Saturday, December 25, 2010

Brownies with Pumpkin Chocolate glaze

I was put in charge of Christmas dessert, which is great.....if I had gotten my ingredients the day before Christmas....when all of the stores are closed....even Walmart. With that being said, it was time to get inventive! I had ingredients for brownies and some leftover cream cheese frosting I was saving for a rainy day (or snowy, for that matter.) This was the end result! Honestly, not what I had hoped for, but it's fairly delicious, and extra delicious with some ice cream!


INGREDIENTS: (makes 12)

for the brownies

3/4 cup butter
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1/4 tsp salt

for the frosting
1 cup cream cheese frosting
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1 tbsp brown sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg

4 oz dark chocolate

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees, and grease a 9x9 pan

2. In one bowl, cream together the butter, sugar and eggs.

3. In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, cocoa, and salt

4. 1/2 cup at a time, mix the dry ingredients with the wet. Mix until well incorporated and smooth. Pour into pan and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.

5. For the frosting, cream together the cream cheese frosting, pumpkin puree, brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg in one bowl. In a separate bowl, melt the chocolate. Pour these mixtures over your COOLED brownies in whatever way your little heart desires. Serve with ice cream, or not--it's Christmas, eat what you want!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Pina Colada Cupcake

Let's get a little summer flavors in the middle of the Christmas season! I mean, I don't know about you, but cold weather and I don't mix well. These will be my little trick to make myself think it's warm....and that I'm on a beach....with a lot of sun.

I used a cake mix for this (gasp!) to save some time. I know, I know, naughty! But I'm generally never disappointed in the texture of a boxed cake mix. HOWEVER, I will never use pre-made icing. Yuck.


INGREDIENTS (makes 12 cupcakes)
for the cake...
1 yellow cake mix
1/3 cup oil
3 eggs
1 cup water
1 cup pineapple
for the frosting...
1 8oz package of cream cheese (room temp)
3 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla
6 oz shredded coconut

1. Preheat oven to 350 and grease or line 12 muffin tins. (I actually was able to make 6 standard sized cupcakes, and 6 jumbo sized cupcakes).

2. In one large bowl, mix together the cake mix, the oil, eggs, water, and pineapple. Mix with an electric mixer for 2-3 minutes until smooth and the pineapple has been shredded.

3. Pour into muffin tins and bake for 15-20 minutes or until insides are baked through.

4. While they're baking, mix together the cream cheese, powdered sugar, and vanilla. Mix until the icing can hold its shape.

5. Once your cupcakes are done, toast the coconut! On a baking sheet, spread the coconut out until it is a single layer. Place the coconut under the broiler for about 2 minutes or until brown/toasted. CAREFUL! Once it begins to brown, it only takes about 10 seconds until it's ready to be pulled out. Nobody likes burnt coconut! : )

6. Ice cupcakes, top with toasted coconut, and dream of the warm weather!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Vegetarian Egg White Frittata

This is your new power meal. Let me break down the stats for you:
Calories: 170
Fat: 2.8 grams
Protein: 27

I mean, this meal is not playing around. I wanted to have something that was filling and satisfying, without a lot of fat and low calories. This is truly filling and won't leave you hungry. The eggs give it a breakfast feel, but it's really a dish that can be eaten for lunch or dinner. If you need to have some carbs with it, stick to a whole grain toast or maybe a wheat tortilla. Enjoy!

INGREDIENTS: (makes 1 serving)
6 eggs white
1 cup spinach
1 medium tomato, chopped
1/8 cup cheese (I used a mozzarella/asiago mix)
salsa (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste

1. Preheat oven to 350.
2. In a bowl, mix together the first three ingredients, until the egg whites are evenly distributed
3. Pour egg mixture into a baking dish, top with cheese and salt/pepper
4. Bake for 20 minutes, or until egg white are white throughout
5. Top with salsa

Saturday, December 4, 2010

DIY: Almond Butter

I found out a little secret a few days don't have to have any spectacular tools or involved process to make nut butters. Considering I could easily survive off of peanut butter alone, this is good news! I generally don't buy almond butter at the store, because it's so much more expensive than PB. Almonds, however, have half the amount of saturated fat, more fiber, and the same amount of sugar as peanuts.

Here's the plan to make your own almond butter, for half the price!

In a food processor or blender, grind 2 cups DRY ROASTED almonds w/ about 1 tbsp of oil. I used olive oil, for health benefits, but you can use whatever you have on hand. Blend blend blend until smooth, then enjoy! Easy, no? Enjoy!