Friday, November 30

Japanese Style Roasted Sweet Potato

Japanese Style Roasted Sweet Potato are seen in many cartoons, anime, and even some video games. To be honest it is nothing more than a roasted sweet potato in a stick, which is somehow magically transformed to masterful yumminess! This highly enjoyable treat is a favorite street food in Japan and you will understand why.

Full time: 45 min to 1 hr (based on size)
Serves 4 (or more based on amount of potatoes)

You will need:

2-3 lbs. small sweet potatoes
1/4 cup corse sea salt, or to taste
1/4 cup butter, melted
2 tbsp olive oil

Let us begin:

Start by preheating your grill to medium high, if using charcoal you will want to stack on half the grill.

Wash your sweet potatoes and dry them off.

In a shallow bowl mix olive oil into the butter.

Pierce skin if potato three or four times with a fork.

Roll potato in butter.

Sprinkle potato liberally with sea salt on all sides.

Wrap potato in aluminum foil.

Place wrapped potatoes on grill away from direct heat.

Roast for 35-45 minutes or until they feel slightly soft when gentle squeezed with tongs.

Rotate potatoes often to avoid scorching one side.

Once roasted remove foil and serve, you can skewer them on a stick or on a plate, enjoy!

Wednesday, November 28

Kasutera: Japanese Green Tea pound Cake

Kasutera is a traditional Japanese pound cake or sponge cake which has a subtle green tea flavor. And since green tea has several health benefits, I like to think so does the cake.

Traditionally the cake is made with matcha (maccha) or green tea powder. But it has a short shelf life and honestly is rather expensive. So you can simply infuse the butter with the green tea! It adds a little extra time to the cake but saves a lot of money! If you have matcha (maccha) on hand I have included the substitute for it.

Full time: 1 1/2 hr (using green tea) or 1 hr (using matcha)
Serves 6-8

You will need:

2 eggs
1 cup flour
2/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter, (plus 1 tsp if using leaves)
1/2 tsp baking powder

2 tbsp green tea leaves or 1 tbsp matcha

Let us begin:

Preheat oven to 340 and lightly butter or grease a loaf pan.

In a small sauce pan place tea and melt butter over medium heat.

Allow butter to fully melt and infuse with tea for 5 minutes.

Pour butter thru a fine strainer and dispose of leaves.

Allow butter to reform in refrigerator.

If using matcha start here: Once butter is reformed.

Cream butter and sugar together in a bowl.

Add in eggs and mix.

Add in baking powder and mix.

Sift flour into mixture and mix.

Pour into loaf pan.

Bake 30-40 minutes or until interred toothpick comes out clean.

Remove from oven and allow to cool 5 minutes in pan.

Turn out of pan and let cool on wire rack and enjoy!

300th Recipe Celebration!

Two years ago, well 1 month short from two years ago, I started a blog-this blog. My intention was to share recipes, stories, and kitchen fun with my friends/family.

Back then every recipe post was published with a second post, a story post as I like to call it. Slowly over time the two separate posts have become one, and each recipe just has a little interdiction. The blog has also seen a few other changes.

In the beginning recipes had no photos, most of which I have gone back and added (a few are still left to update). After a few months, recipes had just a finished product photo and overtime the familiar step by step recipe photo evolved. We have also seen the rise and trail of several types of posts...

The PRODUCT REVIEW was born in 2012, and to my surprise has been a great hit and continues to be very popular.

The CRAFT KITCHEN was meet with some surprise reactions in 2011, but has thinned out, under less popularity.

The HOW TOs began just a few moths ago in the middle of 2012, they have become great resources to beginner cooks, but still have not fully found their stride yet.

I have found that labeling posts in classifications such as BAKE IT, MAKE IT, has helped any reader looking for specific items.

These days the blog is published on a more regular basis and the recipes have a familiar/similar style to them. Helping both novice and advanced cooks make fun dishes in their kitchens. Therefore, I decided the best 300th recipe should be an easy to make cake which features a fun infused butter technique! I hope you enjoy!!!

