“Oreo”-Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies

photo: amandeleine's blog

This is adapted from a dairy recipe I saw online. They are really good, especially right out of the oven!

1 cup (2 sticks) margarine, softened
¾ cup brown sugar
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
3-1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1-1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1 package chocolate sandwich cookies

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper or silpat mats.

In a large mixing bowl, cream together margarine and sugars until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs and vanilla. On a low speed, add flour and baking soda. Stir in chocolate chips.

Take a cookie and cover with dough. Try to use as little dough as possible while still making sure that the whole cookie is covered (You don’t want them to get too big and the cookie to be too far inside the dough!) Place cookie on prepared cookie sheets.

Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until lightly browned. Let rest on cookie sheet for 3 minutes before transferring to wire rack to finish cooling. Can be frozen – if there are any left!

Cucumber, Sesame, and Ginger Seasoned Salad with Mixed Greens

Serves 6

I’m always looking for new salad combinations. This one is creamy, and very tasty. It is nice with fresh sliced green apple too.

1 ½ tablespoons seasoned rice vinegar
1 tablespoon finely chopped shallot
2 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
Pinch of black pepper
1/3 cup tofutti sour cream
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 English cucumber, sliced
2 scallions, sliced
6 cups mixed greens
2 tablespoons sesame seeds, toasted

For the dressing: Combine rice vinegar, shallot, ginger, sesame oil, salt and pepper in a small container with a cover. Stir in tofutti sour cream and olive oil. Mix well and store in the refrigerator until ready to use.

For the salad: In a large salad bowl, toss cucumber, scallion, mixed greens, and sesame seeds. Add the dressing, toss well and serve.

Pastrami, Corn, and Red Pepper Sauté

Serves 4

With corn in season, we are always looking for delicious recipes to use it in. This one combines flavorful and salty pastrami, with sweet red peppers. Kids and adults will love it and its good both warm and at room temperature.

1 tablespoon olive oi
1 red pepper, diced
1 cup cubed pastrami (either buy sliced pastrami at the deli and cut it in thin strips or buy a chunk from the butcher and cut it into bite size pieces)
2 cups corn kernels (from 3 – 4 ears of fresh corn) – yes you can use canned too
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ cup chopped parsley, optional

In a large skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add red pepper and cook for 2 minutes. Stir in pastrami and cook until a little browned, about 3 minutes. Add corn and cook until heated through. Add salt and parsley and toss to combine. Remove from heat and serve warm or at room temperature.

Red Velvet Sandwich Cookies

photo: BonAppetit.com

Makes 16 sandwich cookies

More red velvet…I can’t help it, I still like it. These are pretty and cute and fun.

For the cookies:
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
Pinch of salt
6 tablespoons unsalted margarine, softened
3/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon red food coloring

For the filling:
3/4 cup sweetened shredded coconut
4 ounces pareve tofutti cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup confectioners’ sugar
Pinch of salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Make the cookies: Whisk the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl. Beat the margarine, confectioners’ sugar and vanilla in a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment on medium speed until smooth, about 1 minute. Reduce the mixer speed to low and beat in the flour mixture in 2 additions. Add the food coloring and beat until combined. Transfer the dough to a clean surface and knead a few times. Roll into a 10-inch-long, 1-inch-diameter log; wrap in plastic wrap and freeze until firm, about 2 hours.

Meanwhile, make the filling: Pulse the coconut, pareve cream cheese, confectioners’ sugar, salt and vanilla in a food processor until combined. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Remove the dough from the freezer and unwrap. Slice the dough into 1/4-inch-thick rounds and arrange about 1 inch apart on the prepared baking sheets. Bake until the cookies are firm around the edges, 8 to 10 minutes. Let cool 2 minutes on the baking sheets, then transfer to a rack to cool completely.

Spread about 1 teaspoon of the filling on the flat side of half of the cookies, then sandwich with the remaining cookies.

