Tag Archives: Recipes

How I Got My Daughter To Try Zucchini and Zucchini Noodle Dishes I Love

8 Oct

 

I never thought I would be able to get my girls to eat zucchini.  Not long ago my mom gave me a Veggetti™ Spiral Vegetable Cutter. It’s been the best gift.  It turns Veggies into thick or thin “spaghetti” noodles.  I use it almost every day for lunch and dinner, mostly with Zucchini. One day my youngest, who won’t touch zucchini when its cut into chips or sticks, saw me eating the Zucchini Noodles. She loved zucchini noodles. She prefers the simple version with olive oil, garlic, salt and a little parmesan cheese or in vodka sauce.

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Below are some of my favorite creations that I put together using simple ingredients:

Simple; with olive oil, salt, garlic.  Topped with parmesan cheese.

Simple; with olive oil, salt, garlic. Topped with parmesan cheese.

 

Sautee noodles with olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic, red onion, adding tomatoes at the end.  Top with feta cheese.

Sautee noodles with olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic, red onion, adding tomatoes at the end. Top with feta cheese.

Sautee with chile olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic, red pepper, adding heirloom tomatoes a few minutes later.  Top with goat cheese.

Sautee with chile olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic, red pepper, and carrots. Add heirloom tomatoes a few minutes later. Top with goat cheese.

Zucchini Noodles topped with Whole Foods pre-made Eggplant Balls that were simmered in Cucina Antica Vodka sauce.  One of my favorites.

Zucchini Noodles topped with Whole Foods pre-made Eggplant Balls that were simmered in Cucina Antica Vodka sauce. One of my favorites.

Sautee Zucchini Noodles with salt, pepper, olive oil, crushed red pepper.  Heat two Whole Foods ready-made Turkey Balls and mix in.  Top with parmesan cheese.

Sautee Zucchini Noodles with salt, pepper, olive oil, crushed red pepper. Heat two Whole Foods ready-made Turkey Balls and mix in. Top with parmesan cheese.

 

Cook Pancetta and roast butternut squash first.  Cook Zucchini Noodles.  Add pancetta and butternut squash, salt, pepper, red pepper flakes and garlic. Top with goat cheese.

Cook Pancetta and roast butternut squash first. Cook Zucchini Noodles. Add pancetta and butternut squash, salt, pepper, red pepper flakes and garlic. Top with goat cheese.

 

 Veggetti™ is available at Bed, Bath, & Beyond for $14.99.  It is top rack, dishwasher safe

Disclaimer:  I did not receive compensation for this post.  I am not a professional chef by any means but I love mixing simple ingredients together to come up with something delicious.  I also love to share products that help my girls eat more vegetables.  I’m still working getting my oldest to try them because I know she will like them if she does.

 

 

 

 

Easy Bake Oven Celebrates 50th Anniversary

7 Nov

20131111-184538.jpgLast month, my daughter and I attended an Easy-Bake Oven 50th Anniversary celebration with celebrity chef Gail Simmons. Walking into the venue and seeing years of Easy-Bake Ovens lined up brought back so many childhood memories. I remember waking up one Christmas morning and opening an Easy-Bake Oven. I was over the moon because I remember wanting one for a long time and Santa delivered it. That gift brought so many lasting memories of baking with my brothers and friends in my childhood home. I’m excited to watch my girls when they receive their first Easy-Bake Oven and all the joy and great memories it brings them.

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At the event, chef Gail Simmons, shared her memories of using an Easy-Bake and shared recipes inspired by her childhood. As we approach the Holidays kids can help prepare Holiday meals, snacks, or desserts in their Easy-Bake Ultimate Oven. Create your own recipe or use these Easy-Bake Ultimate Oven recipes by Gail Simmons (from ABC NEWS):

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Gail created recipes, The Hummingbird Cookie & Double Chocolate Rocky Road Layer Cake, for the easy-bake oven celebration inspired by her own childhood memories.

