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Honey Apple Cakelets

Makes 12 cakelets

For the cake:2 cups (240 grams) all-purpose flour1 cup (120 grams) almond flour or almond meal1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg1 teaspoon baking soda1 teaspoon salt3 large eggs3/4 cup honey1/3 cup grape seed or other neutral-tasting oil3 medium Fuji apples, peeled, cored, and chopped (about 1 pound or 3 cups chopped)
For the glaze:3/4 cup powdered sugar1 1/2 tablespoons apple juice (or apple liqueur like Calvados or Applejack)1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
To garnish:1/4 cup toasted sliced almonds
In a large mixing bowl, combine the flours, spices, baking soda, and salt. In a separate medium-sized mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, honey, and oil until fully blended. Pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture and stir just until the dry ingredients are fully incorporated and no lumps remain. Gently fold in the chopped apples, then allow the batter to rest for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 325°F while the batter rests. Grease and flour two mini bundt cake pans.
Use an ice cream scoop or small ladle to spoon the batter into the bundt pans, filling them two-thirds full. Bake the cakes until well-browned and a toothpick or cake tester inserted in the middle comes out clean, about 30 minutes. Begin testing for doneness at 25 minutes to avoid over cooking.
Allow the cakes to rest in the pans for at least 20 minutes — they will shrink away from the pan and become easier to unmold. Run a small butter knife around the edges of each cake to gently dislodge it from the pan. Invert the cakes and transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely.
When ready to glaze the cakes, whisk together the powdered sugar, apple juice or liqueur, and spices in a small bowl. Spoon the glaze into a sandwich baggie, then snip off a small corner of the baggie and drizzle the glaze generously over the cakes.
While the glaze is still wet, sprinkle the cakes with toasted sliced almonds. Allow glaze to set before moving the cakes.
Recipe Notes
Pear or Quince Variation: Sub out the apples for pears or quince, and flavor it with cardamom and vanilla in place of the cinnamon and nutmeg.
No cakelet pan? No worries! This recipe can also be baked in 1-cup ramekins. Just grease and flour the ramekins, lining the bottoms with circles of parchment paper for easy unmolding. For easy transfer in and out of the oven, place the ramekins on a cookie sheet, spaced evenly apart.
If you prefer to test your cakes for doneness with an instant read thermometer, remove them from the oven when their internal temperature reaches 210ºF. This is especially helpful if you are using a different-sized pan, since the cooking time will be affected.

Honey Apple Cakelets

Makes 12 cakelets

For the cake:
2 cups (240 grams) all-purpose flour
1 cup (120 grams) almond flour or almond meal
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs
3/4 cup honey
1/3 cup grape seed or other neutral-tasting oil
3 medium Fuji apples, peeled, cored, and chopped (about 1 pound or 3 cups chopped)

For the glaze:
3/4 cup powdered sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons apple juice (or apple liqueur like Calvados or Applejack)
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

To garnish:
1/4 cup toasted sliced almonds

In a large mixing bowl, combine the flours, spices, baking soda, and salt. In a separate medium-sized mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, honey, and oil until fully blended. Pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture and stir just until the dry ingredients are fully incorporated and no lumps remain. Gently fold in the chopped apples, then allow the batter to rest for 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 325°F while the batter rests. Grease and flour two mini bundt cake pans.

Use an ice cream scoop or small ladle to spoon the batter into the bundt pans, filling them two-thirds full. Bake the cakes until well-browned and a toothpick or cake tester inserted in the middle comes out clean, about 30 minutes. Begin testing for doneness at 25 minutes to avoid over cooking.

Allow the cakes to rest in the pans for at least 20 minutes — they will shrink away from the pan and become easier to unmold. Run a small butter knife around the edges of each cake to gently dislodge it from the pan. Invert the cakes and transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely.

When ready to glaze the cakes, whisk together the powdered sugar, apple juice or liqueur, and spices in a small bowl. Spoon the glaze into a sandwich baggie, then snip off a small corner of the baggie and drizzle the glaze generously over the cakes.

While the glaze is still wet, sprinkle the cakes with toasted sliced almonds. Allow glaze to set before moving the cakes.

Recipe Notes

  • Pear or Quince Variation: Sub out the apples for pears or quince, and flavor it with cardamom and vanilla in place of the cinnamon and nutmeg.
  • No cakelet pan? No worries! This recipe can also be baked in 1-cup ramekins. Just grease and flour the ramekins, lining the bottoms with circles of parchment paper for easy unmolding. For easy transfer in and out of the oven, place the ramekins on a cookie sheet, spaced evenly apart.
  • If you prefer to test your cakes for doneness with an instant read thermometer, remove them from the oven when their internal temperature reaches 210ºF. This is especially helpful if you are using a different-sized pan, since the cooking time will be affected.

