Banana Chunk Chocolate Hazelnut Muffins

Banana bread muffins? With pumpkin pie spice? And chocolate hazelnut spread? YES, please!

Banana Chunk Chocolate Hazelnut1

I can just see that chocolate hazelnut spread peeking through the cracks…

Banana Chunk Chocolate Hazelnut2

Chocolate banana hazelnut deliciousness

Banana Chunk Chocolate Hazelnut Muffins

Yield: 12 Muffins

 

1 ¼ cup all-purpose flour

½ cup old fashioned rolled oats

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon baking soda

¾ cup light brown sugar

1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

1/3 cup pitted deglet noor dates, approximately 10 dates

8 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for greasing pan

2 whole eggs

3 very ripe large bananas, broken into large chunks, plus 1 large banana, diced small

1½ tablespoons chocolate hazelnut spread

 

Set an oven rack to the middle position and preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a muffin tin with paper muffin cups.

Place flour, oats, salt, baking soda, sugar, pumpkin pie spice and dates in a food processor. Process until dates are broken down and mixture is fairly even. (There will still be some very small pieces of dates which is fine.)

Add butter, eggs and the 3 large bananas broken into chunks and process until mixture is fully combined.

Stir in (do not process) the diced banana.

Fill each muffin tin with 2½ tablespoons of batter. Top each with 1/8 teaspoon chocolate hazelnut dollop. Cover each muffin with another 2½ tablespoons of batter.

Transfer to the oven and bake for 25 minutes. Test readiness by poking a toothpick or knife in the middle of a muffin; if it comes out clean, it’s ready.

Remove from oven and let cool before removing from muffin pan.

Toasted Almond Toffee with Orange Zest and Fleur de Sel

It’s Halloween week, so here’s some candy that your and your friends can enjoy come trick or treating time (kids love it, too!). All you need is a candy thermometer and you’ll have your very own homemade delicious toffee in no time. Costume optional.

Toasted Almond Toffee with Orange Zest

Toasted Almond Toffee with Orange Zest and Fleur de Sel

Yield: 1 sheet tray of toffee

 

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

1¾ cup granulated sugar

½ cup water

1/3 cup organic light corn syrup

10 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature and cut into 1 tablespoon pieces

¼ teaspoon kosher salt

¾ teaspoon baking soda

2 tablespoons orange zest (approximately zest of 3 oranges)

1 pound toasted unsalted almonds

A few pinches of fleur de sel

 

Line a sheet pan (bottom and sides) with aluminum foil. Very lightly oil the aluminum foil (bottom and sides) with the olive oil, using a paper towel.

In a 3.5-quart saucepan, over medium-high heat, combine the sugar, water, corn syrup, butter and salt. Do not stir.

As soon as the mixture begins to simmer, add a candy thermometer.

Once the temperature reaches 300 degrees, remove from heat, carefully remove the thermometer and, using a rubber spatula, stir in the baking soda, zest and almonds. The liquid will foam up a little and lighten in color.

Pour the mixture onto the prepared sheet pan. Using a rubber spatula, press the toffee evenly across the bottom of the sheet pan. Sprinkle some fleur de sel atop the toffee.

Set aside to cool to room temperature.

Once cool, break into pieces and enjoy. Store in an airtight container with layers of parchment between pieces.

Chewy Good Chocolate Chip Cookies

It’s National Chocolate Day! So, I have to give a shout out to my favorite chocolate maker, TCHO, which I used for this Chewy Good Chocolate Chip Cookies. I mean, just LOOK at these beauties! I think National Chocolate Day calls for a celebratory cookie, don’t you think?

Chewy Good Chocolate Chip Cookies Raw

Chewy Good Chocolate Chip Cookies

Chewy Good Chocolate Chip Cookies

Yield: 16 cookies

16 tablespoons (2 sticks) room temperature unsalted butter, cut into tablespoon sized pieces

1 cup granulated sugar

½ cup packed light brown sugar

½ cup bread flour

2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour

½ teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon baking powder

1 ¼ teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

2 whole large eggs

8-ounces good quality dark chocolate, 60- to 70% cocoa solids, chopped into medium chunks

4-ounces good quality dark chocolate wafers or discs, 60- to 70% solids, kept whole

A few pinches Maldon sea salt

Add butter and sugars to a stand mixer and mix on medium using the paddle attachment for 10 minutes. Scrape the sides down on the inside of the bowl using a rubber spatula once or twice throughout the process.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flours, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Set aside.

After mixing the butter and sugars for 10 minutes, add the vanilla extract and 1 egg. Mix until the egg fully incorporates into the mixture. Add the second egg and mix until it fully incorporates. Turn off the mixer and scrape the sides down once again.

