Every. Single. Recipe. – Spaghetti Squash with Sage and Goat Cheese

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Hey gang! I’m still here and still cooking! Just a little behind in the posts.
So a couple of weeks ago I made this doozey of a recipe out of Clean Eating with a Dirty Mind.  If you are a fan of squash, and a fan of goat cheese…you will be a fan of this!

It is simple and delicious.  The flavors are tremendous!  The sage brown butter gives such a subtle but rich addition!  As you can see from the pic, I made a few additions to mine….and i think you can add any number of things to taste.  Here is what I did…

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I slow sauteed a few thin slices of onions along with some chopped garlic in about a tsp of Kerrygold butter while the squash was cooking. That got tossed in to the final mix along with some halved fresh grape tomatoes. I ended up and doubled the amount of goat cheese, mixing half into the squash while it was hot, crumbling the rest on top. I think next time I might also toss some red pepper flakes into pan of onions to give it a little kick.  And I will confess here and now, I did not share.  My squash was pretty small anyway.  I ate my “half”…and then ate the other half!  (Don’t panic, this was all I had for dinner!)  And savored every bit!  So delicious!  Again, Vanessa Barajas, I think your real talents may fall in the savory realm!  I have really enjoyed every single one!

And when you don’t wear your glasses to take photos, you get blurry ones.  So here is my solution for that:

spagh squash
A nice artistic filter on photoshop! Like Watercolors! Ha!

Try this one, you will be so glad you did!
Kristen

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Every. Single. Recipe. – Snickerdoodles!

snickerdoo 1
Wow, I have had such a crazy busy couple of weeks, but I actually have been at work in the kitchen as well, just have not had time to post! So, a couple of weekends ago I tried out the Snickerdoodle recipe in Clean Eating with a Dirty Mind, and here goes!

These are just great!  Excellent texture and flavor (especially from her trademark browned butter!)  You will want to be sure to chill the dough as mentioned or you will have a sticky mess!

snickerdoo dough
But that is no trouble, just cover with plastic wrap like she says and pop in the freezer, you will be glad you did!

These are quick and easy….and here is my tip…cook them for the minimum time!  I decided to let the first batch go a couple of extra minutes because I did not think they had browned enough.  Don’t panic!  they didn’t burn!  They looked fine, but the flavor turned a bit with the extra time in the oven, took on a slightly burnt flavor…not bad, just toasty!  Anyway, the next batch I did for less time, and they are SPOT ON!!!   One other tip, give these babies plenty of room on the cookie sheet!  They spread!  (As you can tell on the pic below, mine got very cozy in the oven….had to pull them apart.)…DARN!  You know the rule!  Got to eat the “ugly” ones!!!  haha!

So these are a keeper….another keeper!!!  More to come here on the blog this morning, I finally have a few minutes and quite a few to post!  Lucky YOU!!!

snickerdoo 2
AND…If you are in the Houston area this weekend, Vanessa Barajas (Clean Eating with a Dirty Mind) and Juli Bauer will be signing their books at the Brazos Bookstore here in town on Sunday, October 4th at 5:00 pm….hope to see you there!!!  I will be there!  Wonder if you can pick me out of a crowd???)

Back to work!  Kristen

Every. Single. Recip. – Guest Post! Pesto Caprese!

caprese

Today I get a little help from the best of things, my big sister! After being under the weather for couple of weeks she got a tast for something fresh and delicious and decided the Pesto Caprese from Clean Eating with a Dirty Mind would do the trick! She called me and told me what she was up to, so I begged her to send me the report and the pics…because as much as I love Caprese, and Pesto, I have a pretty intense allergy to Truffles and Truffle Oil…so it’s my sister up to bat with these two recipes!

So the picture above is the final product, which she has done nothing but rave about, even made it a second time and took it to a dinner with her kids!
She really liked the twist of the Truffle oil in the Pesto…
pesto
She reports this was very quick and easy to put together, and made plenty to use several times.

I will definitely be making caprese with a version of pesto that works for me, because Caprese is simple, fresh and delicious.  And the addtion of a flavor loaded pesto is perfect any time of year.

