March 25, 2013

A poem for you

I dream of tasty things to make you,
But my kitchen looks like this...
So instead I paint and hammer and nail
And think of a delicious dish.
When my kitchen is bright and new,
When I have a sink and a counter too,
I promise to make something special for you.
Until then, my friends, I thank you for your patience,
I promise my ignoring you really isn't blatant.

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March 18, 2013

Pinspiration {5 Ingredient Noodles: Veggie Laksa by Zen Family Habits}





Via

***Updated 5/4/15.  It was brought to my attention by reader Sarah H. that the Zen Family Habits link no longer works.  I have clicked all around the internet and everything for Zen Family Habits says "account suspended".  Bummer!  I was able to find this blog where she appears to repeat the original recipe (I'm going from memory here, but it looks accurate).  I have pasted her notes below, in case that link also goes bad.  I also made a slight tweak to her noted recipe wherein she talks about adding 2 cups of water to the coconut cream.  Finally, I'm leaving the Zen Family Habits links up in case the blog ever comes back on-line (there were other good recipes there, darn it!).  Thanks Sarah H. for the heads up!*****

3/4 lb fresh Singapore noodles
2oz Laksa paste or other Thai curry paste
1 large can coconut cream
2 cups mixed chopped vegetables
handful fresh basil leaves

Place noodles in a heatproof bowl and cover with boiling water.  Allow to stand for 1 minute then massage to loosen into individual strands.  Drain.
Meanwhile, heat 2 tablespoons of peanut or other vegetable oil in a large saucepan over high heat.
Add curry paste and stir fry for 30 seconds.
Quickly add coconut cream and slowly add up to 2 cups of hot water (or coconut milk) depending on the consistency (thickness) you want.
Bring to a boil, add vegetables and simmer for 2 minutes until vegetables are cooked to your liking.
To serve, divide noodles between 3 bowls.  Pour over curry and vegetables and top with basil leaves.

*****BEGIN ORIGINAL POST*****

Hi there tasty noodle dish!  I found this veggie laksa dish on Pinterest via Zen Family Habits.  I've made it a few times and it tastes as good as it looks.

The recipe calls for Singapore Noodles, which are rice noodles.  When making this dish I've used both chow mein and rice noodles; they each work great.  Using rice noodles keeps the dish gluten free.

The recipe also calls for coconut cream.  You can substitute coconut milk (I did this the first time), but it is much better (thicker) with coconut cream.  Canned coconut cream is now available at Trader Joe's.


I now often use the coconut cream in other Thai based/curry dishes to get a thicker sauce.

Along with this great noodle dish, Zen Family Habits also shares 3 additional 5 ingredient, 5 minute noodle dishes in the same post.

  

Happy Noodle Eating!

Do you have a noodle dish that Pinspires you?  Tell me about it!

TCW








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March 14, 2013

{Pi Day} Peanut Butter Pie + More!

Hi Everyone!

Today is Pi Day.  I am not really qualified to discuss pi with you, but I am qualified to discuss pie.
I figure those interested in pi are also interested pie.

Let's do this thing!

First I bring you my leeetle siiiiister's Frozen Peanut Butter Pie.


My sister lives in Washington and whenever she comes to visit our friends line up with their PB Pie requests. The line is long.  Longer than 3.14 for sure.

As such, this pie is one of my favorites because it reminds me of my siiiister, who I don't see enough and miss often.  And as sweet as this post of pie ode to my sister is, she probably hates me right now since she is gluten and dairy free at the moment.

Siister, I promise we'll find a gluten and dairy free way to make this!

Until then, peanut butter and cream cheese should be friends.


When I think of this pie I do think of my sister but what I picture are her hands.  Where I often feel clumsy in food or craft there is something elegant about the way she moves her hands when cooking and creating.

Once your peanut butter and cream cheese are together, you should whip it.
Whip it good.


If you are my sister you will seamlessly move this delicious contraption to another bowl.  If you are me it will blob into the bowl while some spills on the counter and you.

The original recipe of this delicious pie called for Cool Whip.  Cool Whip scares me.  It must have at least 3.14 x more chemical ingredients than good old whipped cream.  So instead of getting on the Cool Whip bus, I think you should just whip some cream.  My sister agrees.


Upon a visit from my sister two things happen: this pie and the onset of "let's make fun of Sarah day".  (I'm Sarah, in case you were wondering.)
"Let's make fun of Sarah day" consists of The Cyclist and Sister picking on me incessantly   I want to say their behavior is plain mean, but mostly it just makes me laugh.



It's funny how something as simple as a Peanut Butter Pie can bring 3 people together in teasing, fun and good eats.  Hey, if I add The Munchkin to the mix, I think that brings us to 3.14!


