Thursday, May 28, 2009
Oh my gosh, you guys! I think I can honestly say that this apple strudel was my most favorite recipe I have made since I started the blog! (I know I say that a lot, but I think I'm for real this time!)
The May Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Linda of make life sweeter! and Courtney of Coco Cooks. They chose Apple Strudel from the recipe book Kaffeehaus: Exquisite Desserts from the Classic Cafés of Vienna, Budapest and Prague by Rick Rodgers.
I was very intimidated by the idea of this but after reading the recipe and making it...I felt like it was one of the most simple desserts I've made. You just have to give the dough time and have fun rolling it out and stretching it. Just keep in mind it will take you a good 2 1/2 to 3 hours!
Make sure you see the other streudals and visit The Daring Bakers site.
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
Over the weekend I finished Jillian Michael's "Making the Cut" book. I'm not doing the program per-se. I just wanted to learn more about her opinions, exercise program and recipes. I enjoyed it, was inspired and am even considering doing her 30-day Making the Cut when I can muster up the strength to not eat any cupcakes or baked goods for 30 days. However, I was also a bit confused because I was under the impression that this book went along with her 30-day Shred workout video (which I recommend) and it really doesn't. The whole basis of her book is a 30-day program and eating system that focuses on what type of oxidizer you are, meaning how you burn your food.
According to Jillian, I am a balanced oxidizer Anyway, to get to the point of this post, which is a great breakfast solution for a balanced meal AND for preparing steel cut oats faster! I love steel cut oats, I just can't prepare them every morning. This recipe is perfect for me because I am a fan of all of the ingredients, I can make it the night before, put it in a Ziploc container and eat it at work! It's Jillian's Breakfast in a Bowl.
Breakfast in a Bowl
by Jillian Michaels from "Making the Cut"
* 2 cups nonfat yogurt
* 2 cups nonfat cottage cheese
* 4 ounces steel cut oats, uncooked
* 4 tablespoons slivered almonds (I used whole and chopped them)
* 4 teaspoons vanilla extract
* 1/2 teaspoon allspice (or to taste, but don't use more than 1/2 tsp. or the flavor will be too strong)
1. Blend all ingredients together.
2. Refrigerate overnight to soften the oats.
3. Serve straight from the refrigerator!
1 TB agave
12 raspberries (or any fruit really)
I loved this. I can totally see myself making this a couple times a week. I also made some for the hub and well, he did NOT like it. He gchatted me at work saying "Holy crap this breakfast bowl is going to make me ralph." Then a few minutes later I saw this tweet from him: "Eating a combo of cottage cheese, plain yogurt, steel cut oats and berries. Has to be one of the most disgusting breakfasts in history." So I guess it appears he is not a fan. I had to laugh though...for some reason I knew he wouldn't be a fan. But I will say, the agave really does add a lot and he didn't add it. Maybe next time, Adam.
Here are some other variations/mix-ins I do depending on what I have on hand:
* craisins (or any other dried fruit)
* quick oats
* fiber one cereal
* chopped apples (I add the day of, with lots of cinnamon)
* any fresh or frozen fruit
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
Here's what I did with mine. And believe me...I was totally going to make these into cupcakes, but I resisted. (Not sure why.)
* no walnuts – instead i added 3/4 cup ghiradelli semi-sweet chips
* put the brownie batter in the oven while i made the choc. chip dough. they cooked 15 minutes before i dropped the cookie dough on it.
*total time in oven – about 65-70 minutes, my chipster crust was very golden.
They were great, pretty gooey because I put the chips in. I really wish I would have had vanilla ice cream on hand…it would have been perfect. Beth of Supplicious chose the recipe from Baking From My Home To Yours, by Dorie Greenspan. Check out all the other bakers' results here.
Becky's Steel Cut Agave Oatmeal
1/2 cup (dry) Steel Cut Oatmeal
2-3 cups water
1TB low fat peanut butter
1/2-1 cup fruit, usually berries
1 TB agave nectar
Ground Cinnamon and Nutmeg
I make the oatmeal according to package directions, which usually takes between 10 and 20 minutes (ugh). Then I top it the peanut butter, fruit, spices and agave nectar. If I'm feeling a little crazy I'll dust it with wheat germ or flax seed meal.
