Tuesday, January 31, 2012

oreo stuffed chocolate chip cookies

Do I really need to expound here?
What more could you possibly want than Oreo stuffed chocolate chip cookies?

Oreo Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies
Makes about 12-15 giant cookies.
Taken from Picky Palate.
One recipe chocolate chip cookies
12-15 Oreos

Preheat your oven to 350*.
Follow pictures:

Bake for 12-15 minutes and enjoy warm!

Friday, January 27, 2012

gd likes

husbands in arms :)

deployment #2: done!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

fruit salad yogurt

I have nothing to say about this.
It's delicious and makes a fruit salad extra special.
But, let's face it.
It is just flavored yogurt on top of fruit.
Tasty, but a bit boring.
I'll try harder next time ;)

Fruit Salad Yogurt
Makes about a cup.
1 cup Greek yogurt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1-2 tablespoons honey (depending on how sweet you like it)
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Mix mix mix!

Dollop on top of mixed fruit and sprinkle with toasted, sliced almonds and enjoy!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

chickpea and wild rice salad

I know, I know.
I'm impressed with myself.
I'm posting another healthy recipe and it's still January.
Maybe those resolutions stuck?
Not here.

But, in all seriousness, all those sweet recipes I post??  They are occasional indulgences.  Most of the time, we eat like this.
And yes, occasional does mean once a week :)

Chickpea and Wild Rice Salad
Serves 4-6.
Meh.  Do we need a recipe??

Drain and rinse a can of chickpeas and put it in a large serving bowl.

Add roughly the same amount of cooked wild rice to the bowl.

Dice half a red onion and add.

Add about a head of broccoli, cut into florets, blanched, and drained.

Toss with your favorite vinaigrette...I used a classic lemon for some fresh flavor!

Season with salt and pepper and enjoy!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

chocolate creme brulee

I need birthday cake for my birthday.
Has to be.

My husband, however, likes to change it up.
Likes to horrify me.
With all sorts of crazy suggestions on what his birthday "cake" should be.
Like trifle.
(At least those are technically cake...)

Or, chocolate creme brulee.

And as much as I hate it, it is his birthday.
So, I make what he wants.

Happy Birthday, my love!

Chocolate Creme Brulee
Makes 6.
From Paula Deen.
1 quart heavy cream 
1 cup sugar 
1 ounce chocolate Godiva liqueur 
1/2 tablespoon vanilla 
2 ounces cocoa powder 
1 ounce unsweetened chocolate 
11 large egg yolks

Preheat the oven to 350*.
In a medium sized saucepan over medium-high heat, add the heavy cream, sugar, liqueur, and vanilla. When the mixture is warm, sift in the cocoa powder and add the chocolate and whisk until blended.
Place the egg yolks in a large stainless steel bowl. Slowly add the warm chocolate mixture to the eggs a little at a time while whisking. Strain and pour into individual porcelain ramekins. Place the ramekins in a large baking pan. Pour enough hot water into the pan to come half way up the sides of the ramekins. Bake until firm in the center, about 30 minutes. Remove the ramekins from the water bath and let cool completely. Place in the refrigerator for 2 hours. Dust with sugar and caramelize with a propane torch. Serve immediately and enjoy!

I love that crunchy shell.

And that velvety smooth inside.

I guess I wasn't so mad that we didn't have cake...

Sunday, January 15, 2012

pineapple ginger preserves

My dad loves pineapple preserves.
We used to buy him jars of it and give it to him for his birthday.
(Hey, this is before we had jobs and it's all we could afford! :) )
So, I thought it'd be cute for Christmas, to make him some homemade preserves but spice it up a bit.
Not as sweet and a bit spicy from the candied ginger, it was delicious over ice cream and yogurt the next morning!
Hope you enjoy as much as he did :)

Pineapple Ginger Preserves
Makes about 2 pints.
6-8 pieces of candied ginger (depending on how spicy you'd like it)
20 ounces crushed pineapple
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup white corn syrup

Mince the candied ginger, as small as you can.....you don't want to bite down on a piece of ginger!

Combine this with the rest of the ingredients in a medium saucepan and bring to a high simmer over medium heat for 20 minutes until thickened.

Once it reaches 200* on a candy thermometer, pour into hot, sterilized jars, seal, and process in a water-bath canner for five minutes.  Place jars on a clean dishtowel and cover with another dishtowel to keep the drafts out.  Let cool for 24 hours and then enjoy over ice cream, yogurt, whatever you'd like!

