Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Croissant Carrots
with Egg Salad

This year is flying by (or should I say hoppin' by). I decided to have some fun for Easter this year by making these adorable croissant carrots filled with egg salad. I originally saw them on Pintrest and couldn't resist. Here's how to make these for your next Easter brunch or get together. They're a big hit!

Makes 12 carrots
2        packages seamless croissant dough
8        hard boiled eggs, chopped to 1/2" pieces
1        large stalk celery, diced small
1        scallion (green onion), diced small
1/2 c  light mayonnaise (or regular if you prefer)
1 Tbs  yellow mustard
1 Tbs  sweet relish
1 tsp.  paprika
1         bunch flat leaf parsley (for the carrot tops)
           salt and pepper to taste

* You also need 12 cream horn cones available online from several merchants at $5 to $7 per pkg. of 6. I've seen cone forms made from aluminum foil if you can't get cones.

Egg Salad
1. Add chopped eggs, celery, scallion,
mayonnaise, mustard, sweet relish, paprika,
salt and pepper in a bowl and stir until combined.

2. Refrigerate until needed.

Croissant Carrots
1. Using very cold dough, unwrap one
package and lay out on a flat surface.

2. Using a sharp knife, cut into 6 equal
strips longways.

3. Take one strip and roll into a "snake"
about 1/4" in diameter. Tip: work quickly
to keep the dough cold. Overworking will
make the croissants dense.

4. Starting at the point end of the cone form,
carefully wrap the dough around until you
reach the top, stopping just before the edge.

5. Place on a cold non-stick baking sheet.

6. Repeat steps 3 – 5 for all dough strips,
then repeat the process with the 2nd
package of croissant dough.

7. Bake at 350ยบ for 10-12 minutes or
until golden brown.

8. Allow to cool and carefully remove
the cone forms from the croissants.

9. Fill each croissant with egg salad. Tip: Piping the filling is the easiest method, either with a piping bag with no tip, or a baggie with the corner cut to release the filling.

10. Top each carrot with a few sprigs of flat leaf parsley to finish.

Note: Although I prefer the "natural" look, I've seen these painted orange using food dye.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

It's a New Year and time to try a new diet plan. I've been following the basics of the Omni diet which is: no dairy, wheat/gluten, sugar, complex carbs. (potato, rice, pasta, corn, soy), coffee or alcohol. So far, so good! I can have all the vegetables, fruit, raw nuts and proteins (including eggs) that I want.

Since I started this diet on Jan. 1, I've been getting creative with the approved ingredients and wish to share them with you over several posts.

Pumpkin Banana Crepes gluten free sugar freeRECIPE ONE: Pumpkin Banana Crepes

These fluffy, semi-sweet delights are made using almond meal instead of flour. Excellent for breakfast, brunch or dessert! Here's the recipe:

Ingredients (makes three crepes)
2 eggs
2 Tbs. almond meal
2 Tbs. unsweetened pumpkin filling
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie seasoning
dash cinnamon
1/4 c. unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or more to get thin pancake batter consistency)

2 Tbs. unsweetened pumpkin filling
1/2 banana, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
dash pumpkin pie seasoning
dash cinnamon

1. For the crepe batter, mix first 6 ingredients until well combined.
2. Begin adding almond milk. Keep adding by tablespoon if necessary to get thin pancake better consistency. Set aside.
3. For the filling, mix filling ingredients (except bananas) until well combined. Set aside.
4. Heat crepe pan (or nonstick skillet) to medium low. Spray with a very light coating of vegetable oil.
5. Pour appx. 1/4 cup batter into the center of the pan and begin rotating the pan until the batter coats the bottom in a thin layer. Keep rotating until the batter stops running and return pan to the burner.
6. Cook for 1-2 minutes, loosening the edges very gently with a flexible spatula as to not tear. *These tend to be quite a bit more delicate than regular crepes. Though, it does make for lighter, fluffier crepes - delicious!
7. After 2 minutes, put 1 Tbs. of the pumpkin filling and 1/3 of the chopped bananas in a line near one edge of the crepe.
8. Carefully begin lifting the edge to start the crepe rolling over the filling and keep gently rolling with the spatula until completely rolled up.
9. Let set an additional 30 sec. in the pan to warm the filling through. Remove to plate. Repeat with the remaining batter and filling to make 3 filled crepes.

Variations: Add your favorite chopped nuts to the filling.

These are amazingly filling and satisfying for only a few ingredients. Hope you enjoy this healthier, gluten free, sugar free version of pumpkin banana crepes. Share with your friends! I did ;-)