Sunday, June 17, 2018


Baker Upstairs



Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Garlic Lemon and Parmesan Oven Roasted Zucchini

Garlic Lemon and Parmesan Oven Roasted Zucchini

Zucchini brushed with a garlic lemon oil and topped with plenty of parmesan cheese.
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 17 minutes
Servings: 8


  • 1 1/2 lbs zucchini (about 4 - 5 small/medium zucchini)
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • Zest of 1 small lemon (1 tsp)
  • 2 cloves garlic , crushed through a garlic crusher or finely minced
  • 3/4 cup finely shredded parmesan cheese
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a rimmed cookie sheet with aluminum foil.
  2. Cut zucchini into thick wedges or halves (cut each zucchini in half then that half in half, so you have 4 wedges from each zucchini. Next time I might try to do just halves so the parmesan bakes more evenly, plus it would be easier to add the parmesan). In a small bowl, stir together olive oil, lemon zest and garlic. Align zucchini on prepared baking sheet spacing them evenly apart. Brush olive oil mixture over tops of zucchini (working to get some of the garlic/lemon zest on each piece and not just in one spot. It clumps together a little so just spread it out). Sprinkle tops with parmesan cheese (try to get as much of it on the tops as possible, you can pick up what was sprinkled off to the sides of the zucchini and add it to the tops) and season lightly with salt and pepper. Bake in preheated oven 11 - 13 minutes then, adjust oven rack near top of oven and broil for several minutes until parmesan is golden brown. Serve warm.
  3. Recipe Source: adapted slightly from Liluna





  • 16 ounces baby spinach
  • ½ small red onion, slivered (see note about tempering the onion flavor)
  • 6 slices of applewood smoked bacon, cooked and crumbled or chopped into small pieces
  • 1 cup Feta cheese crumbles, more or less to taste
  • 1 cup dried cranberries or cherries, more or less to taste
  • 1-2 Honey Crisp apples, cored and sliced thin


  • 1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • Pinch of cayenne (more to taste if you want)
  • Pinch of salt


  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 clove of garlic, pressed or finely minced
  • 1-2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, more or less to taste
  • Fresh cracked pepper to taste


  1. For the dressing, shake all the ingredients together in a mason jar until well combined or run them through a quick blender cycle. Store in the refrigerator until ready to serve. The dressing can be made up to a week in advance.
  2. For the nuts, lightly toast the nuts in a 350 degree oven for 8-10 minutes, checking often so they don’t burn. While they toast, place the sugar, cayenne and salt in a skillet over medium-low heat. Cook the sugar mixture until it liquifies completely, adjusting the heat so it doesn’t bubble and burn. Toss in the toasted nuts and stir to coat the nuts with sugar. Let the sugared nuts cool completely.
  3. To assemble the salad, toss all the salad ingredients together along with the cooled nuts. Serve immediately with the vinaigrette alongside. All the components can be measured out/prepped ahead of time and stored separately (I like to soak the apples in a bit of lemon juice in water to help prevent browning). Just toss right before serving. Enjoy!


Kim, who gave me this recipe, alerted me to the most magnificent tip. I love onions but hate the after effects of eating them raw in a salad. To temper the onions a bit, soak the onion slices covered in cold water with a bit of baking soda (I use about 1/2 teaspoon soda). Let them sit for 15-20 minutes then rinse and drain well. Also, in my pictures, disregard the overly yellow color of my vinaigrette. I went a little crazy with the mustard when I made it this time. Yours probably won’t be quite this yellow. Finally, this recipe makes an excellent main dish if served alongside grilled chicken and keep in mind that all the quantities can easily be adapted according to taste. Yum!
All images and text ©.

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Soft Maple Sugar Cookies

Soft Maple Sugar Cookies 

Sweet Community Rating:Not yet rated!
Prep time :0:15
Bake/Cook time :0:08 to 0:10
Yield :22 cookies
Chef :Jessica Segarra


Maple is one of the most under-appreciated flavors, but not for long! These sweet and soft maple sugar cookies pack a double whammy with maple flavoring in the cookie as well as the icing - making them the perfect Fall dessert.


2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour* 
1/2 teaspoon baking soda 
1/2 teaspoon salt 
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened 
1/3 cup vegetable oil 
1 1/2 cup Dixie Crystals Extra Fine Granulated Sugar
1 large egg 
2 teaspoons vanilla extract 
1/2 teaspoon maple extract 
2 cups Dixie Crystals Confectioners Powdered Sugar
2 tablespoons water 
1 teaspoon vanilla extract 
1/2 teaspoon maple extract 


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and salt.  Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, beat butter, vegetable oil and sugar until well combined.   Mix in egg, vanilla extract and maple extract.
  4. Add flour mixture 1 cup at a time, mixing until completely combined.
  5. Roll 2 tablespoons of dough into balls and place on prepared baking sheet, leaving room for spreading. Lightly flatten dough balls with bottom of a cup into a disk shape.
  6. Bake for 8-10 minutes, just until edges are set.  Remove from oven and allow to cool for 15 minutes on baking pan.  Transfer to a cooling rack.
  7. For icing: In a small bowl, whisk together powdered sugar, water, vanilla extract and maple extract until smooth.
  8. Using a spoon, smooth icing onto top of each cookie. Quickly sprinkle with sprinkles if desired and let set for 10 minutes, or until hardened.
  9. Serve immediately or store in an airtight container for up to 5 days.

