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I’ve loved delicious treats (especially breakfast ones!) for as far back as I can remember. Sunday mornings, we would always have waffles, sometimes even bacon waffles, where the bacon was cooked inside the waffle. Then they were topped with delicious maple syrup. Um, yum! On the other hand, I just love fresh fruit. When summer comes, I do as much fruit harvesting as I can. We grow strawberries here, raspberries, and grapes. If we don’t grow it, we go pick it at local U-Pick farms, which always makes for a fun family day out. Usually by the time summer is over, I’ve got jars of jams and jellies, and plenty of fresh fruit tucked away into the freezer to use all winter long. While it doesn’t taste quite as good as fresh off the vine, it still tastes better than store bought, out of season fruit. The photo below is my husband and son enjoying an afternoon picking strawberries at a local farm. A bonus in this, is supporting local farmers! We picked 7 1/2 lbs of strawberries for about $10!

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Today, I want to share with you my favorite recipe for delicious fruit crepes. They come together quickly and easily. I’ve combined a few different recipes to create the perfect crepe. You start with a basic crepe, filled with a delicious ricotta/cream cheese blintz filling, topped with fresh fruit mixed with a tiny bit of sugar and a bit of maple syrup. If you’re daring, you can add a bit of homemade whipped cream on the top too. Hey, I didn’t say it’s the healthiest thing on the planet, but it sure is a nice treat now and again.

I typically use a strawberry topping for my crepes, but you could also do a mixed berry topping, or realistically any topping that you’d like! Last summer, I tried making a Blueberry Lemon Honey syrup that turned out delicious, and I’m sure if you used that on top of a fluffy pile of crepes, you wouldn’t regret it! Throw in some fresh blueberries and it’d be delish! Here’s the link to the Blueberry Lemon Honey Syrup!

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And now, let’s get on with it! I suggest making your filling and topping first, so that your crepes are hot and ready to be filled, topped, and served. We will start with the filling. It’s quite simple, and I do recommend a hand mixer or even a stand mixer to help make it smooth.

Blintz Filling Ingredients

  • 1 cup lowfat ricotta cheese (or nonfat if you are watching fat intake)
  • 1 package (8 oz.) cream cheese (or Neufchatel cheese)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • Pinch of salt

Directions:

Blend all of the above ingredients together until smooth. Some people like it a bit lumpy, and I’ll leave that up to you. Blend to your desired consistency. I personally prefer it smooth. Set aside for now.

Next up, we will make our topping!
Strawberry Topping Ingredients
  • 2 cups fresh strawberries
  • 1 tablespoon sugar (or you could use agave nectar, or even a sugar substitute)
  •  1 tablespoon maple syrup

Directions:

Place your strawberries into a medium sized bowl, and then add your sugar and maple syrup. Next, use a potato masher, or a large spoon to squish them and mix until desired consistency. If you want a syrup with no chunks of fruit, you can process this in a blender. I usually like to have fruit chunks in my topping. Set aside.

Now, it’s time to make the crepes! If you have a crepe griddle, that makes a huge difference, but any non stick pan works fine. You’ll want a reasonably sized one so you have room to flip the crepes. Make sure your spatula is handy! This recipe can easily be halved to make less crepes if you don’t want as many. In fact, you can halve the topping and filling recipes as well if you only need a small amount.

Basic Crepe Recipe

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Directions:

  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine all the wet ingredients (eggs, milk, water, butter and vanilla) and blend well. Sift the salt and flour in another bowl, and then slowly add to the wet ingredients, blending to combine. You want your batter to be very smooth, with no lumps.
  2. Heat your crepe griddle or pan to medium high heat. Lightly oil it (not a lot or the edges of the crepes don’t quite set, and as long as your pan is a true non stick pan, you only need to oil it once at the beginning), and then pour or scoop about 1/4 cup of the batter onto the griddle or pan. I use a ladle to do this, and then I use the bottom of the ladle to swirl the batter around to cover the pan. You can also tilt the pan with a circular motion to coat the pan as well.
  3. You’ll want to cook the crepe for about 2 minutes or so until the bottom is a light golden brown. Loosen it with your spatula or shake your pan very gently to loosen it, and then turn and cook the other side of the crepe. I set my finished crepes on a plate nearby and cover with foil to keep them hot.