Red Cabbage Slaw

photo: thelocalrose.com


Serves 12

Coleslaw is so easy to make and enjoyed by everyone. I am always looking to try new ways to prepare it. This one is sweet with a nice kick of cilantro.

½ cup orange juice
¼ cup rice vinegar
¼ cup canola oil
1 tablespoon honey
1 ½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
1 red cabbage, thinly sliced (about 5 to 6 cups)
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves

In a large bowl, whisk together orange juice, vinegar, oil and honey until combined. Add salt and pepper and mix thoroughly. Dressing can be made up to 2 days in advance.

Plum Baked Chicken

Serves 4

I saw this recipe in Cooking Light magazine and thought it looked interesting but some of the ingredients were hard to find so I just put it aside in my “try it” file. Then online I noticed that there were many comments posted on the recipe about how amazing it was and decided to move it to my “try it now” file. I changed a few of the hard to find ingredients and the results are great. Moist and flavorful but not fruity.

1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
1/3 cup sliced shallots
2 teaspoons minced peeled fresh ginger
1/2 cup sweet white wine plum wine
3/4 cup chicken broth
1 teaspoon chile sauce
1 teaspoon spicy mustard Chinese mustard
1/2 cup halved dried plums (about 9)
4 (6-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breasts
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup (1/2-inch) slices green onions

Preheat oven to 425°.

Heat a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add 1 teaspoon oil to pan; swirl. Add shallots and ginger; sauté 1 minute. Add wine; bring to a boil. Cook 1 minute. Add broth, chili sauce, and mustard; bring to a boil. Cook until reduced to 3/4 cup (about 8 minutes). Stir in plums. Remove from heat.

Heat remaining 2 teaspoons oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat; swirl. Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. Add chicken to pan, and sauté for 3 minutes. Turn chicken over; pour plum mixture over chicken. Bake at 425° for 6 minutes or until done. Let chicken stand 5 minutes. Sprinkle with green onions.

Meatless Tacos in Won Ton Wrappers

If you feel like getting creative during the nine days (and we won’t blame you if you don’t!), here’s a treat that everyone will love.

1 pound vegetarian ground round
1 onion, diced
1 teaspoon minced fresh garlic
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 tablespoon chili powder
½ teaspoon pepper
36 won ton wrappers
¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 (15-ounce) can refried beans
Tortilla chips
2 cups grated cheddar cheese

Toppings: sour cream, salsa, guacamole, chopped fresh cilantro, black olive rings

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly grease 18 standard muffin cups (remember recipe is dairy).

In a medium skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat and brown ground round, onion and garlic, about 5 – 8 minutes. Stir in spices and cook until flavors are incorporated, about 2 minutes.

Place one won ton wrapper in the bottom of each prepared muffin cup. Top with 1 tablespoon of refried beans, 1 crushed tortilla chip, 1 tablespoon of the ground round mixture and 1 tablespoon of cheese. Repeat.

Bake until golden brown, 15 to 18 minutes. Remove from tins and serve with desired toppings.

Indian Tofu and Cauliflower

photo: summit-sandwiches.com

Serves 6

1 (14-ounce) package firm tofu, drained until almost dry
1 onion, chopped
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 teaspoon cumin
2 teaspoons curry powder
2 teaspoons minced fresh garlic
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
½ teaspoon black pepper
¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 head cauliflower, florets only
¼ cup water
1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes
Optional Garnish:
Plain yogurt
Chopped cilantro

In a large skillet or work, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add cumin, curry, garlic, ginger, black pepper and red pepper and sauté for 1 minute. Add tofu and cauliflower and sauté until both begin to brown – about 10 minutes. Stir in water and tomatoes and simmer for about 15 minutes – or until cauliflower is soft. Serve over rice and garnish with yogurt and/or cilantro, if desired.

Guacamole with Grilled Jalapenos

1 jalapeno, quartered and seeded
3 scallions, chopped
2 garlic cloves, unpeeled
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 avocadoes, peeled
¼ cup chopped cilantro
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon mayonnaise

In a small bowl, mix jalapeno, scallions, garlic and olive oil until coated. Heat a grill pan over a medium-high flame. Add vegetables and grill until charred, 5 to 6 minutes. Remove from heat and cool.

