HomeMade PB makes my Fingers Happy…

A recent post from Simply Scratch got my foodie brain spinning. Laurie from Simply Scratch is Simply Amazing in all ways and she’s been very helpful in the start of my own foodie blog =) I love her style and her photos are incredible. This Pb recipe isn’t exactly Laurie’s but was definitely inspired by it.  Thanks for the idea Laurie!

I had Scott’s Best bud Ara A.K.A- “The Peanut Butter Connoisseur”, A.K.A “The man I have to hide my Costco sized jars of Jif from”, try this and I got a “Mmmmmmm, now that’s good peanut butter” out of him.

This is really actually very easy and fun to do and…. PS…It’s all natural.  

Ingredients:

2 Cups Salted Peanuts- Shelled

2 Tbsp. + 1 tsp. Organic Agave Nectar- Light

2 Tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil- I’ve seen recipes call for peanut oil, veggie oil, grape seed oil- really any oil out there. I choose EVOO because it’s super healthy and I already had it. =)

 
In a food processor or blender, combine: peanuts, Agave …

 and oil.

Blend, process, blend and process.

Blend and process until it’s reached your desired creaminess.

You may find it helpful to pause in between to scrape the sides and start the blending processing process again.

You can always SLOWLY add a little more oil and blend again if you’re looking for a creamier consistency. (I did not- but it’s always an option)

My pb came out almost like a cookie dough. It spreads nicely.

ENJOY!!!

Ingredients:

2 Cups Salted Peanuts- Shelled

2 Tbsp. + 1 tsp. Organic Agave Nectar- Light

2 Tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil- I’ve seen recipes call for peanut oil, veggie oil, grape seed oil- really any oil out there. I choose EVOO because it’s super healthy and I already had it. =)
In a food processor or blender, combine: peanuts, Agave, and oil.

Blend, process, blend and process.

Blend and process until it’s reached your desired creaminess.

You can always SLOWLY add a little more oil and blend again if you’re looking for a creamier consistency.

My pb came out almost like a cookie dough. It spreads nicely.

ENJOY!!!

Posted in App A Teasers, Breakfast, Desserts, Dinners, Lunch, Sides, TiPs! | Tagged , | 16 Comments

Bacon & Egg Bouquets

This morning I was browsing through my Comfort Food Cookbook Diet by Taste of Home and came across a recipe they called “Bird’s Nest Breakfast cups” I got inspired and added my own twist on it and since I think they look like little roses I’m calling them Bacon & Egg Bouquets. They’re really good, and totally healthy! I originally planned to have these ready for Scott but unfortunately for him, time was tight and the weather was bad. The OCD blogger in me would not let him even try 1 until I snapped about 200 photos. He had to leave with out even a tiny taste. Sorry Babe, better luck next time! So I had these delsih bouquets all to myself! I’m so cruel.

Serves 4 – Makes 16 Mini Muffin “Bouquets”

Ingredients:

16 Pieces Turkey Bacon

1 ½ Cups Egg Whites (I used the whites from 10 Eggs)

½ Roma tomato- Diced

½ Avocado- Diced

Salt & Pepper to taste

Goat Cheese

Fresh Basil

Pre-Heat oven to 350°F.

Cook bacon on oiled/cooking sprayed griddle over medium-high heat. Do NOT cook fully just a minute or two on each side. Just enough to cook but not crisp.

Remove bacon from griddle and set aside.

Spray mini muffin cups with oil/cooking spray.

Line the muffin cups with one piece of bacon each; wrapping it around completely.

In a small bowl (preferably one with a pour spout, I used a large liquids measuring cup) whisk the egg whites.

Stir in tomato and avocado. (Or any other filler ingredients you choose)

Season with Salt

& Pepper

Slowly pour egg mix into each bacon bouquet.

Top with Goat cheese crumbles.

Bake for 15 minutes or until all egg bouquets have set.

Remove and let cool slightly and plate them up.

Top with fresh basil.

Enjoy!!!

 

Serves 4 – Makes 16 Mini Muffin “Bouquets”

Ingredients:

16 Pieces Turkey Bacon

1 ½ Cups Egg Whites (I used the whites from 10 Eggs)

½ Roma tomato- Diced

½ Avocado- Diced

Goat Cheese

Salt & Pepper to taste

Fresh Basil

 

Pre-Heat oven to 350°F.

Cook bacon on oiled/cooking sprayed griddle over medium-high heat. Do NOT cook fully just a minute or two on each side. Just enough to cook but not crisp.

