Snail Mail and Almond Flour-Breaded Asaparagus

Between social media, evites, e-mail, and text messaging, my snail mail is lacking in the personal department.  I come home from work and my mail consists of magazines, bills, and junk.  There is nothing handwritten – no cards or letters from friends or family (with the exception of my birthday and Chanukah, but these are the rare oddity).  I wish I received more personalized mail.  As a result, I always send snail mail invitations to my holiday shindigs.  I usually go to Target as they have decent prices and a large selection of cards to choose from.  I used these cards for this year’s invitations:

           

What is difficult to see in the picture is the glitter in the front of the card.  Since the insides are blank, I pick a colored pen that matches the card and fill in all of the information:

You Are Invited To S.’s* Annual Holiday Shindig

Saturday, December 28, 2013

8 P.M.

My House**

Please RSVP by December 21, 2013

 *I spell out my name

**I give my address and my cell number for the RSVP

To continue working our way through the recipes from my 2013 shindig, I present to you: Almond-Flour Breaded Asparagus.  I initially stumbled on this recipe on Newsday’s website during Passover.  I e-mailed the recipe to my stepmom with the message “If you make it, I’ll eat it.  :-)”  Needless to say, she did make it and I did eat it and it was delicious.  This dish has become a staple in my kitchen.  I’ll make it and bring it to bbqs and I serve it anytime I have friends over for dinner or throw a dinner party.

Enjoy!

Almond-Flour Breaded Asparagus

Ingredients:

  • 6 egg whites
  • 1 ½ cups almond flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 ½ teaspoons paprika
  • 1 ½ teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • ¾ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 bunches asparagus, rinsed and bottoms trimmed

Steps:

  • Pre-heat the oven (roast) to 450 F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • In a large bowl, whisk the egg whites until they’re frothy.
  • In a medium bowl, mix together the almond flour, garlic powder, paprika, cumin, salt, and black pepper.
  • Working in bunches, toss the asparagus in the egg whites until the spears are fully coated.  Take these spears and roll them in the almond flour mixture until evenly coated (you may need to use your hands to press the almond mixture onto the asparagus).  Lay them on the baking sheet.  Repeat until all of the spears are “breaded”.
  • When all of the spears are on the baking sheet, spritz them with cooking spray.
  • Roast for 20 minutes or until crispy/lightly browned and serve

Tell me, how do you invite people to your parties?  What’s your favorite way of preparing asparagus?

Cousin E’s Banana Bread

This morning, despite having a case of the Mondays, I decided that tonight I would bake another banana bread and, while it was cooking, cook a piece of cod I took out to defrost the other day.  I also gave myself the goal of posting the banana bread recipe so here you go:

Cousin E’s Banana Bread (I think it is based on a recipe found Elana’s Pantry)

3 cups almond flour (I prefer Bob’s Red Mill Almond Meal/Flour as it is more like cake meal and not as coarse as some other brands)

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking soda

Squirt of honey (to your heart’s content)

1/4 cup walnut oil

3 eggs

1 tablespoon vanilla

2 overly ripe bananas (or 2 larger jars of organic banana baby food)

Walnut and raisins (optional)

If you have a stand mixer:

Add the almond flour, salt, and baking soda to the bowl.  Mix.  Add the honey, walnut oil, eggs, and vanilla.  Mix again.  Add the bananas.  Mix.  Add the walnuts and raisins, if you so choose.  Mix one more time.

If you don’t have a stand mixer:

In one bowl, mix the almond flour, salt, and baking soda.  In a second bowl, mix the honey, oil, eggs, and vanilla.  When it’s fully mixed, stir in the bananas.  Mix the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients.  Add the walnuts and raisins if you choose and mix once more.

With either method:

Pour the batter into a loaf dish (greasing optional; I use olive oil spray).  Bake at 350 for approximately 40 minutes.  Do the toothpick test to check if it’s done.

Note: Baking times vary based on oven so be sure to check the middle of the loaf with a toothpick.

Full disclosure here: I use banana baby food as I tend to eat all of my bananas before they can be ripe enough.  I experimented tonight and used banana mango baby food.

Fresh out of the oven.  I can’t wait to dig in: