Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Lemon Rosemary Roasted Chicken

Yes, roasting a whole chicken sound intimidating but it really isn't. 

I promise. I'm still such a novice in the kitchen and I find roasting a whole chicken to be very simple yet so rewarding. I've roasted a whole chicken several times and I'm always happy with the results. There are so many ways you can roast a chicken and so much you can do with the end result.

I always fall back on the very simple lemon rosemary recipe from the one and only, Martha. I find that it has great flavor. The sliced up lemon really helps keep the chicken nice and moist and I've always loved the flavor of rosemary. 

Lemon Rosemary Roasted Chicken: Martha Stewart
  • 4 sprigs rosemary
  • 2 lemons, washed and quartered
  • 1 whole chicken, (3 1/2 pounds), rinsed and patted dry
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Stuff rosemary and 1 cut lemon into chicken cavity. Tuck wings under and tie chicken legs together with kitchen twine. Set chicken on a rack in a roasting or baking pan.
  2. Rub chicken all over with oil, and season with 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Roast until an instant-read thermometer registers 160 degrees when inserted in the thickest part of the thigh (avoiding bone), 45 to 50 minutes. Serve with fresh lemon quarters.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Panko Crusted Chicken Bites

A few weeks ago this little guy, Nico, was over while his mama was getting some stuff done at their house. Isn't he so cute?? His mama thinks he's especially cute when he's up in the middle of the night. While listening to Nadya and him sing some wonderful tunes this great chicken meal was made! Pretty soon he'll be able to eat stuff off this blog! Can't wait for that! He's already a huge fan of his rice cereal. 

I can go on and on about this cutie but I'll get moving to the recipe...

I always keep panko on hand. I actually favor panko compared to breadcrumbs and usually substitute panko when breadcrumbs are called for in a recipe. I find they taste and work better. This meal wasn't planned but I had all the ingredients in the house and had it on my 'to make' list for quite some time. It ended up being really tasty. Another home run from Martha!  I think the next time I make it, I'll make them buffalo style!These are great for a crowd too.

Panko Crusted Chicken Bites: Martha Stewart
  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 4 large boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (about 2 pounds), cut into 1-inch cubes
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and fit with a wire rack. Spray with cooking spray; set aside.
  2. Place flour in a large bowl and season very generously with salt and pepper. Whisk eggs in another large bowl with 2 tablespoons water until well combined. Place the breadcrumbs in a third large bowl, and drizzle with olive oil; toss to coat. Stir in cheese and cayenne and mix well.
  3. Place chicken pieces in the seasoned flour and toss to coat. Working in 3 batches, shake off any excess flour from chicken pieces and transfer to egg mixture; stir to combine. Transfer coated chicken pieces with a slotted spoon to the breadcrumb mixture and toss until completely coated. Place the breaded chicken pieces on a rack-lined baking sheet, spacing them evenly apart. Repeat process until all the chicken is breaded. Bake until golden brown and chicken is cooked through, 18 to 20 minutes

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Roasted Red Pepper and Basil Pesto Penne

Hi everyone! Hope you're all doing well. I'm sorry to disappoint my loyal readers (all two of you). I know I've been bad and missing in action. To be honest with you, I find myself cooking much more in the fall, winter, & spring months than I do in the summer. It's like I give myself a vacation half way through the summer. A vacation from blogging because I am cooking just not as much. Anyway, here I am. I didn't leave you for too long! 

This recipe might be one of my favorites. It has so much flavor and is so easy to make. I promise you won't be let down especially if you like (love) garlic. If you're not a huge fan of garlic, like my parents, you can just omit the garlic from the recipe.

I came across this recipe while searching on one of my new favorite sites, Pinterest. You can follow my boards if you're on. If you're not on, don't blame me for sitting in front of the computer for hours at a time on this one website. Yes, it's addicting!

I know I've taken a picture of this meal but for whatever reason I can't locate it. It's driving me nuts! So you're just going to have to make it yourself so you can see what it looks like. I promise you're going to love it!