Turn the mixer to low and slowly add the flour mixture and mix until just combined. You may need to scrape the sides down again. Once the flour is just incorporated, turn off the mixer. Stir the chocolate chunks and wafers/disks in with a spatula or large spoon.

Refrigerate cookie dough for 30 minutes.

Place an oven rack to the middle position and preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

Using a ¼ cup measuring cup, gather a generous ¼ cup of the batter and form a puck like shape with your hands, about 2 inches in diameter and 1 inch think. Evenly space 6 cookies on a parchment-lined sheet tray.

Add a sprinkling of Maldon sea salt flakes on top of each cookie.

Bake, one sheet tray at a time, in the oven for 18 minutes.

Remove from oven. Let cool on the sheet tray for 1-2 minutes until cookies have firmed up a bit and you can transfer to a wire cooling rack.

Sesame Kale Chips

Highly addictive and easy to make. Not to mention a fraction of the price of those bags of kale chips you see in the store! Note: you should probably triple the recipe – they go fast.

Sesame Kale Chips

Sesame Kale Chips

1 bunch Lacinato (dinosaur) kale, rinsed, stems removed and torn into 2-inch pieces

1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil

2 teaspoons sesame oil

1 teaspoon sesame seeds

¼ teaspoon kosher salt

 

Place an oven rack in the middle position and preheat oven to 250 degrees Fahrenheit.

Toss kale with the oils, sesame seeds and salt in a medium bowl.

Place kale on parchment lined sheet trays and bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until crispy.

Spiced Oven-Roasted Pork Tenderloin

Remember that Date Apple Chutney recipe I posted last week? Ya, well, this pork tenderloin is that recipes best friend. Try them both together for a delicious dish. Or just make the pork, because it’s darn good on its own!

Spiced Oven Roasted Pork Tenderloin

Spiced Oven-Roasted Pork Tenderloin
Yield: 4 servings

 

Tenderloin:

1 ½ teaspoon ground cumin

¼ teaspoon chipotle powder

1 teaspoon Hungarian paprika

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

½ teaspoon garlic powder

1 pound pork tenderloin, silver skin removed (see note below)

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

 

In a small bowl, mix together the cumin, chipotle, paprika, salt, pepper and garlic powder.

Pat the tenderloin dry and season it with the spice rub. Allow to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes. Dust off any excess spice rub.

Adjust an oven rack to the middle position, then preheat the oven to 350ºF.

Heat a large, oven-safe sauté pan (large enough to accommodate the pork) over high heat until very hot. Add the olive oil, swirl the pan to distribute the oil and heat until shimmering. If it begins to smoke, that’s okay.

Add the tenderloin and allow to cook for 2 minutes, undisturbed, until nicely seared. Using tongs, rotate the tenderloin ¼ turn and continue to sear, again for 2 minutes. Once seared, rotate again another ¼ turn and sear for another 2 minutes. Upon rotating the tenderloin to the fourth and final side, hold the tenderloin off the pan with your tongs and insert the digital probe of an oven-safe meat thermometer from the end of the tenderloin into the center. The tip of the probe must reach approximately halfway into the tenderloin.

Replace the tenderloin in the pan on the fourth and final side, and transfer the sauté pan, uncovered, into the oven. Set the digital thermometer to 145ºF.

When the thermometer beeps, after about 15 minutes, transfer the tenderloin to a cutting board, cover loosely with foil, and allow the tenderloin to rest for 15 minutes before slicing.

Note: Similar to the iridescent color of a pearl, silver skin is the inedible connective tissue that covers a small portion of the thicker end of the tenderloin. Too tough to pull off with your bare hands (unlike a layer of fat), the silver skin can be removed, using your knife of choice, by simply filleting it off. Do this by cutting just under the silver skin with the tip of your knife, angling your knife slightly upwards, then cutting the silver skin off in strips. Alternatively, you can ask your butcher to remove the silver skin.

Grilled Skirt Steak with Chimichurri Sauce

Before you put away your grill for the Winter, here’s a recipe that will put dinner on the table in a flash. It’s my Grilled Skirt Steak with Chimichurri featured in this month’s Paleo Magazine – Page 16! And for those of you who have my cookbook, Great Food Starts Fresh, you can find this recipe on page 180.

LyonGrilledSkirtSteakwithChimichurri

The Fare Trade – All’s Fare in Love and Food

SarahNathanKitchen-copy

Want to know the first meal Super Sous and I shared? Or our favorite restaurant in LA?

Super Sous and I were excited to participate in The Fare Trade’s All’s Fare in Love and Food project – where all these answers are revealed!

If you haven’t heard about The Fare Trade – they send a delicious box of artisanal food to your doorstep every month. We got to play with Jacobsen Salt and Grist and Toll products (in addition to other goodies) – seriously these boxes are AMAZING.

