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Tag Archives: rice

Puppy Chow/Muddy Buddies

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Puppy Chow.  Muddy Buddies.  Monkey Munch. Reindeer Chow.  This recipe goes by a lot of names, but what it boils down to is an addictive, peanut butter & chocolate, crispy & crunchy, sweet & salty treat that abounds at parties and in gift baskets during the holiday season.  (And despite the name, it is most certainly not intended for dogs.  Please do not give this to any dogs-chocolate can kill them!)  I know most of you probably have been making this for years, but I’m sharing this for the .00001% that have never heard of it.  The added bonus is that if you  are in need of some gluten-free treats, this one fits the bill if you make it with Rice Chex.

You must make this!  I promise you will love it.  Unless you don’t like chocolate and peanut butter, in which case I advise you seek counseling immediately.  Or maybe you’d like to trade that dislike in for my dislike of exercise?  Because I could use a lot more exercise and a lot less Puppy Chow.  Anyone?

Puppy Chow

Printable recipe
Printable recipe with picture

1 (12 oz.) box Rice Chex or Crispix Cereal
1 (12 oz.) package semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup creamy peanut butter
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
1 (1 lb.) box confectioner’s sugar

Pour cereal into a large bowl that has a lid you can snap on and set aside.  Gently melt the chocolate, peanut butter, and butter in a double boiler or in the microwave in 30-second intervals, stirring well in between and removing when almost melted to stir until the residual heat melts the chocolate completely.  Pour over the cereal and stir well until the pieces are evenly coated.  Add the confectioner’s sugar, cover bowl with lid, and shake well to coat thoroughly.  Alternately, if your bowl doesn’t have a lid, you can pour the cereal into a large paper grocery sack, pour the sugar in, fold the top, and shake until combined.  Two Ziploc gallon-size bags will do the trick as well.  Spread out onto wax paper to cool, then store in an airtight container or Ziploc bags.

Recipe source: Kim D.

Secret Recipe Club

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Masoor Dal with Cauliflower and Kale

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Before we get to some major Indian yumminess, I wanted to mention two things.  First, you may notice things look a bit different around here.  I changed my theme and I like it but I’m not sure it’s “the one.”   I think the header is very plain…but I’m cheap and I don’t want to pay to get fancy so this is probably as good as it gets. :) Let me know what you think!

Second, I think I caused some confusion with my post on the cake decorating competition at work.  I’m not sure how many of you saw that, but I wanted to clarify that the date on it is correct.  I wrote it two years ago on my MySpace blog, and newly copied it to Recipe Rhapsody so that I could link to it in reference to how to make a tiered cake in an upcoming post.  I posted it with the original date I wrote it, so I didn’t think any one would see it, but I started getting some comments on it so apparently it came across some of your radars!  Just wanted to clarify that it’s now old news, but I appreciate your kind words and congratulations.

Red Lentils

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Although I still have a large backlog of recipes to post, the weather is heating up again and it looks like the casseroles, soups, and pumpkin recipes will probably have to wait until next year, so I thought I’d gush (or perhaps rhapsodize would be a more appropriate word for this blog!) about the lunch I made today instead.  I’m on a mission to spring-clean my wreck of a house into sparkling submission, and I started eying the red lentils I’d purchased at a Lebanese market over a month ago while I was organizing the kitchen.

I decided I was (finally) going to make something with them, but by the time I took a break to cook,  I was starving and didn’t want to bother with looking up any recipes.  I needed a quick meal and I threw this one together in just over half an hour, so it would be great for a busy day.  While I’m usually not a good enough cook to come up with anything edible without using a recipe, I think I knocked this one out of the park, if I do say so myself!  Becoming familiar with the cuisine by cooking several Indian dishes over the last few months helped a lot.

I made a masoor dal (a thick stew made of red lentils) that is almost vegan, and could certainly be turned so by using vegetable stock in place of the water and chicken bullion.  It is spicy in the full sense of the word–with plenty of Indian aromatics and and a moderate heat index, though you can certainly reduce or increase the spiciness to your tastes.

