Inspiration Hits – Herb Butter

Thyme plant
Yeah, it’s not new. But sometimes the right thing has to hit you at the right time. Today that amazing thought is Herb Butter.

I love butter, with all my tastebuds. I also really like growing herbs. You see where this is going…
There’s a thyme plant that is currently thriving on my table, I’ve been contemplating drying a few of the leaves. But now those fresh and fragrant tiny leaves have a whole new purpose! So does that fat brick of Costco butter I bought a week ago. It was destiny.

Here’s the Food52 article that pulled it all together for me.

Chia Seed Overnight Breakfast Bowl

Chia Overnight Breakfast BowlI love eggs and toast for breakfast. Love love love. Scrambled, poached, fried on sourdough, english muffin, cinnamon toast. But sometimes I’ll admit variety is nice. Plus making it the night before makes the morning just a little easier. It did take a little while for those not used to chia seeds to get used to the look and texture.

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Banoffee Pie

Banoffee PieWhat is banoffee pie? Banana plus Toffee = banoffee.

It’s creation and rise to popularity are pretty well documented, it even has a cameo in Love Actually, one of my most favorite movies. But the internet is divided about how to make it. Boiling an unopened can for 2 hours does have its drawbacks. Mainly, if the water boils off leaving the can exposed it can / will explode sending sticky boiling toffee and water all over your kitchen. So keep a very close eye on the can, have a large enough pot to keep the tin covered really well, have additional water on hand to add easily, use a lid and just take it nice and easy.

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I made this pie both ways. The digestive biscuit base / boiled can way versus the make your own base / toffee on the stove. And the winner is…

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Citrus Feta Salad – Rough Guide

Citrus Salad A Rough GuideA great side, it compliments heavy rich flavors really well, similar to cole slaw maybe…
I went to a BBQ this weekend (it’s Oakland, the weather was amazing and of course it’s March). The host was making a Slow Cooker Maple Bacon Baked Bean dish! What?! It was so good. She also made a cole slaw which just goes so perfectly together. Heavy, warm, rich paired with light, cold and tangy.

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Black Bean Tortilla Casserole

Black Bean Tortilla Casserole
Nostalgia Day! The UC Davis Coffee House.

The best thing I did during undergrad and life (seriously) was work at the UC Davis Coffee House (the Coho). My dream job was to work in the paint section of Ace Hardware, I’ve always loved colors. But they just wanted me for my cashier skills. So instead I worked for 3 years in the Coho kitchen. Best job ever! It had a few obvious perks; free food, flexible hours, right on campus, working with other students, great music, free container dishware for the home (we used 5 gallon lids for plates and large lemon concentrate containers were cut in half for cups, pure class). But it was so much more! I’d love to re-experience the feeling I had while working there. I really loved what I was doing and the people I was doing it with. It’s still a special place in my heart. So every now and again I pull out a Coffee House cookbook and remake my favorites.

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Blood Orange Cheesecake

BloodOrangeCheeseCakeGingersnap_19_TI really loved the rilling from Figs & Pigs’ Blood Orange Baked Cheesecake, it incorporates more of the Blood Orange into the Cheesecake than most other recipes which just used it as a topping. The proportions of the crust didn’t work for me, probably a difference in gingersnap cookie size. So instead I used a gingersnap crust I already liked from Smitten Kitchen.

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Risotto. One pan and without a recipe.

Risotto This is my longest standing “without a recipe” dish. Years ago, when I was just out of college and living in Scotland I made some risotto for a date night. Thankfully that recipe stuck with me. As I started a 5 month backpacking trip I carried some Arborio rice, garlic and bouillon cubes around with me, sometimes parmesan too. I bastardized the recipe to be a one pot meal, bought what veggies I could find and never knew I was doing it all wrong!

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I still make this basic recipe, expanding into another pot or two, sometimes adding meat, but always enough for leftovers. For the most part, I’ve kept the cooking to one pan. I definitely use another pot to keep the stock warm. But if you’re using boullion you can heat some water in a kettle and mix the bouillon in a large jar or mug. Other proper recipes probably call for cooking the onions and veggies in a different pan… which I’ll admit you probably get better browning on the veggies that way. But i’m gonna stick with my way for a while longer.

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Tried & True – the Perfect Brownies

Favorite Brownies
Sometimes you find a recipe and it should not be changed! It’s perfect, an instant favorite. And a favorite 100 times after that.
There’s no point in me rewriting perfection! But maybe I’ll share my favorites with you.

Here’s my photo of Smitten Kitchen – My Favorite Brownies
Perfection! So long as you do the flaky sea salt step!