Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins

Ingredients:

• 1 1/2 cups sifted flour

• 1 1/8 cups sugar

• 3/4 teaspoon salt

• 3/4 teaspoon baking powder

• 2 eggs, beaten

• 3/4 cup milk

• 2/3 cup vegetable oil

• 2 tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice

• 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

• 1/2 teaspoon almond extract

• 1 1/2 tablespoons poppy seeds

• 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon zest

Directions:

1 Combine flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder in mixing bowl

2 Mix well with fork.

3 Stir in beaten egg, milk, oil, vanilla extract, almond extract, poppy seeds and lemon zest.

4 Do not overmix.

5 Distribute batter evenly into muffin tin.

6 Optional: sprinkle muffin tops with white sparkling sugar.

7 Bake at 325° for 30 – 35 minutes until muffin crowns are just turning golden and tops are crackly.

Super Easy Banana Oat Bars

Now that the kids are home for the summer. They are eating me out of house and home😂. I try to give them snacks that make them full, but then they start asking for something else to eat a hour later. I hid some bananas so that I can let them get ripe and once they did I wanted to try something else that was not banana bread. 

Ingredients:

3 small ripe bananas

1 cup rolled oats

1/2 cup peanut butter

2-4 Tbsp maple syrup

1 egg

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp vanilla

1 tsp cinnamon

1/4 cup chocolate chips
Directions:

Mash bananas in a bowl.

Add oats, peanut butter, maple syrup and egg and mix well.

Add remaining ingredients and stir until combined.

Pour into a 9×9 (or 8×8) baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

Bake at 375 for 20 minutes.

Let cool, cut and serve.

I think this new recipe passed the test!

Carrot and Tomatoes Vegetable Soup

I love summer because of all the fruits and vegetables in season. Yesterday was Father’s Day and we ate kind of heavy. So to balance it out we decided to eat a vegetable soup today. You can use any vegetable you have on hand or that you prefer. When my mom and I get in the kitchen we come up with our own creations. Make sure when you are seasoning your food, you season your food to your taste. Always taste your food to see if it needs more seasoning.

Ingredients:

2 (32 oz) of chicken stock

2 tbsp garlic, chopped

4 carrots, chopped

3 big potatoes or 4 small ones, chopped

2 celery stalks, chopped

4 Roma Tomatoes 

1/2 a yellow onion

1/2 red Bell Pepper

1/2 yellow Bell Pepper

1 cup yellow summer squash

1 1/2 cup Brussels sprouts (we had it on hand, might as well use it)

2 sprigs of fresh thyme

2 chicken bouillon cubes

1 1/2 adobo seasoning 

Salt and pepper to taste

1 bunch of cilantro (do not chop. Will be taken out later)

1 lemon
Directions:

Pour the chicken stock in a pot. Bring it to a boil.

Pour at least 2 cups of the chicken stock into the blender because you will use that as a base.

Once you add the stock to the blender add the tomatoes, peppers, garlics and onion.

Blend till it’s creamy.

Pour your base back into the pot and bring to a boil.

Add potatoes, celery, squash, carrots, cilantro.

Let the vegetables simmer for 45 to a hour, put the top on half covered and let it cook on medium low till it thickens.

Midway through your vegetables cooking add your seasonings to your taste and let it finish cooking.

Once your carrots and potatoes are cooked inside of your soup, take them out and put it in your blender to make it creamy. Pour it back into your soup. If you ar using Brussels sprouts this will be the time to add them.

Take out the cilantro. Squeeze lemon juice in your soup. Check the taste of your soup and it’s done!

You can eat this with a side of bread or rice. It’s your choice. We are eating it with cheddar biscuits.

Potatoes Au Gratin

Ingredients:

4 russet potatoes, 

sliced into 1/4 inch slices 1 onion, sliced into rings 

salt and pepper to taste 

3 tablespoons butter 

3 tablespoons all-purpose flour 

1/2 teaspoon salt 

2 cups milk 

1 1/2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese 
Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Butter a 1 quart casserole dish.

