Foodie News

The Classic Upside Down Cake gets a Creative Spin

Not many desserts bring out a warm sense of old fashioned home cooking as much as an upside down cake. Think classic with those rings of pineapple, bright red cherries and oozy buttery brown sugar.

Upside down cakes are pretty straight forward: gooey sugary business on the bottom, topped with fruit then cake batter. Bake, flip and serve!

Pineapple Upside Down Cake
Here’s the Classic
! But we are going to get creative!

From peaches to pears to pineapple, almost any fruit can get the upside down treatment with this cake. And you can get creative with the cake batter too, like with my Spiced Pear Ginger Bread & Hazelnut Upside Down Cake, it’s unusual in several ways. For one thing, the cake layer is a gingerbread batter. For another, it’s baked in a Bundt pan. And it’s highly spiced and aromatic — ginger along with cloves, nutmeg and lots of cinnamon. And did I mention the cake’s enriched with hazelnuts?

Or for a morning treat how about a Breakfast Oatmeal Apple Upside Down Cake. This moist cake is not too sweet and is a real treat for a weekend brunch. My testing and tasting team even liked it topped with a pouf of yogurt.

If sweets aren’t your thing, try my Savory Onion Upside Down Cake made with caramelized onions, fresh thyme, baked up with an olive oil and herb studded quick bread topping. Perfect along with a green salad or a hearty bowl of homemade soup!

So, consider upside down cakes for your next breakfast, supper or dessert. –Kathy

Spiced Pear Gingerbread Hazelnut Upside Down Cake
Makes 1 Bundt cake, serving 10 to 12

Pears
1 Tbsp butter
2 cups 1/2-inch-diced, firm, ripe pear with skin, cored (about 2 pears or one very large pear)
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon

Batter
3/4 cup boiling water
3/4 cup molasses
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 cups flour
1/8 tsp ground cloves
1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
3/8 tsp ground nutmeg
3/4 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp salt
2 1/4 tsp baking powder
6 Tbsp (3/4 stick) unsalted butter
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg
1 1/2 tsp very finely minced fresh ginger
1/2 cup chopped hazelnuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

To prepare the pears: In a 10-inch skillet, melt 1 tablespoon butter over medium high heat. Add the diced pears, 1/4 cup sugar, and 1 teaspoon cinnamon to the pan. Sauté for 3 to 4 minutes, until the pears are slightly caramelized and somewhat soft. Spoon mixture into the bottom of a 10-cup, non-stick Bundt pan.

To make the cake batter: In a medium bowl combine the boiling water, molasses, and baking soda. Set aside.

In a separate bowl, combine the flour, dry spices, salt and baking powder, and mix well. Set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, beat together the butter and sugar until fluffy. Add the egg and fresh ginger, and mix well. Add molasses mixture and reserved dry ingredients, alternately, beginning and ending with the liquid, and mixing after each addition. Finally, add the chopped hazelnuts.

Spoon batter gently into Bundt pan over the pears and then lightly rap pan on counter to release any bubbles. Bake in preheated oven for 20 to 30 minutes, or until cake tests done. (When done, cake may not entirely fill the Bundt pan. Don’t worry; this is normal for this recipe.)

Cool to room temperature before inverting.

Recipe © Kathy Casey Food Studios®.

Breakfast Oatmeal Apple Upside Down Cake
Makes 1 10-inch round cake, serving 8 to 10

Batter
2/3 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup golden raisins
3/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1 cup boiling water
2/3 cup, packed, brown sugar
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1 egg
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 cup flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt

Apple layer
1 Tbsp brown sugar
1 Tbsp flour
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1 Gala apple, cored, skin on, sliced in thin wedges
—————————–
vanilla yogurt (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 10-inch round cake pan with vegetable cooking spray, and set aside.

Mix oats, raisins, cinnamon and nutmeg in a heat-proof container, and pour measured boiling water over mixture. Let sit for 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare the apple layer: In a small bowl, mix together the 1 tablespoon brown sugar, 1 tablespoon flour, and the pecans, and pat out into the bottom of the cake pan. Then lay the apple slices out evenly on the brown sugar mixture. Set aside.

