Aug 31, 2015

Apricot, Almond, and Toasted Coconut Muffins

Apricot, Almond, and Toasted Coconut Muffins

Apricot, almond, and toasted coconut muffins baked in mini muffin pans! They make it so easy to justify having just one more. After all, they are so tiny!!

They are filled with toasted coconut, toasted almonds, and lots of dried apricot bits. They aren't overly sweet either, and are perfect for breakfast. Of course, if you want to be sinful, you can eat them warm (or re-warmed in the oven), slathered with some butter and apricot jam... not that I would do that... ahem.

Aug 30, 2015

Mini Chicken Empanadas with Cheese and Chiles

Mini Chicken Empanadas with Cheese and Chiles

It was really difficult not to devour more than my share of these Mini Chicken Empanadas when I pulled them out of the oven. They are ridiculously tasty... and so easy peasy to make!

Aug 23, 2015

Make-Ahead Cold Oatmeal with Honey and Raspberries

Make-Ahead Cold Oatmeal with Honey and Raspberries

This Make-Ahead Cold Oatmeal with Honey and Raspberries is just about the easiest way to grab a nutritious breakfast that, in my opinion, is way more satisfying than a breakfast bar or a bowl of cereal.

The oatmeal is mixed with yogurt, milk, and honey, and layered with raspberries (other berries would work nicely too), and then allowed to chill overnight in the refrigerator to soften and thicken. Best part? No cooking involved. The oatmeal is eaten cold.

Aug 21, 2015

Apricot, Almond, & Olive Oil Cake with Vanilla and Lemon

Apricot, Almond, & Olive Oil Cake with Vanilla and Lemon

This apricot, almond, & olive oil cake is incredibly moist, and the flavors of the apricots, lemon zest, almond flour, and vanilla seeds combine perfectly to create a delicate and tasty cake.

Aug 19, 2015

Grandma Pizza | Bread Cookbook Giveaway!

Grandma Pizza

This Grandma Pizza is sort of a cross between pizza and focaccia, and originated from the memories of Donna Curry, the author of the amazing bread baking cook book, Make Ahead Bread: 100 Recipes for Melt-in-Your-Mouth Fresh Bread Every Day.

Aug 18, 2015

Pita Bread | Tuesdays with Dorie

Homemade pita bread

Bread is an amazing thing. Combine four simple ingredients, flour, water, salt, and yeast, and you can come up with so many different loaves, rolls, flatbreads, pastries, and other wonderful and delicious breads.

For example, pita bread. How do little rolled out disks of dough suddenly puff up while baking, creating a big pocket of air, ready to be filled with tasty salads, spreads, or vegetables?

It's pretty magical!

Demerara Shortbread Cookies

Demerara Shortbread Cookies

These Demerara Sugar Shortbread Cookies have a wonderful faint salted caramel flavor that will call you back to the cookie jar all day long.

Demerara sugar you ask? It is a coarse, large crystal raw sugar that is native to Guyana. Unlike brown sugar, it is not flavored with molasses, but is naturally golden brown.

The edges of these cookies are rolled in the sugar before baking, and then the sugar melts and hardens to create a lovely rich tasting coating.

Aug 16, 2015

L'Otto di Merano | Italian Rye Bread | Bread Baking Babes

L'Otto di Merano Italian Rye Bread

L'Otto di Merano gets its name from its shape, two balls of dough baked together to resemble a figure eight. I'm not sure about the figure eight resemblance (see below), however, this bread is super soft and moist, and the dough is supple and really easy to handle and shape.

It makes wonderful sandwiches and toast, and is tasty with smoked salmon or melted cheese. I love toasting it and topping it with a fried egg, salt, and pepper.

Aug 13, 2015

Singapore-Style Stir-Fried Lobster | Wok Wednesdays

Singapore-Style Stir-Fried Lobster | Wok Wednesdays

I had to psych myself up to make this Singapore-Style Stir-Fried Lobster, today's dish on the Wok Wednesdays recipe schedule. First, Grace Young, the author of Stir Frying to the Sky's Edge, from which this recipe comes, describes it as "advanced." Second, she describes it as requiring "solid knife skills." Um... not me.... and then there's that other thing, familiarity with boiling a lobster.

Aug 11, 2015

Pizza Cipolla | Onion Pizza

Pizza Cipolla | Onion Pizza

When I tasted this Pizza Cipolla, I had one of those jump up and down, "oh-em-gee this is so freaking good" moments.

I kind of suspected it would be good when it was baking, because the aroma coming from my oven was spectacular.

Aug 6, 2015

Fresh Fig Margarita

Fresh fig margarita

I decided to try this Fresh California Fig Margarita when my cousin gave me a precious bag of four perfectly ripe figs from her fig tree (along with an assortment of amazing tomatoes, onions, and, of course, zucchini).

If you get ripe figs, you need to use them right away. It was the weekend, so why not a cocktail?

Aug 4, 2015

Demi Baguettes

Demi Baguettes

Baguettes! I have a love/hate relationship with them. When I first attempted them, I got baguette pancakes, squiggly baguettes, pale baguettes, and other various mutations of the elusive perfect product from French boulangeries.

I've got to say, I'm really excited about these. Browned crackly and crispy crust, holey interior, and an amazing flavor from two to three days of fermentation make these my favorite baguettes so far.

Aug 2, 2015

Rugbrød - Danish Rye Bread

Rugbrød - Danish Rye Bread

Rugbrød is a Danish dark rye bread that contains two naturally leavened preferments (containing sourdough starter). It is heavy and dense, and is traditionally baked as a long loaf. The traditional version of this bread contains rye chops, which are cracked rye berries. If you cannot find rye chops, you can use a multigrain mix, such as Bob's Red Mill. It also contains ground fennel seeds and blackstrap molasses.

If you like rye, you will love this bread. It is so full of flavor!