Monday, June 10, 2013

M & M Cookies for Memorial Day

I spent the morning of Memorial Day this year making these cookies to take into my husband and his co-workers who were hard at work serving military families at our Naval Hospital. I adapted this recipe from my Betty Crocker cookbook chocolate chip cookie recipe and was really happy with the results. They were really yummy and who doesn't love an M&M cookie? 
This recipe makes about 6 dozen cookies and I was worried I sent in too many, but my husband said that these were demolished in 24 hours. I am so glad that I was able to give back in a small way  on a Holiday that honors the men and women who have sacrificed so much for our country. 
M & M Cookies
From Betty Crocker's Cookbook
Makes 6 dozen cookies
Printable Version
2/3 cup shortening
2/3 cup butter or margarine, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup brown sugar, packed
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
3 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 large package of M&Ms (I used plain but any variety could be used)
Heat oven to 375 degrees. Mix throughly shortening, butter, sugars and vanilla. Stir in remaining ingredients, making sure to gently stir in the M&Ms at the very end.
Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls 2 inches apart onto an ungreased baking sheet. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until light brown. Cool slightly before removing from baking sheet. 

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Pumpkin Cashew Chicken Curry

This dish is by far the best thing I have made in a LONG time. My neighbor AnnMarie and her family just moved from Okinawa and gave me a bunch of canned pumpkin. I asked her how she used pumpkin and she shared with me this amazing recipe. I am so thankful she did because it was seriously delicious. You can't go wrong with the flavor combinations in this one pot meal - pumpkin, curry, coconut milk, red onion, cinnamon, cilantro, cashews. I added in carrots for additional flavor and veggie content and this dish could easily be adapted for vegetarians if you substituted more veggies for the chicken. After I made it I put it in my crock pot to hang out on warm for several hours and I think it really intensified the flavors.
This is my new favorite recipe and one I will put into our regular dinner rotation. 
Pumpkin Cashew Chicken Curry
Modified from PaleOMG and recommended by AnnMarie (thanks AM!)
Serves 4-5
Printable Version
2 chicken breasts, cut into cubes
2 garlic cloves
2 tablespoons ginger 
1 red onion, sliced
2 large carrots, sliced
1/2 can coconut milk 
1 large can of pureed pumpkin
1/2 cup cashews
3 tablespoons curry powder
1 tablespoon olive oil (or coconut oil)
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
Pinch of cinnamon
Salt and pepper to taste
Fresh cilantro, for garnish 
3 cups of cooked rice (I used Jasmine)
Heat large pot or Dutch Oven to medium and add in oil. Add minced garlic and ginger and once fragrant add in chicken and carrots. Cook until chicken is white on all sides. 
Pour in coconut milk, all spices, red onions and pumpkin. 
Raise heat until mixture becomes bubbly, stirring frequently.  Allow to cook until onions have softened, about three minutes. 
This is when I transferred everything to my crock pot but you can also serve it immediately. When ready to eat place on top of rice and garnish with cashews and chopped cilantro. 


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