To Assemble Your Crepes:

Now it’s time to put them together! Take a warm crepe and put a tablespoon full of filling on it, and spread it around to cover the crepe. Roll it up, and then do the same with the remainder. Fill each plate with desired number of crepes, and then place desired amount of topping over the crepes. Lastly, add a dollop of whipped cream if you so desire! Tada! Your crepes are complete! Here is an image of mine when they are filled and topped. YUM! Enjoy!

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Ah, we all love the occasional sweet treat, don’t we? Especially a sweet breakfast treat. OK, maybe lunch too. Or after dinner. Heck, a snack between meals! And there is definitely nothing better than making that sweet treat yourself, in your own kitchen with minimal effort. I have many a good memory of getting a Saturday morning donut with my family at the local donut shop. Guess what I always picked? If you guessed Apple Fritter, you guessed correct! Nothing like the yummy goodness of the sweet taste of apples and cinnamon with a sweet glaze to top it all off.

Now I know in today’s hurried world, it can be tough to find the time to put together a complex recipe. With that in mind, I have some good news for you! I stumbled across an excellent AND quick apple fritter recipe that you can make in the comfort of your own home, and you don’t even have to have a deep fryer to make it happen. Just a relatively large, high walled pot works just fine. That’s what I used and my fritters turned out excellent. So good that I’m sneaking off to the store to buy more apples to make more tomorrow! Shh, don’t tell my husband. 😛

For those of you who have apple trees in your backyards, I’m a bit jealous of you right now. What I wouldn’t give to walk out on a crisp early fall morning, grab a couple of apples straight off my tree and come back inside to prep them for fritters. Or even an apple pie…but that’s a whole different story. Just the thought of that makes me smile. I’m telling you right now, this is a recipe to tuck away into your most prized recipe book, you’ll thank yourself later. Even my picky 2 year old enjoyed these, although, honestly, what’s not to like?!

Here’s the recipe!

Ingredients

Fritters:

  • 1 quart vegetable oil for frying
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon white sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil (for batter)
  • 3 cups apples, peeled, cored and chopped small
  • 1 cup cinnamon sugar for tossing

Glaze:

  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Directions (20 minutes Prep Time, 15 Minutes Cook Time)

  1. Heat the oil in a deep-fryer or deep pan to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
  2. In a large bowl, stir together the flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Pour in the milk, eggs and oil and stir until well blended. Mix in apples until they are evenly distributed.
  3. Drop spoonfuls of the batter into the hot oil and fry until golden on both sides, about 5 minutes depending on the size. Fry in smaller batches so they are not crowded. Remove from the hot oil using a slotted spoon or tongs (I found that tongs were easiest, I just let the fritter drip over the hot oil for a couple of seconds before removing) and drain briefly on paper towels. Toss with cinnamon sugar while the fritters are still warm.
  4. While your fritters are cooling, prepare your glaze. Put your powdered sugar in a small measuring cup, and add the milk and vanilla. Whisk until no sugar lumps remain. If your glaze is too thick, add more milk. If it is too thin, add more powdered sugar until it is the consistency of a thin syrup.
  5. Once your fritters have cooled for about 10 minutes, dip one side of each fritter into the glaze and then place glaze side up on a cookie sheet lined with parchment or wax paper. If you have remaining glaze, you can drizzle it over the fritters.

 

Recipe adapted from http://www.allrecipes.com.


Hi friends!

I’m not sure why I do this, I tend to disappear off the map for a while and then pop back in and post a whole bunch. My goal is to keep this blog active with all sorts of neat information, DIY, recipes, and more! I love to write so I may as well put that love to use! Expect much more to come, especially now that I have a laptop.