And, we created 2 special recipes!

Herb Drop Biscuit Salad Blood Orange Evoo

Date Apple Chutney

This pairs well with pork, a cheese plate, dessert and turkey – so you might want to keep this one up your sleeve for Thanksgiving!

Date Apple Chutney

Date Apple Chutney

Yield: Approximately 3 cups

 

4 medium apples, peeled and diced medium (preferably Pink Lady)

1 cup roughly chopped deglet noor dates

½ cup black currants

½ teaspoon kosher salt

1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 cup water

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 3-inch cinnamon sticks

1 tablespoon freshly grated Ginger, grated on a Microplane

¼ cup white wine vinegar

3 3-inch sprigs rosemary

 

Put all ingredients in small pot over medium heat. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer for 25 to 30 minutes, until the liquid has almost all reduced and apples are soft.

Remove from heat and let cool. Remove the cinnamon sticks and rosemary sprigs.

Serve with pork, turkey, a cheese plate, dessert, etc.!

Store, covered, in the refrigerator for up to a week.

Teff Polenta with Sauteed Onions, Chard and Bacon

Teff is a North African cereal grass. Being a grass, it’s gluten free. It is primarily ground into flour and, if you have ever eaten at an Ethiopian restaurant, you have probably enjoyed the spongy injera bread, which is made of teff flour. Teff can also be purchased it’s grain form – in fact, it’s the smallest grain in the world! – and can made into a polenta type dish, among other delicious uses.  Being such a fine grain, it has an almost silky texture and the taste is familiar like a mashed potato (almost uncanny) but with a little more earthiness and nuttiness.

Teff Polenta with Sauteed Onions

Teff Polenta with Sauteed Onions, Chard and Bacon

Yield: 3 to 4

 

3 cups water or vegetable stock, divided

½ cup teff grain

¼ cup sour cream

3 tablespoons, unsalted butter

½ teaspoon kosher salt, divided, plus more to taste

freshly ground black pepper, to taste

3 slices applewood smoked bacon, halved lengthwise and then cut crosswise into ¼-inch slices (3/4 cup)

1 large yellow onion, peeled and sliced thinly

1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh thyme

5 medium chard leaves, leaves stripped from stems and chopped roughly, 1 packed cup

¼ cup grated sharp cheddar cheese, not pre-grated

 

For the Teff:

In a medium saucepan, bring 2½ cups water to a simmer. Add the teff and ¼ teaspoon salt. Stir, cover and reduce heat to low. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until the teff has softened and absorbed all the water, 15 to 20 minutes. (Check in frequently. You may need to add a bit more liquid as the teff cooks or to loosen it before serving.)

Once, teff is cooked. Turn off heat and stir in sour cream and butter. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Cover until ready to serve.

For the Sauteed Onions, Chard and Bacon:

Add the bacon to a large sauté pan then place over medium-low heat and cook for approximately 8 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until much of the fat has rendered off and the bacon is just beginning to get nice and crispy.

Remove bacon and transfer to a paper towel-lined plate. Pour off all of the bacon fat from the pan except 1 tablespoon, reserve the rest for another use or discard. Add the onions, thyme and ¼ teaspoon salt to the sauté pan and cook for 8 to 10 minutes until the onions are lightly caramelized.

Add chard and ½ cup of water. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the chard is cooked down, approximately 5 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

To Serve:

Spoon teff into bowls. Top with sautéed vegetables and bacon. Finish with some shavings of cheddar cheese and some cracked black pepper.

Spiced Roasted Cabbage with Yogurt Sauce

Cabbage is more than just the star of a good coleslaw, it can stand on its own – especially when spiced up, roasted and served with my lemon yogurt sauce!

spicedroastedcabbage

 

Spiced Roasted Cabbage with Yogurt Sauce

Yield: Serves 4

 

1 small head of green cabbage, cut into ¼ – ½ inch rounds

extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling

kosher salt, to taste

freshly ground black pepper, to taste

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon ground fennel

1/8 teaspoon ground chipotle powder, or more to taste

 

Place an oven rack on the middle position and preheat the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.

Place cabbage on a parchment lined sheet tray.

Drizzle cabbage with olive oil. Using a brush or your finger, spread olive oil to coat the cabbage.

Season cabbage with salt, pepper, cumin, fennel and chipotle. Flip cabbage rounds and repeat with olive oil and spices.

Roast for 35 to 40 minutes, until cabbage is nice and caramelized.

 

Yogurt Sauce:

¼ cup nonfat Greek yogurt

2 teaspoons freshly squeeze lemon juice

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

kosher salt, to taste

freshly ground black pepper, to taste

 

Stir to combine all ingredients. Serve alongside roasted cabbage.