Luang Prabang Chicken-Chili Sandwiches

These sandwiches, we are told, are reminiscent of some Dorie had while in Luang Prabang, Laos…reminding her of her nightly stroll through the alley with food merchants and their stalls.

The recipe is more of a guideline of the order and type of ingredients used, the actual construction is up to the individual making them. They are served wrapped in a page of a magazine secured with a rubber band…I went with parchment paper. 😃

The sandwiches are layered on a fresh baguette..I chose Cheesecake Factory Brown Bread that we have been using lately for avocado toast. You spread both sides with Mayo and sriracha…and then begin the layering:

  • Roasted Chicken
  • Moisten with Thai sweet chili sauce
  • Add tomatoes and cucumber
  • Drizzle with more chili sauce
  • Top with lettuce
  • Give everything a last hit of chili sauce
  • Close sandwich and secure with parchment and rubber band…letting them sit for 15 min before digging in.

I was thinking we better like the chili sauce or this will not be a success haha.

We enjoyed these! They were a nice change of pace and most things I usually have on hand…especially now that I have the chili sauce. I could see us having them again.

Coconut Patties

I knew my coconut loving family would enjoy these…they didn’t even suggest that next time I should dip them in chocolate…they loved them on their own…the flavor, the texture, and the soft chewy center…oh and let’s not forget the sanding sugar crunch on top!

These are macaroons at its core with the unsweetened coconut, egg whites, and sugar, but the technique we used was French and they were flavored with lemon extract and lime zest.

To get the great texture of these cookies, we used an interesting method. The coconut and egg whites are stirred into a pan with lime zest infused sugar, and cooked over low heat for 5-8 minutes until the coconut is very warm. The mixture is placed in a bowl…vanilla and lemon extract are added, plastic against its surface…and into the fridge it goes,…for a minimum of five hours 😳. This takes some planning.

We are told when we are ready to bake, to form balls and then create the patty in baking rings but I don’t have those so I just rolled the batter into balls and then pressed down with my fingers to get a patty. The dough was slightly sticky so it worked just fine. The patties are then topped with sanding sugar and popped into the 300 degree oven for 20-30 minutes…mostly to dry them out since they are fully cooked from the saucepan. They are done when they are slightly firm and just lightly brown here and there.

My husband, son and his fiancé LOVED these!…as I knew they would. I shared them with my other tasters, who love coconut, telling her I was fairly certain she and her family would love them. I got a text back a little while later:

Love, love, love them!!

These were an all around winner…a keeper for sure!

Natasha’s Mum’s Fruit and Walnut Bread Bars

These bars are a hand-me-down recipe given to Dorie…originating from a friend of hers in Australia. The bars are highly adaptable in that you can use whatever combo of dried fruit that sounds good. The interesting thing is that they are not bread and contain no egg yolks or oil or butter. 😳

Despite their name, these bars are not bread at all, although they are slightly firm. They’re rich-it’s all those walnuts and dried fruit, which also make the bars a little chewy and give them so much flavor

The base of these bars is really a meringue…egg whites and sugar whipped up to glossy peaks. The flour, nuts, and dried fruit are ever so carefully stirred in…mindful you don’t deflate the whites more than is necessary.

Because we like almonds more than walnuts, I subbed those in and chose the dried apricots and crystallized ginger as Dorie suggested. I guess I had never tasted crystallized ginger before as I tasted a piece before baking and wow! That will leave a zing on your tongue…especially if you are expecting it to be sweet…as I was haha.

The batter is smoothed into an 8×8 and baked for about 30 min giving it an ivory color and the look of nougat.

I am sensing a theme with my family…we are not big fruit and nut bars lovers 😳🤷‍♀️…none of us liked these and in fact many of us said it might be one of our least favorite I have made.

Although…

…my good friend…daily walking buddy…and taster from the beginning reported back her family absolutely loved them!! So funny! So…that tells me it is my family and not the recipe haha. I sent the extras up to her family and they were overjoyed. Win-win!

So, not a keeper with my family but that is just us haha.

Tomato Tart With Mustard And Ricotta

“There is little simpler or more wonderful than this tart. While mustard may not be what you think of as a mix-in with tomatoes, it is what makes this tart remarkable”

What a great intro to a new recipe that we are trying this month…I wasn’t sure how a tomato tart would be described as “remarkable” but we were certainly willing to try and see what we thought. 😄

This tart begins with a Pâte Brisée shell partially baked and cooled. I used the option to make mine in a 9 in pie pan…mostly so I didn’t have to fit the dough in the fluted tart pan edges haha.

The tart is then constructed with wilted green as the base, I used spinach. Then the filling is made with the eggs, cream, mustard, salt and pepper…and poured on top of the greens. The tomatoes, which have been patted dry, are placed on top and then topped with…in my case mozzarella balls in place of ricotta…and a little more pepper.

The tart is cooked for about 30 min and cooled to room temperature.

I wasn’t sure what to expect from this tart as I wasn’t sure we had had this combo before but I have to tell you..Dorie nailed it in her intro! This tart was simple…and remarkable…and will certainly find a home in our rotation. We all loved it. Although we had it as a side with dinner, I see this as a perfect brunch dish. Actually it would be good anytime and perfect for entertaining.

It was a wonderful surprise and a keeper with my family!

Pecan-Brown Sugar Crack-Ups

“More crumble than cookie” we are told. Basically a shortbread, but with the dough’s resemblance to a streusel, we are to make these into broken cookie size bites.

I was thinking they would be more of a cracker consistency, but really mine turned out more like thin cookie bars…not that anyone was complaining haha. Maybe I should have dropped the dough by bits into the 9×13 pan instead of pressing…might have given more of an appearance of a struesel.

What I loved about these, other than the simplicity and ease to make them, was the fact that they really are a party cookie! When I pulled my parchment paper out of the pan and onto the cookie rack, the cookies broke apart themselves…and I took the picture. I loved the unevenness of all the pieces, and my family loved the interactive nature of eating the cookies from the broken slab…maybe we are all just a little bored these days haha. The only negative thing they said was that because they werent portioned out in “cookies” you loose track of how much you are eating and because they are so tasty, you keep eating…breaking of a piece or crumb here and there haha. 😂

These were really tasty and most of us commented on loving the added saltiness on top. I would totally make these again, really only needing to make sure I buy pecans for it..the rest…flour, cornstarch, butter, brown sugar, eggs, and fleur de sel are things I usually have on hand.

These are a keeper!