Chai Sweet Potato Cupcakes

Makes 24 cupcakes

For the Chai Syrup:1 cup water6 tablespoons sugar4 bags chai tea4 cracked cardamom pods 1 cinnamon stick4 whole cloves
For the cupcakes:2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder3/4 teaspoon salt1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon1 teaspoon ground ginger1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom1/4 teaspoon ground cloves1 cup brown sugar1/2 cup granulated white sugar3/4 cup + 2 tablespoons grape seed oil4 large eggs3 tablespoons Chai Syrup1 teaspoon vanilla extract2 cups pureed cooked sweet potato (or a 15-ounce can sweet potato or pumpkin puree), see Recipe Note
For the frosting:1 cup unsalted butter, softened3 1/2 to 4 cups powdered sugar2 tablespoons Chai Syrup, or to taste1/2 teaspoon vanilla extractCinnamon (ground) for dusting the tops
To make the Chai Syrup, combine the water, sugar, cinnamon stick, cloves, and cardamom pods in a medium saucepan. Heat over medium until mixture starts to bubble and sugar dissolves. Add in the tea bags, and simmer over low heat until the mixture has reduced to about 1/3 to 1/2 cup and become syrupy. Removed from heat and discard cinnamon, cardamom, and tea bags. Cool before using.
To make the cupcakes, pre-heat oven to 350°F and line 2 12-cup cupcake tins with liners. Sift together the flour, baking powder, salt, and spices in a small bowl. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the sugars and grape seed oil. Using the paddle attachment, mix on medium speed. Turn mixer to low, and add in the eggs, chai syrup, and vanilla. Stop mixer and scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl. With the mixer on low, add in the dry ingredients in two batches. Mix until just combined. Stir in the pureed sweet potato with a spatula.
Divide mixture between all the wells in the cupcake tins. Do not fill each cupcake liner more than 2/3 full. Bake for 20 to 23 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean when poked into a cupcake. Rotate the halfway through. Cool completely before frosting.
To make the frosting, place the butter in the bowl of an electric mixer. Using the paddle attachment, mix until smooth. With the mixer on low, gradually add in the remaining ingredients, adding more powdered sugar for a thicker frosting and more Chai Syrup for sweetness and flavor. Once combined to your liking, turn the mixer up to medium and mix for a couple minutes until smooth and fluffy.
To assemble, transfer the frosting to a pastry bag fitted with a star or round tip, and pipe frosting on cooled cupcakes. Alternatively, spread the frosting on the cupcakes with an off-set spatula. Dust with a pinch of cinnamon.
Recipe Notes
For the Sweet Potato Puree: You will need about two small- to medium-sized sweet potatoes to make two cups of puree. Peel, dice, and boil the sweet potato until very soft. Mash well with a potato masher or puree with an immersion blender or in a food processor. Alternatively, use canned sweet potato puree.
Depending on how much frosting you like per cupcake and how high you swirl, you may need to multiply the frosting recipe by 1.5.
The chai syrup by itself with be strong and fairly bitter. If you have leftovers, try mixing it with some hot water and a splash of milk to make a chai tea latte.
The whole spices in the syrup enhance the flavors. If you don’t have them on hand, you can certainly still make the syrup with just the tea. Consider them optional.

Chai Sweet Potato Cupcakes

Makes 24 cupcakes

For the Chai Syrup:
1 cup water
6 tablespoons sugar
4 bags chai tea
4 cracked cardamom pods 
1 cinnamon stick
4 whole cloves

For the cupcakes:
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated white sugar
3/4 cup + 2 tablespoons grape seed oil
4 large eggs
3 tablespoons Chai Syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups pureed cooked sweet potato (or a 15-ounce can sweet potato or pumpkin puree), see Recipe Note

For the frosting:
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
3 1/2 to 4 cups powdered sugar
2 tablespoons Chai Syrup, or to taste
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Cinnamon (ground) for dusting the tops

To make the Chai Syrup, combine the water, sugar, cinnamon stick, cloves, and cardamom pods in a medium saucepan. Heat over medium until mixture starts to bubble and sugar dissolves. Add in the tea bags, and simmer over low heat until the mixture has reduced to about 1/3 to 1/2 cup and become syrupy. Removed from heat and discard cinnamon, cardamom, and tea bags. Cool before using.

To make the cupcakes, pre-heat oven to 350°F and line 2 12-cup cupcake tins with liners. Sift together the flour, baking powder, salt, and spices in a small bowl. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the sugars and grape seed oil. Using the paddle attachment, mix on medium speed. Turn mixer to low, and add in the eggs, chai syrup, and vanilla. Stop mixer and scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl. With the mixer on low, add in the dry ingredients in two batches. Mix until just combined. Stir in the pureed sweet potato with a spatula.

Divide mixture between all the wells in the cupcake tins. Do not fill each cupcake liner more than 2/3 full. Bake for 20 to 23 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean when poked into a cupcake. Rotate the halfway through. Cool completely before frosting.

To make the frosting, place the butter in the bowl of an electric mixer. Using the paddle attachment, mix until smooth. With the mixer on low, gradually add in the remaining ingredients, adding more powdered sugar for a thicker frosting and more Chai Syrup for sweetness and flavor. Once combined to your liking, turn the mixer up to medium and mix for a couple minutes until smooth and fluffy.

To assemble, transfer the frosting to a pastry bag fitted with a star or round tip, and pipe frosting on cooled cupcakes. Alternatively, spread the frosting on the cupcakes with an off-set spatula. Dust with a pinch of cinnamon.

