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Cinco de Mayo Recipe Ideas

Mexican and Tex-Mex food is my all-time favorite. I love Thai, Indian, Japanese, Greek, French, Cuban — I could eat my way through just about every country — but Mexican is the cuisine I always crave. Want to celebrate Cinco de Mayo this year with a Tex-Mex feast? Above are some of my favorite recipes from around the webz, and below are 8 of my own Tex-Mex creations! Enjoy!

Sausage & Corn Chile Con Queso Taco Ring

More Cinco de Mayo recipe suggestions, plus this recipe!Collapse )

To see my original Cinco de Mayo recipe roundup post, plus some suggestions from blogs other than mine, please head over to Willow Bird Baking!

x-posted to food_porn, picturing_food, cooking, cookingupastorm

Strawberry Doughnut Cake

I made you SUCH AN AMAZING CAKE. Seriously, this case isn’t just cute; it was so incredibly delicious. I blanketed an almond-scented bakery-style sheet cake with a luscious, dye-free strawberry glaze. And added sprinkles, obviously! Another huge bonus is that this cake was super quick to make.

You're going to be shocked by how delicious this cake is. SHOCKED, I tell you! Enjoy!

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To read about why I now own a doughnut clock, see the giveaway Zazzle is hosting, and see more photos, please head over to Willow Bird Baking!

x-posted to food_porn, picturing_food, cooking, bakebakebake
This is what an acquaintance of mine would like to know; he fries his chicken Southern (U.S.) style, applying egg and buttermilk, and he monitors the oil temperature, but he can never seem to get the breading to adhere. Any suggestions?

Blogging Cookbook Recipes Question

I'm doing a project for fun where I'm cooking recipes from around the world. So far I have done Afghanistan and have started Albania. My problem is that most of the recipes I've done are from cookbooks. I want to blog about what I've done, etc. Can I post the recipes form the cookbooks I've done? Or is that total copyright violation? How much can I post from the book? Any suggestions, ideas, tips, etc. are much appreciated. I'm cross-posting this to my own journal and to thequestionclub.

Intense Chocolate Mocha Cake

This easy snack cake packs an intense mocha punch! The espresso powder deepens the already fantastic chocolate flavor of the cake and smooth-as-silk frosting. Be sure to pour a tall glass of milk with this cake (or maybe a nice cup of coffee?)

It’s so quick to whip up (the longest part of the recipe is waiting for the frosting to reach peak spreadability!) and is seriously, hands-down one of the best cakes I’ve ever eaten. YOU GUYS, I don’t say that kind of thing lightly. Okay, so I have one more cake post coming this week that I’m going to say that about, too, but that’s just because the recipes are both SO stellar. Really!

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To read about Baker's Joy's "Which Sweet Treat are You?" quiz, see what prizes they're giving away, and see more photos, please head over to Willow Bird Baking!

x-posted to food_porn, picturing_food, cooking, bakebakebake

Easy No Cook 7 Minute Frosting

Easy No Cook 7 Minute Frosting

This frosting is easy, fluffy and light. Perfect for Spring! Recipe at The Alchemist.  
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Supper and Stargazing

I am hosting a supper and stargazing dinner party and I would really appreciate some menu ideas. I am hosting the event outside for my boyfriend and I along with two other couples. I would like to serve dishes that do not have to be any exact temperature and they should be relatively cooling as I live in Florida and it could be 90 degrees two weeks from now.

I would like to make a spinach and gruyere quiche but other than that I have no idea what to serve. The communities help would be appreciated.

Apr. 19th, 2014

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Little Bunny Foo Foo hopped into my kitchen the other day and landed in some carrot cake doughnuts while looking for something to eat.

Thankfully, they were baked doughnuts so there was no hot oil involved!

Want to make your own bunny in a garden doughnuts? The instructions are under the cut, and it's actually pretty easy. Just make the doughnuts, slather on some icing the icing, then top with the bunny bums. They're the perfect treat for little (and big) kids for the long, holiday weekend.

Happy Easter! For more pictures, or to see other Easter treats, head on over to Leanne Bakes.
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Traditional Easter Bread - Paska

We usually bake Paska either on Thursday or on Saturday before Easter Sunday. This is a type of sweet bread that requires from the baker utter concentration, precision, positive attitude. Dont you even try to make Paska without a prayer on your mind. But if you start the process with light heart - results would be very rewarding.

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Blue Cheese Gougeres

We had a cooking adventure last weekend. It was a seven course meal and this was one of my favorites - a passed app - blue Cheese Gougeres.

