Monday, November 30, 2009

a little bit more giving

here are a few more pictures from the thanksgiving weekend.
and of course the recipe!

home made pumpkin ice cream on thanksgiving!

so this week weekend, being so full of cold turkey sandwiches and dried up mashed potatoes, we decided to do TACO NIGHT! i made my famous guacamole.

like my grandmothers apple pie, french pastry recipe; i don't think i will ever give up my guacamole recipe! its just too great. just indulgence. not once have i made it, and there be left overs. although guacamole is simple and most people make a wonderful version of it, mine has something special besides love in it to make is superb! maybe one day.

price eats alot: again.

on sunday we drove to Salina, to meet our dear friends Stephen + Christie Miller for breakfast. the only place in Salina, KS for breakfast is this place called Russell's.
When i looked them up, the first thing on their website says "if you feel like a cinnamon roll at 3am, Russell's is the place to come!"
i knew right then we would be in a pool of grease.
it was fabulous!

robert got these 3 HUGE pancakes for 7$. and he couldn't even finish them!

then we went to target to try and get in the spirit and got sad because of consumerism so we picked up a baby instead. (maybe he is from santa)

his name is finn.

then of course we had game night:
Scrabble Slam


and now for my recipe:

peanut butter chocolate cup tea cakes!

first i make my gooey peanut butter cookies!

(this makes about 2 dozen- or 17 big cookies)

1/2 c. butter, softened
1/2 c. organic raw peanut butter (or almond butter)
1 c. packed brown sugar
1/2 c. white sugar
2 free range eggs
2 tbs. light corn syrup
2 tbs. water
2 tsp. vanilla
2 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt

oven: 375 degrees

in a bowl, mix together butter, peanut butter, brown sugar, and white sugar until creamy smooth!
beat in eggs, one at a time, then the corn syrup, water and vanilla
then add the flour, baking soda and salt. all together.
then bake for about 12-14 minutes or until they look done!

then while the peanut butter cookies are cooling, take some chocolate chips and melt them in a double-boiler, make sure you don't burn the chocolate and stir it frequently!

dip each cookie into the chocolate (with pastry tongs) then hold the cookie for at least 30 seconds to let it set, then place on wax paper.

once the cookies are all dried, roll them all in powdered sugar!

walllllah! you have an incredible, pretty tea cake/peanut butter chocolate cup!


more bites tomorrow!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

the act of giving

being our first year married over the holidays we decided to spend a couple weeks road tripping around in november to really have a "relaxing/adventurous holiday"

so on november 17th we packed up the dog, moped and some snacks in the volvo stationwagon and headed outta town. from nashville to kansas city we only stopped twice to let our dog go to the bathroom

something about driving into the open plains is so calming. like a gush of warmth in the cold christmas craziness.

we spent a lovely time in kansas city. drinking with friends and eating a lot of food.

since we have been gone our days have been full of live music, lots of coffee/hot chocolate/ soy eggnog with brandy.

so we are now in Mcpherson, KS. just a little north of wichita and west of topeka. its a small quaint town of seems to be 5,000. a little smaller then i am used to, but i love the warmth and friendliness of every old lady and scruffy man here.

a few days after getting to mcpherson, robert's parents had a fish fry for us! so delicious! hush puppies everywhere!

making sushi for my in laws. they have never had it! boy did i change their minds about it.

on thanksgiving robert and I just enjoyed each other. it was a wonderful, renewing morning of us just remembering how we fell in love, our first kiss, our first memories and all of our other "first" and the ones yet to come. we realized how blessed we are to be healthy, full of wealth and knowledge, our families love us, and happy. it was a good thanksgiving. and we didnt over eat...which is good.

we did make pumpkin ice cream! it was to DIE FOR. although i almost did because i kept snacking and i am allergic to dairy :(
it was worth it :)

games are the big thing for us right now. every game you can imagine

killer uno
gin rummy (still unbeaten)
chutes + ladders

i am not really good at any of them except killer uno + gin rummy. unbeated at gin.

more bites later.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

belgium + france

november is a time to cook for me. things and meals that i never cook any other time of the year.
i dont usually eat breakfast, although I know it's so important for me to.. but this weekend robert and I cooked breakfast like never before! my oma's famous crepe's with strawberry preserves and raw sugar. oh my gosh they were delicious. and the trick is, if they look like lace, or a doillie, then they are good crepes! mine are getting there. they are so fabulous!

