Brown Butter Sweet Corn Pancakes

corn pancake

Watch me make this on my YouTube Channel!

Yields: 12 pancakes

Spice Mix:

2 teaspoons kosher salt

½ teaspoon chipotle powder

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon ground coriander

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and stir to combine.

 

Pancake Mix:

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted until browned, cooled slightly, plus more for greasing the pan

½ cup low-fat buttermilk

2 large eggs

2 teaspoons adobo sauce (from a can of chipotles in adobo)

½ cup all-purpose flour

½ cup stone-ground whole-grain cornmeal (not coarse)

2 teaspoons baking powder

¼ teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 teaspoon spice mix

3 scallions (green onions), very thinly sliced (½ cup)

2 cups fresh corn or thawed frozen corn

 

In a small bowl, whisk together the butter, buttermilk, eggs and adobo sauce.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda, salt, pepper and spice mix. Add the liquids from the small bowl into the large bowl. Fold together until just combined. Fold in the scallions and corn with a rubber spatula.

Place a large nonstick pan over medium heat for 1½ minutes.  Add a small amount of butter to pan, just enough to lightly coat. Scoop batter into ¼ cup measure cup. Add the batter to the pan using a spoon to get it out of the measuring cup. Gently press the pancake batter with the back of the spoon to flatten it and form a 3-inch pancake. (Cook 3 to 4 pancakes at a time.) Cook for 2 minutes on each side. Pro tip: start your timer after the last pancake is added to the pan. Repeat until all pancakes are cooked.

Transfer pancakes to a cookie rack until all are made and you are ready to serve.

 

Pancake Topping Options:

Sour Cream

Fresh Cilantro, roughly chopped

Cotija Cheese, crumbled

Avocado, sliced

Green onions, thinly sliced

Spice mix

To serve, place 3 pancakes on a plate. Top with a dollop of sour cream, a sprinkling of the spice mix and all of your favorite toppings.

Coriander Spiced Calabacitas Tacos with Chipotle Crema

Coriander Spiced Calabacitas Tacos

Coriander Spiced Calabacitas Tacos with Chipotle Crema

Yields: 12 servings

 

Chipotle Crema:

1 cup organic sour cream

2½ tablespoons adobo sauce (from a can of chipotles in adobo)

1/8 teaspoon kosher salt

 

Tacos:

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 medium red onion, peeled and diced small

1 medium poblano pepper, seeded and diced small

1 medium jalapeño pepper, seeds and veins discarded, diced small, or to taste

1 teaspoon whole cumin seeds

1 tablespoon whole coriander seeds

5 large garlic cloves, peeled and minced

½ teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste

Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

5 tomatillos, husked, rinsed and diced small

2 medium zucchini or summer squash or mix of both (1 pound), diced small

½ bunch fresh cilantro, leaves and stems, roughly chopped

1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice (juice of 1 lime)

 

Toppings:

12 tortillas, warmed on a griddle, nonstick pan or directly over a flame

Salsa of choice

Cotija Cheese, crumbled

Fresh cilantro leaves

 

Mix Chipotle Crema ingredients together in a small bowl. Taste and adjust seasoning by adding more salt or making more spicy with additional adobo sauce. Set aside.

In a large sauté pan set over medium heat, add the olive oil, onions, poblano and jalapeno and cook, stirring occasionally, for 8 to 10 minutes, until the onions are beginning to soften.

Add the cumin, coriander and garlic and season with salt and pepper.  Stir, and cook for an additional 1 to 2 minutes, until the garlic is fragrant.

Add the tomatillos, zucchini and cilantro. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the zucchini is soft and cooked through, 5 to 8 minutes. Turn off heat and stir in fresh lime juice. Season to taste with additional salt, pepper and/or lime juice.

Assemble tacos by putting a dollop of chipotle crema on a taco, then adding the calabacitas followed by salsa, cheese and cilantro. Repeat – repeat – repeat!

 

Sweet Summer Corn Soup

What is summer without corn?! Grilled, sauteed, boiled – it’s all delicious, but one of my all time favorite ways to enjoy corn is corn soup.

This recipe is packed with that sweet corn flavor because everything comes to a boil, including the otherwise discarded cobs. Even when you take all the kernels off, they still hold so much flavor! So, why not use that flavor to your advantage? This recipe is also drought friendly: not only because we use every last inch of that corn on the cob, but also because it’s creamy without using any butter or dairy. The trick? Throwing a potato into the mix to give it extra richness. Oh, and there’s also that dollop of avocado. Mmmm.

