Category Archives: recipes

Celebrating with Christmas Cookies

So I teased these out on Instagram the other day.  This is in no way my recipe and exactly the best pop of color for your Holiday dessert plate!

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The thing with these cookies is you have to make meringue… The first time I did this I used a carton and a half of eggs, salt from my tears, and a stained pink shirt.  This time, I used the carton of egg whites, an apron, and a lot more confidence.  And voila!  Cute little meringues that make the Husband smile!

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Peppermint Meringues from Bon Appetit

(www.bonappetit.com/recipe/peppermint-meringues)

INGREDIENTS
  • 3 large egg whites, room temperature
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon peppermint extract
  • 12 drops red food coloring

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PREPARATION
  • Preheat oven to 200°. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Using an electric mixer, beat egg whites and salt on medium-high speed until white and foamy, about 1 minute. With mixer running, gradually add suger in 3 additions beating for 2 minutes between each addition. Beat until firm peaks form, about 2 minutes longer. Add powdered sugar and peppermint extract; beat to blend, about 1 minute.
  • Dot coloring over surface of meringue; do not stir (the coloring will form swirls when piped). Spoon meringue into a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2″ tip. (See Prep School; alternatively, spoon into a plastic freezer bag, then cut 1/2″ off 1 corner.) Twist top; pipe 1″ rounds onto prepared sheet, spacing 1″ apart.
  • Bake meringues until dry, about 2 1/2 hours. Let cool completely, about 1 hour (meringues will crisp as they cool). DO AHEAD: Can be made 2 days ahead. Store airtight at room temperature between sheets of parchment or waxed paper.

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Peppermint Mocha Brownie Bites with Coffee Frosting

First let me say, Thanks to Xagave for providing the inspiration!  Could really use a vote here!

What I love about the holidays are the flavors. If you put a Gingerbread Latte in front of me, I’ll take it! Peppermint bark, I’m there! So what about putting some of you favorite flavors together. With the help of Chobani and Xagave, I was able to make delicious Peppermint Mocha Brownie Bites with chocolate chunks and agave sweetener. All Organic products here and some healthy swap outs!

 

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Peppermint Mocha Brownie Bites with Coffee Frosting

1/4 Cup Melted Butter

1/4 Cup Chobani Vanilla Chocolate Chunk

3 large eggs

Pinch of Salt

1/2 Cup Flour

1 Cup Cocoa

3/4 Cup Brown Sugar

2/3 Xagave Brand Agave Syrup

2 oz Crushed Peppermint

Combine Eggs, Melted Butter, and Chobani in mixer until smooth. Then add Salt, Cocoa, Brown Sugar, and Xagave. Once evenly mixed, add flour slowly. Finally mix in peppermint. Scoop into mini muffin tin with cookie scoop. Fill each section 2/3 of the way full. Bake in oven at 325 degrees for 25 minutes. Be sure to check at 20 minutes to make sure you are on track!

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For the Coffee Frosting

1 lb Powdered Sugar

1 Stick Butter

1 Tsp Vanilla

Coffee

3 Tbs Cocoa

Let Butter soften at room temperature. Then beat until smooth in mixer. Then add Vanilla, Cocoa, and a splash of coffee. Once evenly mixed, slowly add powdered sugar. Mix until smooth. Pipe onto brownies. Top with a little more crushed peppermint.

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Wineday Friday: A Fall Pairing

Happy November!  After too many days of these…cookie

I thought it would be time to share a little real wine with a little bit of real food!

The Wine

About a year ago, we went to our favorite wine store.  We gave the sommelier a list of ingredients and a budget and she pointed us in the direction of this great bottle of wine.  The Felton Road Pinot Noir is full bodied, full of tannins, and it expresses dark fruits perfectly!  We have the 2010 vintage in our house but the 2011 is out with great reviews!  What I love about this wine is that the minute you put your nose to the glass, you smell Fall.  There is no hint of citrus and nothing to confuse your palate.  This is the kind of wine that you can dig into and enjoy every aspect.  Be sure to smell it and find those notes of Fall, Swirl it and see it moving ever so slowly down your glass, and finally, Sip it and feel the warmth across your mouth.  It is an approachable and very pair able wine.

The Pairing

This time around, we still had a bottle of Felton Road to enjoy and the pile of squash from Guerrilla Farms continues to grow. It was time for a great farmer’s market inspired meal.  What we had with the amazing Pinot was a pork loin, seasoned lightly with salt pepper and and little rosemary.  The farmer’s market comes in with the side dish.  Roasted apples and buttercup squash topped with a little butter and brown sugar.

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What I love about this meal is that it’s easy (so easy that I made it myself before the Husband got home!) and incredibly delicious.  It’s also easy to increase the amount for an amazing leftover container!

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Apple and Squash Roast with Pork Loin

Serves two with some leftovers

1 medium sized Buttercup squash, cleaned and peeled

2 medium sized baking apples (whatever your preference for sweet or sour), peeled and sliced thin

3 tbs Butter

1/4 Brown Sugar

Small Pork Loin

Salt, Pepper, Rosemary

Olive Oil

Melt butter and stir in brown sugar.  Place squash in bowl and cover with 2/3 of butter mixture, reserving a little for topping.  Mix until squash is well coated.  Place squash on baking stone and then layer the sliced apples on top.  Pour remaining butter mixture over apples.  Cover with foil and bake at 375 degrees for 55 minutes.

