Honeycomb

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I made this beauty of a cake for Thanksgiving. I’ve been branching out of my comfort zone lately too, making things I’ve never made before. I made toffee for the first time EVER a month ago. I am hooked, it is delicious and easy to make. I have been using it for all kinds of things. Firstly, with some truffles (also a first for me). Secondly, with some cookies. And on the naked banana cake I posted yesterday. I’ve also been branching into truffles (as mentioned above and I’ll have an easy recipe to post on Thursday). And I have been really, really working on my macaron abilities (they are so tricky, there are so many areas where you can over/under mix).

I will note that I have no reference of honeycomb to compare this too. But I have been watching a bit (lot) of the British Baking Show and they use honeycomb often. So I have been a little bit eager to try and make some. What is this honeycomb they talk about?

I also have to tell on myself about something else. I do not have a candy thermometer. And I can be a terrible about measuring. I do a lot of baking (and pretty much all cooking) by feeling- which makes posting hard sometimes because I don’t know exactly how much I put in something. I also don’t have an timers. Sorry, it makes it kind of hard to post, but I like it old school. So I can tell you what temperature it’s supposed to go to (because I read it), but I personally just kind of felt my way through this and looked at the color.

I found a traditional honeycomb recipe and tweaked the sugars. And to me it looked like honeycomb and my husband liked it.

Stepping out of my comfort zone never tasted so good!

20171122_151300.jpg Continue reading “Honeycomb”

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Gouda Mashed Cauliflower

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I think I’ve been using cauliflower as a potato substitute for almost a decade now. And I have mashed everything. One day I tried: rutabaga, parsnips, turnips and celery root. I’ve also mashed sweet potatoes several times, but even though I like color, the bright orange is not appealing to me as side. And the rutabagas and such were tasty, but the cauliflower is hands-down the best.

One year for Thanksgiving I made them, and my uncles ate them, thinking they were potatoes. They loved them and requested them for the next year.

I usually like to whip them up with either butter or cream cheese or sour cream. They give them a lovely texture.

But I saw a mash with Gouda and I had to give it a try. I love some Gouda and it was so easy. AND it was a perfect side dish for yesterday’s Crispy Honey Garlic Chicken.

I’ll have more to come with cauliflower mash Thursday, as well. I used them in a loaded casserole. It was so good, my husband went for thirds. And between him, me, and my sister-in-law, Mary, we crushed the whole thing.

Smoked Gouda Mashed Cauliflower

  • 1 head cauliflower
  • 3 sliced sliced Gouda cheese
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tbsp butter or ghee
  • Garnish: crumbled bacon

Continue reading “Gouda Mashed Cauliflower”

Crispy Honey Garlic Chicken

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My whole life I have enjoyed cooking. I think I get type-cast as just a sweets, baking type. Or I slip comfortably into the that role and let my husband hold the savory side down.

But I do love cooking, I always have.

I remember growing up, I liked to be in the kitchen. I recall one time, being in the kitchen, making something with mushroom, pretending I had my own cooking show. My father yelling, “who are you talking to?” And then whispering the rest of my broadcast.

Growing up, family meals were essentially. We sat down for meals together. It wasn’t very often that we ate out. We ate at home. And my father is a bomb cook.

So cooking is essential to me.

It is important for Zach and I to eat together. It is rare that we eat out as well. With him being a chef and me a baker, it is a no-brainer that we love home-cooked meals.

I have been slacking slightly on the meal front, in that I will generally eat the same things. Cabbage. Hash. Sweet potato fries. Zach and I will rotate the same things.

It seems the last few years, that my creative energy all pours into my baking.

This past week I got back to my savory roots. First with this honey garlic chicken and mashed cauliflower. Then tortilla soup. Then pulled pork.Then some creamy spinach stuffed chicken. It felt great to being back in the kitchen, making some new dishes.

And this dish?

The flavor was on point. It was spicy, but the honey was just what it needed. And pork rinds are my favorite for breading chicken.

So good.

And gouda mashed cauliflower on the side? Perfection. I will have that recipe next week. Also this made plenty of chicken and we had left-overs.

Crispy Honey Garlic Chicken: 

  • 3 chicken breasts, cleaned and cut into strips
  • 2 cups pork rinds, ground finely
  • 4 tsp pepper
  • 4 tsp salt
  • 3 tbsp ginger
  • 2 tsp thyme
  • 2 tsp sage
  • 2 tbsp paprika
  • 1 tsp cayenne
  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup raw, local honey

Let’s Make it Happen: Continue reading “Crispy Honey Garlic Chicken”

Tortilla Soup

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This cooler weather has me craving some soup, I don’t know about you.