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Creamed Summer Corn Soup with Chopped Cilantro and Avocado Puree

Yield: 6 cups

 

¼ cup grapeseed oil

2 large yellow onions, peeled and diced small (3 cups)

Kosher salt, to taste

Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

6 large garlic cloves, peeled and minced (2 tablespoons)

2 tablespoons roughly chopped fresh thyme

teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, or to taste

4 ears corn, kernels sliced off the cob (2 cups), reserving cobs

1 medium yellow potato, peeled and diced medium (1 cup)

4 cups vegetable stock

2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice (juice of 1 large lime)

1/8 teaspoon chipotle powder (or more to taste!)

2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro

Avocado puree (recipe below)

 

Heat the grapeseed oil in a small pot over medium heat.

Add the onion, a pinch of salt, and a few grinds of black pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes, until the onions are soft and translucent.

Stir in the garlic, thyme, and red pepper flakes and cook until fragrant, 1 minute.

Add the corn (and their cobs), the diced potato and the stock, then cover. Turn the heat to high and bring to a boil.

Reduce the heat to low and simmer for approximately 30 minutes until the potatoes are cooked through.

Remove from the heat, then remove and discard the corn cobs.

Using an immersion blender, blend continuously until smooth. Add the lime juice, chipotle powder and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Serve warm and garnish each bowl with a dollop of avocado puree, a good sprinkle of chopped cilantro and a light grind of pepper.

 

Avocado Puree

1 large avocado (9 ounces), flesh scooped out, seed and skin discarded

1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice (juice of 1/2 large lime)

¼ teaspoon kosher salt

A few good grinds of black pepper

 

In a small food processor combine the ingredients and puree until smooth.

Crispy Spiced Chickpeas

Here’s a delicious dish that you can whip up in no time. Great for parties and snacks, this unique twist on chickpeas will have you going back for seconds, thirds, fourths…

Spiced Chickpeas

Crispy Spiced Chickpeas

Yield: 15-ounces of spiced chickpeas

Spice Mix

¼ teaspoon kosher salt

1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

½ teaspoon ground cumin

½ tablespoon za’atar

½ teaspoon Hungarian paprika

1/8 teaspoon chipotle powder

Stir to combine spices in a small mixing bowl.

Chickpeas

1/3 cup grapeseed oil

1 15-ounce can of chickpeas, rinsed, drained and spread out on a paper towel to dry for 15 minutes (the dryer the chickpeas the better as it will prevent spattering hot oil in the pan)

Pour grapeseed oil in a large sauté pan and turn heat on medium-high.

Heat oil until it is very hot and shimmering, approximately 3 minutes.

Carefully add chickpeas to the sauté pan and cook for approximately 8 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the chickpeas are golden brown. To prevent hot oil from spattering, partially cover sauté pan; do not fully cover as the chickpeas will steam and not crisp up.

Remove chickpeas from sauté pan with a slotted spoon and transfer onto a paper towel-lined plate to soak up any excess oil.

Transfer chickpeas to the small bowl with spices and stir to combine.

Serve immediately for maximum crispy tastiness!

Candied Spiced Pecans

How about a weekend treat? Careful – they are addictive.

Candied Spiced Pecans

Candied Spiced Pecans

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

¼ teaspoon ground cumin

⅛ teaspoon ground cayenne

¼ teaspoon kosher salt

Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

1 tablespoon grapeseed oil or extra-virgin olive oil

1¼ cups pecan halves

3 tablespoons pure maple syrup, preferably Grade B

 

Mix together the cinnamon, cumin, cayenne, salt, and a few good grinds of pepper in a small bowl.

Heat a medium sauté pan over medium heat for 1 minute or until hot.

Add 1 tablespoon oil and the nuts, and cook for approximately 2 minutes, stirring every 20 seconds to cook evenly.

Working quickly, add the spice mix to the sauté pan and stir to coat. Cook for 30 seconds, stirring once every five seconds.

Add the maple syrup very carefully, as it will bubble up, stirring to coat. Allow to cook 2 minutes more, stirring occasionally. Keep an eye on the nuts, and if they begin to smoke, turn down the heat a little and stir more often.

Remove from the heat and transfer the nuts to a sheet pan lined with parchment paper.

 

Working quickly, using two forks, separate the individual nuts, then allow to cool completely. Seriously. They’re going to be hot.

