Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Mini Frozen Citrus Pies

Summer is fast approaching! And for me it can not come fast enough! One thing I love about summer is the fact that my back porch becomes my second living room. Most nights you can find me outside reading with my golden retriever Charlie at my feet, blogging on Bonbons and Biscotti or laughing with friends while sipping some red wine. Everyone knows when they come to my house that if you knock on the front door and no one answers, walk around to the backyard and you will find me- on my porch. Every year, I decorate my porch with pots of fresh herbs and flowers and last year my Mom and I went shopping for some great new bright cushions and accessories that make this area the cheeriest place in my house. It really is THE place to be from April till October.

So why am I sharing this recipe? This recipe is the perfect little individual dessert to have in the freezer whenever those surprise guests show up for some porch sittin'. Make these mini cream pies ahead of time in whatever citrus flavor that you like and keep them on the ready. These are refreshing and tart.  They are perfect for an after dinner treat, a talk with a friend or a decadent snack when you have had a bad day. Go ahead eat two! You deserve it!

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Whoppers Malted Milk Ball Ice Cream Cake


Happy Birthday to Bonbons and Biscotti....

And what better why to celebrate a birthday than with CAKE!!! Not just any cake but ice cream cake- just in time for spring!! There is nothing better than sitting on the back porch in the sun eating ice cream cake- YUM!

OK, there is a reason that I chose this recipe; actually a few. First I love malted milk balls and we have already established my love for dessert, but the need to make this recipe is more about having something that I never got to have for my personal birthdays. Yes, as I mentioned in my previous post, I always had a great birthday with a awesome cake made by my Mom, Toni "the master baker." However,  every year when my little sister's birthday rolled around in sunny June she had a cook out and a Dairy Queen Ice Cream Cake!  I wanted an ice cream cake sooooo bad but as in most small towns in rural Pennsylvania, the Dairy Queen was only open in the summer months. This made a lot of sense for my region. Really, who wants to sit outside on a picnic table and eat ice cream in 2 feet of snow? Since I was born on a blustery day in late January, an ice cream cake (or a cookout!!!) was never a possibility for me.  My birthdays were always rushed events that people came to, ate and left before the roads got to snowy to travel.  In their own way, my birthdays were festive and memorable but to this day... still no ice cream cake. Well, by making this cake I have solved that dilemma. Now I can have decadent chocolate cake on my birthday in January and mile high ice cream cake for my blog's birthday.  I am a happy girl!

I want to personally say thank you to all of you that followed my blog and watched me grow in this past year. As I have noted, I have had some hard days these past 2 years and every time I get a note of encouragement or hear that someone else has read my blog or tried one of my recipes, it warms my heart. I hope that I have inspired some of you as well. Remember Love Begins In The Kitchen... show someone that you love them.



Thursday, April 4, 2013

Veggitastic Vegetable Soup

OK, so I do not have a huge story about this recipe, other than I have fallen in love with this soup!! I have made this soup 3 times in the past 3 months. It was a recipe that I found in my Eating Well magazine a few months ago and put aside in "my vault of recipes that will never be made."  My BFF Ginny also saw this recipe and decided to make it. She brought me a bowl and it was delish so I began chopping, and chopping and chopping. Yes, this soup takes a lot of prep, but it is worth every bit of work and it makes a ton of soup. Since I have some late nights at work, I have been making this soup and freezing it in individual serving size containers. I get it out in the morning before work and it is ready to heat up for dinner. Also if I want to add a little more bulk to my bowl, I will drop in about 1/3 of a cup of organic brown rice and stir and enjoy.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Baked Turkey Thighs with Baked Bourbon Sweet Potatoes

Baked Turkey Thighs with Baked Bourbon Sweet Potatoes

So, I know, where have I been again?? Well..... this time I have a legit excuse- actually multiple excuses! First, I had a death in my family and had to go home to PA for services and family responsibility (more to come about this in a future post.) Secondly, as some of you already know, I went into battle with a new mandolin and the mandolin won. Three Fridays ago I decided to cut some beet chips with my new mandolin that I got for my birthday. As I proceeded, I thought this is not so hard and that I needed to be careful as my Mom just sliced off the end of her finger in a mandolin accident just a few weeks before. As I thought this, I tilted my hand back to avoid cutting my fingers and in one swift motion, shaved off a huge piece of my palm.... yep down to the muscle. (Insert SCREAM here!!!!) So off to the ER I went. Sparing you the painful, bloody details, I have been in a huge bandage for weeks now. I have not been able to cook, type, see patients, write or even wash my hair, so blogging was completely painful and out of the question. My friends and family have stepped forward in a huge way to take care of my daily duties and hand wrapping, but certain things you just have to do yourself.

This is one of the first recipes that I have made since mauling myself and it felt so good to be back. I love to be in the kitchen.  Being able to make food again was a great relief. There is something to being able to sustain yourself that is empowering to me. I like making things with my hands, and as you all know, that is one of my big stress relievers- baking, knitting, gardening. Moving my hands quiets my mind. Needless to say, in a time right now when I could use stress relief the most, I have been without the ability to quiet my mind and make something beautiful or delicious. It has been depressing.

I hope that you make this recipe and enjoy it. It is something I threw together with ingredients I had at home. The sweet potatoes are amazing. Just a suggestion though- cut them by hand!

Is there anyone out there interested in a mandolin?


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