Links & Things

Some things I need to eat immediately:

Pull Apart Brioche Cinnamon Roll Bread -> What a fun take on cinnamon rolls.

Buttery Gingerbread Maple Muffins -> Exactly how I feel about gingerbread- don’t need crunchy cookies, but in subtle muffin form, looks delish.

Triple Layer Chocolate Cake with Salted Caramel Buttercream Frosting -> I’ve been obsessed with chocolate cake lately. And caramel. This looks like my dream come true.

Red Velvet Crinkle Cookies -> Think the hubs would like these for Christmas.

Slow Cooker Broccoli Cheese Soup -> Been wanting to try making my own for a while!

Easy Sourdough Bread -> Sourdough without a starter? Dream come true. Trying this this weekend!

Salted Caramel White Chocolate Latte -> I’m always too lazy to make fancy coffee at home but would love to do it.

No Knead Crescent Rolls -> What a great addition to a homemade meal.

Coconut Waffles with Whipped Cinnamon Butter

Waffles are undoubtedly one of the best breakfast foods out there. I personally tend to go for pancakes on a more regular basis because I love them and they always seem much easier, but there’s something about waffles that just seem a little bit more special. It’s like pancakes are for breakfast, but waffles are for brunch. I used to love waffles and I still do, but I haven’t actually had a waffle iron in a while so I haven’t been making them myself. No joke, I got a Belgian waffle iron for my graduation from elementary school. It’s the only thing I wanted and the only thing I mentioned when my parents said they wanted to get me something to celebrate. But, it’s been at my parents house ever since because when you get kitchen appliances at such a young age it tends to merge into the other family household appliances and by the time I moved out I didn’t even really think of it as mine and didn’t even think to take it. Anyway, once we had that Belgian waffle maker we never used our plain old regular waffle maker again.Coconut waffles with cinnamon butter

Luckily, my family is the sort that never throws a thing away so I had the good fortune of inheriting the old regular waffle maker the last time I visited because my mother had finally dug it out of a cabinet and set it aside to decide if they should get rid of it. I am now the proud and happy owner of a waffle maker again, albeit a 20 year old one. It still works! I decided to embrace regular waffles again. After all, who says you always must be in the mood for a light and fluffy, thick Belgian waffle? I wanted to make a regular thin waffle that could hold it’s own. Enter, a hint of coconut and whipped cinnamon butter. There really is no question that these are some of the best waffles you could make.

:Coconut Waffles with Whipped Cinnamon Butter:

INGREDIENTS

1 3/4 cups flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

1 tablespoon sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

3 eggs

1/4 cup butter, melted

1 1/2 cups milk

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon coconut extract

For the butter:

2 tablespoons butter, softened

1 teaspoon cinnamon

ASSEMBLY

Combine flour, baking powder, sugar and salt in a bowl. In another bowl whisk eggs, butter, milk and extracts together. Add wet to dry ingredients and whisk together. Pour onto hot waffle iron, about 1/2 to 3/4 cups depending on your iron probably, and close until iron indicates that it’s done. Meanwhile, place the softened butter in a bowl and add cinnamon, whipping by hand or with an electric mixer until the two are completely combined and the butter has reached a soft, fluffy consistency. Top warm waffles with butter. Drizzle with maple syrup if desired.

This Weeks Menu

I can already tell this week is going to be very busy. So many new projects for work, including at least one day with a late meeting, and one day with a photoshoot in the evening. I’m hoping to still get a chance to make good dinners most nights. I just might need to prep earlier in the day or even get things ready the night before. It’s all about time management, right?

Monday: Simple Greek Salad & Leftovers

Tuesday: Out

Wednesday: Maple Dijon Pork

Thursday: Spaghetti and Meatballs

Friday: Curried Lentils and Chickpeas

Saturday: Out

Sunday: Chicken Sausage Skillet

Creamy (Two Ingredient!) Fettuccini Alfredo

If you ask what my favorite meal is, 9 times out of 10 I will say fettuccini alfredo. My dad used to make this for me when I was young and it was always the best thing ever. He would make it for my birthday and all my friends’ birthdays, or whenever I had a sleepover and we wanted a special meal.Super Easy Fettuccini Alfredo

Clearly I only had spaghetti on hand when the urge to make this struck, and honestly it’s just as good. But yes, I am aware that this picture is not truly fettuccini!

It’s super filling and delicious, and for the longest time I did not realize just how simple it is. I’ve seen recipes for fettuccini alfredo that have more ingredients, and I’ve never known why. There is literally nothing else you would need to put in this sauce to make it better. I also never understood why people bought jarred alfredo sauce since buying the ingredients for this homemade version only requires one more item in your shopping cart and it tastes so much better.

