raspberry chipotle chocolate truffles

chipotle raspberry chocolate truffles | what's cooking good looking

 

The holiday season is already in full swing here in nyc. There are christmas trees for sale on many of the street corners in my neighborhood, holiday music is playing everywhere, and there are several parties to attend every week. We picked out and decorated our tree this past weekend, we have the harry connnick jr holiday pandora station on continuously, I dusted off my pine tree scented candles, and I feel like I am living in a state of overindulgent exhaustion.

I don't necessarily mind the overindulgence this time of year, as long as I can balance it out with healthy indulgence in the form of warm salads, soups, and smoothies. Oh, and maybe a health-ish dessert thrown in there too. 

Dessert feels like the first and best place to make a healthier switch during the holidays, and each year I try to come up with a couple of recipes that I can make for us or bring to a party to lessen the dairy, gluten, and sugar load just a little. Last year I made THIS pie which I cannot wait to make again. This year, I am adding in these very easy to make 3-ish ingredient truffles, with Tabasco's raspberry chipotle hot sauce to give them a sweet little zing. I have always been into making super easy truffles, and I love it when chocolate-y things have a spicy kick to them, so this seems like the perfect treat to add to my repertoire this winter. 

This really delicious raspberry chipotle hot sauce by Tabasco is a must-have for your fridge! Especially if you're like me and you love when sweet gets together with spicy. This would go so well with so many things (I am thinking dessert, swirled into some vanilla ice cream), and would also make a great stocking stuffer. You can only find it online, but you can easily order a bottle of your own HERE.

**This post is sponsored by TABASCO, in conjunction with the #TABACSOtastemakers trip. All thoughts are my own. Thanks for supporting the brands who support WCGL! 

chipotle raspberry chocolate truffles | what's cooking good looking
chipotle raspberry chocolate truffles | what's cooking good looking
chipotle raspberry chocolate truffles | what's cooking good looking
chipotle raspberry chocolate truffles | what's cooking good looking
chipotle raspberry chocolate truffles | what's cooking good looking
chipotle raspberry chocolate truffles | what's cooking good looking
chipotle raspberry chocolate truffles | what's cooking good looking

raspberry chipotle chocolate truffles 

If you want to make these truffles and you do not have the raspberry chipotle sauce handy, you can simply omit it, and add a couple of extra pinches of cayenne (if you still want a spicy kick). 

MAKES
about 2 dozen truffles

INGREDIENTS

12oz of 70-80% dark chocolate, cut into chunks
1 cup of canned full-fat coconut milk
1/4 teaspoon of sea salt
a dash of cinnamon
3 tablespoons of Tabasco raspberry chipotle hot sauce
a pinch or two of chipotle or cayenne (optional, if you want an extra kick)

toppings: 
2 tablespoons of cacao powder
a tablespoon of gogi or pomegranate powder (optional)


METHOD

  • In a small saucepan, heat the coconut milk over low heat and add the chocolate. Stir continuously until the chocolate has completely melted. Add the salt, cinnamon, and raspberry chipotle sauce and stir to incorporate. 
  • Remove from the heat and immediately transfer to small baking dish (I like to use a loaf pan). Refrigerate for a minimum of three hours, over overnight, until the mixture has solidified. 
  • Place the cacao powder, and any of the additional toppings (if you choose), onto a flat plate. Using a small ice cream scooper, scoop the chocolate to form the truffles, roll them between the palm of your hands to make a smooth ball shape, and place them on the plate with the cacao and roll it in the cacao until covered. Do this until all of the truffles have been formed. 
  • Place them back into the fridge for another 3 hours, minimum, or until you're ready to enjoy. Keep refrigerated in an air-tight container.

 

harissa + coconut milk baked delicata squash with lentils + toasted almonds

roasted squash + lentil coconut curry | what's cooking good looking

This recipe has a funny little story behind it. Last week, in the midst of writing and cooking for thanksgiving, I was in need of a quick, pantry staple kind of lunch. I had recently seen a recipe in Donny Hay magazine for a pumpkin, lentil, korma curry that was all baked together in one pan. I loved the idea of baking a curry-type dish the oven, while only dirtying one pan, so I thought, maybe I’ll give something like that a try. I had some delicata squash, lentils and coconut milk. I also had a red onion, some almonds and herbs. I did not have any curry paste, so I decided to add harissa for flavor and for a kick. I threw these ingredients into a baking dish and crossed my fingers. I had no idea how it would turn out, and I was so surprised, that out came a delicious, fancy-ish, healthy meal, loaded with flavor and texture, and filled with some of my favorite ingredients.

