Friday, June 27, 2014

Spaghetti Carbonara

Sometimes you just need something comforting for dinner.

These kinds of dinners happen from time to time.

I realize that this isn't an authentic spaghetti carbonara. Real carbonara should not have peas, and it should use pancetta instead of bacon. Oh well. This is still tasty and that little bit of green makes me feel a little less guilty about eating bacon, eggs, pasta and cheese for dinner.

We tend to make this on those rare occasions when the only foods we have in the house are breakfast foods (yet we don't feel like breakfast). I'm sure this happens to everyone. Most of the time we have an omelet but sometimes, something a little different is good too

Hope you enjoy

  • 1 lb dry spaghetti
  • 1 onion
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 4 oz slab bacon
  • 4 eggs
  • splash of milk
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesean cheese
  • black pepper
  • fresh parsley
  • ½ cup peas


  1. Sautee bacon to release a little oil. Then sautee onion and garlic until translucent. Add peas and let aside.
  2. Mix eggs, milk, cheese and pepper
  3. Boil spaghetti until al dente and drain. Immediately stir in egg mixture, slowly pouring in the eggs while quickly stirring the pasta to create a sauce
  4. Stir in the bacon mixture and fresh parsley

  1. Garnish with a little extra cheese

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Tofu Chocolate Pudding

It sounds weird, I know. And the pictures aren't very pretty (brown food in particular is not very photogenic). But this chocolate pudding is really fantastic. It doesn't heat up your house making custard like regular pudding, it includes protein and is dairy-free.

Depending on the type of tofu you use, the pudding will have different textures. A silken soft tofu will give you a pudding texture similar to those chocolate pudding cups at the grocery store. A firm tofu will give you a stiffer mousse-like quality.

I got the recipe from a book called "What Einstein Told His Cook: Kitchen Science Explained" It's a silly book but I learned a few new things and got this fantastic recipe. Everyone should try it out. I guarantee it tastes just like chocolate pudding.

*Note: you can use either espresso or kahlua in this recipe. If you use espresso, you can use semi-sweet chocolate chips. If you use kahlua, it's much better when you use dark chocolate. Make sure you use a vegan chocolate chip like Trader Joe's brand (if you care about that kind of thing).

Tofu Chocolate Pudding


  • 12 oz tofu, drained
  • 1/4 cup almond or soy milk
  • 2 Tbsp espresso or kahlua
  • 6 oz good quality chocolate
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • pinch of salt
  1. Melt chocolate in the top of a double boiler
  2. Put milk, espresso, tofu, vanilla and salt in the blender and blend about 30 seconds
  3. While blender is running, pour melted chocolate into the blender and blend until smooth and uniform.
  4. Pour into 4 containers and chill at least one hour or until ready to serve

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Secret Recipe Club: Fried Green Tomato BLT Salad

It's Secret Recipe Club week again. You know the deal. Everyone picks a fellow member's blog. They pick a recipe (in secret) and everyone posts their blogs on the same day. It's a fun game, and everyone loves seeing someone else's take on their recipe.

This month, I was assigned Kate's Kitchen. Kate is a financial planner from Indianapolis, Indiana who loves to cook almost as much as she loves to eat. Her blog is full of great everyday foods you can easily cook at home like her Egyptian Cucumber Salad (basically chunky tzatziki, what's not to love?)

Today I opted to make her Fried Green Tomato BLT. Her BLT was stacked with aioli in between every layer like a real sandwich, but we opted for a composed salad for our dinner. It was delicious! My finance and I were both so happy with this. The aioli was luscious and the tart green tomatoes went perfectly with the salty bacon. Once you paired it with a slice of crusty bread, there was really nothing better.

 I changed a couple things about her recipe but not much. I made the aioli by hand instead of dirtying the food processor (the trick to aioli is confidence, nothing more). We didn't use the tomato coulis but it didn't seem to impact our salad. I also opted for arugula instead of bibb lettuce or field greens because I like the peppery taste and wilted arugula would actually be nice with the warm tomatoes. Other than that, the bones of this recipe are all Kate's and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

Fried Green Tomato BLT

Ingredients for aioli (you will have leftovers)
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 5 cloves garlic, roasted and finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp dijon mustard
  • 1/2 cup olive oil (not extra virgin)
  • salt/pepper/smoked paprika to taste
Ingredients for Salad
  • 8 slices of green tomato (about 2 whole tomatoes)
  • 4 or 5 slices of bacon
  • All purpose flour
  • Whole wheat flour
  • Cornmeal
  • 2 eggs
  • splash of milk
  • Canola oil for frying
  • Arugula or preferred lettuce
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Crushed red pepper, Parmesan cheese and lemon to garnish
  • Crusty bread for serving
Directions for aioli
  1. Toss the garlic with a little olive oil and roast in a 300 degree oven until fragrant and soft. Mash with the back of your knife and finely chop.
  2. Put garlic, lemon, mustard and egg yolk in a coffee cup. SLOWLY pour in olive oil while vigorously whisking until the egg and oil emulsify.
  3. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Add a little more lemon if desired.
Directions for salad
  1. Cook bacon until crispy. Cut into smaller pieces and set aside
  2. Prepare three bowls/plates for dredging the tomatoes. In the first plate, pour all purpose flour with kosher salt and black pepper to season. In the second bowl, whisk the eggs and milk. In the third plate, use equal parts of whole wheat flour and cornmeal.
  3. Slice the tomatoes and dredge in the flour, eggs and cornmeal. Set aside until ready to fry.
  4. Heat a quarter to half inch of oil in a cast iron skillet on medium high. Place tomatoes in the oil and fry until golden brown on both sides.
  5. Toss the arugula with lemon juice, salt, pepper, crushed red pepper and a little Parmesan cheese. You can also add julienned, de-seeded tomatoes or shaved fennel to the salad if desired.
  6. Place aioli across the plate and lay the arugula perpendicular to the aoili. Lay the tomatoes on top of the arugula, saving some arugula to place in between the tomato slices. Top tomatoes with bacon and a little cheese before serving.
  7. Eat immediately with crusty bread.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Pita Bread

You will never buy pita bread at the grocery store again after making this recipe. This recipe is super easy and amazingly delicious.  They are soft, have perfect pockets inside and are perfect for sandwiches or hummus.

They do go stale pretty quickly, so make sure you keep them tightly sealed in Ziploc bag or freeze them if you're not going to eat them quickly. But I promise they won't be around your house for very long.

Pita Bread

Ingredients (makes 8 pitas)
  • 2 cups AP flour
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 Tablespoon sugar or honey (I use honey)
  • 1 packet yeast (or, if from bulk, 2 teaspoons yeast)
  • 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 cups water, roughly at room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil


  1. Activate yeast with 1 Tbsp of sugar and ¼ cup of warm water until frothy.
  2. Mix yeast, flour, salt, oil, and 1 cup of water together until it forms a ball. Add more water to make it stick if necessary
  3. Knead dough until soft smooth dough forms (about 10 minutes)
  4. Place ball of dough into lightly oiled bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and a towel. Let rise in a warm place for 90 minutes or until doubled in size
  5. After dough rises, punch down dough and shape into 8 balls. Cover with damp towel and let relax for 20 minutes
  6. Preheat oven and baking stone to 400 degrees.
  7. Roll out dough on floured surface to between ¼ inch and ⅛ inch thickness.
  8. Bake pitas on heated stone for about 3 minutes or until dough puffs.

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