Blueberry Cobbler Bars

Jun 9th, 2010 // Desserts, Healthy, Recipes

This is my favorite time of year for fruit because there’s nothing I love more than berries. Large packs of blueberries have already started to appear at Trader Joe’s. Blueberries are great on their own, but once you start making recipes with them things get unhealthy in a flash. Blueberry pancakes, blueberry cobbler, blueberry pie, blueberry coffeecake… you get the idea. So, this morning when I opened my fridge and saw that big pack of blueberries, I immediately wanted some blueberry cobbler with ice cream! Instead I dreamed up this healthier alternative. I’m not claiming that they are fat free or super low in calories, but they are not all bad!

My kid is way into berries and was continually sneaking blueberries one-by-one when my back was turned. When I caught him in the act he told me that a friendly blue dinosaur had come into the kitchen and snacked on them! Hilarious. This particular Blueberry Cobbler Bar Recipe is going to go into our regular dessert rotation because the bars come moist yet crumbly and they aren’t too sweet. (They really hit the spot even without a giant scoop of ice cream on top.) They are also rather beautiful set out on the table. Don’t you think? Now for the recipe… Read more after the jump…

Beef & Bowtie Stew

Jun 8th, 2010 // Dinner, Recipes

Ok, so I admit this isn’t a very summery meal, but just today I had the bright idea that I could create a vegetarian stew and a kid friendly beef stew at the same time. Once I had the idea, I couldn’t wait to try it!  Let me explain why this even matters… Those who follow already know that my husband is a vegetarian. Usually when making things like stew, I have to make an entirely different meal for him. Ugh. So much more work!  Today a light bulb went off — I thought I would try to stew the vegetables separate from the meat and just combine them in the end. Sure, it’s not the same as when it all stews together, but I’m not running a Michelin rated restaurant here. This technique totally worked and my husband was as pleased with his meatless meal as we were with ours. FYI: This technique also cuts down on the total stewing time because the two are stewing simultaneously, side by side.

Now for the kid friendly part: I added bowtie pasta to the stew to make it more kid friendly. It turned out to be a very good decision. My kid’s love of bowtie pasta motivated him to try the stew even though it looked and smelled unfamiliar to him. Now for the recipe… Read more after the jump…

Cannelleni Bean Salad

Jun 7th, 2010 // Dinner, Healthy, Lunch, Sides, Veggie Friendly

I guess I’m way into Donna Hay this week because I keep turning to her Off the Shelf Cookbook for ideas. I’m crazy for this beautiful summery salad. I had high hopes that my kid would like it too. He was a very good little helper in making it, but when he tasted the dressed salad, he grimaced. More for me!

This salad stores quite well and tastes even better the next day. Be sure to toss it right before serving so that all that lemon juice is evenly distributed. Now for the recipe… Read more after the jump…

Grandma Hope’s Baked Blintz

Jun 6th, 2010 // Breakfast, Holiday, Recipes

Several years ago, on the occasion of my Grandma Hope’s 80th birthday, my Aunt BJ put together a cookbook called Recipes for Celebrating Hope. It was filled with our family’s favorite recipes and it was a loving tribute to the matriarch of our family. I find myself turning to this cookbook whenever I want comfort food. A friend’s father died recently, so today I decided that my kid, nephew and I would make something from the cookbook to bring them comfort as well. We chose this Baked Blintz Recipe because it has so much richness and love baked right in.

Farmer cheese kind of looks like a cross between ricotta and goat cheese. My kid got a bit on his hands and was eager to taste it. I encouraged it and he was in heaven. I had to physically restrain him from continually dipping his finger into the filling once the egg was in there. Too bad the baked blintz was being made for another family so he didn’t get to sample the finished product. Now for the recipe… Read more after the jump…

Astonishingly Tasty Oatmeal Pancakes

Jun 5th, 2010 // Breakfast, Healthy, Recipes

My mom and nephew arrived from the east coast yesterday for a quick visit. My nephew is the exact same age as my kid and they are the best of buds. They asked for pancakes in the morning so I decided to try to make something that was (at least in part) healthy. I have tried a million whole grain and oatmeal pancakes recipes. Most of them haven’t made it to the site. Mostly because they are unremarkable. They taste fine covered in maple syrup and butter, but are nothing to brag about. My google search lead me to Smitten Kitchen‘s Oatmeal pancakes which were actually adapted from Good to the Grain. I adapted them a bit myself and got cookin’. These pancakes were beyond exceptional. I wasn’t the only one who thought so. After helping me make them, both boys polished off 5 pancakes each!

The truth is that I’m very hard judge when it comes to pancakes because my mother NEVER made pancakes from a mix. She used all the good stuff – buttermilk, real butter, white flour, eggs, etc. It’s always hard to compare healthy pancakes (even from scratch) with those. Having her here to taste these was the ultimate test and after tasting them, she asked for the recipe. The kids didn’t even want syrup. Oh how I wish I didn’t have baby weight left to lose – I’d eat these every morning! Now for the recipe… Read more after the jump…