Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Quick Muffins

I haven't made breakfast for my Sunday School class in quite a while, so I decided to make some muffins this week. I think that these are probably the most semi-homemade you can get! It uses a cake mix...but made healthier by using pumpkin for the moistener. It is fantastic and so moist you'd never guess that wasn't any added oil. Because of the pumpkin, this is a great ARF entry for Sweetnicks ARF Tuesday. Check out the others at her site. Easy Pumpkin Muffins
1 box carrot cake mix
1 1/2 cups pumpkin
1/2 cup water
1 egg

Preheat oven to 375. Stir together mix, pumpkin, egg, and water. Scoop into greased muffin tin. Bake for 12 minutes (or until springs back) for mini muffins and about 20 minutes (or until done) for full muffins. I got 12 full muffins and 20 mini-muffins.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

I "Popped" Out

Yes, I'm sure you've all see the cuteness of all the cheesecake pops that are circulating around the web. Well, I was supposed to do these little things but didn't. I didn't have an occasion to make them and my little apartment refrigerator is just not equipped to hold a tray of cheesecake pops in the freezer. SO, after doing 6 consecutive Daring Baker challenges, I have missed one. I'll be back in May, but if you want to see all the great participants out there, check out the blogroll! Enjoy!

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Don't Forget the Sugar!

I love spending holidays with my family. However, this year Easter fell in the middle of one of my rotations, so I could not go to TN, and my parents needed to be at their church. So, I didn't get to spend Easter with them. I was really kind of nervous about what to do about lunch. You see, I knew that my parents' best friends would probably end up inviting me to spend it with them, but I kind of wanted to do something with people my age. So, one evening after our special music I asked a friend who is getting married in June what she and her fiancee were doing. I just assumed that they would be going to eat at her dad's because he lives in Madison. Nope...they didn't have plans. YAY! So, we made plans for them to come to my apartment. I asked a couple of other guys, but they both had plans. My roommate ended up eating with us as well, even though her family lives in town. I decided to make pork loin and almost had a fit because the meat appeared to be the normal cut I got but was really one of those that is cut lengthwise down the center to make two long, skinny loins. It turned out GREAT though...so flavorful and tender! Matt made green bean casserole and Kalyn made dirty (or brown as she called it) rice. I had tried a mashed sweet potato recipe but it was, um, gross...so that went in the trash! We cut up a fresh pineapple as well. Then dessert! Ah, dessert. I decided to make an angel food cake. I've done this before; so, when it was time to pour the "batter" in the pan, I thought it looked a little runny but decided to bake it anyway. OH MY WORD! That cake was a disaster. It was flat and oh so eggy. At first, I had no clue what went wrong...then I remember, oops! I forgot to put the other half of the sugar in with the flour. Amazing the difference. Thankfully, I had purchased and extra dozen eggs to dye (which I ended up NOT doing), so I whipped up another cake, and this one turned out great! We topped it with strawberries, cool whip, and chocolate sauce! A perfect end to a lovely day with friends! Angel Food Cake
1 cup cake flour
1 1/2 cups sugar, divided
12 large egg whites
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon vanilla extract Preheat oven to 325°.
To prepare cake, lightly spoon the flour into a dry measuring cup, and level with a knife.
Sift together flour and 3/4 cup sugar. Beat egg whites with a mixer at high speed until foamy. Add cream of tartar and salt; beat until soft peaks form. Add 3/4 cup sugar, 2 tablespoons at a time, beating until stiff peaks form. Fold in vanilla. Slowly add flour mixture into peaks and fold in. Be sure to fold all the way to the bottom of the bowl to distribute the flour evenly.
Spoon batter into an ungreased 10-inch tube pan, spreading evenly. Break air pockets by cutting through batter with a knife. Bake at 325° for 50 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly touched. Invert pan, and cool completely. Loosen cake from sides of pan using a narrow metal spatula. Invert the cake onto plate. Cut cake into 12 slices.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Snappy Side

