Brown Sugar, Oatmeal & Coconut Chewies

I love love love oatmeal cookies (but only those without raisins) and could eat brown sugar straight out of the jar it’s so delicious. And then there’s coconut. Delicious crunchy flaky coconut bits that remind me of sitting on a beach drinking one of those drinks where the top of the coconut has been hacked off. In other words this cookie is a culmination of 3 of my favorite things. It’s soft. It’s chewy. It has a little crunch from the coconut chips. Look-you can see the bits of the oatmeal and coconut flakes right there in the cookie. I know I was helping myself to the raw batter-bet you will too.  Make them. Today. Right now.

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Brown Sugar, Oatmeal & Coconut Chewies

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, slightly softened
  • 1 & 1/4 cups brown sugar, packed
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 & 1/4 cups AP flour
  • 1 cup quick cooking oats
  • 1 & 1/2 cups unsweetned flake coconut, crushed into small bits.

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F and prepare a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. Add butter, brown sugar and white sugar to the bowl of a mixer and cream together until well combined.
  3. Add one egg at a time, mixing each until fully incorporated.
  4. Add the baking soda, baking powder and salt and mix until well combined.
  5. Add the flour in increments and mix until incorporated each time, scraping down the bowl often.
  6. Add the oats and coconut and mix until evenly incorporated.
  7. Make small 3/4 inch in diameter balls of dough, place them on the prepared baking sheet 1 inch apart.
  8. Bake in the preheated oven for 7-9 minutes until the edges are very very lightly browned and the center is still light and puffy.
  9. Allow the cookies to cool on the baking sheet for a few minutes and then slide the parchment paper onto cooling racks (thus saving washing the cookie sheet and racks and getting crumbs underneath the racks).

I made these small bite-sized cookies for the April What’s Baking challenge. The theme this month was ‘bite-sized’ so I made the cookies very small. Small enough to fit 3 in my hand.   Makes approx. 60 cookies.  I froze half of the dough and only made about 30 cookies.

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Here’s the link to the round-up of all of the other April What’s Baking goodies. How great everything looks!!!

Adapted from The Dough Will Rise Again.

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Marinated Chicken Pita Sandwiches

What a great sandwich recipe! It was easy to make ahead of time, the ingredients are inexpensive and you probably already have most, if not all in, your pantry already. The tangy yogurt sauce goes so nicely with the crunchy veggies and the warm grilled chicken.  I put the chicken for these in to marinade a day ahead so remember that there is marinating time involved.  The instructions below are to prepare everything (while marinating the chicken) a day ahead.  These are a snap to put together if everything is precut when you’re ready to assemble the sandwiches.  You could also add cheese, olives or a bit of olive oil if you’d like.

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Marinated Chicken Pita Sandwich

Ingredients:

For chicken:

  • 1.5 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts cut into strips
  • 1 6oz container plain greek yogurt
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped small
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 tbsp Italian seasoning (or a mix of basil, oregano etc…)

For yogurt sauce:

  • 1 6oz container plain greek yogurt
  • 1/2 clove garlic, smashed to a paste
  • 1/2 tsp fresh dill, chopped very small
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt

For sandwich assembly:

  • 4 pita breads (I used low-carb)
  • romaine lettuce, washed, dried, trimmed and leaves cut in half short ways
  • 1 large cucumber, cut into short strips
  • 2 vine ripened tomatoes, cut into slices

Instructions:

  1. Put all chicken marinade ingredients into a large zip-lock bag, smush around to coat, and refrigerate for 24 hours.
  2. Add all ingredients for the yogurt sauce into a small container with a lid and mix well. refrigerate until ready to use.
  3. Cut up all veggies and refrigerate until ready to use.

When you’re ready to make the sandwiches:

  1. Preheat grill, grill pan or panini press (what I used). Cook in batches until cooked thoroughly.
  2. Cut pita in half, split and spread a layer of the yogurt sauce. Fill the inside with lettuce, cucumber, tomato slices, marinated chicken and a bit more sauce if you’d like.  Serve.

