Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Thanksgiving Table

Happy day-before-Thanksgiving Dabblers! My house is in happy prep-mode today as we our hosting our first Thanksgiving this year. 9 family members and 4 dogs are headed our way :) 

Thanksgiving food is one of my favorite things. Growing up, Thanksgiving always meant quality time spent with my dad and brother  playing football and napping after gorging ourselves on mom's stuffing and cranberries and dad's turkey. I am excited to start some fun new traditions this year while holding the most important parts close- spending time with the people that you love and reflecting about the things that you are grateful for. 

Here is a sneak peak at our Thanksgiving table, cozied up and looking classy in the living room. We are using our actual dining table as the appetizer and dessert landing area. My aunt gifted us this gorgeous orange fabric, which I arranged over simple white table cloths and topped with a burlap runner. 

I am extra excited about hosting this year because it is the perfect occasion to use some of the beautiful things we were gifted for our wedding (3 week anniversary this weekend!) these gorgeous crystal champagne flutes and tumblers. Taking them out makes me do a little happy dance :)

We are using two of our wedding centerpieces on our Thanksgiving table. These were handmade using wood from my family's cabin. I adore them.
A fun way to fold napkins so that they hold all of the utensils. Small pears serve as seating cards and bring some extra color to the table.

Gold pumpkins and corn ears reflecting the light from the the candles.

Have a wonderful holiday Dabblers. I am off to begin pie-making (see this recipe for my Grandma's Perfect 9'' Pie Crust). Pumpkin, apple, and pecan this year :) I am very grateful for the privilege to enjoy this holiday with the people and dogs I love and for the opportunity to share my passion for food with you all. 

-The Delicious Dabbler

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Pumpkin Power Bread

This recipe was born out of breakfast necessity. Breakfast is always on the go in our house and I was looking for a healthy, portable option. This Pumpkin Power Bread satisfies both requirements. It is filling, delicious, and perfect for fall.

Pumpkin Power Bread
1 ripe banana, mashed
1/2c unsweetened applesauce
1  15 oz can of pumpkin
2 eggs
1 tbsp honey
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2c whole wheat flour
1/2c old-fashioned rolled oats
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2c raisins

Step 1:  Preheat your oven to 350F. Mash the banana with a fork until you achieve a semi-smooth texture. 

 Step 2: Add the applesauce and pumpkin and stir until incorporated.

 Step 3: Add the eggs, honey, and vanilla. Stir until incorporated.

Step 4: Find your super cute whole wheat flour container, and add a 1/2c of flour to the wet ingredients. 

Step 4. Add the oats, baking soda, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Stir until incorporated.

Step 6: Add the 1/2 cup of raisins.

Hello lovelies :)

Step 7: Grease the baking pan of your choice with coconut oil. Add the batter and spread into an even layer. * I have used a 8 x 10, 9 x 11, and a loaf pan for this recipe. 

Step 8: Bake the Pumpkin Power Bread at 350F until edges become golden brown and the middle of the pan has set up. (Appx. 30-35 minutes). *Please note that you will need to adjust the baking time depending on the pan you use (ex. traditional loaf pan).

This bread is great as is, or with a dab of butter or an extra touch of honey. 

Wrap it up and it is ready for a delicious and healthy breakfast or snack on the go. :)

Enjoy this fall recipe Dabblers, just in time for Halloween. Feel free to switch things up - I have subbed maple syrup for the honey and that was delicious. If you are looking for a sweeter treat, swap the raisins out for chocolate chips. 

Thanks for visiting, 

-The Delicious Dabbler

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Birchwood Waffle Bliss

Happy fall flavors Dabblers.  Fall color has officially arrived in Minnesota and the scenery couldn't be more beautiful. Training for the Twin Cities Marathon has kept me logging many hours around the lakes in Minneapolis and along the Mississippi River, and it has been a joy to watch the trees change as the marathon approaches- 7 days to go!

This morning I completed my last long run with a dear friend who is also running the marathon this year. To celebrate, we went to Birchwood Cafe for brunch after completing our miles. I have been looking forward to this running/brunching date all week because of this gem of brunchery fantasticness:

Birchwood's savory waffle is one of my favorite breakfast creations ever. The waffle flavor rotates seasonly, and this fall's waffle is pumpkin with apple compote, cinnamon-pecan butter, bacon lardons, a fried egg, maple syrup, and a delicate dusting of powdered sugar. If you find yourself wondering, 'how do all of those flavors blend together?,' quit wasting precious time pondering and go eat one :) Brunch ends at 2pm. 

I couldn't love fall flavors more- apples, pumpkins, and spices...comfy, warm, and cozy flavors. My next post will include the recipe for my go-to breakfast concoction of late- Power Pumpkin Bread. 

Happy Fall Dabblers, 

-The Delicious Dabbler

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Memorial Day Weekend Favorites

Hi dabblers. I hope you had a lovely Memorial Day weekend and are now enjoying a short work week. I spent a wonderful long weekend up north with my family and dogs. Here are some weekend highlights in photos:

A breakfast sandwich consisting of a fried egg, spinach, tomatoes, and herb cow's cheese on rye toast. I love having time to really make breakfast and enjoy it on vacation weekends. 

The donut counter at World's Best Donuts in Grand Marais, MN. Truly the best donuts I have ever had and a must stop if you are in Grand Marais. 
Cake donut with chocolate glaze. 
Cake donut with cinnamon and sugar. 
Raised glazed with sugar. Eat the donuts as soon as possible after purchasing (I suggest as you are walking out of the donut shop) for maximum deliciousness.

