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Big Skillet Cookie

18 Sep

When I was growing up my parents would have birthday parties for me and ask me what kind of cake I wanted. 9 times out of 10, I wanted a cookie cake.

Cast Iron Cookie

Cookie cakes are awesome. A big cookie is bigger and better than a regular cookie.

Cast Iron Cookie

In need of a big cookie? Try this Chocolate Chip  Peanut Butter Oatmeal Skillet Cookie. It’s yummy, try not to eat it all at once.

Cast Iron Cookie


French Dip Feast

14 Apr

On Sunday, while my husband was out for most of the day, he texted me, “Feast?”

Who am I to deny him a feast.

We all define feast in our own way. This is one of my many definitions.

French Dip

Since I was home all day doing things around the apartment, I made a minimal work, optimal flavor feast — French Dip sandwiches.

I used Pioneer Woman’s recipe for Drip Beef. It starts with melted butter and onions browned in the pot. On top, throw on your chuck roast. I fit as much as I could in a single layer in the pot. It was about 3.5 pounds of meat — a true feast size.


Then throw in your flavoring — 1/2 cup of soy sauce, 2 cups of water, and 2 cups of chicken broth (Pioneer Woman uses sherry). Plus some salt, pepper, rosemary, thyme, oregano, plus whatever you like.

French Dip

Turn the heat to very low.

Go tidy up your apartment, read through your mail that you haven’t opened for the past month, call your bank, watch Superman on HBO Go, etc. You know the drill.

Let it sit for 6 hours.

French Dip

Take a peak every now and then. Inhale the beef-y aroma.

French Dip

After 6 hours, fish out your beef and shred it using two forks. Then place it back into the broth.

French Dip

Prepare your bread. Place a nice layer of Pepper Jack cheese on the bread and pop it into the toaster. Get the bread nice and toasty and the cheese nice and melty.

French Dip

Pile it up with the shredded beef and onions.

French Dip

Big sandwich. You might need to cut it in half.

French Dip

Serve each sandwich with a small bowl of the broth for a dippin’.

French Dip

Here we go. Feast away.

French Dip


Birthday Dinner, WW-style

24 Mar

Today is my husband’s birthday.

Happy 31st Birthday, husband!

Birthday Dinner, Walter White-style

I’ve been pretty sick lately, so I didn’t do anything for him. I know, lame. If I wasn’t sick, I would’ve made him a nice dinner and a cake or baked good of some variety this past weekend. But instead, I was lying on the couch asking him to pass me the tissues for the past few days.

So instead of a nice birthday dinner, we had our current most favorite, quick and easy dinner. It’s boring, but pretty good, and takes about 15 minutes to prepare – roasted asparagus, homemade hummus, sliced radishes, and flatbread.

Roasted asparagus


Olive Flatbread

Since it was a pretty boring dinner, I fixed up the birthday boy’s plate just like Walter White would – writing out his age with a few spears of asparagus.

Birthday Dinner, Walter White-style

In another life, if my husband was a singer, he’d be a crooner:

Kale Pesto Pizza

13 Feb

Oh man, this was a good pizza.

Kale Pesto Pizza

My sister-in-law bought a ton of kale and gave me a bunch. I made pesto out of it and plopped the pesto on a pizza with tomatoes and fresh mozz. Oh man, I wish I was eating this pizza right now.

First, make your pizza dough. I like Pioneer Woman’s dough – it’s easy and doesn’t need a lot of ingredients (1 tsp yeast, 4 cups flour, 1 tsp salt, 1/3 cup olive oil).

Pizza Dough

While the dough is rising, make your pesto:

Ingredients needed: 1 bunch kale, 2 medium-sized onions, 6-7 cloves of garlic, 3 tbsp olive oil, 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, 1 tsp red pepper, salt and pepper.

With a little olive oil in the pan, saute the chopped onions and garlic (through the garlic press) for five minutes until onions are soft.

Onions and Garlic

Add kale (de-stemmed and chopped). Cook it down for three minutes.


