Showing posts with label Food. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Food. Show all posts

Peanut Butter Cookies

This past weekend we decided not to hit the waves, but clean out a lot of forgotten spaces in our house. One space being the pantry. We are good at rotating foods in our pantry, but every once in awhile we find out we have more of one item than we think. This weekend it was peanut butter. Six jars later we realize that we are pretty set on having enough for awhile. I tried to think of ways to use it and there is so many possibilities. After sorting through all of the options, we agreed on making peanut butter cookies and played around with some of the chocolate candies we picked up at the local food co-op here. We love these chocolate candies and they are similar to M&M's, but are made with Fair Trade chocolate and dyed with better ingredients. Since changing our eating habits to better quality, it's amazing how many things that once tasted "good" now taste off. One of the main products I've noticed the change in taste is chocolate and peanut butter. I used to love Hershey's, especially Hershey Kisses, but now, nope. I can't eat them without feeling like I'm eating chocolate-flavored wax. These chocolate rainbow drops can be purchased online here, if you wanted to use them like we did in this recipe. Here's how we made our peanut butter cookies.

Ingredients:

1 cup organic peanut butter, 1 cup organic sugar

1 large organic egg, ½ cup organic flour

Chocolate candies

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix the peanut butter, sugar, egg in a mixer and add flour on low speed until well combined. Don't over mix, just enough to combine everything and make a wet/oily dough base.

Roll into balls, or create your own pattern of cookie. Pressing a fork into the tops of the cookies creates the lines on the top of the cookies shown here. Add the chocolate candies anywhere on the cookies that you chose. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the tops of the cookies start to brown a bit. 

These cookies are great when they are still slightly warm.

Lemon Squares

I hate cooking. Anyone that knows me well will tell you that. Cooking, baking, or even standing in the kitchen making a sandwich, I hate it all. Which, seems odd to say, as most people that are in my bloodline seem to enjoy it a lot. I've never been one to find any joy in it. I've heard people say that it gives them joy, or melts their heart to watch people eat what they've cooked. Nope, not me. If you like it, cool, if not, I'm not surprised. Ha! But, there are random times where I will go into the kitchen and make something completely unexpected. Skylar tells me all the time that he likes that part of me the best. When I cook, or bake something that no one expects. He tells me that's his favorite kind of cooking and describes me as-"The unexpected cook." 


The unexpected baking I did this week was lemon squares. I took advantage of our local food co-op's citrus sale in January and stocked up on organic Meyer lemons. I ended up juicing all of them and freezing the juice to use at a later time. Well, this week was the "later time." 


These lemon squares are five ingredients and are delicious and easy to make. 
Here's what you'll need:

For the crust:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F, or 176 degrees C.

Mix butter, 2 cups of the flour, and ½ cup of the sugar in a bowl. Press the dough into the bottom of an ungreased glass 9x13-inch* baking dish. Bake for 15-20 minutes until lightly golden. Do not over bake. Set out to cool completely.
(*roughly)


For the lemon filling:

Mix in a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, or by hand, 1½ cups of sugar, ¼ cup flour, all of the eggs (one at a time), and add the lemon juice slowly. 


Pour over the top of the cooled crust.



Bake at 350 degrees F (176 degrees C) for 20 minutes, or until the top is firm and set. 
Allow to cool completely before dusting with powdered sugar. This step is optional, but it does make for a tastier lemon square and it just looks pretty. Place them on a plate and serve. We like to eat them when they are still a slight bit warm, but they are also delicious when they are chilled.


Abeego Food Wrap

Surely, by now, you've heard of the different forms of beeswax wraps for your food and other items. But, have you heard of Abeego? They have such cute designs and varieties and for a limited time they are offering a sample of their beeswax warps for free. It's a small size that will handle an avocado, half a lemon slice, or even a stack of crackers. I like to take the beeswax wrap and cut them into smaller squares and use them to wrap around our toothbrush heads, or cut them into strips and use them to coral pencils together, or silverware for a picnic. The possibilities are really endless with these beeswax wraps. The best part  about them, when they have reached their end of use lifecycle, you can add them to your compost, or use them as a makeshift lighting tool for a campfire or fire pit during a get together. You can use code (EVERYDAYECOABEEGO) to try the small size and then give feedback here on the blog, or on their site about what you think of their beeswax wraps. I guarantee you'll be wanting more. I have every size and shape of beeswax wraps and because of them we have completely cut out cling wrap, or any type of plastic wrap for over two years now. They really do work great and keep food fresh and safe just the same as plastic. We use them for our road trips and while traveling, too, and we just love them. Give them a try! And, right now they are offering free shipping on all US orders. Check out their giant Abeego for bagging breads and other large items.




