The Sugar Cookie

November 18, 2014

Sugar CookiesSometimes you just need simplicity to reign in your life so you don’t have to struggle with all the other crazy things life brings. We all have enough headaches throughout the course of our days with traffic to work, work itself, people showing up to work that don’t want to work, never having enough time to get everything done, and then traffic home where you have made so many decisions at this point your go to answer to everything becomes “I don’t care.” After all this, simplicity always wins out for me. Being a chef everyone always peppers you with very specific questions or statements about your food life, something like,  A.) Whats your favorite thing to cook? For which my response is always: “I’m a moody eater, therefore my moods govern my favorite thing to cook at any given time.” or B.) You must eat great meals every night! For this my response is “No, you are crazy.” My favorite thing to have in the evening time in the summer is a cold salad of some sort, like a summer salad or pasta salad; in the winter time it switches to grilled sandwiches (grilled cheese mostly) and soup (I’m a fan of simplistic tomato). See where this is going? After a long day at work where we cook for so many people, manage time and space and arrange for things to go just right, keeping it simple at home is my favorite. I know everyone likes to go to restaurants and order crazy things that they would never be able to do at home, and I say go for it! You get that lobster mac, or that entree salad with everything on it that ends up making the calories more than the other entree you were checking out that you thought was way more fattening than a salad. Because at home, we are gonna keep it simple, pasta and cheese, yes please, and a salad with, hmmm. . . . what do I need to get rid of before it goes bad?

Life is Messy!

Life is Complicated!

Lets Un-Complicate it: Well maybe we will just make some cookies that are really simple and eat a few and feel less complicated yea?! Sounds like a good plan to me too. I have a huge stock pot of cookie cutters that I need to dust off now that the holiday season is upon us (and yes, I have listened to a Christmas song or two and I totally watched The Grinch last week.) Cookies are going to be your best friend so let me throw a very simplistic cookie recipe your way and you can just bake your feelings and enjoy!

 

 

Print Recipe
Sugar Cookie
Simplistic sugar cookie dough that is easily manipulated to handle many inclusions and flavor profiles. My base for many of my favorite cookies.
Course Desserts
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 8 minutes
Servings
dozen
Ingredients
Course Desserts
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 8 minutes
Servings
dozen
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Cream together the butter and sugar, until light and fluffy.
  2. Once the mixture is thoroughly combined, slowly add the eggs and the vanilla and almond extract. While this is mixing go ahead and combine your dry ingredients.
  3. Stop and scrape down your mixing bowl to make sure everything is mixed properly. Slowly add the dry ingredients a little at a time. The mixture will seem dry, but once ready, it will come together.
  4. Take your dough to a floured surface and roll out to the desired thickness, I prefer mine about 1/4 of an inch thick. But it is your choice entirely. You can also scoop these cookies and press them into rounds with a glass bottom, or your hands if you don't want to use the cutout method.
  5. Place on baking sheets with 1/2 an inch of room between cookies and bake on 350˚ F for approximately 8-10 minutes, or until the edge just turns golden.
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The Things We Don’t Talk About . . . Rice Pudding.

May 10, 2014

Rice PuddingThere are things we don’t talk about, women that is, we don’t talk about morning breath, we don’t talk about stinky feet, we surely don’t sweat, we just quietly conceal and move on with our day. It is commonplace and to quote my grandma “it’s just not ladylike.” So I know you are scratching your head right now thinking, where the heck is this going? She writes about food, yet she’s talking about sweat and morning breath, but please trust me, I’m almost there friends . . . Ok, how does food earn the status of “just not talked about?” You don’t hear too many people coming home from the restaurant saying “Wow, how about that bread pudding?!” or “Hey, did you get to taste that scrumptious custard? Boy oh boy, was that good!” This is where you imagine that blank faced girl standing in front of you taking her hand and giving you a big thumbs down in over exaggerated indifference of your excitement for these commonplace foods. They aren’t embarrassing; they aren’t something to be ashamed of (although I have to say, morning breath, and all those things I mentioned before happen to everyone, so we shouldn’t really be embarrassed of those either.) So why do we brush them under the rug? Why do we fail to appreciate and recognize the foods that have withstood the test of time? I’m standing up to that today.

 

Let me tell you this, I am a big fan of common foods; I love a grilled cheese sandwich and tomato soup anytime. Pastry cream (Which is essentially just pudding.) is delicious on a spoon, or in little tarts dressed up and glazed to perfection. Breakfast of choice: Egg and toast. When I was young all I wanted when my mom made spaghetti was pasta with butter and Parmesan, and to this day, although I love a good red sauce, I still go for pasta, butter, parm and herbs.  All I’m saying is in this moment; lets give a shout out to the less recognized but equally as amazing, comfort foods. If we are honest with ourselves, more often than not, these are the foods we will reach for, just like when life comes to call and you don’t know who you want to talk to, but you know talking to your Mom will make it better, foods can have the same comforting effect. I don’t know why I’m stressed and I don’t really want to eat my emotions away, but this piece of salted dark chocolate will really do something for my soul that nothing else can . . . ok I may be over exaggerating a tad, but for real people, what happened to rice and bread pudding? Mac and Grilled Cheese? I’m keeping it simple today. Welcome Coconut Milk Rice Pudding, it is creamy, it is wonderful, it is an eclectic party of yumminess in your mouth. Bonus: it is gluten free, and this recipe is also vegan, however if you choose to use regular milk because you don’t like coconut, that’s cool too, we still like you. Give it a try, I promise you will feel yourself sigh in contentment ♥

 

 

Print Recipe
Coconut Rice Pudding
Comforting, Classic and delicious dessert.
Course Desserts
Cuisine American, Indian
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Servings
Ingredients
Pudding
Toppings (Optional)
Course Desserts
Cuisine American, Indian
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Servings
Ingredients
Pudding
Toppings (Optional)
Instructions
  1. In a medium size saucepan, over medium high heat, melt your coconut oil and add your rice.
  2. Stirring occasionally, let rice toast until you see some golden color. Add the Coconut Milk, Water, Lemon and Lime Zest and Juice, Salt, and Cinnamon. Bring to a boil.
  3. Once your mixture boils, reduce to low heat cover and simmer for 20-30 minutes, until all liquid is absorbed or the rice is cooked through.
  4. Remove from heat, add Sugar and Honey and stir until dissolved. Slowly pour Almond Milk into rice mixture until you reach the desired consistency. Some prefer their rice pudding thicker than others, so make it however your prefer.
  5. I garnished my pudding with freshly diced mango and pistachios. You could go for any dried fruits, raisins, currants, cherries. Whatever you fancy ♥
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