Place jalapeno and scallions in a medium bowl. Remove garlic from peel, mash and add to bowl. Add avocadoes and begin to mash. Add remaining ingredients and continue mashing until thick and well-combined. Serve immediately.

Easy Italian Bean soup

photo: geekturnedathlete.com

2 tablespoons olive oil
4 carrots, peeled and diced
1 onion, chopped
1 (32-ounce) box pareve chicken broth
2 (15-ounce) can cannellini (sometimes called white kidney) beans, drained
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon basil
¼ teaspoon pepper
1 (5-ounce) package baby spinach
Grated Parmesan cheese (optional)

In a medium Dutch oven, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add carrots and onion and sauté for 3 to 5 minutes, or until soft.  Add broth, beans and spices and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer for about 10 minutes.  Just before serving, add spinach and cook briefly until wilted. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese if desired and serve alongside a crusty bread.

Jalapeno Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

A spicy variety on an easy favorite. Recipe is for 1 – can be doubled, tripled, quadrupled etc. etc.

1 jalapeno, halved and seeded
2 slices crusty bread
1 tablespoon butter, softened
¼ cup shredded pizza cheese

Place jalapeno on a baking sheet, cut side down. Broil for about 10 minutes or until blackened. Cool and chop. Mix with grated cheese. Butter outsides of bread. Place cheese and jalapeno mixture on top of one bread slice. Cover with other slice and grill in pan – about 2 to 3 minutes per side or until cheese is melted and bread is crisp. Yum!

Cajun “Shrimp”

photo: melecotte.com

One more take on the imitation fish…

2 (200-gram) packages imitation shrimp, defrosted
2 (12-ounce) bottles of beer
2 cups flour
2 teaspoon Cajun seasoning
2 tablespoons peanut oil (use grapeseed if you have allergies)

Accompaniment: Cocktail Sauce (add a little fresh cilantro to the cocktail sauce for some extra zing!)

In a large bowl, soak shrimp in beer for about 3 hours.

In a large freezer-strength Ziploc bag, mix flour and seasoning. Remove shrimp from beer and add to flour mixture. Shake to coat.

Heat oil to medium-high in wok or large frying pan. Sauté shrimp until crisp; 3 to 5 minutes per side. Serve immediately or at room temperature with cocktail sauce.

Broccoli Slaw and Ramen Salad

photo: thecocinamonologues

A refreshing change from coleslaw.

1 (16-ounce) bag broccoli slaw
2 scallions, minced
1 cup sunflower seeds
1 (3-ounce) package chicken-flavored ramen noodles seasoning packet removed and set aside
1 cup olive oil
1/3 cup vinegar
1/3 cup sugar

In a large bowl, mix together broccoli slaw, scallions and sunflower seeds. Crush ramen noodles and stir into mixture.

In a small bowl, whisk together oil, vinegar, sugar and reserved season packet. Pour over salad and let sit for about 10 minutes before serving.

Black Bean Chili

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 (4-ounce) can diced, roasted green chilies
1 jalapeno, minced
1 onion, chopped
2 teaspoons fresh minced garlic
1 (12-ounce) bottle beer (preferably Corona)
2 (15-ounce) cans black beans, drained
2 tablespoons chili powder
1-1/2 teaspoons cumin
1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes
2 cups vegetable broth or pareve chicken broth
4 tablespoons fresh lime juice

Accompaniments: sour cream, grated cheddar cheese, tortilla chips, guacamole, sliced olive rings

In a medium Dutch oven, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add chilies, jalapeno, onion and garlic and sauté until soft, about 6 minutes. Stir in beer. Cook until reduced by half. Add beans, chili powder, cumin, tomatoes and broth. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 15 minutes, allowing flavors to blend. Stir in lime juice, remove from heat and serve. Good over rice with some or all of the accompaniments listed above.

