Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Using Up What's In The Fridge - I'm Hungreh!

 I'm having a fat day. yea whatever Jenna you're not fat blah blah I said it for you guys My having a fat day means I am eating prettttty much every ten minutes.  I can't stop eating.  FOOD FOOD FOOD.  Between 7am and 1pm I've eaten a bowl of Cheerios, a bowl of All Bran, a whole banana, a serving of what I made here today, half a bottle of clementine juice, a cup of smoothie, some grapes, and maybe an extra serving of what I made today.....jesus christ :D  I mean mind you a 'bowl' of cheerios and all bran is more like a 'handful' but those are 'bowls' to me.  It's a lot! But I was on a mission.  MUST EAT FOOD.  So glad I have the rest of the day to eat more cause I'm gonna.

So, earlier I was staring at a half a head of cabbage, three carrots clinging to life, half a red onion, a lonely green apple, a jar of Hellman's begging me not to use it (it's about ten bucks for the tiniest bottle here!), half a tub of sour cream, half a bottle of bbq sauce and two leftover chicken breasts from a couple days ago. I needed to use this stuff. I hate when stuff dies in my fridge. But I am the leftover queen!  I can do this!  Plus I need to shove food in my face immediately!

It wasn't obvious at first mind you.  My initial thought was to make some sort of soup seeing as it's a such a dreary day.  But then inspiration hit me.  A voice in my head sounded.  It said..


And just like that, I made yoself some.

I just rough chopped the cabbage into bite sized pieces, peeled and julienned by dying carrots, then mandolined the onion and apple.  It's quite pretty isn't it?  Too bad we're gonna cover it in delicious fatty mayo and sour cream goodness. Toooo bad.

 I wanted to slap this together off the top of my head, so given I had the basics I winged it and went by taste along the way.  I was smart enough, for once, to write down what I used and to my amazement it turned out really yummy!  It's creamy and tangy and sweet and crunchy and just yum.  It's my perfect cole slaw.

But it's not completely perfect.  The only way to make it the ultimate awesome is to slap some bbq chicken on it.  And slap some on I did.  After making everything and waiting the longest hour of my life, I made myself the best lunch I've had in a very long time.  Bbq chicken on coleslaw on whole grain bread.  It doesn't get much better than this.


I just found out it DOES get better!  I ate another one :D

My Cole Slaw 

1/2 Cabbage, Chopped
3 Carrots, peeled and julienned
1 Granny Smith Apple, chopped thin
1/2 Red Onion, sliced thin
1/3 plus 1 large spoonful of Mayonaisse
1/4 Cup Sour Cream plus 1 large spoonful 
3 Tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar
1/4 Cup Sugar, bit less than
Sea Salt and Fresh Cracked Pepper, to taste

Mix all of this in a bowl then pour over slaw and mix well.  Let it chill at least one hour before eating.  Longer it sits, the better. 

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Tuesday, August 30, 2011

All The Ladies Love You When You Give Them Lemon Brioche Rolls

 Yesterday was a beautiful, warm and sunny day so I thought I would go outside and have a little photo shoot.  I rarely get the chance to do natural light shots between the weather and my schedule so I ran out at the chance.  When I got down to the picnic tables, I was met by two lovely little old ladies taking a break from their walk.  They were very interested in what I was doing and asked a lot about me and the food.  After telling them what I was doing and about my blog, the next obvious question was, "When can we have a taste?"  They were kidding of course, but I pretty much made their day when I said, "As soon as I'm done taking pictures".

So I told them I would be right back and quick ran up to the house to grab some plates and forks.  I started a small pot of coffee too just to make them extra happy and ran back down with everything.  To my surprise, two little old ladies turned into five little old ladies.  They seemed to have set out a herding call or something.  So I ran back up to the house again and grabbed a couple more cups and the pot of coffee and set back down.  They were so excited you'd think I was giving them gold.  They had their rolls with a big smear of lemon curd and drizzled sugar glaze and a big cup of coffee.  It was a proper little coffee visit.  They asked me about myself, where I came from and this and that, and told me how much they loved the rolls.  I was quite happy to have given them some, it was a very nice way to spend my afternoon and I feel better having made their day just a little bit nicer.

