Archives for January 2013

Cookie Trip!

Happy Thursday my friends!
Seester arrives tomorrow for some visit/work time. The only thing that matters is that she is going to be here for my birthday which is a little over a week away. Boo-yah! I seem to have steered myself away from the dessert path this week. Whaaaaat? That’s over. Let us take a trip down cookie lane.

I’m a huge fan of ingredients(es) all up in my cookie.
Black raisins are soooooo old. Golden raisins are where it’s at. 
We all know it is literally impossible for me to go without coconut in any recipe
let alone a cookie recipe.

I mean, a cookie without coconut? What kind of cookie is that.
A very sad little cookie I tell you.

These cookies are movie stars I tell you. I’m telling you a heap of things lately, huh?

Let’s not talk about how I got in the car yesterday, went to 2 stores, and arrived back home only to realize that my pants were inside out.
Not my shirt.

MY FREAKING PANTS!
Thank goodness they were my black lululemon pants because I’m sure if I was wearing jeans it would have been more apparent. 
Then again, I’d never wear jeans. That’s a whole different story for another day.

Thank you Lawd for making things better with cookies.

Crispy, chewy, chocolatey, chunky, stuffed cookies of greatness!
BADA-BING!
Dark Chocolate Golden Raisin Oatmeal Cookies (GF):
Ingredients:
1/2 c. coconut oil, at room temperature
3/4 c. raw coconut sugar
1 t. pure vanilla extract
1 large egg
1 1/4 c. gluten-free all purpose flour (I used Cup 4 Cup)
1/2 t. baking soda
1/4 t. salt
1 c. rolled oats (I used gluten-free)
1/2 c. chopped dark chocolate (I used Ghirardelli 60% cacoa)
1/2 c. golden raisins
1/2 c. chopped walnuts
1/2 c. unsweetened, coconut flakes
Instructions:
1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
2. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.
3. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the coconut oil, sugar, and vanilla on high until smooth and creamy.
4. Beat in the egg.
5. In a large mixing bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, and salt.
6. With the mixer on low, slowly add the flour mixture to the sugar mixture until just blended, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. 
7. Mix in the oats.
8. Fold in the dark chocolate, raisins, walnuts, and coconut.
9. Refrigerate the dough for 30 minutes.
10. Use a cookie scoop to scoop the dough out by rounded teaspoons onto the prepared baking sheet.
11. Bake for 5 minutes, then rotate the pan and bake for an additional 5 minutes, or until slightly golden around the edges.
12. Let cool for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack.
Makes 2 dozen cookies.
MANGIA!!!

No Plans.

Happy Wednesday y’all!
Wait…seriously? Is it only Wednesday? Come on…give me something to work with here, people!
Okay. Deep breath. Almost to the end of the week 🙂
So, yesterday I gave you scones. Now, we are going to have another little breakfast party.
If I haven’t mentioned it before…I love breakfast. I think because it’s the time of day where I get to sit quietly and enjoy myself before the day begins. It’s also a time where I reflect on yesterday and map out my daily plans. By plans I mean running “errands”, applying for jobs, and cooking and baking until I am covered in flour and pasta sauce. Yep. My plans are luxurious. 
With breakfast though, well, breakfast takes me to a different place…a land of no plans, where I wander off and do whatever I want, when I want, when I say I want. A land I will one day venture to, but am afraid to at the moment. Yes, I said it. I am afraid to have no plans. But…I am working on that. It’s going great. Probably about a 7 on a 1 to 10 scale. 
Let’s talk about simplicity.
It’s what makes the world go round’. 
Sauteed greens are my fave. 

Also, garlic is definitely running through my veins at all times. 

This frittata is all about the greens. 

You will definitely thank me when I put you into a sugar coma at the end of this week. 

Simplicity at it’s best. 