Roasted Red Pepper and Basil Pesto Penne
3 cloves garlic
1/3 cup pine nuts
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup roasted red bell pepper (fresh or jarred)
1 cup basil leaves
½ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. pepper
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 lb. penne pasta
¼ cup heavy cream, optional

Place garlic and pine nuts in a food processor.  Pulse until finely chopped.  Add Parmesan, red pepper, basil leaves, salt and pepper.  Pulse until well combined.  With the motor running, add olive oil through the feed tube and process until incorporated.  Set aside.

Cook pasta according to package directions.  Drain and return to the pot.  Add the pesto to the pasta and stir to combine.  Stir in heavy cream if desired for a creamier sauce.  Heat until warmed through.  Serve immediately.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

No Mayo Coleslaw

Those who know me know I have a strong dislike towards mayo. Really just can't get myself to eat it or anything that contains it. My dislike for it; however, leaves me with little options when it comes to summer salads. I thought, enough is enough I'm going to enjoy summer salads too! After a quick search on the 'internets', I stumbled across this Rachael Ray recipe which got great reviews. It's super simple and a very refreshing take on coleslaw. 

Oil and Vinegar Slaw by Rachael Ray:

  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons peanut or vegetable oil, eyeball it
  • 1 sack, 16 ounces, shredded cabbage mix for slaw salads
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Salt and pepper
Mix vinegar and sugar. Add oil. Add cabbage to dressing and season with salt and pepper. Toss with fingers to combine. Adjust seasoning. Let stand 20 minutes. Re-toss and serve.

Isn't my sous chef just the cutest??

Monday, July 18, 2011

Blondies with Chocolate Chips

I had full intentions of bringing these blondies to my cousin's graduation party; however, after sampling one they slowly started to disappear. They're dangerous to keep around. 
(Sorry they never made it to your party, Aunt T! )

Believe it or not, this was my first time making blondies. I haven't had a good past with  brownies (I'm determined to change that) so I assumed I wouldn't be good at making blondies. Boy was I wrong!  Martha (yes, we're on a first name basis) sends me daily emails with the cookie of the day recipe. I usually get the email while I'm at work and spend about 2 minutes drooling over whatever the day's recipe is before I file it away in the 'cookies to make' folder in my email. There are a lot of cookie recipes filed away. I better start crossing some off my list, especially if they're all as good as these were. 

Blondies are a cookie cake like goodness. The recipe called for walnuts which surprisingly I didn't have on hand so I omitted them. Walnuts or pecans would add a lovely flavor. I'll be sure to add them next time. If you're planning on bringing these to a party, keep in mind this recipe only yields 16. You might want to make 2 batches.

Blondies with Chocolate Chips

  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted, plus more for pan
  • 1/2 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour, (spooned and leveled)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Brush an 8-inch square baking pan with butter; line pan with a piece of parchment paper, leaving a 2-inch overhang on two sides. Butter paper.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk butter and sugars until smooth. Whisk in egg and vanilla. Add flour and salt; mix just until moistened (do not overmix). Fold in 1/2 cup each chocolate chips and walnuts. Transfer batter to prepared pan; smooth top. Sprinkle with remaining chocolate chips and walnuts.
  3. Bake until top is golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 40 to 45 minutes. Set pan on a wire rack, and let cool completely. Using parchment overhang, lift cake from pan and transfer to a cutting board; cut into 16 squares.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Strawberry Mango Basil Salsa

It's sweet. It's savory. It's delish!

I've made this twice and plan on making it again soon. Yes, it's that good! The first time I made it was for my family barbecue. I loved it so much I decided to make it to bring to a friend's house for dinner which complemented nicely with the fish tacos she made. 

I stumbled across this recipe while reading many many food blogs as I was planning the menu for my family barbecue. This recipe comes from a beautiful food blog called "How Sweet It Is"

The salsa is great with pita chips but I have plans to serve with grilled chicken. I'll keep you posted. After all, who doesn't love a sweet and savory meal? 

