Strawberry Pop Tart Pie

Posted on

Happy Pi Day!

I’m surrounded by nerdy love. My cousin was posting Pi Day memes on Facebook yesterday. My Mother-in-law owns a Pi pie plate I couldn’t let the most epic Pi Day this century pass without some acknowledgement in the form of pie. I just wouldn’t fit in this family if I didn’t!

I love Pop Tarts so this pie was just begging to be made. It’s basically an awesome strawberry pie with an almond-icing glaze. Such a fun pie! We really enjoyed it and I can’t wait to try making it again with fresh berries when the garden starts overflowing.

And what’s better than pie on Pi Day? Well, lots of pie – so I’ve joined up with some of my blogging friends to bring you even more pie! Check out what they made to celebrate the most epic Pi Day of the century below.

StrawberryPopTartPie3

Strawberry Pop Tart Pie
(from Willow Bird Baking)
Makes 1 9″ Pie

2 sheets of refrigerated pie dough
6 cups frozen whole strawberries
1 Granny Smith apple, peeled and grated
3 Tbsp. sugar
2 Tbsp. quick-cooking tapioca, ground in a spice or coffee grinder
Pinch of salt
2 Tbsp. unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
1 cup powdered sugar
1/4 tsp. almond extract
2 Tbsp. milk
Colored sanding sugar

Preheat your oven to 400F degrees.

Squeeze out the grated apple, removing as much liquid as possible. Set aside.

In a saucepan over medium heat, cook 3 cups of the frozen strawberries, stirring often, until the berries have become jam-like and reduced by half, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the grated apple, remaining berries, sugar, tapioca and salt. Stir to combine.

Roll out one pie crust and lay in a 9″ pie pan. Spoon strawberry filling into the pie dough and dot the top with the cut up butter. Cover with remaining pie crust sheet and crimp edges with a fork to seal.

Place the pie on a baking sheet and bake 30 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350 and bake for an additional 30 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown. Let cool on a cooling rack for several hours.

When room temperature, whisk together the powdered sugar, almond extract and milk and drizzle over the pie. Decorate with sanding sugar and serve!

StrawberryPopTartPie2

But the pie doesn’t stop there! Check out these other great pies bloggers cooked up for Pi Day!
Pies for Pi Day

Strawberry Pop Tart Pie from Kate’s Recipe Box

Indiana Sugar Cream Pie from Eva Bakes

Coconut Cream Pie from Relish

Individual Pepperoni Pizza Pot Pies from Cheese Curd in Paradise

Lemon Cheesecake Pie from Hezzi-D’s Books and Cooks

Chocolate Pecan Pie from Cookaholic Wife

Sweet Potato Pie from Kosher Kitchen


5-Minute Pad Thai Fakeout

Posted on

Also known as: fancied up ramen, my favorite Lenten lunch.

I first tried this recipe when we were dealing with the aftermath of Hurricane Irene. She left us with a flooded basement and no power for a week. It was awesome. Since a fast majority of the stores and businesses were in the same boat, it was an exercise in working with what you had – and what we had was ramen. Since then, I keep the ingredients in my emergency stash – just in case. It’s a great one for that – not something I plan to make but something I can say, ah! I can whip that up instead of another grilled cheese!

I don’t think it’s technically vegetarian since it uses chicken-flavored ramen as the base, but since there’s no actual meat in it, it’s Lent-friendly.

PadThaiFakeout

5-Minute Pad Thai Fakeout
(from Martha Stewart)
Serves 1

1 pkg. chicken-flavored ramen with seasoning packet
2 Tbsp. chunky peanut butter
1 Tbsp. low-sodium soy sauce
2 tsp. sriracha
Green onions, sliced

Prepare noodles according to package directions. Drain most of the water off. Stir in peanut butter, soy sauce and sriracha until peanut butter is melted and everything is well combined. Top with sliced green onions and serve immediately.

