Monday, November 14, 2011

"Choose life over the other stuff. Get out of your head. Live. Dress up. Eat. Touch people. Help out. Give up. Love people. Give your best away. There’s more. What’s the problem? Relax. You’re going to die. Throw a party. Eat off my plate. Sing to me. Meet me in the bedroom. Get a massage. Give one. Let your amazement out into the room. Pry open the box you hide your joy in. Be a poem."

Sometimes I need to just take a step back.

Monday, October 31, 2011


I've been running around Ann Arbor for the last few weeks - between meetings, a weekend conference and interviews I've been busy. But I've also been baking up storm! Here's two "Italian" receipes -- they're super American but mostly just easy!
Meatball Calzones
My dad and brother love these - I made them once before school and when I offered to make them a few weeks ago when I came back for the weekend I was shocked at how excited my dad got. They're incredibly easy and quick! I always end up doubling the recipe because it only makes 4 calzones. 

1 can (13.8 oz.) refrigerated pizza crust
1 jar 24 oz. pasta sauce
20 frozen turkey meatballs (they come in a bag pre-cooked)
1 cup shredded Italian cheese blend

1. Heat oven to 425 degees. Line a baking sheet with nonstick foil. 
2. Heat up meatballs in the microwave until they are defrosted. Cut each meatball in half. 
3. Unroll crust on a cutting board and stretch dough to a 12-in. square. Cut in quarters so that you have four squares. Transfer to the lined baking sheet. 
4. Distribute meatballs evenly in centers of dough squares. Top each with sauce and 1/4 cup cheese. Fold corner to corner to form triangles. 
5. Bake 10-13 minutes until golden. Heat remaining sauce to serve on the side. 

(Recipe adapted from here)
Pizza Bread
The second recipe is much more of an appetizer/snack that is great for parties. I've made it twice now and it's been a huge hit both times. This honestly might be the easiest thing I've ever made, no joke.

1 can store-bought Pillsbury Italian or French bread
1 cup shredded Italian cheese
sliced pepperoni
marinara sauce for dipping

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Unroll the dough so that it makes a large rectangle
2. Sprinkle with cheese (be generous!), top with pepperoni. 
3. Roll the dough jelly roll style and place seam side down on a baking sheet lined with foil. 
4. Bake 18-20 minutes, until the top is golden brown. 

(Recipe adapted from here)

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


I did a ton of baking this past weekend but I also found time in there to put together care packages for our troops overseas and go see the Michael Jackson Cirque de Soleil show! The show was AWESOME. It was my first Cirque de Soleil show and I definitely wasn't disappointed. Back to volunteering - here are few quick snapshots of the packing party put on by Desert Angels, Inc. It was nice to see so many people come together to support those who have sacrificed so much for us. 


As I said, I did quite a bit of baking - and most of it was dessert, of course. However, I did manage to make a little "real" food, too. This recipe is one that my mom randomly sent me last year. It's cheap and a perfect staple for breakfast entertaining, especially because it looks (and tastes) like you put a lot of time and effort in!

Baked Eggs in Bread Bowls
8 crusty dinner rolls
8 large eggs
1/4 cup chopped mixed herbs, such as parsley and chives
2 tablespoons heavy cream
Salt, pepper, garlic salt
4 tablespoons grated parmesan
1/4 cup turkey sausage (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Slice off the top of each roll and remove some of the bread, making a hole large enough for the egg. Arrange on a baking sheet, but save the tops for later.
2. Crack an egg into each roll, top with some of the heavy cream, herbs, and sausage. Season with salt, pepper, and garlic salt. Sprinkle each roll with parmesan cheese. 
3. Bake until the eggs are set (but still slightly runny) and the bread is toasted, approximately 20 to 25 minutes. After 20 minutes, place the bread tops on the baking sheet and bake for 5 minutes. Place tops on rolls and serve warm!

*A few notes: 

Don't over-bake the eggs - next time I would do mine a little bit less (I ended up leaving mine in about 30 minutes) but the eggs are not supposed to be firm and will jiggle slightly. They were still delicious, but the bread was a little too crunchy at 30 for my preferences. 

These are great for being creative - change up the cheese on top, add different herbs or spices, or even add prosciutto or ham. 

(Recipe adapted from here)

Friday, October 14, 2011


Ohhh man are these brownies good. Today was the first time I ever made brownies from scratch! And it wasn't hard at all. Food legend David Lebovitz concocted these and I've been wanting to make them for about a year, so I took fall break as my chance to do it.

Warning: they are incredibly rich. But so, so delicious.

Dulce de Leche Brownies
8 tablespoons salted butter, cut into pieces
6 oz. semisweet chocolate, chopped
1/4 unsweetened cocoa powder
3 eggs
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup flour
1 cup dulce de leche (it comes in cans in the baking aisle at the store)
optional: 1 cup toasted pecans or walnut, chopped (I hate nuts so I opted out!)

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
2. Line an 8-inch square pan with aluminum foil that covers the bottom and reaches up the sides. Grease the bottom and sides of the foil with butter or non-stick spray.
3. Melt the butter in a medium saucepan. Add the chocolate pieces, stirring constantly over low heat until it melted and combined. Remove from heat and add the cocoa powder, stirring until smooth. Add in the eggs one at a time, then add the sugar, vanilla and finally the flour. Mix in the nuts, if using.
4. Scrap half of the batter into the pan, then drop half of the dulce de leche, evenly spaced, over the batter and swirl gently with a knife.
5. Spread the remaining batter in the pan and drop spoonfuls of the remaining dulce de leche on the top of the batter, swirly gently again.
6. Bake for 35-45 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool completely.


(adapted from David Lebovitz)


Excuse my boyfriend Brett's roommates' dirty dishes in the background of the picture! We've been together for four years as of last weekend, so we've had a lot of celebratory dinners lately between that and Yom Kippur. Even though Sweetest Day is a totally made up holiday, I still like to celebrate it! We had to do it a few days early though because he's off to New York tomorrow for med school interviews, so we took a break from studying last night to devour giant pieces of cake with berries and custard. I ended up buying it at Whole Foods (I'm ashamed to say I didn't bake anything), but if you ever need a cake I definitely recommend it!