Monthly Archives: January 2017

Peanutty Pancakes 


We are in the process of moving and I was rummaging through the pantry of food items we brought from Pennsylvania. Trying to figure out what I could make for breakfast this morning. 

I planned on preparing pancakes; however, we did not bring the maple syrup. No syrup did not stop me. Sometimes you just have to think outside the box, and work with what you have. 

One pantry stable I never forgot or leave home without daily is peanut butter. For the love of this creamy delicious goodness, I share with you this pancake batter. 

Yields: 6 Pancakes using 1/3 cup measuring device 

Ingredients

1 cup whole wheat pastry flour

3 Tablespoons sugar

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon baking  soda 

3/4 teaspoon baking powder

3/4 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk

1 egg, lightly beaten 

1/3 cup creamy natural peanut butter

Cooking spray (I prefer canola oil spray)

Directions:

1. Preheat a large nonstick skillet to medium heat. 

2. In a large bowl whisk together the first 5 ingredients. 

3. Add the milk, &  egg and whisk into the batter. Set aside

4. In a small glass bowl microwave the peanut butter for 30 seconds. Take the warm peanut butter and whisk into the batter. Be cautious not to over mix. 

5. By now your pan should be ready. Generously spray the pan with the cooking spray. Using a 1/3 cup vessel pour the batter into the hot pan. Allow the pancake to bubble before flipping with nonstick spatula. Flip the pancake and allow the cake to cook for an additional 1-2 minutes. 

6. Serve with warmer peanut butter or a light dusting of powdered sugar. 

Craisin, Sunflower, & Pepita Seed Scones


My husband finally made his way down to North Carolina. I am a happy girl. As you all know, I love making him breakfast. Scones are always a winner for breakfast and can last a few days for repeat morning treats. 

This trip down, he graciously brought down one third of my pantry. So now I can bake goodies. I am tickled pink! 

Yields: 21 scones
Ingredients:

2 cups whole wheat pastry flour

1 tablespoon of baking powder

1/2 cup sugar

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 cup (one stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces 

1/4 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk

1/4 teaspoon pure orange extract 

2 eggs, lightly beaten

1/4 cup dried cranberries

2 Tablespoons pepitas

2 tablespoon sunflower seeds

Directions:

Pre-directions: preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a half sheet parchment paper. 

1. Whisk together, in a large bowl the flour, salt, & baking powder. 

2. Cut the butter into the flour with your fingers. Set aside. 

3. In a small vessel mix the eggs, extract and almond milk. Add the liquid ingredient blend into the flour. Fold the cranberries, and seeds into the wet batter. 

4. Pour the batter onto the pan and spread evenly.  Bake for 20 minutes. Allow to cool on wire rack for 10 minutes and cut the scones using a wide mouth mason jar.  Place the cut scones on wire rack to cool the remainder of the way or enjoy warm. These scones are more cake like texture than traditional scones. 

Cinnaberry Quinoa Bars

Who is tired of expensive granola bars with ingredients you cannot even pronounce? I know I am. Especially when you can make them at home at a fraction of the cost and without all the extra sugar and unwanted preservatives. 

These bars are full of nuts, seeds, whole grains, and mother nature’s natural sweetness. 

Yields: 12 bars

Ingredients

1 cup old fashioned oats

1/2 cup quinoa, uncooked 

1 teaspoon ground Vietnamese Cinnamon 

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1 Tablespoon hemp seeds

1 Tablespoon chia seeds

2 ripe bananas, mashed

1 Teaspoon pure vanilla extract 

1/4 cup creamy peanut butter

2 Tablespoons Creamed Cinnamon Honey 

1 /4 cup sunflower seeds

1/4 cup slivered almonds

1/3 cup dried cranberries

Directions
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9 by 13 glass pan with parchment paper. 

2. In a large bowl, mix  together first 6 ingredients. 

3. Add the mashed banana and vanilla extract to the dry ingredients and mix in with spatula. Set aside. 

4. In a small microwaveable glass bowl, place the peanut butter and honey and stir. Microwave the blend for 30 seconds and stir with rubber spatula. If the consistency is not smooth and easy to stir, microwave for 5 more seconds and try again. Once shiny and smooth, fold the honey blend into the banana oat batter. Continue to mix with spatula until honey blend is incorporated throughout. Lastly fold in the sunflower seeds, almonds & cranberries. 

5. Spread the batter evenly into 3/4’s of the prepared 9 by 13 pan. There is not quite enough batter to fill the entire pan. Bake the bars for 18 minutes. 

6. Remove pan from oven and allow the bars to cool completely on a wire rack. Once the bars have cooled use the parchment paper to pull the bars out of the pan. On a cutting board, cut bars into 12 servings. Wrap individually in sealable baggies for lunches or on the go snacks.  Or store in a sealable container. 

No Knead Homemade Dutch-Oven Bread


We are currently in the process of relocating to the Raleigh, North Carolina region. Which means I am not in my kitchen, and I don’t have all my standard kitchen appliances and utensils. My husband was visiting this past weekend from the burgh, and I wanted to make him a home cooked meal. 

