Diary of a Foodie

Monday, March 31, 2014

Chicken Wontons with Spicy Plum Dipping Sauce

When I was growing up, my mom would make wonton soup and fried wontons... ON THE SAME DAY. Yup, we were spoiled. We would eat so many wontons. Oh, they are worth it. Fried wontons may be one of my personal weaknesses. I have many.

This is my mom's recipe. She was a genius.

This is a simple recipe that you can use for any party or for any appetizer.

Chicken Wontons

  1 package of square wontons (50 per pack)
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
3 green onions, chopped
1 1/2 TBSP soy sauce
1 c vegetable oil to fry

Cook chicken any way you would like- easy right? Boil, bake, roast... Just cook the chicken through and then shred it. Add the chopped onions and soy sauce. Mix together till all chicken is coated in the soy sauce. Lay out the wonton squares and fill with about 1 tsp of chicken mixture right in  the middle of the wonton. Dipping your finger in a bowl of water, wet the wonton around the chicken mixture. Fold the wonton over to make a triangle, pinching the wonton completely closed.  Heat oil in a deep sauté pan over medium high heat til about 350 degrees. Fry the wontons about 1 minute per side until golden brown. Drain on paper towels. Serve with dipping sauce.

Don't want to fry? Try baking them at 425 degrees on a baking rack, until golden brown.

Spicy Plum Dipping Sauce

1/2 c plum jam
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp water

Mix all ingredients together until smooth. Serve with wontons. (Can't find plum jam? Substitute apricot jam)

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Pasta Primavera

Pasta Primavera likes to mascarade around as a healthy option because it boasts tons of vegetables. But lurking underneath is butter, cream, and tons of cheese.

I created my own version of this classic using eggs as a thickener and adding tons of flavor from garlic and roasted vegetables. Try this slimmed down version for dinner.

Pasta Primavera
serves 8

1 lb whole wheat spaghetti or fettucine
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 yellow squash
2 zucchini
1 red bell pepper
1/2 of large yellow onion
3 cloved garlic, minced
1 can low sodium chicken stock
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 c Parmesan cheese
salt and pepper
olive oil

Bring 8-10 cups of water to a boil with 1/4 c salt. When water comes to a boil, cook pasta for 8-10 minutes, or until al dente.

While bringing water to a boil, prepare your vegetables.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Cut zucchini and squash in half lengthwise, they cut into half circles. Remove the seeds from the bell pepper and cut into lond matchsticks. Cut the onion into half moons. Spread onto a cookie sheet and sprinkle with olive oil, and about 1 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp pepper. Roast in the oven until fork tender, about 20 minutes.

In a very large saute pan (large enough to hold all the ingredients), heat 2 TBSP olive oil over medium high heat. Sprinkle the chicken with salt and pepper and brown on both sides, about 7 minutes per side to cook through. Remove from heat when done and let it rest for 5 minutes. After chicken has rested, cut into bite size pieces.

In the same saute pan you cooked the chicken in, add another 1 TBSP of olive oil. Add the minced garlic and saute for 1 minute. Add the chicken stock and reduce it by half, about 5 minutes.

Drain the cooked pasta and add it to the chicken stock. Add the beaten eggs and using tongs, toss together vigorously (the heat from the pasta will cook the eggs immediately and will make a sauce with the chicken stock). Add the roasted vegetables, cooked chicken and Parmesan cheese. Stir together till Parmesan coats all ingredients. Serve immediately.

Best Chocolate Chip Cookies

Growing up, my family LOVED chocolate chip cookies. We didn't get treats very often, but when we did, it was either vanilla ice cream or chocolate chip cookies. I can still remember all of us standing around the mixing bowl grabbing for the chocolate chips in the uncooked dough.

I've tried other chocolate chip recipes, but is never compares to this.

I'm not sure where this recipe came from as my family has used it for probably over 30 yrs. But it always works and it always is delicious.

Chocolate Chip Cookies

yields about 48 cookies

2 sticks butter, softened
3/4 c white sugar
1 c brown sugar
2 eggs
1 t vanilla
1/2 t salt
3/4 t baking soda
3 c flour
2 c semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Cream together softened butter and sugars until smooth. Add eggs one at a time, mixing in between. Add vanilla, salt, and baking soda and mix. Add flour, one cup at a time, mixing well in between. Once all the flour is mixed in, add the chocolate chips and mix by hand with a spoon.

