Friday, June 24, 2011

Butterscotch Squares

What's better than a brownie?  A Butterscotch square!  If you love butterscotch more then chocolate, than these are for you.


1/2 cup butter
2 cups brown sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla

  • Pre-heat oven to 350
  • Melt butter and add sugar while still warm.
  • Lightly beat eggs  and mix into butter/sugar mixture.
  • Mix all dry ingredients in large bowl.
  • Stir in eggs/butter/sugar.  
  • Add vanilla, mix well.
  • Pour into 9x9 baking dish
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the middle is set.

PB & J

Everyone should be able to make the perfect peanut butter and jam sandwich.  Most people don't think about it and just slap a sandwich together.  And while that might work out if you are just stumbling in at 2:00 AM, there is an art form to it when you want to actually enjoy your sandwich.

  1. The bread must be fresh. Squishy, rips when you try to spread on it, fresh.  Did you buy that loaf of bread yesterday?  It's probably too stale now to make a premium PB & J sandwich.
  2. The bread must be white, store bought bread. Anything else is too heavy or too dense and you just end up with a chewy mess.
  3. The peanut butter must be smooth.  Crunchy things have no place in a good PB & J sandwich.
  4. The jam must be of good quality.  Homemade if you can get your hands on it, otherwise find something with a high fruit concentration.
Now that you have the key ingredients, construction is the next step.

  1. The peanut butter must be spread to every edge of the bread.  Leave no spot uncovered.
  2. The peanut butter to jam ratio must be maintained evenly across the sandwich.  A 2:1 ratio works best.
  3. Never spread anything on the top piece of bread. This can throw the 2:1 ratio off and also allows for the bread to slide around and not maintain it's proper position when cutting the sandwich.
I prefer my PB & J sandwiches left whole, but if it must be cut, diagonal cuts that create 4 triangles are traditional.  

Enjoy with a tall glass of cold milk!

Sunday, June 19, 2011


As part of my challenge to myself, I decided to cook a surprise dinner for Hilary tonight.  Never in a million years did I ever think I would make gnocchi from scratch!  I came across a great and easy recipe from The Cooking Photographer that sounded like even I could make it.  So I did!


In hindsight, I made them a bit too big and I couldn't conquer rolling them with a fork to get the traditional gnocchi shape.  But they tasted great!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Sweet Potato Salad

Vegetable Oil
Rice Vinegar or Cider Vinegar

Use 1 portion vinegar for 2 portions of oil.
Mix oil and vinegar 
Add salt, pepper and cayenne to taste

Add cranberries, sunflower seeds and raisins
let sit overnight

Sweet Potatoes
Green Onions
Sunflower Seeds
Dried Cranberries
Green Raisins
Flat Leaf Parsley


Roast sweet potatoes
cool and peel
chop into large chunks
mix with green onions and parsley
Toss salad with dressing, serve and enjoy.

Greek Potato Salad

Tzaziki -
Yogurt Cheese
1 Cucumber
4 tbsp Red Wine Vinegar (may need more to thin out if yogurt is too thick)
2 cloves Garlic
1 tsp Salt
Pepper to taste
Strain yogurt through cheese cloth to remove as much liquid as possible, leaving behind yogurt cheese
Removed seeds from cucumber and grate the rest into a bowl. Add salt and let sit for approx. 1 hour. Roll cucumber up in clean dish cloth and squeeze out excess water.
Mix with yogurt cheese cucumber, vinegar, garlic and pepper.
Let sit.

cherry tomatoes
red onion
black olives
fingerling potatoes

Boil potatoes
chop into large chunks
chop tomatoes, cucumber, red onions and olives
Mix all ingredients with tzaziki
Serve and enjoy!

Sweedish Potao Salad

Horse Radish Dressing:


4 Tbsp horseradish
2 cups sour cream
1 Tbsp salt
Mix all ingredients and set aside


salad shrimp


Boil potatoes
Cut in half and scoop out some flesh with melon baller, discard extra flesh
Add dollop of dressing
top with salad shrimp
garnish with sprig chive

Green Pea Pesto Potato Salad



1 cup Green Peas
1/2 cup Fresh Basil
1/3 cup Grated Parmesan cheese
2 Cloves Garlic
4 Tbsp Olive Oil*

Add all ingredients except olive oil to food processor and blend.  Slowly drizzle in oil while food processor is running, till a smooth paste is formed.

*additional olive oil may be required if Pesto is too thick.
New Gold Potatoes
Diced Red Pepper
Grape Tomatoes
Snap Peas cut in half
Stalks Asparagus
*quantities will depend on how big of a salad you want.

Boil potatoes in skins until tender; cool and cut into bite size chunks.
Cut Asparagus into 1 inch lengths, blanch and cool.
Mix potatoes and vegetables together.  Add in pesto - I only used 1/3 of the pesto for the amount of potatoes that I cooked.
Toss and serve.