Tag Archives: honey

Beer & Honey Baby Back Ribs

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Barbecued ribs are about as American as apple pie. But despite their popularity, ribs are one of those controversial foods where everyone thinks their version is the best with other simply falling short of being the real deal. Often your preference for rib style is dependent upon which part of the country you hail from. Ribs can be marinated in either a tomato or vinegar based sauce or it may be coated with a spicy dry rub. Or maybe you start with a dry rub and move onto basting the meat with a sauce as it cooks slowly over a grill. But really, each method will give you different flavor profiles but all –in my opinion– are equally delicious. All you have to do is think outside of the box.

And thinking outside of the box is exactly what I’ve done with this recipe that is based on one found on the Food 52 website. Not only have I skipped the vinegar or tomato argument instead opting for a sauce made of local Belgian ingredients-dark ale and locally produced honey  but I’ve foregone the grill all together. Thats right, I’ve made delicious and melt in your mouth ribs right in the oven. There really isn’t a better way to enjoy a traditionally summer time treat in the dead of winter. But don’t just take my word for how delicious these ribs are; try them for yourself. You just might want to double the recipe since they are that good.

BEER & HONEY BABY BACK RIBS

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

5 pounds baby back ribs, trimmed

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 large onion, finely chopped

6 cloves garlic, minced

3 tablespoons whole-grain mustard

1/3 cup honey

12 ounces dark ale

1 bay leaf

Salt & freshly ground black pepper

  •  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • Generously season both sides of the ribs with salt and pepper. Arrange the ribs in a single layer on a foil lined, rimmed baking sheet.
  • Pour the oil into a small saucepan set over medium-low heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally for five minutes or until the onion has begun to caramelize.
  • Stir in the mustard, honey, beer and bay leaf. Cook until the mixture is heated through.
  • Remove the sauce from the heat and brush it over the ribs, pouring and additional sauce over the top of the ribs.
  • Bake in the pre-heated oven for 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until the ribs are fork tender and cooked through.
  • Allow the ribs to cook for 10 minutes before slicing and serving topped with any sauce that has accumulated in the pan.

Serves 6

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Twenty-Five Days of Cookies: Orange Sesame & Honey Cookies

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Christmas is twenty two days (gulp) away and what better way is there to countdown to the big event than to feature a cookie recipe each day? Think of it as a cookie recipe advent calendar. And to fill that advent calendar I’m featuring twenty five of my favorite holiday cookie recipes that are sure to fill your holidays with cheer. Bake them to fill your cookie trays, bring them to a cookie swap or eat them yourself; they are guaranteed to bring about holiday joy. And if you love baking as much as I do, making them is a fun filled gift unto itself. Enjoy!

I’m a fan of nuts but when I’m baking for friends with allergies sometimes it just isn’t possible to use them. So how do you make a special cookie with all of the richness and flavor of nuts without, well, the nuts? Use sesame seeds of course and this recipe from Cooking Light is just the answer. Sesame seeds are often thought of as belonging in savory dishes but I love them in sweets as well. When toasted they provide all of the nutiness of nut. Paired with the sweetness of honey and the brightness of orange, these cookies are the perfect addition to a holiday cookie tray.

ORANGE SESAME & HONEY COOKIES

1 1/4 cups sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 large egg
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup toasted sesame seeds
2 tablespoons honey
2 teaspoons grated orange rind
1/3 cup toasted sesame seeds
1 tablespoon orange juice
1 tablespoon honey
  • Preheat the oven to 350°.
  • Combine granulated sugar, brown sugar, butter, and vanilla in a large bowl.
  • Beat with a mixer at medium speed until fluffy then add the egg, beating again until just blended.
  • Beat in flour, baking soda, and salt.
  • Turn the beaters to low and mix in 1/3 cup toasted sesame seeds, 2 table­spoons honey, and the grated orange rind into cookie dough.
  • Place 1/3 cup toasted sesame seeds in a shallow bowl.
  • Scooping the dough by tablespoonfuls, use your hands to form balls then roll the balls in the sesame seeds.
  • Arrange cookies 2 inches apart on parchment paper-lined baking sheets.
  • Bake 10 to 12 minutes then remove from the oven, allowing to cool for 3 minutes before moving them to a wire rack to cool completely.
  • Combine orange juice and 1 tablespoon honey in a bowl; drizzle mixture over cooled cookies.

