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BUCATINI ARRABIATA WITH PANCETTA
Bucatini Arrabiata with Pancetta www.mealsonheelsbymindy.com

Bucatini Arrabiata with Pancetta
www.mealsonheelsbymindy.com

A rock star of classic Italian pasta sauces, this fresh little twist with sauteed pancetta in Arrabiata makes for an intensely flavored pasta.  So don’t hesitate for a second to spice up any winter night in less than 20 minutes!  This in-demand Bucatini pasta recipe promises to fill your belly with joy.  For more yum and our food philosophy, check out Don’t Worry, Eat Happy.

Bucatini, Pancetta & Arrabiata Sauce

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Yield: Serves 4-6.

Ingredients

  • 1 35-ounce can San Marzano tomatoes
  • ¼ cup tomato paste
  • ¼ cup Extra Virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, peeled and thinly
  • 4 slices pancetta, cut into 1 1/2-inch julienne strips
  • 1 Tbs crushed hot red pepper flakes
  • 1 Lbs Bucatini pasta
  • 1 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • Kosher salt and fresh ground pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Pass the tomatoes and their liquid through a food mill fitted with the fine disc. Set aside. Bring 6 quarts of salted water to boil in a deep 8-quart pot.
  2. In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions and cook, stirring, until wilted, about 4 minutes. Stir in the pancetta and cook 2 minutes. Add the hot red pepper flakes, strained tomatoes and tomato paste. Bring to a boil.
  3. Lower heat to a simmer. Season lightly with salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the sauce is thickened, about 15-20 minutes.
  4. Add Bucatini to the boiling salted water and cook, stirring occasionally, until al dente, about 10-12 minutes.
  5. Re-season Arrabiata sauce to taste.
  6. Reserve about 1 cup of the pasta cooking water. Drain the pasta.
  7. Add Bucatini pasta to red sauce and bring it to a boil. Add remaining olive oil. Toss until Bucatini pasta is well-coated.
  8. Remove the pan from the heat, stir in 1 cup of the grated cheese. Transfer to a large serving platter.
  9. Serve immediately.
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Texan Chili Con Carne
Best Chili on a Chilly Day www.mealsonheelsbymindy.com

Best Chili on a Chilly Day
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It’s fitting that we all celebrate National Chili Day every year on the fourth Thursday of February during winter’s coldest month!  Chilis boast a real boost to your metabolism and share a sensual allure  with chocolate–a biological reaction or “chili high” resulting from the rush of endorphins.  So warm up with our fiery Texan Chili Con Carne and enjoy every last satiating spoonful.  For more on our food philosophy Don’t Worry, Eat Happy click here and remember to share the yum with friends on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.

Texan Chili Con Carne

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour, 45 minutes

Yield: 8

Ingredients

  • 8 poblano chilis, a mildly spicy and sweet green chili pepper deep in flavor
  • 2 lbs boneless chuck roast, ask butcher to trim and cut into ½-inch cubes
  • 1½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp fresh pepper
  • 1 Tbs smoked paprika
  • 3 Tbs all-purpose flour
  • 2 Tbs Extra Virgin olive oil
  • 3 cups chopped yellow onion
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
  • 1 bottle of beer (12 oz)
  • 3 cups canned plum tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped
  • 2 cups sweet corn
  • 1 Tbs dried oregano
  • 1 Tbs ground cumin
  • 1 can chipotle chili in adobe sauce
  • 3 Tbs fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 8 Tbs sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1 large Ziploc plastic bag
  • 1 red chili pepper, sliced for garnish

Instructions

  1. Preheat broiler. Line baking sheet with aluminum foil. Pour flour into a shallow dish and set aside.
  2. Place poblanos on baking sheet and broil for 8 minutes or until poblanos are slightly charred, turning after 6 minutes. Place charred poblanos in the Ziploc plastic bag and seal. Let stand 10-15 minutes. Remove poblanos and peel off their skins. Cut chiles into 1-inch pieces.
  3. Season beef with salt, fresh pepper and paprika. Dredge in flour.
  4. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add half of the dredged beef to pan and sauté for 5 minutes, turning with tongs to brown all sides then remove. Repeat procedure with remaining olive oil and beef. Place browned beef in a bowl and set aside.
  5. Reduce heat to medium. Add onions to pan and cook for 10-12 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add garlic and cook for 3 minutes, frequently stirring. Pour in beer, stir and cook until liquid evaporates, approximately 8-10 minutes.
  6. Return beef to the hot pan. Stir in tomatoes, corn,oregano and cumin; bring to a simmer. Cover and cook for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
  7. Stir in poblanos and simmer for an additional 45 minutes or until beef is fork-tender. Rinse, seed and chop chipotle. Stir in fresh cilantro and chipotle and divide into 8 bowls. Garnish with shredded cheese, sweet corn or sour cream. Serves 8.
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REAL MEN EAT QUICHE
Real Men Eat Quiche