Remove bacon from griddle and set aside.

Spray mini muffin cups with oil/cooking spray.

Line the muffin cups with one piece of bacon each; wrapping it around completely.

In a small bowl (preferably one with a pour spout) whisk the egg whites and stir in tomato and avocado. (Or any other filler ingredients you choose)

Slowly pour egg mix into each bacon bouquet.

Top with Goat cheese crumbles.

Bake for 15 minutes or until all egg bouquets have set.

Remove and let cool slightly and plate them up.

Top with fresh basil.

Enjoy!!!

Posted in Breakfast, Sides | Tagged , , , | 33 Comments

No Fuss Sunday Slow-Cooker Balsamic Pot Roast

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Scott and I had a bunch of things to do on Sunday and planned to be out of the house most of the day. We both were craving a Pot Roast so this recipe worked out perfect! It was easy to throw together and I didn’t have to worry about making dinner later in the evening! Scott myself and my adopted son Ara (Scott’s best friend and often our third person for dinner and game night) all LOVED this one. It has a subtle sweet but savory flavor that doesn’t over power the roast flavor. I could NOT get enough of the gravy. Best part? The gravy thickens itself because of the addition of tapioca! SOOOO EASY! SOOO yummy and SOOO satisfying!

Ingredients:


1 2-2 ½ Lb. Boneless Beef Chuck Roast
1 Large Onion – Roughly chopped
1 Cup Low Sodium Beef Broth
3 Tbsp. Balsamic Vinegar
2 Tbsp. Tomato Paste
2 Tbsp. Quick Cooking Tapioca
3 Large Garlic Cloves-Minced
1 tsp. Italian Seasoning- Store bought or Homemade
Salt and Pepper to taste

Place onions in slow cooker. (I used half of a red onion and half of white because I had them and they needed to be used)


Place roast on top of onions.


Season meat

with salt

and pepper.


In a small bowl add tomato paste, tapioca, garlic and Italian seasoning.

Add Vinegar

and Broth

and whisk together. That’s some mad whiskin goin on!


Pour mixture over meat.


Set cooker on low and cook for 8-10 hours. If you’re short on time set cooker to high and cook 4-5 hours.
Let cook without disturbing or checking on it; Every time you open the lid it lets all that precious hot air out. I was bummed to come home and find that my lid somehow and fallen in and created a constant leak. But it all worked out just fine in the end.
Once roast is cooked and is tender to the point of falling apart transfer to serving dish.

Use juice and onions in crockpot as gravy. Transfer liquid to a gravy boat.


Plate it up…


ENJOY!!!

This recipe was adapted from a Skinny Slow Cooker magazine recipe.

Ingredients:

1 2-2 ½ Lb. Boneless Beef Chuck Roast

1 Large Onion – Roughly chopped

1 Cup Low Sodium Beef Broth

3 Tbsp. Balsamic Vinegar

2 Tbsp. Tomato Paste

2 Tbsp. Quick Cooking Tapioca

3 Large Garlic Cloves-Minced

1 tsp. Italian Seasoning- Store bought or Homemade

Salt and Pepper to taste

Place onions in slow cooker. (I used half of a red onion and half of white because I had them and they needed to be used)

Place roast on top of onions.

Season meat with salt and pepper.

In a small bowl whisk together broth, vinegar, tomato paste, tapioca, garlic and Italian seasoning.

Pour mixture over meat.

Set cooker on low and cook for 8-10 hours. If you’re short on time set cooker to high and cook 4-5 hours.

Let cook without disturbing or checking on it; Every time you open the lid it lets all that precious hot air out. I was bummed to come home and find that my lid somehow and fallen in and created a constant leak. But it all worked out just fine in the end.

Once roast is cooked and is tender to the point of falling apart transfer to serving dish.

Use juice and onions in crockpot as gravy. Transfer liquid to a gravy boat.

Plate it up…

ENJOY!!!

Posted in CrockPot, Dinners | Tagged , , , | 12 Comments

Reduced Fat Blueberry Cheesecake Crepes

 

I woke up super early this morning and ended up working up quite an appetite. I rummaged through the fridge and realized I still have quite a bit of cream cheese that needs to be used as well as 2 pints of fresh blueberries. Ideas started swarming around my head and before you knew it, kitchenAid and I were whipping up a batch of these babies!  They’re pretty sweet so I paired them with some low-fat turkey bacon to add a savory flavor to the mix. It was GOOOOOD! Scott loved them.

