Sunday, October 16, 2011

It's Fall, ya'll!

I don't usually say ya'll but it just felt right. I apologize. Not really. So blah blah I'm really busy blah blah but still cooking and baking blah blah. I'm the worst.

Here is a lovely recipe for delicious pumpkin oatmeal bars with a chocolate peanut butter frosting. It's super healthy with plenty of sugar. Certain to supply you with energy for raking leaves and carving pumpkins.

Also, I will be going on a haunted hay ride in the next couple weeks so will probably pee my pants. Unrelated, but still fall-like.

Pumpkin Oatmeal Bars

What ya need:

1/2 c peanut butter

1 c pumpkin puree

2 c oats (whole rolled, not quick cook)

1 c brown sugar, packed

1/2 c white sugar

1 tbsp pumpkin pie spice

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tbsp vanilla extract

1/3 cup peanut butter chips (you could also use anything else like chocolate chips..or something equally delicious)

What ya do:

*Combine all ingredients into a mixing bowl and stir by hand.

*Spread extremely moist batter into a foil-lined and spayed 8 x 8 or 9 x 9 pan. Bake at 350F for 22-25 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean (we baked ours for extra, the consistency is going to be very soft and don't worry you won't be poisoned and die).

*The bars may still look underdone, but that’s okay because they will continue to set up as they cool. Allow to cool before slicing.

*Suggestions for storage include the fridge or freezer if you like.

And now for the sugary goodness.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Frosting

What ya need:

1 c chocolate chips

1/4 c butter/margarine

1/4 c peanut butter

2 tbsp milk

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 c powdered sugar

What ya do:

*Melt chocolate chips in microwave.

*Add and stir in next four ingredients. After all ingredients have been incorporated, stir in the powdered sugar. Continue stirring or whisk together until smooth.

-After bars have cooled, spread frosting on top and refrigerate for a long long long time! Very yummy. May also eat with pumpkin ice cream, pumpkin spice lattes, or while hugging a pumpkin.

Sorry for the short and sweet post...more to come sometime soon :)

Happy eating!

Friday, September 9, 2011

Oh you thought I was done with heirloom tomatoes? Wrong.

Hey there everyone :)

Busy busy week! Classes have started back up again and I will be starting my school-based practicum at Whitman Elementary School! Never been there but it sounds exciting, right? Anyways despite busy schedules, it's always important to keep on cookin'. For me, it's like therapy. Well...paired with a bottle of wine of course.

Now I always find that when things get busy, I have less time to plan meals and get groceries. So wanting to take a preemptive strike against mights of lean cuisines and take-out chinese, I've figured out a strategy that works for me. Maybe you will find it helpful too :) If not, kiss my b.

I like to choose two recipes in the beginning of the week to try. I attempt to ensure they share some similar ingredients, but if they don't that's ok too. Then I go grocery shopping the Sunday before the week begins. This way, I have at least two dinners planned. This leaves some room for leftovers, as well as experimenting with leftover ingredients! Also for a lean cuisine or two. Chinese I'll save for the weekend.

So with that in mind, I've had a pretty successful first week. I saved money by choosing simple recipes with ingredients in common, and did not stress over food! Yes..this is how deeply I care for food. It's sick. So, if you are having a difficult time planning meals around a busy schedule, give this idea a try.

To start you off, here is a DELICIOUS recipe that is really easy for a weeknight dinner. I actually have to give the cooking credit to Steve, because he made it for me one night when I had a lot of work to do. It's from a cookbook that I got him for Christmas two years ago...I thought how can I combine Steve's two greatest loves? So I got him the Sunday Night Football Cookbook. Yes that does exist.

Lemon Pepper Tilapia

What ya need:

2 TBL unsalted butter, softened

Grated zest and juice of 1/2 lemon

2 TBL chopped parsley

1/4 cup flour

Salt and pepper

2 tilapia filets

Lemon pepper (now easily one of my favorite spices to use, a STAPLE)

1 TBL olive oil

What ya do:

*In small bowl, combine butter, lemon juice, zest, and parsley.

*Spread flour on plate and season with salt and pepper. Season fish on both sides with lemon
pepper and dredge filets in flour mixture, shaking off excess. Heat oil in saute pan over medium heat and add fish.

*Cook until golden brown on the bottom, about three minutes, then turn and cook the other side. Add the butter mixture and cook until butter starts to brown at edges of the pan.

