Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Key Lime Pie

Holy Mother of Fruity Desserts. I am a chocolate person hands down. I always want chocolate if I'm having dessert. If there's no chocolate, it's a waste. Not anymore. Key Lime Pie! New love of my life, you have arrived. For Father's Day, we made a Key Lime Pie for my boyfriend's dad. I hadn't even tried it for years so I didn't really remember much about it. I just made it and he took it over for dessert. He came back with a few slices left and was like you neeeeeed to try this. That's the moment when my realization of my love for Key Lime Pie happened. It was really hard not to finish all those few slices.

Key Lime Pie
Yield ~8-10 servings

~10 graham crackers, crushed
4 tablespoons butter
1 can sweetened condensed milk
4 egg yolks
1/2 cup key lime juice

In a food processor, crush graham crackers to crumbs. If you don't have a processor, you can place them in a bag and crush them with a fairly solid or heavy object, such as an ice cream scooper. Combine graham cracker crumbs and melted butter and mix together. Press into a pie dish. In a separate bowl, mix ythe sweetened condensed milk, egg yolks, and key lime juice. Add some lime zest to pump up the flavor, then pour mixture into pie dish on top of crust. Bake 15 minutes. Let cool, then refrigerate ubtil ready to serve. Add whipped cream if desired.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Corn Tomato Slaw

Welcome back! Now you finally get to see the recipe that goes oh so well with the crab cakes. It's really just right. I hope you all had a good weekend. I got to go to DC this Friday for dinner at Lincoln. It is pretty darn neat because the floor is covered with almost 800,000 pennies. How crazy is that? The restaurant is really fun with all Lincoln/1800's themes. All the cocktails are named after things in that era like emancipation punch and the lady lincoln. I'd say the best part of that dinner though was the salted caramel ice cream with caramelized bacon on top! I know this whole bacon in dessert phase has been around while but I still had never experienced it. I begged my boyfriend not to get dessert because we all know I wouldn't be able to resist it but he did it anyway. It was heavenly, now if only I could figure out how to make salted caramel ice cream and caramelized bacon bits. Then maybe more people would actually read my blog AND make comments. That would be the day! :)

Corn Tomato Slaw
Yield ~ 4 servings

2 ears corn, cut off
1/2 package grape tomatoes, halved
2 tablespoons butter
15 leaves of basil, chopped
salt and pepper

Pour a tablespoon of oil in a pan and bring to medium heat. Place corn in, seasoned with salt and pepper. Saute for about 5 minutes, then add in the tomatoes. Saute for another 5 minutes, then add in the basil. Keep on heat for a couple more minutes, then serve.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Maryland Crab Cakes

Rewind 2 years ago. I didn't eat any seafood except for shrimp. That's it. Fast forward to now, I eat a lot of seafood including but not limited to shrimp, crabs, cooked fish and raw, especially sushi. That is quite the increase of seafood vocabulary to add to my diet. One of the first new additions were these crab cakes. I was never even a fan of crabs until I had one of these. My boyfriend introduced to me his version of the crab cake and I never looked back. He was pretty proud of this recipe and there is a reason why. So many crab cakes here have a ton of filler aka bread crumbs that you barely get any crab meat anymore. These babies are pure crab and it's awesome. I can honestly say it's the best crab cake ever. I went down to Charleston to see my amazing aunt and uncle and we made this for them. My uncle fell in love as well and they have asked me for the recipe 3 times! The sauce really compliments the crab cake well, as well as the side which will be the next recipe to come. 

Maryland Crab Cakes
Yield ~4 cakes

1 pound crab meat
2 tablespoons yellow mustard
3 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 egg
juice from 1/2 lemon
1 teaspoon Old Bay
handful of fresh parsley, chopped
dash of pepper
~1/2 cup instant potatoes

3/4 cup mayonnaise 
3 tablespoons chili garlic sauce

Mix all ingredients except instant potatoes in a bowl. Add in 1/4 cup instant potatoes at a time until your preferred consistency and form 4 crab cakes. Pour about a tablespoon of oil in an oven safe pan or skillet and bring to medium heat. Place cakes in the pan and cook on each side for about 4 minutes or until slightly browned. Then place pan in the oven for 15 minutes to finish cooking.  For the sauce, just mix the mayo and chili garlic sauce in a bowl. 