Real Men Eat Quiche www.mealsonheelsbymindy.com

Quiche: A love story.  This spontaneous and versatile dish is a great way to use the season’s abundance of vegetables and kitchen staples you have on hand. So jump right in with reckless abandon and quiche (the cook) me quickly.  After all, real men eat quiche!  For more yum and our food philosophy check out Don’t Worry Eat Happy.

CARAMELIZED FENNEL, KALE, BROCCOLI AND GOAT’S CHEESE QUICHE

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour, 5 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes

Yield: 4-6 servings

Ingredients

  • ½ cup sherry vinegar
  • ½ cup light brown sugar
  • Kosher sea salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 large fennel bulb, cleaned and halved, cut into wedges
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard and ⅓ cup goat’s cheese, softened
  • Store bought puff pastry dough, thawed
  • 1 oz kale leaves, rinsed, dried, blanched and chopped
  • 2 cups broccoli florets, blanched
  • Garnish with fresh thyme leaves
  • (Option to add French ham or grilled chicken to recipe)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 425°F.
  2. Place sherry vinegar, light brown sugar, Kosher salt and fresh ground pepper into a deep-sided baking tray.
  3. Add fennel slices, cut-side down. Roast for 35-40 minutes, turning once until sticky and fork-tender. Reduce oven to 350°F.
  4. Place eggs, mustard, cream, salt and fresh ground pepper in a bowl. Whisk vigorously to combine. Add prepared kale and broccoli. Set aside.
  5. Trim thawed pastry dough and line a lightly greased 11-inch x ¾-inch rectangular tarte pan (with removable bottom), overlapping the pastry sheets in the center.
  6. Top with roasted fennel, cut-side up. Gently pour egg mixture over top. Place spoonfuls of goat cheese around the fennel slices. Bake for 40 minutes or until golden brown and set.
  7. Garnish with fresh thyme or chopped chives.
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SWISS TOBLERONE FONDUE: KISSING KEBABS
Toblerone Fondue Fruit Skewers www.mealsonheelsbymindy.com

Swiss Toblerone Fondue Kissing Kebabs
www.mealsonheelsbymindy.com

Send a sweet message to a sweetie by making our famous Kissing Kebabs.  After all, nothing best showcases your adoration, affection or admiration of someone special than a homemade goodie.  With a brush of creativity and your favorite fruits, skewers and cookies on-hand, this Swiss Toblerone Chocolate Fondue recipe will keep the kisses coming.  For more yum and our food philosophy, check out Don’t Worry Eat Happy.

TOBLERONE FONDUE KISSING KEBABS

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 15 minutes

Yield: Serves 4-6.

Ingredients

  • 7 oz Toblerone white or milk chocolate bars, approximately 2 bars
  • 7 oz Toblerone dark chocolate bars, approximately 2 bars
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 16 fresh strawberries, cleaned and stems removed
  • ½ pints of fresh blueberries, raspberries
  • Green or purple seedless grapes
  • 2 medium bananas or cored pears, cut into 16 1/2-inch slices
  • 16 coconut macaroons or angel food cake cut into cubes
  • Bag of marshmallows
  • 16 bamboo skewers
  • **Option for adults: Add 2 tsp Grand Marnier, Kirsch or Cognac

Instructions

  1. Thread the skewers starting with a piece of macaroon, then strawberry, seedless grape, banana slice, marshmallow, and then a raspberry or blueberry. Repeat with the remaining fruit and skewers.
  2. In two separate bowls, break each type of Toblerone chocolate bar into small pieces. In two separate saucepans, bring 1/2 cup of heavy cream to a gentle simmer, then lower heat.
  3. Add the dark chocolate to one pan and the white chocolate to the second pan. Whisk until completely melted (use 2 separate whisks). Remove pans from heat and option to add liqueur at this point. Whisk until combined.
  4. Gently pour two chocolate fondues into separate warmed serving bowls. Surround with platters of prepared skewers. Have fun dipping!
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Valentine’s Day: Perfect Chocolate Cake
Perfect Cake au Chocolat www.mealsonheelsbymindy.com

Perfect Cake au Chocolat
www.mealsonheelsbymindy.com

The only chocolate cake recipe you’ll ever need!  Make every day Valentine’s Day with this easy and deliciously moist Cake au Chocolat.  For more yum and our food philosophy, check out Don’t Worry, Eat Happy.

