April 8, 2014

Featured Ingredient: Coffee

Tonight's dinner: Coffee-Rubbed Ribeye with Roasted Butternut Squash & Green beans; Dessert: Coconut Coffee Ice Cream with Magic Shell

This meal was inspired by several things... 1) my meal at Kool Beanz Cafe, 2) having leftover coffee in the refrigerator from the weekend with my mom and 3) Chancey's mom made roasted butternut squash when I visited their home over Spring Break, and I couldn't stop eating it! 4) my mom raving about the espresso-rubbed rib-eye she recently had at Carrabba's

I planned to make rib-eye the way I have in the past and then had the epiphany of trying a coffee rub. These kinds of things are my mind's entertainment during Con Law lectures... 

The coffee sitting in the refrigerator with an ice cream making in the freezer was just common sense. Coffee Ice Cream was my absolute favorite growing up. I always got a rainbow sprinkle cone with coffee ice cream at the Haagen Dazs in the mall.

Coffee-Rubbed Ribeye
I used instant coffee that I had on hand from when I made cupcakes for a friend's birthday. And, I couldn't find ancho chili powder at the grocery store, so I used simple chili powder that I had on hand. Does anyone know if there's a difference? I also, accidentally, used smoked paprika instead of regular paprika. And, I cooked the steaks on the stove (don't have a cast iron skillet) in olive oil... I didn't feel like dealing with the splatter of coconut oil. Um... They turned out GREAT, even with all of my modifications. I had some of the rub leftover, so I put it in a mason jar for next time. I plan to try this again and hope to improve my coffee-rub abilities... I think using espresso, rather than coffee will make a difference.

Roasted Butternut Squash
1 butternut squash, peeled and cubed
2-3 tbs. olive oil
sea salt and pepper

Toss the squash cubes with olive oil, salt and pepper. Roast at 400 for 25-30 minutes, or until tender. 
Time-saver: Peel & cube the squash before-hand, so it is ready to go in the oven when it is time to make dinner.
*Rosemary would also be great on this, but it didn't seem to fit with the coffee this time.

Green beans - I made these the same way as last night; super simple! Time-saver: Trim the green beans ahead of time.

Coconut Coffee Ice Cream - For the "sugar," I used about 1/2 cup of coconut sugar. I also used Silk refrigerated coconut milk instead of the canned stuff. It turned out great! I'm still getting used to the not-so-creamy texture of coconut milk ice cream, though. Yay for my first batch of homemade ice cream! This recipe requires prep ahead of time.

Magic Shell - My sister was so excited about this and said it's her favorite. Lucky me! I didn't follow the recipe linked above... just melted ~1/4 cup dark chocolate chips with ~1 tbs. coconut oil in the microwave and then poured it on the ice cream. The secret behind the magic is the coconut oil because it takes the temperature of its surroundings so quickly. Ever noticed how the whole jar is melted after it sits on the counter near the stove while you're making Bingo. Same thing... just on top of ice cream. :) Life's better that way.

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