Tag Archives: apple

It’s Okay to Go a Little Overboard Sometimes

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I’ve always felt that brunch is not a meal to take lightly – both literally and figuratively. If it is supposed to combine two meals into one, it should be the size of two meals…right?

The British, unfortunately, do not agree with me. When I was abroad in London, I had an unfortunate experience at a trendy brunch spot in which I ordered “pancakes” for £12 only to find “pancake.” I was not happy with the singular nor was I particularly ecstatic with the thin, crepe-like thing on my plate.

Needless to say, I take brunch pretty seriously. And when I’m hungry, I like to take things into my own hands instead of waiting to be fed while I’m about to chew my arm off. Don’t cross me before I’ve eaten.

This past weekend was pretty much a brunch extravaganza. It all started on Saturday morning. With a bit of planning in advance, plus waking up all refreshed (read: not hungover), I was good to go. On the menu:

  • Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Coffee Cake (yes, that is a breakfast item)
  • Baked French toast with Caramelized Apples
  • Breakfast Potatoes with Mushrooms
  • Bacon
Yes, you read that one right. I am a good friend, and I will cook unkosher meat for only the very special people in my life. Sarah would probably say that it didn’t compare to Wando’s, but I won’t take offense.
Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Coffee Cake
Recipe from the Food Librarian
Topping:
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup peanut butter
  • 2 Tbsp. butter, melted
  • About 1 cup chocolate chips
Cake:
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 cup milk
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Mix topping ingredients and set aside. Note: if you don’t wait for butter to cool, chocolate will melt. That’s okay.
  2. Beat together peanut butter and butter until fluffy.
  3. Add brown sugar. Then in beat eggs on a medium speed one at a time.
  4. Alternately add in dry ingredients. Then, incorporate the milk.
  5. Pour batter into greased 9X9 pan. Sprinkle topping over the batter.
  6. Bake for about 30 minutes. Enjoy!
All in all, I’d it was enough food for 12 hungry antelopes. Or, like a lot of people. Then, Saturday was a brunch to impress. I was home with my family and was in the mood to make a ridiculous amount of food. And that I did. The menu:
  • Vanilla-Peach Crepes
  • Strawberry Oat Bars
  • Baked Apple Pancake
Oh, yes. It was just as good as it sounds…
And as good as it looks.
As usual, the star of the meal was the famous Baked Apple Pancake. If you’ve ever ordered this from Walker Bros. Pancake House, you’ll know what I’m talking about. This is no ordinary pancake. It’s really like a souffle. Sweet, caramelized apples baked into a pancake of fluffy goodness. If you don’t like it, we can’t be friends.
Oh, small problem…this recipe is TOP secret. I don’t know if I trust you enough to share it right now (and I may have accidentally deleted it from my email). So I’ll have to share it with you another time. To hold you over, just feast your eyes on this…
Hungry yet?
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Top Secret Spinach-Artichoke Dip Recipe

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I’ve been getting a little behind on my blog updates – considering it’s now Christmas and I’m updating for Thanksgiving. Don’t judge. I have a life. I mean…I’m too busy baking to write on my blog. Honest truth. I did promise a Thanksgiving recap, and it was a really memorable Thanksgiving. Everyone stepped up their game, and I mean aside from myself. We started off with…

this Raspberry Coffee Cake for breakfast – it’s even more incredible than it looks.

I may have woken up extremely early to sneak into the kitchen to make it. Mission accomplished. Check out the super-easy recipe from Buns in My Oven – and if you don’t have cream cheese like me, you can substitute with something like sour cream.

Then, just a few hours later, we moved on to the appetizers. If I do say so myself, my baked spinach artichoke dip was the hit of the evening. I doubled the recipe for my 9 x 13 inch pan since we had almost 30 hungry guests, but here’s the basic recipe:

 

Marly’s Spinach-Artichoke Dip
1 8 oz. package frozen, chopped spinach
1 can of quartered artichoke hearts
1/4 of a yellow onion
1 tbsp minced garlic
1/2 cup of mayonnaise
1/2 cup of cream cheese
1/2 cup of shredded parmesan
1/2 cup of cubed pepper jack
1. Saute chopped onion in olive oil until browned.
2. Saute spinach in a separate pan.
3. In large bowl, mix can of artichokes (drain first), onions, spinach, mayonnaise, cream cheese, garlic, 3/4 of parmesan and pepper jack cheeses. Add salt & pepper to taste.
5. Cover mixture in pan with more parmesan and pepper jack cheese
6. Cook at 350 degrees F for 25 min. For 2-3 minutes, or until browned, put dip under the broiler. Be careful not to burn.
This is also a great recipe to make in mini ramekins, especially since the crunchy top is the best part. This dip is seriously good.

The spread. Check out my corn souffle, recipe courtesy of Chef Jamie Rotter, in the front. So good.

The Savory Acorn Squash and Ricotta Tart was delicious…but a lot of work.Thanks Food & Wine Mag.

The piece de resistance was supposed to be my apple tart from my fave blog, Smitten Kitchen. But, unfortunately, my practice you saw on my Thanksgiving preview was just way better. Proof that using farm-fresh apples and making crust the day-of really is worth it. It still was pretty good, though. And it looked delicious enough that one unassuming guest broke off a chunk before dessert was served.

 

There’s still a lot to catch up on. Because apparently all I’ve done this past month is bake and cook. More to come soon!