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my mom first made this cobbler when i was kid. i think the recipe was passed to her from a coworker, but basically it’s so easy i’ve never even written it down. it’s so easy it’s embarrassing. it’s not healthy, it’s full of artificial this and that, but it’s a crowd pleaser for sure. so popular, in fact, that blogging about it is near impossible because it’s gone so fast. yeah, homemade cobbler with fresh fruit is amazing, and i feel a whole lot better about serving it, BUT, this cobbler allows you to relax and enjoy your guests. so there.

fruit cobbler

2 cans of pie filling (i’ve used all fruit fillings and they are all great. this time i used the cherry. blueberry is my favorite.)

1 box of yellow or white cake mix

1 1/2 sticks of butter, melted

2 handfuls of almonds (told you this recipe wasn’t written down, so, therefore, it’s not exact. use to your liking, and use whatever nuts you want!)

1. pour pie filling into a greased 9 X 13 baking pan.

2. pour dry cake mix over the pie filling.

3. pour melted butter evenly over cake mix.

4. spread almonds evenly over the top.

5. bake at 375 degrees for ? minutes. i actually have no idea since i stand by the oven and watch until the top is browned. i think it’s about 20 or so minutes. next time i make it i’ll edit this recipe and let ya’ll know.

don’t let my if-y directions keep you from making this. it’s delicious!

my step kids love this cobbler and ate it so quickly i couldn’t get a proper picture! : )


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arroz verde.

This recipe is adapted from here. Not many changes other than I add more cilantro. It is the yummiest rice, and J’s current favorite. Not to mention it’s a great way to add spinach to his diet since he’s not fond of eating “leaves” yet. We love to eat this rice on taco nights.

 Arroz Verde

  •  3/4 cup lightly packed fresh cilantro 
  • 1 cup tightly packed fresh stemmed spinach leaves (about 1 1/2 oz.)
  • 1 1/4 cups vegetable or chicken stock (I use vegetable)
  • 1 1/4 cups milk
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 1/2 cups long grain rice
  • 1/4 cup finely minced onions
  • 1 garlic clove, minced


Put the cilantro, spinach and chicken stock in a blender and blend until finely pureed.  Add the milk and salt and blend just until everything is blended. Set aside.

In a 3 qt saucepan with a good lid, heat the olive oil and butter. When the butter is melted, add the rice and saute until it just begins to brown (3 minutes). Add the onion and garlic and cook another minute, stirring.

Add the contents of the blender, stir well, bring the mixture to a boil, then put the lid on and turn the heat to low. Allow to cook at least 20 minutes. Stir the rice very carefully with a fork, then cover and let it cook another 5 minutes.

Turn off the heat and let the rice steam, covered, for about 10 minutes before serving.

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squash gratin.





We’re still getting squash in, and I’m actually not sick of it yet. This recipe from 101 cookbooks is a great side dish, but also makes a lovely, hearty main dish for veggies like me.

Squash Gratin

zest of one lemon
1 1/2 pounds summer squash or zucchini, cut into 1/6th-inch slices
1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt

1/4 cup fresh oregano leaves
1/4 cup fresh Italian parsley
1 large garlic clove, chopped
1/4 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
pinch of red pepper flakes
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

1/4 cup unsalted butter
2 cups fresh whole wheat bread crumbs
1/2 pound waxy potatoes, sliced transparently thin

3/4 cup grated Gruyere cheese, grated on a box grater (or feta might be good!)

Preheat oven to 400F degrees and place a rack in the middle. Rub a 9×9 gratin pan (or equivalent baking dish) with a bit of olive oil, sprinkle with lemon zest, and set aside.

Place the zucchini slices into a colander placed over a sink, toss with the sea salt and set aside for 10-15 minutes (to drain a bit) and go on to prepare the oregano sauce and bread crumbs.

Make the sauce by pureeing the oregano, parsley, garlic, 1/4 teaspoon salt, red pepper flakes, and olive oil in a food processor or using a hand blender. Set aside.

Make the breadcrumbs by melting the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Cook for a few minutes until the butter is wonderfully fragrant, and has turned brown. Wait two minutes, then stir the breadcrumbs into the browned butter.

Transfer the squash to a large mixing bowl. Add the potatoes and two-thirds of the oregano sauce. Toss until everything is well coated. Add the cheese and half of the bread crumbs and toss again. Taste one of the zucchini pieces and add more seasoning (salt or red pepper) if needed.