 So go make yourself some lemon curd and roll them up in a fluffy brioche like it did.  It will make your local little old ladies very happy.  It'll make you happy too if they leave you any.

Lemon Brioche Rolls with Fresh Lemon Curd 

For the Lemon Curd 

2 Whole Eggs
2  Egg Yolks 
3/4 Cup/165g Sugar
1/3 cup/80g Butter, cold
Zest and Juice of 2 Lemons 

 Whisk together the eggs, yolks, sugar, lemon juice and zest.  Set over a double boiler (pot of simmering water) and gently whisk constantly for about 6 - 10 minutes until well thickened.  Remove from the heat and stir in butter until melted and smooth.  Strain the lemon curd into a bowl and cover with plastic wrap, being sure to press it right against the curd so it doesn't form a skin.  Chill until ready to use.  Lasts about a week or two.

For the Brioche Dough 
 recipe from Piece of Cake

1/2 Cup Milk
 2 1/2 teaspoons Dry Active Yeast
 3 Cups Flour, divided 
1/2 Cup/113g Cold Butter, cut up
 1/4 Cup Sugar
 1 teaspoon Salt
 2 Whole Eggs
 2 Egg Yolks

Heat milk to lukewarm and whisk in the yeast.  Add 1 Cup of flour, stir to combine then cover and let sit for 20 minutes until risen and bubbly.   

In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade, combine the eggs, yolks, sugar, salt and butter. Pulse until the butter is evenly distributed and it looks curdled. Add the yeast mixture and pulse to combine. Add 1 cup of flour and pulse until smooth.  Scrape the bowl, add remaining 1 cup of flour and pulse until well combined.  Let the dough rest in the food processor for then minutes.  After the rest, run the processor for 10 - 15 seconds, then remove the dough onto a well floured area.

Knead the dough a few times, divide in two, then roll out into a large rectangle.


Spread a generous amount of lemon curd all over the rolled out dough, leaving a slight gap around the edges.  Roll up as you would cinnamon rolls, then slice.  Set into a greased baking pan and cover loosely.  Let rise for 35 minutes.  Repeat with remaining dough.

Preheat oven to 350F/175C.

Prior to baking, brush risen rolls with butter, cream, milk, or an egg wash.

Bake 25 - 30 minutes until golden and center is well risen. 

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Friday, August 26, 2011

Giant Whole Wheat Bran Muffins With Walnuts and Pumpkin Seeds

Bran, I love me some of that.  I've been wanting to make bran muffins for a very long time but I've never quite been able to figure out what bran was in Norwegian and no one knows what 'bran' is so I just said screw it and gave up.  But last night my eyes were opened by wikipedia and I discovered not only wheat bran, but oat bran too!  Yay!  So I bought a huge box of each and got right to muffining.  That is a word, I know because I made it.

I feel like I've struck gold with these muffins.  They are, in my eyes, absolutely perfect.  Very low sugar, practically fat free, packed with fiber and protein, dense without being heavy and perfectly moist. They make a great breakfast or bedtime snack and are great to keep in the freezer. They taste equally awesome hot or cold. The recipe is very adaptable as are the ways to eat them.  It actually comes from Weight Watchers, so if anyone out there follows that plan know that these are a good option for you.  I'm not sure about the point value, but I highly doubt they will throw you off track. 

This was my lovely little breakfast today.  A slice of muffin with cinnamon honey, banana slices and a pinch of grapes.  These are a definite winner.

  You can cut them into slices and eat them with fruit, eggs, jam, honey, whatever you like.  You can also change the recipe to suit your tastes.  Add different nuts or seeds, dried fruit or raisins, even some chocolate chips if you want.  Peanut butter or cinnamon chips would be great too if you want them a little sweeter.  Skies the limit.

