Friday, August 28, 2009

Cooking Night

My sister-in-law, Carley, and I made dinner and dessert last night for the guys. The recipes are worth sharing, everything was really good! We made grilled artichokes as an appetizer with a dipping sauce. For dinner we made orzo and turkey stuffed peppers with salad on the side. And for dessert we made a double-ginger bundt cake with ginger infused strawberries. The recipes follow.

Grilled Artichokes

  • 2 artichokes
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 1 garlic clove crushed
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Olive oil
Trim the top of the artichoke and the pointy edges with kitchen shears. Fill a large pot with water, the lemon juice, half of the lemon , and also the garlic clove. Bring it to a boil and add the artichokes. Use a large bowl to hold the artichokes under the water, and boil for 20 to 25 minutes.

Once removed from the water and cool enough to handle, cut each artichoke in half. Then drizzle olive oil on both sides and season with salt and pepper. Grill on medium to medium-high heat for 3 to 4 minutes on each side. Remove from the grill and serve warm with dipping sauce.

Dipping Sauce:
  • 1/2 Cup Mayonnaise
  • 1 Tablespoon horseradish sauce
  • 1/2 lemon squeezed
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 garlic clove minced
  • 1 shallot finely chopped
Mix all of the ingredient together and refrigerate until ready to use.

Double-Ginger Bundt Cake

Double-Ginger Sour Cream Bundt Cake with Ginger-Infused Strawberries

  • Softened Butter (for brushing bundt pan)
  • 1/2 cup raw sugar (or turbinado sugar)
  • 2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 4 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temp
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 cup chopped crystallized ginger

Ginger-Infused Strawberries:

  • 1 2-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled, very thinly sliced
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 quarts fresh strawberries, hulled, halved (about 8 cups)
  • Sliced fresh mint leaves (optional)

Position rack in center of oven and prehead to 350 degrees. Brush softened butter generously all over inside of a 12-cup Bundt pan. Sprinkle raw sugar over butter in pan, tilting pan to coat completely.
Whisk flour, ground ginger, baking powder, and salt in medium bowl. Using electric mixer, beat 1 cup butter in large bowl until smooth. Add 2 cups sugar; beat on medium-high speed until blended, about 2 minutes. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in 1 egg yolk and vanilla, stopping to scrape down bowl as needed.

Add flour mixture in 3 additions alternately with sour cream in 2 additions, beating on low speed just until blended after each addition. Mix in crystallized ginger. Spread batter in pan, being careful not to dislodge sugar.
Bake cake until top is light brown and tester inserted near center comes out with a few small crumbs attached, about 55 minutes. Transfer to rack; cool in pan 15 minutes. Gently tap bottom edge of pan on work surface while rotating pan until cake loosens. Place rack atop pan and invert acke onto rack; remove pan. Cool completely.

Combine first 4 ingredients in small saucepan. Bring to boil over medium-high heat, stirring until sugar dissolves. Boil until mixture is reduced to scant 1 cup, about 4 minutes. Remove from heat; cool ginger syrup to room temperature (do not strain). **Can be made 2 days ahead. Cover and Chill.
Place berries in medium bowl. Strain ginger syrup. Pour over berries and toss. Cover; Chill at least 1 hour.
Cut cake into slices and place on plates. Spoon berries with syrup alongside. Sprinkle with mint, if desire, and serve.

Friday, August 21, 2009


Last night I was reminded how much I love Bingsoo. I was eating it on a regular basis a couple years ago and could not get enough. However, stopped craving it during my pregnancy. If you've never had it you should try it! You can find it at Fresco in Chandler, located on the North West corner of Queen Creek and Alma School.
You pick three fresh fruits, one fruit puree, frozen yogurt or ice cream, and they put it on top of shaved ice. You mix it all together and it makes for a very refreshing, sweet dessert!
I love mango, kiwi, strawberry with frozen yogurt and mango sauce. Yummy!!!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Painting Stripes

