Fast, Easy, Hot Out Of The Oven

March 25, 2010 at 1:12 pm | Posted in Recipes | Leave a comment
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Several weeks ago (on my birthday weekend) my husband took me to The Bluebonnet Café for breakfast. If you have never been to The Bluebonnet in Marble Falls, Texas read the full article at

This week I made some Irish Soda Bread. I know, I’m a little slow at getting around to baking it. I should have made it St. Patrick’s Day as planned. Oh well! So I started to make some Irish Soda Bread with a recipe from Simply Recipes. I made a few changes, and now call it my Irish American Bread! First, I substituted ½ of the flour (2 cups) for whole wheat flour. After about 35 minutes, I had to cover the bread in foil and cook it an additional 10 minutes or so. The whole wheat makes the bread a little denser, but I expected that. Second, I used craisins instead of raisins. My son and I enjoyed the bread hot right out of the oven. YUM!  The creamy butter we added melted over the top of the piping hot bread and the craisins added a little sweetness. This was soooo fast and easy! This would be wonderful accompanying a pot of soup.You can find the recipe here

Irish Soda Bread

Irish Soda Bread

Remember Meggie Mae Aprons when you’re looking for your next bridal or house warming gift.

May the luck o’the Irish be with ya in all your baking!



Celebrating With Family and Friends

March 11, 2010 at 5:30 am | Posted in Recipes | Leave a comment
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What a great weekend! It was my birthday so we decided to celebrate with family and friends. Did I mention it was all weekend? It all started Friday night with my sister and her husband. (No, back up, it started Thursday night when my daughter surprised me by coming home from college early! yay!) They came over and we cooked the Tomatillo Chicken Stew along with the Green Chile Cornbread from Simply Recipes. Oh so good-definitely will be one of my favorites from now on. I had a friend who made the stew, but she wasn’t quite as pleased with the stew. Suggestions-I used about 8 skinless chicken thighs. I think this made the stew much tastier and the chicken tender. Also, the pictures on the site show cutting the chicken into large pieces, I cut mine into bite size. I used a jar of Central Market Green Chile Salsa Verde since I was pressed for time.  When cooking the onions, I let them become light brown. If you try the recipe, let me know how it works for you.

The Green Chili Cornbread was so delish! I made a little oops! when I grabbed two cans of diced mild green chilies, but to my surprise one can was diced jalapenos! I had to fish the japs out of the batter, retrieving as many as possible. I like hot, but I was feeding company-I didn’t want to ignite them! Oh yeah, and don’t forget to drain them. I had to bake my cornbread an extra 15 minutes, yet it still turned out yummy. I know, so many mistakes on my part-I have a hard time multitasking while visiting and laughing with guests-all part of the fun!

More on the rest of my birthday eating adventure next week!



Simply Terrific Food Blog

February 19, 2010 at 3:18 pm | Posted in Aprons, Food Talk | Leave a comment
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This week I was floating through the food blog universe, which is actually one of my favorite past times. I’m amazed at the number of gifted cooks out there.  They are not only gifted at cooking, but they are also talented writers and creative photographers.  Elsie Bauer, of Simply Recipes is one the most talented.

When visiting her site, make sure you read her ‘About’ page. Her philosophy on cooking, as well as how the blog got started are great reads.  You will find everything from simple, everyday meals to more formal dishes- all tested by Elsie or her family and all with terrific photographs.  The recipe index is very helpful and you can also browse the site by ‘Recipe Type.’ Simply Recipes will definitely be one of my go-to blogs the next time I need a weeknight meal plan or a potluck idea.

This week I’m trying The Italian Pot Roast-perfect for a family meal on a cold February night. I hope you enjoy Elsie’s blog, and get the chance to wear your Meggie Mae Apron in the process!

The 'Kristin' and 'Julia' apron


Valentine’s Day Treats!

February 12, 2010 at 1:18 am | Posted in Aprons, Recipes | 2 Comments
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I had loads of fun spending an entire day making Valentine’s Day treats. I made three of my favorites-puppy chow, chocolate pretzels, and my own creation-Karin’s Valentine Treats.