Spoon 1 TBSP of cookie dough onto an ungreased cookie sheet and bake 8-10 minutes, or until they start to brown lightly around the edges.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Chicken Lettuce Wraps

PF Chang's Lettuce Wraps are amazing; spicy, crunchy appetizers that I can never pass up. But like most things that are delicious, I'm sure there are some not great ingredients.

Now while this recipe is delicious, it is not an exact duplicate of PF Chang's.  This is my rendition of a classic.

Try it and let me know your thoughts.

Chicken Lettuce Wraps
serves 8

3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1- 8 oz can of water chestnuts, cut into very small pieces
8 oz  baby bella mushrooms, cut into very small pieces
4 scallions, sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 inch of fresh ginger, grated
2 TBSP sweet red chili sauce
1 TBSP soy sauce
1 TBSP rice wine vinegar
salt and pepper
olive oil
1 package Maifun Rice noodles
vegetable oil to cook noodles
2 heads of Boston lettuce

Cut chicken into very small pieces (about 1/4 inch by 1/4 inch) and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Heat up 2 TBSP olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add the chicken and brown on both sides.  Add the diced water chestnuts, mushrooms, scallions, garlic and ginger. Cook for 5 minutes. Add the chili sauce, soy sauce and rice wine vinegar. Cook for an additional 5-10 minutes, until sauce is absorbed into vegetables and chicken.

In a 2 qt sauce pan, heat up 2 cups of vegetable oil over medium high heat. Heat oil to 375 degrees F and then add the Maifun Rice Noodles and they will immediately puff up. Remove from oil and drain on paper towels.

Dipping Sauce

1/4 c sweet red chili sauce
2 TBSP soy sauce
1 TBSP rice wine vinegar
1/2 tsp Chinese hot mustard (optional for heat)

Whisk together all ingredients and set aside.


Take a full lettuce leaf and spoon 2-3 TBSP of chicken mixture into the center, topping with crunchy Maifun rice noodles and a touch of dipping sauce. Fold over the lettuce leaf and enjoy.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Creme Brulee French Toast

I've had this idea bouncing around my head for awhile. Crème Brulee. French Toast. Marriage made in heaven? I wouldn't find out until tonight, but let me tell you, it was worth the wait. This may be my favorite recipe I've created to date.

Bruleed French toast, crème fraiche filling and a blueberry compote. So happy together.

Crème Brulee French Toast
serves 6-8 people

1 loaf brioche bread, sliced (stale bread works better)
1 1/2 cups milk
4 eggs
1 TBSP vanilla
1 TBSP ground cinnamon
1/4 c sugar, plus more for brulee
Butter for cooking

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together milk, eggs, sugar, cinnamon and vanilla. Allow the sliced bread to soak in the mixture for about 10 minutes. Heat griddle or non-stick skillet over medium-low heat. Add about 1 TBSP of butter to griddle and cover entire pan. Place soaked bread on the griddle and cook about 5-7 minutes per side, until golden brown.

Crème Fraiche Filling

6 oz crème fraiche
seeds from one vanilla bean
2 TBSP powdered sugar

Split the vanilla bean and scrape out all the seeds and place them in the crème fraiche. Add powdered sugar and mix together until smooth. Set aside for assembly.

Blueberry Compote

2 c fresh blueberries
juice of one lemon
1/4 c water
1/4 sugar

In a 2 qt sauce pan, bring all ingredients to a boil and allow berries to pop. Once they've popped, take off heat and sauce will thicken slightly.


Place one piece of French toast on plate, spoon crème fraiche filling over the top, top with another piece of French toast. Sprinkle the top piece with 1 tsp of sugar. Using a kitchen torch, burn the sugar on the toast. Once you've bruleed the sugar, top with blueberries and serve.

TIP: Don't have a brulee torch? Before you stack the toast, sprinkle with sugar and place it in oven set to "broil", being careful not to burn the toast. Watch the entire time!

Berry Almond Salad

There is a restaurant here in Utah where I love eating. One dish in particular is my go-to salad.