I’m usually not a fan of lentils, but I liked this more than any lentil dish I’ve made before.  I’m not sure if red lentils have a better flavor (which I do suspect, because I detected none of the usual musky lentil flavor in this dish), or if the spices just overwhelmed it.  The tender cauliflower pieces were a perfect accompaniment, but I don’t think the kale is absolutely necessary.  I couldn’t really detect any of its flavor, and it got kind of dull & ugly during the cooking process, but I don’t think it hurts to have all that extra nutrition!  Kale has powerful  antioxidant properties and is considered an anti-inflammatory so if you have it on hand, throw it in!  If not, don’t sweat it.  The only thing I didn’t have that I really felt it needed was a little cilantro to sprinkle over the top.  I had to make do with some dried parsley.  Bummer!

I served mine with whole wheat couscous since I was in a hurry to eat (it only takes 5 minutes to make), but you can serve it with rice or bulgar or even pasta.  Whatever floats your boat!

Masoor Dal with Cauliflower and Kale

Printable recipe
Printable recipe with picture

2 cups water
2 chicken bullion cubes
1 cup red lentils
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 (8 oz) cans tomato sauce
2 teaspoons garam masala
2 teaspoons curry powder
1 teaspoon sriracha hot chile sauce, or to taste
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 head cauliflower, separated into florets
2 cups loosely packed kale
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Fresh cilantro, for garnish

In a large 3-quart saucepan, combine water, bullion, lentils, onions, and garlic; cover and bring to a boil over high heat.  Reduce heat to medium and cook for ten minutes.  Stir in the tomato sauce, garam masala, curry powder, sriracha, and cumin.  Add the cauliflower and kale, stir & cover.  Cook for 20 more minutes, stirring often to make sure the dal isn’t sticking, or until the lentils are tender.  Stir in the olive oil during the last five minutes of cooking and serve with a sprinkle of cilantro over rice or couscous.

Serves 4

Per serving: 231 calories; 8 g fat; 40 g carbohydrates; 15 g fiber; 13 g protein

Green Rice

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I do not really like Spanish rice, but I do love Mexican food, so I’m always looking for alternative side dishes to complement my Mexican meals (let me know if you have some!). I started making this green rice about four years ago and every one that has tried it raves about it and immediately tries to figure out what’s in it b/c they’re always expecting broccoli when they look at it and are surprised by the slightly spicy, garlicky & cilantro taste. It is a very nice complement to any Mexican dinner, but I really like to serve it with my creamy chicken enchiladas along with a salad. It does take a while to make, so I usually save it for special occasions or days when I have an extra hour to prepare dinner.


Green Rice pictured with Fish Tacos

GREEN RICE

3 cups fat-free chicken broth or water
2 poblano peppers, stems & seeds removed
1 jalapeno pepper, stem & seeds removed (use latex gloves so your skin doesn’t get burned during handling)
1 bunch (at least 1 cup) chopped fresh cilantro leaves, divided in half
2 tsp. vegetable oil
1 onion, finely diced
4 large garlic cloves, minced
1 cup brown rice
½ tsp. salt

Combine the broth and peppers in a medium saucepan, bring to a boil, and then partially cover and simmer gently over medium to medium-low heat for about 10 minutes. Pour the mixture into a food processor or blender*, add 1/2 of the cilantro and process to a smooth puree. Set aside.

Wipe the pan clean, add the oil, and heat over medium-high heat. Add the onions and cook until soft. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Stir in the rice and cook for 1 minute.

Stir in the warm broth mixture & the salt. Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat to medium-low and cook for 45 minutes to 1 hour.

Start checking on it about 30 minutes to make sure there is still enough liquid. There should be enough, but add more broth as needed. Also, the rice will start sticking to the bottom toward the end of cooking so when most of the liquid is absorbed, you’ll have to stir it every few minutes to keep the bottom from scorching. This makes the rice creamy–almost like a risotto in texture. Once the rice is tender, remove from the heat and let sit for 5 minutes, covered. Stir in remaining cilantro and serve.

*Remove the center part of your blender lid before turning it on so that the steam has somewhere to escape once the internal pressure increases. If you don’t do this, your blender lid will blow off & you could be badly burned (as I have on two separate occasions). It works best to start the blender on low and slowly increase the speed, that way nothing sloshes out through the open hole at the top.

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