TAKE THE AVOCADO CHALLENGE WITH YOUR NEW WRAP:

1. Slice your avocado in half and wrap in Abeego with the pit still in place.
2. Place in the fridge, pit side up.
3. Wait three days, then unwrap. How does it look? Taste? Smell? Feel? How is it different than other halved avocados you've pulled out of the fridge? If you're keen to push the boundaries, wrap it back up and keep going.
4. Show off your avocado. Share your avocado results online and take @abeego and #BetterWithAbeego



AFTER 10 DAYS (with pit in):






Lemon Cake

I can't cook. Period. Whatsoever. I used to be able to kind of "experiment" in the kitchen, but the last few years I've just lost all interest in even doing that. The only time I enjoy cooking, or baking, is when it's not planned. As in, spur of the moment type cooking or baking. One of those times was to make lemon cake. It went well, but there's a few things I would change in the future. I love lemon and the recipe I followed didn't give the lemon cake enough lemon taste.


Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups cake flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup unsalted butter , softened
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
2 Tablespoons lemon zest from about 4 medium lemons
2 large eggs
4 large egg whites
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup sour cream


Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. 

2. Prepare your cake pans with vegetable grease (I use Spectrum brand). Be sure to get in the corners. Set aside.

3. Mix flours, baking powder, baking soda, and salt with a whisk to combine all together. Set aside.

4. In an electric mixer, combine butter, sugar and lemon zest. Add the whole eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add the egg whites one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add the vanilla. 

5. Incorporate the dry ingredients with the wet ingredients alternating between the dry mix and the sour cream as you add them together. 

6. If making one large cake, pour cake batter into prepared pan, if baking two separate cakes, divide the batter into each pan evenly. 

7. Bake about 20-25 minutes. Check the center with a toothpick to see if it comes out clean.

8. Allow to cool for about 15 minutes and then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.


Lemon Frosting:

1 cup butter (2 sticks)
4-6 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup lemon juice
1 teaspoon lemon zest

1. Mix butter with electric mixers for about 1 minute, until creamy. 

2. Add the powdered sugar, lemon juice and lemon zest. Mix until creamy. 

3. For a thicker icing, add more powdered sugar, for a runnier icing, add more lemon juice.

4. Poke holes in the top of the cake in random places and drizzle your icing over the top. If a thicker icing issued, you don't have to poke any holes, just ice the cake normally.

Jalapeno Poppers

I can't cook. Anyone that's around me for longer than three months knows this. I do try, but I honestly can't stand cooking, so me sharing a recipe is a huge deal. Plus, I'm a picky eater, so the things I eat, that I've cooked are rare. Some of it is a failure, but I am getting better with knowing what I can and can't cook. Here's one of the things I actually enjoy making and cooking. And, plus side, they are easy to do.

Jalapeno Poppers

What you'll need:
  1. 20-30 jalapeno/poblano/Anaheim peppers (seeded and cut lengthwise) **use gloves for this**
  2. 3-4 (8oz) blocks of cream cheese (room temperature)
  3. 1 tablespoon of onion powder
  4. 1 teaspoon of pepper
  5. 1 teaspoon of salt (to taste)
  6. 1 tablespoon of jalapeno juice (this adds some additional spice to the mix)
  7. 2-3 jalapeno seeds (if you want it spicier)
Mix together in a bowl and fill each jalapeno shell. Be sure to overfill to your desired amount. Bake for 20-30 minutes in a 350 degree oven, or until the tops are browned. 

*Additionally, you can add bacon bits on top, or shredded cheese in the last two minutes of baking


Basil/Tomato Chicken Wrap

This recipe is one of the house favorites here. Extremely easy to make and delicious. We normally make this toward the end of the week when we are low on meals for dinner, or lunch. I've even made two batches and placed them in glass lunch containers, so The Mr. can have something to grab and go for lunches for a few days. They are a high-end meal for low effort preparing and baking. 


What you will need:

Two organic, free-range chicken breasts (we like to use Roxy-the organic chicken)
Organic extra virgin olive oil 
Sea salt and organic black pepper
Organic mozzarella (we like to use Organic Valley)
Organic Roma tomatoes-sliced (about two)
Fresh, organic basil leaves


What to do:

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Wash and remove any fat from the chicken breast. Lay them out on a flat work surface and begin slicing them length-wise to cut into two equal-sized pieces. Once cut you should have four pieces to work with. Lay a small sheet of parchment paper over each breast and pound flat to about 1/4-inch thickness. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Rub the salt and pepper into the breasts. Add two slices of tomato, a few leaves of basil, and a thin slice of mozzarella. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, and add another small drizzle of olive oil. Roll up chicken breasts starting from the larger end and rolling to the narrow end. Place on olive oil drizzled, glass baking dish seam-side down. Drizzle more olive oil on top of each breast and sprinkle with more salt and pepper. Bake at 400 degrees for about 15-20 minutes. Remove from oven and top each breast with a small slice of mozzarella. Broil five more minutes to melt and lightly brown the cheese. To cut calories with this dish you can leave off the last step with the cheese on top and just sprinkle with salt and pepper before serving (as pictured below).


Serve them hot along side some French baguette slices!


(As with any recipe, be sure to use quality, non-gmo, organic ingredients)