Tuesday, November 27

English Saddleback Potatoes

An English saddleback potato is a nice cross between a roasted and a baked potato. Cooked at a high heat and seasoned just right, these potatoes will add a little flare to your next dinner.

Full time: Approximately 1 hr
Serves: 4

You will need:

4 large white potatoes, wash/dry
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup sea salt
2 tbsp olive oil

*optional shredded cheese for top

Let us begin:

Preheat your oven to 400 and line a baking tray with aluminum foil.

Carefully cut in the potatoes into 1/4" increments DO NOT SLICE THROUGH you only want to go 3/4 of the way down.

In a shallow bowl mix the butter and oil together.

Roll potato in butter/oil. Save any remaing.

Set on baking sheet and liberally dust all sides with salt.

Once all potatoes are done, bake in oven 25 minutes.

Carefully remove from oven. Pour leftover butter/oil onto the potatoes .

Return to oven for 20-25 minutes or until the middle is fork-able.

If using optional cheese top, add shredded cheese across tops of potatoes and return to oven for five minutes.

Remove from oven, serve immediately, enjoy!

Sunday, November 25

East Inspired Plum Chicken

In most Asian cuisines you can find chicken cooked in a plum or sticky tangy sauce. And although each country has their own version of these dishes which are all tasty, the best version is actually created when you combine the common ingredients into one pan. Creating an fruited chicken which is sweet and tangy.

Full time: 40-50 minutes
Serves 4

You will need:

4 plums, cut in half & pitted
1 large onion, cut into 8 pieces
3 lbs chicken thighs
3 tbsp Dijon mustard
3 tbsp honey
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp dried thyme
1 tsp salt
1 tsp ground black pepper

Let us begin:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray a baking dish with a light coat of cooking spray.

Place chicken into baking dish and season with salt and pepper.

In a large bowl mix thyme, olive oil, honey, and Dijon.

Add in plums and onions. Toss fully to completely coat plums and onions.

Place plums and onions in baking dish alongside chicken. Placing plums flesh side down.

Pour remaining sauce over chicken.

Cook 30-40 minutes or until chicken has reached 180 internal temperature.

Remove from oven and serve chicken with rice and enjoy!

Friday, November 23

Cinnamon Pie

Cinnamon pie is an amazingly flavorful treat. I discovered this interesting confectionary treat after watching one of my favorite shows "Psych". In the show the main characters could not stop eating it, so I did some research and developed this recipe. Now I can not stop eating it!

Full time: 1 1/2 hours
Makes 9" pie

You will need:

1 9" unbaked pie crust or homemade dough for 9" pie

1 egg, beaten
1 1/2 cup heavy cream
1 1/2 cup flour
1 cup sugar
2 tbsp butter, melted
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp salt

Let us begin:

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.

Place pie crust in your pie pan and set on a baking sheet.

In a large bowl combine flour, sugar, cinnamon, and salt.

Add in egg, butter, and vanilla. Mix well.

Slowly add in cream a little at a time until well combined.

Pour into pie crust.

Bake in oven for 15 minutes.

Lower heat to 350 and bake for 35-45 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.

Allow to cool for 15-20 minutes before serving, enjoy!

Wednesday, November 21

Artichoke Parmesan Puffs

It seams that almost everyone likes artichoke dip, so I figured why not find a way to make the flavors bite size. By adding a little extra Parmesan cheese you can easily create a great party puff to serve!

Full time: 35-40 minutes
Makes 48 puffs

You will need:

12-13 oz. artichoke hearts finely chopped
2 eggs
1 cup water
1 cup flour
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
2 tbsp butter
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp salt

Let us begin:

Preheat oven to 375. Line sheet pan with parchment.

In a medium pot boil water, butter, salt, and garlic over medium heat.

Reduce heat to low. Add in flour and quickly stir to form a ball.

Remove from heat and transfer to bowl, add in artichoke and Parmesan.

Add in egg and mix into an even dough.

Drop 1 rounded tsp size blobs onto sheet pan.

Bake in oven 20-25 minutes or until lightly browned.

Remove from oven and plate on serving tray, enjoy!