Sunday, January 29, 2017

Tomato & Cheese Tortellini Soup

Is it cold and wintery where you live? If it is I have the perfect soup for you. 

It takes 15 minutes to prepare and only has 6 simple ingredients!
Oh, and it tastes amazing‼

What you need,
4 cups of low sodium chicken stock + 2 cups water
1 pkg. fresh cheese tortellini
2 cups tiny tomatoes, halved
1/3 cup sundried tomato pesto
¼ cup heavy cream
½ cup basil, thinly sliced
Salt & Pepper to taste
Parmesan cheese for topping, optional

In a large pot bring the chicken stock and water to a boil Add the tortellini and cook for 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes and cook for 3 minutes more. Stir in the pest and cream and cook for another 3 minutes until everything is hot and the tortellini is tender.

Remove the soup from the heat and stir in the basil. Season the soup to taste with salt and pepper.

Ladle the warm comforting soup into a bowl, and then top with parmesan cheese if you want, and stuff it in your face.

This soup will warm you up and fill you up!
It makes a great lunch for work the next day too‼



Sunday, January 22, 2017

Tiny Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Sour Cream Frosting

I know it is January and I should be eating cauliflower and kale…
I just really needed a slice of Chocolate Cake! I did, really I did!

I didn’t want to make a huge cake for just the two of us so I went to my favourite source for small recipes, Dessert For Two.
I have no doubt that you are all familiar with Christina’s amazing recipes but if not, GO LOOK AT HER SITE! NOW!
She makes all the best sweet treats, but she has tons of savory recipes too.

Anyway this cake, what can I say about this cake? Really just look at it, it is beautiful! It is moist and light and chocolaty. It is everything I want in a cake.

I don’t love super sweet icing so I found this sour cream based icing and it was perfect on this cake.
Nothing was too sweet it was just perfection!

What you need,

For the Cake,
½ cup all-purpose flour
5 tbsp. cocoa powder
½ tsp. baking soda
½ cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1/3 cup sour cream
1 large egg, lightly beaten
½ tsp. vanilla
1 tbsp. warm coffee

For the Icing,
6 tbsp. butter
6 tbsp. sour cream
1 tsp. vanilla
½ cup cocoa powder
2 cups icing sugar

Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a 6 inch cake pan with parchment paper and spray liberally with non-stick cooking spray. I really like the PAM with Flour for any baked items!

In a medium sized bowl whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and sugar.  Add the oil, sour cream, egg, vanilla and coffee. Whisk all the ingredients until totally combined.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and tap it on the counter a couple times to make sure the batter is even and there are no air bubbles.

Bake the cake on the middle rack for 30-35 minutes, until the edges come away from the pan and a toothpick comes out with just moist crumbs.

Let the cake cook in the pan for 10 minutes. Then tip it out carefully onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Meanwhile you can make the icing. In a medium bowl combine the butter, sour cream and vanilla.  Sift in the cocoa powder and icing sugar. Using an electric hand mixer beat for 4-5 minutes until the icing is light and fluffy.

Once the cake is cool, slice the cake in half, if you want to make a layer cake, if not that is fine too.

Spread some icing onto the bottom layer then top with the second half and cover the whole thing in that creamy dreaming icing.

Stash the cake in the fridge until you are ready to stuff it in your face!

This cake is heaven. It perfectly satisfied my need for a slice of chocolate cake.
Plus it only has 4 pieces so you don’t have to feel too guilty about it‼

This would be the perfect little dessert for your Valentine’s Day sweet heart. Just toss some red or heart shaped sprinkles on top and voila! Valentine’s Day dessert!



Cake recipe from Dessert For Two

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Stocking The Freezer

I don't know about you guys but January is kicking my butt! I am just having a really hard time getting back into the swing of things.
I always find post Christmas a little hard but for some reason this year is a real struggle...

So I decided to do a few things to make my life a little easier starting with stocking the freezer with some quick easy meals. We all know that working all day then coming home and having to feed the family is always a struggle.
These few simple things can be made in big batches and frozen to make a variety of meals later.

I didn't want to feel overwhelmed by making ALL the things at once so I am doing one item each Sunday. That way it feels more manageable.

Here are a few of my favorite freezer meal ideas.

First up was Pulled Pork. Who doesn't love pulled pork! It has a couple steps but mostly its hands off, since you cook it in the slow cooker.
Here are a few ideas for pulled pork... the classic piled high on a bun topped for coleslaw, Pulled Pork Mac & Cheese is always a winner, and my favorite, Spicy Pulled Pork Tacos.

Meatballs are a GREAT freezer meal. Make a huge batch then divide them into meal sized portions. The classic Spaghetti and Meatballs is always a good start, but there are so many options. Sweet & Sour Meatballs over rice, Meatballs smothered in creamy mushroom sauce on noodles and my favourite Meatball Subs.

Chili is really great as far as freezer meals go. Make a double batch of your favourite chili then freeze it in meal sized portions in freezer bags.
Just take a portion out of the freezer the night before and heat it up in a pot on the stove for dinner. Serve with sour dough bread and a salad and you have dinner in less than 15 minutes.
A big old batch of Chili Cheese fries or Chili Cheese Dogs would be a hit with both little and big kids!

Spaghetti Sauce is a very versatile freezer meal. I love this Crock Pot Sauce, it is my go to. Make a double batch and you will have 4 or 5 meals all ready for the freezer.

I really like to cook up a big batch of Taco meat and freeze it in meal sized portions. I use this homemade seasoning mix and the taco meat turns out perfect every time.
I like to use it for things like Nachos or Burritos or even in a taco style pasta bake.

Make a batch of your favorite soup and freeze it up! I love this Chicken Tortilla Soup. It is hearty and warm and it freezes really well. You can freeze it supper sized portions or smaller lunch sized portions for those days you really don't know what to take to work for lunch.

I often NEED a little something sweet and dont' always have time to make something so putting a few sweet treats in the freezer is a really good idea!

A batch of Blueberry Muffins is a good thing to have in the freezer. Wrap them up individually in saran wrap and keep them in a large zip lock bag. That way you can grab one for breakfast or a snack. Any muffins you like would be great in the freezer!

Cookies are my go to treat... These Peanut Butter Cookies are my favorite! You can freeze them after they are cooked or roll the dough into balls and freeze them to cook later, for those times you need a WARM cookie!
Classic Chocolate Chip Cookies are a good option too, again freeze them cooked for a super fast treat or freeze the raw dough for that gooey treat on a random Wednesday night!

I would love to hear some of your favorite freezer meal ideas. I am always looking for new recipes so feel free to share!

I am hoping these easy meal ideas help me get back into the swing of things.