Saturday, June 4, 2011

chevre cookies

Hurray! Summer is upon us! Last Wednesday Brad and I both rushed home from work so we could pack up the stroller (& Adelaide) and head to the end of our street to the first LEAF night of the season. It was a perfect evening - the weather was beautiful, the atmosphere was delightful & the food (samples) was delicious. We even went to our favorite Lakewood restaurant, Deagans Kitchen & Bar, and brought our take out back to LEAF night (I think this will have to be our Wednesday night tradition this summer). It was so good to get out and about and catch up with friends.

I think one of  the coolest things about buying food locally is getting to know the food makers. Abbe from Lucky Penny Creamery had a stand that lured us over with free samples. We got to chit chatting (she is the nicest ever) and I noticed she had a few recipe cards laying out, one of which was for these cookies. Well of course it intrigued me and I had to buy her goat cheese and try these for myself. They turned out pretty tasty - Brad thought they tasted like sugar cookies, which reminded me of the sugar cookie recipe I use for cut outs at Christmas which uses cream cheese in the batter, so it really isn't so far off. She said to experiment with different citrus flavors so I used limeade instead of the orange juice (since we didn't have any), and it really didn't come through...perhaps i should have used lime zest too. The cookies are delicious anyway and it's fun trying unexpected ingredients in 'normal' recipes.

Lucky Penny Chevre Cookies

1/2 C unsalted butter, softened
1 C sugar
8 oz. soft goat cheese
1/4 C milk
2 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 C flour

1/2 C powdered sugar
2 T orange juice

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Mix all cookie ingredients together until the dough comes together - it will be sticky. Place teaspoon sized balls on the ungreased baking sheet, about 2 inches apart. Bake for 12 minutes or until bottoms are brown. Move to rack to cool completely.

In a small saucepan combine the powdered sugar with the orange juice. Stir over low heat until smooth and glossy, the spread over the cookies. Quickly top with sprinkles or colored sugar.

recipe courtesy of Lucky Penny Farm

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

crispy raw kale salad

My sister Mary sent me this recipe last week raving about how good it was. It was so good she made it twice in one week. With that kind of hype, I couldn't wait to try it. Much to Brad's disappointment I made it for dinner on cinco de mayo (he obviously wanted something a little more festive) and I could tell he wasn't too excited about it. He couldn't hide how much he like it when he went back for seconds though. I cannot tell you how delicious this is! We made again to bring to my sister Jenna's for a Mother's Day cookout and I'm already dreaming of when I'll make it again. So quick & easy, so fresh & crisp, so satisfying, so summer-y. Yum yum! This will definitely be a staple meal for us this summer, hopefully with some kale from our garden!

crispy raw kale salad
1 bunch kale (any kind, we tried the curly kale the 2nd time)
2 thin slices bread
1 garlic clove
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt, plus a pinch
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Freshly squeezed juice of one lemon & zest
a dash red pepper flakes (to taste)

Toast bread slices in the oven (at 350 degrees or so) until golden brown and crispy. Pulse toast in a food processor to make small crumbs.

In a food processor, combine the olive oil, garlic, lemon juice, and 1/2 of the cheese. Add to a large bowl and toss with the kale until leaves are completely coated. Add, bread crumbs, zest, red pepper flakes, remaining cheese and salt to the kale and toss a few more times. Serve immediately or refrigerate.

recipe courtesy of

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

egyptian edamame stew

This stew is both tasty and incredibly easy! The addition of edamame gives the stew a real substance. I love recipes where you can sub in whatever you have on hand...I could see really loading up on the veggies in this one. Serve over brown basmati rice for an incredibly satisfying meal. 

egyptian edamame stew

1 1/2 10-ounce packages frozen shelled edamame, (about 3 cups), thawed
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 large zucchini, diced (we used a carrot)
2 tablespoons minced garlic
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste
1 28-ounce can diced tomatoes (we used passata as we're not fans of canned tomatoes...see here for more info.)
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro, or mint
3 tablespoons lemon juice

Bring a large saucepan of water to a boil. Add edamame and cook until tender, 4 to 5 minutes or according to package directions. Drain.

Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and cook, covered, stirring occasionally, until starting to soften, about 3 minutes. Add zucchini and cook, covered, until the onions are starting to brown, about 3 minutes more. Add garlic, cumin, coriander and cayenne and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in tomatoes and bring to a boil; reduce heat to a simmer and cook until slightly reduced, about 5 minutes.

Stir in the edamame and cook until heated through, about 2 minutes more. Remove from the heat and stir in cilantro (or mint) and lemon juice.
recipe courtesy of

Wednesday, March 16, 2011


We have an unofficial brunch club with a few friends of ours (and their little ones). We all recently had babies so we try to get together every few months as a way to catch up since we all lead pretty busy lives these days. This past weekend was our turn to host and I think it was quite a success if I do say so myself.

I made a jalapeno, sausage, jack and egg braid (pictured) that was quite the hit. It looks pretty fancy but don't let that fool you, it's easy and quick and very delicious and satisfying. We also had corn & potato cakes which Brad made, almond biscotti & fresh fruit. And of course no brunch would be complete without mimosas, bellinis & fresh coffee. It was a wonderful way to spend a Saturday morning - with good friends, lingering at the table over good food & conversation.

Jalapeño, Sausage, Jack, and Egg Breakfast Braid

1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 cup chopped onion
4 ounces chicken sausage with jalapeño peppers, chopped
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup (2 ounces) shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 cup chopped seeded jalapeño peppers
1 large egg white, lightly beaten

Preheat oven to 425°.

