Monthly Archives: September 2012

Asiago Herb Biscuits

Very few smells can top that of fresh baked bread… which includes bread’s little brother, the biscuit.

These little babies will make your neighbors knock on your door and invite themselves over for dinner.

Sooo you may want to double the recipe.

Toss two cups of flour in a mixing bowl and by toss I mean lightly sprinkle or you will turn yourself into a powdery mess… which I may or may not have done in the past.

1 tablespoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

Question of the day: what is the difference between baking powder and baking soda?

When I ask these questions, my curious little mind just can’t resist a Google search.

The short answer?

Not much.

Don’t tell a chemist I said that.

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 teaspoon each of dried oregano and rosemary… because it was an oregano and rosemary kind of day. No other reason.

I’m not even sure what an “oregano and rosemary kind of day” is but I like the sound of it!

Here’s what is great about these biscuits – you could substitute any combination of dried herbs. Or fresh herbs for that matter because that would be d-e-lightful.

The sky is the limit. Let out your inner herb creativity.

I love trying different cheeses. I think I get it from my dad.

I’ve had breads with asiago baked on top and decided that asiago would be my cheese of choice for these biscuits.

Here again, asiago could easily be substituted for parmesan or romano.

Grate until you have about a cup of cheese. Quick alternative: package of pre-grated cheese

Glorious mountain of cheese

Ok, I know you are thinking “whooaaa… what is THAT?”

I’ll give you two guesses.

Mayo?

Nope.

Sour cream?

Negatory.

This is actually 1 cup plain low-fat yogurt… let me re-phrase that, this is supposed to be 1 cup of plain low-fat yogurt. As you can see from the picture, I was a little short on yogurt.

Since I was adding a bunch of cheese to the biscuits I wanted to cut some of the butter and I read yogurt serves that purpose.

And it did a fine job.

I still added a 1/4 c butter… which I melted just a little too much but hey, it worked out.

Mix with a pastry cutter, or spoon, or your hands. Once it’s all mixed in, sprinkle flour on the counter and…

… knead a handful of times.

Haha, sometimes my jokes dough-n’t quite make it and knead a little work.

Ok, ok that’s the last one.

Roll out until it’s about 1/2 inch thick

Where there’s a lack of biscuit cutter… there’s a glass that works just as well.

I got 11 biscuits out of it. You can always make them a little thinner to get more.

Put ’em on an ungreased baking sheet, and bake for about 10-15 minutes until lightly brown.

Oh.my.word.

Look at that scrumptious yummy goodness.

We made breakfast sandwiches with them but they would be great as a side to soup or many other things that I want to list here but can’t think of at the moment.

Maybe they’ll come to me later.

Enjoy!

Jordan

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Pumpkin Spice Donuts

I never knew my hand could move so fast when this pumpkin spice donut pin popped up on Pinterest. I had it repinned to my Pinterest account faster than you can even start the word ‘pumpkin’.

(For those that may not have discovered Pinterest yet… it’s a handy-dandy site that holds a massive collection of all things wonderful… well I guess that is… if you like to craft, cook or plan your entire future through pictures.)

I have been dying to try this recipe by Blue-Eyed Bakers since I saw it wandering around Pinterest but as much as I couldn’t wait to try it, I also wanted to wait for that rare and elusive Saturday morning when you have no obligations except to start the coffee. This is the kind of recipe to take your time on, enjoy, and the best part, savor each bite.

I am happy to report… that kind of Saturday arrived last weekend and I.was.pumped.

These are hands down one of the best fall Saturday morning breakfasts.

Leading off is 3/4 cup canned pumpkin.

And here we see a lack of milk in our fridge, substituted by vanilla soy milk. (1/2 c.)

I invite you to read of my journey in coming to terms with vanilla soy milk.

An egg… just an egg… one little egg…

Question of the day: Did the chicken come first or the egg?

Other question of the day: how old is the first question of the day?

I have no idea but I’m guessing its pretty darn old!

Because you can’t have baked goods without vanilla… 1 1/2 teaspoons

1/2 cup brown sugar into the vanillafied batter.

Vanillafied – (van-ill-a-fide) – a state in which a baking batter contains vanilla that can no longer be separated and extracted from the batter as a whole

You will see that in the Merriam-Webster Dictionary in 2013. Mark my words.