 


Buffalo Hummus

Posted on

I was lamenting to myself the other day that I had so many recipes bookmarked for football season that didn’t get made – and then I realized it’s March. March Madness is right around the corner! I’m very ready to binge-watch basketball and get annoyed when my bracket implodes.

For fun, I put together a bracket group for Kate’s Recipe Box readers. Click here to join and fill out your bracket once teams are announced. It’s free and I’ll be sending the group winner some goodies!

And if you need some game-watching munchies, this is a great option. I always associate buffalo flavor with junk food so, to me, this tastes “bad” without any of the deep-fried guilt.

HummusBuffalo

Buffalo Hummus
(from Fettle Vegan)
Makes about 2 cups

1 15oz. can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1/2 tsp. cumin
3/4 tsp. smoked paprika
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
3/4 tsp. salt
3 cloves garlic
2 Tbsp. tahini
2 Tbsp. Frank’s buffalo sauce
1 Tbsp. lemon juice
1/2 cup roasted red peppers
2 Tbsp.olive oil

In a food processor, combine everything except olive oil and pulse until well combined. Add olive oil and process until well combined and at desired consistency.


Hawaiian Pork Burrito Bowls

Posted on

Seven months into motherhood and I’m finally coming to terms with the fact that I can’t do everything. It been a lesson in “OR” lately.

You can spend time making dinner OR go visit the adorable new twins across the street OR get another load of laundry done.

You can make that nice stew that simmers all day OR go to the baby play date OR run errands at the mall.

It seems that more and more, I’m pushing dinner to the back burner so I’ve been trying to plan easier, more hands-off meals. This slow cooker meal was a huge win – healthy, flavorful and quickly prepped before my busy day got out of hand. It was so nice to plop on the couch for baby cuddles instead of starting dinner after running around!

HawaiiPorkBurritoBowls

Hawaiian Pork Burrito Bowls
(adapted from The Housewife in Training Files)
Serves 6

1 14.5 oz can tomato sauce
2 Tbsp. tomato paste
2 Tbsp. chili powder
2 Tbsp. cumin
1 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. paprika
Pinch of cayenne
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1 cup pineapple juice
2 lbs. pork sirloin roast
6 cups of cooked rice
2 bell peppers, thinly sliced
Pineapple, sliced into rings
Avocado, sliced

In the slow cooker, whisk together the first 11 ingredients (tomato sauce to pineapple juice). Add the pork and turn to coat. Cook on low for 6-8 hours. Remove pork, shred and return to slow cooker, stirring to combine with the juices.

When the pork is just about done, heat a grill pan. Grill peppers and pineapple until peppers have char marks and the pineapple is starting to caramelize.

Serve pork in bowls with rice, peppers, pineapple and avocado.

 


Chickpea Puttanesca

Posted on

I think eggplant parmesan is the default vegetarian option for most American-style Italian meals. More often than not, that’s what you’ll find alongside trays of baked ziti and chicken parmesan at parties. So, when I start seeking out new meatless meals for the Lenten dinner series, I tend to avoid Italian-inspired searches. It’s not that I don’t love eggplant parmesan, I do, it’s just that it sort of feels overdone.

I was searching for something else entirely when I came across this recipe – and it made me realize how wrong I was to discount Italian options for this series. This was so, so good. Comfort food at it’s finest! And easy enough that I didn’t feel overwhelmed making it after a busy week.

ChickpeaPuttenesca1

Chickpea Puttanesca
(slightly adapted from Mountain Momma Cooks)
Serves 4

1/2 cup polenta
2 cups water
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
1 Tbsp. butter
2-3 Tbsp. half & half
3 Tbsp. olive oil
1/2 cup onion, finely chopped
1/4 cup pitted kalamata olives, quartered
2 Tbsp. drained capers
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1 14 oz. can stewed tomatoes
1 14 oz. can petite diced tomatoes
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
1/2 tsp. dried crushed basil
1/8 tsp. dried crushed red pepper flakes
Salt, to taste
1 14 oz. can garbanzo beans
Fresh basil, for serving

In a saucepan, bring the water to a boil and stir in polenta and salt. Return a boil then turn to low and let simmer for about 30 minutes. If it gets to thick, stir in an additional 1-2 Tbsp. water. Remove from heat and stir in cheese, butter and half & half.  Keep warm until serving time.