I don't really mix it all up together, I just make each bite unique. Some bites will have just oatmeal and agave. Others will have just berries and peanut butter. It's rather fun! You'll notice I don't pour milk over it. I just don't. I don't feel like it needs it. But if I am craving the dairy then I'll add some vanilla soy milk.
I just found two huge-mungo solutions to the time-consumingness problem of steel cut oatmeal. I hope to have the them posted by the end of the week!
Friday, May 22, 2009
I want this cookbook.
I've read a lot about it and must have it. I have been reminded continually that it is a must-have.
*Exhibit A) One day while enjoying cupcakes and soup and bread at American Fork's Flour Dough and Girl Boys and learn that this book was the inspiration for their entire business! Uh-mazing!
*Exhibit B) Pinch My Salt and some other blogger's just started baking their way through this book. Ahhh how amazing. I'd love to join but know I couldn't keep up. Thank goodness the group is locked so I'm not too tempted.
*Exhibit C) Who doesn't want to master the art of making extraordinary bread! I don't think I need another reason. Eh?!
So this cookbook is officially on my wish list. I accept gifts for any and all holidays/occasions/day of the week! Happy Friday, I hope you all have a great weekend.
Thursday, May 21, 2009
Anyway, life is crazy...but really isn't it crazy for all of us? I'm really trying to adjust to my working schedule...for some reason it feels busier than my firm work and yeah, I still don't feel like I'm caught up from my Tahiti trip. And I'm trying to fit in all the baking, cooking, dishes, running, husband and leisure time into each day. It's all working out, it's just busy.
I'm excited summer is here. However, there are days I just don't want to be in the kitchen. Anyone else feeling this way? Thank goodness for outdoor grills.
I treated myself to this lovely book at Williams-Sonoma two days ago. I've heard lots about it and swear there was a blogger's baking group making all the recipes last summer. (I can't seem to find it at the moment, so if you know, send me a link.)
Here's the recipes I'm looking forward to the most:
* Fresh Mint Ice Cream (we've got loads of fresh mint in the backyard)
* Rice Gelato
* Orange Popsicle Ice Cream
* Chocolate Raspberry Ice Cream (we'll have lots of fresh raspberries in a few while!)
* Pink Grapefruit Granita
* Fleur de Lait
* Strawberry Sherbet
* Lemon-Buttermilk Sherbet
* Mango Sorbet
* Blueberry Frozen Yogurt
Of course most of all I am just really excited to learn more about making ice cream. I would really like to master this skill! I know some of you own this book, so please share your favorite recipes or the recipes you are most excited to try.
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
I sometimes watch Guy Fieri's "Guys Big Bite" show when I'm at home eating lunch on my break. I've really grown to like Guy and admire his cooking style. In this particular episode, he made these veggie patties for his sister who loves beans and veggie meals.
I made these patties for a BYOM BBQ on Mother's Day. I didn't snap a pix of the patties, which turned out great! (Check out this blog for a great pix!) So I'm a bit sad, but I can totally see myself making these again because I usually have all these ingredients on hand. They had so much flavor and I'll be sure make the red pepper hummus he paired with it soon.
Anyway, I ate them at the BBQ and had two leftover patties. So I made them the next night but they didn't hold together and I came up with this little meal! Leftover veggie patties, cherry tomatoes, fresh parsley and steam asparagus with fresh lemon. I'm sure you are thinking by now that I eat asparagus like everyday...
Here's the recipe for the veggie patties! Let me know if you make them
Morgan's Veggie Patties
by Guy Fieri
2 ounces olive oil
3 tablespoons diced red onion
2 tablespoons diced black olives
2 tablespoons diced red bell peppers
1 teaspoon diced jalapeno
1 1/2 tablespoons diced garlic
1 tablespoon diced artichoke
4 ounces black beans, drained (I used pinto, didn't have black bean on hand)
4 ounces chickpeas, drained
4 ounces white beans, drained
6 ounces rolled oats
1/2 teaspoon Hungarian paprika
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley leaves
1/2 teaspoon red chili flakes
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon celery salt
1/4 teaspoon ground sage
2 tablespoons seasoned bread crumbs
In a medium saute pan over medium heat, add 1-ounce olive oil and all raw vegetables except beans. Saute until translucent. Remove and cool.
