If you’re looking for a solid desk-drawer snack staple, have I got a super simple recipe for y’all today.
I have been on a really big bring-food-from-home-to-work-as-opposed-to-take-out kick lately. Breakfast, lunch and snacks that I used to buy from around the office are now getting made at home and brought in- everything from coffee, to oatmeal, to fruit, and of course, lunch. But most importantly, I have really been trying to up my snack game- because I can’t keep feeding $1 bills into the vending machine at work. Yes, I love me some Pirate’s Booty. No, I don’t want a giant booty (and an empty wallet). Continue reading →
I am somewhat of a pizza addict. It’s borderline alarming.
It’s not hyperbole when I tell you that I consumed five slices of pizza yesterday. And no, not those lame Little Caesar’s style personal pizza slices, that even the smallest of small children could house in about 3 seconds. I’m talking about five grown-ass-woman slices of pizza. No regrets. (OK, maybe some regrets.)
To demonstrate how dedicated I am to this, my most favorite of food groups, I tried to find you a really funny GIF I saw once of a cat who’s busy burrowing themselves in a bag when they suddenly pop out all crazy-like, looking around, and the text comes over saying “DID SOMEBODY SAY PIZZA??”. Alas, several, possibly incriminating-in-the-future Google Image searches later could not yield the GIF I was looking for, but hopefully you get the idea. But here’s another one I did find that should give you at least a few nightmares:
(On a side note, it’s alarming/probably not surprising how many “cat pizza” gifs there are on the internet).
ANYWAYS, if I haven’t scared you off yet, back to this pizza. I’m guessing there are more than a few pizza addicts around here too, so I wanted to share a recipe for what I consider the perfect pizza dough that you can make right at home, no fancy brick-oven fires required.
As we know, the crust can either make or break a pizza, regardless of its toppings. This dough produces pizza crust that is crispy on the exterior, but tender and fluffy once you take a bite. There are a few techniques in here that prevent any sticking to the pizza stone or baking sheet (parchment paper is your friend!), and if you’re scared of working with yeast or have never made dough from scratch, I promise it’s not as scary as it might seem (and certainly not as scary as the above cat gif. I should probably take that down).
Here’s a video I made to walk you through the steps to pizza bliss!
3.5 cups (16 oz) bread flour (plus a few tbsp more if needed)
1 tsp sugar
2 tsp kosher salt
1 packet instant yeast
1.5 cups water
2 tbsp olive oil
cornmeal, for dusting
In the bowl of a stand mixer (or, if not using a stand mixer, a large bowl), add the bread flour, sugar, salt and yeast. Mix together to combine.
Bring the 1.5 cups of water to 110°F, warm enough to activate but not kill the yeast. Using a thermometer is the best way to be sure of the temperature, but if you don’t have one, microwave the 1.5 cups of water for one minute on high.
With the mixer on low, slowly pour in the warm water into the bowl. Add the olive oil and mix until combined. If the mixture is too sticky, add more flour a tablespoon at a time. If the mixture is too dry, add more warm water a tablespoon at a time. You want the dough to be smooth and only slightly tacky.
If using a stand mixer, put on the dough hook attachment, otherwise use your hands. Knead for 10 minutes, then place the dough in a greased bowl. Cover with plastic wrap.
Place the covered bowl in a warm environment for one hour to let rise. (I turned on my oven to 400°F for one minute, then turned it OFF and placed the dough in the oven. If you use this method, make sure to turn the oven OFF before you put the dough in there!)
After an hour, dough should have risen considerably. Remove from the oven, then turn oven on to 450°F. Place a pizza stone or baking sheet in the oven and allow to heat up as oven is pre-heating.
Take off the plastic wrap, and punch down the dough to allow the gases to escape. Divide dough in half (you can save the other half for later in the fridge for a few days, or use it all for an extra large pizza). Roll the dough out on a piece of parchment paper dusted with cornmeal to the desired size and shape, and cover with toppings of your choice.
When oven is preheated, place the parchment paper with the pizza on it on the pizza stone and bake for 12-15 minutes. The pizza should slide easily off the parchment. Slice and serve!
Let me know if you try this dough, and if anyone ever does find that pizza cat GIF…:) I’m off to eat another slice!
Green beans are boring, right? It’s pretty much a fact. When they come from a can (shudder), they’re often mushy, lackluster in color, and tasteless. I find steamed green beans are often the same way- no texture, no real flavor.
I’m here to tell you that green beans CAN be sexy. Making the best green beans ever requires only a few easy tricks:
First step? Put away the steamer and/or the canned beans. We’re going fresh here.
Second step? Browned butter. Yup.
Third step? One of my favorite flavors: dijon mustard. This brings these beans up about seven notches, flavorwise.