Thank you big sister for taking on the Truffle Oil for me!  Hope you can get in there with a cake down the line!! 😉

Every. Single. Recipe. – Southern Biscuits

biscuit cover this one
Love me some biscuits!
I have been so excited to get to this recipe from Clean Eating with a Dirty Mind, I just knew it would not dissappoint, and I was correct! Nice buttery flavory, flaky on the inside, golden crisp on the edges, this is just about right!

The ingredients are right, as are the amounts..  This recipe is quick, simple, all done in the food processor…just the way I like it!

Now I want to give you my tips to streamline a little more.

biscuit mix
Absolutely follow the recipe.  When I had all the ingredients combined, I popped the processor bowl in the fridge while I prepped the surface…put away all the ingredients, laid out a piece of parchment paper and dusted it with arrowroot flour.  Dough was in the fridge less than five minutes, but kept it cool, which makes it easier to work with  I scraped the dough out onto the dusted parchment paper and dusted the top of the dough as well.  No real need for a second “top” piece of paper or a rolling pin.  The texture of the dough was nice enough to press out to the 1 inch thickness with my fingers, no problem.  I know the recipe calls for cutting 2 biscuts at once, which is a little confusing, I cut them one at a time…got three on the first round, then re dusted and pressed out the dough for the final 2 biscuits.  The dough lifted up with the cutter ever time as well, so no need for the pulling away of dough, just makes a sticky mess for me.  The last bits of dough, I plopped it on the pan as well (sad little wobbly donut shapes in my case!)  I am not easily offended by off shaped baked goods from the leftovers…I eat those!  (I don’t serve them, that would be so rude of me! MINE!)

biscuit 1
Anyway, they just brown beautifully! Start to finish was about 30 minutes, total. They disappear much more quickly! Lucky for me I was having a quiet morning on my own and did not have to share! Did I mention the aroma in the air?? Golden buttery goodness all over the house!

inside biscuit
Here is a peak at the inside! Of all the breads and biscuits I have tried Paleo style, this is as close to the real thing as it gets. Fluffy texture, not dense. And moist and buttery…in fact I was ready to spread these with butter and honey, but they really do not need a thing! Ate the first one plain, the next piece, put a little honey on it… which for some reason reminded me of “honey-wheat” bread that I used to eat a million years ago! I can’t wait to toss a fried egg on one. Take that, golden arches!
biscuit and coffee
In conclusion, this one is getting dog-earred for sure. I will make these again, they are too easy and way too delicious not too!
Let me know how yours turn out!!
AND…please share this post on all your favorite social media spots! Let’s get the word out there!!
See ya!
Kristen

Every. Single. Recipe. – Going deep into it – Chocolate covered Caramel Cups.

caramel bite
Caramel Cups.
Yeah, that’s right.

This is beautiful stuff from a beautiful recipe.  Actually, it takes in two recipes from Clean Eating with a Dirty Mind.  Caramel Sauce, and then Chocolate Covered Caramel Cups.

The Caramel Sauce itself is just lovely.  Smells divine, easy make.  My personal tip?  Watch your temperature.  And…consider not putting it in the freezer.  At least in my climate (Houston, TX)….the fridge should do it.  In the freezer, it froze rock solid in minutes and never went back to liquid…but never fear….I mananged to heat and stir it back to softer and form it into little balls, pressed them into the chocolate…and then you get the pic above, which, is the DEVIL!  So decadent and rich, even my husband (who would normally eat something like this like popcorn) said it was so rich he couldn’t eat more than one. DANG!

The flavor of the caramel is just beautiful…especially when you realize it comes from coconut milk!!  Crazy good!caramels
So, yeah. Do these. You will not regret it at all!  I’m thinking these will be beautiful on your Holiday spread!

Oh one other thing, she leaves you on your own to pic the level of chocolate you use.  I used semi-sweet mixed with dark chocolate.  I will go all dark chocolate next time…the caramel is so sweet you can go deep and dark with the chocolate and still have plenty of sweet!

I hope you give these a try, they were fun to make!  And more fun to eat!  (Don’t panic, there are plenty in the fridge right now!!)

