Sunshine Soup

Please be aware, I’m about to sing….

– – wait – – first, have you entered my brand spankin’ very first giveaway? – – dooo ittt! I want to give you cookies, and this cook book and .. did I mention cookies?!?!

And now ………

*ahem ahem*

You Are My Sunshine
My only sunshine.
You make me happy
When skies are grey.
You’ll never know, dear,
How much I love you.
Please don’t take my sunshine away

Lately I find the sun’s been playing hide and seek. On Monday, it was out in all its bright and shiny glory and then yesterday – – it was as though someone told it to run away forever!! Mr. Sun, I’m ready for you to come out and play … 🙂

 When it’s cold, dark and cloudy, add a little sunshine to your day with a piping hot bowl of sunshine soup.

A bowl of sunshine is bound to brighten your day.

It’s thick and velvety, bursting with brightness teasing you like a warm blanket in the middle of the arctic

( … whoever said I was dramatic, totally doesn’t know me 😀 lol)

Sunshine Soup

1 Large Sweet Potato – cubed

1 Large Kabocha Squash – halved

2 Large Carrots – peeled and cut into large pieces

3 Tbsp fresh Thyme

4 Cloves Garlic

¼ Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

4 Tbsp Salt

4 Tbsp Black Pepper

4 Tbsp Onion Powder

4 Tsp Fresh Nutmeg

6 Cups Vegetable Stock

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 oc

In a large bowl, mix together all of the above vegetables.

Add the Olive Oil, as well as all of the above seasonings and spices.

Mix together until everything is well coated.

Roast for 40 minuets until all of the vegetables have become tender.

Remove from oven and allow to cool.

Working in small batches, add the roasted vegetables to a blender, with 1 cup of stock – blend until smooth.

Empty into large pot and repeat with the remainder for vegetables and stock.

Reheat once ready to consume.

This soup will leave you, walking on sunshine 🙂

Enjoy my dears, stay sweet

Xoxox

Peanut Butter Cinnamon Raisin Bread

Sweet Treats….

Let’s just have a moment of silence

………

A moment of Silence to take in

THIS

FANTASTICALLY

AMAZING

PEANUT BUTTER REVOLUTIONARY

MASTER PIECE


aka any Jar of Peanut Buttery goodness that comes out of the Peanut Butter & Co. Factory.

OMG … can you imagine visiting such a place, you think those little rugrats in willy-wonka had problems keeping their hands to themselves?!?!

– – phhaaa-leeaaassseee.

Let me loose in that factory, and it will become messy (of course in a wonderfully delicious way 😉 lol)

I guess I don’t have to mention just how excited I was to see that Peanut Butter & Co. can now be found at my local grocery store … to be completely frank; I had to be picked up off the floor. I wanted all of them – – seriously, I did. But because I’m such an adult and I’m mature and all that jazz – – I only bought 1 ( not to worry, I’ll be back for the other ones :D).

I came home right after my exciting buy and lost my Peanut Butter & Co. virginity with a spoon and cinnamon swirl peanut butter.

One

Word

…. BLISS

My inherent foodie then took hold of matters and began thinking, what can I add this magic to, to rock my world?

Bread.

Mama LTSL always say’s bread fixes everything and well… has mama ever been wrong?

So, I made this little doozie – – Peanut Butter Cinnamon Raisin Bread 😀 .

 

Peanut Butter Cinnamon Raisin Bread

Bread

3 Cups Flour

4 1/2 Tsp Yeast

2 Tsp Cinnamon

1 Tsp Nutmeg

3/4 Cups half and half cream

1/4 Cups Brown Sugar

2 Tbsp Butter

1/2 Tsp Sea Salt

1 Cup Peanut Butter and Co Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Peanut Butter

1/2 Cup Raisins

1 Tsp Almond Extract

Filling 

*see NOTE below*

3 Tbsp Granulated Sugar

2 Tbsp Cinnamon

1 Egg

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 oc, lightly spray a 5 x 3 inch loaf pan.