*Remove filets to serving plates and spoon butter and lemon sauce over them.

Steve served this with one of my favorite Summer appetizers. Heirloom tomatoes with basil, mozzarella, and balsamic. This is one of my favorite combinations. Just layer it up, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and serve it to the masses.

Happy eating :)

Sunday, August 28, 2011

A taste of Minneapolis

Hello all! [side note: sometimes I want to say ya'll but then I don't]

I hope everyone is having a magnificent weekend despite that whore Irene. Please excuse the foul language. I also hope that my east coasties are drinking many dark and stormies to celebrate the hurricane, just like my parents currently are :)

Since I'm quite backed up with posts, my next few may be a little off time-wise. Today I'll be posting a few pictures from my trip to Minneapolis a few weeks ago.

Steve and I took off after my last exam of the summer to visit Doug and Charlie for a long weekend of food and drink. We went to a fantastic farmer's market in St. Paul. It was much bigger than any farmer's market I've encountered in Milwaukee, and I was delighted to buy 10 million squash blossoms. This may have been an exaggeration and there may have been only 15. We only needed three but by the end of the day, many things are given away for free.

We picked up some goodies for the dinner we cooked that night. Steve and I wanted to make Doug and Charlie a feast for our last night in Minneapolis. We made grilled steak with a blue cheese butter (a recurring recipe in this blog), stuffed squash blossoms with artichoke dip and gouda, a heirloom tomato salad with basil and mozz, and corn salsa salad (also a familiar blog character).

---- Voila. A foodie masterpiece of epic proportions. I joked at the market when we were picking up groceries that Steve would end up eating one whole sirloin, and that Doug, Charlie, and I would end up splitting the other one. That is precisely what happened.

I am also very curious about squash blossoms. I find it very difficult to acquire them in stores and markets near me. Where are you mysterious squash blossom? I would like to do cuisine-like experimentation with you. Please join me.

The stuffed squash blossoms that Doug made were absolutely amazing. You soak the blossom, and then stuff
them very carefully with dip or cheese or what have you.
This takes much grace and finesse (of which I am lacking) because they are so delicate. Then you flour them and fry em up!

Plus, they look beautiful.

We also wined and dined our way through some great restaurants in Minneapolis. I would have never pegged it for a foodie city, but every corner you turn there is a delicious place to eat. I may or may not have gained 30 pounds.

Well that's more like a pregnancy, but still. Many food babies were born.

I would also like to take this chance to hop up on my little soapbox to discuss buying local food. Doug and Charlie take part in this food co-op in partnership with a Minnesota farm about an hour away. Each week, they receive a box of fresh produce to use. It is delicious, nutritious, and takes less energy in transportation. Our second night in Minneapolis, we had a little dinner party and used some fresh farm ingredients. The menu consisted of: grilled chilean sea bass with navy beans, zucchini and chives, a strawberry salad, scalloped potatoes, and this blue cheese/beet dip combo thing that Charlie made up. I put it on some bread and called it a day. A delicious day.

We grilled the fish, beans, zucchini, and chives in a little foiled grill packet. It's an easy and convenient way to make a pretty well-balanced dinner. We put the fish and veggies in a packet of aluminum foil along with some herbs, spices, butter, and oil. Throw that on the grill and you have yourself a meal. You can also do this in the oven. Will try soon and share.

To end this magnificent Minneapolis post, I will share with you a picture of the best Bloody Mary I've ever had. It actually may not even be the best bloody I've ever had, but it certainly had the best bacon I've ever had in my life. And I don't even like bacon. That much.

Happy eating :)

Friday, August 19, 2011

New camera, new blog title.

Hello everyone!

I know posts have been scarce this summer, but I've been consumed with thesis writing. I must remind myself that cooking = therapy.

So..the title change. My last title was created as a joke, after watching several entertaining episodes of the Jersey Shore. After awhile it wasn't sitting very well with me anymore. I wondered, if someone asked me the meaning of it, what would I say? "Oh well, I'm such a huge fan of the Jersey Shore" --No way. It began because I was making a big dinner for Kevin and Steve on Sundays, hence the family dinner part of the title.

As I searched for a new name that would represent what I want this blog to be, Kevin said something during a brainstorming session that really resonated with me. He said, "what about have food will travel?". Isn't that what my blog is about? Two things I am passionate about?