What goes better with a home cooked meal then fresh homemade bread? I realized after I bought all the ingredients, I didn’t have my stand mixer. Oh geez, no worries, I’ll make a No Knead bread. 

This recipe turned out really well without having my stand mixer. After all, that is how our great-grandmothers used to make it. 

Ingredients:

3 cups all-purpose Unbleached flour, plus more for dusting

 1/4 teaspoon yeast (active dry or instant)

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 1/2 cups warm water, not boiling (like bath water)

1 1/2 teaspoon Honey 

Directions

1. Combine flour, and salt in a large bowl and wisk together. Set aside. In a small bowl place water, yeast, & honey, allow to rest for 5 minutes or until yeast proofs. After water-yeast liquid proofs (aka bubbles), using a wooden spoon stir in the water mixture into the flour blend until it is well combined.

2. In same bowl, cover the dough with clean towel and let rise at room temperature for at least 3 hours.

3. After 3 hours, the dough will appear as to doubled in size, wet with air bubbles. Transfer the dough to a heavily floured surface and sprinkle dough with 1-2 additional Tablespoons of flour. Fold the dough over about 10 times and shape into ball. 

4. At this time, Preheat the oven to 450 degrees with the Dutch-oven & lid in center of the rack.  In the same bowl, where the dough rised initially, line with parchment paper up the sides (there maybe some residual dough in the bowl, but don’t bother dirtying another pan. Place the dough on the parchment paper-lined bowl. Cut a line or two on top of the dough with a sharp knife to give a stream escape vent for the bread. Cover the dough again with towel to allow the dough to rise for a second time. Place the bowl on top of the preheating oven for about 35 minutes (the warmth from the oven will help the dough rise faster). 

5. After the 35 minutes has elapsed for the dough to rise and giving at least 35-60 minutes for the Dutch-oven to warm up in the oven. Wearing oven-gloves, carefully remove the lid from the dutch-oven and take the parchment paper on both sides of the dough and lift to place the dough and parchment paper in the hot Dutch-oven.  With oven-gloves remaining on, cover the dough with the hot lid. Decrease temperature of oven to 400 degrees and bake for 45 minutes. No peeking! 

6. Remove the Dutch-oven from the oven (always wearing oven-gloves). Remove the lid and place the dough on a wire rack to cool. Allow the bread to cool for 15-20 minutes, even though tempting to cut right away. 

Enjoy with dinner! I made a crockpot beef roast! There will be plenty of juicy beef sauce left for dipping your bread into to soak up the remaining goods. 

Creamed Cinnamon Honey Roasted Pecans

My team at work for Christmas gifted me a lovely bag of North Carolina Local Gems. 

I couldn’t wait to open the Creamed Cinnamon  Honey! I made some Carmellized Banana Pecan French Toast with it this morning to coincide. 

This is a tasty way to utilize local ingredients for a delicious snack or gift. The finished product reminded my husband ,and I of a fancier version of Cracker Jack’s since that is the texture they portrayed. 

Ingredients

1 pound of raw pecan halfs

1/4 cup creamed Honey with cinnamon 

Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place raw pecans on the baking pan. Place the pecans on the sheet in the preheated oven on the center rack. Bake for 6-8 minutes. 

2. In the meantime place a two quart sauce pan on low medium heat and melt the creamed honey. Once the timer has elsapsed on the pecans place the pecans in the sauce pan with the honey. Allow the pecans and honey to merry. Use mini spatula to incorporate the honey throughout. Allow the ingredients to heat for 6 minutes on low. 

3. Pour the pecans on wax paper and allow them to cool. The pecans will remain tacky. Allow for them to cool on the wax for about 1 hour then place in ziplock sealable container. That is if they make it past the cooling part! 😉

Slowcooker Drunken Roasted Beef & Vegetables

Happy New Year! Welcome 2017! 

Traditionally I make pork and sauerkraut today in honor of my husband’s family tradition to ring in the New Year. However; since we are a guest at a home where pork is not consumed I am preparing a beef roast instead. 

I decided to throw in one of my husband’s favorite beers for good measure, hence the name drunken beef roast. 

Ingredients: 

1.5 pounds small gemstone potatoes, multicolor 

1 pound baby carrots 

3 stalks of celery, cut into 3 inch pieces

1 large yellow onion, quartered 

2 cups beef stock, low sodium 

2 Tablespoons tomato paste

1, 12 ounce can Yuengling light

4 whole cloves garlic 

1 package of dry low sodium onion soup mix

3 pounds bottom round beef roast, seared (fat trimmed off)

Tools for the job:

Slowcooker

Large sauté pan

1-2 Tablespoons Olive oil for searing 

Prework: make sure to rinse and clean all the vegatables prior to using preparing as indicated above. Also, trim the fat off the beef & sear the meat until some caramelization  appears on both sides in the sautĂ© pan. 

Directions:

1. Place the first 8 ingredients in the slowcooker. Arrange evenly and diversely. 

2. Sprinkle with half of the onion soup mix. Set the prepared meat on top of the mixture. Sprinkle the meat with the remaining onion mix. Cover the dish with the slowcooker lid and let the ingredients merry for 8 hours on low. 

Enjoy with some homemade bread!