Kristen

Every. Single. Recipe-Cha Cha Cha!

pepper plate
Let me start off by saying, “mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm”. That is technical jargon.
I am beginning to think Ms. Barajas may have a calling in the savory world!
Of the handful of savory recipes she has in the book, they are all knock-outs so far!
Chiles Rellenos. I can honestly say I have never made this before. But have certainly enjoyed it in many a Tex Mex restaurant! I have lived in Houston, TX my whole life and am spoiled for mexican fare for sure! So I don’t usually even bother with it at home, it is too easy to go get some. But since going paleo, it is not so easy. You know the cheese does not come from a grass fed source, nor the meats. You can count on pretty much nothing being organic, although some of the newer, trendier spots are catching on!
So being a lover of spicy cheesy goodness, let’s give it a whirl, shall we?

I certainly have never purchased these little beauties before….it was fun picking them out!  and handling them!  And prepping them, which was just simple!

poblanos
As the peppers par boiled, I followed her directions for the meat mixture which came together very quickly as well! I admit…I did add a couple of things, which I think is appropriate with a canvas recipe such as this one. She gives you a tasty, simple version…how far you jump from there is up to you! I really love to see tomatoes in the meat, so I added some fresh pico de gallo, a handful of cilantro and some fresh chopped garlic. The recipe assembles super easy! When layering, I admit, I did add a handful of grated pepper jack between the layers as well as what is called for on top. (Note – I cannot find sliced pepper jack from a grass fed source around here, however, I love Rumiano’s brand grassfed cheeses…I used a block of their pepper jack and grated the whole thing….some for the middle layer and the rest on top. MMM cheesy!).

It only takes about 20 minutes in the oven to heat through, cheese melty and golden….while it was in the oven I whipped up some fresh quacamole with EXTRA lime juice…the citrus-y tang of the guac was perfect with each bite of the Chiles Rellenos…and this dish was fantastic!  In fact, plenty for 4 people,  or in my case leftovers for 2, yay!  Except for when your husband decides to go and get a full 2nd helping!  Then it becomes my lunch later in the week  (today!!!).

Make this….you can really push it a number of different ways!  It is not overly spicy, just tasty!  If you want spice, add some peppers, or salsa, or red pepper flakes to the meat mixture.  A spanish cauli-rice would be great alongside as well!

Let me know what you think after you make it!  And you SHOULD make it!  Clean Eating with a Dirty Mind…in the first chapter…hurry!  It is too delicioso not too!

Kristen

Every.Single.Recipe. – Cookie Dough Fudge – Clean Eating with a Dirty Mind RECIPE SCORE!

oblique

My latest try, and huge success, Cookie Dough Fudge! And today, via the magic of internet links, you can try this recipe out yourself, as if you don’t already have enough reasons to run out and pick up the cookbook, go to http://www.thespunkycoconut.com/2015/09/cookie-dough-fudge/    where Vanessa Barajas has given The Spunky Coconut permission to post the recipe…a teaser if you will!  (Pluse if you are not already familiar, The Spunky Coconut is a great blog, she has some great recipes, info and photos, I have followed her on instagram for years!)

Okay, back to business here.

1st

Not complicated, simple clean ingredients and the magic of a cashew base, if you take the extra 5 minutes and do the browned butter, you will end up with an incredibly close rendition of toll house cookie dough flavor! I went with mini chocolate chips…I’m really in it for the dough, so the minis are always my choice with cookies. Be warned, you gotta pull out alot of equipment to get it done, but it is pretty quick. And because of the type of dough it is, it all cleans up easy. (saucepan, food processor, beaters, bowl, pan, spatulas….maybe not that much??) I just grumble about the food processor really, because I keep mine under the sink and I always time it so it just won’t quite fit in the dishwasher! haha…but then I stuff that chunk of Cookie Dough Fudge in my mouth as I wash the dishes and it’s like little kitchen pixies are there with me making it all get done quickly with sparkles and twinkles!

bowl

So, yeah. If cookie dough is your thing, you really need to do this. I sent a pic to my daughter who is in college several states away and her response was… “STOP.”

I told her not to worry! It’s in the freezer waiting for her on the next trip home!!

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One more shot for the road….
Get in the kitchen already!
Also, pick up your copy of Clean Eating With A Dirty Mind, you will be so happy!

Give me some feedback on how you are liking this series of posts…and PLEASE pass along the word about my blog!  I know I am having fun with it!!! Hope you are too!

