Gnocchetti with Asparagus and Garlic-Gorgonzola Sauce & Giveaway

This dish is a garlic lover’s dream. Mini gnocchi (gnocchetti) and asparagus are tossed in a garlic-gorgonzola cream sauce made with enough garlic to keep the vampires away.

Gnocchetti with Asparagus and Garlic-Gorgonzola Sauce 1

Today is National Garlic day and to celebrate I joined up with a bunch of other food bloggers to share recipes that predominantly feature this beloved food enhancer. There’s even a stellar giveaway to go along with it!

When thinking of what to make for the occasion, I immediately thought of a garlic restaurant in San Francisco at which I once ate, which takes pride in how much garlic they use every day. We had garlic seeping out of our pores afterwards and I relished in it, refusing gum afterwards. This pasta dish is my recreation of what I ordered – mini gnocchi (gnocchetti) and asparagus tossed in a garlicky-gorgonzola cream sauce. I used 8 cloves of garlic (which amounted to 1/4 cup minced) in the sauce. In other words, this is not for the faint of heart when it comes to garlic.

Gnocchetti with Asparagus and Garlic-Gorgonzola Sauce 2

Check out all the other garlicky goodness happening today:

One year ago: Strawberry, Mango, and Yogurt Smoothie

Two years ago: More Fudge Less Pudge Brownies

Three years ago: Coconut Chicken Salad with Apricot Honey Mustard Vinaigrette
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Balsamic-Strawberry Bagel Bruschetta

To prove how versatile bagel bites can be I made bruschetta with them. But not just any bruschetta, a straberry-balsamic marinated goat cheese bruschetta.

Balsamic-Strawberry Bagel Bruschetta 1

This post almost didn’t happen. Yesterday WordPress put out yet another update (3.9) which caused problems for any blogger with the Ziplist plugin. I didn’t figure out until midnight that deactivating the plugin provided a temporary fix allowing me write up the post before reactivating the plugin. So tada here’s today’s recipe!

City Takeover2

A few weeks ago my friend Shiva asked if I could help dream up some fun bagel-bite recipes to be on the menu for her new cafe called Tabletop Board Game Cafe. It’s a board game cafe, featuring a maker space, and it’s opening soon near the west side of Cleveland, OH. I have been to a boardgame cafe once in Toronto and it was a blast, but with her and her husband’s creativity I know their cafe will be even better. So all you NE Ohioans better check it out once it opens! Play some games and order some tasty bagel bites.

Balsamic-Strawberry Bagel Bruschetta 2

With my goat cheese mania lately I had to make a bagel bite incorporating it so I started my bagel biting adventures with more of a dessert-appetizer variety, making a bruschetta with strawberries instead of tomatoes. The strawberries are marinated in balsamic glaze before being placed on top of the goat cheese. It was so simple and easy that I decided to make it two different ways: toasted bagel bites and bagel chips.

To find out more about Tabletop Board Game Cafe, follow them on Instagram (http://instagram.com/tabletopcleve), Twitter (https://twitter.com/tabletopcleve), and Pinterest (http://www.pinterest.com/tabletopcleve/).

One year ago: Cast Iron Skillet Brussels Sprouts Bacon Pizza

Two years ago: Gnocchi with Roasted Red Pepper Cream Sauce

Three years ago: Nutella Mousse
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Rice Krispies Easter Bunny Cake

Looking for an Easter dessert? This cute Easter bunny cake is easily constructed with two round cakes. The best part is that it’s a no-bake cake made out of rice krispies treats.

Rice Krispies Easter Bunny Cake

Baking for the holidays is always a lot of fun. Beyond an excuse to use festive sprinkles, there are so many creative  ideas. Take this cake for example – two round cakes magically transform into this cute little guy. Unfortunately my photo-shoot for this Easter creation was not conducive to great pictures, but the execution is what’s important here. It’s an Easter bunny cake!

First things first, this is a no-bake cake. I made a cake out of rice krispies treats which were formed in cake pans. Using a simple template I cut up one of the cakes into the ears and bowtie to create the bunny. From there all that remained was to frost and decorate! You can use any assortment of candy, sprinkles, and frosting that you prefer. I made the eyes out of leftover cakeball fondant and white and black frosting, the cheeks are pink sprinkles, the nose is more cakeball fondant, the mouth is black frosting, and finally the bowtie consists of a chocolate chip cookie, cakeball fondant and sprinkles. Coconut would also be a great way to make a “fluffy” bunny but I made this cake for a non-coconut lover.

One year ago: Apple Pie
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Broccoli and Cauliflower Quiche with Hash Brown Crust

Change up your quiche routine with a crispy hash brown crust baked in a cast iron skillet. Fill it up with broccoli, cauliflower, eggs, and cheese or any of your favorite quiche add-ins for a great way to start the day.