I painted stripes in my laundry room last week (thicker then the ones in this picture) and was surprised how easy it was. I was doubtful that they would turn out, but I had a few helpful tips that made a big difference!
  • Pick two colors and paint one of the colors on all of the walls, I used cream and beige.
  • Then you have to do some math to figure out how many stripes you can fit on each wall. You want each wall to start and end with a whole stripe. Decide about how many inches you would like the stripes to be. Measure each wall and divide the width of the stripe into the width of the wall. ex) 70 divided by 12 = 5.8 Round the total you got either up or down and that will be how many stripes you will have on that wall. ex) 6 stripes. Now take the width of the wall and divide the total number of stripes into it to get the exact width that your stripes will be. ex) 70 divided by 6= 11.67
  • Now you can measure out your stripes on the wall and mark the wall with a pencil. I used a level to draw the stripes in pencil. Next I took thick painters tape and taped off the stripes that I painted in the second color.
  • This next step is what made the lines come out so perfect. Once the tape is on the walls brush a lite coat of the base color over the edge on the tape to seal it. That way when you paint the second color none of it will leak through the tape.
  • Paint your second color and don't let it dry completely before removing the tape.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Homemade Ice Cream Sandwiches

If you love peanut butter and love chocolate then you have to try these ice cream sandwiches! They require a bit of work, but it is worth it in the end! Soo Good!!!

Makes about 3 dozen
Vegetable-oil cooking spray
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
11 ounces (2 sticks plus 6 tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature
7 ounces unsweetened chocolate
2 2/3 cups sugar
4 large eggs
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
Peanut Butter Ice Cream


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat two 13- by-18-inch rimmed baking sheets with cooking spray, line with parchment, and spray parchment.
  • Whisk flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. Melt butter and chocolate in a large heatproof bowl set over a pot of simmering water, stirring until smooth. Remove from heat, add sugar, and stir until dissolved. Stir in eggs, 1 at a time, and then stir in vanilla. Stir in flour mixture until just incorporated. (Do not over mix.)
  • Divide batter between pans. Use an offset spatula to spread batter into thin, even layers. Bake, rotating pans once, until batter just begins to set, 8 to 10 minutes. (The surfaces will look dry, and testers inserted in the centers will come out wet.) Let cool completely in pans on wire racks.
  • To assemble, place the flat side of a large wire rack over 1 brownie, and invert rack, brownie, and pan together. Remove pan and parchment. Repeat with remaining brownie. Place a clean rimmed baking sheet over 1 brownie, and invert pan, brownie, and rack together. Remove rack. The brownie should be in the pan, top side up.
    Spread ice cream in a smooth, even layer over brownie in pan. Align pan lengthwise with remaining brownie on rack, and use rack to quickly and carefully flip brownie onto ice cream. Remove rack. Press top brownie gently. Cover and freeze until firm, at least overnight (or up to 1 week).
  • Uncover, and cut into squares. Serve immediately (or cover and freeze ice cream sandwiches overnight).
Peanut Butter Ice Cream Recipe

Makes 4 cups
2 cups heavy cream
2 cups whole milk
1 cup salted cocktail peanuts
6 large egg yolks
2/3 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup chunky peanut butter


  • Heat cream, milk, and peanuts in a medium saucepan over medium heat until bubbles begin to form around edges. Remove from heat, cover, and let steep at room temperature for 3 hours (or refrigerate overnight).
  • Prepare an ice-water bath. Uncover cream mixture, and reheat until hot but not boiling. Whisk yolks, sugar, and salt in a large bowl. Add cream mixture in a slow, steady stream, whisking constantly until well combined. Return mixture to saucepan, and stir constantly over medium heat until thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 8 minutes. (Do not let the mixture come to a simmer.)
  • Strain through a fine sieve into a bowl. Discard solids. Set the bowl in the ice-water bath.
  • Stir in vanilla, and let cool, stirring occasionally, until cold, about 20 minutes.
  • Freeze mixture in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer's directions. Transfer to a large bowl, and fold in peanut butter until ice cream is swirled. Use immediately, or freeze for up to 1 week. 

Recipe via Martha Stewart