Hummingbird Cookies with Cream Cheese Frosting
Ingredients
For cookies:

  • 1 Easy-Bake Pink Sugar Cookie Mix
  • 1 teaspoon water
  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ ripe banana, thinly sliced, then quartered into small pieces
  • 2 tablespoons chopped pecans

For cream cheese frosting:

  • 1 Easy-Bake Vanilla Frosting Mix
  • 1¼ teaspoons water
  • 2 tablespoons cream cheese, softened 4 1-inch chunks fresh pineapple, thinly sliced

Directions:

  1. Plug in Easy-Bake Ultimate Oven and turn it on. Preheat for 20 minutes.
  2. Spray baking pan with cooking spray and spread it evenly. Set aside.

Make the dough:

  1. Pour 1 Pink Sugar Cookie mix and 1 teaspoon of water into a bowl and stir to combine. Add vanilla, banana and pecans, and mix well.
  2. Press the mixture together to form the dough.
  3. Sprinkle flour on your hands and roll the dough into a ball. Then, split it evenly into 12 smaller balls.
  4. Place 6 of the dough balls on the baking pan, spreading them out as much as possible, and lightly press each one to flatten.
  5. Follow Easy-Bake directions for cookies through step 11. Baking time: 15 minutes (instead of 9).
  6. Hand wash the baking pan, spray again, and repeat with the other 6 dough balls.

Make the frosting:

  1. While cookies are baking, pour vanilla frosting mix and 1¼ teaspoons of water into a small bowl and beat with a fork until smooth. Then beat in cream cheese. Refrigerate until ready to use.

When cookies have cooled, spoon the frosting into a plastic sandwich bag and cut one corner with scissors. Squeeze a large drop of frosting onto each cookie. Top with a slice of fresh pineapple before serving.

Double Chocolate Rocky Road Layer Cake
Ingredients
For the cake:

  • 2 Easy-Bake Devil’s Food Cake Mixes
  • 12 teaspoons water, divided
  • ¼ cup chopped walnuts, divided
  • ¼ cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips, divided

For the frosting:

  • 3 Chocolate Frosting Mixes (water as per directions)
  • ½ cup mini marshmallows (approximately 40 pieces), 20 cut in half lengthwise
  • ¼ cup chopped walnuts (because I have a daughter

Directions:

  1. Plug in Easy-Bake Ultimate Oven and turn it on. Preheat for 20 minutes.
  2. Spray baking pan with cooking spray and spread it evenly. Set aside.
  3. Make the cake batter:
  4. Pour 1 Devil’s Food Cake Mix and 6 teaspoons of water into a bowl. Break up any lumps and stir until smooth. Add chopped walnuts and chocolate chips, and mix well.
  5. Spoon the batter into the baking pan. Spread evenly using the back of a spoon or a small off-set spatula.
  6. Follow Easy-Bake Baking Basics directions. Baking time: 20 minutes (instead of 16).
  7. After removing the cake from the oven, let it cool completely. Once cool, slide a butter knife around the edge of the cake and remove it from the pan onto a flat plate, upside down. Set aside.
  8. Hand wash the baking pan, spray again, and repeat with the other Devil’s Food Cake Mix.
  9. Make the frosting:
  10. While the cake is baking, pour 3 chocolate frosting mixes and 3 teaspoons of water into a bowl. Break up any lumps and stir until smooth.

Using a small spoon or off-set spatula, frost the top of the first cake with about 1/3 of the frosting mix in an even layer. Place the 20 halved marshmallows, in 4 lines of 10 halves, across the cake, flat side down. Top with the second cake, upside down, pressing lightly to secure it. Frost the top of the cake using another 1/3 of the frosting mix. Then carefully frost all sides. Scatter the remaining marshmallows over the top of the cake and gently press the chopped walnuts against the sides to cover before serving.

