Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Maple Dijon Salmon and WIAW

Breakfast is one of my favorite meals. I really like cereal. There was a time in college that I had cereal for most meals. Most days. Not be cause I was on my own and poor but because the dining hall had tons of different options. Wonderful options that I mixed and matched for all meals. 

What I realized this morning is that when I eat my cereal with fruit I concentrate on getting an equal balance of fruit and cereal at once. One slice of banana with one piece of cereal. It makes me so happy when in the end I have the correct ratio left.  Is that strange?

Pizza!  I kind of feel like all my eats posts have pizza. We love pizza. Homemade pizza is an easy meal with lots of variety. We split this one in half because Mr. J wanted Canadian bacon. I did not. 

Dinner was this maple Dijon salmon. The recipe is so easy to put together and so good.  Every time we make the salmon I pair it with this arugula salad.  Maple. Maple. Maple.  I could eat this meal every night for dinner. 

What is your favorite way to make salmon?

Do you count your cereal bites? 

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

July Favorites

It is the end of the July. Oh my. I cannot decide if this is a good thing or not. 

This summer has been hot. So hot I don't want to be outside. Plus fall is my absolute favorite season. Pretty much right after the 4th of July I am ready to move on to fall.  Leaves. Apples. My birthday!

But enough of that. It is still July and that means I still have time to post about my favorites before the month is done. 

This scarf

and this necklace from Noonday!

I am currently obsessed with this home improvement blog. I pretty much think I can design anything right now. Lowe's here I come.

Along with improvement comes design.  I spend equal amounts of time pouring through Esty. I found this fun poster that now needs a frame.

As for food, I am falling in love with ice cream and bars.  Sorry cookies, I am sure I will come back to you soon. 

Finally I just watched the first two episodes of Downton Abbey. I know some people love it and some people hate it. I am in the love it people group. Mr. J fell asleep.

What are you loving right now?

Monday, July 29, 2013

Fresh Zucchini Oven Chips {SRC}

July is ending and that means it is time for the Secret Recipe Club posting.  This month I had Laura from a Healthy Jalapeno.  Laura is also from Connecticut. Instant connection. Don't you just love those. 

She had a sorts of yummy goodies to pick from. I had trouble deciding between the Irish Cream Latte Guinness Cupcakes  and the Fresh Strawberry Yogurt Cake.

In the end I went with the Fresh Zucchini Oven Chips to fit with the season. I had a boat load of zucchini.  Zucchini chips were a new and fun way to have some of our zucchini. They were delicious and came out super pretty. 

My one regret is that I used Panko bread crumbs.  Not recommended. They were too thick with the breading and didn't stick as well as I would have liked. Regular bread crumbs are best. 

Thanks for sharing A Healthy Jalapeno!

Secret Recipe Club

Zucchini Oven Chips

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Ingredients (serves 4)
  • 1/4 cup dry whole wheat breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup (1 ounce) grated fresh Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 tsp seasoned salt
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/8 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tbsp low-fat milk (or almond milk)
  • 2 1/2 cups (1/4-inch-thick) slices zucchini (about 2 small)
  • Cooking spray
Preheat oven to 425°.

Combine first 5 ingredients in a medium bowl, stirring with a whisk. Place milk in a shallow bowl.

Dip zucchini slices in milk, and dredge in breadcrumb mixture. Place coated slices on an ovenproof wire rack coated with cooking spray; place rack on a baking sheet.

Bake at 425° for 30 minutes or until browned and crisp. Serve immediately.
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Sunday, July 28, 2013

Weekend Edition: Round Up

Holy cow this weekend flew by...seriously?!?!?  We have some big things happening to us right now. Good things.  Big things. Busy things.  I hope to share with you all soon.

I hope you all had a great weekend!

In the meantime, here is what I was up to last week in case you missed it:

            Thursday, July 25, 2013

            BC BBQ Sauce and Ribs {Pass the Cookbook}

            It's that time of the month for Pass the Cook Book.  Each month Kita from Pass the Sushi picks a cookbook from her shelf that hasn't been used in a while.  We then pick one of three recipes to make. This month was pretty busy for Kita but she arrange for someone else to pull from their cookbook library.  The more the merrier, right?

            July's cookbook pick was Ina Garten's Barefoot Contessa Foolproof: Recipes You Can Trust.  I have all of the other cookbooks, which I love, but not this one. Thus I was super excited to see what I was missing.  After trying two of the three recipes options, I might just go out and get it.

            I had a really hard time picking between the BBQ ribs, blondies and gazpacho.  It was so hot the cold gazpacho really had me thinking. Blondies, of course, is dessert with chocolate. Yes, yes, and yes.  To please the Mr. J, though I made the ribs. He was so happy for the ribs.

            The recipe made a ton of sauce.  The flavors were a bit more spicy then I typically have in my BBQ but we really enjoyed the depth of spice.  The meat of the rib literally fell off the bones. I ended up eating the meat with a fork doused in sauce.