Yields: 4 dozen cookies

 

Rosemary & Red Wine Beef Kabobs

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There is something about eating food off a stick that simply makes it more fun. And when that food is delicious it is even better. Kabobs make a regular appearance on my dinner table since they are fun, easy and because everything is cut into bite sized pieces before cooking, fast. Just about anything can be skewered and grilled –from meats to fruits and vegetables. You can even personalize each skewer by adding the ingredients each family member likes.

I love these colorful beef and pepper skewers and the secret to their intense flavor is a generous amount of fresh rosemary. And fresh is key since dried rosemary won’t yield the same bright flavors. Choose a robust dry wine to serve as the base of your marinade, after all you will want to drink what is left with your meal.

ROSEMARY & RED WINE BEEF KABOBS

1 cup dry red wine

2 tablespoons honey

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1 large handful fresh rosemary

1 pound beef, cut into bite sized cubes

1 large sweet onion

1 red bell pepper

1 yellow bell pepper

1 orange bell pepper

1 green bell pepper

  • Combine the wine, honey, black pepper, salt and rosemary in a large sealable plastic bag. Use your hands to kneed the mixture until the honey is dissolved.
  • Add the beef to the wine mixture, reseal the bag and refrigerate for 30 to 60 minutes.
  • When you are ready to cook, coat a gas grill with cooking spray and preheat to medium high heat.
  • Cut the peppers and onion into bite sized pieces.
  • Remove the beef from the marinade and discard the liquid.
  • Skewer the beef and vegetables onto metal skewers, alternating between meat and vegetables as desired.
  • Place the skewers over direct heat and grill, turning every two to three minutes until the meat is cooked to your liking. I cooked mine for 8 minutes.
  • Remove the skewers from the heat and serve.

Yields 6 kabobs

Grilled Figs w/ Honey & Mascarpone

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If you love figs this is the dish for you.  Combining the classic Mediterranean ingredients of figs, honey, and mascaropne cheese, this dish is so simple to make.   As a bonus, it can be served as an appetizer on a buffet table or as a light dessert or even as snack.   Because there are only three ingredients make sure that you use the best quality ingredients you can find.  If you don’t have a grill the figs can be cooked under the broiler.

GRILLED FIGS w/ HONEY & MASCARPONE 

8 ripe figs

1/4 cup mascarpone cheese, at room temperature

2 tablespoons honey

  • Lightly oil the grill rack or broiler pan with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Preheat a gas grill or broiler to high.
  • Slice the figs in half lengthwise.
  • Place a small dollop of mascarpone cheese onto the top of each fig.  Drizzle with the honey.
  • When the grill is hot, reduce the temperature to medium-high.  Place the figs directly onto the grill and close the lid.  Cook for 2-3 minute until the cheese melts and the outer skins of the figs just begin to char and turn crisp.  Serve immediately.

Serves: 4

Indonesian Ginger Chicken

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Grilled chicken is a summertime staple at my house. It is easy, delicious and leftovers are perfect for lunches the next day. While barbecue sauce reigns supreme for us, sometimes you want to change things up a bit and when that is the case, this Indonesian ginger sauce recipe from Noble Pig is just the thing. The sauce is loaded with tangy ginger and garlic which when combined with honey and soy sauce makes for the perfect sweet, tangy and sticky coating for the chicken.

The key to a flavorful chicken, however, is letting it marinate overnight in the sauce. So yes, you will have to plan ahead with this dish but if you do the work the first day, the next one you will just have to throw the chicken on the grill. The results will be so well worth it. And the leftover chicken is just as good cold as it is hot so if you find yourself with leftovers the next day, pack some up in your lunchbox. Just make sure to include plenty of napkins.

