Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Please follow me at my new location

I have moved my blog to a new location. I would love for you to check out my new website and start following me at the new location.


Tuesday, February 26, 2013

New Blog

I have moved my blog to a new location. I would love for you to check out my new website and start following me at the new location.


Saturday, February 23, 2013

Baked Blueberry Oatmeal

Oatmeal is such a satisfying breakfast and I find myself eating it several times a week. Whether it's Overnight oats, stove top oats, or baked oatmeal, it's all good to me. This is a big difference from someone who grew up thinking oatmeal tasted like cardboard. My how times have changed.
I have seen this recipe for baked oatmeal all over the blog world and knew I needed to give it a try. I wanted to keep it simple, yet sweet and flavorful. The combination of the sweet warm blueberries and the coconut made me feel like I was eating a dessert. I simply cannot get enough of this heart-healthy, fiber-rich breakfast. 
This dish makes several servings, perfect to reheat and have for breakfast throughout the week. How is that for a quick and healthy breakfast option?!
Baked Blueberry Oatmeal
 (Recipe yields 4 large servings)

- 2 cups old fashioned oats
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 egg
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1 cup blueberries
- 1 1/2 cups almond milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/4 cup coconut

- In a large bowl mix together the oats, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and coconut. Set aside.
- In a separate bowl mix the sugar, milk, egg and vanilla together. Add to the dry ingredients and mix together.
- Fold in the blueberries.
- Bake in a greased 8" square baking dish on 375 degrees for 30 minutes.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Chicken, Potato, and Leek Potpie

Chicken potpie is the quintessential comfort food containing a creamy vegetable filled sauce and surrounded by a thick pie crust. In other words, it's a delicious yet calorie-laden dish.

This recipe is a healthier spin to the traditional potpie, full of veggies and served with a flaky biscuit on the side. I chose to serve the pie crust in the form of a biscuit to eliminate excess crust but still have something to soak up the creamy sauce found underneath all of those good for you veggies. This is a hearty, one-dish meal the whole family will love and keep you warm on those bone chilling winter nights.

Chicken, Potato, and Leek Potpie
(Recipe adapted from Cooking Light Magazine)

- 2 slices center cut bacon, chopped
- 2 cups cubed red potato
- 1 sheet of puff pastry, thawed
- 1 cup chopped carrots
- 6 skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces
- 3 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 3 cups sliced leeks (about 2)
- 1- 16oz. bag frozen okra, thawed
-  1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 2 cups fat-free, low sodium chicken broth

- Preheat oven to 450 degrees
- Cook bacon in a large skillet or saucepan. Add the potatoes and carrots to the pan stirring occasionally, about 3 minutes
- Add in the chicken; saute until lightly browned; Stir in flour, leeks, salt and pepper; saute 1 minute.
- Slowly add the broth to pan, stirring constantly; bring to a boil. Cook until slightly thick (3 to 5 minutes)
- Pour mixture into a glass or ceramic baking dish and bake at 450 degrees for 30 minutes.
- Turn oven down to 425° F. Using a 4½-inch cutter or large glass, cut the pastry into 4 circles. Place on a baking sheet and bake until golden, 8 to 10 minutes. Flatten out excess dough to make more circles if you wish.


Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Preparing for Baby Key's Arrival

This past weekend my girlfriends gave me a baby shower. The shower was held at Chantilly's, the tea room that Jason's mom started back in the early 90's, which made the day even more special.

Instead of bringing a card guest were asked to bring a children's book to sign so that we can start a collection of books for the nursery. When I arrived at the shower I realized the girls continued with this idea to make a storybook theme for the shower. There were children's books displayed throughout the tea room and they had this adorable cake made to go along with the theme as well. The top layer was Vanilla Almond and the bottom cake was red velvet (my favorite). I have a slight sugar addiction these days and loved every bite of the two slices of cake that I had.

There was a huge spread of food that the owner of Chantilly's put together for the party. She did a wonderful job creating a variety of food and there was more than enough for everyone to enjoy.  

fruit, cheese and crackers and mini quiches.

Meatballs, tea sandwiches, chicken salad in phyllo cups, and chips with hummus

Chicken and cheese on a baguette (tasted like a pizza), spinach dip and crackers, and veggies with ranch dressing dip.

The famous poppy seed muffins with strawberry butter that Jason's mom started at the tea room and it is still served today to munch on while waiting on your food.

It was truly a memorable day and I am so thankful for wonderful friends and family for making the day so very special. Only a few more weeks until we get to meet our baby girl!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Chocolate Eclair Cake

Happy Valentine's Day. Nothing says romance like this succulent homemade cake.


My mom has been making this cake for my family as long as I can remember. The first time Jason tried it he immediately declared it his favorite thing she has ever made (next to her chicken and dumplings). Per mom's orders you need to use french vanilla pudding versus regular vanilla for a richer flavor.

This no-fuss dessert is simple to make and requires no baking making it the perfect dish for anyone to try. Who knew something with only 5 ingredients and little prep work could taste so good. To allow for a more "cake" like texture let the cake sit in the refrigerator for several hours or overnight before serving.

Chocolate Eclair Cake

- 1 (16oz.) container milk chocolate icing
- 1 box of graham crackers
- 2 (3.4oz.) boxes french vanilla instant pudding
- 3 1/4 cups skim milk
- 1 (8oz.) container light cool whip

- Whisk together milk and pudding for 2 minutes. Fold in the cool whip until mixed well.
- In a 9 x 13 inch baking dish lay graham crackers down on the bottom until covered.
- Pour half of the pudding mixture on top of the first layer of graham crackers.
- Lay down another layer of graham crackers and pour the remaining pudding mix over top.
- Add one more layer of graham crackers. Set in fridge until cold (about 2 hours).
- Spread the top of the graham crackers with the chocolate icing. (Icing should be at room temperature). Return to refrigerator for several hours or until ready to serve.




Monday, February 11, 2013

Broccoli, Cheese and Potato Soup

One of my best friends loves cooking as much as I do so we are always trying out new recipes and sharing them with each other. She recently shared this recipe with me for Broccoli, Cheese and Potato Soup and included a few modifications that she had made. I included some of her changes and added a few of my own to come up with this thick and creamy soup.

If you order this soup in a restaurant it is usually loaded with fat and calories but by using very little butter, skim milk, and less cheese this is a much healthier version. Per Emily's suggestion I also added in more broccoli than the original recipe called for to give it an extra veggie kick. This cheesy soup is full of flavor leaving you feeling warm and cozy.

Broccoli, Cheese and Potato Soup

- 5 cups chopped broccoli
- 1 cup chopped onions
- 1/2 cup chopped carrots
- 2 cloves garlic
- 3 cups chopped red potatoes
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 3 cups skim milk
- 1/2 cup flour
- 1 1/2 cups sharp cheddar 2% shredded cheese
- 1 1/2 cups shredded Gouda cheese
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
- 1/4 teaspoon paprika
- salt to taste

- In a large pot saute onions, carrots, and garlic in butter over medium heat until tender.
- Add in the flour, pepper, salt, paprika and basil until smooth
- Add broth, milk, butter, broccoli and potatoes stirring constantly until it boils and thickens.
- Reduce heat; cover and simmer until broccoli and potatoes are tender (20-30 minutes)
- Stir in cheese and cook over low until cheese is melted and soup is heated through.

* Optional: Top each bowl with extra cheese*