Thursday, October 24, 2013

Peanut Butter & Jelly & Banana Muffins

I made these as a snack to bring along to a bachelorette party, and they were SO GOOD.

Tip: Don't put the sugar on top if you arent going to eat them soon. I put them in a big baggie, and the tops sorta turned to mush, because the sugar got soggy.

( recipe from Java Cupcake)

  • 1 1/2 cups ripe bananas (4-5 small bananas - I like chunks of bananas, so I don't over-mash mine)
  • 1/3 cup buttermilk
  • 1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 3 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 cups fresh raspberries (not frozen)
  • 1/4 cup coarse sugar (I used Sugar in the Raw or Turbinado sugar)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F degrees. Line cupcake/muffin tin with liners. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together mashed bananas, buttermilk, peanut butter and melted butter.
  4. Add the eggs and sugars to the wet mixture and whisk until smooth.
  5. Pour the wet mixture into the flour mixture and fold together with a spatula until just combined or until only a few flour lumps are visible.
  6. Add the raspberries and gently fold into the batter. NOTE: Do Not over mix! You don't want to break up the raspberries or work the flour too much.
  7. Gently scoop the batter into the prepared muffin tin filling no more than 3/4 full. Top each muffin with the coarse sugar.
  8. Bake 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean from the center of the muffins and the tops are golden brown.
  9. Remove from the oven and allow to cool in the pan for 20 minutes before running a butter knife along the edges of the pan and inverting the bread onto a wire rack to cool completely.

One Pot Pasta

This pasta is RIDICULOUSLY easy. (pic and recipe by the linked Lottie and Doof)

Throw a bunch of crap in a pot and cook.


You can kinda customize it, too. Add a bunch more herbs, if you want.

It turns out oddly creamy. I think from keeping the starches in the water from the noodles.

One-Pan Pasta (adapted slightly from Martha Stewart Living)
  • 12 ounces linguine
  • 12 ounces cherry or grape tomatoes, halved or quartered if large
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced (about 2 cups)
  • 6 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1/2- 3/4 teaspoon red-pepper flakes
  • 2 sprigs basil, plus torn leaves for garnish
  • 2-3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for serving
  • kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 4 1/2 cups water
  • Lots of freshly grated Parmesan cheese, for serving
Combine pasta, tomatoes, onion, garlic, red-pepper flakes, basil, oil, 2 teaspoons kosher salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, and water in a large straight-sided skillet. Bring to a boil over high heat. Boil mixture, stirring and turning pasta frequently with tongs, until pasta is al dente and water has nearly evaporated, about 9 minutes.
Season to taste with salt and pepper, divide among 4 bowls, and garnish with basil. Serve with oil and Parmesan.


Monday, October 14, 2013

milk chocolate mousse with coconut whipped cream.

Holy crap, I am SO far behind on this blog!!

This recipe is from How Sweet Eats.

It is DELICIOUS. It's crammed full of coconut, though, so not exactly a good diet dessert. I almost found the coconut in the mousse AND the coconut in the whipped cream to be a little over the top. I think next time I would put regular whipped cream on it, but I would fo sho put the coconut whipped cream on something else.

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon powdered sugar

8 ounces high-quality milk chocolate, chopped
2 large egg yolks
2 cans full-fat coconut milk, cold (refrigerated overnight)
Combine chocolate, water and butter in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave on medium heat for 30 seconds, stir, then microwave for 30 seconds again. Stir constantly until all chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth. Set aside to cool for 10 minutes.
While the chocolate is cooling, take one can of coconut milk out of the fridge. Open the can and discard the liquid, then scoop the firm coconut meat into the bowl of your electric mixer. Beat on medium-high speed until completely whipped and thick. Set the bowl in the fridge.
Add egg yolks, sugar and remaining water to a saucepan over medium heat. Whisk constantly until sugar is dissolved, mixture is opaque and light yellow and has thickened and can coat the back of a spoon. Remove from heat and stir in melted chocolate mixture. Place saucepan in a bowl of ice water and whisk constantly until chocolate is cooled.
Remove whipped cream from the fridge and fold it into the chocolate mixture. Once whipped cream is completely folded in, evenly pour mousse into either two or four glasses. Refrigerate for 4 hours.
A few minutes before serving, remove the other can of coconut milk from the fridge and whip the cream just as you did earlier. Once whipped, add in powdered sugar and beat just until the sugar is incorporated. Top mousse with the whipped cream and extra chocolate shavings if desired.
[adapted from taste of home]

Monday, July 1, 2013

Baby Spinach Frittata with Sweet Potato Hash Crust.

