Tag Archives: Dessert

Wednesday Wine Night

Earlier this year, a small group of my girlfriends decided we wanted a regular gathering every month or so. Thanks to Jordy, ‘Wednesday Wine Night’ began in the Fall! The idea is simple: every 4-6 weeks a different person in the group would have everyone over, serve wine, and prepare some offerings to snack on. Though I am allergic to wine, and we do not always meet on a Wednesday, this has been a great way to have a relaxing night with girlfriends. This past Monday the group came over to my apartment, which I took as an opportunity to try and wow everyone with my food. The menu consisted of:

  • Homemade sun-dried tomato hummus with veggies
  • Herb crusted sweet potato bites
  • Greek quinoa salad
  • Roasted red pepper pizza with a splash of balsamic
  • Lots and lots of wine & desserts

Thankfully, my wonderful friends loved the meal! I had been nervous about the pizza because it was the first time I used a real pizza pan, but the crust came out perfectly crisp. Everyone enjoyed the sweet potato bites because they were something tasty and different. One of the best compliments to the chef was when a few people asked for the recipes! Most importantly, everyone had a great time with each other chatting about life and nibbling the food.

For now, feast your eyes on some photos from the evening. Recipes to come individually!

Herb Crusted Sweet Potato Bites

Greek Quinoa Salad

Roasted Red Pepper Pizza

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Chocolate Choco Chip Candy Cane Cookies

It has been far too long since I have posted. Life has certainly been busy these past few months. Since my last update on July 22, 2011 so much has happened. I got a job, joined a new sports league, made new friends, gone through a lot with old friends, settled into a new apartment, and started my post-college journey through life. All of this, and more, has swept me away from blogging (and sometimes cooking). Finding ways to balance all parts of my life has been somewhat of a challenge, but I believe I am starting to get the hang of it (more thoughts on this to come in a new years post). And so, here I am, finally taking the time to sit down and write about my beloved passion: cooking.

Seeing as todays date is December 23, it is fair to say we are in the midst of the holiday season. In some places it is getting cold (or if you’re in DC, its oddly warm) and everyone is bundling up. Twinkling lights adorn buildings and trees, and the warm-fuzzy-joyful holiday feeling fills your insides. Naturally, this means it is time for some holiday cookies. I decided to dive right in and make Chocolate Choco Chip Candy Cane cookies (gotta have the candy cane!).

CHOCOLATE CHOCO CHIP CANDY CANE COOKIES

1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour

1/3 cup cocoa powder

½ teaspoon baking soda

1/3 cup brown sugar

2/3 cup white sugar

1 teaspoon salt

½ cup softened butter

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla

Handful of chocolate chips

3 candy canes

Preheat oven to 350 F

Mix together all ingredients except chocolate chips and candy canes. Smash two candy canes, and fold in candy cane pieces and chocolate chips.

Place balls of batter on cookie sheet and sprinkle remaining candy cane pieces over the tops of each ball of batter.

Bake for 15 minutes.

This is by far one of the simplest cookie recipes I have ever made. And did I mention delicious? Actually, I thought they could have used a bit more peppermint flavor. I was discussing with a coworker and debated between adding more crushed candy cane or a few drops of peppermint oil. I believe either would do the trick. Nonetheless, these cookies were a huge success at the multiple holiday parties they made an appearance at.

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Banana Bread

Ingredients

·         1 cup granulated sugar

·         8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature

·         2 large eggs

·         3 ripe bananas

·         1 tablespoon milk

·         1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

·         2 cups all-purpose flour

·         1 teaspoon baking powder

·         1 teaspoon baking soda

·         1 teaspoon salt

Directions

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Butter a 9 x 5 x 3 inch loaf pan.

Cream the sugar and butter in a large mixing bowl until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.

In a small bowl, mash the bananas with a fork. Mix in the milk and cinnamon. In another bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.

Add the banana mixture to the creamed mixture and stir until combined. Add dry ingredients, mixing just until flour disappears.

Pour batter into prepared pan and bake 1 hour to 1 hour 10 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Set aside to cool on a rack for 15 minutes. Remove bread from pan, invert onto rack and cool completely before slicing.

Spread slices with honey or serve with ice cream.

Banana bread is super yummy and loved by all! This recipe is very simple and easy to follow. Make sure to mix the dry ingredients well before adding to the creamy mixture. Also, I like to add semi-sweet chocolate chips which makes the banana bread extra delicious! Depending on your oven baking time will differ, but I usually need to keep it in for an hour and 10 minutes. Enjoy!

Recipe can be found at:  http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/banana-bread-recipe/index.html

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