Google Amy's Cooking Adventures: 2020

Sunday, March 29, 2020

Strawberry Moscow Mule

I’m flying in at the last second for Food n Flix again.  In Food n Flix, those who want to participate watch the selected movie make something delicious inspired by the movie and share! This month, Kimberly at Coffee &Casseroles gave us a broad selection by letting us choose any Tim Burton movie!

I’d already seen a few, had no interest in a few others and was having trouble choosing.  I enlisted Hubs and he was interested in seeing Alice in Wonderland.

When I was young, I saw the Disney animated Alice in Wonderland, and a few years ago I read the book, and yeah…pretty odd.  I can see why it was right up Tim Burton’s alley. 

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Homemade Strawberry Sauce

Let’s talk strawberry sauce!  A couple years ago, I shared a chunky fresh Macerated Strawberry Sauce that I served over pancakes.

More recently, I’ve been making silky smooth strawberry sauces.  One was used in a cheesecake (recipe coming soon) and the other is absolute perfection on ice cream and that’s the one I’m sharing today!

Friday, March 20, 2020

Fruit Race Cars

Hey, everyone.  How are you holding up?  I’m in the US where the COVID-19 pandemic is just rearing its ugly face.  School systems are shut down, which means I’m teaching from home (I’m an elementary teacher librarian) and teaching my own children.

Step #1 was to get my kids on a schedule.  It may not work for every family, but my kids thrive on routine!  Things go much better when they know what’s coming next.

We’re doing lots of reading, lots of crafting, lots of walks.  Next week we’ll start school work (this week was to be spring break), so it’ll be a bit different, but this week, we’re focusing on family and fun, in between recording read alouds for my students, that is!

Which bring us to today’s recipe, Fruit Race Cars!

Sunday, March 15, 2020

Lolo Buns

On Tuesday, I shared a recipe for Creamy Lentil Soup (Dhal) for the Eat the World Recipe Challenge.  The recipe came form Fiji.  But it wasn’t the only Fijian recipe I made!

As I was researching, I also became fascinated my Lolo buns.  I wasn’t certain, at first, that I would actually make these.  They sounded so interesting (and I love making breads), but I learned that Lolo means coconut (and I really don’t care for coconut…actually no one in my family does).  Even so, I was interested and since I needed a can of coconut milk for the soup anyway, I decided to give them a whirl.

Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Fijian Creamy Lentil Soup (Dhal)

It’s the 10th, which means it’s time to buckle up, because we’re traveling the world!  This month’s destination is Fiji!

Fiji is an island, kinda between Australia and Hawaii, so I was surprised to find that the cuisine ha a strong Indian influence, featuring many curries and spice palates from India.

Indian food is always a pretty tough sell in my house, so I worked to find a more moderate recipe.  I actually found two, but I’ll share the second one in a couple days.

Since it is Lent and I’m Catholic, I decided to take a look at meatless recipes, since we abstain from meat on Fridays and I don’t eat seafood or fish.

Sunday, March 8, 2020

Creamy Stovetop Mac & Cheese

I’m not going to lie.  I didn’t think it could get better than my previous version of Creamy Stovetop Mac & Cheese.  In that recipe, the pasta is cooked directly in milk to create a rich, creamy macaroni, but it does thicken up quite quickly after cooking.

I started to wonder if I could start my mac & cheese off with a cheese sauce (starting with a roux) to make an even creamier version and yes, yes I could.

This mac and cheese comes together just as quickly as others – the cheese sauce comes together while the pasta cooks!

Sunday, March 1, 2020

Homemade Chili con Queso

A few years on the Superbowl, I randomly decided that I couldn’t handle processed cheese in my queso anymore and decided to make queso from scratch, but I still used a can of chili in the mix.

At the time, I realized the irony and wanted to make the entire thing from scratch, but just never got around to it!

And now it’s 6 years later and here we are.

Monday, February 24, 2020

Lavash Bread

It’s Cook the Books Club time and we’re back with another food-centric novel!

I like reading memoirs because they stretch me as a reader, but they are almost never my personal book of choice, so I’m always excited when a foodie novel comes my way!

Pomegranate Soup by Marsha Mehran is an interesting concept.  It follows 3 Iranian sisters who have fled Iran and are attempting to start a new life (and café) in Ireland.

Sunday, February 23, 2020

Everything Bagel Mix

It’s time for this month’s Food ‘n Flix pick…well…sort of.

This month’s movie was Nina’s Heavenly Delights hosted by Heather at All Roads Lead to the Kitchen.

Based on the title and the cover art, I was skeptical (I also had to check the rating, because, yikes (turns out it’s PG-13)).  I read the synopsis and I was still not enthusiastic.  Then I realized that the movie wasn’t available at the library or on any streaming service and I was done.  Then my friend Cam mentioned having the same problem.  She got around it by watching trailers and clips on Youtube.  That I could do.

Monday, February 17, 2020

Rich Chocolate Cake & Circuit Board Cake

Last month was Dude's 12th birthday. TWELVE you guys!

When I asked him what he wanted for a birthday cake this year, the requested chocolate cake with chocolate frosting (my favorite, too!)

But that wasn't the real question.

The real question was how do you want your cake decorated?

Then, the big guy broke his mama's bear's heart a tiny bit saying, "it doesn't need to look like anything, just the chocolate."


My baby is big!!!!