From The Sprouted Kitchen, which my newly mama'd friend, Gabrielle got us for our wedding. I have LOVED everything I've made out of it, so far, and I have made this frittata two times in as many days. It's just SO simple and SO tasty.

8 eggs
1/2 cup milk
salt and pepper
2 small sweet potatoes (I've  made it with one, and it was perfectly fine)
1 Tbl coconut oil or olive oil
1 tsp ground cumin
1 Tbl fresh thyme
2 green onions, white and green parts, thinly sliced
2 cups baby spinach
1/3 c. (about 3 oz) of herbed goat cheese (ok with a little less)
Chopped fresh cilantro, for garnish
Hot sauce (optional)

Arrange a rack in the upper third of your oven and preheat the oven to 425F.

In a large bowl, whisk the eggs together until uniform in color. Add the milk, a pinch of salt, and 1/2 tsp pepper, whisk, and set aside.

Peel the sweet potatoes and cut them into 1/4 in cubes (the smaller the better, I've found). Warm the oil in a 10 or 12 inch saute pan over medium heat. Add the potatoes and toss to coat. Sprinkle the cumin, 1/2 tsp salt, and the thyme and stir again. Cook the sweet potatoes, tossing occasionally, until they are cooked through and have brown marks, about 10 mins. Sprinkle the green onions on top of the potatoes, followed by the spinach. Let the spinach wilt, about 1 min, putting a lid on the pan to help things along if you have one. Turn the heat down to low. Give the eggs one last whisk and pour them over the spinach. Break up the cheese wth your fingers and distribute it over the top. Put the pan in the oven and bake until you shake the pan and see that the middle is just barely set, 10 to 12 mins. The handle will be very hot.

Put the frittata aside to set for a couple minutes before slicing it. Sprinkle with more pepper and garnish with the cilantro. Serve with hot sauce on the side. Or, if you're like my husband, dump it all over, as seen below.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Mini Greek-Style Meat Loaves with Arugula Salad

Another keeper from Real Simple.

I loved how portable these were. Just pop them out of the muffin tin, and you can grab a few at your leisure. Perfect.

I served it with cauliflower mash, for a solid plate of grub.


  • Preparation
  • 10 ounce ground sirloin 
  • 5 ounces lean ground lamb
  • 1/3 cup dry breadcrumbs
  • 1/3 cup grated red onion
  • 4 teaspoons chopped fresh mint
  • 4 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
  • 3/8 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • garlic cloves, minced 
  • large egg, lightly beaten 
  • Cooking spray
  • 1/2 cup plain fat-free Greek yogurt 
  • 2 ounces reduced-fat feta, crumbled
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, divided
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 cups baby arugula leaves
  • 1 1/2 cups (1/4-inch-thick) diagonally sliced seeded peeled cucumber 
  1. 1. Preheat oven to 450°.
  2. 2. Combine first 4 ingredients in a large bowl. Stir in 1 tablespoon mint, 1 tablespoon thyme, 1/4 teaspoon salt, allspice, and next 3 ingredients (through egg). Press meat mixture into 8 muffin cups coated with cooking spray. Bake at 450° for 7 minutes. Turn broiler to high; broil 3 minutes.
  3. 3. Combine yogurt, feta, 1 tablespoon juice, 1 teaspoon mint, and 1 teaspoon thyme in a mini food processor; pulse 10 times to combine.
  4. 4. Combine 1 tablespoon juice, oil, 1/8 teaspoon salt, and pepper in a bowl; stir. Add arugula and cucumber; toss.

Chipotle and Apple Turkey Burgers

My friend, Gabrielle, bought us the Sprouted Kitchen cookbook for our wedding, and I decided that it was time to put it to work.

