It’s almost Valentine’s Day. I can tell because everything in every store is pink, red, and chocolate. And 4 of the 5 most viewed posts on the blog this week are indulgent chocolate desserts (the popular non-chocolate recipe is the recipe for a Blood Orange Margarita – now that’s why we get along). So if you’re looking for a chocolate dessert to knock your significant other’s socks off (let’s stick with “socks” – my 11-year old niece reads this), I’ve got a couple of favorites:
Chocolate Overdose Cake. This is the most viewed post over the last few days. Inspired by a dessert that our favorite pizza place used to serve, it’s a layer of chocolate mousse sandwiched between a brownie base and a top layer of chocolate cake. If that’s not enough, it’s coated in chocolate ganache. You’ll need a few hours and almost 2 pounds of chocolate to make the recipe. You’re welcome. (About the chocolate, not the few hours. I’m sorry for that part.)
Molten Chocolate Lava Cake. A rich, gooey chocolate center inside a cake. The recipe can easily be made without a fancy mixer and scaled to serve only 2 people. Should you not want a couple of extras hanging around for breakfast the next morning.
Red Velvet Cupcakes. I’m an unapologetic Red Velvet fan. I strongly feel that copious amounts of scary red food coloring should be dumped into every baked good possible… and then slathered with cream cheese frosting.
Chocolate Raspberry Tart. A dense, rich chocolate tart spiked with raspberry liqueur. You can say “I love you” and “You have a gym membership, right?” without really saying anything at all.
Chocolate Truffles. You melt chocolate, cream, and maybe a little booze, let it cool, and then scoop it into rounds. That’s it. A fancy dessert with little effort.
Our dwarf citrus trees in the backyard are dotted with dozens of key limes and a handful of pink and Meyer lemons. Our grapefruit tree is still a little young but the Rio Grande valley picks up the slack when it comes to our sizable demand. They churn out wonderful, softball-sized Texas Rio Star grapefruits at only ~.20/lb. It’s totally worth waiting a couple of years for better production from our tree.
I’ve pulled together a collection of recipes where the citrus can really shine. And for the next 2 1/2 months, we’ll be whipping up lots more
You know what today is, right? Only 44 shopping days left ’til Christmas! As if you weren’t stressed enough, trying to figure out where everyone and their +1 is going to sit and then realizing that with each dish broken over the last year, you moved closer and closer to hosting Thanksgiving on paper plates.
Our menu is set! I mean, you know, mostly. I’m always on the look for the next new great side dish. I’m still debating between a classic baked mac & cheese or a fancier one that uses goat cheese.
And after I typed that, I’m not even sure why it’s still up in the air
If you’re still working on yours and need a little inspiration, I’ve pulled together some of our fall favorites and the greatest hits from our holiday menus over the last few years.
Items marked * are on our menu this year. Probably. Almost definitely.
After being teased with bathing suit weather and endless fresh gulf seafood at Food Blog Camp in early January, we just couldn’t go back to heavy winter foods. So for the last couple of months, we’ve been eating like it was 80 degrees outside, even if it was only 35.
I’ve lost count of the number of times we’ve had Cilantro Tandoori Chicken since January. The chicken sits in a fragrant and flavorful marinade and is then grilled to crispy and juicy perfection. While it’s very good as a grilled cut-up whole chicken (the original recipe), it’s excellent when served as tacos.
We serve the tacos with our favorite pineapple salsa, wrapped in a fluffy tortilla. Prior to cooking this recipe, neither of us were crazy about dark meat but we were quickly converted. We now “fight” over the last thigh and leave the white meat for the baby
A couple of notes: There is a lot of marinade here. The original recipe called for the legs, thighs, and breasts from a 4 lb chicken. The first time we made it, I realized it could easily handle double the chicken as I was pouring a bunch of used marinade down the drain. So now when I make it, I marinate 10-12 skin-on/bone-in chicken thighs in the biggest glass bowl we have. These leftovers don’t suck!
Tandoori Chicken Tacos
The chicken sits in a fragrant and flavorful marinade and is then grilled to crispy and juicy perfection. While it’s very good as a grilled cut-up whole chicken (the original recipe), it’s excellent when served as tacos.
Up to 12 chicken thighs (see note above)
1 1/2 cups plain yogurt
1 cup packed fresh cilantro
4 cloves garlic
1/2-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled
1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 1/2 tsp ground coriander (I used 2 rounded tsp of whole coriander)
1 tsp salt
Vegetable oil, for oiling grill pan/grate
Flour tortillas, for serving
Place chicken in a large bowl. Place remaining ingredients in the blender and process until smooth. If you use a really thick yogurt, you might need to add a little milk if your blender struggles with the marinade.
Pour the marinade over the chicken, cover, and refrigerate for several hours to overnight.
Oil grill (or grill pan) and heat to medium. Remove chicken from marinade and shake off the excess marinade.
Grill ~10 minutes each side (for bone-in/skin-on – use your meat thermometer), until juices run clear and the skin has nicely browned. Remove from heat and let rest 5 minutes before serving.
Yields: 4-6 servings (whole chicken) or up to 12 (individual thighs)