Chocolate Covered Pretzels

Chocolate Covered Pretzels

Many of you have made puppy chow mix before. It is one of my favorites! My daughter loves it because she can make it in her dorm microwave, package it in a pretty bag, and give as gifts. My picture turned out overexposed, but you can look on Savory Sweet Life to get the recipe, as well as see a beautiful presentation. This is the picture that inspired me to use it in the red Valentine’s Day tins I found. Alice has other great recipes as well, so browse the site-she takes awesome pictures!

Of course chocolate covered pretzels are so easy and fun-no recipe needed! Just dip in chocolate and decorate with drizzled white chocolate or sprinkles of your choosing. Chocolate covered pretzels are fun to do with little kiddos too!

My previous two treats were so easy, my final creation took a little longer-but was well worth the effort! Who can resist ‘nilla wafers, peanut butter, caramel, and chocolate? Is there anything I missed?? Oh so good!

'Nilla wafers and peanut butter

'Nilla wafers and peanut butter-oh yum!

Karin’s Valentine Treats

Lollipop sticks (optional)
Vanilla wafers (I prefer Nabisco or Keebler)
Smooth peanut butter-about 1 ½ cups
Butter or nonstick cooking spray

Caramel Ingredients
1 1-pound box dark brown sugar
16 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
1 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
2/3 cup dark corn syrup
1/3 cup maple pancake syrup
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon molasses
1/4 teaspoon salt

12 oz. bag of semisweet chocolate chips-or whatever you prefer
Optional-white icing for drizzling, various valentine’s sprinkles

Spread each cookie with peanut butter and top with another cookie. Slide lollipop stick between cookies, optional. Place on a foil lined cookie sheet.


Karin's Valentine Treats covered with caramel

Covered with caramel

Combine first 8 ingredients in a heavy 2 1/2-quart saucepan. Stir with wooden spoon over medium-low heat until sugar dissolves (no crystals are felt when caramel is rubbed between fingers), occasionally brushing down sides of pan with wet pastry brush, about 15 minutes. Using a candy thermometer, heat to medium-high; cook caramel at rolling boil until thermometer registers 236°F, stirring constantly but slowly with a wooden spoon and occasionally brushing down sides of pan with wet pastry brush, about 12 minutes. Pour caramel into metal bowl. Cool, without stirring, to 175°F, about 20 minutes.

Cover two cookie sheets with aluminum foil. Rub each with butter. Using 2 fingers or small tongs, carefully pick up each cookie and dip it in the caramel. Use a small spatula to brush off any excess from each side. (If using lollipop sticks, the trick is to not let the stick fall out!) Gently place on the buttered foil. Place them in the fridge and cool completely.

Cover two more cookie sheets with foil and butter them. Melt your chocolate in the microwave according to package directions. Dip each cookie in the chocolate, scraping off excess with a spatula. Place each chocolate covered cookie on the buttered foil. While still warm, sprinkle with decorations or drizzle with white chocolate. Place in the fridge until cool. Wrap in individual lollipop wrappers or saran wrap.

I hope you have lots of fun making treats for your favorite Valentine.  And don’t forget-Meggie Mae Aprons make great gifts!

Puppy Chow, Chocolate Covered Pretzels, Karin's Valentine Treats

Chocolate Covered Pretzels, Puppy Chow, Karin's Valentine Treats

Happy Valentine’s Day!


Chicken Pot Pie-Perfect For A Cold Winter Night

February 5, 2010 at 3:29 pm | Posted in Recipes | Leave a comment
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I made it through my 21 days without sugar, flour, or fast food! O.k., so I did splurge twice for special occasions, but I still feel better having rid myself of sugar and processed flour. I didn’t realize how sugar affected my mood until I went off it totally. I will certainly cut back on the amount of sugar I consume.  Also, with all the fruit I was eating, that had to have some positive effects, right? I have started back on flour as well, but only in small amounts-like in the recipe that follows.

