Breakfast Pull Apart Bread


Oh Pinterest, you make me more addicted every single day. The downside of Pinterest is too much inspiration and not enough time to make everything. But I still must pin all.the.time. If you are a member, then you know what I mean. 🙂 But, this recipe is one of the few things that I’ve actually made from that site and it did not disappoint. It is very much like monkey bread, but the biscuits are left whole. Hope you enjoy!

Breakfast Pull Apart Bread

2 tubes of buttermilk biscuits
3 Tbsp butter, melted
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 cup chopped nuts – optional

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray a fluted ring pan with cooking spray.

Mix the melted butter and maple syrup, pour 1/2 in bottom of ring pan. Combine the brown sugar, cinnamon and nuts and put 1/2 of that mixture over the butter mixture. Arrange all of the biscuits upright in a circle all the way around the pan. Top with remaining 1/2 of butter mixture and then remaining nut mixture.

Bake about 20-25 minutes or until center of biscuits are done. Let set for about 5 minutes then loosen edges with a knife, invert onto a plate and serve. Servings just pull right apart.

Baked Barley Risotto with Butternut Squash


Well, this was my first time cooking with barley and it turned out great!  The oven does most of the work so it was really easy too.  I can’t wait to make this again.  It is a pretty healthy meal as well since barley is fiber rich and the spinach and squash are vitamin and nutrient rich.

Oh by the way, I’m crossing this off my 30×30 list for risotto.  It is really not a true risotto, but that list has barely been touched so I’ll take what I can get.  I have a feeling that list is going to be extended to a 30 while I’m 30 list.  Oops.

Baked Barley Risotto with Butternut Squash

Source:  Dec 2011 issue of Real Simple magazine

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 butternut squash – peeled, seeded, and chopped into 1″ pieces (about 3 cups) – next time I may use a large sweet potato

1 onion, finely chopped

salt and pepper

1 cup pearl barley

1/2 cup dry white wine

3 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth

5 oz baby spinach – I know I used less that this, I didn’t measure, just used all I had in an open package

1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Directions:

Heat oven to 400 degrees.  Heat the oil in a dutch oven over medium-high heat.  Add the squash, onion, and s&p.  Cook, stirring often, until the onion begins to soften, 4-6 minutes.

Add the barley to the vegetables and cook for another minute.  Add the wine and cook until evaporated, about 1 minute.  Add the broth and bring to a boil.  Cover the pot and transfer to the oven.  Bake until barley is tender, 35-40 minutes.

Remove from oven, stir in spinach and Parmesan.

Enjoy!

Ham and Bean Soup

As soon as temperatures turn chilly in the Fall, soup is the first thing I turn to.  And one really great thing about this soup is that it is cooked in the crock-pot so its really easy.  🙂

Sorry, no picture.

Ham and Bean Soup

Source:  Budget Bytes

1 medium yellow onion

3 stalks celery

4 medium carrots

2-4 cloves of garlic, to taste

2 medium ham hocks

1 pound dry 15 or 16 bean soup mix {discard the seasoning mix that comes with it}

2 bay leaves

1 tsp dried ground thyme

1 tsp dried oregano

1 bouillon cube

ground pepper to taste

6 cups water

Directions:

The night before, pick over the beans for stones and debris, rinse and place in a large bowl and cover with 2x the water.  Let sit overnight.

In the morning, chop all of the veggies and garlic and place in the bottom of a large slow cooker. Lay the ham hocks on top.

Pour soaking liquid off beans, rinse again, and add beans to crock.  Add all seasonings and bouillon.  Top with water.  Lightly stir, but don’t disturb the ham hocks and veggies.

Secure the lid and cook on high for 4 to 6 hours or until beans are soft.

Remove the ham hocks and cut off any meat and add it to the soup {there will be very little meat, but the soup already has great ham flavor}. Discard the rest of the hocks.

Taste and adjust the seasonings.  Serve with garnishes and toppings of your choice.  We enjoyed it with hot sauce and sour cream on top and crusty bread alongside.

Enjoy!

2 Ingredient Pumpkin Cookies

I know you’re thinking that that title must be too good to be true, but believe it.  These cookies only have two ingredients and they are really good!  So soft, and very flavorful.

1 box of spice cake mix

1 (15 oz) can of solid pumpkin puree

Mix together. Drop rounded tablespoons of dough onto parchment lined baking sheets, bake for 10-12 minutes in a 350 degree preheated oven.  Allow them to cool and they can be enjoyed as is, or topped with cream cheese frosting and a sprinkle of pumpkin pie spice or cinnamon.