This recipe was delicious.


1 Tbls olive oil
1 celery stalk
3 green onions, finely chopped
4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1 green apple, grated
1 lb turkey
1 chipotle chille in adobo sauce, finely chopped
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
2 Tbls fresh thyme, chopped

Heat oil in a saute pan. Add the celery, green onions, and garlic and saute until just browned, about 5 mins. Turn off heat and seat aside to cool.

Using the large holes of a box grater, grate the apple. Combine the grated apple, turkey, chipotle, salt, pepper, thyme, and cooked veggies in a large mixing bowl and stir everything together. Form the mixture into four patties, each about 1.5 inches thick, and let them rest at room temp for about 15 mins, or keep them covered in the fridge until ready to grill.

Heat the grill (I just used a pan) to medium-high. Cook the burgers about 5 mins on each side. Put a slice of cheese (the disc in the picture is provolone) on top of each patty in the last minute of cooking time to melt. Transfer the patties to a plate and cover loosely with foil.

Grill or toast the buns. I spread some aoli that I mixed together on the buns and put lettuce and caramlized onions (to die for) on top.

The glorious end.

Milk Chocolate Mousse with Coconut Whipped Cream

Aaaaaand my love affair with How Sweet Eats continues.

Note: the coconut whipped cream was pretty damn good, BUT the coconut on coconut (it's in the pudding, too) was a LITTLE rich. I think I would do regular whipped cream next time, and slap the coconut whipped cream on a bunch of other stuff.

But, really?

This was phenomenal.

I did so many taste tests through the process that I was pretty sure I would have none left by the time it was done.


8 ounces high-quality milk chocolate, chopped
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons water
2 large egg yolks
1 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons water
2 cans full-fat coconut milk, cold (refrigerated overnight)
1 tablespoon powdered sugar


Combine chocolate, water and butter in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave on medium heat for 30 seconds, stir, then microwave for 30 seconds again. Stir constantly until all chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth. Set aside to cool for 10 minutes.
While the chocolate is cooling, take one can of coconut milk out of the fridge. Open the can and discard the liquid, then scoop the firm coconut meat into the bowl of your electric mixer. Beat on medium-high speed until completely whipped and thick. Set the bowl in the fridge.
Add egg yolks, sugar and remaining water to a saucepan over medium heat. Whisk constantly until sugar is dissolved, mixture is opaque and light yellow and has thickened and can coat the back of a spoon. Remove from heat and stir in melted chocolate mixture. Place saucepan in a bowl of ice water and whisk constantly until chocolate is cooled.
Remove whipped cream from the fridge and fold it into the chocolate mixture. Once whipped cream is completely folded in, evenly pour mousse into either two or four glasses. Refrigerate for 4 hours.
A few minutes before serving, remove the other can of coconut milk from the fridge and whip the cream just as you did earlier. Once whipped, add in powdered sugar and beat just until the sugar is incorporated. Top mousse with the whipped cream and extra chocolate shavings if desired.

Raspberry Chipotle Chicken

Recipe adapted from Real Simple Magazine

This sauce was bomb. 

Like, bomb enough to bring the term bomb back for. 

Served with baked asparagus fries, and we've got ourselves a winner. 

  • Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons seedless raspberry jam
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon minced chipotle chile, canned in adobo sauce
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh garlic
  • 4 chicken breasts
  1. 1. Combine first 4 ingredients in a small saucepan, stirring with a whisk until smooth. Cook over medium heat 4 minutes or until slightly syrupy.
  2. 2. Heat a large grill pan over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Sprinkle chicken evenly with 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper. Grill chicken 6 minutes on each side or until done. Spoon raspberry mixture over chicken.
Tip that I just figured out: usually I buy a can of chipotle peppers, use one, and end up tossing the rest. I recently bought a can, used one...and....omg I should FREEZE THE REST! BRILLIANT! I stuck the rest in a baggie and stuck it in the freezer. Super easy to stick it under some warm water, defrost, and grab another pepper, when I need it. Waste not, want not and stuff.

Baked Asparagus Fries

Adapted from Spoon Fork Bacon.

Time for a little catch up!

