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recipes

100% home made sausage and ricotta ravioli

Today is the last day of my summer break. I’m sitting on the couch watching Band of Brothers with a fan in my face because its been too hot for too long. I didn’t get everything on my to-do list done but I did get a lot done and let me say I am ready to get back to school I am missing a bit of structure in my life! Yesterday I finally got to make home-made ravioli, now originally I was going to make just home-made pasta but after looking at a few different recipes I decided it was too boring and really it was just noodles and there was no ta-da about it. These ravioli were the best I have ever had and not just because I made them, they tasted so fresh and the filling was light and flavorful! I was in shock. Now making ravioli does take a few hours, when I first read on the recipe that it took a few hours I pretty much laughed and said yeah right, but no it takes a few hours and it’s because of the dough. I combined two recipes and it worked beautifully! the first recipe I tried for dough sucked so I scrapped it and started over, man was I glad I did!

I first started with the filling because the filling needs to cool in the fridge before you can fill the ravioli.

Ingredients:

5 spicy italian sausage links

1 large onion

2 1/2 cups ricotta cheese

salt and pepper

garlic (fresh or powder, I used powder)

olive oil

I chopped up the onion and cut the sausage out of the casings, I then heated up a pan with a little olive oil in it. I cooked the sausage and onions till the onions were cooked and the sausage was no longer pink and then I added the garlic till it smelled just right. My advice with garlic powder is honestly don’t be afraid to add too much because you probably wont! I always add a ton of what ever spices I’m using and I always get great results. Use a slotted spoon to put the sausage and onion mix in a blender or food processor (I used a blender) and then add 1/4 cup olive oil and the ricotta cheese, blend and mix till you get a smooth mixture, taste and add salt and pepper till perfect. Then place in the fridge to cool while you work on the dough.

the sausage out of the casing and the chopped onions

the sausage, onions and garlic

 After I made the filling I cleaned up a bit because I had already made quite a mess. Once the kitchen was back in order I started on the dough, now the first recipe SUCKED! All it was, was flour, eggs and olive oil and let me tell you it was this tough pile of dough that was seeping olive oil, I couldn’t even knead the dough so I threw it right out and found a different recipe. Here it is:

Ingredients:

3 cups flour

1/2 tsp salt

2 eggs, beaten

1/4 cup olive oil

1/2 cup water

extra flour for dusting

 Add the olive oil, water and salt to the already beaten eggs and beat with mixer till mixed. Add in one cup of flour at a time till combined. Once you are done you should have a lovely dough that is soft and ready for kneading. Knead on a flour dusted board until it is smooth through out and elastic (when you pull the dough it doesn’t tare right away it has a pull to it). Get a rolling-pin and dust it to prevent sticking. Roll out flour till it is about as thick as 2 quarters stacked, then start cutting out circles, (I used a cutter that I normally use for crumpets, it’s the perfect size) cut the pieces and lay them in a pan. When you are done with all the dough ( you may have to roll it out a few times to get it all cut out) grab the filling, a table-spoon, a fork and a cup of water. 

Prepare a cookie sheet by dusting it with flour and set it near your workspace, grab a chair and sit down. Take the dough, work it out a little bit with your hands, scoop a tablespoon full of filling into the middle, dip your finger in the water and put a little water around the edge of the dough. Fold the dough over and press down, then with a fork, seal the ravioli and place it on the pan. Repeat this till you run out of dough or filling.

  If you are not going to make  the ravioli right away cover the cookie sheet in plastic wrap and stick them in the freezer till they are ready to be boiled (this is what I did) If you are going to leave them there for a while, let them set for an hour (in the freezer) then store them in a freezer bag till you want to use them (I would say use them within a week)

 

 

 When you are ready to cook them, bring a pot of water to boiling and add salt and olive oil, cook 10 ravioli at a time. When they float to the top they are done, 4-6 minutes. Then with a slotted spoon, place them gently in a dish while you cook the others. These are amazing  plain or with marinara sauce. Enjoy!

 If you happen to have extra filling, as I did here’s what you can do:

Boil some pasta depending on how much filling you have left, once the pastas done, drain and pour in to a greased pan and mix in the extra filling till it is all combined, sprinkle a little parmesan cheese on top and bake at 375 till the top browns.