Giant Whole Wheat Bran Muffins 
makes 6 Jumbo or 12-14 regular muffins

1 Cup Oat Bran
1 Cup Wheat Bran
1 Cup Whole Wheat Flour
1/2 Cup  All Purpose Flour
1 teaspoon Baking Soda
1/2 teaspoon Baking Powder
1/4 teaspoon Salt
1 Egg
2 Egg Whites
1/2 Cup Sugar
 2 Tablespoons Golden Syrup/Maple Syrup/Molasses
1 Cup Buttermilk or Substitute (I used skim milk/vinegar)
 1/2 Cup Walnuts, chopped
1/2 Cup Pumpkin Seeds
1/2 Cup Ground Flax Seed

Preheat oven to 375F/190C.  Grease or line muffin tray

Combine brans, flours, baking powder and soda, salt, walnuts, seeds and flax in a bowl.

In a separate bowl, beat together the egg, whites, sugar, syrup of your choice, and milk.

Add the bran mixture to the wet ingredients and fold together until moistened.  It will be a bit soupy, that's just fine.  Fill muffin cups 3/4 full.  Bake 25 - 28 minutes for giant muffins, 15 - 18 minutes for normal sized. 

 It's best to let them go the full time as they are hard to test, and they will taste more toasted and nuttier.  
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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

This Was My Lunch Today

Oh yes.  Oh yes yes.  Holbergstuen in Bergen.

On the bone lamb shank, gorgeous mashed potatoes and braised vegetables with a red wine sauce.  Oh yes.

This is my favorite restaurant in Bergen.  The quality of the food is amazing.  The presentation is amazing.  The atmosphere is classic and comfortable.  The number one reason it's my favorite place though, is that when your food arrives you can tell it was prepared by someone who not only knows food, but loves it.  This is love food.  You can taste it.  I'm in love

Thanks Trond! 
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Monday, August 22, 2011

Foodie Crafts With Bellamy

Bellamy wanted to do something fun before bed, so we decided to paint marshmallows!

Just mix milk and a little food coloring.  Use paintbrushes or Q-Tips and you're good to go!


When you're all done painting you can eat them!  
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Don't Know What To Call This So Let's Just Call It Awesome

Not even gonna lie people.  This right here looks a hot mess.

But holy hell is it yummy.  What's even better is that it's super easy.


It's fast and very adaptable.  You could use a roll of biscuits or pizza dough or make it fresh.  Use a jar of sauce or make your own.  You can do pesto, ricotta, make it a lasagna pie.  Whatever you do, it's gonna be awesome.

 I will assume you know what I did already.  Fresh homemade pizza dough, from scratch meat sauce.  Start to finish...35 minutes.  You can't get pizza delivered in that amount of time and it takes much longer than that to make normal pizza, so if you got a hankering and don't want to wait this is the way to go.  Wanna know the very best thing about it?  You can pull it all apart like Monkey Bread.  It's Pizzonkey Bread.  Ha!  Named it.

Om nom nom nom nom nom nom. 

Pizzonkey Bread 

I did not use any recipes for this.  The 'recipe' here is approximate but will result in the above deliciousness.  Change it to make it work for you.

For the Pizza Dough 

2 1/2 Cups Flour, plus more as needed
 1 packet Instant Dry Yeast (roughly one tablespoon)
1/2 teaspoon Sugar
1 Cup Warm Water
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil (just eyeball it)
1 teaspoon Salt
Garlic, Onion Powder, Italian Seasoning

In the bowl of a stand mixer (or just a normal bowl if you're using elbow grease), mix the water, yeast and sugar.  Let it sit a minute or two, then add in everything else.  Mix it until it forms a solid ball and doesn't stick to the sides of the bowl anymore.  Just keep adding flour one tablespoon at a time until you get there.  Knead it a couple minutes until it's smooth.

For the Sauce 

1/4 lb (200g) Hamburger
1 small can Sliced Mushrooms
1/4 Red Pepper, sliced
1/2 Onion, sliced
Handful of Black Olives, cut in half
1 Box Diced Tomatoes
1 Tablespoon Tomato Paste 
Salt, Pepper, Garlic, Onion Powder, Sugar, Italian seasoning

Brown the burger, add in everything else and simmer for a few minutes to blend it together.

Preheat oven to 450F/230C

Pull off small hunks of dough and throw them into a baking dish.  This does not have to be pretty just chuck it in there.  Add the sauce, mix it all up if you want. I didn't.  Top with cheese and additional seasonings.  Bake 15-20 minutes until it's nice and puffy and the cheese is golden brown.  Om nom nom.

