Tuesday, September 26, 2023

Fresh Pear Cake with Cardamom Icing

Bundt cakes are so fun to make. They just look so impressive and are perfect for any kind of celebration. I especially love fruit-studded cakes, and this one is perfect for fall. 

This cake is so easy to throw together - you wouldn't even need to use a mixer. And pears have such thin skin that you don't even need to bother peeling them. You can have a show stopper of a cake in no time at all!

I think what really makes this cake special is the cardamom-laced icing. If you don't have cardamom on hand, don't worry - still make this! - but if you have some, it adds such a nice flavor depth to the "regular" powdered sugar icing.

I made this cake for a birthday celebration at work and it won rave reviews. Friends had given me a lot of pears from their trees, and this was the best use of them!

Pears bake up so beautifully, similar to apples, but have a slightly different flavor profile. They are wonderful to include in muffins, breads, cakes and tarts. Take advantage of the pears this fall and have some cake!

Fresh Pear Cake with Cardamom Icing
4 cups chopped pears
1 1/2 cups sugar
3 cups flour
1 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. cinnamon
3 eggs
2/3 cup vegetable oil
1 tsp. vanilla 
1 cup powdered sugar
4 or 5 Tbsp. milk or half and half
1/2 teaspoon vanilla 
1/4 tsp. cardamom

In a large bowl, beat eggs on medium speed. Gradually add sugar and oil; beat thoroughly. 
Combine the flour, cinnamon, salt and baking soda; add to egg mixture and mix well.
Stir in pears and vanilla. (The batter will be stiff.) Spoon into a greased and floured Bundt pan. Bake at 350° for 60-65 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool in pan 10 minutes before inverting onto a wire rack to cool completely. 
For the icing, in a small bowl, combine the powdered sugar, vanilla, cardamom, and milk; beat until smooth. Add more sugar, or more milk, to get to a consistency you like. Drizzle over cake. Makes14-16 servings.
Recipe Source: Adapted from Sweet Southern Blue

Monday, September 18, 2023

Thai Basil Chicken in Coconut Curry

If you need a new supper recipe to liven up your back to school dinner rotation, this is it! Don't be intimidated by the long list of ingredients - you will be making your own curry powder and then cooking the chicken in it and coconut milk for a super delicious, slurp-worthy dish. 

You'll marinate the chicken for a short while in all the spice-y goodness, and then saute the onion and jalapeno, which makes a good, kicky base for the curry. It's not too spicy, but you could also use less jalapeno, if you have kids like mine who think ketchup is spicy. :) 

After cooking the chicken and adding in the coconut milk and more aromatics, you will have a bubbly cauldron of deliciousness.

Make sure you have plenty of rice to soak up that delicious sauce!

Do you love curry? I have many more recipes that you should try:

Thai Basil Chicken in Coconut Curry

1/2 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. cloves
1/2 tsp. cardamom
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. turmeric
1 pound boneless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 Tbsp. olive oil, divided
3/4 cup chopped white onion
5 garlic cloves, minced
2 jalapeno peppers, seeded and diced
1 - 14 oz. can coconut milk
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/3 cup fresh Thai basil leaves, chopped
1 Tbsp. finely chopped ginger
White or cauliflower rice, for serving

In a small bowl, mix together the cumin, cinnamon, cloves, cardamom, pepper, chili powder, salt, and turmeric. Placed the diced chicken in a large bowl and sprinkle the curry mixture over it. Stir so that all the chicken pieces are coated with the spice mixture, then set aside for 30 minutes.

After the chicken has "marinated," heat 1 Tbsp. oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and jalapeno, and cook for about 3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook and stir for another minute, then remove from the pan into a bowl, and set aside.

Add the remaining oil to the skillet and add the chicken, but don't overcrowd it. (If you have a smaller pan, you may need to do this in two batches.) Cook for a few minutes on each side until lightly browned, then remove to the bowl with the onions. 

Pour the coconut milk into the skillet and cook and stir until it starts to thicken, scraping up any curry bits from the bottom of the pan. Mix in the Worcestershire sauce, then add the chicken and onion mixture back into the pan, along with the basil and ginger. Cook for two minutes to meld the flavors, then serve over rice. 

Recipe Source: We are not Martha
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