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Tagged With: snacks

Voodoo Jalapeño Poppers

We’ve had a bumper crop of jalapeño peppers from the garden this year and that means POPPERS! Autumn is chile season, though Jalapeños are readily available at the grocery store year round. The flavor buzz from these was well worth the effort of seeding all those little suckers, but do wear gloves! The warm bite of jalapeño with smoky paprika in the cheese, and the Voodoo sprinkle on top of these poppers goes down well chased by a rich porter. Enjoy a whole platter by yourself while you watch the game like we did, or serve them up at your next fall fête.

Vodoo Jalapeno Poppers

Vodoo Jalapeno Poppers

 

Vodoo Jalapeño Poppers

Ingredients

12 jalapeños (makes 24 poppers)
4 ounces cream cheese
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
Voodoo spice for sprinkling

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Slice each jalapeño in half lengthwise and remove seeds and core. Wear gloves
  3. In a small bowl, mix together cream cheese and smoked paprika.
  4. Fill each chile shell with the cheese mixture and place on a lightly oiled sheet pan. Sprinkle the lot with Voodoo Spice.
  5. Bake at 375 for 15 minutes to soften and then broil to brown the tops.
  6. Serve with guacamole and stout or porter.
http://www.silkroaddiary.com/jalapeno-poppers/

Categories: North America, Recipes, Sides, Snacky Bits | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Cinnamon Toast Spice Blondies

Sometimes we just want a little something sweet, but not too heavy. This updated version of a classic blondie fits the bill. Our Cinnamon Toast Spice, featuring Indonesian and Vietnamese cassia-cinnamons with True cinnamon, dark brown sugar and just a hint of nutmeg, perfectly complements the sweet potato base. These disappeared in moments at our last recipe test, and may need a “re-test” in my personal kitchen tonight. They’ve got sweet potatoes in them; so they’re totally healthy, right?

cinnamon toast spice blondies

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Cinnamon Toast Sweet Potato Blondies

Ingredients

3/4 cup mashed, cooked sweet potato
1/2 cup butter, melted
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup dark brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup milk
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
1-1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons Cinnamon Toast Spice, for top

Instructions

  1. Preheat over to 350 degrees.
  2. Line an 8X8 baking pan with parchment paper. Lightly spray the bottom on the parchment-covered pan with a bit of nonstick spray.
  3. In a large bowl, cream together melted butter, mashed sweet potato, sugar, brown sugar, milk and vanilla extract until smooth. Then add the baking powder, salt, 2 teaspoons of Cinnamon Toast Spice and flour to the mixture. Stir until combined, being careful not to overmix.
  4. Pour batter into prepared pan. Gently spread batter to all corners with a rubber spatula.
  5. Sprinkle remaining 2 tablespoons of Cinnamon Toast Spice evenly over the batter
  6. Bake at 350 degrees for about 25 - 30 minutes, or until they are just set in the middle. (You can also test with a toothpick in the center - if it comes out clean, then it's done.)
  7. Cool completely before cutting into bars. These will keep in a covered container for a week.
http://www.silkroaddiary.com/cinnamon-sweet-potato-blondies/

Categories: Recipes, Snacky Bits, Sweet Somethings | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Ancho Chili Beef Empanadas

Who doesn’t love food that you can hold in your hand?  The beauty of empanadas is that the rich, buttery dough can be filled with almost anything - sweet or savory. Our Ancho Chili Powder is mild-medium in heat and adds magnificent depth to the beef and vegetable filling we chose. Ancho chiles have a wonderful, darkly sweet flavor, so we added a little Alderwood Smoked Salt for just a touch of smoky contrast. They can be served either hot or at room temperature; we like ours with salsa,  sour cream and a Hibiscus Margarita.  They freeze well, so make a bunch and plan to enjoy them another day, or surprise yourself at how quickly your guests devour the extras.

Ancho Chili Beef Empanadas

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Ancho Chili Beef Empanadas

Yield: 24 empanadas

Ingredients

For the Dough
4 1/2 cups flour
1 cup unsalted butter, cut into cubes and chilled
2 large eggs
2/3 cup ice water
2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
For the Filling
1/4 cup olive oil
5 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 large sweet onion, finely chopped
1 medium red bell pepper, finely chopped
1 pound lean ground beef
1 1/2 teaspoons Alderwood Smoked Salt
3 tablespoons Ancho Chili Powder, ground
1 teaspoon Mexican Oregano
1/2 cup sliced black olives
For the Egg Wash
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 tablespoon water