This weekend a friend and I rented The Awakenening and picked up dinner from a local bakery. The movie left more to be desired. I mean, it wasn't bad but it was a bit confusing and sad...really sad! The dinner, however, was delicious! The bakery is called Broadstreet and offers sandwiches on homemade breads, pasta, salads, quiche, and even "real" food. I got the roasted chicken BLT without the B. I know, kind of odd but I don't like the way they do the "B." They crumble it up and just toss it through the chicken. Anyway, I got it on focaccia. Yum! This place gives HUGE sandwiches...like two in one! So, I had leftovers last night, but I wanted something to go with it. I decided to snap my tiny, thin asparagus and roast it with some balsamic vinegar. OH it was SO good! And just think about the good vitamins and nutrients in the asparagus. Because of that, this is my quick and simple entry to Sweetnicks ARF Tuesday. Stop by and see the other entries! Balsamic Roasted Asparagus
1 bunch asparagus
balsamic vinegar
salt seasoning

Preheat oven to 425 F. Snap asparagus and place on a baking sheet. Drizzle with balsamic vinegar and sprinkle with the salt seasoning. Cook for about 10-12 minutes, depending on how crisp you want it. Enjoy!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Wonderful Berries

I've started peds this week and am simply enjoying myself. Even a full day in clinic doesn't slow me down! It's wonderful...and now I'm back with another wonderful recipe from Fresh Everyday. The original recipe calls for blackberries, but I had an almost empty bag of frozen mixed berries, so I used those. I also decreased the sugar in the recipe. Now, even though these were good the way I made them, I can see that the original full 3/4 cup of sugar would be great...who doesn't like a nice sweet corn muffin? Okay, I know that many people don't. Anyway, with the addition of the berries, this makes a wonderful entry to Sweetnicks' ARF Tuesday at www.sweetnicks.com (grrr...I can't get the link in blogger to work). So, stop by and see what great recipes everyone else has come up with. Corn Berry Muffins adapted from Fresh Everyday by Sara Foster.
1 1/2 cups AP flour
1 1/2 cups yellow cornmeal
1/2 cup suar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 large egg
3/4 cup buttermilk
1/3 cup canola oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen berries Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Stir the flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, soda, and salt together. In another bowl mix the eggs, buttermilk, and vanilla together. Add the flour mixture gradually, stirring until just mixed. Fold in the berries. Using a 1/4 cup measure*, scoop into prepared muffin tins. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until tops spring back. Allow to cool in pan before turning out.

*Sara suggests a 1/3 cup measure. My mufins were still a decent size and I got 12 full mini-muffins. If you want really tall muffins, use the 1/3 cup size.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Baking as I Go

Do you ever forget that you have a certain cookbook and then, when trying to find a recipe, happen upon that forgotten cookbook? Well, I have recently done that with my Fresh Everyday by Sara Foster. So far, I haven't tried any of her main dishes, though I plan to. I have tried a few breads and cookies as well as one side dish that didn't quite turn out, but that's because I'm not a huge fan of the ingredient to start with. Anyway, I got a break between waiting for babies to be born who never came when I was there to make some cookies. I found a recipe I wanted to try, but didn't have any white chocolate chips as they are more expensive. So, I used my World Market cappucino chips and subbed pecans for the macadamia nuts. I thought they turned out well...except for the pictures! Something is going on with my photography skills...hopefully, they'll return soon! Cappucino Chip Pecan Cookies adapted from Fresh Everyday
2 sticks margarine (or unsalted butter), softened
1 cup sugar
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
3 cups AP flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1-2 cups cappucino chips
1 cup toasted, chopped pecans Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugars together (about 3 minutes). Add eggs one at a time; add in vanilla. Be sure to scrape the bowl down to incorporate everything. Combine the dry ingredients. Add the flour until it is just combined. Stir in the chips and pecans. Place the dough on a baking sheet/stone with a tablespoon scoop*. Bake for 10 minutes or until just browned. Allow to cool for 2 minutes before removing. Enjoy.
*For larger cookies, use a 1/4 cup measure and space cookies further apart. Cook for 12-14 minutes for soft cookies or 15-17 minutes for crunchy cookies. Allow these to cool for 5 minutes before removing.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

A meme

I love doing these things but never do it unless I'm specifically invited/tagged...so, if you say whoever wants to do this, do it...I won't! I just don't have the time...unless I'm tagged...and I have been! Abby tagged me and now I will comply!