Peanut Chicken Zucchini Noodles

Peanut Chicken Zucchini Noodles

Mixing up weeknight dinners with this wildly flavorful and healthy Asian inspired peanut chicken and veggies dish! Keep in mind that the sauce ingredients are each important for the flavor. I do not recommend substitutions.


  • 2 Tablespoons sesame oil (you'll need more for the peanut sauce below)1
  • 2 teaspoons minced or chopped garlic
  • 1 cup shredded carrots
  • 1 cup thinly sliced cabbage (I use red)
  • 1 large bell pepper, thinly sliced (I use red)
  • 3 large zucchini, spiralized into noodles4
  • 2 large chicken breasts, cooked & shredded (about 2-3 cups)2
  • Toppings: 1 Tablespoon sesame seeds, handful of cilantro, 1/2 cup peanuts, chopped green onion


  • 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1/3 cup soy sauce (I use reduced sodium)
  • 2 Tablespoons sesame oil1
  • 2 Tablespoons rice vinegar3
  • 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, minced
  • 1-2 teaspoons Sriracha or any hot chile sauce
Special Equipment


  1. Heat 2 Tablespoons of sesame oil and the garlic in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the carrots, cabbage, and pepper slices. Cook for about 5 minutes until the vegetables are a little tender. (I usually begin the peanut sauce, step 2, during this time.) Once tender, add the zucchini noodles and shredded chicken to the skillet. Cook and stir for about 3 minutes until the zucchini is a little softer and chicken is warm. Turn off the stove and remove from heat. Set aside. (*If your skillet isn't quite big enough, you can do this step in batches.)
  2. Combine all of the peanut sauce ingredients in a small saucepan over low heat. Whisk constantly until the peanut butter has melted and everything is combined. I usually use 2 teaspoons of Sriracha, but use the amount of heat you like.
  3. Once the sauce is heated through, pour over chicken/vegetables. Toss everything around until combined. Place on a serving dish (or not!) and top with sesame seeds, cilantro, peanuts, and green onion. Serve immediately.
  4. Leftovers keep well in the refrigerator for a few days. Reheat to your liking.

Recipe Notes:

  1. Sesame oil is KEY in the signature flavor of this dish. I highly advise against using any other oil; the recipe will not taste the same. You can find it in the Asian section of grocery stores.
  2. I simply boiled chicken until cooked through-- about 12-15 minutes, then shredded it. If you have leftover shredded, chicken from another recipe, use that! Or buy a rotisserie chicken from the store and shred the meat.
  3. Rice vinegar is also KEY in the signature flavor of this dish. It's a sweet and delicate vinegar you can find in the Asian section of your grocery. Do not use white wine or white vinegar-- they're much too harsh. Rather, you can use cider vinegar because it is more mild but your sauce will not taste the same. Again, rice vinegar is best.
  4. My spiralizer recommendation: I love the Inspiralizer! If you do not have a spiralizer, just cut the zucchini into super thin strips instead. Or use 1 pound pasta. If using regular pasta, you'll want to cook it before using.

The BEST Chili on Earth

The Best Chili on Earth

Megan Porta

Sweet & Spicy Sriracha Chicken Tacos

Sweet and Spicy Sriracha Chicken Tacos

Recipe from : Will Cook for Smiles
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 6 -8 tacos
Author Lyuba Brooke


  • Chicken:
  • 2 chicken breasts boneless and skinless
  • 3 Tbsp sriracha sauce
  • 1 Tbsp honey
  • 1 tsp lime juice
  • Salt
  • Tacos:
  • 6-8 taco shells
  • 1 avocado peeled and pit take out
  • 1-2 cups mixed greens
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onion
  • Sauce:
  • 1/3 cup sour cream
  • 1 Tbsp finely minced cilantro
  • 2 tsp lime juice
  • Salt
  • __
  • 1 Tbsp sriracha + 1/2 Tbsp honey for topping


  1. Combine sriracha, honey, salt, and lime juice for marinating the chicken. Mix and slather both chicken breasts with the mixture. Let it marinade for about 15 minutes. (You can also let it marinade for longer in the fridge.) You can prepare the chicken on the grill or in a skillet on a stove top. Cook on both sides until done. Take off heat and cool a little bit, until you can handle it enough to cut.
  2. In a small sauce bowl, mix together sour cream, finely minced cilantro, lime juice and salt. Set aside.
  3. Mix together 1 Tbsp of sriracha and 1/2 Tbsp of honey. (You can always make more if you like more sauce and more heat.) Set aside.
  4. (To drizzle sauces, I usually add them to separate small zip-lock bags and cut off little tips when I'm ready to drizzle. That way I don't have to wash a million squeeze bottles or use pricey piping bags.)
  5. Slice chicken and add some to each taco shell.
  6. Add some diced avocado, greens, and green onion on top of chicken.
  7. Drizzle with sour cream sauce and honey sriracha on top.
  8. Serve right away.
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