 

 

Spiced Carrot Almond Bites

A few months ago, I had an excess of carrots (and by excess I mean about a 20 pound surplus) and a bit of a sweet tooth. Well, what to do? Throw some carrots, fruit, nuts, spice and cocoa in my food processor and minutes later, my sweet tooth problem was resolved! Hooray! As far as my surplus of carrots, well, I made a very small dent with this dessert snack, but I can say that I did enjoy a lot of carrot juice that week. Win-Win! (Did I mention these are raw, gluten free, vegan and DELICIOUS?)

P.S. You can see a video of me making these on my Facebook Page.

 

Spiced Carrot Almond Bites

 

 

Spiced Carrot Almond Bites

Yield: approximately 16 balls

 

3 small carrots, peeled and chopped into the size of whole almonds

1 teaspoon orange zest

15 deglet noor dates, pitted

5 dried black mission figs, chopped roughly

1 tablespoon old fashioned rolled oats

1 cup toasted almonds

1 teaspoon cocoa powder

1 tablespoon grade B maple syrup

2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice

1-ounce good quality dark chocolate, 65-70% cocoa solids, chopped roughly

¾ cup unsweetened shredded coconut

 

Place all ingredients, except coconut, in a food processor and process until well combined and the ingredients stop moving about in the bowl.

Place shredded coconut on a large plate.

Using your hands, roll dough into 1-inch balls and roll balls in the coconut to coat.

Refrigerate 30 to 45 minutes to firm up before serving.

 

 

Spiced Amaretto Peaches

Warmed peaches, brown butter, Amaretto, mint, almonds, cinnamon. Sounds like a perfect summer dessert to me. What more is there to say?!

 

Spiced Amaretto Peaches

Spiced Amaretto Peaches

Yield: 2 servings

 

3 ripe peaches, washed, cored and sliced thinly

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

2 tablespoons dark brown sugar

1  2- to 3-inch stick cinnamon

¼ cup Amaretto liqueur

5 fresh mint leaves, chopped finely

2 tablespoons sliced almonds

 

Combine the butter, sugar and cinnamon in a medium sauté pan over medium heat. When the butter begins to brown after 2 or 3 minutes, add the sliced peaches, stir and simmer until tender.

Warm the liqueur in a small saucepan. Carefully add the warmed Amaretto to the sauté pan with the peaches and ignite by tilting the pan away from you. The flames will subside in seconds as the alcohol burns away. Heat and stir until glazed.

To serve, divide sautéed peaches among bowls. Spoon any remaining sauce from the pan over the peaches. Garnish with sliced almonds and some mint.

Grilled Spiced Okra

Last Sunday, I found some beautiful okra at the Hollywood Farmers Market, so I decided to make a quick meal of it – and I’m glad I did! It was flavorful, spicy, bright and there was none of that okra slime that can occur! I used my grill pan because it was actually cooler in my (un-airconditioned) kitchen than it was outside, but you could also throw these on the grill. Either way, just make sure you eat them right away while they are still a bit crisp and hot off the grill.

Grilled Spiced Okra

 

Grilled Spiced Okra

Yield: 2 servings

 

½ pound okra, washed and dried

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

¼ teaspoon ground cumin

¼ teaspoon ground fennel

1/8 teaspoon ground chipotle

¼ teaspoon kosher salt

freshly ground black pepper, to taste

½ lemon

 

Heat a grill pan over medium heat for 3 to 5 minutes, until very hot.

In a medium bowl, mix to combine the okra with the olive oil, cumin, fennel, chipotle, salt and a few grinds of black pepper.

Place on the grill pan and cook for 5 to 6 minutes on one side, until grill marks are acheived. Do not stir. Flip the okra to cook on the opposite side for an additional 5 to 6 minutes.

Remove from grill pan. Squeeze lemon juice over the okra and serve immediately.

Homemade Barbecue Sauce

Nothing says summer and Fourth of July than a good barbecue sauce. This holiday, try mine! It’s easy and delicious and if you really like a kick to your sauce, go ahead and up the heat in this sauce.

 

Homemade Barbecue Sauce

 

Homemade Barbecue Sauce

Yield: approximately 2 cups

 

1 cup organic ketchup

1 tablespoon whole-grain Dijon mustard

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

¼ cup apple cider vinegar

¼ teaspoon hot pepper sauce (preferable adobo sauce), or to taste

2 tablespoons organic unsulfured dark molasses

 

Whisk or stir the ingredients together in a small container.