Google Amy's Cooking Adventures: April 2017

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Gluten Free Banana Oat {Pikachu} Pancakes

Banana Oat Pikachu pancakes are perfect for Pokémon fans everywhere!

Spud is a huge Pokémon fan.  In particular, he loves Pikachu!  Spud also loves pancakes, so he decided that we needed to combine his two loves and make Pikachu pancakes!

Can I confess that all of us were way more excited by the cuteness of Pikachu than the pancakes themselves?

I had some bananas moldering on the counter and decided to try to use them up in one fell swoop, plus I was nearly out of flour and somehow managed to not have a spare bag waiting in the wings.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Power-Up (Mushroom) Apples #MarioMonth #FandomFoodies

Power-Up (Mushroom) Apples are a fun, Mario-themed after school snack!

Who’s ready for some Fandom Foodies?

This month Bryan from Level 1 Chef chose the theme: Super Mario Bros!

Guys, I LOVE Mario!  Hubs and I both grew up with the classic game, so it is near and dear to our hearts.  In fact, we dressed up as Super Mario Bros for Halloween a few years ago!

And I also had a blast making these Mario Kart themed cupcakes for a birthday party!

So what to make for the challenge?  Mushrooms are obvious what how to interpret them?  Sure I could make cookies or cupcakes, but I didn’t want to do that.  I could have made a mushroom based dish, but coming right off of Lent, I’m tired of fighting with Spud over mushrooms (turns out he’s one of those people who will literally gag if he eats a mushroom).

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

BLT Pesto Pizza #FantasticalFoodFight

 BLT Pesto Pizza brings a classic to a whole new level!

It’s Fantastical Food Fight time!  Each month Sarah at a Fantastical Sharing of Recipes hosts FFF!  Participants whip up something within the monthly theme.  This month’s theme was BLT!

At first, I made a BLT breakfast sandwich.  I took an English muffin and an egg and added all the BLT goodness!  It was delicious, but unwieldy.  I just wasn’t thrilled with it.

Then I decided to BLT my pizza.  But not just any pizza.  The kids had requested pesto pizza and it was just meant to be!

Monday, April 17, 2017

Lentil Quinoa Veggie Burgers

Lentil Quinoa Veggie Burgers are a great Meatless Monday Vegetarian option!

During Lent, Dude checked out a vegetarian cookbook from the school library and wanted to make dinner one night.

He chose a recipe for Veggie Burgers.  He was excited because he’d found a veggie burger that didn’t include beans in any way.  It left me wondering what exactly the *were* made of. 

Upon closer inspection, I saw that the burgers relied on TVP or Textured Vegetable Protein.  I squinted suspiciously at the recipe, then went off to find out what fresh horror TVP could possibly be.

What I found out was that TVP is the “stuff” that leftover after soybeans have been processed to make soybean oil.  There is very little nutritional value, other than the high protein content.  TVP is often favored in vegan or vegetarian recipes because it supposedly has a “beef-like texture” when rehydrated.

None of these facts convinced me that I wanted to use TVP.  I don’t like soybeans at all and TVP sounds just as horrifying as I had suspected.

But spud reeeeeeally wanted to use his recipe.

So I managed to convince his that lentils are different from beans and that we could add quinoa for some additional protein and structure.

Friday, April 14, 2017

Roasted Root Vegetable Soup #SoupSwappers #EasterRecipes

Roasted Root Vegetable Soup is the perfect soup course for the Easter table.

Now that I’ve shared all those yummy bread recipes, it’s time to share a soup to go with them!

This month’s Soup Saturday Swappers theme is Root Vegetable Soups hosted by Wendy at A Day in the Life on the Farm!

There are so many ways to interpret root vegetable soup!  Potatoes?  Onions? Beets? Carrots?  Celery root?  I mean, you could go so many directions on this!

Almost immediately I decided I wanted carrots involved, since it’s Easter and all.  Then I decided that I also wanted beets (beets are so delicious!)  Then, I kept adding some of the more flavor neutral root vegetables (parsnip and rutabaga), plus some necessities (onion and garlic) and got to roasting!

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Honey Cinnamon Quick Bread #EasterRecipes

Honey Cinnamon Quick Bread is perfect for Lent and First Communion Preparation!

