Tag Archives: Cookbooks


Hey! Remember when I used to bake all the time? Yeah me neither, BUT! I’m back at it. A couple days ago, while Cormac was at school and Teddy was taking a decent nap for once, I had a midday baking session.

I bought Dorie’s Cookies as a “congrats on living through your kitchen remodel!” gift to myself a couple months ago, but somehow managed to go until now without baking from it. I wanted something fairly quick and with ingredients I had on hand, so after just a couple seconds of flipping I came across “Natasha’s Mum’s Fruit and Walnut Bread Bars.” I didn’t know what to expect but they looked appetizing and I had fruit and nuts.

Whipping the meringue was a little more frustrating than I expected. (True confession my egg whites weren’t room temp.) But once I got firm peaks it all came together really quickly.

Baking was easy. Cutting the bars was easy. And the kids gobbled them up. And the whole recipe only had a 1/2 cup of added sugar which is less than a lot of cookies so that’s a plus. I went lightish on the crystallized ginger since I knew the kids would be doing most of the eating, but for myself I would’ve preferred more ginger.

I’m looking forward to making more cookies soon. I think I want to try the espresso sables next.

While was making the bread bars, I had a loaf of bread coming together and rising. I’ve used this recipe for 9 or 10 years at this point and its fail proof. Its a perfect sandwich bread, and makes absolute exquisite peanut butter and jellies.

I love that it makes two loaves, so I always stick one in the freezer. The kids go through nearly a whole loaf in about two days. Bread is a major food group around here.

Besides sandwich bread, I almost always have a loaf of quick bread around for after school snacks and whatever. My go-to is the banana bread recipe¬†from Veganomicon. I don’t think I even own the book anymore, but I’ve had the recipe memorized for a couple years now. I usually throw a shredded zucchini in it too, just to force vegetables into my kids. I’m evil like that.

I also made some bagels a week or two ago, but can’t find a picture. I need to make more though because I haven’t found any bagels I like at all in Issaquah, and they’re easy enough to make at home. I tried out a cheddar jalapeno version this time and it was pretty good.

That’s all for now. Keep your fingers crossed Seattle gets some sun soon! Cormac and I are planning a garden this spring/summer and we’re sick of record-setting rain!

Jamie Oliver’s Quick Salmon Tikka

Jamie Oliver rocks. Yeah, I’m just putting it all out there. I love that man. I love his recipes. (But I have to admit I was not an avid watcher of the second season of Food Revolution.) Brent and I have used several of his cookbook recipes from both Jamie’s Italy and his Food Revolution cookbook, and they’re always quick and flavorful. This week we made his Quick Salmon Tikka with Cucumber Sauce from the latter book. Rather than use the pre-made red curry paste, we used his recipe for tikka masala curry paste from the same Food Revo book. His curry recipes are awesome.

The meal literally takes 15 minutes to make, and I had brown rice/quinoa blend in the rice cooker on the timer ready to be done at just the right time. All of that means this was the perfect weeknight meal.

I’m pretty positive this would be equally flavorful and awesomely delicious on chicken or tofu or any other sort of protein you’d like to spice up. I really liked the simplicity of rubbing the paste on and just cooking. It was a nice alternative to simmering a curry.

We’re slowly getting back into the groove of having a routine and actually cooking dinner every night, so 15 minute meals are definitely more my speed right now. But now that we have internet and cable, I must return to my Dexter on demand marathon.