This week was dark, cold and rainy- just the type of weather for some homemade chicken pot pie. I started following a recipe from some unnamed source, but it was soooo unnecessarily complicated that I took it in my own direction. I was happy with the results. Here’s the recipe for

Karin’s Chicken Pot Pie

1 ¼ cup flour
½ tsp salt
1 stick butter, cold, cut into small cubes
5-6 Tbsp. ice water
1 egg yolk, blended with 1 Tbsp water for glaze (optional)

4 chicken breasts, skinless, cut into 1 inch pieces
Salt/pepper to taste

5 + 2 Tbsp. butter, melted
5 Tbsp. flour
4+ 2 Tbsp. olive oil
½ onion, diced
3 stalks of celery, diced
4 carrots, diced
¼ tsp. dried thyme
1 clove garlic, finely diced
¾ cup dry white wine
3 cups chicken broth
1 ½ cups frozen green peas
¼ cup fresh parsley, finely chopped or 1 ½  tsp dried

Mix flour and salt in a large bowl. Cut in cold butter until you have pea size lumps. Pour in the water, 1 tablespoon at a time, mixing with your hands. Add enough water to where you have a good dough, but not wet or soggy. On parchment paper, flatten dough to a 9 x 13 rectangle. Place on a cookie sheet and put in the fridge.

In a large skillet, heat 4 Tbsp of olive oil, add the chicken, season with salt and pepper.  Cook until well done. Remove from skillet and set aside.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Mix 5 Tbsp. flour and 5 Tbsp. of melted butter until smooth. Set aside. Melt remaining 2 Tbsp. butter and 2 Tbsp. oil in the skillet on Med-high. Add the celery, onion, and carrots. Sauté until soft, about 10 minutes. Add thyme and garlic, cook 3 minutes. Add wine, cook about 5 minutes. Add chicken broth and simmer. Slowly whisk in butter/flour mixture a little at a time.  Simmer until the sauce thickens, stirring often, about 4 minutes. Stir in chicken, peas, cream, and parsley. Add salt and pepper to taste. Pour into a 9X13 baking dish.

Remove crust from the fridge. Place on top of the chicken mixture. Brush with yolk/water glaze. Bake in the oven on middle rack for 15 minutes.

Turn on broiler. Place pie in the top half of the oven. Broil until top is a golden brown-about 2-3 minutes.
Remove pie, let rest 5 minutes. Serve with a simple side salad and there you have a delicious, warm chicken pie for a cold winter night. I placed mine in 2 round baking dishes, since I knew my family would not finish this whole pie in one night.  We ate one and I froze the other for another night. You could also use rotisserie chicken so you can skip that step. Also, if you wanted a meat pie, you could make it with beef and use red wine instead of the white.

Keep warm and have a wonderful week!


Healthy Ideas for Breakfast and Dinner

January 29, 2010 at 2:12 pm | Posted in Food Talk, Recipes | Leave a comment
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I’m on day 18 of my no sugar, no flour 21 day resolution! I have to admit, I did splurge and have some of the chocolate cheesecake I made, but other than that, I’ve stayed the course. I’m almost there! I do feel better without the sugar and flour coursing through my veins. But to tell you the truth, can’t wait to start baking! Life is meant to be celebrated, and what’s a celebration without cake?

We’ll, this week I did try some outstanding recipes. My first was Rosemary Trout with Cherry Tomato Sauce from Food & Wine magazine. This is such a fast and easy meal to make and it’s the perfect winter dish-it has a warm,  carmel color  and is light and flavorful. I used trout filets with the skin on for my dinner served with steamed asparagus, Greek salad and crusty whole grain bread.

Rosemary Trout with Cherry -Tomato Sauce

4 servings. A couple of rosemary sprigs are all you need to flavor each whole trout.


