Meyer Lemon Marmalade Three Ways

I ordered $30 worth of Meyer lemons from the Lemon Ladies Orchard in California.

Once I had a list of recipes lined up, I wished I spent $50 instead.

The first thing was marmalade. I enjoy marmalade enough that I would eat it with a spoon….but since I’m scared of eating an entire jar in one sitting, I rarely buy them.

Making marmalade is so easy. The most tedious part was to chop up the zest and separate the lemon fruit from the membrane. Once you get through all that, the rest is easy.

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Meyer Lemon Rolls

Being nice to your sweetie doesn’t just end after Valentine’s Day. How about surprising your loved one with a nice little breakfast in the morning?

These are lemon rolls, which are essentially cinnamon rolls but filled with lemon sweetness. I used my cinnamon rolls dough as a base (but used half WW and half AP flour), and made a lemon-sugar mixture topped with lemon icing.

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Dinner for Two: Buttermilk-Brined Cornish Hens

Happy Birthday to me!

I had been banned from baking any desserts all week, because SO didn’t want me to bake my own birthday treat, so unfortunately I had no treat for you.

However, I have a quick date-night dinner if you are still debating what to make your significant other!

Roasted Cornish hen is a perfect dinner for two. With an average weight of just under 2 lbs in most supermarkets, these easily fit into a small glass dish for baking, and feeds just enough so that you don’t have to worry about eating chicken for the next few days.

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Elvis Bars

While there has been thousands of chocolate recipes floating around Pinterest because Valentine’s Day is tomorrow, I thought I’d come up with a different type of dessert.

How about some bacon?

Don’t get me wrong, I looooove chocolate. I also love bacon and peanut butter. And who says Valentine’s Day has to be filled with chocolate?

Since I’m always doing some sort of exercise every day, I’m always on a hunt for lots of protein (with some carbs). I’ve always wanted to make some sort of Elvis cake (one of which consists of chocolate, peanut butter, and bananas). I thought this would be the perfect post-workout dessert.

I made this treat for my running group this past Tuesday, and it was such a big hit, that I think I instantly became everyone’s Valentine. I skipped the chocolate, because the peanut butter frosting is very rich. However, feel free to drizzle chocolate sauce over it if you desire.

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Baked Garlic Parmesan Drumsticks

Superbowl is approaching and the interwebs has been filled with all sorts of creative party foods.

I am a huge sucker for chicken wings. Since I can’t handle too much spicy flavor, garlic parmesan is my go-to wing flavor.

I had a bunch of drumsticks left over in my freezer, so I used those instead of wings. By baking it on a rack, you get a much crispier skin as the oil will drip off as it is released from the skin.

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Sweet Bourbon Sausage Pasta

I finally looked at my Blogging Report from 2013. It’s interested that some of my recipes were shared to Reddit.

Anyhoo, here’s a quick weeknight recipe for you. It’s one of those “roughly 30-minute meals”.

Sorry for the cellphone photos again.

This is a quick tomato-based pasta sauce, flavored with Italian sausage and sweet bourbon. I highly discourage you to use expensive bourbon, as this recipe calls for 1/2 cup of it. I used Firefly Sweet Tea Bourbon, which is on the much milder side and costs only $20 a bottle. You can use dark rum or brandy if you don’t have bourbon in hand.

This results in a chunky sauce, so go with pasta such as rigatoni or penne would be best. I had neither, so I used medium shells but made sure that the Italian sausage was broken up into small enough pieces so that the pasta can hold the sauce.

Printable Recipe!

Serves 4-6

Ingredients:
1 lb whole wheat pasta
1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 lb Italian sausage, casings removed
1 medium onion, chopped
1 lb baby bella mushroom, sliced
2 cloves garlic
1 (28oz) can of diced tomatoes
1 tbsp tomato paste
1/2 cup cheap bourbon (or dark rum or brandy)
1/2 cup cream
salt and pepper to taste

Directions:
1. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain, reserve a cup of pasta water, and set aside.
2. In a large saute pan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Cook garlic, onions, and mushroom until softened, then add in Italian sausage. Cook for about 5 minutes, breaking up the sausages to smaller pieces.
3. Add in diced tomatoes, tomato paste, and bourbon. Bring the mixture to a boil, and reduce the heat to a simmer. Continue to cook down the sauce for about 30 minutes.
4. Turn off the heat and stir in the cream. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve over pasta.

Eggnog Bread Pudding

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday break! SO and I traveled around New England a bit to see family, and I also had the opportunity to meet up with my high school friends, and have some of my bridesmaids meet for the first time!

That means a lot of eating out and not a lot of “blog-worthy” cooking, hence the almost 3-week hiatus. This year will be a busy one, so number of posts will probably be limited, but I am hoping to give myself some cooking challenges just to stay blog busy.

Right after the new year we had a minor snow storm, so I stocked up the refrigerator and our pantry with goods for the entire weekend. I bought a pack of bagels but didn’t have enough cream cheese to serve them. As they started getting stale, I thought I’d try them on a bread pudding.

Coincidently, I bought a jug of eggnog from Whole Foods just before Christmas, and we had about half of it leftover. I added some eggs, chopped up the bagels, soaked them together, baked it, and voila!

(I apologize for the cell phone photos on this post and the next few…I will try not to do that again)

I topped the bread pudding with a butterscotch sauce. The results came out pretty eggy, as expected, but it makes a perfect filling breakfast. The spiciness of the eggnog was perfect (depending on what kind of eggnog you have on hand, you may want to add some extra nutmeg).

Printable Recipe!

Serve 6-8

Ingredients:
2 cups eggnog (or 1 cup eggnog and 1 cup milk if you want a less eggy bread pudding)
4 stale bagels, chopped to 1-inch cubes
4 eggs
1 tbsp vanilla extract
4 tbsp butter
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup heavy cream (or half-and-half)

Directions:
1. Grease a 8″x8″ pan with butter or cooking spray. Throw in cubed bagels. Whisk together eggs and eggnog in a separate bowl and pour over the bagels. Let the mixture soak for at least 1 hour in the refrigerator, and preferably overnight.
2. Preheat oven to 350F. Take the pan out of the refrigerator and let it rest at room temperature as the oven preheats. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until the center is set.
3. While the bread pudding is cooking, prepare the butterscotch sauce. Bring together vanilla extract, butter, brown sugar, and heavy cream in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Let it boil for 5 minutes, stirring constantly, as the sauce starts to thicken.
4. Once the bread pudding is ready, pour the butterscotch sauce over it. Let it sit for 5-10 minutes before serving. The bread pudding can be kept refrigerated for up to 1 week.