Not hard at all, and very sweet and tasty!

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Makes 8 Crepes with Filling

Cheesecake Filling:

½ stick Low-Fat butter

4 oz. Fat-Free Cream Cheese- room temp

½ Cup powdered sugar

½ tsp. Vanilla extract

1 Cup Fresh Blueberries

With an electric mixer mix cream cheese and butter on medium speed until smooth.

Using a rubber spatula scrape the sides of the bowl to ensure complete mixing. Add vanilla
Slowly add powdered sugar.
Pour in blueberries and mix well on low. Just enough to give the mixture a pink/purple tint. You want most blueberries intact.
Transfer to an air-tight container or cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to use.

Crepes:

1 cup all-purpose flour

2 eggs

1/2 cup milk

1/2 cup water

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons butter, melted

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour and the eggs.

Gradually add in the milk and water, stirring to combine.

Add the salt and butter; beat until smooth.

Heat a lightly oiled griddle or frying pan over medium high heat. Pour or scoop the batter onto the griddle, using approximately 1/4 cup for each crepe. Tilt the pan with a circular motion so that the batter coats the surface evenly.

Cook the crepe for about 2 minutes, until the bottom is light brown. Loosen with a spatula, turn and cook the other side.

Lay crepe flat and put a small amount of Blueberry Cheesecake Filling in the center (This is rich so you don’t want to over fill) Roll Crepe and put on plate.

Serve hot.

ENJOY!!!

Makes 8 Crepes with Filling

Cheesecake Filling:

½ stick Low-Fat butter

4 oz. Fat-Free Cream Cheese- room temp

½ Cup powdered sugar

½ tsp. Vanilla extract

1 Cup Fresh Blueberries

  • With an electric mixer mix cream cheese and butter on medium speed until smooth
  • Using a rubber spatula scrape the sides of the bowl to ensure complete mixing
  • Add vanilla
  • Slowly add powdered sugar
  • Pour in blueberries and mix well on low. Just enough to give the mixture a pink/purple tint. You want most blueberries intact.
  • Transfer to an air-tight container or cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to use.

Crepes:

1 cup all-purpose flour

2 eggs

1/2 cup milk

1/2 cup water

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons butter, melted

  • In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour and the eggs. Gradually add in the milk and water, stirring to combine. Add the salt and butter; beat until smooth.
  • Heat a lightly oiled griddle or frying pan over medium high heat. Pour or scoop the batter onto the griddle, using approximately 1/4 cup for each crepe. Tilt the pan with a circular motion so that the batter coats the surface evenly.
  • Cook the crepe for about 2 minutes, until the bottom is light brown. Loosen with a spatula, turn and cook the other side.
  • Lay crepe flat and put a small amount of Blueberry Cheesecake Filling in the center (This is rich so you don’t want to over fill) Roll Crepe and put on plate.
  •  Serve hot.
  • ENJOY!!!

I found the recipe for the crepes here.

Posted in Breakfast, Desserts | Tagged , , , , | 13 Comments

Easy Crockpot Artichoke Garlic Chicken

This is my first attempt at a recipe from Skinny Slow Cooker Magazine. It turned out pretty good; Scott really doesn’t like artichokes but he was more than happy with this dinner. It was flavorful and not full of fat!

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Serves 2
Ingredients:


1 Red Bell Pepper- diced
1 Medium Onion- Cut into wedges
6 Garlic Cloves, Peeled and smashed
1 tsp. Fresh Rosemary- minced
1 tsp. Quick Cooking Tapioca
½ tsp. Lemon Zest
¼ Cup Low Sodium Fat-Free Chicken Broth
1 ½Lbs. Boneless, Skinless Chicken Thighs (I used 4-and had no left overs)
1 14 oz Can Cut Artichoke Hearts- Drained
1 tsp. Fresh Lemon Juice
Salt & Pepper to taste
2 servings Rigatoni Pasta

• Chop, mince and dice all veggies & spices.
• Combine bell pepper, onion, garlic, tapioca, rosemary, lemon zest, artichokes, chicken thighs, salt and pepper in crockpot.
• Pour broth and lemon juice over mixture.
• Cover and cook on low for 5 hours- You really don’t need to check on this but every once and a while maybe give it a little stir.
• Once chicken is cooked through, cook pasta.
• Serve over pasta top with fresh shaved parmesan
• ENJOY!!!

