Short Bread

Short Bread

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Old Fashioned Pancakes

Old Fashioned Pancakes

“Bun in the Oven” Cravings - Finale Pancake Month

I have about one month left of being pregnant with our first child. She is due to arrive on June 24th so hopefully she stays put until close to then. In honor of my final month I thought it’d be fun to have a Finale Month of all things pancakes! Pancakes seem to be the main thing I have craved weekly while being pregnant and I have become quite good and making them tasty and fluffy. Perhaps she will be a pancake lover when she is a little older and we can remake some of these recipes together as Mom and Daughter.

So, without further ado, I’d like to kick start my Finale Pancake Month with the simple Old Fashioned Pancake. 

Serves: 4 large pancakes

Recipe modified from the PocketChange Gourmet Blog


     Dry Ingredients
1 cup flour
1 tablespoon sugar
  3 teaspoons baking powder
 ½ teaspoon Kosher salt
 ⅛ teaspoon nutmeg
 ½ teaspoon vanilla

Wet Ingredient
1 egg
¾ cup milk
2 tablespoons cooking oil

1. Whisk all the dry ingredients in a large bowl. 
2. Add wet ingredients and mix well with a whisk.
3. Heat the pan and add a dollop of butter. Let the butter melt and pour batter onto the pan.
4. Cook until golden brown, about 3 minutes, flip and cook other side. 
5. I always heat the oven to about 250 degrees and put the cooked pancakes in there to keep warm.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Crepes with (Door County) Jam

While being pregnant I haven't had too bazaar of food cravings. The things to top my list of cravings are pancakes, donuts, lemonade, fruit, and milk. I must say, I've become very good at making pancakes. I'm excited to use this developed culinary skill and have visions I will make feasts of pancakes with our little girl on the weekends. Once she is old enough of course. 

Two weekends ago, my mother and I took a long weekend trip up to Door County for Mother's Day weekend. It was so nice to spend time with my mother as mother and daughter. Soon we will be mother, daughter, and granddaughter which is so exciting; but this was the last time it would just be mother and daughter and we wanted to celebrate that. 

We were driving through the back country roads to see what shops and stores we could come across. We stumbled upon a shop called Koepsel's Farmers Market. Their store was stocked full of so many fun things and tons and tons of jam and jelly. They had little 3oz jars of different flavors so I bought a bunch so that I could try them all. Yum!!!

Once returning home, I thought of different ways I could use the jam besides just on an everyday PB&J or my morning English Muffins. I found a recipe for Crepes with Jam and that immediately piqued my interest. With my craving for pancakes and crepes being very similar, I thought what better treat to make for a Sunday morning. I found the main recipe off of the blog Julia's Album and made a few additions of my own. They turned out delicious! 

Crepes with (Door County) Jam

1 cups milk
1 1/3 cup flour
1 egg
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 tsp baking powder
2 tbsp sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
2 pinches of kosher salt

1-2 tbsp of your favorite jam/jelly
1 tbsp powdered sugar
Maple Syrup
Cut fresh berries: strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, etc

Whisk all the ingredients together. Heat the frying pan until it is very hot and spray with oil spray. Use a soup ladle to pour the crepe mixture into the frying pan. Roll the pan from side to side so the mixture covers the bottom of the pan evenly with a thin layer of the batter. Let sit for a minute or two, then flip the crepe over using a spatula and cook on the other side for another minute or two. Once the crepe is golden brown, transfer it to a plate and put the plate in a 250 degree oven to keep warm.

Once all the crepes are made, take the warmed plate of crepes out of the oven. Spread some of your favorite jelly/jam over one crepe, fold once then fold again. Place this crepe on a new plate. Top with some powdered sugar, syrup, and berries. Enjoy!! You'll probably want more than one...I know I did.

Friday, May 15, 2015

Portabella Mushrooms Were 49 Cents!!

Stuffed Portobello Mushroom

Tuesdays are typically when I have the house to myself after work; Kevin usually has band/music practice. These are the nights when I might either just have a bowl of cereal for dinner or if the mood strikes, I'll become Chef Jackie and make a new recipe that he wouldn't normally eat. This particular week, Portobello mushrooms were on sale for 49 cents/lb!!! Jackpot! I bought two and started to think of tasty ways I could create my own stuffed mushroom using a few store bought items, but also some things I already had at home.  I'm excited to say that I created this all on my own (no help from another recipe) and it turned out amazing!! 

The second one was even tasty reheated for lunch the next day (minus the fried egg).

Italian Sausage Stuffed Portobella Mushroom 

2 Portobello Mushrooms
12 oz Mild Italian Sausage
2 Portobello Mushrooms
1 tbsp shallot - finely chopped
1 tsp minced garlic
1 cup Cherry Tomatoes - cut in half
1 1/2 cup Frozen Broccoli Florets
1/8 tsp garlic powder
1/8 tsp onion powder
Pinch of Salt and Pepper
White Sharp Cheddar Cheese (cheese of your choice), shredded
2 eggs

Preheat oven to 450 F.

Wipe the mushrooms down with a damp paper towel. Set them inside a square baking dish. Begin by browning the Italian Sausage. Once complete, transfer to a plate with a paper towel to drain the juices. In the same pan as you just used to brown the sausage (no need to clean it yet...use those juices), add the shallot and garlic and cook until the shallot is browned. Then add the tomatoes, broccoli, and artichoke antipasto. Let cook for a few minutes. Add in the garlic and onion powder and salt and pepper to taste.