In a large bowl, combine the 2/3 cup brown sugar, granulated sugar, egg, and oil, and mix well. In a small bowl, mix together the 1 cup flour, soda and salt, then add to sugar mixture. Add plumped oat mixture and stir well.

Without disturbing the apple layer, add batter into the cake pan carefully, and then lightly rap pan on counter to release any bubbles. Bake in preheated oven for 35 to 40 minutes, or until cake tests done.

Let sit 5 minutes after coming out of the oven, loosen sides of cake from pan with a table knife, and then immediately invert cake onto a large plate.

Serve warm or at room temperature, topped with dollops of vanilla yogurt if desired.

Recipe © Kathy Casey Food Studios®.

Savory Caramelized Onion Upside Down Quick Bread
Makes 1 10-inch savory cake, about 8 servings

Onion layer
1 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp butter
2 large white onions, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch rounds
1/2 cup garlic cloves, halved
2 sprigs fresh thyme
1 bay leaf
1/4 tsp salt
1 Tbsp white wine
1 Tbsp red wine vinegar

Batter
2 cups flour
3 Tbsp sugar
1 Tbsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup olive oil
3/4 cup whole milk
2 eggs
1 Tbsp chopped fresh chives
1 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

To prepare the onions: In a 10-inch skillet, heat olive oil and butter together over medium heat. Add onions, garlic, thyme and bay leaf. Cover, and cook over medium-low heat for 15 minutes. Stir in 1/4 tsp salt, wine and vinegar, and continue cooking, covered, for another 15 to 20 minutes until golden brown and very soft. Set aside in pan and cool to room temperature. Remove thyme stems and bay leaf. (You will be adding the cake batter to this pan.)

To make the batter: In a large bowl, combine and mix flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Add remaining ingredients, and mix till just combined.

Spoon batter over onion mixture in the pan and bake in preheated oven for 35 to 40 minutes, or until quick bread layer tests done.

Remove from oven. Run a knife around edge, carefully invert hot skillet onto a large serving plate, and remove skillet. Any onion mixture remaining in pan can be scraped out with a spatula and spread on quick bread.

Recipe © Kathy Casey Food Studios®.

Posted by Kathy Casey on March 28th, 2014  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Foodie News, Fruit, KOMO Radio, Recent Posts, Recipes, breakfast, dessert, sides

The Northwest eCookbooks

Great friend, award winning writer, and long time Pacific Northwest native Cynthia Nims has written a wonderful series of e-cookbooks covering The Northwest! Whether you’re looking to cook up up Crabs and Wild Mushrooms or looking for a new combo of Soups, Salads, & Sandwiches, Cynthia has you covered and more! The ebooks are priced at $3.50 each (what a steal!) and are available to download through the Kindle and most mobile/tablet devices with the free Kindle app.

Posted by Kathy Casey on March 12th, 2014  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Books to Cook, Foodie News, Lifestyle, Recipes, appetizers, breakfast, meats, seafood, sides

Citrusy, Sweet, Floral: Meyer Lemons!

Meyer Lemons – a culinary favorite of mine with its deep yellow hue and fragrant flavor. Rumored to be a cross between a lemon and an orange–or mandarin, this zesty citrus fruit was named for Frank N. Meyer who first brought it to the United States from China in 1908.

Typically available December through April, Meyer lemons are different from standard lemons. They have pretty “thin skin”, are highly aromatic, and offer a bit of a sweeter taste than standard lemons. They’re great in cocktails or desserts, but are also d’lish in savory dishes!


(Photo courtesy of Girl Versus Dough.)

I like to thinly slice them and roast them along a chicken or pork roast. The slices are so tasty when cooked and eaten with the dish like in my recipe for Spiced Chicken with Meyer Lemon, Pears & Port.

