Thursday, October 20, 2016

Mug Brownies

So I kind of teased you with the mug brownie after my failed mug bread pudding attempt.  The brownie made everything all better. :)  It's really a simple recipe, which can be deadly, especially when the ingredients are things you'll generally have in your pantry!

I found this recipe years ago when researching egg-free goodies for our daughter who has an egg (and peanut) allergy.  I can't even tell you how many times this has been made.

Here we go.
Into a mug, mix:
1/4 C. brown sugar
1/4 C. flour
2 T. cocoa powder
pinch of salt
1/4 C. brown sugar, 1/4 C. flour, pinch of salt, 2 T. cocoa powder
whisk, whisk, whisk
...whisk dry ingredients.

2 T. oil
3 T. milk
whisk, whisk, whisk
...whisk wet into dry.

The chips.
Guittard chips are soooo gooood!
The milk chocolate chips (in the silver bag, front and center) are extra big.
Grab an extra bag (or more?) for nibbling!
These also go on sale for $1.88 for the holiday season.
I've been known to get a lot (ahem, a LOT) of them when they're on sale.
Guittard mint, white, butterscotch, milk or dark chocolate
Pick or mix and match
mint, white, butterscotch, milk or dark chocolate
...stir chips in.

Pop it in the microwave for
one minute and thirty seconds

It will look moist when you take it out.  Dig in a bit to see if it is done enough for you.
Add time by 10 seconds at a time, if necessary. 
Sticking a Reese's in the middle doesn't hurt.
Neither does a plop of Nutella.
Or peanut butter.

Go make one.  Now.

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What would you add?
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Monday, October 10, 2016

Bacon Serrano Deviled Eggs

Can you resist?

Are deviled eggs a football snack?  Maybe, maybe not.  They *are* easy to whip up on a Sunday for the game.

And they might be gone before the game starts.  

First things first, get those eggs going.  Put eggs in a pot of cold water, cover, bring to a boil, then shut the burner off and let sit for 12 minutes.  Rinse under cold water.

Cooking your eggs the way I described is the trick to pretty yellow yolks and easy peeling.
Now let’s make your house smell good.  Bacon time!  One pack, fry it up until crispy and set aside to drain and cool.  (There should be enough for you to steal a couple of pieces!)
The filling:
1 C. mayo
1 ½ tsp vinegar
¾ tsp. dry mustard
½ tsp. sugar
2 (more or less) Serrano peppers, seeded and minced
Who gets to lick the bowl?
So yeah, you can use a Jalapeno if you want it to be a bit milder, but honestly Serranos aren’t *that* much hotter, but enough to make it a bit spicier.  You’ll just have to test out peppers to see what works for you.  Maybe you’ll go nuts with a Habanero!

Peel your eggs.  It helps to do this under gently running water.  Cut them in half and put the yolks into a bowl. Set the halved whites on a clean kitchen towel, then onto a dish for filling.

Ta-da!Mash yolks and filling ingredients together to the consistency you’re happy with, then spoon into egg. (You can also throw it into a Ziploc, cut a corner off, then use like a pastry bag.  I find that the spoons are easier, less messy, and quicker.)
Sprinkle with paprika, and crumbled bacon!
You can make these the day before, cover and refrigerate.
My mind started churning while making these, thinking of all kinds of filling options!
  • Add Sriracha to the mayo mix
  • Stir in crumbled blue cheese
  • Play with different types of mustards- horseradish, Dijon, brown...

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What’s your favorite filling?
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Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Lemon Blueberry Scones

Scone deliciousness!

Check that out.  Check THAT out.

How could you not want to sink your teeth into one of these?  I have to admit, I stayed away from scones for years because I thought they were dry and crumbly.  Then I was introduced to real scones.  Scones that were moist and delicious.  After that, I had to find the perfect recipe, and I think I did.  I knew there was a world of options for additions to the basic dough that could transform it into something special.  

My last post was about Butter Coffee.  Conveniently, a scone will gladly snuggle right up next to your mug and put a smile on your face.

Here ya go.

3 T. sugar
Zest from one lemon (optional)
2 C. flour
1 T. baking powder
½ tsp. salt
6 T. unsalted butter, cold (or even frozen)
1 C. heavy cream (or milk)
1 C. (ish) blueberries, frozen or fresh

Preheat oven to 400 DEGREES
Loves me some parchment paper!
Parchment paper is awesome.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, add the lemon zest and sugar, and rub together with your fingertips
Add sugar and 2 T. lemon juice

Into the same bowl, SIFT flour, baking powder, salt.

flour, baking powder, salt, sift

And here comes a smarter way to prep your butter for all your baking.

Grate your butter!GRATE YOUR BUTTER.

Directly into your dry ingredients, grate your butter then gently toss it with the dry ingredients.  TOSS IT, don’t mix it.  Your butter will stay separated just like you want it!

butter, tossed, blueberries, tossed, happy!
Add the blueberries and toss so they are also covered with the dry ingredients.  (You can sub any berry you like.)

Pour the cream (or milk) and toss/fold with one hand until it starts to come together.


Dough, be gentle!

Once it is together, dump it onto a clean counter dusted with flour.  You want to form it into a circle, around 8-10 inches in diameter, then cut into 8 pieces.  Transfer to baking sheet and bake until golden, 15-20 minutes.  Remove and allow to cool completely.

