Sweet Kitchen Treats For Valentine’s Day

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Consider treating yourself with a few sweet kitchen essentials for Valentine’s Day ~ guaranteed 100% fat free! Here are some Sweet Kitchen Treats For Valentine’s Day.

I don’t know about you, but I can get pretty messy while cooking. Seriously, when was the last time you used flour and didn’t get it all over some surface, including yourself? 😉 Enter the handy apron, a kitchen staple that’s now fashionable. Here’s an adorable apron perfect for Valentine’s Day and beyond.

Pink and Black Cotton ApronDouble Layer 100% Cotton Women’s Kitchen Apron with Pockets

I love my spiralizer! This gadget is so handy, especially in the spring when it seems cucumbers, yellow squash and zucchini are in abundance. My favorite use for it is to make veggie pasta. So simple, so healthy. The uses for a spiralizer seem endless. If you have a vegetable, you can probably spiralize it. You get an assortment of blades so you can create different types of spiral slices for your veggies. It’s dishwasher-safe and is made from BPA-free plastic.

SpiralizerSpiralizer, Tri-Blade Vegetable Spiral Slicer

If you don’t yet have a KitchenAid Artisan Stand Mixer, consider this beauty in gorgeous Empire Red. If that color doesn’t work for you, there’s a drool-worthy palette to chose from here. Wondering if the investment in a stand mixer is worth it? I wondered that, too. My experience is that I use it for so many more things than I thought I would, plus, it’s an incredible time-saver in the kitchen, and who doesn’t need that? I’ve never heard of anyone who has regretted having one! 😉

Kitchen Aid MixerKitchenAid KSM150PSER Artisan Stand Mixer with Pouring Shield, 5 Quarts, Empire Red

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Chicken, Snow Peas and Ginger Stir Fry

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I love snow peas. I love ginger. Combine them with chicken, and you’ve got a delicious meal just waiting to be created: Chicken, Snow Peas and Ginger Stir Fry. I combined these, stir-fry and served over brown rice. If you happen to have leftovers, just warm them up the next day and enjoy again.

Chicken, Snow Pea, and Ginger Stir Fry

Here’s how to put it together:

If you plan on serving the stir fry over rice, go ahead and get that started. I used brown rice, which took about 25-30 minutes to cook. Your results may vary depending on the type of rice and method of cooking you use.

While the rice is cooking, prepare the stir fry and chicken.

Take two boneless chicken breasts and cut into small pieces. Season with salt, pepper, garlic powder, ground ginger, and soy sauce. I use a gluten free version, if that’s a concern. Cook in skillet with a tablespoon of olive oil. Make sure the pieces are cooked through, and then set aside.

Stir Fry Chicken

Rinse the snow peas and cut off the tips. You don’t have to do this, but I don’t really like the little thread tips, so cutting them off takes care of that. Set snow peas aside.

Snow PeasNext, prep all your veggies. Grab some bell peppers and chop into large pieces, or lengthwise strips. Here I used a yellow pepper because that’s what I had on hand. Green, red, orange would be fabulous (and pretty, too!). Peel and slice a large sweet, or yellow, or red onion. Here, I used a sweet onion. Peel and chop a small piece of ginger. Peel and chop 3 garlic cloves.

Add a tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet and heat. Throw all of your veggies in the skillet and season with salt, pepper and a dash of gluten free soy sauce. Stir fry on medium.

Stir Fry

When veggies are almost tender, add cooked chicken in to veggies to reheat.

Serve stir fry over rice and enjoy!

Chicken, Snow Pea, and Ginger Stir Fry

Chicken, Snow Peas and Ginger Stir Fry
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Chicken, Snow Peas and Ginger Stir Fry
Author:
Serves: 2 servings
Ingredients
  • 2 boneless chicken breasts
  • 1 cup snow peas
  • 1 large onion (sweet, yellow, white or red), sliced
  • 1 large bell pepper (any color), chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh ginger, peeled and chopped
  • Soy sauce (gluten-free)
  • Olive oil
  • Garlic powder
  • Ground ginger
  • Salt and pepper
  • Optional: brown rice, cooked
Instructions
  1. If you plan on serving the stir fry over rice, go ahead and get that started. While the rice is cooking, prepare the stir fry and chicken.

  2. Take two boneless chicken breasts and cut into small pieces. Season with salt, pepper, garlic powder, ground ginger, and soy sauce. Cook in skillet with a tablespoon of olive oil. Make sure the pieces are cooked through, and then set aside.

  3. Chop bell pepper into large pieces, or lengthwise strips.

  4. Peel and slice onion.

  5. Peel and chop a small piece of fresh ginger.

  6. Peel and chop 3 garlic cloves.

  7. Add a tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet and heat. Throw all the veggies in the skillet and season with salt and pepper, and approximately 1 Tablespoon of soy sauce. Stir fry on medium heat. When veggies are almost tender, add cooked chicken in to veggies to reheat.

  8. Serve stir fry over rice.

 

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Roasted Cauliflower Soup

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Here’s a creamy and elegant roasted cauliflower soup recipe that works well paired with a sandwich or a salad.

Roasted Cauliflower Soup

Roasting the cauliflower adds another dimension to the flavor of the soup. Here’s how I make it:

Roast a head of cauliflower in the oven by cutting the cauliflower into large chunks, drizzling with olive oil and seasoning with salt and pepper. While the cauliflower is in the oven, chop and saute some onion and garlic. This is optional; you can also use onion powder and garlic powder if you prefer. Here, I used green onion and saved a little for garnish on the soup when ready to serve.