Put your onion-kale-garlic mixture into the blender, add olive oil, parmesan cheese, red pepper, and salt and pepper to taste. Blend.

Kale Pesto

Once your dough has risen, roll it out into a pizza shape. Spread your pesto on top, spread out a layer of fresh mozzarella, and then place thinly-cut tomato slices on top.

Kale Pesto

Kale Pesto Pizza

Bake at 500 degrees for 10-12 minutes.

Kale Pesto Pizza

Kale Pesto Pizza

Kale Pesto Pizza

Oh man, that was good pesto.

Some music for Valentine’s Day:

Poblano Posano

30 Jan

Since we don’t have cable at home, when I go to the gym, I have this bad habit of watching Food Network. So while I’m on the treadmill or elliptical, I just think about food. It’s terrible.

Tomatillos and Red Onion

Usually Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives is on. You know that show where they make nothing but unhealthy, extra greasy, really delicious dishes. But fortunately, a few weeks ago, I caught Rachael Ray’s show. And she made this delicious looking dish — Poblano Posole.

Roasted poblano peppers

It’s healthy since there’s no meat, just a ton of vegetables. And it’s like a stew, perfect for this freezing weather.

Roasted tomatillos and red onion

The recipe is basically roasted poblanos, tomatillos, red onion, and garlic, blended with cilantro and spices. Then mixed with some broth, roasted corn, and hominy on the stove top.

Poblano Posano

To top it off, slice up some radishes. Rachael Ray puts avocado on top as well, but all the avocados at the market weren’t ripe enough to eat yet, so I skipped it. She also uses a little lime juice, but I think it’s already acidic enough.


The corn and hominy really add a little extra bite to this.

Poblano Posano

Holiday Baklava

30 Dec

A little late, but Happy Holidays!

Since our holiday decorations are meager, here’s a picture in front of the Christmas tree in Atlantis from our pre-holidays cruise.

Happy Holidays

Our holidays were fun and filled with family.

For our family gatherings, we brought baklava. We made baklava from How Sweet It Is that I had pinned a while ago.

My husband helped me make this, probably reducing the amount of time it took to make by half since one of us could deal with the phyllo sheets and the other could brush on the butter.

It didn’t take as much time as you’d think, and totally, completely worth the work.

It was crazy good.




Carrot Cupcakes

23 Oct

One of my resolutions this year was to read more books.

It hasn’t been going well. And although I know it’s not going well, I feel too lazy to get moving on this.

Carrot Cupcakes

So instead, I’ve made the argument in my head that listening to podcasts is, in some aspects, similar enough to reading a book. (I know this isn’t even close to true, but don’t tell me that.)

Carrot Cupcakes Recipe


So I set up my iPod to subscribe to a bunch of podcasts.

But I’m really not a great listener. In meetings, I will accidentally zone out and subsequently panic that I have no idea what everyone else in the meeting was talking about for the past five minutes.

Mixing the batter

Carrot Cupcakes

Anyway, the best podcast that I’ve listened to so far is the Dinner Party Download. The premise of the podcast is that it prepares you to “win” your next dinner party, which means that the hosts, along with their guests, give you some ideas for small talk, a cocktail recipe, etiquette tips, news/stories, and a music playlist.

Making the Cream Cheese Frosting


One of the cool stories from the podcast was about Jane Fonda. How after conquering fashion, modeling, and acting, she went on to conquer fitness. She got into aerobics, which was new at the time, opened her own aerobics studio, and published an aerobics workout book.

And then some guy who produced home improvement VHS tapes got inspired and asked Fonda to make an aerobics video. At that time, only 5% of homes had a VCR to watch VHS tapes.

He thought a few people would buy the workout video, but he was wrong, millions of people bought it. And that sparked millions of homes to buy VCRs, arguably starting the home video boom.

Carrot Cupcake

Pretty interesting, right?

If you agree, give the Dinner Party Download a listen while you make these delicious Carrot Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting from Martha Stewart. And then share them with your dinner party guests (or eat them all yourself while pretending to read).

Carrot Cupcakes