Chop, mince and dice all veggies & spices

Combine bell pepper, onion, garlic, tapioca, rosemary, lemon zest, artichokes, chicken thighs, salt and pepper in crockpot

Pour broth and lemon juice over mixture.

CoveCover and cook on low for 5 hours- You really don’t need to check on this but every once and a while maybe give it a little stir. Once chicken is cooked through, cook pasta and serve over pasta.

Serve over pasta

Ttop with fresh shaved parmesan.

ENJOY!!!

This recipe was adapted from Skinny Slow Cooker Magazine.
dogatDinnerTable

Posted in CrockPot, Dinners, Lunch | Tagged , , | 15 Comments

His & Her Surf & Turf- Filet & Champagne Scallops

 
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Since I was lucky enough to spend Valentine’s Day night working at the hospital, Scott and I celebrated the night before with a really really tasty dinner. The dish was perfect for us beacause I LOVE scallops and he realllllly LOVES steak. Honestly I think if he had to choose who to save from a burning house…He’d pick the steak, who want’s a burnt steak? Anyways, it was perfect because not only were they both each of our favorites but we got to cook it together. Scott is always in charge of the grill, lighting that massive thing is to much work for me.
Ingredients:
2 Filet Mignon
10 Large Sea Scallops
1 ½ tablespoons olive oil
2 cups Champagne
3 Tbsp. Fresh squeezed lemon juice
1 tbsp. Butter
2 Garlic cloves-minced
2 Tbsp. Parsley- minced
Fresh ground pepper

• Heat grill
• While the steaks are resting on the counter season with salt and pepper. (It’s always a good idea to let meat come back to room temp before grilling-you’ll achieve an accurate cooking temperature more effectively)
• Have hubby take the steaks out to the grill. (Our steaks were very thick and we like them medium rare, so this step came before I started the scallops. I also wanted to leave enough time for the filet’s to rest, allowing the juice to redistribute. You may want to start the scallops before the steak if you have a thinner piece of meat or like your steak well done)
• In heavy skillet heat oil over high heat
• When oil begins to smoke add scallops. BE CAREFUL! I used long grilling tongs, these babies splatter and that oil is H-O-T HOT!
• Sear each side for one minute or until each side is golden brown
• Add ½ cup of Champagne and lower heat to medium
• Simmer for about 2 minutes
• Add lemon juice, garlic and remaining champagne
• Bring to a boil and reduce by half
• Add butter, parsley and season with pepper
• Place scallops on a plate and smother with sauce
• By now your steaks should be ready and have had time to rest, so add them to the plate of scallops
• ENJOY!!!!

  • Heat grill, While the steaks are resting on the counter season with salt and pepper. (It’s always a good idea to let meat come back to room temp before grilling-you’ll achieve an accurate cooking temperature more effectively) Have hubby/Man-Friend take the steaks out to the grill.  (Our steaks were very thick and we like them medium rare, so this step came before I started the scallops. I also wanted to leave enough time for the filet’s to rest, allowing the juice to redistribute. You may want to start the scallops before the steak if you have a thinner piece of meat or like your steak well done)

 

In heavy skillet heat oil over high heat

When oil begins to smoke add scallops. BE CAREFUL! I used long grilling tongs, these babies splatter and that oil is H-O-T  HOT!

Sear each side for one minute or until each side is golden brown

Add ½ cup of Champagne and lower heat to medium

And of course pour yourself a glass!

Simmer for about 2 minutes

Add lemon juice, garlic and remaining champagne

Bring to a boil and reduce by half. Add butter, parsley and season with pepper

Place scallops on a plate and smother with sauce. By now your steaks should be ready and have had time to rest, so add them to the plate of scallops

ENJOY!!!!

And since it was our Valentine’s Day Celebration we continued it out here….

With this…. A great way to unwind and enjoy each others company and conversation!

Posted in Dinners | Tagged , , , | 29 Comments

Egg in a Basket – Love Day Style

This was one of my all-time faves growing up. I loved it when my mom whipped us up some eggs in a basket! Since it was Valentine’s Day I felt like my super awesome husband deserved a super awesome Valentine ’s Day themed breakfast.

So eggs in a basket love day style it was!
Serves 2


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Ingredients:

4 slices favorite bread -I used wheat but a brioche would be amazing!

