Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Compound Butter Schmutter - Chipotle Thyme

Hey fancypantses, wanna know what I made today?
Compound butter.

To the non cook, that's a prettied up word for butter with some "stuff" in it.
Now said "stuff" could be anything really from fresh herbs, garlic, to spices or even aromatic liquids mixed into the butter.  Generally once you've created your concoction you form it into a log type shape in some plastic wrap and toss it into the fridge so that you are able to slice off slivers of greatness to top a steak or some veggies, ohhh I like to make it for corn on the cob in the summer time!

Me, I made it actually to rub all over my chicken - so in true form I suppose it isn't a compound butter until I wrap it in plastic wrap and chill it but who are you the "food prep police"?

I wanted a reason to test out my new kitchenaid food processor, a gift from my recent wedding shower.  Great gift isn't it?!?!?  Thanks Yvonne!!! (She'll never see this but I'm still putting it out there)
In a matter of 2 minutes I was a rockin with some.....get this....
chipotle thyme butter.

SO simple, SO aromatic, SO wonderful.
You gotta try it!

I'm listening to:  Last Train to Clarksville - The Monkees (RIP Davie Jones)

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Monday, February 27, 2012

Thats some SAMOKEYYYY chicken

Not sure if you noticed but I'm kinda, sorta having a giveaway?
I was asked if I wanted to sample some La Chinta Spanish paprika and there was no catch.  They didn't want me to write a post (ya right, um, I cook, I blog, its gonna happen) and they even offered to supply one of my lucky readers a few samples too!  (now when I say samples I don't mean a tablespoon or two either).
I thought I am going to use my regular recipes that I would normally make and substitute the smoked paprika I received and see if I notice a difference.
YUP.  Totally did!

I made a marinade for some chicken quarters a few nights ago, let it sit for ohhhh 8 hours.  Results.
Darned near blew my socks off!
First thing I noticed was when I added the paprika the heavily liquefied base became thicker, quick!  Never noticed my regular paprika do that.  Honestly it was like I threw in some cornstarch or somethin....not complaining, it made the marinade stick better to the chicken.
The smokey scents permeated my nose and couldn't wait to eat it up.
Doesn't this look AmaZing?

Sure did taste great!

I'm Listening to:  Change - Tears for Fears

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Thursday, February 23, 2012

Giveaway! A Smokey One at That! CLOSED

Do you ever wonder if your nose is smelling properly?
You know,  when you have dried spices in your cabinet but you forgot to write the date purchased on them so you aren't too sure if the potency remains in tact and you can only go by your sniffer?
I always wonder if what I smell is what its SUPPOSED to smell like.  How do you really know?
I dunno either.

I do know that when my La Chinta Smoked Paprika from Spain was delivered and I opened up the tin I most certainly had not smelled paprika like THAT before.
Is this what paprika is supposed to smell like?!?!?!!!!
I thought I had died and gone to spice heaven.

The brands I had had previous, absolutely, positively do not compare to the wonderful aroma that permeated my nostrils.
I wanted to inhale it.
Smokey.  Almost campfire like.
Fragrant.  Sweet and indulgent.

I cant even begin to tell you how excited I was to use it.
I am even more excited to tell you that I will be offering up 2 samples of La Chinta's paprika (the sweet smokey and the hot) in the form of a giveaway all thanks to La Chinta, from Spain.
Thank you and the winner will want to thank you also - trust me!

So here's the skinny:

  1. You must be a follower of my blog - there is a "join this site" button, if you aren't a friend already - its on the right hand side of the page, I like new friends (but I like my old ones too).
  2. This giveaway is open to all, no matter where you live (how awesome is that??)
  3. To be entered into this draw I'd love it if you would share either a) a recipe that you use that calls for paprika OR b) what you would like to make with this.
  4. I will use a random number generator to select the winner - so please make sure you leave me your contact information in your post (i.e. email address).  Once contact has been made the winner will have 72 hours to connect, if no response another name will be drawn.
  5. This contest will run until March 1st 5:30pm EST- that's a week from today
Please feel free to share this on your pages (either personally or company/blog pages) on facebook or pass along thru the Twitter universe.  You can tag me at @ppkongacooks or on Facebook at Running With the Deviled Eggs
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Saturday, February 18, 2012

Peter, Paul and Mary Scones (Lemon of Course)

Lemon tree very pretty, and the lemon flower is sweet.
Ah Peter, Paul and Mary, you should have written something about poppy seeds too.

I'm not really sure why lemons and poppy seeds go together, they just do.  Then again, I don't really know why little girls shrill and little boys like mud and insects (because I'm pretty sure none of us moms and dads teach either sex those things - especially the shrilling!) - random thoughts I ponder while baking.