The zest of their peel is fragrant and delicious — in dishes like Herbed Meyer Lemon Orzo – or added to shortbread cookies for a great citrus-y zing!

So cook up some new dishes this winter with Meyer Lemons while they are in season! –Kathy

Spiced Chicken with Meyer Lemon, Pears & Port
This is a great entrée for a dinner party. I also love it sprinkled with blue cheese right before serving for a delicious twist.

Makes 6 servings

3 firm ripe fresh pears
2 teaspoons ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon kosher salt
3 tablespoons olive oil
6 skin-on, bone-in chicken breast halves
2 shallots, thinly sliced
6 cloves fresh garlic, sliced
1 unpeeled Meyer lemon, sliced (about 9 slices)
1 cup port wine
1 teaspoon cornstarch (optional)
1/4 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves for garnishing

Preheat an oven to 375 degrees F.

Cut pears in half and core. Cut each half in half and then in half again—to make large chunks. Reserve.

In a small bowl, mix the spices and salt. Lay the chicken on a baking sheet or piece of waxed paper or plastic wrap, and sprinkle each piece liberally on both sides with the spice mixture.

In a large nonstick skillet or sauté pan, heat the oil over medium-high heat until hot. Sauté half of the chicken for about 3 minutes on each side, or until the skin is deep golden brown and crispy. As the pieces are browned, place them, skin side up, in a 10-by-15-inch baking pan or small roasting pan. Repeat with the remaining chicken.

Pour off any excess oil, then sauté the pears, shallots, garlic, and lemon for about 1 minute. Add the port and stir to scrape up the browned bits on the bottom of the pan. Bring just to a boil, and then add the hot mixture, with all the goodies, to the roasting pan, pouring it around, not over, the chicken to keep the browned crust intact.

Roast for about 40 to 45 minutes, or until the chicken is opaque throughout and nicely browned on the outside, with an internal temperature of 160 degrees F (chicken will gain another 5 degrees on standing).

Transfer the chicken to a platter or individual plates and keep warm. Using a slotted spoon, retrieve the pears, shallots, garlic, and lemon slices from the sauce and distribute them over the chicken. Place the roasting pan on a burner on high heat and cook to reduce the sauce to about 3/4 cup. (If you like your sauce to have a bit more body, mix 1 teaspoon of cornstarch with 2 teaspoons of water until smooth and whisk into the reducing sauce. Cook till lightly thickened.) Taste the sauce for seasoning, adjust if needed, then drizzle the sauce over the chicken and goodies. Scatter with parsley leaves for garnish.

Adapted from Kathy Casey’s Northwest Table cookbook.

Herbed Meyer Lemon Orzo
Makes 6 servings

12 ounces dry orzo pasta (2 cups)
2 tablespoons butter, salted
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon very finely minced shallots
1/2 cup very coarsely chopped Italian parsley leaves
1/4 cup thinly sliced chives
1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint
2 tablespoons fresh Meyer lemon juice
1 tablespoon finely minced Meyer lemon zest
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
fresh-ground black pepper
1/3 cup finely grated parmesan

Bring 3 quarts of water to a boil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Stir in orzo and cook for approximately 6 – 7 minutes, stirring often, until just al dente or per package instructions. Immediately drain well, then place orzo in a heat-proof bowl. Stir in butter, olive oil, shallots and herbs to coat well. Then stir in lemon juice, zest, seasonings and cheese. Serve immediately.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®.

Posted by Kathy Casey on February 20th, 2014  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Books to Cook, Foodie News, KOMO Radio, Recent Posts, Recipes

Women Stars of Food & Wine

Make sure to mark your calendars and buy your tickets for this hot event on Sunday, February 9th from 2:00pm – 5:00pm in Seattle’s Columbia Tower Club – featuring the Northwest’s best tastemakers: chefs, winemakers, and sommeliers! Proceeds of this event will go on to support the Women’s Funding Alliance.

