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!!!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Spinach cake!!!

I came across this recipe on Pinterest for spinach cake and thought "I have a 3 year old and 1 year old who refuse to touch the stuff... if they'll eat it in cake, then so be it!". After mulling over the original recipe I, of course, made a few changes! Olive oil was called for but I don't see olive oil being tasty in cake and it's pretty expensive so I subbed butter and coconut oil (I'm obsessed!!) instead. Fresh spinach is an absolute must! You will have way too much liquid and the color won't be a nice bright green if you use frozen. It was also suggested to serve it with whipped cream, but the cake needs a frosting with a bit more substance, in my opinion, so I opted for a lemony cream cheese frosting. It was perfect, not a hint of spinach flavor, both boys loved it (!!!) and it's green, just in time for St. Patty's Day :)  Enjoy!

8oz, fresh, baby spinach. You'll need 1 cup of puree.
3 eggs
2 Tbsp sour cream
Squeeze of Lemon juice (1/4 of a small lemon)
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
1/4 cup coconut oil
2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp baking powder
Cream cheese frosting (recipe below!)

Preheat oven to 350°F and lightly grease a 9x13 pan.
In a food processor, chop the spinach as much as possible. It will not completely puree with out the liquid, but try to estimate as best as you can about 1 cup, add the lemon juice and add the eggs, 1 at a time. Continue to puree spinach until it resembles baby food. Meanwhile, cream together your butter, oil, vanilla and sugar. Add the spinach mixture to the sugar mixture and blend well! Add in the salt, baking powder, and flour and combine completely. Pour into a greased 9x13 Pyrex baking dish and bake 25-30 minutes, until a butter knife comes out clean. Cool completely and frost with your choice of frosting. I used the cream cheese frosting recipe below :)
*For mini cupcakes, bake at 350°F for 12-14 minutes. Makes 64*

8oz cream cheese, softened
5 Tbsp butter
1 Tbsp sour cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp lemon juice
1 Tbsp lemon zest
1 1/2 cups confectioner's sugar
Beat all ingredients together until smooth and creamy.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Cranberry orange cornmeal biscotti

During my (ever so brief) stint at culinary school, I took an awesome class called Hot and Cold Desserts. It was a pretty general class, like a baking 101. For our final exam, we had to come up with and execute a recipe.  I decided to do a biscotti. In recent weeks I've been cleaning and purging a lot of stuff (we live in a relatively small apartment) during which i came across my class notes. I had everything i needed on hand to make them so I wanted to see if I still thought they were as awesome as I did 12 years ago. They are!!!

Cranberry orange cornmeal biscotti

8oz butter
16oz sugar
4 eggs
23oz flour
12oz cornmeal
1tsp salt
1 TBSP baking powder
10oz dried cranberries
Zest of 1 large orange

Whisk together flour, cornmeal, salt, and baking powder in a separate bowl. Cream together the butter, zest, and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs 1 at a time until well mixed. Add the dry ingredients in 3 turns and mix until all incorporated.
Bake on parchment at 350°F for ≈ 35 minutes, remove from oven and let cool enough to handle. Slice on an angle and place cookies sliced side up on cookie sheet.
Lower oven temp to 325°F and bake for another 25-30 minutes, flipping cookies half way during baking.
I tried to "drizzle" them with some white chocolate.... tasted great, but doesn't look so hot :(

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Broccoli quinoa casserole

Recently I discovered quinoa ( a bit late I know). I knew it existed, but had never tried it, until recently. So lately I've been on a quest for dishes that use it. I came across a recipe, where else but Pinterest, for broccoli and cheese quinoa casserole. However, when I looked at the recipe it includes ingredients like mayonnaise, low fat cheese, and cream of something soup. Anyone who knows me knows that I don't do low fat anything or cream of anything! And mayonnaise I just didn't think would taste good. So in my usual fashion I decided to try to revamp this recipe and make it my own. I immediately decided to take some cues from baked macaroni and cheese. By adding 1 egg and a little bit of milk I'm able to give it that creamy, cheesy consistency without mayonnaise or canned soup.  the quinoa is an excellent source of protein so I serve this just as a vegetarian main dish but you can easily serve it as a side with any protein of your choosing, especially fish or chicken!!

Broccoli quinoa casserole

1 TBSP butter
1 shallot, minced
1 red, orange, or yellow pepper, diced small
1/2 head broccoli, chopped
8 ounces of sharp cheddar cheese (or whatever cheese you like! Swiss or pepper jack would be delicious!)
1 egg
Enough milk to make 1/2 cup, when mixed with the egg
1 cup dry quinoa, cooked according to package

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Cook quinoa according to package directions. Set aside to cool.
Sautee shallot, peppers, and broccoli in butter until soft. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Mix together egg with enough milk to total 1/2 cup. Combine the quinoa, veggies, and cheese then add the egg/ milk mixture. Pour into a buttered 8x8 Pyrex dish and bake for 45-50 minutes.