Tips-y Tuesdays: Steak in a Cast Iron Skillet

After watching an America’s Test Kitchen episode of cooking with a cast iron skillet, I decided to give it another try for cooking steak. Now, I have done one method of starting on the stove and finishing in the oven, but this method is supposed to be really good for your steak and not involve the oven. (My main issue with finishing in the oven is it can sometimes get smoky).

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Making and Decorating Sugar Cookies

It’s the time of year when everyone starts making cookies. Even people who bake nothing else the rest of the year will sometimes get in on this. What I don’t understand is buying the dough pre-made, though. The absolute worst part is rolling out the dough. Making it is fairly simple and easy with a mixer. Cutting out shapes and baking them is fun and straightforward. Decorating is obviously the best part. But rolling? Ugh. I would gladly have a tool that eliminated that step for me. Anyone else agree? I know there are spritz cookies but my mom and I would make them and have the darndest time trying to get the cookies to push out of the tube. So, yeah, not a helpful tool. Unless we just had bad luck or a bad tool?

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Italian Sausage with Grapes and Balsamic Vinegar

This sounded odd. Sausage and grapes? But we like sausage, and the Fudgelet has been on a whole grape kick lately, so I figured it was worth a try. We ended up loving it. There was originally mint in the recipe which I used but wasn’t a fan. I’m leaving it out next time. Because yes, we will definitely make this again. It’s easy and full of flavor.

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Tagliatelle with Prosciutto and Peas

This should have been a simple recipe, but I had some trouble at the grocery stores. Yes, plural. First, I only bought half of the prosciutto needed, because I had sticker shock and couldn’t fathom the possibility that the one package was not enough. Oops. Well, not really an oops since I decided to make it work. I did a single batch of pasta, then ended up having enough sauce leftover to make some more pasta to coat with the rest. Soooo, I made the recipe below reflect the “half” amount. In case you’re thinking I’m part-vegetarian (not that such a thing exists), K also agreed that it was enough. You got the flavor, you got some meat in most bites, and it was satisfying. Especially because the pasta is so eggy and rich.

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Chocolate and Caramel Layer Cake

Two months post my birthday, I am sharing with you my birthday cake for this year. I hadn’t planned to make anything necessarily, but I happened to have buttermilk and cream that needed to get used, so this was a good recipe for it. Plus, it was something I had been wanting to make. I was able to make it in a few stages, which helped since the Fudgelet and I were both super sick and naps weren’t happening. He actually helped me make it. I asked if he wanted to “help Mommy bake” and he stopped playing with his cars, pointed where we keep his stool and said “over there” (for me to move the stool over where I was working). I figured he would like to help since there was some whisking involved (his favorite part).

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Mixed Bag (Part 7): Burgers, Brioche, Baked Chicken, and (Date) Bars

Half of these recipes are from America’s Test Kitchen/Cook’s Country. The chicken is from the Food Network Magazine and the last one was a random blog I used to make something date-related for the Fudgelet. None were super successful, as you will see below. All are B-related! Maybe these are B recipes for their grades, too.

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Cranberry-Walnut-Orange Muffins (Take 2)

These muffins have been discussed before. In fact, they gave me some trouble before. Or rather, I gave them trouble. Basically, flipping pages back and forth while following three sets of directions was confusing. Aaaannnnyway, my dad requested them again, and I jumped at the chance to make them again. This time, I would have no trouble!

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Look how nice and tall they are, and yet not too dense. Just muffin-y enough to be eaten for breakfast.

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