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Oatmeal cups (muffins)

Dry ingredients:

1 cup flour

2 cups oats

2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons cinnamon

1 teaspoon ginger

1 teaspoon nutmeg

Combine dry ingredients in a medium bowl and set aside

Wet ingredients:

3/4 cup milk

1 beaten egg

1/4 cup oil (for an even healthier muffin use apple sauce instead of oil)

1/4 cup brown sugar

2 tablespoons honey

1 cup raisins

Mix the ingredients then add to the dry ingredients and mix till combined. Bake in medium-sized muffin tin at 390 for 10 minutes. Perfect with a cup of tea or coffee 🙂


Quick hello

I am currently sitting on my kitchen floor with my boxer Daisy. Yesterday I finished my Christmas shopping and wrapped presents (lots of fun! i absolutely adore giving presents!!) today me and my father are heading to the grocery store in the beautiful rain to procure some ingredients for my holiday baking. I get three weeks off of school this year and trust me they will be spent well and in the kitchen! I plan on baking cinnamon rolls(christmas-cinnamon-rolls) for christmas morning (tradition that I carried on for my dad because his mom used to do it, and i luckily found a recipe that I can start the day before other wise it wouldn’t happen!) the swedish cookies pepparkakor that are rolled in cinnamon and sugar YUM!(pepparkakor-mmmmm) peanut butter cookies(peanut-butter-cookies) that I am handing out to my brothers friends for presents, peanut butter cake (peanut-butter-cake), brioche bread, spiced slice and bake cookies, chocolate cookies rolled in powdered sugar then baked, gingerbread, and maybe sugar cookies for my brother since they are his favorite. Clearly my family and I plan on gaining some holiday weight haha :). I hope to get recipes, pictures and stories up soon! I already have the pictures for the spiced slice and bake cookies and chocolate biscotti done so soon *fingers crossed*. I truly hope you all have a wonderful holiday season and a beautiful Christmas with your family!! God Bless you all!! 🙂

quick note 🙂 some of the recipes i mentioned I have already posted, so the links are included they are just in super light blue but right next to the name.


simple- but THEE best- chicken and pasta in red sauce

K, so I made this recipe up literally two hours ago! and let me just say while I was creating it I had no idea that it was going to become such a hit in the house. I made one package of pasta and 6 pieces of chicken and its all gone! What’s amazing about this recipe is that you can make it your own, I didn’t write down any specific measurements for the spices and flavorings so you can add as much as you want or as little and claim it as your own! You will know if this pasta came out right because when you eat it, it will become the best thing you have ever eaten; this pasta will become your new death row meal!

k so for this recipe you will need the following:

  • 6 pieces of chicken thighs
  • 8 tablespoons of butter
  • garlic powder
  • fresh garlic (4 cloves about)
  • salt
  • thyme
  • chopped onion
  • canned tomato sauce (any kind, plain and spice-free is totally fine)
  • tabasco
  • 3 bay leaves
  • package of pasta (any kind)

K to start, chop the onions and mince the garlic, then set them aside on a plate. Get out the chicken and start cutting the bones out. I didn’t look up how to do this I learned on my own, I cut the skin that s covering the bone and then cut around the bone. It’s really easy! then get out powdered garlic, salt and thyme and season the chicken with it.

Get out a large sauce pan and melt the 8 tablespoons of butter, then add the onions, let them cook. When they are done place the chicken in the pan skin side down. Cook for 5 minutes over medium heat or until the skin is browned. Then flip and cook for another 5 minutes. After add the canned tomato sauce (preferably plain with no spices) and the minced garlic. Then add 3 bay leaves,(this is where you take over) salt, thyme and powdered garlic and a few hits of tabasco. After let simmer on low low heat with the lid on while the pasta cooks. When the pasta is finished plate the chicken and finish the pasta in the sauce then add the chicken back on top and add a few more hits of tabsaco. After that, the pasta is ready to be eaten!!!! 🙂

I hope that you give this pasta a try because it is amazing! It really is and its SO easy!

