Recipe ~ Garbanzo Frito ~ from my kitchen #SpanishCooking

Garbanzo Frito Recipe

This is a dish that my mother and grandmother used to make while I was growing up.  I have taken their recipe and added my own twist. Although it is called Garbanzo Frito, there is no frying involved.  I hope you enjoy making and eating it as much as I do.  From my kitchen to yours.

~Susi

garbanzo frito top image final

 

Ingredients

(Serves 4)

1/4 cup olive oil

2 small Spanish Chorizo’s cut into thin rounds

1/2 lbs. smoked pork ham or Virginia ham cut into 1/2 inch pieces

1 onion chopped

1 red bell pepper, 1 yellow pepper or 1 orange pepper chopped into small pieces

6 cloves garlic minced

2 cans 16 ounces Chickpeas/ Garbanzos (drained)

1 can 8 oz. tomato sauce

8 oz. water (use tomato sauce can)

1 box (10 oz)  frozen spinach (thaw for 1 hour before cooking)

1 teaspoon ground cumin or add to taste

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

salt to taste

1/4 pound Manchego cheese (shredded)

Ready to cook?

1.  Heat oil in pan on medium to high heat.

Add the smoked ham pieces.

2.  When ham has browned a bit, add onion, peppers and garlic.

Cook about 7 minutes.  (Lower heat to medium)

garbanzo 3

3.  Add sliced Spanish chorizo and stir.

Once the color has distributed on pan (reddish color) add the chickpeas.  Stir.

garbanzo 4

garbanzo 5

4.  Add the pepper, cumin (to taste) and stir.

5.  Add the tomato sauce and water.  I use the same can to add the water.

Raise the heat to high and cook for about 20 minutes.  Stir as needed.

garbanzo 6

6.   Shred the spinach into thin strips and add to the garbanzo mixture.

Cook for another 10 minutes.

7.  Taste and add salt as needed.

8.  Shred Manchego cheese.

9.  Serve and top with Manchego cheese.

garbazno 7 final

10.  You can add this to rice or serve as is.  I prefer it as is.

11. Enjoy!

Italian Cream Cake Recipe – Inspired by Sempre by J.M. Darhower @jmdarhower

As a baker, I always have baked goods in my kitchen.  Sometimes the goodies are for customers, other times I am simply testing new recipes.

I was inspired to make an Italian Cream Cake after reading Sempre by J.M. Darhower.

Here is my easy Italian Cream Cake Recipe.  I think Carmine will approve. 🙂

You can make this shape using round cake pans too.  I used 3 9 x 5 loaf pans.

italian cream cake 1

Ingredients

1 box White Cake Mix with pudding (any brand will do)

1 1/4 cup Buttermilk

3 large eggs

1/4 cup Vegetable oil

1 package flaked coconut  120z

3/4 cup chopped pecans

1/4 cup of rum

3 9 x 5 inch loaf pans

 

Frosting Ingredients 

2 8 oz creme cheese packages (softened)

2 sticks of unsalted butter (softened)

4 cups  powdered sugar

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/4 cup chopped pecans

 

Directions  (Preheat oven to 350 degrees)

1.  Beat cake mix, buttermilk, eggs and oil with electric mixer for 2 minutes at medium speed.

2.  Fold in the coconut flakes and pecans

3.  Pour even amounts of cake mixture into each of the loaf pans.

4.  Bake at 350 degrees for 17 -18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

5.  Cool cakes for about 30 minutes

6.  Sprinkle rum on each cake layer and allow the rum to soak into cake (15 minutes)

7.  Spread frosting over layer 1 and assemble cake. Frost over each layer. Top the final layer with frosting and pecans.

8.  Refrigerate cake for at least 2 hours.  Cake tastes best cold.

9. Serve and enjoy!

 

Frosting Directions

1. Using the stand mixer, mix 2 sticks of butter and cream cheese together.

2. Add vanilla extract

3.  Slowly add powdered sugar to the mix

4. Ready to spread (refrigerate extra frosting)

italian cream cake 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Recipe – Zeppoles – Italian Doughnuts – An Easy Dessert

Here is a fun and easy recipe for you to try.  I happen to love these fried little treats.  They are also known as Italian doughnuts.