Now excuse me while I jet off to the isles of Santorini to eat olives, feta, and bask in the Mediterranean sun. 
Frittata is the new omelet. 
Simple Greens Frittata (GF/P):
Ingredients:
extra-virgin olive oil
1.5 c. fresh spinach
1.5 c. fresh baby kale
2 cloves of garlic
1/2 c. chopped fresh parsley, (reserve for garnish as well)
8 large eggs
1/2 c. unsweetened vanilla almond milk
freshly cracked black pepper and salt, to taste
freshly grated Parmesan cheese, optional
Instructions:
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. 
2. Add the evoo to a 10′ cast-iron skillet. Heat over medium heat on the stove.
3. Add the spinach and kale to the skillet and saute until wilted. 
4. Add in the garlic and parsley.
5. Set the skillet aside and allow to cool.
6. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, almond milk, salt and pepper. 
7. Once the skillet is almost completely cool, pour the egg mixture over the greens mixture.
8. Place the skillet in the oven and bake until the frittata puffs up and becomes lightly golden brown. 
9. Cut into wedges and serve warm topped with freshly grated Parmesan cheese.
Makes 8 slices. 
MANGIA!!!

Wizard’s and Poppies

Happy Tuesday y’all!
My intentions were to make a cake yesterday, but somehow, that cake translated into making scones. Oh, and a frittata. Oh, and some bacon. Do you think I’m obsessed with breakfast? Breakfast for breakfast, lunch, and dinner is just fine by me. In college when I was working as a barista at a local coffee shop, I often had little time to eat breakfast before rushing off to work for my morning shift. However, the perks of opening up the coffee shop by myself were absolutely delicious…seriously. 
While I did paperwork, ground fresh coffee beans, and set out the pastries…wait, pastries…yes, I would sit and have a double espresso con panna with a day-old cranberry orange scone. Sometimes I would dip the scone into the espresso and take a bite…absolute heaven. The only problem with day old scones is that they are rock solid. I like my scones chewy and fluffy. So, out with the old…in with the new.
We begin with almond flour and orange zest…these are paleo
duh.

The almond flour is key to achieving that chewy scone with crispy edges. 

We sweeten these scones with a touch of honey. My dad’s friend gave us fresh honey from his backyard bees months ago.
Looks like I used the last bit. 🙂

We add poppy seeds for that extra nutty texture. 
Oh, and because they are just soooo pretty.

Just don’t eat the poppy seeds before taking a drug test. Wait…do they give you a false negative or a false positive? Is that a myth?
Who cares…
we’ve got cranberries too!

On another note, poppy seeds remind me of the field of poppy’s in the Wizard of Oz.
Now I want to take a nap 🙂

But back to these scones. 

Seriously, everything I hoped for…chewy, crispy, tart, sweet, nutty. 
Wham-bam!

We are about to get crafty with some glaze here people. 

Fresh orange juice, honey, and powdered sugar.

We will just pretend powdered sugar is paleo. 
There’s always a little wiggle room.

Hey there breakfast. 

I seriously cannot get over how delicious these scones are. 

Wish seester was here to eat them with me. 

I will save one for her until her arrival on Friday. 🙂

Birthday scones are always a treat 🙂

Cranberry Orange Poppy Seed Scones with Orange Honey Glaze (GF/P):

Ingredients:
For the scones:
3 c. almond flour
1 t. baking soda
1/8 t. salt
zest of 1 orange
2 eggs
2 T. raw honey
1 T. freshly squeezed orange juice
1 T + 1 t. poppy seeds
3/4 c. dried cranberries
For the glaze:
3 T. raw honey
juice of 1 orange
6 T. powdered sugar
Instructions:
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the almond flour, baking soda, and salt. 
3. Add in the orange zest, eggs, honey, and orange juice. Stir until a dough forms.
4. Fold in the poppy seeds and cranberries.
5. Mold the dough into 1 large round ball and place on the prepared baking sheet.
6. Place another piece of parchment paper on top of the dough and lightly press down on the dough using your hands. Then, using a rolling pin, roll out the dough to 1 inch thickness.
7. Using a pizza cutter or a large serrated knife, cut the dough into 8 triangular pieces.
8. Bake the scones for 12-15 minutes, or until slightly golden brown around the edges.
9. To make the glaze, combine all of the glaze ingredients in a small mixing bowl, whisking until smooth and thick.
10. Let the scones cool slightly and then glaze.
Makes 8 scones.
MANGIA!!!