Recipe Notes

  • For the Sweet Potato Puree: You will need about two small- to medium-sized sweet potatoes to make two cups of puree. Peel, dice, and boil the sweet potato until very soft. Mash well with a potato masher or puree with an immersion blender or in a food processor. Alternatively, use canned sweet potato puree.
  • Depending on how much frosting you like per cupcake and how high you swirl, you may need to multiply the frosting recipe by 1.5.
  • The chai syrup by itself with be strong and fairly bitter. If you have leftovers, try mixing it with some hot water and a splash of milk to make a chai tea latte.
  • The whole spices in the syrup enhance the flavors. If you don’t have them on hand, you can certainly still make the syrup with just the tea. Consider them optional.
Pasta with Cauliflower, Sausage & Breadcrumbs

Serves 8 to 10

1/2 tablespoon olive oil1 large shallot or small onion, diced2 cloves garlic, minced1/2 pound sweet Italian sausage1 head cauliflower, cut into small, bite-sized florets1 teaspoon saltPepper2 (14.5-ounce) cans diced tomatoes1 pound pasta, any shape1/2 to 3/4 cup fresh breadcrumbs or panko1/2 pound mozzarella, cut or shredded into small pieces
Start a large pot of water to boiling over high heat for the pasta. It will take several minutes to come to a boil.
Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large, high-sided skillet over medium heat (use a 14-inch skillet if you have one). Add the shallot or onion, season with salt and pepper, and sauté until soft and translucent, 5 to 8 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the sausage, breaking it up as it cooks.
When the sausage is almost cooked through, add the cauliflower, salt and pepper. Push the cauliflower down into the pan so the florets have as much surface contact with the pan as possible. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the cauliflower begins to brown slightly. If the pan is very dry, depending on how much fat is in your sausage, you can add another splash of oil.
Turn the heat up to medium-high and pour in the tomatoes. Scrape any brown bits off of the bottom of the pan. Bring the mixture to a simmer, then cover, lower the heat to medium-low, and simmer until the cauliflower is cooked through, about 10 minutes.
While the sauce is simmering, boil the pasta. When the pasta is al dente, drain it and set aside. Also, spread the breadcrumbs onto a cookie sheet and run under the broiler to lightly toast; alternatively, brown the breadcrumbs in a dry skillet.
If your pan is big enough, transfer the pasta to the pan with the sauce once the cauliflower is tender. Otherwise, combine everything in a large serving bowl. Toss together, then add the cubes of mozzarella.
Top each serving with bread crumbs, reserving extra breadcrumbs for leftovers.

Pasta with Cauliflower, Sausage & Breadcrumbs

Serves 8 to 10

1/2 tablespoon olive oil
1 large shallot or small onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 pound sweet Italian sausage
1 head cauliflower, cut into small, bite-sized florets
1 teaspoon salt
Pepper
2 (14.5-ounce) cans diced tomatoes
1 pound pasta, any shape
1/2 to 3/4 cup fresh breadcrumbs or panko
1/2 pound mozzarella, cut or shredded into small pieces

Start a large pot of water to boiling over high heat for the pasta. It will take several minutes to come to a boil.

Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large, high-sided skillet over medium heat (use a 14-inch skillet if you have one). Add the shallot or onion, season with salt and pepper, and sauté until soft and translucent, 5 to 8 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the sausage, breaking it up as it cooks.

When the sausage is almost cooked through, add the cauliflower, salt and pepper. Push the cauliflower down into the pan so the florets have as much surface contact with the pan as possible. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the cauliflower begins to brown slightly. If the pan is very dry, depending on how much fat is in your sausage, you can add another splash of oil.

Turn the heat up to medium-high and pour in the tomatoes. Scrape any brown bits off of the bottom of the pan. Bring the mixture to a simmer, then cover, lower the heat to medium-low, and simmer until the cauliflower is cooked through, about 10 minutes.

While the sauce is simmering, boil the pasta. When the pasta is al dente, drain it and set aside. Also, spread the breadcrumbs onto a cookie sheet and run under the broiler to lightly toast; alternatively, brown the breadcrumbs in a dry skillet.

If your pan is big enough, transfer the pasta to the pan with the sauce once the cauliflower is tender. Otherwise, combine everything in a large serving bowl. Toss together, then add the cubes of mozzarella.

Top each serving with bread crumbs, reserving extra breadcrumbs for leftovers.


Pepperoni Skillet Pizza

Serves 4

1 pound pizza dough 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened10 ounces mozzarella cheese, grated4 ounces pepperoni1/2 green pepper, thinly sliced1 cup tomato sauce Dried basilRed pepper flakesSalt and pepper
Preheat the oven to 375°F. Roll out the pizza dough into a large rectangle about 12 inches in length. Spread the softened butter on dough in an even, thin layer. Fold the pizza dough into thirds, like a book (fold the right side into the center, and then left side over the right). Roll out dough a second time and repeat the fold. This will create many layers of butter inside the dough.
Lightly oil a 12-inch cast-iron or other oven-safe skillet (if the skillet is well seasoned, you don’t need to oil it). Roll the finished dough out into a large circle roughly 15 inches wide — large enough to fit in the skillet and come at least an inch up the sides of the pan. Transfer the dough to the skillet.
Sprinkle the mozzarella cheese evenly over the crust, then top with pepperoni and sliced peppers. Spoon the sauce over everything and sprinkle with dried basil, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper.
Bake the pizza for 60 minutes. Let the pizza cool for 5 to 10 minutes before slicing and serving.
Recipe Notes
If you want an even cheesier deep dish pie, add about a cup of ricotta cheese in the bottom of the crust, then layer in the mozzarella and other toppings!