In a large skillet, heat the olive oil until shimmering. Add in onions and cook about five minutes, until soft. Add the olives and capers and cook for 2 more minutes. Stir in garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add in stewed tomatoes, diced tomatoes, Italian seasoning, basil, red pepper flakes and salt and stir to combine thoroughly. Let simmer until slightly reduced, about 20 minutes. Stir in garbanzo beans and let heat through.

Serve sauce over polenta, topped with fresh basil.


Mint Chocolate Chip Snow Ice Cream

Posted on

You know what the best part of today’s snow storm is? That most news outlets are calling it the “last” of the season. I have a feeling they’re just getting our hopes up to crush them with a late-March blizzard but instead of irresponsible reporting, I’m choosing to see it as optimism. I am over winter.

To be fair, we haven’t gotten that much snow this winter. Instead, we’ve been getting ice storms. I prefer snow.

I’m using the “last” storm today to do all the things I feel like I’ve been missing out on this winter – more snowman making, more cuddling under a blanket reading, more hot chocolate drinking while watching the flakes come down and, of course, more snow ice cream.

SnowIceCreamMintCC
Mint Chocolate Chip Snow Ice Cream

(a Kate’s Recipe Box original)
Serves 4

1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. mint extract
1/2 c. milk
Large bowl of snow
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips

In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar, vanilla, mint and milk until well combined. Stir in snow until you reach the desired consistency. Fold in chocolate chips. Serve immediately.


Sprinkle Cookies

Posted on

I, along with most of my friends from school, are turning 30 this year. It’s weird to think we’re exiting our 20s – mostly because that makes it painfully obvious we’re no longer “just out of college” or “just starting adulthood”. Hello, we’re here.

Adult doesn’t necessarily mean mature, though. We’ve had two 30th birthday parties so far this year: one involved playing dodgeball at a trampoline park and the other was a pizza party. Because, you know, my friends are awesome.

I made up these cookies as a 30th birthday gift for our friend, Douglas. I’d actually made them back in November when Jacob was baptized with blue and white sprinkles and Douglas was crazy for them. His wife held a Christmas cookie exchange in December and he was sorely disappointed I didn’t bring these so I knew they’d be a hit his birthday.

They remind me of the soft vanilla cookies my Mom used to get from the bakery. Just the right amount of chewy center with a slightly crisp edge. And switching up the sprinkle colors makes them perfect for just about any occasion. Or, any 30th birthday party you may be attending!

SprinkleCookies

Sprinkle Cookies
(from Grace and Good Eats)
Makes about 2 dozen

1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 small package instant vanilla pudding mix
3/4 cup butter
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
1 cup sprinkles

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, baking powder and pudding mix. Set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, 1 at a time, until well combined. Beat in vanilla.

Add the dry ingredients to the wet and stir until well combined. Mold dough into a ball and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 350F degrees. Roll the dough into 1″ balls, roll the balls in sprinkles and place on a lined baking sheet. Bake for 10-12 minutes, until lightly golden at the edges and just set in the center. Let cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes, then remove to a cooling rack to cool completely.


Chicken Zoodle Lo Mein

Posted on

My mother-in-law gave me a veggie spiralizer for my birthday in June and up until now, it’s been sitting it the cabinet unused. Why? I knew spiralized veggies in place of spaghetti would be a hard sell at our dinner table. My husband grew up in a very Italian family and the man likes his pasta. To be honest, I wasn’t so sure about zucchini instead of spaghetti in a big, Italian meal either. But in a stir fry? That was something I could get on board with.

