Saturday, October 28, 2017

Cranberry Scones

If you've read my blog before, you know my aversion to baking.  I don't like that you have to use exact measurments and I never quiet know how things are supposed to look before they go into the oven.  I've been watching the British Baking show lately and gave myself false confidence.  "Oh, I can do that!" I said.  Nope.
Well, I shouldn't say I couldn't do it because these scones turned out good... it was just the making them that wasn't great.  The dough was far stickier than it should have been and subsequetnly I couldn't really shape them into scones.  A more accurate description would be cranberry blobs.  I'm sure that if you have baked in your life (more than just a box of brownies) you probably would fair much better than I did.  I also increased the amount of cranberry for my version because I didn't think it had enough.

Cranberry Scones

Cranberry Scones

Ingredients:
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup powdered sugar
4 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
3/4 cup butter, cut into pieces
1 cup dried cranberries
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup buttermilk or sour milk

Preparation:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
In a large bowl stir together flour, powdered sugar, baking powder, and baking soda. Using a pastry blender, cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
Stir in dried cranberries.
Make a well in center of flour mixture.
In a small bowl combine eggs and the 1/2 cup buttermilk.
Add egg mixture all at once to flour mixture.
Using a fork, stir just until moistened.
Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface.
Knead dough by folding and gently pressing it for 10 to 12 strokes or until dough is nearly smooth. Divide dough in half. Pat or lightly roll each portion into a 1/2-inch-thick circle.
Cut each circle into six wedges.
Place scones 1 inch apart on an ungreased baking sheet.
Bake for 12 to 18 minutes or until golden brown.
Transfer to a wire rack; cool for 5 minutes. Serve warm with butter.
Enjoy!

Recipe adapted from Better Homes and Gardens

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Cornbread

Are you ready for the best cornbread?  This recipe is so good.  For real.  I feel like most cornbreads are really dry and crumbly but this is not at all. It's super moist from the creamed corn and it's healthy because there's real corn in there, right?  Right.
It goes perfectly with anyone of my chili recipes (including my sweet potato black bean chili) and any leftovers can go into some cornbread stuffing.  With only 4 ingredients, how can you go wrong?



Cornbread

Ingredients:
2 boxes Jiffy cornbread
2 Eggs
1 15 ounce can creamed corn
1 Tbsp. sugar

Preparation:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Mix all ingredients until combined in a medium bowl.
Scrape mixture into a 9x9 cake pan that has been sprayed well with cooking spray.
Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the center is done.
Enjoy!

Recipe adapted from the Pinning Mama


Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Chili

Yum!  This chili is on point.  It's a bit spicy, but not in an overpowering way and it's so hearty you won't even miss the meat.  You get lots of vitamins by using sweet potatoes and it's full of vegetables and beans for protein.  Serve with a side of cornbread and scoop some sour cream (or Greek yogurt) on top.  Of course, if you're vegan, skip the sour cream and enjoy!


Sweet Potato and Black Bean Chili


Sweet Potato and Black Bean Chili

Ingredients:
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 pound sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
1 yellow onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 Tbsp. chili powder
1 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. dried oregano
¼ tsp. cayenne, adjust to taste
2 10 ounce cans  diced tomatoes with chiles, undrained
1 15 ounce can black beans, drained
2 cups vegetable broth
Optional toppings: sour cream (Greek yogurt), shredded cheese

Preparation:
In a large Dutch oven, heat oil over medium-high heat.
Add sweet potato, onion, garlic and bell pepper and saute until onion softens, about 5 to 7 minutes.
Stir in chili powder, cumin, oregano and cayenne, and saute for 1 minute.
Add diced tomatoes, black beans, and broth and stir until combined.
Bring to a boil and then simmer for 30 minutes, or until sweet potatoes are tender.
Serve with any toppings you wish.
Enjoy!

Recipe adapted from Alida's Kitchen



Monday, October 23, 2017

Sausage Ragu

Looking over my recent posts, I realized that they've all been vegetarian!  I often try to cook at least 2 meals a week that are vegetarian, but I've been adding in a few more vegetarin meals, I'm up to about 3 or 4 per week.  I find that fall and winter cooking lends itself to vegetarian meals much easier for me; I love fall vegetables and they feel heartier than spring and summer ones. 
That being said, this recipe does have meat, but there are plenty of carrots, onions, and tomato (sauce) to give you your veggie intake.  Yum!