So, enjoy your sister, make fun of her and make pie.....or pi.



Ingredients:
1 cup peanut butter
1 cup cream cheese
1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon sugar
1 pint heavy whipping cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
10 oz. jar of fudge topping
1 Oreo crust

How To:
Mix peanut butter, cream cheese and 1/2 cup sugar until well blended.  If using a stand mixer, transfer to a separate bowl.
Whip heavy whipping cream, remaining sugar and vanilla until stiff peaks form.  Transfer about 1/3 of the whipped cream to a separate bowl (this is for the topping) cover and place in the refrigerator.
Combine the peanut butter mixture to the remaining whipped cream and mix well.
Pour the batter into the Oreo crust.
Top with a 10 ounce jar of your favorite fudge topping.
Cover and place in the freezer for 2 to 4 hours or until it's set.
Once ready to serve, top with the remaining whipped cream, slice and enjoy.

Hey wait!  I have something else for you.  For the love of pie, I bring you these delicious looking pies from around the web.


Row 1: Shoofly Pie, Snickerdoodle Pie, Candied Yam Pie, S'mores Pie
Row 2: Chocolate Covered Pretzel Pie, Chocolate Cream Pie, Mud Pie, Cranberry & Wild Blueberry Pie
Row 3: Salted Honey Pie, Strawberry Skillet Pie, Apple Pie, Banana Cream Pie
Row 4: Banoffee Pie, Biscoff Butter (cookie butter) Pie

Oh my pie!  What's you're favorite pie?  Mine is Huckleberry, shown here as served at our wedding.



Enjoy Pi Day!  And if you're out there saying you like cake, well this is what I have to say to that...


P.S. Don't forget to follow me on Pinterest!  (It was the source for all of those delicious pie finds).









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March 12, 2013

10 Reasons You Should Follow Me on Pinterest


  1. I'm just trying to help a girl (or dude) out.  I'm terrible at asking for stuff.  Really.  I would make the worst possible salesperson..."oh you're not interested, OK, have a nice day!"  I want you to follow me because I think I can help you streamline your pins and only grab stuff that's worth pinning.
  2. I test the links!  Don't you hate it when you pin something and it goes....nowhere.  So annoying!   If the link doesn't take me back to the original post, I don't pin it.  What's the point of pinning a recipe if you don't have the recipe?  Follow me, re-pin my pins and you don't have to worry about that.
  3. I test the pins!  That's right.  I'm not just pinning my heart away.  I'm actually trying out a lot of the stuff I'm pinning.  I just started a Pinterest Project Complete! board, you can check out my "done" pins there and see what I thought.  Sometimes I also blog about things that have Pinspired me.
  4. I pin stuff any normal human can do.  I am not Martha, far from it.  I have limited time to complete projects. When I cook dinner after working 8 hours it better be easy, healthy and good.  If something looks too complicated, I probably won't pin it.
  5. My boards are organized.  Looking for a good dessert recipe?  Check out my Food! {Sweet Tooth} board. Looking for a way to cute up your kids room?  Check out my Kids Rooms board.  Want to DIY some beauty stuff?  Check out my DIY Natural Beauty board.
  6. I'm a picky pinner.  If the picture is terrible, I probably won't pin it.  Unless it is some ridiculously good sounding thing or cool easy craft, but otherwise, you won't see junk on my boards.
  7. I'm kind of a pin freak.  I pin a lot, so there is always new stuff popping up if you follow me.
  8. My pins have variety.  Looking for a new kitchen?  Like Labs?  Want some natural cleaning tips? Looking for somewhere to go?  I love food, but it's not the only thing I pin.  :)
  9. Let's get to know each other!  Otherwise, I might not see what cool stuff you're pinning, but if you follow me I will!
  10. It'll be fun!  Really, I promise.
So let's do this thing!
Click here and follow me!
♥TCW




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March 6, 2013

Meyer Lemon Pound Cake

Oh Meyer Lemon, how I love you.


Living in Sacramento gives us great access to all kinds of fresh fruits and veggies, especially citrus.
I have a friend who says she can't understand why anyone living here would ever buy citrus.....there are so many trees to borrow from.

This is true.  It is in fact her tree, from which I borrowed the Meyer lemons to make this pound cake.
Thanks Coco!


This could easily be served as a brunch item or dessert.
We ate it for dessert after scrumptious carne asada made by my Ironmommy.  Yum.


I'm sure plain lemon pound cake is good, but I really believe the Meyer lemons make a difference.  They have such a sweetness and even more so when baked.