I’m looking forward to shaking up the signature cocktail for the event…my libacious Rosemary Mandarin Sparkle! Hope to see you there! -Kathy

Rosemary Mandarin Sparkle
Fresh rosemary adds an herbal note to this festive cocktail. You can also make a cocktail pre-mix with the vodka, lemon and Honey Syrup then just shake 3 oz with the rosemary and mandarin, strain and top with champagne bubbles. For a demo on how to make this drink and more imbibing recipes and ideas, check out this episode of Kathy Casey’s Liquid Kitchen!

Makes 1 drink

1 sprig fresh rosemary
1/2 – 1/4 mandarin or clementine depending upon size
1 1/2 oz Crater Lake Vodka
1/2 oz fresh lemon juice
1/2 oz Honey Syrup*
————————————
1 oz Michelle Brut Champagne
Garnish: small sprig of rosemary

Bend rosemary sprig and drop into mixer glass. Squeeze and drop in Mandarin.
Measure in the vodka, lemon and honey syrup. Fill with ice, then cap and shake vigorously. Strain into a chilled martini glass. Add a splash of champagne. Garnish with rosemary.

*To make Honey Syrup: combine 3/4 cup local honey with 1/2 cup hot water. Stir to dissolve. Store refrigerated.

Sparkling Cocktail Pre-Mix
Makes 20 ounces or about 6 – 7 cocktails

1 1/2 cups vodka
1/2 cup lemon juice
1/2 cup Honey Syrup*

Combine and store refrigerated until needed.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Liquid Kitchen®.

Posted by Kathy Casey on February 7th, 2014  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Cocktails, Foodie News, Lifestyle, Small Screen Network, events, videos

Party with these Super Bowl Apps!

Need some new d’lish ideas for the big game? Don’t worry! I’ve got you covered with some tasty recipes for your big party.

Everyone loves the classics: crab dip, wings, deviled eggs… but how about some new variations?

Take my Warm Crab, Mushroom and Brie Dip recipe made with Alaskan King Crab, sherry sautéed Mushrooms and Brie – ooo la la! It can be made the night before and heated up before guests arrive. Just serve with some artisan crackers or slices of baguette. Touchdown!

Sriracha is hot, hot, hot – in all ways! Just TRY it in a Sriracha Deviled Egg. Simply mash it in the filling and top with shrimp and cucumber for a tasty crunch. These eggs are sure to kick-off your party right.

And for a new twist on wings, try my recipe for Sticky Pomegranate Chicken Wings! A d’lish, sweet and zesty finger food, sure to rile up the fans.

The best thing about all these apps – it can be prepped ahead so you’re not stuck in the kitchen missing the big plays.

For some great sips to go along with these apps, check out www.LiquidKitchen.tv!

Now go enjoy the game and GO HAWKS! -Kathy


Photo by Kathy Casey Food Studios®.

Warm Crab, Mushroom & Brie Dip
Dungeness crab meat is tasty but also pricy. Try purchasing Alaska King Crab legs and picking the meat out. It’s easy to do by using a pair of clean scissors to open up the legs. Then just give the meat a very coarse chop to cut it into 1/2 inch pieces. Dip can be prepared up to 2 days in advance if using very fresh crab and baked when your guests are just starting to arrive.

Makes about 6 cups — serves about 12 – 24 people

1 small (8 oz wt.) wheel brie cheese
——————————————
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 cup thinly sliced onion
2 cups thinly sliced crimini mushrooms
2 teaspoons minced fresh garlic
1/2 cup dry sherry
——————————————-
1 1/2 cups mayonnaise (Note: do not use reduced-fat or fat-free, I like to use Best Foods in this recipe)
3 cups (about 10 oz. wt.) shredded, high-quality parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon Tabasco
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup thinly sliced green onion
1/4 cup minced sweet red bell pepper (optional)
1/2 cup minced celery
3/4 pound crab meat, drained well (about 2 1/2 cups drained), see note above
Garnish: Minced fresh parsley

Cut the brie cheese into 1/2” pieces, set aside and then let come to room temperature.