INDONESIAN GINGER CHICKEN

1 cup honey

3/4 cup soy sauce (reduced sodium)

1/4 cup minced garlic (8 to 12 cloves)

1/2 cup peeled and grated fresh ginger root

12 chicken drumsticks, trimmed

  • Combine the honey, soy sauce, garlic and ginger root in a small saucepan set over low heat until the honey is melted. Allow the sauce to cool slightly.
  • Place the chicken in a large ziplock back and place it in a shallow baking pan.
  • Pour the sauce over the chicken, seal the bag and allow it to sit overnight.
  • When you are ready to cook, preheat a grill to medium-high heat.
  • Place the chicken on the grill and cook the drumsticks, turning regularly until they are cooked through and the juices run clean, about 20 to 25 minutes.

Serves 6

Grilled Peach & Steak Salad

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It’s Fast Friday again and time for another fast and fabulous dinner suggestion. If you are anything like me, by the time Friday rolls around the last thing I want to do is cook a big meal yet we all still have to eat. The dishes featured in this series aren’t necessarily fancy but they bring together simple ingredients most people already have in their pantries or have easy access to and allow you to put a real meal on the table in between 30 and 45 minutes. Enjoy and if you have your own fast recipes you want to share, please send them my way and I will in turn share them with all of my readers.

Entree salads are a favorite summer time dinner. When topped with protein they are cool, crisp and completely satisfying. For me, the trick to keeping salads interesting is continually changing up the ingredients. This salad is built around what is good at the markets this time of year and peaches top that list. Grilling them gives them a slightly charred flavor which complements the steak. Peppers and tomatoes add to the salad’s texture while the blue cheese and sunflower seeds add interest. I’ve kept the seasonings for both the steak and the dressing simple as to not detract from the freshness of the fruit and vegetables. Add other vegetables if you want; after all the key to a good salad is one that includes the toppings you want.

GRILLED PEACH & STEAK SALAD

2 rib eye steaks, trimmed

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon salt, divided

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided

2 peaches, halved and pitted

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

2 tablespoons honey

2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar

8 cups mixed greens

1 green bell pepper, sliced

1 red bell pepper, sliced

1 yellow bell pepper, sliced

1 cup grape tomatoes, halved

1/4 cup sunflower seeds

1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese

  • Pre-heat a grill to high heat and lightly coat with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Sprinkle both sides of the steak with the garlic powder, half of the salt and half of the pepper.
  • Sprinkle the cut sides of the peaches with the nutmeg.
  • Reduce the grill temperature to medium-high then place the steak on the grill. Cook the steaks, turning after 6 minutes, until they are cooked to your liking. Medium-rare takes  approximately 9-11 minutes. Remove the steak from the grill and allow to rest for 5 minutes before slicing along the diagonal.
  • Add the peaches to the grill, cut side down, and cook for 3 minutes then flip and cook for an additional 2 minutes. You want the peaches to be slightly softened but not mushy.
  • While the steaks cook, make the dressing by combining the honey, vinegar and remaining salt and pepper in a small bowl. Set aside.
  • Divide the greens, peppers and tomatoes between two large shallow bowls.
  • Top the salads with the sliced steak, drizzle with the dressing then sprinkle with the sunflower seeds and blue cheese.
  • Serve immediately.

Serves 2

 

Grilled Figs w/ Honey & Mascarpone

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If you love figs this is the dish for you.  Combining the classic Mediterranean ingredients of figs, honey, and mascaropne cheese, this dish is so simple to make.   As a bonus, it can be served as an appetizer on a buffet table or as a light dessert or even as snack.   Because there are only three ingredients make sure that you use the best quality ingredients you can find.  If you don’t have a grill the figs can be cooked under the broiler.

GRILLED FIGS w/ HONEY & MASCARPONE 

8 ripe figs

1/4 cup mascarpone cheese, at room temperature

2 tablespoons honey

  • Lightly oil the grill rack or broiler pan with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Preheat a gas grill or broiler to high.
  • Slice the figs in half lengthwise.
  • Place a small dollop of mascarpone cheese onto the top of each fig.  Drizzle with the honey.
  • When the grill is hot, reduce the temperature to medium-high.  Place the figs directly onto the grill and close the lid.  Cook for 2-3 minute until the cheese melts and the outer skins of the figs just begin to char and turn crisp.  Serve immediately.

Serves: 4

 

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