Sunday, May 31, 2015

Watermelon Radishes in Sherry Vinegar

 What's your favorite season?  For me, it's a toss up between Spring and Fall.  Spring has just a slight edge because Spring brings us the Farmer's Market.  When you live in the cold Midwest like we do, fresh vegetables are pretty sad in the Winter time.  Our Farmer's Market began the first weekend in May.  It was obvious Omaha residents were ready for the fresh veggies of Spring, you could hardly walk around at the market because it was so crowded.  The first week, we picked up beautiful asparagus, nothing out of the ordinary but oh so delicious.  The second weekend, we found a new type of radish, the watermelon radish.  I wish I had taken a picture of the radish itself, it was a beautiful green on the outside and pink on the inside.  The flavor of a watermelon radish is mild but still has the wonderful hot bite flavor normally found in radishes.

 Watermelon Radishes in Sherry Vinegar

2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
2 teaspoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon sesame oil
Kosher salt, to taste
½ pound watermelon radishes (about 3 large radishes)
A few cilantro sprigs, for garnish
In a large bowl, combine the sherry vinegar, sugar, oil, and salt. Add the radishes, and toss well to coat. Let sit for 2 to 3 minutes, then serve garnished with cilantro.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Old Fashioned Rhubarb Pudding Cake

Rhubarb is a sign of Spring at our house.  There's those traditional rhubarb desserts, like the Rhubarb Pie I always make for our friend the landscaper and this rhubarb dessert, recipe courtesy of Tim's mom. Looking for something new for this year,   I was intrigued by the look of this Old Fashioned Rhubarb Pudding Cake.  The topping looked crunchy and delicious.This could be my new favorite rhubarb dessert. easy to make but nice enough for when you have guests. 

Served alongside ice cream or whipped cream, this dessert is a keeper!  One thing to note, it doesn't keep well.  Although, still delicious, it was dry within a day or two of baking. 



Old Fashioned Rhubarb Pudding Cake Recipe

  • 2 cups chopped rhubarb
  • 1 3/4 cup sugar, divided
  • 3 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 cup sifted flour
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 2/3 cup boiling water
Cover the bottom of an 8 or 9 inch square pan with fruit. (I prefer an 8 inch or 9 inch square glass baking dish.  You could also use a deep dish glass pie plate.)

Mix 3/4 cup sugar, butter, baking powder, salt, extracts, milk and flour together (add a little more milk if it is too thick to pour); pour over fruit.  Mix remaining sugar and cornstarch; sprinkle over mixture in pan.  Pour boiling water over the top.  ( I know this sounds strange, but trust me, it works to create a pudding around the rhubarb in the bottom of the pan.)
Ready to go into the oven
Bake at 375 degrees for 45 minutes.  Yield:  9 servings.
You can see that the sugar topping creates a glaze on the top of the cake, something like a creme brulee, as well as creating the pudding at the bottom.  You can serve warm in a bowl with ice cream, or let it cool a bit, slice and invert on your plate to show off the pudding. 

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Banana, Chocolate Chip, Granola Muffins

Does anyone know what time it is?  You guessed it!  It's time for Secret Recipe Club.   Want to know more about SRC and join in the fun?  Check it out here! 

This month I was assigned the Kitchen Witch.  Rhonda a.k.a. Giggles, a middle-aged blogger, culinarian, photographer and avid motorcycle rider.  Drop by and give her blog a look, you'll find beautiful photographs and delicious recipes!

After making my way through Rhonda's recipes, I settled on Banana, Chocolate Chip, Granola Muffins.   No granola in the pantry?  No problem, I used coconut and quick oats.  I found these to be done after 15 minutes.  I always set the timer on muffins for less time than the recipe calls for because muffins tend to be dry when overcooked! 