I made raspberry chipotle chicken and these baked asparagus fries, tonight. LeGreg is out of town, and I almost feel guilty when I pull off a good recipe and he's not here. When we're together, he cooks prrrrrobably 9 times out of 10. And my one time has a 30% chance of being horrible.


These fries were SO GOOD. Totally worth the super gummy fingers that the different steps require.

I even INVENTED a dip for them!! The linked recipe has a few dip options, but I have approximately almost nothing in my

1/2 cup almond flour
1 cup breadcrumbs
1 lb asparagus, ends trimmed and cut in half
3/4 cup all purpose flour
2 eggs, lightly beaten
salt and pepper to taste
cooking spray

1/2 cup of plain yogurt
2 cloves of chopped up garlic
few sprigs of fresh thyme 
a sprig of fresh oregeno
gentle squeeze of half a lemon (like...I didn't try to get alllll the juice out?)

1. Preheat oven to 375°F.
2. Place almonds and panko in a food processor and pulse until the almonds are finely ground and well mixed. Pour mixture into a shallow dish.
3. Dredge cut asparagus spears in flour and shake off excess (not much flour will stick to the waxy spears, but that’s okay).
4. Dip each spear into the egg wash followed by the panko mixture. Cover each spear in the panko mixture until fully coated. Season with salt and pepper.
5. Place coated spears onto a parchment lined baking sheet and spray with a light coating of cooking spray. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until crisp and lightly
browned. Season with salt and pepper.

Chop it all up and mix it all together. 


Ok I got pretty new plates but my pictures still blow. So...meh....

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Honey Sriracha Chicken

Since Ive made this twice, I figure I should probably document it?

  • 2-3 pounds chicken legs, thighs and/or wings.
  • Marinade –
  • 2 tablespoons sriracha sauce
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, grated and peeled
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable/any neutral flavor oil
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ black pepper
  • Topping-
  • ½ cup fresh cilantro, chopped (optional)
  • 3-4 stalks of scallions, chopped (optional)
  • 1 jalapeno, chopped (optional)
  • Lime wedges, serve on side
  1. Wash and thoroughly dry the chicken pieces using a paper towel.
  2. In a large non-reactive bowl add all the ingredients for the marinade and mix well till they are well combined. Add the chicken pieces and toss well to coat them all with the marinade. Let the chicken marinate for minimum 30-45minutes at room temperature or in refrigerator if keeping for longer time. Toss the chicken at-least once while marinating.
  3. Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  4. In a large baking-dish/baking-sheet place the marinated chicken pieces in a single layer along with all the marinade. Bake until the chicken is cooked through and the sauce is thick, 40-55minutes. Flip the chicken 1-2 times while baking to ensure even baking.
  5. Once done take out the chicken on serving platter, sprinkle with topping and serve immediately.

My only tip would be to maybe spray your dish before putting all the crap in it. My glass dish got all kinds of gunk on it. 


Sunday, March 3, 2013

Blue Cheese Mac and Cheese

Recipe from How Sweet It Is, aka the blog where dreams are made.

I saw this recipe last week, and thought, "Holy CRAP, that would make an incredible 'bad' meal!". Friday night, LeGreg and I were figuring out dinner and we brought it up. NO! We were going to be HEALTHY! And, we were. He said that we should save that mac and cheese for some night that involved steak and wine.

The very next morning, my parents invite us over for dinner. Dad is bbq-ing steak. Both of our heads whipped towards each other.


I got all the cheeses for this from Trader Joes, which wasn't too pricey. Each little triangle was the exact right amount we needed, which was perfect.





