Monday, March 31, 2014

Sweet Potato Bacon Hash with Fried Eggs

 Hello! I have another easy dinner (or breakfast!) recipe for you today. I just realized I haven't shared many dessert recipes with you yet in 2014. Sorry about that! Hope you don't mind. Hopefully I'll have more dessert recipes for you this spring. :)

Mike and I enjoyed this sweet potato bacon hash with fried eggs as an easy weeknight meal. However, you could certainly enjoy this for breakfast or brunch too. Eggs work for any meal, in my opinion! This recipe is incredibly simple and comes together pretty quickly (about 30 minutes, start to finish). This recipe from Lauren's Latest was the inspiration for this dish. The only thing I really did differently was add in some mushrooms and grape tomatoes to increase our vegetable intake! :) I did not, however, add the jalapeno that the recipe calls for. The recipe serves two, but you could easily increase the quantities of the different ingredients to serve more people. It's a pretty straightforward dish! And of course, you could make this meatless by omitting the bacon.


-2 slices bacon
-1 Tbsp. olive oil
-1 small or medium yellow onion, diced
 -1 medium sweet potato (peeled if desired), diced into 1/4 to 1/2-inch pieces
-other vegetables (e.g., tomatoes, mushrooms), if desired
-salt and pepper to taste
-1/2 Tbsp. butter
-2 eggs


Cook bacon until crispy and transfer to plate lined with a paper towel to remove excess grease. In medium pan over medium heat, drizzle olive oil, and saute onion and sweet potatoes until the potatoes are fork tender and are browned, about 10 to 12 minutes. If adding vegetables that won't take as long to cook, such as tomatoes and mushrooms, add them later on during the cooking (maybe with about 5 minutes left; use your best judgment). Season veggie mixture with salt and pepper to taste (and other herbs, if desired).

In a medium nonstick skillet, melt butter. Fry eggs until yolks are done to your liking. Divide sweet potato hash between two dishes, top with fried eggs, and crumble bacon over top. Feel free to add some shredded cheese on top too! Enjoy. :)

This really is such an easy meal. And it tasted so good! We both loved it. The sweetness of the potatoes paired nicely with the salty bacon and egg. Mmmmm. 

I think this dish might make it into our dinner rotation again soon. It's too good not to have again!

Do you make eggs for dinner sometimes? If so, I'd love to hear your favorite egg for dinner recipes! I'm always looking for new ways to enjoy eggs. :)

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Spinach and Avocado Greens Pasta with Roasted Grape Tomatoes

I am obsessed with this recipe. It's by far my new favorite dinner. I've made it twice in the past few weeks, and I've had to restrain myself from making it more often...for variety's sake. But I can easily say that I'd be happy to eat this at least once a week, if not more! It's that good.

A couple things in particular that I love about this dish are how healthy it is and how filling it is! And, in the grand scheme of dinner recipes, it's fairly easy too. There are several steps to make this meal, but they're all easy; I promise. Also, the dish is meatless, which is another added bonus (for me personally - I don't always love cooking meat!). And also because it's meatless, it's perfect for the Lenten season if you are someone who happens to be observing the practice of not eating meat on Fridays.

The recipe is from Annie's Eats. I only adapted the original recipe slightly. I did not add the greek yogurt to the green "sauce," although I'm sure it would be yummy. The first time I made the dish, I tasted the sauce before adding the yogurt and liked it as is, so I decided to omit the yogurt. But definitely add it if you'd like! And also, both times I've made this I've used feta cheese in lieu of parmesan cheese. Below are the ingredients I used both times I made the dish.


For the tomatoes:
-1 pint grape or cherry tomatoes (halved or whole - your call)
-1 to 2 Tbsp. olive oil
-salt and pepper to taste

For the pasta:
-12 to 16 oz. whole wheat pasta (I recommend linguine)
-2 Tbsp. olive oil
-1 medium yellow onion, chopped
-3 to 4 garlic cloves, minced
-1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes (add more if you want a bigger spice kick)
-approx. 5 to 6 cups of loosely packed baby spinach leaves
-1 and 1/2 to 2 avocados, split and pitted
-6 Tbsp. fresh basil leaves, packed
-1/2 cup feta cheese


To roast the tomatoes, preheat oven to 350 degrees. On a rimmed baking sheet, combine tomatoes, olive oil, salt and pepper, tossing well to coat tomatoes. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, tossing once halfway through. Remove from oven and let cool.

In a large pot, bring water to a boil and cook pasta according to package directions. Reserve 1 cup of pasta water, and then drain pasta. While the pasta is cooking, heat olive oil over medium heat in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Add chopped onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and red pepper flakes, and cook 1 minute more. Add spinach to pan, cover, and reduce heat to medium-low (it's okay to add spinach in batches if it doesn't all fit at once). Stir occasionally until all the spinach has fully wilted.