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Moon Pies

These were our dessert for Father's Day after we had that awesome BBQ and Corn Dip. Dad has always always loved moon pies and oatmeal cookies. He's just a big fan of all those candies and baked goods he grew up with. In fact, for Christmas I gave him a box of all the candies he grew up with, including Turkish Taffy, Mallow Cups, Clark Bars, Bit-O-Honey, and so on. If you have a parent who is into that kind of stuff, let me tell you it will be a big hit! He loved it and I'm sure yours will too. So that was my inspiration and we  now have the Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Moon Pie. 

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Moon Pies
Yield ~15 

3/4 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups oats
1/2 cup pecans, chopped
1/2 cup chocolate chips
6 tablespoon butter
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 egg
2 teaspoons vanilla

3/4 cup marshmallow fluff
1/2 cup butter
1 tablespoon vanilla
1- 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Cream butter and brown sugar together, add in the egg and vanilla. In a separate bowl mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour the liquid mixture in to combine. Last stir in the oats, pecans, and chocolate chips. Bake for 9 minutes. Let cool. Meanwhile cream the 1/2 cup butter and powdered sugar together in another bowl. Mix in the vanilla, then the marshmallow fluff. When your cookies are cool you may assemble them. Just spread a layer of the fluff filling on them and place another cookie on top and they're ready!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Spicy Corn Dip

Good Morning! Hope you all had a great Father's Day! I spent part of mine on the Black Pearl. It was pretty awesome. It was actually the HMS Bounty but it was used as the Black Pearl in Pirates of the Caribbean. When you see it in real life it doesn't look so much like the one in the movie though because they completely changed out all the masts and did a ton of cosmetic work to it. Then they changed it back. I think they should've left it the way Black Pearl was intended to be but that's just me. It would've made for a much cooler tour.
After that I started on dinner and made my Dad some Carolina BBQ and some Spicy Corn dip to have before we dug in. It was pretty tasty and a nice change up from the every day salsa although I still love salsa with all of my heart. It is hands down my favorite snack of all time. I could drink the salsa at El Toro Bravo in downtown Annapolis, maybe even bathe in it... Is that weird?

Spicy Corn Dip
Yield ~ 3 cups (enough for 5 people)

1 can corn
1/2 green pepper
1/2 onion
1/2 red pepper
handful of cilantro, chopped
2 tablespoons sour cream
1/3 cup mexican cheese blend
1/2-1 teaspoon chili powder (to your desired spice level)

Saute peppers and onion in a pan on medium high heat. Add them to corn, cilantro, sour cream, cheese, and chili powder. Refrigerate until ready to serve with some fritos!

Friday, June 15, 2012

Asian Crunch Salad

I'm fresh out of awesome stories to tell you. Maybe I just can't think of any right now. All I can think about is that it's Friday. Aruba vacation spoiled me. It seems that's all I look forward to every week anymore. Then it comes and the weekend goes too quickly. This won't be too different either especially since I am helping my family with their moving sale and packing everything up! There are only 2 weeks left! Yikes! One awesome thing I'm doing this weekend though is seeing my friend play at the new Green Turtle in Annapolis. Know how my super talented friend made my logo for my site? She also sings along with being super artistic. Pretty darn cool!

So this salad was one of the first ways my boyfriend really got me to stick around. It was part of one of the first meals he ever made for me and it sucked me in. This peanut dressing is seriously amazing. So amazing I just take spoonfuls of it and eat it. It may not be so healthy but it's heavenly. They may say the way to a man's heart is through his belly, well it's the way to my heart too! 