Add veggies to beans and mix thoroughly. Add all dry ingredients along with the egg. Thoroughly mix all ingredients and form into 4 patties, cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
In saute pan add 1-ounce olive oil, and cook patties 2 to 3 minutes per side.
* Wake up
* Grocery Shop on company bill
* Make seven delightful dishes
* Meet photographer
* Style dishes
* Assist photographer in shooting
* Eat all the good food I made using Shirley J
* Clean up
* Head over to Shirley J office and teach social media training workshop to our Home Chefs
Granted it was a 15-hour day..but it was so fun. If you would have asked me five years ago or even one year ago that I would be making food, styling food as part of my job (in communications) I would have laughed. Yes, I am amateur but I'm learning a lot and our next photo shoot will have some major planning and lots of other adjustments but this one was great.
For the shoot I made the following dishes with the hub serving as sous chef: chicken noodle soup, french onion soup (don't ever make this dish for a shoot...it was so hard to get it right), french onion dip, beef roast, pepperoni pizza, wheat bread and beef stew. Wow! Seriously I can't believe how many wonderful dishes were put together that morning.
The photo shoot was a project for product cut sheets/information sheets. For the Shirley J Beef Bouillon the owners wanted to do a beef stew. I found this recipe by Emeril Lagasse and we (mainly Adam) made it in the crockpot. We used the beef bouillon to make the beef stock the recipe called for. I was also excited to use Emeril's "Essence" for the first time. It was a nice flavoring and good to finally see what all the hype was about. Do you like the finished photo/cut sheet?
Here's the recipe.
by Emeril Lagasse and Jessie Tirsch
* 2 tablespoons olive oil
* 2 pounds beef stew meat, cut into 1-inch pieces
* 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
* 1 teaspoon Essence, recipe follows
* 3/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper
* 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
* 1/2 pound button mushrooms, thinly sliced
* 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
* 3 cups veal or beef stock, at room temperature (3 cups water + 1 1/2 tsp Shirley J Beef Bouillon)
* 2 tablespoons tomato paste
* 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
* 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
* 1/4 teaspoon dried basil
* 1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
* 1 pound small (golf ball size) new potatoes, quartered
* 1 cup diced carrots
* 1 cup frozen pearl onions, thawed
* 1/2 cup frozen green peas, thawed
* 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley leaves
Set a 12-inch saute pan over medium-high heat. Add 1 tablespoon of the olive oil to the pan and season the beef with 1 teaspoon of the salt, 1 teaspoon Essence and 1/2 teaspoon of the black pepper. Sear the beef (in 2 batches) in the saute pan for about 2 or 3 minutes per side.
Add the butter, mushrooms, flour, veal stock, tomato paste, herbs, spices, and browned meat to a slow cooker. Cover the slow cooker and set the temperature to high. Cook for 1 hour. Add the potatoes and carrots and continue to cook the stew for another 7 hours. During the last hour of cooking, add the pearl onions and replace the lid. Once the stew is cooked, stir in the peas and parsley and serve immediately.
Emeril's ESSENCE Creole Seasoning (also referred to as Bayou Blast):
2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
2 tablespoons salt
2 tablespoons garlic powder
1 tablespoon black pepper
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon dried thyme
Combine all ingredients thoroughly.
Yield: 2/3 cup
Recipe from "New New Orleans Cooking", by Emeril Lagasse and Jessie Tirsch, published by William Morrow, 1993.
*Photo by Tom Black for Shirley J, Cut Sheet Property of Shirley J
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
you know i love it. and my pictures have been getting better bit by bit.
i took some great advice from my friends bethany, lindsey and bakerella (okay, i wish she was really my friend!)