In a small bowl, combine the sugar and cinnamon that will be used as your filling.

In a separate dish, lightly beat your egg.

Using a standing mixer and your dough hook – combine 1 1/2 cups Flour, yeast, cinnamon and nutmeg.

Over medium heat, bring milk, brown sugar, butter, salt and almond extract to a simmer ( this will take roughly 4 minutes)

 

Add your milk mixture to your dry ingredients.

Mix until just combined – approximately 2 minutes on medium speed.

Now – – it’s peanut butter time!! In goes the magic maker 😉

Next, add 1 more cup of flour.

Last but not least — add your raisins.

Sprinkle 1/2 cup of flour across a clean surface. Turn your dough out and need, until you achieve a soft dough consistency ( it should feel like pizza dough).

 

Roll out your cinnamon raisin bread into a  wide rectangle.

Lightly brush the surface of your dough, with the egg ( it is not necessary to use the entire egg – – you’ll want to save some for the top of the bread)

Sprinkle 3/4 of your cinnamon-sugar mixture over the surface.

Starting with the end nearest to you, roll your bread as though it were a jelly roll 🙂

Place your roll into your bread pan, seam side down.

Brush the surface of the bread, with the remaining egg.

Now, using that reserved cinnamon-sugar sprinkle over the crust to form a layer of yumm-osity 😉 lol.

Bake for 45 minutes.

Allow to cool – – and then have your way with this little monster!!

Let’s chat for a second about this recipe. It’s what I would call a YAY/Boo concoction.

Yay – because it tastes phenomenal, it oozes with cinnamon goodness, cry’s with the richness of the peanut butter and holds up to a good slathering of butter like a gem. It’s a great recipe but….

Boo– since, I was aiming for cinnamon swirl bread. As you see that didn’t happen 😦

*NOTE* I’m pretty sure I skimped on the cinnamon sugar that goes into the bread. Next time, I’ll probably do a 3:1 cinnamon sugar ratio.

With that being said though, there were no complaints from my main hype man – papa LTSL. He said it was the best Peanut butter Cinnamon Raisin Bread he’s ever eaten – –  granted that man is both fabulous and ridiculously biased.

The bread IS a stunner and I certainly won’t call this a recipe flop – – the sugary crust that’s formed meshed with the cushiony middle, alone makes me excited to try this recipe again.

Stay Sweet Good looking people of the blog world

Xoxox

Peanut Butter and Jelly Oatmeal

Dear you,

Yes – this letter is to you.

You the good look person, sitting there reading my blog.

Thank you for being such a sweetheart and reading this little thing that has become such a huge (and exciting) part of my life.

I seriously love you for doing so, and in turn I hope to rock your socks with super yummy – oh so good delicious recipes for a long long time.

You read

I’ll write and attempt to rock your socks, every single jingle time

Sweet Deal?

To carry on with my peanut butter love affair and in celebration of March being National Peanut Butter month – – I’ve found a way to rock your socks from the morning right through to the evening.

Yeppperrss – – this recipe is deee-lich-ious whether it’s for breakfast, lunch, dinner or anywhere in between

(mmm or all of the above – – totally not speaking from experience! 😉 ).

Smooth

Creamy

Velvety

And comforting

… All wrapped up in a cozy bowl waiting for you to dig in!!

…Want some? Want Some? —Want Some?

Cooommmmeee annnndd getttt-eerrr 😉

Peanut Butter & Jell-aayy Oatmeal

Serves 1 (increase as needed for the familia)

2 Cups Milk

¼ Cups Steel Cut Oats (seriously, this stuff – – is the STUFF – – love it!!)

¼ Cups Peanut Butter

3 Tbsp. Grape Jelly (or any other kind that tickles your fancy – – you say Nutella, I say – – marry me 😉 )

Directions:

Over medium heat, bring your milk to a simmer. This should take about 3 minutes.

Next, add your peanut butter and allow to simmer for another 2 minutes.

