Thursday, February 13, 2014

Doggy Birthday Cake

Even pets need special treats on their birthdays!  Today we celebrated Oliver's sixth birthday so my sous chef and I baked him a cake. Oliver loved it!!

Doggy Birthday Cake with Peanut Butter Cream Cheese Frosting


1 egg
1/4 cup canola oil
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup peanut butter
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup shredded carrots
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking soda

1/4 cup peanut butter
2 oz cream cheese
2-4 tbsp water (I had opened chicken stock in the fridge so I used that)

1.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and grease a 6-9 inch cake pan.  In a large bowl, mix together egg, oil, honey, peanut butter and vanilla until well blended.

2.  Add in the carrots, flour and baking soda and stir until combined.  The batter will be very dense and heavy.  Spread batter into prepared cake pan and bake for 20-25 minutes.
3.  Remove from oven and cool in pan for 10 minutes.  Move to a wire rack to continue cooling to room temperature.  While the cake is cooling, whip the peanut butter and cream cheese adding in liquid as needed.  Frost, serve and enjoy!






Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Creamy Orzotto

My take on the absolutely delicious, though time consuming risotto.  This is a popular side dish in our house, Redmond even loves it!  It has a texture similar to risotto, but not nearly as labor intensive. 

Creamy Orzotto
Serves 4
2 tsp olive oil
1 cup whole wheat orzo
1 1/2-2 cups low sodium broth or water
2 large handfuls fresh baby spinach
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan
Black pepper

1.  Heat olive oil in a small saucepan until it begins to shimmer.  Add in orzo and cook, stirring frequently, until orzo is toasted, about 5 minutes.  Pour in 1 1/2 cups of broth and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer until orzo is tender, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes.  *you want the orzo to absorb most of the broth

2.  Once orzo is cooked, stir in the spinach.  Once the spinach is wilted, remove from heat and stir in the Parmesan until melted.  Season with black pepper and serve.  Enjoy!

Red Wine Beef Roast

I've finally made notes and created a recipe for a beef roast.  I've always just created a random marinade for roasts and sometimes they'd turn out good and sometimes they wouldn't.  Jason could not stop raving about this roast so I think I'll stick to this recipe from now on!

Red Wine Beef Roast
Serves 4-6

2-2.5lb boneless roast
1/2 cup dry red wine
1 tbsp dried Marjoram
1 tbsp dried Thyme
1 Bay leaf
3 garlic cloves, minced
Salt & Pepper
3-4 large carrots
4-5 medium potatoes, cleaned and unpeeled
4-5 celery stalks
1 medium onion

1.  Pierce the roast with the tip of a sharp knife all over.  Place the roast in a large ziplock bag.  Add in the wine, marjoram, thyme, bay leaf, garlic, salt and pepper.  Seal the bag, releasing any excess air, and rotate the bag making sure the roast is covered in the marinade.  Place the roast in a bowl (just in case the bag leaks) and let marinate in the refrigerator overnight.

2.  The next morning, place the roast in the bottom of a large crock pot, reserving the marinade.  Chop the carrots, potatoes, celery and onions into large pieces.  Place veggies around roast.  Pour the reserved marinade over the veggies and cook on low 6-8 hours.  Enjoy!

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Whole Wheat Pita Bread

A great bread maker recipe and the perfect accompaniment to some delicious hummus!  These are so simple to make and so yummy!!

Whole Wheat Pita Bread
Makes 10-12 pitas

1 1/4 cups warm water
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp honey
3 cups whole wheat flour
1 1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp yeast

1.  Add all ingredients into a bread maker and choose the "Dough" cycle.  Once the dough has finished, divide into 10-12 equally-sized dough balls and place them on a flour dusted surface.  Cover with a damp cloth and allow to rest and rise for 20 minutes.

2.  While the dough is resting preheat the oven to 400 degrees and place a baking stone or baking sheet in the oven to heat.  Once the dough has rested, roll each dough ball into a circle and place on a preheated baking sheet. 

3.  Bake for 5-6 minutes until pitas have begun to puff up.  Allow to cool before serving.  Enjoy!


I love hummus.  This recipe is so simple, but so delicious.  You can add in anything you'd like - cumin, roasted red peppers, jalapenos, or my favorite - roasted garlic.  My favorite way to eat hummus is with celery, pita bread or in a wrap with veggies.

8 servings

1/4 cup tahini
2-4 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1/2 tsp Kosher salt*
1-2 garlic cloves
2 tbsp olive oil
1 can no salt garbanzo beans or 1 1/2 cups cooked,dried garbanzo beans
1-2 tbsp water

1.  Combine tahini and lemon juice in a food processor.  Blend for one minute; scrape down sides and blend for an additional 30 seconds.  Add in the salt, garlic and olive oil and blend for another minute.

2.  Scrape down the sides and add in the garbanzo beans.  Process for a minute or so, scrape down sides and continue to process until beans have reached desired consistency.  While machine is running, slowly add in water until desired thickness is reached.  Transfer to a serving bowl and sprinkle with paprika and drizzle with additional olive oil if desired.  Enjoy!

*I've found that I do not need to add salt if I use canned beans.