Strawberry Mango Basil Salsa

makes about 2 cups
3/4 cup chopped mango
3/4 cup chopped strawberries
1/4 cup chopped red onion
6 fresh basil leaves, chopped
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Combine all ingredients and mix, or simply later ingredients in a bowl. Tastes even better after it sits for a few hours! Salsa should stay fresh in the fridge (in a sealed container) for about one week.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

It's that 'Gouda'!

I have finally found the recipe ... the mac n cheese recipe and who knew it would be so simple! In case you didn't know, I've been searching. I've had a lot of mac n cheese failures that I decided not to share with you. I've had some successes that I did share but nothing compares to this recipe! It's creamy, it's cheesy (like most of my jokes), and it's heavenly ... yes, it's that Gouda! 

After having a delicious Gouda at a local restaurant, I decided to look for a Gouda macaroni & cheese recipe. I stumbled across many recipes that called for smoked Gouda ... that's not Goudanough for me! I'm not a fan of smoked flavors. Then I found this recipe from Epicurious and couldn't be happier ... seriously make it and you'll agree! 

Aged Gouda Macaroni & Cheese:

16 oz of aged Gouda, shredded
1 stick of salted butter
1 cup of light cream
1/2 tablespoon of flour
1 16 oz package of dry elbow macaroni
salt and pepper

Prepare macaroni according to package instructions. While pasta is boiling, melt butter in an 8 oz pot over low heat. When butter has turned into liquid, add flour and stir until there are no lumps. Reserve 1/2 cup of grated cheese for topping and add remaining cheese to the butter/flour mixture. Turn up heat to medium low. Stir until the cheese is fully integrated into the mixture, then stir in cream in 3 intervals, making sure that the cream is fully integrated into the cheese before adding more. Continue to stir for 1 1/2 minutes, and then add drained pasta. Mix everything together over low heat for 2 minutes, constantly stirring. Add salt and pepper to taste. Remove pot from heat and turn on broiler. Equally divide macaroni and cheese into 8-12 oz or 16 oz ramekins. Sprinkle remaining cheese onto each portion and place in broiler for 60 seconds or until cheese is melted and golden brown. Serve immediately.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Sweet and Sour Chicken with Green Beans

I love Chinese food. I really do! But it really isn't all that healthy...BUT making it at home makes it a bit healthier! It's amazing how cooking at home can really cut the calories of some meals in half. After having this meal stare at me on the cover of an issue of Every Day Food, I knew I had to make it and I'm happy I did.

  • 1 cup long-grain white rice
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup white vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 1/4 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 bell peppers (any color), seeded and diced large
  • 1/2 pound green beans, trimmed and halved
  • 5 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 2-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and minced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons chopped roasted peanuts (optional)
  1. Cook rice according to package instructions. Meanwhile, in a small bowl or measuring cup, whisk together cornstarch, sugar, soy sauce, and vinegar. Set aside.
  2. In a large skillet or wok, heat oil over high. Add chicken, bell peppers, and green beans and cook, stirring frequently, until vegetables begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add scallions, ginger, and garlic and cook, stirring frequently, until chicken is cooked through and vegetables are tender, about 4 minutes.
  3. Whisk soy sauce mixture, add to skillet, and cook, stirring constantly, until sauce thickens, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat. Fluff rice with a fork. To serve, spoon chicken mixture over rice and top with peanuts if desired.

Monday, April 4, 2011

What a Week!

Happy April Lots to Ladlers! 

There has been a lot going on! This past week was a busy one...busy in a good way! Nadya and I spent Sunday-Wednesday in Key West, FL. Our first time there! It was absolutely lovely!!! Perfect weather, perfect drinks, perfect food. 

And yes, I had key lime pie. It was my first taste of key lime pie, ever. Since it was my first time, I had to make sure it came from the best place in Key West. After a Google search and surveying the locals, it was determined that we were off to Kermit's Key West Key Lime Shoppe.
Kermit's is really cute. They have key lime everything! You name it, they have it....key lime guacamole, key lime fudge, key lime popcorn, etc. I was there for the key lime pie but did get a sample of the key lime fudge which was mighty good! 