Kristen

Every. Single. Recipe. – Surprise! Salty and Sweet!

chip close
what? WHAT???

Yes, you are seeing what you are seeing.

I know, I said it would be a few days, but I got a boost of encouragement from a little bird last night with this project, and had a sweet tooth to boot, and it donned on me, I have ALL the ingredients for this little doozey!  (Ha if you have taken a look at this recipe!)

Chocolate Dipped Potato Chips.

Nothing more to say really!  I cannot give you the recipe, and it’s VERY complicated, probably way above your pay grade.  In fact, don’t even bother looking it up.

chip flat

In fact, don’t even be tempted to throw this together on the fly with what you MIGHT have in your pantry already.  It’s just to complex.

(Is anyone hearing a little sarcasm in my post today?  Perhaps a little taunting even to encourage you to get the book and look up this handy little morsel?)

Clean Eating with a Dirty Mind, this is genius. GENIUS!!!  (By the way, this brings the count to 8 out of 152…go go go!)

Ok, one more look….now get to it!!!

chip angle

Every. Single. Recipe. – Two-Fer! Spicy Chipotle Dishes from Clean Eating with a Dirty Mind! And a MAYO bonus!

hot dishes
This is where the spicy delicious lives!!! Right here!

So clearly it did not take me long to figure out of the very few non-dessert type recipes, these two needed to be taken on as quickly as possible!

Chipotle Cole Slaw (page 86) and Chipotle Chicken Salad (page 102) are both big winners!  Not only do they big time deliver on that smoky, spicy goodness of Chipotle pepper deliciousness, but they are quick and easy recipes!  Both would be great for a crowd or kept on hand for quick lunches during the week!

slaw

The slaw is VERY spicy!  In fact, I may have to tone down the amount of pepper in my next batch, but what a great twist to cole slaw!  I added extra lime juice to help tame the heat…i think serving a few slices of fresh avocado along with it would be great!  (slaw is on the left in the pic above and also on the left).

The chicken salad is fantastic!  This is the spice I am always looking for in chicken!  I decided to serve with cold grapes and apple slices, because I wanted to see which would be better along with that heat, plus I love a little fruit in my chicken salad.  Grapes were the winner for me, although the apple was very good with it to…would even be nice with either one diced up and tossed in at the last minute!

chicken salad prep chicken salad

You will notice that dollop of mayo in the chicken salad prep pic above…this is the mayo from the book as well…(Easy Immersion Blender Mayonaise, page 78).  This is a nice mayo, more mustardy than my basic mayo (it’s on the blog as well).  Simple ingredients, simple process with the immersion blender.  My tip here?  When you use an immersion blender, it eliminates the need for the slow drizzle of the oil into the mayo.  Dump all your ingredients in, including the oil, and put the blender wand all the way in to the bottom of the jar and blend continuously until you have the consistency you want.  Easy!

mayo one mayo 2

So that’s it!  Three great recipes from Clean Eating with a Dirty Mind  (Vanessa Barajas) in one hit!  All three are simple and delicious!  You should definitely give these a try…

Let’s see…that puts my count at 4/152  (4 recipes completed out of 152)!  Every. Single. Recipe!

Let me know your thoughts, comments, questions…or if there is a recipe out of the book you want to see sooner rather than later!!

Keep cooking!

Every. Single. Recipe. – “Better Than Box Brownies” – First Crack

Of course I would gravitate to chocolate brownies with a first crack at this book!  Page 110 has a lovely, simple but very rich recipe for brownies….Clean Eating With A Dirty Mind does not dissappoint here.brownies

Barajas uses this recipe as a base in several things throughout the book. A little deeper in she puts it in a skillet for a brownie sundae that I will be putting together when I make her ice cream, etc., however, seeing that my usual brownie pan was otherwise occupied, I went ahead and cooked the brownies in the skillet…which was a win! Because I greased the pan with Kerrygold Butter….and added a nice buttery tone to the edges of the brownies!
These are easy and delicious, definitely will be a repeat!
skillet brownies
Let me know if you give this one a try, and any ideas you have for it!
I think a sprinkle of cinnamon would be my twist on it…I am a sucker for cinnamon in chocolate. Eat up!