SRP #3: Mom-morial Day Weekend

In the world of dentistry, “SRP” stands for “Scaling and Root Planing.”  In the world of FoodSwing Blog, “SRP” stands for “Short Recipe Post,” a way for me to augment the recipe archives without the pressure of excessive punning.

Easy Lemon Pudding Bars

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This Memorial Day weekend, I decided to abandon my dental mannequin to spend some quality time with my mom — don’t worry, I left my mannequin prepared meals with easy re-heat instructions.  Certain things I always associate with my mom:  the color combo of pale yellow and baby blue, skorts (Google them if you’re lucky enough to not have grown up dressed in skorts), and lemon meringue pie.   Inspired by a box of lemon-flavored instant pudding in my mom’s pantry, I decided to adapt my staple pudding mix brownie recipe to capture that classic lemon meringue pie tang, without making a whole pie for two people…because a whole tray of lemon bars for two people is less “bad,” right?

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The Joy of Tex…ture

Tom’s Favorite Sugar Cookies

I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase, “That’s just how the cookie crumbles” — often declared with a sad shake of the head.  I’m equally sure that you’ve never really considered just how a cookie crumbles, but I can guarantee that — subconsciously — you have been significantly impacted by the crumble of a cookie at some point in your life.  If not, the crumble of these sugar cookies are sure to bring you to your knees!

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These cookies have a pillowy-soft, melt-in-your-mouth, simultaneously-crumbly-yet-tender structure that no combination of words (hyphenated or otherwise) can adequately capture.  You’ll just have to make them for yourself. Continue reading

PB&C

Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookies

To whoever came up with the brilliant idea of pulverizing peanuts into a gloriously smooth and creamy consistency, I thank you.  Jebediah Peanutbutter, you single-handedly made life worth living.
IMG_6482There’s just something so wonderful about peanut butter.  I can’t decide if it’s the rich texture, the profound umami taste, or the way it sticks your mouth together when you eat a big spoonful of it.  Whatever the reason, it’s safe to quote Zac Brown Band next time you serenade your peanut butter (normal people do that, right?) and say, “You got whatever it is, that blows me awaaaay”

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Raising the Jar

Chocolate Banana Overnight Oats

What do Lady Gaga and this recipe have in common?  They’re both overnight sensations!! No, this recipe does not contain a coat made of raw meat…that’s a different post.

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My fascination with jars goes way back.  In 6th grade, my Ancient Egypt unit final project was construction of a canopic jar — you know, those creepy-looking vessels they made to store the Pharaoh’s organs and whatnot.  Using just clay and a doll head (from a sacrificed Barbie), I made a canopic jar fit for the liver of King Tut himself!  That was one of my best school projects…right up there with the snowshoes I made out of woven Walmart bags — I didn’t have Cable TV as a kid. Continue reading

S’more or Less

S’more Brown Butter Cookies

Sorry for tactlessly stating the obvious, but you will DEFINITELY want s’more of these cookies.
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I’m a big fan of contractions — not the kind that bring new humans into the world, the language kind.  Not only do they save you valuable syllables, but they also keep you from coming across as incredibly pretentious (you know those people…the ones who pronounce the “h” in “when” and “white” and tell you not to use Wikipedia for research purposes…those people).  What better contraction is there in the entire English language than s’more?  I may argue that the double-contraction wouldn’t’ve is a favorite of mine, but s’more definitely comes in at a close second — like Richard Nixon in 1960.

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Duly Oated

Zucch-Carrot Ginger Recovery Oatmeal

Brief diatribe:  Instant oatmeal.  To even call it “oatmeal” is sacrilegious.   You know how they call something “crème” if it doesn’t actually contain real cream, or “frozen dairy dessert” if they can’t legally say it’s ice cream?  Well, I think that they should have to call it “Instant oatmèle,” lest anybody misconstrue that pasty goop for actual oatmeal, made in a pot, on the stove, using old fashioned oats.  A large portion of the world thinks they don’t like oatmeal, when in actuality, they don’t like instant oatmeal.  Just saying…
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Those who know me well know that I take my post-run breakfast VERY seriously.  On weekdays, I have a jar of Overnight Oats, and on the weekends, I have a potful of Made-in-the-Morning Oats.  There’s nothing I like more than rewarding a good, long Saturday morning run with a massive bowl of homemade oatmeal, full of fruits and veggies and topped with a big, creamy dollop of Greek yogurt, oh, and a shower, too.  This glorious bowl is the perfect balance of carbs, “good” fats, and calcium to keep that invigorating post-run momentum going strong all day long! (And the shower is a great way to not repulse the rest of the world…I’m very pro-hygiene).  Really, though, this oatmeal just tastes good, regardless of any health benefits which may or may not exist!