1 pint cherry tomatoes (preferably assorted color), halves
1 large shallot, chopped
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh rosemary plus 8 large sprigs
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
Coarse kosher salt
4 -10 to 12 ounce whole trout, gutted, boned, heads removed, if desired

Mix tomatoes, shallot, vinegar and chopped rosemary in bowl. Stir in 1 tablespoon oil.
Season sauce with salt and pepper.
Open trout like book on work surface. Sprinkle with coarse salt and pepper.
Place 2 rosemary springs on each; fold over to close.
Divide 3 tablespoons oil between 2 large nonstick skillets. Place over medium-high heat.
Add 2 trout to each skillet. Cook trout until brown outside and just opaque in center, about
3 minutes per side. Transfer to plates. Spoon sauce alongside.

My next dish I enjoyed was for breakfast-although it could be a dessert as well-whole wheat fruit crepes.  I love crepes because you can make them easily, they are lighter than tortillas, and you can fill them with just about anything to make a terrific meal. I filled mine with fresh fruit and non-fat plain yogurt, with a dollop of fresh whipped cream (no sugar added). These are so delish! I’ve made crepes before, but this whole-grain recipe filled with fruit is one of my favorites.  I can make a batch, wrap them between parchment paper, and they keep in the fridge up to 4 days.

Wheat Crepes –adapted from The Sonoma Diet Cookbook

Whole-wheat Crepes

2 eggs

2/3 cup water

½ cup milk

1 TB olive oil

1 cup whole wheat flour

pinch of salt

In a small bowl blend the eggs, water, milk and olive oil. In a large bowl mix the whole-wheat flour and salt. Make a well in the flour. Slowly stir the liquid ingredients into the flour until thoroughly combined.

Let set at room temperature for 15-20 minutes. Coat a non-stick skillet with spray oil. Heat skillet on medium-low heat. Pour batter into skillet. You might have to lift the skillet and swirl the batter to get it to spread. Heat for 2-3 minutes on each side. Transfer to a platter and continue with the remaining batter. Place parchment paper between crepes.

These healthy fruit crepes are easy to put together in the morning if you slice your fruit the night before. Then the next morning just spread your fruit and yogurt in the crêpe, wrap in cellophane, grab your coffee, and you’re out the door.

The 'Lisa' Apron

I hope these recipes get you off to a great start!


Valentine’s Day will soon be here. Order your apron today!

My Favorite Healthy Meal-Fish Tacos!

January 22, 2010 at 2:03 pm | Posted in Aprons, Food Talk, Recipes | Leave a comment
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I’ve made it ½ way through my 21 day resolution! No sugar, sugar substitutes, or processed flour-and through that I’ve made cappuccino brownies and Mississippi mud cake, without a drop of sugar entering my mouth!  I’m feeling pretty good about it, although I am really looking forward to the time when I can have some sugar once again. I have a hard time looking at dessert pictures-there are lots of recipes I’m now dreaming of making; I can’t wait to try them all!

Fish taco-healthy eating at its best!

But really, I’ve found some great healthy recipes. My favorite to prepare this week were my Fish Tacos. Fish tacos are my favorite! I consider myself an expert on fish tacos. The best are at La Playa in Port Aransas, Texas. Mine are second. Sometimes I dip the fish in Panko bread crumbs and fry it (not healthy but oh so yummy), but I enjoy grilled fish the most. I have used tilapia, mahi mahi, and orange roughy.  For frying, tilapia works great. For grilling-I prefer mahi mahi. This particular night I had orange roughy because that’s what looked the freshest in the store.  Grilled fish, mango salsa and purple cabbage slaw drizzled with a special sauce all served on soft corn tortillas, alongside seasoned black beans and fresh guacamole. Oh yeah, it was delicious!

Here’s a great recipe (not mine, but a good one) from Food and Wine Magazine-check it out!