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onions and cook stirring often till half cooked, about 4 minutes. Add the mushrooms and continue cooking until the onions are very soft and the mushrooms are tender, about 4 minutes. Then add the garlic and sherry and continue cooking until the sherry is completely reduced about 8 minutes. (There should not be any liquid left.) Set aside to cool.

Place the room temperature brie in a mixer with a paddle attachment. Mix on medium-high speed for about 1 minute or until the cheese softened. Scrape down the sides of the bowl then add half of the mayonnaise. Mix for 3 more minutes on medium-high speed. Add the remaining mayonnaise, parmesan, Tabasco, and lemon juice. Mix together on medium speed until well mixed, about 1 minute.

Remove bowl from mixer and fold-in the cooled mushroom mixture, green onion, pepper, celery and crab meat – being careful not to break up the crab meat. Do not over mix.

Place dip in a 7×11 baking dish, or 2 quart ovenproof serving dish. Smooth out but do not compact it (dip can be covered and refrigerated up to 1 day at this point).

When ready to serve dip, place in a 400°F preheated oven. Bake for 15 – 20 minutes or until dip just starts to bubble around the edges, heated through and the cheese is melted (be careful not to overcook). If desired, garnish dip with minced fresh parsley. Serve immediately with Fresh Thyme & Sea Salt Crostini, or rustic flat bread or crackers.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®.


Photo by Kathy Casey Food Studios.

Sriracha Deviled Eggs with Crunchy Cucumber & Shrimp
Sriracha adds a spicy kick and a beautiful color to these festive eggs. The shrimp and cucumber topping adds a fresh note and fun texture. Be sure to use eggs that are at least 10 days old or the shells will not peel off easily.

Makes 24

1 dozen hard-cooked eggs (procedure follows)

Filling
1/4 cup mayonnaise
3 tablespoons Sriracha hot sauce
1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
2 tablespoons thinly sliced green onion
2 tablespoons finely minced celery

Topping
2 teaspoons vinegar
1 teaspoon sugar
1/3 cup chopped cooked shrimp, well drained
2 tablespoons finely minced English cucumber
1 tablespoon finely minced red pepper (optional)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro or parsley

Garnish: extra Sriracha sauce and cilantro leaves (if desired)

Halve the eggs lengthwise and transfer the yolks to a mixing bowl. Set the egg white halves on a platter, cover, and refrigerate.

With a fork, mash the yolks to a smooth consistency. Add the mayonnaise, Sriracha and salt, and mix until smooth (you can also do this in a mixing bowl with a whip attachment). Stir in the green onion and celery.

Spoon the mixture into a pastry bag fitted with a plain or large star tip, then pipe the mixture evenly into the egg white halves or fill the eggs with a spoon, dividing the filling evenly.

To make the topping, stir the vinegar and sugar together in a small bowl, until dissolved. Add the shrimp, cucumber, pepper and cilantro, and toss until well coated. Top each egg half with about one heaping teaspoon of the mixture. For extra flavor and spice top each egg with a dot of Sriracha and garnish with a tiny cilantro leaf, if desired. Serve immediately.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios.

Hard Cooked Eggs
1 dozen large chicken eggs

Place the eggs in a large nonreactive saucepan and add cold water to 1 inch above the eggs. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Turn off the heat and let the eggs sit for 10 minutes. Remove from the stove and run cool water over the eggs in the pan until they are cooled. When cool, carefully peel them under running water.

Recipe from D’Lish Deviled Eggs by Kathy Casey, Andrews McMeel Publishing.


Photo by Kathy Casey Food Studios.

Sticky Pomegranate Chicken Wings
These chicken wings get a big-flavored, lacquer-y glaze in this low-and-slow method. You can make the sauce a few days ahead of time, but be sure to allow a full hour for cooking the wings.