Valentine’s Day Cake au Chocolat

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Yield: 8 -10 servings

Ingredients

  • 8 Tbs unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • ¼ cup dark chocolate
  • ¾ cup flour to coat the pan
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 Tbs cocoa powder
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 ripe bananas, peeled and mashed
  • Non-stick cooking spray

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Coat 8-inch cake baking pan with non-stick spray and a dusting of flour. Set aside.
  3. In a medium saucepan, melt the butter and the dark chocolate. Remove from heat. In a small bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, cocoa and ¼-cup of sugar. Once dry Ingredients are mixed, gently pour this mixture into the melted chocolate and butter.
  4. Separate the egg yolks and whites in two bowls. Pour in the whisked egg yolks into the chocolate mixture then add mashed bananas.
  5. In a separate large bowl, whip the egg whites with a wire whisk while gently adding the remaining ¼-cup of sugar.
  6. Fold the whipped egg whites into the chocolate mixture. Gently incorporate all Ingredients before pouring batter into the greased and floured baking pan.
  7. Bake for 25 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature. Sprinkle with confectioners' sugar. Serves 8.

Notes

Perfect for Valentine's Day.

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WING BOWL WINNER: SPICY THAI CHICKEN WINGS
Spicy Thai Chicken Wings www.mealsonheelsbymindy.com

Spicy Thai Chicken Wings
www.mealsonheelsbymindy.com

As Super Bowl Sunday fast-approaches, expect two things: irresistible, finger-licking good wings and good cheer!  Our twist on the iconic original wings and blue cheese combo will have you jumping for joy in the first quarter.  Spicy Thai Chicken Wings wins our Don’t Worry Eat Happy Wing Bowl contest hands-down.

 

ULTIMATE SPICY THAI CHICKEN WINGS

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 35 minutes

Ingredients

  • Canola oil, for frying
  • 2 lbs chicken wings
  • Kosher salt
  • ½ cup tapioca or cornstarch
  • 2 Tbs coconut oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
  • 2 shallots, peeled and minced
  • 1 small yellow onion, minced
  • 2 tsp freshly grated ginger
  • 2 vine-ripened tomatoes, cored and finely chopped
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 2 Tbs Asian hot sauce (I prefer Sriracha)
  • 2 Tbs low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 Tbs light brown sugar
  • 1 Tbs oyster sauce
  • 1 Tbs Chinese cooking wine (Mirin or Sherry cooking wine works well)
  • ¼ cup roasted, chopped peanuts
  • Fresh cilantro leaves for garnish
  • Celery sticks for serving platter
  • Fresh lime wedges for garnish

Instructions

  1. Set a wire rack over a baking sheet and set aside.
  2. Pour canola oil to a depth of 2-inches into a 6-qt. Dutch oven. Heat oil over medium-high heat until a deep-fry thermometer reads 400°F.
  3. Place chicken wings in a bowl and season with Kosher salt. Add tapioca starch and toss to coat with tongs. Working in small batches, add chicken wings to oil and fry, stirring occasionally, until golden brown and crisp, approximately 12 minutes. Remove wings with a large slotted spoon and transfer them to the prepared wire rack. Allow wings to drain over rack.
  4. Heat coconut oil in a 6-qt. saucepan over medium-high heat. Add garlic, shallots, and onion, and cook, stirring, until golden brown, about 8 minutes. Add fresh ginger, tomatoes and cook, stirring, until elements are broken down and smooth, about 4 minutes.
  5. Add ketchup, hot sauce, soy sauce, light brown sugar, and oyster sauce. Cook, stirring, until thickened, about 6 minutes. Stir in cooking wine. Add wings, and toss to coat. Cook until heated through, about 3 minutes. Using tongs, transfer wings to a serving platter, and sprinkle with chopped roasted peanuts. Garnish with fresh cilantro leaves and serve with celery sticks and lime wedges. Spoon remaining sauce from the pan over the wings and serve immediately. Serves 4-6. (Keep wings warm in a pre-heated oven at 250°F.)
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Super Bowl Recipes for the Entire Family
Three Bean and Chorizo Super Bowl Soup www.mealsonheelsbymindy.com

3 Bean Chorizo Super Bowl Soup
www.mealsonheelsbymindy.com

Ready to kick-off Super Bowl Sunday?  No stress or OT called for as we’ve got you covered!  These simple yet hearty recipes, like our 10-minute dips: Game Time Guacamole or Blue Cheese for Chicken Wings; to our Sweet & Sour Meatballs; to our irresistible Three Bean and Chorizo Soup, will both satisfy and delight without penalty.

