Monthly Archives: July 2013

Pink Pepper Sauce

Pink Pepper Sauce with Zucchini and Bowtie Pasta


For the love of a fine restaurant we dine at for special occasions, I tweaked my mom’s recipe for our favorite pasta. Now we can have it in just 20 minutes anytime instead of driving 45 minutes to a hour for this spicy filling pasta. Plus this is great way to use your garden’s endless supply of Zucchini!

1/2 box of whole wheat farfalle pasta
4 cloves of garlic (minced)
1/2 small onion diced
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 package of Alfredo dry mix
1 small or medium Zucchini
1 TB Olive Oil
1 can of stewed tomatoes (drained)
Salt and pepper to taste
1/4 to 1/2 tsp of hot red pepper flake
1 cup of Hot Sicilian pasta sauce
Parmesan Reggiano cheese to taste

1. Cook pasta according to package and and set aside. Start sauce when you go to start your water for the pasta and the sauce will be ready when your timer goes off for the pasta.

2. Heat large sauté pan to medium high heat and oil. Once oil is heated add minced garlic.


3. Once garlic lightly browned add onion and sauté until golden. Add pepper flake


4. Add chopped Zucchini and stewed tomatoes


5. Once vegetables are tender add heavy cream, Alfredo mix, salt and pepper and pasta sauce.


6. Bring to a boil and reduce heat.


7. Add pasta and enjoy.


Best served with shrimp, or grilled chicken and a slice of garlic toast!

Next… I just have to tackle their chocolate cake with mile high peanut butter frosting …

Zucchini Whole Wheat Waffles

Whole Wheat Zucchini Waffles


We have zucchini growing like weeds in the garden! So I just added a entire category devoted to Zucchini! Stay tuned for more recipes to come! Here is a take on zucchini bread batter tweaked in to waffle batter.

Recipe yields: 4 waffles 6 ” in diameter

1 cup of whole wheat flour
1 cup AP Flour
1/2 tsp Vietnamese Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Nutmeg
Pinch of Allspice
2 TB Ground Flaxseed
2 TB Brown Sugar
2 TB of Canola Oil
1 tsp of Pure Vanilla
1/4 tsp Salt
2 egg whites
1 whole egg
1 cup skim milk
1 Cup Shredded Zucchini (squeeze and pat dry to remove moisture)


1. Sift all dry ingredients into medium bowl.


Set a side.

2. Place milk, oil, vanilla, egg whites, and eggs in separate bowl whisk until combined.


3. Pour wet mixture into dry mixture and whisk until incorporated. Stir in shredded zucchini.


4. Let mixture set 5 minutes and preheat waffle iron.


5. Measure 3/4 to 1 cup of batter on to a cooking sprayed low heat waffle iron.
Spread evenly. Follow waffle iron instructions to cook waffle (my waffle iron did take a while longer because of the thicker batter).


Sprinkle with powdered sugar and Enjoy!


Overnight French CinnamonToast Casserole

Overnight Cinnamon French Toast


We had a family sleepover last weekend and one of my favorite things to do is bake for my family in the morning! I have been dying to try this recipe. We had Italian bread at dinner so we definitely had some leftover to make this tasty breakfast dish. This recipe was adapted from Ree Drummond’s One of my favorite things to do is alter recipes so of course I made a few changes and it turned out beautifully!

Yields 12 servings

French Toast Ingredients:
1 cup of egg substitute
4 eggs
1/4 cup of heavy cream
1/4 cup fat free half and half
2 cups of skim milk
One loaf of crusty italian bread (torn into one inch pieces)
1/2 cup of sugar or (Splenda for baking)
1/2 brown sugar
2 TB of pure vanilla
1/2 tsp Vietnamese Cinnamon

Topping Ingredients;
1/2 cup AP Flour
1/2 cup Brown Sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp Vietnamese Cinnamon
A pinch of ground nutmeg
1 stick of unsalted Butter (cubed)

1. Place all that the cute and bread into a 9 x 13 pan sprayed with Pam are cooking spray.


2. Place all of the wet ingredients in the into a bowl mix well.


3. Pour the wet ingredients over the bread evenly.


4. Sprinkle with half a teaspoon of cinnamon and wrap in foil and let sit in the refrigerator overnight.

5. In morning preheat oven to 350.
Prepare topping mixture in a small bowl using hands.


6. Sprinkle evenly over top of soaked bread dish.


7. Bake for one hour and uncovered



You can enjoy this with some fresh berries! You don’t even need any maple syrup.