Pepperoni Skillet Pizza

Serves 4

1 pound pizza dough 
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
10 ounces mozzarella cheese, grated
4 ounces pepperoni
1/2 green pepper, thinly sliced
1 cup tomato sauce 
Dried basil
Red pepper flakes
Salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 375°F. Roll out the pizza dough into a large rectangle about 12 inches in length. Spread the softened butter on dough in an even, thin layer. Fold the pizza dough into thirds, like a book (fold the right side into the center, and then left side over the right). Roll out dough a second time and repeat the fold. This will create many layers of butter inside the dough.

Lightly oil a 12-inch cast-iron or other oven-safe skillet (if the skillet is well seasoned, you don’t need to oil it). Roll the finished dough out into a large circle roughly 15 inches wide — large enough to fit in the skillet and come at least an inch up the sides of the pan. Transfer the dough to the skillet.

Sprinkle the mozzarella cheese evenly over the crust, then top with pepperoni and sliced peppers. Spoon the sauce over everything and sprinkle with dried basil, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper.

Bake the pizza for 60 minutes. Let the pizza cool for 5 to 10 minutes before slicing and serving.

Recipe Notes

  • If you want an even cheesier deep dish pie, add about a cup of ricotta cheese in the bottom of the crust, then layer in the mozzarella and other toppings!
Broccoli Slaw

Serves 12 (1/2-cup servings)

1/3 cup currants2 pounds broccoli, about 1 large head1/4 pound red onion (1/2 small onion), finely chopped3/4 cup almonds, slivered or roughly chopped1/2 cup mayonnaise2 tablespoons lemon juice2 tablespoons rice vinegar2 tablespoons sugar1 teaspoon saltFreshly ground pepper
Heat 1/2 cup water to boiling and pour over the currants in a small bowl. Set aside for 5 minutes, then drain.
Shred the broccoli in a food processor, using the grater disk (the attachment with the holes, not the blade). In a large bowl, combine the shredded broccoli, currants, red onion, and almonds.
Whisk together the mayonnaise, lemon juice, vinegar, sugar, salt, and a generous quantity of fresh pepper. Pour the dressing over the broccoli mixture and stir to combine. Taste and add more salt or pepper, if needed. Allow to sit for 30 minutes (or an hour in the fridge) so the flavors can mingle.
Recipe Notes
Quicker Slaw: If you do want to skip the broccoli shredding, substitute about 6 cups of pre-shredded broccoli slaw mix for the whole broccoli.
Reader Tip: We love the reader recommendation of substituting dried cranberries for the currants.

Broccoli Slaw

Serves 12 (1/2-cup servings)

1/3 cup currants
2 pounds broccoli, about 1 large head
1/4 pound red onion (1/2 small onion), finely chopped
3/4 cup almonds, slivered or roughly chopped
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground pepper

Heat 1/2 cup water to boiling and pour over the currants in a small bowl. Set aside for 5 minutes, then drain.

Shred the broccoli in a food processor, using the grater disk (the attachment with the holes, not the blade). In a large bowl, combine the shredded broccoli, currants, red onion, and almonds.

Whisk together the mayonnaise, lemon juice, vinegar, sugar, salt, and a generous quantity of fresh pepper. Pour the dressing over the broccoli mixture and stir to combine. Taste and add more salt or pepper, if needed. Allow to sit for 30 minutes (or an hour in the fridge) so the flavors can mingle.

Recipe Notes

  • Quicker Slaw: If you do want to skip the broccoli shredding, substitute about 6 cups of pre-shredded broccoli slaw mix for the whole broccoli.
  • Reader Tip: We love the reader recommendation of substituting dried cranberries for the currants.
Slow Cooker Quinoa Oatmeal with Apricots and Hazelnuts

Makes 6
(1-cup servings).
Recipe can be doubled.
3/4 cup steel cut oats
3/4 cup quinoa (red, white, or tri-color variety), rinsed 
1 cup chopped dried apricots
2 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (or 1/2 teaspoon vanilla bean paste)
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 cups water
3/4 cup hazelnuts, roasted and chopped

Toppings:
Extra roasted, chopped hazelnuts
Honey
Milk

Combine the oats, quinoa, dried apricots, honey, vanilla, salt, and water in the bowl of a slow cooker (2 1/2- to 3 1/2-quart size; if your slow cooker is larger, double the recipe). Stir to dissolve the honey and mix everything evenly.

Set the slow cooker on its lowest setting (LOW or 8-10 hours), cover, and leave overnight.

In the morning or after about 8 hours, remove the lid and stir to re-incorporate all the ingredients. Also stir in any film that has formed on top of the porridge.

Ladle porridge into bowls and top with about 2 tablespoons chopped hazelnuts. Serve with extra toppings.

