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Showing posts from April, 2011


12 ounces plain Greek yogurt1 cucumber, peeled and shredded1 clove garlic, minced1 tablespoon white vinegar (or lemon juice)2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oilsalt & pepper*optional: 1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill, mint, or chives Squeeze all the excess moisture out of the shredded cucumber, then blot it on a paper towel. Try to dry it the best you can.Mix all the ingredients together, refrigerate for at least an hour before serving.I didn't take any pictures.. Whoops. We had 'Greek Chicken Pitas' (grilled chicken seasoned with Greek seasoning from World Market, tomatoes, cucumber, red onion & feta cheese on flatbread) for dinner and this complimented them perfectly.

Chocolate Zucchini Bread

Healthy changes/additions that I use to justify eating this while on a diet: Substituting half the white flour with whole-wheat flour. Using applesauce in place of canola oil Two of these little guys are perfect for this recipe. Using fresh, grated zucchini! 
Chocolate Zucchini Bread Original Recipe from 1 cup all-purpose flour1 cup whole-wheat flour1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa 1/2 tsp. baking soda1/2 tsp. baking powder1/2 tsp. salt1/4 tsp. cinnamon3 eggs1 cup sugar3/4 cup unsweetened applesauce1/4 cup canola oil1 tsp. vanilla extract1 oz. unsweetened chocolate, melted1/2 cup chopped walnuts or chocolate chips2 cups grated zucchini (1 medium)Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Grease two 8 x 4 inch loaf pans.Whisk the flours, cocoa, b. soda, b. powder, salt, and cinnamon together in a large bowl.In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugar, applesauce, canola oil, vanilla, and unsweetened chocolate until smooth.Add the wet mixture to the dry ingredients and stir until just comb…

Beer Bread

I bought beer today. On a Tuesday! But it wasn't to drink.. it was to bake with. It's a sad day when you realize you're no longer as young & exciting as you used to be.

I'm normally a Coors Light [with lime & green olives] Girl. But I like perusing the beer aisle for fun, fancy beers. I used Pyramid Apricot Ale for this batch of beer bread. The ale is surprisingly fruity, and it's just kinda.. delicious. You can use any beer that you want, just choose a beer that you like. The variation I tried this time was SO good, but I'm going to try to use different beers/ales/stouts so it will taste different every time. Try the beer, or read the label, then decide if any additions (fresh rosemary, grated cheese, raisins, dried fruit, chocolate chips, etc) would complement the flavor. The bread WILL take on the flavor of the beer, so be creative!
Pyramid Apricot Ale. Mix everything together. Until just combined. Put into a greased 9 x 5 pan* [This was an 8 x 4- This wa…

Pancakes with Blueberry Sauce

After a long night of drinking, I used to enjoy a delicious plate of chocolate chip pancakes from IHOP. But I'm grown up now. Now I eat them for breakfast. With blueberries instead of chocolate chips.
This recipe is easy, delish, and produces thick, fluffy pancakes. Personally, I love small pancakes. I like my pancakes petite and adorable. Big pancakes are too hard to flip. I used 2 medium cookie scoops per pancake and they were the perfect size. The blueberry sauce is really simple. I buy frozen blueberries in a giant bag from Costco, and always have them in the freezer. The warm sauce is fab over pancakes or waffles, but if you chill the sauce it's reaaaaaally good with cheesecake.  Pancakes 3/4 cup milk2 tablespoons white vinegar1 cup flour2 tablespoons sugar1 teaspoon baking powder1/2 teaspoon baking soda1/2 teaspoon salt1 egg1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract2 tablespoons unsalted butter, meltedCombine milk with vinegar in a medium bowl and set aside for 5 minutes to "sour&quo…

Fresh Vietnamese Spring Rolls

One of my favorite places to eat is Saigon Pho in Chandler. It's super cheap, small, and sometimes it smells weird, but I'm a big fan of their chicken pho & shrimp spring rolls, also known as #2 & #14. Everything on their menu is numbered so it's easier to order- some of the servers don't exactly have the best English, but it's never been an issue for me. Michael, on the other hand, can't understand a word they say. 
I want to branch out and try more of their menu items, but they don't have any freakin' descriptions so I don't know what anything is! If anyone considers themselves to be a connoisseur of Vietnamese food, feel free to point me in the right direction.
I ran to Asiana Market on Dobson/Southern to pick up some ingredients. My mom shops there for Korean groceries and I've been there several times with her- I know the layout and I feel comfortable perusing the aisles, even though I can't read the majority of the labels. Michae…