1 pound whole wheat mini elbow noodles
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons flour
2 1/2 cups milk
8 ounces fontina cheese, freshly grated
8 ounces gorgonzola cheese, crumbled
8 ounces buttermilk blue cheese, crumbled
salt + pepper
1/3 cup panko bread crumbs
1/4 cup seasoned fine bread crumbs
chopped fresh herbs for topping


Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Spray a baking dish with nonstick spray.
Bring water to a boil and prepare pasta according to directions, shaving 1-2 minutes off of the cooking time.
While pasta is boiling, heat butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Once sizzling, add flour and whisk constantly to create a roux (FANCY), until golden and bubbly, about 2 minutes. Pour in milk and whisk constantly, stirring until the mixture slightly thickens. Reduce heat to low and add in 6 ounces of the fontina, all of the gorgonzola and about 6 ounces of the other blue. Stir until cheese melts and sauce is thick (I never got REALLY thick. We probably did this for 20 mins, before giving up. It thickened a LITTLE, but not a lot.). Taste and season with a bit of salt and pepper if desired (I didnt add either).
Add noodles to the baking dish. Pour cheese sauce over top, tossing to coat all the noodles. Sprinkle remaining fontina and blue over top evenly, then cover in breadcrumbs (I just used regular bread crumbs, and added a pinch each of dried oregano and parsley). Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until top is golden and crunchy.

This was absolutely killer. 
It wasn't super saucy, but the flavor was incredible, IF YOU LIKE BLUE CHEESE. If you don't, bugger off. This is not for you.

Baked Oatmeal


I whipped up this baked oatmeal this morning. It was super easy and made our apartment smell like CHURROS. Heaven.

I tweaked the recipe just a touch, based on what I had on hand.

  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup pecan pieces, toasted and chopped (I bought a bag of chopped and toated pecans from trader Joes)
  • 1/4 natural cane sugar or maple syrup, plus more for serving (could use less)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups almond milk
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 ripe bananas, cut into 1/2-inch/1 cm pieces

  • Preheat the oven to 375°F with a rack in the top third of the oven. Generously butter the inside of an 8-inch square baking dish.
    In a bowl, mix together the oats, half the pecans, the sugar, if using, the baking powder, cinnamon, and salt.
    In another bowl, whisk together the the milk, egg, and the vanilla.
    Arrange the bananas in a single layer in the bottom of the prepared baking dish. Cover the fruit with the oat mixture. Slowly drizzle the milk mixture over the oats. Gently give the baking dish a couple thwacks on the countertop to make sure the milk moves through the oats. Scatter the remaining pecans across the top.

    Bake for 35 to 45 minutes, until the top is nicely golden and the oat mixture has set. Remove from the oven and let cool for a few minutes. Sprinkle with a bit more sugar or drizzle with maple syrup if you want it a bit sweeter.

    My tweaks: I used almond milk instead of regular milk. The original recipe called for butter, which I didnt have, so I left it out. Didn't miss it. I used pecans instead of walnuts, cut back the sugar (could have cut it back even more). I used the 1/2 tsp of salt the recipe called for, but it tasted like too much. I would half it next time, to the 1/4 tsp mentioned above. 

    Overall, this was super easy, and super tasty. A keeper. 

    Monday, February 11, 2013

    Butternut Squash-Chicken Pan-Roast

    Recipe and picture by Food and Wine.

    Holy ridiculously easy new favorite recipe, batman.

    Butternut Squash–Chicken Pan-Roast

    1. One 1 1/2-pound butternut squash, peeled and cut into 3/4-inch dice
    2. 3 Fuji apples, peeled and cut into 3/4-inch dice
    3. 1 tablespoon chopped sage
    4. 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
    5. Salt
    6. Freshly ground pepper
    7. 6 whole chicken legs (3 pounds)
    8. 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, thinly sliced
    1. Preheat the oven to 400°. In a large roasting pan, toss the squash, apples and sage with the olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Season the chicken legs and set them on top. Dot with the butter and roast for about 1 hour and 15 minutes, until the squash and apples are tender and the chicken is browned and cooked through.
    2. Transfer the chicken to a plate and keep warm. Place the roasting pan over a burner and boil, stirring, until the pan juices are reduced, about 5 minutes. Return the chicken to the pan and serve.

    Ok, technically, I have forgotten the sage each of the two times I have made this. I'm sure it would be amazeballs, but it is still LEGIT without it. This is so simple and delicious. The leftovers are fantastic, too. 

    Saturday, January 26, 2013

    Black Butte Porter Meatloaf With Gruyere

    From Deschutes Brewery

    So, my friend, Gabrielle, sent me this recipe. 

    Just by looking at it, I knew it would be MUST MAKE. 