Enjoy!

 

zeppoles 5

Ingredients

 

Fry Daddy or Electric Kettle (I use one with temp control)

2-2 1.2 quarts or more of vegetable oil for frying (This all depends on the depth of your pan/kettle) Add more if needed.

1 cup All Purpose Flour (sifted)

1 pinch of salt

2 teaspoons of baking powder

1 1/2 teaspoons sugar  

2 large eggs

1 cup whole milk ricotta cheese

1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

Confectioners sugar for dusting

Directions

1.  Heat up the oil to 375 degrees.

2.  In a saucepan, mix up the ingredients in this order:  Flour, salt, baking powder and sugar.

3.  Gently stir in the beaten eggs, ricotta cheese and vanilla extract.

4.  Stir slowly over low heat until all ingredients are combined and sticky.

5.  Using a small ice cream scoop or tablespoon drop the mixture one at a time into the hot oil. (fry 4- 5 at a time)

6.  Watch them fry.  They will turn themselves magically.

7.  Fry until golden in color and remove with slotted spoon.

8.  Place on paper towels to absorb excess oil.

9.  Sprinkle confectioners sugar to your liking.

10.  Eat and Enjoy!

zeppoles 4

Fry at few at a time.

 

zeppoles 8

Sprinkle confectioners sugar to your liking.

 

Go ahead, take a bite! Delicious!

Go ahead, take a bite!
Delicious!

Cuban Style Chicken Salad Recipe – Yummy!

One of my favorite salads is a Cuban Style Chicken Salad.  My grandmother made it best. I’ve tried to recreate hers.  Here is my version.  Enjoy!

Cuban Style Chicken Salad Recipe

chicken salad 4

 

Ingredients

chicken salad 1

2 lbs white chicken meat- fully cooked (You can use a rotisserie chicken)

1 cup tender canned sweet peas. Well drained.

1 cup chopped celery (finely chopped)

4  hard boiled eggs, chopped

12 Spanish olives stuffed with peppers, cut in halves

3/4 cup  salted almonds, chopped

1/2 tsp. vinegar

1 ¼ cups light  mayonnaise

3 granny smith apples, peeled & chopped

1 small can of sweet pimentos

salt

1 tbs. lemon juice

 

Instructions 

1.  First, sprinkle the chopped apples pieces with lemon juice.  (Set them aside or in the refrigerator)

2.  Chop up the chicken into small bite size pieces.

3.  Combine the following ingredients in a large bowl:

sweet peas, almonds, celery, eggs, olives vinegar, mayonnaise, apples and chicken

4. Add a dash of salt (to taste)

5.  Mix all of the ingredients together gently.

5.  Garnish the completed salad with red pimiento strips.

6. Refrigerate for a couple of hours.  This salad tastes best cold.

7.  Enjoy with soda crackers.

chicken salad 2

chicken salad 3

Enjoy!  

 

Recipe – Tres Leches Cake with Mango Rum Topping

Here’s a delicious recipe for one of my favorite desserts. 

mango rum tres leches

 

Tres Leches Cake with Mango Rum Topping

 

Ingredients

1 8 inch square baking pan

Vegetable oil for greasing the pan

Parchment paper

4 large eggs

1 cup of sugar

2/3 cup unsalted butter, melted

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

2 3/4 cups whole milk

1 1/2 cups cake flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 12 ounce can evaporated milk

1 14 ounce can sweet condensed milk

3 tablespoons of dark rum

2 large ripe mangoes

3 tablespoons of sugar

1 cup heavy whipping cream

ground cinnamon for sprinkling (if you like)

Directions

1.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Grease the 8 inch square baking pan with the vegetable oil. Line the bottom with parchment paper.

