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  1. Pumpkin Pecan Baked Oatmeal

    November 18, 2013 by frecklesandsunshine

    We woke up the other morning to the tiniest bit of snow. Just a dusting on the car after some overnight rain/sleet/snow. It was a hint of what’s to come. Autumn days are dwindling. Halloween has come and gone. Thanksgiving looms.

    Do not, for one hot second, think that this means I’m done cooking with pumpkin. 

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    Au contraire! Along with everyone else on the Internet, I am here today with a pumpkin recipe. It is still fall, the season of warm, comforting meals. Stews and soups. Thick meat and potato type dishes. And let’s not forget about breakfast. My go to hot breakfast is oatmeal. In high school and college, I was a big fan of the packets of instant oatmeal, but these days I tend to make it from scratch. Up until recently this consisted of boiling some water on the stovetop and throwing in the oats for a quick bubble. 

    Keep reading…


  2. Summer Fun List Wrap Up

    September 23, 2011 by frecklesandsunshine

    Today is the first day of fall.

    Autumn.

    I like the word Autumn better than fall. It’s just….better.

    Autumn is falling leaves and apples. It’s farmer’s markets and pumpkins. It’s fireplaces and football. Spice and soups and stews.

    The time for summer fun is over.

    I didn’t finish my list.

    Because…
    I went back to work.
    I was busy.
    I was tired.
    I was lazy.
    I had bigger fish to fry.

    It should come as no surprise that I didn’t accomplish the “big” things like sewing a crib rail cover for Olivia. Or redecorating the guest room. Or baking homemade English muffins. Those items were probably delusions of grandeur to begin with.

    What does disappoint me is that I wasn’t able to manage an hour or two to read a magazine on the deck. Or volunteer. We are blessed beyond measure and have no good reason for not volunteering.

    That being said, I think I kicked butt on my list, given the circumstances.

    Olivia has learned how to blow kisses, even if they are only for her Grandma on Facetime. She will also give you five repeatedly. And pajama days? Dude, I don’t even know why that is on the list when it happens nearly every weekend.

    There is also another piece of big news that I’m not quite ready to share yet. But it did interfere with the last few weeks of summer. I’ll update soon…

    Should I make an Autumn list? My sister in law did.

    Do I even have the time? What are you doing this fall?


  3. Salmon and Fettuccine in a Creamy Lemon Sauce

    September 14, 2011 by frecklesandsunshine

    As we race through the last days of summer, I am craving cool, crisp recipes. In what will seem like the blink of an eye, we’ll be eating the rich, hearty meals of fall and winter once more. There will be stews, soups, and casseroles. The grill will be covered and abandoned. Citrus flavors will exist primarily in the form of sweet Clementines around Christmas.

    So, while this is a hot recipe, it’s flavors are summery. Salmon, fresh from the grill. Lemon, the zest and the juice. Basil, plucked from the garden. A cream sauce that is somehow rich and light at the same time.

    Keep reading…


  4. #5 Make Homemade Ice Cream

    September 7, 2011 by frecklesandsunshine

    When I was a little girl, my grandparents had a peach tree in their yard. Every summer we all awaited the arrival of homemade peach ice cream. Peaches would be skinned and sliced. Ice and rock salt would be gathered and everyone, manwomanandchild, would get their arms ready to turn the crank as long as they could on the old fashioned ice cream machine.

    Some things are just better when they are homemade. In fact, I’m not sure what is better when store bought or eaten at a restaurant. Between the higher quality of homemade ice cream and my nostalgia over the summers of my youth, I had to put “Make homemade ice cream” on my Summer Fun List.

    What I didn’t account for in the excitement of making my list was that I didn’t own or have access to an ice cream machine. I suppose I could have bought one. If I did, it probably would have been this one by Cuisinart.

    Unfortunately, I do not have the room in my kitchen for one more small appliance.

    Imagine my excitement, when a recipe from Two Peas and Their Pod popped up in my Google reader. Two Ingredient Banana and Peanut Butter Ice Cream. Two ingredients. Two things that we have in our house nearly all the time. Two flavors that pair well. And NO ice cream machine.

    Although I was super excited about making ice cream from this recipe, I was a bit skeptical. The recipe doesn’t call for things typically found in ice cream. No cream, milk, or dairy of any kind. No vanilla. No sugar. Just peanut butter and bananas. Could that combination really taste like ice cream? I pondered that question from the perspective of sweetness and texture. How could it possibly be creamy enough?

    In spite of my reservations, when I found myself with a few spotted bananas on my shelf, I decided to give it a whirl. Aside from peanut butter and bananas, you will need some method of pureeing the bananas. Either a powerful blender or food processor will work. The Two Peas crew used a Blendtec blender. I used my Cuisinart food processor.

    First, peel and slice your bananas.

    Next, place them on a baking sheet in one layer. I used a Silpat to line the sheet because I wasn’t sure if they would stick. I’m not sure how necessary that is, but I hate trying to pry food from a baking sheet. It’s just annoying. Place the sheet in the freezer for a couple hours.

    Then, process the bananas in the kitchen appliance of your choosing until they reach a smooth creamy consistency. This will take a bit of time. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as necessary.

    After the first scrape, my nanas resembled Dippin’ Dots ice cream. That’s not my favorite, so I wasn’t excited.

    As I continued to puree the bananas they started to come together and the blade spun freely under the fruit and wouldn’t really continue to blend them. At this point the bananas were getting a bit creamier, but still weren’t the consistency of ice cream. So I did something that has saved my butt in the kitchen more times than I can count.

    I walked away.

    Olivia needed my attention for about five minutes and that was just enough time for the fuit to soften up a bit and reach that creamy texture.

    It was time to add the peanut butter. I added a couple spoonfuls to 3 bananas. You could add this to taste depending on the level of pb flavor you desire.

    When I took off the lid to scrape down the bowl one last time, it looked like this.

    Wheeeeeeee! Ice cream!

    I transferred it into a bowl and put it in the freezer to harden for dessert.

    Here’s the awesome thing about this: it is sugar free, dairy free, and vegan. And, I promise you, it totally, totally, tastes like ice cream. I can’t wait to make this for my mama, who is lactose intolerant and misses ice cream like nothing else.

    Thanks, Maria and Josh, for helping me cross one more thing off of my Summer Fun List!

    Now, what am I going to top my ice cream with?? Nutella? Honey? Graham cracker crumbs?

    Two Ingredient Banana and Peanut Butter Ice Cream
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    Ingredients
    1. 3 ripe bananas
    2. 2-3 spoonfuls of creamy peanut butter
    3. 1-2 tablespoons of milk (if necessary, to help your bananas get creamy)
    Instructions
    1. Peel and slice your bananas. Lay them on a baking sheet and place in the freezer for two hours.
    2. After they have chilled, place the bananas in your blender or food processor and process until creamy and smooth. Scrape the sides of the bowl as necessary. Add the peanut butter and blend until combined. Serve immediately for soft ice cream or freeze for a few hours for a firmer consistency.
    Adapted from Two Peas and Their Pod
    Freckles and Sunshine http://www.frecklesandsunshine.com/

  5. How I Menu Plan

    August 31, 2011 by frecklesandsunshine

    Do you menu plan? I do. I love it. It is one of those household chores that seems like it should be really boring and tedious, but I really love it.

    Keep reading…

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