In a food processor or blender, combine the spinach mixture with the avocado, basil, and feta. Adding a splash of reserved pasta water at a time, processing mixture until smooth, adding more water as needed along the way. You will likely end up needing 1/4 to 3/4 cup of water total, depending on your other ingredients and your preferred sauce thickness. Toss the sauce with noodles, and if necessary, return to stovetop to reheat the mixture over low heat. Top with roasted tomatoes and more cheese (feta, parmesan, or any other kind!), if desired. Enjoy! Makes 5 to 6 servings.

Did I mention that I love this recipe? I love this recipe. :) The second time I made this, I roasted red peppers with the tomatoes, and they were a great addition. Roast any other veggies you think might be yummy with this! Also, another great thing about this recipe? It tastes awesome as leftovers. The flavors really come together nicely on the second or third day... So it's a great recipe to make for dinner one night and then enjoy for lunch the next day!

I highly, highly recommend you give this recipe a try. It might even be fun around Christmas time with its green and red colors. :) Or, it might be a fun dinner (without the tomatoes ;)) for St. Patty's! If you have kids and are looking for new ways to incorporate veggies into their dinners, this would be a great recipe to try!

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Herbed Parmesan Buttermilk Biscuits

Homemade biscuits are one of my favorite goodies to bake. When I was young, whenever we were having biscuits with our dinner, my mom enlisted my help to make them. Lucky me! Back then I got my start baking biscuits with Bisquick, so making biscuits then involved fewer steps than making them from scratch, but still, my love of baking biscuits began many years ago and hasn't faded since!

I posted a delicious recipe for garlic cheddar beer biscuits a few weeks ago, and this recipe isn't too different. It simply uses buttermilk instead of beer and parmesan instead of cheddar! Otherwise, the recipes are fairly similar.

These herbed parmesan buttermilk biscuits are everything I love in a biscuit. Fluffy, flaky, and flavorful - the three fundamental f's of biscuits, apparently. :)

The recipe is adapted from these parmesan chive buttermilk biscuits from Good Life Eats. I halved the recipe, and the half proportions are below. This makes about 8 to 10 biscuits. If you are feeding a crowd, feel free to double (or triple!) the recipe.


-2 cups all-purpose flour
-2 tsp. baking powder
-1/2 tsp. baking soda
-1/4 tsp. salt
-1 tsp. sugar
-1 stick (8 Tbsp.) very cold butter
-3/4 cup cold buttermilk
-1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
-2 tsp. dried herbs de provence


Preheat oven to 450 degrees and line two baking sheets with parchment paper. In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and sugar. Using two knives, a pastry blender, or a cheese grater, cut the butter into small bits and work it into the dry ingredients. Stir in the parmesan and herbs. Form a well in the center, and add the buttermilk, stirring until moistened. On a well-floured surface, knead the dough until it comes together well and you can easily form it into a disc (it should not be sticky). Roll the dough (you can use your hands for this) to 1/2 to 3/4-inch thickness. Using a biscuit cutter or the top of a round drinking glass, cut the dough onto biscuits. Combine the dough scraps and form more biscuits, continuing until all the dough is used. Place biscuits on prepared baking sheets, and bake for 10 to 15 minutes, checking after 10 minutes. The tops should be a light-medium golden brown. Enjoy!

If you'd like, you could use half whole wheat flour and half all-purpose. Also, you're welcome to use your favorite type of cheese instead of parmesan, and the types of herbs can easily be changed up as well.

One night we enjoyed these biscuits with some beef stew I'd made in the crock pot. They go perfectly with soup or stew! And then we saved a few for the weekend to eat with our eggs. These biscuits are perfect for breakfast too. Oh my goodness. So good. The biscuits I made with the omelettes Mike made were the perfect pairing! We toasted the biscuits too - I highly recommend that!

My husband makes the BEST omelettes. As I'm writing this post, I'm getting hungry for one! And of course, I'm getting hungry for more biscuits too. I might have to make some more pretty soon. ;)

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Mocha Chip Cinnamon Rolls

Remember a couple weeks ago when I shared with you an amazing coffee cake recipe? And I suggested that you add it to your next brunch menu? Well, I have another brunch requirement suggestion for you. Mocha chip cinnamon rolls. Holy cow are these babies delicious.

The original recipe is from Inside BruCrew Life. And an excellent recipe it is! What I love about this recipe is that it's a no-yeast, no-rise recipe. You can have these cinnamon buns on your brunch table in less than an hour!

There are some great step-by-step photos on Inside BruCrew Life's post about this recipe, so definitely check them out! Also, there is a coffee glaze that you can put on top of the cinnamon rolls should you so desire. I didn't make the glaze, and we found the rolls to be wonderfully flavorful as is and sweet, but not too sweet. If you're a glaze person though, by all means, go for it!