Sausage Ragu

Sausage Ragu 

Ingredients:
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound ounces bulk pork Italian sausage
2 medium onions, diced
1 1/2 cups carrot, diced 
3 garlic cloves, chopped
10 oz. tomato sauce
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup red wine

Preparation: 
Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Add sausage; cook 5 minutes or until browned, stirring to crumble.
Remove sausage mixture to a bowl with a slotted spoon. Remove pan from heat (do not wipe out pan).
Return pan to medium-high. Add onion, carrots, and garlic to pan; cook 5 minutes.
Add sausage mixture, water, wine, and tomato sauce to pan; cook 5 minutes.
Serve over cheesy polenta.
Enjoy!

Recipe adapted from Cooking Light

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Vegetarian Enchilada Casserole

If you read my blog a lot, you know about my love affair with enchiladas.  Vegetarian, meat, breakfast, homemade sauce, canned sauce, green sauce, avocado sauce... they're all delicious to me.  This recipe is actually a lot like my crockpot enchiladas, but in an even easier way.  Just cook a package of boca soy crumbles with some enchilada sauce and layer up tortillas in a pan with some cheese.  Delicious! 

Vegetarian Enchilada Casserole

Vegetarian Enchilada Casserole

Ingredients:
2 15 oz. red enchilada sauce cans
12 oz. frozen soy crumbles (I used Boca brand)
4 oz. frozen corn
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
20 4-inch round corn tortillas, cut into thin strips
2 cups cheese
Salt and pepper, to taste
Optional toppings: avocado, sour cream, tomatoes, cilantro

Preparation:
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
Heat the oil in a large skillet and add the crumbles to the pan.
Add 1 can of sauce to the skillet and simmer for about 5 minutes minutes.
Add corn and simmer for about 5 more minutes.
Taste and season with salt and pepper.
In a greased 9x13 pan, spread a thin layer of sauce on the bottom.
Layer the tortillas, crumbles and corn mixture, sauce, and cheese (I did three layers, ending with cheese on top).
Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes.
Remove the foil and bake for another 10 minutes, or until the cheese is slightly browned.
Add any toppings you like.
Enjoy!

Recipe adapted from Pinch of Yum

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Fennel and Carrot Soup

This is not normally a recipe I would try on a weeknight, it takes about an hour and a half to complete and though it isn't super labor intensive, it does take time.  Tonight I got home super energized, went grocery shopping, and then changed my menu (this was going to be made on Sunday!) to make this tonight!
This turned out super yummy, I made a few changes to make it more affordable/so I was able to find all the ingredients in my grocery store.  This was more fennel-y than carrot-y, but still was very tasty and definitely was a perfect cool fall night dinner.  I accompanied my dinner with Nightmare Before Christmas and a nice blanket.  Perfect!

Fennel and Carrot Soup


Fennel and Carrot Soup

Ingredients:
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 large fennel bulb, chopped
1 small onion, thinly sliced
3 carrots, peeled, chopped
1 small russett potato, peeled, halved
1/4 tsp. thyme
1 bay leaf
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 cups low-sodium chicken broth (or vegetable if you're vegetarian)
1/4 cup roasted unsalted almonds, chopped
¼ cup plain Greek Yogurt
1 tablespoon pure maple syrup

Preparation:
Heat 4 Tbsp. butter in a large heavy pot over medium. Add fennel, onion, carrots, potato, thyme, and bay leaf; season with salt and pepper.
Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and cook, stirring occasionally and reducing heat if needed, until vegetables are soft but not browned and have released their moisture, 40-50 minutes.
Add broth, bring to a boil.
Reduce heat and simmer until potato is falling apart, 8–10 minutes. Let cool slightly. Remove bay leaf.
Working in batches, purée in a blender until smooth. Strain into a clean pot; season with salt and pepper.
Mix yogurt and maple syrup in a small bowl. Serve soup topped with maple yogurt and almonds.

Recipe adapted from Bon Appetit

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Chickpea Peanutbutter Curry

Fall is here!  It's finally time to start making soups and stews and curries are in the mix too!  If you read my blog a lot, you know that I try to include vegetarian or vegan meals several times a week into our diet.  I always want to make sure that the vegetarian and vegan recipes I pick are filling and not so so full of cheese.  This recipe is both!  The chickpeas and peanut butter add protein and it's vegan so no cheese!  
You can always use another nut butter if you're allergic to peanuts and vegetable stock instead of chicken stock to make to vegan or vegetarian; if you're not, feel free to use chicken stock.  Other great news is that this recipe is gluten free!