I hope you guys have an awesome rest of the week and thank you for reading 🙂

the seasoned chicken

 

onions and butter mmm.

mmm, the sauce and spices

 

Cherry turnovers

Before the fourth of July, I had never once made a desert that had cherries. I must say that working with cherries is a lot of fun! they are a wonderful fruit to bake with, adding lots of flavor. This was also my first time working with filo dough and making turnovers so it was quite a bit of firsts for one day but oh it was so much fun! This recipe is a mix of three recipes that I used to create a simple recipe. These turnovers are so easy to make I could probably have 500 done in one day and im not over exaggerating! So here is the recipe, it is very simple, I do hope you try and love it!

Filling:

1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch

12 ounces frozen cherries, or fresh if you have them (make sure they are stemmed and pitted)

2/3 cup dried cherries

1/2 cup sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

K, to start stir the cornstarch in with 1 1/2 tablespoons cold water in a bowl and set aside. combine all the other ingredients in a large saucepan, cook over medium heat, stirring a bit just till the cherry juices are released (about 5 minutes). Add the cornstarch mixture and bring to a boil stirring often. When mixture is thickened remove from heat and let cool to room temperature stirring occasionally.

Dough and topping:

One package of filo dough

one egg mixed with one teaspoon of water

raw sugar (optional topping but totally worth the purchase!)

This is when you get the filo dough (make sure it is defrosted check the package for instructions) lay the sheets out on parchment and gather up six pieces, lay the six pieces on another piece of parchment and cut in to 6,5 inch  pieces. Get some filling (about 2 tablespoons) and place it in the middle of one of the pieces, then get some melted butter and brush the edges of the filo dough. Press down on the edges to seal and then lay the finished turnover on a parchment lined baking sheet. Finish the rest. When done take the egg and the water mixture and brush the tops, then take the sugar and sprinkle on top. Bake at 400 for 10 minutes.

The turnovers are beautiful when they come out of the oven and they taste delicious!!! I could easily eat 6 so yeah these can be dangerous 😛

I hope you give this recipe a try!

Thank you for reading and I hope you have an amazing rest of the week and an amazing weekend!!!

 

 

 


Classic white cake – lemon

 

I usually don’t like making cakes, I feel like making the batter doesn’t take enough time and it requires no skill. There is one cake I will never get sick of making though and that  is this cake, Classic white, and that is because for this cake you don’t just mix everything together and add eggs..you also have to beat together egg whites “until stiff peaks form” and then carefully fold them in. This cake is beautiful and if you choose to add lemon flavoring..its perfect for spring! I got the recipe from my all american cookery book.

 

The recipe

 

 

 
 
 
 

 

 

Very easy just start by creaming the sugar and butter which is just mixing the two.

butter and sugar

 
 
 
 

 

 
 
 

Then combine the flour and baking powder, add to the butter and sugar mixture alternately with one cup of milk

 

..mix well after each addition. Add the salt and extracts, instead of lemon you could do almond, just vanilla, maple, coconut, or even walnut.

 

the extracts and salt

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

This is where it gets fun 🙂 beat the 6 egg whites until stiff peak forms (you can save the yolks and make a yellow cake! I’ll post the recipe for that cake next time) after gently folk in to the batter.

 

cake batter

 

 

 
 
 
 
 
 

Divide the batter equally in to two cake pans that are buttered and floured (make sure you flour the pans, I didn’t think it necessary and a bit of the cake stuck to the bottom even though the pans were greased)

 

Bake for 25 to 30 minutes at 375, if the cake starts browning too quickly, cover the cakes with tin foil, then let them continue baking.

the finished cake

 

I finished the cake with lemon icing that was perfect with the cake..heres the recipe:

frosting:

3 tablespoons butter

3 cups sifted powder sugar

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1 tablespoon water

dash of salt

Just combined the ingredients in a bowl with a whisk till combined.

I also topped the cake with strawberries because my best friend said it would look good..and she was right..not only looked good but tasted amazing!!

Hope you all have an amazing weekend and an awesome Easter Sunday!


Coconut cream pie…..CAKE!

