Cookbook: Breakfast for Dinner

Do you make breakfast for dinner? I love to throw that into the mix and it is such a helpful theme for keeping dinner budget friendly and for keeping dinner varied. I was psyched to see Breakfast for Dinner by Lindsay landis and Taylor Hackbarth. Lindsay writes Love & Olive Oil and wrote Cookie Dough Lover’s Cookbook.
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Besides the beautiful photos, I love that these are different recipes. This is no ‘scrambled-eggs-for-dinner’. These are real dinners, inspired by breakfast. I thought maple glazed meatballs was genius. Habanero-cheddar bread pudding? Yes please! Cornmeal pancakes with beer-braised short ribs also sounded amazing. The sunny side up burgers are a great idea (with a touch of crispy potatoes!) and will definitely be part of my menu planning sometime.
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Italian-Style Stuffed French Toast

adapted from Breakfast For Dinner

Ingredients:

2 garlic cloves
½ cup whole-milk ricotta
¼ cup Parmesan cheese
3 tbs chopped basil
1 tsp dried oregano
salt & pepper
4 slices french bread
2 eggs
¼ cup milk
¼ tsp salt
½ tsp garlic powder
1 cup marinara sauce, warmed

Directions:

Mix ricotta, Parmesan, basil, oregano, salt, and pepper.
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Cut a pocket into the bread horizontally with a small sharp knife. Cut into the bottom of the bread, starting small and cutting deeper while leaving a ¼ inch intact around the other edges.
Gently stuff ricotta mixture into the bread.
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Whisk eggs, milk, salt, pepper, and garlic powder in a shallow dish/bowl.
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Heat a large skillet or grill pan over medium heat and spray with nonstick spray.
Gently dunk and coat stuffed bread pieces into the egg mix.
Pan fry on each side for about 3 minutes.
Top with marinara to serve.
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I loved the flavors. I thought this savory stuffed french toast was great. The original recipe called for sauteed spinach mixed with the ricotta. That would be right up my ally, but I was out of spinach and lots of fresh basil. I left out the spinach, and upped the basil.

Occasionally I crave pancakes, but normally, I’m not seeking sweet for breakfast. This cookbook is perfect for lots of savory options.
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I truly love this book and thought it would be a great gift after being a house-guest. Cooking breakfast just seems so do-able and I think anyone would feel comfortable picking out something and whipping it up. Breakfast for dinner is also super fast…like fast enough to help allow you to watch the entire 3-hour Bachelor finale. 3 hours…that’s like a movie! Nope, don’t know who would need to fit those 3 hours into their week. Surely not me ;)

Full 3 Bite Rule Disclosure: My copy of Breakfast For Dinner was completely complimentary but my thoughts, opinions, and words are entirely my own.

Cookbook: Cookie Dough Lover’s Cookbook

I got a copy of Cookie Dough Lover’s Cookbook but I kept it under wraps until I could make Cookie Dough Truffles for Mr. J’s Birthday. I’ve been making treats to accompany birthday and Christmas gifts lately and I figured this was definitely special enough! He got real gifts on his bday but I wanted him to have something to open at a family gathering too. Plus, I love excuses to make something unusual!

The Cookie Dough Lover’s Cookbook is by Lindsay Landis. She also writes a blog Love and Olive Oil. Here’s her blog post for these cookie dough truffles! The cookbook is lovely and really has some good ideas. It is a fun one I think anyone would like. It is spiral bound which is a huuuuge help when following a recipe (it lays flat). I love the photography and I’m sure I’ll make something again. Here it is standing up but hiding behind my cookbook shield.
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The cookbook has a ton of creative recipes I haven’t seen everywhere. I have my eye on Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Sandwich Cookies, and Cookie Dough-Stuffed French Toast.

I made the truffles and they came out ok. They were somewhat messy but tasted good (as was the case for some oreo truffles I made with Mrs. E way back when). Anything that has to be dipped in chocolate is going to be good but messy. I made them on a warm day and couldn’t come up with a good technique.

The dough is super sticky since there aren’t any eggs in the recipe, but otherwise it is standard cookie dough dipped into melted chocolate. First I made the dough.
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Then the chips are mixed in and it is left to refrigerate for 30 minutes. I’m a lucky duck that my Mum gave me a mixing bowl cover for opportunities such as these!