I had bought an abundance of lemons because I thought to make curd.  That didn't happen.
So I made scones instead.  I'm versatile like that.

They weren't too dense, a little flaky even, and not sweet either. 
Perfect quick breakfast on the go - just make sure to bring floss for those pesky seeds or else people will be staring at you while you're talking to them thinking "should I tell her she's got poppy seeds in her teeth?  NAAA I'll just leave it" and then the next person comes along and tells you and you think to yourself "hey, that last person's a jerk, why didn't THEY tell me!?  Was it maybe not that noticeable and this new person is just obsessed with staring at peoples teeth (creepy)" 
In either of those cases its a clearly bad day if you don't floss.

I'm Listening to:  All My Life, K-Ci and JoJo

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Monday, February 13, 2012

Mash Up Monday Guest Post

Mash Up Monday Guest Post?  Why not!?!  When someone channels their inner Andy Warhol of food I am a fan.  That's why I started the Mash Up Monday in the first place, so that I could be as creative and/or whacky as the next.  But I see so many fantastic people out there come up with some wonderfully fascinating combos and thought, maybe I could share those too.

So I approached Shayla of Made From Scratch Recipes nearly immediately once I spied her Sweet Potato Mascarpone Ravioli.  Me and my love of pasta would die to have this for dessert.  What makes it a dessert rather than a fancy dinner?  The nutmeg cream sauce of course! Silly!  Or at least that's what's making it a mashup meal for me anyway and why I wanted to post.
I haven't been a follower of Shayla's blog for long but from what I see I likey.  We share the same "make from scratch" values and she's got a great writing sense.  I am envious that I didn't come up with this creation myself but so happy to share it with all of you!

So without further adieu - Shayla and her Sweet Potato Mascarpone Ravioli with a Nutmeg Cream Sauce
Photo courtesy of Made From Scratch Recipes


The idea for sweet potato mascarpone ravioli came to me one night while drifting to sleep. Don’t ask why I was thinking of ravioli at bedtime. I suppose it’s just one of the many curses of being a foodie.

I love sweet potatoes and I adore mascarpone cheese so I figured, why not mix them together into a delightful ravioli filling? I paired the sweet potato mascarpone ravioli with a nutmeg cream sauce to complement to the filling’s sweet taste.

This has quickly become one of my favorite recipes and it pairs great with homemade Italian bread and white wine. The recipe produces about 12 to 15 ravioli pieces, enough for 3 to 4 people depending on how hungry you are.


Pasta Dough (this dough recipe is from the Best Ever Italian Cookbook, the remainder of the recipe is my original creation):
      ·         1 1/3 cups flour
      ·         1/4 teaspoon salt
      ·         2 large eggs
      ·         1 tablespoon olive oil
      ·         1 additional egg for dough brushing, lightly whisked

Sweet Potato and Mascarpone Filling:
      ·         1 large sweet potato, baked until soft
      ·         4 ounces mascarpone cheese
      ·         1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
      ·         1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
      ·         1/4 teaspoon ginger

Nutmeg Cream Sauce:

·         2 tablespoons unsalted butter
      ·         2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
      ·         3/4 cup milk (add more milk as desired to make a thinner sauce)
      ·         1/2 cup heavy cream
      ·         1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
      ·         Dash of cinnamon
      ·         Salt to taste


The first step with this recipe is to preheat the oven to 375 degrees F and bake the whole sweet potato until soft, about 1 hour. Remove from oven and let cool before removing the peel.
Pasta Dough:

·         Combine the flour and salt in a medium mixing bowl.
      ·         In another bowl, whisk the eggs together lightly.
      ·         Add the eggs and olive oil to the flour mixture and stir until a dough forms.
      ·         Continue mixing the dough with your hands until it becomes more fully formed.
      ·         Place the pasta dough on a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth, about 6 minutes.
      ·         Cover with plastic wrap and let rest on the countertop for at least 30 minutes.

Sweet Potato Filling:

·         Place the cooked and peeled sweet potato into a medium mixing bowl and mash with a fork until broken down.
      ·         Add the mascarpone cheese to the sweet potato in small amounts, mixing completely with each addition.
      ·         Add the nutmeg, cinnamon and ginger to the sweet potato filling, stir until combined. Set aside.

Final Ravioli Preparation:

·         Remove the rested pasta dough from the plastic wrap and divide in half. Place one half of the dough back in the plastic wrap to prevent drying.

·         Use a no-stick rolling pin to roll out the first half of the dough on a lightly floured surface. Turn over the dough a few times while rolling out to prevent sticking. Roll out as thinly as possible, to about 1/8 inch thickness. You can also use a pasta roller.

·         Cover the rolled out half of the dough with plastic wrap to avoid drying. Repeat the process of rolling out the second half of the dough (try to get it as close as possible to the shape and thickness of the first half).

