: Easy

Ingredients
• 1 cup fresh dill, finely chopped
• 8 cloves garlic, finely minced
• ¼ cup parsley, finely chopped
• 1 ¼ cup vegetable margarine, margarine or unsalted butter
• 1 tsp black pepper
• 1 tsp sea salt

Assembly
1. Chop and mince dill, garlic and parsley and pour into a bowl along with the margarine.
2. Season with salt and pepper.
3. Mix until well combined.

Tips
• Don’t over salt whatever you are putting the dill butter on.
• Use unsalted butter to control how much salt you want in the butter if any.
• Scoop out portions and freeze to use at a later date. Wrap in some wax paper and cover with cling film and place in a freezer bag.

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
I made these to accompaniment my baby potatoes and this tasted amazing. I could still taste the fresh dill and the aromatics of the garlic and dill. I also bought some mini ciabatta breads and prepared dill garlic bread for snacks and to accompany pasta dinners.

Flourless Almond Butter Triple Chocolate Chip Cookies

Flourless Almond Triple Chocolate Chip Cookies - Candy Coated Culinista

Flourless Almond Triple Chocolate Chip Cookies – Candy Coated Culinista

I made these Monday night on a whim. I left work feeling energized and wanting to bake even though on Sunday I had done 3 recipes during my hectic day: Cupcake Decorating #1, Gluten-Free Brownies and Garlic Dill Butter– (the last two to be posted very soon). I got great reviews from this recipe by Mr. C’s co-workers so this baby is being fast-tracked to post. So his colleagues can enjoy this recipe.

Yield/Serving: 12 cookies
Prep Time: 10 min
Cook Time: 8-12 min
Difficulty level is: Easy

Ingredients
• 1 egg
• 1 ¼ cup almond butter (100% almonds)
• ¼ cup golden brown sugar
• ¼ cup Demerara sugar
• 1 tsp baking soda
• ¼ cup bittersweet chocolate chips
• ¼ cup milk chocolate chips
• ½ cup swirl milk chocolate chips (white & milk chocolate)
• 1 tsp coconut extract

Assembly
1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
2. Line two cookie sheets with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper.
3. Whisk egg in a large bowl.
4. Add almond butter, sugars and baking soda and combine until well incorporated.
5. Add the chocolate chips and fold until combined.
6. Using a tablespoon, scoop out about one to one and one half tablespoons onto the baking mat or baking sheet.
7. Brush coconut extract onto the top of the cookies and bake in 2 batches of 6 cookies.
8. Bake for 8-12 minutes for a softer cookie. If you would like a crispier cookie increase the cook time by 2 minutes, but keep an eye on the oven.
9. Let cookies cool on the baking mat/parchment paper for 15 minutes, as they will seem too soft. They will require this time to firm up.
10. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Tips
• 3 days later the cookie the almond cookies is still soft. This probably can last 5-7 days in a sealed container at room temperature.

Please Enjoy

Reviews
I had intended to make almond cookies with flour awhile back along with my PB & JJ Thumbprint & Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookies, but I felt I was making too many cookies. Mr. C. and I attempted to consume the almond butter but he in particular found it to be “too grainy for (his) taste and was a little dry on its own”. However, in the form of these cookies, this almond butter tasted much better. Mr. C. emailed me at work and said “Your cookies are a hit”. I even got one comment from one of my email subscribers that is also Mr. C’s co-worker: “I love your wife”. With a response like that I can’t help but want to make more treats. I got a big smile from that comment.

My thoughts
Soft, sweet and gooey. This tasted much better than I expected. I am used to making cookies with flour and I also expect when recipes are changed at the base ingredient level they will taste funny. My hopes weren’t high at all, but this time I was really pleasantly surprised. They looked and tasted like cookies and I didn’t miss the flour. The cookies were quite crumbly so maybe the flour is what binds all the ingredients into one cohesive mass. In any event I enjoyed this thoroughly and could taste the lightness to this recipe.

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