Asian Salad
Yield ~ 4 salads 

1 pound shrimp
1/2 Napa cabbage (they are pretty large)
2 carrots, julienned 
1 cup bean sprouts
1 cucumber
1 red pepper
handful of cilantro, chopped
toasted almonds

Peanut Dressing
1/2 cup oil
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 inch piece of ginger, chopped
4 tablespoons rice vinegar
1/4 cup peanut butter
1 teaspoon sesame oil
2 tablespoons soy sauce
dash of pepper

 Bring the oil, garlic, and ginger to a boil in a saucepan for about 10 minutes. Take off stove to cool. In a separate bowl mix together the rice vinegar, peanut butter, sesame oil, soy sauce, and pepper together with a whisk. Once the oil mixture has cooled some, whisk it into the peanut butter mixture. Pour the dressing on the salad (when prepared) as much as you'd like. To prepare salad, cut up the napa cabbage, carrots, cucumber, and red pepper. Mix it all together in a bowl with the bean sprouts and cilantro as well. Set aside. Last bring a pan to medium high heat and spray with cooking oil. Prepare your shrimp with any spice you prefer. We sprinkled some Chinese five spice on ours to give it some extra flavor. Place them in the pan, they won't take more than a few minutes on each side. Prepare your salad and add your shrimp and toasted almonds on top!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Salted Chocolate PB Bars

It's half way day! That's my new term for Hump Day aka Wednesday. It always makes me feel better once we get to Wednesday because there's only 2.5 days until I'm done with work on Friday now. Come on weekend! Not that I'm doing anything terribly exciting unless you consider packing up a whole house to move and having a yard sale exciting. If you do, you need help. There's only one thing that can be fun about packing a whole house and that is finding things from your childhood like a journal. Namely, a journal that has entries about every boy from 5th grade through 9th grade. Apparently I only wrote a handful of times a year and every time it was professing my undying love for some boy of the year. One of my favorites was definitely about how distraught I was because I didn't get to ride the bus home the ONE day my crush was riding it home. I wrote about how wonderful and perfect it could have been if I'd been able to sit next to him and hang out with everyone on the bus and talk. WHAT WAS WRONG WITH ME!?!?! Oh, the thoughts of a ten year old. At least I hope I'm not the only one who had silly thoughts like that...

Onto the next subject! Salted Chocolate PB Bars! I wanted to try something new so I decided I'd make them for my company picnic so I wouldn't have them all sitting at my house. Happy to report they were all gone!

Salted Chocolate PB Bars
Yield ~ 25 bars

Cookie Base
1 cup brown sugar
1 1/3 cup flour
1 egg
6 tablespoons butter
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
pinch of salt

1 cup peanuts
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1/3 cup peanut butter
1 egg
1 Reese's bar or Reese's cups, chopped ~1/2 cup

Kosher salt to sprinkle on top

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a bowl cream the brown sugar and butter together. Add in the egg, then mix the flour, baking soda, and salt. Spray your pan with cooking spray and spread the cookie dough out on the bottom to cover the whole pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 8 minutes. Take the base out of the oven by then even if it isn't done. While it's baking, then mix the sweetened condensed milk, peanut butter, egg, and reese's bar chunks in a bowl. Once you take it out of the oven spread out the peanuts on top then pour the liquid mixture on top of the cookie base. Place back in the oven for about 25 minutes. Check on it around 20 minutes to see if the topping has become firm, you may not need the full 25 minutes if you do not want it to be as caramelized on top. Once it comes out of the oven sprinkle it with some salt. Let cool to room temperature, then place in fridge for an hour to cool.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Fish Tacos

I'm officially in summer mode. My Take Steps walk (which was a total success) was this weekend which officially kicked off summer in my opinion. I personally thought we should have won for most creative shirts but sadly we didn't. Honestly though, how could this not win?? We were "Flintstones Against Crohn's". We had Betty, Fred, Wilma, Dino, and Pebbles. We were even yelling Yabba Dabbo Doo!
Oh well, at least the weather is nice now and my food is in full blown summer mode as well. I'm over soups, stews, and big hearty meals. Time for lots of vegetables and fresh meals. Thus, I bring you fish tacos!

