Cookie Dough Truffles

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Cookie dough ice cream, cookie dough milk shakes and now cookie dough truffles!  I, like most people, always wanted to lick the spoon after making cookies with my mom.  However, before sneaking a bite or two my mom would berate me for eating raw eggs.  The solution?  Eggless cookie dough!  Not only does the recipe curve my sweet tooth, but I took it one step further by making the cookie dough into truffles.

cookiedoughtrufflesThe “American truffle” is a half-egg shaped chocolate-coated truffle, a mixture of dark or milk chocolates with butterfat and, in some cases, hardened coconut oil.  The “European truffle” is made with syrup and a base made up of cocoa powder, milk powder, fats, and other such ingredients to create an oil-in-water type emulsion.  The “French truffle” is made with fresh cream and chocolate and then rolled into cocoa or nut powder.  The “Belgian truffle” or praline is made with dark or milk chocolate filled with ganache, buttercream or nut pastes.  The “Swiss truffle” is made by combining melted chocolate into a boiling mixture of dairy cream and butter, which is poured into molds to set before sprinkling with cocoa powder.  As you can see there are many ways to make a truffle, but this recipe simplifies and hits the nail on the head: a win-win.

Here are some tips to keep in mind:

  1. I halved the cookie dough recipe.
  2. I think the recipe was too sweet, so I suggest adding more flour as a thickener and less brown sugar.
  3. Make sure your butter is softened allowing it to incorporate evenly.
  4. Add any type of filling–chocolate chips, M&Ms or any other candy.
  5. Make the truffles using a melon baller or similar instrument.
  6. Place your truffles on wax paper in the freezer until they harden.  You can put them in the fridge, but they take longer to harden.
  7. I used semi-sweet chocolate as the coating.  I suggest dark chocolate to cut the sweetness.  You can use any type of your choosing.
  8. Place the truffles back in the fridge or freezer to harden after coated in chocolate.

Cookies are extremely versatile.  These truffles are no different.  You can mix and match add-ins; you can mix and match the chocolate coating.  These sweet treats are pop-able and delicious.  Without getting sick, you can enjoy your favorite dough without hesitation.  For up to three months, the cookie dough can be stored and enjoyed–unless you, like me, cannot keep your paws off it.

Leave a comment with your favorite cookie add-ins.  Follow my Pinterest for more recipes.  Check back again next Wednesday for more tips and tricks from The Cooking Bug.

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Garam Masala Hummus

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Hummus is a great side dip for parties and gatherings; however, store bought hummus can be expensive for the amount you receive. Eating out at Indian restaurants can be expensive as well. Solution? Homemade Hummus–it’s inexpensive and extremely versatile. From garlic to roasted bell pepper, hummus can be appreciated by all taste buds. The garam masala hummus today brings a big bite of the Mediterranean home.

Garam Masala is a popular Indian spice consisting mostly of black and white peppercorn; cloves; black and white cumin seeds; cinnamon and black, brown and green cardamom pods. Some masala may be toasted before use to extract flavor and aroma. Garam refers to the intensity of spices, which one can sense from just a whiff. Surprisingly, there is no single garam masala. Recipes and ingredients differ according to region as well as a chef’s individual preferences. From turmeric to fennel seeds, variations can arise to accompany the dish’s flavor; consequently, most pre-made spice mixes in grocery stores contain the basic ingredients.

Here are some tips to keep in mind:

  1. I used homemade tahini, but you can use store bought. Most kinds of tahini are found in the healthy, ethnic or refrigerated sections of your supermarket.
  2. I used bottled lemon juice. If you use fresh, be sure to squeeze the lemon over a mesh colander to keep the seeds and strings from falling into your hummus.
  3. You may want to use more olive oil depending on the consistency of the hummus.
  4. Feel free to add more than a pinch of paprika to balance out the garam masala. I
    love paprika.
  5. Use about ¾ tsp of garam masala and add more to your tasting. It can be a potent spice if you are unfamiliar with the flavors.

garammasalahummus2Again, hummus makes the perfect party platter or side at lunch.  Pair hummus with chips and crackers or add to a wrap for an extra umph.  There are several variations of hummus to keep your stomach happy. Experiment to find your favorite recipes after trying the garam
masala hummus.