(Imitation) Lobster Rolls

gourmet.com

The nine days are the perfect time to try this summer treat.

8 kaiser rolls, split in half
8 lettuce leaves
2 (16-ounce) packages imitation lobster, defrosted and flaked
4 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
4 teaspoons hot pepper sauce
1 stalk celery, minced
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper

Line bottom of buns with lettuce leaves.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, lime juice, hot pepper sauce, salt and pepper. Stir in celery and lobster.

Fill buns with lobster mixture and dig in!

Peach Strawberry Crisp

photo by chowbellabycassi.blogpspot.com

Serves 8

1 lemon, zested and juiced
1-1/3 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
3 tablespoons brown sugar
½ cup plus 3 tablespoons sugar
10 tablespoons margarine, melted
6 ripe peaches, peeled and halved
1-pint strawberries, sliced
¼ cup cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon salt
Pareve whipped cream or pareve ice cream

In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder, brown sugar, 3 tablespoons sugar, and lemon zest. Pour in melted margarine and gently mix until small and large clumps form. Refrigerate 15 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Cut peaches into ¼-inch slices. In a large bowl, toss peaches, strawberries, cornstarch, salt, lemon juice and remaining ½ cup sugar. Let stand 15 minutes.

Pour fruit into an oven safe 2-quart dish. Top with reserved crumb mixture. Bake 40 to 50 minutes or until filling is bubbling. Cool 30 minutes.

Serve with pareve whipped cream or pareve vanilla ice cream.

White Asparagus Salad with Creamy Tomato Dressing

Serves 6

This time of year white asparagus is readily available. I like to find ways to use it because it is always delicious and more interesting to use seasonal ingredients. Don’t worry, if you cannot find it, you can use canned white asparagus or regular green spears.

5 large plum tomatoes, divided, 4 cut into wedges, 1 coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 cup mayonnaise
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
Salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 pound green beans
1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
12 spears white asparagus, steamed or grilled or
One 12-ounce jar of white asparagus, drained

In a blender, puree the 1 coarsely chopped tomato with the lemon juice, mustard and sugar. Add the mayonnaise and the 3 tablespoons of olive oil and blend the dressing until thick. Season with salt and pepper.
In a large saucepan of boiling salted water, cook the green beans until tender, 4 minutes. Drain and let cool to room temperature, then drizzle the beans lightly with olive oil and season lightly with salt and pepper.
Arrange the beans, tomato wedges, onion and asparagus on a platter. Drizzle the dressing over the vegetables and serve.

Make ahead the dressing can be refrigerated overnight. Serve lightly chilled or at room temperature.

Watermelon Mojito

photo: Quentin Bacon

Serves 12

I’m obsessed with mojitos and this time of year I love to mix in fresh seasonal sweet fruit into my mojitos. Watermelon works great because it pairs well with the lime. I also love to use pureed peaches and pineapple.

1-1/2 cups sugar
1-1/2 cups water
1 bunch mint leaves, plus some for garnish
2 cups lime juice, from about 1 dozen limes
2-1/2 cups white rum
9 cups watermelon, pureed and strained

Yields: 10-12

Combine sugar and water in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil and simmer until the sugar has completely dissolved. Remove from the heat and cool completely.

In a small mixing bowl, muddle the mint leaves, dissolved sugar/water mixture, lime juice, and rum. Add the pureed watermelon and stir. Pour into a large pitcher.

Serve over ice and garnish with mint.