It's a mix of romaine, berries, candied nuts and a sweet dressing. I loved it..until I read the sugar content. YOWZA.

So, I decided to recreate it at home, sans the sugar. No candied nuts and a lighter, scratch-made dressing.

Berry Almond Salad
serves 6 people

4 cups fresh, baby spinach
1 cup strawberries, sliced
1 cup blackberries
1 cup blueberries
1/2 cup sliced almonds

In a large bowl, mix all the salad ingredients together and set aside.

Poppy Seed Dressing

1/4 c red wine vinegar
2 strawberries, hulled
1 TBSP poppy seeds
2 TBSP honey
1 cup extra virgin olive oil

In a blender or food processor, blend together the vinegar, strawberries, poppy seeds and honey until smooth. With lid on but center lid off, turn blender to low and slowly stream in olive oil til emulsified. Serve along side the berry salad.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014


Oh, Indian food, how I love thee. Let me count the ways....

Samosas. Lovely fried little finger foods filled with potatoes, peas and spices. I could eat them ALL. DAY. LONG. Every day of my life. There is nothing in life I love more than samosas.

No joke.

Try them today.


1 tsp mustard seed
1 t Madras curry powder
1 t red pepper flakes
1/3 t paprika
1/2 t cumin
1 t sugar
juice of one lemon
1/2 onion, diced
5 potatoes, peeled and diced small
1 c frozen peas

Peel and dice the potatoes into small cubes. Place diced potatoes in a 2 qt sauce pan and rinse them in cool water until water coming off potatoes is clear. Cover potatoes with cold water and 1 tsp salt and bring to a boil. Cook for 10 minutes and then drain and set aside.

In a sauce pan with a lid (this is very important), heat 2 tsp vegetable oil over medium heat. Add the mustard seed and place the lid on. The mustard seeds will pop. Cook seeds for 2 minutes and the diced onion and the rest of the spices; curry, red pepper flakes, paprika, and sugar. Let spices cook for 2-3 minutes. Add the sugar and the lemon juice and stir.

After spices are cooked, add the drained, cooked potatoes and the frozen peas. Mix until the spices cover everything.


2 c all purpose flour
2 tsp Kosher salt
1/2 c vegetable oil
1 tsp turmeric
APPROX 1 c water

Mix flour, salt, turmeric and oil together with a fork. Slowly add the water while stirring it. Once it looks slightly wet, start mixing with your hands and knead the dough for 5 minutes. Let the dough rest 15 minutes before rolling out.

After the dough has rested, turn it out onto a floured surface and roll it out very thin. Using a circle cookie cutter, about 2 inches in diameter, cut circles out the dough.

Spoon about 1 TBSP potato mixture into the center of the dough, fold it over to make a half moon shape and pinch the edges closed.

Heat 2 cups of vegetable oil up over medium high heat to 350 degrees in a large sauce pan. Fry the samosas until golden brown. Drain on paper towels and serve hot.

Breakfast Quinoa Apple Crisp

I think it would be safe to say that I love apple crisp. Peach crisp. Pear crisp. Any and all crisps. I love heating up crisp leftovers and having them for breakfast. But like most yummy things, they are full of not-so-healthy ingredients; butter, sugar, brown sugar, more butter.

So, I tried to recreate the flavors of a crisp in a better way. No butter. No sugar.

Breakfast Quinoa Apple Crisp  serves 4-6 people

1 c quinoa
2 c water
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp vanilla
2 apples, diced
1 TBSP honey OR agave
1/2 c sliced almonds

In a 2 qt sauce pan cook quinoa with the water, cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla. Cover and let cook for 12-15 minutes. The last 5 minutes of cooking, add the diced apples and honey. Stir in completely, recover the pan and let cook until apples softened slightly, about 5 minutes. Serve with sliced almonds sprinkled on top.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Rigatoni with Chicken, Mushrooms and Spinach

I love a good, creamy pasta, but I can't eat it very often. I created this full-cream, heavy cheesed pasta dish several years ago before I started to care about how big I was or about fat and calories. These days, I'm on a journey to find a healthier and stronger me. So, I need to tweak my current recipes to fit this new attitude.