The next day I met up with my good friend Hetty for coffee and a pre-thanksgiving union square greenmarket run. As we sipped coffee and chatted about what we were going to make for t-day, she surprised me with a jar of harissa from her friends NYShuk. I laughed and told her about my semi-accidental, one-pan, pantry recipe success where the harissa was the star ingredient … and that I couldn’t wait to test it again with my new harissa (which is also now my new favorite now, btw).

Being the delicata squash lover that I am (it’s all about that delicious, edible skin) I am always looking for new ways (besides the classic, roasting with olive oil, salt and pepper) to enjoy my favorite fall veggie. I have also been looking to create more one-pot/dish/pan meals, because who doesn’t want less hassle and less dishes to wash. I have a feeling this recipe will become a new all-time favorite of mine for both a quick lunch, or a dinner party side dish. 

harissa + coconut milk baked delicata squash with lentils and toasted almonds

This recipe was inspired by a recipe I spotted in the most recent Donna Hay magazine for tray-roasted pumpkin and lentil korma curry. Feel free to use a curry paste instead of the harissa if you prefer. 

SERVES
4-6

INGREDIETNS

2 medium sized delicata squashes, seeds scooped and sliced into half moons
1 large red onion, cut into wedges
¼ cup of harissa (my favorite is NYSHUK )

13.5oz can of full-fat coconut milk
1/4 cup of water
1/2 cup of lentils

1/3 cup of toasted almonds
A handful of chopped herbs of your choice such as: cilantro, basil, parsley

METHOD

  • Pre-heat the oven to 425º.
  • In a medium sized, deep baking dish, toss the squash and onion with the harissa, and bake for 20-25 minutes, until the vegetables are tender.
  • Remove from the oven, sprinkle the lentils evenly over the vegetables and pour the coconut milk and water over the top, making sure the lentils are submerged. Return to the oven and cook for another 30-35 minutes, until the lentils are cooked.
  • Top with the toasted almonds and herbs, and serve warm. 

deviled brussels sprout salad

deviled brussel sprout salad | what's cooking good looking
deviled brussel sprout salad | what's cooking good looking

This will be the first Thanksgiving in a while where I am doing the cooking. Our family has an atypical tradition of eating out for Thanksgiving that we have very much enjoyed over the past several years, however this year we decided to switch it up again and go back to a more traditional celebration ...... I could not be more excited for it. I think that this year, and especially after a rough couple of weeks, sitting around a table with family and friends to a big home-cooked meal is especially needed. 

The thing that I get most excited for, and I am sure you are the same too, is to plan the menu. This year I decided to go a simple as possible .... for a fews reason. Simple is always better, I don't want to be eating leftovers for a week, and I am working with a reallllllly really small oven. Plus, I would rather not be over-stuffed, or over-stuff my guests .... I would rather end the day feeling satisfied, nourished, content ..... with a good wine buzz. 

So far, my menu is shaping out to look something like this:

A brined + spatchcocked turkey
..... with THIS mustard seed gravy

THIS cauliflower, leek, and potato gratin with hazelnut milk béchamel

maybe some sort of variation of THIS stuffing fried rice  

one (okay, maybe two) of THESE pies from my favorite pie cookbook, Four and Twenty Blackbirds

OH .... and these brussels sprouts I am sharing today. 

I wasn't quiet sure what to call this dish. They are pretty much a hybrid of a deviled egg and a crispy brussels sprout salad. By taking hardboiled egg and mixing it up with the same kinda of ingredients that would make up a spicy deviled egg filling, it makes for an incredibly rich and extremely tasty sauce to coat those crispy sprouts in. So, if you like both deviled eggs and crispy brussels sprouts as much as I do, then this side dish is a t-day (or any-day) must! 

**This post is sponsored by TABASCO, in conjunction with the #TABACSOtastemakers trip. All thoughts are my own. Thanks for supporting the brands who support WCGL! 

deviled brussel sprout salad | what's cooking good looking
deviled brussel sprout salad | what's cooking good looking
deviled-brussel-sprouts-WCGL-05.jpg
deviled brussel sprout salad | what's cooking good looking
deviled brussel sprout salad | what's cooking good looking
deviled brussel sprout salad | what's cooking good looking
deviled brussel sprout salad | what's cooking good looking

deviled brussels sprout salad 

SERVES | 4

INGREDIENTS

3 hardboiled eggs
2 tablespoons of mayo
1 teaspoon of dijon mustard
2 teaspoons of tabasco
1/4 teaspoon of kosher salt
5 green onions, thinly sliced