Recipe Notes
Rinsing the quinoa before cooking it helps remove some of its bitter outer coating, making it more pleasant to eat. Read more about it here: How To Cook Fluffy, Tasty Quinoa.
Just like our Mid-Winter Spiced Porridge, the leftovers of this recipe take well to being reheated in the microwave with a splash of milk. The porridge will keep in the refrigerator for up to a week.
You can also freeze scoops of the porridge in a muffin tin for a pre-portioned breakfast option. Transferred to a freezer bag, the scoops will keep well for up to two months. Place as many scoops as you like in a serving bowl and microwave on high for about two minutes, stirring once during cooking.
If you like, you can cook this recipe in half the time with less water. The grains will be slightly firmer, but still well cooked through. Just reduce the amount of water to 4 cups instead of 6, and the porridge will be done in approximately 4 hours on the “Low” setting.

Slow Cooker Quinoa Oatmeal with Apricots and Hazelnuts

Makes 6

(1-cup servings).

Recipe can be doubled.

3/4 cup steel cut oats

3/4 cup quinoa (red, white, or tri-color variety), rinsed 

1 cup chopped dried apricots

2 tablespoons honey

1 teaspoon vanilla extract (or 1/2 teaspoon vanilla bean paste)

1/2 teaspoon salt

6 cups water

3/4 cup hazelnuts, roasted and chopped

Toppings:

Extra roasted, chopped hazelnuts

Honey

Milk

Combine the oats, quinoa, dried apricots, honey, vanilla, salt, and water in the bowl of a slow cooker (2 1/2- to 3 1/2-quart size; if your slow cooker is larger, double the recipe). Stir to dissolve the honey and mix everything evenly.

Set the slow cooker on its lowest setting (LOW or 8-10 hours), cover, and leave overnight.

In the morning or after about 8 hours, remove the lid and stir to re-incorporate all the ingredients. Also stir in any film that has formed on top of the porridge.

Ladle porridge into bowls and top with about 2 tablespoons chopped hazelnuts. Serve with extra toppings.

Recipe Notes

Rinsing the quinoa before cooking it helps remove some of its bitter outer coating, making it more pleasant to eat. Read more about it here: How To Cook Fluffy, Tasty Quinoa.

Just like our Mid-Winter Spiced Porridge, the leftovers of this recipe take well to being reheated in the microwave with a splash of milk. The porridge will keep in the refrigerator for up to a week.

You can also freeze scoops of the porridge in a muffin tin for a pre-portioned breakfast option. Transferred to a freezer bag, the scoops will keep well for up to two months. Place as many scoops as you like in a serving bowl and microwave on high for about two minutes, stirring once during cooking.

If you like, you can cook this recipe in half the time with less water. The grains will be slightly firmer, but still well cooked through. Just reduce the amount of water to 4 cups instead of 6, and the porridge will be done in approximately 4 hours on the “Low” setting.

Kale and Potato Gratin
Makes 6 to 8 servings

1 1/2 pounds thin-skinned boiling potatoes, such as red potatoes1 bunch kale1/4 cup olive oil4 cloves garlic, minced3 teaspoons coarse salt1 teaspoon pepper1/3 to 2/3 cup bread crumbs1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese (or use 3 tablespoons olive oil and 1 tablespoon minced fresh herbs, such as thyme or sage)1/4 cup whole milk
Preheat the oven to 350° F. Place a pot of water large enough to accommodate the potatoes over high heat and bring to a boil. Prepare an ice bath.
Slice the potatoes 1/4-inch thick. Remove and discard the ribs from the kale, then chop the remaining leaves in 1/2-inch-thick ribbons by stacking the leaves and slicing cross-wise. This doesn’t need to be exact — as long as you end up with a pile of roughly 1/2-inch-thick shreds of kale.
When the water is boiling, add 1 teaspoon of salt and gently lower in the potatoes. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes, until tender, but not totally cooked through. Drain and plunge into the ice bath. Drain again, then place on a dish towel and blot.
In a large bowl, combine the olive oil, garlic, remaining 2 teaspoons salt and pepper. Add the kale and rub the olive oil mixture aggressively into the leaves.
In a 9-inch square casserole dish or pie plate, place the kale, half the cheese, then the potatoes, the bread crumbs and the remaining cheese.
Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the foil, pour the milk over evenly and bake another 15 minutes, until the top is crispy.

Kale and Potato Gratin

Makes 6 to 8 servings

1 1/2 pounds thin-skinned boiling potatoes, such as red potatoes
1 bunch kale
1/4 cup olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
3 teaspoons coarse salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1/3 to 2/3 cup bread crumbs
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese (or use 3 tablespoons olive oil and 1 tablespoon minced fresh herbs, such as thyme or sage)
1/4 cup whole milk

Preheat the oven to 350° F. Place a pot of water large enough to accommodate the potatoes over high heat and bring to a boil. Prepare an ice bath.

Slice the potatoes 1/4-inch thick. Remove and discard the ribs from the kale, then chop the remaining leaves in 1/2-inch-thick ribbons by stacking the leaves and slicing cross-wise. This doesn’t need to be exact — as long as you end up with a pile of roughly 1/2-inch-thick shreds of kale.

