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Posts from the ‘Appetizer/Snack’ category

Spinach Hummus

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I love hummus! I saw a few recipes for spinach feta hummus and decided to give one a go. After adding everything else except the feta, I tasted the mix and decided it was completely delicious already and didn’t want to change anything, so instead of mixing a bunch of feta in, I just sprinkled some on top. The red pepper flakes in this gave it a great kick. This was an awesome snack to have right after getting home from work before making dinner!

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Ingredients:

  • 30 oz garbanzo beans, drained
  • 2 cups fresh spinach
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 5 tbs lemon juice
  • 4 tbs tahini
  • 2 tbs red pepper flakes
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 tsp salt
  • optional: feta cheese for sprinkling on top or mixing in

Directions:

  • Add garlic to food processor and mince. Add garbanzo beans, spinach, olive oil, lemon juice and tahini. Pulse until combined.
  • Add the red pepper flakes, garlic and salt (optional: add 8 oz feta). Pulse until combined and add more salt or red pepper flakes as desired.

More Homemade Fruit Leather

Previous post

I had a lot of fun making the first batch of fruit leather so I wanted to try some other flavors.

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From top to bottom: Cherry (2 cups pureed canned cherries), Kiwi (2 cups pureed kiwis), Pear (2 cups pureed ripe pears), Strawberry apple (2 cups strawberry applesauce)

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These ones were all made with different flavors of applesauce. I used 2 cups of applesauce for each tray. Granny smith, mixed berry, mango peach, strawberry , cinnamon, pear, and blueberryDSC_0095-2 DSC_0110

Kiwi watermelon

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cantaloupe, honeydew, pineapple

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Raspberry apricot

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Applesauce with frozen cherries

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I have This Nesco Dehyrator. You can buy cheap trays specifically for fruit leather or you can just use parchment paper. In general I use about 2 cups of pureed fruit for a single tray. Try to spread the fruit as evenly as possible over the whole area so it dries at the same time. Depending on the thickness and amount of fruit you use, they dry at different times. In general I have been running the fan at 135 F and the trays take 6-10 hours to dry. I just check them occasionally during the day. Some I overdried because they were running into the night but they still taste good, just a bit more crisp than leathery.

Crispy Roasted Chickpeas

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I’ve been meaning to make these for a while. I had a can of chickpeas sitting around in a drawer so I popped these in the oven for an evening snack. They were SO addicting and tasty and easy to make. I especially loved the ones that got all the way crispy. These have a great crunch and flavor to them and you can experiment with all different kinds of spices to put on them.

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Ingredients:

  • one 15-ounce can garbanzo beans
  • olive oil
  • salt
  • spice blend of your choice

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 400 F.
  • Drain the can of garbanzo beans in a strainer and rinse with water for a few seconds to clean off the beans. Shake and tap the strainer to rid of excess water. Lay paper towl on a baking sheet, and spread the beans over. Use another paper towel to gently press and absorb the water on the beans. Roll the beans around with the paper towel to also remove the thin skin from any of the beans. Discard the skins and the paper towels.
  • Drizzle the olive oil over the beans and use your hands or a spatula to toss around and coat. Sprinkle with seasoned salt (I used creole seasoning). Roast for 30-40 minutes until the beans are a deep golden brown and crunchy. Make sure that the beans do not burn.

Recipe from Steamy Kitchen

Oven-Baked Sweet Potato Fries

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These are SO GOOD! These fries are extremely easy to make and much healthier than actually frying them. Be generous with the salt and pepper and make sure they’re cooked till they start to char a bit. I usually just eat these as a snack but they can work as a side dish too.

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Ingredients:

  • ›1 large sweet potato
  • ›Sea salt or kosher salt
  • ›freshly ground black pepper
  • ›Olive oil

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 450 F
  • You can peel potato or leave the skin on. Wash potato and dry well. Cut into slices ½ to ¾ inch thick.
  • Toss slices with small amount of olive oil and spread out onto a baking sheet covered in foil. Sprinkle generously with sea salt and ground pepper
  • Bake for 15 minutes, flip the fries over and put them back in the oven for 10 more minutes

Spiced Fried Tofu

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My internet has been acting up a ton this weekend so it’s been a bit of a pain to post, very frustrating. Oh well, on to tofu! According to my parents,  tofu was one of my favorite foods as a kid. I’m not sure why I don’t cook with it more often. This a quick and simple dish I’ve made before, usually just to eat as a snack. Make sure to adjust the salt to your liking, or add on a bit more salt at the end if needed. These are great little crispy treats. I pan fry them in only a very small amount of oil to keep them relatively healthy. I eat these just on their own, but they’d be really good with various sorts of dipping sauces as well.