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SRP #2: Pale-NO!

In the world of dentistry, “SRP” stands for “Scaling and Root Planing.”  In the world of FoodSwing Blog, “SRP” stands for “Short Recipe Post,” a way for me to build up my recipe portfolio without pouring over mildly clever pre-recipe introductions and photographing each painstaking step.  

Dark Chocolate Avocado Cookies

“Cavemen Diets” baffle me.  Pardon me for stating the obvious, but if these Paleo Diets were so wonderful, wouldn’t the cavemen still be alive?!  Why not do a “Dodo Diet” or a “Constantinople Cleanse” while you’re at it?  But, I’ll get off my nutritional soapbox now and tell you about these delightful [incidentally-Paleo-friendly] cookies!
Quick disclaimer:  I’m a dark chocolate girl.  I mean REALLY dark…like Lindt 90% Cocoa chocolate bar dark.  So, if you like your chocolate treats a bit sweeter, feel free to add some honey to the cookie batter to achieve your desired level of sweetness.  Also, with measurements like, “1 banana” and “1 avocado,” you’re quite likely to have slight variations in batter consistency each time you make these cookies — nothing a small adjustment in coco powder can’t fix! Continue reading

Cake Better

Cake Batter Blondies

I don’t really know when “Cake Batter” became a thing — like “Salted Caramel,” “Truffle Fries,” and “Hipster Glasses” — but it’s a thing with which I’m 100% okay! There’s just something so sublime about that borderline-artificial vanilla flavor, inviting yellow color, and playful interspersion of rainbow sprinkles.  As an otherwise-staunch proponent of wholesome foods, I am willing to be a walking contradiction and proudly proclaim that these blondies take the cake!

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No Knead to Thank Me

Subtly Pumpernickel No-Knead Bread

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What makes bread rise, you ask?  Yeast farts.  Yeast farts and love, my friends, yeast farts and love.  That magical fermentation reaction is what sets the texture of yeast breads far apart from that of quick breads and cakes.  Yeast breads, however, are often feared by the casual baker.  Multi-page recipes, full of kneads, proofs, second kneads, second proofs (proves?), etc., can certainly be daunting to any non-Julia Childs (Children?) among us.
Don’t get me wrong here, I love me a good bread knead, but — to quote one of my friends from college — AIN’T NOBODY GOT TIME FOR THAT!  Few things are as cathartic as really going at a lump of yeast, flour, and water, to lovingly develop the glorious gluten strands that sadly cause Celiac patients extreme discomfort (an unfortunate side effect of an otherwise innocuous compound).  However, on a busy weeknight or in a kitchenette with minimal counterspace, a solid no-knead bread recipe is a godsend! Continue reading

Mother’s Day Brunch <3

Peanut Butter, Banana, & Marshmallow-stuffed French Toast

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I can entirely attribute my love of cooking and baking to my 100% homemade mom.  Not that there’s anything wrong with TV dinners or McDonald’s…wait, actually, the general consensus seems to be that there is MUCH that’s wrong with TV dinners and McDonald’s…but, there’s nothing quite like a homemade chocolate chip cookie in a lunchbox or a Sunday night roast chicken dinner.  Seeing the care and love that my mom put into every meal — even the Red Beans and Rice that I hated as a kid — taught me to have a strong appreciation for food and the messages that one can convey through its sharing.  Though she might have made some questionable fashion calls (see floral turtleneck in photo below) and flat -out refused to make any attempts to tame my hair (again, see photo below), she did a pretty good job overall.  So, here’s to you, Mom; I think you raised me right! ❤
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