August 28, 2012

Strawberry Muffins

Looking for a wonderful, yummy muffin?! I made these last night so the kiddos would have something to pop in their mouths before school. These Strawberry Muffins are a mock of my blueberry muffin recipe. I just added strawberries in place of blueberries and I did not add cinnamon to the crumble. I wanted to add something new to this recipe and it hit me when these where in oven, next time I am adding oats and Greek yogurt. I will definitely let you know how that turns out! These may not be the healthiest muffins, but still very yummy!
In the meantime,
I hope you enjoy this recipe :)

Strawberry Muffins

Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 egg
2/3 cup milk
1 & 1 /2 cup chopped strawberries

Crumble:
5 TBS white sugar or brown sugar
2 TBS all-purpose flour
1-2 TBS cold butter, cubed

Directions for muffins:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Grease muffin cups or line with muffin liners. Combine flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder. In a small bowl whisk vegetable oil, egg, and milk; then mix with flour mixture.
Fold in strawberries. Fill muffin cups 3/4 of the way and sprinkle with crumb topping mixture.

Directions for Crumble:
In a mixing bowl add sugar, flour, butter. Cut in butter with a fork or pastry blender until you reach a crumble texture. If your butter is clumping just keep cutting in and you may need to add a bit more butter until you reach a crumble texture. Sprinkle over muffins before baking.

  Bake for 20 to 25 minutes in the preheated oven, or until done. Enjoy :)

August 27, 2012

Spinach and Basil Tomato Sauce

One of my favorite go to dinners is pasta! I mean how can you go wrong with pasta, right?! This summer, when my garden was bursting with basil, I made a Spinach and Basil Tomato Sauce that will forever remain in my rotation. This picture does not do the sauce justice, but I promise all the flavor is there!

Basil and Spinach Tomato Sauce

Ingredients
1- 15 oz can tomato sauce
1- 6 oz can tomato paste
1 cup chicken broth (add more if needed)
1 TBS of fresh chopped oregano or 1 tsp. dried oregano
1 TBS of fresh chopped marjoram or 1 tsp. dried marjoram
1 tsp garlic & herb
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/8 tsp red pepper
(add a bit more for a little more spice)
1 TBS honey
kosher salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
2 cups of baby spinach leaves
2 cups packed fresh basil leaves
1/2 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Directions:
Add the spinach, basil, and olive oil to a food processor or a blender such as a Vita Mix. Slowly add olive oil and blend until smooth. Then combine all ingredients in a sauce pan, stir, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes or longer. Stir occasionally. Serve over cappellini and sprinkle with fresh grated parmesan. This meal pairs well with a salad made with homemade croutons and ranch dressing, click here for the recipe!
Enjoy!

August 22, 2012

Homemade Croutons

This recipe has been moved to Cherishedbliss.com, click here for the recipe!

Homemade Croutons

These croutons are an excellent addition to a salad covered in Homemade Ranch Dressing,
click here for my recipe!
Homemade Croutons and Ranch Dressing

August 17, 2012

Homemade Ranch Dressing

I will be honest I have never made homemade ranch dressing until recently! One of my good foodie friends, The Fountain Avenue Kitchen,  did a guest post for me this summer and posted her recipe for Better for You Ranch Dressing, check out the original recipe here! I quickly tried Ann's recipe and it was amazing! I then ran out of chives in my garden because all my kiddos loved it and I was making this dressing daily! After I had made Ann's dressing a few times and then ran out of chives, I was inspired to add a few ingredients of my own. I would love to share this recipe with you because it is such a big hit around this kitchen! Don't forget to stop by and visit Ann's blog, The Fountain Avenue Kitchen, she has amazing, healthy recipes the whole family will enjoy!

Homemade Ranch Dressing
Homemade Ranch Dressing
6 TBS nonfat plain Greek yogurt
6 TBS low fat mayo  (I use Kraft Mayo made with olive oil)
2 TBS finely chopped chives or 2 tsp dried chopped chives
2 TBS finely copped Italian parsley or 2 tsp dried parsley flakes
2 TBS tarragon vinegar
2/3 cup low fat buttermilk
1 tsp garlic and herb seasoning
1 tsp kosher salt (or to taste)
1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper (or to taste)

Add all ingredients to a pint size mason jar, seal, and shake to mix well, or blend all ingredients in a blender. Store in refrigerator; I let all my  flavors marinate overnight. Serve over salad or as a veggie dip. Enjoy!



August 9, 2012

Grilled Pizza

Grilled pizza is something new I discovered this summer. In the past it never entered my mind to put pizza dough on the grill, but I promise once you grill your first perfect pizza there is no turning back!

Grilled Pizza

Click here for the bread machine pizza dough recipe I use and my homemade pizza sauce!

Ingredients:
olive oil
pizza dough
pizza sauce
mozzarella cheese
pizza toppings
parmesan cheese
oregano
garlic and herb seasoning

Directions:
First, cut dough for the size of pizza you would like. I find smaller pizzas work better for me than trying to roll out a 16 inch pizza per se! Do what ever feels comfortable to you. Roll your pizza into any shape, it gives the pizza more character. I like mine thin!
rolling out pizza dough
 
Preheat your grill. I have a gas grill; I warm my grill on medium heat about 400 degrees and adjust as needed.

  Place dough on foil and then on the heated grill.
Allow the dough to cook on the grill for about 3- 5 minutes and then take the dough off the grill and flip dough over.

Brush pizza with olive oil. I season my olive oil with a little garlic and herb seasoning.
Brush Olive Oil_thumb[1]

Keep the dough on the foil and apply sauce, cheese, and toppings. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and oregano.

The pizza in the picture above has my homemade pizza sauce
click here for the recipe,
shredded mozzarella cheese, turkey pepperoni, seasoned hamburger meat (cooked) , black olives, and thinly sliced onions, and bell peppers!

Then put the pizza back on the grill with foil under the dough and close the lid. Check often, it doesn't take long. Once the cheese is melted take the foil off the bottom. You can tell when to take the foil off by how stable the crust is, and then finish grilling the pizza to your liking!

Tongs are a must for this project!
This is how I grill my pizza :) I hope you found useful tips and will enjoy a grilled pizza of your own soon!

August 7, 2012

Cool Cucumber Sub

The first time I saw a cucumber sub was of course on Pinterest!
You can find the original pin here at
Make the Best of Everything.
I thought it was such a cute and light lunch option! I quickly had to try one and then tell you about how fun it was to make! I will admit it is a bit slippery if you peel the skin, but if you are looking to cut those carbs this is a wonderful idea! My older kids loved this idea and it will definitely be going in their lunch boxes this year :)
My younger one could not keep it in his hands and decided to eat his open faced. Either way it was a healthy lunch everyone enjoyed!Cucumber Sub

There are so many options, so do not stop at my ingredient list! Hummus, egg salad, and tuna salad would be another great option in these subs!
What's in my sub...
English cucumbers
deli turkey
crispy turkey bacon
chopped tomatoes
low fat cream cheese, softened and seasoned with a sprinkle of garlic and herb seasoning
a few turns of fresh ground pepper

I served this lunch with hummus chips!

First wash and seed an English cucumber. You can leave the skin on, but I chose to slightly peel mine!
DSC_6900

Then fill one cucumber half with soften cream cheese and then placed the turkey, turkey bacon, tomatoes, on top of the cream cheese. Close with the other half of the cucumber and you have a cool, low calorie lunch!

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