My Favorite Recipes of 2015

2015 has been a good year for me. How about you? I finished my second full year at our farmer’s market selling my gluten-free treats. I switched jobs to one that I love and have creative freedom in, plus some radical bosses. I had some great times with my family and friends. There was lots of laughter. Of course there were tears (I find the older I get the more sentimental I get). There was much to be thankful and I am filled with gratitude. I am eager to see what kinds of adventures 2016 has in store. Here are 11 of my favorite recipes from the past year. I was going to do a nice 10, but I am not a very conventional person and 11 is what I wrote down and so it is what I am sticking to! I hope you enjoy them and there will be much to come in 2016 (I already have January planned)!

ohwdu4v-9n2gdjeiiiz6w4cymbwjoocsj7f6spryboow788-h524-no

Bacon Wrapped Goat Cheese Stuffed Parsnips

I love goat cheese. I don’t know what it is, but I think the last year I posted at least 5 recipes with it (probably more). I know a lot of people who have never eaten parsnips. They have an interesting flavor. The bacon. The goat cheese. The rosemary. I really feel like I nailed this recipe. It made the parsnip sing. And all the flavors married together perfectly. I was majorly happy with this one!

2015-03-21 08.49.05 Plantain Pizza Crust

The last year and a half, I got really attached to plantains. I also have a thing for pizza crusts. Once again I probably have over 5 recipes just for pizza crust alone. Seeing as I live in Indiana, many of my friends have never had, nor heard of plantains. And so, like a good friend, I introduce them to it. A pizza is a good gentle nudge. This is an ugly picture. I know. And it doesn’t look impressive (although I feel a bacon woven top should always be admired), but it tasted AMAZING. This one went to my best friend Tab and she said it was her favorite crust ever. Continue reading “My Favorite Recipes of 2015”

Sunbutter Blondies

20151213_165204

So I have 10 pounds of sunbutter at my apartment! Yes 10 pounds! That is a lot of freaking nut butter.

What is a girl to do with 10 pounds of sunbutter?

Well upon browsing on my Pinterest, a recipe popped up for peanut butter blondies.

Perfect! Let’s adapt it!

Here is the results. Not impressive looking per say (for some reason I felt like baking it in a bundt pan. However, my mother and my best friend Tab (who I gave the whole thing to), both said it was delicious. That is all I need!

Sunbutter Blondies Continue reading “Sunbutter Blondies”

Gluten-Free Sugar Cream Pie

IMG_20151224_122758

As I mentioned yesterday, my grandfather and aunt have Celiac’s they can’t have anything with gluten.

One of my grandfather’s favorite pies is a sugar cream pie or Hoosier Pie (fitting since we are Indiana heartbeats).

I decided on December 23rd then that I HAD to attempt to make one. I will confess now that I have tried before and it was an epic fail (it happens to us all).

Now this picture is not very appealing. I was unsure too of the texture, it was pretty custardy. But since I wanted it to be just right, I tried some. At first I was hypercritical. But progress bites made me a believer, that this is indeed a very good pie. Not the prettiest, but a good bite. Plus once dessert was set out, I was told it was very good. Positive approval from the family is always something to be treasured.  Continue reading “Gluten-Free Sugar Cream Pie”

Gluten-Free Hot Chocolate Cookies

IMG_20151223_115634.jpg

Man I had a great Christmas and mini holiday break! Did you?

I am fortunate to come from two BIG families. Every year each side gathers together at my grandparent’s house. That is over 30 people in a house. It is loud. Neither of my families are quiet. We are loud. It is crowded. There is drinking. Lots of wine. Lots of whiskey. Games of euchre. Delicious food every where. Endless options of people to talk to you. The opportunity to discover new things about someone and forge deeper connections. My cousin Ali, for instance, I spent a lot of time talking to. We have a LOT in common. We bonded over art. The last two years we’ve had baseball games in my grandma Dreher’s back yard. There’s a lot of story telling. Laughter and smiles. There are tears. Often happy tears that we still have this time together, even as many of us are well into adulthood. Sometimes there are arguments. It is bound to happen occasionally. Sometimes we try to open presents one at a time, before mass chaos ensues. Hugs. There are all kinds of hugs. Great bear hugs because some people you only see once a year. Hugs that you feel to your core. And love. There is an abundance of love.

And so I had a great four-days off with my family and friends.  Continue reading “Gluten-Free Hot Chocolate Cookies”

Bacon, Pork, Goat Cheese, Butternut Casserole?

20151213_171819

I work in a kitchen. Well I guess technically I work in a bake area.

I expressed last week that I suck at feeding myself sometimes.

I spend every day thinking and creating delicious food for other people. And I rarely take time to focus on what I am feeding myself. I like quick, easy and simple at home.