Broccoli and Cauliflower Quiche with Hash Brown Crust 2

This post is a bit delayed but better late than never! While in LA Kate requested that I make a quiche one day for breakfast which was perfect because I had been wanting to try out a hash brown crust. Since my nephew Luke loves broccoli I knew I had to incorporate that into the quiche as well, which lead to the creation of this broccoli and cauliflower quiche with a hash brown crust! Instead of baking it in a pie pan, the quiche is baked and served in a cast iron skillet. Food is more appealing when presented in a cast iron skillet, don’t you think? If you don’t have a cat iron, use an oven-safe skillet or a 10-inch spring-form pan.

Broccoli and Cauliflower Quiche with Hash Brown Crust 1

One year ago: Hot Oat & Quinoa Cereal

Two years ago: Blueberry Oatmeal Bagels
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Spaghetti with Roasted Butternut and Brussels & Greek Yogurt Cream Sauce

Spaghetti with roasted butternut squash and Brussels sprouts proves that that winter squash and vegetables transcend the seasons. Especially when paired with a Greek yogurt cream sauce.

Spaghetti with Roasted Butternut and Brussels & Greek Yogurt Cream Sauce

The weather was finally showing signs of spring sticking around but has suddenly revived its pesky habit of dropping to nearly below freezing today. Here I was getting into the groove of spring attire only to be denied once more. As a result I continue to crave roasted winter vegetables/squash such as Brussels sprouts and butternut squash. With this cold front sweeping the nation I figured a pasta dish with some season-transitioning flavors would help comfort the cold away, especially when paired with a creamy Greek yogurt sauce. I even put some fried sage on top, in all its crispy and falvorful glory.
One year ago: Creamy Pesto with Mini Ravioli, Asparagus and Sun Dried Tomatoes

Three years ago: Guiltless Cajun Chicken Alfredo
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Peepsters Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies

My favorite chewy chocolate chip cookies get dressed up for Easter on the inside with PEEPS Peepsters stuffing.

Peepsters Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies 1

Yesterday I returned a couple unopened bags of candy melts thinking it wouldn’t be a big deal, it’s just sugar. There was nothing wrong, just didn’t end up needing them for a recipe, to which she replied, “Doesn’t matter I have to throw them out anyway.” Now I thought she was joking so I laughed, but after her unchanged facial expression I realized she was not. Apparently returned food items (even unopened, packaged sugar/chocolate) cannot be resold. It makes sense for fresh food or anything requiring refrigeration, but candy?? Upon discovering this I felt bad for returning them and voiced this to her. However, she shot back that I did not in fact feel bad or else I wouldn’t be returning them. She said it so matter-of-fact, again without any humor, that I felt like I should be offended. True I could have snatched them up saying I changed my mind and if I had a job right now I would have. Unfortunately I do not and keeping them is less important than being able to pay for things such as bills. In the end, Walmart can handle the loss a lot easier than I can right now.

Just in case you still think I am a bad person, how about some cookies? I used my favorite chewy chocolate chip cookie recipe using both semisweet and milk chocolate chips this time and then stuffed them with PEEPS Peepsters – fun chocolate Easter candies with marshmallow centers. These cookies are basically PEEPS stuffed chocolate chip cookies without the mess of an exploding marshmallow, which commonly happens if you stuff a regular marshmallow into the center of a cookie. 

Peepsters Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies 2

Three years ago: Double Cake Batter Truffle Ice Cream
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Easy Corn Salsa & CW CorningWare Giveaway

This sweet and tangy corn salsa is as easy to make as it is to watch disappear. With sweet yellow corn, black beans, pimentos, and bell pepper, what’s not to love?

Easy Corn Salsa 1

If you’ve been paying attention, you may have spied the new CW bakeware by CorningWare in my posts this week. CW is a new line of bakeware from CorningWare that comes in an array of vibrant colors and sizes (purple, blue, green, yellow, and red & 3 quart, shallow 1.9 quart, 1.5 quart, and 20 oz.). What first excited me about this bakeware were the colors, especially the purple ;-). It didn’t hurt that they also net together for compact storage – something I battled with constantly in my apartment’s tiny kitchen.

CW_Aerial_Hero_Stack

I made a sausage and egg breakfast casserole in the blue 3 quart baker, an asparagus & wild rice casserole in the green 1.5 quart baker, and today I am sharing a recipe for an easy corn salsa displaying in the blue 1.5 quart and red 20 oz. bakers. Although this salsa does not require any oven-time, I wanted to show off that this bakeware is just as good at serving food as it is at baking. As for the salsa, the recipe is from my PhD advisor’s wife. Whenever she made it for any event and I would be found hovering over it. Under my watch, it disappeared as quickly as it was made.

