Nov 27

roasted pears with sweet potatoes

After what will forever be referred to in my home as Tart Debacle 2012 (don’t ask), I found myself with a few extra pears and no idea what to do with them.

Mad genius and boss of my pal Ashley, Martha Stewart, says that you can bake pears with sweet potatoes and it totally won’t be weird or anything.

I was skeptical, but of course she was correct. It wasn’t weird at all. It was actually pretty dang delicious.

And in super important news that I keep forgetting to share with you…

There is a new boss running my local cooking store!

Look at those eyes! Look at that face! I love her. Must go shopping for whisks and skillets immediately!

PS – those are not my hands in the photo. My hands are nowhere near as lovely as those hands.

 

Roasted Pears with Sweet Potatoes
Recipe from Martha Stewart
Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 2 sweet potatoes, sliced into wedges or cubes (I chose wedges)
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
  • sprinkle of sea salt
  • 2 Bartlett pears, cored and sliced into 2″ pieces (don’t get hung up on the size, however you slice them up, it will be great)

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and get to work cutting up your potatoes.

In a large bowl, toss together the potatoes, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, dry mustard, ground ginger, cayenne and sea salt.

Spread the potatoes out on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and roast for 20-25 minutes, until they’re slightly crispy.

While the potatoes are in the oven, cut up your pears.

Remove the potatoes from the oven, toss the pears and remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil with the potatoes

and roast the glorious medley for another 10 minutes.

Serve warm.

Nov 18

apple pumpkin brown betty

Usually I shy away from baking things inside of other things because it seems, well, terrifying.

I read this recipe again and again, waiting for the intimidating part to jump out at me so I could convince myself that I couldn’t do it. But, it never happened.

The steps are basically this:
1. Cut top off of pumpkin
2. Cook some stuff in a skillet for a total of about 10 minutes
3. Put that stuff in the pumpkin
4. Bake it
5. Eat it

It’s really simple, and at the same time, it looks crazy impressive.

If you serve this for the holidays, people are going to talk about it forever. Someone will be all like, “oh hey, I brought stuffing” and you’ll smile and nod and say, “that’s so nice. I just brought this little dessert baked inside of a pumpkin bowl that we will also eat. No big deal.”

Not that the holidays are a competition or anything. But guess what.

You win.

 

Apple Pumpkin Brown Betty
Recipe from Food Network Magazine
Serves 4-6
Printable recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1 2-3 lb sugar pumpkin
  • 3 tablespoons vegan butter substitute
  • 1 cup cubed bread (preferably a vegan baguette)
  • 2 Gala apples, diced into 1/2″ pieces
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • sprinkle of sea salt
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup

Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

Slice off the top of the pumpkin and scoop out the seeds and pulp. Keep the pumpkin top because you’ll use it again for this recipe. We’re not going to use the seeds or the pulp, but you can save them to make roasted pumpkin seeds, pumpkin brittle or pumpkin puree.


Melt 2 tablespoons of vegan butter in a skillet. Add the bread and cook over low-medium heat until golden, 4-5 minutes.

Remove the bread from the skillet and place in a large bowl.


Melt the remaining tablespoon of vegan butter in the skillet.

Add in the apples, brown sugar and raisins.

Cook the apple mixture over low-medium heat for 5 minutes.

Remove the skillet from the heat and stir in the vanilla, cinnamon and salt.

Add the apple mixture to the bread and stir.

Place the pumpkin in a small baking dish.

Spoon the apple filling inside of the pumpkin.

Place the top of the pumpkin back on.

Boil a small pot of water (or microwave it) and fill the bottom of the baking dish with 1″ of water.

Place aluminum foil loosely over the pumpkin. Bake the pumpkin for 2 to 2 1/2 hours, until the pumpkin is tender.

Remove the foil and the pumpkin top, and bake the pumpkin for another 10 minutes.

Transfer the pumpkin to a serving dish. I used a metal spatula to scoop the pumpkin out of the water and it worked really well. Be careful not to squeeze the sides of the pumpkin too hard, as it will dent.

You can either drizzle the maple syrup over top of the pumpkin now, or you can drizzle the syrup over top of each serving after you’ve scooped it onto a plate or bowl.

Scoop some of the pumpkin flesh out with each spoonful of apple mixture, and serve. It’s even more delicious when served with vegan vanilla ice cream.

 

Don’t forget to leave a comment over on the blogiversary post by midnight EST on 11/21 to enter to win a Vegan Organic Caramel Sampler from Feed Your Face!

 

Nov 16

happy 2nd blogiversary + a yummy giveaway!

Guess what, friends! It’s our special day! We’re two! Happy Blogiversary to us!!!

I am so grateful for your ongoing support and virtual friendship. I love you guys!

In honor of this joyous occasion, I’m giving away a super delicious Vegan Organic Caramel Sampler from Feed Your Face.

 

image courtesy of Feed Your Face

That’s 20 big vegan caramels, all ready to have a dance party in your mouths.