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Then the dough is rolled and dipped.

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I liked that there weren’t a million ingredients. I overlooked that the chips were supposed to be mini (makes sense). That might have allowed them to form more uniform balls, rather than the large and lumpy ones mine were.

My trouble was dipping. I think the tines of my forks are kind of close together to allow the chocolate to drip through. I tried a bamboo skewer and that seemed to go ok. They were tough to get off though. It meant that getting off the skewer left an undipped hole. I did my best to cover it and I definitely recommend sprinkles to hide any imperfections.
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He liked them. I thought they looked cute once they were done and I could breathe again. Dipping was time consuming so I might make them as cups…that’s just a hint to what I made in cups that worked so well. ;)

I wish I could send some fun sweet treats to Biloxi this weekend. Something tells me 95-degree weather would wreak havoc on some cookie dough deliciousness but should be great for a beachy bachelorette party! Enjoy ladies!

Full 3 Bite Rule Disclosure: My copy of Cookie Dough Lover’s Cookbook was completely complimentary but my thoughts, opinions, and words are entirely my own.

Pies? Whoopie!

I loooove whoopie pies. I’m thankful that Mr. J comes from the state whose official treat is the whoopie pie (Maine’s official dessert is blueberry pie)! If I had my way, I wouldn’t have had a wedding cake, I would have served whoopie pies. Don’t get me  wrong, I ended up loving the cake, but how yummy would that have been?! For Christmas my bro & sis in-law gave me a whoopie pie pan and cookbook. It was so perfect since on the way to the C family Christmas I said I hoped I got a whoopie pie in my stocking!
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I’m not a big baker but now that I have lots more space and a fancy mixer, I hope to bake more. These came out great which was definitely a confidence booster. Also, you may recognize these from my Nosh guest blog post!

Oatmeal Whoopie Pies

Ingredients:

4 tbs unsalted butter, at room temperature
½ cup (packed) brown sugar
¼ cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 ½ cups rolled oats (not fast-cooking)
¾ cup all-purpose flour
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp salt
½ cup raisins (optional)
½ cup chopped pecans (optional)

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
In the work bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together the butter and both sugars on low speed.
Increase the speed to medium and beat until fluffy and smooth, about 3 minutes. Beat in the eggs one at a time. Add the vanilla dn beat until light and creamy, about 3 minutes.
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In a food processor or blender, process ¾ cup of the oatmeal until it resembles whole grain flour. Transfer the ground oatmeal to a medium bowl and add the remaining oatmeal, flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Add the oatmeal mixture to the butter-sugar mixture and beat on low speed until just combined.
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Using a spoon, drop about 1 tablespoon of batter onto one of the prepared baking sheets and repeat, spacing them at least 2 inches apart.
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Bake one sheet at a time for about 11 minutes each or until the cookies begin to brown. Remove from the oven and let the cakes cool on the sheet for about 5 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack to cool completely.
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Makes about 48 two-inch cakes.

Classic Marshmallow Cream

Ingredients:

1 ½ cups Marshmallow Fluff
1 ¼ cups vegetable shortening
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
1 tbs vanilla extract

Directions

In the work bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together the Marshmallow Fluff and the vegetable shortening, starting on low and increasing to medium speed until the mixture is smooth and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
Reduce mixer speed to low, and add the confectioners’ sugar and the vanilla, and beat until incorporated.
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Increase mixer speed to medium and beat until fluffy, about 3 minutes more.

I was really proud of these and they were delicious. I might fill the whoopie pan a bit less next time because they were pretty large.
Using the whoopie pan, I made 24 cakes, thus making 12 whoopie pies.
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The cookbook is cute. I liked that it was casual (makin’ whoopie, beating filling until you forget about it, etc). The pictures are great and there are some great combinations (bacon chive goat cheese filling or pistachio cardimum cakes, or mocha etc).

