Flour and Flowers | A Kitchen and Garden Blog

Posts tagged “smitten kitchen

Smitten Kitchen’s Broccoli Pesto and a new website discovery

I know it seems like I’ve stopped eating, but I promise I haven’t. I even still take pictures of most of the things I cook (usually), they just never make it this far. This one I just took with my phone as I reheated last night’s leftovers for lunch today – but that counts, right?

First, the exciting news. I’ve discovered my new favorite website/tool – Pepperplate – which basically consolidates recipes from the internet or inside your head and lets you tag them, sort and search them, meal plan, and make shopping lists from the ingredients.  For free.  It has a few quirks, and things I think it’s missing (I’ve annoyingly emailed them every time I find something), but it’s a great tool and it’s allowing me to move away from my immense piles of printed recipes that I can’t ever find or remember I have to something much more useful.  It also partners with Smitten Kitchen, which is both awesome and dangerous, because it means I am spending inordinate amounts of time on her site looking through all the billions of recipes I want to make.  Which leads me to the Broccoli Pesto.

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Broccoli is one of those things.  I love it.  Calin does not love it.  We agree to disagree, but he still has to eat it sometimes, so I’m always on a quest to find broccoli recipes that he will eat and hopefully enjoy at least a little bit.  When I discovered this recipe, I immediately added it to Pepperplate (see where that comes in?) to make soon – because pesto! and pasta! and broccoli! and kind of easy!  Well, the reality didn’t come out quite as well, but it was absolutely worth trying, and I’m definitely going to tweak it for us in the future.

Problem 1: My garlic and onions were both sprouting.  In garlic, I think that makes it stronger, but apparently in onions it makes them more mild, because the onion flavor was minimal.

Problem 2: I lost the garlic.  Seriously, one minute it was there, and the next minute it was gone.  I finally found it hiding in with the broccoli, dutifully steamed.  Weird.  So I added another clove, but that one didn’t get cooked long enough, so I ended up with this weird combo of faux-roasted and raw garlic.

Problem 3: I didn’t have any heavy cream.  I used half 1% milk and half plain yogurt instead.  Definitely different, and less flavor, but better for us…

Problem 4: I overcooked the broccoli.  There’s no getting around this one.

So the pesto was tasty, but a little bland (I also didn’t measure the salt or pepper, because I’m lazy), and Calin’s verdict was that he would probably rather just eat broccoli.  Or, preferably, not eat broccoli at all.  So, success for me but still a no-go in the “eating more broccoli” department.  Oh well.  The leftovers were actually pretty good, too.  I think I’ll try fixing the problems first, and then maybe see if I can add some other things to make the flavor stronger if that isn’t enough.

Do you have reliable go-to broccoli recipes you’d recommend?


Cupcake Friday: Blackberry & Mint Chocolate Muffins – Baking Serendipity

This is harder than it looks, guys.  Where do we find the time? Even something as simple as Cupcake Friday – where I didn’t do any baking and I didn’t do any photographing, and all I’m doing is lusting after somebody else’s delicious creation – has proven too difficult to maintain.  Every evening feels like a Friday, but every morning feels like a Monday.  This die-hard tea drinker is now a coffee drinker because let’s face it, it’s faster, easier, and has more caffeine.

Anyway, cupcakes!  This week I’m cheating a little – these call themselves muffins.  But who do they think they’re fooling?  These are muffins in the sense that any cupcake without frosting is a muffin.  (And by Patrick’s logic, that means we can have cupcakes for breakfast.)  These make me think of the amazing chocolate soufflé I had at dinner the other night at Fleurie…  But here, before I get too distracted, why don’t I just show you?

Blackberry and Mint Chocolate Muffins by Baking Serendipity

Don’t you want to eat one of these right this second?  I do.  I want to eat five.  (Three for me, two for the baby in a few hours.  She only gets two because she’s little.)  Oh man, this makes me think of my other incredibly exciting discovery of the week – another Smitten Kitchen Awesomeness – Everyday Chocolate Cake.  I might have a chocolate problem.  But does it get more delicious?

Actually, this reminds me of a question I’ve asked myself far too many times now.  What’s the last food you would ever consider giving up?  What’s the food that makes life worth living?  For me, it’s a hard call between chocolate and cheese, but I think cheese wins due to its versatility.  But obviously I can’t fully commit to that, since I keep asking the question.  What’s your one thing?


Gooey Cinnamon Squares – Smitten Kitchen

It’s another Smitten Kitchen post!  Huzzah! It’s been a weird year, so I haven’t gotten to nearly as many of my planned recipes as I had intended, but I think I’m headed back into it.  Honestly, though, I made these months ago and just never got around to sharing them with you.

The name is really fitting on these – they are the gooeyest things I think I’ve ever baked.  And since I spent several years inventing my own recipe-less cooking projects, that’s saying something.  They don’t look that gooey in the pictures, but trust me – it’s alllll goo.

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Tomato-Glazed Meatloaf – Smitten Kitchen

For my first Smitten Kitchen recipe, I decided to go with savory. We needed dinner. I actually meant to make the Roasted Fingerling and Carrot Coins, but then I decided we needed a main course, and by the time I figured that out, it was too much food to have both. So instead we had the Tomato-Glazed Meatloaves.

They were supposed to be made with brown butter mashed potatoes, but I lost a little momentum by then, so I just made regular mashed potatoes, with the yukon gold potatoes I had been planning to use for the roasted fingerlings.  I’ll make the brown butter ones for another post.

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The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook: Best Blogiversary Present Ever

Technically this cookbook was my birthday present. But since the publication date was later, and I actually received said cookbook much closer to my blogiversary, from my co-blogging fiend Alimonkee, I’ve decided it was actually meant as a blogiversary present.

Smitten Kitchen has been a favorite blog stand-by since I started reading foodie blogs. I can’t remember whether Alice got me started or I got her started, but either way, we’re both hooked. So giving me the Smitten Kitchen Cookbook as a birthday/blogiversary present could not be more perfect. In fact, when she told me she’d gotten me a present, she said “Guess what it is!” and only had to give me one hint. (As an aside, if you don’t already follow the Smitten Kitchen blog and you like cooking/food/blogs, start now. Seriously. Click that link, or do a google search, and sign up. Or bookmark it. Or whatever. You will not regret it, I promise.)

Smitten Kitchen Cookbook

I’m not going to pull a Julie & Julia here, mostly because I don’t have time. (Although, heavens, certainly not because I don’t want to. There isn’t a recipe in this book that I don’t want to make now now now.) But I do have big plans to make many of these recipes in short order.

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