Monday, March 30, 2015

Carrot Coconut Bread

Easter is right around the corner, which means it's pretty much carrot cake season. I'm not a huge fan of carrot cake, but I will have a piece when in the right mood. And I'll certainly entertain the idea of turning carrot cake into something else, like a cookie or in this case, a lovely loaf of quick bread. I actually made this twice in the past week--once for my friend Cindy for her birthday baking and again for us because Dave was drooling when he saw Cindy's loaf and I think was a little disappointed he couldn't try it. But I'm glad to repeat it since it's a delicious twist on a breakfast or snack bread and was super easy to make. And the glaze. Do not skip the glaze. If carrot cake is just a delivery vehicle for cream cheese frosting, then this bread was made specifically for this cream cheese glaze. So. Good. This loaf is hearty, so you could totally just make it breakfast with a cup of coffee. Or a mid morning snack. Or lunch. Or grab a slice when you're up at 2 am with the baby.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Buffalo Chicken Meatballs

I love some buffalo chicken wings. That spicy meaty game day grub is one of my favorite indulgences. Heat and spice makes me happy, so I like having that flavor some other way, like the Buffalo Chicken Meatloaf I shared a while back. So I'm loving these meatballs which are perfect little appetizers without the mess of wings with bones. Dave even tossed a few of these on a sub roll for a buffalo chicken meatball sub--brilliant! Yes, we'll have these again for many parties, I'm sure.

Monday, March 16, 2015

Guinness Brownies

St Patrick's Day is tomorrow and I need to share with you guys the awesomeness that is these brownies. A thick, dense brownie full of rich chocolate goodness, heightened with that beautiful Irish stout Guinness. And then I did something awful. And by awful I mean amazing. I took the Bailey's buttercream frosting from my Irish Triple Threat cupcakes and slathered it on top of these brownies. Irish dessert squared. I took these to a party over the weekend were they got rave reviews. I've never made a brownie quite like this. It's fudgy but not gooey and thick but not cakey. Seriously, these are so good I can hardly describe them. Just trust that you need to make these. Now.

Friday, March 13, 2015

Leek & Potato Soup

When Dave and I went to Ireland, one of my favorite meals included a delicious bowl of leek and potato soup. It was fresh, creamy and the perfect consistency. Ever since I've wanted to make a version at home and I've finally gotten around to it. And the timing is great for a beautiful and healthy green dish for St. Patrick's Day next week. This soup is simple to make and has very few ingredients but tons of flavor. I love the flavor leeks give to dishes, so a soup that celebrates the leek itself makes me very happy. This soup seems fancy but uses just a few ingredients and is ready in less than 30 minutes.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Bacon Wrapped BBQ Chicken Tenders

I know, I had you at bacon. Really, do I have to tell you how delicious these chicken strips are? Tender, flavorful and just so good--after all, bacon makes everything better. Not only was this a delicious dinner on a cold, gray day (will this winter ever end?), but it took all of 3 minutes to put together and 20 minutes to cook. Bacony goodness in record time. I'm always up for wrapping food in bacon and I'm glad my Secret Recipe Club match had this idea on her menu as well.

Friday, March 6, 2015

Oven Chicken Fajitas

These fajitas have changed my whole perspective. I actually have several cast iron skillets--even the flat ones like you get fajitas on at a restaurant--but I never get that smoky flavor or the perfectly soften vegetables. Somehow my veggies always end up soggy and the chicken just so-so. Well that's all changes and I'll never bother making skillet fajitas again. Seriously, no need to stand by the stove willing the excess water to cook off. Just chop the veggies, slice the chicken and season them up. Toss it all in the oven and behold--amazing fajitas. Dave was totally on board and said these fajitas were better than one of our favorite Mexican restaurants. Oh, and I totally made this while Logan slept in the carrier. I kept asking him to help, but he just yawned and snuggled in for a nap. He's not yet useful in the kitchen.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Magic Turtle Bars

These days I'm looking for quick recipes for delicious treats that I can make either while Logan sleeps or while he "helps" me when I wear him in the kitchen. Magic bars definitely fit the description because they are basically just piles of tasty goodies layered on top of one another and baked to perfection. Very easy to do, even when your littlest kitchen helper falls asleep on you while you explain the merits of semi sweet versus dark chocolate chips. And this turtle candy inspired version of a magic bar live up to the hype. They are amazing--dark chocolate, caramel and pecans are an irresistible combination. The chocolate gets slightly melted, the caramel is gooey and the nuts offer a perfect salty crunch. Plus the texture of these bars is like a party for your mouth. Based on how quickly these vanished from our counter (and the fact that I had to package some up to give away), these are a huge hit.