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Blue Cheese GougeresCollapse )
This is a time of year when many of the green chile and bell peppers at my local groceries show touches of red and yellow; I've discovered that they will continue ripening even in the refrigerator. Green peppers* plus time equal red peppers--at considerable savings, since ripe peppers are far more expensive than the corresponding green varieties (understandably so, since the ripe ones will have required the expenses of longer cultivation.)

The flavor sweetens and--in the case of hot peppers--mellows the bite, but I'm wondering what effect shelf-ripening has on the nutritional content: is the increase in carotenoid vitamins offset by the decline in freshness?

*Providing that they already show touches of the eventual ripe color; I've never had a wholly green pepper ripen after purchase.
So I had a bunch of odds & ends today, food-wise. It all started when I saw an ad for Denny’s ‘build your own French Toast’.
I wasn’t willing to spend $10 to have some day-old bread, so I figured I’d make my own.

Digging through the food in the van, I found coconut milk powder, candied walnuts, & limes.
& I made AMAZING french toast this morning

Lime French Toast With Coconut Icing

Serves 2

1 lime
2 tbs sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
4 slices bread
1/4 cup icing sugar
2 tbs coconut milk powder
2 tbs water
3 tbs shredded coconut
1/4 cup candied walnuts

Juice & zest the lime in a shallow bowl. Add the sugar, vanilla, & eggs & beat well.
Dip the bread in the egg mixture & cook in a hot pan until no longer wet, flipping when needed
Meanwhile, combine the icing sugar, coconut milk powder, & water. Mix until smooth, adding more water to get a drizzling consistency
Dish out the french toast, top with walnuts, drizzle icing over top, & sprinkle with shredded coconut

This recipe was originally posted on my blog, but I thought this was too good not to share everywhere else.
If anyone's interested, here's my blog where I b*tch & moan about how much of a pain it is to live in a camper van in Canadian winters (hint: not at all, as I cheated & lived inside), but I do occasionally post recipes & other food-related things:

Moroccan Meatball Recipe?

Many years ago I had a truly exceptional Shabbat dinner with a Moroccan family. One of the dishes served was a savory meatball dish. This is what I know. The meat was a mixture of ground lamb and beef. The main spice was mace, and there were green peas in the gravy and it was served over couscous.

Does anyone have any ideas for a recipe?

Honey-Garlic Roasted Cauliflower

Delicious vegetarian dish, takes about 15 minutes to cook, serves as an excellent side dish or just by itself!

Roasted Cauliflower
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Crab-Cheese Pilaf

A "dieters" version from the Weight-Watching chapter of the Good Housekeeping Cookbook, 1963.

Crab-Cheese Pilaf

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scaling down cooking time

Is there a good formula for how to figure out cooking time if, instead of making one large thing, you're making many small things?

Example: I made schadenfreude pie yesterday. I don't like it but my husband loves it, so instead of making single large pie, I made a whole raft (seriously, 15, I think) of the commercial 3" small pies. The large pie cooks for 40-50 minutes, so I put the small pies in for 20 minutes.

They boiled over, and soaked through the graham crust. Plus, they now have the consistency of caramel (sticky, chewy) which means to me that they cooked too long.

I've done this successfully with key lime and lemon meringue pies, plus assorted fruit pies (apple, peach), so I know it can be done, but is there a way to guesstimate a reasonable amount of cooking time that doesn't involve poking the pie every 5 minutes?

Strawberry Coconut Cream Pie Bars

These are the latest in my pie bar series, and Mike's favorite! That says a lot, considering how much he loves chocolate. These are so springy and fresh, and of course, really simple to prepare. Enjoy!

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To read some #realtalk about my faith, discuss your own ideas, or see more photos, please head over to Willow Bird Baking!

x-posted to food_porn, picturing_food, cooking, bakebakebake

Apr. 7th, 2014

I got gyoza wraps, and utterly no way that I know of to fix them. What's the straight dope on this one?

Cream of Mushroom Soup

Fast, easy, delicious. I always make it for our RG competitions. And all the judges love it! Now is a time for you to try

Cream of Mushroom

Hot cross bun bread and butter pudding

Make the most of hot cross buns while they're in the shops, and make this gorgeous bread and butter pudding - a real crowd pleaser that would be perfect for Easter Sunday!

Recipe here.

Hot cross bun bread and butter pudding 7


Double Chocolate Mousse Cake


I made BF a lovely "romantic" dinner tonight of slow-roasted lamb shanks (4 hours in the oven! So worth it though!) with sour cream and chives mashed potato and buttered asparagus with Parmesan. AH-MAZING! Dessert was this gorgeous Double Chocolate Mousse Cake that I found on Its an easy-peasy chill-only dessert, super-rich, and about as unhealthy as you can get! But the calories are worth it, this is incredible, indulgent, and will definitely satisfy your need for a chocolate fix!

