Soft Pretzels

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Apparently Friday was National Pretzel Day. Coincidentally,  I was already planning on making homemade soft pretzels on Saturday for a small party we were hosting at our apartment. I love when stuff like that happens! I kind of think that we need to have a monthly National Pretzel Day (or at least National Pretzel Month) because these were SO good. I can’t believe it took me so long to make soft pretzels. Especially since TheBetterHalf is from Philadelphia, which is, as he likes to remind me, the home of the original soft pretzel.

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Pineapple Mint Tequila Mojito

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It’s finally Friday! I don’t know about you, but I could use a cocktail (or two)! This refreshing pineapple mint tequila mojito will do the trick! This cocktail is delicious. The light sweetness from the mint simple syrup and the fresh pineapple complements the tequila and lime perfectly. Top it off with club soda for some bubbly action and you have a perfect cocktail! The original recipe calls for rum, but TheBetterHalf and I prefer tequila. I think this would also be great with vodka. I decided to put a sugared lime rim on our cocktails because it looks so pretty – and because I am a fan of sugar if you couldn’t tell. It is so easy, just zest one or two of your limes and mix it with some sugar. Cheers! Hope you all have a great weekend.   Continue reading

Rye Bread

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TheBetterHalf fancies himself as some sort of sandwich artist. He’s even called himself a sandwich architect. And I can’t argue with him – he makes a great sandwich!  I need to find a good recipe for a hoagie roll (any suggestions welcome!), but in the meantime I decided to make him some rye bread for pastrami sandwiches! This recipe turned out so well. The bread has a delicious light rye flavor and I love the addition of caraway seeds. The texture is so soft, but still sturdy enough to stand up to a sandwich.    Continue reading

Momofuku Ssäm Bar

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Somehow CateyLou and I have managed to live in New York for several years without eating at a David Chang restaurant. Sure we’ve been to Milkbar on numerous occasions to try their exotic soft-serve flavors (I applaud the ingenuity but does anyone really want celery flavored ice cream?) but our recent trip to Momofuku Ssäm Bar was our first legitimate David Chang experience.  And it did not disappoint.   Continue reading

Chocolate Zucchini Bread

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Monday morning is here again.  I always start the week off with lofty goals to be healthy, when really all I want to do is eat a giant pain au chocolat.  But this morning, I have a great recipe that combines the best of both worlds.  Chocolate zucchini bread!  It tastes rich and decadent – thanks to chocolate chips and cocoa powder – but is healthy because most of the fat is replaced with nonfat Greek yogurt, and the loaf has 1.5 cups of shredded zucchini!  Of course, this isn’t as good for you as a bowl of plain oatmeal – but it is much more virtuous than the giant scones that stare at me from the Starbucks case every morning. The yogurt gives this bread such a moist texture. You won’t even miss the fat! Some people might argue that this is not healthy because you are still eating chocolate for breakfast.  Just tell them that you had a serving of veggies at breakfast, and that totally negates the chocolate.  Continue reading

Blueberry Muffins

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I love going to the market and seeing what produce is fresh. And now that spring is here, all the fruits and veggies are starting to look and taste so much better! This past week the blueberries looked amazing, so I decided to make blueberry muffins for breakfast. Muffins are such an easy breakfast to make – one hour and you have a delicious freshly baked meal!  There are so many great muffin recipes out there, I always have a hard time deciding which one to make.

I went with this King Arthur Flour recipe because the reviews were so amazing, and because I happened to have some White Whole Wheat flour in my pantry. I always like to sneak in some whole wheat when I can. I try to trick TheBetterHalf, but he can usually tell when wheat is involved – much too healthy for him! I think the white whole wheat flour works very well in this muffin though. The muffins were light and fluffy, with just a bit of wheat flavor. The almond extract really adds something special, although be careful not to put in more than 1/4 tsp – a little of that goes a long way! The original directions say that the cinnamon sugar on top is optional, but really, who wouldn’t want cinnamon sugar on top of their muffin?! So in my recipe, it is not optional :).

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Ultimate Banana Bread

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If you haven’t noticed yet, I’m slightly obsessed with America’s Test Kitchen recipes. Literally every recipe I try from them turns out well – they take all the guess work out of cooking and baking because they try every combo for you and then tell you what works best! I would love to develop recipes someday, but I don’t have enough time to do that right now, so I’ll stick with tried and true recipes.

I saw this gorgeous banana bread in an America’s Test Kitchen newsletter and I really wanted to try it out. Those little rows of banana on either side of the loaf are so cute!! But I have to tell you – I don’t really like bananas! TheBetterHalf actually hates them!! But I know that most other people LOVE bananas, so it wouldn’t be hard to get rid of this bread. I must say, I wish that I had put chocolate chips in the batter – I can get on board with banana bread if it is loaded with chocolate!! But I followed the recipe exactly, and I think (or at least my tasters told me!) that it turned out great! Very moist and full of intense banana flavor – what more could you want from Banana Bread?

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English Muffin Bread

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When I made this recipe on Friday, I was so excited to share it with you.  The reason: I have found a bread recipe that is easier than no-knead! I started this bread at 5:30pm on Friday, and it was out of the oven by 7:30pm. Seriously, it is the easiest bread I have ever made and the results were great!

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Broccoli Cheese Soup

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We had a quick taste of spring (actually felt like summer!) earlier this week here in NYC. But today, it is back to chilly temperatures and rainy weather. However I don’t mind, I think I am one of the few people who prefers winter to summer. Winter just feels so cozy to me. And I get to eat soup all the time. So here is another soup recipe for you! Broccoli cheese soup – it looks and tastes so creamy, but there’s actually no cream in the recipe.  I’m not sure how America’s Test Kitchen does it, but they come up with the best recipes time after time. This soup has amazing broccoli flavor and it is complimented by the rich cheddar and nutty parmesan. The addition of spinach gives the soup a gorgeous green color, and it is never a bad thing to sneak a super-food in any recipe. Try this recipe before it gets too hot to eat soup!  Continue reading

Carrot Bread

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Today I have another no-knead recipe for you.  No-knead has really become my favorite way to make bread.  It is just so easy, and more importantly, it consistently turns out great.

The one tricky part about making no-knead bread is the timing.  Once the dough is made, you have to bake the bread 12-18 hours later – even if life gets in the way.  In fact the other day I said no to plans after work because I had to go home and bake this bread!  It is slightly pathetic to let my baking interfere with my social life, but what can I say, I’m committed to making great recipes for this blog!  And I really wanted to eat this bread all weekend 🙂  Plus look at that gorgeous orange dough – I couldn’t let it go to waste!

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