Monday, January 9, 2012

buckwheat whole wheat pancakes + buckwheat whole wheat waffles

So, I feel really guilty eating fluffy, delicious pancakes or waffles in front of our little man.
But, I really don't want him to have all that white flour and white sugar.
So, I came up with recipes that were mostly buckwheat or whole wheat flours to make it a bit healthier for him.  When I make his pancakes (or waffles!), I leave out the sugar and make a double batch for the freezer.  That way he can have one whenever he wants :)
But, for us, let's put the sugar back in ;)

And can I let you in a little secret?? 
I hardly ever make the regular pancakes or waffles anymore.
The buckwheat and whole wheat flours make it so earthy and hearty and just plain delicious that I don't wanna go back. 
These are my new favorites.  
But, don't worry...I'll keep you updated on my ongoing search for new pancakes and waffles :)

Makes about 16.
1/2 cup buckwheat flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2 cups buttermilk
2 large eggs
3 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled
In a large mixing bowl, whisk the flours, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.  In a medium bowl, whisk the buttermilk and eggs.  Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. 
Whisk gently until the dry ingredients are almost incorporated; stop before the batter is evenly moistened.  Add the cooled melted butter and mix just until the batter is evenly moistened - there will be lumps and it will be very thick.  Don't be tempted to add milk.  It'll be fine, I promise.  Let the batter rest while you heat the griddle.
Heat a griddle or a large skillet over medium heat.  Lightly oil the griddle.  Working in batches, pour 1/4 cup of the batter onto the griddle for each pancake, spacing them about 1 inch apart.  Let cook until bubbles rise to the surface and the edges look dry, 1-2 minutes.  
Check the underside of each pancake to make sure it's nicely browned; then flip.  Cook until the second side is browned, about 1 more minute.  Transfer the pancakes to a baking sheet and keep warm in a 200* oven while you finish. Enjoy with warm maple syrup!

Makes about 18.
1 cup buckwheat flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup all purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup brown sugar
2/3 cups canola oil
4 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups buttermilk
Set up your waffle iron on a level, clean surface and turn on to preheat.
In a large bowl combine flours, baking powder, baking soda, salt and brown sugar.  Whisk to blend.  In a  medium bowl, whisk together eggs, oil, buttermilk and vanilla extract.  Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and fold.  Try not to over mix the batter or the waffles will become tough.  It’s ok if a few lumps remain in the batter. Cook according to your waffle machine instructions.  Enjoy with lots of butter!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

creamy lemon crumb squares

Were you good?
I hope so.
Because are definitely making these today, no matter what.
They are, hands down, the best lemon squares I've ever eaten.
I will never ever (pinky swear) make another lemon square recipe again.

Creamy Lemon Crumb Squares
Makes 12ish.

1 1/3 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 stick butter, slightly softened
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup old fashioned oats
1 can (14 ounce) sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup lemon juice
Zest of one lemon
Preheat your oven to 350*.
Sift together flour, salt, and baking powder and set aside.
Cream butter and brown sugar until well combined.
Add oats and flour mixture to butter and sugar mixture and mix until crumbs form.
Press half of the crumb mixture into the bottom of an 8 x 11 inch pan.
Mix together condensed milk, lemon juice, and lemon zest. Spread onto the bottom layer of the crumb mixture. Top with the other half of the crumb mixture, but don’t press.
Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until golden brown.
Allow pan to sit on counter for 30 minutes after baking. Cut into squares and refrigerate for a couple of hours or until cool.  Enjoy!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

broccoli pesto + broccoli quinoa + the question of resolutions

I have mixed feelings about new years.
On one hand, it's a new year!
On the other, time for resolutions.
Raise your hand if you've ever made a diet resolution.
Haven't we all?
Why bother, when we know next week, we'll be back to our old ways.
But, I am a firm believer in moderation.
So, at least for today, we are going to do some healthful cooking!
(Next post just miiiight be the best lemon squares you've ever had.  Maybe.  If you're good.)

Broccoli Pesto
Makes about a cup or so.
From 101 Cookbooks!
2 cups raw broccoli, cut into florets
3 medium garlic cloves
1/2 cup sliced or slivered almonds, toasted 
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan
2 big pinches salt
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup heavy cream
Cook the broccoli by pouring 3/4 cup water into a large pot and bringing it to a simmer. Add a big pinch of salt and stir in the broccoli. Cover and cook for a minute, just long enough to take the raw edge off. Transfer the broccoli to a strainer and run under cold water until it stops cooking. Set aside. 
*If you are making the quinoa on the same day, go ahead and blanche the other three cups of broccoli florets as well....it'll save you time!*
Puree two cups of the cooked broccoli, garlic, almonds, Parmesan, salt, and lemon juice in a food processor. Drizzle in the olive oil and cream and pulse until smooth.
Serve on cooked pasta, eat with pita chips, or use in the quinoa recipe, below!  

Double Broccoli Quinoa
Serves 4-6.
From 101 Cookbooks!
3 cups cooked quinoa, heated
3 cups blanched broccoli, cut into florets 
1 recipe broccoli pesto
1/2 cup sliced or slivered almonds, toasted
1 avocado, diced
Handful of Parmesan, for garnish
Toss the quinoa and broccoli florets with about 1/2 - 3/4 of the broccoli pesto. Taste and season. If needed, you might want to add more of the pesto a bit at a time, or a bit of salt. Turn out into a large serving bowl and top with the almonds and the diced avocado.  Sprinkle the Parm onto each serving and enjoy!

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