Cashew and Garlic Pesto “Kale Chips”


Gluten Free, Potato and Corn Free, Soy Free, Dairy Free, SUGAR FREE!!
Snacking just isn’t what it used to be.. but that doesn’t mean it has to be non existent and un-enjoyable! I have come to really enjoy food oddities, like crunchy seaweed, plantain banana chips, fried garbanzo beans and my favorite.. kale chips!

In my quest for non-dairy goodness, leaving out the cream and cheese for that creamy element, has been a work in progress, but, I have found that “something creamy” by way of cashews! I have been completely surprised.. and enjoy it in dairy free cream sauces too!

This is a quick and easy recipe to make.. hope you enjoy!!


Cashew and Garlic Pesto “Kale Chips”

Ingredients
2 Bunches Kale

1 cup raw cashews
½ cup olive oil
2 garlic cloves
2 tsp. fresh lemon zest
A dash of Cayenne Pepper
Salt if needed

Directions
Preheat oven to 275˚
Remove ribbing from kale and cut into 2-3 inch chunk sizes. Wash and spin dry to remove all water! Set aside in large mixing bowl.


In food processor, add remaining ingredients, except salt.. add only if needed.
Process until creamy. Pour pesto a little at a time over the kale, mix well. Be careful not to over drench the kale.. it will be too heavy to bake evenly! Spread evenly between two baking sheets, bake in pre-heated oven for 25-30 minutes, till crispy.
The kale will shrink quite a bit so don’t be shocked! 


Enjoy!! Xo

Laurie


Pepper Jelly Scones


I'm so happy to share this recipe with you today.. even more so because I've created it using one of my favorite products ever, Mrs G's Hot Pepper Jellies! These unique blends come in three amazing flavors; Ja-Ha (Jalapeño-Habanero), Jalapeño Garlic Lime and Mango Ginger Habanero. 
Handcrafted with the freshest ingredients, Mrs G's artisan hot pepper jellies are produced with great care in small batches in an FDA-certified kitchen to ensure quality and consistently excellent flavor!

Not only is Mrs G a producer of fine products, but she happens to be one of my dearest friends!
I've been fortunate to be able to photograph her products, and at the same time enjoy using these peppery jellies in many of my own dishes. This recipe came from our recent Valentine Day shoot where we had the idea to use spicy jam with yummy scones.. I knew that we could easily infuse the jam right into the baking process as well as smothering it on later. :) These scones are light with a hint of Ja-Ha spiciness. Just the right amount to add that extra something to your Valentines Day!


Pepper Jelly Scones
Recipe courtesy Laurie M. Vengoechea, Dalla Mia Cucina

Ingredients
4 cups flour
2 tablespoons sugar 
2 tablespoons baking powder
2 teaspoons kosher salt
3/4 pound cold unsalted butter, diced
*2 Tablespoons Mrs G’s Pepper Jellies
4 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup cold heavy cream *minus 2 Tablespoons (Pepper Jelly is replacing the milk)
2 tablespoons milk, to brush on scones during baking



Directions
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Combine 4 cups flour, 2 tablespoons sugar, the baking powder, and salt in an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment.
Blend in the cold butter and 2 Tablespoons of pepper jelly at the lowest speed and mix until the butter is in pea-sized pieces. 
Combine the eggs and heavy cream and quickly add to the flour/butter mixture. Combine until just blended. The dough may be a bit sticky.
Place the dough out onto a floured surface, push together till combined. Flour your hands and a rolling pin and roll the dough out to 3/4-inch to 1-inch thick. You will see lumps of butter in the dough. Cut into circles with a 4-inch fluted cookie cutter. Place on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.
Brush the scones with milk. 
Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until the outsides are crisp and the insides are done.

Glaze
1/2 cup milk
2 cups confectioners' sugar 
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 teaspoon Mrs G’s Pepper Jelly

Mix all ingredients together in a small pot till well combined!
Drizzle abundantly over your the scones!! :)


Enjoy!!!
And please don't forget to check out Mrs G's Hot Pepper Jellies website!