Friday, October 9, 2015

Breakfast For Dinner with Krusteaz

Breakfast is quite possibly my favorite meal- when there's sweet and savory, and never ending freshly brewed coffee, I am a happy woman. Throw in some salty bacon or sausage and it's a perfect meal in our household. Eating breakfast at dinnertime is even better and so comforting. 

Ever since my kiddo started school last month, he's been sick. He's picked up yucky school germs and has either had a cough, cold or congestion since the start of September....that he kindly shared with his parents. Just recently he also had a fever that really wore him down. When Hayden is really sick, he just sleeps and doesn't eat very much. While it's nice and quiet in the house, I worry about him getting enough nutrition. So when he specifically said he was hungry and wanted pancakes for dinner, I happily obliged. 

I reached for the Krusteaz Blueberry Pancake mix and made a double batch of pancakes for my boy. I like to make enough pancakes to stock my freezer so that school day breakfast are quick and easy. I followed the directions on the back of the box but added a little vanilla extract and a few handfuls of fresh blueberries- for extra berry goodness. He ate every single bite and after a few days, felt much better. 

**GIVEAWAY CLOSED** Would you like to try Krusteaz mixes as well? One lucky winner will receive a Krusteaz Breakfast Night prize pack containing each of the Krusteaz mixes- Buttermilk Pancake, Blueberry Pancake, Belgian Waffle, Wild Blueberry Muffina pancake pen, a spatula and a coupon for free product. Simply leave a comment on this blog post along with your email and tell me what your favorite kind of pancakes are. **GIVEAWAY CLOSED**

Krusteaz kindly sent me product to try, but the options I express are my own. I was not compensated for this blog post- just sharing so that you can enjoy it too!

Saturday, April 25, 2015

My Return To Blogging and Secret Ingredient Chocolate Chip Cookies!

Hi! Remember me?! I've been away for some time. It wasn't planned, I just got burnt out. I worked so hard on the cookbook and was making and photographing 2-3 recipes a day. Once it was all done, it was a huge relief but I really didn't want to do it anymore and that meant blogging was put on hold. That also meant that I didn't pick up my camera for a long time either. I am still baking and trying new recipes and am taking pictures with my iphone to share on Instagram (monica_h30) and Facebook. It's easier and faster and much less pressure and I get to post daily pics of my growing curly haired boy! 

Christmas 2014
I've been getting emails and comments asking when I'm returning and posting a new recipe, so here I am! I am so thankful for you guys and your support. I'm feeling motivated and I'm learning to use my camera once again (I sort of forgot how to use it and felt lost and confused when I picked it up...which also led to me not wanting to take pictures of food or anything else, for that matter). I took pictures of Hayden's 3rd birthday in September and was disappointed with how they turned out. The lighting was off and things were out of focus but I think I'm getting the hang of it again and I'm feeling inspired to try new recipes....which is kind of thrilling. 

These cookies were my "practice cookies". I took so many pictures of them, relearning the camera as I went. Some were too dark, some were over exposed and many were blurry and out of focus. But in the end, I think this is what I needed to do. I just needed to sit and shoot until it felt comfortable again. Thus I bring you, hard boiled egg chocolate chip cookies. 

I know what you're thinking and you're probably making faces at your screen right now but trust me on this. This was a way to use up some of the leftover boiled eggs I had from Easter. It's a basic chocolate chip cookie recipe but instead of raw eggs, you use finely chopped cooked eggs. I chopped the eggs, then I used a pastry cutter to chop them up even finer. You can see the bits of egg in the raw dough but once it's cooked they kind of melt away into the cookie. In the end you're left with a buttery, slightly chewy cookie, reminiscent to oatmeal chocolate chip cookies. We all really liked these and they seemed to stay fresher than most other recipes. I didn't tell hubby what was in these until after he ate them but it didn't make any difference. We all loved them!

These look much different than the cookies from Cookies and Cups. Her cookies were fluffy and thick while mine were thin. I made one batch on a Silpat mat and they spread into each other and were super thin. The other batch I baked on an unlined metal sheet pan and I preferred them much more. They were still thin but they looked better. The edges crisp and the center chewy. Also I baked them a little longer, I'm not a big fan of underbaked cookies. Bake them however you like, but definitely give this unique recipe a try!

Boiled Egg Chocolate Chip Cookies
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1¼ cups brown sugar, packed
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 2 hard boiled eggs, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a large mixing bowl cream together butter and brown sugar, approximately 2 minutes until light and fluffy. 

Add in vanilla and finely chopped eggs and continue mixing. (You will still see bits of egg in the batter, this is okay.)

Add in baking soda, salt and flour and mix until combined. Stir in chocolate chips.

Scoop onto pan using a medium cookie scoop.

Bake for 10-12 minutes or until edges begin to turn golden. 

Allow to cool for a few minutes on baking sheet before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. 

Makes about 2 dozen. 

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Pumpkin Spice Pie & The Jif Giveaway Winner


I make pumpkin pie every year but I've never blogged about it. Maybe I feel it's so common it's not worth a post of it's own? Or perhaps I think everyone has their own recipe for it already? Or maybe I just never got a good picture of the pie? I don't really know the answer, but today I'm sharing my version of this pie. 

There's a BBQ joint here in town that sells pumpkin pies around the holidays. No one in my family thinks they're that great except for my brother. He buys them in multiples and eats 2-3 whole pies just by himself. A couple years ago I set out to make him the best pumpkin pie I possibly could. I researched several recipe and combined bits of each to create this one. You can make your own pie crust recipe or use a frozen or refrigerated crust. It's up to you and no one will judge you for choosing one over the other. Today we are simply talking about pumpkin pie filling. 

This pie uses brown sugar, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and freshly ground black pepper. That's the little surprise ingredient that makes this pie special. It adds an extra bit of spiciness, that you can't quite pinpoint but you know there's something a little different about it. I also like to refrigerate the pumpkin pie filling overnight before baking it. Some chocolate chips cookie recipes call for the same step- it allows all the ingredients to meld together and makes it that much better. If you're short on time you can skip the refrigeration step but if you have the time, try it! This pie is silky and creamy and while it's got some quirky aspects to it, it's very traditional. My brother still likes his store bought pies but I found out he likes them dry and firm and I'm not willing to make dry pie. haha! 

Pumpkin Spice Pie from Lick The Bowl Good

  • 1- 15 oz. can pure pumpkin
  • 3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1  1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon finely ground black pepper
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1- 12 oz. can evaporated milk

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. 

In a large bowl, combine the pumpkin, brown sugar and spices. Whisk the ingredients together together then add the eggs one at a time until just combined. Gradually add the evaporated milk to the pumpkin mixture, stirring to combine.  

Optional Step: Refrigerate the pumpkin pie mixture overnight to intensify the flavors. Otherwise, continue on with the next step. 

Pour the pumpkin pie mixture into a deep dish unbaked pie shell. 

Bake at 425 degrees for 20 minutes then reduce the oven to 350 degrees F and bake for an additional 45-50 minutes. The pie might be a little jiggly in the center but it will firm up as it cools. 

Place pie on a wire rack and allow to cool completely. Serve at room temperature or chilled. 

The winner of the Jif giveaway is commenter #99 Elle who said: 

"I am incredibly thankful for my family, specifically my Mother who has always supported me and loved me through everything and who has always been my personal cheerleader in life."
Congratulations Elle! Please email me with your address. Thank you all for entering the giveaway.

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