This title happened to be very similar to my uncle's blog from a few years ago. My uncle Ric is the most influential person in my life. He inspires me everyday, to travel, seek out new experiences, and embrace life. He passed away when I was a freshman in college. I think about him everyday. He was a travel writer for the majority of his life and created a blog to keep his family and friends updated while he was abroad. It was called, "have pen, will travel". So here is to you Ricky. Your channel of expression was writing....mine is peas and carrots.

For you Ric: Have food, will travel.

*Note- The heirloom tomato picture is a preview from my trip to Minneapolis. Stay tuned.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Vegetarians- this one goes out to you.

Hey there bloggerz.

I am approaching crunch time for the end of my summer classes, so obviously procrastinating by adding a new post was my top priority. I'm still backed up by about 4 posts, but just bought a NEW CAMERA. YES. So this should help with motivating me to add the recipes that have just been sitting in my blog document..resenting me for not being shared with the world.

So this camera business. I've had my current camera for a solid three years. It's not broken, and it still takes OK pictures (despite some water marks). This has induced feelings of guilt over the purchase of a new camera...and also resulted in poor Steve hanging out at Best Buy with me for an hour while I was trying to make the decision (if you know me, you know how greaaat I am at making decisions). But, I
really liked this camera, it was a decent price, and best of has a Cuisine setting. WHAT!? Yes.

In conclusion, I hope to be much better about blogging as my classes will be over, I only have one job now, and will be Papprazzi (spelling?) with my new camera.

Now I know that I do not always make the most vegetarian friendly meals. I have some thrown in there, but I'd like to increase the amount of meals I make sans meat. There are times that I consider going vegetarian, but then...I don't? I think about it often, but then end up eating some chicken. Or a burger. While I'm thinking about it. Not a good situation. But many of my friends are vegetarian, and I like to make things that most people will enjoy :)

Basil Pesto Pasta

What ya need:

Whole wheat penne pasta (however much you want, I shared this with Steve so I believe we split a box with plenty of leftovers. This took much self-restraint, as I have an addiction problem with pasta).
1 tbl olive oil
1 cup chopped onion (we used white)
3 garlic cloves
1 orange bell pepper, chopped
1 yellow bell pepper, chopped
1 small zucchini, chopped
1 cup frozen edamame
**this recipe called for tomatoes, but I pulled a Cathy Reynolds and left them at the store. Like mother, like daughter.

Basil sauce:

1 cup packed fresh basil
1 avocado
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 tbsp water
2 tbsp olive oil
Kosher salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, to taste (I used lots of red pepper flakes so it had a nice kick to it)
What ya do:

*Bring a pot of water to a boil for the pasta.

*Sautee onion, olive oil, and garlic in a large skillet for about 5 minutes on medium heat. Add in chopped vegetables and edamame. Sauté for 10 minutes.
*Meanwhile, add the pasta to the boiling water and cook for the amount of time recommended on the box (I usually do 10 minutes). It's ok to make it a little al dente. Drain and set aside.

*In a food processor, make the basil cream sauce by processing the basil, water, olive oil, lemon juice, avocado, salt, black pepper, and red pepper flakes until smooth (or just about).

*Add pasta to the vegetables in the skillet. Now, pour on the basil cream sauce and stir until combined. Season with salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes, to taste. Garnish with basil leaves.

SO DELISH! Adapted from one of my favorite blogs, Happy eating :)

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Baked Breakfast Goodies.

Okay bloggers. I know. I'm the worst ever. My last post was in June and it is now JULY (p.s how did that happen??). However, I have been extremely overwhelmed this summer with three summer classes, two jobs, and a Master's project. And moving. And cooking. And socializing. Man I'm busy. So forgive me, but I will be posting many more recipes once I can breathe in August.

For now, I've been in super breakfast mode. I never used to like breakfast. Lunch and Dinner usually include some type of pasta which I am all about, and it's more socially acceptable to have dessert after these meals. I can't really get away with eating a whole bag of M&Ms in the morning. But, apparently I've had a change of heart. These two recipes are healthy, relatively easy, and will leave you satisfied until Lunch (when you can sneak in some dessert).

Baked Tomato Cups

What ya need:
4 medium sized tomatoes on the vine

4 large eggs

1 tbsp butter

Freshly minced or dried tarragon

Salt and pepper

What ya do:
*Preheat oven to 375°F and slice off the tops of tomatoes. Carefully scoop out the pulp. Place tomatoes in a baking pan or casserole dish, whatever ya got.