For more family-friendly game day yum and Don’t Worry Eat Happy tips, huddle up over our  Super Bowl Party Playbook.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Three Bean and Chorizo Soup

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Yield: 4-6 servings

Ingredients

  • 4 Tbs unsalted butter
  • 1 cup yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1 cup shallots, finely chopped
  • 2 carrots, peeled and finely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
  • ¼ lbs Chorizo, chopped into thin disks
  • ¼ cup flat-leaf parsley, chopped
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 3 cans of beans, I prefer Adzuki, kidney and white beans
  • 2 Tbs olive oil
  • Salt and fresh pepper to taste
  • Sliced avocado for garnish

Instructions

  1. Melt the butter in a stew pot over medium heat.
  2. Add onions, shallots, carrots and garlic and cook, covered, over low heat for approximately 15-20 minutes or until vegetables are tender and lightly colored. Drain cans of beans over a colander and rinse with cool water. Set aside.
  3. Add chorizo. Cook for 2-3 minutes and stir mixture with a wooden spoon. Add parsley, thyme, bay leaf and chicken stock. Stir.
  4. Add drained beans and olive oil. Stir. Bring soup to a boil, reduce heat and simmer, partially covered for 20 minutes.
  5. Remove bay leaf. Serve hot. Serves 4.
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NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTION: PANTRY MAKE-OVER

Eat the Rainbow www.mealsonheelsbymindy.com It’s THAT time of year!  You guessed it, no time like the present to grab your new year’s resolutions and put your best foot forward! If this is what stocked your shelves and refrigerator last year: instant Mac-n-Cheese, potato chips, sugary cereals, boxed processed snacks, then the time is ripe to apply our Don’t Worry, Eat Happy Pantry Make-Over.  We call this the Don’t Worry, Eat Happy philosophy for a reason.  We want preparing and eating meals as a family: a stress-free experience; made of a grocery list comprised of affordable and seasonal ingredients; easy to follow tutorial on how to shop smart, eat mindfully, cook with joy and celebrate food both in schools’ classrooms and at home; to be aware of both the environment and your families’ overall health through delicious recipes. Check out our Winter Fruit Salad Compote to kick off 2015 with color and zest.

Here are our helpful tips to get you started.

  • As a family, create a colorful seasonal produce chart to hang in the pantry or on the fridge. It’s a great reminder of what’s super delicious at any given time of the year;
  • Less boxes more bulk. Forget the instant oatmeal, breakfast bars, crackers and chips and go for things you can buy or make in bulk like nuts, popcorn kernels, homemade walnut-ginger granola, turkey jerky, dried cranberries, chocolate chips and quinoa;
  • Keep reusable produce bags or stainless steel containers within your pantry for easy grab and go options for the kids. To make sure you’re not going overboard with the nuts and cranberries, keep some measuring spoons to rest assured you’re staying within a healthy calorie limit;
  • Keep bulk products in glass containers or use a clear plastic shoe organizer so that everyone can see what’s available to nosh on. Remember, we most often eat with our eyes;
  • Make sure your pantry has plenty of color. With the seasonal produce chart, you’ll know when it’s best to buy apples, Brussels sprouts, blueberries and peas;
  • Consider growing your own salad bowl. While this little bowl might sit outside of your pantry near a bright sunny window, growing your own leafy greens is both delicious and fun. You’ll always have a veggie in the house, and it’s so much cheaper than the salad in a bag you buy at your neighborhood grocer;
  • If you’ve got the green thumb, take it a step further; find the right container to plant your own herbs like rosemary, chives, flat leaf parsley and cilantro. Besides being able to season your food, herbs also offer a variety of health benefits;
  • Reconsider the oils you use to cook. Swap out vegetable oil and shortening and consider healthier options like safflower, coconut, and extra virgin olive oil;
  • Know what canned and boxed foods are ok. Canned beans, whole wheat pasta, tuna fish – are all perfect pantry staples for easy lunch and dinner options;
  • Thaw and eat in more ways than one. Frozen berries and edamame are true lifesavers in more ways than one. Grab a bunch of berries for a quick breakfast smoothie or thaw some edamame for a healthy afternoon snack.