When the water is boiling, add 1 teaspoon of salt and gently lower in the potatoes. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes, until tender, but not totally cooked through. Drain and plunge into the ice bath. Drain again, then place on a dish towel and blot.

In a large bowl, combine the olive oil, garlic, remaining 2 teaspoons salt and pepper. Add the kale and rub the olive oil mixture aggressively into the leaves.

In a 9-inch square casserole dish or pie plate, place the kale, half the cheese, then the potatoes, the bread crumbs and the remaining cheese.

Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the foil, pour the milk over evenly and bake another 15 minutes, until the top is crispy.

Glazed Apple Fritters

Makes 12 fritters

For the apple filling:2 1/2 pounds (about 5 whole) Granny Smith apples3 tablespoons unsalted butter2 teaspoons cinnamon1/4 cup sugar4 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
For the dough:1 packet of active dry yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons)3 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour1/3 cup sugar1 teaspoon salt1 teaspoon cinnamon1/2 cup whole milk2 large eggs, lightly beaten1/3 cup unsalted butter, softened
For the glaze:1 1/2 cups powdered sugar3 to 4 tablespoons milk1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Prep the apples: Core, peel and chop apples into small pieces. Submerge them in ice cold water with 2 teaspoons of lemon juice to prevent them from browning. Push the apples down and place a piece of parchment paper on top so the apples don’t bob above the surface of the water. Set aside or refrigerate (for up to 24 hours) until ready to use.
Make the dough: Whisk together the yeast, 3 cups of the flour, sugar, salt and cinnamon in the bowl of a stand mixer. With a dough hook and the mixer on low speed, mix in the milk followed by the eggs. Continue mixing until the dough gathers into a ball around dough hook, 2 to 4 minutes.
Continue mixing the dough, and add in the butter one tablespoon at time. Allow each tablespoon of butter to combine into the dough before adding another. If dough starts to fall away from the dough hook, add the remaining 1/4 cup of flour 1 tablespoon at a time until dough comes back together before adding in next butter piece.
Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl, turn to coat and cover with a clean kitchen towel. Let the dough rise in a warm spot until doubled in size, 1 to 2 hours.
Make the apple filling while the dough rises: Heat the butter for the filling in a skillet over medium-high heat until butter turns brown and smells nutty. Drain the apples and add them to the pan with the butter. Sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon, and cook until tender. Add in vinegar and cook until liquid is reduced by half. Set aside to cool.
Assemble the fritters: Turn the dough out onto a floured surface. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough into a 1/2-inch thick rectangle. Starting from the end closest to your body, scatter 3/4 of the apples over the surface of the dough then roll it up in a long tube.
Now rotate the tube of dough so that it’s perpendicular to your body. Flatten the tube slightly, then scatter the remaining apples over the surface. Roll up the tube like a snail’s shell — the finished dough will look like a large ball.
Using a rolling pin, roll out the apple-filled dough ball to a 1/2-thick rectangle. Some apples may pop out — don’t worry if they do, just set them aside and pop them back in where you can. Use a bench scraper to cut the dough into 2 1/2-inch squares to make 12 fritters. Use your hand to and pull the four corners of each square towards the center. Again, don’t worry about any apples falling out or if they are exposed. Pinch dough together if necessary to create a rough circle.
Place the shaped fritters on a parchment-lined baking sheet and loosely cover with plastic wrap. Let rise for about 30 minutes or until the fritters puff and almost double in size
Make the glaze: Sift the powdered sugar into a medium bowl. Stir in the milk and vanilla until smooth. Set aside; warm in the microwave in 10 second bursts if the glaze starts to harden.
Deep fry the fritters: Heat 6 to 7 inches of oil to 360°F a large Dutch oven. Meanwhile, line a wire rack with paper towels.
Carefully lower 3 to 4 fritters into the hot oil. Fritters will float and not sink. Fry on one side for 30 to 60 seconds or until golden brown, then flip the fritter and fry the other side for 30 to 60 seconds until golden brown. Remove fritter with a spider or slotted spoon, and drain on prepared wire rack. Repeat with the remaining fritters. (Between batches, make sure the oil temperature returns to 360°F and remove any floating pieces of dough or apples.)
Let fritters cool slightly, then brush the glaze on top. Serve immediately.

Glazed Apple Fritters

Makes 12 fritters

For the apple filling:
2 1/2 pounds (about 5 whole) Granny Smith apples
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/4 cup sugar
4 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

For the dough:
1 packet of active dry yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons)
3 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup whole milk
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/3 cup unsalted butter, softened

For the glaze:
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
3 to 4 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Prep the apples: Core, peel and chop apples into small pieces. Submerge them in ice cold water with 2 teaspoons of lemon juice to prevent them from browning. Push the apples down and place a piece of parchment paper on top so the apples don’t bob above the surface of the water. Set aside or refrigerate (for up to 24 hours) until ready to use.

Make the dough: Whisk together the yeast, 3 cups of the flour, sugar, salt and cinnamon in the bowl of a stand mixer. With a dough hook and the mixer on low speed, mix in the milk followed by the eggs. Continue mixing until the dough gathers into a ball around dough hook, 2 to 4 minutes.