    And geeeez, I was right. This was phenomenal. 

    I couldnt find the right porter, so I actually made mine with chocolate stout, because that's what I had on hand. Weird, I know. But it worked. Promise. And, also? Gruyere is freaking EXPENSIVE. Cripes. But, the pockets of cheese in the meatloaf were the best part. So, I suppose I should shut my yap. 


    2 Tbs. extra virgin olive oil
    1 medium yellow onion, chopped
    1/2 C carrots, diced
    1/2 C celery, diced
    2 large cloves garlic, finely chopped
    3/4 C Black Butte Porter
    4 ounces bread, cut into 2-inch pieces (about 2-1/2 cups)
    1 C whole milk
    2 lbs ground beef
    2 large eggs
    1/2 C gruyere cut into small cubes
    1/4 C fresh Italian parsley, chopped
    1 Tbs Worcestershire sauce
    2 tsp kosher salt
    1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
    3 Tbs BBQ sauce for a glaze


    Heat the oil in a 10- to 12-inch skillet over medium-low heat. Cook the onion, carrots, celery, and garlic, stirring frequently, until softened and just beginning to brown, 6 to 8 minutes.

    Add the beer, and simmer briskly, until almost dry, 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl and let cool until warm.

    In a shallow dish that holds it in a single layer, soak the bread in the milk, flipping once, until soggy but not falling apart, 5 to 10 minutes, depending on the coarseness and freshness of the bread. Lightly squeeze a handful of bread at a time to remove some of the milk (it should be wet but not drenched). Finely chop and add to the bowl with the vegetable mixture.

    Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 375°F.

    Add the beef and eggs to the onion mixture. Scatter the cheese and parsley over the meat, and then sprinkle with the Worcestershire, salt, and pepper. Use your hands to gently mix all the ingredients until just combined; try not to compact the mixture as you do this.

    Transfer the meatloaf mixture to a 9x13-inch baking pan and form into a 10x4-inch rectangular block (it becomes loaf-shaped as it cooks). Finish the meatloaf by spreading the glaze over the top and lightly down the sides of the meatloaf. Bake until an instant-read thermometer registers 160°F in the center of the meatloaf, 40 to 55 minutes.

    Let rest for 10 minutes before cutting. 

    Chocolate Chip Cookie In A Cup

    Recipe from No. 2 Pencil

    The other night, we were sitting around, craving something sweet. I came across this recipe, and thought it would be perfect. ONE serving of chocolate chip cookie! Made in the microwave!

    Ok, it was more like a spongy cake than a cookie, but I had all the ingredients on hand and it did the job. 

    1 Tablespoon Butter
    1 Tablespoon Granulated White Sugar
    1 Tablespoon of firmly packed Dark Brown Sugar
    3 Drops of Vanilla Extract
    Small Pinch of Kosher Salt
    1 Egg Yolk (discard the egg white)
    Scant 1/4 of All Purpose Flour
    2 Tablespoons of Semi Sweet Chocolate Chips

    Start by melting your butter in the microwave. Add sugars, vanilla and salt. Stir to combine. Separate your egg and add the yolk only to your cup. Stir to combine. Add flour, then stir again. Add the chocolate chips, and give a final stir. Cook in microwave 40-60 seconds, start checking for doneness at 40 seconds. Mine takes 50 seconds. 

    Serve warm.

    The Best Lasagna Ever

    Recipe adapted from The Pioneer Woman.

    We were trying to figure out what to make for dinner today when I stumbled across a bottle of local made marinara sauce that LeGreg had brought down from his hometown. I knew what to do. Lasagna. Naturally, I totally ended up NOT using that sauce. But, whatever. It got the ball rolling. When I found the Pioneer Woman's recipe, it looked easy enough that I didn't think it was even worth using the bottled sauce that we had.

    I was right.

    This lasagna was DELICIOUS and pretty simple to make.

    A crowd pleaser.

    The original recipe uses regular cooked lasagna noodles, but I used no cook noodles. Because, YOU DON'T HAVE TO COOK THEM! Win.