Baked Salmon

Super easy recipe! And the best part about it? Michael caught this bad boy while he was fishing on the Columbia River! Start by seasoning the salmon with garlic & lemon pepper. Mix the marinade together, and seal everything together in a ziplock bag. Marinade for 2 hours in the fridge Grill or bake!
Asian Salmon
[Original recipe from] 1 lb. salmon filletsgarlic powderlemon pepper1/4 c. reduced-sodium soy sauce1/4 c. light brown sugar1/4 c. water3 T. vegetable oil Season the salmon with garlic powder & lemon pepper. Combine the soy sauce, brown sugar, water, and vegetable oil in a small bowl. Place the salmon & the sauce in a large ziplock bag. Refrigerate for atleast 2 hours.Place foil on a cookie sheet and lightly spray it with nonstick spray. Place the fillets on the cookie sheet, discard the marinade, and bake at 425 degrees for 15-20 minutes* (depending on how thick your fillets are, it may require more or less time).  *Normally, I would prefer to grill the salmon…

Strawberry & Spinach Salad

I'm trying to get back on track with WeightWatchers, and one of the best ways to do that is to fill myself up with vegetables! I needed a low point lunch because dinner is going to be a little heavy- we're having Chile Rellenos.
I recommend adding the dressing right before serving, otherwise the spinach will wilt down and begin to look  a little sad. If I was serving this for dinner, I'd top it with a grilled chicken breast or shrimp. But for lunch, a big beautiful salad with a little crumbled feta was perfect. I'm glad I have extra dressing so I can have this for lunch a few more times this week.

Strawberry & Spinach Salad 16 cups baby spinach3 cups strawberries, slicedDressing
1/4 cup vegetable oil1/4 cup seasoned rice vinegar (can be found at Asian markets, or in the Asian section of supermarkets)3 tablespoons red onion, finely minced 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar 2 tablespoons honey 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika1 1/2 teaspoons toasted sesame seeds salt & pep…

Redemption Cookies

I needed to bake something extra delicious. Why? Because Michael was ready to fire me as house-girlfriend. He ran out of clean undershirts & I basically tried to poison him with my cooking this week.
These are my redemption cookies. They worked. I think sandwich cookies are my new favorite. They're just so cute! The second you sandwich cookies, they automatically seem like they required extra effort. But these are made from a box of cake mix- they're so easy! Start with one box of Devil's Food cake mix.  Duncan Hines is my cake mix of choice. Add in 2 eggs, 1/3 cup oil, and mix the ingredients until everything is fully incorporated. It makes a thick dough- you might want to use a stand-mixer. Scoop out the dough with a medium cookie scoop. Place each scoop on waxed paper, placed on the counter. Cut each scoop in half.  Roll each half into a ball. Place the ball onto a greased baking sheet. Flatten the cookies down slightly with the back of a spoon. Bake for 8-10 minutes in a 325 degree…

Zucchini Fritters

1 cup grated zucchini1/8 cup onion, finely chopped1/4 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded1/4 cup parmesan cheese, shredded1/8 cup flour1/8 cup italian-style bread crumbs1 egggarlic clove, mincedsalt & pepper1 tablespoon parsley, choppedIn a bowl, combine all the ingredients until well-mixed.Heat a small amount of oil in a skillet over medium heat. Drop the zucchini mixture by heaping tablespoonful onto the hot skillet (I used my cookie scoop). Cook a few minutes per side, until golden.Serve hot, with marinara sauce or 'italian pico' (tomatoes, fresh basil, balsamic vinegar, garlic powder, salt & pepper)Serves 3  Serving size: 3 fritters Points + / Serving: 4 Coarsely grated Zucchini. Part-Skim Mozzarella. 1 1/2 T. cookie scoop

BBQ Chicken Pizza

Last time I made homemade pizza, I literally spent hours making & monitoring the dough. And it tasted just like... pizza crust. I opted to use Pillsbury Pizza Crust this time because it was 1- on sale. 2-easy. 3-tasted exactly the same.  I used fresh cilantro from my little herb garden! When we first moved in, we wanted to find something we could use as a firepit- one of Michael's friends brought an old tractor rim over as a housewarming gift. But I ended up taking over and turning it into my own little herb garden. My herbs are getting really big, and all of them are thriving. I'm excited to have so many fresh herbs at my disposal.   This is the finished product! For some reason, I can NEVER get my pizzas to be round or square, they always end up being some weird combination of the two. But taste-wise, it ended up exceeding my expectations.

BBQ Chicken Pizza

Pillsbury Pizza Crust1/2 c. BBQ sauce (I used Famous Dave's Rich & Sassy)1 1/2 c. Mozzarella, shredded (I used …