so we celebrated france yesterday. and on saturday we celebrated belgium! with homemade belgium waffles. i woke up to the smell of maple syrup and blueberries in my house. wish i could bottle that fall smell up.

compliments to my husband's mad skills!

also this year, being our first christmas married we have decided to make our own stockings, decorations, and ornaments! we are starting our own traditions and we are so excited!

above: my stocking

below: wizard and the top of robert's stocking!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

the fruits of the soul

oh i am preparing a fabulous meal for my kiwi friends! a royal thai experience! full of fusion flavors and to explode the taste buds!
so i have been busy all day and started preparing some food last night!
ginger chili chicken (and veggie) lettuce wraps
home made wonton spring rolls with ginger pomegranate dipping sauce
steamed edamame with a salty garlic butter
pineapple goji berry martini's!

oh my tongue doesn't know the bang that is about to hit!

and of course, the sprinkle of sweetness will be banana pudding!
(i wanted to do brown sugar fried bananas but robert has been craving banana pudding for weeks! and honoring our 6 month anniversary from this week i craved!)

now for the banana pudding recipe and more pictures to follow with the food!

the yummy home made vanilla pudding:

1/2 cup of organic sugar (raw does not work as well)
3 tablespoons of cornstarch
2 cups of organic milk
2 pinches of salt
2 egg yolks
2 tablespoons of unsalted butter
2 teaspoons of all natural vanilla extract

wisk the sugar, cornstarch and salt in a saucepan.
pour 1/4 cup of the milk into the saucepan, stirring until smooth
wisk in the remaining milk and then the egg yolks
cook the pudding mixture on low heat (so you don't burn!) and stir constantly- until thick.
(wooden spoons work best!)
do not let it boil!
remove from the heat and stir in the butter and vanilla.
put in a bowl and cover tightly and refrigerate at least an hour!

then of course cut the bananas
and get some vanilla wafers and alternate the 3 layers!

cover and i think it is best served after being in the fridge for at least 24 hours! so cold and yummy!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

new season. new things

i love november. probably my favorite month.
all the leaves have turned, the weather is just perfect.
no humidity, no sweltering days, just refreshing gust of cool air on my rosy cheeks.
my lips are always chapped but it feels so nice when I apply the almond butter. so comforting

pumpkin bread, banana cookies, hot apple cidar, strong coffee.
such a beautiful feeling.

well after a exasperating week of stress and moving, we are finally settling in.
it feels so nice to have a warm cozy home that i love.

our new house is comfy, carefree, colorful. oh so many words!
it was made for fall.

we have our bedroom and kitchen set up, of course the most important rooms to me.
things are changing and we like it.
we have already decided where to put our christmas tree.


now for my recipe!

pumpkin bread:

*suggestion- when cooking breads, especially once with spices and such, its worth the money to get fresh spices that will burst in flavor! (ie- Saigon cinnamon, far more flavorful then generic cinnamon)

1 pound fresh organic pumpkin puree
3 ½ cups pastry flour
1 cup organic canola oil
3 cups raw sugar
4 free range eggs
2 teaspoons organic baking soda
1 teaspoon organic baking powder
2 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
2/3 cup cold water

Oven: 325 degrees.

take the pumpkind and peel, sedd and cut into pieces, then steam until soft.
puree the pumpkin in a food processor until there are no lumps.

in a large bowl, beat the sugar, oil, pumpkin and eggs together.
in another bowl sift together all the dry ingredients.
fold the two mixtures together and the water.

Great and flour two loaf pans and pour batter into the pans.
bake for 1 hour or until cooked in the middle (you know the tooth pick trick)

cool in the pans on a cooling rack for at least 10 minutes, then turn our of pans and let them finish cooling.
serve warm but wrap in foil to keep moist!


as it has gotten cold recently I've needed something fall to put on my toast in the mornings, something different.
so i made this little mixture up and its wonderful!

Pumpkin Spice Spread!
I have not tried it on the pumpkin loaf, but if you love pumpkin, im sure its fabulous!

I haven't measured it all out yet, but it's very simple and you can do it to taste!

4-8 oz (depending on how much you want to make!) cream cheese
3-5 tablespoons of brown sugar
a couple spoonfuls of pumpkin
2-3 tablespoons of maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon of vanilla

soften the cream cheese, sugar and syrup in a bowl until creamy.

add the rest of the ingredients and beat until smooth. refrigerate at least an hour!

thats it for today, more bites tomorrow!