*Crack an egg into each tomato cup. Add ¼ tablespoon butter, sprinkle with tarragon and season with salt and pepper.

*Bake for 25 to 30 minutes . Remove and serve immediately with toast, or a bagel, or fruit, or whatever your little heart desires ☺

Baked Oatmeal

What ya need:

2 cups rolled oats
1/2 cup toasted almonds, chopped
1/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp fine-grain salt
2 cups milk
3 tbs unsalted butter, melted
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
2 ripe bananas, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 1/2 blueberries or raspberries

What ya do:

*Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and butter the inside of an 8-inch baking dish.
*In a bowl, mix together the oats, half the almonds, the sugar, the baking powder, cinnamon, and salt.
*In another bowl, whisk together the sugar, the milk, half of the butter, and the vanilla.

*Arrange the bananas in a single layer in the bottom of the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle 2/3 of the berries over the top. Cover the fruit with the oat mixture. Slowly drizzle the milk mixture over the oats. Gently give the baking dish a couple of thwacks on the counter-top to make sure the milk moves through the oats. Scatter the remaining berries and remaining almonds across the top.

*Bake for 35-45 minutes, until top is browned. Remove from the oven and let cool for a few minutes. Drizzle the remaining melted butter on top and serve. If you don't want to do that to limit your butter intake, I usually drizzle a bit of honey on top.

Enjoy your breakfast! It's the most important meal of the day (or so I was told by my beautiful nutritionist Mother). Happy eating!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Shrimp and Veggie Lasagna! Eat em up.

What up my peeps. So...confession. I kind of sort of really A LOT stole this recipe question mark? I mean not that most of my recipes are original, but I do manage to tweak something in some way to feel a little bit better about posting it on my blog. But this one legit stole. Like probably should be arrested electronically. It's only missing one ingredient from the original recipe and that's only because my Mom decided to weigh the tomatoes and then leave them on the scale....somehow they did not make their way to our house.

Therefore, please excuse my blatant copying disgressions when viewing this post. Also, contrary to recent posts, I decided to use all fatty mcfat ingredients instead of the healthy stuff. Mostly because I was with my family and I'm trying to secretly fatten them all up...bwahahaha...

Shrimp and Vegetable Lasagna

What ya need: THE FILLING

-1 lb lasagna noodles

-1 medium red onion, diced

-1 tomato, chopped
 (ours is still waiting at Stop and Shop)
-1 bunch of asparagus (cut)

-2 cloves garlic, minced

-1 lb shrimp

-1 block mozzarella cheese

-olive oil

What ya need: THE SAUCE

-4 Tbsp butter

-6 Tbsp flour

-2 cups skim milk

-1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

-2 cups ricotta
-1 tsp garlic powder

-salt and peppa

What ya do:

*Boil two pots of water- one for noodles, one for shrimp. Boil both until they are done. In the meantime, do your veggie chopping.


When the shrimp are pink but not curled up, remove them from the water and let them cool off. Chop the shrimp into bite-size pieces. Grate the mozzarella cheese. Next, saute the asparagus, red onion and garlic in olive oil for 5 minutes. Preheat the oven to 350F and set the prepared ingredients aside.

*For the sauce, we're going to be making a little roux. Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Stir in the flour to make a paste. Add the milk and stir over medium heat until sauce starts to should get more difficult to stir and you should feel the sauce resisting. Add parmesan cheese, ricotta, garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Stir until smooth and remove from heat. After the sauce has thickened, put a layer of it in the bottom of a 9×13 pan. Cover with a layer of noodles. Spread the veggies and shrimp over the noodles, sprinkle with mozzarella cheese. Add another layer of sauce, followed by noodles, followed by shrimp and vegetables, followed by the cheese, and repeat this layering until you can't repeat it anymore!. Bake the lasagna for 30-45 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.

This was incredibly tasty and indulgent. I got this recipe from a friend of a friend...her website is Try it out! Happy eating everyone :)

Saturday, June 11, 2011

My favorite kind of meal.

Hey everyone! So I have some recipes on the back burner, but the meal I made last night was too good not to publish it for all to see. It had all my favorite qualities for a meal: healthy, easy, quick, and not too many ingredients.

Chili-rubbed Salmon with corn salsa

What ya need:
4 filets of salmon (or however many you need, I only got 2)
2 teaspoons chili powder
salt and pepper
2 zucchini
1 package cherry tomatoes
1 10 oz package frozen corn
1/2 cup salsa
Olive oil
1 clove of garlic

What ya do:

*Make sure the oven is set to Broil, with an oven rack at the highest level.