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Another Year Older...Not Sure About Wiser

I'm I don't believe it.  I'm gonna say I'm twenty-four until I look twenty-seven and then I will say I'm twenty-seven because I'll actually be thirty-five.  I'll repeat this until I'm fifty.  

My birthday this year had its ups and downs, but overall it was a good day.  I had a good time with good friends and a very lovely cake with yummy ice cream all made by myself.  That was probably the best part of my day, being able to share everything with my friends.  A big thanks goes out to Jan, Nina, Andreas, Remi, Are and Bjørn for spending my day with me.

And now..the cake.  A vanilla and chocolate two layered checkerboard cake covered in vanilla Italian meringue butter cream.  I also made chocolate, vanilla bean, strawberry with white chocolate, and coconut with dark chocolate ice creams.  What is cake without it?

I am very proud of my little birthday cake.  It was an absolute labor of love and hate.  I cursed at it. I broke it..twice. I changed my game plan multiple times to make up for mistakes. I went over and over and over recipes and changed my mind about thirty times.  I stressed over which icing I was going to use and in general fashion chose one I had never attempted.  I'd like to think most people would have thrown in the towel and grabbed a box mix after all of the mess I went though, but screw that.   My goal was a vertical layered cake.  My goal was a multi flavored, rose covered beautiful cake.  It didn't turn out to the picture I had in my mind, but it could not have possibly been any better for all the trouble it was.  I very much love my little cake.  Everyone else did too, and that is all that matters to me.


 Jan and Andreas...back away heathens!

Happy Birthday to Me 

You do not see date stamps in those pictures.  They are a figment of your imagination.  Okay fine you do, I forgot to turn it off and I am too lazy to Photoshop them out.  You're gonna have to deal.  Don't hate me.


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Tuesday, August 16, 2011

A New Camera And A Cloudy Day

Happy Tuesday everyone.  Hope everyone is having a livelier day than I've had.  It's just one of those days that happen more often than not around here.  The weather man says 18 degrees and the sun is shining so best take advantage of being able to wear a dress one last time.  Get dressed up and looking all pretty, run outside.  Sun is still shining yes!  Get to goes gray.  Air gets cold.  Tourists have coats on.  It's god damn cold.

I hate you Bergen.  I truly, honestly do.

But!  I didn't go out to enjoy the weather no sir.  I went out on a mission, and that mission was to break in my birthday present!  A beautiful, shiny, super pretty Nikon D3100!  Luurrrve ♥

This mission didn't go as planned though, because once I started taking pictures I quickly realized that I really suck at taking pictures.  So what's a girl to do?  Practice practice practice.  And practice. 

So, here for you are the results of my practicing...with a little surprise at the end.

(click each picture to make it larger, then click again to close) 

Getting there yea?  All good things come to those who wait.

And since you waited, here is a super yummy cake!  I almost didn't post this.  A mixture of horrible light and being a total noob resulted in less than stellar pictures, but given it's delicious no matter what it looks like I couldn't help but to share.  I know you guys will forgive me though, you have so far.

Banana Cake with Milk Chocolate Glaze 
recipe from The Pastry Affair

2 1/2 Cups / 315g Flour 
1 Tablespoon Baking Powder 
1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon 
1/2 teaspoon Salt 
1/2 Cup / 113g Butter, soft 
1/2 Cup Sugar 
3/4 Cup Brown Sugar 
2 Eggs 
3 Bananas, very ripened and mashed 
1 teaspoon Vanilla
3/4 cup buttermilk 
1 Tablespoon Vinegar/Lemon Juice plus Milk to fill to 3/4 Cup

Preheat oven to 325F/160C. Grease, line and flour two 8-inch pans.

Mix together flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. Set aside.

Cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well. Mix in the bananas and vanilla extract.

Add dry ingredients to banana mixture, alternating with the buttermilk, in 5 additions beating well after each.  Flour, millk, flour, milk, flour. Pour batter evenly between prepared baking pans. Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. 

Let cool for 10 minutes before removing from cake pans. Cool completely before frosting.  