This summer has been abnormally hot here in the Seattle area, we have been breaking temperature and heat streak records left and right, and we also haven’t had any significant rainfall in over 45 days. Yes, you heard right. Seattle hasn’t had rain in almost 2 months. Crazy, I know. We have been dealing with hotter than normal temperatures for us, between 85-90 most days, which most Seattleites aren’t used to. I’m sure some of you are shaking your heads, thinking, wow, they are wusses. Just remember what we are used to…grey, cloudy, and rainy. With that in mind, we have been doing everything we can to stay cool, which means finding alternative ways to cook or recipes that don’t require cooking. I’ve also been trying my hand at canning on the cooler days, as well as a number of DIY projects. I have also been gardening this year, and it’s wonderful.  Since I last blogged, we have purchased our first house and have a decent sized yard with beautifully established trees and plants, and I tore out a weedy patch next to the house to turn it into a container garden area, which turned out decently successful despite not having full sun. My dream would be to have my own homestead, so I’m attempting to do that on a smaller scale. We have two Silkie chickens who lay us adorable and tasty little eggs frequently which helps combat the rising price of store bought eggs due to the avian flu. The photo below is of our new yard, in late Spring.

backyard

I have also been doing survival prep and emergency prep, just in case. All this talk of earthquakes here on the west coast makes one a bit uneasy, so I’d rather be ready than not ready. I’ll touch more on that later, and explain what we have been doing little by little to prepare.

For now, I have to get ready to head out to my job, in which I am a line cook, so I have plenty of recipe ideas and whatnot to share. Give me a follow,  leave a comment, etc! 🙂


So, I’ve never really had a knack for just throwing things into a pot and having it come out right. But, now that I’ve been spending more time in my kitchen, tinkering with ingredients and seasonings, things have been coming along a little better. The other day I was very pressed for time, and needed something to make in the crock pot for my husband and my mother, since I had to work that night. I kept looking for a recipe, but was missing at least one or two things ingredient wise on each recipe. Not so helpful. So, I decided that I was just going to try a “recipe” of my own, and see what happened. Well, needless to say, it actually turned out quite good!

chicken

You can use frozen or fresh chicken breasts for this, it doesn’t particularly matter, although it’s easier when they’re thawed in my opinion. I’m just overly picky. To each their own, as I always say. And the vegetables you add to it can vary, I was in a hurry so I used a frozen mixed vegetable blend of onion, green and red peppers, and mushrooms. It turned out great, but I’m sure it would be much better with fresh veggies. I always prefer to use fresh, more nutrients that way as well. As we come up on the new year, my husband and I have resolutions for weight loss, healthy meal plans, and exercising that we intend to stick with. 🙂 With that in mind, I will be focusing my recipes on low calorie, but high “good” fats/protein meals. So if you have a resolution to stay fit and eat better, this is definitely the blog to follow! I am also contemplating posting a few entries on Mom and Baby Yoga, so even if you’re a new mom, you could totally get in on this for 2014. Which, I can’t believe, is seriously already here. My son turns 3 months old January 2nd. Goodness how time flies.

Ok, now, back to the point. I’m sure you’re wanting the recipe for this fantastic chicken, huh? 😉 Well, here it is.

Directions

3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, thawed or frozen (thawed is easier, in my opinion)

2 cans cream of mushroom soup (the cans say to add one can of water with each, you will only add ONE can of water)

2 cups of your choice of cut vegetables (broccoli, onion, peppers and mushrooms work great, frozen veggie mixes work as well if you are in a time crunch)

1/2 packet of powdered chicken marinade of your choice (you can vary the flavor this way, I used an Italian chicken marinade)

Combine all ingredients in crock pot, and turn on high 4-6 hours, or low 6-10 hours, depending on how long you need it to cook for. 🙂 That’s it. Super easy, and super tasty. This is fantastic served over white or brown rice. Just pop a package of quick cooking rice into the microwave when you get home, and dinner is done! Serve with a drizzling of the sauce over the chicken, veggies and rice.


