Saturday, August 13, 2011

A New Twist on an Old Favorite

The fad this week on many blogs was homemade Oatmeal Creme Pies similar to those made by Little Debbie Snacks.  Well, as you know I have so many zucchini coming from our garden that I wanted to incorporate it somehow.  Since I needed a snack for the Kid's Club that my husband and I teach on Sunday mornings, I gave it a whirl.  Being a parent myself, I don't want to just fill the kids with sugar and candy.  Although all of that is used, I want some nutrition in there.  I found and used a recipe for Zucchini Oatmeal Cookies from the Family Fun website.

I doubled the recipe and altered it a little by using vegetable oil instead of corn oil and by using 3/4 cup of the oil and 1/4 cup of unsweetened applesauce for the double batch.

I found the marshmallow filling recipe from the Macaroni and Cheesecake blogsite and doubled that as well.

With doubling the recipes it yields about 36 sandwich cookies.  They're good, so enjoy!

I almost forgot!  The reason I even made these today is because the girls wanted me to add eyes to them so they look like little cookie monsters.  So, without further adieu, I give you the cookie monsters!

Squash Pizza

I know, I know - I didn't make the name of this pizza sound too appetizing.  But it's the truth!  It's topped with summer squash and zucchini (and carrots, mushrooms, spinach, red onion, white pizza sauce, extra sharp cheddar cheese, fresh mozzarella, and ham).  It was delicious!!!!
First I made my pizza dough using this recipe from my friend, Jeanne:
1 1/2 c. warm water
1 TBL yeast
2 TBL sugar (or honey)
Mix together and let sit for a minute or two.

1 1/2 c. white flour
1 1/2 c whole wheat flour (or you can use all white)
1 TBL salt
2 TBL olive oil

Add the flour,salt and oil. Mix well.
Add up to one more cup of flour to make soft dough. Knead for 4-5 minutes. . Let rise for 30 - 40 minutes.

Punch down and shape. Will make 1 thick 16" crust or 2 fairly thick 12" crusts.

I made my white pizza sauce:
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 2 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced fresh thyme or marjoram
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
In a heavy saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté for 5 or 6 minutes, or until translucent. Add the garlic and stir for 1 minute longer. Add the cream, lower the heat to medium-low, and cook for about 3 minutes, or until the cream thickens and reduces slightly. 
Remove from the heat, stir in the thyme, and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Then I added all my veggies in a nice and neat order:

Then after I took the picture, I dumped all the leftover pieces that I still had over the nice and neat pizza and covered the entire thing with delicious extra sharp cheddar cheese and discs of fresh mozzarella.  I baked it in a 500 degree oven for 18 minutes.  YUMMO!

Dessert Anyone?

Sometimes I really enjoy sabotaging myself and make desserts that I really don't need.  I believe part of the reason is that I enjoy making things with my girls.  Cooking and baking are a treat for us.  However, we need to find people to give these treats to instead of just keeping them.  Any suggestions?
Well, here are the most recent indulgences.  (I am proud of myself though.  I have held back a bit on eating these and so far have lost 2 pounds this week!)

First, we made the amazing Hershey's Chocolate Cake and Frosting - to die for!

Then I picked up these little sponge, tart shells and filled them with lemon curd and blueberries topped off with whipped cream.

Garden Omelettes

As you've noticed, our garden is going nuts and so I'm stuffing our meals full of veggies.  I wish we could enjoy this all year, but since I can't I'll just savor the moments of fresh veggies from the garden while it lasts.

I made omelettes for Jeremy & I full of mushrooms (okay - they're from the store),  onions, spinach, red peppers, ham and provolone from the deli, along with a side of grilled pitas.

The girls' breakfast was basically the same thing, only they requested to have scrambled eggs instead of omellettes.  Their pitas were mini ones that I cut in half.  It was a very tasty breakfast!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

My Very Own Amazing Recipe

I've been really enjoying the use of pocketless pitas for meals lately.  They're pretty versatile and fun.  Last night I used them for pizzas and they were very good.  The last couple of days I've been making my very own amazing recipe.  My husband went to barber school with a Bulgarian man who would bring crepes filled with sour cream and feta cheese.  They were pretty good and I thought I'd add a little more of my own flare to it.  Seeing as we have a ton of cucumbers growing in our garden, I have to use them up.  My husband isn't a big fan of cukes, but he loved this dish!

To start add a little olive oil to a pan and heat over high heat.  Add the pita cook it until it starts to get crispy.  Place the pita on a plate.  In a separate bowl, add 1/2 cup sour cream to 1" cube of feta cheese that is crumbled. Mix well and add salt and pepper to taste.  Spread the sour cream & feta mixture over pita.  Top with very thinly sliced cucumbers and generously sprinkle salt over each cucumber slice.  Then garnish with dill and you have a very delicious lunch!

Cooking with Kids

My girls have been watching a new little show called Tasty Time with Ze Fronk online on Disney Jr.   It's a cute little cooking show of healthy snacks that kids can make pretty easily.  So far they've made the Banana-Strawberry smoothie, Coconut-Banana wheels, British Tea Sandwiches, and Pita Pizzas.  I have to admit they are pretty tasty!  Here are some pics of Angelina's endeavor with making the Coconut-Banana wheels & British Tea Sandwiches.

Then I made these little snacks for the Kid's Club that my husband and I teach at our church on Sunday mornings.  I wanted to make blueberry muffins, but wanted them to be a little more fun than just a muffin.  I also didn't want to use up all my good blueberries, so I cheated and got some Jiffy muffin mix and then topped off each one with a blueberry and a drop of frosting.  Make the muffins just like the instructions say except use ice cream cones.  I put the cones in my mini-muffin pan, but found the middle ones didn't bake well because they were too close together.  So, I think next time I'll use my regular muffin pan.  Oh well, they still turned out good and the kids really liked them.