Roses.

Happy Monday y’all!
Today is my baby seester’s 23rd birthday and probably one of the first years that I am spending her birthday without her 🙁 I have also come to terms with the fact that I must be the worst seester in the world because I haven’t made her any birthday treats….yet, that is. This week expect birthday treats. Hopefully I can mail them to her 🙂

Last week I was craving protein, but instead of my usual go to chicken or turkey, I wanted fish. If you know me…this is highly unlikely. Especially since I once went on a fish binge…like salmon burgers, blackened tilapia, seared halibut all up in my mouth for months binge! Then of course I got sick of it. However, last week was the week I decided I was back on the fish train. Well…only certain types of fish. So, I headed out to the place where I knew I could get the freshest fish available…Rose’s Seafood.

 Rose’s is right down the street from my house, located directly on top of the bay…so you know their seafood is fresh. My parents have been taking seester and I to Rose’s since we were little girls. It is a family run business which is why I love to purchase from them. Not to mention, it’s local so you know where you are getting your seafood from. I hadn’t been to Rose’s in a year or so, but of course the second I arrived all my childhood memories came rushing back to me. I headed to the fish counter to pick out the best looking fish. Now, usually I would get me some red snapper but in this case, I would have to sell my arms and legs down the river to afford it. Soooo, I settled for a couple of pounds of fresh, beautiful, flounder.

I mean, seriously?
Who am I?

This fish was the most flavorful fish I have ever met.

Not to mention, super tender and flaky.

The fish has a buttery taste…without the butter 🙂 Oh, and I got creative with some spinach there. 
For sure melt in you mouth-ish.

Yes, I am describing fish as melt in your mouth.
Now I want some chocolate. 

Lawd hawwwlp me!
Baked Lemon Rosemary Flounder (GF/P):
Ingredients:
1 lb. fresh caught flounder, rinsed and patted dry
1 T. extra-virgin olive oil
1 T. Dijon mustard
3 sprigs of fresh rosemary, minced
1 large Meyer Lemon, thinly sliced
freshly cracked black pepper and sea salt, to taste
Instructions:
1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9×11 in. baking dish with cooking spray. Place the fish in the baking dish.
2. In a small bowl, mix together the evoo and dijon.
3. Using a pastry brush, brush the flounder with the dijon mixture.
4. Sprinkle the flounder with chopped rosemary and place lemon slices evenly over the fillets. Season with salt and pepper. 
5. Bake for 12-15 minutes or until the fish flakes in the thickest part.
Serves 4-6.
MANGIA!!!

My Life According To…

Happy Sunday y’all!
This week has been pretty busy round’ these here parts. 
Work, eat, run, sleep, repeat. 
Oh, and a little fun in between.
My mom’s birthday was at the beginning of the week.
My aunts got her a beautiful bouquet of flowers and a Starbucks gift card.
They know her a little too well 😉

I made cake and gave my mom a bite…that was our little celebration. 
But I told her this cake was strictly for single gals and if I was going to get the full benefits, I would have to consume the majority of the cake solo. 😉

Pumpkin Carrot Cake Bread please come back to me!

Best eggplant idea like…ever!

My dad and his bff. 
I went to my cousin and his fiances wonderful wedding shower last night and why I’d love to share pics…I need to do some editing and send them off to the wedding party people. They just might want to use them for something special.
Off to run some errands and attend my friends housewarming party!
I might just bring her some cookies…if she’s lucky!
MANGIA!!!