The rules of the game get posted at the beginning.- Each player answers the questions about themselves.- At the end of the post, the player then tags 5 people, posts their names, and then leaves a comment on their blogs, letting them know they've been tagged. Here we go....

What was I doing 10 years ago (April 1998)?
I was in 9th grade at Sumner Hill Jr. High, my city's 9th grade school. Yes, we have a school with only ninth grade. Our high school houses 10-12. The other schools hold K-1, 2-3, 4-5, and 6. Yes, strange, but it works. I was getting ready to try out for Attache, our high school's nationally known and celebrated show choir. I sang "Outcast" from Disney's Hunchback of Notre Dame. It was fun even though I didn't make it.

5 Things on my "To Do" list today/tomorrow:
Go with Mama to The Fresh Market and The Loft
Make cookies for Daddy
Go to the pediatric department resident vs. attending softball game
Study some more in 1 Peter
Get ahead on my peds rotation: start CLIPP cases and buy a book

5 Things I would do if I were a Billionaire:
Pay off my med school loans.
Buy a house
Give more to my church
Go to Greece, the Holy Land, and New York...oh, and Prince Edward Island, the land of Anne
Go crazy on gifts for the kids at the hospital during Christmas

5 Bad Habits:
Biting my nails - I'm not as bad as I used to be, but sometimes things just happen!
Not calling people to do things
Chewing on my lip
Forgetting to pluck my eyebrows
getting defensive

5 Places I have lived:
Alexandria, VA
Clinton, MS
Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan
Jackson, MS
Oakridge, TN

5 Jobs I have had:
Church Music Intern
Chemistry Researcher
Medical Assistant - in ophthalmology, family medicin, and pediatrics (all in different summers)

Now, I'm supposed to tag people:
Casey - Blog A La Bradshaw
Kristen - Dine and Dish
Red Dirt Mummy
Paula - The Cookbook Junkie
Jennifer - Weekly Dish

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Baby Sweets!

I have been working nights this week in labor and delivery. Last night I finally delivered a baby!!! It was pretty neat and I hope I get another chance to do it tonight. Anyway, thought I'd leave a little sweet recipe for you before I go to work. A couple of weeks ago, we had our Pediatric Interest Group fundraiser. I made a chess square recipe. This is going to be my entry to Cate's ARF Tuesday. How is the ARF you ask? It has lemon in it which has a lot of vitamin C, which is an anti-oxidant. This is a pretty good recipe and is a lot like those Gooey Butter Cakes that Paula Deen makes, except with about two sticks less butter! Try it out for yourself! St. Louie Gooie Butter Cake from With Special Distinction (MC cookbook)
1 box butter recipe cake mix
1 egg, well beaten
1 stick butter/margarine, softened
1 8-oz package cream cheese, softened
2 eggs, well beaten
1-lb box confectioners' sugar
2 teaspoons lemon extract
Mix together crust ingredients until crumbly and press into bottom of a lightly greased 9X13 pan. Beat cream cheese, eggs, and desire flavoring. Add sugar gradually. Pour over crust. Bake at 325 degrees F for 35-40 minutes. Allow to cool thoroughly before slicing.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Real Food Fast

I've not had time to cook real food lately as I've been doing the aforementioned 12-hour shifts. However, last night (even though I got to the hospital at 5:30 and got home around 5:30) I decided to make some real food. I wanted to make a stir-fry, but I was lazy and didn't want to stand there waiting for the veggies to cook. So, I had a roasted veggie stir fry. I took a couple of heads of broccoli and a fresh-frozen yellow pepper and roasted them in the oven. Then I threw those in a skillet with some frozen shrimp, seasoned it with Nature's Seasoning and then threw some low sodium soy sauce in it. It turned out great! With all those anti-oxidants and anti-carcinogens (anti-cancer agents) in the broccoli, this is a great meal for Cate's ARF. Check it out and see what she's put together in her super mom way! :-) Shrimp and Broccoli Stir Fry
2 small heads of broccoli
1 yellow pepper, cut in strips
2 cups frozen shrimp
Roast the veggies at 425 degrees F for 15 minutes or until crisp-tender. In a hot skillet, add veggies and shrimp. Cook until shrimp is hot and cooked through. Season with desired seasoning and soy sauce. Serve over brown rice. Mango goes great with this!