Here's a slice of pie. Looks like a cheesecake doesn't it? I liked the pie more and more as each bite went on. It was light and airy yet filling with a nice citrus bite. It had a great graham cracker crust and whipped cream topping that complimented the filling greatly.

Now if you can get your hands on some key limes you can make this pie yourself! Kermit's was featured on The Food Network and so was the key lime pie recipe. 

Kermit's Key Lime Pie:

  • 1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup key lime juice
  • 1 (9-inch) graham cracker pie crust
  • Whipped cream, to garnish
Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.
In a mixer on low-medium speed, blend the milk and egg yolks at low speed until smooth. Add the key lime juice and finish blending.
Gently pour the mixture into the pie crust and bake for 15 minutes. Remove the pie from the oven and let cool for another 15 minutes before refrigerating.
Refrigerate for 1 to 2 hours before serving. Serve cold and top with fresh whipped cream. 

In other news, I'm an aunt! I told you it was a busy week. Jake (that cutie, not me, the other cutie) was born Wednesday, 3/30 and instantly stole the hearts of everyone in my family! So happy he's finally here! xoxo!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Crustless Broccoli-Cheddar Quiches

I'm sure I've mentioned this before but breakfast for dinner is one of my favorites! I actually prefer it rather than having breakfast at breakfast...silly me! When this picture popped up on my Martha iPhone app, I knew I wanted to make it!  Then after reading the ingredients, I knew I had to make it! Eggs, cheese, broccoli...yes, please! And let's be honest, I really love using my ramekins any chance I get! There's something about individualize portions that really tickles me.

This meal was really simple and really tasty. Perfect for breakfast, brunch, or dinner. You can mix it up to your liking too; spinach would be tasty! If you don't have ramekins,  you can bake it in a larger dish. It just might need a little extra time.


  • Butter, for ramekins
  • Coarse salt
  • 1 package (10 ounces) frozen broccoli florets
  • 6 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup half-and-half
  • Ground pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese (3 ounces)
  • Crusty bread and mixed salad (optional)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter four 8-ounce ramekins (or a 9-inch pie dish); set aside. Bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil. Add broccoli; cook 1 minute. Drain well; transfer to a cutting board, and blot dry with paper towels. Chop coarsely. 
In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, half-and-half, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, and nutmeg. Stir in broccoli and cheese.
Place ramekins on a rimmed baking sheet. Ladle broccoli mixture into ramekins, dividing evenly. Bake until golden brown, 35 to 40 minutes. Serve with crusty bread and a mixed-green salad, if desired.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Thank You, Aunt Kathy!

Can you believe that I've had this blog for over two years and have yet to mention my Aunt Kathy? She can't believe it either! Honestly, it is shocking that I have yet to mention her. So this post is all about Aunt Kathy! After all, a lot of the goods in my kitchen have come from her (i.e., Polish Pottery collection). 

One of the gifts Aunt Kathy gave me this past Christmas was a collection of TSP Spices and the TSP Spices cookbook.  I never heard of this company before so I was really excited to read about them and use their products! 

First and foremost, their packaging is super cute! I don't know if this picture does it justice. All of their organic spices are measured into TSP packets (get it? the name of the company!) and stored in super cute tins that can be displayed on your counter or organized in a drawer. 

In addition to the spice collection, Aunt Kathy gave me the spice kitchen cookbook which contains a ton of recipes and ideas. I've made a lot out of this cookbook and have a lot more on my to do list. 

Most recently, I made their guacamole recipe which was mighty good and really really simple!

Thank you Aunt Kathy for this great gift along with all the other wonderful items in my kitchen!!!! You're the best!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Banana Bundt Cake

Hello Lots to Ladlers! Sorry for the lack of posts these days. Let's blame it on my sister, Katie! She's consuming a lot of my time. I'm currently planning her baby shower with my mom! It's taking up a lot of my time but at least I got a glue gun out of the deal. Can you believe I didn't own a glue gun until this year? Shocking, right?!?