Fritatta di Saldiccia e Cipolle (Sausage & Onion Fritatta)

I am a huge lover of public television-no commercials and the programming is so great.  I don’t know if it’s like this all over but I have a spin-off of one of my regular PBS channels called Create. It’s cooking, crafts, gardening and travel. It’s got great shows-Pepin, Child, America’s Test Kitchen and so on. If you ask me Food Network could learn a lot from them-such variety.

I’m getting off the point here. Nick Stellino is one of the chefs that has a show on the channel and he makes some yummy stuff. The fritatta below was inspired by him. Pretty easy and really tasty.  The onions cook for a while so they get nice and sweet.  This is delicious warm or great at room temperature the next day or reheated.

I served it with my delicious roasted broccoli.

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Fritatta di Saldiccia e Cipolle

Ingredients:

  • 6 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 onions, sliced
  • 1 scallion, sliced
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1&1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp white pepper
  • 2 tsp garlic, chopped finely
  • 1 lb Italian Sausage (I used part sweet part hot) out of the casings
  • 2 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
  • 8 eggs
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated cheddar cheese

Instructions:

  1. Cook 3 tbsp oil in an oven-safe 12 inch non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. When it’s hot add the onions, red pepper flakes and thyme and stir well to combine. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for 20 minutes, stirring every few minutes to avoid sticking.
  2. Pre-heat oven to 350F.
  3. While the onions are cooking brown the sausage. When it’s cooked put the sausage in a strainer to drain of excess fat.  Discard the fat and keep sausage on the side for use later.
  4. In a bowl beat the eggs with 1/2 tsp salt and set aside for use later.
  5. When the 20 minutes for the onions is up add 1/2 tsp of the salt, the pepper and 1 tsp of the garlic, reduce heat to low and cook for 20 more minutes stirring every few minutes again.   Then pour the mixture into a large bowl.  Wipe the pan clean.
  6. Add the cooked sausage and parsley to the onions and mix well. Then add the beaten egg mixture and the remaining garlic and mix well.
  7. In the pan wiped clean cook the 3 remaining tbsp of oil over medium-high heat. When it’s hot pour the contents of the bowl into the pan. Cook for 2 minutes then stir. Cook for another 5-7 minutes until just set then transfer to the oven and bake for 15 minutes then remove, sprinkle the cheese on the top, and return to the oven for another few minutes until cheese is melted and bubbly. Remove and allow to cool for a few minutes before cutting into wedges and serving.

Serves 4-6

I always worry about burning the hell out of my hand by grabbing the handle of the pan after it’s out of the oven and cooling so usually I keep the handle turned way in so that I can’t grab it. How I never thought to just put an oven mit over the handle before is beyond me.  Now I don’t have to worry (and yes those are margaritas on the oven mit :).

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Yummy Granola

Have you bought granola recently? Holy cow it’s a fortune!! I’ve seen a few recipies here and there for it but I never tried to make it.  Recently I took the cookbook ‘Quinoa 365’ out of the library and spotted their ‘Ultimate Granola’. Well-it wasn’t MY ultimate granola as I can’t stand raisins and I’m not much of a pumpkin seed fan-so I made it my own.  It’s full of all kinds of good stuff-the flake coconut and the tart cranberries are so great together and I love the whole almonds and parts of walnuts.

Feel free to make the same kind of adjustments to YOUR ultimate granola.

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Yummy Granola

Ingredients:

  • 2.5 cups rolled oats (not instant)
  • 1 cup whole almonds
  • 1 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1/3 cup sesame seeds
  • 1/3 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 1/2 cup flaked coconut (unsweetened and crushed into small bits)
  • 1/2 cup walnut pieces
  • 1 cup real maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 3/4 cup cranberries

Instructions:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 225F.
  2. Combine all ingredients through and including walnuts in a large bowl and mix well.
  3. In a small bowl mix the syrup and vanilla and stir to combine.  Pour the syrup over the oat mixture and stir until evenly distributed.  Add the cinnamon and stir again until evenly mixed.
  4. Spread mixture evenly onto a rimmed baking sheet and bake for 1 hour in the preheated oven.
  5. Remove from the oven and allow to cool. Mix in the cranberries and extra coconut if desired. I did  🙂

Store in a sealed container for up to 4 weeks.

Makes 7 cups.

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