Since I puree the soup in a blender (I use my trusty Vitamix), go ahead and pour 1 cup of vegetable broth, the onion, garlic and 1/2 cup of half and half in the blender.

Roasted Cauliflower Soup Collage 1

Here’s another option: add some cheddar cheese to your soup, either as a garnish or melt it into the soup, as I’ve done here. Again, this is optional depending if you like your soup cheesy. Sometimes I add it, other times I prefer to have more cauliflower flavor come through.

If you opt for it, grate about 1 cup of cheddar cheese and set aside.

Grated cheddar cheese

Once the cauliflower is roasted, add about half the chunks into the blender and lightly puree. Taste it and decide you need to add more seasoning. Instead of more salt and pepper, sometimes I like to use a blend called Herbamare. Season if needed, and add in the remainder of the cauliflower; puree again. If needed, add a splash more of half and half, or water, if the soup needs to be thinned out.

Roasted Cauliflower Soup Collage 2

Pour the soup into a large saucepan on the stove and heat over medium heat. Add about half the grated cheese to the soup and stir until melted. Continue to taste the soup and season as needed. Once the soup is warm enough and the cheese is melted, serve it with a garnish of cheese and green onion.

Roasted Cauliflower Soup

Roasted Cauliflower Soup
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Roasted Cauliflower Soup
Author:
Serves: 2 servings
Ingredients
  • 1 head cauliflower
  • 1 small onion (sweet, white, yellow or green) OR onion powder
  • 1-2 cloves garlic OR garlic powder
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • ½ cup half and half
  • 1 cup grated cheddar cheese
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Olive oil
  • Optional garnish: grated cheddar cheese and chopped green onions
Instructions
  1. Remove stem and leaves from cauliflower head. Wash cauliflower, chop into large chunks and spread on baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast in a 350 oven for 25 minutes.

  2. While roasting cauliflower, chop onion and garlic and lightly saute. (Omit this step if using onion and garlic powder.)

  3. Grate cheese and set aside.

  4. Add the vegetable broth, half and half, onion and garlic to blender. Carefully add half of the roasted cauliflower to the blender and lightly puree.

  5. Taste; add more seasoning and half and half or water if needed. Add remaining cauliflower chunks and blend again.

  6. Pour soup into saucepan and simmer on stove.

  7. Add in cheddar cheese, stirring to melt. Reserve a small amount of cheddar cheese for garnish, if desired.

  8. When cheese has melted, pour into bowls, garnish with cheese and/or green onions and serve.

 

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Pour Over Coffee Maker

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Are you a coffee lover? If so, you should try the pour over coffee method. Pour over coffee gives you great control over the strength and amount of coffee that you make. Here’s how I make it:

Chemex Pour Over Coffee Maker Carafe

Note: This post contains Amazon affiliate links.

I use the Chemex glass handle pour over coffee maker and I love it.  Most people are familiar with the iconic wood collar Chemex pour over glass coffee carafe, which is equally lovely. If you love coffee and are particular about the bean, grind, flavor, and strength of your coffee, consider giving pour over coffee a try.

Tip: Using a gooseneck kettle like this one makes the whole pour over method a breeze and it’s much safer than trying to pour from a wide spout tea kettle or even a small pan.  I eventually invested in one once I became serious about pour over coffee.

Chemex Pour Over Coffee Maker

Yes, it takes just a little longer than a drip coffee maker or a single serve machine, but the end results are totally worth it for superior coffee made just the way you like it. It really has become a morning ritual for me.

How To Make Pour Over Coffee

It’s really easy:

  1. Boil your water. I use a gooseneck kettle like this one for easy pouring; it’s the best for pour over coffee.
  2. While your water is coming to a boil, grind your beans, unless you’re using pre-ground. The suggested ratio is 3 Tablespoons of coffee for every 1 cup of water. However, you know what you like, so play around with this ratio until you get it just right for you!
  3. Take your water off the boil and let sit for 30-45 seconds.
  4. Add the filter to the Chemex carafe. Do not add the coffee grounds yet. I use the Chemex pre-folder filters which just tuck right down in the top of the carafe. I’ve tried other brands and types of filters, but the Chemex filters are a special weight of paper that seems to filter with a precision that produces the best taste, in my opinion.
  5. Very slowly pour just a little water in and around the filter to wet it. That helps the filter stay put and adhere to the top section of the carafe. Trust me, you want to do this. A dry filter will tend to move around with the grounds in it and any splash of boiling water jumping the filter is not a good thing. So wet the filter just a bit.
  6. You can discard the water in the bottom of the carafe.
  7. Now add the ground coffee to the filter.
  8. Very slowly pour the water over the grounds as it drips through the carafe. Avoid pouring too much water too quickly. If you do, just take a spoon and stir the grounds a little to make sure they’re not clumping. Continue pouring slowly until desired strength and amount of coffee is reached. (You will want to play around with the coffee to water ratio until you get it just right for you.)
  9. After coffee has fully dripped, carefully remove the filter and grounds and discard.
  10. Pour your coffee into your cup and enjoy!

So if you have some extra time in the morning or even on the weekends, give the pour over method a try. You may never go back!

Chemex Pour Over Coffee Carafe And Filters

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How To Make Pour Over Coffee

How To Make Pour Over Coffee Step By Step Guide

Pour Over Coffee DIY Step By Step Guide

Pour Over Coffee DIY Step By Step Guide

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