Posts Tagged ‘lemon’

Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup

Hearty chicken, veggie, and whole wheat orzo soup with a refreshing lemon broth seasoned rosemary and parsley. Comforting but not too heavy for the summer.

Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup

Homemade soups usually hit their prime during the fall and winter months but who says you cannot enjoy soup during the summer? This lemon broth based chicken and whole wheat orzo soup is comforting yet light enough to enjoy despite the heat outside.

In family news my nephew Luke has been exceptionally good with his new little brother Griffin. He actually requested to hold him one day and has been showing him how to do tummy-time. Sounds like he’s going to be a good big brother! Hopefully I will get an opportunity to venture out there soon and then will shower you all with photos sweeter than any cookie photo you’ve ever seen.

One year ago: Slow Cooker General Tso’s Chicken

Two years ago: Dark Chocolate Banana Peanut Butter
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Sour Patch Kids Cake

Get a serious sweet-and-sour fix with this Sour Patch Kids Cake. Lemon cake, lemon frosting and a ton of Sour Patch Kids!

Sour Patch Kids Cake 1

More new nephew (newphew?) news! His name is Griffin Watson, born at 10:46 pm on 7/1/14 (at least in California), and weighed in at 6lbs 11 oz, 20.5 inches. Here’s another cute picture my brother shared (CLICK HERE). I cannot wait to see a picture of Luke and Griffin together! To celebrate I am giving you cake. Sour Patch Kid covered cake to be exact. The cake itself is lemon flavored, as is the frosting, and is decorated with Sour Patch Kid gummies and covered in any remnant Sour Patch sweet-but-sour sugar that collected at the bottom of the bag. “First they’re sour, then they’re sweet” indeed. Hopefully Griffin will be mostly sweet rather than sour, just like his big brother :-).

Sour Patch Kids Cake 2

This cake was actually made for a friend’s birthday. As you can guess when he told me he loved citrus things and Sour Patch Kids I took him at his word and made a lemony-Sour Patch covered cake. And he loved it! The inside was actually rainbow colored just like the surprise-rainbow lemon cake I shared awhile back (the method for creating that design ends up making 2 full cakes) which made it even more fun. The recipe here however does not reflect that method as I have left that secret to be discovered in the Surprise-Inside Cakes cookbook. If you haven’t checked it out yet you must!

One year ago: Fruit & Yogurt Popsicles

Two years ago: Shortbread Cookies
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Fruity Sangria

Warm weather means it’s time for sangria. This red wine based sangria has oranges, lemons, strawberries, and nectarines. Drink up and then enjoy the fruit!

Fruity Sangria 1

You know that 1 hour and 45 minute phone interview I had last week? I just got an e-mail saying I am one of their top 10 candidates, but the earliest they can arrange the in-person interview is sometime in July so I won’t know more for a little while. I will keep you posted (btw it’s in Des Moines, Iowa). In the meantime I have reached my farthest destination on my journey, Rochester, NY. Time to enjoy not driving for a couple days and see my friend Adrienne get married!

Since I had all of these fun things to share with you today and it’s Friday, I decided it was a good day to post a cocktail recipe. I made this with Trader Joe’s Charles Schwab cabernet sauvignon. Cheap wine is always great for sangria because you don’t have to feel guilty about “ruining” it. Feel free to serve this with a splash of lemon-lime soda or another bubbly additive if you prefer such a thing in your sangria but I like mine without carbonation. Go ahead and eat the fruit floating in your drink too. You better believe I did, except for the lemons.

Fruity Sangria 2

One year ago: Coconut Pecan Cookies

Two years ago: Spicy Avocado Chicken Enchiladas
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Homemade Strawberry (Vodka) Lemonade

Homemade lemonade with fresh strawberries is a perfect spring or summer-time beverage. Throw in some vodka and you’ll be ready for a Sunday Funday!

Homemade Strawberry Vodka Lemonade

If you are hosting brunch for Mother’s Day, hand the mother(s) in your life a tall glass of homemade strawberry lemonade to enjoy while you’re busy cooking. And if she’s the boozing type throw in a shot of vodka! I personally came to appreciate vodka lemonade after trying it out at The Slider Inn while living in Memphis. This concept may not be novel to some people but I was extra excited when I realized all the fun flavor combinations that could be created with their well stocked supply of flavored vodkas (they even had one called loopy which tasted like fruit loops). I took it one step further by adding both real strawberries and vodka to homemade lemonade, resulting in one deliciously dangerous cocktail. Happy Mother’s Day!

Two years ago: Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Granola

Three years ago: Raspberry Mango Margarita Pie
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Strawberry Shortcake Cobbler

Use your cast-iron skillet for dessert with this strawberry shortcake cobbler. Easy to throw together and a fun presentation.

Strawberry Shortcake Cobbler

In case you were unaware, cast-iron skillets are not just for entrees but desserts as well. Throw in some strawberries topped with shortcake biscuit batter and you will soon discover the validity of that statement. The strawberries become juicy and gooey which perfectly contrasts the crumbly, buttery biscuit topping. Don’t forget the fresh whipped cream!