**Allergy Warning: My oldest daughter, not at the event, has a Peanut/ Pistachio Allergy so we do not use any nuts at home. When I make these with her, I plan on leaving out the nuts or using an alternative such as sunflower seeds. Also, make sure to always read the labels of the mixes before using. There are online resources for Easy Bake Oven mixes made from scratch.

Fun Facts about the Easy-Bake oven:

  • Twelve EASY-BAKE oven models have been released since 1963, each designed to reflect the colors and oven style of its time. The EASY-BAKE oven has appeared in a variety of colors, including avocado green, harvest gold, pink, purple, and aqua.
  • Past EASY-BAKE oven menu items included treats from popular food brands such as Betty Crocker, Kellogg’s Pop-Tarts®, M&M’s®, Dunkin’ Donuts® and OREO®. Not just cakes and cookies, savory EASY-BAKE snacks over time have included popcorn, TV dinners, potato chips, macaroni and cheese, pizza, French fries, and more.
  • In 2006, the EASY-BAKE oven was inducted into the National Toy Hall of Fame.
  • The EASY-BAKE Ultimate Oven retired the light bulb in 2011 and introduced a way for chefs-in-training to bake up tasty treats using a heating element similar to a conventional oven.
  • The EASY-BAKE brand has inspired a number of celebrity chefs and famous fans throughout the years.

The Easy-Bake Oven will definitely be featured in my upcoming gift guide!

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What’s your favorite Easy Bake Memory or Recipe?

Disclaimer: This product is not recommended for children under 8. I received an Easy Bake Oven at the event which I plan to wrap under our tree this year. My girls are under 8 but I intend to use it with them with full supervision. Check back for a full review and recipes we create together. All opinions expressed are my own unless otherwise noted. Information in italics came from a press release.

I Know Two Little Girls Who Swallowed a Pie…

22 Nov

I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a PieBoth of my girls love books.  We visit the Barnes & Noble in Tribeca at least once a week.  A few weeks ago I was on a mission for books for Thanksgiving and found I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Pie by Allison Jackson.   We have read it just about every night since we bought it.  The girls LOVE it and my older daughter even helps read it to my younger daughter.  Since we have been reading it so much and talking about Thanksgiving, we decided to make a pumpkin pie to share with some friends at a potluck.  I had most of the ingredients sitting around so I only had to pick up a few things.  The recipe below was very easy.  Unfortunately, my youngest was napping but it would have been so easy for her to help with.  While the pie was cooking we read I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Pie and I changed it to “I know two little girls who swallowed a pie” and my older daughter thought it was funny.  If you are looking for a last minute activity that you could share on Thanksgiving, definitely try this.

Tips before you start:

  • Measure out all the ingredients and set them up where your child will be preparing the pie.
  • Number the ingredients if you want your child to work on number identification and then have them count the ingredients you are using for the pie.
  • Make sure you encourage proper hand washing.
  • If you have more than one child helping, let them take turns putting in the ingredients and when whisking count to ten and then switch whiskers.

Recipe for a Perfect Pumpkin Pie (1 9 in Pie)

Nutritional Information: Amount Per Serving Calories: 379 | Total Fat: 14.3g | Cholesterol: 70mg

Ingredients

  • 1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin (I used Libby’s Pumpkin)
  • 1 (14 ounce) can EAGLE BRAND® Sweetened Condensed Milk (I used Santini Organic Sweetened Condensed Milk)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt ( I didn’t measure salt, only put a little in our pie)
  • 1 (9 inch) unbaked pie crust (I used Whole Foods brand in the freezer section)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. Whisk pumpkin, sweetened condensed milk, eggs, spices and salt in medium bowl until smooth. Pour into crust. Bake 15 minutes.
  3. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F and continue baking 35 to 40 minutes or until knife inserted 1 inch from crust comes out clean. Cool. Garnish as desired. Store leftovers covered in refrigerator.
     

Other cute Thanksgiving books I found:

T Is for Turkey  10 Fat Turkeys