Friday, May 25, 2012

Roasted Honey/Balsamic Carrots

Last night I was making meatloaf & rosemary potato bread for dinner, and was trying to come up with a vegetable to serve with it.  I remembered a carrot recipe I found a few weeks ago on Pinterest, and I had all the ingredients for it.  So, the background here is that I normally HATE carrots.  I couldn't eat a raw carrot if you paid me. 

So I made these carrots (they were really easy to throw together)- and not only did I tolerate them, I actually liked them!  I was shocked!  I know that most vegetables tend to be tastier roasted, and these are no exception.  The honey & balsamic vinegar adds great flavor, too.  This is a recipe I KNOW I will make again!  Enjoy!

Recipe Source: Here

(I didn't bother taking a picture, because I was doubtful that I would like them- of course I was wrong, so next time I'll take one!  In the meantime, here's the picture from the original source)

Roasted Honey/Balsamic Carrots
Printable version here

1 pound baby carrots
Olive oil
Salt & pepper
1/2 tsp. balsamic vinegar

1. Preheat oven to 400º.  Put carrots in a baking dish (I used an 11x7 glass dish) and drizzle with olive oil; stir.  (You want enough oil so they're all covered, but not so they're soaked.) Sprinkle with salt and pepper and stir one more time.

2. Bake for 20 minutes.  Remove from oven, drizzle with honey (about 1-2 tablespoons, but I didn't bother measuring) and add 1/2 tsp. balsamic vinegar.  Stir.  Bake for 5 more minutes, until softened but still a little crisp.

Why I love it? It's super easy to make, it's healthy, and it actually tastes good! :)

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Peanut Butter Banana Oatmeal Squares

(I'm sorry about the serious lack of posting lately- I've been so busy with various activities, and finishing up the year homeschooling.  I have been making a lot of new recipes lately & taking tons of pictures, so I'll have plenty to post about once I find the time!  Just 2 weeks left of school, then I'll be back.)

I saw this recipe on Pinterest, and right away it looked interesting.  I'm always up for an easy, yummy breakfast recipe!  The kids and I love these- even my picky eater who refuses to eat a bowl of oatmeal, he'll eat this because it's in bar form!  Silly boy.  These bars will last a few days at room temperature, and if you want you can reheat them before eating.  Enjoy!

Peanut Butter Banana Oatmeal Squares
Printable version here

1 1/2 cups oats (old fashioned or quick)
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. kosher salt (or 1/4 tsp. table salt)
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 cup milk
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 large banana, mashed
1/4 cup creamy peanut butter

1. Mix together the oats, brown sugar (I used a little less than 1/4 cup), baking powder, salt, and cinnamon.

2. Add in the vanilla, milk, and egg.  Mix the ingredients together.  Then add in the mashed banana and peanut butter and stir to combine.

3. Pour the mixture into a lightly greased 8x8 inch baking pan.  Bake at 350º for 20 minutes.  Cool, cut into squares, and enjoy!

Recipe source:

Why I love it?  They are ingredients I almost always have (normally I just have to wait for a ripe banana), they have a good amount of nutrition in them (fiber, protein, and some good fats), they're easy, and they taste great! 

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Peanut Butter Pie

I made this pie tonight for my husband's 30th birthday (and then realized that the last time I made it was his 29th birthday!).  He's a fan of chocolate & peanut butter.  This has a graham cracker crust and a creamy, peanut-buttery filling.  After plating the pie, I drizzled homemade chocolate syrup over each piece. Daniel (my almost-8 year old) asked me tonight if we could have this as his birthday dessert next month, too.  I told him that I promise I won't wait another year again to make it!

This is what I used to decorate the top of the pie- it's so easy to do, and makes your foods look that much better! Wilton Dessert Decorator (I got mine at JoAnn's with a 40% off coupon, or here it is on Amazon for $11)

I also love it for filling deviled eggs, it makes that go so fast!

Peanut Butter Pie
Printable version here

1 1/2 cups crushed graham crackers (about 10 whole crackers)
3 tbsp. sugar
1/3 cup butter, melted

4 oz. cream cheese, softened (light cream cheese is okay)
3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup heavy cream, whipped (or 2 cups whipped topping)

Optional toppings: more whipped cream, chocolate sauce, chopped peanuts

1. Combine crust ingredients; press into a 9-inch pie plate.  Bake at 350º for 9 minutes.  Cool.

2. In a mixing bowl, beat cream cheese, peanut butter, sugar, and vanilla until smooth.  Fold in whipped cream.  Gently spoon into crust.  Top with more whipped cream around edge and chopped peanuts, if desired.  Refrigerate until serving. Drizzle with chocolate sauce at time of serving.

Yield: 8 servings.

Why I love it? It's pretty quick to throw together, and I like that you can make it several hours before serving, and just keep it in the fridge.  The peanut butter filling is just so smooth and flavorful.  That combined with the crunchy peanuts on top, the chocolate drizzle, and the graham crackers & whipped cream- mmmm!  Plus, while it's not "healthy" by any means, I did lighten up the original recipe by about 50%.  So go ahead, have some pie!