Now back to the banana Bundt, after all that's what this post is about. I always joke with Nadya that she purposefully leaves bananas on the counter to get too ripe so I'll have to make her banana bread. (NOTE: I don't like bananas so I can't help to eat them up before they're too ripe.) I guess I'm buying too many bananas for one person to eat. I often end up making banana bread but decided to make this banana Bundt this time.

I came across the recipe on a food blog that I often read called The Food Librarian; however, the recipe is from Dorie Greenspan. As I mentioned earlier, I don't eat bananas ( I know, I know that's bananas!) so I can't really tell you how good or bad this was BUT I can tell you that everyone who ate it loved it. I can also tell you that it was super easy to make. So if you're a fan a bananas, go bananas and make this Bundt!!

Classic Banana Bundt Cake
Baking: From My Home to Yours.

Ingredients: Makes 1 Bundt Cake (14 servings)

3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 sticks (8 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 large eggs, preferably at room temperature
About 4 very ripe bananas, mashed (you should have 1 1/2 - 1 3/4 cups)
1 cup sour cream or plain yogurt (I used Stonyfield vanilla yogurt)

Center a rack in the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F. Generously butter a 9- to 10-inch (12 cup) Bundt pan. (If you use a silicone Bundt pan there’s no need to butter it.) Don’t place the pan on a baking sheet - you want the oven’s heat to circulate through the Bundt’s inner tube.

Whisk the flour, baking soda and salt together.

Working with a stand mixer, preferably fitted with a paddle attachment, or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, beat the butter until creamy. Add the sugar and beat at medium speed until pale and fluffy. Beat in the vanilla, then add the eggs one at a time, beating for about 1 minute after each egg goes in. Reduce the mixer speed to low and mix in the bananas. Finally, mix in half the dry ingredients (don’t be disturbed when the batter curdles), all the sour cream and then the rest of the flour mixture. Scrape the batter into the pan, rap the pan on the counter to debubble the batter and smooth the top.

Bake for 65 to 75 minutes, or until a thin knife inserted deep into the center of the cake comes out clean. Check the cake after about 30 minutes - if it is browning too quickly, cover it loosely with a foil tent. Transfer the cake to a rack and cool for 10 minutes before unmolding onto the rack to cool to room temperature.

If you've got the time, wrap the cooled cake in plastic and allow it to sit on the counter overnight before serving - it's better the next day.

Optional Lemony White Icing:
Sift 3/4 cup confectioners' sugar into a bowl and squeeze in enough fresh lemon juice (start with 2 teaspoons and add more by drops) to make an icing thin enough to drizzle down the Bundt's curves.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

A Guest Post from Sara Hayes!

Hello Lots to Ladle readers! I'm so excited Lynnie asked me to guest blog. I've learned a lot from her and this blog, and just like her, I've adapted a Martha Stewart recipe to share today!

Martha has a very easy recipe for tortilla soup with black beans. I added some shredded chicken and left out the tortilla chips for a lighter version. This soup is perfect for an easy dinner. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

Chicken Tortilla Soup with Black Beans

1 tbsp. olive oil

4 cloves garlic, minced

1 tsp. chili powder

2 cans (14.5 oz each) diced tomatoes in juice

2 cans (15 oz each) black beans, rinsed and drained

1 can (14.5 oz) reduced-sodium chicken broth

1 package (10 oz) frozen corn kernels

course salt and ground pepper

1 cup crushed tortilla chips (optional)

1 tbsp. fresh lime juice, plus lime wedges for serving

1/2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breast

In a large saucepan, heat oil over medium. Cook garlic and chili powder until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add tomatoes (with juices), beans, broth, corn, and 1 cup water; season with salt and pepper.

In a separate, smaller saucepan, add chicken breast. Add water or chicken broth so chicken is covered by about 1-2 inches. Season with salt and pepper. Bring water to just under a simmer on medium-high heat. Simmer for about 10-12 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through. After chicken is cooked, shred and add to the soup.