Enjoy!

Cauliflower Soup

Every year I make a ton of soup recipes throughout the fall and winter.  This cauliflower soup was one of the first that I made this year.

As usual I was pretty much winging it, but it is loosely based off the Pioneer Woman’s recipe.  I realized I didn’t have any milk in the house about half way through so I kind of panicked, but it all worked out in the end and I made it healthy in the process. Woohoo! {I mean, there’s still butter in it, but a lot less than the original.}

Go to the link below if you want to see PW’s original version.  She leaves hers chunky, and adds milk and cream.  I did not add any milk or cream, and I pureed the soup with an immersion blender.

Cauliflower Soup

Source:  Pioneer Woman

Ingredients:

2 T. olive oil

one medium white or yellow onion, finely diced

2-3 carrots, finely diced

2-3 celery stalks, finely diced

1 large head of cauliflower, roughly chopped

2 T. dried parsley

salt and pepper

1 carton (32 oz) low-sodium chicken broth

2-3 T. butter

3 T flour

Sour cream for serving – optional

Directions:

Add the oil to a soup pot that’s over medium heat.  Add the onion, carrots, and celery and cook for a few minutes, until they are tender and starting to brown.  Turn the heat to low and add the cauliflower and parsley and stir to combine.  Let that cook for just a few minutes to allow the cauliflower to brown very slightly.

Pour in the chicken stock or broth.  Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and allow to simmer until cauliflower is completely tender.

*This is where I panicked.*  So, off to the side, I melted a few tablespoons of butter and then added flour to it.  I cooked that for a few minutes hoping to eliminate the raw flour taste.  Then I added it to the soup as a thickener.  {PW added whole milk and half and half to the roux to create a white sauce.}

Stir the soup as it simmers and thickens, taste and add s & p.  Total simmering time should be about 15-20 minutes, during that time I pureed it with an immersion blender but you could transfer it to a blender or food processor in batches if you would like.  Or like I said above, PW leaves hers chunky.

Serve with a dollop of sour cream or plain Greek yogurt.

Enjoy!

Tilapia & Quinoa with Basil and Pine Nuts

This really isn’t a recipe, but I thought I would share anyway since it involves my new favorite side-dish QUINOA.  Maybe it will give you inspiration to try something new?!

The other night I cooked a cup of quinoa in plain water as directed on the package.  Once the quinoa was cooked and liquid was absorbed, I stirred in a small handful of chopped fresh basil and a handful of pine nuts.

I served the quinoa with sauteed tilapia (pan fried?  I don’t know what you call it but I just cooked the fillets until opaque in a non-stick pan coated with Pam spray}.  I topped the tilapia with Parmesan and more basil. You could also bake the tilapia with a Parmesan crust.

It was light and tasty!  Enjoy!

Pumpkin Oatmeal

So, I’ve been on a baked oatmeal kick lately.  I’ve made the fruit and oatmeal recipe twice, and now I have this wonderful baked pumpkin oatmeal to share with you.  I found it on a blog that I recently discovered called Budget Bytes and as you would expect, she offers recipes that are very budget conscious.  But, more importantly, they are always delicious and usually healthy too.  I’ve made one other recipe from her site so far and I’ll post about it later.

I really only have a few things to say about this recipe.  First is that the pumpkin flavor is very prominent {in the best possible way}.  Next, the texture is almost spongy.  Its hard to describe, but also good, just different from the other baked oatmeal that I tried.  And lastly I think I’ll add raisins next time and maybe chopped nuts too. 🙂

Pumpkin Oatmeal

Source: Budget Bytes

serves at least 6

Ingredients:

1 (15 oz) can pumpkin puree (not pie filling)

1/2 cup brown sugar

2 eggs

1 tsp pumpkin pie spice

1 tsp cinnamon {this was my addition because I love cinnamon!}

1/2 tsp salt

3/4 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1.5 cups milk {I used almond milk}

1/2 cup plain greek yogurt

2.5 cups dry old-fashioned oats

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350.  In large bowl, whisk together pumpkin puree, brown sugar, eggs, vanilla, spices, salt, and baking powder until smooth.  Then stir in the milk and yogurt.

Mix the dry oats into the pumpkin mixture, coat an 8×8 (or similar) baking dish with non-stick spray.  Pour pumpkin oats into the dish and cover with foil.  Bake for 45 minutes, removing the foil after the first 30 minutes.

Serve and enjoy!

Topping options:  milk, maple syrup, nuts, raisins, a dash of cinnamon, and whipped cream.

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