Instructions

    To Make The Dough
  1. Sift flour into a large bowl. Add salt and chilled, cubed butter. Using your fingertips or a pastry cutter, mix together until the mixture resembles coarse meal.
  2. In a separate bowl, beat together eggs, chilled water and vinegar and add to flour mixture.Combine until well incorporated.
  3. Empty onto a lightly floured surface and knead just enough to bring the dough together. Cut dough in half and form each half into a rectangle. Chill for at least 1 hour.
  4. To Make the Filling
  5. In a heavy skillet heat olive oil over medium heat.
  6. Add onions, red bell peppers and garlic and saute until softened. Add Alderwood Smoked Salt, Ancho Chili Powder and Mexican Oregano, and saute for about 1 minute.
  7. Add ground beef, breaking up any lumps and cook until no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Add olives and mix well. Taste for seasoning, adjust as needed. Pour into a bowl and refrigerate until chilled.
  8. To Assemble the Empanadas
  9. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  10. Remove chilled dough from the refrigerator. Cut each rectangle into 12 pieces. Form into discs and cover with a towel.
  11. On a lightly floured surface, take one of the pieces and roll it out into a circle (about 1/8 inch thick). Holding the circle in the palm of your hand, place 2 heaping teaspoons of the chilled filling in the center.
  12. Fold the two edges of the circle together over the filling. Press the edges to seal. Using a fork dipped in flour, crimp the edges so the filling won't escape.
  13. Transfer to a parchment lined baking sheet. Repeat the process with the remaining dough and filling. Lightly brush the empanadas with egg wash.
  14. Bake until golden, about 25 minutes. They are done if they sound hollow when tapped on the bottom.
  15. Transfer to a wire rack and cool for at least 5 minutes.
  16. Serve with salsa and sour cream.
http://www.silkroaddiary.com/ancho-chili-powder-beef-empanadas/

Categories: Caribbean, Latin America, Main Meals, Recipes, Snacky Bits | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Le Quebecois Mini Pies

We were recently asked by another spice company to change the name of our Montreal Steak Spice because they owned the rights to the name. Well, okay….

We had to brainstorm a new name, take the labels off of jars in gift sets, redo the store displays, and adjust our website all in a very short amount of time.  We were busy!  While all of this change was taking place, I recalled a quote by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, ‘We must always change, renew, rejuvenate ourselves; otherwise we harden.’  Change can be good, our store displays are fresh and new our website got a nice update, we have a fantastic new name for one of our earliest blends and an outstanding recipe to go with it.  Introducing……Le Quebecois Steak Spice  (applause, applause)!

Paying homage to the Canadian Provence were the blend originated, Le Quebecois Steak Spice showcases both the French flair for deft seasoning, and the British love of beef. While usually associated with steak, we tried it in these vegetarian mini pies with great success – you know how how we love to play with our food!  Bon appétit.

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Le Quebecois Mini Pies

 

Le Quebecois Mini Pies

Ingredients

2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for brushing pastry
1 large onion, diced
1 pound Swiss chard, stems and leaves thinly shredded and kept separate
2 stalks celery, thinly sliced
2 scallions, chopped
2 ounces arugula
1/2 bunch fresh parsley
1 ounce fresh mint, chopped
2 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped
4 ounces ricotta, drained
3.5 ounces aged, white cheddar. We used Beechers Flagship
2 ounces feta, crumbled
Grated zest of one lemon
2 eggs
1/3 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar
9 ounces filo pastry, thawed, but cold

Instructions

  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a deep skillet over medium heat
  3. Add onion to pan and saute until translucent, about 8 minutes
  4. Add chard stems and celery, cook about 4 minutes, stirring occasionally
  5. Add chard leaves, raise heat to medium high and cook, stirring, until wilted, about 4 minutes
  6. Add scallions, arugula and herbs. Cook for two minutes more and transfer to a collander
  7. Once cool enough to handle, squeeze out as much liquid as you can
  8. Transfer to a bowl and mix in cheese, zest, eggs, salt, sugar and Le Quebecois Steak Spice
  9. Lay out a sheet of filo, cut into 12 squares and brush with olive oil
  10. Lay the oiled squares into the cups of a muffin tin
  11. Repeat, alternating the angles of the squares so that they cover the sides of each muffin cup, until you have 5 layers of filo
  12. Fill each cup with herb mixture and fold excess filo over the edges of the filling
  13. To top each cup, make another 5 layer filo piece, cut in a round, and place atop of each cup
  14. Brush lightly with olive oil and bake for 40 minutes until the filo turns golden brown
  15. Serve warm or at room temperature as an an appetizer or an accompaniment to roast lamb or beef
http://www.silkroaddiary.com/mini-herb-and-chard-pies-with-le-quebecois/

Categories: British Isles, French, Hot Topics, Recipes, Snacky Bits | Tags: , , , , , | 2 Comments

Kharcho Tuna at Eltana Bagels

Eltana's Wood-fired Bagel

Eltana’s Wood-fired Bagel

By now most bagel lovers in Seattle have discovered Eltana and as an ex-pat from the East Coast, I can tell you it is about time. The perfect crust on their bagels comes from being boiled in honey water and then baked in a wood burning oven; yielding a hint of sweetness with a very light smokiness that is out of this world. Of course, they use our spices in many of their dips, spreads & salads too which always makes for a superior schmear.