This recipe was inspired by this one.

Ingredients:

Meyer Lemon Pound Cake
Unsalted butter to grease your baking dish
1 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 eggs, separated
1/2 cup sugar
Zest of two Meyer lemons
1/3 cup olive oil (that's right, olive oil)
1 1/2 tablespoons milk (I used 2%)
3/4 cup Greek yogurt (I used the Trader Joe's low-fat version)
1/4 cup Meyer lemon juice
3 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
Note - you'll need a few clean bowls for this recipe.  Lot's of bowls happening.

Limoncello Glaze
1 cup powdered sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons Limoncello* (feel free to substitute with fresh squeezed Meyer lemon juice)
1 1/2 tablespoons Meyer lemon juice

How to:

Meyer Lemon Pound Cake
Pre-heat your oven to 325
Line the bottom of a 9x5 loaf pan with parchment paper
Grease the pan and paper with unsalted butter
Melt your unsalted butter and set it aside
Sift flour, baking powder and salt to a large bowl and mix well
Whisk 2 egg whites until stiff peaks form, transfer to a separate bowl**
Add 2 egg yolks, sugar and lemon zest to your clean mixer bowl.  Beat on medium until the mixture turns light yellow and forms ribbons when beater is lifted, transfer to mixture to another bowl
Add olive oil, milk, Greek yogurt and lemon juice to your clean mixer bowl, whisk at low speed until combined
If using a stand mixer, switch to your paddle attachment
Add flour to the olive oil, milk, Greek yogurt, lemon juice mixture
Drizzle in melted butter and mix until combined
Add in the egg yolk, sugar and lemon zest mixture and mix until combined
At this time you should have combined all of your bowls except the egg whites
Fold in the egg whites to the mixture by hand
Now all your pound cake ingredients should be in one bowl, mixed
Pour the batter into the prepared pan
Bake for 25 minutes, then rotate the pan
(while the cake is baking you can get started on the glaze)
Bake for an additional 20-25 minutes
When done the cake should be golden and a toothpick inserted in the center should come out clean
Transfer the pound cake to a wire rack to cool
While the pound cake is still warm, pour over the lemon glaze and let it sit for about a half hour to dry

Limoncello Glaze
Using your mixer (again) with a clean bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar, limoncello (if you're using it) and Meyer lemon juice***
While the pound cake is still warm, pour over the lemon glaze and let it sit for about a half hour to dry

*You can buy Limoncello at most well stocked groceries.  We have an Italian grocery nearby that stocks several varieties.  I happened to have Meyer Limoncello that my mom made from the same Meyer lemon tree where I got the lemons from.
**I used my Kitchen Aid mixer to make this, so I whisked the egg whites first, transferred them to a different bowl, rinsed out my mixer bowl and then did the next step.
***You can increase or decrease either ingredient to get the consistency to your liking.  I like the glaze on the thinner side.

When I make this cake again, I will pour the glaze over on a different dish than I'm using to serve.  You can see in the pictures that there was a pool of glaze around this cake.  My step-dad enjoyed sopping up the glaze with his cake, so I suppose it all worked out, but, that said, I think it would be more eye appealing if it wasn't drowning in glaze.

The cake itself is super moist and refreshing tasting.  This would make a great Easter dish.


Thanks for stopping by!

P.S. If you could give me a Facebook like over here that would be awesome!

Have a great day,
♥TCW





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March 4, 2013

Crystal Cove {Newport Beach, CA}

Guess what?  Today is March Fourth!  The only day of the year that commands you.
Get it?  March Fourth!

Anyway, in celebration of March Fourth!  I am commanding you to come on a daydream vacation with me.

Let's go!


Today we're visiting the beach at Crystal Cove State Park.


Remember when we visited The Resort at Pelican Hill?  Well Crystal Cove is right down the way.

It was a perfectly beautiful day summed up as follows:


Even though it was October it was literally the perfect day at the beach.




I have never been to a beach quite like Crystal Cove.  There is a whole community of quaint cottages that are being restored to period.  I loved that.




It is a great place and I only wish it was closer to home.



I'd love to take a road trip there and stay in one of the cottages.
(You can find out about reserving them here.)

We spent our time lounging on the beach, enjoying the weather and exploring.







I must credit The Cyclist for most of these shots.  Good job Cyclist!


I noticed a little painting class happening, it looked like fun.


So, if you are in the area, I highly recommend a visit to Crystal Cove!

Thank you for Marching Fourth!....and daydream vacationing with me today.

Later this week: Meyer Lemon Pound Cake.

Also, please "like" my turkey burger here.

Thanks everyone!  Have a fabulous day!

TCW


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