2.  Make the cake:  Beat eggs and sugar in a large bowl with a mixer until pale and slightly thick.  Slowly beat in the melted butter, then beat in the vanilla and 1/4 cup of whole milk.

3.  Whisk the flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl.  Sift the flour mixture over the egg mixture.  Gently fold the ingredients together with a spatula.  Batter will be thick.

4.  Transfer the batter into the prepared baking pan.  Bake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.

5.  Whisk the remaining 2 cups of whole milk, evaporated milk, condensed milk and rum into a bowl.

6.  Pierce the entire warm cake with a fork.  Pour the milk mixture over the top of cake.

7.  Cover and refrigerate 1 hour to overnight.

Make the Mango Rum Topping

1.  Peel, pit and slice up the mangoes.  Puree 1/2 of the mangoes in a blender with 2 tablespoons of sugar. Fold that mixture into the remaining mango pieces in a bowl.  Add a tablespoon of rum (to taste).

Make the Whipped Cream Topping

tres leches with rum

1.  Beat the heavy cream and the remaining tablespoon of sugar in a mixture until soft peaks form.

2.  Spread the whipped cream over the cake.

3.  To serve, slice the cake, sprinkle cinnamon (if desired) and serve the mango rum topping on the side.

Enjoy!

 

 

 

I’m Back – Coming Soon!

Good morning,

I am back from my trip to Spain.  It was amazing!  I got to experience the culture, the people, the gastronomy, the wines and even visit bilingual schools in Spain.  My trip was complete.  ( I even gained a couple of pounds along the way.)

One of the highlights of my trip was meeting up with Ana, @SRFansSpain.  I had a lovely afternoon talking about books, authors and yes, even David Gandy with her.  I hope I can meet up with her again soon.

I look forward to bringing you reviews and recipes this week.  I am slowly getting back into the swing of things.

 

Reviews coming up:

Twisted by Emma Chase

twisted cover

Carnage by Lesley Jones

carnage

 

Currently Reading:

An Acute Attraction by A.J. Walters

an acute attraction

I look forward to sharing my reviews with you soon!

Have a Happy Monday!

~Susi

 

 

Susi Reviews – Clipped Wings by @HelenaHunting

Clipped Wings by Helena Hunting

clipped wings

Synopsis

An emotional love story that follows the touch-and-go relationship of Hayden and Tenley; two young people who desperately want to love and be loved but are afraid to completely let go of their pasts.

As Hayden and Tenley navigate their newfound but slightly unstable relationship, they want to trust each other, but Hayden is hiding a dark and shameful past that he doesn’t ever want Tenley to find out about. And Tenley has secrets of her own that could make Hayden run away forever. When Tenley asks Hayden to put a beautifully elaborate tattoo across her back, the two form what they thought was an unshakeable bond. But when Tenley’s past shows up on her doorstep, will Hayden stand by her side…or run?

My Review

Where do I begin?  This is one of, if not the best book I have read this year.  Seriously,  I floved it! When I first received the ARC copy, it sat on my nightstand for a couple of days.  I finally read the synopsis and started the book.  Talk about surprise…. I couldn’t put this book down!  Seriously!

First of all, Helena did an amazing job creating her protagonists for this story.  Tenley and Hayden were perfect and well written.  She created characters with real problems and believable pasts.  Tenley, is a graduate student starting her life over again in a new city hoping to escape her traumatic past. Hayden is a tattoo artist who works across the street from Tenley’s place. He also has a traumatic past. From the moment they first see each other, the chemistry and connection is there.  Not only do they share traumatic pasts, they both keep secrets about their past from each other, each for different reasons.

Tenley decides to get a tattoo and there is only one person she wants as her tattoo artist.  This tattoo she wants represents many things to her, and will serve as a cathartic experience.

Hayden, a true tattoo artist, takes his work /art seriously.  He knows that this tattoo will require months to complete due to its complexity.  Their intense chemistry poses a problem due to his policy of client and artist relationship. Their friendship and relationship flourishes.  They soon realize how much they need each other. Their moments together from those at the parlor to those in her apartment are intense.

