January 23, 2013
I don’t know about you, but it’s pretty cold where I am. And I’m down in Tennessee so if it’s cold for me, I know it’s lot colder for many others. When the temperatures get down this low all I want to eat are warm and comforting foods. I crave thick soups and stews or pot roast or chicken and dumplings. But it’s also January, and while I didn’t specifically make a New Year’s resolution to go on a diet, I definitely overindulged over the holidays and have been trying to eat better this month.
Thankfully, Cooking Light came to the rescue with their Comfort Food cookbook that I bought recently. Their Shrimp Etouffee is just the kind of warm and comforting dinner that I want when it’s below freezing outside but I can also feel good about eating it since the recipe has been lightened.
December 20, 2012
I always have grand plans every Christmas. This year I’m going to send homemade Christmas cards! This year I’m going to make peppermint bark and send it to everyone in pretty tins! This year I’m going to make cookies for Brandon’s whole office! Over the years, I have actually accomplished all of these things—though rarely all in the same year—but sometimes it doesn’t work out. I get too busy with work or I’m just too lazy to make all the effort.
This is definitely one of those years. This month has gone by so fast, and I can’t believe we’re less than a week from Christmas. I have a few (store-bought) cards and (not handmade) gifts to send but who knows when I’ll get to the post office. I still have quite a few people to find gifts for! Besides all that, I also have work deadlines hanging over everything. I hate being this stressed, especially during my favorite time of the year! All I really want to be doing this week is watching Christmas movies and …
December 14, 2012
Well, it’s that time of year again. The time that I buy bags and bags (and more bags) of cranberries and hoard them in my freezer. I was in Sam’s Club last month and they had the biggest bag of cranberries I’ve ever seen, it had to be at least 5 pounds. Since it was right before Thanksgiving I had absolutely no extra space in my freezer so I didn’t buy the giant bag of cranberries (even though I really wanted to). I figured I would get them later but, of course, the cranberries were nowhere to be found on my recent trips back to the store. Despite that, I still had several bags sitting in my freezer and I decided it was finally time to use them!
This dutch baby pancake has been one of my favorite go-to breakfasts (or more likely, breakfast-for-dinner) since I got my first cast-iron skillet. If you’ve never made one before, it’s sort of a giant pancake and an omelet combined. The batter is poured into a skillet and you …
November 29, 2012
Another Thanksgiving has come and gone. I’ve already disposed of the turkey because I could not look at that sad carcass one more day. I’m just turkey-ed out. I hope you guys had a nice Thanksgiving day/weekend! We invited a few friends over and I did most of the cooking, making all of my traditional dishes. I’ve never really hosted a dinner party like that before so it felt very grown up. I think it was a success!
It helped that we ended the night on a good note, which was this apple crumb pie. I’ve made it before, but after posting that Caramel Apple Cider last week, I could not get the whole caramel-apple combo out of my head. So I decided to experiment with the recipe and add some caramel! I did not have a plan B for dessert, so thankfully the pie turned out as good as I had hoped.
November 21, 2012
November has passed in a flash and here we are, it’s almost Thanksgiving! I’m freaking out about this because I just got back from vacation and I’m having a hard time adjusting to normal life again. We spent half the week in a secluded cabin in the Smokey mountains and the other half in Asheville, NC, which is a pretty little town with lots of wonderful restaurants. I had such a good time that I’m already mentally planning a trip back to the same area next year!
I didn’t mean to take such a long break from posting but between work deadlines and vacation it didn’t leave much time for cooking this month. But thanks to how easy this recipe is, I did have a chance to whip up this delicious drink in my spare time. I wanted to post it before Thanksgiving because it’s easy to make ahead of time and would be an excellent addition to any holiday get-together, particularly if you serve a nice piece of pie along with it.
October 25, 2012
You know that saying, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away?” Of course you do, everyone does, but I wonder how many people actually eat an apple every day? After eating poorly and—not surprisingly—feeling crappy all summer I’ve been making an effort to get my diet back on track and eating an apple every day was the first thing I decided to do. But not just apples, I’ve been making sure I have at least one fruit or vegetable with every meal. That includes dessert, too, which is where this wonderful Brown Betty comes in.
A Brown Betty is a dessert that’s similar to a crisp but instead of just having the awesome streusel-y part on the top you get several layers of it. Crisps are already one of my favorite desserts so a layered version is even better! Like a crisp, a brown betty is very simple and doesn’t take long to make. I’ve seen lots of variations but generally they consist of fruit and some kind of bread or cookie crumbs. I was inspired by …
October 17, 2012
I’m so happy that the weather is cooler because now I can finally make my favorite comfort foods again. The list includes:
Unfortunately, all of those recipes either heat up the kitchen too much or they’re just too hot to eat on a muggy summer day so I haven’t made them in what feels like forever. When I was excitedly making up a new weekly meal plan full of these recipes I realized I hadn’t yet shared one of my very favorite comfort foods: Barbecue Chicken!
Back when I lived in Florida, Brandon and I had a favorite barbecue restaurant nearby that we ate at regularly but when we moved to Charlottesville the nearest good barbecue was a 45 minute drive away. That’s when I started making this recipe so that we could still get our barbecue fix. Barbecue sounds like it could be time-consuming to make and in the past I have tried other recipes that took a lot longer which is why I love this recipe. You …