With a recent spice delivery, I found Daniel, one of the founders of Eltana, working on something new that was too good not to share. He was making tuna salad using our Kharcho blend. This rare mixture of spices is typically associated with the hearty stews of the former Soviet state Georgia, and its unusual flavor profile often leaves folks wondering what to do with it. When I tasted this Kharcho Tuna Salad, I was sold. This is no ordinary tuna salad. Daniel starts with high grade albacore tuna which is cooked in house before getting mixed with all kinds of delicious goodies, including our Kharcho. I haven’t been able to pry the secret recipe from him yet, but if he does share it, we will pass it along. Until then, we’ll see you at Eltana!

Categories: Eastern Europe, Fruits of the Sea, Hot Topics, Notes from the Field | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Indian Coriander Energy Bars

Sometimes I get so busy doing things that I forget to eat breakfast and/or lunch. I know, I shouldn’t do that, but I do. I’ve tried various power or energy bars, but I find them too sweet, lacking in flavor, or really just not very healthy.  So I set out to make an energy bar that tasted good, was high in all of the “good” stuff we’re supposed to be eating every day, and was full of things that I loved (like Indian Coriander). I’m also a huge fan of chia seeds, and using them eliminated the need to use oil or eggs in my energy bars. (Chia seeds are full of essential fatty acids, antioxidents, calcium, iron, fiber, and are a source of natural extended energy.)

I’ve found this to be a great recipe for experimentation and using up tasty odds and ends. Got a quarter cup left of fig butter? Put it in your next batch. Found an apple or banana you need to use? Mash the banana or grate the apple, and add it to your next batch. (These are also good with grated carrots, too.) I’ll make these every week or so, and bring them into the shop. Somehow, they always seem to disappear…there are even some days where I might actually get one or two pieces! (We have some sneaky people here at the shop, especially where baked goods are concerned.) They’re always a big hit, and no one feels guilty about eating them. Yes, I will admit to sometimes putting chocolate chips in them, but chocolate is good for you, too, right?

Dried cherries and almonds make this a tasty treat…and it’s good for you, too!

 

Indian Coriander Energy Bars

Ingredients

¼ cup chia seeds (can usually find these at Whole Foods, Trader Joe's, or check your local Latin market)
1 cup water or juice
½ cup high-fiber cereal (like Fiber One or Bran Buds)
½ cup non-white flour (like whole wheat, oat or spelt)
1 cup Scottish or Irish oatmeal (not instant or quick cooking)
1 cup raw or toasted nuts (any variety – can also use pumpkin or sunflower seeds)
1 cup dried fruit, in bite sized pieces (any variety, any mixture)
¼ cup pure maple syrup or honey
1 orange, zested and juiced

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees. Line an 8 x 8 pan with foil, making sure that you have extra hanging over the sides. (This will make it easier to take the bars out of the pan, as there is no fat used in this recipe. Just pull the foil & bars out, and your pan is still clean!)
  2. In a small bowl, add the chia seeds and water. Whisk together with a fork, being careful to make sure that all of the seeds are submerged in the water. Set aside for 10 minutes, gently stirring after 5 minutes.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the Indian Coriander, high-fiber cereal, non-white flour, oatmeal, salt, nuts, dried fruit and Poudre Douce. Mix together well.
  4. Add the maple syrup or honey and the orange zest and juice to the rehydrated chia seeds. Stir well. Add to the ingredients in the large bowl, using a rubber spatula to scrape out all of the chia seeds. Gently mix all of the ingredients together. (It will look like it won’t come together, but it will. If it find that it might need some more liquid, add a tablespoon or two of orange or grapefruit juice. You just want the ingredients to “bind” together – it won’t look like any batter you’ve worked with!) This makes a slightly soft bar - if you want a more cake-like bar, add about 1/4 cup more juice.
  5. Scoop out into the foil-lined pan and press down to fill every corner, smoothing out as you do it. Bake for 20 – 30 minutes – when you touch the center of the bar mixture, it should be very firm.
  6. If you want a drier, firmer bar, cook for an extra 5 - 10 minutes. Let cool in the pan. Then remove, using the foil.
  7. Place a cutting board on top of the pan and flip it over, so that the pan is on top of the board. Unwrap the bar from the foil carefully, and cut the bar into pieces. It’s great cut into bite-sized pieces, or just cut into 16 bars. Place in a zip loc bag or covered container and keep in the refrigerator. These will keep for over a week.
http://www.silkroaddiary.com/indian-coriander-energy-bars/

Categories: North America, Recipes, Snacky Bits, Sweet Somethings | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment