Pick-me-up Tuesdays

tiramisu

Is anyone else tired of the crummy weather already? One day, it is in the 60s and I am sweating at night in my flannel pjs. The next, it is a frigid 24 degrees with sleet pounding down from the sky. It is gross and I’m tired of it. Who do I have to feed to make it stop?

On a positive note, the holidays are coming around and I feel relatively settled in the new apartment. No longer is every weekend spent busy things that we need or stocking the pantry. While we can’t yet host people, a new couch is on its way and then we can party at home. In the meantime, we have been making the rounds, visiting friends who have been neglected since the summer.

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Filed under Cakes & Tarts, Italian, Puddings

Sighting: Elegant Comfort Food

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How can this be? Elegant comfort food. Brisket, macaroni and cheese, mashed potatoes, brownies. Sure, they are all comfort foods but I wouldn’t go so far to say that they are elegant. It takes some pretty fussing piping and arranging to make them look nice. And there is seemingly little point as you will soon demolish them while sitting on the couch, wrapped in a blanket, watching Netflix.

This, like so many of my other recipes, came from a point of necessity. A sad eggplant. An enormous container of mashed potatoes. A few rogue mushrooms. And FMFK’s (future Mr. Fictional Kitchen) burning desire for something called potato cakes which he has never eaten nor has any idea how to make. Since I have a tendency to read cookbooks cover to cover, I did have an idea.

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Filed under British, Italian, Vegetable

Flavor-Explosion Chicken

It’s amazing the combinations you come up with when trying to clear out the fridge. This came from an excess of hummus, which isn’t a bad thing. But I was overwhelmed as to how it would all be used. And with no preservatives, I had no idea how long it would last. Luckily, neither of those concerns ever had the chance to become a problem.

My constant snacking eliminated a lot and this tasty recipe helped out too. I have come to love boneless  chicken thighs because they give you all the juice and flavor of a thigh but cook soooo much faster. More through recipes and posts to come soon!

Hummus Crusted Chicken
Adapted from Host the Toast

4 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
1 c hummus
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp Tabasco sauce
juice of 1 lemon

Preheat oven to 450°F. Place chicken in a medium baking dish. In a bowl, mix together remaining ingredients. Spoon over chicken until completely coated. Bake 25-30 min or until chicken is cooked through.

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Filed under Meat & Fish

Brownie S’mores

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Yeah, you read that right. I put marshmallow on top of a brownie. It’s kind of awesome. It may be the main reason I got my job. But seriously, these brownies are less dangerous than they seem.

They are magical brownies. Reduced fat but dense and chocolate-y. Almost bittersweet with a burnt marshmallow topping. Job seekers out there: I say bring this to your interview and see what happens ;)

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Filed under American, Cakes & Tarts, Cookies & Bars

Good Guest Pasta

Good guest pasta

Still living out of boxes folks.

I’ve been pretending it’s like we are traveling and we can only use what we have not-in-boxes. Spaghetti with capers, garlic, and olive? Check!

We are moving about 40 miles and I swear it is taking that many years of my life. It has been forever since I could reach out and grab a sweater or blanket. Now I have to decide: I am really that cold that I want to try to unpack something. Inevitably, whatever I want will be in the box at the bottom of a pile. Things are disappearing and reappearing in the strangest places. I have no idea what has happened to my tea strainer. I can only hope I find it again at some point.

To make the move easier, I assembled a lasagna earlier in the week and my lovely parents are bringing by sandwiches. I can only hope that as I get organized again, the desire to cook/eat will return. In the meantime, enjoy this lovely pasta “recipe.” It is quick, easy, and really addictive. I would be happy to serve it to company and probably will. If only I can find my plates…

Caper Pasta
A loose recipe provided by David Lebovitz

Heat olive oil in a medium saute pan. Add garlic slices and brown gently. I like 2 cloves per person. Pour over cooked spaghetti. Season with grated Parmesan cheese and fresh pepper. Add additional olive oil or butter as necessary. Toss to combine.

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Filed under Pasta, Thoughts

Trying Something New

Not every recipe is a success. Sounds simple enough. I have been struggling for quite some time to find a plum jam recipe I like. A few summers ago, when I first started making jams, I cobbled together a recipe. It was wonderful: sweet, tart, beautifully red. The jam quickly disappeared and I promptly forgot the recipe.

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Filed under Jams & Sauces

Sweet Home Alabama

“Spoiled’s in the eye of the beholder … like these plums here. Some people might call them “spoiled” but I think that these almost-ruined ones, sometimes make the sweetest jam.”

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September 1, 2014 · 8:00 am