Layer 1/2 of the potatoes into bottom of the prepared casserole dish. Top with the onion slices, and add the remaining potatoes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

In a medium-size saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Mix in the flour and salt, and stir constantly with a whisk for one minute. Stir in milk. Cook until mixture has thickened. Stir in cheese all at once, and continue stirring until melted, about 30 to 60 seconds. Pour cheese over the potatoes, and cover the dish with aluminum foil.

Bake 1 1/2 hours in the preheated oven.

Roasted Veggies

Roasting the vegetables is our favorite way of eating them. You can roast any veggies that you like or have on hand. It’s great by itself or as a side dish.

Ingredients:

2 carrots

1/2 cabbage

1 head of broccoli

1 lb asparagus 

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tsp garlic salt

Salt and pepper to taste

Tip: You can add herb seasoning and balsamic vinegar if you like. You can also at the end of cooking the vegetables add grated Parmesan Cheese.

Directions:

Pre heat oven at 350 degrees.

Chop all the veggies to your desired size. “I like smaller pieces”.

Drizzle the vegetables with olive oil. Add the rest of the seasonings. 

Spread the veggies on the sheet pan and cook for 20 minutes to your desired texture.  Half way through cooking stir the vegetables.

At the of the 20 minutes if your vegetables are not tender cook it for another 5 minutes.

Vanilla Cinnamon Buttermilk Pancakes

My kids love pancakes. When I make pancakes I try to make a double batch so that I can put the extras in a ziplock bag and save it for the next day. All I have to do the next morning warm it in the microwave. My favorite pancake recipe by far. With this recipe you also have the option to opt out the vanilla and cinnamon and it will be a great buttermilk pancake recipe.

Ingredients:

2 cups all-purpose flour

3 Tbsp white sugar

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

2 cups buttermilk

1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

1 egg

1/4 cup melted butter
Directions:

Melt the butter and set aside to cool down slightly.

To a mixing bowl, add the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Use a whisk to combine all dry ingredients well.

In a separate bowl, combine buttermilk, vanilla, ground cinnamon and egg. Whisk to combine. Add melted butter and whisk again.

Slowly pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, whisking and stirring to mix it all together. Once it’s combined, stop mixing. If you over-mix, your pancakes won’t be light and fluffy.

Set pancake batter aside and heat up a large skillet or griddle over MED-LOW heat. Add a bit of butter to the preheated griddle and spread it out.

Use a 1/4 or 1/3 cup measuring cup to scoop the pancake batter onto the griddle or skillet. Slowly pour it onto the surface, circling outwards to make a nice circle.

Let the pancake cook about 2-3 minutes. You’ll notice bubbles popping up on the surface of the pancake, if the edges look set, carefully flip the pancake over. Cook another 2 minutes on the other side.

Remove to a plate and cover with a kitchen towel. Alternatively, you can place the pancakes on a baking sheet and keep it in a low heat oven (175-200 degrees), until you’re ready to serve.

Baked Pasta With Spinach

Ingredients:

12 oz uncooked pasta

28 oz crushed tomatoes

1 tsp olive oil

3 cloves garlic, minced

10 oz spinach

1 tsp oregano

2 tbsp chopped fresh basil

kosher salt and fresh pepper to taste

8 oz fat-free ricotta

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

2 cups (8 oz) shredded part skim mozzarella

olive oil cooking spray 
Directions:

Preheat oven to 375°F. Spray a 9×13-inch baking pan with oil spray.

In a large pot of salted water, cook pasta according to instructions until al dente (I like to under-cook it 3 or 4 minutes as it will cook more in the oven). Drain and return to pot.

Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan, add olive oil and sauté garlic. Add chopped spinach, salt, pepper and crushed tomatoes. Season with basil, oregano, salt and pepper and cook 5 minutes.

Add sauce to the pasta and combine. Add half of the mozzarella, Parmesan cheese and ricotta. Mix well then transfer to the baking pan.

Pour the pasta mixture into the prepared pan and spread evenly. Top with the remaining mozzarella and cover with foil.

Bake for 30 minutes, or until mozzarella is melted and the edges are lightly browned. Let it cool 5 minutes before serving.