            Because I couldn't resist the Blondies, I made a version earlier this week. I highly recommend these bars. I recommend the ribs too. Basically I love Ina and all of her recipes. I guess I am going to get the cook book now.

            If you want to become a part of the cook book club read this post and click for the facebook group. Come join us in the fun!

            BC BBQ sauce

            by Ina Garten
            Prep Time: 10 minutes
            Cook Time: 30 minutes
            Keywords: canning sauce summer
            Ingredients (4 cups)
            • ½ cup vegetable oil
            • 1 ½ cups chopped yellow onion (1 large onion)
            • 1 Tbs. minced garlic (3 cloves)
            • 1 cup (10 oz.) tomato paste
            • 1 cup cider vinegar
            • 1 cup honey
            • ½ cup Worcestershire sauce
            • 1 cup Dijon mustard
            • ½ cup soy sauce
            • 1 cup hoisin sauce
            • 2 Tbs. chili powder
            • 1 Tbs. ground cumin
            • 1 ½ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
            Heat the oil in a large saucepan over low heat, add the onions, and cook for 10 to 15 minutes, until the onions are translucent but not browned.

            Add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute.

            Add the tomato paste, vinegar, honey, Worcestershire, mustard, soy sauce, hoisin sauce, chili powder, cumin, and red pepper flakes.

            Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer uncovered for 30 minutes. Use the sauce immediately or pour into a container and refrigerate.
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            Wednesday, July 24, 2013

            WIAW: Grilling it up

            Breakfast is cereal this week. I realized we have about 6 different varieties of cereal in the pantry. I got excited and decided I needed to take advantage. Peanut butter Puffins. Blueberries. Bananas.  Coffee was done by the time eating took place.

            I think this post shows that I blog about what we actually eat. Every day this week I had a piece of quiche for lunch. Carrot sticks.  Every. Day.  Today it will be finished.

            Lunch was followed by one of these salted caramel chocolate chip cookie bars. Every. Day. Wish they would never be done.

            This dinner was a feast that made Mr. J do a little dance.  A Boston bibb bacon and blue cheese salad. Steak. Grilled corn. I did a little dance because besides these plates there were no dishes. Perfect dinner.

            Tuesday, July 23, 2013

            Quiche Lorraine featuring Kaltbach Cave-Aged Le Gruyère Switzerland AOC

            Studying abroad in France I ate cheese and bread a lot. This combination was readily available, cheap and oh so delicious.  And although I loved the creamy soft cheeses of France, I really loved the Swiss Gruyère and Emmentaler.  As you can imagine this was to the dismay of my French family. They just shook their heads and tsk, tsked me. 

            When Emmi Roth asked me to sample some of their Kaltbach Cave-aged Le Gruyère I didn't hesitate to say yes.  

            Quiche is something I don't make nearly as often as I should. If you buy store bought pie crust, quiche is very simple to put together and can be extremely versatile in flavor. The key to a good quiche is good add ins. One quiche made for dinner leaves leftovers lasting several days after.

            This Quiche Lorraine was particularly flavorful with the aged Gruyère from Emmi Roth. It melted smoothly throughout the quiche, leaving a nutty taste in your mouth.. Mr. J insisted I add bacon as well. 

            The richness was cut by using milk instead of cream and the addition of spinach. I absolutely had to add a bit of green.

            So the next time you are contemplating what to make for dinner go for a quiche.

            Disclaimer: I was given a sample of Emmi Roth USA Kaltbach Cave-aged Le Gruyère cheese for this post but all opinions are 100% my own.

            Quiche Lorraine

            by Emily Morris
            Prep Time: 10 minutes
            Cook Time: 45 minutes
            Ingredients (serves 8)
            • 1 unbaked pie crust, 9 inch round
            • 4 slices bacon, cut into 1 inch piece
            • 1/2 cup chopped onion
            • 1 8 oz package frozen chopped spinach, thawed
            • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
            • 1 pinch nutmeg, or more to taste
            • 7 eggs
            • 1 1/2 cup milk
            • 1 tsp chopped fresh thyme
            • 6 oz Kaltbach Cave-aged Le Gruyère
            Preheat oven to 350° F.

            Cook bacon in a skillet over medium heat until browned and cooked through, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove from pan and drain.

            Blot out some of the oil from the skillet, leaving 1 to 2 teaspoons. Onion, salt, and black pepper. Cook and stir until tender and browned, 5 to 7 minutes, then add spinach. Mix together and set aside.

            Whisk eggs and milk together in a large bowl. Add thyme and nutmeg. Stir to combine.
            Place the pie crust in a pie tin and crimp the edges. Put spinach and onion mixture on the bottom of a pie pan. Top with 1/2 cooked bacon and 1/2 Kaltbach Le Gruyère cheese. Ladle in half the egg mixture. Gently use your fingers to incorporate the egg mixture with the spinach and onion mixture. Top with the remaining cheese and bacon.

            Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, or until the custard is golden brown, puffed, and set yet still slightly wiggly in the center.

