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Showing posts from January, 2009

Tuiles - Daring Bakers' January Challenge!

Yes...You know what time it is! This month's Daring Bakers' challenge is brought to us by Karen of Bake My Day and Zorra of 1x umruehren bitte aka Kochtopf . They have chosen Tuiles from "The Chocolate Book" by Angélique Schmeink and Nougatine and Chocolate Tuiles from Michel Roux. As always, I was on pins and needles waiting for the new challenge to be announced. I'm always excited for a brand new recipe to try. I have to admit - I was so happy to see an easier challenge this month...after all, we did make a French Yule Log last month!! That was quite the recipe...! This month's recipe for Tuile Cookies wasn't too fussy or complicated. I was able to make them very quickly, and the clean-up wasn't too bad either. You can literally make all kinds of shapes with these cookies...fortune cookies, ice cream cones, piroulines...the list goes on and on. I decided to keep it simple and make pretty little bowls. I filled them with frozen blueberries and added a

Steaks with Kalamata-Olive Chimichurri

*** WOW...this recipe was amazing! I am a new fan of kalamata olives...they are so yummy! This is one of those recipes that I will no-doubt be making again and again. The chimichurri accompaniment was delicious. And the best part is, I had enough left over to add to our dinner the following evening. I baked a few chicken breasts and topped them with it....YUM! It was just as good the second night! The only change that I made was the cooking method. Brad cooked these on the outside grill, instead of the oven. The red wine vinegar adds an excellent flavor to the yourself a favor, and make this recipe won't be sorry! :) Enjoy!*** Steaks with Kalamata-Olive Chimichurri Source: bon appetit magazine Recipe by Jeanne Thiel Kelley February 2009 "Chimichurri, the traditional accompaniment for steak in Argentina, is an olive oil-based sauce with vinegar, parsley, and other seasonings. In Argentina, cattle are grass-fed, and the vinegary relish complements the h

Martha's Lemon-Thyme Green Beans

***Here's another wonderfully easy recipe from Martha Stewart. I served this with a delicious recipe - "Steak with Kalamata Olive Chimichurri", which I'll post tomorrow. These green beans had a great little "kick" from the fresh lemon juice and tasted perfect. Enjoy!*** Lemon-Thyme Green Beans Martha Stewart Source: Everyday Food: Great Food Fast Ingredients: Serves 4 Coarse salt and ground pepper 1 1/2 pounds green beans, ends trimmed 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice (from about 1 lemon) 2 tablespoons butter 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves, plus more for garnish (optional) Directions: In a large skillet with a tight-fitting lid, bring 1/2 inch water to a boil; salt generously. Add green beans; reduce to a simmer, and cover skillet. Steam beans, tossing occasionally, until crisp-tender, 6 to 10 minutes. Pull lid back slightly, and tilt skillet to drain water from green beans; add lemon juice, butter, and thyme. Season with salt and pepper, and toss

Mouth-Watering Mocha Cupcakes

***I was chatting with one of my little sisters, Suzanne, the other day, and she told me about the fabulous Mocha Cupcakes that she was in the process of making. Well, of course I had to get the recipe! She sent it to me via e-mail, and I decided to leave the extra notes that she wrote at the bottom...I thought they were cute...LOL. Needless to say, these cupcakes really did turn out to be fabulous...and very easy to make! I actually had some buttercream icing stashed in the fridge from the wedding cake that I made last week, so I used that instead of whipped cream. Suzanne bought a jar of pre-made icing to use on hers. Just use your can't go wrong with any kind of icing! Enjoy!*** YUM...just look at the inside of that cupcake! Mocha Cupcakes with Whipped Cream: Source: "Perfect Chocolate" by Parragon Publishing Ingredients: 2 tbsp instant expresso 6 tbsp butter 3/8 cup superfine sugar 1 tbsp honey 1 cup water 1 5/8 cup all-purpose flour 2 tbsp unsweetened

Joel Rubuchon's "Chicken with Mushrooms & Tarragon" - (Poulet aux champignons et a l'estragon)