Milk Chocolate Glaze 

12 oz/350g Chocolate, your choice
1/2 Cup / 113g Butter

Combine the two in a bowl over a double boiler (pan of simmering water).  Stir until melted and smooth.

Let cool for 2 - 3 minutes, stir, then quickly add some to a layer.  Stack the second layer then pour remaining glaze over the cake and smooth.  Serve.  This cake is even better the second day.  
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Sunday, August 14, 2011

Best of the Week

August 8 - 14th, 2011

There were literally tons of amazing recipes going around this week, it was quite a challenge to knock my list down to only seven.  I managed though, so here are this week's winners.

Chocolate Covered S'mores Pops by Christi at Love From The Oven. love me some s'mores, and food on a stick. And most of all I love anything covered in chocolate.  So s'mores + stick + chocolate = ♥♥♥♥♥  I don't think it's possible to go wrong here.

Baked polenta lasagna?  No messy pan to clean?  Only make what you need instead of a huge vat?  I'm in!  This looks incredibly delicious, simple and healthy. Check out Heidi over at Food Doodles for this and tons more awesome nummies. 

This to me is one of those perfect desserts. Sweet, but healthy, but so awesome so you think it's not healthy.  I love lightly caramelized bananas on Greek yogurt with honey and pecans, so I can only imagine how amazing this is.  This recipe can be found over at the gorgeousness that is The Pastry Affair.


Balsamic Strawberry Pizza with Chicken, Sweet Onions and Applewood Smoked Bacon. Let's just think about that for a minute.  We all know balsamic strawberries are more or less food of the gods...and bacon. I love chicken and onions.  This pizza sounds like a foodgasm waiting to happen.  Sign me up baby momma needs a good time.  You can find the recipe for this awesomeness over at Cafe Sucre Farine.

Hello gorgeous.  I don't even care what's in you.  You are made in homage to a Mocha Coconut Frappuccino and I need you in my life since Starbucks can't be.  I'm going to make you and although you probably won't look this pretty I'll just turn the lights off cause we all look the same in the dark don't we.  Jessica over at How Sweet Eats made these and I highly recommend you check her out, she's hilarious.


These right here are heaven on a plate. Coconut and pancakes? Best make me some breakfast. This is a vegan recipe but don't let that scare you!  99% of the time vegan food is tastier and about a million times healthier. Vegan recipes aren't just for tree hugging Peta activists, I use them all the time.  Don't believe me?  Check out This Can't Be Vegan to get your mind changed.  If it isn't, just switch out the hippy shit for butter.  Cow hater.


Last, but definitely not least, it is this gorgeous cake that comes from none other than the culinary goddess herself, Julia Child.  If Julia made it you know it's good. There is no need to question and her recipes never need improving.  But the variation here that I think makes it is the use of dulce de leche. Check out Sweetest Kitchen for this Queen of Sheba cake. Strange name huh? Wonder if that's what Julia's husband called her...
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Thursday, August 11, 2011

A Lovely Little Breakfast and a Meltdown..

I wish I had known a mini apocalypse was going to erupt shortly after these were being eaten, I would have made it a point to finish mine.  You see, my child has an 'I run the show' complex and decided that, once again, she was not going to school.  After keeping my calm and telling her she was in fact going to school, or that she could go to summer camp down the road if she wanted, she decided then that the only compromise would be that she had to take her bike.  She knows full well that she is not allowed to take her bike to school (this being the school rule, not mine).  So I told her no.  This is when shit got really ugly.


Oh wait, there are no troops, it's just me.  

And so the bulls locked horns, words were thrown and some tears were shed. I begged her to be nicer while she screamed and cried about her life being terrible.  Oh the woes of an eight year old.  After much begging, some more crying, a mini mental breakdown on my part and lots of hugs she finally caved.  I walked her down to school and she ran off happy like nothing happened.  The battle of wills is a hard fight to win, but today was a good lesson for her that she might as well surrender early and save herself the trouble, and a good lesson for me that perseverance pays, even if you do cry the whole time.

 I need a break now, and a new breakfast.