While Hayden appears to be this bad boy, covered in ink and piercings, a new side of Hayden is revealed, one which made him even more lovable to me.  I kid you not when I say, “I actually had dreams about this book.” Hayden is….well… intense and his character is just one I cannot let go of. Hayden knows that the past Tenley keeps from him must be awful. I love how hard he tries to get her to open up and trust him.

There are so many reasons why I love this book. The story of Tenley and Hayden would be the main reason but there are also many different symbolic and emotional elements that add to my reasons why this book was so complete.  The secondary characters were also well written and they too are so vital in Tenley and Hayden’s life.

Helena, your sex scenes are hot!  Umm… kitchen counter hot!

I really loved how much these two characters craved and needed each other.  I loved Hayden’s protective and OCD side too.

While the story ends with a cliffhanger, don’t fret.  This will give you some time to reread it and get ready for Inked Armor (May 2014) and more of Hayden.

I floved everything about this book!!!

I gave this book 5 steamy stars!

I can’t stop raving about it.

clipped wings on the counter

“Tell me you need this. Tell me you need me.”
“I need you.” We were united in our craving for each other. His desire was just as overwhelming as mine.

hayden 3

Beyond the tattoos and piercings, or because of it–I couldn’t decide which– he was the most beautiful man I’d ever seen.

If you haven’t read the prequel, Cupcakes and Ink by Helena Hunting, go one click it today.

It is definitely worth reading!  Here’s my review.

cupcakes and ink

Inked Armor – May 2014
inked armor

Since Hayden loved cupcakes and I love to bake just like Tenley,  I decided to throw in one of my recipes for Vanilla Cupcakes.  You see, every time I bake now, I think of Hayden.  Enjoy!  

cupcake

Vanilla Cupcakes:

1/2 cup (113 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature

2/3 cup (130 grams) granulated white sugar

3 large eggs

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract 

Zest of 1 large lemon (outer yellow skin)

1 1/2 cups (195 grams) all purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup (60 ml) milk

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting:

2 cups (230 grams) confectioners sugar (icing or powdered sugar), sifted

1/2 cup (113 grams) unsalted butter room temperature

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

2 tablespoons milk or light cream

Directions:

Vanilla Cupcakes:

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (177 degrees C) and line 12 muffin cups with paper liners.

2.  In the bowl of your electric mixer, or with a hand mixer, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla extract.

3.  In a separate bowl whisk together the lemon zest, flour, baking powder, and salt.

4.  With the mixer on low speed, alternately add the flour mixture and milk, in three additions, beginning and ending with the flour. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.

5.  Evenly fill the muffin cups with the batter and bake for about 17 -20 minutesor just until set and a toothpick inserted into a cupcake comes out clean. (Always check a few minutes before the stated baking time. Do not over bake or the cupcakes will be dry.) Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool. Once the cupcakes have completely cooled, frost with icing. If you want flat topped cupcakes then slice off the dome of each cupcake, with a sharp knife, before frosting. If you want to pipe the frosting, I like to use a large Wilton 1M star decorating tip. Cupcakes are best eaten the same day they are made, but they can be covered and stored for a few days.

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting:

In an electric mixer, or with a hand mixer, cream the butter until smooth and well blended. Add the vanilla extract. With the mixer on low speed, gradually beat in the sugar. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the milk and beat on high speed until frosting is light and fluffy (about 3-4 minutes). Add a little more milk or sugar, 

Makes about 12 cupcakes.

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About the Author:  Helena Hunting

Helena Hunting lives on the outskirts of Toronto with her incredibly tolerant family and two moderately intolerant cats. She’s putting her degree in English Lit to good use by writing contemporary erotic romance. She is the author of Clipped Wings, her debut novel, and Inked Armor.

Website:    http://www.helenahunting.com/

Twitter:  @HelenaHunting