Since I made tortillas last week, it immediately popped into my mind to make a tortilla soup.

The tortillas crisped up perfectly (I actually may have liked the crispy little tortilla bits more than the regular tortillas).

The soup was slightly spicy with a great flavor.

Plus I swapped beans for roasted peppers.

I LOVE roasted peppers. And I was super geeked when they turned out perfectly. Needless to say I will be featuring a separate piece on making roast peppers and what to do with them.

I love crock pots! They are easy to just put everything in and let them cook. Or to warm them.

This soup made plenty and we enjoyed some Sunday before some football.

Nothing beats soup on a crisp Fall day!

Crispy Tortilla Soup

  • 1-2 Spicy Tortillas
  • 64 oz. chicken broth
  • 14.5 oz. fire roasted tomatoes
  • 2 roasted peppers, diced
  • 1/2 lb- 1 lb. chicken, shredded
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • 3 tsp cumin
  • Optional Toppings: Avocado, Sour Cream, Green Onions, Cilantro

Continue reading “Tortilla Soup”

Gluten-Free Spicy Tortillas

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I have to admit that during the school year I don’t do a lot of cooking. Plus I tend to make the same things: cooked cabbage, root hash, etc.

All of my creativity is put into my baking and ideas for baked goods.

So I take a back seat sometimes and let Zach take over the savory portion.

And sometimes he’ll make something for his frat boys that I really want too.

For instance, he makes them quesadillas every week.

I cannot remember the last time I had a quesadilla. Or embarrassingly: if I ever have? I have no recollection, sorry.

I have made plenty of tortillas, usually with the intention of making a wrap (these ones for spinach and kale ones are my fav).

This time I wanted a quesadilla. And I wanted to add some spices, make it tasty and different.

And then I wanted to use the extra tortillas for a tortilla soup (recipe coming Thursday) and a pulled-pork wrap (coming Friday).

This wrap is definitely adaptable. I worked well in all these dishes.

AND it did make a wonderful quesadilla, which was the initial goal.

Gluten-Free Spicy Tortillas

  • 1 1/2 cup almond flour
  • 1 1/2 cup tapioca flour
  • 1 tbsp coconut flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/3 cup Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp paprika

Continue reading “Gluten-Free Spicy Tortillas”

Chicken Shawarma

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This adventure into pita bread began with chicken shawarma.

When Zach and I were living in Champaign they had a lot of diverse restaurants, it was definitely a nice food town.

One of our favorite spots was a Middle Eastern restaurant. The first time we went, the menu was out of my know. Zach insisted on shawarma, so I got the chicken with him.

SOOOOO DELICIOUS!

It did come with a side of pita. Naturally I give all my bread sides to Zach, so he was stacked up.

I reserved in my mind to one day make my own shawarma. And to make my own pita for the side.

This had so much flavor, and we had plenty of left-overs the next day. The pita was a good boat for eating the chicken, but also for sopping up the tasty sauce left on the plate.

I also tried to make a yogurt sauce, but I used a coconut milk one (dairy generally upsets Zach’s stomach), but I think the coconut threw us both off. Maybe some day I will try it again with another yogurt.¬† Continue reading “Chicken Shawarma”

Gluten-Free Pita Bread

20170928_182335.jpgIt has been on my list to make pita bread for some time.

I think it may have ¬†started when Zach and I lived in Champaign. They have a plethora of restaurants, which meant we pretty much had the option to eat our way around world cuisines. Zach loved this one restaurant, that we could get chicken swarma at. Chicken swarma is one of Zach’s favorite things. I had no clue what he was talking about, but I tried some anyways, what could it hurt? It was good! But is the usual with us when we eat out, I go ahead and get the bread and give it to Zach. In this instance they served it with pita.

Seed planted.

Then I made some naan bread with butter chicken. I was so happy with the results, I next set my eyes on pita bread.

And a few weeks ago, I finally made some!

I remember as a child my mother would make us pita sandwiches, stuffed with my favorite sandwich things: lettuce, cheese and salami.

So my excitement when they puffed up while baking and actually had a pocket was beyond.

My mind was swirling.

I’m going to make my own chicken swarma finally.

I’m going to make my own sandwiches. What can I fill those pockets with now?

I can make pita chips.

Options. I had options.

And so do you. Go wild with these guys. Continue reading “Gluten-Free Pita Bread”