I'm a 30 year old stay at home mom of two beautiful boys! I love cooking, crafting, movies, playing with my boos, pop culture, and tons of other stuff! I fancy myself a bit of a foodie and have been trying to incorporate lots of fresh, seasonal, local organic foods into my cooking. Hopefully this blog will serve as a forum for me to try new recipes and share them with anyone who might be interested!!!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Chocolate chip banana bars!!!

Here's a recipe a friend saw on the Chew (on ABC) and immediately tried and sent to me. They are AMAZING! I've had banana bread with chocolate in it before but there's just something about these.... perfection comes to mind! Probably because it's a Mario Batali recipe (I LOVE Mario Batali!!) I used a slightly smaller sheet pan than what is called for, mine is 15.5x11x1, and the amount of batter was perfect! I cut them into 1x1 squares.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Bacon, brie, and corn pizza (I know, it sounds odd, but trust me!)

Ready for the oven!!!
Tonight I made one of my husbands favorite meals, a pizza with brie, bacon, spinach, and sweet corn. The first time I came across the original recipe, I was desperately trying to find things to do with brie. We bought some from Costco and it was far too much to be eaten alone with french bread and fruit!!! A quick search on for recipes gave me this one and I'll admit, I was skeptical! Once we tried it though, there was no coming back! I think the hubby could eat this, at least, once a week! As usual, I made a few changes here and there but my version is not fundamentally different so I wont bother posting my version of the recipe. I will, however, say that I add a bit more brie than what is called for, a bit more corn (usually frozen, straight out of the freezer!), spinach instead of the parsley, a small diced shallot, and I skip the olive oil and grated Pecorino Romano. And, after many years of trying to concoct the perfect pizza dough recipe, I've got it!! That, I have included below. It is truly delicious!!! 

My Perfect Pizza Dough
1 1/2 cups 105 degree water
4 1/2-5 cups all purpose flour (whole wheat flour can just as easily be substituted)
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 1/2 teaspoons granulated sugar
The finished product :) YUM!!!
2 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon active dry yeast
Dissolve sugar, yeast, and salt in the water, add the oil and 4 cups of flour. Preferably using a standing mixer, kneed approximately 12 minutes, adding more flour as needed, until you can stretch to window pane. Proof in an oiled bowl, covered with plastic wrap, 1 to 2 hours. Makes enough for 2 pizzas that should serve between 4-6 people (depending on your serving size preference :)

Herb roasted pork with plum chutney

Ok, it's official, this is a food blog. I just don't have the energy to write about things other than food! So, tonight I was searching Epicurious for something to do with the pork tenderloin I got this past weekend at Costco, when I came across this recipe for pork tenderloin with plum chutney. I just so happened to have 4 VERY ripe plums on hand so I decided to give it a try. Right off the bat I could tell it was going to be a very fall-ish dish, which was perfect because it has been in the mid 50s here in Michigan lately. I knew I wanted to serve it on a bed of spinach and with couscous on the side, so that part was easy! The recipe itself needed a bit of tweeking because there were a few things I didn't have and some extra stuff I wanted to use. My changes are as noted below. My husband and 2 year old both seemed to enjoy it and I really liked it! Putting the pork on the spinach allowed the chutney to drip down, wilting the spinach just a bit and keeping me from having to actually cook a veggie :) Now to the recipe!

Plum Chutney:
  • 4 red or black plums
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large shallot, sliced lengthwise
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup Sherry vinegar or apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon chopped garlic (about 3 cloves)
  • 1 tablespoon ground mustard
  • 2 teaspoons grated peeled ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 bay leaf
  •  salt

  • 1 packet of fresh Poultry herbs (usually found in the produce section and contains thyme, rosemary, sage)
  • 1 Tablespoon dried herbes de Provence (again, a mix of different herbs but this one has a very diverse mix including, dill, thyme, cracked fennel, savory, basil, tarragon, chervil, lavender, and marjoram)
  • 1 Tablespoon of whole grain dijon mustard (I love Trader Joes')
  • 4 teaspoons olive oil
  • 2 pork tenderloins (about 2 pounds)
  • Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
 Pre heat oven to 400 degrees

For plum chutney:
Peel plums. Halve and pit. Cut into 1/2" pieces.
Heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add shallot and cook, stirring occasionally, until shallot begins to soften, about 2 minutes. Add remaining ingredients. Cover and simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for 8 minutes. Uncover and continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until fruit is soft and juices have thickened, 20-25 minutes. Season to taste with salt. Let cool slightly. DO AHEAD: Chutney can be made 1 week ahead. Cover and chill. Rewarm slightly before serving.
For pork:
Place herbs from the packet, herbes de Provence, mustard, and oil in a small food processor or magic bullet. Pulse until starting to come together, adding a bit of water as needed to get it to a pasty consistency. Rub all over pork; season with salt and pepper. Bake at 400 degrees until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the middle of each loin registers 145°F, 35-45 minutes. 
Transfer tenderloins to a cutting board. Let rest for 10 minutes. Slice thinly and serve with plum chutney and sides of your choosing :)