Superbowl BBQ Peanuts

In my moving maddness right before the holidays, I came home to a package and was surprised to find a gift! Mrs. K is totally supportive of The Three Bite Rule and saw the Hunting and Fishing cookbook thinking of my love of cooking and Mr. J’s hunting and fishing trips…not that he’s caught/shot anything for me to cook (just yet).
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I thumbed through and was impressed. I thought there were a bunch of fun recipes and the photographs are lovely as well. Most recipes use pretty standard ingredients which is nice. I saw the snack section and picked an easy BBQ peanut recipe to try. The breakfasts look awesome too. Mr. J will have to check out the venison section for the deer meat his brother hunted.
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Ingredients:

1/3 cup barbecue sauce
2 tbs butter, melted
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
16 oz dry roasted peanuts

Directions:

In a large bowl, combine barbecue sauce, butter, garlic powder, and cayenne.
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Add peanuts; stir until evenly coated.
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Transfer to a greased 13-in. x 9-in x 2-in. baking pan.
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Bake, uncovered at 325 degrees for 25-30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes.
Spread on waxed paper; cool completely. Store in an airtight container.
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I thought these were great! They are so easy and will disappear quickly. They’d make a fun superbowl snack or hostess gift. I had cashews and mixed nuts so I decided not to go out and buy peanuts. I used the mixed nuts and they worked just fine.

Thanks Mrs. K! There will be more meals to come from here! Now, if Mr. J would just catch me some salmon!

On a Stick

I was psyched to get a copy of “On a Stick” by Matt Armendariz and after quickly glancing through it I just couldn’t decide what to make! Everything just looked so good!
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Part of me wanted an excuse to make something fun or an upcoming special occasion and the other part of me figured, what’s wrong with just making something fun on a Monday? It was a dreary day here in Boston and I was pretty soaked after getting home and walking the dog.I chose: (drum roll please) fried ravioli on a stick! It was a fun dinner and more filling than I thought. A few extra large raviolis sprinkled with Parmesan with tomato sauce for dipping. How great is that?! The leftovers toasted up nicely under the broiler too.
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Ingredients:

marinara sauce
1 tbs olive oil
1 garlic clove, minced
1 (14.5 ounce) can whole tomatoes, drained, seeded and roughly chopped
1/4 cup dry red wine
2 tsp sugar
salt & pepper

1 qt vegetable oil
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup plain bread crumbs
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
2 tsp dried oregano
2 tsp dried basil
1 tsp dried thyme
2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
12 store-bought ravioli

Directions:

1) make the marinara sauce: warm oil in a medium pot over medium heat. Add garlic and tomatoes and cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Deglaze pot by adding wine, stirring to loosen browned bits from bottom of pot; then stir in oregano and sugar and seacon with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer mixture to a food processor and process to desired consistency. Return mixture to pot and simmer 30 minutes. Cool slightly before serving.

2) Prehead vegetable oil in a large, heavy pot over medium-high heat.

3) Place flour in one shallow dish and eggs in another. In a third, mix bread crumbs, 1/4 cup Parmesan, oregano, basil, thyme, garlic powder, salt and pepper.
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4) In two batches, toss ravioli in flour, gently shaking off excess. Dip in egg and then in bread crumb mixture. Thread 3 breaded ravioli onto each skewer.
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5) once oil reaches 350F carefully place skewers in pot, 2 at a time, and fry about 4 to 5 minutes. Drain on paper towels and sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup Parmesan. serve warm, with marinara sauce on the side.
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They came out awesome! They were definitely something I wouldn’t have really thought about making otherwise, and I’m sure I wouldn’t have put them on a stick. The stick helped make them more manageable rather than bobbing for raviolis.

The book is beautiful. The photos are lovely and very appropriately styled. Though I’m not familiar with Matt Armendariz’s work, the blogger voice comes through rather than the often-distant cookbook author voice. For the ravioli he says “if you haven’t tried them, you should”. True story.

Each stick item includes a recipe for the sauce too. This definitely puts some of these items to the next level. I plan to make the s’mores sometime before fall decends and the bacon wrapped shrimp looks like something my Mum and I would love.
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I liked the background provided on certain recipes and that he differentiated all the types of sticks. While I don’t know that every item in the book needs to be on a stick, they definitely spice up the presentation and sometimes make the item more manageable.

Full 3 Bite Rule Disclosure: My copy of On A Stick was completely complimentary but my thoughts, opinions, and words are entirely my own.