Roll out pizza dough onto a baking sheet coated with cooking spray; pat into a 15 x 10–inch rectangle.

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and sausage; cook 9 minutes or until lightly browned. Stir in eggs; cook 1 1/2 minutes or until set. Remove from heat.

Sprinkle Monterey Jack lengthwise down center of dough, leaving about a 2 1/2-inch border on each side. Spoon egg mixture evenly over cheese. Sprinkle cheddar over egg mixture; top with jalapeño peppers.

Make 2-inch-long diagonal cuts about 1 inch apart on both sides of dough to within 1/2 inch of filling using a sharp knife or kitchen shears. Arrange strips over filling, alternating strips diagonally over filling. Press ends under to seal. Brush with egg white. Bake at 425° for 15 minutes or until golden brown. Let stand 5 minutes. Cut crosswise into slices.

recipe adapted from

Sunday, March 13, 2011

the ultimate cookie

I am pretty sure I have boasted on here before about finding the best cookie recipe, but this one, oh this one is really it! I wanted to make a cookie full of stuff - oats & chocolate & fruit & nuts - and found these two recipes while searching. I decided to morph them into one recipe and the resulting cookie was absolutely phenomenal. 

The best part about these cookies is that they don't contain butter, rather coconut oil and you would never know the difference. Since I've been leaning more and more towards a vegan diet as of late, any alternate to dairy is a welcome addition in my recipes - especially one with so many health benefits. Brad declared these his favorite cookie (although he didn't understand 'why i ruined a perfectly delicious cookie by adding fruit'). I think this will be my go to chocolate chip cookie recipe - it is so versatile and it will be fun to experiment with other add ins.

Trail Mix Cookies

1/2 C Coconut Oil (softened)
3/4 C brown sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/8 C whole wheat flour
1/2 ts baking soda
1/2 ts sea salt
1/2 C chocolate chips
1/2 C shredded unsweetened coconut
3/4C oatmeal
1/4/ C dried cranberries
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1 tbsp flax seeds

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cream oil and sugars. Beat in egg and vanilla until well combined. Slowly add flour, baking soda and sea salt. Mix in chocolate chips, coconut, oatmeal, cranberries, walnuts and flax seeds.

Scoop onto cookie sheet and bake for 9-11 minutes, until slightly golden around edges. Makes about 3 1/2 dozen cookies.

Friday, March 4, 2011

mmm mmm good!

My new favorite addition to any dish is the sweet potato. I used to hate sweet potatoes. Growing up my only exposure to them was Thanksgiving where they were smothered with marshmallows and I wanted nothing to do with them. Now I pretty much love them in anything...especially  in Brad's infamous Indian-ish vegetable coconut milk concoction. YUM. Anyway, I digress. Brad made this chunky vegetarian chili a few weeks back and I didn't get too excited about it because I have made many a veggie chili recipes before and they weren't much to rave about. But this one was different. Very different - so much so that when I took leftovers to work the next day, a coworker who was walking behind me as I was carrying my bowl back to my desk exclaimed "what is that Sarah?! It smells amazing!". Super delicious and flavorful and the perfect comfort dish to indulge in at the end of a long day when it's snowy and cold outside. I'm not quite sure what makes this recipe so much better than any other veggie chili recipe I've tried, but I think it might have something to do with the sweet potato.
chunky veggie chili with sweet potatoes
1 tablespoon olive oil
1½ cups Vidalia onion or other large, sweet yellow onion chopped
3 cloves garlic minced
¾ cup red bell pepper chopped
½ cup green bell pepper(s) chopped
1 cup celery chopped
2 C water or chicken stock
15 ounces black beans canned, rinsed and drained
15 ounces great northern beans canned, rinsed and drained
1½ tablespoons chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 Unit bay leaf
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon black pepper
1 cup zucchini chopped chunky
1 sweet potato, chopped

Heat the oil in a Dutch oven or large sauté pan over medium heat.

Add onion, garlic, bell peppers, and celery.
Sauté 5 minutes or until tender and transfer to slow cooker.
Add remaining ingredients and cook on Low 6-8 hours or High 5-7 hours.
Serve over white or brown rice

recipe adapted from

Sunday, February 27, 2011

carrot oatmeal cookies

Here is a delicious cookie you don't have to feel guilty about eating. Almost muffin like in texture it is so moist and full of flavor. I found the recipe on 101 cookbooks where she describes it as a cross between a macaroon & carrot cake, which is completely accurate. This is my first experience with coconut oil (I believe it's used in place of oil or butter) and it gives such a nice flavor to the cookie. I also love that it's sweetened with syrup instead of sugar. Such a delicious little treat!

carrot oatmeal cookies
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
scant 1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
1 cup rolled oats
2/3 cup slivered almonds
1 cup shredded carrots
1/2 cup real maple syrup, room temperature
1/2 cup unrefined (fragrant) coconut oil, warmed until just melted
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger

Preheat oven to 375F degrees and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a large bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, and oats. Add the nuts and carrots. In a separate smaller bowl use a whisk to combine the maple syrup, coconut oil, and ginger. Add this to the flour mixture and stir until just combined.

Drop onto prepared baking sheets, one level tablespoonful at a time, leaving about 2 inches between each cookie. Bake in the top 1/3 of the oven for 10 - 12 minutes or until the cookies are golden on top and bottom.

Makes about 2 1/2 dozen cookies.

recipe adapted from