If you like cake or maybe coconut or cream cheese try this cake!!!! It was honestly amazing! I made this cake when my friend was over this past weekend and it was awesome! Now if you do make this cake  make sure you serve it after it spends the night in the fridge, its amazing cold :).  I found this recipe in Bon Appetit magazine, this cake is from a resteraunt called “Hominy Grill” and they call it “Classic coconut cake” but I thought coconut cream pie cake was a more appropriate name since it describes the cake perfectly. Now this is a dense dense cake, all you need is one slice..you do not go back for seconds with this one..the cake is like a meal! It took me a while to realize this cake was like coconut creme pie though..but if after reading this you try the recipe and finish the cake and let it cool over night…and then the next day you take a bit you’ll realize what i mean right away.

k so for this recipe you will need:

for the cake:

  • nonstick vegetable spray
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2  cups sweetened flaked coconut
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup butter
  • 5 egg yolks
  • 4 eggs whites

for the frosting

  • 31/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1  8 ounce package of cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • extra coconut to cover the beautiful cake

Cake:

K, so to start preheat the oven to 350 and coat two 9 inch cake pans with nonstick spray..set aside. Mix the flour and coconut in a medium bowl set aside. Whisk buttermilk and baking soda in a small bowl(..k little insider help..don’t use a coffee cup or something that can barely hold a cup..the buttermilk mixture expands so use a big enough bowl so you don’t have to dirty up 3 dishes for this one step haha) set aside.

I took this after it started growing so before and

and after

Beat sugar, and butter in a large bowl until light and fluffy…2 minutes..add the egg yolks and beat to blend. Add the flour mixture in 3 additions alternately with buttermilk mixture in 2 additions..beating just to blend.

  Using clean dry beaters, beat egg whites and 1/4 teaspoon salt in another large bowl until peaks form. Add 1/3 of egg white mixture to batter and fold in just to blend. Fold in remaining egg white mixture in two additions.

before adding the egg whites

 

batter with the egg whites added

Divide the batter between the two cake pans and bake the cakes for about 35  minutes. When the cakes are done remove them from the pans and let them cool on racks.

Frosting:

Use an electric mixer and beat sugar, cream cheese, butter and vanilla in a large bowl until blended. When the cake has cooled start frosting and when the cake is completely covered with this deliciousness start topping with more coconut…I sprinkled coconut all over, even on the sides and it came out perfect 🙂 .

finished 🙂

yummy

I hope you decide to give this cake a try..its worth it.

Hope you all have an awesome Friday and amazing weekend!!! 🙂


A saturday in the kitchen : French Bread.

Saturday was quite lovely, the sun was shining out and for the first time in quite a while, it was real California weather. I had no plans, and while thinking about what I was to spend my day doing I realized I hadn’t made bread in at least a month and a half…this was far too long for a baker! I got out the “American Cooking” cook book and decided to make French bread. French bread is so much fun to make, so simple! Six ingredients and that is it.

Here is the recipe I used :

   

The recipe is pretty simple, you start by dissolving the yeast in warm water (around 105-115) no warmer no cooler! You don’t want to kill the yeast but you need it to activate. Then you add the sugar and (I personally always wait to add the salt till I start adding the last of the flour) just because salt can kill yeast and I’m paranoid…I have found that with this recipe 4 cups of flour works much better than 4 1/2 cups. With this recipe you don’t knead the dough before letting it rise or put the dough in a clean greased bowl to rise, you leave the dough in the original bowl. Before I leave my dough to rise in the microwave (that’s just where I’ve always let mine rise) I always let the microwave run for two minutes and then put the dough in, this helps the dough rise faster and in most cases cuts the rising time in half! 

before

after 🙂

 

 

After the dough has risen get a large cutting board or clean surface and lightly flour it, then cut the dough in half and take on half and start rolling it out to a rectangle at the shape of 10 inches by 14.

Then start rolling the dough from the broadest side and pinch the dough together, then start shaping the dough in to an 18 inch long loaf  and place on a prepared pan that is greased and lightly covered with corn meal. Repeat with the next piece of dough. Take a knife and slash the bread four times.

