If you haven’t noticed already, I’m literally all about “ease, ease, ease” and “few ingredients, few ingredients, few ingredients”. Rarely a time exists where I cave and use a recipe that requires over 12 seperate ingredients. That being said, this Tuesday was no different. A friend from college came over to visit my roommate and I. I decided to make a simple dinner and one that would require few ingredients (of course!!).
I had already picked up a lemon at the store a few days prior and decided I wanted to incorporate it somehow. Since I already had pasta on hand, I figured I’d try to figure out some type of pasta-lemon duo. After some glancing around the cupboard, I decided to make Fresh Lemon Pasta as a nice, summery dish.
Step 1: Smash Garlic and Chop Finely
Step 2: Grate Parmesan; Juice and Zest Lemon
Step 3: Combine Zest, Juice, and Olive Oil
Step 4: Combine Cheese, Cooked Noodles, Sauteed
Garlic, and Olive Oil/Lemon Sauce Together; Enjoy!
Although it almost seems too simple, my tastebuds were not disappointed and my wallet was sure happy with me too. As cheesy as that sounds, it is completely true! Anyway, the key to this recipe’s success is lots of garlic (lots!) and playing around with the lemon-to-olive oil ratio in order to make a sauce that includes enough lemon, but doesn’t make your mouth pucker in a sour grin. Next time, I’d like to add chicken or perhaps olives and tomatoes. Until then…
One of my best friends came to visit me this past weekend. Like me, she loves to bake and cook. In fact, she is an inspiration to me and even taught me some new tricks with cooking (whether she knows it or not). For her visit, I wanted to make a fun breakfast that would encompass three traits: ease, few ingredients, and fruit (have to take advantage of fruit during the summer season). I happened to find a recipe for Lemon Ricotta Pancakes that looked enticing — especially because prior to this cooking experience, I’d never used ricotta in a “sweet” recipe or used lemon curd.
Step 1: Combine Dry Ingredients;
Combine Wet Ingrediens
Step 2: Combine Dry and Wet Ingredients
Step 3: Drop Batter Onto Greased Hot Griddle;
Flip When Golden Brown; Add Powdered Sugar
and Raspberries; Enjoy!
Although these look “pretty” — they were tough to make. The batter does not hold together as easily as I would have liked. The best trick is to carefully watch the heat and make sure to master the perfect art of the quick-flip (I had a few fall apart…). But, nonetheless, these were absolutely delicious and the combination of fresh lemon and raspberries flavors provided a nice contrast to the boring egg-and-cheese-combo of the usual Sunday morning breakfasts.
So, in true patriotic spirit, I attempted a few “July 4th-like” desserts. Of course, I did the classic cake July 4th cake, complete with strawberries and blueberries. Note to self: always make sure to dry the strawberries before putting on the cake… if they are juicy, they will fall, drip, and make a complete mess/unelegant presentation.
Happy July 4th!
So, I tried to be creative with the inside of the cake with red, white, and blue layers. Unfortunately in this case, the red dye didn’t turn out quite red. Apparently America’s colors are now “pink, white, and blue.”
In addition to a cake, I made these very simple chocolate and sprinkle dipped marshmallows. I found this awesome recipe from Lauren Conrad‘s blog (as seen here). These were a definite hit that I will look forward to making next year!
During one of my last few visits to the store, I happened to pick up a copy of Real Simple. The cover held the infamous “3 Ingredient” featured recipes. I was instantly intrigued. If you haven’t noticed already, I really enjoy making simple recipes and ones that require few ingredients. Therefore, I was extremely drawn towards this issue.
One of my favorite recipes that I saw was for a “flat-bread-esque pizza”. Since I already had puff pastry leftover from making a Rhubarb Tart (as seen here), I knew that this would be the perfect recipe. Plus, whenever has melted cheese and tons of carbohydrates not resulted in a pleasantly awesome situation? Unless something goes drastically wrong, I’d say pretty close to never!
So, I decided to make this recipe. Even though I cheated (I used more than the 3 ingredients as listed in the recipe), I would make this again and again. Real Simple has it right — 3 ingredients (plus a few more minor ones) always wins!
Step 1: Thaw Pastry Dough and Roll Out
Step 2: Cut Tomatoes
Step 3: Layer Cheese and Tomatoes Onto
Puff Pastry; Add Olive Oil, Salt/Pepper, and Spices
Step 4: Bake and Enjoy!
I absolutely loved this recipe. Although this definitely resulted in just another glorified version of a cheese pizza, it definitely tasted better than a frozen pizza or one from the local joint down the street. The flakiness of the crust just can’t be beat and the authentic gooey-ness was perfection. I’m smitten.
Rhubarb – the wonder plant. Despite it’s terrifying and quite strange appearance (that might just be my opinion), rhubarb (rhubarbs?) is (are?) actually quite delicious (when done right). All right, I’ll nix the parantheses from now on, but I just wanted to make that quick exclamation about this odd plant/vegetable/fruit wannabe.
I’ve only had assorted rhubarb concoctions a few times. In fact, I think it’s pretty safe to say that when I think of desserts, rhubarb is not among the first few choices, let alone the top twenty. But, I am glad that something will trigger my memory and like of it every now and then. It is definitely an odd plant/vegetable/fruit wannabe that I am happy to use in my cooking!
Nonetheless, I became reminded of rhubarb a few weeks ago when I happened to stumble upon it in the vegetable aisle while grocery shopping. On a whim, I decided to purchase some and figured that I would go home and find a recipe. I found a recipe from Epicurious titled Rhubarb Tart With Orange Glaze. It looked absolutely delicious and I liked the fact that it combined rhubarb with another fruit for different flavors.
Step 1: Zest Orange and Cut Rhubarb
Step 2: Stir Orange Juice and Sugar Together
Step 3: Mix Rhubarb and Orange Juice
Mixture Together; Let Stand for 10 Minutes
Step 4: Roll Out Thawed Pastry Dough;
Place Rhubarb Onto Pastry in Rows
Step 5: Bake Pastry
Even though I still think rhubarb looks absolutely silly and I’m confused as to why it’s classification is technically a vegetable, I do love it’s tart yet sweet taste. This dessert was perfect for a summer day. Next time, I’d recommend pairing with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.