Baking is a breeze. I get in a groove. In a flow. Putting things in a bowl, throwing it in the oven is cake for me (literally sometimes). It is nothing for me to whip up a batch of fresh cookies when I have apartment guests.

But the first of the month I went to the market. I scored some major market finds.

I had a butternut squash stare me down for a week. Seriously we just looked at each other. “What am I going to do with you?” This was the question on my mind every time I passed it.

And so I held off.

Until one day I got off work early, yet I was still feeling creative. Not yet ready to leave the kitchen.

I tackled the butternut.

I cubed it. Minced the garlic I found in my fridge and then I waited a little bit longer.

Last week kicked my ass. I am known for my frankness and this true. It kicked my ass. Between working, spending hours painting windows, squeezing in three mile walks with my friend Amy, and family/friend time and birthday celebrations, it was Sunday before I came face-to-face with the squash.

I typically spend my days off in the kitchen. This is when I finally get down to taking care of me, myself and I. Make some meals for the week. Make a delicious dinner. With my apartment cozy, cleaned and festive, I was ready for something good to go in my belly.

One of my favorite recipes is a butternut apple bake with pork. I did a similar take, but with a goat cheese addition.

Magical. This meal was magical, delicious and oh-so filling!

IMG_20151213_155621

  • 1 butternut squash, cubed
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 apple, chopped
  • 1/4 cup pecan pieces
  • Thin pork loins
  • 1/2 lb. of bacon
  • 2 oz. of goat cheese
  • Coconut sugar
  • Sea Salt
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Drizzle of honey

Continue reading “Bacon, Pork, Goat Cheese, Butternut Casserole?”

Quit Playing Small

small

So I love this quote.

Last month, my rad cousin Jacki invited me to do some game changing Igolu sessions. It was completely empowering. Not only did it connect me better to myself, goals and dreams, but it tied me to a group of really strong, game-changing, goal-getting women.

Our first call I was so nervous.

My reactive thoughts were telling me, “who are you to be on this call? A little baker from Indiana.” I listened to the other powerhouse women introduce themselves, and I thought, “holy shit.” And then Jacki said, “Just know you are meant to be here.”

My reactive below the line living voice was instantly shut down. And I thought of this quote. Which coincidentally, one of the other members posted in our group later that week. Something the Universe intended for me to hear and remember.

I have this conditioned habit of playing it small. Sometimes I tell myself I am trying to be humble, but that is bullshit frankly. I am doing what the quote above says.

And as I dove further into the sessions this popped up. This play it small. This inability to to not receive. Like a light dimming switch. But awareness is the key, catching myself. And being aware that I do this.

I am the first one to help, to volunteer, to want to cheer others up, to give compliments. I want to build others up, but there is a barrier when others do the same. I shut down. I act coy. I can’t maintain eye contact. It is weird. It is weird because I truly think I am awesome. Read my about section. That is truly how I feel. I am statements I rock. I am strong. And beautiful. And creative. And smart. And talented. And positive. And radiant. The list is on-going. There is a disconnect when someone else says it though. Where is that coming from? And so I teach myself to shift. Take the compliment Brittany. Take the upgrade. Remember. Remember this quote. Give it out and take it. You are enough. Boom, that sentence is critical.  Continue reading “Quit Playing Small”

Spaghetti Squash Breakfast Casserole

20151209_122343

Sometimes I just like to create things on the fly.

This usually means I will look at whatever is in my fridge (usually not a lot) and try to make something edible and hopefully tasty out of it.

I think I got this from my grandma Dreher. She is resourceful. When you don’t have a lot, you can still make good food. My grandfather always loved my grandma for making something out of nothing. Resourcefulness and creativity are traits, which I value. I seek them. I want them. I am.

Last week I was feeling ambitious. I went to the market. I had broth on. I made burgers (click the link for the recipe). I roasted some carrots. I boiled a spaghetti squash.

And then I stopped there. I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do with the squash.

Days later I got off work early, but I wasn’t ready to leave the kitchen yet. I made gingersnaps (posted Monday). I attempted to make caramel filled sunbutter coookies. They failed, but I made them into a cheesecake jar, so all was not lost.

And then I stared at the squash. It was like it was challenging me. What the hell am I going to do with this squash. I was tripped up.

I go back to the fridge for an inventory check.

I have spinach for Kate and Jason. There is some garlic. I have all this cheese that Bob got me. And eggs. Hmm….

Casserole. That is clearly the solution. A breakfast casserole.

And I will confess I was a little (lot) leery of this combination. But I was committed (plus it was what I had to work with).

Result? It was actually pretty freaking tasty, otherwise I wouldn’t be sharing it here! Continue reading “Spaghetti Squash Breakfast Casserole”

Comparison: A Dream Killer

12278677_10101135884999623_696854541520296548_n

Comparison is a dream killer.