Makes 24 pieces

3/4 cup pomegranate juice
1/2 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons very finely minced peeled fresh ginger
1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic
1 tablespoon of lemon zest
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1 dozen whole chicken wings or 2 dozen drummettes, about 2 1/2 to 3 pounds

Garnish: 1/2 cup pomegranate perils* and thinly sliced green onion tops

In a small saucepan, whisk together the pomegranate juice, soy sauce, ginger, garlic, sugar, pepper flakes, vinegar, cornstarch, and water. Set the pan over medium heat and bring to a boil, whisking constantly, to thicken. Mixture will be very thick. Let cool. If not using immediately, store, covered and refrigerated, for up to 4 days.

If using whole wings, disjoint the wings and remove and discard tips; you should have 24 pieces. Put them in a large bowl and set aside.

Pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Add the sauce mixture to the chicken and mix well to coat evenly. Spray a 9×13 baking dish with cooking spray or lightly oil it. Arrange the drummettes and sauce in a single layer in the dish.

Bake for 30 minutes. Stir and turn the chicken pieces over and bake for 20 minutes more. Stir and turn the chickens pieces again and bake for 10 minutes more, or until chicken is tender and sauce is thick and glazed. Total cooking time should be about 1-hour.

Stir the drummettes in the sauce once more, and then transfer the chicken to a serving platter. Sprinkle with the pomegranate seeds and green onions.

*Pomegranate seeds, called “perils”, can be purchased or you can easily remove them from a fresh pomegranate with this trick: cut it across cross-wise and hold over a bowl, smack the back of the fruit with a wooden spoon – the seeds will fall out with ease.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios.

Posted by Kathy Casey on January 30th, 2014  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Foodie News, KOMO Radio, Lifestyle, Recent Posts, Recipes, appetizers, events

The Seattle Times

Tasty read in the Seattle Times by Providence Cicero all on Women Stars of Food & Wine event on Sunday, February 9th! Make sure to mark your calendars and get your tickets soon. Looking forward to shaking up the signature cocktail!

Posted by Kathy Casey on January 29th, 2014  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Restaurants, Cocktails, Foodie News, events

New Year Resolution Foods

The holiday feast is over, and the New Year’s resolutions have begun!  For those who vow every year to eat healthy – the trick to keeping those promises is to make it easy and delicious. Don’t worry; I have some great tips to keep you going!

Eating breakfast gets your metabolism boosted so start the day off right with a healthful smoothie. Try incorporating a few power packed ingredients like Greek yogurt, chia seeds, almond butter, kale or even goji berries!

Next, quinoa is a fantastic food! It’s high in protein, amino acids, and fiber. I love it sprinkled over salads or served as a side dish. This gluten free seed is a powerhouse! Try my recipe for Big Protein Quinoa Salad – perfect to pack and take to work.


And if you’re traveling from Sea-Tac Airport,
my Dish D’Lish has a great new, healthy Mediterranean Quinoa Salad in to-go cups!

Photo by Kathy Casey Food Studios®.

Another great motto for healthy eating is “eat with the rainbow”. The vividness of the plant pigments is a good guide to the nutritional value of fruits and veggies. Bright orange sweet potatoes, deep purple wild blueberries and, dark kale and chard are all loaded with vitamins and antioxidants!

And my best tip is to stock your fridge with healthful foods. When you come home from work you won’t be tempted to order out! –Kathy

Kathy’s Jump-Start Smoothie
Makes 1 serving

1/2 cup frozen fruits or fresh fruits
1/2 cup fat-free plain Greek yogurt
2 Tbsp agave nectar (or sub honey for another all natural sweetener)
1/2 cup ice cubes
1/2 – 1 tsp flax seed (the more seeds – the more “texture”)
1 fresh kale leaf (optional)

Place ingredients in the order above and blend until smooth. Enjoy your healthy start to a great day!

Recipe by Kathy Casey Liquid Kitchen®

Big Protein Red Quinoa Salad
I like to make this salad with all organic produce and also add in a cup of chopped fresh raw kale for extra fiber!