·         Place small helpings of the sweet potato mascarpone filling in rows on the second half of the rolled out dough. Ensure that each placement of the filling is about 1 inch away from the others to provide room for the cutting of the ravioli.

·         After the filling if placed (you’ll probably have leftover filling), use your finger to rub the dough spaces between the filling with the whisked egg.

·         Carefully place the other dough half on top. If needed, carefully stretch the dough to the edge of the lower dough portion.

·         Starting at one edge, press the dough down firmly between the mounds of filling, pushing out any air as you go.

·         Cut the ravioli pieces apart using a sharp knife, ensure all edges are sealed and place the pieces on a lightly floured dish towel. Let rest for at least one hour.

·         Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to boiling. Carefully place batches of the rested ravioli into the water and boil for about 2 minutes on each side. Remove from the water with a slotted spoon and place onto a dish towel or paper towel to absorb any remaining water. Boil the remaining ravioli in the same manner.

Nutmeg Cream Sauce:

·         Begin making the nutmeg cream sauce while the ravioli are boiling.
      ·         In a medium sauce pan, melt the butter on the stove top over medium heat.
      ·         Whisk the flour in with the butter until fully combined.
      ·         Slowly add the milk, stirring constantly. Continue cooking the sauce over medium heat until thickened, about 2 minutes.
      ·         Slowly add the cream, nutmeg and salt to taste.
      ·         Reduce heat to low and simmer another 2 minutes, stirring occasionally.
      ·         Serve the sauce over the prepared ravioli with your favorite homemade bread.

This recipe was created by Shayla Ebsen of Made From Scratch Recipes. Browse more recipes by Shayla at the Made From Scratch Recipes blog ( or on the Made From Scratch Recipes Facebook page ( A major thanks to Running with the Devil(ed) Eggs and Katrin for supporting this guest post!

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Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Mandarin Ginger Pork Chops

Wanna know the last time I ate a pork chop?
Me too!

Since the Mr. BM gave up pork none of us have eaten it really.  There`s been an occurrence of tenderloins but even that I can only come up with once in the last 6 months, maybe probably longer.
I crave PIG.

We had some tonight - squeeeeaaallll (like a pig)

I only bought 2 chops too.  1 for me, 1 for Little Ugh.  So when he asked me what was for dinner and I gave him the news he too was happier than a pig in S(*&T and asked for leftovers HA.
What can I say, we love the "other white meat".

This was going to be a special occasion, I suppose a little fancier flavor is in order.
Maybe I should get dressed up?  Put on some makeup, do my hair, remove my apron when eating?
PPPFFFTTT who am I kidding, its going to reach the plate, I'm going to take photos quickly not caring of the quality, lighting or background and its going to be gone faster than 2 shakes of a lamb's tail.
I never got that saying, who shakes a lamb's tail anyway?  When was the last time you saw a pasture of sheep?  Have you ever seen a lamb tail?  Isn't it all covered in fur?

Dinner is now over, I am full of the oinker. 
I hope to see you a little more often little pink morsel of goodness who makes breakfast sandwiches better.

Sorry Miss Piggy!

I'm Listening to:  War Pigs - Black Sabbath (of course)

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Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Simply Syrup

Waffles, pancakes and french toasts aren't the same when you leave out the smooth syrup to adorn your creations.
Pure maple is divine but costly, the bottled processed brands are ok but why not just make your own and incorporate fruit into it?
It really is SO simple and you can incorporate whatever fruit your little hearts desire!  And if you have guests sleep over they'll be amazed when you tell them they're having homemade fruit syrup with breakfast.

We decided to have breakfast for dinner and we opted for French Toast.
I had picked up a tray of strawberries a few days prior and realized I hadn't used them as of yet and while they weren't fuzzy they were starting to get "soft".
Might as well make some strawberry syrup right?
Oh ya, take a lookie at this!

Here's how utterly easy this is:

1/3 c. vanilla sugar (I simply put used or half beans in my sugar container)
1/3 c. water
1 pint washed, hulled and diced strawberries (or you could use frozen)

3 ingredients, one which can be interchanged (blueberries, blackberries, cherries etc.).  You can even add in some citrus juice or peel for extra flavoring!

Wash, hull and cut up your strawberries

In a pot add your sugar and water (which would be a simple syrup recipe alone) heat on medium to dissolve.  Add in the berries, stir and slow boil it for about 15 minutes or until the liquid has reduced  and looks "syrupy" teehee.

I prefer a thicker sryup and so I let mine boil a tad longer. 
You may get a little foam on the surface (it doesnt bother me none but you can just skim it off with a spoon.)

Let cool slightly and serve or store in a mason jar in the fridge for a few days.

I'm Listening to: Strawberry Swing - Coldplay
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