This is the best and most simple pasta you will ever make. Your friends will all think you are some amazing cook and you don’t need to tell them how simple it is. It’s also great for guests, because it’s so filling that one box of pasta is definitely enough. Start will small portions and go from there! It’s not diet food, but you can only eat a small amount anyway, and it’s only once in a while right? It’s so worth it.

:Creamy Two Ingredient Fettuccini Alfredo:

INGREDIENTS

1 pint of light cream

1 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese (or pre-shredded), plus more for sprinkling

1/2 box fettuccini (or spaghetti!)

ASSEMBLY

Heat a pot of water to a boil and add in the pasta. Cook until al dente, according to package instructions. Meanwhile, slowly heat the cream in a small saucepan over medium heat. When it becomes warm, begin adding in the grated cheese little by little, stirring constantly. Strain the pasta well and set aside. Once all of the cheese has been added to the cream and is fully melted and incorporated, add the pasta to the sauce carefully. You may want to add it little by little to make sure you get each strand fully covered. Alternatively, you can dish the pasta into dishes and then pour the sauce over the pasta. Garnish with fresh or dried parsley (if you have it) and extra cheese. Enjoy immediately.

This Weeks Menu

I can already tell this week is going to be another hectic one. All I want is a nice relaxing, slow, lazy week, and you would think that with a Monday holiday this week, there would be a chance of the next four days being that. But no, I know they won’t. All the meetings and things that I would have normally spread out between Monday and Tuesday are crammed in for Tuesday now, including two things rescheduled from last week. Wednesday, the Mr is being sworn in as an official citizen of this fine country, so we’ll be out for the afternoon and will probably do a late lunch/early dinner that day with family and friends who come to celebrate. After that the week should return somewhat to normal for the next couple days, but I know that there will be a lot of catching up on work and everything. I am going to try to stick to the plan and eat good meals each night and take the time to cook. I picked fairly easy things that should be quick to put together and satisfying to eat.

Monday: Chuck steak & potatoes

Tuesday: Chicken Tikka Masala

Wednesday: Out

Thursday: Quinoa Burgers & Sweet Potato Fries

Friday: Brown Sugar Baked Chicken Legs

Saturday: Fettuccini Alfredo

Sunday: Homemade Bacon Pizza

Brown Butter Banana Bread from Seriously Delish

Last week Jessica Merchant from How Sweet It Is, my favorite blog ever, came to Boston for a book signing of her brand new cookbook Seriously Delish. I have never bought a book as soon as it came out until this one- I made the Mr order it for me like the week it came out. I’ve been reading through the whole thing cover to cover like a novel, which I’ve also never done before with a cookbook. But there’s a little blurb to read with each recipe and it’s almost like getting a mini blog post on every single page.

Anyway, last week I went to see the writer and had her sign my book! I figured after that I couldn’t wait any longer to make one of the recipes, even if I hadn’t finished reading through the whole thing yet. Deciding what to make was the hard part. Glancing through the pages I had already read, I stopped today on the brown butter banana bread. Today was one of those days where I woke up feeling exhausted already and had a lot of trouble getting motivated. The windows were still open, but it was super windy and had a fall chill to the air. I was in the mood to be cozy and have the house smell nice. Also I didn’t want to have to go to the store to get any ingredients I wouldn’t already have. Banana bread seemed perfect. I had everything I needed and it was a perfect excuse to use up all bananas I keep sticking in the freezer as they turn brown. brown butter banana bread

I ended up only using three bananas. The recipe says to use about four mushy bananas, or about 1 1/4 cup. I had over 1 1/4 cups with only three bananas (I don’t know if this was partly because I was too impatient to let them totally defrost and the iciness added a bit of volume, or what, but it came out perfect). I also added a little extra cinnamon because I was in a cinnamony mood. The bread came out nicely. Not dry at all, very moist, but not overly moist and mushy which sometimes happens to me with banana bread.

All in all, a great success for my first recipe from Seriously Delish. I can’t wait to make another one!

:Brown Butter Banana Bread from Seriously Delish:

INGREDIENTS

1 stick of butter, browned

1/2 cup loosely packed brown sugar

1/2 cup canned coconut milk

4 very ripe bananas, mashed- about 1 1/4 cup (I only used 3)

2 large eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 2/3 cup whole wheat flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon (I used 1/2 teaspoon)

ASSEMBLY

1 Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Spray a 5×9 inch loaf pan with nonstick spray.

2 In a large bowl, whisk together the browned butter and brown sugar. Once it is combined, stir in the coconut milk, bananas, eggs, and vanilla extract. In a small bowl, whisk together the four, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.

3 Add the dry ingredients to the wet and mix them with a large spoon until just combined. Pour the batter into the greased loaf pan. Bake the bread for 60 to 65 minutes, rotating the pan once during the cooking time. Remove the bread from the oven and let cool in the loaf pan for 20 minutes, Gently remove the bread and place on a cutting board or counter lined with parchment paper. Let cool completely before cutting. <- Yeah right!