Zucchini and Kale Pancakes

Zucchini and Kale Pancakes


My nephew loves zucchini pancakes. I’m home for the weekend and I thought I’d dish some up with my mom and dad’s homegrown supply of zucchini for him for breakfast this morning.

1/2 cup Finely Shredded Zucchini
1/4 cup shredded Part-skim Mozzarella Cheese
1/4 cup shredded sharp Cheddar Cheese
1/4 cup chopped Kale
Pinch of salt
1/2 Cup Bisquick (you can use the heart healthy one)
1 egg or 2 egg whites or 1/4 cup egg substitute
1 TB Finely Chopped Onion

Recipe yields: 4 to 5 mini pancakes

1. Place all dry ingredients in bowl.


2. Mix in lightly beaten egg


3. Add in zucchini, onion, kale


4. Mix until all ingredients incorporated.


5. Turn griddle on medium heat


6. Let each pancake heat throughout and flip (once you see air bubbles).




Whole Wheat Banana Granola Mini Muffins

Whole Wheat Banana Granola Mini Muffins!


These little banana bites of heaven have everything in the cupboard. I make these every year for one of my co-workers birthday’s. They are her favorite treat. This year I decided to make them as mini muffins.

Recipe yields 48 mini muffins

3/4 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cup AP Flour
1 tsp of baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
Pinch of nutmeg
2/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup canola oil
1/2 cup no sugar added applesauce
1 egg
1/4 cup & 1/8 cup skim milk
1 tsp pure vanilla
2 medium ripe bananas (mashed)
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup your favorite granola
1/4 cup unsweetened coconut

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
2. Line 48 mini muffin tins with paper-liner and spray with Pam Cooking spray.

3. Sift flours, salt, baking soda, baking powder, sugar, and nutmeg. Set aside.


4. In a stand mixer combine, oil, applesauce, mashed bananas, milk, vanilla and egg. Mix but do not over mix.


5. Add in two parts the dry ingredients mixture.


6. Mix until incorporated but do not over mix.


7. Fold in granola, coconut, and walnuts.


8. After thoroughly combined, use a number 60 scoop to portion out your mini muffins.


9. Bake for 9-10 minutes. Check using toothpick method.



Key Lime Pie oh my!

Key Lime Pie Oh my!


My mom’s birthday was this weekend! One of her favorite desserts is Key Lime Pie! This recipe was thrown together rather quickly for her special occasion. It’s very simple and a crowd pleaser. The recipe below was adapted from a Taste of Home recipe in this past May’s issue. Here is the link . I made a few changes since my mom doesn’t like macadamia nuts and I didn’t have short bread cookies. I also reduced the calories by substituting a few of the full fat products to either fat free or reduced fat products.

•1 can of non fat sweetened and condensed milk
•1/2 cup fresh Lime Juice (key lime if possible)
•8 once block of reduced fat free cream cheese (softened)

•1 1/2 cup of crushed whole grain graham cracker crumbs
1/4 cup melted in salted butter
1/4 cup sugar

Directions for crust:
Preheat oven to 350.

Place graham crackers in food processor. Pulse until fine add sugar, add melted butter.


Press graham mixture in 9″ pie dish. Bake for 8 minutes. Set aside to cool.


Direction for lime filling

Beat the cream cheese until light and fluffy.


Add the lime juice and milk. Mix until incorporated.


Using a spatula spread evenly the lime cream cheese mixture into the cooled pie crust.

Add the lime juice and milk. Mix until incorporated.


Let sit in refrigerator for at least 4 hours to set. The add whipped cream to top and serve.

Fresh whip cream topping
1 cup of whipping cream
1 heaping Tb of confectioner sugar
1 tsp of Pure Vanilla


Beat cream in cold metal bowl until soft peaks form, add sugar and vanilla. Beat until stiff peaks form. Spread evenly over cool pie.


Rhubarb Spice Cookies

Rhubarb Spice Cookies


This recipe was inspired by my grandma’s zucchini cookie recipe. When I went back home for a visit this past Sunday my grandpa gave me more rhubarb. Plus two plants for me to start growing the vegetable in my own garden. I can only hope to have a green thumb like him someday! I am terribly excited to grown my own rhubarb!! My husband chopped up 9 cups of rhubarb tonight for us to freeze. So you will see more posts on rhubarb no doubt.

Yields 4 Dozen using a number 60 cookie scoop.