- 175g plain chocolate biscuits (I used Arnotts Chocolate Ripple)
- 85g butter, melted
- 400g chocolate (good quality dark cooking chocolate or eating chocolate, I used Plaistowe)
- 600ml thickened cream

Grease and line a 20cm springform pan. Melt the butter, and process the biscuits in a food processor into tiny crumbs. Mix butter and biscuit crumbs together, then press into springform pan to form the base. Chill.

Melt the chocolate either using a double-boiler on the stove, or using the "cheat" method of microwaving in 30 second increments, mixing well between using a metal spoon until completely melted. Allow the chocolate to cool to room temperature.

Whip the cream until soft peaks form. Flavour the cream with vanilla essence, or a liqueur of your choice. Fold through the melted, cooled chocolate. Spoon the cream/chocolate mix over the chilled chocolate biscuit base. Chill for 3 hours.

Baking chicken pieces with salad dressing

I have been researching about cooking with salad dressing and want to make baked chicken parts (bone in) but the recipes I looked at are for boneless chicken and the cook time varies from 35 minutes to an hour.  I thought because of the bones I'd have to cook it longer...

So the recipe I want to do says to drizzle the Italian dressing over the chicken until the bottom of the baking dish is covered and bake this uncovered.  I am not using Italian but a greek salad dressing that looks like Italian but has more or different spices in it.  I know it will work the same as Italian.  I think I should remove the skin.  What about other dressings like ranch?

My next question is about making this same thing in a slow cooker which is more convenient for me on work days.  How long and will it be soggy?  I have made a whole chicken cooked over gravy, potatoes and carrots.  I remove the skin when I take it out but I wasn't planning on removing the skin from the cut up chicken but wonder if it would be better if I did.

So if you have baked chicken with bones in how long and how hot?

Palos Verdes Stew

A "dieters" version from the Weight-Watching chapter of the Good Housekeeping Cookbook, 1963.

Palos Verdes Stew

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A follow-up to a previous post - Pork Adobo

The last time I made pork adobo, it was nasty dry. The recipe is from a Hawaiian cook book (Taste of Aloha) and is called Pork Chop Adobo.

This time, I drained (reserving the marinade after marinating the meat overnight), then cubed the pork and stir fried it quickly. Then I took it out and stir fried a mess of veggies, then reintroduced the meat and then added some of the sauce back, thickened it slightly with corn starch and *wow* – mo’ betta! I served it with fried rice and a red blend called Three Popes. It was very good.

Thanks to everyone who responded to my last cry for help. I really appreciated all the suggestions and you gave me the confidence to think outside the box on this one.


Ukrainian Style Stir-Fry

I've sent offers, booked showings for tonight and enjoying the break - posting what I cooked and eating what I am posting at the same time. It is kinda challenging - I need the third hand, or type with one just one hand, or learn to eat handsfree - may be should watch my dog :) Here is what my family eating tonight - Ukrainian Style Stir-Fry. Ya-ya, don't roll your eyes, I just made it up.

Buckweat Stir Fry
Are you sure?...
Hello everyone! I got a Top Pork Loin for dirt cheap at my local grocery store and I was wondering if anyone had any ideas on what to do for sides with it. I'm thinking about doing this recipe for Roast Pork Loin with Apples (recipe also posted below) because it looks delicious and I love apples. I'm dealing with egg, dill, and nut allergies but other then that I'm willing to try almost anything. :)

My second question is how long do I cook a 4 pound pork roast at 400 degrees F? The recipe is for a 2 pound and it says 30-35 minutes so do I add 5-10 minutes per pound?

Roast Pork Loin with Apples RecipeCollapse )


Pork Adobo

I'm getting ready to do some pork adobo. I have a recipe, but it always leaves the pork dry as dirt. Does anyone have a pork adobo recipe that they have used successfully. There are tons of recipes on the Internet, but I am looking for one that people swear by and use again and again.



French Silk Pie Bars

I've been on a pie bar kick, in case you haven't noticed. Coconut Cream Pie Bars, Lemon Cream Pie Bars, and now French Silk Pie Bars. These things are crazy! They remind me of going to Perkins Family Restaurant as a kid and getting a huuuge slice of French Silk Pie to devour all by myself. Enjoy them with a huge glass of milk.

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To read my review of my friend's book, Surprise-Inside Cakes, come enter to win a copy, or to see more photos, please head over to Willow Bird Baking!

x-posted to food_porn, picturing_food, cooking, bakebakebake

Chili Con Carne

A "dieters" version from the Weight-Watching chapter of the Good Housekeeping Cookbook, 1963.