...i bought this lens three weeks ago and i seriously have no clue why i waited so long! it has made the biggest difference in my food/bloggie photography.
hopefully you'll notice more improvement as i get accustomed to the lens and manual shooting.
Speaking of improvement. I also need to post about my wonderful experience taking Nicole Hill Gerulat's Photo 101 and Food & Tabletops classes. I hope to get that up soon!
I love mangos. One of my favorite desserts includes mangos and I just love eating mangos fresh. This was in my top 10 of recipes I would choose to bake when it was my turn so I was very happy that Kelly of Baking with the Boys chose this recipe.
I was very pleased with the other quick bread recipes by Dorie. I found them fast, easy and very moist. I just couldn't believe all the wonderful add-ins: lime zest, plump golden raisins, mango and ginger...ahh so good! Well this was a winner and a keeper.
I'm just frustrated that I find these wonderful recipes and I want to make them again...I really do. It's just that there are other recipes to try. I think the only recipes I've made over again are the red velvet cupcakes, magnolia bakery vanilla cupcakes and savory corn and pepper muffins.
Check out the other baker's blogs on the official Tuesdays with Dorie blogroll. See ya next week.
Next Week: Chipster-Topped Brownies (aka chocolate chip cookies on top of yummy brownies!)
Monday, May 18, 2009
I got the recipe from Kalyn's Kitchen and you should try it!
I used ham, red onion, red pepper and cheese in mine.
The whole thing behind this recipe is to make like 12-18 egg muffins and use them throughout the week or longer. You can individually package them in zip lock bags and freeze them.
I'm going to buy silicone muffins for the next time I make these babies!
We ate them Sunday morning and brought them to work to eat for breakfast today!
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
I don't have the patience to try and remember the exact recipe but I will get as close as I can. I adapted this recipe from the Better Homes & Gardens Cookbook.
Red Pepper & Asparagus Pasta Primavera
* 1 lb Pasta, any kind (I used penne and rotini)
* 2 Red Peppers
* 1 lb Asparagus
* 3 cups Shirley J Universal Cream Sauce Base
* 1 cup Water
* 1-2 cups Parmesan Cheese
* 2 TB Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
Chop all vegetables, set aside. Boil water add Shirley J Universal Cream Sauce and whisk. Turn heat down and let reduce, stirring occasionally.
Boil water for pasta in separate pan. Cook pasta according to directions. Add chopped vegetables the last three minutes of cooking. Meanwhile, add crushed red pepper and Parmesan Cheese to Shirley J base, stir well. Drain pasta and veggies. Add sauce to pasta and serve.
Next week: Something using Shirley J Dutch Oven/Slow Cooker line products!
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
I was shocked at how perfect my tart dough turned out. I was very proud. Then I realized I forgot to make it with nuts. Oh well. It was perfect.
I loved using the entire lemon (minus seeds). It really gave me a chance to see a lemon like never before. I really loved taking it a part and enjoying its fresh beauty.
This was a huge hit at my house. We served it with whipped cream (with Tahitian Vanilla Extract). I really want to make it again, or even do what Lindsey of Cafe Johnsonia plans to do..and that is make it using grapefruit!
So I promise next week's, or rather tomorrow's post won't be late. I've already made it! Check out Babette of Babette Feasts blog for the recipe for this week's recipe...and the Tuesday With Dorie blogroll for other yummy tarts!
Next Week: Fresh Mango Bread
I have been brought to tears, especially this season. I am continually inspired by the trainers and contestants on the show. Though I may sometimes eat a treat while watching, I rarely go a Tuesday without working out because of this show.
Some friends and I are getting together to watch the finale and have a little BL partay. Just in case you want to through together one here's what you'll need.
1. Subway - We all know that changing your life doesn't have to mean staying inside to eat. That's why we love Subway.
2. Something Green - Or pink or brown, depending on who you are rooting for. Our group is on part of Team Tara.
3. Ziplock Products - Make sure all your guest bring their snacks in Ziplock bags or containers. Our group for one will be steaming some veggies in Ziplock's special steam bags.