4 cups (about 30) brussels sprouts, sliced in half
a couple tablespoons of sunflower (or another neutral high heat oil)
kosher salt + pepper

METHOD

  • Mash up the hardboiled eggs with the mayo, mustard, tabasco, salt and green onion. Keep in the fridge until you're ready to serve. 
  • Cook the sprouts. Heat the oil (enough to coat the pan) in a large cast iron over medium-high heat. Add the sprouts to the pan, flat side down. Cook, undisturbed for about 5 minutes, until the sprouts are brown/charred on that one side. Give it a stir and continue cook for for another 2-4 minutes, until the sprouts are fork-tender. Transfer them to a serving bowl and allow them to cool slightly. 
  • Pour the egg sauce over the sprouts and toss to combine, and serve. 

twice baked delicata squash + crispy za'atar roasted chickpeas

twice baked delicata squash + crispy za'atar roasted chickpeas | what's cooking good looking
twice baked delicata squash + crispy za'atar roasted chickpeas | what's cooking good looking

I have found it a little difficult to move forward after this highly emotional week. I have found it hard to post pictures of food and everyday life and pretend like everything is ok. I have so many thoughts racing through my mind , I am having a hard time putting pen to paper and making sense of it all. I had another post saved for this week that had such a different tone, of excitement and hope ..... it's amazing how that tone has changed so quickly and so drastically. 

I have so many things I want to say, so many feeling I wanted to get out. I wanted to say them here, but if you're anything like me, you've been reading wayyyy to much the past few days, or even the past few months. I don't want to do that to you or to me. So, today I want to keep it short and positive. No matter what you're thoughts are on the state of the world right now, there is one thing that we can agree on, and that is that we can all use a little extra love right now. 

Sometimes during tough times, posting recipes can seem a bit trivial. Another pumpkin pie recipe, or another thanksgiving side dish seems a bit silly when there are much bigger problems happening all around. I have spent the past few days walking around in  daze, spending too much time on social media or reading the news, and too little time in the kitchen. I've been eating out every single meal and I feel disoriented, not like myself. This morning I realized (as I knew all along) that cooking food is actually incredibly important right now.  It's grounding, it's nourishing ..... and that is everything. 

Life goes on. We need to keep sharing the love in the ways we know best, for me that is cooking, feeding people, and sharing recipes. Spreading the love in every way we know how, and taking care of ourselves and one another. 

twice baked delicata squash + crispy za'atar roasted chickpeas | what's cooking good looking
twice baked delicata squash + crispy za'atar roasted chickpeas | what's cooking good looking
twice baked delicata squash + crispy za'atar roasted chickpeas | what's cooking good looking
twice baked delicata squash + crispy za'atar roasted chickpeas | what's cooking good looking

twice baked delicata squash + crispy za'atar roasted chickpeas


The skin of the delicata squash is edible (and really tasty) making it the perfect vehicle for twice baking and topping with these super flavorful za'atar roasted chickpeas. The tahini drizzle is optional, but highly recommended. This dish would make a great holiday side dish, but also works great as a filling veggie main.  


MAKES | 5-6 stuffed squashes

INGREDIENTS

3 medium sized delicata squashes
a couple tablespoons of olive oil
salt + pepper

for the mashed squash insides:
2 tablespoons of butter, ghee or olive oil
1/4 teaspoon of sea salt
pepper

for the za'atar chickpeas:
1 tablespoon of za'atar
3 tablespoons of sunflower (or another neutral oil) 
1 can of chickpeas, drained

for the (optional) tahini drizzle:
1/4 cup of tahini
3 tablespoons of water
the juice of 1/2 a lemon
1/4 teaspoon of salt
pepper

METHOD

Roast the squash

  • Pre-heat the oven to 400º
  • Place the squashes onto a baking sheet, rub all over with the olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast for 30-40 minutes until the outer skin is very tender. Remove, and allow to cool. 

Roast the chickpeas:

  • While the squash is roasting, prep the chickpeas. Wish together the za'atar and the oil. Place the chickpeas onto a baking sheet, and toss with the za'atar oil. Roast for 15 minutes, until the chickpeas are crispy. Set aside until you're ready to assemble. 

Make the tahini drizzle (if using):

  • In a small bowl, whisk together all of the ingredient for the tahini drizzle. Set aside until you're ready to serve. 

