Sunday, May 30, 2010
Saturday, May 29, 2010
Baked Mascarpone & Mozzarella Pasta
Adapted from Cooking Light (here)
1/2 pound uncooked penne (I used shells)
1/8 cup all-purpose flour (about 1 ounce)
1 1/2 cups milk
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup mascarpone cheese
1/2 teaspoon salt (or more to taste)
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
4 oz ham, sliced (or prosciutto)
2 tablespoon butter
1 small garlic clove, minced
1/2 cup breadcrumbs
1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley (I omitted)
Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain; keep warm.
Preheat oven to 350°.
Lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Combine flour and milk in a large saucepan over medium heat, stirring with a whisk. Cook 10 minutes or until thick, stirring constantly with a whisk. Remove from heat; add cheeses, stirring with a whisk until smooth. Stir in salt and black pepper.
Melt 1 Tbsp butter in a small skillet over medium heat. Add sliced ham; cook until crispy. Add ham and cooked pasta to cheese mixture and stir until coated. Spoon pasta mixture into a 13 x 9-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray.
Melt 1 Tbsp butter in the skillet over medium heat. Add garlic; cook 30 seconds. Remove from heat. Stir in breadcrumbs until well combined. Sprinkle breadcrumb mixture evenly over pasta mixture. Bake at 350° for 25 minutes or until bubbly. Sprinkle with parsley.
Thanks to Sarah of Growing on Gettysburg for passing the award along to me! Now, here are 7 random facts about me:
1. I collect playing cards.
2. I'm originally from Chicago, IL but we moved to FL when I was 6.
3. When I was younger I wanted to be an astronaut. Then I found out you had to be good at and know a lot of science and decided against it.
4. I feel more comfortable and more like myself when I wear a ponytail.
5. I have a star named after me.
6. If you would have asked me 10 years ago what I thought my life would look like now I'd tell you I wouldn't be married or have a kid. Well played Life.
7. I was in a sorority in college. Go ZTA!
I'm passing this award along to 4 other great versatile bloggers:
Katrina of Baking and Boys!
Cara of The Picky Apple
Eliana of A Chica Bakes
Jen of Beantown Baker
Friday, May 28, 2010
Last week I mentioned how Cati finally noticed Perla. Well, this week Perla has taken a very active interest in Cati. I think Perla is still wondering what this little human is doing here :)
I'm wondering if Cati is starting to teethe. I can't see anything in her gums but she drools a lot and she chews on everything that goes into her mouth. She doesn't suck on things, she chews. She also likes to chew on the bottle nipple, which drives me off the wall.
We visited Alex at work twice this week and it's always fun to show off the baby. The best part is having multiple people say Cati looks like me. It's amazing how much babies change. When she was first born everyone said she looked exactly like Alex. Now that she's getting older and fatter, more and more people are saying she looks like me. I like to joke that Cati should at least look like me since her dad is going to forever have her heart.
I'm still struggling with clogged ducts. I hate that I have to deal with them as often as I do. I've made the decision to start weaning myself from the pump. I still plan on having Cati on breast milk exclusively until she's a year old but I'm hoping that with weaning I will be able to make my supply more aligned with Cati's eating. Before the last bout of mastitis I was freezing 30 oz of milk a day and now I am storing a little more than 20 oz per day. I would like to donate some milk, anyone have any experience with this?
Being a mom is so rewarding but it's so hard. Not only is having a child with a developing personality and temperament hard but it's also hard to take the pressure off of yourself. You want so badly to do everything right that most things become an emotional issue. It's hard to be rational when so much of you is swelling with love.
With all that said, let's get to the food. The portions are decent sizes and everything tastes incredibly delicious. My mother-in-law ordered a toasted bagel and salmon. She said the salmon tasted fresh and loved how, despite the bagel, the breakfast felt incredibly light.
I ordered the Croque Madame and, wow, this was spectacular. I eat every bit of it. This baby was covered in cheese and the bechamel sauce helped moisten things up (the bread is very, very thick).
Le Boudoir is located at 169 Miracle Mile in Coral Gables, FL. I recommend going on a comfortable weather day because the restaurant has a great location for outdoor seating and people watching.
Wednesday, May 26, 2010
Vanilla Bean Refrigerator Cookies
Source: Williams-Sonoma's Desserts
Yields 3 1/2 dozen
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
About 1 1/3 cups vanilla sugar
In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside. Place the butter in a large bowl and, using an electric mixer set on high speed, beta until light and fluffy. Add 1 cup of the vanilla sugar and beat until thoroughly incorporated. Add the egg and beat until light and fluffy. Reduce to low speed and add the flour mixture, mixing until just incorporated.
Form the dough into a rough log, 10 inches long, in the center of a sheet of waxed paper. Fold one side of the paper over the dough and press to shape it into an even oblong, square, rectangular, or triangular log about 10 inches long. Wrap tightly in the waxed paper and refrigerate until firm, about 4 hours or as long as overnight.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Butter two baking sheets. Unwrap the dough and transfer to a work surface. Carefully cut into slices 1/4 inch thick. Transfer the cookies to the prepared baking sheets, spacing them 1 inch apart. Sprinkle with remaining vanilla sugar.
bake until the edges are brown, about 12 minutes. Transfer the cookies to wire racks to cool. Store in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
Instead, I kind of made an apple pie. I used store bought pie crusts but made the filling myself. The pie was really good, but I cut the apples too thin and sprinkled the top with turbinado sugar so the pie tasted more like an apply pastry than your typical apple pie. Can't complain much when served with ice cream :)
Apple Pie by Grandma Ople
Source: All Recipes (here)
1 recipe pastry for a 9 inch double crust pie
1/2 cup unsalted butter
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
8 Granny Smith apples - peeled, cored and sliced
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C). Melt the butter in a saucepan. Stir in flour to form a paste. Add water, white sugar and brown sugar, and bring to a boil. Reduce temperature and let simmer.
Place the bottom crust in your pan. Fill with apples, mounded slightly. Cover with a lattice work of crust. Gently pour the sugar and butter liquid over the crust. Pour slowly so that it does not run off.
Bake 15 minutes in the preheated oven. Reduce the temperature to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Continue baking for 35 to 45 minutes, until apples are soft.
Monday, May 24, 2010
Sweetly Simple Coffee Cake
Source: Sing For Your Supper (here)
or this one of the Mediterranean.
Both these cruises are wishful thinking because of their length but it would be sooo nice to go on one of them. What are your recommendations for great vacation locations?
Sunday, May 23, 2010
Friday, May 21, 2010
Ok, enough venting and on to some good news. This week Cati actually acknowledged Perla! She even reached out for her and pulled her hair (not hard, I promise!). Normally they live in complete ignorance of one another except when Perla's barks startle Cati and Cati's cries startle Perla, so it's cool to see Cati starting to take an interest in Perla. I think they will be the best of buddies in the future. Cati also laughed! Or what I think is a laugh. I was playing with her and she smiled really big (I adore that gummy smile) and made a "hah" sound. I nearly fell over. I can't believe how much my little girl is really starting to interact with us.
I honestly can't remember what else happened this week because of the sleep deprivation and mastitis. One thing that keeps me going is the fact that each day is different. Cati keeps me permanently in the present so while one day may completely suck, the next day is a new day and there is renewed hope for a better day.
Thursday, May 20, 2010
Tuesday, May 18, 2010
Thanks to Elizabeth of Cake or Death? for this week's selection. Make sure to head over to her blog to get the correct and full recipe. Also, don't forget to stop by TWD to see what the other bakers thought of this week's selection.