Transfer the squash to the lemon-zested pan, top with the remaining crumbs, and bake for somewhere between 40 and 50 minutes – it will really depend on how thinly you sliced the squash and potatoes – and how much moisture was still in them. You don’t want the zucchini to go to mush, but you need to be sure the potatoes are fully baked. If the breadcrumbs start to get a little dark, take a fork and rake them just a bit, that will uncover some of the blonder bits. Remove from oven, and drizzle with the remaining oregano sauce.

Serves about 8 as a side.

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tomato tart or pie.


this is one of those recipes that i kind of made up on the fly inspired by a bunch of other recipes. it never comes out the same because i don’t use exact measurements, but is always, always good. trust yourself and just add in whatever sounds good, in whatever quantity seems right. experiment, experiment! we’ve been eating this a lot since we’ve had bushels of tomatoes.

tomato tart

1 prepared pie crust

1 medium onion, sliced

garlic, minced

tomatoes (i use enough to fill up the tart or pie plate), chopped

goat cheese (about 4 oz., but we love goat cheese so usually i add more)

mozzarella cheese

salt, pepper, fresh herbs (using basil lately since it’s prolific)

1. place the pie crust in your tart or pie pan. blind bake it. i put a piece of parchment paper or foil in the center of the pie crust and weigh it down with dried beans. bake at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes.

2. saute onions with salt and pepper. when translucent add garlic.

3. add onions to baked pie crust. add tomatoes, mozzarella, and goat cheese. top with herbs and bake for approximately 30 minutes.

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{cooking club}: cream of broccoli soup.


{via 101 cookbooks}

we’ve been in a big-time soup mood lately. since j loves broccoli (we call them little trees), i thought i’d try out cream of broccoli soup this week. this recipe is from how to cook everything by mark bittman, and it was simple and delish.

cream of broccoli soup

  • 1 lb. of broccoli florets
  • 1 large russet potato, peeled and chopped
  • 4 cups vegetable or chicken broth
  • 1/4 to 1 cup half-and-half , cream, or milk
  • a grating of nutmeg
  • salt and *white* pepper

Add the broccoli, potatoes, broth and bring to a boil. Don’t worry if broth doesn’t completely cover broccoli. Turn heat to low, cover, and simmer until the broccoli and potatoes tender, about 15-20 minutes.

Cool lightly and blend the entire mixture off heat until a smooth puree is achieved.  Return to low heat and warm through but do not boil. Add the cream. Add nutmeg and adjust salt and pepper.

next time i’m trying this recipe from 101 cookbooks.

happy eating! thanks to joslyn from raising foodies for hosting this cooking club. it’s been fun!

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chocolate chip cookies.


i sometimes get the occasional craving for a homemade chocolate chip cookie, but who wants to bake a big batch and eat them all by oneself? andrew’s been watching his sweets intake, j doesn’t even like cookies (interesting child, huh?), and everyone at work is dieting. i’d share with my students, but as of late they aren’t worthy since all they do is complain about how hard school is (we are ALL ready for thanksgiving break). so what i do is make a big batch, bake a few, and freeze the rest. they lie in wait in the freezer for when i’ve had one of THOSE days.

chocolate chip cookies

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter

1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 large eggs

2 cups semi-sweet chocolate morsels

1 cup chopped nuts (optional)

preheat oven to 375F.

combine flour, baking soda, and salt and set aside. beat butter, sugar, and vanilla extract in a separate bowl until creamy. add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. gradually beat in flour mixture. drop by rounded tablespoons onto ungreased baking sheets.

bake for 9 to 11 minutes or until golden brown. cook on baking sheets for 2 minutes.

tip: use an ice cream scoop to portion out the dough on cookie sheets. pop in the freezer. when they are fully frozen put cookies into a freezer bag.



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{cooking club}: pumpkin ginger waffles.



yum. enough said. everyone liked them. as far as i know this was the little one’s first foray into the something made with pumpkin. he’s a fan so far. these waffles are like a soft pumpkin pie pancake bread. a lame description, i know, but yum. did i already say that???

pumpkin ginger waffles (from country living magazine)

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons ground ginger

1/2 teaspoon cinamon

1/4 cup finely chopped crystallized ginger

2 large eggs

3/4 cup buttermilk

1/2 cup canned pumpkin puree

1/2 cup sugar

3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled

combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ground ginger, and cinnamon together in a large bowl. remove 2 tablespoons of the flour mixture and toss with crystallized ginger in a small bowl. set aside. whisk eggs, buttermilk, pumpkin, sugar, and vanilla in a medium bowl. combine with flour mixture. stir in butter and fold in reserved crystallized ginger mixture. do not overmix. heat a waffle iron and make waffles, using about 1/2 cup batter for each one. keep warm in 200F oven, if desired.

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