Eat the Rainbow
Pantry Make-Over Series

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ULTIMATE NEW YEAR’S EVE DINNER: BRAISED BEEF WITH DRIED CHERRIES, RED CHILI PEPPER AND APPLES
Ultimate NYE Entree www.mealsonheelsbymindy,.com

Ultimate NYE Comfort Food  Entree
www.mealsonheelsbymindy,.com

This dish looks so impressive but requires little effort. So go that extra mile and dress to impress, pop the cork and enjoy one of our all-time favorite New Year’s Eve entrees, Braised Beef with Apples, Red Chili Pepper and Dried Cherries.  Save room to top off the evening with our Bodacious Brownies.  After all, resolutions don’t officially start until January 1st.

BRAISED BEEF WITH DRIED CHERRIES, RED CHILI PEPPER AND APPLES

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 2 hours

Yield: 4-6 servings

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs of ground beef or brisket-lean cut leaving fat on
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 3 Tbs Extra Virgin olive oil
  • 1 large onion, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • ¼ tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 chili pepper, minced
  • 2 tsp nutmeg
  • ½ tsp ginger
  • ½ cup dried cherries
  • 2 green apples, peeled-cored and diced into ½-inch cubes
  • 1 tsp fresh rosemary, chopped
  • ½ cup cider vinegar
  • 2½ cups apple juice
  • 2 lemons, juiced
  • Salt and fresh pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 300°F and center baking rack.
  2. Season the beef with salt and pepper.
  3. In a small Dutch oven or cast-iron pot, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over high heat. Add the seasoned beef and cook for 5 minutes or until it's gently pink.
  4. Transfer beef to a bowl and set aside. Lower heat to medium and add remaining olive oil. Add chopped onion, red pepper flakes and minced chili pepper. Cook for 5 minutes.
  5. Add diced apples, dried cherries, peas, chopped rosemary, lemon juice and cider vinegar.
  6. Bring to a boil. Return beef to this pot and add apple juice plus 1 cup of warm water.
  7. Bring to a gentle simmer.
  8. Cover pot and place into oven to braise for 2 hours.
  9. Goes very well served over buttered egg noodles ganished with chopped chives or flat-leaf parsley. Serves 4-6.
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BEST CHOCOLATE CHIP CHRISTMAS COOKIE
Santa and Rudolph-worthy Cookies www.mealsonheelsbymindy.com

Santa and Rudolph-Worthy Cookies
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Santa and Rudolph with his nose so bright won’t be able to resist these Deep-Dish Chocolate Chip, Caramel and Hazelnut Cookies!  They’ll even put you at the top of St. Nick’s “Nice List.”  So, hurry to the kitchen and whip up these cookies for the happiest Don’t Worry, Eat Happy: Ho-Ho-Ho holiday.

DEEP-DISH CHOCOLATE CHIP, CARAMEL AND HAZELNUT COOKIES

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 20 minutes

Yield: 36 cookies

Ingredients

  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups unbleached all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1¼ lbs dark or semi-sweet chocolate chunks
  • 10 Kraft caramel squares, unwrapped and cut into small pieces
  • Add 1½ cups chopped hazelnuts
  • **Option: Add ⅓ cup unsweetened cocoa option for chocolate-chocolate chunk cookies

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease muffin tins and set aside.
  2. Cream the butter and two sugars in a large mixing bowl on high speed until light and fluffy. Add the vanilla extract and the eggs, one at a time, and mix well.
  3. Sift together flour, salt and baking soda over a medium bowl. Slowly incorporate the dry mixture to the butter with the mixer on low speed. Mix until just combined.
  4. Make sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula. Fold in caramel pieces, nuts and chocolate chunks into the batter.
  5. Scoop cookie batter with an ice cream scooper into prepared muffin tins. Bake for 15 minutes. Remove muffin tins from the oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes. Transfer muffin tins to a wire rack and cool cookies completely. Makes 36 cookies.
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About Mindy
 
For lifestyle and entertaining expert Mindy Kobrin, cooking, wellness and celebrating are a family affair. Her lifestyle philosophy can be distilled to a single, luscious concept: Don't Worry, Eat Happy. Fusing culinary know-how and health initiatives, Mindy aims to create nothing short of a movement: to arm people with information on the value and culture of food and the importance of quality time around the table. Her mission is to teach the foundation of mindful eating and how to use seasonal ingredients to create nutritious, delicious and satisfying meals. It’s also her heartfelt goal to be a change agent, spreading the message of quality food and spirited cooking for children to carry into adulthood and pass on to the next generation. See more.
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