***Now that the holidays are over (and the wedding cake is finished!), I finally have time to sift through the new cookbooks that I got for Christmas and try out some of the recipes. I present to you...the first one! As I mentioned before, Joel Rubuchon is the man ...he's even been proclaimed the "Chef of the Century." In his wonderful cookbook, "The Complete Rubuchon", he shares a multitude of fabulous French recipes in what some call the "Joy of Cooking" for French cuisine. This seemed like a great recipe to start with. It's got a classically delicious flavor...not too fussy or complicated but with a complex flavor. I think you'll love this one!*** Chicken with Mushroom and Tarragon (Poulet aux champignons et a l'estragon) From: The Complete Rubuchon by Joel Rubuchon Serves: 4 Preparation: 15 minutes Cooking: 35 minutes Ingredients: 3/4 lb. small white button mushrooms, stem ends trimmed, caps rinsed clean, and drained; quarter them if t

Foodies - Here are "50 Ways to Eat Green"!

***I recently came across the article below in the latest issue of Bon Appetit of my favorites. I've found myself trying to be as "green" as possible lately. I'm "that girl" at the grocery store...the one that pushes a buggy full of filled, reusable grocery bags out of the store. I'm so proud of that, though. It never fails, every single time that I check out, someone comments about how neat and great it is. In fact, it happened just today as I was leaving the store. On a recent grocery trip, one lady even told me that I had inspired her to start using reusable grocery bags. I sure hope so. I think that's awesome. You may remember THIS post a while back about reusable bags. Do you use them yet??? What are you currently doing to help our planet? Be sure to click the links below for more info! :) *** From Bon Appetit magazine: "50 Ways to Eat Green" The Bon Appétit Guide to Cooking Up a Greener World By Hugh Garvey Photogr

Introducing: My First Wedding Cake!!!!

I know I've been a little MIA for the past week or so...but, I've got a good excuse...I promise! I recently got the opportunity to bake my very first wedding cake. And let me just tell was quite the undertaking! I've never done it before, so I did a lot of research into the whole process. After all, I couldn't imagine anything worse than having the cake topple over mid-reception. But, I am ecstatic to report that there were absolutely no cake mishaps. I even did okay working with fondant for the first time. I was nervous about that too...I hadn't worked with it before, but it looked easy enough...kind of. After over 20 hours of reading, mixing, tasting, rolling, stirring, zesting and baking...I ended up with the fabulous four-tiered concoction that you see here. I got the design idea from Wilton. In fact, we bought almost all of the supplies from the Wilton aisle at Michael's Arts & Crafts. I started on Monday, with a test cake. The result was good

Hershey's "Especially Dark" Chocolate Cake

***We recently celebrated my wonderful husband's birthday...on Jan. 2nd. We had a fantastic day and a GREAT dinner with our family and friends that night. And by now, you know that it isn't a birthday around here without a delicious, homemade birthday cake. I started asking Brad what sort of cake he wanted about a week before the big day. He took some time to think it over and finally decided on a dark chocolate cake...his favorite kind of chocolate! I remember seeing the recipe below for the perfect cake...conveniently located on the back of the Hershey's "Special Dark" cocoa package. And besides, I had already made the milk chocolate version several times with great results. You may remember THIS post from a while back, of Hershey's "Perfectly Chocolate" Chocolate Cake. And perfect it was! The best (and really only) change that I made to the recipe was substituting 1 cup of freshly brewed coffee for the 1 cup of boiling water that's called for

Delicious "Outside-In" Bacon & Swiss Burgers

***Happy New Year's!! I hope that you had a fantastic 2008 and that your 2009 is even better. Did you have a fun New Year's Eve? We sure did. Our friends Jessica and Dustin came over for a night of great food, good drinks, and fun times! We chowed down on a wonderful burger recipe that they shared with us. Why put the cheese and bacon on the outside of your burger when you can put it on the inside?? It's a simple recipe that yields a juicy, mouth-wateringly delicious burger. Try it tonight!*** Ingredients: 2 lbs. ground beef Swiss cheese, sliced 1 pkg. pre-cooked bacon Your choice of extra goodies - ketchup, mustard, lettuce, pickles, mayo, buns, etc. Directions: Shape ground beef into extra thin, round patties. Cut swiss cheese squares into quarters. Also, cut bacon into 1-inch pieces. Place cheese and bacon pieces on the center of a hamburger patty. Place a second hamburger patty on top, cinching the edges all the way around to seal the will be a big burger! :