August 7, 2008

Sugar and Spice Cookies

Sugar Cookies

Have you ever seen two different recipes for the same thing and didn’t know which one to make? That happens to me all the time. Sometimes I don’t bother at all, thinking it’s too much pressure to pick the “right” recipe, but if it’s something that looks really good I might just make both and see what I like better. That is the case for these dueling snickerdoodle recipes that I found on two or my favorite sites: What Geeks Eat and Simply Recipes. The big difference between the recipes is the Shuna’s at Simply Recipes has cornstarch, while Vanessa’s has the more traditional cream of tartar. You can go read Shuna’s post about why cornstarch is special. Due to this different “secret” ingredient in the cookies, I found the outcome of both to be completely different tasting cookies.

If you are cookie dough connoisseur, the cornstarch recipe wins hands down. I LOVE cookie dough, but I could barely eat any of the other recipe because it was too flour-y. The problem comes after you bake them. The cornstarch cookies have a really nice …

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July 1, 2008

Fried Pasta

Have you ever heard of such a thing?  I mean, I know you can fry pretty much anything, but fried pasta?  I’ve never heard of that before.  Well, I’m here to say fried pasta = yum!

A few weeks ago my boyfriend, Brandon, and I went to Copelands and we were basically blindsided with this item.  We had ordered spinach and artichoke dip as an appetizer and assumed that it would come with tortilla chips like every other restaurant we’ve ever eaten spinach and artichoke dip at (which is A LOT).  But Copeland’s is not every other restaurant.  The dip comes out with a plate of fried bow-tie pasta.  At first we just looked at it in astonishment and even a little disgust, but neither of us are ones to turn away fried food so we tried one.  Oh.  My.  God.  I could eat them all day long.  I would say pasta and fried food are my two biggest weaknesses, so to combine them is just ungodly.

The worst part is that the portion was ginormous.  It was like 5 parts pasta to 1 part dip.  AND WE COULDN’T STOP EATING THE PASTA EVEN WHEN WE FINISHED THE DIP.  It was horrible …

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June 17, 2009

Molten Chocolate Cakes

Molten Chocolate Cakes

I love chocolate cake. It’s one of my biggest cravings, one that pops up over and over again (almost always late at night). But in the last few years, I’ve noticed something disturbing (to me, at least): I don’t seem to be able to eat it anymore. Take last month, for instance:

Brandon was out with some friends so I was home alone. For some reason when I’m home alone I always want to bake so I decided I would finally indulge my chocolate cake craving and make a cake. After looking though my delicious account, I decided to try Smitten Kitchen’s Peanut Butter and Chocolate cake. So I went to all the trouble of making the cake layers and the two different kinds of icing and after a couple hours finally sat down with a delicious looking piece of it to eat. I took two bites, two bites, and I had to set it down. I couldn’t eat anymore. It’s not a bad cake, in fact, it’s a wonderful cake but it was just so rich that it was too …

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July 13, 2009

BBA Challenge: Ciabatta

Ciabatta

The seventh recipe for The Bread Baker’s Apprentice Challenge was Ciabatta. This was one I was really excited about attempting but also pretty apprehensive. It’s probably one of the most complicated breads we’ve done so far and from surveying other BBAers on twitter and the forum it was pretty apparent that “results may vary”. Good Ciabatta is full of big giant holes and that involves having a very wet dough, which you can imagine, is hard to work with. In addition to working with the very wet dough for the first time, making this bread involves some special tools as well as setting up your oven in a very specific way, so there’s quite a bit of prep involved.

There were two different versions, using different kinds of pre-ferments: poolish or biga. These are just mixtures of bread, water and yeast that sit out for a certain amount of time to develop flavor and texture. Later you add the rest of ingredients to make the final dough. I chose the biga because the consensus seemed to be that it resulted in bread with bigger holes. I …

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October 31, 2009

Have a Happy Halloween with Double Chocolate Pumpkin Cupcakes

Double Chocolate Pumpkin Cupcakes

I just had to pop in today and post these cupcakes that I made on a whim last night. They are so good and super easy to make. And I have to tell you, they’ve kind of changed my world view. Or maybe just my…food view?

Anyway, on twitter last night someone posted that pumpkin and chocolate should never go together and until I made these, I totally would have agreed. In fact, this whole month, I’ve been turning my nose up as pumpkin flavored anything. I don’t know when I got it in my head that I don’t like pumpkin, but I think it’s just one of those things that I decided as a kid and I never challenged it. I’ve been overcoming a lot of these prejudices lately, it’s a wonder I ever ate anything with how picky I was!

I had read about the pumpkin shortage that is going on and despite the fact that I don’t ever make anything with pumpkin in it, when I saw a big can of it at the grocery store a few weeks ago I couldn’t help but buy it. I just felt it was something I had to do. What if I find a recipe that calls for it and I can’t find anymore at the grocery store? I’d have been kicking myself for not buying it when I could, right? Well…maybe not, but this is how my mind works.

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February 9, 2011

Light and Chewy Chocolate Cookies – Two Ways

Chewy Chocolate Cookies

I wasn’t able to post last week due to my work load being particularly crazy lately, so this week you get two recipes! I’ve been good about eating better and counting my Weight Watchers points for the past month, but sometimes I just get a craving for chocolate that won’t go away. Especially now since it’s almost Valentine’s Day and there are lots of chocolate recipes floating around trying to tempt me. That’s when I head to my trusty Cooking Light cookbooks because they always have really satisfying desserts that won’t kill my diet. Both recipes I’m sharing today are rich and chocolatey and will satisfy your worst chocolate craving, but they happen to be quite low in fat and calories so you don’t have to feel bad about eating either of them!

September 23, 2008

Pam’s Homemade Spaghetti Sauce

Spaghetti

I am all about comfort food. What I love even more is food that is dead simple to make and that stores easily. That’s probably why spaghetti is my all time favorite dish. Judging from how many brands of spaghetti sauce there are at the grocery store, I would venture to say that not many people make their own sauce anymore. This was one of my mom’s staple recipes and I don’t think I ever saw her use sauce from a jar her entire life. This was the first recipe I asked for when I moved into my own apartment during college and I’ve been making it ever since. I’ve tried jar sauces before, but I always wind up feeling like I’ve let my mom down. Plus none of them taste even one fifth as good as homemade.

March 18, 2009

Chicken Adobo

Chicken Adobo

This easy to make recipe is from the Philippines. You might think it was just your garden variety chicken and rice dish, but the sauce is so good it takes it to a whole other level. It’s rich, tangy, tart and kinda sweet all at the same time. Maybe like a Filipino version of BBQ sauce…but honestly that description does not do it justice at all. You just have to taste it, you’ll see what I mean. I got it from Mark Bittman’s cookbook How to Cook Everything, which I LOVE and highly recommend for the sheer number of recipes, but also the tips and helpful info he offers.

I’m pretty sure I remember Anthony Bourdain talking about Adobo on a recent episode of No Reservations? It’s a very popular Filipino dish and this recipe can be made with chicken or pork, but I remember him saying there are tons of variations. If they are all as good as this, then I need to find more Filipino recipes because I could eat this …

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