Bring soup to a boil; reduce to a simmer. Add to tortilla chips; cook until softened, about two minutes. Remove from heat; stir in lime juice, and season with salt and paper. Serve soup with lime wedges and, if desired, more chips.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Peanut Butter Icing

Are you mad at me? Are you sick of looking at the oatmeal chocolate chip cookies? Forgive me please for leaving you guys in the dark for so long! I really have no excuse!

I'll find my way back into your hearts with this super sweet treat! I just know I will! 

Nadya has been recovering...(Hey, that's my excuse for leaving you in the dark! I've been busy nursing her back to health.) Anyway, while she's been recovering she has had quite the sweet tooth. This girl wants cookies, ice cream, chocolate, etc

Her favorite treat these days just happens to be a chocolate cupcake with peanut butter icing. A great combination. There are tons of cupcake boutiques in the city and just about all of them offer this flavor. Some even use peanut butter alone for the icing. I'm on a mission to find the right peanut butter icing, my friends! I'm sorry to report this is not the one. (tears.) The flavor was just not working for me (nor was it working for the patient). I thought the cream cheese was too strong. Nadya really thought the little bit of salt ruined the flavor. Try it yourself or give me a better recipe! 

This might be the only time Martha has let me down. I'll be back with another recipe. I'll keep you posted.

Peanut Butter Frosting:
6 ounces cream cheese
1/3 cup confectioners' sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup creamy peanut butter (not natural)
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup heavy cream 

Beat cream cheese and confectioners' sugar with a mixer on medium speed. Add salt, then peanut butter, then vanilla. Whisk cream until soft peaks form, and then fold into peanut butter mixture. Use immediately, or cover and refrigerate for up to 2 days. (Bring to room temperature, and beat on low speed until smooth before using.)

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

two words: snow day! 

Yes, there was 14.9" of snow this morning when I woke up and looked out my window. No, I was not going to deal with SEPTA to make it in to work. So what did I do with my day off?? Lots! One of the things I did today was make these easy (I mean easy) oatmeal chocolate chip cookies. Yum!

I was flipping through the January/February Issue of Food Network Magazine and came across this recipe. The recipe called for raisins since I really don't like raisins I substituted chocolate chips for them! Which makes a great combination!! 

I promise you these cookies are easy! I started to make them at 2pm and had them on the table ready to eat by 2:45! That's quick, right?
Oatmeal Cookies:

1 1/4 cup brown sugar
1 egg 
2 egg white
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 cup rolled oats
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup wheat germ
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup raisin, chocolate chunks, walnuts or a combination of all (I only used chocolate)

Whisk brown sugar and eggs in a bowl. Whisk in vegetable oil. Stir in rolled oats, whole wheat flour, wheat germ, baking soda, salt. Add raisins, chocolate chunks and walnuts. Drop large spoonfuls onto lined baking sheets and gently flatten ( I used the bottom of a glass which worked great). Bake at 350 for 12-15 minutes.

Did I mention they're easy to make? 

Monday, January 24, 2011

National Pie Day

Well actually it was yesterday, January 23th. 
To celebrate, I made these tasty savory pies. Mini Italian potpies to be exact. 

The recipe below comes from Martha and serves 4 (my ramekins are 7 ounces so I actually got 5 servings).  I stumbled upon this recipe on my Martha Stewart Every Day Food app on my iPhone. (Yes, Martha is everywhere I go.) Overall, this meal was a hit! I swapped out the ground beef sirloin for extra lean ground turkey and used skim milk to help make this meal a little lighter...Hey, it's still January and people still have their resolutions to follow!

