The Elvis Cookie

23 Jan

Elvis Cookies

One of the downfalls of having a sweet tooth and knowing how to bake is…having a sweet tooth and knowing how to bake.  Many times, if the urge hits, I’ll just take a look in my (usually stocked) baking cupboard and whip something up.  Last night I saw a commercial with chocolate chip cookies and lo and behold, 20 minutes later I was in the kitchen with my 3 1/2 year old helper, whipping up a batch of those divine Neiman Marcus Chocolate Chip Cookies.  And now I have not been able to stop eating them.  I even brought some to work with the intention of handing them out and they never made it past my fingertips.  I try really hard to live by my mom’s rule that if the end product isn’t directly going to someone else, don’t make it.  Because you’ll eat it.  All of it.  But hey, we are in the middle of a polar vortex and I am comforting myself with cookies.  Don’t judge.  This cookie mash-up combines some absolute loves of mine, peanut butter, bananas and bacon.  So in a nod to “The King” Elvis Presley (who loved those items plus honey on a sandwich, which is killer), these were born out of our kitchen. Continue reading

Asian Chicken Noodle Soup

13 Jan

Asian Chicken Noodle Soup

I had an unhealthy obsession with ramen noodles growing up.  If I had it my way, I would eat it every single night.  My parents pleaded with me to add more variety to my diet, but there was just something about that salty bowl of ramen noodles that I just couldn’t kick.  When college rolled around, my tiny bank account was a perfect “excuse” to keep my bad habit going (or at least that is what I told myself, as my sodium levels were off the chart).  Then I grew up and realized that there was more to food outside of that 25 cent, neon orange package.  Nevermind the fact that I would probably die from salt overload if I ate it now; I really just know better at this point in my life (and helllooo real ramen joints in NYC, like Momofuku Noodle Bar). I do, however, miss the fact that it took about 3 minutes to make a bowl of ramen, I especially feel that way on a busy Monday night in a household with two working parents and a hyper 3 1/2 year old.  So this is a nod to those “delicious” bowls of ramen, with a couple of hacks that make it a little more gourmet, a whole lot more delicious and just as easy. Continue reading

Southwest Turkey Soup

10 Dec

Mexican Turkey Soup

So I have been seriously sidelined about five times trying to write this post. I blame a turkey hangover.  I also blame reruns of Chopped.  And for good measure, I’ll throw in my three year-old who has been boycotting bedtime lately. This was originally made as our first meal home from a Thanksgiving spent in Maryland with some lovely family.  This was part of our bounty of leftovers that crossed state lines and made it back in our fridge.  Amongst the sweet potatoes, sausage stuffing and veggies, there was turkey. In many forms.  Okay, not many (just two): Chris’ homemade thanksgiving turkey sausage and the grilled one that was the centerpiece of our meal.  Just barely beyond the point of never wanting to see turkey again, Chris gave it life one more time in the form of a soup that was perfect on the chilly night we drove home (remind me why I moved from sunny San Diego again…).  This would also work well with some shredded rotisserie chicken or any type of cooked, chopped sausage (which we threw in at the end too). Continue reading

Good Ol’ Fashioned Pot Roast

22 Nov

Pot Roast

I totally get eating healthy.  I understand that vegetables and fruits should be the bulk of our diets.  I get it.  Quinoa?  After actually learning how to pronounce it, I got right on board with it.  Kale?  Definitely the Britney Spears at-her-peak of the leafy greens world.  Throw enough garlic on it and sure, I’ll eat it.  However, sometimes I just want some meat.  Like, a lot of meat.

I discovered I actually liked pot roast a couple of years ago.  And for that, I apologize to my mom, who definitely made it many times when I was younger (and I obviously did not eat it…sorry).  Both Chris and I like to try different cooking techniques and like to experiment with flavors, but sometimes a good old-fashioned standby like a pot roast is so comforting and fulfilling.  So for this recipe, I channeled my inner June Cleaver, threw on a strand of pearls and got to cooking. Continue reading

Pumpkin S’mores Cupcakes

14 Nov

Pumpkin S'mores Cupcakes

I have always been obsessed with cupcakes.  And this started way before cupcakes became so trendy and everyone jumped on that bandwagon.  I’m not hating because I certainly understand why everyone should love them.  So many options, in a tiny little package, with pretty little wrapping.

I tend to even use all types of events as excuses to try new cupcake recipes.  Pink Cosmopolitan cupcakes for a bridal shower; boozy cupcakes for Chris’ birthday; strawberry shortcake ones for a summer party.  I have even made cupcakes for dogs.  Like I said, I love making cupcakes.  I previously espoused my adoration of all things fall, so I wanted to put that canned pumpkin to good use before we switched over to gingerbread-mode (which I already did with my lattes. You know, the true signifier of winter.) .  In addition to cupcakes, my obsession with s’mores is pretty high, so this is a combination of two true loves of mine. Continue reading

White Bean, Butternut Squash and Turkey Sausage Soup

8 Nov

White Bean, Butternut Squash and Turkey Sausage Soup

Leaves are on the ground, tights are on my legs (this is not Chris writing by the way…) and soup is on our stove top.  Fall is officially here. This is seriously my favorite season and because it sticks around for such a short time, everything fall-ish needs to be packed into a small window.  I am embracing all things fall into my wide, pumpkin-spice-loving embrace.  The second a crisp starts in the air, we break out our big stockpot and crock pot and soup the hell out them.  We have been testing out a few new ones in our rotation, ranging from creamy ones to a really quick Asian Chicken Noodle Soup (stay tuned for those…).

Soup is a great meal that can be made ahead and easily re-heated, which is great for those days that you come home late and have hungry mouths snapping at your heels (true story:  Ella and Chris are like raptors when they are hungry).  It’s also a great way to eat relatively healthy, packing the soups with loads of vegetables and experimenting with the spices in your cupboards.  I haven’t really mentioned the fact that Chris and I are watching our weight (a direct result of delicious craft beer and my undying love for sweets…), because we don’t want to bore you with our dieting details.  But we have learned that everything in  moderation is okay and when you can, focus on the seasoning and spices, because that can easily ramp up any bland dish.  This soup packs a ton of flavor and uses seasonal vegetables, making it a perfect fall dish.  Now I’m off to go sip on my pumpkin spice latte and wrap myself in a scarf.  Continue reading

Herb and Lime Skirt Steak

22 Oct

Herb and Lime Skirt Steak

I apologize for the radio silence.  We went on vacation to California to visit my parents (and their adorable black lab, Tomas), so we haven’t really been in the kitchen.  But I can say that during our time on the left coast, we ate our weight in Mexican food and drank so much craft beer, I am still sweating it out.  The rest of the trip included some Disneyland time, beach playgrounds, botanical gardens, fabulous friends and family and of course, food.  Lots and lots of food.

Leading up to our trip, we tried to use everything we had in our fridge and the last of the blooms on our parsley plant.  We had some steak and it was still warm enough to grill, so a chimichurri steak was the goal.  The large bundle of parsley we had was not quite enough, so it turned into more of an herb-infused lime sauce, versus a chimichurri. However, sometimes there are happy accidents and this turned out to be delicious. Continue reading

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