*Wash the salmon and rub with salt and pepper. Sprinkle one teaspoon of chili powder over the salmon. Cut up the zucchini into strips, and place around the salmon on a baking sheet with aluminum foil for easy clean up. I also included some tomatoes, but feel free to throw in any other veggies you want roasted with the salmon. Just be careful not to burn them!

*Place the baking sheet in the oven, and broil for approximately 8-10 minutes. Make sure the salmon is opaque throughout and the zucchini is tender.

*While the salmon, zucchini, and any other veggies you my have included are broiling, saute the frozen corn with 1 tbl of olive oil and the chopped up clove of garlic. After corn has browned (about 5-8 minutes), take off heat and add in chopped scallions and salsa and stir.

*Serve salmon and veggies with corn on the side, and garnish with lime wedges.

This was the perfect summer meal :) Easy, inexpensive and absolutely delicious.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Engagement Chicken

WHOA IT'S BEEN AWHILE. So sorry my blogger folks, I finished finals and then flew home for a whirlwind 10 day trip to spend time with my family. The result is neglected blogging, but man do I have a back-up of posts for you! I'm trying to balance my schedule of summer classes and work currently, but will try to keep up with my blogging to supply you with everlasting recipes. However, when I started this blog I wanted to make sure it was a tool to give me a break from busy graduate life and not something to stress even more about. So I guess if I do neglect sometimes...sorry I'm not sorry? :)

So Engagement Chicken! Ina Garten (Barefoot Contessa) calls it this, because I guess this dish is SOOO tasty that if women make it for their boyfriends they end up receiving a proposal. Since that is not something I'm looking for at the moment, I made it with my family. This was a new challenge for me because I've never worked with a WHOLE chicken before, but it turns out it's quite easy.

Engagement Chicken

What ya need:
1 (4 to 5 pound) roasting chicken
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 lemons
1 whole head garlic, cut in 1/2 crosswise
Good olive oil
2 Spanish onions, peeled and thickly sliced
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/2 cup chicken stock, preferably homemade
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour

What ya do:
*Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

*Remove and discard the chicken giblets. Pat the outside dry. Liberally salt and pepper the inside of the chicken.

*Cut the lemons in quarters, place 2 quarters in the chicken along with the garlic and reserve the rest of the lemons. Brush the outside of the chicken with olive oil and sprinkle the chicken liberally with salt and pepper.

*Place the chicken in a small (11 by 14-inch) roasting pan. (If the pan is too large, the onions will burn.) Place the reserved lemons and the sliced onions in a large bowl and toss with 2 tablespoons of olive oil, 1 teaspoon of salt, and 1/2 teaspoon of pepper. Pour the mixture around the chicken in the pan.

*Roast the chicken for about 1 hour and 15 minutes, until the juices run clear when you cut between a leg and a thigh. Remove the chicken to a platter, cover with aluminum foil, and allow to rest for 10 minutes while you prepare the sauce, leaving the lemons and onions in the pan.

*Place the pan on top of the stove and turn the heat to medium-high. Add the wine and stir with a wooden spoon to scrape up the brown bits. Add the stock and sprinkle on the flour, stirring constantly for a minute, until the sauce thickens. Add any juices that collect under the chicken. Carve the chicken onto a platter and serve with the lemons, onions, and warm sauce

This dish was incredibly juicy and tender. If it results in any proposals...let me know! Happy eating :)

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Something good and something bad: Part II

Hey there bloggers! Thought I would leave you a little goodie for the midst of finals..if you are in the midst of finals like I am. It stinks. Nothing better for procrastination than a tasty meal (or blogging about tasty meals...wonder how my final will go tomorrow morning). Now, here is a little dish for all of the vegetarians out there. I know I probably don't give you guys enough recipes, but here we go :) This dish was so easy, and so flavorful! It was my first attempt at tempeh since I'm not a big fan of tofu, and let me tell you...success. Also, original.

Lemon Pepper Tempeh

What ya need:

1 cup tri-color pearl couscous

1 cup cherry tomatoes

1 cup sundried tomatoes

1 package frozen brussel sprouts

4-6 strips of lemon pepper tempeh

What ya do:

*First make the couscous. You can simply follow the directions on the package, but it usually calls for 1 1/4 cup water, 1/2 tsp salt and 1 tsp butter. The salt and butter are optional, I just used the salt. You make couscous similarly to the way you make pasta. Just boil the water, and then cook the couscous for about 10 minutes.