Transfer to cooling rack and put back on the parchment-papered pan.

Baked, cooled, drizzled.  Mmm...
1 C. powdered sugar
2 T. lemon juice (use juice from lemon if you used one for zest)
SIFT the powdered sugar, then add the lemon juice.  You can mix it with your fingers!  If you want a thicker glaze, add a bit more powdered sugar.
Using your hand, drizzle glaze over the scones.

Taste test one of these and you’ll want to whip them up all the time!  Once you get the recipe down it really doesn’t take long to make, which can be dangerous ;)

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Sunday, October 2, 2016

Flaky Buttery Biscuits

Tender, flaky, buttery biscuits with Venison SOS!

It’s hunting season and our son just returned from a bow hunting trip to Idaho with a deer!  Once it’s ground and seasoned, the first thing I think of is SOS.  For those who don’t already know, SOS is military slang for, ahem, shit on a shingle.  It refers to meat and gravy served over toast.  What goes with SOS?  Not toast in our house.  Instead we have fresh biscuits.  Fresh, flaky, buttery biscuits.


They’re really pretty quick to put together, and so worth it.

Keeping it real with UNSALTED butter and sea salt, along with your baking staples.The Biscuits

2 C. flour
1 T. baking powder
2 tsp. sugar
½ tsp. cream of tartar
¼ tsp. salt
2/3 C. milk

Preheat your oven to 450 DEGREES

Not cheese.
Cheese?  Nope, butter!
Sift your dry ingredients into a large bowl, then grate your butter into the bowl.  If you haven’t seen me do this before, it is exactly what it says.  It is the smartest way to incorporate cold butter without it getting warmed up and incorporated, which is bad bad bad for any biscuit, crust, or pastry!

TOSS the dry ingredients with the butter.  Do not mush it together.  That’s the whole point of grating it.
Pour in the milk and gently mix together with one hand, folding it as it comes together.

Turn out onto a floured counter top and flatten.  Now here’s the secret to those flaky layers- fold the dough in half.  Press it out and fold it again.  I do this 4-5 times.  You might need to let your dough rest if it starts bouncing back when you spread it.  Just let it sit for 5-10 minutes.  Then press your dough to about ½ to ¾ inches high and get going with those Biscuit Cutters

Cute cutters cut cute biscuits!

Place biscuits onto a baking sheet
...bake for 12 minutes, until golden on top.  Smell your house?  Oh yeah…

A few things-
·         You can butter the biscuits before baking them, or as they come out (or both I suppose!)
·         You can serve with butter and honey.
·         You can add extra sugar (a couple of tablespoons rather than teaspoons) for a yummy sweet biscuit to serve with fresh berries and whipped cream.

·          You can also freeze these.  They're almost as good as fresh when you pop them in the microwave.

What do you have with your biscuits?
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Saturday, October 1, 2016

National Coffee Day!

According to Facebook, National Coffee Day is September 29th!

We’re from Seattle.  Coffee is a way of life.  Starbucks is on every corner and there are just as many quaint neighborhood coffee shops.  Yes, I have a “usual” order, (Venti Decaf Raspberry Mocha), and I’m up for a Java Chip Frappuccino all summer long.  Not to suck the fun out of those drinks (I’ll never give them up) but they are full of sugar.  Sad face.  I’ve seen Bulletproof Coffee everywhere (not Starbucks!) but have never tried it.

There are supposed health benefits to Butter Coffee.  Let’s divide and conquer.  Ingredients are coffee (duh), coconut oil, and grass-fed butter.

Fill your mug!First, the coffee.  Caffeine has many health benefits.  There are a lot of claims and studies.  I happen to get put in check any time I have a caffeinated coffee drink and get jittery and nervous, thus my decaf Starbucks fave.  I might just have to find a way to put some caffeine into my life after seeing how it can positively affect your health.

Some of the claims are that it:
·         Prevents mouth and throat and other cancers
·         Reduces risk of stroke
·         Decreases the risk of diabetes

There’s even research that supports caffeine protecting against Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s.

There there’s the coconut oil.

Again, so many health claims, some being:
·         Cholesterol and Heart Health
·         Reducing Inflammation and Arthritis
·         Cancer prevention
·         Memory and Brain Function
·         Digestion
·         Skin Conditions (eczema, psoriasis, dandruff)
·         Bone health
·         And, like caffeine, is said to be an Alzheimer’s Disease treatment.

Finally, butter.  I see grass fed butter as the recommendation, and there are specific reasons why.  Grass fed is much higher in Omega 3's and Vitamin K2, which is responsible for 

Pros with eating real butter:
·         Protects against arthritis
·         Good source of Vitamins A, E, and K2
·         Promotes gastrointestinal health
·         Protects against cancer
I saw a suggestion to put the drink into a blender (we have a Bullet) so you don’t end up with an oil slick floating on top.  If you can, do it!  It makes it nice and frothy

I have a huge disclaimer here that none of this is scientifically proven and I, like 99.9% of people, am going with what I find online.  Everything has its pros and cons, and I believe in having everything in moderation.

Butter Coffee
1 C. coffee
1 T. unsalted butter
1 T coconut oil

Good morning!

Have you tried Butter Coffee?
Let us know what you think!