Sunday, February 9, 2014

Well Hello

Here I am! You might not think that taxes could be inspiring, but yes it's true - I was  filing my taxes and my fingertips yearned for the clicking to write. I have taken some time away, and honestly I make no promises of a regular return - but I am here today. I have several excuses for my absence of course - the holidays, travels, work, life and most recently a move - which includes a smaller kitchen that is somehow more comforting. Perhaps it's the promise for the future, perhaps an easier turn into the fridge or maybe it's just more light. Whatever it may be -  I am in love.

  The Arctic Blast of  2014 has me in a flurry in the kitchen - cooking, cleaning, organizing and at one point just sitting in all it's glory. I have been a regular Joan Cleaver making crepes for the first time, brunch in bed and just moments ago a spicy peanut shrimp stir-fry. I made pork chops, fruit salad, veggie scrambles, roasted potatoes with charred peppers and onions, cleaned the screens on the new windows, rearranged the shelves in the cabinets, and organized my glassware. 

I thought about a few things while I was deep in my bliss- one I have incredible knife skills (thank you OCI for your attention to that detail) and two this blog. I like getting serious about the shot- getting out the screens and the tripod, making sure the light is just right and the food is perfectly in place- but mostly I just love to cook. I love gathering the ingredients, creating the dish, tasting the elements and dancing when it comes out deliciously.  

 The pictures shown here are stolen from my Instagram, because part of my absence was this pressure to make every post perfect - the story, the shot, the dish... but guess what? I am NOT a professional blogger, I am just me people. A girl who loves to cook for herself, her man, her friends and her family. From here on out I excuse myself of that pressure! To my friends reading I hope you laugh with me, learn with me, are inspired by me and mostly are just excited to share a meal. 


Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Test Kitchen Tuesday: Chocolate Bourbon Pecan Pie

I hate to be the spoiler alert, but do you have any idea how many calories are in a piece of pecan pie? 
Almost 500! 
Seriously, I had no idea. 

 I mean when I think about it - it makes sense - a ton of sugar, corn syrup, butter, eggs, and nuts...
then there is the crust, and in this case the chocolate.

I have said before that my sweets- doesn’t like sweets, but I failed to mention that he does love Pecan Pie around the holidays. This year I made two; one for our Thanksgiving celebration,  and one to take pictures of that I shared at work.

Kody ate one piece, and I am pretty sure I just ate the equivalent of a whole pie! 

I will not think about the calories - I will not think about the calories, I am just going to run...see you in 10 miles:) 

For this test kitchen Tuesday, I found this awesome recipe - copied right from Jenna's blog Eat. Live. Run. I followed this recipe almost to the tee, but I used a graham cracker crust that I painted with melted chocolate before adding the filling. I must give a big shout out to Jenna, because it was amazing - thank you! 
makes 1 pie
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1 1/2 cups pecans, roughly chopped
1 cup corn syrup {light or dark}
1 cup brown sugar, packed
4 large eggs, slightly beaten
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup bourbon
2 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
1 refrigerated or homemade pie crust, thawed (I used a graham cracker crust)
Preheat your oven to 325 degrees.
Spray a 9″ pie tin with nonstick spray. Drape your pie crust into your tin, letting it hang over the edges of the tin. Crimp the edges of the dough with your fingers then remove extra dough hanging over the side. Prick the bottom of the dough all over with a fork.
Scatter the roughly chopped pecans and semisweet chocolate chips over the bottom of the pie dough. Set aside.
In a small pot over medium heat, combine the corn syrup, brown sugar and bourbon. Bring to a boil, stir well, then remove from the heat and let cool slightly.
In a bowl, mix together the eggs, melted butter, vanilla and salt. SLOWLY drizzle hot syrup into the eggs, stirring continuously with a whisk while you drizzle. You must go very slow here or you risk cooking the eggs. Continue drizzling and whisking until the last of the syrup has been poured into the eggs. Pour this over the pecans and chocolate in the pie.
Carefully place pie in the oven and bake for 1 hour. Top should be puffy and crust should be golden. Let cool for 1 hour before serving.
active time ~ 15 minutes
total time ~ 2.5 hours

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Sunday Supper: Spicy Tomato Soup

Every home cook has their arsenal, mine is making something out of nothing - I am, literally, the Queen of this. Open the fridge, look in and figure it out. I finally got that nasty cold that was going around the restaurant, and on Sunday I woke up with the sniffles and a sore throat. 

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Test Kitchen Tuesdays: Reese's Peanut Butter Cups (Only Better)

I may have found the easiest holiday recipe ever! These peanut butter bars are not only delicious, but painless and quick. 
5 ingredients. Yes. 5 ingredients. Peanut butter, confectioners sugar, graham cracker crumbs, chocolate and butter. 

The best part - no baking! 

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Roasted Rosemary Potatoes

If you have ever been confused on how to make the best potatoes ever, I am here to show you the love. I am not entirely responsible for this recipe, I have to give some props to my friend Ian. After enjoying an awesome brunch at his house, he shared his secret for potatoes, super simple - par boil. Duh? How had I not done this before? My roasted potatoes were never right, but now they are, and holy s#@t - they are delicious! 

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Sunday Supper: Pot Roast

Sunday Suppers... a childhood memory... an adult obsession. As the leaves turn colors, and the days get crisp, it's time for a pot roast. Growing up in my family, and perhaps yours, we had a roast on the regular in these cooler months - pork - beef - lamb; whatever Mom could get her hands on. As a child, you couldn't get me out of the kitchen... somethings never change... as the aromas fill my home, I am instantly transported back in time.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Scratch Caesar

The caesar dressing that just happened. Usually when I embark on making something new, I check the web, look at blogs and recipes, gather my inspiration, and go. Nope, not this time, I just went for it. How, have I not made a scratch caesar dressing before? I have no idea, not only is it super easy - its super delicious.
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