Chickpea Peanut Butter Curry

Chickpea Peanut Butter Curry

Ingredients:
1/2 medium onion, chopped
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 tsp coconut oil 
3/4 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. ground cumin
3/4 tsp. ground coriander
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. cayenne 
1/2 tsp. tumeric
1/2 tsp. curry powder
3 Tbsp. peanut butter or almond butter
1/2 cup coconut milk
3/4 cup chicken stock (or vegetable stock to make vegan)
1 red pepper, chopped
1 small zucchini, chopped
1 15 oz can chickpeas, drained
1 tsp. salt, or more to taste
1/2 tsp. sugar
1/2 lime, juiced 

Preparation:
Add oil to a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat.  Add garlic, onion, ginger, cumin, coriander, cinnamon, cayenne, turmeric, and curry.  
Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently. 
Add in the nut butter, coconut milk and stir. Add broth. 
Add the veggies and chickpeas, salt, sugar. 
Mix, cover and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to medium low and continue to cook for 5 minutes. 
Stir in the lime juice. Taste and adjust salt.  
At this point, if you want a thinner curry, add more coconut milk or if you want it thicker, uncover and keep simmering. 
Serve over rice.
Enjoy!

Recipe adapted from Vegan Richa

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Greek Yogurt Lemon Muffins

So it's actually a total coincidence that I followed my recipe for Greek yogurt Pancakes with this other Greek yogurt recipe.  I don't know about you, but I always have Greek yogurt in the fridge and this recipe probably uses ingredients you already have on hand.  1 container Greek yogurt, 1 cup water, and 1 box lemon cake mix.  Don't have lemon?  Use a different kind of cake mix.  Boom.  Easy!  These super easy muffins came together in about a half hour between making the batter and baking them off.  Perfect for a quick weekend breakfast!
The other perfect thing about these muffins is that they're super healthy!  At only 92 calories per muffin, what could be better?

Greek Yogurt Lemon Muffins

Greek Yogurt Lemon Muffins (22-24 Muffins)

Ingredients:
1 5.6 oz. vanilla yogurt
1 box lemon cake mix
1 cup water

Preparation:
Preheat oven to 350.
Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl until well blended.
Spray two muffin tins with butter nonstick spray.
Scoop batter into muffin tins until about 3/4 full.
Bake for 15-17 minutes, until knife inserted in the middle of muffin comes out clean.
Let cool on baking rack.
Enjoy!

Recipe adapted from Penny Pincher Jenny

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Greek Yogurt Pancakes

I make these pancakes all. the. time.  In fact, I don't even make regular pancakes anymore because these are so easy and because they are much healthier than regular pancakes.  They are only 4 ingredients and you can go from deciding you want pancakes to eating breakfast in about 10 minutes.  Perfect!  These can be made with any kind of Greek yogurt, but be warned that if you use any fruit flavor the pancakes will turn slightly that color; I make these with mixed berry a lot and they always turn kind of blue, which is not super appetizing, but they are good.
These yield about 4 pancakes so if you have a family or really like pancakes, this recipe is easy to double or triple.

Greek Yogurt Pancakes 

Greek Yogurt Pancakes

Ingredients:
1 5.3 oz. container Greek yogurt (I used vanilla, but you can use whatever flavor you like)
1 egg
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 Tbsp. butter
Optional toppings: butter, syrup, fruit

Preparation:
Mix yogurt, egg, baking soda, and flour in a bowl, until well incorporated.
Heat a large skillet over medium heat.
Add butter and heat until melted.
Add scoops of batter until you have 4 even pancakes.
Cook until golden brown on the bottom.
Flip. Cook until golden brown.
Top with butter, syrup, or fruit.
Enjoy!

Recipe adapted from Everyday Belle

Monday, September 18, 2017

Blueberry Margaritas

The heat is back in Philly so the only thing to do was make margaritas!  I had some blueberries in the fridge that needed to be used up AND didn't want to run to the store so this recipe was perfect!  My friend Rae came over for dinner so I thought I would make a pitcher of these to impress and they were a hit!
I was a bit skeptical at first about just putting sugar into water and not making a simple syrup, but I shouldn't have worried.  The sugar dissolved and I had one less step!  These were ready in about 5 minutes and made 8 drinks!
We served these with chips and salsa for a Mexican start to our meal... well we actually were supposed to also have tacos to continue that theme, but ended up getting takeout and having a Chinese feast.  The good news is that the margs were so good, you could serve them with almost anything and it would be a good meal!
Photo courtesy of my friend Rae who was much better at taking this picture than I was!

Blueberry Margaritas 

Blueberry Margaritas 

Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups water
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/5 cups blueberries
1 1/2 cups silver tequila
1/2 cup fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon kosher salt, optional

Preparation:
Combine 1 1/2 cups water and sugar in a large pitcher.
Stir vigorously until sugar dissolves.
Muddle the blueberries in the pitcher. Add tequila and lime juice; stir.
If you wish, wet the rims of margarita glasses and dip in salt.
Pour over ice.
Enjoy!

Recipe adapted from Rasa Malaysia