Cover pork loin with light coat of olive oil.  Season to your liking with salt, pepper, and rosemary.  20 minutes into squash/apple baking, place pork in oven, uncovered.  Pork should cook for 35 minutes or until done according to thermometer.

Pull everything out of oven at 55 minutes and let stand for 5 minutes.

Plate and enjoy!

What have you been enjoying?  Let me know on Twitter @kemerselis #WinedayFriday

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Busy week!

Happy Thursday!  This week has flown by.  Every day I planned on sitting my butt down to write a post but I never got around to it.  Same thing happened to my workouts.  It’s just been one of those weeks.

Tuesday was Valentine’s Day.  Definitely one my favorite holidays.  All about love, hugs, and happy hearts!  I was greeted at work by flowers from Maggie, my pup!  The Husband dropped them off before I got to the office. 

We went out for drinks and dinner as well Tuesday night and we had a blast!  It was so nice to eat out.  We went to a Key West restaurant so I had some lovely Mahi!  I will definitely be eating there again soon.  No good pictures to show but I did manage to snap one!

 

Yesterday, we were both feeling a bit off and I actually ate dinner and then fell asleep on the couch.  Still not feeling 100% today but I have almost made it through the week.  Nothing a little coffee won’t fix.

 

I did try something new this week.  I made Mama Pea’s Mmmm Sauce and I definitely licked the spoon!  While I still enjoy my cheese, this is definitely going to make it into a rotation for me.  The Husband won’t touch it so that means more for me!  So far it’s made its way into a salad and onto my tacos.  I can’t wait to put it on roasted veggies. 

Day and a half until a 3 day weekend!

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Happy Day Light Savings time!

Happy Sunday every body!!  Usually I like to post in the morning but today I just didn’t have the time.  Because of the extra hour today I felt like we were really productive.  First on my list for the day was to make short work of our smaller decorative pumpkins

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Most people would think to just leave them out and throw them out when they start to shrink up.  The smaller two pumpkins are actually pie pumpkins and so as it got cold, we moved them in.  The largest of the three has started to wrinkle up but the tiny two were ready to be eaten!!

As some canned pumpkin has been in short supply, we decided to roast and puree our own.  I peeled them due to the paint and gutted them and then roasted them meat side down for 50 minutes.  I added a little water and popped the chunks into the Ninja chop and pureed!  We had the same amount of pumpkin as eight cans!  Can’t wait to start using it.  Here is the bowl before being bagged.

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Lunch was chicken we marinated overnight in Trader Joe’s Island Soyaki!  SOOOO tender.  We put the chicken on top of some fresh greens and topped with feta from Cheese Importers. 

 

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Loved this combination.  Loved it so much that there is more chicken marinating in the fridge.  Sadly we don’t have  Trader Joe’s here but the Husband’s parents have made a shopping trip for us and will be driving it out for Thanksgiving!

We also did a top to bottom clean of our house, switched from summer to winter clothes, and swam at the Y.  I am beat!  Time to cuddle on the couch and get ready for the rest of the week.

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Fall Treats!

The Husband and I have decided to branch out with our food tastes this year.  The lovely people at Guerilla Farms (Heather and Timpson) recommended that we try a variety of winter squash.  Tonight we had Delicato Squash and Pork for dinner.  Such a great fall combination.  The squash was a lot like pumpkin on the inside but it was easier to clean!

For the squash, we cut it open and took out the seeds.  We drizzled with Olive Oil and sprinkled garlic salt and black pepper.  We stuck it in the oven at 375 degrees for 30 minutes and voila!

We have also purchased everything to make Pumpkin Bars!!  Fall is definitely the time for all of the spices to come out and to not shy away from cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and ginger!  Next, we will have to break out the cider!

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So many steps!

To homemade pizza!

After our lovely bikeride yesterday, the Husband declared it was pizza night.  Actually, we had planned to do pizza on my day off last week but I had completely forgot.  The Husband likes to do things from scratch so I will go through the photos along with the instructions. 

First, combine 1 Tbs. of Olive Oil, 1 Tbs. of Agave Nectar, 2/3 cup of Water (heated for 20 seconds in the microwave), 1/2 Tbs. of Dry active Yeast.  It’s important that you combine by hand!  Let all of this rest in the mixing bowl so that the yeast can bloom.  If it hasn’t bloomed after 10 minutes, the yeast was either dead to start with or it was killed by the too hot water.

After 2 minutes. You can see the graininess still as well as the liquid around the side.

After 5 minutes. You can see how it has evened out and thickened up!

Once the yeast has bloomed, add 1 cup of Wheat flour, 1 cup of Bread flour.  Once combined, you can either knead it for 5-10 minutes or use a fancy bread hook!  After it is nice and doughy, place your ball into a greased up bowl and cover with cling wrap.  Let it raise for 1 hour.

Your dough should get bigger and fluffier.  After an hour, roll out on your pizza pan (or stone) and let cover with a slightly damp towel and let raise another 3o minutes.

Finally, add your sauce and bake for 12 minutes at 400 degrees.  Next add your toppings and bake for 8 more minutes.

And, voila!  Pizza!

 

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