            Allow to cool slightly before serving.
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            Monday, July 22, 2013

            Salted Caramel Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

            Are you looking for a decadent treat to get you through the week?  If you are you came to the right place.  These salted caramel chocolate chip cookie bars are completely decadent.

            The cookie base has extra brown sugar but the real reason these are up a few notches on the rich scale is the salted caramel.

            You get lots of sweetness and just a hint of salty.  One small bar was enough to satisfy my sweat treat need for the day.

            Putting it all together takes a fine touch. You press half of the cookie dough into the bottom of the pan followed by a layer of the caramel sauce. Then you finish off the bars with the remaining half of the cookie dough.  You want to cover the caramel for the most part so it doesn't get tough in the baking process but a few swirls will come through the top layer.

            I cheated a bit and used my favorite caramel sauce but you can certainly make your own too.  And be ready to share.  

            Salted Caramel Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

            by Emily Morris
            Prep Time: 20 minutes
            Cook Time: 30 minutes
            Keywords: bake dessert chocolate caramel bar
            Ingredients (24 bars)
            • ½ lb. (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
            • 1 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
            • ½ cup granulated sugar
            • 2 tsp vanilla extract
            • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
            • 2 cups all purpose flour
            • 1 tsp baking soda
            • 1 tsp Kosher salt
            • 1 12 oz bag mini chocolate chips
            • 1/2 cup salted caramel
            Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

            Grease and flour an 9 x 13 x 2-inch baking pan.

            In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar on high speed for 3 minutes, until light and fluffy. With the mixer on low, add the vanilla. Add the eggs, one at a time, and mix well, scraping down the bowl after each addition.

            In a small bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, and salt. With the mixer still on low, slowly add the flour mixture to the butter mixture. Fold in the chocolate chips with a rubber spatula.

            Microwave salted caramel until the consistency is runny but not liquid, about 15 to 30 seconds depending the power of your microwave.

            Spread the 1/2 of the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top. Pour caramel on top of first layer and smooth over cookie dough. Top with remaining 1/2 of the dough.

            Bake for 30 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. Be careful not to over bake. The toothpick may have melted chocolate on it but shouldn’t have wet batter. Cool completely in the pan and cut into 24 bars.
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            Sunday, July 21, 2013

            Weekend Edition: Decorating

            Clearly my weekly motivating posts didn't last long.  I track what I do on a different website so I know it is there somewhere but I am too lazy to make the transfer. Plus I can sum it up much easier than typing it out day by day. The last two weeks have been walking. Even at 6am, even at the air conditioned gym it has been hot and humid.  I might have gotten two runs in but they were miserable. Miserable running is NOT motivating.

            In other news I have been a painting fiend. Three wrong colors later I think we might be done painting.  The whole apartment wasn't redone and I am sure the longer I stare at the old walls the more I will want to do. I have also been obsessed with this website.  It has led me to purchase several art pieces/frames for our new walls. I cannot wait to hang them up.  Decorating is much more fun than painting.

            That pretty much sums up the weekend. 

            Do you love or hate to paint?

            Mr. J conveniently decided he was not good at painting and left it all up to me.  Good news is he was willing to do whatever else I asked of him all weekend.

            In case you missed it, here is what I was up to last week:

                  Thursday, July 18, 2013

                  blueberry chocolate chip muffins

                  Because everything tastes better with chocolate chips.

                  It's Friday and the heat has made the week seem extremely long and exhausting. I have a day full of meetings before the weekend.  Muffins seemed most appropriate. 

                  I tweaked a healthy muffin recipe from Stonyfield Farm. Of course it includes yogurt. I cut back on the sugar and then added some chocolate.  Emily logic.

                  happy friday!

                  blueberry chocolate chip muffins

                  by Emily Morris
                  Prep Time: 10 minutes
                  Cook Time: 15 minutes
                  Keywords: bake breakfast blueberries chocolate
                  Ingredients (12 muffins)
                  • 2 cup all-purpose flour
                  • 1 tsp baking soda
                  • 1 tsp baking powder
                  • 1/2 cup sugar
                  • 1⁄2 tsp salt
                  • 1 tsp cinnamon
                  • 2 eggs
                  • 1 1⁄4 cup low fat plain yogurt
                  • 1⁄2 stick of butter, melted
                  • 1 cup blueberries, fresh or frozen,
                  • 3/4 cup chocolate chips
                  Preheat the oven to 375°and line the muffin tins.

                  In a small mixing bowl, stir together the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.

                  In another bowl, combine the sugar, yogurt, eggs, melted butter, and cinnamon. Beat until thoroughly mixed.

                  Add the dry ingredients and mix just until blended. Be careful not to over mix.

                  Gently fold in blueberries and chocolate chips and then spoon the batter into the lined muffin tins, filling each cup about two thirds full.

                  These should bake for about 15 minutes, or until the tops are browned, and a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.

                  When the muffins are done, let them cool in the pan. Remove and serve warm.
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