The best thing is these are a total snap to make! In 10 minutes you will have a killer side that even picky eaters and former green-bean-haters will enjoy.
These, my friends, are…. the most interesting green beans in the world.
Brown Butter Dijon Green Beans (The Best Green Beans Ever)
zest of one lemon + 1 tsp juice, for garnish (optional)
In a skillet over medium-high heat, add the butter and allow to melt. Once the bubbling subsides and brown bits appear in the butter, add the green beans right away and a sprinkling of kosher salt. Toss to coat the beans in the butter and allow to cook for 3 minutes, until the beans are bright green and starting to show signs of browning.
Add the garlic to the skillet with the beans and allow to cook for a minute, stirring every so often. Add the dijon mustard and toss again to coat everything.
Remove to a serving dish and garnish with lemon zest and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice.
At first glance, candied pecans may not seem like the world’s most glamorous snack. They look boring, seem kind of bland, and aren’t even really candy.
But add a little cayenne to the mix, and oh boy, do you have a game-changer.
These candied pecans have a nice spicy kick and are the perfect snack- although, warning: they are seriously addictive. Brown sugar, maple syrup, cinnamon, cayenne and a touch of salt all combine to make an irresistible flavor combination that will keep you coming back for more.
If you’re willing to share, you can even make them as a great handmade holiday gift for your friends and family! The best part: these delicious pecans only take 20 minutes to make from start to finish.
Preheat oven to 350°F (you can also use your toaster oven if you don’t feel like using the regular oven!). Arrange the pecans in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with foil or parchment paper. Toast for 10 minutes, stirring once halfway through.
While pecans are toasting, whisk together the melted butter, brown sugar, salt, cinnamon, cayenne pepper and maple syrup in a large bowl. When pecans are done toasting, immediately add to the bowl and stir to coat the pecans with the mixture.
Transfer coated pecans back to the lined baking sheet and bake for another 10 minutes at 350°F. Allow to cool slightly, then serve.
If packaging for later, let cool entirely then place in an airtight container. Can be stored for a week at room temperature.
I’ve got another step-by-step tutorial here to explain how to make these spicy candied pecans- you won’t believe how easy they are to throw together!
As you may know, this year Thanksgiving coincides with Hanukkah. In honor of both holidays, I devised a dish that can work as an appetizer, side, OR dessert, depending on your mood and appetite! These are a take on the traditional potato latke, made with sweet potatoes and a slightly sweet spice flavor running throughout.
Aren’t these the coolest dang potatoes you’ve ever seen? These are giant PURPLE sweet potatoes that I found at Whole Foods the other week, and just had to have.
These sweet potato latkes can be made with any type of sweet potato, though- in fact, I ended up using 1/2 of the giant purple one (it was the size of 2 normal sweet potatoes!) and a regular orange one. I love the color in these latkes, and the warm spice that comes with each bite.
Topped with a dollop of maple syrup-infused Greek yogurt and some homemade cranberry sauce? Bye. Yes.
Greek yogurt (I mixed mine with maple syrup and ground cinnamon!)
Grate the potatoes and the apple using the coarse holes of a box grater. Set aside in a bowl.
In a large bowl, whisk the egg until beaten. Add the flour, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cardamom, and salt. Stir to combine. Add the grated potatoes and apple, and stir to coat everything with the egg and spice mixture.
Add oil to a large skillet, so that there’s ¼ inch of oil in the pan. Heat to medium-high. When oil starts to smoke, or a small drop of the batter sizzles when added to the pan, we’re ready to fry our latkes.
Form patties of potato-apple mixture with your hands. What I did was grab a ¼-cup portion, form a ball with my hands, and flatten slightly before placing carefully in the oil. Working in batches (don’t crowd the latkes, go for 3-4 at a time), fry for 2-3 minutes on both sides. Remove to a plate lined with paper towels.
Serve with a dollop of greek yogurt and cranberry sauce. Enjoy!
To make cranberry sauce:
Place 1.5 cups of fresh cranberries, ½ cup water, and ½ cup sugar in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Cover and bring to a boil. Once cranberries start popping, bring heat down to low, but keep covered. Cook for 15-20 minutes. Stir in 1 tsp fresh lemon juice and garnish with lemon zest.
Hey! Before I go, I wanted to let y’all know I started a new segment on my YouTube channel called, “How the F#!& Do I Make That?“! My first lesson? The dreaded from-scratch pie crust! I wanted to share this with you all now before the holidays, in case you’d like to tackle a pie for dessert this year!
Please don’t forget to subscribe and leave a comment with an idea for what I should take on next. I’m open to suggestions!
This is my last post before Thanksgiving, but come back on Friday for a full list of recipes you can make with Thanksgiving LEFTOVERS!