Fish Tacos
Yield ~ 8 tacos

Mango Salsa
1/2 red pepper
1 mango
1/2 onion
1 jalapeno
1 teaspoon white vinegar

1/3 head cabbage, shredded
1 carrot, shredded
2 tablespoons white vinegar
salt and pepper

1 pound fish (we used Swai, you can use anything like Halibut, Mahi Mahi, etc) 
blackening seasoning 

To make mango salsa, take your red pepper, mango, onion, and jalapeno and dice them all. Place into a bowl with white vinegar and stir to combine. In a separate bowl, place your shredded cabbage and carrot with vinegar and salt and pepper. After you have made your salsa and slaw season the fish with blackening seasoning. Just sprinkle enough to lightly cover each piece of fish, then flip over and season the other side. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil at medium high heat and place fish into pan. It shouldn't take long to cook the fish, more than a few minutes on each side will probably be more than enough. Take fish and place on a paper towel to get excess oil off, then prepare your tacos with your tortilla, fish, salsa, and coleslaw.  


Thursday, June 7, 2012

Blue Bottom Cupcakes

I feel like a lot of the things I make end up being inspired by the fact that I have too much of something... like blueberries. Ever since I can remember at Giant if it said buy one, get one free, if you bought one it was just half price. This has been the law of the land for years. I moved recently and now it's not the closest but at work I go to Giant. I bought strawberries a while ago when they were "on sale" but only got one. Later I realized I paid a lot more than I thought I should have. So when blueberries were on sale I tried again and realized now you actually HAVE to buy the second one. It was a sad day when I realized this was truth but then I ended up with a ton of blueberries and these were born. I've always loved black bottom cupcakes, like love love love, so I just thought I'd omit the cocoa powder from the cake part and add in the blueberries. The best part is these can be a dessert or breakfast!

Blue Bottom Cupcakes
Yield ~18 regular cupcakes, 48 mini cupcakes

Cream Cheese Filling

1/2 cup cream cheese
1/2 cup sour cream
1/3 cup sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla


1 1/2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup oil
3/4 cup water
1 egg
1 tablespoon vanilla
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt

White Chocolate Chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a bowl mix the flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt. Make a well in the dry mixture and add in the oil, water, egg, and vanilla. Slowly mix in with the dry ingredients. In another bowl, cream the cream cheese and sugar together. Next mix in the sour cream, then the egg and vanilla. Fill cupcake tins about 1/2 way with the cake mixture. Place 2 blueberries (for minis) or 5 blueberries (for regular) on top of the cake batter. Then pour the cream cheese filling on top until they are filled up to about 80%. Sprinkle some white chocolate chips on top. Bake for 18 minutes for minis, 25 minutes for regular sized cupcakes.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Evil Jungle Noodles

I have been really out of it since my vacation, I tell you. I always post on Monday and I completely forgot to bring my memory card and adapter, therefor I had no post yesterday. At least I remembered today. This past weekend I went to another potluck party hosted by my friend but this time it was Thai themed. This made me very happy and excited since Thai is in my top 2 favorite kinds of food. Before I even had time to think what I should make, I already knew what I was going to try to attempt.

Rewind 3 years ago. I'd been living in North Dakota a few months and had finally started making friends and stopped reading books every day of my life. We went to Fargo to go to a baseball game and half were going to one place and the other half were going to a Thai place. I'd never been to this restaurant before, let alone even had Thai food, but this boy I really liked and just so happened to be seeing was going there so that sealed the deal. I had no idea what to get and frankly I'm surprised I tried what I did but it was called Evil Jungle Noodles. I was instantly in love and this was my inspiration for my recipe for the potluck!

  • Evil Jungle Noodles
  • Yield ~ 4 servings

  • 1 red bell pepper, sliced
  • 1 small onion, sliced
  • 1 cup cabbage
  • 1 can bamboo shoots
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes (or enough for you desired level of spice)
  • tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon red curry paste
  • 1/2 can coconut milk (14 ounce)
  • tablespoon fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • ~8 ounces rice noodles 

  • Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a pan and saute peppers, onion, cabbage, and bamboo shoots with red pepper flakes. In a separate pan, heat the other 1 tablespoon oil to medium-high and add a tablespoon of curry paste. Add coconut milk, fish sauce, and soy sauce then mix together. Let simmer for a few minutes mixing occasionally. While simmering, make your rice noodles. Just boil them until slightly al dente as they will soak up more liquid once combined with the sauce and vegetables. Drain the noodles and pour the noodles and vegetables into the sauce. Mix together and keep on medium heat for another 5 minutes to let the flavors mix together. Serve.