Well, I couldn't leave well enough alone and I still wanted to make him a special cake, even if he wouldn't request it himself.

Dude love electronics in any way, shape or form, so I decided to make a cake that looked like a circuit board (honestly, you should see my basement right now, he takes everything apart, there are motherboards everywhere!) 

Then I decided to take it just one step further.  I knew I wanted to pipe along the edges, but instead of a regular pattern, I used a series of dots and dashes to write "Happy Birthday" in binary!

Monday, February 10, 2020

T’Bit (Iraqi Slow Cooked Chicken & Brown Rice)

It's time for this month's Eat the World recipe challenge and this month, we're heading to Iraq!

Oh boy, I thought, this will be a tough one.

My family, while pretty adventurous eaters, are not big fans of a middle eastern spice profile.  I could have given myself a break and made some sort of bread, but I felt it wasn't really in the spirit of the challenge.

Eventually, I found a recipe for T'bit - a slow cooked chicken and rice and hoped, that even though there were some unfamiliar spices, it would be acceptable.

Tuesday, February 4, 2020

Cheesy Chicken, Broccoli, & Rice Casserole

How about a nice, comforting casserole for a chilly February day?  Because despite what that groundhog predicted, we’re in one heck of a cold snap in my area!

This is a recipe that I’ve been trying to perfect for years.  There have been so many versions!  And none of them blog-worthy until now!

I vaguely remember something like this recipe from my childhood, but never managed to get the recipe from my mom. So, I set out to make it myself and was just never successful.

Each and every time, the cheese was the problem.  The issue, I finally realized, was that I was trying to stir the cheese in last.  That is, I was leaving the rice just a bit liquidy (but still cooked through), then stirring the shredded cheese in.  The first few bites would be fine, but the dish would quickly congeal.  Still delicious, but unsightly.

Finally, I realized that I needed to make a roux and a cheese sauce first.  Ding, ding, ding!  We have a winner!

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Manduguk (Korean Dumpling Soup)

Remember that time my New Years Resolution was to blog at least once a week?  Well, here I am, with loads of recipes to share and two weeks of crickets around here.  Oops.

I blame Netflix.  Hubs and I have been binge-watching Stranger Things and it is not conducive to writing!

Anyway, a couple weeks ago (yes weeks), the boys were at a hockey rink campout (they got to watch the local college hockey team, then camp out in the arena), so I took the opportunity to watch this month’s Food n Flix pick, Always Be My Maybe, hosted by Camilla at Culinary Adventures with Camilla.

The movie is a quirky romance.  There’s snooty Sasha, clueless Marcus, and a super weird (yet hilarious) cameo by Keanu Reeves.

Sunday, January 12, 2020

Butter Mints

Let’s chat books and this month’s Cook the Books Club pick!  Debra over at Eliot’s Eats chose this month’s book, The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh.

The story follows Victoria, a girl who has just aged out of the foster care system.  As she begins to navigate life on her own, she often expresses herself in the language of flowers; a means of covertly expressing flirtations through flowers (each flower having a specific meaning).   However, because of her past experiences, Victoria does not use the language of flowers in flirtation, but to express her distrust and hatred instead.

I was riveted by the story and fascinated by the language of flowers.  Just before the end, the book was particularly upsetting, but (I’m being purposefully vague to avoid spoilers), it is because the situation is deeply personal to me and upsets me easily.  Despite this, I very much enjoyed the story and can recommend it to others.

Friday, January 10, 2020

Trini Macaroni Pie

It’s time for this month’s #EatTheWorld challenge hosted by Evelyn from CulturEatz.  This month, we’re seeking warmed climates and heading toward Trinidad and Tobago!  Trinidad and Tobago is a Caribbean island off the coast of Venezuela.

When I started researching recipes from Trinidad and Tobago, I noticed that there seemed to be a lot of influences from all over the world. 

The most surprising “Trini” recipe I found was macaroni pie!  I just knew I needed to see more.

As I refined the search to Trini macaroni pie, I found out that there are TONS of variations on macaroni pie.  Some were incredibly simple (pasta, eggs, milk & cheese), while other were more complex (spices, herbs, veggies, and even one sweet version including brown sugar!)

Since I was trying to get my mac and cheese skeptics to eat this, I kept mine on the simpler side, with a nice spice profile but no herbs or veggies.

Thursday, January 2, 2020

Jule Kag Cinnamon Rolls

Yesterday, I shared a recipe for Jule Kag, after finding out that it was a much loved recipe in my husband's family (on his mom's side).

I shared the recipe for this light, tasty sweet bread, but only hinted at the variation!

A little footnote on the bottom of the recipe noted that one loaf of Jule Kag (the recipe makes 3) could be rolled out and make in to cinnamon rolls.'

Well, that's all I needed!  I love cinnamon rollsRainbow Sprinkle Cinnamon Rolls, Twisted Star Cinnamon Rolls, Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls and so many more!

Wednesday, January 1, 2020

Jule Kag (Danish Christmas Bread)

Over Christmas break, we packed our bags, boarded a plane, and flew a few states over to milder weather to visit Hubs' family.

As I was chatting with my mother-in-law (MIL) and grandmother-in-law (her mom, let's call her GGP) one afternoon, we started talking about bread (anyone who's been around here much knows I love baking bread!) . GGP was telling us that she is not much of a bread baker, but had fond memories of her mother's recipe for Jule Kag. 



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