And while this is not as healthy as, let's say, a plain salad, this is still a healthier version of creamy pastas.

Rigatoni with Chicken, Mushrooms and Spinach

1 lb whole wheat rigatoni
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 lb sliced baby bella mushrooms (or white button if you can't find them)
3 cups fresh baby spinach
1 c fat free half and half
1/2 c Parmesan cheese
1 TBSP  dried chervil
1 TBSP dried tarragon
salt, pepper
1/8 tsp nutmeg
Olive oil

Bring 8 qts of water to a boil with 1/4 c Kosher salt. While bringing your water to a boil, heat 2 TBSP of olive oil in a sauté pan. Sprinkle salt and pepper over chicken breasts and cook in sauté pan, about 8 minutes a side, until golden brown and cooked through. Remove from pan. Let chicken rest for about 5 minutes, then cut into bite size cubes.

The water should be boiling at this point. Pour pasta into salted water and cook according to package directions, about 12-15 minutes, or until al dente. Drain when cooked through and place pasta back into the pot it was cooked in for assembly.

 Add another 2 TBSP olive oil to the same sauté pan and brown the mushrooms. DO NOT ADD SALT AT THIS POINT. Cook the mushrooms until browned on both sides and then sprinkle with 1/2 tsp Kosher salt and 1/4 tsp black pepper, tarragon and chervil. Remove from pan and place to the side for assembly.

Add 1 c half and half to the sauté pan and scrape the mushroom and chicken bits off the bottom of the pan. This will add flavor to your sauce. Let the cream cook for about 5 minutes, reducing slightly. Add 1 tsp of Kosher salt, 1/2 tsp black pepper, nutmeg and Parmesan cheese. Stir until well combined.

Pour sauce over drained pasta, add the chicken pieces, cooked mushrooms and stir well. At the last minute, sprinkle in the fresh spinach. The heat of the pasta will wilt it immediately.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Steak and Veggie Kabobs

Steak and Veggie Kabobs

1 lb of steak, cubed

Marinade: this is enough for veggies OR steak.
1/3 cup worchestshire sauce
1/4 cup light soy sauce
1/4 cup Balsamic vinegar
2 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

Cut veggies into any shape you would like and place in a bowl. Pour marinade over the veggies and let them soak it in for at least 4 hours. Add steak to another bowl and pour marinade over the steak also allowing it to soak in for 4 hours. Skewer veggies and steak onto bamboo skewers and cook on a grill for about 5 minutes a side.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Heather's Protein Pancakes with Fresh Fruit "Syrup"

My friend, Heather, is a freakin' fit goddess. No joke. She is strong, tough, built, a bloody brickhouse, and on top of that she knows nutrition. I love when she shares recipes that we can all incorporate into our lives to eat like a normal person, but still be healthier.

Heather's Protein Pancakes

4 egg whites
1/3 c rolled oats
2 TBSP cottage cheese OR Plain Greek yogurt
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp vanilla

In a blender add all ingredients and blend until smooth. Heat a griddle or non-stick skillet to medium heat and melt 1 tsp of coconut oil onto it. Pour about 2 TBSP of batter and cook until bubbles form ontop and then flip, about 2 minutes a side. Yields about 6 pancakes

TIP: Want chocolate pancakes? Add 1 TBSP unsweetened cocoa powder.

Fresh Fruit Syrup

1 cup of berries of your choice (I used a mix of strawberries, raspberries and blackberries)
Juice of half a lemon

In a blender or  food processor, blend all ingredients together til a syrup consistency. If you want it thinner, add water a little at a time. Serve over pancakes.

Samoa Cupcakes

It's Girl Scout Cookie time again. IMO, there is nothing better than a Samoa cookie. And being in the cupcake mode, I've decided to pay homage to those classic flavors of coconut, chocolate and caramel in this cupcake.