4. Brita - The finale is going to be a long and exciting episode. Make sure to hydrate yourself and save the enviornment by using Brita water filters and bottles. Don't you dare bring a disposable water bottle.
5. Extra Gum - Recognize this product placement quote:
"I know the contestants are under a lot of stress these days, so I wanted to take Kristen and Ron aside and talk to them about new Extra Winterfresh gum..." We'll be chewing my favorite "Polar Ice"
6. Cheerios: Cheerios, or any other General Mills product makes a great snack.
Most of these are major tributes to the ridiculous product placements they've had this season. I still have to laugh and roll my eyes every time they show contestants filling up there water bottles. Happy Biggest Loser my friends. Partay time!
My mother-in-law got me hooked on it about a year ago. See it's a great natural sweetener that comes from Wild Agave. Here are some things I love about it:
a) organic and kosher
b) same characteristics as honey for use in baking and cooking
c) lower glycemic index
I use agave almost everyday. I like to put it on my oatmeal and use it with peanut butter on toast or with apples. I also like to make fresh lemonade that reminds me of a this new york eatery!
I hope to use it more in cooking and baking these next few months. I've already made frozen yogurt with it and loved it! Check out the recipes here!
I currently use the Madhava Agave brand and purchase it at Sunflower Farmers Market or Good Earth. The MIL also uses XAgave.
Monday, May 11, 2009
a) making a mess
b) getting frustrated
c) wasting a lot of toothpaste
So my solution (besides buying those nifty bottles that don't cause this problem) is the Squeezit! Toothpaste gadget. You basically slide it on the end of your tube and go from there. Seriously, whenever I use this I get every bit of toothpaste I paid for.
Heck, I don't even limit this gadget's goodness to toothpaste. I have one on my eye cream right now! And I'll probably put one on my shampoo soon! Anyone else a fan? (I just bought mine at Target)
Friday, May 8, 2009
Well, they were genius and I was able to enjoy some fabulous salmon. Confession: I just watched while the hub did all the work. :)
My favorite tips from Cook's Illustrated:
* Clean/Heat Up the grill with aluminum foil before grilling
* Drying and Refrigerating the fish before grilling
* Coating Salmon w/ Oil for moisture and crisp
Read the whole article here or pick up May's issue of Cook's Illustrated!
Wednesday, May 6, 2009
This shot is dang ugly and doesn't even showcase the chicken.
As part of my meal planning efforts I made this Shirley J Meal using our All-Purpose Seasoning. Here's what I prepared: Honey Chicken with a side of cous cous with craisins and steamed broccoli.
Shirley J All-Purpose Seasoning is a full-bodied seasoning that is similar to a dry onion soup mix, but so much better! It is way more concentrated so you use less and it is a lot more economical. It comes in a larger size and costs less per serving or ounce.
I really liked the honey glaze, especially because the honey and the Shirley J All-Purpose Seasoning really balanced each other. Some bites I'd get a real sweetness from the honey, and then the next I'd notice the savory/oniony taste from the seasoning. Here's the recipe. It was super easy.
Honey Mustard Chicken
adapted from Shirley J Honey Mustard Wings
3 TB Shirley J All-Purpose Seasoning
1/3 Cup Honey
2 TB Spicy Brown Mustard (Dijon)
1 lb. Chicken Breast Tenders.
1. Mix Shirley J All-Purpose Seasoning, honey and brown mustard.
2. Place chicken in a baking pan and coat with mixture.
3. Bake at 400 degrees F 30-40 minutes. Turn once
Next week: Red Pepper & Asparagus Pasta Primevara
Tuesday, May 5, 2009
Monday, May 4, 2009
Monday: FFY "Fend for yourself night!"
Tuesday: Cinco de Mayo Menu!
* Honey Lime Chicken Enchiladas
* Jicama and Black Bean Salad
* Corn Muffins, using Shirley J Corn Muffin Mix
* Knock Your Socks off Chili Mac - from the cover of Better Homes and Gardens Slow Cooker Issue
* Green Salad
Friday: Who knows!
*AKA leftovers, sandwiches or go out.
Saturday: Who cares!
*Something easy or go out!