Banana, Chocolate Chip, Granola Muffins

  • 1 1/2  cups plus 2 tbs. all purpose flour, divided
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup mashed ripe bananas (2 or 3 bananas)
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/3 plus 2 tbs. butter, melted and divided
  • 1 1/2 cups granola, divided
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/8 tsp. cinnamon
Preheat oven to 375F.  Lightly grease 12 muffin cups or line with muffin paper liners.  In a large bowl, mix together 1 1/2 cups flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.  In another bowl, beat together bananas, sugar, egg and melted butter.  Stir the banana mixture into the flour mixture until moistened.  Then stir in the  granola, and chocolate chips.  Do not over mix.  Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups.
In a small bowl, mix together brown sugar, 2 tbsp. flour, cinnamon and melted butter.  Then stir in 1/2 cup granola.  Sprinkle topping over muffins and gently press into batter.
Bake in the oven for 18 to 20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of muffin comes out clean.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Peanut Butter Hot Chocolate Rice Krispie Treats

When I was a kid, the only options for Rice Krispie Treats were the original ones.  I always thought they were too sweet.  Today it's fun to see all of the different recipes.  There's one's made with red hots,  a salted caramel variety, this one using cake batter and a recipe made with everyone's favorite biscoff. 

With hot chocolate season over,  left with a few extra packets in the fridge, this recipe caught my eye.  Fun how it uses the hot chocolate packets in the recipe.  These are yummy and you could substitute almost any kind of chips.

Just a little recipe note on this one...the next day I was planning to send these to Tim's office and tried to cut them.  They were hard as rocks.  Have you ever had this happen with Rice Krispie Treats?  I did some reading and apparently my marshmallows got too hot which results in very hard Rice Krispie Treats.  Note to self, don't let the marshmallows get that hot ever again!!  I'm so glad we enjoyed a couple of them the night we made them.  

Peanut Butter Hot Chocolate Rice Krispy Treats
Recipe Courtesy of
Serves: 24
  • ¼ C butter
  • 1 (10 oz) bag marshmallows
  • ¼ C creamy peanut butter
  • 2 packets dry hot chocolate
  • 3 tbsp unsweetened baking cocoa
  • 6 C crisp rice cereal
  • chocolate chocolate chips, for garnish
  • peanut butter chips, for garnish
  • mini marshmallows, for garnish
  1. Butter or spray with non-stick cooking spray the bottom and sides of a 9×13 inch baking dish.
  2. In a large saucepan (I used a 6qt.), melt butter over low heat. Stir in marshmallows until melted. Stir in peanut butter, hot chocolate mix, and baking cocoa until smooth.
  3. Add crisp rice cereal and stir until coated.
  4. Gently press mixture into the bottom of prepared baking dish. Do not press too hard or bars will turn out hard.
  5. Sprinkle with chocolate chips, peanut butter chip, and mini marshmallows. Gently press down.
  6. Allow to cool completely before cutting into bars and serving.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Sunday, May 3, 2015

3-Ingredient No Bake Toffee Bars

I would love to write a cookbook featuring nothing but quick and easy recipes.  How many times do you need a dessert but don't want to spend a lot of time in the kitchen?  Or how about someone is coming over and you need a quick appetizer?  Don't get me wrong, I love to cook when I am in the mood and have the time.  Unfortunately, that's not as often as I would like.  I either am out of time or too tired.  So when I find an easy but yet delicious looking recipe, I'm there.

One of my favorite blogs is Dine and Dish.  Kristen lives in KC and often features something from my home town.  Besides that, she's an amazing writer and has a wonderful blog. If you don't follow her, you should.  She shared this recipe as one that her kids can whip up, quickly and easily.  For me, these were what I made for the monthly birthday treat day at Tim's office.


3-Ingredient No Bake Toffee Bars

  • 2 sleeves Ritz Crackers
  • 1 14 ounce can Sweetened Condensed Milk
  • 1 8 ounce package Heath English Toffee Bits (found in the baking aisle)
  1. Spray a 9" square pan with Pam cooking spray
  2. Place Ritz crackers in a gallon sized Ziploc bag. Remove the air and seal tight. Using a rolling pin, roll the crackers into fine crumbs.
  3. Pour cracker crumbs into a medium bowl. Stir in sweetened condensed milk and toffee bits.
  4. Press firmly into prepared square pan. Store in the refrigerator for at least one hour.
  5. Cut into small squares and serve.