November 4, 2008

Banana Coffee Cake with Cinnamon-Chocolate Chip Streusal

Banana Coffee Cake with Chocolate Chip Streusal

I had a bunch of overripe bananas that I didn’t want to go to waste, so I was going to make some banana bread. That’s what you do with overripe bananas, right? But I couldn’t help thinking how boring that is. I have a great banana bread recipe from my mom, but that’s the point, everyone and their mom already has a great banana bread recipe on hand. So I made it my mission to find something different to make with overripe bananas and boy did I hit gold. This banana coffee cake recipe is AWESOME! I’ll be making this again and again. If I have kids, they will have this recipe from me, just like I have my mom’s banana bread recipe. That’s how good this stuff is.

The one fault issue nit pick, I have with the recipe is that it’s actually too good. Seriously. It’s almost too rich to eat in the morning. That could just be me, though. I’m used to eating very light in the mornings, and the amount …

Read the Rest »


October 8, 2013

Nutella Stuffed Almond Butter Cookies (Gluten free)

Nutella Stuffed Almond Butter Cookies

It’s been a little over two weeks since I completed Whole30. It wasn’t easy, but I’m so glad that I did it and I’m really happy with the results. So far, I’ve dropped 15 pounds but the biggest difference has been losing 6 inches off my waist and 3 inches off my hips. Hello, smaller pants size! The only other time I’ve ever lost this much weight was when I did Weight Watchers about 5 years ago. That took a lot of dedication and point counting and feeling hungry most of the time. What I really liked about Whole30 was just being able to eat without counting calories or feeling like I was supposed to starve myself to get results.

It’s also been very illuminating to find that even when you can’t have grains, sugar or dairy, there is still A LOT that you can eat. Before this I honestly didn’t think it would be possible to go even a single day without bread or sugar or potatoes or cheese and now I barely give those things a second …

Read the Rest »

March 2, 2011

Spicy “Fried” Chicken Tenders with Glazed Sweet Potato Sticks

Spicy "Fried" Chicken Tenders with Glazed Sweet Potato Sticks

I generally put a lot of effort into making dinner. I comb through my cookbooks and bookmarks to come up with a meal plan every week and I try to make dinner most nights so that we won’t go out to eat instead. Brandon is a good sous chef and helps me prep everything, but sometimes I’m just not in the mood to put in all the effort, so over the past couple of years I have gathered a bunch of go-to recipes just for this occasion. I keep the ingredients in stock so that if I’m tired or I forgot to defrost the meat for my planned recipe or whatever else goes wrong, I can pull them out and have dinner within an hour. This is one such meal and probably the one I default to the most. I realized I had never blogged about it, which felt weird since we eat it so much. But I think it’s because these chicken tenders are so good that I’ve never wanted to bother with photographing them when I could be eating them …

Read the Rest »

September 19, 2012

Caramel & Cinnamon Banana Oat Bars

I don’t know what it is about bananas but I always feel compelled to buy a huge bunch of them despite the fact that most of the time I eat three or four while the rest sit there and rot. But then I wind up standing in front of the bananas again at the grocery store and telling myself that this time I’ll really eat them all. THIS TIME. I’ll eat two a day! I swear! Yeah, right.

But now, I finally have a good excuse for letting those bananas blacken and it’s all thanks to this recipe. I’d been looking for something with oats that was healthy but still, you know, actually tasted good so when I saw a recipe that had oats and used up all my overripe bananas it seemed perfect. But I still wanted it to be healthier so I did some tests. Can I use whole wheat flour? Can I use less butter? Luckily, the answer to both of those was yes. In fact, it turns out you can completely substitute coconut oil for butter and it tastes just as good while giving you lots more health benefits.

October 25, 2009

Orange Cinnamon-Raisin Swirl Coffee Cake (AKA The GIANT Cinnamon Roll)

Orange Cinnamon-Raisin Swirl Coffee Cake

Late last week I finally got the island I ordered for my kitchen, which adds almost 4 glorious feet of counter space, so on Saturday I had an itch to break it in with some type of fun recipe that involved rolling out dough. Scanning through my cookbooks, I saw this recipe and it definitely fit the bill. I wound up modifying it to fit the ingredients I had in my pantry (mainly I substituted raisins for figs and added cinnamon and ginger), but it turned out really, really good.

And seriously, what’s not to love? It’s a giant cinnamon roll. Let me say that again: a cinnamon roll the size of a cake! It’s taken a lot of effort to eat this thing like an actual cake (ie you cut a small section from it) instead of just unrolling and eating the whole thing the way I usually eat cinnamon rolls.

May 27, 2009

Lemon Glazed Strawberry Tart with Pastry Cream

Lemon Glazed Strawberry Tart with Pastry Cream

I’ve been on a strawberry kick lately (seriously, I hope you like strawberries because I have two more strawberry recipes coming up). I also finally bought a tart pan last week and I wanted to make something fun and different. This may not sound like such a “different” dessert, but it’s really different for me. The majority of the desserts I make are either cake or cookies (or some variation like cupcakes and brownies). I’ve only make pie during the holidays and as much as I’d LOVE to make my cheesecake all the time I have to force myself to save that for special occasions.

Anyway, I found this recipe in my favorite cookbook and decided to go for it. I’m glad I did because this was damn good but it’s kind of involved. It’s definitely worth the effort to make, but like pies and cheesecake, I think this is a “special occasions” kind of dessert. It’s not difficult, per se, but there’s a lot of steps because you have to make all the parts (the crust, the …

Read the Rest »

June 13, 2013

Mexican Chicken Casserole

Mexican Chicken Casserole

Have you ever had one of those terrible days that just won’t end? Yesterday started with the wonderful surprise that my beloved coffee machine wasn’t working. After much futzing around and ultimately going through the 5 stages of grief for my dead coffee machine, I plopped down in my office chair to try to get some work done. This was followed by a giant cracking noise. At first, I tried to ignore the sound, hoping it wasn’t a big deal. Then, almost comically, I leaned back in the chair and the ENTIRE back fell off along with half of an arm. Thankfully, I was able to borrow my boyfriend’s chair for the rest of the day but things didn’t really improve after that. I was waiting for the maintenance guy and the UPS guy and neither showed up. Add to that some annoying tech issues with my business and not feeling particularly inspired (or even awake) enough to finish a project and you have the recipe for very bad, no good, pretty terrible day.

On days like this I dread making dinner. In fact, …

Read the Rest »

October 3, 2013

Carnita Salad with Citrus Chipotle Dressing

Carnita Salad with Citrus Chipotle Dressing

I’m not going to lie: for most of my life I’ve hated salad. Mostly, it’s the lettuce. It’s so limp and flavorless. I’ve never had a true BLT because the lettuce was always the first thing to be discarded from any sandwich. But earlier this year I realized the problem wasn’t all lettuce it was just iceberg lettuce. So I put aside my lettuce prejudice and tried a bunch of other kinds of lettuce only to discover that they’re not that bad. Especially once you add a bunch of veggies, cheese and dressing on top.

Since making that discovery I’ve implemented a weekly Salad Night where we eat a very large salad, usually topped with chicken. It’s a simple but filling dinner on nights when I don’t feel like making much effort and it saves us from ordering pizza like we used to. It’s been especially great while we’ve been doing the Whole30 because it’s one less meal I have plan out every week.