Add about 1/2 - 3/4 of the sausage to the pan and the cooked tomato and broccoli mixture. Once it is all combined, place about 1/2 cup of the mixture on top of each mushroom. Top with some shredded cheese and put into the oven. Let cook in the oven for about 8-10 mins or until the cheese is melted and a little browned. With about a minute left, fry an egg to place on top of each mushroom. Yum!!

Friday, April 17, 2015

Easy Week Night Meals - Smoked Salmon Scampi

Smoked Salmon Scampi

Last weekend I went grocery shopping at Mariano's (my favorite grocery store). I picked up something new...a treat for Kevin and myself to try. It was Hickory Smoked Salmon. I wasn't quite sure what I would do with it; maybe we would just have it as a snack or appetizer one night. But I knew it would delicious no matter what. 

Thursday came around and we had yet to try the smoked salmon. I didn't want it to go to waste, so I created my own little concoction. I've made Shrimp Scampi a few times before and figured I'd just swap out the shrimp for the the smoked salmon. It was a hit and definitely will be a recipe I'll keep on hand for easy week night meals. 

1 - 1.5 lbs of smoked salmon; cut into pieces (something like this is what I used)
3 - 4 tbsp unsalted butter
1 - 2 minced garlic
1/2 shallot - finely chopped
1 lemon - zested and juiced
1 tbsp dry sherry
1 tbsp white wine vinegar
1 tbsp dried parsley (or fresh if it's on hand)
1/8 tsp onion powder
1/8 tsp garlic powder
Salt and Pepper to taste

1/2 lb Noodles

Boil and cook the noodles as the directions state on the box. 
Add the butter to a large, medium temperature saucepan. Once the butter has melted, add the onion and garlic and stir together. Once the onion has become soft and somewhat colored, add in the lemon zest and juice of that one lemon. Also add the sherry and vinegar and let cook for a few minutes to combine the flavors. Then add the parsley, onion and garlic powder. Season with the salt and pepper. Continue to stir for a minute or two. Add in the smoked salmon combine so the salmon is coated with the sauce and becomes hot. 

Once the noodles are done cooking; put it on the place and top with the smoked salmon and sauce. Top with a little Parmesan cheese and enjoy! 

***Note/Confession - I always have a jar of Trader Joe's Crushed Garlic on hand. I don't even buy the fresh garlic anymore. This stuff tastes great and a little goes a long way so it lasts a long time!! Plus, then I don't get smelly garlic fingers for days and days. 

Monday, March 30, 2015

Shortbread Bars

I am a huge fan of shortbread treats. Cookies or bars, they are all delicious in my opinion. I got the idea for this recipe from the Magnolia cookbook I have. The recipe in the book is actually for Coconut Pecan Shortbread Squares. I'm not a big fan of coconut so I thought about what else goes well with pecans and decided I'd remove the coconut from the recipe and added dried cranberries, apricots, and chocolate chips. It turned out great! I also altered the dough ingredients a bit to make it a little sweeter. I'll definitely be making these again!

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened and cut into smaller pieces.
2 cups all purpose flour
3 tbsp sugar
1 tsp vanilla

2 cups chopped and toasted pecans (see note)
1/3 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/4 cup dried apricots
One 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk

Note: To toast the pecans, place on a baking sheet in a 350 degree oven for 15 minutes or until lightly browned and fragrant

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

To make the crust, in a large bowl, on the medium speed with an electric mixer, beat together the butter and flour until crumbly and well combined. Add in the sugar and vanilla, mix for about another minute. Transfer the mixture to an un-greased 13x9 pan. Using your hands, pat the crust firmly and evenly into the pan.

Sprinkle the pecans, chocolate chips, dried cranberries, and apricots over the crust. Pour the can of sweetened condensed milk on top to completely cover the toppings. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until lightly golden.

Coll to room temperature, cover tightly with plastic wrap and allow to set overnight before cutting.

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Delicious Ceviche

This sweet and savory meal was perfect for my lunches this past week. Mixed with some avocado, it was filling and satisfying. Definitely one I will be making again for myself. I think it would also be something good to bring or prepare for entertaining. It is simple and quick to make too which is another bonus. 

Shrimp & Pineapple Ceviche
altered from the Food Faith Fitness Blog

2 tbsp finely chopped shallot
1 cup cherry tomatoes, cut
1/2 lb thawed cooked shrimp, largely chopped
1 8oz can pineapple tidbits, drained (I only used about 3/4th of the can)
1 avocado, pitted and chopped
Juice of 3 limes
3/4 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp finely minced garlic
Pepper to taste

1. In a large bowl, mix the shrimp and lime juice together. Let sit for about 20 minutes.
2. In a separate bowl, chop and combine the onion, tomato, and garlic.
3. Drain the remaining lime juice from the shrimp and add the chopped items to the shrimp.
4. Add the drained pineapple bits, salt and pepper. 
5. Wait to add the avocado just before serving so it doesn't brown. 


Thursday, February 26, 2015

And just like that...

And just like that, a year has passed.  A lot has happened since I submitted my last blog post. My husband and I bought our first home last winter. We have moved in and are learning what it is like to be homeowners. It is wonderful, but it is also a lot of work. Things pop up that I never even thought about before. But after being in the home for almost a year, making some of our own updates, and going through each season once, I feel like it is becoming ours.  Especially because this summer we will be welcoming our first child, our baby girl, to this home. So many images are already going through my mind of the years to come and the memories we will make in this home. I have many ideas of things I want to do with her, what I want to teach her and show her, and how I plan to spend my time with her and my husband. I might keep a running list on here just so I don’t forget any of my ideas.