    • 1-1/2 pound Ground Beef
    • 1 pound Hot Breakfast Sausage
    • 2 cloves Garlic, Minced
    • 2 cans (14.5 Ounce) Whole Tomatoes
    • 2 cans (6 Ounce) Tomato Paste
    • 2 Tablespoons Dried Parsley
    • 2 Tablespoons Dried Basil
    • 1 teaspoon Salt
    • 3 cups Lowfat Cottage Cheese
    • 2 whole Beaten Eggs
    • 1/2 cup Grated (not Shredded) Parmesan Cheese
    • 2 Tablespoons Dried Parsley
    • 1 teaspoon Salt
    • 1 pound mozzerella cheese
    • 1 package (10 Ounce) No Cook Lasagna Noodles

    In a large skillet or saucepan, combine ground beef, sausage, and garlic. Cook over medium-high heat until browned. Drain half the fat; less if you’re feeling naughty. Add tomatoes, tomato paste, 2 tablespoons parsley, basil and salt. After adding the tomatoes, the sauce mixture should simmer for 45 minutes while you are working on the other steps.
    In a medium bowl, mix cottage cheese, beaten eggs, grated Parmesan, 2 more tablespoons parsley, and 1 more teaspoon salt. Stir together well. Set aside. Cook lasagna until “al dente” (not overly cooked).
    To assemble:
    Arrange 6 lasagna noodles in the bottom of a baking pan, or however many it takes to cover the bottom, overlapping if necessary. Spoon half the cottage cheese mixture over the noodles. Spread evenly. Cover cottage cheese with a layer of mozzarella cheese. Spoon a little less than half the meat/sauce mixture over the top.
    Repeat, ending with meat/sauce mixture. Sprinkle top generously with extra Parmesan.
    If eating immediately, let it sit for 20-30 mins to allow the noodles to soak up some of the moisture.

    Either freeze, refrigerate for up to two days, or bake immediately: 350-degree oven for 30-40 minutes, or until top is hot and bubbly.

    Tuesday, January 8, 2013

    The Perfect Hard Boiled Egg


    I have stumbled across a gem.

    The perfect hard boiled eggs, from Nom Nom Paleo.

    I will never stray from this  method, from now on. The eggs were light and fluffy and, as the original post says, not stinky and didn't have the grey ring around the yolk. I will say that my yolk was a little dark in the middle (but still cooked through). Likely because the eggs I used were pretty big. She says to use a timer on all the steps, as timing is key.


    Thursday, January 3, 2013

    Whole Wheat Chocolate Banana Bread

    Adapted from My Kitchen Addiction.

    Yep. I'm ADAPTING things, folks.

    Kiiind of a big deal.

    When friends Nic and Rob came to visit last week, they left an army of 5 bananas behind. I have commitment issues to eating a whole banana, so they just sat there.

    And sat there.

    Until I checked the clock.


    I adapted this a little bit. I only had whole wheat, so I didnt mix with regular flour. I used all 5 of my bananas, instead of the 3 in the recipe, I didn't have buttermilk, so I tossed some sour cream in there, and I added CHOCOLATE. Because I had it. Duh.

    The result?



    • 1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick), softened
    • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
    • 2 eggs
    • 5 mashed bananas
    • 2 cups whole wheat flour
    • 1 teaspoon baking soda
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    • 1/4 cup sour cream
    • 1/2 bar dark chocolate, chopped
    Preheat the oven to 325°F.  Lightly grease a standard 9-by-5-inch loaf pan and set aside.
    Beat together the butter and sugar until the mixture is light and fluffy.  Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition to make sure the eggs are fully incorporated into the mixture. Stir in the mashed banana. OR, if you're lazy, like me, and don't want to dirty up another dish by mashing them, just toss the whole (peeled, obvs) bananas in the mixture and run your beaters through them a few time. It left mine a little chunky, which I'm all for. 

    In a separate bowl, whisk together the whole wheat flour, all purpose flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.  Gradually add the dry mixture to the creamed butter mixture alternating with the sour cream (I didn't alternate, because I only had 1/4 cup of sour cream, compared to the 1/2 cup of buttermilk called out in the original recipe). Be sure to start and end with the dry ingredients, and mix on low speed just until the dry ingredients are incorporated.

