Month: February 2016

Peanut Noodle Perfection

Tonight I perfected my peanut noodle game. My son was obsessing over these packaged “Thai” peanut noodles, so I did what any great mom would do: I found some recipes on Pinterest & attempted to recreate them at home. I ended up morphing together the aspects of each recipe that I liked and making a bit more of the sauce than either recipe called for. Both kids eat them, they are easy to make, & I typically have most of the ingredients on-hand, so I think these will be on heavy rotation until we tire of them. 

Perfect Peanut Noodles

makes enough noodles for 2 teens & one mom

Ingredients:

  • 6-8 oz package rice noodles
  • 1/4 C sesame oil
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 1/4 C soy sauce
  • 1 tsp garlic, finely minced
  • 1 tsp freshly grated ginger
  • 2/3 C peanut butter, half crunchy/half creamy works best
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
  • sesame seeds (to garnish)
  • green onions, finely chopped or minced chives (to garnish)

Instructions:

  1. Prepare rice noodles according to package directions. Most rice noodles don’t get “cooked” per se, the water is heated, and they are soaked off the heat for several minutes. 
  2. While your noodles are soaking, prepare your sauce. Combine all ingredients except garnish in a small bowl. No need to mix at this point, really. 
  3. Drain the noodles. While they are still warm, add the sauce and stir into the noodles with a rubber spatula. This is key. The noodles must be warm/hot when they receive the sauce or 1) the peanut butter will not melt and 2) the noodles will harden into a impenetrable rice-noodle mass. Trust me when I tell you that nobody wants that to happen. 
  4. Serve up the noodles in individual bowls. Top with sesame seeds and green onions or chives. 

Peanut Noodles? CRUSHED IT!

Truffle Shuffle Part Deux: Spicy, Creamy, Chili Truffles

Hot & sweet is my thang! When I embarked on my latest truffle journey, I couldn’t do so without trying a little something SPICY!! Remember awhile back when I made brownies with cayenne pepper? Not to toot my own horn, but these truffles are amazing! Toot! Toot! They start out sweet & creamy & then the heat slowly creeps in… And I’ve invented a topping: Cayenne Sugar! Another layer of hot & sweet!!

Sweet Heat Chili Truffles

makes 16-18 truffles

Ingredients:

  • 2/3 C heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 tbsp dried chili flakes
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/3 C milk chocolate chips
  • cocoa powder, sprinkles, cinnamon sugar, cayenne sugar (optional)

Instructions:

  1. In a small saucepan over med-high heat, bring cream to a gentle simmer. 
  2. Whisk in chili flakes, cover, remove from heat & allow to steep for 10-12 mins.     
  3. Meanwhile, slowly heat a large pot of water for the double-boiler. I like to use my pasta-pot
  4. In a bowl large enough to rest over the top of the water pot, combine chocolate and cinnamon. 
  5. When cream has finished steeping, pour it through a wire mesh strainer into the chocolate & cinnamon mixture. Discard chili flakes. 
  6. Heat chocolate, cinnamon, and cream slowly over the double-boiler until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth. 
  7. Refrigerate genache mixture 6-8 hours or overnight. 
  8. When you’re ready to roll the truffles, you will want to have clean, warm hands. I used my smallest Pampered Chef scoop, so my truffles were about 1/2 oz each. I spread a small amount of each topping on a plate so I could easily top each truffle in the topping of my choice. 
  9. Scoop out the truffle mixture, making sure to level-off your scoop. Quickly roll it in your hands to desired shape and while the chocolate is slightly melty from the heat of your hands dip it into the topping of your choice. Place finished truffle on a sheet pan lined with wax paper. Continue until all of the truffles are rolled & topped to your liking. 
  10. Chill truffles for several hours before serving or gifting. I like to freeze mine so they will keep their shape better & longer. Place each truffle in a mini-cupcake wrapper for adorable presentation!

Cinnamon Sugar (for topping)

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 C granulated sugar 
  • 1 tbsp ground cinnamon 

Instructions:

  1. Combine sugar & cinnamon. 
  2. Toss to combine. 
  3. Store in an airtight container or an old spice jar. 

Cayenne Sugar 

My own invention! 

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 C granulated sugar 
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper 

Instructions:

  1. Combine sugar & cayenne. 
  2. Toss to combine. 
  3. Store in an airtight container or an old spice jar. 

* I’m dying to give this a whirl in a cup of coffee!*


Do the “Truffle Shuffle” with Your Valentine!

Help! I’ve fallen down the truffle rabbit hole! 

  
I’m making truffles & I can’t stop!! Making truffles 1) is easy 2) is fun (in my opinion) and 3) looks impressive to your friends. I’ve made truffles a handful of times over the years, but this time I upped my game & made them in some outside-the-box flavors (I’m nothing if not outside-the-box).

Lavender-Love Truffles

makes 16-18 truffles 

Ingredients:

  • 2/3 C heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 tbsp dried lavender buds
  • 2 tbsp honey (lavender honey if you can get it)
  • 1 1/3 C dark chocolate chips
  • cocoa powder, sprinkles, lavender buds, lavender salts etc for topping (optional)

Instructions:

  1. In a small saucepan over med-high heat bring cream to a gentle simmer. 
  2. Whisk in the lavender buds, cover, and steep for 10-12 mins.    
  3. Meanwhile, slowly heat a large pot of water for the double-boiler. I like to use my pasta-pot
  4. In a bowl large enough to rest over the top of the water pot, combine chocolate and honey.    
  5. When cream has finished steeping, pour it through a wire mesh strainer into the chocolate & honey mixture. Discard lavender buds. 
  6. Heat chocolate, honey, and cream slowly over the double-boiler until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth. 
  7. Refrigerate genache mixture 6-8 hours or overnight. 
  8. When you’re ready to roll the truffles, you will want to have clean, warm hands. I used my smallest Pampered Chef scoop, so my truffles were about 1/2 oz each. I spread a small amount of each topping on a plate so I could easily top each truffle in the topping of my choice. 
  9. Scoop out the truffle mixture, making sure to level-off your scoop. Quickly roll it in your hands to desired shape and while the chocolate is slightly melty from the heat of your hands dip it into the topping of your choice. Place finished truffle on a sheet pan lined with wax paper. Continue until all of the truffles are rolled & topped to your liking. 
  10. Chill truffles for several hours before serving or gifting. I like to freeze mine so they will keep their shape better & longer. Place each truffle in a mini-cupcake wrapper for adorable presentation!

By the way, this is Chunk from The Goonies. Then & Now!