January 23, 2013

Lighter Shrimp Étouffée

Shrimp Etouffee

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.


November 19, 2009

Thanksgiving Side Dish Mania: Cranberries, Squash and Casseroles

Cranberries

This whole blogging every day thing is hard. I don’t know how some of you do it. It’s hard for me to blog even once a week sometimes (though I’ve been trying to remedy that). Anyway, a work emergency left me unable to post yesterday and I still have lots to do today, so a slight change of plans: I’ll post all the rest of the side dishes today and the turkey tomorrow. Then next week I’ll post my favorite part of Thanksgiving (or any meal, really): Dessert!

So I already posted all my sweet potato side dishes but you can’t just eat sweet potatoes (well, I actually think I could, but I’m weird). All of today’s recipes (as well as the turkey) are courtesy of my mother. I found them all in her battered, food covered, recipe scrapbook where she dutifully taped in handwritten recipe cards or cutouts from magazines.

January 6, 2010

Individual Cranberry Apple Crisp with Snow Ice Cream

Cranberry and Apple Crisp with Snow Ice Cream

Well, it’s January and you know what that means. It’s time for my annual “I’m going to completely change my lifestyle this year…I swear…for real this time.” Sigh. Honestly, I wasn’t really going to bother until Lori at RecipeGirl.com started her “Ten in 10” Challenge. What I like about it is that it’s not about weightloss, it’s just about trying to become more healthy in whatever way you define that.

I like food. I like to eat food. I even like to take pictures of the food I eat because I just like it that much. So going on a diet doesn’t appeal to me. Maybe it’s something I can do for a few weeks but eventually I get, you know, hungry. So my goal for the next 10 weeks is not another diet, but just be healthier (more fruits/veg, whole grains, etc.) and more active. I did that this past summer/fall and lost about 15 lbs. But if you’ve been reading my blog since November you know I, uh, indulged a bit …

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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 …

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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.

September 12, 2013

Spicy Chicken and Summer Vegetable Soup

Spicy Chicken and Summer Vegetable Soup

Well, hello there. It’s been awhile. I hope you all had a nice summer! You might remember (but you probably don’t) that I mentioned in my previous post that work was overwhelming me. Well, it kind of took over this summer and since this blog doesn’t exactly pay the bills (though it helps pay for my Sephora habit) I had to put work first and get all my projects done. As of last week I finished everything and now I can finally get back to a more normal posting schedule.

Work hasn’t been the only overwhelming thing that happened this summer, though. I decided to challenge myself to do something that I never thought I could do. As of today I am 24 days into Whole30. If you’ve never heard of it before, that means that for 24 days I have eaten no grains, no dairy, no legumes, no white potatoes, no unnatural additives or preservatives and no sugar or any sweeteners (like honey or maple syrup) whatsoever.

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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September 25, 2009

BBA Challenge: The European Trifecta (and some other stuff)

Italian Bread

I’m still here! I just looked at the date on my last post and realized I haven’t posted anything since Sept. 1 and I can’t believe it’s been that long. This month has been a wash due to the fact that I’m moving. Again. Less than a year after I moved back to Orlando. Ugh. But I’m moving to the literal greener pastures of Virginia, which I’m extremely happy about it because it suits me much more than Florida ever did. We weren’t planning to move but my boyfriend found a new job in Charlottesville and we both hate Florida, so it seemed like the best decision for us, despite being incredibly inconvenient. We’re moving up there next week and once I finally get settled in my new apartment — which I chose entirely because of it’s large, well lit kitchen — I’ll be able to start cooking again and posting regularly.

But first I thought I would give an update on the BBA Challenge since I haven’t posted about it in forever. I’m still plodding along with it, though most people …

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