Blueberry Muffin Cake, an easy blueberry-laced confection with a crunchy streusel topping, is delicious served for brunch or dessert!
I can feel it in the air. Summer is coming. But here in Houston, that phrase is uttered with more of a “Game of Thrones” style dread than excitement. Well, for me anyway. It means the return of suffocating heat and humidity and my personal inability to do anything outside without ending up looking like I jumped in a pool. But on the bright side of things, it also means that the berries are just getting better and better! And I do love my berries. Mixed in smoothies, adorning cereal, out of hand eating, and of course, dessert. Now, this lovely Blueberry Muffin Cake actually pulls double duty, as while you can definitely serve it for dessert, you can also definitely use it for breakfast or brunch. Maybe even for Easter?
Nutella Cheesecake Oreo Bars are just as dreamy and decadent as they sound – the perfect dessert for Nutella-lovers!
Anyone who knows us, knows we tend to plan vacation activities around food. Or sometimes, I would go so far as to say we find things to do on vacation in between meals. (Don’t judge – I’m positive at least 38.7% of you do the same thing.) Of course, it depends on the type of vacation. For instance, Ross is quite the skier, and on a typical trip to the slopes, food lags slightly behind skiing in importance.
However, our recent vacation (babymoon!) to Jackson Hole was entirely traditional for us, in that food reigned supreme, and even Ross’s ski runs had a foodie link. Fun fact: there is a cabin serving WAFFLES at the top of the Tetons! In my preggo condition, I passed on the skiing (I’m not very good anyway), but you can bet I hopped on the tram and met Ross at the summit for a taste of those waffles. Of course they were fantastic.
Even better than those waffles, however, was an astonishingly decadent dessert we shared at an Italian restaurant (Il Villaggio Osteria) after a snowy day of sight-seeing: a Nutella cheesecake. It had an incredibly rich flavor, silky texture, and the perfect amount of sweetness to balance it all out. We foolishly ordered just one slice and almost came to blows over the last bite. We knew we had to recreate it immediately upon returning home. And with some tinkering and tasting, these Nutella Cheesecake Oreo Bars were born.
This Lavender Grapefruit Martini is a fresh and flavorful cocktail, just right for welcoming spring.
With the approach of spring, my mind has been turning to all the fresh ingredients that come along with it. Mind you, I have to look at a calendar to know that spring is approaching, as Houston was entirely without winter this year. Regardless, the jasmine and azaleas blooming made me think of another, more edible flower: lavender.
Back when Liz lived in New York, there was a great bar just down the street from her apartment called Dove Parlour. Sadly, it has since closed, but we think of it quite fondly. It had this dark, almost speakeasy feel, and was the sort of place that felt entirely natural to order fancy cocktails and once, even absinthe. Of course, they don’t make it with hallucinogenic wormwood anymore, so it’s not as fun, but I digress. One of their signature cocktails was the “French Lavender,” and I might go so far as to call it Liz’s favorite cocktail in all of NYC. So this is our homage to that drink: a lavender grapefruit martini.
Our version of Irish soda bread is tender, flavorful, and most of all, EASY! Whip up a batch in no time and you’ll have your house smelling like home.
You know how some people are all down on baking mixes? Like, cake mix is an abomination, and if that’s the only option it’s better to have NO CAKE AT ALL?
Those people be crazy.
Me, I love a good mix. Sure, some mixes are pretty poor quality, but sometimes you find one that’s a winner, and then guess what? There are less steps between you and a delicious baked treat. Sounds like a genius plan to me.
When I was studying abroad in Ireland, we found just such a mix for Irish soda bread, or “brown bread” as I think this particular brand called it. We were four girls in an apartment with a comically small kitchen, expected to store all of our groceries in a single mini fridge. Needless to say, our cooking was on the simple side. Kneading bread? No counter space for that nonsense. But a mix for a homemade quick bread? Now THAT we could manage. Pro tip: if your kitchen lacks a bread pan, improvise with an inverted, unidentified pyrex lid that doesn’t seem to match up with any actual container! Small kitchens don’t matter when you get to eat fresh, crusty bread – and everything feels a little more like home.
The recipe I’m sharing today for Irish soda bread doesn’t actually use a mix, but it’s darn close. In the spirit of those cozy-kitchen days, this is a truly traditional Irish recipe, with five ingredients, no kneading, and way more deliciousness than seems possible for something so easy.
These insanely good bacon burgers pack a ton of chopped bacon right into the burger patty. Pair with your favorite toppings for unbeatable flavor!
Well, fresh off the big announcement from our last post, it would seem hard to come up with anything as significant, but if there’s anything that compete with impending fatherhood for my attention, it’s bacon. Ok, ok, it’s not really a fair competition, but I’d say bacon is amazing enough of a food to occasionally distract me.
Ain’t No Fakin’ These Bacon Burgers
I’m confident most people have had a burger with bacon on it, and I am likewise confident that most people have the following complaint: there’s not enough! Oh sure, there’s a slice or two, but despite its assertive flavor, it get’s lost to sheer mass of the bun, patty, and toppings. Well not today! Chopped bacon will make up about half the mass of the burger patty in this bacon burger recipe – it’s not just a strip or two slapped on top – so unless you take some odd, grazing bite, you’ll get a full punch of bacony goodness.