Ingredients:

  • 1 (16 oz) package exra-firm tofu, drained and pressed
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 3 tbs oil (enough to coat pan)
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp sage
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne
  • 1/2 tsp curry powder
  • 1/2 tsp cumin

Directions:

  • Cut pressed tofu into 1/2-inch thick slices; then cut again into 1/2-inch wide sticks. Place tofu in a bowl, and pour broth over the top. Set aside to soak.
  • In a separate bowl, stir together flour and spices
  • Warm oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Remove tofu sticks from broth, and squeeze most (but not all) of the liquid from them. Roll sticks in breading. (You may have to roll sticks twice to end up with a fairly dry outer layer of breading.)
  • Place tofu in hot oil; fry until crisp and browned on all sides. Add more oil if necessary.

Adapted from Allrecipes

Homemade Fruit Leather

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Flavors from left to right: grape, apple cinnamon, raspberry mango, banana chocolate, tropical fruit, blueberry cantaloupe, strawberry kiwi, honey vanilla peach

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I just got a new kitchen toy (I LOVE kitchen toys), a dehydrator! A lot of people use dehydrators to store food that they buy in bulk or that goes out of season, but I pretty much just bought it to make beef jerky and fruit leather 🙂 I may also use it to store herbs if I grow some when it gets warmer out. I tried out making several different flavors to get a feel for how the thing worked and which types of fruits would work best. I would say it was a huge success because all the flavors tasted delicious! Some had better consistencies than others but they were all very tasty.

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This is how the sheets look after they’re done dehydrating

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These quantities made 1 tray for each flavor. For all the flavors except the apple cinnamon (which I poured straight from the jar) I pureed all the ingredients in my food processor until they reached a smooth consistency.

Apple cinnamon – 2 cups cinnamon applesauce

  • This one had the consistency most resembling real fruit leather I used to eat as a kid. Super delicious and peeled off really easily!

Rasbperry mango – 1.5 cups fresh mango, 1 cup fresh raspberries, 1 tbs honey (because my mango wasn’t very ripe and sweet)

  • Really good, the most tart of all the flavors

Honey vanilla peach – 2 cups canned peach halves (drained and rinsed), 1 tbs honey, 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

  • Another one with really good consistency and peeled away really easily, very sweet and good flavor

Banana chocolate – 4 small ripe bananas, 2 tbs unsweetened coco powder

  • good consistency, you could definitely taste the chocolate, great if you’re a fan of bananas!

Tropical fruit – 1 cup fresh pineapple, 1 cup fresh mango, 1 ripe banana

  • yum! peeled easily and great texture

Blueberry cantaloupe – 2 cups cubed cantaloupe, 1 cup blueberries

  • This one was a bit sticky and probably had my least favorite flavor. It was still good but I probably won’t make it again

Strawberry kiwi – 1 small package strawberries (~1.5 cups), 4 kiwis, 1 tbs honey

  •  delicious! a bit tart and I love the crunch of the seeds

Grape – 2 cups fresh grapes

  • This one probably was the stickiest and hardest to peel off but it was one of my favorites in terms of taste

I dried all of the flavors on fruit roll sheets at 130 C for 6-9 hours until they were dry

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Making your own hummus is something that is SO worth trying out. It is very easy to make, much cheaper than buying the small containers at the store, and you can add-in almost anything you want to get new flavors. For this hummus I mixed in kalamata olives and green olives because I love the Sabra Greek olive flavor hummus. It turned out really well and I’ve been snacking on it for the past couple days.

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Ingredients:

  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 (19 oz) can chickpeas (garbanzo beans) with half the liquid reserved
  • 4 tbs lemon juice
  • 3 tbs tahini
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ground black pepper, to taste
  • Optional add-ins and garnish (olives, sun-dried tomatoes, pine nuts, spinach, feta cheese, cumin, paprika, olive oil, cilantro, etc.)

Directions:

  • Mince the garlic in a food processor. Add the remaining ingredients and process until smooth.
  • For add-ins, you can add them with the other ingredients if you want them finely diced and mixed in, or you can chop them separately in the food processor or by hand and add them at the end (if you want larger chunks).
  • Pour into a bowl and garnish with whole chickpeas, oil, and spices
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