Continue mixing the dough, and add in the butter one tablespoon at time. Allow each tablespoon of butter to combine into the dough before adding another. If dough starts to fall away from the dough hook, add the remaining 1/4 cup of flour 1 tablespoon at a time until dough comes back together before adding in next butter piece.

Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl, turn to coat and cover with a clean kitchen towel. Let the dough rise in a warm spot until doubled in size, 1 to 2 hours.

Make the apple filling while the dough rises: Heat the butter for the filling in a skillet over medium-high heat until butter turns brown and smells nutty. Drain the apples and add them to the pan with the butter. Sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon, and cook until tender. Add in vinegar and cook until liquid is reduced by half. Set aside to cool.

Assemble the fritters: Turn the dough out onto a floured surface. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough into a 1/2-inch thick rectangle. Starting from the end closest to your body, scatter 3/4 of the apples over the surface of the dough then roll it up in a long tube.

Now rotate the tube of dough so that it’s perpendicular to your body. Flatten the tube slightly, then scatter the remaining apples over the surface. Roll up the tube like a snail’s shell — the finished dough will look like a large ball.

Using a rolling pin, roll out the apple-filled dough ball to a 1/2-thick rectangle. Some apples may pop out — don’t worry if they do, just set them aside and pop them back in where you can. Use a bench scraper to cut the dough into 2 1/2-inch squares to make 12 fritters. Use your hand to and pull the four corners of each square towards the center. Again, don’t worry about any apples falling out or if they are exposed. Pinch dough together if necessary to create a rough circle.

Place the shaped fritters on a parchment-lined baking sheet and loosely cover with plastic wrap. Let rise for about 30 minutes or until the fritters puff and almost double in size

Make the glaze: Sift the powdered sugar into a medium bowl. Stir in the milk and vanilla until smooth. Set aside; warm in the microwave in 10 second bursts if the glaze starts to harden.

Deep fry the fritters: Heat 6 to 7 inches of oil to 360°F a large Dutch oven. Meanwhile, line a wire rack with paper towels.

Carefully lower 3 to 4 fritters into the hot oil. Fritters will float and not sink. Fry on one side for 30 to 60 seconds or until golden brown, then flip the fritter and fry the other side for 30 to 60 seconds until golden brown. Remove fritter with a spider or slotted spoon, and drain on prepared wire rack. Repeat with the remaining fritters. (Between batches, make sure the oil temperature returns to 360°F and remove any floating pieces of dough or apples.)

Let fritters cool slightly, then brush the glaze on top. Serve immediately.

Spinach Feta Breakfast Wraps

Serves 4
10 large eggs
1/2 pound (about 5 cups) baby spinach
4 burrito-size whole wheat tortillas (about 9-inches in diameter)
1/2 pint cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
4 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
Butter or olive oil
Salt
Pepper

In a large bowl, whisk the eggs until the whites and yolks are completely combined. Place a large skillet over medium heat and add enough butter or olive oil to coat the bottom. When the butter is melted or the oil is hot, pour in the eggs and stir occasionally until the eggs are cooked. Stir in a pinch of salt and a generous amount of black pepper, then transfer to a large plate to cool to room temperature.

Rinse or wipe down the skillet, place it back over medium heat, and another pat of butter or oil. Add the spinach and cook, stirring often, until the spinach is just wilted. Spread the cooked spinach on another large plate to cool to room temperature.

Arrange a tortilla on a work surface. Add about a quarter each of the eggs, spinach, tomatoes, and feta down the middle of the tortilla and tightly wrap (See How To Wrap a Burrito). Repeat with the remaining three tortillas. Place the wraps in a gallon zip-top back and freeze until ready to eat. If freezing for more than a week, wrap the burritos in aluminum foil to prevent freezer burn. To reheat, microwave on high for two minutes.

Recipe Notes
I usually prefer soft scrambled eggs, but find the process overly fussy for a wrap I’ll be freezing. If you’re eating these fresh, though, give it a try!
Microwave times may vary, but two minutes works for us.

Spinach Feta Breakfast Wraps

Serves 4

10 large eggs

1/2 pound (about 5 cups) baby spinach

4 burrito-size whole wheat tortillas (about 9-inches in diameter)

1/2 pint cherry or grape tomatoes, halved

4 ounces feta cheese, crumbled

Butter or olive oil

Salt

Pepper

In a large bowl, whisk the eggs until the whites and yolks are completely combined. Place a large skillet over medium heat and add enough butter or olive oil to coat the bottom. When the butter is melted or the oil is hot, pour in the eggs and stir occasionally until the eggs are cooked. Stir in a pinch of salt and a generous amount of black pepper, then transfer to a large plate to cool to room temperature.

Rinse or wipe down the skillet, place it back over medium heat, and another pat of butter or oil. Add the spinach and cook, stirring often, until the spinach is just wilted. Spread the cooked spinach on another large plate to cool to room temperature.

Arrange a tortilla on a work surface. Add about a quarter each of the eggs, spinach, tomatoes, and feta down the middle of the tortilla and tightly wrap (See How To Wrap a Burrito). Repeat with the remaining three tortillas. Place the wraps in a gallon zip-top back and freeze until ready to eat. If freezing for more than a week, wrap the burritos in aluminum foil to prevent freezer burn. To reheat, microwave on high for two minutes.