Italian Potpies:  

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 carrots, finely chopped
Coarse salt and ground pepper
1 pound ground beef sirloin, thawed if frozen
2 cups homemade or best-quality store-bought tomato sauce
1 cup all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled)
1/4 cup grated Parmesan (1 ounce)
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon crushed dried rosemary
4 tablespoons butter, melted
1/2 cup whole milk  

Preheat oven to 450 degrees, with rack in lowest position. In a large skillet, heat oil over medium. Add onion and carrots; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, 6 to 8 minutes. Add beef, and cook, breaking up meat with a wooden spoon, until no longer pink, 3 to 5 minutes. Add tomato sauce; bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook, stirring occasionally, until meat mixture has thickened, 8 to 10 minutes; set aside.
In a medium bowl, whisk flour, Parmesan, baking powder, rosemary, and 1/2 teaspoon salt; make a well in center, and add butter and milk. Stir just until dough comes together.
Spoon meat mixture into four 8-ounce ramekins; mound dough on top. Place on a large rimmed baking sheet; bake until topping is golden brown and a toothpick inserted in topping comes out clean, 10 to 12 minutes.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Roasted Red Pepper Bruschetta

I love a crunch which is one of the main reasons why I love bruschetta. There are so many types of bruschetta that you can make. Really you can put any thing on top of grilled bread and call it bruschetta, right? I love roasted red peppers! So I decided to make a roasted red pepper bruschetta on New Year's Eve. So simple! You and your guests will eat it right up!! 

Roasted Red Pepper Bruschetta with a Balsamic Reduction
by: Lots to Ladle

1 loaf french bread, sliced into 1 1/2" pieces
1 clove of garlic
6 tablespoons of olive oil2 red peppers
1/2 tsp of thyme
1/4 tsp roasted red pepper flakes 
salt & pepper
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar

Preheat oven to 375. Cut peppers in large chunks. Toss with 2 tablespoons of olive oil, thyme, red pepper flakes. Spread peppers on baking sheet and roast until tender, about 30 minutes. Chop peppers once roasted.

Meanwhile, brush olive oil on both sides of bread slices. Toast on heated grill pan, about 3 minutes per side. Rub each side with garlic clove.

Heat balsamic vinegar in medium saucepan over medium heat. Cook until thicken and reduced by half. 

Place chopped peppers on toasted bread drizzle with balsamic reduction. 

Tuesday, January 4, 2011


Granola. One of my favorite things to have for breakfast. 

Seriously, I love granola and yogurt. It's a perfect breakfast and awesome snack. I usually buy granola which can actually be pretty pricey. So I made some (really who doesn't want to save money?). Honestly, I don't think I'll ever buy it again. It's really simple and you can play with the recipe to make the right granola for your taste buds.

I stumbled upon this recipe yesterday while on Twitter (follow me, @lynneck). Of course it came from my favorite, Martha. This recipe makes 4 cups. You can store it in an airtight container for up to two weeks (if you can keep it around that long)! I look forward to trying out different recipes and even making granola bars. Stay tuned!

Maple-Nut Granola
  • 3 1/2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/4 cup chopped almonds
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 5 teaspoons vegetable oil
  • 5 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract 
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In a large bowl, toss together oats, pecans, almonds, salt, vegetable oil, maple syrup, and vanilla extract.
  2. Spread oat mixture on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake until golden brown, 25 to 30 minutes, rotating sheet halfway through. Let cool completely.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Two Thousand Eleven

That's right it's 2011! 

Happy New Year to all of my lovely readers! I hope you and your family had a great holiday, mine was perfect! I'm really looking forward to this year. I think it's going to be great! I have high hopes. 2010 was a great year for me and my blog. I really experimented with a lot of different things in the kitchen. I'm ambitious to continue to share my love of learning my ways around the kitchen with all of you in 2011.

Over the past week I spent time reading a bunch of blogs & news articles relating to the 2011 food trends (there was even a segment on Good Morning America). From what I gathered it looks like 2011 is going to be the year of pies (specifically mini pies), gourmet hot dogs, fried chicken & ice pops! Out of all these trends spotted, I'm most excited about PIES! They're apparently going to be the 'cupcake' of 2011! I'm not just talking sweet pies here people, I'm talking savory too!

I have a lot of ideas for 2011. I'll definitely be including some of these trends (most likely not the hot dog trend). Can't wait to see what 2011 brings us! Please let me know if there's anything you'd like to see in 2011.

Here's to a happy and healthy year, Lots to Ladle readers!