Friday, July 29, 2011

Zucchini Bread

LeGreg has a newly planted veggie garden at his place. When I was up last weekend, there was a pile of giant zucchinis on the table and I was told that I wasn't leaving without some. Arm: twisted.

My plan was to make zucchini bread. And it was an epic journey.

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 1/4 cups white sugar
  • 3 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 cups grated zucchini
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts (No. Gross)


  1. Grease and flour two 8 x 4 inch pans. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C).
  2. Sift flour, salt, baking powder, soda, and cinnamon together in a bowl.
  3. Beat eggs, oil, vanilla, and sugar together in a large bowl. Add sifted ingredients to the creamed mixture, and beat well. Stir in zucchini and nuts until well combined. Pour batter into prepared pans.
  4. Bake for 40 to 60 minutes, or until tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in pan on rack for 20 minutes. Remove bread from pan, and completely cool.  
So. Here's the thing. I assume that, like my parents kitchen, MY kitchen will ALWAYS be stocked with the essentials. You know, flour, sugar, vanilla, etc. I mean, I've baked like twice before, so I'm sure I'm good and stocked up. 
I was not good and stocked up. 
And I was NOT going back to the effing store. 
Loaf pan? Didn't have. Used an 8x8 glass dish. 
White sugar? Didn't have. Used light brown sugar. 
Veggie oil? Didn't have. Stole some from Nic. (Hey Nic, I stole a cup of oil. SORRY FOR PARTYING). 
Vanilla? Didn't have. Used honey, because it was the only sweet thing I had. Even though vanilla isnt necessarily sweet.  
Baking soda? Didn't have. Didn't use. 
 So I basically didn't have or subbed half the ingredients. Given my track record in the past, the chances of this succeeding was...0%. But I was already balls deep and committed, so I continued on.
I thought that maybe it would cook faster, since it was shallower, so I set the timer for 45 mins. 45 mins later it was a dark wobbly mess. Ok, this isn't going well. I set the timer for another 15 mins. Stuck a knife in and it was covered in goo. About 30 mins LATER, the knife was finally clean! Cripes! 
I tasted a little bite when it cooled....and it was GOOD! Miracles happen, people. And they taste so good. It even has a nice crunchy crust along the top. I think that's from the brown sugar.
 I brought some in for "team food" at work, and it got a resounding THUMBS UP. 
I should just stop now, while I'm ahead.  

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Spinach and White Bean Dip

Another dip from that Real Simple article!!


  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • clove garlic
  • 15.5-ounce can cannellini beans, rinsed
  • 2 1/2 cups spinach
  • 1/4 cup fresh dill sprigs (...I used dried. SO KILL ME)
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • kosher salt and black pepper
  • crostini, for serving


  1. In a small saucepan, heat the oil with the garlic over medium heat until fragrant, 2 to 3 minutes; let cool.
  2. In a food processor, combine the garlic oil, beans, spinach, dill, and lemon juice. Season with ¾ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper and puree until smooth. Serve with the crostini. 
Ok. This dip. SO GOOD. And really? Pretty healthy!! Took just a few mins. I ate mine with some flax tortilla chip things I had from Trader Joes, rather than crostini. Bottom line? SUCCESS!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Feta and Sun-Dried Tomato Dip

Real Simple had a page of super easy dips in their July 2011 issue, and this was in there. Real Simple? Easily one of the best mags ever. Thank God LeGreg's mom subscribes so I can scour every issue and take notes. 


  • 4 ounces crumbled Feta
  • 1 cup low-fat Greek yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil (next time I'm just going to use the oil from the tomatoes)
  • 1/2 cup chopped oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, drained (I got the herby kind from Trader Joe's)
  • kosher salt and black pepper
  • pretzel crisps, for serving (or whatever. I used some other crack type thing)


  1. In a medium bowl, mash together the Feta, yogurt, and oil until mostly smooth. Mix in the sun-dried tomatoes and season with ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Serve with the pretzel crisps. 

Dudes. After chopping up the tomatoes (could prob use a food processor if you're fancy and have one), this took like 8 secs to make. It was SUPER tasty and I will fo sho be busting it out again. Not too often for myself, with the whole lactose intolerance thingy, but it might end up being my signature "bring an appetizer" thing. I haven't tried any other dips yet from that feature, but I'm definitely gonna. Woot!

(Pic from the Real Simple site, by Tom Schierlitz)