Baked Ham and Egg Cups 

4 slices Ham
2 Eggs
1/4 Cup Mozzarella, shredded
1 Tomato, seeded and diced
Salt, Pepper, Basil, Oregano

Preheat oven to 400F/200C.  Very lightly grease two ramekins.

Line the ramekins with 2 slices of ham each.  Beat the eggs and add the tomatoes, seasonings and most of the  cheese.  Pour into the lined ramekins and top with remaining cheese and additional basil and oregano.  Bake 15 minutes or until puffy and golden.

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Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Digging Up The Past..

Since I don't have a new recipe for everyone today, I thought I'd dig up one of my favorites which happens to be from this time last year.   Enjoy!
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Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Sweet Cream and Raspberry Napoleon with Chocolate Ganache

I was in the mood for a lovely dessert to top off this day of good food, and my inspiration came from this post over at Bella Nutella.  It's a very simple dessert that only looks fancy.  Puff pastry topped with sweetened vanilla whipped cream, chocolate ganache and raspberries.  It's ready in 20 minutes from start to finish and would be excellent for a dinner party.  Maybe I should throw one...who wants to come?

Sweet Cream and Raspberry Napoleon with Chocolate Ganache 

2 sheets Puff Pastry, Thawed
1 Cup Heavy Cream
3 Tablespoons Powdered Sugar
1 Vanilla Bean
3oz Chocolate, milk or dark
1/3 Cup Heavy Cream

Cut the thawed puff pastry in half width wide and bake at 400F/200C for 15 - 20 minutes.
Combine 1 Cup heavy cream, vanilla bean seeds and powdered sugar.  Whip to stiff peaks.
For the ganache, heat 1/3 Cup heavy cream until just boiling, then pour over chocolate and stir until melted and smooth.  Set aside to cool.  

To assemble, cut baked puff pastries in half, then layer ganache, cream and berries as you like. Top with powdered sugar and ganache.

Serves 4
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Chicken Florentine


This dinner was so incredibly delicious that I just had to share it with all of you.  I don't normally share meals that I make because the food never makes it past the stove.  But this time I managed to ward off the vultures and make a plate up as nice as I could to show you guys.  I'm quite proud of my little mashed potato mold, aren't I fancy.  This wasn't made with any recipe, just right off the top of my head with the basic idea of what Chicken Florentine is supposed to be.  All amounts are approximate, so adjust them to your tastes and substitute or add things where you see fit.

Chicken Florentine 

4 Chicken Breasts
1 large bag of Spinach
8 Mushrooms, sliced
1 Cup Flour
1/2 Cup Cream
1/2 Cup Chicken Stock
1 teaspoon Minced Garlic
1 Cup Mozzarella Cheese, grated 
Salt, Pepper, Italian Seasoning

Mashed Potatoes 

5 large Potatoes, chopped
1/4 Cup Cream
1 Tablespoon Butter
1/2 teaspoon Minced Garlic 
Salt, Pepper, Italian Seasoning 


Heat a large frying pan with 2 tablespoons of oil and a bit of butter over medium high heat.  Preheat oven to 400F/200C.  Have a large baking dish set aside.  Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil for the potatoes.

Put the chicken between plastic wrap or in a plastic bag and flatten evenly with a mallet or rolling pin. Season with salt and pepper. Put flour in a bowl and season well salt, pepper and Italian seasoning.  Lightly coat the chicken with flour and shake off excess.  Sear the chicken until golden on both sides, about 2 minutes per side.  Remove from pan and set aside.

Add potatoes to boiling water.

To the same pan, add the mushrooms and spinach.  Saute until the spinach is reduced, then add the chicken stock.  Season with pepper and minced garlic.  Boil until slightly reduced, about 2 to 3 minutes.  Once reduced, add the cream. Season with salt, pepper and Italian seasoning to taste.  Boil and reduce for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Put half of the spinach sauce in the baking dish.  Add chicken, and cover with remaining sauce.  Add mozzarella cheese and bake uncovered for 20 minutes.  

Once potatoes are soft, drain and put back in pan.  Add butter, cream, salt, pepper, minced garlic and Italian seasoning.  Mash, then whip with a handheld mixer if desired.

Serves 4 - 6 

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