 Then cover the dough with a towel and let rise in a warm spot till doubled in size. After the dough has risen again and is finally ready to be baked pre heat the oven to 425 and lightly brush the loaves with ice water. When the oven is ready bake for 10 minutes. Lower the heat to 325, brush with ice water again and let finish baking for 40 minutes. When the bread is done it will be golden, and when tapped on the bottom it will sound hallow. Make sure that the bread is spread out far enough away from each other so that the heat can circulate other wise the bread will bake on top but not on the sides or very middle. When the bread is finished let cool for about 10 minutes and then dig in! This bread is awesome, I made three small loaves and gave two away to my neighbors.

I hope you all have an awesome Monday and amazing week!! 🙂

beautiful


Peanut butter cake

A few days ago my brother asked me if I could make brownies but with peanut butter instead of chocolate, and it immediately reminded me of peanut butter cake..which I had made a few years prior just to try out. This cake is amazing to say the least, the actual cake is light and fluffy and then there is a topping and..well..lets just say its like eating a cake that’s topped with cookie. It’s a great easy recipe that everyone loves..even those who don’t eat peanut butter love this!

For this recipe you will need the following:

the topping :

1/2 cup flour

1/2 cup brown sugar (packed)

1/4 cup peanut butter

3 tablespoons butter

the lovely cake:

2 cups flour

1 cup brown sugar (packed)

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup milk

1/2 cup peanut butter

3 tablespoons honey

2 eggs

1/4 cup butter (softened)

K, now for the topping get a small bowl and stir together the flour  and the brown sugar. Then using a pastry cutter (or a fork, anything similar) cut in the peanut butter and the butter till mixture becomes coarse crumbs. Set aside 🙂

In a large mixing bowl stir together the flour and brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add the milk, peanut butter, honey, eggs, and butter. Beat with an electric mixer on lowest speed till combined, then beat on high-speed for 3 minutes (when done it should look like a tan cream soup..mm haha.

Now pour batter in to either a greased 13x9x2 inch pan or two greased 9x8x2 ( i used the two 9x8x2 pans) and spread the batter evenly. Sprinkle the topping on and bake at 375 for about 30 minutes.

Some tips:

If the top starts browning or burning before the cake is done, cover lightly with aluminum foil and lower the temperature around 5 to 10 degrees. This cake is amazing, but don’t cook it too long because then it isn’t, I have found that if you test the cake with a toothpick in the middle and it comes out with a few crumbs its done…dont wait till its clean because then its dry.

This cake is amazing fresh from the oven, take a chance and make this cake even if you don’t love peanut butter because this cake may just convert you :).

 

 Oh and sorry no pictures…my camera was dead and I couldn’t find any batteries but they both came out beautifully!

Have an awesome sunday!


peanut butter cookies*

Okay so I have been wanting to type up this recipe for the longest time and I finally have free time today..so much free time that I plan on dying my hair, relaxing with a mud mask, making these cookies for my broken brother 🙂 and watching an awesome movie…maybe Narnia? I added my own twist to this recipe one night when my brother and his friends wanted  peanut butter cookies..now I use to suck at making peanut butter cookies but this recipe is awesome it works..your cookies will be amazing!.

For this recipe you need the following:

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cactus honey powder
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 1/4 cups flour
  • extra sugar 🙂

In a large bowl start by beating the butter and peanut butter with an electric mixer on medium speed for 30 seconds (do it..30 seconds..not 20..30 🙂 ). Add the sugar, brown sugar, cactus honey powder, honey, baking soda and baking powder. Beat till combined, scraping the sides of the bowl as needed. Beat in the egg and vanilla till combined. Beat in as much of the flour as you can with the mixer..stir in the rest. Shape the dough in to 1 inch balls ( I use a melon baller)(don’t make them any bigger because then they wont be as good) roll in additional sugar to coat and place on an ungreased cookie sheet…flatten with fork making the crisscross marks. Bake the cookies at 375 for about 8 minutes. Let the cookies cool a minute on the sheet before you transfer them to a wire rack.

this dough is so easy to work with you'll love it!

I could eat a million

I hope you try this recipe and love it!

Have an awesome weekend!!

*I need an idea for a name for my peanut butter cookies..it would be awesome if some how the name could involve mumford and sons because on the piece of paper that had this recipe written down was also a song by them that I didnt want to forget.