Recipe Notes

I usually prefer soft scrambled eggs, but find the process overly fussy for a wrap I’ll be freezing. If you’re eating these fresh, though, give it a try!

Microwave times may vary, but two minutes works for us.

Chicken Pasta Bake with Spinach & Parmesan

Serves 8

1 pound pasta, such as fusilliCoarse kosher salt1 tablespoon olive oil1 pound chicken breast, diced into 1-inch piecesFreshly ground black pepper10 ounces baby spinach, about 8 packed cups, roughly chopped2 shallots, diced 1/4 cup unsalted butter (1/2 stick) 1/3 cup flour 2 cups 2% milk1 cup nonfat yogurt4 ounces grated Parmesan cheese, divided1 lemon, zested
Heat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 9x13-inch baking dish, or two 9x9-inch baking dishes.
Heat a large pot of water to boiling. Salt generously. Add the pasta and cook according to package directions. When it reaches al dente, drain.
While the pasta water is boiling and the pasta cooks, heat a deep sauté pan over high heat and add the olive oil. When it shimmers, add the chicken pieces and sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper. Cook for about 2 minutes, not moving the pieces and letting them brown, then stir and brown the other side. Add the chopped greens, letting handfuls wilt down first if necessary, and cook just until half wilted. Spread in the prepared baking dish (or divide between two dishes). Add the diced shallots and toss.
Wipe out the sauté pan and return to medium heat. Add the butter and melt. Whisk in the flour and cook for 3 minutes. Slowly whisk in the milk, whisking vigorously to avoid lumps. Cook for 3 to 5 minutes, whisking constantly, until the sauce thickens. Remove from the heat and stir in the yogurt, 3/4 of the Parmesan cheese, and lemon zest. Add 1 teaspoon salt and a generous quantity of black pepper.
Toss the pasta with the chicken and spinach in the baking dish (or dishes), using a spoon or your hands to mix thoroughly. Pour the sauce over top and mix. Sprinkle the top with the remaining Parmesan cheese.
Bake for 25 minutes or until hot through and slightly browned on top.
Freezing Instructions
To freeze one pan of this casserole, bake and then let cool completely. Cover tightly with a layer of plastic wrap and then foil. Freeze for up to 3 months.
To bake from frozen: Heat the oven to 400°F. Remove plastic wrap but cover again with foil. Bake for 1 to 1 1/2 hours or until hot through, then uncover and bake for 15 minutes or until the top browns slightly.
To bake from the refrigerator: Thaw the pasta bake in the refrigerator overnight. Heat the oven to 400°F. Remove plastic wrap but cover again with foil. Bake for 30 minutes or until hot through, then uncover and bake for 15 minutes or until the top browns slightly.

Chicken Pasta Bake with Spinach & Parmesan

Serves 8

1 pound pasta, such as fusilli
Coarse kosher salt
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound chicken breast, diced into 1-inch pieces
Freshly ground black pepper
10 ounces baby spinach, about 8 packed cups, roughly chopped
2 shallots, diced 
1/4 cup unsalted butter (1/2 stick) 
1/3 cup flour 
2 cups 2% milk
1 cup nonfat yogurt
4 ounces grated Parmesan cheese, divided
1 lemon, zested

Heat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 9x13-inch baking dish, or two 9x9-inch baking dishes.

Heat a large pot of water to boiling. Salt generously. Add the pasta and cook according to package directions. When it reaches al dente, drain.

While the pasta water is boiling and the pasta cooks, heat a deep sauté pan over high heat and add the olive oil. When it shimmers, add the chicken pieces and sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper. Cook for about 2 minutes, not moving the pieces and letting them brown, then stir and brown the other side. Add the chopped greens, letting handfuls wilt down first if necessary, and cook just until half wilted. Spread in the prepared baking dish (or divide between two dishes). Add the diced shallots and toss.

Wipe out the sauté pan and return to medium heat. Add the butter and melt. Whisk in the flour and cook for 3 minutes. Slowly whisk in the milk, whisking vigorously to avoid lumps. Cook for 3 to 5 minutes, whisking constantly, until the sauce thickens. Remove from the heat and stir in the yogurt, 3/4 of the Parmesan cheese, and lemon zest. Add 1 teaspoon salt and a generous quantity of black pepper.

Toss the pasta with the chicken and spinach in the baking dish (or dishes), using a spoon or your hands to mix thoroughly. Pour the sauce over top and mix. Sprinkle the top with the remaining Parmesan cheese.

Bake for 25 minutes or until hot through and slightly browned on top.

Freezing Instructions

  • To freeze one pan of this casserole, bake and then let cool completely. Cover tightly with a layer of plastic wrap and then foil. Freeze for up to 3 months.
  • To bake from frozen: Heat the oven to 400°F. Remove plastic wrap but cover again with foil. Bake for 1 to 1 1/2 hours or until hot through, then uncover and bake for 15 minutes or until the top browns slightly.
  • To bake from the refrigerator: Thaw the pasta bake in the refrigerator overnight. Heat the oven to 400°F. Remove plastic wrap but cover again with foil. Bake for 30 minutes or until hot through, then uncover and bake for 15 minutes or until the top browns slightly.