Thursday, December 20, 2012

Classic Cranberry Nut Bread

The Menu:
Classic Cranberry Nut Bread
The Original Recipe:
My friend, April, has made this recipe many times. I have not. I have been meaning to make it. So, this year, I had to bite the bullet and make it only because April lives so very far away from me now! You cannot go wrong with this simple recipe. It's delicious! I don't know why I never seem to bake out of my comfort zone. If it doesn't include chocolate, I am less likely to make it. This, however, is a favorite of mine any time of the year!

Classic Cranberry Nut Bread via


2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 cup orange juice
1 tablespoon grated orange peel
2 tablespoons shortening
1 egg, well beaten
1 1/2 cups Ocean Spray® Fresh or Frozen Cranberries, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup chopped nuts


Preheat oven to 350ºF. Grease a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan.

Mix together flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and baking soda in a medium mixing bowl. Stir in orange juice, orange peel, shortening and egg. Mix until well blended. Stir in cranberries and nuts. Spread evenly in loaf pan.

Bake for 55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool on a rack for 15 minutes. Remove from pan; cool completely. Wrap and store overnight. Makes 1 loaf (16 slices).

PER SERVING (1 slice): Cal. 211, Fat Cal. 54, Protein 3grams, Carb. 37grams, Fat 6grams, Chol. 18mg., Sodium 313mg.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Spicey Beef with Leeks

The Menu:
Spicey Beef with Leeks

The Original Recipe:
I have the cookbook, "Chinese Cooking for Dummies." I absolutely love some of these recipes in this book! This is another favorite. I have never cooked with leeks before, and I really liked the flavor. I am excited to try Potato and Leek soup sometime. I served this over Jasmine Rice.

Spicey Beef with Leeks

2 tbls. soy sauce
1tbls. Chinese rice wine
1 tbls. cornstartch
3/4 lb. flank steak or tri-tip beef, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
2 tbls. chinese black vinegar or balsalmic vinegar
2 tbls. hoisin sauce
2 tsp. chile garlic sauce
1 tsp. sesame oil
2 leeks, white parts only (oops! I used a bit of green!)
3 tbls. cooking oil
4-6 red chiles, torn in half ( I used red chili flakes)

Make the marinade by combining the soy sauce, rice wine, and cornstartch in a bowl. Add the beef and stir to coat. Let stand for 10 minutes.
Make the sauce by comining the vinegar, hoisin sauce, chile garlic sauce, and sesame oil in a bowl. Wash the leeks well. Cut them in half lengthwise and then into 1-inch peices.
Place wok over high heat until hot. Add 1 1/2 tbls. of the cooking oil, swirling to coat the sides. Add the chiles and stir-fry until fragrant, about 1 minute. (I just added beef and some chile flakes) Add beef and stir-fry until no longer pink, 1 to 3 minutes. Remove the beef from the wok.
Return the wok to high heat until hot. Add the remaining 1 1/2 tbls. oil, swirling to coat the sides. Add the leeks and stir-fry until slightly softened, about 3 minutes. Add the sauce; bring to a boil and cook until the sauce reduces slightly. Return the beef to the wok and mix well.
* I also kicked this up a notch with some orange peel shavings for an orangey flavor. It went well with the leeks!