For the filling:

-3/4 cup brown sugar
-1/4 cup granulated sugar
-2 tsp. cinnamon
-1/4 tsp. nutmeg
-1 Tbsp. butter, melted
-1/2 cup mini chocolate chips

For the dough:

-2 and 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
-2 Tbsp. sugar
-1 and 1/2 tsp. baking powder
-1/2 tsp. baking soda
-1/2 tsp. salt
-1 and 1/4 cups buttermilk
-2 Tbsp. instant coffee
-5 Tbsp. butter, divided

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Combine all filling ingredients in small bowl, and mix until it resembles coarse sand; set aside. Stir together the buttermilk and instant coffee; set aside.

Combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add the coffee buttermilk and two tablespoons of melted butter; mix until combined. Transfer the dough onto a well-floured surface. Knead about 10 times to get some of the extra flour incorporated into the dough. It might be sticky at first. Once the dough is easy to work with, press it (as best you can) into a rectangle about 16 by 10 inches. Spread the dough with two tablespoons of melted butter, and sprinkle evenly with the filling. Try to keep the filling away from the edge of the dough by an inch. Gently roll the dough (from one of the long sides) until it's in a log shape. Press the ends together and fold into the log. Cut into 9 even rolls.

Cover the bottom of an 8 x 8 or 9 x 9 pan with one tablespoon of butter. Place rolls in the pan. Bake for 20 to 22 minutes.

Other than being very excited to share another great recipe with you, the other main reason I wanted to share this recipe is that I have a snowman mug in these pictures!!! I made these cinnamon rolls about a month ago, when at the time, we were smack dab in the middle of winter. And now spring is just a week away! Of course, just because spring is a week away on the calendar, it doesn't mean it's actually starting to feel like spring... 20 degrees and snow in Boston today!

 Although we may not be sure if winter will stick around for a while longer or if spring is coming soon, one thing we can be sure of is that these cinnamon rolls need to make an appearance in your life. ;)

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

A Special Valentine's Day Dinner: Chicken Cordon Bleu with Prosciutto and Gruyere

 I love my husband. Obviously. :) But one of the many reasons I love him is that he can cook! Mike is an excellent cook, and we are fortunate to love both cooking together and for each other! For Valentine's Day last month, Mike asked if he could cook dinner for me. And I think you can guess what my answer was...

He chose to make a "fancified" chicken cordon bleu recipe that was out of this world. Instead of the traditional ham and swiss, this recipe used prosciutto and gruyere. It is a recipe that contains many steps, and I'm so thankful that Mike was willing to put the time and effort into making such a special meal for me. The delicious meal and Mike's thoughtfulness made our 2014 Valentine's most memorable. ♥

Mike printed this recipe and couldn't remember where it came from. So I'm just repeating the recipe from his print out. :)


For chicken:
-4 chicken breasts, skinless and boneless
-4 thin slices prosciutto di Parma
-1/2 lb. gruyere, grated
-1/4 cup all-purpose flour
-salt and pepper
-1 cup panko bread crumbs
-4 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves only
-1 clove garlic, minced
-2 Tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
-2 eggs
-extra virgin olive oil

For sauce:
-3/4 cup white wine
-1 and 1/4 tsp. chicken broth
-1 and 1/4 cup heavy cream
-1 Tbsp. cornstarch
-dash of paprika


 Lay the chicken, one breast at a time, between two pieces of plastic wrap. Using the flat side of a meat mallet, gently pound the chicken to 1/4-inch thickness. Remove the top sheet of plastic and lay one slice of prosciutto neatly over the top to cover the breast and sprinkle a quarter of the cheese over the prosciutto. Tuck in the sides of the breast and roll up tight like a jellyroll inside the plastic wrap. Squeeze the log gently to seal and twist both ends tight to form a nice log. Repeat with remaining chicken.

Season the flour with salt and pepper. Mix the bread crumbs with thyme, garlic, salt, pepper, and melted butter. The butter will help the crust brown. Beat together the eggs and season them slightly with salt and pepper as well.

Lightly coat a baking pan with olive oil or cooking spray. Remove the plastic wrap from the chicken. Lightly dust the chicken with flour, dip in the egg mixture, and gently coat in the bread crumbs. Carefully transfer the chicken to the pan. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until browned and cooked through.

For the sauce, in a small saucepan, over medium heat, warm the wine and chicken broth. Whisk to combine. In a small cup, whisk the cornstarch into the cream until smooth. Pour the cream into the saucepan very slowly, whisking until combined. Continue cooking over medium heat, stirring the mixture until it thickens. Add a dash of paprika. Pour the cream sauce over the chicken when ready to serve.


This meal would be a great option if you're trying to impress a date ;) or say a special thanks to a friend or family member for all that they do.

The flavors of this dish were awesome. The gruyere cheese and prosciutto were amazing together. And the breading couldn't have been more perfect! It was a decadent meal and oh-so-worth the calories. Is it possible to fall in love with your husband even more when he cooks a dish like this? :)

Hope everyone's having a good week and month of March thus far!