Ginger Cookies

These are my very favorite holiday cookies! This recipe came in the Food Network’s 12 Days of Cookie annual email series in 2008, I believe, and I made them as soon as I got home from college that winter break. I love that they are crackly on the outside and soft on the inside — they were a big hit at our holiday party last weekend.

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Salted Brown Butter Milk Chocolate Chip Cookies

Salted Brown Butter Milk Chocolate Chip Cookies – say that three times fast! These cookies are a unique twist on the classic chocolate chip cookie. Usually I use a semi-sweet chocolate chip, but I saw these extra-large Guittard Milk Chocolate Chips and wanted to try them out (though I think dark chocolate would be even better). The browned butter adds a special richness and delicate sweetness to the cookie, and the sea salt balances the sweetness out. These would be a fantastic addition to a cookie tin for the upcoming holiday season.

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Calzone with Rainbow Chard and Sun-Dried Tomato

One of the things I make often when Tim is on the road is pizza (and calzones). They allow me to get a ton of veggies into my dinner, make the house smell awesome, and one batch of dough makes plenty of pies (4 personal size to be exact, so I always have a few in the freezer). I had a bunch of Rainbow Chard from my first CSA basket, and found this delicious looking recipe from Food & Wine – it was a date! (with my oven…)

I have been on a veggie kick, and have found a great way to get lots of servings. When I halve a recipe, such as this calzone recipe or any number of pasta recipes, I halve the “bad” stuff, like the dough/pasta/cheese/oil, but keep the vegetables at the original amounts. It’s essentially doubling the vegetables, which makes me feel like I’m pigging out and gets me extra nutrients, without extra calories or bad fats.

Fancy crust skills from my days at Pizza Express

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Cottage Cheese Muffins with Sundried Tomato and Basil

I made a major discovery. Instead of your typical coffee shop muffin (super-sweet calorie bomb), these “muffins” are more like a hand-held souffle. They are delightfully savory, with cottage cheese, parmesan, sun-dried tomatoes, and basil. They made a fantastic lunch (I’ll take two, please) as well as the easiest grab-and-go breakfast ever. Even better than their taste is the fact that they have less than 125 calories each. It’s actually kind of unbelievable.

These muffins come from the amazing Heidi Swanson at 101 Cookbooks. As I have mentioned, my best friend of the same name (Hi, Heidi!) introduced me to Ms. Swanson’s work a couple years ago and I always do a quick search on her blog whenever I am looking for a healthy meal. I am beyond thrilled to be sharing these with you, and I hope you make them as soon as you can. This is one that just shouldn’t wait.

p.s. how do you like my makeshift muffin wrappers? I never remember to buy them at the store, but parchment paper made a great (and probably cheaper) alternative!

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Zucchini Cheddar Buttermilk Biscuits

I’ve been hearing that summer is over. It seems as though everyone is talking about boots and a chill in the air. Well…it’s been reaching to almost 100 here in Paso this week and the Farmer’s Market is overflowing with various colors and sizes of zucchini. It’s still summer and I’m not giving up on it just yet!

I’ve been in love with the Magda variety of zucchini – they are so pretty and not mushy at all, and they don’t have too many seeds. That’s what I used for this recipe, which I absolutely loved. I made a few swaps to the original: I used buttermilk instead of regular milk, because I just can’t resist a buttermilk biscuit. I also used half barely flour and half all-purpose flour – of course, using 100% all purpose would be just fine.

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Pumpkin Muffins

Holy November. When did you get here?

October was birthday/harvest/promotion/family and more, but there is no excuse for me neglecting my little piece of the internet.

If you’re reading, thank you for still being here. I missed you.

These muffins will make your hands smell like cinnamon and your house smell like fall. It takes about 5 minutes to whisk them together, and although they are not the most healthy thing to eat, they are also not terrible. Pumpkin has tons of vitamins and antioxidants, and it adds moisture to the muffins that other baked goods might get from butter or more oil. You could add some flax seed or pepitas (aka pumpkin seeds) on top for a little extra fiber and crunch, but I went the cinnamon sugar route…and it is oh-so-delicious!

Is there anything you’d like to see me make? Looking for a particular holiday recipe but not sure where to start? Leave a comment and let me know!


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Heirloom Tomato and Burrata Panzanella

Due to the bizarre weather we are having this year, I don’t feel too guilty posting this recipe so late in the season. While some tomato crops are well past their prime, some are just starting to come to fruition – WEIRD! If you’re one of the lucky ones who still has tomatoes on the vines, you need to introduce them to burrata before it’s too late!

If you haven’t had burrata before, please run to your nearest cheese shop and grab a tub. Burrata is a fresh mozzarella ball filled with mozzarella “rags” (pieces) and cream. It can be made with cow or buffalo milk, and it is creamy, silky, and buttery. It has a short shelf life and needs to be used within a couple days of being made. It is fabulous with crackers, crusty bread, tomatoes, basil, peaches, olive oil, or a combination of all of these…or just by itself (shh…I won’t tell!).

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