I stumbled across this icing alternative the other day, and it’s remarkably good for being so simple. I’m amazed at the properties of cool whip, it really CAN do anything. This alternative has much less sugar than your average icing or frosting, and is easy to make, and versatile. You can make different flavors and different colors, just like your typical frosting or icing.

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(I don’t take credit at all on the photo, for some reason my camera on my phone wouldn’t focus when I tried to take a pic of mine. It may have been too white and just washed out too much.)

It’s as simple as this;

1. Mix one instant pudding packet (flavor of your choice), with HALF of the milk called for on the package.

2. Whisk it until it begins to thicken.

3. Then, fold in one container of cool whip. You can use light or regular cool whip here.

4. Optional; If you want, you can add a few drops of your choice of food coloring to change the color for frosting cakes, etc.

This recipe is good for frosting cakes, icing anything that needs icing (Haha), and you can also use it as a topping or filling for waffles and crepes, just add some fresh fruit or a fruit sauce of your choice!


This is definitely a fun little twist on your classic S’mores dessert. Super easy and super fun to make, especially for the kiddos! It’s definitely not the healthiest choice out there for a dessert, but hey, sometimes you just have to splurge a little. Got a campfire? Make a campfire cone! The alternative is to make these on a barbeque grill as well, both charcoal and propane grills work too.

campfirecone

Campfire Cones!

Ingredients

  • Waffle Cones
  • Peanut Butter
  • Banana slices
  • Mini Marshmallows
  • Chocolate Chips (I prefer semi-sweet, but the kids usually like milk chocolate chips)
  • Aluminum Foil

Directions

  • Spread peanut butter inside of waffle cone, fill with banana slices, mini marshmallows and chocolate chips.
  • Wrap in Aluminum Foil and pop over hot coals (or on BBQ grill) for 5-10 minutes, turning occasionally.
  • Unwrap foil, make sure everything is gooey and melted, and ENJOY. 🙂

Well, what did I say? Super simple and fun, huh? Something you can throw together as a surprise for your little ones one of these nights in the upcoming Summer! Sure to please them!

(recipe idea courtesy of http://www.cometogetherkids.com)


One of my favorite things about summer are the many varieties of salads and slaws there are. From fruit salads, to macaroni salad, potato salad…all sorts! But my favorite…it just has to be coleslaw. I don’t know why but I just love the flavor and how well it pairs with the many entrees of summer like fried chicken or even steak. This coleslaw recipe that I want to share is actually one straight from Kraft. It’s wonderful! Something to be said about making your own versus just buying the pre-made kits or a tub from the Deli. This slaw is wonderful because it features fresh fruit, crunchy apples and tart cranberries.

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Creamy Apple Cranberry Coleslaw

1 cup Kraft MIRACLE WHIP Dressing
1/4 cup milk
2 tablespoons white vinegar
1-1/2 tablespoon sugar
1 pkg. (16 oz.) coleslaw blend (cabbage slaw mix)
1 medium crisp apple (such as Granny Smith, Braeburn or Fuji), chopped
1/2 cup dried cranberries (I used Craisins)

Whisk salad dressing, milk, vinegar and sugar together in a small bowl until well blended. In a large bowl, add coleslaw blend, chopped apple and cranberries. Pour prepared dressing over top and mix together until well combined. Refrigerate until serving, approximately one hour.

(The direct link for this recipe on the Kraft page is here: http://www.kraftrecipes.com/recipes/creamy-apple-cranberry-coleslaw-148466.aspx?cm_mmc=social-_-facebook-_-timeline-_-recipe . They have a lot of other amazing recipes so I figured I would include it for anyone interested.)

And there you go! A tasty coleslaw that’s sure to please even the little ones! Happy grilling!