Makes about 4 cups

3/4 cup red quinoa
1 1/2 cups water
1 teaspoon minced garlic
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons minced or grated lemon zest
1/2 cup peeled, seeded and 1/4-inch-diced organic cucumber
1/2 cup canned organic garbanzo beans, drained
1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/2cup organic golden raisins
1/2 cup organic hazelnuts, lightly toasted and coarsely chopped
1/4 cup thinly sliced green onions
1/4 cup grated carrot
3/4 to 1 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Rinse quinoa in cold water and drain well. Put the drained quinoa in a heavy medium saucepan and dry roast the grain over medium heat, stirring occasionally for about 1 minute. Add the water, bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cover with a tight-fitting lid. Cook for about 15 minutes or until all water is absorbed. Remove from the heat and let stand, covered, for 10 minutes. Remove lid, fluff grains with a fork, and let cool to room temperature.

In a large bowl, combine the cooked quinoa with the remaining ingredients and toss well.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®

Posted by Kathy Casey on January 2nd, 2014  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Foodie News, Fruit, KOMO Radio, Lifestyle, Recent Posts, Recipes, breakfast, salads

Cooking with Candy Canes

I just love this time of year. Everything is sparkly, the lights twinkling in the trees, and of course, candy canes!

Those wonderful, seasonal peppermint treats that hang from trees, peak out of stockings and garnish your holiday latte. The holidays just wouldn’t be complete without them. They are also an ingredient in many of my favorite holiday goodies!

Peppermint and chocolate, what a great pair! Try my recipe for individual little Peppermint Chocolate Fudge Cakes – baked in muffin tins then drizzled with chocolate and sprinkled with crushed candy canes. They make a great little something to “take” or gift.

Need a holiday cupcake idea? Whip crushed candy canes into your favorite frosting recipe and crown with a mini candy cane. D’lish and oh so festive!


Photo by Kathy Casey Liquid Kitchen®.

For a more spirited idea, try making candy cane-infused vodka! Just combine 1 1/2 cup of vodka plus 8 – 10 starlight peppermints or 6 mini candy canes in a jar with a tight fitting lid. Shake a couple of times a day until dissolved. Enjoy it in your cocoa or frozen as a shot.

Here’s to some holiday cheers with candy cane! -Kathy

Peppermint Chocolate Fudge Cakes
These are the perfect little something for after a big holiday dinner or for a party take-along.

Makes 12 cakes

Cupcakes
3 ounces unsweetened baking chocolate
1 1/2 sticks salted butter
3 large eggs
1 1/2 cups sugar
6 tablespoons flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Topping
2 ounces dark chocolate chips
2 ounces white chocolate chips + 1/2 teaspoon vegetable oil
6 peppermint hard candies, crushed

Preheat an oven to 400 degrees F. Pan-spray nonstick standard size cupcake/muffin pan(s) —you will be making 12 cakes. (If any muffin cups are left empty, fill them halfway with water before baking cakes.)

In a bowl over simmering water, melt the unsweetened chocolate and butter together.

Meanwhile, with a whisk or electric mixer, in a large bowl mix the remaining cupcake ingredients together until glossy. Add the melted chocolate-butter mixture and beat again until glossy and smooth.

Divide the batter evenly into the 12 muffin cups. (Liners are not needed.)

Bake cakes for 15 to 16 minutes or until slightly puffy. Remove from the oven and let cool completely. Run a knife around the sides to release cakes.

To decorate: Lay cakes out on a platter. Place each of the chocolate chips in small glass ramekins or very small microwave safe containers; add the vegetable oil to the white chocolate; and individually microwave for 10 second intervals (stirring in between) until just melted. Be careful not to overcook the chocolate. Immediately drizzle/decorate the tops of the cakes with the chocolates and then sprinkle with the crushed hard candies.

Cakes will keep covered at room temperature for up to 3 to 4 days.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®.

Posted by Kathy Casey on December 19th, 2013  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Cocktails, Foodie News, KOMO Radio, Lifestyle, Recent Posts, Recipes, dessert
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