One year ago: Whole Wheat Hamburger Buns

Two years ago: Pineapple Pancakes with Honey Greek Yogurt Topping
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Grilled Chicken Gyro Salad with Pita Croutons

If you love gyros then you need to make this gyro salad. It’s a Greek salad topped with grilled chicken, homemade pita croutons, and tzatziki dressing.

Grilled Chicken Gyro Salad

I do not repeat recipes often but when I do I typically change them up slightly. Today is one such example, where I deconstructed the recipe for my chicken gyros into a salad. Gyro-seasoned chicken is grilled to perfection and served over a Greek salad topped with homemade pita croutons and tzatziki dressing. The grilled chicken could easily be enjoyed by itself as it is tender, juicy, flavorful, etc… but the remaining components work to further enhance the experience. Although this recipe has quite a ridiculously long ingredient list do not be discouraged because it is relatively simple to throw together. Toss the chicken in the marinade, whisk together the dressing, toast the croutons (or use store-bought), chop up the salad and then grill the chicken. That’s only 5 steps and the longest task is marinading the chicken, which is inactive time.

One year ago: Funfetti Macarons

Three years ago: Mexican Mac and Cheese
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Rainbow-Surprise Lemon Cake & Surprise-Inside Cakes Cookbook Giveaway

Traditionally frosting is the star of cake decorating, but what about the inside? Amanda Rettke proves that it’s the inside that counts with her cookbook, “Surprise-Inside Cakes”.

SurpriseInsideCakes hc c

When it comes to decorating cakes I am not an expert. Upon receiving the Surprise-Inside Cakes cookbook by Amanda Rettke (I Am Baker) I was a bit intimidated to go beyond the recipes for different layers of color and/or frosting without any cutting and cake-puzzle-assembling. It is truly impressive how many different interiors she was able to design and execute. But after reading through a few of the more complicated recipes I realized that with the right tools and some patience, paired with her excellent step-by-step photos and directions, I might be able to pull it off.

I really loved the smiley face cake and argyle cake but decided to start out small with one of the easier recipes – the rainbow cake. First I had to decide on a cake flavor. Amanda provides recipes for perfectly level cakes and frostings which can be used to create any of the surprise-inside cakes. However, you could also use your own recipe or even a boxed mix, I won’t tell. If using other recipes you may end up with a domed top which will need to be leveled off, unless of course you know that particular recipe does come out flat. Either way, a cake with these interior designs will look made from scratch no matter what recipe you choose.

Rainbow Balloon Lemon Cake 1

To see if a boxed mix would work, I decided to doctor up a white cake mix to create a lemon cake. (Did you know that rainbows taste like lemons? Well, at least this one does.) The cakes did dome but that was easily solved by slicing off the tops with a long serrated knife. After that I followed Amanda’s detailed instructions for assembling and frosting the cakes. I don’t think I’ve ever frosted such a smooth cake before.

Rainbow Balloon Lemon Cake 2

Upon that beautiful white scene I created my own balloon decorations using the cake-top scraps and leftover frosting. It looks like fondant doesn’t it!? Nope it’s something even better, something I have decided to call cake-ball-fondant! Yup, I am a genius. Instead of forming balls to be dipped in chocolate, roll flat with a rolling pin and cut out shapes with cookies cutters. Consider your mind blown.

Rainbow Balloon Lemon Cake 3

In order to find out exactly how I colored and assembled this cake you’ll have to read about it in the Surprise-Inside Cakes cookbook! To assist in keeping a copy into your hands asap I am giving away a copy of this awesome cookbook to one lucky reader. After checking out the recipe use the Rafflecopter widget at the bottom of this post to enter.

Rainbow Balloon Lemon Cake 4

One year ago: Baked Eggs with Crispy Hash Brown Crust

Two years ago: Cheesy Cat Treats

Three years ago: Funfetti Cake Batter Smoothie
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Meyer Lemon Curd Cupcakes for Two

The more I pack, the more stuff I realize I have (and wonder how more than one person could have ever survived living in this apartment). In an effort to reduce the unnecessary clutter, as is typical with packing/moving, I have a separate set of boxes that are being filled with things to donate or give away. Some of it is stuff that I have debated donating in the past but somehow convinced myself to hold on to. Just goes to show that you should trust your instincts when you cannot answer the question, “when will I need/wear this?” Of course then there are things like my highschool tennis hoodies that even though I never wear them I refuse to donate them.

Meyer Lemon Curd Cupcakes 1

Which brings me to the items in my fridge that I cling on to because I don’t like to waste things and think that I will find some purpose for it in another recipe, only to be pushed to the back and lost. Then much later it is found without knowledge of what it was in the first place. Thankfully I found a purpose for the meyer lemon curd before it suffered the same fate – stuffed into a vanilla cupcake! Yes, I know I could’ve just eaten it straight up but that wouldn’t have been as fun because these cupcakes also happen to make just enough for two. Got any leftover frosting lying around? Perfect time to use it! I somehow did not have any so I whipped up a miniature batch of white chocolate buttercream.

