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Sunday, July 22, 2012

Busy Day Brunch to Dinner

I schemed and planned on Friday and Saturday to figure out what to make hubby for breakfast today.  Yes I know that lately it's been a together event but I wanted to treat him to something nice.  So what better way then to combined his favorite and my favorite.  Yes I know that I said I wanted to treat him and he does enjoy what I like so the way I look at it it's still his treat. *winks*  The result was dark chocolate "sneaky" waffles with white chocolate chips, strawberries, and a butter rum syrup.
Throw in some orange juice and coffee and you have a feast fit for a king and a queen. I know you caught the "sneaky" part in the waffle description.  Wondering what it is? Hmm .... 
Chocolate "Sneaky" Waffles
(Adapted from

1/2 Cup All Purpose Flour
1/2 Cup Almond Flour
1/2 Cup Cake Flour (or increase All Purpose Flour to 1 Cup)
1 Tablespoon Baking Powder
1/2 Teaspoon Baking Soda
1 Teaspoon Cinnamon
1/4 Teaspoon Salt
1/2 Cup Dark Cocoa Powder, sifted
1/4 Cup Brown Sugar
1/4 Cup Coconut Oil, melted (Butter will work)
2 Large Eggs
1 3/4 Cup milk (I used dark chocolate Almond Milk)
1 Teaspoon Almond Extract
1 Cup Zucchini, pureed in food processor (Pureed pumpkin would work here.)
1 Cup White Chocolate Chips

Shift dry ingredients (first seven ingredients) in large bowl. 
In a separate bowl, whisk together brown sugar and melted coconut oil. 
Whisk in beaten egg, milk, and pureed zucchini. 
Add wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and whisk until just combined (do not over mix). 
Stir in chocolate chips. 
Pour about 1/4 cup mix per waffle and cook according to waffle iron instructions.
Can place done waffles in an oven at 200 degrees to keep warm or I just put mine in a bowl covered by a towel.  When you add new hot waffles keeps them all warm.

Butter Rum Sauce/Syrup Recipe

1 Cup Light Brown Sugar
3 Tablespoons Flour
1/ Teaspoon Salt
1/ Cup Water
2 Tablespoons Butter
2 Teaspoons Rum Flavoring (You can substitute real rum for an adult breakfast, that conversion would be 4 teaspoons.  I would add 1 at a time to your taste.)

In a heavy sauce pan combined brown sugar, flour, and salt.  Whisk ingredients together until flour disappears.
Add water and cook on low heat until smooth and thick.  (I like to check to make sure the flour flavor has cooked out)
Stir in butter and flavoring.  Once butter has melted, use immediately or set aside until cool and store in refrigerator.

Normally we have Sunday dinners at my family home.  But lately between us being busy and them being busy we've taken to eating more at home.  We all have busy lives so when we don't go there Mom gets a much deserved break.  And sometimes my younger brother's home to cook the dinner, so she gets a break. *Laughs*  Someone's got to do it, I'm no there anymore.   So when we decided to eat at home, that is a trial because now what do I make.  I already had an idea from a recipe I found online, and thankfully I went shopping yesterday so I was able to pick up the "main" ingredient.  Again scheming because hubby had no clue I was planning to make it, nor what "it" was.  Always like to get fruits and veggies in where I can.  Tonight we made it together.  I like when hubby helps, especially when he offers.  It's like you always want to show off what you do best.  So when hubby's there, I show off.   Tonight we made chicken strips, a cherry couscous, and toss salad.  The only dish hubby had no hand in was the cherry couscous, though he did find it delicious.  
Chicken strips were made with panko and bread crumbs.  The trick to making tasty anything that you bread at home is to remember to season all of the layers.  Season the flour, season the eggs, season the "breading".  One of the flavors I wanted carried through the meal was the pineapple sage I was using.  I minced about a tablespoon of it up and tossed it in the flour.  Then we used Weber beer can chicken seasoning in the eggs and "breading", about 1 1/2 teaspoons in each.
Then dunk in flour, egg mixture, and shake in "breading". (That was hubby's job.)

Regular toss salad with whatever you like.  Then there is the Cherry Couscous.  Very refreshing and definitely not a heavy side.
Cherry Couscous
(Adapted from )

1 cup Israeli Couscous
1 1/4 Cup Boiling Water
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 Cup Coarsely Chopped Pitted Cherries
1/2 Cup Sliced Green Onion, whites and greens
1 15oz Can Cannellini Beans, drained and rinsed
5 Spinach Leaves, cut in ribbons
5 Pineapple Sage Leaves, cut in ribbons
1/3 Cup Dry-Roasted Almonds, sliced
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
2 Teaspoons Grated Orange Rind
2 Tablespoons Fresh Orange Juice

In a saucepan boil water and salt.
Add Israeli Couscous, reduce heat to simmer, and cover cooking from 8 - 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
In a bowl place, cherries, onions, beans, and almonds. 
In a small bowl whisk together oil, orange rind and juice.
Put couscous in with cherry mixture, toss with oil mixture.  Let stand about 15 minutes for the couscous to soak up some of the oil mixture and serve.
You can use any citrus you like in place of orange.  You can use pecan pieces instead of almond slices.  This recipe is very, very versatile.  So change it how you like!  Remember the best ingredient is you.... Enjoy!