Category: Baking

From beignets to blueberries

IMG_5636I tried my hand at making beignets for the first time on Saturday morning. The one and only time I’ve ever tried beignets was at Disneyland, nearly 15 years ago, and from that one taste, I was hooked.

As with pretty much anything else in my life, I glanced at the recipe and jumped in with both feet, hoping for the best. It’s not like the instructions were real challenging, so I gave myself a 75% shot at coming out with at least a few “winners” from the batch.

The original recipe, taken right from the Café Du Monde box of beignet mix, lists 4 steps. Mix. Roll. Cut. Fry.

Easy peasy mac and cheesy, as my 5 year old would say.

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The pretty cookies

Being the mother of two boys, it is rare that I feel the urge to do something “pretty” – even for myself. For the most part I feel quite blessed because I do believe I would spending a LOT more money on things like dress-up clothes and hair accessories and shoes if I had two girls.

But every now and then I do get the urge to decorate or to dress up for Hubbs or to embellish. And today was the day. Valentine’s Day is coming up pretty quick, and though it’s not a holiday that Hubbs and I put a lot of effort into for each other, it’s definitely something that my children are “expected” to put effort into the older they get. Good or bad, it’s just the way it is! Continue reading

Foodie thoughts

Yep – I’m a foodie. A dream of mine is to be able to attend culinary school. I’d love to learn the proper methods for cutting veggies and fruits, to learn the best way to make a fantastic pie crust, and to simply become more confident in my general cooking skills. I love food and more importantly, I love making the food my family and I eat.

Since cooking and / or baking is part of nearly every day of my life, I thought I’d share some of my recent “finds” that have worked for me. I visit what I call “mom blogs” nearly every day and that’s where I found the most delicious and EASY rice pilaf recipe. I’ve made it twice now and have decided it’s completely foolproof. I screw up rice every time I attempt to make it and this recipe has been perfect both times. I use whole wheat thin spaghetti in lieu of the vermicelli and a little over 2 TB of butter for the 1/3 cube of butter. Try it! I promise you’ll love it. Leigh Ann at Your Homebased Mom has loads of yummy recipes, so check them out sometime!

One of my all-time favorite people to cook for are my children. I served fresh food to my first son from the time he was 4 months old. I didn’t go so far as to making my own rice cereal and such, because the organic rice cereal was, frankly, good enough. But I was thankful at how easy and quick it was to prepare all kinds of fresh fruits and veggies for him, freeze portions into ice-cube trays and have them on-hand for his meals. Certainly there were times that a jarred food was needed, but the majority of the time he ate what I was able to cook for him. I wasn’t sure I would be able to hold to that standard when my second son was born, but so far it’s been about the same. If you have little ones in the home, I highly recommend including homemade baby / toddler food in their diets!

One of the best cookbooks I use for my children is the petit appetit cookbook by Lisa Barnes. This book is chock-full of wonderfully helpful information, most especially for the first-time mom. And her recipes are easy and very practical. She gives nutrition facts for each recipe, as well. I love it!

Since my Wee Bubbs is able to eat more solid, chunkier foods I decided to make the Baby Biscotti from the petit appetit book. That’s another thing I like to do: try new recipes, on nearly a weekly if not bi-weekly basis.

The biscotti was a bit messy to accomplish and unfortunately the results were a bit too hard for Wee Bubbs to enjoy. But they do go great with my morning coffee, so they’re not a complete waste! If I attempt them again, I’ll be sure to make them smaller so they aren’t nearly as dense. Try and try again. 🙂

Do you like to cook? If so, how often do you try new recipes? If you don’t do much cooking, is it because you feel you can’t, don’t have the time, or something else?

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