What you would make in the CW bakeware? Tell me using the Rafflecopter widget at the bottom of this post and you will be entered to win your own set!

P.S. For those of you wondering, I qualified in the B1 group for pickleball. There are 5 groups starting with C, B2, B1, A2 and then A1 is the best. So I’m i the middle of the pack. I was told I could easily move up to A2 with just a little more practice. Maybe in another month if I’m still without a job…

Easy Corn Salsa 2

One year ago: Pear Yogurt Almond Cake with Cinnamon Brown Sugar Buttercream
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Apple Jelly Glazed Pork Chops

Facts: Glazes always improve a meal and apples pair well with pork. Therefore, the apple jelly glaze used on these pork chops is especially delicious and, better yet, easy to prepare.

Apple Jelly Glazed Pork Chops

Yesterday I woke up with a sore throat and a fitful of sneezes despite feeling perfectly healthy the night before. Of course it got progressively worse as the day went on, with full blown sinus pressure and a sore nose. My dad recently came down with a cold so it is possible that I am sick. However, I do tend to get allergy symptoms during the first allergy season after moving somewhere new but never again so long as I live there. Happened when I moved to Columbus, OH and Memphis, TN. The same phenomenon may be happening now that I am in Knoxville. Bleh, I hope it’s a cold because those symptoms don’t last as long.

Either way I have to power through these symptoms for my pickleball evaluation this evening. In case you haven’t heard of it, pickleball is similar to tennis except played on a smaller court with paddles and a wiffle ball. It is all the rage here and my parents play it religiously. Naturally, I got sucked in as well. With my tennis background it was easy to pick up once I adjusted to the shorter paddle. However non-group members can only play indoor or during outdoor open time. After three months the others have decided that it is time I went for evaluation to be placed in a group (5 different groups based on skill level), which would enable me to play more often in designated time slots. Wish me luck!

As for these pork chops, everyone knows how well apples go with pork so why not slather on an apple glaze made with apple jelly (homemade in my case because my dad is the jelly man). Glazing pork chops is all the rage.

One year ago: Slow Cooker Chicken Nachos

Two years ago: Cheesy Potato Casserole
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Easter Recipe Roundup

Complete Easter recipe roundup with recipes for Brunch, appetizers, sides, dinner and dessert!

Easter Recipe Roundup 2014
With Easter just a little over a week away I thought it was a good time to gather up some recipes to help you plan your Easter Brunch and/or dinner. Many of these have appeared at Easter events I attended in the past and I know they will be a hit with your friends and family too. Do you have a favorite recipe that you have to make every year? Somehow my favorite carrot cake recipe has not made it onto the blog yet but there are a few carrot cake-inspired treats on this list – Carrot Cake Batter Dip, Carrot Cake Waffles and Carrot Cake Oatmeal!

Check back as I will be adding new recipes as we get closer to Easter!

One year ago: Speculoos Oatmeal Raisin Cookie Dough Granola Bars

Two years ago: Flavor-Injected Glazed Ham

BRUNCH

Mini Razzle Dazzle Peanut Butter Cinnamon Rolls

APPETIZERS

Deviled Strawberries

SIDE DISHES

Individual Scalloped Potatoes

ENTREES

 Crockpot Turkey Tenderloin

DESSERTS

Double Chocolate Chip Cookies 1

Previous Roundups: Easter Recipe Roundup 2012

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Asparagus & Wild Rice Casserole

Creamy wild rice and fresh asparagus come together in this baked side dish. Serve it alongside your favorite cut of meat – it’ll go with just about anything.

Asparagus & Wild Rice Casserole 1

Let’s talk plastic bags. I try to use reusable shopping bags wherever I go and have already told my story about them confusing retail but not grocery cashiers, yet sometimes they like to wait in the car instead of coming into the store with me. Such occasions result in a double dose of annoyance because not only do I have to get plastic bags but the cashiers have a habit of using excessive amounts of them. Yesterday I had one bag with a single can of black beans and another with just a block of cheese and container of sour cream. Apparently those three items would not get along if placed in the same plastic bag. I understand they don’t want the bags to break but that’s just silly. My milk was also bagged, which is not a light item and conveniently already possesses a handle. This is why I prefer self-checkout. Alas, I will just bring them back for recycling.

In other news (I need a new transition phrase because that one gets used a lot), I made a side dish! They appear so infrequently on this blog that I get excited when there’s one to share. Especially when it is something that pairs so well with a variety of things. Grilled steak? Definitely. BBQ chicken? You bet. I served it with apple jelly-glazed pork chops and it was wonderful. Wild rice and fresh asparagus are mixed together in a creamy sauce, topped with cheddar cheese, and baked until bubbly.

Asparagus & Wild Rice Casserole 2

One year ago: Baked Quinoa Chicken Parmesan

Three years ago: White Bean Chicken Chili
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