Leave a comment with your favorite hummus dip recipes. Follow my Pinterest for more recipes. Check back again next Wednesday for more tips and tricks from the Cooking Bug.

Zoodles

Zoodles2Is it a poodle? Is it a noodle? It’s zucchini noodles!!!!! Or as many like to call them the famous zoodles—perfect for low carb or Paleolithic diets. These surprisingly tasty substitutes for noodles are quicker to cook and full of beneficial nutritional treats. From boring and bland to pizzazz and pop, zoodles add both flavor and color to any dish.

Zucchini provides only 17 calories per 100 g. It contains no saturated fats or cholesterol. The peel is good source of dietary fiber that helps reduce constipation and offers some protection against colon cancers. Zucchinis can be available all around the year, but they are at their best during late spring and summer seasons. In the stores, choose small to medium-sized zucchini featuring shiny, bright green skin, firm and heavy in hand. The best size for zucchini is 6 to 8 inches length and 2 inches or less in diameter. Some big sized varieties with marrow are specially grown for stuffing. Minor superficial scratches and mild bruises oftentimes seen on their surface are perfectly fine. Avoid overly mature, large zucchini with pitted skin, and those with flabby or spongy textured. Furthermore, avoid those with soft and wrinkled ends as they indicate old stock.

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Here are some helpful tips to keep in mind:

  1. For this recipe, use fresher zucchini. Zucchini that has been sitting around becomes too watery and is hard to spiral/peel.
  2. You can use different tools to create zoodles: a sprialer or a ribbed peeler. I used a ribbed peeler.
  3. You can peel the skin off the zucchini, but my preference is to keep it on. It creates a nice contrasting light and dark green of color to the dish.
  4. Sauté the zucchini in a heated pan of olive oil or coconut oil. Start out with less oil than you think you’ll need because you can always add more in.
  5. Toss the zucchini a couple of times while cooking to keep it from burning and cooking through evenly.

ZoodlesZoodles trending popularity comes with the new wave of low carb dietary restrictions and healthier substitutions. Unlike heavy pastas, zoodles offer a low calorie, zero carb vegetable to your plate. Cooked properly, the zucchini turns a vibrant green that makes my heart melt and my mouth water. I love using fresh zucchini from the farmers market because the zucchini tends to be in better form. Whatever your reason, zoodles are a great way to enjoy vegetables and mix up your diet.

Leave a comment with your favorite zoodle addition: meat, sauce, pesto or more the options are endless. Follow my Pinterest for more recipes to try. Check back again next Wednesday for more tips and tricks from The Cooking Bug.

Honey-Chipolte Meatballs

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Sweet and spicy with a tangy punch, these honey-chipolte meatballs are a flavor blaster to any dish.  They will ramp up pasta or sandwich.  Within ten minutes, you’ll have a delicious dish that shine.  Turkey is a great substitute to ground beef with less calories and saturated fats; turkey is even juicier than chicken, so the meatballs won’t dry out.

Here are some tips to keep in mind:

  1. I used turkey sausage instead of ground turkey.  Remove the turkey from the casing and it acts just like paged ground turkey.
  2. I added purple peppers to the mix along with onion for an extra crunch.
  3. Instead of cider vinegar, I used red wine vinegar.  You just need the acidity to balance the sweetness of the honey and spiciness of the chilies.
  4. Be sure to brown the meatballs in a pan before placing them in the oven to prevent them from drying out.
  5. Placing them in the oven allows the turkey to cook through without burning the outside.
  6. Be sure not to burn the sauce by constantly stirring the mix of meatballs in the sauce.  Tip the pan to allow the sauce to gather in one spot.  Then, spoon it evenly onto all
    the meatballs.
  7. I used about 2 sausages and made 8 meatballs, about 4 meatballs per sausage.

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These sweet and spicy meatballs will make your mouth sizzle.  They pair well with pasta or as a hoagie with peppers and onion.  It’s a new way to enjoy turkey with flavor that will blow your taste buds away.  Try it the next time you want to spice up your bland pasta.

Leave a comment with how you enjoy ground turkey.  Follow other recipes and dishes on my Pinterest.  Be sure to check back next Wednesday for more tips and tricks from The Cooking Bug.