Meyer Lemon Curd Cupcakes 2

Two years ago: Broccoli Quiche

Three years ago: Pizza Dough

MEYER LEMON CURD CUPCAKES FOR TWO

Serves 2

Ingredients:

CUPCAKES

1 egg white

2 Tbsp sugar

2 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

1/4 heaping tsp baking powder

Pinch salt

1-1/2 Tbsp milk

FILLING

1-2 Tbsp meyer lemon curd

FROSTING

1 Tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature

1/2 cup powdered sugar

1/8 tsp vanilla extract

0.5 oz. white chocolate, melted

1/2-1 tsp milk

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a muffin pan with 2 liners.
  2. In a small bowl, add egg white and sugar and whisk until combined. Add in vanilla and melted butter and stir until mixed. Add flour, baking powder and salt and stir until smooth. Stir in milk. Divide batter equally between the 2 cupcake liners.
  3. Bake at 350 for 12-16 minutes, or until cake is set. Let cool completely.
  4. While the cupcakes cool prepare the frosting: In a small bowl, cream butter with an electric mixer until fluffy, then add vanilla. Add in powdered sugar on low speed. Add in melted white chocolate and beat until incorporated. To reach desired consistency, add in milk 1/2 teaspoon at a time with mixer on low speed, until it reaches desired consistency.
  5. Using a paring knife, cut out the core of the cooled cupcakes. Fill with meyer lemon curd. Cut off the tops of the removed cored and place on top of filling. Frost and decorate with sprinkles if desired.

Source: Cupcakes and Frosting adapted from How Sweet It Is.

Signature

Meyer Lemon Chess Pie & Zulka Pure Cane Sugar Giveaway

Earlier this year I was introduced to Zulka Pure Cane Sugar, an all-natural and unrefined granulated sugar, and was very pleased with it after testing it out in several recipes. Today, I’m writing to let you know about Zulka’s Holiday Bake-Off contest! To celebrate the holiday season, Zulka is hosting a Holiday Bake-Off Facebook contest for a chance to win $500 to Sur La Table! Entering is easy:

  1. Create a recipe using Zulka Pure Cane Sugar
  2. Upload the recipe with an image of your creation to Zulka’s “Bake-Off” Facebook tab by December 22 for a chance to win a $500 gift card to Sur La Table!

I know I am not giving you much warning with the deadline only being a couple of days away, but if you needed an excuse to bake any more festive treats for the holidays now is the time! To sweeten the deal, I am also giving away a bag of Zulka to one reader! Just use the Rafflecopter widget at the bottom of this post (giveaway ends Sunday night).

But before you rush off to enter the contest and giveaway, you really should stick around for this recipe I made. It’s a chess pie recipe from the days when my parents lived in Texas. My mom included this recipe in the recipe box she gave me when I left for college many years ago but I did not make it until now. In her directions she said to use lemon juice, coconut, or crushed pineapple. With Meyer lemons in season right now, there was an obvious winner.

Being that this was the first ever chess pie that I have made, I was a bit nervous to share it with people who had grown up in the South and ate this pie on the regular. To my satisfaction it passed the test. I was told that they had had regular, buttermilk, and chocolate chess pies but never lemon – and they liked it! Sounded like a good candidate for me to enter into Zulka’s Holiday Bake-Off ;-).

Meyer Lemon Chess Pie

Two years ago: Pecan Fruit Cake
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Skillet Greek Yogurt Chicken

Surprise surprise it’s me posting today! You thought I was going to drop off the face of the blogging-planet post-defense didn’t you? I am taking a couple days off to spend with my family that came into town, but I am back to my regularly scheduled posts. Just make sure to call me Dr. Erin, mmk? Gotta start putting this PhD to work, and hopefully get a job in the process.

A serious amount of gratitude goes out to all the awesome guest bloggers who helped me out during a very intense time of my life, and I hope everyone enjoyed their visits. I also hope you appreciate simple yet delicious meals because that’s what I’ve got for you today. My defense may be over, but the work is not! If for some strange reason you feel like making a meal that takes longer to prepare, feel free to browse my recipe index. But otherwise, continue on for a creamy, healthy, and easy chicken recipe.

This chicken is cooked in a cast iron skillet and then topped with a Greek yogurt sauce that is perfect paired with your favorite side of veggies or pasta. I served mine with roasted balsamic tomatoes and asparagus from Prevention RD’s cookbook which I shared recently. A couple of you wanted to know the recipe for the chicken I mentioned in that post, and here it is to please your belly. Picture was taken in haste pre-defense so cut me a break on that one, I was stressed and hungry.

Skillet Greek Yogurt Chicken

One year ago: Sweet Potato Dark Chocolate Bars
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