Mushrooms, Greens & Toast from Smitten Kitchen

August 12, 2015 Leave a comment

Mushrooms toast and greens

Since the baby arrived, I don’t spend as much time cooking and even less time documenting. In the 60-90 minutes we have between when we all get home  and when she goes to bed, I try to spend that time with my family rather than in front of the stove…which means we eat fairly simple meals during the week: roasted vegetables and quick cooking meats, soups or stews prepared the previous Sunday, fish tacos or delivery. Read more…

Categories: food

Beef Stroganoff

March 23, 2015 Leave a comment

Beef stroganoff

This is the first new dish I’ve cooked since the baby was born. I’m not sure I’ve ever actually had beef stroganoff…maybe on an airplane or in a frozen TV dinner as a kid. To me, it is cafeteria food. For some reason, I got curious and made a batch last week.

It was surprisingly delicious, though the amount of butter, sour cream and pasta probably means this won’t make it into our regular rotation. Not surprisingly, my Midwestern husband LOVED it. Happy to indulge him every once in a while.

My dad arrives this week to meet the baby. Looking forward to some Vietnamese home cooking! Read more…

Categories: food

The best thing I’ve baked so far…

January 22, 2015 2 comments

The best thing I've baked so far

Born January 8, 2015. 11 days overdue, 1lb bigger than predicted and so far…she’s pretty cool. As a result, there hasn’t been much cooking around here lately. We’ve just been reheating whatever family and friends are generous enough to drop off, eating out of the freezer and calling takeout.

Categories: food

Lactation Cookies

December 2, 2014 Leave a comment

Lactation cookies Several friends have had babies in recent weeks and as part of a care package, I baked lactation cookies, which are supposed to help milk production. Do they really help? I don’t know, but the cookies taste good and include some of the same ingredients in beer, which I’m also told encourages milk production. They’re basically oatmeal chip cookies with brewer’s yeast and flax seed meal. Husbands and toddlers like them too.

Most of the recipes found online are very similar. All of the odd ingredients (brewer’s yeast, flax seed meal) I was able to find at my local Whole Foods in the supplements aisle. The recipe makes A LOT of cookies (~70 with the Tablespoon cookie scoop) so I baked half and froze the other half so the new mama could bake the cookies on demand when she had a sugar hankering. My friends requested butterscotch chips but you can use anything, really. The recipe I based my version on also includes dried fruit, which I don’t really like in my cookies, so I skipped that, but its a really adaptable recipe. Per usual, I reduced the sugar. I’ve found that the more my butter is melted/softened, the crispier my cookie. The less it is melted, the more cake-like in texture. I like it somewhere in between. p.s. We’ve been going through a disgusting amount of butter around here lately! Read more…

Categories: sweets

Bacon, cheddar & chive scones

November 4, 2014 Leave a comment

Bacon cheese & chive scones


Scones really are just triangular breakfast biscuits. As muffins are just an excuse to eat cupcakes for breakfast. But who cares??

Finally found a winning savory scone recipe! I attempted savory scones last year when a friend had a new baby. I thought it would be fast and easy food to eat for her but that batch turned out a bit greasy and too dense. This time, the recipe yields a fluffy inside with a crispy outside. I made sure to get a leaner bacon and render the crap out of it. These scones work great fresh or straight from the freezer. I did find that baking them in my toaster oven yielded uneven results and that using my standard oven is much better…I’ll just have to be more patient and let the oven warm up while I’m showering or something.

Now that I have a basic recipe I like, I’m going to try different combinations such as ham & gruyere; sausage, jalapeno and mexican cheese; olive, prosciutto and parmesan…the possibilities are endless!   Read more…

Categories: bacon, breakfast, food Tags: ,

Banana Chocolate Chip Scones

October 22, 2014 Leave a comment

Banana Chocolate Scones

The bananas and chocolate kick continues. A few weeks ago, a friend tipped me off to the banana chocolate croissants at b. patisserie. The weekend morning line was much, much shorter than that of Tartine and I really dug the banana chocolate croissants. I also had their banana chocolate scones which were amazingly moist and delicious. I had an appointment nearby last week and swung by to pick up another scone but they were out by the time I got there…how sad! My remedy? Make my own.

The recipe is super simple…the hardest part was waiting for my bananas to ripen and dealing with a somewhat crumbly dough (scone dough is supposed to be like that–its just a new texture for me to bake with). I tested a batch of frozen scones this morning (shaped, cut and frozen on a tray so that they don’t stick together before being thrown together into a ziploc) and those worked out great as well! I just baked those at the same temperature for an extra 2 minutes. My 3.5-year-old niece also loved these scones…but wanted to add raisins. No way, kid. This is a strongly anti-raisin family!  Read more…

Arroz con pollo

September 29, 2014 Leave a comment

Arroz con pollo


This chicken and rice recipe is from chef Jose Enrique and was published in this month’s issue of Food & Wine. It is supposed to be served with an avocado and pea salsa but I don’t really like peas. In fact, frozen peas make me kind of angry, I’m too lazy to shell fresh peas and too cheap to pay for fresh shelled peas…so there aren’t many peas in our diet. Maybe next time, I’ll make tomatillo and avocado salsa to go with it…but it tasted lovely with just some Crystal hot sauce on top.

I forgot to buy parsley so substituted chopped arugula and spinach for the greenery. Next time, I’d also chop up some pimento green olives for a little extra zing. I didn’t look that hard for Bomba rice or Valencia rice but just substituted with arborio. It reheated perfectly for a nice lunch today. Read more…

Categories: food Tags: , ,

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