My favorite restaurant in Grand Marais, the Angry Trout Cafe

I always get the same thing because I love it. Whitefish chowder.

House-made root beer in an Angry Trout Cafe cup. 
Fish and chips with local whitefish. 
House-made dill tartar sauce. My favorite part of the entire experience. 
A fabulous delivery bike. 

Grandma's rhubarb pie made with rhubarb from the family garden. Her pies are the best in the world, and as always, the crust (recipe here) was fabulous. 
Spicy hot chocolate with cinnamon and cayenne pepper, made with milk that I whisked until frothy over the stove. Served in a classic cabin mug and topped with marshmallows :) The perfect accompaniment to a cool evening and a good book. 

Cheers to time spent appreciating the beauty of nature, 
and time spent with the people and animals you love. 

-The Delicious Dabbler

Friday, May 25, 2012

Sourdough Popovers

Happy Memorial Weekend dabblers! I am really looking forward to the long weekend and to heading to northern Minnesota for a few days with family. I hope that you get to enjoy some relaxing moments this weekend as well. If you are looking for a quick and delicious side, I highly recommend these sourdough popovers (pictured in last week's post) from King Arthur Flour.

The dough is very simple (1 c milk, 3 eggs, 1/2 c sourdough starter, 3/4 tsp salt, and 1 c all-purpose flour; yield 6 popovers) and the popovers could be served savory (i.e. with last week's compound chive butter) or sweet (i.e. honey, compound cinnamon/sugar butter, or chocolate hazelnut spread...whatever your favorite indulgence is).

To begin, preheat the oven to 450°F and place your popover pan (or a muffin pan, which is what I used...I am in the market for a great popover pan, so recommendations are welcome!) in the oven to heat up while the oven comes to temperature. While that is happening, heat the milk in a small sauce pan over the stove until it is warm to the touch. In a separate bowl, combine the eggs, sourdough starter, salt, and flour. Slowly add in the milk, stirring constantly. 

Whisk the dough to combine (a few small lumps are okay). 

The dough is pretty thin and should feel runnier than pancake batter. 

When the oven is done preheating, remove the popover/muffin pan and generously brush 6 of the muffin cups with coconut oil. You can space the popovers out in the pan so that they have more room to expand. If you are using a popover pan, fill the cups 3/4 full. If you are using a muffin pan like me, fill them to the top. 
Forgive the through-the-oven camera work, but I wanted to show you how cute they look as they puff up. 

Bake the popovers at 450°F for approximately 15 minutes. You can tell you are ready to reduce the oven temperature when the popovers have reached max lift-capacity (see how the two in the front have broken open). Reduce your oven temperature to 375°F  and continue to the bake the popovers for an additional 15-20 minutes until they are golden brown. 

For the best popover enjoyment, serve them immediately with your favorite toppings. 

I am looking forward to getting a great popover pan so that these beauties will get even more lift. As mentioned on the King Arthur website, you can also make these with whole wheat flour, which I have tried twice now. They are much denser than the all-purpose variety, but also delicious. 

Have a great holiday weekend dabblers. Thanks for visiting, 

-The Delicious Dabbler 

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Compound Chive Butter

Hi Dabblers. After a long hiatus due to grad school and work consuming my free hours, I am happy to be back and sharing with you all. Over the weekend, I was out working at our family garden. This is my first year being really involved in the planting and I have been enjoying it immensely. Chives and rhubarb were ready for harvesting, so I brought home some of both. Next trip I will take more photos, but for now- here is a photo of the lovely picnic prepared by my aunt as a mid-day break:

She makes every meal into a beautiful experience.

Back to the butter...compound butters are super easy to make and great to have on hand. I brought about a 1/4 of a stick of unsalted butter to room temperature and broke it up with a fork. I then added approximately 1 tbsp of finely chopped chives.

I then seasoned the butter with salt and pepper and used the fork to mix all the ingredients until combined.

You could also add garlic or red pepper, depending on what application you were going to use the compound butter for.

This butter was destined for sourdough popovers. That recipe is coming next...and within the week (I promise). I also used the butter to finish off a simple spinach, pasta, and goat cheese dish tonight and it was delicious.

The chives doubled as decorations as well. My aunt gave me this sweet little mason jar as I have been collecting jars to use as candle holders for my upcoming wedding. Chive flowers are edible and make great garnishes for salads or any other food displays.

Happy summer food dabbling :)

Thanks for visiting,

-The Delicious Dabbler

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Valentine's Day Cupcakes

♥Happy Valentine's Day Dabblers!♥

I love Valentine's Day...a day to spread the love. My favorite way to do that is through food, and these Valentine's Cupcakes were for the girl's basketball team that I coach. I needed a quick recipe, and this one from for One-Bowl Chocolate Cupcakes fit the bill. 

They came together quickly and all in one bowl, as the name promises, so I saved time on dishes as well. 

I topped them with homemade buttercream frosting and a chocolate heart candy. If you haven't made your own buttercream before, give it a try (recipe inspiration here). The texture, depth of flavor, and richness is so fabulous and it is simple to do. 

The girls were very excited when the cupcakes showed up at practice and it was a fun start to the Valentine's Day festivities. I wish you and yours a Happy Valentine's Day and hope you spread a little love today. 

Thanks for visiting, 

-The Delicious Dabbler