1 egg+ 3 whites

4 whole eggs

Salt & pepper to taste

  • Use a rounder shaped cookie cutter to punch a hole in your “basket” (bread) – I used a heart because it was Valentine’s Day morning
  • If you don’t have a cookie cutter in hand just use the top of a small glass.
  • Remove cut outs and set aside
  • Whisk together 1 egg & 3 egg whites season with salt & pepper
  • Submerge each piece of bread into the egg mix quickly. Flip to get each side coated evenly. Don’t forget your cut outs!
  • Once all your bread has been egged heat an oiled/buttered/cooking sprayed griddle on medium high heat.
  • Place 1-2 baskets (depending on the size of griddle) on hot griddle. Put your cut out on there too!
  • Crack an egg and put it directly into the cut out
  • Let cook a few minutes so the bottom of the egg has cooked through
  • With a large flipper carefully flip your egg in a basket and cut out.
  • Allow egg to cook but be careful not to overcook the yolk. Unless of course your into that sort of thing.
  • Once everything is cooked through to your liking plate it up!!
  • Use your cut out as a dipper
  • Enjoy!!!

4 slices favorite bread

Use a rounder shaped cookie cutter to punch a hole in your “basket” (bread) – I used a heart because it was Valentine’s Day morning

Remove cut outs and set aside

If you don’t have a cookie cutter in hand just use the top of a small glass.

Whisk together 1 egg & 3 egg whites season with salt & pepper

Submerge each piece of bread into the egg mix quickly. Flip to get each side coated evenly. Don’t forget your cut outs!

Once all your bread has been egged heat an oiled/buttered/cooking sprayed griddle on medium high heat

Place 1-2 baskets (depending on the size of griddle) on hot griddle. Put your cut out on there too!

Crack an egg and put it directly into the cut out

Let cook a few minutes so the bottom of the egg has cooked through. With a large flipper carefully flip your egg in a basket and cut out. Allow egg to cook but be careful not to overcook the yolk. Unless of course your into that sort of thing.

Once everything is cooked through to your liking plate it up!!

Use your cut out as a dipper

Enjoy!!!

Clean Plate Award!

Posted in Breakfast | 34 Comments

Valentine’s Day Recipe Round Up

Ohhh Valentine’s Day… Loved by many and Hated by lots. Regardless of your thoughts on the day full of pink, hearts and mushy cards you can still take advantage of all the yummy goodies that come along with it!

For Breakfast:

HomeMade Pancakes with Strawberry Sauce and Whipped Cream-All homemade with love

Lunch time:

Sausage & Kale Soup

Mid Day snack:

Salt and Vinegar chips

Dinner:

Low Fat Baked Porcini Mushroom & Basil Manicotti

Date Night Drinks:

Strawberries and Basil Martini!

Dessert:

Home Made Ghirardelli Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups!

I hope EVERYONE has a beautiful Valentine’s Day! Whether you’re married, single, dating or it’s confusing & complicated, Make today a great Tuesday and EAT GOOD FOOD!

What are your V-day Plans??

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Pancakes with Strawberry Sauce & Whipped Cream! All HomeMade!

For Valentines Day my Husband got me a brand new KitchenAid Mixer!! So to thank him I made heart shaped Valentines Day Inspired pancakes with all the fixings!

 

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Just follow these steps!

I suggest making your Whipped Cream first and refrigerating it until your ready

Then I would make your Strawberry sauce. It can sit on the lowest setting on your stove while you’re making the pancakes. Just don’t forget to stir!

Then make HomeMade Pancakes

Enjoy!!!!

Posted in Breakfast | Tagged | 19 Comments

HomeMade Whipped Cream

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Makes enough for 4-6 servings

Ingredients:

¼  cup Heavy whipping cream

2 ¼ Tbsp. Confectioners’ sugar

1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • In a chilled small mixing bowl and with chilled beaters, beat cream until it begins to thicken.
  •  Add confectioners’ sugar and vanilla; beat until soft peaks form.  But don’t get to excited that your new mixer does all the work and walk away like I did… You’ll end up with butter!
  • Use immediately over your dish or Store in the refrigerator
  • ENJOY!!!

In a chilled small mixing bowl and with chilled beaters, beat cream until it begins to thicken.  Add confectioners’ sugar and vanilla; beat until soft peaks form

But don’t get to excited that your new mixer does all the work and walk away like I did… You’ll end up with butter! This is a FAIL!

This is what it should look like!

*source: http://allrecipes.com/recipe/sweetened-whipped-cream/

Posted in Desserts | Tagged | 4 Comments