Chili Con Carne

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Pizza Primavera

We had at exchange student from France last year staying with us for 2 weeks and he was immensely surprised that a pizza could be made at home - fast, easy and delicious. The main trick here is thin yummy crust made in the microwave. Yes, yes, you got it right - microwave!

Pizza Slice Close

Raspberry Filled and Frosted Cupcakes

raspberry cupcakes

 Raspberry Filled and Frosted Cupcakes - Fluffy and Moist white cupcakes filled with Raspberry Cream Cheese Filling and topped with raspberry buttercream. These are a big crowd pleaser!  Recipe and more at The Alchemist.
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cooking for a group of picky eaters


I need some advice.  I am having a girls weekend soon (yeah) and each meal two people take turns in making dinner.  I love to cook and I am partnered with someone who doesn't cook that much so it has been left to me to come up with a menu.  It would be for a dozen people.  However we have people with dairy issues (can use cream ), no pork, no red meat, and no onions.  Yes the killer for me is the no onions.  I ask why she can't just not eat the onions (she isn't allergic just doesn't like them) but no...she only eats these veggies
I like cooked broccoli, cauliflower and carrots
Onions and peppers – ick!
also so no dairy with meat
and no shellfish

Which kinda leaves chicken???
any ideas?

thanks ever so much

JUST WANTED TO ADD:  thanks so much for all your suggestions!  very helpful :)

Shortcuts and Substitutions

Today I was making spaghetti and meatballs and realized I only had 1/3 of a jar of sauce left.This was problematic because I brown my meatballs on two sides and then let them simmer in the sauce to finish. In a flash of brilliance, I decided to drain a can of diced tomatoes and added my leftover sauce and managed to make a pretty tasty concoction for my meatballs to complete cooking in. No complaints from the boyfriend. He loved it.

So now I am wondering...

What are your favorite shortcuts and substitutions in the kitchen?

Help requested

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

So I've been making this Mounds Cake.  And it's going awesome, I've got the cake in the freezer and started making the coconut filling.'s pretty gross.  It's yellow for one (bummer) and pretty much tastes like sweetened condensed milk with coconut.  (no surprise)

I did a search (after the fact) and looked at other recipes and they all seem to involve marshmallows.  Which, I don't have any, nor do I have any more coconut.

Do you guys have any thoughts on how I can rescue this?  Make it taste a little less cloyingly like condensed milk?  And perhaps get it a bit whiter?


Lemon Cream Pie Bars

Here's some St. Patrick's Day love for you! Okay, okay, so these don't really look like a St. Patrick's Day treat. No Bailey's Irish Cream or mint or green or any of that this time. But I still think this is quite the sweet offering to celebrate with today! If you love lemon, this is the dessert for you. A huge cloud of lemon cream mousse and freshly whipped cream sit on a buttery shortbread crust. Enjoy!

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To read about my original song, St. Patrick's Day Love; to see how insufferable I was as a 6-year-old, or to see more photos, please head over to Willow Bird Baking!

x-posted to food_porn, picturing_food, cooking, bakebakebake

Super simple grape cocktail sauce

-Frozen grapes

After the grapes are solidly frozen, grind them in a zester. Let them sit and warm until they're in a soft liquid state, and zest some freshly frozen ones over top. After cooking the shrimp, let them cool, then grind them in the zester over top of the grape mix. Or, put them to the side of the plate or glass (personally I like them better grinded and mixed in). Put one 3 second squeeze of Sriracha around the mix. I also like putting a couple of dandelions on the side for decoration, but that's your call. Enjoy!

ANYTHING is better with Sriracha!

Mayo question

Hey all, I need a spot of help!

I want to do my Dutch husband a super special thing and make him Dutch Mayonnaise from scratch, since he keeps insisting it's better and we can't get it locally. I've found some recipes online, but only one has storage instructions - and those instructions say not to keep it in the fridge.

Now, that sounds odd to me, since it'll contain eggs. How should I store homemade mayo?

Many thanks!!!

Boeuf Bourgignon II

A "dieters" version from the Weight-Watching chapter of the Good Housekeeping Cookbook, 1963.

Boeuf Bourguignon II

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Creamy garlic spaghetti with roasted portobello mushrooms - for those days when you just need to indulge ;)
Recipe here.

Creamy garlic spaghetti with roasted portobellos 6

Vegetarian Borsch

I am trying to shoo winter away with a nice bowl of hot borsch, aka beet soup. The debate was between onion soup and borsch. But I am Ukrainian or what?
This is a vegetarian version, ideal for lent, diet. The only type of folks this dish won't work for is raw vegans. The rest are welcome to try!

Borsch_close up


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