1 Cup Whole Wheat Pastry Flour

1 Cup AP Flour

3 TB of ground Flaxseed

1 Tsp of ground Cinnamon

1/2 Tsp of ground Clove

1 Tsp of Baking powder

1 Tsp of Baking soda

1/2 Tsp of Salt

1 Cup of Granulated Sugar

1 Egg

1 Tsp of pure vanilla

1/4 Cup Canola Oil

1/4 Cup butter (unsalted) (1/2 a stick)

1 Cup of Rhubarb chopped

1/2 Cup of chopped walnuts

1/2 Cup of mini Cinnamon Chips


Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

1. Throw cut rhubarb into 1/4 cup of sugar and toss to coat. Set aside.


2. Place in mixing bowl butter and remaining (3/4 cup) sugar mix to cream.


3. Add oil, egg, vanilla, and mix.


4. Mix in the chopped rhubarb.


5. While mixing creamed mixture, in a separate bowl sift together flaxseed, both flours, salt, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and cloves.


6. On low speed add in two separate batches the flour mixture to the creamed mixture.


7. Once mixed until all ingredients incorporated detach the whisk attachment.


8. Fold in the cinnamon chips and chopped walnuts.


9. Place parchment paper on 1/2 sheet cookie pan and place 12 cookies to a sheet. Using a number 60 scoop bake for 14 minutes




Fresh Mozzarella and Basil Pizza

Fresh Mozzarella and Basil Pizza


I am always looking for a new pizza dough recipe. I tweaked this one from Anne Burrell’s recipe in the June FN Magazine.


1 cup warm water
3 teaspoons dry yeast
1 teaspoon sugar or honey
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons olive oil

1. Place yeast, sugar or honey and warm water in small bowl and set aside for 10 minutes or until foams.


2. In stand mixer place flours, salt, and form a well with the flour.


Pour oil in center


Attach dough hook and mix on low speed at first and slowly add the yeast mixture.


Knead mixture with dough hook until ball forms.


Place dough in a oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap.


Let rise for and hour in a warm place.


Divide into 4 portions


Place in ziplock bags and let rise another hour.


Now is a good time to preheat oven with pizza stone in oven at 500 degrees.

After the oven has preheated for an hour. And dough has risen for second time throw extra dough in freezer for another day.


Roll dough out on lightly floured surface.


Place on pizza peel sprinkled with cornmeal to prevent sticking and toss onto baking stone. Bake for 2 minutes.


Pizza Topping Ingredients:

1/4 cup of pizza sauce
1-2 teaspoons of pasta sprinkle or Italian seasoning
4-5 slices (1/8 inch) Fresh Mozzarella (blotted to remove excess moisture)
6 leaves of fresh basil
Fig balsamic (optional)


Sprinkle pasta sprinkle evenly on pizza crust.


Add the sauce spread evenly with spatula.


Add Mozzarella Cheese on top evenly.


Throw back in oven and bake for 10 to 12 minutes.



Throw on basil and drizzle fig balsamic.



Chocolate Mini Oreo Cupcakes with Oreo Buttercream!

Happy Fourth of July Chocolate Mini Oreo Cupcakes


I don’t know about you but my husband’s favorite generic cookie is an Oreo! What better way to celebrate the Fourth of July with Americans favorite cookie flavored Mini Cupcakes! Happy Fourth !


3/4 cup Ap Flour
1/3 cup high quality Dutch cocoa
(penzey’s is my favorite)
3/4 Teaspoon of Baking Soda
1/2 Teaspoon of Salt
1/2 Cups of granulated sugar plus 2 tbs
1 Teaspoon of Pure Vanilla
1 egg
1/3 cup canola oil
1/2 cup buttermilk

Directions for Chocolate Minis

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Sift dry ingredients together in one bowl. Whisk wet ingredients together in another larger bowl. Once incorporated add dry ingredients into wet ingredients. Don’t over mix.

Line 30 mini cupcake liners with papers liners and Do Not Spray with cooking spray. Use number 60 scoop to portion out perfect sized minis. Bake for 9 to 11 minutes in oven. My oven only takes 11 minutes. Check minis using toothpick method at 9 minutes. Once toothpick comes out clean, remove from oven. Immediately remove minis from pan to stop baking.

Wait until cupcakes are completely cooled on wire rack before icing.

Oreo Buttercream
6 cups of Powdered Sugar
1 teaspoon of pure vanilla
9 TB of Cream
8-10 Oreos (place in food processor and crush)
1 stick of butter ( 1/2 cup ) room temperature
2 Ounce of 1/3 Fat Reduced Cream cheese room temperature

Directions for Oreo Buttercream
Cream the butter and cream cheese in a stand mixer until fluffy. Add one cup of powdered sugar at a time until incorporated. Mix slowly! Add liquids mix. Lastly add crushed Oreos add more cream as needed to desired consistency.

Yields 30 mini cupcakes using a number 60 Scoop