I’m not a complete zoodle convert. You’re not going to mistake them for noodles in this dish but they’re good in their own right. I thought this was a great, lighter meal – and my husband downed several bites before asking me where the noodles were, always a good sign! It’s probably a gateway dish for us – after this, I’ll definitely be trying more zoodle meals.

ZoodleLoMeinChicken

Chicken Zoodle Lo Mein
(slightly adapted from Skinnytaste)
Serves 2

1/2 cup chicken broth
1 Tbsp. soy sauce
1 Tbsp. oyster sauce
1/2 Tbsp. rice wine
1 Tbsp. cornstarch
2 medium zucchini, ends trimmed
1 large boneless chicken breast, cut into thin, short strips
Salt, to taste
2 tsp. canola oil, divided
3/4 cup sliced bok choy
1/2 cup shredded carrots
3 scallions, sliced into 1-inch pieces on the diagonal
1/2 Tbsp. grated fresh ginger
2 garlic cloves, chopped

In a small bowl, whisk together the broth, soy sauce, oyster sauce, rice wine and cornstarch until smooth. Set aside.

Spiralize the zucchini and cut into spaghetti-length strips.

Heat a skillet or wok on high heat. Add 1 tsp. oil. Season chicken with salt, add to the wok and stir-fry until browned and cooked through, about 3 minutes. Remove from wok and set aside.

Add remaining oil to the wok, followed by the bok choy, carrots, scallions, ginger and garlic Cook for another 3 minutes. Remove from wok and set aside with the chicken.

Pour the sauce mixture into the wok and cook for about a minute, until bubbling.  Add the zucchini and cook until tender, about 2 minutes. Return the chicken and vegetables to the wok and toss to combine. Serve immediately.


Black Bean Tacos with Avocado Cilantro-Lime Sauce

Posted on

You know how you have crutch dinners you make in a pinch? Like, oh no! I forgot to defrost the chicken! What am I going to do?! nights. This is one of our new crutch dinners. It uses things we usually have in the house and comes together in less than 15 minutes.

They are, undoubtedly, not the prettiest tacos ever but what they lack in looks they make up for in flavor and ease. And since you can make them in about the time it takes to get a pizza delivered, they’re a perfect option for busy Lenten Fridays.

BlackBeanTacos

Black Bean Tacos with Avocado Cilantro-Lime Sauce
(from The Garden Grazer)
Serves 4

1 15 oz. cans black beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup salsa
1/2 tsp. cumin
Tortillas, for serving
Corn and Pico de Gallo, for serving, optional

1/2 ripe avocado
3/4 cup cilantro, stems removed
Juice from 1 lime
1 clove garlic
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 tsp. honey
1/8 tsp. salt

In a skillet, combine the black beans, salsa and cumin over medium heat. Warm, stirring occasionally, until heated through, about 5 minutes. Mash about half the beans and stir to combine.

While the beans are warming up. combine the avocado, cilantro, lime juice, garlic, olive oil, honey and salt in a food processor. Process until well-blended and mostly smooth.

Serve black beans on tortillas, topped with avocado cilantro-lime sauce and corn and Pico de Gallo, if desired.


Peanut Butter Yogurt Fruit Dip

Posted on

My snacking recently has been out of control in the worst way. You don’t even want to know how much chocolate I downed on Valentine’s Day. Seriously. And since I have to fit in a bridesmaid dress in about two months, I’m making more of an effort to curb the junk food and reach for healthier snacks.

This was a healthier snack/dessert that went over really well. It’s just the right amount of sweet without being loaded up with sugar. I really loved this with sliced up bananas!

PeanutButterYogurtFruitDip

Peanut Butter Yogurt Fruit Dip
(from Food, Fun & Life)
Makes about 1 1/2 cups

1 heaping cup plain Greek yogurt
1/2 cup natural, unsweetened peanut butter
2-4 Tbsp. honey, to taste
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
Fruit, for serving

Mix together yogurt and peanut butter. Stir in honey, starting with 2 Tbsp. and adding more until it suits your taste. Stir in cinnamon. Refrigerate until serving.