One night I made a Frittata with eggs, spinach, bacon bits, red onion, and sliced black olives with feta cheese sprinkled over the top and served alongside fresh fruit (blueberries, tangerines, and apple slices.) This was a quick, delicious meal for a busy night, but would also be great at breakfast served with toast. There are many Frittata recipes online, just add your favorite ingredients. It’s like making a quiche, only without the crust. This is a tasty and satisfying dish, as well as very colorful. Here’s a great recipe from

Enjoy your week by spend some time cooking your favorite meal or trying a new recipe-you will be very satisfied with your efforts and your family will love it!

The 'Amy' full apron


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Best Dessert of the Year?

January 5, 2010 at 3:21 pm | Posted in Food Talk | Leave a comment
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You all know I love to bake. I’ve been baking non-stop since Halloween! My first attempt at a recipe for the New Year appears on this month’s front cover of Food and Wine Magazine. It was named the dessert of the year-Butterscotch Sticky Buns.  In my opinion, sticky buns are not a dessert-they are like a pastry served at breakfast. So really, I don’t feel like this should have been named “Dessert” of the year, but who’s complaining?? Anyway, they looked so yummy staring at me from the front cover, I had to grab an apron and start bake them.

I’d have to say, they turned out very pretty, and the irresistible icing drizzled perfectly into all the folds of the little buns and absorbed into the bottom oh so right. But the downside was my dough turned out a little dense-probably had something to do with the yeast and temperature of the milk (I think it was too warm). Served hot, right out of the oven-oh who could resist?  Overall, I’d say the first treat of the New Year was delicious! But best dessert of the year? That will need some testing. I’ll let you know in December how it holds up.

Happy Baking!

Butterscotch Sticky Buns


Classic Christmas Cookies

December 17, 2009 at 6:23 pm | Posted in Aprons, Recipes | Leave a comment
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It’s the week before Christmas! I still have shopping left-I’m headed out into the holiday crowd today. Odd, but I actually enjoy the crowds-I think it lends a sort of cheer and anticipation to the Christmas celebration.

But I also enjoy the cold nights spent at home with family, the fireplace lit and the smell of cookies coming fresh out of the oven. Recently, Meghan and I spent time cooking two of our favorites-M&M cookies and Coconut Macaroons. The recipes are old standbys; you probably have ones similar in your own recipe collection, but here is our take on these yummy classics.

Meggie Mae Aprons

Meggie Mae Aprons and Christmas Cookies

M&M Cookies

1 cup shortening
1 cup brown sugar
½ cup sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon soda
1 ½ cups M&Ms plain

Blend shortening and sugars. Beat in vanilla and eggs. Sift remaining dry ingredients together and add to the sugar and egg mixture. Mix well. Stir in 1 cup of M&Ms-reserve remaining for decorating. Drop from teaspoon onto ungreased cookie sheet-decorate tops of the cookies with the remaining M&Ms.
Bake at 375 degrees for 10-12 minutes until golden brown.

Coconut Macaroons

Coconut Macaroons

Coconut Macaroons

½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperatureCoconut Macaroons
¾ cup sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs
24 ounces sweetened flaked coconut (about 6 cups firmly packed)
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate or chocolate bark, melted

Position rack in center of the oven; preheat to 325 degrees. Line 3 baking sheets with parchment. Beat butter in large bowl until smooth. Add sugar and salt; beat until blended. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Mix in coconut. Drop batter onto sheets by tablespoonfuls, spacing 1 ½ inches apart.
Bake 1 sheet at a time until golden on bottom and browned in spots, about 25-30 minutes.
Using a ziplock, place the melted chocolate in the bag. Cut a tiny hole in one corner. Drizzle chocolate over each cookie. Chill on sheets until chocolate is firm.

Enjoy the Christmas season!


Honey and Jam

December 4, 2009 at 7:36 pm | Posted in Food Talk | 1 Comment
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Vintage Inspired Designer Aprons

The "Lisa" apron

Burrrr-It’s cold outside! Great day to drink coffee, eat biscotti, and look at food blogs! I found the most amazing blog author of this blog is only 19, but from her outstanding blog and photography, you wouldn’t know it. Most importantly, she loves Jesus and you can visit her site to read more about her, view her photographs, and check out some delicious recipes!


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