    Fold in chocolate until just mixed.

    Transfer the batter to the prepared loaf pan.  Bake for about 60 minutes (I went to 70 mins. I think the extra banana is probably to blame), until a toothpick inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean.  Cool in the pan for about 15 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

    Tuesday, January 1, 2013

    Black Beans

    Another Isabel's Cantina special!

    A super easy way to fancy up some boring ass beans.

    2-14oz cans of black beans, rinsed and drained
    2 cups cold water
    2 Tbl olive oil
    1 med spanish onion (no idea. we used yellow)
    5 garlic cloves, minced
    1 Tbl cumin
    1 Tbl oregano
    1 Tbl chile powder
    2 bay leaves
    1 Tbl dried sweet basil

    Heat the olive oil in a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion and garlic and saute until the onion is soft and translucent, about 2 mins. Stir in the cumin, oregano, and chile powder. Stir to combine and simmer for about 1 min. Add the beans, 2 cups cold water, the bay leaves, and basil. Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat so that the mixture simmers. Cover partially and simmer for about 5 mins. Remove and discard the bay leaves before serving. The beans can be stored, covered, in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat over medium heat.

    Firecracker Corn

    I've been eyeballing this recipe in Isabel's Cantina for a while, but jalapenos make me a little gun shy. A little too gringa for that, usually.

    Enter LeGreg, Mr. Spice Master. He was all about it, so I let him have at it.

    It was surprisingly delicious. Smoky and spicy, but not overly so. He couldn't find red jalapenos, so he used fresh green ones.

    3 Tbl olive oil
    3 red jalapenos, thinly sliced into circles, seeds discarded
    4 ears corn, kernels cut from the cobs, or 2 cups frozen corn kernals (yep), defrosted

    Heat the oil in a medium saute pan over medium-high heat. Add the jalapenos and cook until softened, about 3 mins. Add the corn and saute for a minute or two, until the corn is tender and hot. Season with salt and transfer to a serving bowl. The corn can be stored, covered in the refrigerator, for up to 1 day. Serve hot or at room temp.

    I mean...does it get any easier?

    (hint: no)

    Ropa Vieja

    After hosting a whole slew of family for a couple weeks, LeGreg and I thought my parents might like to have dinner cooked for them.

    We were right! Imagine that!

    I thought ropa vieja was a stew, based on exactly nothing, but it turned out to be more of a shredded, delicious, soupy meat.

    Served with firecracker corn and black beans.

    This is out of my favorite cookbook, Isabel's Cantina.

    For the meat:
    1 flank steak (about 1.5 lbs), cut across the grain into 4 pieces
    1 med yellow onion, halved
    4 garlic cloves, crushed and peeled
    2 bay leaves
    1/2 tsp cumin

    For the sauce:
    2 Tbl olive oil
    1/2 med yellow onion, thinly sliced
    2 garlic cloves, minced
    1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
    3/4 cup dry white wine
    2 Tbl tomato paste
    1 chipotle chile in adobo sauce, minced
    1/2 tsp salt
    3 green onions, green parts only, sliced
    1/2 cup sliced green olives (optional)(gross. nope)

    To cook the meat, combine the steak, onion, garlic, bay leaves, and cumin in a large pot and add enough water to cover completely. Bring to a boil over high heat and then reduce the heat so the water simmers gently. Cook until the meat is very tender (it will shrink A LOT) and falling apart, 2 to 2.5 hrs.

    Remove the meat from the liquid. Strain the liquid, serving the broth but discarding the solids. Place the meat in a bowl to cool. When cool enough to handle, shred the meat into small pieces.

    For the sauce, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion, garlic, and bell pepper. Saute until the bell pepper is tender and onion is soft and translucent, about 4 mins. Add the white wine and tomato paste. Stir well and cook for about 5 mins.

    Add the reserved broth, the chipotle, and salt. Continue simmering for another 5 mins. Add the beef, stir, and cook until the beef is heated through. The ropa vieja can be stored, covered in the refrigerator, for up to 3 days. Reheat over medium heat before proceeding. Stir in the green onions and garnish with sliced green olives, if desired, before serving.