*While the couscous is cooking, throw a little olive oil or non-fat cooking spray in a sautee pan for the veggies and tempeh. Once heated, lay the strips of tempeh in the pan with the cherry tomatoes and sundried tomatoes. Feel free to spice it up with a little garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Sautee for about 10 minutes, or until tempeh has browned a bit.

*When the veggies and couscous are almost done, throw the frozen brussel sprouts in the microwave. I know, I know. Frozen? Really Cate? But sometimes you don't have time to go all out. Cheating is ok sometimes.

*Toss everything together and enjoy! It's flavorful, colorful, and pretty darn healthy.

-And now, to continue this two part series with something bad. We had presentations for one of my classes, and we all decided to bring in delicious snacks and treats to cushion the blow of 3 hours worth of tutoring talk. These suckas are a recipe of my Mom's neighbor, and are SO ADDICTIVE. Seriously. Maybe I just have portion control decide. Also there are only a few ingredients, so if you are poor like me it works :)

Scottie Bars

What ya need:

1 cup peanut butter

1 cup light corn syrup

6 cups rice krispies

1 cup chocolate chips

1 cup butterscotch chips

What ya do:

*Heat gently the peanut butter and corn syrup.

*Add 6 cups rice krispies and pat into greased 13x9 inch pan.

*Microwave/heat 1 cup chocolate and butterscotch morsels.

*Spread on top and chill.

-SO AMAZING. Indulge after your delicious vegetarian meal. Or have seven in one week like me. Oops. Why am I not 500 pounds?

Happy eating!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Something good and something bad: Part I

Bloggers! Oh hai!

So...thoughts on health food. Although I do enjoy eating healthy, it is nicer to eat vegetables with a little extra something on them. Anyone who says they crave plain celery is fooling themselves. Unless my stick of celery has 75 tablespoons of peanut butter on it, I ain't eatin' it.

So here is a lovely healthy dish, with a little extra something (cough gouda cheese cough).

Asparagus and Pea Quesadilla Lasagna

What ya need:

whole wheat tortilla

asparagus (about 5-6 stalks)

1/2 cup frozen peas

1/2 cup ricotta cheese

1 tsp. minced garlic
2 slices cheese (I used Gouda)

garnishes: green onions, gorgonzola cheese, parsley (I just used green onions).

What ya do:

*Blanch the asparagus by putting the stalks into a pot of boiling water for about five minutes, and cook the peas (I used frozen so you could be a cheater like me).

*Mix the garlic with the ricotta. Season with salt and pepper.
*Spread mixture on half of the tortilla, layer vegetables, top with cheese slices and place the other tortilla half on top. I did multiple layers!

*Place the quesadilla/lasagna creation into a casserole dish or on a baking sheet, whatever is easiest. I used aluminum foil as well, for easy clean up. Bake in the oven at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes, or until the top of the quesadilla is lightly browned and the cheese has melted.

*Garnish with green onions, parsley or gorgonzola cheese!

-Ok, so then obviously we needed a super unhealthy dessert to balance out all this crazy nutty healthy stuff going on. My friend Kristin had a birthday party, which was a great excuse to drink booze and eat junk. So I decided to use up the box of thin mint cookies in the freezer that I was avoiding. It's great to use things that you have already..sometimes I'll just pick one item in my pantry and research different ways to use it.

Thin Mint Truffles

What ya need:

1/2 box of Thin Mint Girl Scout Cookies (1 sleeve) + 3 cookies

4 oz Cream Cheese, softened

What ya do:

*In a food processor, process 1 sleeve of Thin Mints Girl Scout Cookies until they resemble course sand.

*Transfer the mixture to a large bowl and add the cream cheese. Mix together by hand until fully incorporated. Scoop out by the tablespoon (or use a small scoop) and roll into a nice ball in your hands to form truffles.

*Pulse the extra 3 cookies in the food processor until it resembles course sand and place in a small bowl. Roll the truffles in the processed cookie crumbs to coat. (Instead of saving the extra cookies, I pulsed all of them and rolled the truffles in hot chocolate!)

*Chill coated truffles for at least an hour to set up.... or overnight for flavors to really develop with the cream cheese.

Happy eating!