Falafel Crusted Chicken with Hummus Slaw

photo: foodnetwork.com

Serves 4

This chicken recipe doubles well and is great for kids and adults.
3 skinless, boneless chicken breasts (about 1 1/4 pounds), sliced into 1/4-inch-thick strips
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup falafel mix (boxed – available in major markets)
2 pitas, halved
6 tablespoons hummus
Grated zest and juice of 1 lemon
1/2 teaspoon chile sauce
4 cups shredded coleslaw mix
6 radishes, halved and thinly sliced
1 cup chopped fresh parsley
Kosher salt

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Set a rack on a rimmed baking sheet and coat with cooking spray. Toss the chicken with the olive oil in a large bowl, then add the falafel mix and toss to coat. Arrange the chicken on the rack and bake until golden and cooked through, about 10 minutes. While the chicken is baking, stack the pita halves and wrap them in foil; warm in the oven, about 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, mix the hummus, lemon zest and juice, chile sauce and 3 tablespoons water in a large bowl. Remove 2 tablespoons of the hummus sauce and reserve. Add the coleslaw mix, radishes and parsley to the remaining hummus sauce and toss. Season with salt.

Divide the chicken among plates and drizzle with the reserved hummus sauce. Stuff the slaw in the pitas and serve with the chicken.

Cold Sesame Noodles with Vegetables

photo: bonappetit.com

Serves 6

I love this as a side dish. We make many versions but this one is great with good summer vegetables.

1/3 cup unseasoned rice vinegar
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 tablespoon Sriracha (hot chili sauce)
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
8 cups matchstick-size pieces mixed summer vegetables (such as carrots, radishes, cucumbers, and bell peppers; about 1 1/4 pounds)
Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
8 ounces buckwheat soba (Japanese-style noodles) or spaghetti
1 cup (loosely packed) cilantro leaves with tender stems
3 scallions, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon black or white sesame seeds

Whisk rice vinegar, oil, Sriracha, and sesame oil in a large bowl. Add vegetables; toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper.
Cook noodles in a large pot of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally, until al dente; drain. Run noodles under cold water to cool them; drain well and add to bowl with vegetables. Add cilantro and scallions; season to taste with salt and pepper. Sprinkle sesame seeds over and serve.

*** Note:
If noodles are too sticky, add 2 tablespoons of hot water and toss.

Lemony Chicken with Zucchini

Serves 8

This is an easy and super flavorful chicken. The natural juices of the chicken and the lemon flavors yield a very fresh tasting chicken dish.

½ cup olive oil (or a little less)
2 chickens cut in 1/8’s
Kosher salt and pepper to taste
2 pounds zucchini, cut into ½-inch pieces
2 lemons cut into 1/8’s
1 cup pitted Kalamata olives (or other flavorful black olive)
4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
2 teaspoons dried oregano

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

In a large skillet, heat ¼ cup oil over medium heat. Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Add chicken to skillet, skin side down, and brown on both sides, about 6 minutes.

Transfer chicken, skin side up, to 2 large roasting pans. Pour fat from the skillet into the roasting pans. Add zucchini, lemon and olives to the skillet and cook over high heat, stirring, until zucchini and lemon are lightly browned, about 3 minutes. Stir in garlic, and oregano and add more salt and pepper to taste.

Transfer zucchini mixture to the roasting pans, spreading them around the chicken. Roast for 25 minutes.

Spinach Pasta Salad

photo; nancysrecipes.wordpress.com


Summertime is salad time. A nice big salad can take the place of a heavier meat meal. This salad, with pasta in it, is filling, healthy and delicious to boot. You can always be creative and add your own favorite ingredients. If you want to serve this for your July 4th picnic, just take out the feta cheese. Or serve it for lunch – before the festivities begin!

Serves: 8

Salad:
1 (16-ounce) package rotelle pasta (or any other pasta you prefer), cooked, rinsed with cold water and drained
1 (6-ounce) package baby spinach
2 tomatoes (fresh off the vine), chopped
½ red onion, diced (optional)
2 Persian cucumbers, diced
½ cup sliced black olives
1 cup feta cheese, crumbled

Dressing:
½ cup olive oil
½ cup white wine vinegar
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon fresh minced garlic
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

In a large bowl, combine pasta, spinach, tomatoes, onion (if using), cucumbers, olives and feta.

In a separate bowl, whisk together all the dressing ingredients. Pour over salad and toss to coat. Let sit for 5 minutes for flavors to blend and serve.