Samoa Cupcake

Chocolate Cupcakes yield 15-18 cupcakes
1 stick butter, softened
1 c sugar
2 eggs
1/2 c sour cream
1 t vanilla
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 c unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 c all purpose flour
2/3 c water

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line muffin tins with paper liners. In a stand mixer, or a mixing bowl with a hand mixer, cream together softened butter and sugar until smooth, about 3 minutes. Add eggs and beat together. Add sour cream, vanilla, baking powder and soda, and salt and mix until well incorporated. Add the cocoa powder and mix on low speed til totally mixed. Add 3/4 of the flour and mix well. Add ALL the water and mix. Add the last 3/4 c of the flour and mix well. Using a one ounce ice cream scoop, divide the batter into the liners. Bake at 325 degrees F for 20-25, or until done. When they come out of the oven, using the handle of a wooden spoon, poke a hole in the center of each cupcake. Let cool completely before frosting.

Caramel Filling

1/2 stick butter
1 cup brown sugar
1/4 tsp Kosher salt
1 T milk

In a 2 qt sauce pan, melt butter over medium heat. Once melted completely, add the brown sugar and salt, stirring continually. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring to make sure it does not burn. Once it's thickened and the sugar is melted completely, add the milk and cook for another 5 minutes. Let cool before filling the cupcakes.


6 oz cream cheese, softened
1 stick butter, softened
2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 c unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp vanilla

Using a hand or stand mixer, Cream together cream cheese and butter until smooth. Add the powdered sugar and cocoa powder and mix on low speed until well incorporated. Add vanilla and mix well.


Place 3/4 c flake coconut onto a sheet tray and toast until golden brown in a 400 degree oven.


Spoon caramel into a piping bag that is fitting with a filling tip. Fill each cupcake with caramel. Pipe extra caramel onto the top of the cupcakes. Using a 1 MM star tip, pipe chocolate frosting onto the filled cupcakes. Top with toasted coconut.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Quinoa and Chicken Bowl

Quinoa and Chicken Bowl serves 8

3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 cups quinoa
2 avocados
2 ears fresh corn
2 large tomatoes
2 cans black beans
1 large onion
4 cloves garlics
1/4 c cilantro, chopped
2 limes
garlic powder
onion powder
crushed red pepper flakes
chipotle chili powder
olive oil OR coconut oil

Cook 4 cups water and the 2 cups of quinoa with 2 cloves of crushed garlic and 1/2 of an onion and 1/2 tsp salt, over medium heat for 15-20 minutes, or until quinoa is cooked. The garlic and onion are there to flavor the quinoa and will not be eaten.  Remove them  before you serve the quinoa.

While the quinoa is cooking, heat  2 T oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Season chicken with salt, pepper, cumin, garlic and onion powders and a few red pepper flakes. Saute for about 7 minutes per side until cooked through. Chop the chicken into bite size pieces.

 Drain the black beans and cook in a 2 qt sauce pan over medium heat with 1/4 diced onion, 1 tsp cumin, and about 1/4 tsp chipotle chili powder. Cook for about 10 minutes.

Dice two cloves of garlic and 1/4 of a onion and diced tomatoes. Add the chopped cilantro and mix together. Season with a little salt and pepper.

Cut the avocado into bite size pieces and mix with the juice of one lime.

Cut the corn of the cob and set aside.

Assemble the bowl with quinoa on the bottom, topped with black beans, pico de gallo, avocado, corn, chicken and a slice of lime.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Steak Salad with Roasted Tomatoes, Fried Onion Strings and Creamy Balsamic Dressing

Long title, delicious results. It's safe to say I've been eating a ton of salads lately trying to eat more veggies and eat cleaner. While this salad isn't the cleanest salad, it is one of the best. And with all things, all things in moderation.

Steak Salad enough for 8 people

1-2 lb flank steak
2 heads of Romaine lettuce
2 cups chopped kale
1 pint cherry OR grape tomatoes
1 yellow onion
1 c milk
1/4 c white vinegar
salt,pepper,chili powder
1 c flour
Canola oil to cook with

Peel and slice onions in very thin circles. Soak them in a mix of milk, vinegar, salt, pepper and chili powder. Set aside for later. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. On a cookie sheet, place your tomatoes and rub with a little bit of olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast them at 400 degrees for about 10 minutes, until wrinkled and bursting. Heat a cast iron skillet over med-high heat on your stove, adding a touch of canola or coconut oil. Salt and pepper your steak and sear in your cast iron skillet, about 4-5 minutes per side, or til desired doneness. When cooked, set it aside and cover it in foil.