Let me share with you my own experience with said killer.

Growing up I loved to draw. Life looked out for me and encouraged it. In 5th grade our school offered strings or newspaper, but the year I entered they added advanced art. It was the only year they had it. I felt like it was there for me, this beautiful little opportunity, which changed the way I looked at the world. It was in this class, that I fell in love with drawing portraits. Drawing portraits changed the way I looked at people. I became a beauty seeker. This helped me when I got into taking pictures. The picture above was drawn by me last week.

As I progressed through school, I was encouraged. In high school I designed and created our class float every year. My senior year, we got the shop teacher to create a run-through for basketball games. I got out of my art class every home Friday basketball game to paint a banner to run-through. I was voted my artistic by my classes.

In college I didn’t take a single art class.

In the past decade I have hardly drawn.

I went years without making a beautiful sketch.

I lost touch.

What happened to the artist in me.

Why did I let my artist die?

It did morph into style and food and baking and my Farmer’s Market booth and photos and writing. I have expressed art in different ways. Elizabeth Gilbert’s Big Magic talks about living a creative life. I think I’ve nailed that for sure. But what about that little artist? I am aware that I have skill. This photo above is not something just anyone can do. I am blessed with this talent and I have kept it dormant.

What happened?

Sometimes I dabbled with the idea of doing something with art. In elementary school we wrote books and they would publish them for us. At the back they would add bios, like a real book. It is so cute to look back now. Some were absurd. Some were whatever was being suggested. You’re so smart, why not be a doctor. And sometimes, sometimes I wrote art (or sometimes a cartoonist, when I broke my femur and was bed bound with a pin through my leg, I spent hours drawing Rugrat characters and Disney princess’s). 
Continue reading “Comparison: A Dream Killer”

Soft Gluten-Free Gingersnaps

11202589_10101142223517183_462418784836607635_n
“I love this. This is my first tree. I’ve always lived with someone. I love that it is simple, yet beautiful. It’s not themed or impersonal. It is me. More importantly I love that it is filled with memories and traditions. Every year since I was born my parents (mom) have gotten me an ornament. And so this is an accumulation over my lifetime. There are homemade ones and ones from other family members. And as much as I seem unconventional in many ways, I love holidays traditions. I think looking back I had a happy childhood, with a big crazy, beautiful family. Every time I walk by my living room I will have to smile. Because it floods me with these feelings. With love and tradition and family and memories and pure bliss.” ~Me, on my Facebook on December 8th
So clearly it is nearly Christmas. This above post pretty much sums up my thoughts on the holidays. Love. Family Tradition.
To me, as a baker, Christmas is about cookies. Growing up, both of my grandma made amazing cookies for Christmas. My grandmother Dreher lived across the holler and I would walk over it to my grandmothers house tucked into the woods. Once nestled inside we would roll and cut cookies. Stars. Trees. Maybe a few Santas. A couple of angels. These were the usual cookie cutters. Once they set we had the task of icing. I think if you took pictures of my cookies from a young age through my 20’s, they were be drastically different. While we were there, we sampled the other cookies. Sandies. Sandies (powdered sugar cookies with pecans) were my FAVORITE). I stayed clear of the gingersnaps (although they’re my momma’s favorite). I also really loved what she did with the extra dough when there wasn’t enough to shape. She would roll it thin. Cover it with cinnamon and sugar. Roll it up. And cut them into little pin wheels. Delicious.
Two years at my grandma Paulin’s we decided to start an annual cookie exchange. We all dressed up in our pajamas. My aunt Toni taking it to another level. Each person brought x amount of cookies. Everyone got to sample all the cookies. My cousin Jacki’s friend Erin then came to judge. She didn’t know who’s cookies where who’s. And I can only imagine the pressure of watching so many Paulin women staring at you while you ate. Waiting for a reaction. Afterwards we divided into teams and played games. It was a night filled with delicious cookies, fun, laughter, and the prospect and excitement of creating a new tradition.

Continue reading “Soft Gluten-Free Gingersnaps”

Brittany’s Blissfilled Burger

IMG_20151205_150144.jpg

I do a lot of baking.

It is my job.

It’s my baby business, Bliss Delish’s purpose.

I actually love savory cooking.

I chose baking because it fuels my creativity more, but when I am at home, cooking for myself, I want something savory.

Last week, I headed out to the market to visit with my vending friends (family). I was on a mission to snag some bones. I prayed that L & A Farms had oxtail (they did). When I arrived though, my brain started swirling. Looking down at their products, I needed some ground beef. Hamburgers. You should make hamburgers Brittany. Mental note taken, I began my mission to create a burger.

How to add flavor? Continue reading “Brittany’s Blissfilled Burger”