Molten Chocolate Lava Cake for One

February 26, 2015 § Leave a comment

There are some cravings in life you should not deny yourself. In my world, when my boyfriend is on a business trip for a month, I’ve done four loads of laundry and caught up on all recent episodes of Broad City, Girls and Parks and Rec, chocolate cake is one of those cravings.

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It started as a far stretch knowing that I didn’t have milk in the house, only a chocolate bar, a few eggs, butter and flour. I began googling recipes for “chocolate cake recipe no milk” but only turned up with vegan cake recipes and that just wasn’t the kind of route I felt like taking myself that night. Little did I know that most molten chocolate cake recipes don’t call for any milk at all. I had exactly everything I needed without a trip to the store = Magic.

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What I will tell you about this cake is that it (over)cooks in an instant. The recipe calls for it to cook for 10 m. so I checked it at 8 m. and it was a jiggly puddle. 2 m. later, it is slightly overcooked, and not as “molten” as I would have hoped. Still delicious and a recipe worth saving.

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Foods I’m Diggin’

February 24, 2015 § Leave a comment

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  1. I am smitten with these garlic/ginger crispy bits. [ smittenkitchen ]
  2. This blog has been blowing my mind lately and this newest post is no exception. [ ladyandpups ]
  3. A popular k-town bar food: corn cheese or more grammatically correct, cheesy corn. There’s no way I wasn’t about to add this to my faves list after coming across it. [ spoonforkbacon ]
  4. Exotic, delicious, and gets you tipsy. [ minimalistbaker ]
  5. A healthier salt and vinegar craving, satisfied. [ cookiesandcups ]

Nigella’s Lemon Polenta Cake

February 1, 2015 § Leave a comment

This is a bit of a dense cake that is a bit crumblier and nuttier thanks to the use of almond meal and polenta which incidentally makes it gluten-free. So easy to snack on and made lip smackingly “damp” with the help of a little lemon glaze.

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The sharp, tartness that the lemon juice and zest imparts work nicely with the grainy polenta making for a pleasingly light cake. It reminds me of lemonade stands in the sunshine in its simplicity and the happiness it brings.

the crumbs

the crumbs..

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Beef Ragu

January 30, 2015 § Leave a comment

This is a great way to incorporate any cut of beef with a sauce to serve over pasta and no matter what you start with, you end up with a rich and tender meaty sauce.

It’s nice to use it as a different option than bolognese when you are starting to get tired of ground beef for dinner, again. I know it’s not the best picture out there but it’s all about the taste and comfort food is hardly considered photogenic. This dish is that home cooked goodness that you crave after a long, cold day.

I started out with a pretty thin slice but cut them at an angle to get them as thin as possible. Next roll up the beef filled with thin slices of garlic and parmesan.

Cook these babies on top of a mound of onions and carrots, mostly onion. Cover with the lid so that the rolls cook gently. Then slice the beef and be amazed at how tender these turned out to be! Immersion blend your onions and that makes the deliciously sweet, beefy sauce for your pasta.

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Twice Baked Spaghetti Squash w/ Bolognese

January 16, 2015 § Leave a comment

I’m not sure if you can tell, but I’m pretty obsessed with this bolognese recipe. It’s my go-to with ground beef and it works with pasta, or for a low-carb option, on top of this roasted spaghetti squash.

I roasted the spaghetti squash whole for about 45 minutes before I cut it open and continued roasting for about 45 more minutes. This made cutting the spaghetti squash soo much easier.
When finished roasting, scoop out the seeds. You don’t want the seeds.

This is how the squash looks before fluffing with a fork, the strands are packed pretty tightly together

This is after a good fluffing. Way more spaghetti-like already!

I found it was easiest to dump the strands out horizontally by scraping all along the wall of the squash.

Next, I stuffed the squash back into their boats and topped with cheese and baked for 10 more minutes until the cheese melted.

You could serve the squash in their own bowl but personally, my squash bowl was too mushy for that. I served the meaty bolognese alongside the squash and ate the whole thing right up.

This was my first time cooking spaghetti squash so I got a little excited about sharing step by step and went a little overboard with the pictures. At least now, you’ll be more prepared about what to expect when you opt for the healthier choice,

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Quinoa Salad with Cranberries & Pine Nuts

January 10, 2015 § Leave a comment

Quinoa is so good for you that it’s kind of hard to not like it. Granted it does look a bit like a science experiment and the texture takes some getting used to, when done right, it’s pretty tasty! Made even tastier by omission of guilt.

There was that one quinoa dish my college roommate made with tons of fresh herbs and lemon that really got me thinking “this stuff isn’t so bad,” and another preparation with chunks of almost raw, still very crunchy bits of sweet potato that I tasted and enjoyed. My version has pine nuts, a fair amount of sweetness from dried cranberries, lemon, parsley, salt, and the flavors meld together in a way that makes me nod my head in a dance-like bop as I taste a bit of this, a bit of that. Oh yeah, it all works.
The flower started as being unintentional, but I went with it
I didn’t soak the quinoa, I didn’t know that was a thing. But I did rub the individual grains against each other and against the fine mesh sieve to rub off some of that outer skin and along with it, the bitterness that quinoa sometimes tends to have if you skip this step. I toasted the pine nuts, I chopped the cranberries and parsley, I squeezed the lemon, and that’s all. It’s perfect this way. If you want, you could concoct a dressing with apple cider vinegar, honey, maybe some olive oil and orange juice. I didn’t because I thought it didn’t need not one single thing more. Mmmm.

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BBQ Pulled Chicken

January 3, 2015 § Leave a comment

I wouldn’t consider myself a “BBQ” girl, whatever that means. I’ve never been partial to the joker-esque smile of BBQ sauce left on my face after attacking some ribs and KC Masterpiece, A1, Sweet Baby Ray’s, all those bottled sauces don’t really doanything for me. They are all too sweet, too sticky, too something.
Making my own barbecue sauce changed allll that for me. I know it’s still not real barbecue, in terms of low and slow but I think it’s the closest I’m going to get to it in my small kitchen on the west side. I’m not sure how my pulled chicken sandwich would hold up compared to southern “q” but it gets the boyfriend seal of approval and was an easy enough meal to fix up.
I marinated the chicken overnight and then baked it off in the oven. I served mine on good toasted bread with a smear of sour cream and sautéed spinach but next time I think I’ll make some crunchy coleslaw with it.

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