Heat 2 inches of canola oil in a 2 qt sauce pan over med-high heat. In a large mixing bowl, add the flour and 1 tsp of salt, 1/2 tsp of pepper and 1/2 tsp chili powder. Mix well. Drain the onions from the milk mixture and dredge in the seasoned flour. Fry in the oil until golden brown. Drain on a paper towel.

Chop the romaine lettuce into bite size pieces and mix with the kale. Slice the steak and spread over the lettuce, sprinkle with the roasted tomatoes and onion strings. Serve with Creamy Balsamic Dressing or your fav dressing.

Creamy Balsamic Dressing

1 c mayo
1 c buttermilk
4 oz cream cheese
1/4 c Balsamic vinegar, reduced
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp Accent seasoning

In a small sauce pan, reduce the Balsamic vinegar over med-low heat until slightly thickened and reduced by about half. In a large mixing bowl, cream together mayo, buttermilk, cream cheese and seasonings. Add Balsamic after it has reduced and mix well. Refrigerate for an hour before you use it.

Avocado Lime Chicken Salad

I'm like most American women, constantly trying to lose a few pounds. I'm not a strict eater as I feel like life would be soooo boring and sad without some sugar and fried goodness.

But, I need to eat a cleaner variety of foods. Enter in this delightful wonder. Eating clean(er) never tasted so good.

Avocado Lime Chicken Salad

8 ounces of roasted skinless chicken breast, shredded
1 avocado
juice of one lime
dash of salt of pepper

Shred the chicken into a bowl. Using a spoon, scrape out all of the avocado from the skin. Using hands, mash the avocado into the chicken, until the chicken is coated. Squeeze lime onto the chicken mixture and sprinkle with a touch of salt of pepper. You can eat this by itself, on a bed of greens, or I like to eat it on thin whole wheat bread with tomatoes and lettuce. Makes enough for two sandwiches.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Schnitzel with Lemon

Schnitzel is not much more than thin pork cutlets, breaded in some seasoned bread crumbs and sauteed in some olive oil. But it sure it delicious and a fast dinner.

Schnitzel with Lemon

6 thin cut pork cutlets, with or without a bone
1 c flour
2 eggs
1 c plain bread crumbs
salt and pepper
1 lemon cut into wedges
Olive oil to cook with

In one large bowl, place the flour and spinkle with salt and pepper. In a different bowl, crack and whisk eggs till frothy and add about 1 TSP water and whisk again. In yet another bowl, add the bread crumbs and sprinkle with salt and pepper. This is called a dredging station. Take each pork chop and first dip in the flour, shaking off excess. Then dip in egg, shaking off excess. Lastly, dip in bread crumbs and set onto a clean plate.

Do this to all pork chops and let set up for about 10 minutes. Heat up about 2 TBSP of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Cook pork chops when heat is about 350 for 2 minutes per side. Drain on paper towels and serve with lemon wedges.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Baby Back Ribs with Dry Rub

It's safe to say that my husband LOVES ribs. Whenever I tell him that's what we're having for dinner, he gets an extra little pep and does a little happy dance. (Think Bill Cosby's dance. HAHA)  And since we don't have a smoker, I've had to come up with another way to make ribs.

Enter your oven. It does most of the work and then at the very end, you slap them on the grill for a few minutes to caramelize the sugar in the BBQ sauce and get that smoky barbeque taste that can only come from a grill.

Baby Back Ribs with Dry Rub

Slab of Baby Back Ribs, about 4-6 lbs

Dry Rub:
1 T Kosher salt
1 T chili powder
1 t ground black pepper
1 t ground paprika
1/2 t cumin
1/2 t ground cayenne pepper
1/2 t garlic powder
1/2 t onion powder
1/2 t ground mustard
1/2 t ground chipotle chili pepper

In a small bowl, mix all ingredients together and sprinkle over the baby back ribs, ONLY USING ABOUT 1/3 OF THE RUB. Save the rest for another day in an air tight container.

Place ribs on a cookie sheet with about 1/4 cup of water and cover with foil. Bake at 275 degrees F for 2-3 hours. When done, take ribs to the outside grill and cook for 5 minutes a side, slathering with your favorite BBQ Sauce. Serve immediately.