From Nicole of Feed Your Face:

I hand wrap the caramels in eco-friendly compostable clear cellophane, label them individually so you know what you’re eating, and package them in biodegradable cellophane bags tied off with multicolored yarn made from reclaimed cotton and banana fiber by a fair-trade women’s cooperative in Nepal. I can include a handwritten gift tag at no extra cost — just ask! The wrappers and bags are compostable; the padding I pack the boxes in is recycled and recyclable.

All of my caramels are dairy-free, gluten-free, corn syrup-free, virtually soy-free, free of most common allergens, and 100% vegan. Don’t worry, they don’t taste healthy in the slightest. They’re creamy and chewy and decadent, and many many nonvegans have loved these caramels and couldn’t tell the difference from the traditional version. I use organic and fair-trade ingredients wherever possible.

They have a room temperature shelf life of at least a couple of weeks and they’ll freeze pretty much indefinitely. They’re coconut milk-based so they may be pretty soft when they arrive in the mail if it’s warm where you are, and if you leave them in the fridge or outside in the cold too long they’ll get very hard. They’re happiest at room temperature.

image courtesy of Feed Your Face

Here are the flavors that are currently offered in the sampler:

Hawaiian red sea salt
dark chocolate Hawaiian red sea salt
vanilla
espresso
pumpkin spice
dark chocolate pumpkin spice
double ginger
lavender brown sugar
lemongrass coconut
blood orange
pomegranate balsamic
green tea chai
spicy (cinnamon/chipotle) dark chocolate
vanilla-orange creamsicle
carrot cake
dark chocolate orange
maple
mocha
limited edition mulled apple cider
limited edition gingerbread

image courtesy of Feed Your Face

All you have to do to enter is leave a comment below telling me how much you love cats, on a scale of 1-10.

Just kidding!

Just leave any old comment by midnight EST on Wednesday, 11/21.

Just say hi. Say you want caramels. Say whatever.

I’ll choose a winner at random and announce it here on Friday, November 23.

Did I happen to mention that I love you? Because I do. Thank you for a wonderful two years.

Nov 08

savory molasses biscuits

This recipe was created in the spirit of Support for Sandy – a food blogging event to help the victims of Hurricane Sandy.

Jenn of Jenn Cuisine and Barb of Creative Culinary created today’s virtual event to raise awareness for those affected by Superstorm Sandy. Although much has been said about the aftermath of Sandy in the New York City and New Jersey areas, the affects of Sandy were felt from Appalachia to Canada, and the long road to recovery has just begun.

Unlike fundraisers in the past, these Savory Molasses Biscuits aren’t for sale.  Jenn and Barb have called on food bloggers to publish a recipe that they find comforting, and few foods are as comforting to me as biscuits. The idea is that I’ll hopefully grab your attention with the biscuits, and then you’ll hang around long enough to click the box below, which will take you to American Red Cross donations page. It is often said that every little bit helps, and I promise that it’s the truth.

To see what other bloggers are contributing to today’s event, head over to Twitter and follow hashtag #FBS4Sandy

To fill your bellies with these biscuits, follow the simple instructions below.

Savory Molasses Biscuits
Recipe adapted from Food Network Magazine
Serves 10
Printable recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1 tablespoon wheat germ
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt, plus more for sprinkling
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
  • sprinkle of fresh ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons molasses
  • 1/3 cup grape seed oil
  • 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons unsweetened almond milk

Preheat your oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, whole wheat four, 1/4 cup of oats, wheat germ, baking powder, 1 teaspoon sea salt, 1 teaspoon thyme and the black pepper.


In another bowl, stir together the molasses, grape seed oil and 3/4 cup almond milk.


Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir until fully combined.


Use a 1/4 cup measuring cup to scoop the batter onto the pan. You can either make drop biscuits, or do what I did and roll the batter in a ball with your hands and then press the biscuit ball gently between your palms before placing on the baking sheet.


Brush the tops of the biscuits with the remaining 2 tablespoons of almond milk.

Sprinkle the biscuits with the remaining 1/4 cup of oats, 1 teaspoon of thyme and sprinkle of salt.

Bake for 12 minutes, until the tops begin to brown.

Allow to cool for a bit before digging into these savory biscuits.

Serve with a dollop of vegan butter.

Nov 01

thank you

Thank you all so very much for the kind messages regarding Hurricane Sandy. Moose, the kit kats and I are grateful to be safe and sound. Unfortunately, many of our neighbors were not as lucky as we have been over these past few days. If you’d like to help out, there are a myriad of organizations that are accepting donations for both humans and furry friends. A link to a few are below, along with a couple of helpful articles.

American Red Cross
ASPCA
The Humane Society of the United States
North Shore Animal League
How to Donate Using iTunes
How to Donate via text message to American Red Cross, Salvation Army, American Humane Association and/or Direct Relief International
Hurricane Sandy: 10 Tips for Donating Smart