Watch carefully for small bubbles to form- – don’t let your milk mixture boil as it burns easily (and there’s nothing worse than burnt milk *yuck*).

Add your oats.

Lower heat and allow to cook for 20 minutes, until desired consistency and tenderness of oats.

Remove from heat and spoon into your favourite bowl.

In a separate bowl, mix your jelly until it becomes a smooth syrup.

Last, drizzle your jelly over your peanut butter oatmeal.

Feeeelllll theee loooovvveee!!

There’s something special about a hot bowl of oatmeal, that makes me just want to dive in and do back-strokes (if I knew how to do back stokes :() It’s just so comforting so warmso inviting – so *yuuuuuuuummmm*!

I hope your socks have been rocked 😀

Stay sweet cutie pies

Xoxoxo

Nona’s Italian Wedding Zuppa

I’m not Italian – but I want to be so badly!!

The reality however is, I’m not … 😦

I’ll probably continue wishing and trying to be Italian for as long as I live (…..is this weird?? – never mind, don’t answer that).

I’ve also wanted to call my grandma nona forever … nona just screams cute and cuddly … my granny is cute and cuddly … therefore she’d totally deserves the title nona. If I did call her nona though, I’m sure she’d look at me and wonder what in the world was going on in my little head.

If I explained to her my wish to turn my entire world into an Italian dream (complete with biscotti, tiramisu, gelato and pasta … and pizza … and zeppole…. and an italian polo player 😉 lol) – – she’d be more confused than ever and then probably make me eat something because she’s convinced, food makes everything better ( lol, this is why we get along so well ;)).

If I did have an italian nona though, besides always making delicious cookies and fresh pasta – – she would make me this soup.

It’s not your traditional Italian wedding soup – – she’s my nona … how could it be traditional?!?! … I put pop-tarts in cookies for heaven’s sake. The meatballs are made with chicken … but its pretty delicious none-the-less and I wouldn’t mind living out of italian fantasy by living in an entire pot of it.

Allow yourself to whisk away for a few minutes tonight from the frigid snowy winter, to a cool italian evening – with the sun just setting and ” godere la vostra zuppa” (enjoy your soup ;))

Nona’s Italian Wedding Zuppa

Meatballs:

3 Lbs Ground Chicken

3 Tbsp Fresh Thyme

3 Tbsp Fresh Rosemary

2 Tbsp Salt, Onion Powder, Black Pepper, Ground Garlic

3 Cloves Minced Fresh Garlic

1 Egg

1 Tbsp Cesar Salad Dressing

1 Cup Breadcrumbs

1 Tbsp Worcestershire Sauce

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 oc. Lightly spray a large baking tray ( I used my largest cookie tray :))

Mix all of the ingredients together, until well combined. Try your best, not to over mix.

Form into 1 Tbsp Balls.

Place on baking tray and bake for 30 minutes.

Remove meatballs from oven and allow to cool.

*At this point, the meatballs can be refrigerated until you are ready to make your soup* – – orr … if you’re hungry

let’s make some soup!!

The Zuppa:

8 Cups Water

4 Cups Chicken Broth ( I used low sodium … just because – – use the fresh stuff, if you’ve got it on hand :D)

1 package Frozen Spinach ~ approximately 2 Cups

1/4 Cup Freshly grated Parmesan Cheese

2 Tbsp Black Pepper

2 Tbsp Salt

2 Cups Tripoline pasta ( or any short cut pasta)

Directions: 

Over medium-high heat and in a large soup pot, bring the water and chicken broth to a boil.

Add frozen spinach. Allow to boil for 5 minutes.

Next, add the black pepper and Salt.

Now add the meatballs back into the soup.

Add the freshly grated Parmesan Cheese.

And last but not least, add the Tripoline. Allow to boil for another 5 minutes

Then …. Mangiamo!!

Stay cozy and warm this weekend with this zuppa … and maybe share with your nona 😉

xoxox