1 3/4 cup o’ flour…

Also somewhere along the way I missed the picture for vegetable oil sooooo yeah… add 1/3 cup. veggie oil

It wouldn’t be a great fall breakfast without the fall spices:

1 t. cinnamon, 1/2 t. nutmeg, 1/2 t. allspice, 1/8 t. ground cloves

Also add 1/2 t. salt and 1 1/2 t. baking powder

Now for a couple of thoughts:

– nutmeg is missing from the photo shoot… whoops

– I’ve never heard of 1/8 t. in my life and completely didn’t even notice that measurement so naturally I thought “oh great, that’s easy, 1/2 t. of each spice” and put 1/2 t. ground cloves into the mix and 5.8735 seconds later realized it should not be even close to that amount and immediately started scooping out the extra cloves because you CAN separate spices that have been mixed up. Haha… nope, so I scooped out the cloves and added some more of the other spices to ensure the right amount of spiciness.

– What is a clove anyways? …. I just googled them… they are dried flower buds and they look like this:

Meanwhile back at the ranch…

This batter’s on deck for the oven.

I can’t help the sports terms… I have two brothers.

I do not have a donut baking pan so I divided the batter between a mini-muffin pan and a regular muffin pan, greased.

Bake at 350 for 10-12 minutes or so and these will be pretty moist even when they are fully baked.

And while they were baking, I enjoyed a hot cup of java…

…in my favorite mug. I hope you can read the bottom but if not, it says “Herman catches a lucky break.” I don’t know why but I loved this mug when I first saw it and it’s been my favorite ever since. A nice little reminder to find the humor in all things.

Also while the donuts were baking, I got the assembly line ready – a bowl of hot, melted butter and a bowl of cinnamon & sugar…

Sorry, I did not get a full shot of my little assembly line. Maybe one of these posts I’ll have all the pictures I need!

Once the donuts are fully baked, let them cool just enough for your hands to tolerate.

Pull out the Henry Ford deep inside and get that assembly line cranking – a dip in butter, a dip in the cinnamon & sugar and on to a plate they go until they are all coated.

Mine turned out like this:

Kinda funky shaped for donut holes but they were delectable. And that’s all that counts.

Absolutely delightful and without a doubt, worth a repin!

Nom nom nom,

Jordan

Mini Burgers & Couscous

This little recipe has just been inducted into my collection of “staple” recipes. You know the kind, those “I-don’t-know-what-to-make-so-I’ll-revert-back-to-easy-recipes-I-know-and-love” recipes.

I found this one on RealSimple.com a couple months ago, tried it, loved it.

It has it all – different textures, lots of flavor, and simple to make.

And I don’t have much else to say except – let’s eat!

We’re going to start off with some spices for the burgers…

This mound of granules contains: 1 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin, 1 teaspoon paprika, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

Now, I must explain… I’ve actually found two different versions of this recipe on Real Simple. One was for chicken and called for paprika and the other was for ground beef and calls for oregano.

I actually made the chicken version first and loved the combo of the cumin & paprika so when I found the other and realized how similar they were, I substituted the paprika for the oregano.

So what I’m saying is – you could be the first one to try the cumin & oregano combo!

It could be the highlight of your day.

Also, what I’m saying is you can use boneless skinless chicken breast or ground beef to make this recipe and it will be wonderful either way.

Enough of me saying stuff… let’s get cooking!

The recipe version I am basing this post on is the one for ground beef but, at the time, we happened to already have ground turkey meat so it got the good fortune of being made into this recipe.

Wow, I never realized how versatile this recipe was – chicken, ground beef or ground turkey!

Stir up the spices and mix in the enter-any-one-of-the-meats-here, then form them into patties.

I cook the burgers on the stove because we do not and cannot have a grill in our apartment so really, these could be full size burgers but I make them mini because they’re easy to work with on the stove… and they cook faster so they can reach my mouth faster.

There they are… I wish you could smell them through pictures. I’m sorry you can’t. They smell wonderful when they cook.

The real reason I tried this recipe – couscous.

I had never made it before and really wanted to try it.

You should have seen me at the grocery store trying to find couscous the first time. I searched way too long in the pasta section.

Eventually I found them by rice… just FYI, in case you’ve never had to look for couscous either.

I also am a huge fan of these boxes of flavored couscous. The actual recipe says to add olive oil, lemon juice, and salt & pepper.

I ignore all of that.

I just follow the directions on the box and bam! couscous in five minutes, flavor and all.

In the five minutes the couscous cooks, I cut up a few veggies.

Meet the trio: tomato, cucumber, onion.

I ALWAYS cut up too much onion. I never can seem to break this habit, I don’t know why, it’s weird. I just always overestimate how much onion will be needed.

After the couscous is done cooking…

Mix the veggies in… don’t mix so much that the tomato turns to salsa, a light mixing will do.

Make sure the burgers are cooked all the way through (especially if using chicken or turkey).

Yum, yum, yum…

See? A really great simple weeknight dinner.

I still wish you could smell it.

Enjoy,

Jordan