Scoop and re-stuff the squash, assemble, and serve:

  • Once the squash is cool enough to handle, cut it down the center lengthwise, and then carefully scoop out the seeds and discard (or save if you have a good use for them). Then, carefully scoop out the insides (leaving the skins in tact), place them into a mixing bowl, and add the butter (or oil), salt and pepper. Mash, and mix it all together using the back of a fork. 
  • Transfer the mashed squash back to the skins. I found that I did not quite have enough squash for all six skins, so I did not stuff the last one (and just cut up and ate the skin on it's own).
  • Distribute the chickpeas over top of the stuffed squashes. Return to the oven for another 5-10 minutes to re-heat and crisp the top. 
  • Remove, and finish with the tahini drizzle and serve immediately. 

homemade cereal: matcha cocoa sesame clusters + macadamia milk

homemade cereal: matcha cocoa sesame clusters + macadamia milk | what's cooking good looking
matcha-sesame-cereal-WCGL-02.jpg

I have a thing for cereal. Actually, I guess I should say I recently rediscovered my thing for cereal. Back in my office working days, I used to keep a box of cereal in the office kitchen, and some milk in the office fridge. I ate corn flakes with sliced banana every single morning and it was a breakfast that I loved and fully satisfied me until lunchtime.

When I left my office job, I also left behind a lot of not-so-great food habits such as dairy at every single meal, and many processed foods. I found that I no longer needed  the convenience so much, but I also learned that processed stuff (like certain breakfast cereals) can be fine once in a while, but less so as a daily habit. I exchanged my cereal for things like oatmeal and smoothies, and started making my own nuts milks, and never looked back. Well, that is until recently when I got a craving for my old friend cereal and milk.

In a quest to satisfy this craving, I wanted to experiement with a homemade cereal. I have experimented with homemade cereal before, last year, when I made homemade puffed rice (which is basically like homemade rice crispies). I love homemade puffed rice cereal so much, but I do not love how much time it takes to make. So, this time around I wanted to make a delicious homemade cereal that didn’t require as much time and patience. Something that I could make and keep around, even if I were hypothetically still in an office job and convenience was more of a priority.

I am happy to say, I found my new favorite cereal, and it checks all the boxes. A crunchy, satisfying breakfast with lots of healthy ingredients, and even a mini matcha caffeine jolt .... if that’s how you’d like to roll. It can basically can be made with 2, or 1, dirty dishes, about 5 minutes of prep, and 30 minutes of cook time. You can even make a double or triple batch, store it in an airtight container, and munch on it all week long.  

 

This cereal was also made to celebrate a very special arrival ….. Cynthia of Two Red Bowls is expecting a third bowl, and we are throwing her a virtual baby shower to celebrate their arrival! Cynthia is one of the most talented photographers and recipe creators, and her new little one is so lucky to have Cynthia as mom. Congrats to you both! So happy for you! To check out the all of the other delicious recipes to celebrate Cynthia's arrival, head to Steph's (i am a food blog) or Alan's (fix feast flair) for a full list! 

homemade cereal: matcha cocoa sesame clusters + macadamia milk | what's cooking good looking
matcha-sesame-cereal-WCGL-06.jpg
homemade cereal: matcha cocoa sesame clusters + macadamia milk | what's cooking good looking
homemade cereal: matcha cocoa sesame clusters + macadamia milk | what's cooking good looking
homemade cereal: matcha cocoa sesame clusters + macadamia milk | what's cooking good looking
homemade cereal: matcha cocoa sesame clusters + macadamia milk | what's cooking good looking

homemade cereal: matcha cocoa sesame clusters + macadamia milk 

MAKES | about 2-4 servings 

INGREDIENTS

1 cup of quick cooking rolled oats
1/2 cup of oat flour
1/4 cup of white sesame seeds
1/4 cup of black sesame seeds
3 tablespoons of cocoa powder
1 teaspoon of matcha powder (optional)
1/4 teaspoon of sea salt

1 egg white, beaten until fluffy
3 tablespoons of maple syrup
2 tablespoons of sunflower oil (or another neutral oil) 
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

METHOD

For the homemade macadamia nut milk, follow these instructions using macadamia nuts. It will keep for about 3 days, in an air-tight container in the fridge. 

For the homemade cereal:

  • Pre-heat the oven to 300ºF.  
  • Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl (or directly onto a baking sheet if you want one less bowl to clean). Combine the wet ingredients in a separate, small, bowl. Add the wet ingredient to the dry and stir until combined. 
  • Spread the mixture out to an even layer small the baking sheet. Bake for 30 minutes, until everything is crisp and toasted. 
  • Wait until it has completely cooled (this is important if you want to get larger clusters!) and then gently break apart the mixture into clusters using your hands. Enjoy immediately with a splash of nut milk, and any other fruit or toppings that you like, or transfer to an airtight jar/container to store to enjoy later. It should keep for about a week.