So, I just realized that all of the Easter recipes this year are bread recipes…

But we love bread around here, so it’s cool, right?

I used this bread recipe for a First Holy Communion Lesson with my 3rd graders.

The lesson begins by reminding the children of the story of the Last Supper (which is celebrated today on Holy Thursday!)

Jesus broke the bread and said, “This is my Body, which will be given for you. Do this in memory of me.” Luke 22:19

Jesus also said, “I am the bread of life, whoever comes to me shall not hunger.” John 6:35

Here is what each ingredient represents:

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Praying Arm Pretzels #EasterRecipes

Praying Arm Pretzels are a wonderful Lenten tradition for kids!

I always loving doing fun, food related activities with my kids.

This year, since I’m teaching 3rd grade, I get to take those fun activities to the classroom!

And since I’m teaching at a Catholic school, I can really make Easter and Holy week faith based.

For yesterday’s Holy Week lesson, I brought bread baking to the classroom!

After lunch, I introduced the Legend of Pretzels.  According to legend, a Catholic Monk wanted to motivate children to learn their prayers.  Since people at that time prayed with their arms crossed over their shoulders, he made the school children pretzels as a reward for learning their prayers. 

Additionally, the word “pretzel” may have its roots in the Latin word, “pretiola” meaning little reward!

For a bit more info and a cool printable, click here.

Oh, and as an added bonus, pretzels, divided into three sections as they are can be a great teaching tool for the Holy Trinity (the Father, Son and Holy Spirit as the three persons in one God).

Pretzels for the win!!

After discussing the history of pretzels, we moved into a science/math/cooking lesson and made our pretzel dough.  I did the mixing, then had the kids each take a turn kneading.

Monday, April 10, 2017

30 Minute Dinner Rolls #EasterRecipes

30 Minute Dinner rolls are perfect for Easter!

I LOVE making homemade breads.  But some days I get home late from work or the oven is in use all day on a major holiday and I just don’t have time to make fresh bread.

Or so I thought.

Because that’s when 30 minute dinner rolls come in!

That’s right, 30 minutes from start to finish (well, depending on your oven.  Mine took a bit longer, because I like my rolls to be deeply browned).

Now what happens here, is that you use a quick yeast, shape your rolls immediately, go for one quick rise, and bake.  The resulting rolls are delicious.  However, because of the significantly reduced rise time, there’s less time for gluten development.  Therefore, these rolls will be quite heavy and a bit dense (yet still very soft), compared to the light delicate crumb of, say, my Grandma’s Two Hour Rolls.  The tradeoff is totally worth it, though, for a super-fast dinner rolls!

Friday, April 7, 2017

Orange & Herb Roasted Chicken #CooktheBooksClub

Orange & Herb Chicken is a homey delicious recipe the whole family will love!

Hey hey!  It’s time for Cook the Books Club!  In CtBC, participants read the selected book and cook up something delicious!  This month Debra from Eliot’s Eats chose Life from Scratch by Sasha Martin.

The memoir follows Sasha through her difficult upbringing, with poverty, instability, adoption, and death of loved ones.  She had a lot of hardship to overcome, though it eventually led her to happiness.

Her past eventually brought her on a mission to cook across the world from a-z and chronicle her adventures on her blog.  It’s an amazing story of perseverance in many ways, from overcoming the struggles of her childhood to the huge cooking a-z project she undertook (with an infant, no less!)

Quite a few recipes referenced in the story are included in the book.

I chose to make the nice, homey roast chicken Sasha made when she cooked for her boyfriend for the first time.

Monday, April 3, 2017

Quadruple Grilled Cheese #GrilledCheese

Quadruple Grilled Cheese for National Grilled Cheese Day!

Guess what?!?

It’s Grilled Cheese Day!  Hooray for grilled cheese!

I’m celebrating by making the most cheesiest grilled cheese there is.

But before we get to the deets, let me bring you this puzzler:

At what point does a grilled cheese stop being a grilled cheese and become a grilled sandwich?  I mean, is cheese the only requisite for the moniker of grilled cheese regardless of the number of additional ingredients added?  Or is there some magical threshold where the number of added ingredients outweighs the amount of cheese and becomes a grilled sandwich? I dunno, these are the weird things I contemplate sometimes.



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